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Xiaomi unveils Mi A1 with Android One and dual cameras

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Xiaomi has just unveiled its new smartphone, and it looks strangely familiar. Remember the Mi 5X from China? Its international version finally arrived as the Mi A1.

The Xiaomi Mi A1 is not just a repackaged phone for the international market with a global version of MIUI, but rather a new entry for the revival of Google’s Android One program. As much as we love MIUI, having pure Android on board a Xiaomi phone is the best thing that could happen for fans.

It comes with Android Nougat out of the box with no skin whatsoever, complete with Google services and monthly security updates. Xiaomi is proud to promote Google Photos for the Mi A1, because it offers unlimited high-quality photo backup for free.

It’ll receive Andriod Oreo before the end of the year, and be one of the first devices to get Android P when it launches in 2018. That’s the Android One promise it’s set to deliver.

Another main feature of the Mi A1 is its dual rear cameras. The phone has 12-megapixel 26mm wide-angle and 12-megapixel 50mm telephoto cameras. As with other dual-camera phones, the setup allows users to take amazing portrait shots with nice bokeh effects.

Specs-wise, the Mi A1 is the same Mi 5X we saw before. It has a 5.5-inch 1080p display topped with Gorilla Glass and encased in a metal unibody. It’s powered by a Snapdragon 625 processor with 4GB of memory and 64GB of storage.

Other hardware features include a 10V smart power amplifier for audio, dual graphite sheet for better thermal management, and a fingerprint reader on the back. Juice comes from the 3080mAh battery, which has support for fast charging.

The Mi A1 is priced at INR 14,999 (US$ 235) in India and will go on sale on September 12. Other markets will get the Mi A1 in the coming months. There are three different colors: black, rose gold, and gold.

SEE ALSO: Xiaomi announces Mi 5X with the latest MIUI 9

News

Apple iPad explodes inside an Amsterdam store

Three employees treated for minor injuries

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It looks like this exploding gadget trend isn’t ending any time soon.

The latest casualty happened in Amsterdam, Netherlands — inside an official Apple store, no less.

An iPad on display burst because of a leaking battery, causing minor injuries to three employees inside the store. Everyone was subsequently evacuated and the local fire brigade checked the scene for damages.

Fortunately, the three employees suffered only respiratory issues based on the latest report. In addition, there was no actual fire involved.

Apple is still investigating the incident and has yet to release a public statement.

This isn’t the first time Apple is facing problems with exploding products, but these cases are still too rare to cause widespread fear or a recall.

At least the device wasn’t bitten this time.

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Lifestyle

Netflix is testing engagement by putting ads between episodes

Netflix, no chill

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How would you feel if, after a long day at work, you were relaxing and catching up on a series you’ve been excited to binge, and it gets interrupted by “But first, check out…” followed by a trailer of another show? If you’re miffed at the thought then you should sip your most calming tea, because that’s exactly what Netflix has started to do.

The streaming big shot has confirmed to Ars Technica that this move is a test to see whether or not inserting these ads would help speed up viewers’ discovery of new titles that they’ll like. Right now, these ads only appear for some people globally, but Netflix did not confirm how long this test will last.

The move has garnered some backlash from users encountering the ads, but Netflix has said that, although they are aware of the “chatter on social channels,” their focus is more on the engagement to these ads and that this is what will determine a wider rollout in the future.

If you find yourself faced with these ads though, apparently you can opt out of these tests. That way, you’ll still be able to Netflix, chill, and binge watch the night (and/or day) away.

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India

Huawei’s Nova 3 to go on open sale starting August 23

More than 50 million units have been shipped globally

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Just last month, Huawei launched the Nova 3 and 3i in India, and since then the duo has been up for purchase via flash sales in India. The company says the two phones have garnered incredible response globally and more than 50 million units have been shipped as of now.

Huawei has announced that the Nova 3i’s next flash sale will be held on August 21. On the other hand, the more powerful Nova 3 will be available via open sales (not flash) starting August 23, 1 PM. Both phones are exclusively sold on Amazon.in, and Prime members can order the Nova 3 from 12 noon itself.

The Nova 3 is priced at INR 34,999 (US$ 500) and competes against the mighty OnePlus 6. The phone has an edge over the OnePlus counterpart thanks to the beautiful glass backing that has nice color gradients. It features Huawei’s latest processor along with added AI capabilities and a GPU Turbo mode for a more refined gaming experience.

The phone comes with a host of offers including zero fee EMI and screen protection insurance. American Express cardholders are eligible for an instant cashback of INR 3,000, while telecom operator Jio is bundling along 100GB of data worth INR 3,300 along with the phone.

The Nova 3i is a midrange phone that features the same premium glass backing along with a slightly weaker processor. Though, it also houses a host of AI-powered features along with the popular GPU Turbo mode.  The phone is priced at INR 20,990 and competes against the Honor Play, Nokia 7 Plus, and the Mi A2.

The Nova 3i too has many offers bundled along, including an instant five percent discount when purchased via HDFC credit and debit cards. Zero-fee EMI options up to nine months are also available.

The two phones are cheaper siblings of the P20 Pro and feature the same high-end design language along with a suite of smart features thanks to EMUI.

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