Categories
From The Editors Technology

Samsung Galaxy Note 9: Bigger, Better and Expensive

The highly-anticipated and much-talked-about Galaxy Note 9, Samsung’s newest and biggest flagship phone yet, has finally gone official.

Thankfully, it brings an end to all the speculations and assumptions that had been flying around after many of the phone’s features and specs were leaked to the media prior to its official unveiling on Thursday (August 9).

It also gave us a chance to verify all the leaked details and it seems that the grapevine had been spot on about many of the phone’s features and specifications, although there’s a couple of things that nobody saw coming.

The Samsung Galaxy Note 9 definitely has a lot riding on it, considering that the S9 series has not lived up to the Korean tech giant’s expectations.

So, it’s now up to the Note 9 to infuse some life back into the company’s dwindling performance and, believe you me, the all-new S Pen on the Note 9 should be a major factor in making it a success and see Samsung through this lean patch, but more about this wonder stylus in a bit.

From a design perspective, there isn’t anything that new about the Galaxy Note 9, as it carries forward the same glass and metal boxy design that we’ve got accustomed to from previous-generation Galaxy Notes, including the infinity display and curved edges, to name a couple.

Taking a leaf out of the S9 book, the fingerprint reader on this one will now feature below the rear-facing cameras, which is a very welcome upgrade, as it makes it easier to reach the fingerprint scanner without leaving unwanted smudges on the camera lenses – a really cool improvement, one has to say.

And, while we’re still on the back of the phone, let’s check out what the horizontal dual rear camera setup has to offer.

.

Again, like the S9, the 12-megapixel primary sensor on the Note 9 now has a variable aperture lens, f/1.5 – f/2.4.

The secondary shooter, which also boasts a 12-megapixel sensor with an f/2.4 aperture, has a telephoto lens with 2X Optical Zoom support, as well as support for up to 10X Digital Zoom.

Both of the rear-facing cameras support Optical Image Stabilization (OIS) and what’s really good about the entire rear-camera module is that it is flush with the back of the device, with no protrusions, whatsoever.

Moving over to the front, there’s a single 8-megapixel f/1.7 aperture selfie camera with a number of interesting features to go with it, including flaw detection, Auto-HDR, as well as a Scene Optimizer that will be able to see and understand at least 20 scenes – thanks to the liberal use of artificial intelligence.

The Galaxy Note 9 sports a gorgeous 6.4-inch QHD+ Super AMOLED infinity display with an aspect ratio of 18.5:9 and a pixel density of a whopping 516ppi, all protected by Corning Gorilla Glass 5.

Powering the Note 9 in North America will be Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 845 SoC, while the rest of the world will get their Note 9s with Samsung’s Exynos 9810 SoC.

The phone will ship with Android 8.1 Oreo out of the box with Samsung’s Experience UI on top.

The Samsung Galaxy Note 9 is being made available in two configurations; the baseline variant will ship with 6GB of RAM and 128GB of onboard storage, while the other config will have 8GB of RAM and 512GB of internal storage.

Both configurations will support up to 512GB of expandable storage via micro SD card.

Also, the new Note is getting a massive battery boost with a 4,000mAh battery – that’s 21 percent bigger than the 3,300mAh battery inside last year’s Galaxy Note 8, which was pretty respectable in itself.

Despite the large battery, Samsung has managed to keep the phone sleek enough – thanks to some of its design elements, particularly the diamond cut.

And last, though not the least, the battery supports, both, wireless and wired fast charging.

Alright, it’s time now to talk about the most anticipated feature of the Note 9 – the S Pen, which Samsung says is the biggest selling point of the company’s Note phones.

This time around, the S Pen will come with integrated 2.4GHz Bluetooth Low Energy and its own internal battery, which the company chooses to call a supercapacitor, giving it 30 minutes of usage or 200 button clicks with just 40 seconds of charging.

It’s a massive improvement, indeed, compared to the unpowered inductive stylus you got with the previous generation Notes.

Because the S Pen is now Bluetooth-enabled, it can be used for a number of things that are not even related to a stylus.

It can serve as a remote control, allowing you to click your way through presentations, watch YouTube, click pictures, control different apps and even switch between the front and back cameras.

What’s great to know is that Samsung is opening the S Pen SDK (software development kit) for other developers to create even more features and add to the stylus’ functionality.

Although the Note 9 is not a hard-core gaming phone, Samsung has included a couple of gaming-inspired features, one of which is a Water Carbon Cooling system with a large thermal spreader, which will allow you to play heavier games without the device overheating.

The Positives

  • 6.4-inch Quad HD Super AMOLED infinity screen – super bright, super vibrant
  • Fast wireless and wired charging with USB Type C
  • 3.5mm headphone jack
  • A much-improved S Pen
  • Thin bezels, no ugly notch, clicky buttons, and a solid build
  • Iris scanner
  • Fingerprint reader
  • Heart rate sensor

The Negatives

  • Unfortunately, the under-the-screen fingerprint scanner that was originally planned for the Note 9 was abandoned late in the development process of the phone.
  • Expensive
  • No HDR video recording

Pricing

  • $999 for 128GB of storage and 6GB of RAM
  • $1,249 for 512GB ROM with 8GB of RAM

Categories
From The Editors Technology

Samsung Galaxy Note 9: Everything We Know, So Far

We’re less than a month away from the official launch of Samsung’s Galaxy Note 9 and already a good amount of all the suspense that had been building up is spoiled – by guess who – Samsung, of course.

So, let’s go ahead and break down all the leaks that have been dished out to us, so far, about the Galaxy Note 9.

What the leaks have managed to reveal is that the Note 9 is built very much along the lines of the Galaxy Note 8, with a rectangular design, metal frame and a glass back.

Early reports suggest that the Note 9’s screen might be a tad bigger at 6.38 inches than the Note 8’s 6.3-inch display, and if there’s any truth in it, it would mean the biggest display ever on a Samsung phone.

Taking a leaf out of the Galaxy S9’s book, the fingerprint reader on this one will now exist below the rear-facing dual camera setup, which is a very welcome upgrade, as it makes it easier to reach the fingerprint scanner without leaving unwanted smudges on the camera lenses – a really cool improvement, one has to say.

Unfortunately, the under-the-screen fingerprint scanner that was originally planned for the Note 9 was abandoned late in the development process of the phone.

As far as connectivity is concerned, the Note 9 will, probably, give you most of the ports, if not all, that you can think of, including a 3.5mm headphone jack, a USB Type C port, SD card slot and a speaker grille on the bottom that suggests onboard stereo speakers.

In keeping with what Samsung has consistently done in the past, the Note 9 will be dust and water-resistant, as well.

Powering the Note 9 in North America will be a Snapdragon 845 processor, while the rest of the world will get their Note 9s with Samsung’s Exynos9 series 9810 chip.

Also, the new Note is getting a massive battery boost with a 4,000mAh battery, capable of delivering 25 hours of video playback on a single charge – certainly a big jump from the Note 8’s 3,300 mAh battery, which was quite respectable in itself.

Now, here’s the biggest change you can expect in the Samsung Galaxy Note 9; it will come equipped with an all-new S Pen with integrated 2.4GHz Bluetooth Low Energy and its own internal battery – a big, big improvement, indeed, from the unpowered inductive stylus you got with the previous generation Notes.

The August unveiling is sure to dedicate a good amount of time to introducing the S Pen and explaining its features and functionality, which is not very clear with the current information available.

.

However, the highly-regarded Ice Universe says that owing to the fact that the S Pen is going to be a Bluetooth device, you will be able to use it for some things that are not even related to the stylus, like controlling music playback, for example, and more.

So, if you’re a fan of the S Pen, you’re, probably, getting all excited already.

However, it would be prudent not to take anything for granted, as of now.

Rather, it would be in your interest to wait until the unveiling next month to be absolutely sure of the benefits and then you can take an informed decision on whether or not to upgrade to the Note 9.

We got to learn a bit more about the Note 9 when Mobile-Review’s Eldar Murtazin, somehow, got hold of a Note 9 and confirmed most of what we’ve already talked about above, in addition to some new information.

Murtazin says that the Note 9 has a super AMOLED display with increased brightness compared to the Note 8; plus, it’s heavier than the Note 8 – thanks to the huge 4,000mAh battery;

He also says that Samsung will offer the Note 9 in 6GB and 8GB RAM versions as well as 128,256, and 512GB internal storage options; however, it’s still now known which markets will get which of these options.

Murtazin is all praise for the performance of the Note 9 and the exclusive Samsung experience it brings with it.

He says the user interface is getting some cool new animations and that the Samsung AR emojis will get an update but chances are they might not be available at launch.

While there’s no confirmation on what the color choices are going to be on the Note 9, rumor has it that copper, blue, silver, violet, and black are potential options.

As for the price, we can expect the Note 9 to cost somewhere in the region of 900-1,000 dollars.

From the little that we know, we can surmise that the Note 9 will be hard, if not impossible, to beat in terms of features, performance, and versatility.

For Samsung, there’s a lot riding on the Note 9, but isn’t that the case with all new releases and with all manufacturers, alike?

Categories
From The Editors Technology

Copying iPhone Features Costs Samsung $539 Million in Damages

In a years-long patent dispute between tech giants Apple and Samsung, a California jury has ruled in favor of the former, ordering Samsung Electronics Co Ltd to pay Apple Inc $539 million in damages.

The Thursday verdict came after nearly five days of deliberations, bringing the hard-fought legal battle between the tech rivals to a near conclusion, hopefully.

Back in 2011, Apple had filed a lawsuit against Samsung, accusing the South Korean company of incorporating patented iPhone features into their own products to reap unlawful benefits from copied technology.

Although Samsung was found guilty of infringing on some of Apple’s patents in a 2012 trial, disagreements over the penalty amount of $1.05 billion awarded to Apple led U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh to bring the damages down to $548 million.

With no consensus in sight, the matter escalated to the U.S. Supreme Court, in 2016, which ruled that a lower court would have to reassess $399 million of the $548 million awarded to Apple.

However, Samsung had already paid Apple the $548 million in December 2015, which included the $399 million that Supreme Court had asked a lower court to re-examine.

The Supreme Court’s ruling in favor of Samsung was based on the premise that profits made from a product shouldn’t be awarded in full if the patent infringement is limited to just one component of the product, which is a fair argument according to Sarah Burstein – a patent law professor at the University of Oklahoma.

Burstein, who has predicted that Samsung will take it to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, said that the decision seems like a middle path between the companies’ individual contentions and does not really offer much in terms of clarity on the question of awarding full profit for limited infringement.

“This decision just means we are going to have more uncertainty,” Burstein said. “Smart tech industry players are waiting to see what the Federal Circuit does. This is just one jury applying one test.”

The ruling was based on the argument that it was unfair to penalize Samsung for all the profits the company made from its products that had incorporated iPhone technology, when, actually, the infringement may have been limited to a few patents only.

In the course of the deliberations that led to Thursday’s judgment, Apple contended that Samsung was liable to pay the company more than $1 billion but Samsung’s lawyers argued that the $399 being reviewed should be reduced to $28 million.

However, the Thursday ruling took the middle path and held Samsung liable for $533.3 million for copying design patents and $5.3 million for infringement of utility patents, bringing the total damages to be paid by the Korean company to $538.6 million.

The court’s decision, however, didn’t go down well with Samsung, which said that the ruling was against the Supreme Court’s unanimous ruling in its favor and that the company would reconsider its options.

“Today’s decision flies in the face of a unanimous Supreme Court ruling in favor of Samsung on the scope of design patent damages,” Samsung said in a statement. “We will consider all options to obtain an outcome that does not hinder creativity and fair competition for all companies and consumers.”

Apple, on the other hand, seemed pleased with the verdict, saying that the case was less about money and more about principles and that Samsung had blatantly infringed on its patents.

“We believe deeply in the value of design, and our teams work tirelessly to create innovative products that delight our customers,” Apple said in a statement. “This case has always been about more than money. Apple ignited the smartphone revolution with iPhone and it is a fact that Samsung blatantly copied our design.”

In the earlier trial, Apple’s legal representative Seth Waxman had based his case on the argument that design patent infringement meant the entire smartphone was in question and was not just limited to individual components.

He said that design patent included the entire “thing to which the design is applied” and that “design is not a component.”

Samsung lawyer Kathleen Sullivan’s counter-argument was that “a smartphone is smart because it contains hundreds of thousands of the technologies that make it work.”

Justice Elena Kagan had given the analogy of the Volkswagen Beetle at the time, saying that its design represented “the thing that makes the product distinctive,” but she sort of balanced that out by adding that “the car has to run, and it has to do all the other things that cars do.”

Intellectual property litigator and Goodwin Procter partner, Neel Chatterjee, argues that even though a computer does not work without a power cord, it doesn’t mean that the computer’s primary value depends on it.

“Some people could go to court and say without a power cord it wouldn’t work so I should get a bigger slice of the overall patent royalties due associated with the device. That’s an extreme example. But you can imagine when there are thousands of patents that cover something like a Samsung phone there’s going to be a lot of fight about relative importance, and what factors you look to determine their relative importance to value the patent.”

Before the start of this latest trial, Mark McKenna, a professor at the Notre Dame Law School, told USA TODAY that it wouldn’t be easy for the jury to determine the outcome of the case.

“The Supreme Court decision struck me as obviously right,” McKenna said.

“But it didn’t do anybody a favor by punting on the hard question which is ‘How do I identify those circumstances where this is worth less than the whole?’

Categories
From The Editors Technology

Samsung Unveils its 2018 QLED TV Lineup at New York City Media Event

The world’s leading TV manufacturer Samsung unveiled its latest range of QLED 4K TVs at a New York City media event on Wednesday.

While the new sets may not boast too big an improvement on the picture quality when compared to the company’s previous-generation QLEDs, which was pretty good to start with, the focus this time around has been, primarily, on intelligence and smart home features, as well as Bixby integration.

“Our 2018 lineup of televisions are truly our most innovative and sophisticated yet, designed for today’s consumer who is mindful of the aesthetics of their space,” said Jonghee Han, President of Visual Display Business at Samsung Electronics.

“We are excited for consumers to experience our new TV lineup and features that offer more freedom to decide where and how the TV can be best enjoyed within the home,” he added.

What’s more is that the new QLEDs are SmartThings-enabled, allowing you centralized control of compatible smart devices using your TV as the main hub.

The new lineup, which should begin shipping out in a matter of weeks, includes the Q9, Q8, Q7 and Q6 models, in descending order of price and picture quality, with each series to be made available in flat as well as curved versions.

Each of the models will be available in different screen size options, which is welcome news for potential buyers with limited space, as well as those looking for larger versions to fill up the extra space in their homes.

In so far as image quality improvements are concerned, two models of the new-gen QLEDs – the Q8 and the Q9 series – boast Full Array Local Dimming (FALD) that allows better management of contrast and deeper black levels compared to Samsung’s edge-lit displays.

While the FALD feature is found in most flagship TVs, it’s the first time it’s being incorporated in Samsung QLEDs.

All four models support HDR10+ but the Q9 has the superior HDR output, which the company refers to as “Q HDR EliteMax.”

The addition of an “Ambient Mode” is essentially a feature which rival OLED screens would, in all probability, find difficult to incorporate, considering their image retention issues while displaying a static image for extended lengths of time. It will not come as surprise if Samsung flouts this particular addition to its new QLED lineup the most.

The “Ambient Mode,” which all the new QLEDs are equipped with, basically emulates Samsung’s Frame TVs. It allows you to keep your screen running even when not in use, displaying screen savers of your choice along with temperature, news headlines, personal photographs and more.

Samsung 2018 QLED’s “Ambient Mode” will make the TV appear almost invisible.
Samsung 2018 QLED’s “Ambient Mode” will make the TV appear almost invisible.

You can even camouflage you new QLED by capturing a photograph of the background and using it on the screen so that it blends in with whatever is behind it, giving it an almost transparent look.

In addition to using less power than the standard viewing mode, the “Ambient Mode” automatically regulates the screen’s brightness in sync with changing light levels in the room the QLED is housed in.

Also, Samsung has included a dedicated button for the feature on the latest QLED smart handset.

The smart home features allow the TV to serve as a centralized hub for Samsung’s SmartThings-compatible devices. Using the onscreen SmartThings dashboard, you can access and control other smart devices on your network, such as cameras, lights, refrigerators, dishwashers, robotic vacuum cleaners, thermostats, and the likes.

Plus the inclusion of Bixby allows you to use voice commands to control your SmartThings devices and perform other functions as well, like bringing up your favorite program.

Samsung’s SmartThings dashboard
Samsung’s SmartThings dashboard

Improving on the 2017 QLED’s ‘invisible connection’ cable, the new ultra-thin single cable on the new-gen QLEDs can now serve the dual purpose of carrying power as well as audio/video signals, thereby eliminating the need for an additional cable.

Although it’s a little wider with a 3.4mm thickness compared to 2017’s 1.8mm cable, it shouldn’t be much of a concern considering the fact that it does away with the need for an additional cable

To sum it up, Samsung’s new line of QLED TVs, particularly the Q9 and Q8, have much to look forward to.

Each of the new QLED models is available in the following screen sizes

  • Samsung Q9F QLED TV (available in 65-, 75- and 88-inches)
  • Samsung Q8F QLED TV (available in 55-, 65- and 75-inches)
  • Samsung Q7C QLED TV (available in 55- and 65-inches)
  • Samsung Q7F QLED TV (available in 55-, 65- and 75-inches)
  • Samsung Q6F QLED TV (available in 49-, 55-, 65-, 75- and 82-inches)
Categories
From The Editors Technology

Samsung ‘Galaxy S9’ and ‘Galaxy S9 Plus’ Review: Everything You Need to Know

Not only are we going to discuss how Samsung’s new Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S 9 Plus are different from the company’s previous generation flagships, but we’re also going to break down the difference between the two and highlight all the brand new features that you should learn about before taking the plunge.

So, here we go!

With the same material and the front and back glass sandwiching the metal frame, the Samsung Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus don’t really look much different from their predecessors; they feel pretty much the same in the hand.

While both come with amazing Quad HD AMOLED infinity displays – boasting punchy colors and those deep blacks and perfect brightness – the S9 Plus has a larger display at 6.2 inches compared to the S9’s 5.8-inch display.

Both the phones are equipped with one of the fastest processors available in the market as of now. Yes, it’s the Qualcomm Snapdragon 845 (10 nm Octa-core chipset) we’re talking about.

The difference, however, is that the S9 has 4 GB of RAM while the S9 Plus comes with 6 GB of RAM and because of the difference in their form factors, the S9 will have a 3,000 mAh battery and the S9 Plus is going to have a 3,500 mAh battery.

So, if your decision is going to be based primarily on form factor, then, without a doubt, the S9 feels great in the hand; it’s almost the same size as the iPhone 10, which, one has to admit, is the perfect size for your daily use.

If you were disappointed that the S8 phones didn’t offer a softer color choice, you’ll be happy to know that Samsung has introduced a new color this year – the Lilac Purple.

U.S. customers will have a choice of three colors at launch, including the new Lilac Purple, the Midnight Black, and the Coral Blue, while internationally Samsung is offering an additional color option of Titanium Grey.

Also, the Internal Storage of 64 Gigs is common in both the versions and so is the presence of the SD card slot, allowing you to slap up to a 400 GN micro SD card.

It must be mentioned that while the 64 Gig Internal Storage is available in all colors, the Midnight Black versions of both the S9 and the S9 Plus are being made available in 256 GB Internal Storage versions as well.

One of the biggest complaints on the Galaxy S8 was the placement of the fingerprint scanner, but that has finally been addressed by Samsung by placing it below the camera module, making it a lot easier and that much faster.

.

The S9 and S9 Plus continue to have the Face Unlock and Iris Scanning security features, which again is great. Although Iris Scanning is securer than Face Unlock and Fingerprint Scanning, choices are always welcome.

Another big complaint about Samsung smartphones, including the S8s, was the single speaker. Well, that has also been corrected now, with both the S9 and the S9 Plus featuring dual stereo speakers tuned by AKG Acoustics with support for Dolby Atmos sound, which is just awesome.

If you test them side by side with their predecessors, you will notice the difference in sound quality, with the Dolby Atmos giving it a spatial sound as well. It may not be the first dual speaker arrangement out there in the market but it’s nice that Samsung has gone ahead and incorporated it this time around.

And what’s more, the headphone jack continues to be available on the S9s. What a relief!

The most exciting feature – something that can well prove to be a game changer – is the new camera system, and it’s not the 12-megapixel sensor that we are referring to; it’s the variable aperture option that allows you to switch between two apertures depending on your surroundings. If you are in a low-light situation, the f/1.5 aperture option is the one to go for, while the f/2.4 aperture is ideal for well-illuminated surroundings.

If you are not sure about the aperture options, simply choose the auto mode to allow it to choose the best aperture for your light situation.

But if you think you are a pro and would like to make the aperture choice yourself, the toggle at the bottom of the display will let you do that.

Now, the only disappointment here – and a big one at that – is the fact that the dual camera system has been made available on the Galaxy S9 Plus only; the S9 comes with just a single camera.

So, to take advantage of all these extra camera features, such as live focus and all these different depth modes, you will have to opt for the Plus.

For Selfie freaks, the same 8-megapixel-f/1.7 aperture front camera has been continued with on both the S9 and S9 Plus.

The good thing is that both the phones have one super-exciting feature, and that is the 960 frames per second slow motion.

The fun doesn’t end here!

If you thought iPhone 10’s Animoji was a big deal, Samsung answer to that is the really cool AR Emoji on the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus.

Basically, you just take a picture of yourself and become the Emoji, and you can even give yourself different hairstyles, glasses and clothes. How cool is THAT?

Wait, there’s more!

The AR Emoji can also make a ton of GIFs for you, allowing you to share yourself as a GIF as well.

This never-seen-before personalization feature on a smartphone is truly amazing and can prove to be another game changer.

Bixby also gets a couple of new features that are sure to appeal to a whole lot of users.

The first such feature is the live translation built right into the camera app, allowing you to see real-time translations.

For example, if you are looking at a sign in a different language that you’d like the translation of, this option will let you see the translation happen on your screen as you point the camera at the sign – all in real time.

And, here’s something for the ladies!

Samsung has partnered with the French beauty and cosmetic company Sephora, to bring to you the live makeup mode. It lets you try out different lipstick shades, eyebrows, blushes and all kinds of different girlie stuff on a picture of yourself, and if you like a particular look, all you need to do is hit a button and, PRESTO, all the products are there for you to buy. Another potential game changer!

To complete the 2018 flagship package, Samsung also gives you the IP68  dust and water resistance on the S9 and S9 Plus along with fast wireless charging; the newest version of the ‘Samsung Experience’ user interface; as well as Android 8.0 at launch, which is somewhat disappointing as you would have expected an 8.1 Android version on the new phones. But you never know; a software update down the line might address this concern as well.

So, if you are convinced that the S9 or the S9 Plus is the phone for you, pre-orders go live from March 2 and the phones will hit the stores on March 16.

Categories
From The Editors Technology

Samsung is Back to its Taunting Ways with New Galaxy 8 Commercial Mocking iPhone Users

With its new Galaxy 8 commercial following on the heels of Apple’s iPhone X, Samsung seems to have resumed its ad war with Apple with a vengeance. The minute-long video clip is an attack, and not too subtle at that, on both iPhone and its diehard fans who are known to line up outside stores for the latest iPhone models.

The ad is titled “Samsung Galaxy: Growing Up” and this is how it cuts a swathe through the different iPhones over the past decade.

The year is 2007; the month June; people are queued up outside an Apple Store for the latest iPhone model while a young dude ambles by. The scene changes to the young man unpacking his first iPhone and calling up a friend to say, “Guess what I just got.”

We’re now in 2010. The young iPhone user from back then is now trying to take a picture of his car with his new iPhone but gets the “not enough available storage” message – a jibe at Apple’s constant use of 16GB of storage.

2013. The young dude has just got his latest iPhone and is trying to swap numbers with a girl who nonchalantly jots down his details using her Samsung S Pen on her 5.5-inch Samsung phone, while he has to punch in her number on his much smaller iPhone. He even comments, “That’s a big phone.” Here we see, it’s the iPhone size which is being mocked.

While 2015 is uneventful, 2016 shows the dude and his girlfriend falling into a lake while trying to click a picture. Needless to say, the waterproof Galaxy is working fine after the dip, whereas the iPhone is thrown into a bowl of rice by the owner, to dry perhaps. “You’ve got to sell me that.” the guy says. This time it’s the waterproof feature of the iPhone being ridiculed.

In 2017 the girlfriend’s Galaxy phone is charging wirelessly on a pad while the guy is all wires. That’s when he decides he’s had enough and dumps his iPhone for the Galaxy 8 and is seen using the S-Pen to write a familiar message, “Guess what I just got,” but for a Samsung phone this time around. The wireless jibe was uncalled for as the latest iPhones are Qi-enabled.

“Upgrade to Galaxy” is the ad’s parting message.

US giant Apple and its Korean competitor Samsung go some way back in so far as ad wars are concerned. Other companies have been involved in similar confrontations as well.

Here’s a relook at some of the famous face-offs in the commercials arena.

In this ad Samsung directly mentions Apple by name comparing the superior features of its Galaxy S three with the iPhone 5.

.

Apple retaliates with a similar print ad.

.

Here’s a Blackberry TV commercial taking a pot shot at Apple. Check out Apple’s backlash as well

Here’s Samsung attacking Apple again.

Here’s Samsung attacking Apple again.And this one is Samsung’s sequel to the previous one

Samsung is relentless in its ad attacks. It released this mean print ad when Apple was experiencing the “bendable iPhone 6 ” issues.

.

Not to be left behind, Nokia Lumia decides to cash in on the Samsung –Apple war.

Samsung and Apple have been involved in a number of court battles over their aggressive ad campaigns always trying to show the other in poor light.

“I will spend my last dying breath if I need to, and I will spend every penny of Apple’s $40 billion in the bank, to right this wrong. I’m going to destroy Android because it’s a stolen product. I’m willing to go thermonuclear war on this.

Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple, said in 2010

“Smartphones, TV’s and other key IT products are entering a slow growth phase and our rivals are changing value chains by introducing new technology and business models.”

Kwon Oh-hyun, Samsung Vice Chairman

In 2010, in response to Steve Job’s statement that “No one is ever going to buy a big phone” Samsung used the same quote, in an image which also says “Guess who surprised themselves and changed their mind,” followed by the Galaxy Note 4 ad with the hashtag #MoreThanBig

.

Rémon Elsten, Vice-President of the Swiss Contact Center Association has summed up the Apple -Samsung competition most appropriately.

“Samsung is doing a lot of things to prove they are innovative and therefore, can experiment and learn from their experiences. Apple is known for innovation and don’t have to prove this by using by social media platforms. They have to make sure to keep their status as a quality leader and therefore, cannot experiment as much as Samsung. So they lay back.”

Categories
From The Editors Technology

What Do We Know About Samsung’s Bendable Smartphone Galaxy X?

Samsung and other manufacturers, including LG and Lenovo, are known to have been working on smartphone devices with bendable displays for some years now. However, with the current news and rumors surrounding Samsung‘s new bendable smartphone, it appears that the Korean giant is winning the foldable-smartphone race.

The technology which was previously referred to as Project Valley is now being, reportedly, dubbed as the Galaxy X. Whether or not the name sticks is anybody’s guess – for all we know, we could be in for yet another name on the final product. Waiting for the official announcement and release is all we can do for now.

.

News about its features and expected release date has been gradually trickling out from, both, reliable and unreliable sources. We have endeavored in the following paragraphs to make some chronological sense of all the information that has, so far, been doing the rounds.

If tech site Let’sGoDigital’s report is anything to go by, the Korean National Radio Research Agency (NRRA) – Korea’s answer to United States’ FCC – and the Korea Communications Commission (KCC) have gone ahead and approved a Samsung device with a new model number SM-G888NO, believed to be the Galaxy X.

 

As is evident from the certification result page, model SM- G888NO has been classified as “Equipment of radio equipment for LTE mobile communication (transceiver of land mobile station) under certification number MSIP-CMM-SEC-SMG888N0 of Sep 21, 2017.

However, what has got the rumor mills working full-time, is the fact that a Samsung device with an identical model number (SM- G888NO) was also seen at the WiFi Alliance. If you access the link https://www.wi-fi.org/content/search-page?keys=SM-G888N0, you will observe that model number SM-G888N0 has been categorized as a Phone.

Furthermore, a couple of months ago, a Samsung device bearing the same number was spotted at the Bluetooth Special Interest Group (Bluetooth SIG). The model number, which is listed as a Samsung Mobile Phone under “Design Description” in the Bluetooth SIG certification, did not correspond to any known Samsung device – thereby, fuelling speculations, even then, that the model in question couldn’t be anything but the bendable Samsung Galaxy X.

 

.

Now that we have, somewhat, established – with the help of all the circumstantial evidence at our disposal – that it is the Galaxy X we are faced with here, let’s take a look at some of its reported core features and what it promises to offer consumers.

Here are the rumored specifications of the bendable Samsung Galaxy X

  • 5 inch (12.7 cm) display – 1080 x 1920 pixels
  • Runs on Android v7.0 (Nougat) Operating System
  • Powered by Quad core (2.4 GHz, Dual core, Kryo + 2 GHz, Dual core,
    Kryo) Qualacomm Snapdragon 830 MSM8998 processor
  • 6 GB of RAM
  • 128 GB of Storage
  • Non-removable Li-Ion 4000 mAh battery
  • 18-megapixel primary camera
  • 8-megapixel front camera

Again, in so far as the release date is concerned, one can but speculate as Samsung has not been very forthcoming in clearing the ambiguity surrounding the Galaxy X. However, Techadvisor reports that in spite of the “foldable technology” being said to be ready “a source close to the matter told the Korea Herald that the device has not been unveiled because of marketability and profitability issues. Plans have also been held up by the political scandal involving president Park Geun-hye and her confidante Choi Soon-sil.”

Earlier, Samsung had been looking forward to unveiling the folding smartphone in the third quarter of 2017 with the company expected to ship out over 100,000 units. ETNews also predicted a working prototype in Q3 2017 while Chinese leaker mmddj_chin went even further, claiming that the Galaxy X would go on sale in Q3 2017, ahead of the Note 8 in Q4.

Well, now that the Q3-launch speculation is busted, with Q3 at its fag end, Bloomberg has reported that a bendable smartphone is due to debut as a Samsung Note device next year.

Koh Dong-jin, president of mobile business at Samsung Electronics, said: “As the head of the business, I can say our current goal is next year. When we can overcome some problems for sure, we will launch the product,” Bloomberg reports.

We may, or may not, get to see the Galaxy X anytime soon; however, what we can hope for is that when it does arrive, it is as dependable as it is bendable.

Categories
From The Editors Technology

Samsung Chromebook Pro Has a More Powerful Processor Than Chromebook Plus – Launching April

Apart from the processor, an Intel Core m3-6y30, the Samsung Chromebook Pro is identical to the Chromebook Plus which hit the market this month on the twelfth – Chromebook Plus has the less powerful ARM hexa-core chip. Pro, by the way, will be available to customers in March/April.

There is but one more difference in the two Chromebooks – the price. While Plus is priced at $449, Pro will be available for $549 because of the more powerful processor, obviously.

Features of the Samsung Chromebook Plus and Pro:

Two-in-one: Both the Chromebooks, Plus and Pro, can be used as laptops as well as tablets. For example, when working on documents, emails and other similar work, one can switch over to the laptop option and back to the tab mode once done. It all depends on the user’s ease and preference.

Aesthetics: The Chromebooks are aesthetically slim and attractive and all metal; touchscreens with hinges for 360° rotation with two identically shaped panels so that they merge to look like one when in tablet mode. The edges and corners are beautifully rounded off giving them a pleasing appearance.

Stylus Pens: They are equipped with built-in stylus pens that can be pulled out for notes and handwriting-to-text conversion, and slid back home to blend in with the body when not in use. The pen can also be used to take a screenshot, magnify and unlock the screen, and even personalize a photo.

Operating System: Samsung has worked hand-in-hand with Google to include an Operating System in the Samsung Chromebooks Plus and Pro that allows users to run even Android apps from Google’s Play Store thereby giving them access to a vast software library. The earlier Chromebooks did not have the Chrome OS and Android apps on the same platform.

Pre-loaded apps: The Chromebooks Pro and Plus come with a host of pre-loaded apps primarily designed to work with the built-in stylus.

Display Screen: The Plus and Pro boast of 2400×1600 resolution 12.3 inch Quad HD displays made of Gorilla Glass 3 giving them durability and great picture and color quality. When in tablet mode the user can enjoy portrait as well as widescreen viewing with an aspect ratio of 3:2.

Battery: Up to 10 hours of battery life on full charge points towards a powerful battery.

Main Memory: 4GB/LPDDR 3

Storage: 32 GB

Camera: 720p front web cam.

Keyboard: Now, the keyboard may take a little getting used to as some minor compromises have been made to accommodate the form factor. The keyboard is compact-sized with some of the keys smaller than the others such as the back and tab keys which are much smaller than they generally are.

What is missing and would have been a real good addition is backlighting. However, the keyboard is painted with highly reflective ink which makes it visible in the dark with the screen as the only light source.

Trackpad: The trackpad is comfortably large and has a nice click to it.

Categories
From The Editors Technology

Samsung Has Finally Decided to Discontinue the Galaxy Note 7 in the U.S

Before the Galaxy Note 7 kills or maims users, Samsung has decided to kill the much-maligned phone itself, and rightly so, by totally disabling the model effective December 19, 2016. While 93 percent of the device has already been recalled the remaining 7 percent is still a big safety threat to the owners – hence, Samsung’s drastic decision to completely do away with Galaxy Note 7 in the U.S.

The Galaxy Note 7 has a history of serious malfunctioning ever since the model hit the stores. Even the phones that Samsung replaced, with claims and assurances that the exploding battery problems had been corrected by their engineers, continued to burn or explode – the problem has become Samsung’s nemesis and finally they have decided to completely kill the model come December 19th.

However, as December 19th is still some distance away, a lot can happen in the interim period. Therefore, users who are still in possession of this dangerous piece of technology are advised to power it down and get rid of it – like yesterday.

“To further increase participation, a software update will be released starting on December 19 that will prevent U.S. Galaxy Note 7 devices from charging and will eliminate their ability to work as mobile devices,” said Samsung in a statement. “If you have not yet returned your device, you should immediately power it down and contact your carrier to obtain a refund or exchange.”

As an additional safety measure, Samsung has taken steps to urge users to return the potentially deadly device by issuing pop-up reminders every time the phone’s screen is turned on along with a software update to restrict the Galaxy Note 7’s charging ability to 60 percent.

“Consumers with an original Galaxy Note 7 or replacement Galaxy Note 7 should power down and take advantage of the remedies available, including a refund at their place of purchase,” advised Samsung in an official statement.

Samsung had earlier put the blame for the overheating and exploding to a battery manufacturing defect; however, it has been reported that the defect is in the phone itself.

Here are some reports of incidents involving the replaced Galaxy Note 7:

October 4 – A Kentucky user of the device in question suffered lung damage after the phone overheated and filled his bedroom with toxic smoke.

October 5 – A Note 7 ignited during a Southwest Airline flight.

October 7 – A Taiwanese woman reported smoke emitting from her phone while in her pocket.

October 7 – A 13-year old girl suffered burn injuries due to extreme overheating of her phone.

October 9 – A Virginia resident reported that his Note 7 caught fire on his nightstand and filled his room with toxic smoke.

In an earlier article on Samsung’s exploding Galaxy Note 7 we had written, “Ironically, the Galaxy Note 7 which was intended to be the crowning glory of their smartphone range may turn out to be Samsung’s Waterloo, so to speak. Only time will tell.”

Well, time has told, and it is now confirmed that the Galaxy Note 7 will meet its Waterloo on December 19, 2016.

Categories
From The Editors Technology

Samsung’s Exploding Smartphones and Washing Machines and its Declining Reputation

The Samsung Group a Korean Conglomerate is involved in diverse businesses including advanced technology, skyscrapers and plant constructions, petrochemicals, fashion, hotels, finance, medicine and more.

Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. established in 1969 in Suwon, South Korea is the flagship company of the Samsung Group. The company has evolved over the last 78 years into a manufacturing giant. The company manufactures hard-disk drives, televisions (LCD, PDP, CRT, LED), mobile phones, digital cameras, lithium-ion batteries, semiconductors, chips, flash memory etc.

First it was Samsung phones. Now it's exploding Samsung washing machines
First it was Samsung phones. Now it’s exploding Samsung washing machines

Of late Samsung has been in the news for all the wrong reasons. To start with, there have been several instances of the much-touted Galaxy Note 7 bursting into flames because of battery issues. There were numerous complaints of replacement sets giving similar problems.

Because of safety issues and the negative publicity, it received from the press and authorities, Samsung decided to recall the Galaxy Note 7 and discontinue its production. To add to the woes of the company there have been reports of their washing machines catching fire as well.

According to The New York Times, Samsung has a history of product recalls in recent years starting 2003 when 184,000 microwave ovens in the US were recalled.

In 2007 the company had to recall 20,000 washing machines because of fire hazards. It doesn’t end here; 210,000 refrigerators were recalled in 2009 in South Korea and 43,000 microwave ovens in the U.S. the same year, because of electrocution risks.

There are further reports that Samsung may recall top-loading washing machines in the U.S. manufactured between 2011 and the current year because of risks of personal injury and damage to property. Samsung and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) are working together to address and rectify safety issues involving these machines.

The CPSC has advised customers to use the delicate cycle mode of the washing machines when washing heavy and water-resistant clothes in order to lessen the impact injury in case the machine malfunctions.

In Australia, Samsung had to refund 4000 washing machine owners, after having initially refused to issue refunds for the defective machines. This was after the intervention of the Australian Govt.

Another case reported by The Times was that of a Boston resident whose induction range was replaced three times over a period of four years. The fourth replacement exploded in 2013 and the money was refunded by Samsung in 2015 when they lost the legal case in a small-claims court.

Other manufacturers have had to make recalls and refunds too, but the frequency of product malfunctions and the hazards involved with various Samsung products makes one wonder whether proper safety measures are being practiced while manufacturing these products.

Samsung, Stung by Galaxy Note Failure, Recalls Washing Machines
Samsung, troubled by Galaxy Note Failure, Recalls Washing Machines

Samsung has a lot of damage control to do and implement proper manufacturing methods if they are to regain the trust of the consumers. Their declining reputation and drop in the market share have to be addressed.

As far as the most recent recall of the Galaxy Note 7 is concerned, Samsung has failed to explain the real problem satisfactorily. Consumer Union policy analyst, William Wallace had this to say, “Samsung has not been communicative with consumers, regulators or the media as clearly as it should have during this recall, especially for a hazard as dangerous as this one where your phone can catch on fire, damage your property and harm your family.”

As discussed earlier, the latest Galaxy Note 7 debacle is not the first that Samsung has faced. With a history of product recalls in the last few years, one wonders whether profit is the main priority for Samsung or do they give any importance to customer safety as well?

Out of all the other product safety issues that Samsung has faced over the years, the latest recall of the Galaxy Note 7 has been their biggest problem by far involving over 2.5 million devices.

Ironically, the Galaxy Note 7 which was intended to be the crowning glory of their smartphone range may turn out to be Samsung’s Waterloo, so to speak. Only time will tell.