Items tagged with smartphone

Are you miffed that the latest iPhone doesn't have a dedicated 1/8" audio jack? Well, Apple likely won't be alone, as other smartphone OEMs may be looking to ditch the venerable headphone jack in order to take advantage of audio over USB-C. This week, the USB-IF (Implementers Forum) announced "USB Audio over USB Type-C", and it's touting it for much the same reasons that Apple does with its latest iPhone. USB-IF expects this standard to be used for headsets, mobile devices, docking stations, gaming setups, VR solutions, and more. Notebooks are not mentioned, but it seems certain they'll... Read more...
Security firm Cellebrite made headlines earlier this year when its services were employed by the FBI to help break into the phone of the San Bernardino shooter. Cellebrite recently invited a bunch of UK press to an event to show off what it's capable of.Equipped with an outdated smartphone, BBC reporter Rory Cellan-Jones went off for a half an hour, password-protected the device, and took pictures -- basically using the phone normally. You can see where this is going. Despite the password, Cellebrite plugged the phone into a bulky tablet, and after a few taps, the phone's security was disabled.... Read more...
Samsung has had to deal with one heck of a headache following the launch of its top-end Galaxy Note7 smartphone. From lost property to a global recall, the whole ordeal has, without question, tarnished Samsung's otherwise impeccable reputation for quality devices. Yesterday, we wrote that roughly half of all Note7s sold in the US have been returned, and that 90% of those who've returned a defective device were pleased to receive a new replacement in exchange, and were sticking with the phone.Unfortunately, as it now appears, it seems that some of the replacement devices are also acting up... Read more...
The sky is most certainly falling over Samsung headquarters in the wake of reports that its hottest new smartphone, the Galaxy Note7, might actually be too hot to handle, literally. Samsung has received at least 92 reports of Note7 batteries overheating in the U.S. alone since its launch, with 26 of those resulting in burns and more than half causing property damage. While officially recalled in the U.S. now, Samsung has been criticized heavily in the media for their alleged slow response and hackneyed initial exchange program. [Image Source: Baidu] Samsung's public relations disaster may actually... Read more...
Now, more than ever, manufacturers are exploring alternative ways to differentiate smartphones. One savior to the oversaturated smartphone market, that is rife with products with similar specifications, may come in the form of modularity. The promise of a modular phone, is an ability to adapt to a user’s needs in the moment. Purchasing a smartphone is traditionally a long-term investment. What might perfectly address day-to-day use, however, could come up short under specific use cases. We already took a close look at the Moto Z family and see promise in Moto Mods, but modular smartphones... Read more...
Update 4:25PM - Samsung is also now urging customers not to use their Galaxy Note 7 devices, stating: "Because your safety is our utmost concern, we ask you to power down your Galaxy Note7 and exchange it now. We strongly encourage you to take advantage of the U.S. Note7 Exchange Program detailed above." You can find Samsung's notice here and their statements in the FAQ.To say that the launch of the Galaxy Note7 has been less-than-ideal for Samsung would be a gross understatement. Almost immediately following the device's shipment in market, it was discovered that some batteries in certain devices... Read more...
Google's Project Ara was ambitious from the start. The goal of Project Ara was to produce a modular smartphone platform, that could updated, upgraded, or augmented, by simply snapping new components in place. The concept seemed like a good idea. If your phone's performance was up to snuff, but you wanted a better camera, simply replace the camera module. Or if you wanted better performance, a more powerful SoC module would be an option. On some levels, it would be like updating a PC.Project Ara had been trudging along for a few years now. Google even cozied up to a handful of hardware partners,... Read more...
While Samsung's Galaxy Note7 has proven itself to be an excellent smartphone, its global launch has been marred by a global recall. While it's admirable that Samsung is acting in such a swift fashion to satisfy customers, not everyone is giving the company passing marks for its recall -- especially in the United States. The way that Samsung is handling the recall has been put under scrutiny by one federal regulatory agency. According to Re/code, Samsung's recall completely sidestepped working with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, which is supposed to act as a proxy for recalls.... Read more...
Samsung announced earlier today that it would be recalling the recently released Galaxy Note7 due to reports of exploding batteries. It was confirmed by Samsung that a small number of Note7 devices (35 at last count) had exploded when charging, and the company quickly moved to recall the phones to ensure customer safety. If you’ve got a Note7, and are wondering how to get your replacement, you’ve got a couple of options. Samsung just sent word that they’ve setup a replacement and exchange program that gives Note7 customers a couple of options. Rather than re-has the details, here is the information... Read more...
It's been a long time since HTC was the top dog in mobile, a position now held by either Apple or Samsung (depending on your vantage point and criteria). Unfortunately for HTC, it's new One A9s isn't going to help the company reclaim its former glory. It's a decidedly mid-range handset, though that in and of itself isn't the problem.What's at issue here is how it compares to its predecessor, the One A9, a phone we reviewed in 2015 that left us "wanting more" because of its "mid-range internal hardware combined with the somewhat small battery and higher than we expected price tag." Rather than improve... Read more...
Motorola recently launched two new flagship Droid offerings, the Moto Z and Moto Z Force. We really liked them for their ultra-premium design, strong performance, and innovative Moto Mods add-on features. However, Moto is also ushering in a refresh of their more mainstream, cost-effective Moto G family as well. We last looked at the Moto G in 2014. We weren't blown away by performance, however, we were impressed how much the device managed to offer for just $149. The Moto G delivered Android’s core experience with good enough web browsing and general productivity performance to stand... Read more...
At the end of July, we learned that there would be a chance of Android N coming out in August. Thanks to a leak that came out of Canadian carrier Telus, we might have just gained an even more accurate answer: August 22nd. The information leaked from Telus is a simple schedule of updates hitting various phone models. This list states which each update is, and for Nexus 6P and Nexus 5X, August 22nd will be the day for the "Android N Update". Per the information we found last month, it still appears that the Nexus 5 will not be treated to any nougat-flavored OS -- a harsh reminder of just how quickly... Read more...
If you're a SwiftKey user and have been experiencing some oddities lately: you're not alone. Due to a bug, some SwiftKey users have been receiving some downright bizarre recommendations, including phrases that they never use. Even worse? The software also predicted names and email addresses of other users! Once this discovery was made, the company behind the software took swift (sorry) action to pull some of its services offline; namely, the cloud-related bits. The company says that the vast majority of users were unaffected by this issue, which is a little reassuring as the software has millions... Read more...
With its ZenFone 2 series, ASUS really seemed to hit the ball out of a digital park. For $200 USD, what the phone offered was ridiculously compelling, from its large 5.5-inch 1080p screen to its dual SIM slots to its beautiful aesthetic. While it wasn't the most powerful phone out there at the time, its price still made the phone feel like a great deal. In addition to the regular ZenFone 2, ASUS also offered a 'Deluxe' model, and it'll be doing the same thing with the ZenFone 3 series. In fact, it appears that the ZenFone 3 Deluxe will be the first ZF3 phone out on the market, and as expected,... Read more...
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