Author Archives: JC Torres


iOS 10 might finally bring an official Apple HomeKit app

iOS 10 might finally bring an official Apple HomeKit app

It's been more than a year since Apple introduced its own foray into the budding market of smart appliances and home automation products, what some label as the Internet of Things. Since then, adoption of HomeKit by manufacturers and developers has been steady but somewhat slow. Adoption by consumers, however, was perhaps slower, hampered by the dozens of apps available, one per smart home product. A long requested feature, Apple might have finally listened to its customers and might soon have its own official HomeKit app, available starting iOS 10.

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Alleged OnePlus 3 prototype appears in leaked photos

Alleged OnePlus 3 prototype appears in leaked photos

We're smack right in the middle of the lull between MWC and IFA, the calm before the storm, so to speak. That, of course, is the perfect opportunity to make some noise about some new smartphone that may be coming in the next few months or so. We've already seen Motorola's odd direction for the upcoming 4th gen Moto X and its DROID variant. Now we're supposedly getting to see what Chinese startup OnePlus has in mind for its 3rd flagship. Suffice it to say, it's going to at least get people talking a lot.

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Xiaomi puts the Mi Max marketing machine on full throttle

Xiaomi puts the Mi Max marketing machine on full throttle

Xiaomi may have just revealed its Mi 5 flagship last February, but the way it is trying to hype the Mi Max, you'd think this was actually its 2016 champion. Set to be the Chinese superstar's foray into the phablet race, Xiaomi has been teasing the Mi Max nonstop. Now it is going as far as releasing a new video ad each day before the expected May 10th announcement. Of course, there are a few marketing images available as well, all of them officially coming from Xiaomi's own CEO, Lei Jun.

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iFixit: Huawei P9 easy to repair if you have a pentalobe tool

iFixit: Huawei P9 easy to repair if you have a pentalobe tool

These days, the premium look and quality of flagship smartphones usually come at a price. The first to go are removable batteries, followed usually by hardened silos that are tough to get into. So when a flagship smartphone gets a 7 out of 10 repairability score, it's definitely a surprising but very much welcome breath of fresh air. That seems to be the case with the Huawei P9, the Chinese OEMs latest and greatest. Amusingly, iFixit notes that Huawei might have one upped Apple to some punches, despite copying the latter in a few aspects.

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Moto X4, DROID version photos leaked with odd design choices

Moto X4, DROID version photos leaked with odd design choices

It's been a while since Motorola has put out a smartphone that was the center of the market's attention. It seems, however, that the fourth gen Moto X will generate a lot of noise, and not all of them will be good. If you thought the physical home button slash fingerprint sensor on the front of the 4th gen Moto G was bad enough, take a gander at what is supposed to be the Moto X4's newest design. That includes a large, bulky camera sensor smack in the middle of the smartphone's back.

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Leaked Samsung Galaxy C5 photos show traces of HTC One design

Leaked Samsung Galaxy C5 photos show traces of HTC One design

Samsung gained a reputation, deservingly or not, for being "inspired" by designs and features from some of its competitors. Of course, over time it has developed its own distinctive design language that other are now also getting inspired with. One OEM, however might soon take issue again with Samsung's sources of inspiration. Leaked photos of what is allegedly the upcoming Galaxy C5, the first in the new Galaxy C series, do indeed show a dominantly metallic motif. However, it also seems to carry some parts that readily call to mind HTC's older One flagships.

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Google exec: Android One is part of broader hardware strategy

Google exec: Android One is part of broader hardware strategy

Many Android users will probably have heard of Nexus devices at one point in time or another. But, unless they're in one of the very few countries covered by the program, they probably have never heard of Android One. The program was launched to sort of mirror Google partnerships with OEMs seen in the Nexus program but to a more liberal and more affordable degree. It hasn't, however, caught on, leading many to consider it dead. Google directory for Business Development and Android & Chrome Partnerships Mike Hayes says, however, that it couldn't be farther from the truth.

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LG G5, V10 get approved for use in US military, enterprise

LG G5, V10 get approved for use in US military, enterprise

While consumers are still the primary audience of smartphone makers like Apple, Samsung, and LG, there are three other markets that companies are scrambling to get a hold of: education, enterprise, and government. Of the three, getting government approval is perhaps the trickiest, going through all the certifications, not to mention red tape, in order to be deemed fit for government and military use. So it's no surprise that LG is only to happy to boast that it has gotten certified by the US government to be secure and fit for use both in the enterprise as well as in military.

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HoloFlex makes dreams of bendable, holographic phones come true

HoloFlex makes dreams of bendable, holographic phones come true

A few years ago, Samsung and LG were almost at east other's throats, trying to beat the other to the flexible smartphone race. Both, however, have stopped short of that goal, settling for curved smartphones like the G Flex, or curved edge screens like the Galaxy S7 edge. Some, however, have never given up that dream. Researchers from Australia's Queen's University Human Media Lab have cooked up a smartphone that does flex just a bit. That, however, is only in service to the HoloFlex's real raison d'être: projecting holograms.

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Sony Xperia C6 Ultra phablet leaked with a 16MP front cam

Sony Xperia C6 Ultra phablet leaked with a 16MP front cam

Al most anyone and everyone is about selfies these days. Well, maybe except Leica. Most smartphone makers, however, have at least one, maybe even more, selfie-friendly model in their lineup. Sony, whose name was, and partly still is, synonymous with digital photography, is no different. It seems, however, it saved its selfie aspirations not for its new premium Xperia X flagship line but for the Xperia C6 Ultra, a mid-range tablet that boasts of a 16 megapixel front camera, one of two largest selfie cameras on a smartphone so far.

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Galaxy Note 6 “Lite” to get FHD screen, 4GB RAM, Snapdragon 820

Galaxy Note 6 “Lite” to get FHD screen, 4GB RAM, Snapdragon 820

A few years ago, flagships came with "mini" flagships. These days, everyone is going "lite", either in name or in deed. The Sony Xperia XA is veritably an Xperia X Lite, which, amusingly, is really an Xperia X Performance Lite. There really is an LG G5 Lite on the way. The HTC 10 Lifestyle is also just a fancy name to call the same thing. Not to be outdone, Samsung's upcoming phablet will also have a lite counterpart, at least according to this leak. As if having two possible Galaxy Note 6 models weren't confusing enough.

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SpaceX didn’t fail at landing a rocket at sea after all

SpaceX didn’t fail at landing a rocket at sea after all

Some recommend your expectations low so that you will be pleasantly surprised when you succeed but won't take it too hard when you fail. That might not be the reasoning behind SpaceX's less than enthusiastic outlook as it launched another Falcon 9 to put the JCSAT-14 commercial communications satellite into orbit. It already set a low probability for making a safe sea landing this time around because of the specifics of this mission. Well, guess what? SpaceX nailed it yet again. So yes, it successfully landed another rocket at sea.

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