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Jun 30, 2014

iPhone 6 to Feature Glass Radio Windows, New Apple Logo Implementation

The currently discussed iPhone 6 design is not final, according to sources in Japan. The mockups flying around today have a few features out of place, including the radio windows on the back and the display. The Apple logo has a new story too.

New iPhone 6 cases are emerging in the Far East, with Japan’s Nikkei reporting that the design being discussed in the media is not final. In fact, it’s not accurate at all. The glass covering the display (likely made from sapphire) will be curved, tapered at the edges, while the Apple logo on the back will not be carved, but drilled outright. Apple perhaps wants a new sensor behind the logo, while the logo itself could act as a window for this new part. Speaking of windows, the radios inside the phone will be placed identically as in the current-generation iPhone. In that respect, expect two glass stripes at the top and bottom of the rear shell, the source reports. The LED flash, which is round in the current mockups, may end up pill-shaped just like in the iPhone 5s. There have been a lot of questions as to why Apple would backpedal on this particular design feature, and it seems they are not changing it after all.

The report goes to describe the look and feel of the case, noting that Apple is putting a big emphasis on how the user is expected to hold the phone in their hand. Perhaps most intriguing is the fact about the display being tapered. So far all of Apple’s iPhones have all featured completely flat glass. This would give the iPhone 6 a truly redesigned facade. According to various rumors, the company is pressing for an early September launch of the handset, with some claiming that the phone will physically ship on September 19. The date remains to be verified. A second version of the iPhone 6, whose screen reportedly measures 5.5 inches on the diagonal, is also said to be in the works. Mockups based on that claim have shown that the phone is ridiculously big, even taller than existing phablets from the likes of Samsung and LG.

Apple is expected to adopt a new design with this big version of the phone, perhaps one that does away with the big screen bezel. In any case, it seems that the design of the phone has yet to be confirmed. Back to the rumor mill folks.

iPhone 6 curved glass mockup (right)
Image credits to Martin Hajek

Samsung Galaxy Mega 2 Leaked with 5.9-Inch HD Display, 64-Bit Processor Snapdragon 410

There are lots of rumors surrounding Samsung’s upcoming Galaxy Mega phablet, but most of the details we got are probably referring to some of the prototypes that are now being tested in the wild.

The latest info on the alleged Samsung Galaxy Mega 2 comes via Dutch website Techtastic, which spotted the smartphone on GFXBench database where most of its specs are revealed. According to the benchmarking website, the Galaxy Mega 2 should boast a huge 5.9-inch HD (720p) capacitive touchscreen display, but this is not the only major feature that will be part of the phablet. It appears that the Galaxy Mega 2 will be equipped with a Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 410 chipset, which features a 64-bit capable quad-core processor clocked at 1.4GHz, and an Adreno 306 graphics processing unit.

The smartphone is also listed with 2GB of RAM and 8GB of internal memory. The Galaxy Mega 2 is also supposed to pack an impressive 13-megapixel rear-facing camera with full HD video recording, as well as a no less impressive 5-megapixel front-facing photo snapper for that perfect selfie. Samsung Galaxy Mega 2 is powered by Android 4.4.3 KitKat operating system out of the box, but it might get released with a newer version. What do you think about Samsung’s new phablet in the Galaxy Mega family?

Samsung Galaxy Mega 2 info
Images credits to GFXBench

Motorola Moto G Google Play Edition Now Receiving Android 4.4.4 KitKat Update

Motorola has promised that its Moto X, Moto G and Moto E smartphones will eventually receive the Android 4.4.3 KitKat update and most of those who own these particular devices have already got their updates.

However, it looks like soon after the US-based company made the Android 4.4.3 update available to its customers, Google released another version of the platform. Given the fact that Motorola already has some Google Play Editions released on the market, it makes sense that these should receive the newest Android 4.4.4 KitKat update soon after the Nexus devices. Well, it appears that the Moto G Google Play Edition is now eligible for the said update, AndroidPolice reports. The update is pushed OTA (over the air) in stages, so Moto G owners will be notified when it’s available for them.

Keep in mind that Android 4.4.4 KitKat update is about 160MB in size and it will take between 10 and 15 minutes to download and install it, depending on your network connection. According to the official changelog, Android 4.4.4 KitKat should bring improved performance, as well as various enhancements to security and stability. There are no new features in this update, but Google has included lots of bug fixes.

Android 4.4.4 KitKat update for Moto G (screenshot)
Image credits to AndroidPolice

Nokia Looking to Bring Its Camera Technology to Android, Other Platforms Too

It looks like Nokia, or what’s left of the Finnish company, has serious plans regarding Android and its camera technologies. We’re not yet sure what this is all about, but since the company has launched the test version of Z Launcher for Android devices, it appears that it is working to bring software solution to users rather than hardware.

Well, that could be a slightly wrong assumption, as Nokia is now looking for a senior engineer who would be able to design and implement drivers for different camera solutions on a variety of platforms. The job posting has recently been spotted by NokiaPowerUser on LinkedIn, but this is not the only hint that we got in the last couple of weeks that makes us believe that Nokia is working on something related to camera technology and Android. Furthermore, the new job post also shows that Nokia is taking into consideration bringing this stuff it’s now working on to more platforms, other than Android, as well. Here is what the job description posted on LinkedIn says: “We are looking for passionate camera driver engineer with an eye for quality and understanding of camera software from low level drivers towards the end user applications.

The person we are looking for will take responsibility of designing and implementation of camera drivers for different camera solutions on variety of platforms.” But this is not all, as Nokia wants a senior engineer who has solid experience on Linux kernel driver development and knowledge of flash drivers. There’s also a list of desired skills for the job, which clearly hints at something Android-related:
  • Android development experience;
  • Experience on driver development for MIPI raw camera sensors;
  • Knowledge of autofocus, optical image stabilization and other peripheral drivers is a plus; 
  • Understanding of driver level enablers for imaging algorithms and tunings; 
  • Experience on Camera production testing and sensor calibration; 
  • Theoretical background on imaging.

In light of the new details, we suspect that Nokia is now working to bring a new set of utilities in the camera technology, which will be offered to users on all mobile platforms. However, we can safely assume that this hardware / software solution will be released initially on Android, as Nokia seems to be pushing the development for its product on this platform in particular. Unfortunately, there’s no telling when exactly Nokia will go official with its plans regarding the camera technology, but we should expect an announcement in the next couple of months.

Nokia 808 PureView
Image credits to Nokia

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