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Aug 30, 2013

Meizu MX3 Emerges in Leaked Official Photo

Chinese mobile phone maker Meizu is getting ready for the launch of a new smartphone running under Google’s Android operating system, and what appears to be an official photo with it has already emerged online, courtesy of Mobile3G.

The handset is expected to become official as Meizu MX3 as soon as the next week, and should pack a 5.1-inch Full HD display, as UnwiredView notes in a recent article. Furthermore, the device is reportedly headed to the market with the Flyme 3.0 OS loaded on top (based on Android Jelly Bean), and with an Exynos 5 Octa processor packed inside.

The specifications list of the new mobile phone should also include 2GB of RAM and a 13-megapixel photo snapper on the back, with full HD video recording capabilities. The new handset is expected to become official on September 2 and might arrive on the market with a price tag of 1,999 Yuan (around $330 / €250) attached to it.

Meizu MX3
Image credits to Mobile3G via UnwiredView

Aug 29, 2013

HTC’s 4.3-Inch 301e Smartphone Spotted in China

Taiwanese mobile phone maker HTC Corporation is reportedly getting ready for the launch of a new mid-range smartphone in China, and the device has already emerged in the country with model number 301e attached to it.

The handset was spotted at the country’s TENAA telephone certification center with dual-SIM capabilities packed inside and with a 4.3-inch touchscreen display capable of delivering a 480 x 800 pixel resolution. Furthermore, the yet unannounced smartphone features a 1GHz dual-core processor inside, 512MB of RAM, 8GB of internal memory, and a microSD memory card slot with support for up to 64GB of additional storage space.

The specifications list of the device is also said to include WCDMA 3G connectivity and a 5-megapixel photo snapper. As Engadget notes, the handset features the same front design as the HTC One. A handset with similar looks appears to have emerged in live photos over at Weibo. According to UnwiredView, the phone might cost around $210 (€160).

New HTC smartphone emerges in China
Image credits to Weibo via UnwiredView

Sony Xperia Honami New Leaked Photos

A new set of leaked photos with the Sony Xperia Honami smartphone is now available for your viewing pleasure, only days before the device is set to become official at the IFA 2013 trade fair in Berlin.

Available courtesy of 365Dian, the new photos sport a much better resolution when compared to other leaked images that emerged with the device, as XperiaBlog notes, and offer a glimpse at all of the phone’s design elements. Codenamed Honami, the Android smartphone is expected to become official on September 4 as Sony Xperia Z1, though the Japanese mobile phone maker has yet to confirm specifics on the matter.

Xperia Z1 is rumored to arrive on the market with a 5-inch full HD touchscreen display, a quad-core Snapdragon 800 processor inside, 2GB of RAM, and with a 20.7-megapixel photo snapper on the back, with G Lens technology.

Sony Xperia Z1 Honami
Images credits to 365Dian via XperiaBlog

Aug 28, 2013

Samsung Galaxy Note III’s Front Panel Next To Galaxy Note II's

Earlier this week, a series of leaked photos emerged online offering a glimpse at what the front panel of Galaxy Note III would look like, and a new photo with it is now available, showing us the main differences that it will sport when compared to that of Galaxy Note.

As it turns out, the upcoming handset will not be much bigger than last year’s smartphone, and the newly released photo (available courtesy of rbmen) confirms that. Although the new Galaxy Note III will arrive on shelves with a larger display, it will also feature a smaller bezel, which allows it to keep about the same dimensions as last year’s large device.

It should also be noted that the new handset will have more squared corners when compared to Galaxy Note II, provided, of course, that the front panel in this photo is indeed showing the Galaxy Note III, as SamMobile notes.

Galaxy Note III's front panel next to Galaxy Note II's
Image credits to rbmen via SamMobile

HTC to Launch Its Own Mobile OS in China [WSJ]

Taiwanese mobile phone maker HTC Corporation is working on its own mobile operating system, which is set to be officially launched in China and which should be exclusive for the market, a recent article on the Wall Street Journal reads.

Apparently, HTC is focused on integrated Chinese-specific apps and services into this mobile OS, including Weibo, the Twitter-like microblog. Expected to become official before the end of this year, the platform would be part of Chinese government’s effort to broaden the spectrum of homegrown software, which would allow it to detach from US companies.

No specific info on what the upcoming OS would be like has been provided as of now, and it remains to be seen whether it will be based on Android, the same as platforms used by various phone makers in China are at the moment.

HTC to build its own mobile OS for China
Image credits to HTC

MSI Releases GeForce GTX 780 Lightning

Micro-Star International has finally made the official introduction of a graphics adapter which has been on our radar for a few good weeks, with the latest update on it having been made just six days ago.

We are, of course, referring to the GeForce GTX 780 Lightning, the video controller that, like all other GTX 780 cards, regardless of factory overclocking (or lack thereof), stands just one level below the GeForce GTX Titan. Normally, the GeForce GTX 780 runs the GK110 graphics processing unit (GPU) at 863 MHz, unless the GPU Boost technology kicks in. In that case, the clock speed jumps to 902 MHz. Not that large a leap, but still better than nothing. Obviously, MSI wasn't about to name a card “Lightning” without making it better than the original. Thus, is was that the product ended up with a core base speed of 980 MHz and a GPU Boost maximum setting of 1033 MHz. Clearly, those numbers are in a different league.

To ensure stability even at those settings, MSI gave the GTX 780 Lightning a 16+3 phase VRM, an additional GPU Reactor module (filters out electrical noise), high-grade chokes, PowIRstage driver-MOSFETs, and DirectFETs from International Rectifier, plus tantalum capacitors. That way, all that power brought through the two 8-pin PCI Express connectors is put to good use, instead of being wasted or overwhelming the circuitry. All the while, the 3 GB of GDDR5 VRAM work at 6 GHz over the 384-bit interface. Here, at least, there was no tweaking involved. As for the cooler, the TriFrozr merges the benefits of a large aluminum fin stack with those of several 8 mm heatpipes and three fans (each with its own 4-pin PCB connection). MSI's Afterburner utility is enough to individually control the rotary speeds of each fan. MSI's GeForce GTX 780 Lightning bears a price of $749.99 / €749.99. That's $100 / €100 more than the reference tag.

MSI GeForce GTX 780 Lightning
Image credits to MSI

Aug 27, 2013

Samsung Galaxy Note III 5.68-Inch Screen Front Panel Leaked

Next week, Samsung should officially introduce its next member of the Galaxy Note family of large smartphones, one that should pack a 5.7-inch touchscreen display, the latest reports on the matter suggest.

The handset, supposedly called Galaxy Note III, was rumored before to arrive on the market with such a display on the front, but no official confirmation on it has been provided as of now, and some even suggested that it could feature a 6-inch screen. However, what appears to be the handset’s front panel has emerged online in a series of leaked photos over at Sonny Dickson, suggesting that Samsung might have indeed packed it with a 5.68-inch screen.

The phone might sport a design similar to the one present on Galaxy S4, which does not come too much as a surprise, though it should feature a slimmer border, at only 2.2 mm, as mobilesyrup notes.

Samsung Galaxy Note III front panel
Images credits to Sonny Dickson

Sony to Confirms Honami’s Xperia Z1 Name

On September 4, Japanese mobile phone maker Sony Mobile is expected to make official a new smartphone in the popular Xperia lineup, one that has been long rumored to feature the codename of Honami, and which might be called Xperia Z1 in the end.

The name has emerged online a few times before, and it appears to have been confirmed by a post on the company’s official blog, which features the headline of “3…2…what comes next?” “Think you know what a smartphone can do? It’s time to think again. Something new, something extraordinary is on the way from Sony. #Sept4 #bestofSony,” the blog post reads.

Furthermore, it links to the video teaser that Sony Mobile has published for the upcoming mobile phone not long ago, which provided us with a better look at some of the design elements that the new device will sport when launched.

Sony Honami teaser
Image credits to Youtube

Microsoft Changes the RTM Concept for Windows 8.1

Just as rumored, Microsoft is set to continue work on Windows 8.1 even though the operating system has reached RTM, in an attempt to provide a greatly improved experience to early adopters.

Microsoft’s Brandon LeBlanc has confirmed in a short tweet that new updates will be delivered to partners, while the company is working on a new set of updates to be delivered to end users ahead of the October launch. “RTM is different now as we ship updates faster for Windows, meant for partners while we refine for customers for GA,” he said on Twitter.

According to some previous reports, Microsoft wants to deliver the latest Windows 8.1 updates to end users three days before general availability via the built-in Windows Update feature. The public launch of the OS update will take place on October 18, while Windows 8 users will be allowed to download it free of charge from the Store one day earlier.

The Start button is back, but it only gets users to the Start screen
Image credits to Microsoft

Microsoft Officially Announces Windows 8.1 RTM

Redmond has finally confirmed that Windows 8.1 reached RTM, revealing that OEMs are getting the operating system as we speak.

Windows 8.1 is projected to be officially unveiled on October 18, while Windows 8 adopters will be allowed to download it free of charge from the Store. MSDN and TechNet subscribers will get it on October 18 as well. The operating system is set to bring lots of changes to the rather disappointing Windows 8, including a Start button that’s supposed to make the whole platform a lot more familiar for users migrating from an older platform, such as Windows XP, Vista, or 7. Even though it’s back, the Start button does not launch a Start Menu, but instead it launches the Start screen that has often been criticized by Windows 8 adopters. Microsoft claims that the Start screen is a very helpful replacement for the standard menu, pretty much because it shows all the apps on the screen and lets you initiate a search by simply starting typing.

At the same time, Microsoft is also expecting Windows 8.1 to spawn a completely new wave of touchscreen devices, including hybrids, tablets, and notebooks, all of which are supposed to bring the key features of the operating system in the spotlight. Word is that the company is even working on the second-generation Surface tablet that could be unveiled in October, together with the operating system. “Windows 8.1 continues the vision we began with Windows 8 and is an example of our commitment to continuous innovation and improvement for our customers,” Microsoft’s Brandon LeBlanc said in a public announcement in mid-August. Windows RT will also be improved as part of the 8.1 update cycle, so tablets running the operating system will get new Start screen customization options, better touch support, new live tile sizes and enhanced performance in portrait mode, a feature specifically aimed at tablets equipped with smaller screens.

The Start button is back, but it only gets users to the Start screen
Image credits to Microsoft

Samsung Starts Teasing BBM as Coming Soon to Galaxy Handsets

The popular BlackBerry Messenger service is finally getting ready to make its way to the owners of Android devices, and Samsung has already started to promote it as landing on its Galaxy smartphones first.

For the time being, Samsung appears to be the only Android phone maker to have officially confirmed plans to support BlackBerry’s Messenger (BBM) on its devices, though other handsets also will, as SammyHub notes. Samsung has started to tease the upcoming availability of BBM on Galaxy smartphones, on Facebook, as the official page of Samsung Ghana shows, and also on YouTube, in a video that CrackBerry found on Samsung Ghana's YouTube account, but which was already removed.

When the application arrives, Galaxy users out there will be provided with access to the BBM social network, as well as with the possibility to engage in BBM chats, multi-person chats, and to join BBM Groups.

Samsung teases BBM for Galaxy smartphones
Image credits to Youtube

Samsung teases BBM for Galaxy smartphones
Image credits to Samsung Ghana Facebook Page

Aug 26, 2013

New Leaked Photos of Oppo N1 Emerges

Chinese mobile phone maker Oppo has confirmed a while ago plans to bring to the market a new high-end device running under Google’s Android operating system, namely the Oppo N1, and leaked photos with the handset are now available for your viewing pleasure.

The upcoming smartphone should arrive on the market with a backside touch feature, which will provide users with the possibility to easily swipe through pages, control the camera, or perform various actions in applications, as Engadget reports. Rumor has it that the new Oppo N1 will become official sometime in September, featuring a large 5.5-inch 1080 touchscreen display, gizchina notes in a recent article.

The phone that can be seen in the newly leaked images appears to be identical with what Oppo has already shown on the handset, which suggests that said photos (available courtesy of weibo) are the real deal.

Oppo N1
Images credits to Weibo via GizChina

Oppo N1
Image credits to Weibo via New-Phones

HTC One (in Blue Flavor) Emerges in China

Taiwanese mobile phone maker HTC Corporation has been long rumored to plan the launch of a Blue flavor of the HTC One smartphone, and the device has just made an appearance in China.

The smartphone is already available in Black, Silver, and Red, in addition to a Gold edition, and it seems that it won’t be too long before the Blue variant hits shelves too. The handset was spotted in China, with photos of it already available only courtesy of weibo, but is expected to be officially launched in the United States on the network of Verizon Wireless, as TechKiddy notes.

No specific info on the hardware specs of the new model has been provided, but chances are that the device will be similar in all respects to the already available flavors. Stay tuned for more on this.

Blue HTC One
Image credits to Weibo via TechKiddy

Windows 8.1 RTM Screenshots Leaked

Windows 8.1 has already reached the RTM development phase, according to some rumors, but Microsoft is trying really hard to prevent any ISO from getting leaked to the web.

A new set of pictures coming from Win8China reveals that the RTM version is indeed being tested right now by some partners across the world, but it’s not yet clear whether these screenshots have been made by an OEM or straight by regular users. Since such screenshots have already reached the web, it’s only natural to expect a new ISO to get leaked anytime soon, so we’re pretty sure that the stable flavor of Windows 8.1 would be here way before October through unofficial channels.

As you know, Microsoft plans to publicly launch Windows 8.1 on October 18, but Windows 8 users will be allowed to download it freely from the Store on October 17. Here are few screenshots, click for larger images.

Sony Publishes Photo of Honami’s Camera, G Lens Confirmed

Next week, Sony Mobile should make official a new Android-based smartphone in the popular Xperia lineup, and the company has published a new teaser image with the device today, via its Twitter account.

The phone emerged online before under the codename of Honami, though it is expected to land on shelves under the name of Xperia Z1. Last week, Sony published two other photos with the device, showing parts of it, while posting a shot of the handset’s camera today. The photo also unveils the fact that the upcoming mobile phone will land on the market with Sony's G lens technology inside, and with single-LED flash next to it.

With the official unveiling supposedly set for September 4, Sony might continue teasing the device in the coming days, so stay tuned to learn more on the matter.

Image credits to @SonyXperia on Twitter

Sony Xperia Z1 mini (Itsuki) Emerges in Leaked Photo

Xperia Z1 is not the only new Android-based smartphone that mobile phone maker Sony Mobile is expected to make official in the not too distant future, as a smaller flavor of the handset is also rumored to be planned for launch.

Supposedly codenamed Itsuki, the phone has emerged online in a leaked photo that shows it next to a BlackBerry Q10, which offers a better idea of its size, as this forum thread on XDA-Developers unveils. The handset has already been spotted en route to Japan as Sony SO-02F, and is said to sport a compact design, smaller than that of iPhone 5, but to keep the powerful capabilities that Xperia Z1 Honami was rumored to include. Thus, the upcoming smartphone will feature a 4.3-inch touchscreen display capable of delivering a 1280 x 720 pixels resolution, as well as a 2.2GHz quad-core Snapdragon 800 MSM8974 processor inside, Ameblo notes. Furthermore, the phone is said to pack 2GB of RAM, along with 16GB of internal memory, a 2400mAh battery, Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, Bluetooth 4.0, and 4G LTE connectivity.

On top of that, rumor has it that the device could arrive on the market with a 20-megapixel photo snapper on the back, the same as Xperia Honami, as well as with a front camera for making video calls. Xperia Z1 mini Itsuki is said to be running under Google’s Android 4.2.2 Jelly Bean operating system at the moment, though Sony might bring it up to Android 4.3 in the not too distant future. For the time being, we’ll take the info above with a grain of salt, though it might not be too long before specifics on it become available. According to the latest reports on the matter, Sony might be set to make both the Xperia Z1 and the Xperia Z1 mini official on September 4, though previous rumors suggested that we won’t see the smaller device until the end of the year.

Alleged Xperia Z1 mini leaked photo
Image credits to XDA-Developers

Motorola Teases Moto X Developer Edition Online

Mobile phone maker Motorola is getting ready for the launch of a new flavor of its Moto X smartphone, one labeled Developer Edition, which has already made an appearance on the vendor’s website.

The new phone model is not available for purchase as of now, but it should hit shelves soon, with 32GB of internal memory, and with an unlockable bootloader. Although it makes it easier for users to unlock the device, Motorola still warns all those interested in the matter that “Unlocking your Developer Edition's bootloader voids all warranties and may cause serious harm to your device.” Apparently, the upcoming device model will have a look of its own, and the available press photo shows a black frame on the front, coupled with a white back case.

There is also “Developer Edition” engraved on this phone’s back, as Droid-life notes. No specific price tag has been announced for the new device flavor, but it is expected to go for around $629 (€470), the same as Moto X on AT&T’s network at the moment. Those who would like to learn more on Moto X and the various personalization options available for them should head over to this page on Motorola’s website. Moto X was made official with a 4.7-inch 720p touchscreen display, Motorola’s X8 Mobile Computing System inside, and 2GB of RAM. Motorola packed the device with a 10-megapixel photo snapper on the back, with full HD video recording and other appealing features, as well as with a front camera for making video calls while on the go.

Furthermore, the handset also sports 16GB of internal memory (though the Developer Edition will have twice that amount), 4G LTE connectivity, HSPA+, Wi-Fi 802.11a/g/b/n/ac, Bluetooth, GPS receiver, and a 2200mAh battery capable of offering up to 13 hours of talk time. The smartphone is running under Google’s Android 4.2 Jelly Bean operating system, with only a few modifications from the stock platform, but with exclusive applications coming from Motorola.

Moto X Developer Edition
Image credits to Motorola

Xperia Z1 Press Photo Confirms Black, Purple, and White Versions

Japanese handset vendor Sony Mobile has been long rumored to plan the release of a successor for the Xperia Z smartphone in the beginning of September, and a press photo with the device is now available for your viewing pleasure.

Available courtesy of Digi-Wo, the leaked press photo confirms what previous rumors on the upcoming device have suggested, namely that it would land on shelves in three different color flavors, including Black, Purple, and White. As XperiaBlog notes, there’s no surprise in the fact that the supposedly called Sony Xperia Z1 (C690X) will be released in these three colors, given that Xperia Z and Xperia Z Ultra had a similar fate.

Codenamed Honami, Xperia Z1 is expected to feature a 5-inch full HD touchscreen, a quad-core Snapdragon 800 processor inside, 2GB of RAM, and a 20MP photo snapper on the back. More should be announced at IFA 2013 next week, so stay tuned to learn the news.

Allegedly leaked press photo of Xperia Z1
Image credits to Digi-Wo via XperiaBlog

Aug 25, 2013

XiaoMi to Launch 8-Core Smartphone This Year

Chinese mobile phone maker XiaoMi is reportedly getting ready for the launch of an 8-core smartphone before the end of this year, the latest reports on the matter suggest.

Apparently, the company is getting ready to make said device official with a MediaTek MT6592 8-core processor packed inside. Furthermore, a recent article on GSM Insider claims that other phone makers in the country are also getting ready for the launch of similar devices, including Lenovo, Oppo, Gionee, and Vivo.

Through the launch of its own such smartphone, XiaoMi will be able to better compete with rival companies on the Chinese market, that’s for sure. No info on when the new device will be launched has been provided, but chances are that it will arrive in several months, after the XiaoMi Mi3 flagship smartphone is made official next month.

XiaoMi Mi2S
Image credits to XiaoMi

Sony Xperia Honami’s Metal Frame Leaks

Sony’s upcoming Xperia Honami smartphone is making it to the headlines more and more often in anticipation of its official unveiling on September 4, as the latest leaks on the matter brought us a glimpse of the phone’s metal frame.

Available courtesy of repair shop eTradeSupply, said photos show the frame from all angles, but reveal little that was not known already, as XperiaBlog notes. Expected to arrive on shelves as the Xperia Z1, the mobile phone will sport about the same hardware specifications as its successor, the Xperia Z.

Thus, it will hit the market with a 5-inch full HD screen, a quad-core Snapdragon 800 processor inside, a 20-megapixel photo snapper on the back, and one of the latest flavors of Google’s Android operating system, maybe Android 4.3 Jelly Bean. No official confirmation on any of these has been provided as of now, but all should be unveiled soon, so stay tuned.

Honami’s Metal Frame
Image credits to eTradeSupply

Motorola DROID 5 Smiles for the Camera

Mobile phone maker Motorola has unveiled four new smartphones this year, all of them full-touch handsets, but it seems that it is not done with the launches just yet.

What appears to be the upcoming DROID 5 smartphone from the company has allegedly made an appearance online in a series of leaked photos, showing that the sliding QWERTY keyboards are not dead just yet. The specifications list of the device hasn’t been leaked until now, but the aforementioned leaked photos, available courtesy of Weibo, do offer a good look at the phone’s design. As Droid-life notes, the new mobile phone appears to feature an edge-to-edge display, with a small bezel, while also sporting a front camera, along with the Motorola and Verizon logos next to the screen. Furthermore, the upcoming device could arrive on shelves with a full five-row QWERTY keyboard, as well as with a voice-to-text button.

Motorola might also pack the new mobile phone with wireless charging capabilities, at least this is what the massive coil on the phone’s back, which can be seen in the photo below, shows. At the same time, it seems that Motorola will be packing the new device with support for Verizon’s 4G LTE network, considering that there is a specific logo visible on the smartphone’s back. Also visible on the handset’s back is the photo snapper and the flash next to it, though no specific details on the camera quality have been provided as of now. The rest of the phone’s hardware specifications remain shrouded in mystery as well, though chances are that we’ll see Motorola launching it with the same X8 Mobile Computing System inside, just as it did with its latest devices.

It’s still unknown when exactly the so-called Motorola DROID 5 will be unveiled or made available for purchase, but it might not be too long before the vendor decides to make it official, considering that it launched DROID 4 over a year ago.

Alleged Motorola DROID 5
Image credits to weibo via droid-life

Aug 22, 2013

Xperia Z Ultra Confirmed to Receive X-Reality for Mobile Next Month

Xperia Z Ultra, the 6.4-inch full HD smartphone from Sony, lacks one great feature at the moment, namely X-Reality for mobile, though it does come with a Triluminous Display for mobile, built with the latest Sony BRAVIA technology, though this might change soon.

Apparently, the Android-based mobile phone is set to receive the feature as soon as next month, as a white paper published on Sony Mobile’s website last week unveils. “X-Reality for mobile will be available for this device through the forthcoming software upgrade available to download over the air. Sony Mobile will use reasonable endeavors to make this software available to end users in the week commencing September 9th, 2013 or as soon as possible thereafter,” said doc reads.

As XperiaGuide notes, the update could arrive on devices in the form of the recently approved firmware version 14.1.B.1.510 and 14.1.B.1.515, but an official confirmation on this has yet to emerge.

Sony Xperia Z Ultra
Image credits to Sony

Large Nokia Smartphone Confirmed for September [Reuters]

Finnish mobile phone maker Nokia is getting ready for the launch of its first device to pack a screen larger than 5 inches in September, the latest reports on the matter suggest.

The company has been long rumored to plan the release of at least one such smartphone, and it appears that all is almost confirmed, a recent article on Reuters claims. Furthermore, the news site claims that Nokia is planning the release of this device during a press event set to take place in New York. The handset in question could be none other than the previously rumored Nokia Bandit, which should sport a 6-inch full HD touchscreen. In fact, WPCentral claims that they have already managed to confirm that the smartphone is indeed the aforementioned codenamed Bandit.

Furthermore, the news site says that the phone will feature a quad-core processor inside, and that it will run under Microsoft’s Windows Phone 8 GDR3 OS flavor, just as previous rumors have suggested. On top of that, the phone is expected to pack a 20-megapixel photo snapper on the back, which should provide users with a great camera experience while on the go. Should the rumor pan out, we will also see this device arriving on shelves in a thin body, though still featuring a small camera hump. Apparently, Nokia is set to announce the smartphone on September 26, though it might also plan the release of a tablet PC the very next day, it seems. This is not the first time that Nokia is said to aim at entering the market of smartphones with large touchscreens before the end of this year, yet an official confirmation on the matter has yet to be provided. In the meantime, we’ll take the info above with a grain of salt, though stay tuned to learn more on the matter.

Nokia logo
Image credits to Nokia

ASUS Z87-Deluxe/Quad ATX Motherboard

The Thunderbolt connectivity interface hasn't seen much success, adoption-wise, but the new mainboard from ASUS is one of the platforms that possesses it: Z87-Deluxe/Quad.

Thunderbolt 2 is the evolution of the first Thunderbolt technology. Compared to the four separate transfer channels, the new one merges them into two 20Gbit/s bi-directional channels. Thus, their 40 Gbps transfer speed is superior to USB 3.0 by a factor of 4. It won't steal the thunder of USB, since USB has a much greater product base and is much more widespread, but it's still a significant bragging right. Also, the bandwidth is important because it allows high-resolution video (4K 4096 x 2160 resolution) to be streamed, while communicating with HDDs and other devices through the same port. In fact, each of the two Thunderbolt ports can communicate with 6 devices at the same time (daisy-chained). Besides Thunderbolt, the ASUS Z87-Deluxe/Quad has NFC, Dual Intelligent Processors technology 4 with 4-Way Optimization, UEFI BIOS, four DDR3 memory slots, seven PCI Express slots (presumably, the yellow ones are PCIe 3.0), a bunch of SATA III/SATA II ports, and gold-colored heatsinks.

Needless to say, connectivity is top notch as well, with various USB 3.0, USB 2.0, video and audio ports at the back, plus pin headers for front/top case I/o panels. "Z87-Deluxe/Quad has been subjected to a tremendous amount of compatibility, BIOS, as well as video/audio and other tests to verify its quality and design," said Joe Hsieh, ASUS corporate vice president and general manager of the motherboard and desktop system business unit. "Being the world's first certified motherboard for Thunderbolt 2 technology also means setting the standard for all of the upcoming products, which is something that ASUS has always done." Sadly, in its press release, ASUS did not say what price the ASUS Z87-Deluxe/Quad would be shipped for.

ASUS Z87-Deluxe/Quad
Image credits to Asus

Apple iPhone 5S and iPhone 5 Comparison Shots

A retailer in Japan has obtained the “champagne” version of the iPhone 5S lacking a display, electronics, buttons, and the radio windows on the back.

OK, so they didn’t actually get their hands on the iPhone 5S, but rather the chassis. However, what’s interesting about it is that it sports that rumored “champagne” color that the phone is set to ship with. In addition to “champagne,” the iPhone 5S will probably also ship in black and white, as the iPhone 5 does today. Weekly Ascii has released some comparison shots of the 5S enclosure next to the current-generation iPhone 5 (gallery below). Reportedly obtained from Japanese retailer Moumantai, the images show that the new color is consistent with the existing chromatics (if we can call black and white a color palette), and seems to support claims that the phone won’t actually be golden, as previously rumored.

Coloring aside, the phone’s ports and connectors haven’t been repositioned, while the screen size will match that of the iPhone 5 (4 inches on the diagonal), going by the near-identical design. Reportedly, Apple will discontinue the iPhone 5 when it deploys its new iPhones on September 10, but not because of the iPhone 5S. Replacing the iPhone 5 – which has been troublesome for many customers – is the plastic-encased iPhone 5C. Apple is basically repackaging the iPhone 5 making it cheaper, both for end customers and for its own production lines. While the iPhone 5C will probably bring nothing too extraordinary to the table (except for the option to buy it in more than two colors), the iPhone 5S is reportedly set to introduce several new features, including a fingerprint sensor (underneath its Home button) and a dual LED flash next to the rear camera.

The 5S will also be the one to get an updated processor. One prominent analyst has been quoted as saying that the A7 chip destined for the iPhone 5S will be 20 percent faster, as well as smaller than its predecessor (the A6).

 "Champagne" iPhone 5S chassis

 "Champagne" iPhone 5S chassis compared to iPhone 5 (black and white models)
Images credits to moumantai via Weekly ASCII

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