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Apr 1, 2014

New Huawei Ascend P7 Photos Allegedly Leak Online

Chinese mobile phone maker Huawei has been long rumored to plan the release of a new high-end smartphone running under Android, and some more leaked images with the phone have allegedly emerged online.

The upcoming device, supposedly called Ascend P7, made it online a few times before, and was expected to make an official appearance at CES or MWC, but it has not been in sight until now. However, chances are that it will be announced sooner rather than later, especially since it has made it online in more leaks. The new photos with it come from weibo (via gforgames). Although no official info on the smartphone has been provided as of now, some details on its hardware specifications are already available, suggesting that the phone will feature a 5-inch touchscreen display capable of delivering a 1080 x 1920 pixels resolution. Moreover, it should arrive on the market with a 1.6GHz quad-core Hi-Silicon SoC from Huawei, as well as with 2GB of RAM, and 16GB of internal memory.

On the back, the phone is said to include a 13-megapixel camera with full HD video recording capabilities, complemented by an 8MP front camera for making video calls while on the go. The handset should be powered by a 2460mAh battery, while running under Huawei's Emotion UI, which is based on the Android 4.4.2 operating system. Stay tuned for more details on this smartphone.

Huawei Ascend P7
Image credits to weibo via gforgames

Sony Xperia Z2 Gets Rooted, ClockworkMod Recovery Available for It

On February 24 this year, Japanese mobile phone maker Sony Mobile made official its new Android-based flagship device, in the form of Xperia Z2, yet the device isn’t shipping as of now.

However, even before being actually released on shelves, the phone has been rooted, and a ClockworkMod Recovery is now available for it, it seems. The smartphone too will arrive very soon, so this is good news for enthusiasts. As detailed in an XDA-Developers Forum thread, the Touch Recovery is based on CWM Recovery and comes from renowned developer DooMLoRD, that was helped by Koush people involved in the CyanogenMod project. Apparently, all the testing was performed on a user’s handset, and the installation of the ClockworkMod Recovery requires that the handset’s bootloader be unlocked. At the same time, those interested in trying out the new piece of software will need to make sure that they have a working fastboot on the phone, and that the device is running under stock Android 4.4.2 KitKat firmware (version 17.1.A.2.36 - v01).

Some issues with this still exist, as the recovery needs an unlocked bootloader which, in its turn, requires TA backup. Without it, DRM keys will be irreversibly lost. Furthermore, it appears that adb is not working in recovery, though this issue can be resolved in the future. On the other hand, the camera on Xperia Z2 will still work after unlocking the bootloader. Flashing the software through fastboot requires that users download the kernel image, save the boot.img to the folder containing fastboot binary, then flash it using the “fastboot flash boot boot.img” command. Then, simply reboot using the “fastboot reboot” command. To root the device, users will need to download the latest SuperSU update.zip, save it on the phone’s microSD card, and then reboot into recovery. From there, they will need to flash the SuperSu update.zip and reboot from recovery into OS.

According to DooMLoRD, users should also strongly consider installing busybox after rooting. It can be found in the Google Play Store and should be installed on/system/xbin. All the necessary info on the files needed for rooting and installing the custom recovery on Sony Xperia Z2 can be found in the aforementioned forum thread. Links to the downloadable files are available there as well. Just keep in mind that rooting a smartphone will void warranty. Users will be the only ones held responsible in the event that anything happens with the smartphone when trying to tweak it.

Sony Xperia Z2
Image credits to Sony

Qualcomm LiQUID with Snapdragon 805, Adreno 420, Windows Tested

Now here’s something interesting. Back in November, Qualcomm announced a new version of its Snapdragon 800 processor, the Snapdragon 805 tablet processor capable of handling Ultra HD (4K) video playing on a tablet or streamed to a TV.

Anyway some evidence of a Windows device running the above-mentioned 4K-ready tablet processor has been uncovered in the lofty GFXBench database. A device called “Qualcomm LiQUID” has been spotted there, listed with Adreno 420, and a cropped screen with 1422 x 800 screen resolution (full resolution might be 2560 x 1440 pixels). There’s no mention per se of Snapdragon 805, but currently the Adreno 420 is married to the Snapdragon 805 process that supports 4K resolution. Furthermore, the device in question runs Windows OS, so this could as well be Windows Phone 8.1 or Windows RT. The GFXBench doesn't show information about the device’s manufacturer, so there's no information regarding this aspect.

Anyway, the idea of a Snapdragon 805 processor testing in combination with a 2K display (?) on a Windows device seems pretty interesting and something lots of us could be looking towards. A previous leak showed us Windows Phone could support 2K screen (double 1080P) resolution, so maybe a handset is incoming. On the other hand, Qualcomm LiQUID could turn out to a tablet too.

Mystery Qualcomm LiQUID appears in benchmarks
iImage credits to GFXBench

iPhone 6 Photos Reportedly Leaked from Foxconn Factory, Phone Looks Relatively Unchanged

An alleged leak from Foxconn would suggest that Apple’s iPhone 6 will not sport a radical redesign, as many fans hoped, but rather a few minor aesthetic changes, along with a bigger screen and rounded edges.

Assuming these images leaked on weibo.com are genuine, it appears that the next-generation iPhone will have a similar design to the current-selling hardware, something that might spell trouble for Apple, (as we opined recently). The device seems to be constructed from metal (aluminum, most likely) and there will be two radio / WiFi windows on the back of the phone, as with the current iPhone 5s. Again, these images cannot be verified, but their source claims to have obtained them straight from Foxconn, Apple’s assembler. The phone appears to be a lot thinner, which may help it project a sense of major redesign. The back shell appears to be slightly tapered around the edges, and the camera module seems to stick out of the case, in what would suggest a design compromise to enable a more powerful camera in a thinner chassis. Apple has done the same with the fifth-generation iPod touch. Various design mockups from artists around the world have portrayed the iPhone 6 as a bigger iPod touch. This leak certainly lends credence to that vision, but Apple might need more oomph to keep unconvinced customers from jumping ship (to Android).

The purported Foxconn leak includes an image that depicts a schematic, along with precise measurements for what would appear to be assembly instructions from the California giant. According to one of the images, the headphone jack is being moved closer to the Lightning port, and one of the speaker/mic grills is no longer there. Nothing is being said about the screen size (or at least nothing can be made out from the low-resolution photos), but the phone presumably has a larger display that goes beyond the 4.5-inch mark (on the diagonal). Apple is rumored to launch not one, but two versions of the iPhone 6, one of which actually has an even bigger screen, measuring over 5.5-inches on the diagonal. All in all this seems to be a credible leak, but a disappointing one at that for customers hoping to see a completely reimagined iPhone this time around. As we noted in our editorial this weekend, Apple might also need to change the face of its smartphone, not just the enclosure.

Purported iPhone 6 photos
Image credits to Weibo

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