Articles about Smartphones

WARNING! Sony decides its waterproof Xperia phones are not actually waterproof


Sony seems hell bent on confusing its customers by giving very conflicting advice about its Xperia smartphones. If you're familiar with the range, you'll no doubt be aware of the advertising material that appears to show users taking photos in the rain and even (seemingly) underwater at the pool.

Take a look at the picture above and you'd probably assume that a) it depicts someone shooting a video or taking a photo in a swimming pool, and b) you can do the same with your phone. But you'd be wrong (at least on b) because Sony has changed its mind about what waterproof means. Or it doesn't know. It really depends on where you look on the Sony website.

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Android/Lockerpin.A ransomware holds victims hostage by changing their PIN


The latest ransomware to hit Android users attempts to force victims into coughing up $500 by changing the PIN used to lock the device. Disguising itself as a system patch and then a message from the FBI suggesting that 'forbidden pornographic sites' have been viewed, the Android/Lockerpin.A malware differs from previous examples of ransomware that encrypted data.

The malware is impossible to remove without root access or by performing a factory reset. An interesting feature of the PIN change is that even the attacker is unware of what the new code is -- handing over money really makes no difference. But also worthy of note is the way in which Android/Lockerpin.A manages to gain Device Admin privileges.

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T-Mobile announces special iPhone 6s pricing for Jump on Demand

iPhone 6s and 6s plus edited

T-Mobile is so confident that you will be very satisfied with its cellular network that it will offer the new iPhones at a lower cost if you are willing to switch from a rival carrier soon. And if you are not happy with the quality of the service, T-Mobile promises to give you your money back in the first month or unlock the smartphone, free of charge, after that.

This "special introductory pricing", as T-Mobile calls it, means Jump on Demand customers can get an iPhone 6s for as little as $20 per month, or an iPhone 6s Plus starting at $24 per month. This is a launch deal, so "it won't last long".

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Apple iPhone 6s Plus vs Samsung Galaxy Note 5, Galaxy S6 edge Plus

Apple Samsung

Now that Apple has taken the wraps off its latest iPhones, phablet fans will want to know how the new iPhone 6s Plus compares to its obvious rivals from Samsung, the Galaxy Note 5 and Galaxy S6 edge Plus flagships. So, to see which one is best, let's take a look at their main features and find where the biggest differences are.

This will be a close comparison, more so than the iPhone 6s vs Galaxy S6 head to head, as Apple has significantly beefed up its new iPhone 6s Plus over last year's model, while Samsung has come up with two very strong competitors in this segment.

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Apple iPhone 6s vs Samsung Galaxy S6: Which is best?

iPhone 6s Samsung Galaxy S6

Now that Apple has unveiled the new iPhone 6s, you may be wondering how it stacks up against its main rival, Samsung's Galaxy S6. The major under-the-hood improvements that Apple has packed into its latest flagship smartphone, coupled with the refinement added by Samsung for its own top-of-the-line offering, make this a very interesting comparison.

Choosing between iPhone 6s and Galaxy S6 is very difficult, as both feature attractive designs and high-end internals, which is why we will highlight and explain the major differences between the two smartphones.

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Apple delays iPhone 6s and 6s Plus preorders for 9-11 commemoration?

iPhone 6s

Apple's decision to start iPhone 6s and 6s Plus preorders on Saturday September 12 surprises me. Friday is typical, which lets the company tabulate an extra day into the weekend when reporting the number of preorders the following week. So you have to wonder why the change. I asked Apple PR, but there is yet no response to my query.

In 2014, Apple announced iPhone 6 and 6 Plus also on September 9th, a Tuesday. Preorders began on Friday the 12th and sales one week later. In 2013, there was no preorder option for iPhone 5s, just straight sales starting Friday September 20th; announced the 10th. In 2012: Friday September 14th for preorders; the 21st for sales. In 2011: again Friday, October 7th preorders and October 14th sales.

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iPhone Upgrade Program screws Apple junkies


You may have heard that Apple had a little get together today. There were lots of big launches -- the iPhone 6S, the iPhone 6S Plus, and the iPad Pro. Those waiting for an iPhone fix were given quite a lot to get excited about, but like your friendly local drug dealer, Apple has a 'sweetener' to help ensure its customers just keep on coming back for more: the iPhone Upgrade Program which lets you upgrade to a new iPhone every year as long as you keep paying each month.

On the face of it, it might seem like a good deal -- particularly as the price includes Apple Care -- but is that really the case? What Apple's actually doing is feeding the habit of iPhone junkies, keeping their addiction going a little bit longer, and a little bit longer, and a little bit longer. In reality, Apple would like you to perma-rent your iPhone and keep paying through the nose for it. Ideally forever. And the sad thing? People will be quite happy to bend over and take it.

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Apple takes the wraps off iPhone 6s, iPhone 6s Plus

iPhone 6s and 6s plus edited

We have come to expect new iPhones to be introduced in September, and today Apple does not disappoint as it takes the wraps off the new iPhone 6s and its bigger brother, iPhone 6s Plus. Typical of "s" models, both smartphones retain the design first seen in the previous generation while improving upon their predecessors in a couple of key areas.

With the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus, Apple has focused its attention on build quality, cameras, display, and performance. Both flagships, of course, ship with a new version of iOS, which will be generally available later this month, on September 16.

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Google slashes the minimum price for Android apps in India


Google has cut the minimum price for which apps can be sold by a fifth. The price cut currently only affects India, and sees the cost plummet from 50 Rs (around $0.75) to just 10 Rs (around $0.15). It is a decision that has clearly been taken to both entice new customers to Android, as well as discouraging existing users from switching allegiances to Apple -- particularly with the launch of the iPhone 6s.

The lower price point was made available to developers at the end of July, but now Google is starting to promote apps and let users know that there are now many apps available for the reduced price. As well as applying to apps and games in Google Play, the 10 Rs minimum now also applies to in-app purchases.

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Samsung paves the way for mobile devices with 6GB of RAM

Shock surprise

The amount of RAM that manufacturers pack into our mobile devices will only increase as time goes by. It seems like only yesterday that 2 GB was reserved for premium handsets, but now you can find much cheaper mid-rangers featuring that much memory.

However, the latest crop of Android flagship phablets now ship with 4 GB of RAM. Samsung's Galaxy Note 5 and Galaxy S6 edge Plus are prime examples, and so is the more expensive OnePlus 2 model. And you can expect next year's batch of standard-sized flagships to follow suit, if not exceed them. But, pretty soon, that too will no longer be enough. Thanks to Samsung, in the near future our high-end mobile devices will have 6 GB of RAM.

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Our smartphone addiction, by the numbers


One in ten smartphone owners in Britain checks the device the moment they wake up. Sky News, reporting on Deloitte’s research of the matter, calls it an addiction. (I thought everyone checks their smartphone the moment they wake up, but I guess I was wrong.)

Deloitte’s research on how much Britons use smartphones has shown some crazy statistics: a third of smartphone owners look at their device more than 25 times a day. Even worse, a sixth check it more than 50 times each day.

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Messaging slowly replacing phone calls for smartphone users

Breakup Smartphones

Smartphones are a great way to communicate with people, but according to some new research, our communication is switching from voice to other means.

Talking over the phone is actually dropping in popularity. The number of people making a phone call once a week went from 96 percent to 75 percent over the past three years, according to research carried out by Ipsos Mori for Deloitte, The Guardian reports.

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Yu Yunique launches in India, offers 4G LTE for Rs 4999 ($75)


Yu Televentures, an online subsidiary of Micromax, today launches its third smartphone. Targeting the growing affordable smartphone market, the company introduces Yu Yunique. The 4G capable handset packs in an impressive set of specifications for just Rs 4,999 ($75).

The Yu Yunique sports a 4.7-inch HD (1,280 x 7,20 pixels) display and is powered by a 64-bit capable Snapdragon 410 quad-core SoC clocked at 1.2GHz with Adreno 306 GPU. It has 1GB of RAM, and 8GB of internal storage, with support for a microSD card should you need more storage. On the software front, the handset runs Android 5.1 Lollipop.

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Samsung Galaxy Note 5 launches in India starting at Rs 53,900 ($800)


At an ongoing media event in New Delhi, India, Samsung today launches the Galaxy Note 5, its latest flagship phablet device, in the country. Unlike the Note 4, and several other Galaxy smartphones and phablets, the Note 5 is comparatively well priced. The South Korean technology conglomerate announced that the Note 5 will be available for purchase starting Rs 53,900 (roughly $800), and will go on sale starting September 20.

Unveiled at an event last month, the Galaxy Note 5 is the company's latest flagship phablet device. It sports a 5.7-inch QHD Super-AMOLED display with a pixel density of 515ppi. It is powered by a 64-bit octa-core Exynos 7420 SoC with four Cortex-A57 cores clocked at 2.1GHz, and four Cortex-A53 cores clocked at 1.5GHz, coupled with 4GB of LPDDR4 RAM. It comes in two storage variants: 32GB and 64GB, and doesn't support microSD card. On the software side, it runs on Android Lollipop with TouchWiz UI on top of it.

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Insanity! Get Nexus 6 for $350

Nexus 6 Back

What the frak? Is it because of the presumed, imminent launch of Apple's successor to iPhone 6 or 6 Plus? Are rumors about Google launching new Nexus devices near month's end true -- and it's better to clear out excess inventory now? Or is Amazon being Labor Day weekend Amazon?

Motorola-made, Google-branded Nexus 6 is on big sale today from the retailer's U.S. store. Last night, I oogled at the phablet for $499.99, which already was a hefty discount. This morning I rolled out of bed to see $349.99. Both prices are for the 32GB model. Double the memory and pay $399.99. Yesterday: $549.99. Surely the price and supply can't last. That's helluva good deal -- and for both colors: Cloud White and Midnight Blue.

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