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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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