Phones

LG rollable phone might be gone for good

LG rollable phone might be gone for good

South Korean sources suggest this week that LG's sent word of a halting of efforts for their future rollable phone. This conceptual effort was meant to be a real deal, at some point - a phone with a display that'd effective unfurl like a scroll. But now, amid the restructuring of the LG smartphone business in general, it would appear that any sort of "rollable" smartphone efforts will need to be done by a different company, one more prepared to drop cash on such a risky endeavor.

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Smartphone sales in Q4 put Apple, Samsung, Xiaomi, Huawei in a blender

Smartphone sales in Q4 put Apple, Samsung, Xiaomi, Huawei in a blender

Smartphone sales numbers in the fourth quarter of the year 2020 look like the top brands were playing musical chairs. As Gartner shows, All five of the top brands in smartphone sales worldwide changed places year-over-year. Back in Q4 2019, Samsung was the leader, followed by Apple, Huawei, Xiaomi, and OPPO. At the tail end of 2020, Huawei fell to 5th place, and Apple moved to first, followed by Samsung, Xiaomi, and OPPO in-between.

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Universal Android Debloater kicks bloatware to the curb without root

Universal Android Debloater kicks bloatware to the curb without root

A system for Android devices was created by user W1nst0n to crack down on bloatware with relative ease. This isn't a one-stop-shop for every single Android user - you still need to be able to use ADB. It IS far easier to use than most solutions that've been conjured over the past decade for this one purpose. This solution works without needing root, which means you're not going to need to mess with anything that'll void your smartphone's warranty - and again: easy.

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Galaxy Z Fold 3 could be next to get S Pen support

Galaxy Z Fold 3 could be next to get S Pen support

In the lead up to the launch of the Galaxy S21 earlier this year, we heard numerous rumors which claimed that at least one of the phones in the line would support Samsung's S Pen. Those rumors ended up being true, with Samsung later confirming such support for the Galaxy S21 Ultra. As it turns out, the S21 Ultra may not be the only phone outside of the Note line to get S Pen support this year, as now the Galaxy Z Fold 3 is rumored to be getting it as well.

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ZTE under-display camera to get another chance next week

ZTE under-display camera to get another chance next week

One of the holy grails of smartphones, aside from foldable and rollable screens, is a camera that completely hides underneath the screen. This solves a few design problems surrounding bezels and cutouts but might actually be harder to pull off those flexible displays. ZTE was bold enough to actually start selling its first attempt in the ZTE Axon 20 5G, which turned out to be quite a dud. That hasn't dampened its enthusiasm for under-display cameras or UDC which will get a second-gen version at MWC Shanghai in a few days.

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iPhone fold concept suggests a sleek future

iPhone fold concept suggests a sleek future

A concept video created by Svyatoslav Alexandrov, Alexandrov's Studio for ConceptsiPhone demonstrates what might be if Apple jumps onboard the foldable train. In this concept, the iPhone Fold is exactly what you might expect: an iPhone 12 Pro with a big ol' bend in the middle. If what we're seeing here is made real by Apple, we'll basically have everything good about the iPhone 12 Pro and the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold all in one package.

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POCO reveals new devil/angel logo for future phones

POCO reveals new devil/angel logo for future phones

The future of the POCO phone brand is sort of Mad, but with a "sense of goodness." According to documentation for their brand update this week, their new logo is a bit of a mashup of elements, some good, some bad, some witty. You'll find the icon here, complete with antennae, a halo, mad eyes, and a triangle mouth.

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ZTE Axon 20 5G under-display camera flops in DxOMark tests

ZTE Axon 20 5G under-display camera flops in DxOMark tests

Last year, ZTE boasted about having accomplished what even the likes of Samsung still failed to do. It brought the world's first commercially available under-display camera on a smartphone and explained how it pulled off this difficult trick. As much excitement as it generated, it also raised doubts on how it would work in practice. Early feedback was less than encouraging but perhaps the most damning comes from DxOMark's review that almost put the ZTE Axon 20 5G at the bottom of its selfie list.

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Samsung accused of aggressive background app killing in Android 11

Samsung accused of aggressive background app killing in Android 11

Samsung and Android seem to have a love-hate relationship. It has certainly gotten better at keeping in line with Android standards, best practices, and updates even while it continues to form its unique identity with its One UI user experience. It's by no means as bad as the TouchWiz days but there are still some cases where Samsung prefers to do things its way. Those don't always end up well, as illustrated by the case where, at least starting Android 11, Samsung's divergence from stock Android has been observed to be too aggressive and too excessive in killing background apps.

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Android 12 adds haptics-coupled audio, which could be extraordinary

Android 12 adds haptics-coupled audio, which could be extraordinary

With the launch of the Android 12 developer preview this week, we're getting our first look at what the software will bring later this year. Android 12, also known as Android S, adds a system called HapticGenerator. This new bit of code is an audio post-processor "which generates haptic data based on the audio channels." This could change the way you experience sound on your smartphone in the very near future.

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Pixel camera problems might be a hardware issue, not software

Pixel camera problems might be a hardware issue, not software

Just like the old Nexus line, Google's own Pixel phones are taken as the standard by which all Android phones are to be measured against. Like the old Nexus line, that may be true only for the software part. There is no shortage of complaints about the quality of the Pixel phone's hardware, even up to the latest Pixel 5 but a new and inexplicable issue with a growing number of Pixel phones' cameras may become the biggest mess the phones might face.

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Galaxy S20, Galaxy Note 20 One UI 3.1 update is rolling out

Galaxy S20, Galaxy Note 20 One UI 3.1 update is rolling out

It used to be the case that owners of Samsung's Galaxy phones would have to wait indefinitely before they get any news about updates. The new Samsung, however, has been more religious in pushing out updates, both on high-end as well as mid-range Galaxy A models. In fact, it didn't take too long for Samsung to announce that its One UI 3.1 user experience, which debuted on the Galaxy S21 series last month, is already heading out to last year's Galaxy S20 and Galaxy Note 20 families.

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