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SAMSUNG GALAXY NOTE 9: EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT SAMSUNG’S LATEST PHONE

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A new S Pen, more storage, longer battery life, and a slightly larger display all add up to equal Samsung’s new Galaxy Note 9.

After months of rumors, leaks, speculation, and anticipation surrounding the Galaxy Note 9, we finally have an official announcement directly from Samsung.

We now know every last detail about the company’s latest flagship smartphone, built for pro and enterprise users alike. From increased storage, to a Bluetooth S Pen – there’s a lot to like about the Note 9.

Here are a few of the highlights:

  • 6.4-inch display is slightly larger than the Note 8
  • 128GB or 512GB storage options
  • Pricing starts at $999
  • S Pen does a lot more than scribble on the display

SAMSUNG GALAXY NOTE 9: RELEASE DATE

  • Preorders start Aug. 10 at 12:01 am ET
  • Orders will arrive by Aug. 24

Samsung, carriers, and some retail partners will begin taking preorders for the Note 9 on Friday, August 10 at 12:01 am ET. Deliveries are currently scheduled for August 24, the same day as in-store availability

SAMSUNG GALAXY NOTE 9: PRICING

  • So much for “reasonable” pricing
  • Tops out at $1,250

The Galaxy Note 9 will be available in 128GB or 512GB, with the former priced at $999. For the 512GB model, you can expect to pay $1,249. Keep in mind, both models offer microSD card support of up to 512GB – so don’t go all out on internal storage unless you really need a phone with up to 1TB of storage.

SAMSUNG GALAXY NOTE 9: DESIGN

  • Not a design overhaul
  • Fingerprint sensor is moved
  • It still has a headphone jack

When rumors first started circulating about the Note 9, they ran the gamut. From a fingerprint sensor hidden under the display to fancy new S Pen features — we heard it all. We now know the fingerprint sensor did move, but not under the display. Instead, the sensor is still on the back of the phone, but this time around it’s under the dual camera setup.

The Note 9 more or less looks just like last year’s Note 8. It has a slightly bigger display, measuring 6.4-inches compared to 6.3-inches on last year’s model. But not much else has changed.

The Note 9 will be available in a new ocean blue and lavender purple in the US, with black and copper color options internationally.

SAMSUNG GALAXY NOTE 9: FEATURES

  • Bixby 2.0
  • Big update to the S Pen
  • Smarter camera
  • Fortnite

S Pen

For the first time since it was released, the S Pen now has Bluetooth connectivity and will add the ability to control various aspects of the Note 9. From launching apps to media playback, the S Pen has new tricks. Read more about what you can do with the S Pen on the Note 9 here.

Camera features

When taking a photo on the Note 9, the camera app will now analyze your picture and let you know if it detects any potential issues with a new feature called Flaw Detection. For example, when taking a group photo, the app will detect if someone blinked and a small alert will pop-up letting you know you should probably take another photo.

Fortnite and gaming

The most popular game on the planet right now, Fortnite, has teamed up with Samsung. Fornite is available for a limited time exclusively to Samsung Galaxy users.

You can download the game from Fornite’s website.

DeX

Samsung’s software feature that transforms a smartphone into a desktop-like experience, DeX, no longer needs a dedicated dock. Instead, a simple HDMI adapter and a monitor is all it takes to use DeX.

SAMSUNG GALAXY NOTE 9: SPECIFICATIONS

  • Bigger battery
  • Bigger display
  • Increased base storage

For those who like to geek out on every last specification for a device, here you go:

  • Processor: Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 2.35 GHz quad-core
  • Display: 6.4 inch, 2960×1440-pixel resolution Super AMOLED (516 ppi)
  • Operating system: Android 8.1 Oreo
  • Storage: 128GB/512GB internal with microSD expansion card slot
  • Memory: 6GB (128GB model) or 8GB (512GB model) LPDDR4
  • Rear cameras: 12-megapixel f1.5/f2.4 OIS, and 12-megapixel telephoto f2.4 OIS with 2x optical zoom, 10x digital zoom.
  • Front camera: 8-megapixel f/1.7 with autofocus
  • Water resistance: IP68
  • Connectivity: Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac (2.4/5GHz), VHT80 MU-MIMO, 1024QAM, Bluetooth 5.0 BLE, ANT+, GPS/Galileo/Glonass/BeiDou, MST, and NFC
  • Sensors: Accelerometer, Barometer, Fingerprint Sensor, Gyro Sensor, Geomagnetic Sensor, Hall Sensor, Heart Rate Sensor, Proximity Sensor, RGB Light Sensor, Iris Sensor, and Pressure Sensor Battery: 4,000 milliamp-hour with Quick Charge 2.0 and fast wireless charging
  • Size: 161.9 x 76.4 x 8.8-millimeters
  • Weight: 201 grams

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Hardwares

THE NEW PIXEL 3’S CAMERA WILL LET AI PICK OUT THE BEST PHOTOS FOR YOU

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Google’s Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL smartphones were just unveiled this morning at an event in New York City. As expected, both phones are coming with a near-identical set of front-facing and rear-facing cameras that are powered by artificial intelligence. That allows them to do all sorts of algorithmic work behind the scenes, all powered by what Google calls its new Pixel Visual Core chip.

Among the new AI features built into the Pixel 3 camera are two new shooting modes called Top Shot and Photobooth. Top Shot uses Google’s work in image and object recognition and computer vision to analyze photos and pick the best shots in a given batch. With Top Shot, you’ll be able to capture a number of photos before and after the moment you press the virtual shutter button, while the software will pick out the best shot.

Image: Google

It’s similar to Google’s Motion Photos feature that creates GIFs from short snippets of video. You can still browse through the alternates to pick out others, Google says. Photobooth, on the other hand, takes a bunch of photos of you or your friends using the front-facing camera, but only when it recognizes that the subjects of the photo are making a funny face or smiling. You don’t need to even press the shutter.

Google also announced a feature called Super Res Zoom, which uses a burst of photos to amp resolution when you zoom into a subject, and Night Sight, which uses machine learning to artificially brighten dark spots in photos. For Pixel 3 XL owners, you’ll be able to access a wide-angle lens for a feature Google is calling Group Selfie Cam.

Some of the AI-powered software here, specifically a feature like Photobooth, was built initially for Google Clips, the company’s square-shaped photo and video capturing device that automatically operates on its own to let parents capture moments of their kids. Now, it appears that Google has taken a lot of the knowledge there and integrated it into its Pixel devices to help ease the pain of picking a photo or tinkering with all the settings to capture the perfect shot.

Since the original Pixel, the defining feature of the device line has not been its design or the relatively spartan stock Android it runs, but the camera. Using its advancements in artificial intelligence, Google was able to achieve a staggeringly capable camera that has only improved with last year’s Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL. So it makes sense that Google has put more resources toward improving the Pixel 3 camera and positioning it as one of, if not the most important, reason why you’d pick its device over an iPhone XS or a Samsung Galaxy S9 / Note 9.

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Hardwares

APPLE IS RETHINKING THE HEARING AID — AND NOW ANDROID IS, TOO

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Google is making life a bit easier for people affected by hearing loss — with official hearing aid support in Android.

On Thursday, the company announced that it’s working with GN Hearing to bring low-power hearing aid streaming support to future versions of Android. This means people will be able to connect, pair and monitor their hearing aids from their Android device.

This follows Apple’s Made for iPhone hearing aid program, which allows people to connect and control their hearing aids from iOS devices. You can read more in CNET’s feature on the Apple program here.

Although Apple was first, Google’s move has potentially bigger impact since 85 percent of the world’s smartphones run Android (compared to 14.7 percent for iOS).

A World Health Organization statistic from March says that around 466 million people worldwide have disabling hearing loss, meaning a lot of people could potentially benefit from Android’s support.

Apple and Android aren’t alone in bringing cutting-edge tech to hearing aids. Manufacturers like Bose, Oticon and Harman are also working to make hearing aids smarter with app support, built-in sensors and communication between connected smart devices.

Android’s hearing aid support is designed to have a low impact on battery life while keeping audio quality high. The nitty-gritty details about the hearing aid support can be read on Android’s spec page here.

 

 

 

Source: https://www.cnet.com/news/apple-is-rethinking-the-hearing-aid-and-now-android-is-too/

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Hardwares

MICROSOFT’S SURFACE CHIEF HINTS AT A MODULAR SURFACE PC AND USB-C WEBCAM

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Microsoft unveiled a bunch of different Surface products this week. There’s a new matte black Surface Pro 6 and Surface Laptop 2, an updated Surface Studio 2, and all new Surface Headphones. While most of the hardware was typical Surface, the Headphones were a surprising shift for Microsoft. In an interview with The Verge, Surface chief Panos Panay reveals that Microsoft moving into headphones is all about a new idea of “completing the Surface experience.”

“Now that the company is designing these products as one company, the tech is evolving where we want it to be… there was an opportunity to complete this thing in a way that I’m passionate about and that the team is passionate about,” explains Panay. That “completion” on the headphones side is designed to meet Surface users that engross themselves in music, as many creators do, or even gamers who use headsets for hours. “Just like a Surface, there are a few little elements that we can bring to the table that are transformative for your experience in getting things done,” explains Panay. Those elements include the clever noise canceling dial, integrated Cortana and Skype functions, and the automatic mute features.

While Microsoft has taken this step into headphones and beyond its regular mouse and keyboard accessories, there are signs Surface will continue to push into new areas. During our interview, Panay hints that we might see a USB-C webcam from Microsoft. “Look at the camera on Surface Hub 2, note it’s a USB-C-based camera, and the idea that we can bring a high fidelity camera to an experience, you can probably guess that’s going to happen,” explains Panay. “Is it completing an experience or bringing the next level of an experience to something that you wanted, even if it’s not Surface? I’ve been looking at all of that. While I won’t announce a new product, I think that’s important. I really think the completing of experience is our design from Microsoft that’s hardware and software.”

Microsoft is increasingly looking at a tighter blend of hardware and software that’s typically the playbook of Apple. While the software giant has tried to mash these together by demonstrating things like OneNote with a Surface Pen, the Surface Hub 2 feels like the first real demonstration of Microsoft’s new approach to hardware and software. It also has a modular design so you can upgrade its components, and that same design feels like it should be on the 28-inch Surface Studio.

Surface Hub 2’s modular design

I asked Panos if we could see the same modular design of the Surface Hub 2, that lets you replace the processor cartridge, coming to Surface Studio. “Probably, you look at it and you see what’s the evolution and how do we make it better for our customers,” says Panay. “Yeah, there’s still so much more to do, and while I won’t tell you what it is you can put stories together.” It’s easy to connect the Surface dots, especially when Microsoft filed patents for a modular Surface Studio years ago.

Either way, it’s clear the future of Surface will be very similar to the Surface Hub 2 and Surface Headphones. Both these products marry hardware and software together in meaningful ways that are designed to make them truly fit into the unique gap in the market that Microsoft is trying to fill with Surface.

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