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Jul 11, 2013

Micromax Canvas 4 A210 Now Listed on Flipkart in India

On Monday, mobile phone maker Micromax made official its next flagship Android-based handset, the Micromax Canvas 4 A210, which has been available for pre-order for the past two weeks or so, and which is now listed on Flipkart’s website too.

The phone can be seen on this page at the retailer with a “coming soon” tag attached to it, but with no specific info on its availability and pricing (although the official cost is known to have been set at Rs. 17,999 – $295/€230). At the phone’s launch event, Micromax said that users will be able to purchase it within a week, which means that Flipkart too might start selling it in a matter of days.

Micromax Canvas 4 packs a 5-inch HD screen, a 1.2GHz quad-core processor, 1GB of RAM, 13-megapixel photo snapper, 5MP front camera, and Android 4.2.1 Jelly Bean loaded on top.

Micromax Canvas 4 at Flipkart
Image credits to Flipkart

Motorola Moto X Photographed in Black

One of the smartphones that mobile phone maker Motorola will make official in the not too distant future is the Moto X, which can now be seen in a newly leaked photo, all dressed up in Black.

The new photo shows the Android device fully assembled, yet no specific info on when it might land on shelves has been provided as of now. As PhoneArena notes, the mobile phone will arrive on shelves with a signature three-line speaker grill placed on the back, as well as with a photo snapper on the center of the back, with single LED flash beneath it.

The handset will also feature a 3.5mm headphone jack at the top, placed near a second microphone, the photo that leaked over at weibo shows. Apparently, the smartphone will feature a plastic body all around, and should hit shelves in a variety of color flavors, as previous reports on the matter suggested.

Motorola Moto X
Image credits to weibo via phonearena

Nokia Lumia 1020 Now Official, Lands on July 26 Priced at $299.99 (€230)

Today, Finnish mobile phone maker Nokia has made official the long rumored Nokia Lumia 1020 smartphone, a new Windows Phone 8 device packing a 41-megapixel backside illuminated sensor, the largest in any mobile phone on the market.

The handset, detailed in previously leaked press photos, packs all the features and hardware specifications that have been previously rumored to arrive inside it. The phone will hit shelves with a 4.5-inch PureMotion HD+ AMOLED display and a 1.5GHz dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 processor, the same as the Nokia Lumia 920 and Lumia 925 did before it. However, unlike these phones, the new device lands on the market with 2GB of RAM inside, twice the RAM of previous models. The specifications list of Nokia Lumia 1020 also includes 32GB of internal memory, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, NFC, GPS receiver, and the usual set of sensors. Despite the large camera sensors on the back, the mobile phone is only 10.4mm thick, while weighing 158 grams. The main selling point of the handset, of course, remains the 41-megapixel photo snapper on the handset’s back, which comes with Optical Image Stabilization and with the ability to adjust flash, focus, ISO, white balance, shutter speed, and exposure.

The camera will save two images of snapped photos, one at 38MP and the other at 5MP. It is also capable of shooting videos in 1080p resolution with 4x zoom, while offering zoom capabilities at up to 6x at 720p. The handset also comes with a new camera application, called Nokia Pro Camera, packing a variety of advanced features to enhance the experience users receive from the device. Nokia Lumia 1020 is set to land on shelves in the United States exclusively at AT&T on July 26 in matte black, white, and yellow, featuring a price tag of $299.99 (€230) with the signing of a two-year contract agreement. The handset will be put on pre-order on July 16, the carrier announced.

Nokia Lumia 1020
Images credits to Nokia

Gigabyte 990FXA-UD3 AMD-Ready Motherboard for the Fifth Time Revises

The Vishera series of central processing units from Advanced Micro Devices, like the 8-core FX-8350, need motherboards with the AM3+ socket to work, which is why Gigabyte's 990FXA-UD3 exists.

The 990FXA-UD3 is a curious thing really. It has been revised five times, yet the latest iteration is called 990FXA-UD3 Rev. 4, not 5. Obviously, this has to do with the fact that two of its previous revisions were called rev. 1.1 and rev. 1.2. Anyway, the 990FXA-UD3 Rev. 4 motherboard has eight SATA 6.0 Gbps ports, six handled by the SB950 southbridge and two managed by a Marvell 9172 controller. It also gets four DDR3 DIMM memory slots (up to 64 GB of DDR3 RAM are supported, dual-channel at 2133 MHz), a 10-phase VRM, two PCI Express 2.0 x16 slots, two PCI Express 2.0 x4 slots, and a PCI Express 2.0 x1 slot, plus a legacy PCI slot. That's right, unlike Intel-ready motherboards, this one doesn't have any PCI Express 3.0 slots. It's a good thing video cards haven't quite reached the bottleneck of 2.0, otherwise this would have been a big disadvantage.

Of course, all these specifications, or at least most of them, were already there even before 990FXA-UD3 Rev 3 became 990FXA-UD3 Rev. 4. What Rev. 4 brings are a 10-phase CPU VRM (Digital Power Engine), new heatsinks for the VRM and chipset, a different set of chokes, capacitors, and MOSFETs, and Gigabyte's newest UEFI BIOS setup program. All the changes are there because AMD wants to make sure the motherboard can perform well under pressure. That said, the rest of the feature set is as follows: four USB 3.0 ports, 8-channel HD audio driven by Realtek ALC889 CODEC, and a Gigabit Ethernet port (Realtek 8111F). The gigabyte 990FXA-UD3 Rev. 4 should have the same price as its predecessor: $140 / €107 – 140.

Gigabyte 990FXA-UD3 Rev. 4
Image credits to Gigabyte

Nokia's New Pro Camera Application Emerges in Leaked Screenshots

Nokia’s Lumia 1020 smartphone, the Windows Phone 8 device that should become official today, is expected to arrive on shelves with a 41-megapixel photo snapper and with a new camera application loaded on it.

Screenshots showing the software have already emerged online. The new app is expected to be called Nokia Pro Camera, said photos available courtesy of Vizileaks unveil. Furthermore, they show a radial menu-like interface that will deliver fast access to options such as white balance, ISO, focus, shutter speed, and other settings, all of which should be fully detailed later today.

In the meantime, we should note that the Nokia Lumia 1020 is as good as confirmed for AT&T, as it has emerged on the carrier’s YouTube channel in no less than three videos that showcased features such as 6x zoom, low-light performance and Pro Camera user interface, and OIS, as The Verge notes.

Nokia Lumia 1020 Pro Camera
Image credits to ViziLeaks via The Verge

Intel Will Release Core i3 and i5 Embedded CPUs in September

Intel's Haswell processor architecture hasn't spread to all layers of the company's processing business, which means that some chips have yet to come out.

Among them, there are dual-core embedded processors branded Core i3 and Core i5. Fortunately, the DFI HM920-HM86 COM Express Basic board and EKF PICMG CompactPCI Serial System Slot Controller have exposed five of them. All are dual-core chips with 4 threads, HD 4600 graphics and DDR3L-1600 memory support. The Core i3-4100E and Core i5-4400E are 37W chips with 2.4 GHz and 2.7 GHz clock speeds, respectively.

The Core i3-4102E and Core i5-4402E can survive on just 25W and work at 1.6 GHz. Further info is unavailable, such as the difference between those last two chips up there. The size of the L3 cache and support for Hyper-Threading and Turbo Boost technologies will probably play a part.

Embedded Intel Core i3 and Core i5 CPUs detailed
Image credits to Intel

Nexus 5 to Arrive on October 5 with Android 5.0, Based on LG Optimus G2

Google and LG are once again rumored to plan the launch of a new Nexus smartphone before the end of this year, one that would land on shelves with the name of Nexus 5, while running under the upcoming Android 5.0 Key Lime Pie operating system.

According to the latest reports on the matter, the new device is set to make an official appearance on October 5, and should be based on the upcoming LG Optimus G2 flagship. Last year, LG made a similar move with the Nexus 4, which was designed on Optimus G’s hardware, which suggests that the same could indeed happen this year as well.

Previous rumors suggested that Optimus G2 would arrive on shelves with a 5.2-inch 1080p screen, a 2.3GHz Snapdragon 800 processor, 3GB of RAM, a 13-megapixel photo snapper on the back, and a 2700 mAh battery, while being set to go official on August 7. It might be released in South Korea on August 20, it seems.

LG Nexus 4
Image credits to Google

Nokia’s 6-Inch Smartphone Codenamed Bendit

One of the devices that Finnish mobile phone maker Nokia might make official in the not-too-distant future is said to sport a large 6-inch touchscreen display, and is currently rumored to feature the codename of Bendit.

The phone was rumored before to land on the market with such a large display, yet no other details on it have emerged until now. However, a recent tweet from @leakschina, which was accompanied by the photo above, claims that the mobile device will be launched after Nokia EOS (Lumia 1020), and that it will run under Microsoft’s Windows Phone 8.1 operating system.

Given that no official confirmation on this has emerged until now, we’ll take the info with a big grain of salt, but we’ll keep an eye out for more on the matter, so stay tuned.

Nokia's allaged 6-inch smartphone to be codenamed Bendit
Image credits to @leakschina on Twitter

BlackBerry A10 and 9720 to Arrive in 2013

Canadian mobile phone maker BlackBerry has been long rumored to plan the launch of new handsets before the end of this year, and a new report on the matter suggests that only two devices will form its upcoming lineup, namely BlackBerry A10 and BlackBerry 9720.

The BlackBerry A10, codenamed Aristo, should arrive with the new BlackBerry 10 operating system loaded on top, while packing a large 5-inch touchscreen display, a dual-core processor and 2GB of RAM, BGR claims. Apparently, BlackBerry 10 OS limitations and battery life prevented the handset vendor to move to quad-core processors, though it might not be too long before it makes the step towards them.

Featuring a design resembling the one of Samsung Galaxy S4, the BlackBerry A10 flagship should sport an 8-megapixel camera on the back, and great gaming capabilities. The BlackBerry 9720, instead, will run under BlackBerry 7 OS, and should sport the same looks as previous Bold series, just as leaked photos with it unveiled.

Leaked BlackBerry 9720 photo
Image credits to BGR

Red Oppo Find 5 Now Available, Only 5,000 Units Produced

Chinese mobile phone maker Oppo has made available for purchase a new flavor of its Oppo Find 5 smartphone, one that lands on shelves dressed entirely in Red, though in a very limited edition.

In fact, it seems that the vendor has put up for sale only 5,000 units of the new Red color version, which was launched with a price tag of 2,998 Yuan ($489 / €381) attached to it. The Oppo Find 5 Limited Red Edition sports a 1.5GHz quad-core Snapdragon S4 Pro processor packed inside, and can be found on this page on Oppo’s website.

The Android handset features the same 5-inch full HD touchscreen display as the original, a 2100mAh battery, and an HDR camera on the back, paired with front camera for making video calls.

Red Oppo Find 5
Image credits to Oppo

Upcoming 20nm Mobile Processors to Clock at over 3GHz

Future high-end smartphones could arrive on shelves with processors clocked at over 3GHz, courtesy of the new 20nm production method, recent reports on the matter suggest.

Apparently, TSMC, a leading chip maker from Taiwan, is working on 20-nanometer ARM processors that could consume up to 25 percent less energy than today’s 28nm chipsets, while also being able to deliver 30 percent more performance. This would translate into clock speeds of over 3GHz inside mobile devices, a significant improvement over today’s high-end Snapdragon 800 CPU, which can reach 2.3GHz per core, as PhoneArena notes.

The new mobile chips are expected to enter production sometime next year, and should help ARM strengthen its position on the market in front of rivals Intel and AMD (although they are considering mobile processors built using the 14nm process, fudzilla reports).

Upcoming 20nm ARM mobile processor to clock at over 3GHz
Image credits to ARM

WhatsApp for Android Exploit Discovered: Priyanka

Owners of Android devices who have the WhatsApp Messenger application installed should be aware of a new exploit spreading through the software, called Priyanka.

Apparently, the virus / exploit doesn’t actually harm Android devices, but it is very annoying, especially since it changes all contact names in WhatsApp to Priyanka. However, it should be noted that the exploit does not spread on its own, and that users will need to accept it to be added to their contacts list, as AndroidSoul explains. Furthermore, Priyanka is said to be rather easy to remove from an infected device, through clearing all contact data in WhatsApp (which will then require setting up the application again). To prevent their devices from being infected, users should simply reject Priyanka when it appears in their app as a friend request. Provided that they accepted it and the device is infected, users are recommended to search in Contacts for Priyanka, and then delete all entries found there.

After that, head over to Settings > Apps, find WhatsApp, and hit Force Stop and then Clear Data. This will bring the application to same state it was after the installation, and users will have to re-enter their credentials.   However, although all WhatsApp data on the phone has been erased, the service offers server backup capabilities, and users should not lose contacts and conversations, except maybe for the very recent ones. In the end, Priyanka doesn’t seem to be a very damaging exploit, especially given that users will have to actively accept it on their devices, as a post on softonic notes. At the moment, the best protection against the exploit is to reject Priyanka when it pops up in the messaging application (though it is possible that it could start spreading under other names as well).

Hopefully, WhatsApp will have a look at this and will resolve the problem soon. No info on whether the app suffers from this issue on other mobile platforms out there has emerged.

WhatsApp for Android exploit Priyanka emerges
Images credits to TheAndroidSoul

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