News

ZTE Blade Z Max comes with dual cameras, super-affordable price

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The big players may be grabbing all the headlines, but ZTE is discreetly building a lineup of smartphones with excellent value. The Blade Z Max is the newest of which, and it offers features you’d normally find in handsets more than twice its price.

You wouldn’t think the Blade Z Max could offer anything substantial with its US$ 129 price tag, but all that changes at the first glance alone.

The back shows off a dual-camera setup composed of a 16-megapixel sensor coupled with a secondary 2-megapixel shooter to help with portrait duties. Below that, you can find the fingerprint scanner — another feature that was once reserved for much more expensive phones.

You can’t tell by the renders above, but the Blade Z Max has a massive 6-inch Full HD display and 8-megapixel selfie camera up front, as well as a 3.5mm audio port at the bottom. While the large screen would suck more energy out of the battery, the capacity is a healthy 4080mAh, and unlike most entry-level phones, this one has the more future-proof USB-C connection.

To keep things efficient, this ZTE model has a Snapdragon 435 processor and a decent amount of memory at 2GB. This means it’ll struggle to play graphics-intensive games, but running several light apps simultaneously should be manageable. On the bright side, its 32GB of storage can be expanded using a single microSD card.

All these are encased in a metal frame and textured back — again, not bad for a Android Nougat-powered smartphone costing less than US$ 150! The official release date is August 28; if you want it earlier, you may pre-order through MetroPCS in the US starting today.

SEE ALSO: Best Budget Smartphones below $300 (August 2017 Edition)

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Computers

Snapdragon’s upcoming chipset beats Kirin 980 and A12 Bionic on AnTuTu Benchmark

The battle of next-gen mobile processors!

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Huawei already unveiled the Kirin 980 processor for the Mate 20 series and Apple has the powerful A12 Bionic chip for their new iPhones. Meanwhile, Samsung just announced its next-gen chip — the Exynos 9820 — which will most likely power the upcoming Galaxy phones. Qualcomm, on the other hand, is still cooking the successor to the popular Snapdragon 845, although a leaked AnTuTu Benchmark result shows that it’ll be ready for primetime soon.

The official name of Qualcomm’s upcoming chipset is yet to be confirmed, although it’s rumored to be called Snapdragon 8150. It’ll not be Snapdragon 850 because that’s already taken, but the Snapdragon 855 moniker is still available.

Moving on to what matters, the soon-to-be-unveiled chipset skyrocketed on AnTuTu Benchmark with a score of 362,292 points. This is an unconfirmed test, but if this is true, Qualcomm will soon have the most powerful processor for smartphones. It beats Kirin 980’s official score of 309,628 and A12 Bionic’s 352,405 points.

Again, nothing is certain about the leaked score which came from Weibo. We’ll just have to wait for Qualcomm to officially announce the chip and let users benchmark it on their own. Just in case the numbers are true, Android flagships are in for a treat.

SEE ALSO: Samsung unveils Exynos 9820 chipset based on 8nm LPP FinFET

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OnePlus 6T now comes in a beautiful gradient color

The color we’ve always wanted

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Finally, OnePlus releases a phone color I can get behind!

OnePlus phones have always been known for their performance and great value, but I’ve always found their color choices to be lacking. Black, graphite, red, or white works for a lot of different folks but for those, like me, who want a flashier and prettier option, we are left wanting.

Not anymore.

OnePlus has just announced that we’re getting the OnePlus 6T in a dreamy new shade called Thunder Purple. This particular device has a beautiful black to purple gradient and a shiny curve on its back that moves with the light. So pretty!

Just look at that subtle, stunning color pop

The same color, announced in China last week, will be available in the US and Europe starting today on the OnePlus website. It rocks 8GB of memory with 128GB of storage and retails for US$ 579.

Image credit: Joshua Vergara

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News

An iPhone X allegedly exploded after installing iOS 12.1

In Washington, USA

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Goodbyes are always difficult. Some can go graceful; some, however, lash out in weird directions. As the 2018 iPhones go on their successful world tour, the iPhone X tries to get one more stab at the spotlight. However, the headline is far from positive. One might even call it fiery.

Reported in Washington, an iPhone X supposedly exploded in a user’s home. Rahel Mohamad, the user, posted about the incident on Twitter. According to Mohamed, the iPhone was in the process of installing the iOS 12.1 update.

In an interview with Gadgets 360, Mohamed was using and charging the phone normally. Amid installing the recent update, he plugged the phone into Apple’s original charger and cable. (Of note, Redditors have countered that Mohamed used an iPad charger, instead of an iPhone one.) Shortly after, the phone started heating up, spewing out gray smoke. After the update’s completion, it caught fire and exploded.

Since then, Apple has responded to Mohamed’s original tweet. “That’s definitely not expected behavior,” @AppleSupport replied. According to Mohamed, Apple has invited him to mail the destroyed model for an official investigation. The company has not issued an official statement regarding the explosion yet.

Curiously, this isn’t the first Apple explosion this year. Back in January, a Chinese customer bit into an iPhone’s battery, causing it to explode in his face. In August, an iPad exploded inside an Apple store in Amsterdam, injuring several employees.

To Apple’s luck, none of the three incidents has incited enough controversy to turn into another Samsung Galaxy Note 7 disaster. At the moment, Apple’s explosions are isolated incidents. We can only hope that the iPhone XS, XS Max, and XR don’t suffer the same fate.

SEE ALSO: Apple patents a holed iPhone design

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