Author Archives: JC Torres

An open source contributor and holds doubly lethal degrees in Philosophy and Computer Science. When not working, he spends his time lurking and helping out in KDE Project.

Android Q desktop mode might be too little too late

Android Q desktop mode might be too little too late

The first beta for the next version of Android has landed and, naturally, developers and modders are already taking it apart to look for hidden or even incubating features. One of those small nuggets is a not so hidden desktop mode for Android. And while it's definitely interesting that Google is finally considering such an interface, it might no longer make a difference in expanding Android beyond smartphones and some TVs.

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Huawei P30 Pro to include Sunrise color, IR blaster

Huawei P30 Pro to include Sunrise color, IR blaster

Remember the days when the only way you'd get some color on your phone would be with a case or a skin? Those days are long gone and, ironically, you'd actually be hard pressed to find new smartphones in plain black, grey, or even white color options. Chinese phone makers, in particular, seem to like playing with different combinations of colors and the Huawei P30 Pro is now believed to come with a reddish Sunrise mix.

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Samsung 12GB LPDDR4X RAM for phones begin mass production

Samsung 12GB LPDDR4X RAM for phones begin mass production

Our smartphones are getting insanely powerful to the point that they're starting to rival mid-range and ultra-thin laptops in terms of specs, performance, and especially battery efficiency. There are, of course, areas where laptops still trump phones in raw performance and software, things seem to be headed in that direction as well. The latest piece to drop comes from Samsung who is boasting the launch of 12 GB LPDDR4X RAM that might be a bit too late for the Galaxy S10+ but not for its 5G version.

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Insta360 EVO foldable camera records in 180 degrees 3D

Insta360 EVO foldable camera records in 180 degrees 3D

Foldable seems to be the new trend this year and it isn't just smartphones either. Insta360, a brand that has become synonymous with consumer and, recently, prosumer 360-degrees cameras has a new foldable product that, thankfully, isn't a smartphone. Whether you want to be immersed in everything that happens, even behind you, or prefer to record things the way you naturally see things, the new Insta360 EVO foldable camera has got you covered. Plus, the new Insta360 VR app and Insta360 HoloFrame will give you more options on how to relive those moments.

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Lookout app now on Pixel phones to help the blind see with AI

Lookout app now on Pixel phones to help the blind see with AI

When people here about AI, they usually think either of disembodied personal assistants or, worse, Skynet. AI, however, has so much more varied applications, including the computer vision technology that powers the likes of Google Lens. Google is now bringing that exact same AI technology at the service of people that may need them the most. With the Lookout app, those with impaired vision will no longer have to play a guessing game or ask someone to help read crucial and maybe sensitive documents.

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YouTube Music, YouTube Premium expand to more countries

YouTube Music, YouTube Premium expand to more countries

YouTube is most popular for being the world's biggest video streaming site but, ironically, many use it for listening to music more than watching videos. That is what prompted the service to launch YouTube Music, its "made-for-music" app dedicated to, well, music. Unlike with videos, though, rolling out a music streaming service in other countries can be a tricky thing. Fortunately, the wait finally ends for India, South Africa, and a handful of Latin American countries as both YouTube Music and YouTube Premium make their way to those markets.

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Galaxy A90 coming to the US as a gaming-worthy phone

Galaxy A90 coming to the US as a gaming-worthy phone

Samsung has recently given its Galaxy A series a new calling, becoming its test bed for new features that could eventually make its way to the company's premium models. Those included, for example, quad cameras, a side-mounted fingerprint scanner, and, of course, the infamous hole-in display. The Galaxy A phones themselves have mostly been unavailable in the US but based on a Samsung's own US website, the still to be announced Galaxy A90 might be the lone exception to that.

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Microsoft ports DirectX 12 to Windows 7 for World of Warcraft

Microsoft ports DirectX 12 to Windows 7 for World of Warcraft

Talk about sending mixed messages. Microsoft has recently reminded its customers that Windows 7 support is ending next year and is going to start nagging them to upgrade to Windows 10. At GDC 2019, however, it is seemingly giving gamers a reason not to upgrade yet. It boasts that it has just made a critical part of DirectX 12 available on a version of an operating system it will soon abandon, all for the sake of courting Activision Blizzard's World of Warcraft players.

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Gboard on Pixel phones get fast offline speech recognition

Gboard on Pixel phones get fast offline speech recognition

Even before there was Google Assistant, Google was already playing with voice and speech recognition for various features, including Voice Search. Like most of Google's AI-powered functionality, however, those relied on an active, not to mention good, Internet connection. That's OK when you're trying to search for something online or place an order, not so much when you're dictating or translating words. Fortunately, Google's AI team has come up with a solution for the Gboard keyboard that will let you dictate text even when you're offline.

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Huawei’s plan to develop its own OS is an exercise in futility doomed to fail

Huawei’s plan to develop its own OS is an exercise in futility doomed to fail

Depending on your perspective, Huawei is either a victim or political war or a victim of its own ambitions, maybe even both. No matter which way you look at it, however, the Chinese company that has just recently claimed the title of second biggest smartphone maker is in trouble.

It isn't too worried even while it's fighting its biggest battle yet. It has backup plans in place if it comes to that, including its own homegrown mobile operating system to replace Android. And that could very well spell the end of Huawei's smartphone business.

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Bugatti Baby returns in a larger 3D-printed Type 35 body

Bugatti Baby returns in a larger 3D-printed Type 35 body

We see quite a few "miniature" model of iconic cars being made available for children to drive but that practice isn't a modern invention. More than a century ago, Bugatti made a half scale model of the historic Type 35 racing car for his four-year-old son. The car became so popular that the Bugatti Baby became one of the first limited edition miniature cars in history. To celebrate the company's 110th anniversary Bugatti is bringing the Baby back, this time with more than a few modern features for good measure.

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Huawei P30 images show off flat tops and bottoms

Huawei P30 images show off flat tops and bottoms

In just a few days, Huawei will be unveiling what many expect and some hope to be the camera smartphones of the year, topping the company's own Huawei P20 Pro and Mate 20 Pro from last year. While that will be the biggest change inside, Huawei has changed very little on the outside of the Huawei P30 and P30 Pro. The most subtle and almost unnoticeable change? Having somewhat flat tops and bottoms as shown by fresh batch of images showing the phones on every side, including, well, the side.

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