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Mar 7, 2014

Qualcomm Details the Snapdragon 801 CPU Inside Galaxy S5 and Xperia Z2

Last week, mobile phone makers around the world gathered in Barcelona at the Mobile World Congress to unveil their latest devices, and Samsung and Sony were among them, both launching new flagship smartphones running under Google’s Android operating system.

Sony announced its new Xperia Z2 smartphone at the event, which comes with a 5.2-inch screen and a 20-megapixel camera on the back, while Samsung announced the Galaxy S5, which features a 5.1-inch screen and a 16-megapixel camera. The two handsets are very different, but both have in common some elements, including the Android 4.4 KitKat operating system, high-end features, and Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 801 processor inside. However, although both smartphones are powered by the same CPU from the leading chip maker, there are some differences between them, and Qualcomm took its time to offer some clarification on the matter. For starters, we should note that Samsung went for the MSM8974AC chip for its new flagship, while Sony chose the MSM8974AB processor for its device. According to Qualcomm, the two variations were initially included in the Snapdragon 800 family of chipsets, which resulted in some confusion when both Galaxy S5 and Xperia Z2 were announced.

However, the processors inside these phones actually pack features and capabilities that make them stand above the Snapdragon 800 series, and “Samsung Galaxy S5 and Sony Xperia Z2 are among the first smartphones to be able to take advantage of this upgrade,” as Qualcomm notes in a blog post. The new Snapdragon 801 chipset was designed to provide users with “even more compelling mobile user experiences than its predecessor,” the company also notes. Among these enhancements, we can count a 14 percent faster CPU, paired with a 28 percent faster GPU, and a 45 percent faster camera sensor. The memory in Snapdragon 801 is also said to be 17 percent faster compared to the predecessor.

“The Snapdragon 801 processor has already been called ‘2014’s must-have mobile chipset,’ so be sure to stay tuned to see what other great smartphones and tablets will be powered by this new addition to our processor family,” Qualcomm also notes. Starting with this month, users around the world will be able to purchase the new Xperia Z2 smartphone from Sony, and they should get the chance to buy the Samsung Galaxy S5 too starting with the next month. Before the end of this year, we should see some more mobile devices being pushed to the market with the new CPU inside, that’s for sure. After all, other vendors will also want to impress users with the performance capabilities of their new phones.

Galaxy S5 and Xperia Z2
Image credits to Qualcomm

Xiaomi Mi3 Sold Out in 2 Minutes in Singapore

Good news for Xiaomi, as the company announced it managed to sell all Mi3 units put on sale in Singapore on March 7 in only 2 minutes. This is not a first for the Chinese company, which is well-known in the mainland for selling their devices in less than 5 minutes.

However, for the time being, Xiaomi did not offer any details on the amount of units it has sold in Singapore, but we suspect the company had around 200-300,000 Xiaomi Mi3 devices in stock. Lucky customers who managed to secure their Xiaomi Mi3 units are advised to complete their payment within 24 hours so they won’t lose their placed orders. Unfortunately, there’s no word on exactly when the next batch of Xiaomi Mi3 devices will arrive in Singapore, but we can safely assume the Chinese company would want to bring more in the coming weeks to fulfill the increased need for high-end smartphones. For those unaware, Xiaomi Mi3 has been priced in Singapore at $330 (€240) outright, which is quite decent judging by the smartphone’s specs sheet. The only downside of the smartphone might be the fact that Xiaomi rarely offers major software updates for its devices, so Mi3 owners might be stuck on Android 4.2.1 Jelly Bean operating system while the newest high-end handsets arrive with KitKat platform onboard.

Overall though Xiaomi Mi3 is a more than decent alternative to high-end smartphones launched by well-known brands such as Samsung, LG and HTC. The smartphone comes equipped with a powerful 2.3GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 processor inside, which is complemented by an equally more than decent Adreno 330 graphics processing unit. Xiaomi Mi3 packs 2GB of RAM and 16GB of internal memory, but it does not feature microSD card slot for memory expansion. The only way to take advantage of more storage space is to create an account on Dropbox or other similar service that offers free cloud storage. Aside from that, the Mi3 is worthy of the top-tier category. The smartphone boasts a 5-inch IPS LCD capacitive touchscreen display that supports full HD (1080p) resolution, as well as an enhanced 13-megapixel rear-facing camera with autofocus, dual-LED flash and 1080p video recording.

The handset also features a secondary 2-megapixel camera in the front that will allow users to take as many selfies as they wish or make video calls. Another strong point of the Xiaomi Mi3 would be the high-capacity non-removable 3050 mAh battery. Here is hoping the Chinese company will bring more Mi3 units in Singapore. Stay tuned for more details on when that will happen.

Xiaomi Singapore tweet

Xiaomi Mi3
Images credits to Xiaomi

Nokia X Gets Disassembled

At the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona last week, Finnish mobile phone maker Nokia made official its first smartphone to run under the Android operating system, in the form of Nokia X.

The handset is not a high-end and does not come with spectacular hardware specifications, but it was instead designed for the entry level of the market and packs capabilities in line with that. However, given that it is the very first phone from Nokia to run under Android, interest in it is high, and some enthusiasts took their time to disassemble it, so as to have a better look at the hardware packed inside it. Photos with the phone’s internal circuitry are also available for your viewing pleasure, courtesy of windowsmania.pl. There is even a guide than gives more info on where each of the phone’s parts needs to be. As thinkdigit notes, the device appears to have a pretty simple design, with all of its internals and outer cases kept together on the chassis with about 11 screws.

As can be seen in the photo above, Nokia X includes the front panel with the touchscreen, a camera module, the main board, speaker and earpiece modules, a series of ribbon cables, the aforementioned chassis, and the back cover. Overall, it should be pretty simple for anyone to tear the device apart, which should prove a great thing in case the phone needs repairs. For those out of the loop, we should note that Nokia has announced the mobile phone with a 4-inch touchscreen display capable of delivering a 480 x 800 pixels resolution, as well as with a 1GHz dual-core Qualcomm MSM8225 Snapdragon S4 processor inside. Moreover, the handset arrives on shelves with 512MB of RAM, Adreno 203 graphics, and 4GB of internal memory, along with a microSD memory card slot, which offers support for up to 32GB of additional space.

On the back, the Nokia X smartphone features a 3-megapixel camera with video recording capabilities, yet there’s no front camera to take advantage of. The device also comes with 3G (HSDPA, 7.2 Mbps; HSUPA, 5.76 Mbps) connectivity inside, as well as with the usual Wi-Fi and Bluetooth capabilities. It also includes a built-in GPS receiver for navigation purposes and support for using two SIM cards at the same time. Although Nokia did load the Android OS on top of this smartphone, it stripped it down of Google services and packed its own set of products on top of it. The phone has already started to arrive in various markets and will be available worldwide, though Nokia won’t launch it in the US.

Nokia X disassembled
Images credits to windowsmania.plk

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