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Xiaomi Redmi Pro brings dual-cam system to budget phone category

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We knew it was only a matter of time before the dual-camera set-up in a smartphone becomes mainstream. After all, one camera just doesn’t cut it when you want better focus and depth perception. Xiaomi is the latest company to join the fray with the newly launched Redmi Pro.

The 5.5-inch device uses sensors from different manufacturers: a 13-megapixel Sony IMX258 main lens for the still image and a 5-megapixel Samsung assistive sensor for that DSLR-like bokeh effect you probably want. You may even adjust the focus point after taking a photo.

To show the Redmi Pro’s camera prowess, Xiaomi has released the following sample images.

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The Redmi Pro is also Xiaomi’s first smartphone to get an OLED display — a full-HD at that — to make visuals eye-popping.

We’re surprised the company has introduced the dual-camera and OLED screen technologies into the entry-level Redmi lineup, not into the flagship Mi series. It makes us wonder how Xiaomi is going to set its next top-of-the-line phone apart.

Not that we’re complaining, considering the base model, which comes with 3GB of RAM, 32GB of ROM, and MediaTek Helio X20 10-core processor, costs only 1,499 yuan or about $225. Even the variant with 3GB of RAM, 64GB of internal storage, and MediaTek Helio X25 64-bit deca-core chipset is priced at just 1,699 yuan or roughly $255, and the version with 4GB of RAM, 128GB of internal memory, and Helio X25 processor sells for only 1,999 yuan or around $300.

At those prices, you already get a brushed-metal unibody, a 2.5D curved glass up front, a fingerprint sensor at the bottom of the screen, a USB Type-C port, dual-SIM and VoLTE support, an IR blaster, and Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow-based MIUI 8 OS.

To top it off, you may not have to worry about charging the Redmi Pro often because it boasts a huge, 4,050mAh battery. Fast charging should keep you sane as well.

Xiaomi has not announced any international launch for the Redmi Pro yet. The August 6 availability of the gold and silver models is only for the Chinese market, but we’re pretty sure it will soon be sold in India, the second largest smartphone market after China.

The low-cost Redmi series is Xiaomi’s most successful line of devices. The Chinese company sold more than 110 million Redmi units — or 1.2 units per second — in three years.

With the entry of the Redmi Pro, coupled with Xiaomi’s strategy to use celebrity brand ambassadors and traditional advertising for the first time, that number may probably rise significantly, hopefully enough to take on Chinese rivals Huawei, OPPO, and Vivo, which research firm IDC says beat Xiaomi in terms of global shipment volumes in the first quarter of 2016.

[irp posts=”9920″ name=”Xiaomi Redmi 4 Prime Review”]

India

Netflix announces nine new originals from India

2019 is going to be even more entertaining!

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India is among the most content-hungry markets in the world right now. Thanks to an extensive network of 4G connections and cheap data tariffs, a massive boom is underway and every Internet-centric company wants to be a part of this revolution. While telcos are busy luring more subscribers, content-focused companies have massively increased their investment in this region.

One of these is Netflix, one of the top streaming services in the world. It is expanding its India slate of original content by announcing eight new original films and a new original series. These will include many A-list Bollywood and Hollywood talent on camera as well as off-camera. After the success of Sacred Games this year, the service is even more confident about its investment.

The eight films include Chopsticks, Bulbul (produced by Anushka Sharma’s production house Clean Slate Films), Upstarts, Cobalt Blue (based on a popular Marathi novel), 15th August (a Marathi film produced by Madhuri Dixit), Music Teacher, Hotel Mumbai (starring BAFTA-winning actor Dev Patel), and Firebrand (another Marathi film produced by Priyanka Chopra).

The original series is called Typewriter and it’s about a haunted house and a haunted book that attract a young group of ghost hunters. Netflix has already released four original movies and two original series this year from India while one series is scheduled to release in December.

While Netflix is ramping up its presence in the country, local studios and production networks have been trying to evolve as well. Voot (Viacom18), SonyLiv (Sony Pictures), and Hotstar (Star India and 21st Century Fox) are just a few of these services that already enjoy good public recognition.

Even Amazon is trying to make it big here and has been aggressively pushing its Prime service that has Prime Video and Prime Music bundled along.

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Sony Xperia XZ1, XZ1 Compact, and XZ Premium now have Android Pie

Hoping this will put Pie on the charts

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Sony Xperia XZ Premium | GadgetMatch

Sony might not be doing well in phone sales, but they keep loyal customers happy by giving the latest software update possible. True to their promise, Android 9 Pie is now available to more Xperia phones.

After the Xperia XZ2 lineup, Sony is now updating the older Xperia XZ1 and XZ1 Compact phones. Also, the Xperia XZ Premium joins the group. The rollout is quite later than expected, but Sony still managed to push Android Pie earlier than other major phone manufacturers.

The over-the-air update brings all the goodness Android Pie has to offer (except for new navigation gestures), plus a few touches from Sony including cool features such as 960fps super slow-mo recording in Full HD and HDR video modes. Not only that, the update also bumps the security patch to October 2018.

As with any other rollout, it’s done by batches. Some users already confirmed the update on their phones, while others will have to wait a few days or weeks.

SEE ALSO: Sony announces which Xperia phones are getting Android 9 Pie

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India

Xiaomi has officially hiked prices for some of its products

A very non-Xiaomi thing to do

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Xiaomi has been immensely successful in establishing a market of its own. The brand is known for selling quality products at affordable prices. This year, it has launched a plethora of Redmi-branded phones along with the expansion of its Mi Home offerings. In fact, competing brands often launch new products to specifically take on Xiaomi’s devices.

But Xiaomi has announced price hike for five of its products: Redmi 6A, Redmi 6, Mi LED TV 4C Pro, Mi LED TV 4A Pro, and the 10,000mAh Mi Power Bank 2i. When these products were launched, the company had said the prices were “introductory” and could change in the future depending on market fluctuations.

Since the last few months, the Indian Rupee has consistently weakened against the American Dollar which has in turn significantly increased operating costs for the company. The company says the local currency has depreciated nearly 15 percent since the beginning of the year and hence price adjustments are a need of the hour.

Even though the transactions are between India and China, the equipment and parts are globally offset in American Dollar. Xiaomi isn’t the only one affected, though; OPPO’s sub-brand Realme has also announced similar price hikes on its products.

The Redmi 6A has received an INR 600 price hike, so the 16GB option will now be available for INR 6,599 (US$ 91) while the 32GB option will retail for INR 7,499 (US$ 103). The Redmi 6 32GB variant will now cost INR 8,499 (US$ 117).

The Mi LED TV 4C Pro 32-inch will now cost INR 15,999 (US$ 220), up from its initial price of INR 14,999. The Mi LED TV 4A Pro 49-inch has received an INR 2,000 hike, making the new selling price INR 31,999 (US$ 441).

Lastly, the 10,000mAh Mi Power Bank 2i Black is now available for INR 899 (US$ 12.5), up from INR 799. The new prices are already applicable and official rates have been communicated to offline sellers, as well.

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