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Unread 2019-12-17, 05:45 PM   #11726
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Default Google's answer to iMessage is finally here

New York (CNN Business)Google's version of iMessage is now available to Android owners in the United States.

Google is calling its new service "Chat," and it contains an array of improved tools that mirror Apple iMessage. For example, Android users now have read receipts, an ellipsis symbol that indicates when people are typing and the ability to send higher-resolution images and videos.
Sanaz Ahari, Google's product management director, tweeted last week that people need to update both their Messages app and carrier services to receive the new tools. Chat first rolled out in June to users in the UK, France and Mexico.


Like iMessage, Android users can opt into the service or disable it if they don't want it. All Messages users in the US will be able to use the new Chat features with any phone that has Rich Communications Services (RCS, a successor to SMS) enabled. That includes people using Samsung (SSNLF) Messages and customers on Sprint (S) and US Cellular, both of which enabled RCS on their networks.


RCS has been promised for years, but carriers have been dragging their feet in enabling it on their networks. So Google decided to provide RCS chat directly through its own servers instead of waiting for the carriers to offer them.


But the rollout may not be as seamless as Google hoped.
For starters, there's a privacy issue. Unlike iMessage, WhatsApp and Signal, RCS doesn't offer end-to-end encryption. Google can still technically see messages as they arrive on its servers and may have to turn them over to law enforcement if asked. This could be a concern for Android users and security advocates.


Then there is the fact that the networks of the three biggest US carriers — Verizon (VZ), AT&T (T), and T-Mobile (TMUS) — currently can't connect to each other via RCS. They recently announced that they will join forces next year, and Google said it is "willing to work with any carrier to connect their RCS users."


Dan O'Connell, an analyst at research firm Gartner, previously told CNN Business that Google has long needed to catch up with Apple's iPhone and RCS is a way for it to do so.


"They had been hoping that the service providers would work on supporting RCS themselves," he said. "But that was very slow to happen, so I think that [Google] decided to take the initiative themselves."
-- CNN Business' Evelina Nedlund contributed to this report.

https://www.cnn.com/2019/12/17/tech/...rnd/index.html
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Unread 2019-12-31, 07:11 PM   #11727
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First Note 10 Lite pics look exactly like you'd expect



Samsung released the Note 10 and Note 10+ a few months ago with predictably high price tags, but there may be a more budget-friendly stylus-equipped phone soon. After a series of leaks, we now have what appear to be photos of the Note 10 Lite. If you were asked to imagine a cheaper Note 10, this is probably what it would look like.

A settings screen in the photos confirms this is the SM-N770F, the leaked model number for the Note 10 Lite. The device has an S Pen, of course —it wouldn't be a Note phone without that. However, the display is flat, which could be a selling point over the more expensive phones. There's also a centered front-facing hole-punch camera like the Note 10 and Note 10+.
On the back, the leaked phone has a new square camera module as opposed to the vertical arrangement on the flagship Note phones. There are still three cameras, but we don't know the specs. Likewise, the internals are still the subject of rumors. A previous leak did point to the Exynos 9810, the chip from the Note 9 and Galaxy S9. Pricing, full specs, and release date are all still up in the air, but Samsung could announce device this any day now.
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Unread 2020-01-04, 09:25 PM   #11728
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New rumor says there will only be one Pixel 4a variant, no XL version this year




The Pixel 4a rumor mill is picking up some current after last week's OnLeaks renderpalooza. YouTuber Dave Lee, also known as Dave2D, has posted unattributed claims about the upcoming series of budget phones — including word that the 4a may not even be a series, but a singular model.

While we note that Dave Lee is a well-respected computer reviewer with over 2.5 million subscribers as of today, we should also point out that he isn't in the habit of sharing what he calls "juice" on products that have yet to be announced. You may want to take his track record, or lack thereof, into account.


Something went wrong. Please make sure you added the video correctly.

Video URL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZJ6hc9Scd3s


Lee's source believes that the Pixel 4a will only come in one size, which Lee reasons is possible based on his assertion that the smaller Pixel 3a model has outsold its XL companion based mostly on their $80 price difference alone. This would be the first Pixel series to not come in two sizes if this claim comes true.
As it stands, the 4a would be smaller overall than the 3a with dimensions of 144.2 x 69.5 x 8.2mm plus a camera hump of 9mm. It would pack a larger screen, though. Lee gives a 5.81" 1080p specification, more specific than OnLeaks's range between 5.7" and 5.8" and right in between the Pixel 3a's 5.6" panel and the Pixel 3a XL's 6" screen.





He also posits the 4a's colorways, which have always put the body paint together with a differently-accented power button. This year, he says, will see black with green, white with coral — in keeping with the Pixel 4's primary aesthetic motif — and, for the wild card option, an "arctic blue" with "hot pink" combo. His own rendering of that last couplet draws on maximum contrast to give it an attractive punch to the eye. Whether Google goes heavy on those hues or others is still up in the air.
The rest of the details shouldn't come as a surprise one way or another: there's a fingerprint sensor on the back along with a single rear camera — while there won't be more lenses, Lee does not elaborate on any other sensors hiding in that stove as OnLeaks hints to — no wireless charging, a USB-C port, a headphone jack, and a punch hole selfie camera, all wrapped within a plastic unibody shell.

One thing that eludes everyone at this moment: pricing. We may have to wait until closer to I/O 2020 (when Google is expected to launch the 4a) to learn more. Cross your fingers that the company either keeps $399 as a baseline or does better.
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Unread 2020-01-13, 07:20 PM   #11729
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Leaked photos confirm Samsung’s next flagship phone is called the Galaxy S20



A “do not leak info” sticker was very optimistic, Samsung. Images: XDA Developers There will be no Samsung Galaxy S11. Instead, Samsung is jumping ahead to the S20. Rumors had been swirling about the branding change in recent weeks, and today XDA Developers published the first real-world shots of the Galaxy S20 Plus.
The phone’s startup screen confirms the new name; maybe Samsung is naming by year now. And we also see that the front of the device has a center hole-punch cutout that’s similar to the selfie shooter from the Galaxy Note 10. Samsung has significantly toned down the curved sides of the Galaxy S10 and S10 Plus, with XDA’s source saying that the S20 Plus feels largely flat in hand.
On the back, we get a look at Samsung’s large camera array for the S20 Plus, which is rumored to contain a regular wide lens, an ultra-wide, portrait, and a macro lens as the new, fourth option. On back is also one of the more optimistic, hopeful confidentiality stickers I’ve ever seen: it actually just flat out says “do not leak info.” So much for that.
Samsung will unveil an entire line of Galaxy S20 devices at its Unpacked event on February 11th, including multiple screen sizes and some models with 5G connectivity. The company’s next foldable phone, perhaps called the Galaxy Bloom, is also expected to debut next month.
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Unread 2020-01-14, 03:34 PM   #11730
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Hands-on With Galaxy S20+ Confirms 120Hz Display, No More Headphone Jack



An early hands-on is confirming a ton of details of Samsung’s upcoming Galaxy S20+. Samsung isn’t announcing its new lineup until February 11, but since the phone appears to be in the wild, don’t be surprised if you start seeing a lot of leaked content like this.
Thanks to XDA, we can essentially confirm that the Galaxy S20+ will offer a display capable of a 120Hz refresh rate, rumored to be sized at 6.9-inches. Inside the phone’s settings menu, users will have an option to select between 60Hz for better battery life and 120Hz for smoother scrolling and improved animations. While the display’s resolution is listed at a max of 3200 x 1440, this hands-on has confirmed that owners will be limited to a FHD+ resolution when using the 120Hz setting.
Also detailed in this writeup is the phone’s usage of an ultrasonic fingerprint reader. This isn’t really surprising news, but it should be noted that it’s not yet clear if Samsung is utilizing Qualcomm’s new 3D Sonic Max reader or a previous iteration.
The last piece of info could have a few folks upset, so let’s just rip it off like a band-aid. The Galaxy S20 lineup doesn’t offer a headphone jack. 💀
Below you can get a look at the phone.


Something went wrong. Please make sure you added the video correctly.

Video URL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3318yIY6_Bc
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Unread 2020-01-16, 12:34 PM   #11731
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New leak tells us exactly how big the Galaxy S20 phones are







The Galaxy S20 series will be unveiled on February 11th, but the Galaxy S10 successors will hardly have any secrets left by the time Samsung introduces them on stage. This week alone brought us a few major leaks, as we’ve learned even more details about the specs of the three phones, and saw the first photos and videos of actual Galaxy S20 prototypes. The new naming scheme of the phones has also been confirmed by various sources, and we now know the Galaxy S20, S20+, and S20 Ultra will be the direct successors of the Galaxy S10e, S10, and S10+. Yes, the name change might confuse some fans, but once you get the hang of it, you’ll know what to expect from the new S20 models. All three phones, however, will have a slightly tweaked design compared to last year’s S10 series, and that includes different sizes for all of them.






The Galaxy S20 will feature a hole-punch display like the Galaxy S10, but the selfie cam is placed in the middle rather than on the side, which makes the S20 look more like the Note 10. There won’t be a flat-screen version of the S20 this year, and that’s because all three phones will have almost flat displays. Recent leaks revealed we’re looking at 2.5D glass for the S20, which is a fancy way of saying the screen bends around the edges, but only slightly. All three phones will come with in-display ultrasonic fingerprint sensors like their predecessors.


On the back, you’ll find three or four camera lenses, arranged in rectangular, vertical modules placed on the left. The most impressive of the bunch will be the Ultra camera, which will feature a 108-megapixel primary lens and a 10x optical zoom periscope camera.


Finally, the phones will lose the Bixby button, and they’ll feature just one connector, the USB-C port on the bottom.
Image Source: YouTube


This brings us to the video below, which tells us exactly how big the S20 phones will be. Courtesy of xda-developers, whose Max Weinbach obtained 3D-printed Galaxy S20 dummy units created with the leaked CAD files that were used to generate S20 images a few weeks ago.
You’ll immediately notice that the camera lens design on the S20 Ultra dummy looks unusual, and that’s because it is. That’s not how the camera will look like, and we’ve already established that long ago. But Weinbach says the design and size of the three handsets is the real deal.
As you’ll see in the clip below, the S20, with its 6.2-inch screen, will be about the same size as last year’s S10, which has a 6.1-inch screen. The S20+, meanwhile, will be significantly bigger than the S10 in replaces, featuring a 6.7-inch display. The S20 Ultra will get the biggest screen of all. At 6.9-inches, that’s a lot bigger than the 6.4-inch display of its predecessor, the S10+. The Ultra will be even bigger than the Note 10.






In fact, the clip below features other size comparisons, as Weinbach is pitting the S20 phones against a slew of devices, including the iPhone XS, Pixel 4, Galaxy S10, Galaxy Note 10, and Galaxy Fold


Something went wrong. Please make sure you added the video correctly.

Video URL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j5ZRpFmhhkc
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Unread 2020-01-26, 09:32 PM   #11732
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Here’s a First Look at Google’s Version of AirDrop for Android



Apple’s AirDrop, the feature that lets iOS users seamlessly transfer files across the company’s devices, has been the envy of Android users for a while. Don’t worry: Google listened, and is working on its own version of AirDrop called Nearby Sharing. Although the feature hasn’t been released yet, we now have an idea of what Android’s file-sharing system could look like.

XDA Developers managed to get Nearby Sharing working on two Pixel phones, the Pixel 2 XL and the Pixel 4. Originally called “Fast Share,” it is Google’s successor to Android Beam, a service that used NFC, Bluetooth and wifi to transfer files that Google pulled the plug on last year. Although the folks at XDA Developers carried out their file transfer test on two Pixel phones, another of the site’s developers managed to try out Nearby Sharing on a Pixel 2 XL and a OnePlus 7T Pro.



Based on the Pixel-OnePlus test, XDA Developers believes that NearbySharing will, in general, be a feature accessible for Android devices with Google Play Services pre-installed. Nonetheless, this won’t be known for sure until Google releases the feature.


In the test, which you can see for yourself in the video below, Nearby Sharing seemed easy to use. Google’s new feature lets you choose the account you want to use with Nearby Sharing, change the name that shows up when you’re sharing files and set device visibility. In terms of visibility, you can allow your device to be visible to all nearby Google contacts, only certain Google contacts or remain hidden.



Something went wrong. Please make sure you added the video correctly.

Video URL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oVcGDDRMoWg


If you choose this last option, you have to manually turn on Nearby Sharing to receive a file.
Nearby Sharing also lets you specify whether you want to use your phone’s data for file transfers. Google lets you choose between using data to transfer small files, using wifi only or allowing transfers without Internet.



According to XDA Developers, the feature uses Bluetooth and Location Services, the latter of which is used to find nearby devices for transfers. At the moment, Nearby Sharing can apparently only be used with devices that are within 1-foot of each other.


The file transfer test worked pretty well in the XDA Developer video. Nearby Sharing was able to transfer photos perfectly, but has a hiccup when transferring video and didn’t manage to do so on the first try. It did carry out the task the second time around, though.



Apparently, having an AirDrop clone has turned into a must-have for phone manufacturers. This month, Samsung announced that it was planning on launching Quick Share for its devices. Xiaomi, OPPO and Vivo are also releasing a cross-device file transfer feature. Let the AirDrop race begin.
[XDA Developers]
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