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Today’s Linux platform accommodates a number of really good financial applications that are more than capable of handling both personal and small-business accounting operations. That was not always the case, however.

Not quite 10 years ago, I scoured Linux repositories in a quest for replacement applications for popular Microsoft Windows tools. Back then, the pickings were mighty slim. Often, the only recourse was to use Microsoft Windows-based applications that ran under WINE.

Classics and Fresh Faces

The best of the Linux lot were GnuCash, HomeBank, KMyMoney and Skrooge. In fact, depending on the Linux distro you fancied, those four packages often comprised the entire financial software lot.

In terms of features and performance, they were as good as or better than the well-known Microsoft Windows equivalents — MSMoney and Quicken. Those Linux staples are still top of the class today. Their feature sets have expanded. Their performance has matured. However, Linux users now have a few more very noteworthy choices to chart their personal and small business financial activities.

In a change of pace from the usual Linux distro reviews, Linux Picks and Pans presents a roundup of the best financial apps that make the Linux OS a treasure trove for your financial needs. These Linux apps are tools to handle your budget, track your investments, and better organize your record-keeping. At a bare minimum, they will help you become more aware of where your money goes.

One development with the growing catalog of money management software for Linux users is the cost factor. Just because an application runs on Linux does not mean it is free to use. The lines have been blurring between open source products and Linux packages with free trial periods or reduced features unless you pay to upgrade. This software roundup includes only free, open source products.

If you are looking for an app only to track your checking and savings accounts, you will probably find the applications in this roundup a bit too advanced. For maintaining your bank account registers, you can find a variety of spreadsheet template files for LibreOffice Calc and Microsoft Excel on the Internet. Yes, you can get Microsoft Office apps for Linux now! They are cloud-based, and you need a Microsoft log-in such as a free mail account.

Cash In with GNUCash

GnuCash is an advanced financial program and one of the few money apps that an accountant using Linux would relish. It is a powerhouse personal and small business finance manager. It comes with a steep learning curve, though.

It is a double-entry accounting system. GnuCash tracks budgets and maintains various accounts in numerous category types. It has a full suite of standard and customizable reports.

GnuCash has the look and feel of a checkbook register. Its GUI (graphical user interface) is designed for easy entry and tracking of bank accounts, stocks, income and expenses. The easiness ends there, however, if double-entry accounting is not your comfort zone.

If you do not have an appreciation for formal accounting principles, be sure you spend considerable time studying the ample documentation. Learning to use GnuCash is not overly difficult. It is designed to be simple and easy to use. Its core functions, though, are based on formal accounting principles.

For business finances, GnuCash offers key features. For instance, it handles reports and graphs as well as scheduled transactions and financial calculations. If you run a small business, this app will track your customers, vendors, jobs, invoices and more. From that perspective, GnuCash is a full-service package.

There is not much that GNUCash cannot do. It handles Check Printing, Mortgage and Loan Repayment, Online Stock and Mutual Fund Quotes and Stock/Mutual Fund Portfolios. Create recurring transactions with adjustable amounts and timelines. Set an automatic reminder when a transaction is due. Or postpone a scheduled payment without canceling or entering it before the due date.

The latest stable release of GnuCash is version 3.3. Most Linux distributions come bundled with a version of GnuCash. Often, it is not the most current version.

Feel at Home with HomeBank

Compared to GnuCash, HomeBank is a much easier personal accounting system to use. It is designed for analyzing your personal finance and budget in detail using powerful filtering tools and charts, and for those purposes it is an ideal tool.

It includes the ability to import data easily from Intuit Quicken, Microsoft Money or other software. It also makes importing bank account statements in OFX/QFX, QIF, CSV formats a snap.

Also, it flags duplicate transactions during the import process and handles multiple currencies. It offers online updates for various account types such as Bank, Cash, Asset, Credit card and Liability. It also makes it simple to schedule recurring transactions.

HomeBank is more than a simple ledger program. It uses categories and tags to organize transactions.

For example, this app handles multiple checking and savings accounts. Plus, it automates check numbering and category/payee assignment.

HomeBank can schedule transactions with a post-in-advance option and makes creating entries easy with transaction templates, split-category entries and internal transfer functions. It also offers simple month or annual budget tracking options, and has dynamic reports with charts.

The current version is 2.2, released Oct. 10, 2018.

Welcome Uncle Skrooge

Skrooge resembles Quicken with its dashboard-style graphical user interface, or GUI. It looks less like a banking ledger. The design is much more user-friendly. Skrooge goes where the other financial apps don’t.

The tab structure gives Skrooge a more appealing look and feel. Each task — such as filtered reports, ledger entry and dashboard — remains open as a tab line along the top of the viewing windows under the menu and toolbar rows. This keeps viewing open tabs one click away to see the Dashboard, Income vs. Expenditure report, various pie categories, etc.

Skrooge is no slouch when it comes to features. One of its strong points is the ability to grab data from other money applications so you do not have to set it up from scratch.

It imports QIF, QFX/OFX and CSV formats. It can handle exports from KMyMoney, Microsoft Money, GNUCash, Grisbi, HomeBank and Money Manager EX.

Other features include advanced graphical reports, tabs to help organize your work, infinite undo/redo even after a file is closed, and infinite categories levels. You also get instant filtering on operations and reports, mass update of operations, scheduled operations, and the ability to track refund of your expenses.

Skrooge also automatically processes operations based on search conditions and handles a variety of currencies. It lets you work with budget formats and a dashboard.

The latest stable version is version 2.16.2 released on Nov. 4, 2018.

Easy KMyMoney Doubles Down
KMyMoney makes using double-entry accounting principles. It could very well be the Linux version of Quicken that actually is easier to use.

The user interface has a look and feel that is familiar and intuitive. This money manager is one of the original made for Linux.

The KDE community developed and maintains this money manager app. Although it is a part of the KDE desktop, KMyMoney runs fine in most other Linux desktop environments.

It supports different account types, categorization of expenses and incomes, reconciliation of bank accounts, and import/export to the “QIF” file format. You can use the OFX and HBCI formats for imports and exports through plugins.

What gives KMyMoney an edge, at least where usability is concerned, is its friendly user interface. It is a comprehensive finance-tracking application that does not require an accounting degree to use effectively.

Even if you have no prior experience with money management software, KMyMoney is a win-win solution. The interfaces used in most other Linux finance and banking tools are much more cumbersome. KMyMoney has a much lower learning curve.

KMyMoney is a capable and useful tool for tracking bank accounts and investment results. Not much effort is needed to set it up and learn to use it efficiently.

Oddly, it is as if the Linux version is a separate product. You cannot get it from the main website. The Linux version is available on

The latest release is version 4.6.4. Get KMyMoney here.

Grisbi Masters Simple Entry Accounting
Grisbi Finance Manager is functional and uncomplicated. It is an ideal personal financial management program.

Much of the credit for that assessment is due to the accounting entry method that relies on debiting one account and crediting one account. It is populated with an impressive set of home finance features, including support for multiple currencies.

The feature set focuses on best practices for handling Accounting, Budgeting and Reporting. You can create multiple unlimited accounts, categories and reports.

One of the essential features that work is Grisbi’s clear and consistent user interface. Another design feature that makes Grisbi work so well is its customization. You can tailor transactions lists, trees, tabs, and a lot more to your use.

Grisbi uses a tab-based interface for its menu system. This makes the controls easy to operate. It is built around using multiple accounts, categories and transactions. You can back up and archive your records effortlessly, and use the built-in scheduler and file encryption tools.

Importing and exporting data has an Achilles’ heel: You cannot export to non-QIF and non-CSV formats. Real-time updating is a drawback as well. You can’t. There is no local help file, and an account is unrecoverable if the user forgets the password.

My only real complaint about using Grisbi is the unnecessary challenge to learning how to get the most out of it. Do not bother downloading the 259-page Grisbi manual unless you are fluent in French. For speakers of other languages, that makes for a steep learning curve. You are totally on your own.

The current stable edition of Grisbi is version 1.1.93, released in December 2017.

Buddi Does It Simply
If you crave simplicity but demand budgeting awareness from your money management software, Buddi could be the hands-down banking tool for you. It is a personal finance and budgeting program.

Buddi ignores the complications of other features that make more in-depth money applications harder to use. It is aimed at users with little or no financial background.

Buddi’s user interface is based on a three-tab concept built around your accounts, your budget and your reports.

Buddi runs on any Linux computer with a Java virtual machine installed. The only drawback with this software is its legacy nature. The latest version, Buddi, was released on Jan. 14, 2016.

Use Money Manager EX for Lightweight Reliability
Money Manager Ex is easy-to-use personal finance software. Use it to organize your non-business finances and keep track of where, when and how your money goes.

Money Manager includes all the basic features you need to get an overview of your personal net worth. It helps you to keep tabs on your checking, credit card, savings, stock investment and assets accounts.

You can set reminders for recurring bills and deposits. Use it for budgeting and cash flow forecasting. Create graphs and pie charts of your spending and savings with one click.

Two factors make this application an unbeatable personal finance tool. You do not have to install Money Manager EX. Instead, run it from a USB drive. It uses the nonproprietary SQLite Database with AES Encryption.

Several features make Money Manager EX intuitive and simple. It has a wizard to simply create accounts and start to use the program. You can use multiple currencies for each account to have more flexibility.

Categories tell you the reason for an expenditure or income received. Clear displays show all expenses and income. You can divide and highlight them with different status indicators. You can search, filter and sort by every field to have a clear understanding of bank accounts at any time.

Special transactions can be set up in order to have the transaction entered into the database at some future date. They generally occur at regular intervals based on a schedule.

Budgeting and Asset tracking are easy to do with Money Manager Ex. You can undervalue or increase every asset value by a specific rate per year, or leave them unchanged. It is a snap to set up a budget for any time interval.

One of the best features in this lightweight money management application is the ability to store all related documents to every element type (transaction, account, asset) so you always have quick access to invoices, receipts and contracts.

The latest stable release of Money Manager EX Desktop is 1.3.3.

Bottom Line
These seven money manager applications for Linux offer a wide range of features and user interfaces. Some are good starting products for users with little or no experience with this category of software. Other titles give you all of the tools to manage your household and your small business.

I deliberately avoided ranking these Linux products. I also suspended the usual star rating for each one in this roundup. All of them share two things in common. They are all free open source applications. They are all stable and very workable, depending on your money-tracking and management needs.

Some of them are easy to set up and use. Others are more involved and can be frustrating if you are not familiar with accounting procedures.

Want to Suggest a Review?
Is there a Linux software application or distro you’d like to suggest for review? Something you love or would like to get to know?

Please email your ideas to me, and I’ll consider them for a future Linux Picks and Pans column.

And use the Reader Comments feature below to provide your input!


SCOUT is the portable charger that’s thought of everything — and now, it’s half off




We’re all carrying so many devices these days that our pockets are starting to look like Batman’s utility belt. Between your smartphone, smartwatch, tablet, laptop and the half-dozen other assembled gadgets and doohickeys we’re toting around, power to keep all that tech running is a primary concern at all times.

With so many different device standards, power protocols, connecting cables and more, your power answer needs to start with versatility. A great place to start is the SCOUT Wireless 5,000mAh Portable Charger. Right now, you can pick it up at half-off its retail price, just $34 from TNW Deals with promo code: PREZDAY15.

Whether your device powers up via USB-C, micro USB or Lightning cable, SCOUT is ready with 5,000mAh of power, which is enough to fully charge an iPhone two or three times. Don’t actually have your power cable? No problem, SCOUT connects via its own built-in connectors, meaning you won’t have to be scrounging around for cables ever again. There’s even a USB port just in case you do need to use an outside cable.

Does your device power wirelessly through Qi compatibility? SCOUT has you covered as well so you can simultaneously charge your full armada of devices, even via wireless charging.

And, if you want to go super old-school, the SCOUT recharges itself through conventional micro USB or your good old trusty AC wall outlet. SCOUT sports internal  intelligent charging tech that auto-detects new connections, then adjusts to the current specs to the device’s needs, avoiding any over-charging or short circuits.

This super-convenient package is about the size of your smartphone — and might be just as useful. Retailing for $80, you can get one right now at half price, only $34before this offer ends with promo code: PREZDAY15.

Like this deal? Check out Vault, the best way to secure your online data for just $9.99/month.

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Huawei Y9 2019 Smartphone Excites Customers




The latest model of the Huawei Smartphones called Y9 2019, which is already available in Nigeria and other parts of the world, has continued to excite Nigerian customers who see it as a sleek, light wight smartphone with broad screen that allows for fuller view of images and texts.

Shipped into the country in January 2019, the smartphone comes with dual SIM card slots, including a microSD card slot for additional memory capacity to accommodate heavy downloads of photos and videos.

The dual SIM slot was specifically built to address customers’ demand in Nigeria and Africa, where most of the subscribers prefer to operate with dual SIMs from different telecoms service providers.

One of the latest customers to Huawei brand of smartphones in Lagos, Nigeria, Mr. Jacob Adebayo, described Huawei Y9 2019 as rugged that could withstand pressure and shock when dropped from a distant height.

The Huawei Y9 (2019), which is an improvement on Y9 2018, Y8 Prime and Y7 Pro, is powered by Huawei’s new Kirin 710 mid-range processor. Other specifications include 4GB of RAM, 64GB of internal storage which can be expanded using a microSD card (up to 400GB), and a non-removable 4,000mAh battery.

The battery, which is long-lasting, enables users to make maximum use of the phone all through the day without battery drainage. Experience has also shown that minimal usage of the phone could retain its battery for more than 36 hours talk time.

Dubbed the Huawei Y9 (2019), the smartphone was launched in China back in October 2018 and is the successor to the Y9 (2018). The latest smartphone from the Chinese smartphone giant, which overtook other smartphone brands to become the world’s second largest manufacturer in 2018, features AI-enhanced cameras, a notched display, dual rear and front cameras, and Android 8.1 Oreo out-of-the-box.

Priced at N76,900 in the Nigerian market, the lone variant of the Huawei Y9 (2019) with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of internal storage, commenced sale exclusively via Amazon India from 15th January 2019.

The Huawei Y9 (2019) fits comfortably in the palm of the hand and feels chunky and solid. The plastic back has a high-gloss finish in a bid to imitate glass. It looks sleek and stylish but gets smudged very easily. A case is recommended to enhance grip, as the phone comes very slippery.

Colour and camera

There are two colour variants on offer — Midnight Black and Sapphire Blue. The vertically oriented dual-camera module is located in the upper right corner of the smartphone, with the words AI camera emblazoned underneath it. There’s also a centrally located fingerprint sensor and a Huawei logo on the bottom right. The power button and volume rocker are placed on the right edge of the phone, and the left side houses the SIM tray, which has separate slots for two Nano SIMs and a microSD card.

Up front, there is a 6.5-inch full-HD+ display, with a 1500:1 contrast ratio, and a pixel density of 397ppi. The notch has become the new normal in smartphone design and the Huawei Y9 (2019) also embraces the design trend. The dual cameras are housed within the sizeable notch, which can be be masked via the settings.

The Huawei Y9 (2019) has four cameras in total — two at the front as well as the back. Up front, there is a 16-megapixel primary sensor with an aperture of f/2.0 and a pixel size of 2-microns, and a 2-megapixel secondary sensor with an aperture of f/2.4. At the back, there is a 13-megapixel sensor with an aperture of f/1.8 alongside a 2-megapixel secondary sensor with an aperture of f/2.4.

The camera app is loaded with features such as intelligent scene detection, a fully featured Pro mode, AR stickers, filters, light painting, panorama, and time-lapse.

Other features

The display seemed to have adequate brightness, good viewing angles, and punchy colours. Huawei offers two colour modes for the display — Normal and Vivid — and users can also calibrate the colour temperature according to their own preferences. There’s also an Eye Comfort Mode which reduces harmful blue light. A detailed analysis of the display will have to wait till we conduct our full review.

Huawei has retained the legacy 3.5mm headphone jack. It still uses the old Micro-USB standard for charging and data transfer.

The Huawei Y9 (2019) runs Honor’s EMUI 8.2 skin atop Android 8.1 Oreo. EMUI is smooth and fluid, but the software experience is let down by the sizeable amount of clutter and bloat.

There is a dedicated night mode as well which allows you to tweak the exposure and ISO. Huawei’s flagships are known for their camera quality, and it is expected that the Huawei Y9 will maintain high quality images.

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Samsung Galaxy Fold, S10 and 5G phones unveiled at Unpacked event




  • Samsung has revealed its latest S10 smartphone in San Francisco
  • Here is a hands-on first look at the Galaxy S10, S10 Plus and S10E
  • The Korean giant has unveiled a folding phone, the Samsung Galaxy Fold
  • Samsung has launched a new 5G smartphone
  • Why Samsung’s folding phone could be a blueprint of the future

Samsung has unveiled a folding phone that doubles as a tablet, which the Korean company hailed as the biggest development in smartphones in a decade.

The Samsung Galaxy Fold, which was launched alongside four other smartphones on Wednesday evening, functions as a typical smartphone but can be unfolded to a second 7.3-inch touchscreen.

The device, which will be released in April, will cost at least $1,980 (£1,516), making it by far the most expensive smartphone on the market.

It is the first of its kind from a major smartphone company, with Samsung claiming the device “answers sceptics” who claim that innovation has dried up in the industry

Samsung’s folding smartphone that transforms into a tablet

Samsung also unveiled the latest version of its flagship smartphone line, the Galaxy S10, releasing three models that cost between £669 and £1,099.

The phones – the cheaper S10E, the S10 and the S10+, feature a fingerprint scanner embedded within the touchscreen and three rear cameras that allow for wider-angle photos.

The smartphone-maker also teased its largest phone yet, the S10 5G, which offers 6.7 inch display and promises to be the future of smartphone connectivity. The phone will be available later this year, when 5G networks, that offer faster mobile data connections, come online.

The company is hoping 5G support will give it a leg up over Apple, which is not expected to unveil a 5G phone until next year.  All these devices are capable of wirelessly charging other Samsung phones and accessories.

Image result for samsung fold

The Galaxy Fold in its “closed” form

Phone makers have spent years attempting to develop flexible touchscreens that allow devices to fold in two, answering consumers’ demands for ever-bigger phone screens, without sacrificing portability. Several manufacturers are now working on their own foldable phones, hoping the technology will breathe life into a saturated smartphone market.

“The Galaxy Fold breaks new ground not just because it defines categories. It breaks new ground because it answers sceptics, who say that everything has been done, that the smartphone is a mature category in a saturated market,” Samsung’s mobile chief DJ Koh said. “We are here to prove them wrong.”

Samsung said folding the phone out into a bigger-screened version will allow multi-tasking features such as split-screen apps and better video watching.

However, the high price of the device means it is likely to sell in small numbers. Some versions are likely to sell for more than $2,000, just 18 months after Apple introduced the first $1,000 17 months ago.

The presentations are winding down, and Samsung has left us with their vision of the future in their latest commercial featuring the classic song made famous by Doris Day.

But there’s more to come, keep up to date with the latest Samsung news here and follow @JamesTitcomb on the ground as he elbows everyone out of the way for a first look at the folding phone.

Samsung’s 5G phone

The Galaxy S10 5G is being introduced with a fanfare – a 6.7 inch display that promises to be the future of smartphone connectivity.

This is the biggest screen on a Galaxy device. It comes with a 25-watt charger, so it will charge a lot faster. It has a 3D depth-sensing camera.

Verizon customers will be the first to receive the handsets.

New smartwatch with a full week’s charge

Samsung’s new Galaxy watch features a battery that lasts up to a week and can continually analyse your stages of sleep – this is a huge part of the company’s push into healthcare.

They include heart monitors and “continuous stress tracking when life gets overwhelming”.

Galaxy Buds with Bixby

Samsung has just launched wireless, Apple-style earbuds. Hot take from the Samsung stage: “They are so cool”.

They feature a high efficiency chip set for which allows for 5 hours of calls on a single charge. They are also Bixby-enabled, so you can interact with them remotely and give them instructions (and why wouldn’t you?). They will be available from March.

Incidentally, Bixby can now apparently tell the difference between the Queen’s English and English from Queens (cue laughter from stage). Samsung’s AI assistant also understand three different languages.

S10 price starts at £799 and will be available from March 8

The Samsung Galaxy S10 will start at £799, up to £999. The S10 Plus will start at £899 with a £1,099 version. The S10E will begin at £669.

You can find pre-order details on the Samsung Galaxy S10 here.

Samsung bets on Instagram feature with the S10

The S10 presentation featured Instagram chief executive Adam Mosseri, who presented an “Instagram mode” that will allow users to quickly post any photo onto the social media site.

Of course, there was a rather awkward selfie on stage with DJ Koh….

Here is everything you need to know about the new S10

Matt Field has gone through all of the bells and whistles of the new phones here – here are the highlights and how they differ from the S9.

S10 specs

First photos of the Samsung S10

Here’s the S10

The S10 introduction has come hot on the heels of the Samsung Galaxy Fold. But what does it bring to the table? Read Matthew Field’s guide to the new devices to find out more.

Forget the £1,000 smartphone.

“Samsung just announced the price of the fold – $1,980 and up – and the crowd here literally went ‘ooooooooh'” like a pantomime,” says James Titcomb.

The era for smartphone innovation is not over

DJ Koh Samsung presents the Galaxy Fold.

Samsung chief executive DJ Koh said that the company will prove critics wrong with the lineup of products and services launched this evening. He said:

“The Galaxy Fold breaks new ground not just because it defines categories. It breaks new ground because it answers sceptics, who say that everything has been done, that the Smartphone is a mature category in a saturated market, we are here to prove them wrong”

“Today marks a new beginning, a shift.

“The next decade of progress and innovation. I am excited by what we have achieved, but I am even more excited by what we have enabled.”

Samsung Galaxy Fold: Price and availability

The new device will cost $1,980 (£1,516) and will be available from April 26.

Six cameras, but kind of clunky

View image on TwitterView image on TwitterView image on TwitterView image on Twitter

Galaxy Fold: the specs

The new Galaxy Fold has a 9nm processor and 12GB of RAM, making it one of the most powerful smartphones on the market (and ever). It has 512GB of on board memory. Because the phone folds up like a tablet from essentially two “smartphone” bodies, it has a dual battery, one in each side of the device that link together.

Samsung has claimed that the Galaxy Fold will fit in the palm of the hand when it’s folded.

Galaxy Fold, revealed

It’s here – within a couple of minutes of the launch, we’ve seen the first official photo of the foldable phone. The first official description is “It’s gorgeous”.

Samsung has called the new device part of a “whole new category” and confirmed the name: Samsung Galaxy Fold – with a 7.3-inch folding infinity display that folds the phone out into a tablet.

Samsung says it has invented a whole new hinge system with “multiple interlocking gears” that are hidden away.

And… here we go

It’s kicked off in San Francisco, with some distinctly creepy music. It looks like they are starting with the folding phone…

Watch it live here

The expert’s take

We’ve been stuck in a camera race, Peter Jarich of analyst firm GSMA Intelligence argues, as smartphone makers have struggled to stand out with a “series of black rectangles”.

“If you’re trying to convince people to buy, then foldable is the way to go, ” he says. “This is all taking place at the same time as 5G. Will this have 5G? Doubtful.”

Could Samsung launch the iPhone killer?

Samsung’s launch today could provide the smartphone market with a much-needed jolt this year. In January, Samsung was forced to issue a profit warning as sales fell 11pc and profits dropped dropped 29pc on the back of slowing phone and chip sales; just days after Apple chopped its sales forecast due to an economic slowdown.

So can the S10, a foldable phone or a 5G device turn the tide? One market analyst told us this evening that the smartphone market is so competitive that Samsung can’t afford not to try.  “What if this were the next big thing and they missed out on it?”

Live from San Francisco

James Ticomb (@jamestitcomb) is up and running from the launch in San Francisco. First thoughts?

“Samsung has to pull off the trick of convincing us that the S10 matters and is worth buying, and that phones these days are so boring that you need one that folds in half.”

View image on Twitter

A folding phone is on the cards

Rumours ahead of the launch included a foldable phone, nicknamed Samsung Galaxy X or Galaxy F (for fold), which was teased back in November. It would be a first for the technology company and could be a game-changer in the smartphone market.

Why foldable phones are the next big thing

But that’s not all. Several rivals are rumoured to be launching 5G smartphones at Mobile World Congress next month, which could prompt Samsung to release a rival product today.

Here’s what we know so far

Samsung’s main new phone tonight is expected to be the Samsung Galaxy S10. It is due to feature some “very significant” design changes, according to Samsung’s mobile chief executive DJ Koh. You can read all the rumours here – but we’re expecting more cameras, more memory and a larger display.

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