Brian Fagioli

Huawei unveils Mate 30 Series of Android 10 smartphones -- no Google needed

Earlier today, Huawei unveiled five new phones as a part of the Mate 30 series -- the Mate 30, Mate 30 5G, Mate 30 Pro, Mate 30 Pro 5G, and the Porsche Design Mate 30 RS. They are absolutely gorgeous smartphones with high-end specifications. They are even running the latest and greatest Android 10 operating system. Quite frankly, the beautiful design shows how Apple should have laid out its rear cameras on the iPhone Pro. In fact, while the Mate 30 has a triple camera system like the iPhone 11 Pro, the Mate 30 Pro has four cameras! I guess we can really see which phone deserves its "Pro" moniker!

All models of Mate 30 have a notched display, with the notch being a bit bigger on the Pro and RS models. The Pro and RS models have a 6.53-inch screen (OLED FHD+ 2400 x 1176), while the regular Mate 30 is a bit bigger at 6.62-inch (OLED FHD+ 2340 x 1080). All are powered by the same octa-core processor (2 x Cortex-A76 Based 2.86 GHz + 2 x Cortex-A76 Based 2.36 GHz + 4 x Cortex-A55 1.95 GHz), 16-Core Mali-G76 GPU, and 8GB of RAM -- with the exception of the RS, which has 12GB of RAM. The Mate 30 comes with 128GB of storage, while the Mate 30 Pro has 256GB. The high-end RS gets an insane 512GB. And yes, they all feature an in-screen fingerprint reader!

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Roku Ultra and Express get big upgrades

Earlier this month, Apple had a big product unveiling, where it showed off a new iPad, Apple Watch, and three new iPhone 11 models. You know what it didn't reveal? A new Apple TV. This was very surprising, as the company is planning to really push its upcoming Apple TV+ streaming service. You would think an upgraded device for Apple TV+ would make sense, but no, the company laid an egg in that regard.

Thankfully, Roku is happy to keep pushing the envelope and releasing new hardware. Following the previous announcement of the innovative Roku Soundbar, today, the company unveils upgrades to two of its most popular devices -- Roku Ultra and Roku Express. The Ultra is its top of the line device, while the Express is a budget offering for the masses.

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Ubuntu-maker Canonical shares top 5 snaps per Linux distribution

All Linux users are the same, right? Oh, hell no! Linux users are a diverse bunch, with differing opinions, tastes, and personalities. In fact, that is probably a contributing factor to the fragmentation of the Linux community. Linux users have lots of options between distributions, desktop environments, and more -- they are not stuck in a box like Windows 10 users.

To highlight how different Linux users can be, Canonical has released some data about the installation of snaps, categorized by distro. It chose six of the most popular Linux-based operating systems for its analysis -- Ubuntu, Debian, Fedora, CentOS, Arch Linux, and Manjaro. It then shared the top five most popular snaps for each distribution.

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Google Fi finally gets an unlimited plan

Want to know a secret? Most people probably don't need an unlimited data plan on their smartphone. And yet, many folks will happily overpay for the peace of mind -- worrying about data overages can be stressful. You know what? That's not so crazy. Look, I am all for saving money, but at the same time, I don't want to concern myself with anything other than consuming media and surfing the web when on my phone. So, yes, I crave unlimited even though I don't need it, and I am not alone.

Today, Google Fi launches an unlimited plan for the first time ever. This is significant, as Google's service (which utilizes T-Mobile, Sprint, and U.S. Cellular networks for enhanced coverage) was historically marketed as a way to save money by only paying for the data you use. With that said, this new unlimited plan is surprisingly very affordable -- I find myself quite intrigued. As an extra bonus, until September 18, Google will give 50 percent off a Pixel 3 or Pixel 3XL. Yes, I know, the Pixel 4's release is imminent, but if you don't need the latest and greatest, this could be a great way to save some money.

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Blue Yeti X is a pro USB microphone for vlogging, gaming, podcasting, and more

When amateurs decide they want to create music, vlogs, podcasts, or some other form of media, there is often a product they buy first -- a Blue Yeti microphone. Creators tend to gravitate towards the professional-grade Yeti, and it is not hard to see why -- it is well made, performs well, and looks super cool. Even game streamers on services like Twitch use Yeti microphones. Hell, I have seen them in business conference rooms.

Today, Blue -- a Logitech company -- launches its latest and greatest USB microphone. Called "Yeti X," it is designed for vlogging, gaming, podcasting, music creation, and more. While Blue says this microphone is for professionals, it can, of course, be used by amateurs too.

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Fedora Linux 31 Beta is here

Fedora may not be the flashiest or most exciting Linux distribution, but it is very reliable. You can always depend on the operating system to be rock solid and very modern. Best of all, it focuses on true open source ideology -- there are no non-free packages by default. I tend to "distro hop" out of curiosity, but no matter what, I always find my way back to Fedora.

Fedora 31 is due later this year, but first, there needs to be some beta testing. And so, today, Fedora 31 Beta is made available for download. Unfortunately, details surrounding version 31 are a bit sparse. With that said, one big change involves Fedora users with ARM 64-based single board computers, such as a Raspberry Pi. Those folks will get access to an additional desktop spin -- the lightweight Xfce.

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Logitech G604 LIGHTSPEED wireless gaming mouse has six thumb buttons

Do you play those hardcore massively multiplayer online role playing games (MMORPG) like World of Warcraft? If so, you have probably encountered those wild-looking mice with multiple thumb buttons. These types of mice are great, because you can customize the many buttons to perform various functions of the game. This can be used for any game, really, including, say, a first person shooter -- you can program macros or key-presses into the buttons, essentially giving you an edge.

Today, Logitech unveils its latest such mouse, and it is a beast. Called "G604," we have been testing it in the BetaNews labs with great success. It has both Bluetooth and LIGHTSPEED for connectivity, with the latter utilizing a USB-A dongle. You can then switch between the two by pressing a button -- helpful for working with two computers or operating systems.

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Huawei embraces deepin Linux as Microsoft Windows 10 future remains uncertain

Huawei makes some of the best laptops around -- the company actually puts Apple's design team to shame. This focus on elegance cannot be said for many other Windows PC manufacturers, as they often just set their sights on cutting corners to keep prices down.

And that is why Donald Trump's xenophobic attacks on Huawei are so tragic. Huawei's computers and smartphones are wonderful, but with uncertainty about access to Windows and proper Android (with Google apps), consumers are correct to be a bit concerned.

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GNOME 3.34 'Thessaloniki' Linux desktop environment is finally here

There are many Linux desktop environments from which to choose -- some are good, others are bad, but only one can be best -- GNOME. Whether you choose Ubuntu, Fedora, Manjaro, or some other different Linux distribution, GNOME will provide you with a superior user experience. Not only is it ideal for productivity, but GNOME is quite pretty too. And yes, there are plenty of customization options. Not to mention, the excellent stock GNOME apps create a very cohesive experience overall.

Today, GNOME 3.34 is finally released. Code-named "Thessaloniki," the newest version of the desktop environment is chock full of new features, bug fixes, visual improvements, and updated apps. One of the most apparent changes to users will be the ability to group icons into folders using drag-and-drop within the application overview -- very cool.

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There's a new Pandora desktop app for Windows 10 in the Microsoft Store

Pandora is a popular music streaming service that aims to function as sort of a personalized radio station for the listener. There are different tiers of service, including a free option -- a big reason for its popularity. There are also paid tiers, starting at just $4.99.

Today, Pandora releases a new desktop app for Windows 10. This follows the release of the app for Apple macOS, which has been available since May of 2019. This new app for Windows is being offered exclusively from the Microsoft Store, so Windows 7 users, for example, cannot experience it fully. Pandora specifically says it is a Windows 10-only affair. Of course, all platforms can access Pandora thanks to the web player -- something Apple Music is currently beta testing.

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Arch Linux-based Manjaro 18.1.0 'Juhraya' now available with GNOME, KDE, or Xfce

Manjaro may have lofty goals of becoming a successful company, but let's be honest -- users of the Linux-based operating system don't really care about that. Don't get me wrong, I am sure most members of the Linux community are rooting for the newly-formed company's success, but they are probably more interested in the excellent operating system itself.

Today, Manjaro Linux 18.1.0 "Juhraya" finally becomes available for download, and it isn't without some controversy. You see, rather than just offer up LibreOffice like most distributions, Juhraya offers an alternative choice at installation -- FreeOffice.

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G.SKILL RAM exceeds 6GHz to set DDR4 overclock world record

Business speed

There are essentially two types of overclocks -- one is where it is done for actual performance gains, while the other is just for bragging rights. While the former is obviously more useful, insane overclocks that exist just to prove it is possible are still very fun.

Today, G.SKILL announces an insane DDR4 memory overclock that reaches a major milestone -- greater than 6GHz speed! To be more specific, a famous overclocker and MSI engineer named "Toppc" was able to successfully boot into Windows with RAM running at 6016.8MHz! This shatters the previous record of 5902MHz set by HyperX.

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Apple iPad 7th-gen gets bigger display and is faster than the best-selling Windows 10 PC

Apple's iPad changed the world in 2010, but since then, tablets have fallen a bit out of favor with consumers. Google abandoned the tablet hardware business entirely, relying on manufacturers such as Samsung and Huawei to make slabs running Android. While iPad remains the best tablet experience, and Apple seems committed to the iPadOS operating system, even that device is not the juggernaut it once was. Many consumers seem totally satisfied using their smartphone.

Still, iPad has plenty of fans, including those that try to use the Pro model as a makeshift laptop with a keyboard attachment. Other people, such as yours truly, only utilize iPad for media consumption. The lower-cost standard 9.7-inch iPad more than meets those media-focused needs. Today, Apple unveils the 7th-generation of the "regular" iPad, and it is better than ever.

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ADATA launches fast and rugged SE800 USB 3.2 Gen 2 external USB-C SSD

How great is USB-C? Long gone are the days of incorrectly plugging in your devices, as the Type-C connector is reversible. Not to mention, it is smaller and more aesthetically pleasing than USB-A. Slowly but surely, the Type-C connection it is showing up on more and more devices, with USB-A being increasingly omitted.

And so, it is essential that device and accessory makers utilize USB-C. For example, ADATA has a new USB-C SSD which uses the USB 3.2 Gen 2 interface. Called "SE800," it is essentially an upgrade to the company's excellent SE730H. Not only is this new model insanely fast, but it is quite rugged too. It's also very small, making it easy to toss into a bag or your pocket. And if your computer doesn't have USB-C, don't worry -- a USB-A cable is included in the box.

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Arch Linux-based Manjaro forms a company, but will it fail?

Some people may think a company focused on Linux can never be successful. That’s false thinking, actually. True, some people use Linux as just a hobby, but it is so much more than that. As Red Hat shows us, Linux can be a billion dollar business. Plus, System76, for example, has been selling personal computers running Linux for many years. So, yeah, a Linux-focused company can be a success.

Of course, that does not mean a Linux-focused company is guaranteed to be a success. Case in point, today, popular Linux distribution Manjaro announces that it has formed a limited partnership business entity. The question, however, is whether or not creating such a company is a good idea.

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