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ZTE is in panic mode after US imposes trade ban

MediaTek pledges help but is it enough?

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We’re in the endgame now. After suffering through the turmoil of the past few months, ZTE is now feeling the full force of government intervention.

Since last year, the Chinese-born company has found itself embroiled in a controversy involving US politics. The United States government accused the company of selling its merchandise to Iran, a no-no country for US imports.

Since the accusation, ZTE has pleaded guilty, initially agreeing to fire the erring employees. However, the company has failed to do so. Now, they face a US ban that threatens to eradicate their business for at least seven years, if not forever.

Following up on its warnings, the US has banned ZTE from doing business within the territory, from selling phones to buying parts for them. The company is now in the fallout, enlisting a crisis team to handle the massive issue.

The ban has ensured that ZTE can’t rely on Qualcomm, Dolby, and Google products anymore. They have yet to find adequate replacements. However, the Taiwan-based MediaTek has already secured a permit to supply the company with fresh parts to replace Qualcomm.

For a finnicky industry when it comes to specs, getting new parts isn’t as easy as a 1-2-switch. For example, ZTE’s premium handsets rely on Qualcomm’s more powerful chops. Further, a switch from Qualcomm to MediaTek heavily affects public perception.

Currently, ZTE is in negotiations with the US government to reverse the ban. They have also requested US telcos to retain stock space for them, should the ban be reversed.

However, the future remains bleak for the tech company. Without US sales or parts, the company has halted to a standstill. While they can still sell to other countries, the withdrawal of US parts has taken their toll on ZTE’s sales.

According to some reports, employees are left without things to do, despite still reporting to work. ZTE officials, however, are requesting their employees to maintain a state of calm amid affairs.

ZTE maintains that they have enough cash to remain in business in the meantime. However, if they don’t find resolution to this issue, ZTE might find itself on the chopping block of failed smartphone brands.

SEE ALSO: ZTE’s new concept phone has two notches

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Realme X50 Pro 5G confirmed to have 65W fast charging

Fastest charging technology available right now

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Following the cancellation of MWC 2020, Realme has announced it will launch its next flagship product, the Realme X50 Pro 5G, via an online event.

The Realme X50 Pro 5G will be powered by a Snapdragon 865 processor, 5G support, a Full HD+ display, 12 GB of RAM, 256 GB of internal storage, 65W SuperDart fast charging ability, and the new Android 10-based Realme UI.

Unlike the Realme X50 5G, which comes with a 120Hz IPS LCD display, the Realme X50 Pro 5G will sport an AMOLED display with a 90Hz refresh rate. Multiple cameras on the back are also certain, but it remains to be seen what image sensors make the cut.

 

At the Snapdragon Tech Summit in December, Realme was one of the notable smartphone makers that confirmed the use of the new generation of 5G chipsets for its upcoming smartphones.

OPPO’s Reno Ace is the only phone to support 65W fast charging today and Realme’s offering will be called SuperDart. Realme’s CMO Xu Qi Chase revealed additional information about the new charging technology over on Weibo, stating that the Realme X50 Pro will use a GaN charger which is more compact, efficient, and generates less heat.

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Lenovo’s new phone will supposedly score 600,000 on AnTuTu

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Since its inception, AnTuTu has dominated the benchmark conversation for mobile devices. Even today, smartphones are still touting higher and higher scores for their marketing campaigns. Naturally, when a device brags about a new top score, all eyes are focused on the new contender.

Today, Lenovo wants to hog all that spotlight. On Chinese social network Weibo, leaks have teased an all-new Lenovo phone that will supposedly score 600000 on the AnTuTu scale. It’s quite a huge boast for the Chinese smartphone company. Currently, Apple owns the highest-scoring phone on AnTuTu; the iPhone 11 Pro Max holds a score of 548239. On the Android side, the ROG Phone 2 holds the high score of 507051. Only Apple’s 12.9-inch iPad Pro 3 has a higher score — a whopping 720076 — but, of course, it’s a tablet and not a phone.

Image source: Weibo

Like the ROG Phone 2, Lenovo’s new phone will likely cater to the gaming market. One of the posters uses the slogan, “Game On.”

In another poster, Lenovo has confirmed the industry-leading Snapdragon 865 for the upcoming smartphone. A new AnTuTu high score is definitely in the realm of possibility.

Since it will go up against the ROG Phone 2, Lenovo will likely launch the smartphone under its own gaming line, Legion. No word on an official launch yet, though.

SEE ALSO: Lenovo IdeaPad S540 review: A professional’s daily driver

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Xiaomi Mi 10 series goes official with 5G support and flagship specs

Xiaomi’s going all in

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Xiaomi has launched the new Mi 10 and Mi 10 Pro at an event in China. The new flagships have only been launched in China but the company was expected to launch them globally in Barcelona, Spain on Feb 23, one day before MWC 2020 was scheduled to begin.

However, after the cancellation of the tech convention, there’s no certainty about the Xiaomi launch event. Due to the Coronavirus outbreak, however, the phones were launched at an online-only event.

Both the Mi 10 and Mi 10 Pro feature 6.67-inch OLED displays with a 90Hz refresh rate, Snapdragon 865 processors, and up to 12GB of RAM. The duo also sports a 108-megapixel primary lens.

The Mi 10 has a 13-megapixel wide-angle sensor, a 2-megapixel depth sensor, and a 2-megapixel portrait lens. The Mi 10 Pro, on the other hand, houses a 12-megapixel lens for portraits, an 8-megapixel telephoto lens with 10x hybrid zoom, and a 20-megapixel wide-angle lens.

The cameras will be capable of shooting 8K videos. The front camera that is housed in a punch-hole is a 20-megapixel unit. During the launch event, Xiaomi claimed that the Mi 10 Pro managed to score 124 in the DxOMark testing. Additionally, while both feature a 108-megapixel main rear-facing camera, the one in the Mi 10 Pro has an 8P lens.

The Mi 10 houses a 4780mAh unit with 30W fast charging. The Mi 10 Pro comes with a slightly smaller battery with 4500mAh capacity. When it comes to connectivity, the Mi 10 series phones support the latest Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.1, as well as dual-mode 5G.

The Mi 10 starts at a price of CNY 3,999 (US$ 572) for the 8GB+128GB version, CNY 4,299 (US$ 615) for the 8GB+256GB option, and CNY 4,699 (US$ 672) for 12GB+256GB variant.

The Mi 10 Pro starts at CNY 4,999 (US$ 715) for the 8GB+256GB option and CNY 5,499 (US$ 786) for the 12GB+256GB variant. The top of the line variant with 12GB RAM and 512GB of internal storage is available for 5,999 (US$ 858).

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