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Feb 26, 2015

HTC One M9 Benchmark Confirms Rumored Specs

HTC's next flagship smartphone has already leaked online a few days ago when someone published no less than three promo adds showing some of the main features of the One M9.

Previous to yesterday's leak, we received many details on HTC One M9's specs sheet. Although they haven't been confirmed by the Taiwanese company, it does seem multiple sources in the industry agree on the same set of hardware packs in the One M9. Now, a new benchmark confirms what we've been reported for the last couple of weeks. Dutch blog Mobifo reports HTC One M9 has been listed at GFX Bench and besides the benchmark scores we also get to see the phone's specifications. Unfortunately, there's no way we can confirm this is indeed the HTC One M9 being test, and we definitely can't assume that this is the final version of the smartphone. However, it might be one of the prototypes that's more closer to the final build.

That being said, it appears that HTC One M9 will indeed be equipped with a 2.GHz 64-bit quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 processor inside, an Adreno 430 graphics processing unit and 3GB of RAM. The tested version packs 32GB of internal memory, but shows only 23GB user-available which is quite standard for Android smartphones with that amount of storage.

Android 5.0 Lollipop and HTC Sense 7 UI on top
The benchmark also confirmed the One M9 will come with a 20-megapixel photo snapper on the back with 4K video recording, while in the front there will be a 4-UltraPixel camera for selfies and video calls, which also features full HD (1080p) video recording. HTC One M9 will sport a 5-inch display with full HD (1080p) resolution, but the Taiwanese company may launch a QHD version as well. Software-wise, the One M9 will be powered by Android 5.0 Lollipop operating system out of the box, with HTC Sense 7 UI on top. S

HTC One M9 will be officially unveiled this weekend, on March 1, so stay tune for more updates on the matter.

HTC One M9 benchmark
Image credits to GFX Bench

Asus Zenfone 2 Scores Massive in Benchmark, Still 10K Short from Samsung Galaxy S6

Although most of the news today cover the upcoming flagship smartphones coming from Samsung or HTC, there are some handsets that deserve the same level of attention and Asus Zenfone 2 is one of those smarpthones.

Announced last month at Consumer Electronics Show (CES), the Zenfone 2's price has been confirmed to start at $200. However, Asus plans to launch more than one version of the Zenfone 2, so those who can afford will be able to grab the 4GB model, which is likely to cost more than $300. Asus confirmed its Zenfone 2 smartphone will come with Intel Atom Z3580 chipset that accommodates a quad-core processor clocked at 2.3GHz. The information has been recently confirmed by a few benchmark tests coming directly from China. If you ever doubt that an Asus smartphone could be the most powerful smartphone available on the market then these benchmark will show you that you're wrong.

First of all, the smartphone tested is a prototype unit equipped with a 2.3GHz quad-core Intel Atom Z3580 processor, a PowerVR Rogue G6430 graphics processing unit and 2GB of RAM, so it's not even the 4GB version. Even so, the Zenfone 2 took over the benchmark ranks by scoring no less than 50,401 points. Coming in second is Meizu MX4, which is currently seen as world's most powerful smartphone.

Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge scored more than 60K points
The massive results produced in AnTuTu benchmark, even if it might seem impressive, it will only briefly help the Zenfone 2 take the crown for world's most powerful smartphone because Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge has scored more than 60K points. The question is how many points Asus Zenfone 2 with 4GB of RAM will be able to score. Even if will be lower than Galaxy S6's score, Zenfone 2 is much cheaper than Samsung's flagship smartphone, so that won't matter that much. So there you have it folks, Asus Zenfone 2 is not only a cheap high-end smartphone, but also a very powerful one.

AnTuTu benchmark

AnTuTu benchmark
Images credits to AnTuTu

CPU-Z benchmark

CPU-Z benchmark
Images credits CPU-Z

BlackBerry Leap (Rio) Leaks in Real Life Photos

Yesterday fresh information emerged about the long-lost BlackBerry Rio which was rumored to exist back in 2014.

The BlackBerry Rio is supposed to be the Z10 sequel and will be offered with mid-range specification. But according to a recent rumor, the BlackBerry Rio will actually end up on the market under the BlackBerry Leap name. Today brings us more info about the BlackBerry Leap, including specifications and a few images actually showing the device in the flesh (as seen at N4BB). And judging by the images, it looks like a re-designed version of the Z3. Let’s take a peek at the specs: the BlackBerry Leap will apparently come with a 5-inch display with 1280 x 720 resolution and will draw life from a Snapdragon MSM8960 dual-core processor clocked at 1.5GHz in combination with 2GB of RAM and 16GB of internal storage (expandable via microSD card).

As for photography, selfie lovers will be pretty disappointed to find a 2MP shooter up in the front. Although maybe the 8MP frontal camera might help compensate somehow. The Leap should support Penta Band LTE + 4G hotspot, Wi-Fi 2.4GHz 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0 and Miracast. The model runs the company’s latest BlackBerry 10.3.1 OS. The phone will be 9.5 mm / 0.37 inches (yes, not that sleek) in profile and will be supported by a 2800 mAh battery. The BlackBerry Rio is expected to launch around April/May and speculations indicate that it will be priced around $199 / €177.

BlackBerry Leap back side

BlackBerry Leap full back view

Choosing a language in BlackBerry Leap

BlackBerry Leaps phone details

BlackBerry Leap bottom side

BlackBerry Leap in profile
Images credits to N4BB

First VAIO Smartphone Arrives with Snapdragon 410, Android 5.0 Lollipop

In an effort to concentrate all its strength on its smartphone business, Sony sold off its VAIO laptop brand last year.

Since then, the company has introduced several products retaining the unmistakable Sony feel. The latest are the VAIO Z and VAIO Z Canvas Ultrabooks which are the first to go official with a Broadwell-U Core i7. It seems VAIO will not be stopping at following the Sony legacy but will branch out into another product category, namely smartphones. According to information provided by GSM Dome, a VAIO phone has just popped up in benchmarks revealing possible specs for the device. The handset boasts a 5-inch display with 720p resolution and is powered by a 64-bit Snapdragon 410 MSM8916 chipset clocked at 1.2GHz and fitted with 2GB of RAM and 16GB of internal storage.

The upcoming VAIO model will also boast a 13MP/5MP camera setup and run Android 5.0 Lollipop out of the box. Nothing here screams wow, but those nostalgic of the Sony VAIO era might be persuaded to pick one of these devices up. According to the information, VAIO will unveil the handset March 12, so if you’re interested, keep an eye out to learn of further details.

This is VAIO's first smartphone
Image credits to GSM Dome

Feb 25, 2015

Sony Xperia M4 Aqua to Be Unveiled at MWC 2015

We reported yesterday Sony is expected to unveil its next Xperia tablet at Mobile World Congress 2015 trade fair. A teasing image with a few details appeared briefly inside Xperia Lounge application, but it was quickly pulled by Sony.

It's clear that the Japanese company will launch the Xperia Z4 tablet next week, but Sony's presences at MWC 2015 will much more consistent than this so we expect more devices to be announced there, other than the tablet. We don't expect Sony to launch another flagship smartphone anytime soon, especially that the company confirmed it will only release on top-tier handset each year, but we do expect it to announce a few mid-range and/or entry-level devices next week. One such devices would be the newly leaked Xperia M4 Aqua, which has just been spotted online. XperiaBlog reports this smartphone has been recently mentioned in some official documents, alongside the Xperia Z4 Tablet.
Xperia M4 Aqua may not be the only smartphone to be unveiled next week

Unfortunately, few details on the Sony's unannounced smartphone are mentioned in these documents, but once word on Xperia M4 Aqua emerged online we expect more info to leak in the coming days. Until then though, here is what we know. It looks like Sony Xperia M4 Aqua will feature IP65/IP68 certification for dust and water protection. But this was to be expected due to the name given by Sony. It's also worth mentioning the smartphone will ship with Android 5.0 Lollipop operating system out of the box. Other than that there are no other details on the Xperia M4 Aqua.

We can also safely assume that this will be a mid-range Android smartphone not a high-end device. Beside the Xperia M4 Aqua, Sony may introduce other smartphones as well, so stay tuned for more updates on the matter.

Sony internal document
Image credits to XperiaBlog

Qualcomm, Watch Out Snapdragon 810, the MediaTek MT6795 Impresses in Benchmarks

Qualcomm’s upcoming high-end platform, the Snapdragon 810, made more headlines than it should have after rumors surfaced saying the chip was faced with overheating issues.

Not long after, Samsung was revealed to have renounced using the Snapdragon 810 in its upcoming Galaxy S6 flagship, which raised further suspicion. Since then Qualcomm has been striving to prove the Snapdragon 810 is not facing any major culprits. The chip made an appearance in benchmarks repeatedly showing its strength, but so have the Exynos 7420 (Samsung is going to use it in the Galaxy S6) and Tegra X1 which showed relatively better performance. Well, the original octa-core chip producer, MediaTek, is also prepping one beast of a chip. We talked about the upcoming MT6795 chip not so long ago, when we told you the piece of silicone would be capable of shooting super slow-motion 1080p video at 480fps.

MediaTek MT6795 makes it into benchmarks, too
Now it looks like MediaTek’s upcoming premium chip has popped up in the GeekBench benchmark, where it scored quite well compared to Qualcomm’s reputed high-end platform (as seen at G for Games). The GeekBench is a CPU-oriented benchmark test, so GPU results aren’t taken into account. Nevertheless, here is how the two chips managed to perform. In the multi-core test, the MediaTek MT6795 scored 4536 points, thus faring out better than the Snapdragon which only managed to grab 4345 points. In the single-core test, the MediaTek lost the battle by scoring only 886 points compared to the Snapdragon’s 1144.

The two chips are quite similar in configuration, as they both take advantage of 8 cores (broken down into 4 x Cortex-A57 and 4 x Cortex-A53). When it arrives, the MediaTek chip is expected to bring 2K support, 120MHz refresh rate and ClearMotion technology. The chip is scheduled for market release sometime towards the end of Q1 2015, so it’s probably going to take a while until the first devices bundling the architecture are offered for purchase. And who knows? By the time this happens, the chip might be made even more capable. Even as we see the preliminary results, the MediaTek MT6795 appears to be shaping out to be quite a powerful high-end piece of silicone. 

MediaTek prepping high-end octa-core chip
Image credits to Android Beat

MediaTek MT6795 in GeekBench
Image credits to Geekbench

Snapdragon 810 in GeekBench
Image credits to Geekbench

ASUS Announces Major Collection of Hardware with USB 3.1

USB 3.0 is all well and good, but it was bound to be surpassed eventually. The world hasn't quite reached the stage of USB 4.0, but USB 3.1 is already here and active. Though apparently not well represented enough, according to ASUS.

If it thought that Universal Serial Bus 3.1 technology was already widespread, it would not have felt the need to specifically set up a “USB 3.1” product line for the whole world to see. Especially since any new and promising technology is invariably used as a means to raise the profile of product brands in the eyes of potential buyers. In any case, ASUS has come forward to introduce what it describes as “the world's fastest and first complete line-up of SuperSpeed+ USB 3.1 solutions.

The new lineup of USB 3.1 products
There are quite a few motherboards here, 12 in number to be exact, all of which have a USB 3.1 suffix at the end of their name. Many of them are based on the Intel X99 chipset compatible with Haswell-E Xeon and Core i7 central processing units. Most of the others are powered by the Z97 chipset, which is compatible with LGA 1150 chips. That leaves two models based on the B85 chipset, lacking in CPU overclocking support. In addition to motherboards, ASUS is selling a USB 3.1 Card with dual Type-A ports and a design compatible with PCI Express x4 and x8 slots, or even x16 slots if you're willing to, well, waste it on this instead of a graphics card.

There are cards with dual Type-A sockets or reversible Type-C. Alas, if you already have an ASUS X99 or Z97 mainboard, you might need to download a BIOS and driver update to make the cards work.

The benefits of USB 3.1 technology
In a nutshell, this interconnect generation allows for a maximum transfer speed of 10 Gbps as opposed to USB 3.0's 5 Gbps. It's not the tenfold increase that USB 3.0 brought over USB 2.0, but no one expected something like that before USB 4.0 anyway. So far, tests done by ASUS engineers in real-world data transfers have enabled read/write speeds of up to 854.6 / 863.9 MB/s.

ASUS Rampage V Extreme

ASUS X99 Deluxe

USB 3.1 Type-C card

USB 3.1 Type A card
Images credits to ASUS

Samsung Galaxy S6 Comes with 3 Microsoft Apps, but Also 2 from Samsung

The first report concerning Samsung Galaxy S6's software and refreshed TouchWiz UI emerged online earlier this month. According to sources closed to the matter, the next flagships smartphone won't feature any bloatware from Samsung.

Samsung may have inked an agreement with Microsoft to bring the Redmond-based company's apps and services on its Galaxy S6, but the details are unknown. Those who were expecting Samsung to remove all the bloatware from its top-tier smartphones will probably be disappointed to learn that the South Korean company will still include some of its S Apps inside the Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge. A new report coming from SamMobile, citing the same source that came up with the first leak, lists all the apps that will be pre-installed on both Galaxy S6 versions.

First of all the, Samsung Galaxy S6 won't have all the S apps removed, but it will feature only a few of those. The S Health app will be pre-installed on the flagship smartphone because it's needed in order to sync health and fitness data from Samsung's fitness trackers.

The smartphone will also come packed with all Google apps
The second S app pre-installed on the Galaxy S6 will be S Voice. We have no info on why Samsung insists on keeping this application on its smartphones, we only know that there a high chance that it's here to stay for the moment. Microsoft will have three apps pre-installed on the Samsung Galaxy S6: OneDrive, OneNote and Skype. They will be grouped together into a folder called Microsoft Apps. Samsung Galaxy S6 will also feature apps such as Facebook and WhatsApp Messenger, as well as all Google apps and Galaxy Apps.

These Galaxy Apps will be included in the smartphone because Samsung wants users to be able to download other apps from its third-party store, as well as other premium apps that will be offered for free by Samsung. Last but not least, the TouchWiz UI on the Samsung Galaxy S6 is said to be similar with the one from the Galaxy Note 4, but slightly faster and with more animations from Android 5.0 Lollipop.

Samsung Galaxy S6
Images credits to XDA Developers Forum

Samsung Galaxy S6 Pictured Ahead of March 1 Announcement

With less than a week left until the official reveal of the Samsung Galaxy S6, the first live pictures of the upcoming smartphone have just leaked online.

Although the South Korean company is trying to hide the design of their next flagship smartphone like the biggest treasure in the world, it looks like someone was willing to take the wraps off the Galaxy S6's looks ahead of the official reveal. The pictures of an an alleged Samsung Galaxy S6 for AT&T have just been published on XDA Forums by someone with access to the device. He was also able to share some details on the Galaxy S6, which can only be confirmed when keeping the smartphone in your hand. For example, it looks like Samsung has decided to cover the back side of the Galaxy S6 with a resistant glass, but they have also removed the microSD card slot.

Although the person that leaked these pictures says that this might be a test model, he also points out that if that would be truly an early build then why send it so late.

No microSD card and non-removable battery
Another aspect that's worth mentioning is the Samsung Galaxy S6 might be available in many variants, including a 128GB version. Seeing it from the front, the Galaxy S6 looks very much like the Galaxy S6, but the sides bring it more closer to the Galaxy Alpha since they are made of metal. The bottom and top sides look very much like the iPhone. If we didn't know this is the Samsung Galaxy S6 shown in the pictures, we could have easily think it's the iPhone 6, when looked on from top or bottom.

Another piece of information confirmed by the leaker is the fact that Samsung Galaxy S6 won't feature a removable battery, so the SIM tray will be placed on one of the two sides of the smartphone. Unfortunately, there's no telling whether or not the device in the pictures is indeed the Galaxy S6, as we can't vouch for the legitimacy of the source. That being said we suggest our readers to take these with a grain of salt.

Galaxy S6 wrapped up in bubbles

Galaxy S6 back side

Galaxy S6 front side

Galaxy S6 right side

Galaxy S6 top side

Galaxy S6 bottom side

Galaxy S6 horizontal

Galaxy S6 SIM tray
Images credits to XDA Developers Forum

Samsung Galaxy S6 Will Be Expensive, Galaxy S6 Edge Will Be Hard to Find

It's common fact that flagships smartphones are always priced very high at launch, but as time goes by they become cheaper and cheaper.

However, handset makers rarely launch flagship smartphones and price them higher than a year before. Samsung Galaxy S5 was priced at around €650 in Europe and $650 in the United States, so we expect the next Galaxy S smartphone to be priced similarly. Unfortunately, it looks like Samsung has other plans. ArsTechnica reports a source at one of Samsung's mobile carrier partners in Europe claims the Galaxy S6 will be priced higher in Europe and United States than its predecessor. According to this source, Samsung Galaxy S6 will be priced at carriers at €749 ($849), €849 ($963), and €949 ($1,076) for the 32GB, 64GB, and 128GB respectively.

As many of you probably know by now, Samsung will launch to smartphones on March 1: Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge. It makes sense that the curved version of Galaxy S6 to be priced higher than the standard model and Samsung will deliver on that, sadly.

Samsung won't be able to supply enough Galaxy S6 Edge units to carriers
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge will cost €849 ($966), €949 ($1,080), and €1,049 ($1,194) for the 32GB, 64GB, and 128GB respectively. These prices are for the European version of the Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge, but in the United States they might have the same prices only in USD. Another aspect that Samsung will be faced with is lack of enough Galaxy S6 Edge units, which will make it a very hard to find smartphone. Apparently, Samsung has a hard time in supplying enough curved displays for the Galaxy S6 Edge and many carriers have barely managed to get thin stocks.

It's possible that Samsung will be able to supply enough Galaxy S6 Edge units a few months after the phone release on the market, but at launch many carriers won't be able to provide enough devices.

Samsung Galaxy S6 back side
Image credits to XDA Developers Forum

Feb 24, 2015

BlackBerry Rio Launching as BlackBerry Leap

Word about BlackBerry Rio emerged last year, as one of the smartphones the Canadian company will launch in early 2015. However, that did not happen yet and it will probably take a few more weeks until we will probably get a tentative release date for the smartphone.

Although there's no telling when BlackBerry will come out with the Rio, judging from the latest rumors the smartphone might be closer to launch than we originally thought. Everytime a handset maker starts working on a new product it gives a codename to its device, which is different from the market name that's usually established closer to official unveil. This seem to have just happened with the rumored BlackBerry Rio, which, according to CrackBerry, will be released on the market as BlackBerry Leap. The new name is mentioned in the BlackBerry 10 OS files, which suggests that the Canadian company has already taken the decision to rename the Rio.

BlackBerry Leap is a mid-range smartphone
For those out of the loop, BlackBerry Rio is supposed to be the Z10's sequel and will come with mid-range specs. Apart from the larger display, the upcoming BlackBerry Leap should be packed with similar hardware as the latest BlackBerry Classic smartphone that's already available on the market. Previous rumors claim the Leap should sport a 5-inch capacitive touchscreen display that supports HD (720p) resolution, as well as dual cameras (8-megapixel main camera and 2-megapixel secondary camera). On the inside, BlackBerry Leap is said to come equipped with a 1.5GHz dual-core Qualcomm MSM8960 Snapdragon processor, 2GB of RAM and 16GB of internal memory. The smartphone will also come with microSD card slot for memory expansion (up to 128GB).

Other highlights of the BlackBerry Leap that have yet to be confirmed include: 2,800 mAh non-removable battery, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0 connectivity, LTE support, DLNA and Miracast.

Alleged BlackBerry Leap
Image credits to N4BB

Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 Specs Unveiled in Benchmark: 9.7-Inch QHD Display, Exynos Chipset

The next high-end tablet Samsung is likely to launch in early March is the Galaxy Tab S2. As we're getting closer to launch date more details on the tablet pop up online.

Judging by the specs that has just been confirmed in a benchmark spotted by TechTastic, Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 will be one of the best tablets launched by the South Korean company. However, the Galaxy Tab S2 won't be the only tablet Samsung may announced at Mobile World Congress 2015 next week, as the company is known for working on two additional slates: Galaxy Tab S 10.5 and Galaxy Tab S 8.4. Now, according to a benchmark from GFX Bench, the Galaxy Tab S2 will boast a stunning 9.7-inch QHD touchscreen display with at least 5 finger gesture support. Just like the Galaxy S6, Samsung has decided to include its proprietary Exynos chipset into its tablets as well. The Galaxy Tab S2 will be equipped with an Exynos 5 Octa chipset that accommodates two quad-core processors.

The tablet will be powered by Android 5.0.2 Lollipop out of the box
Samsung's Exynos chipset also packs a hexa-core ARM Mali-T760 MP6 graphics processing unit along with 3GB of RAM. The spec list also mentions 32GB of internal memory, but only 25GB user available. There's no mention of microSD card slot though, so it's unclear whether or not you will be able to add more storage. The Galaxy Tab S2 seems to pack an 8-megapixel camera on the back, which features full HD (1080p) video recording, along with a 2-megapixel camera in the front for selfies and video calls. Software-wise, the unannounced tablet will ship with Android 5.0.2 Lollipop operating system out of the box with the latest version of TouchWiz on top.

These are just about all the specs included in the benchmark, but previous rumors also mention that Samsung's Galaxy Tab S2 tablet with measure 237.1 x 168.8 x 5.4mm and should weigh 407g (battery included).

Galaxy Tab S2 listing at GFXBench
Image credits to GFXBench

HTC One M9 Promotional Video Leaks on Twitter, Account Gets Banned

Taiwanese handset maker HTC has already confirmed it will announce its next flagship smartphone on March 1, the same day that Samsung Galaxy S6 will be unveiled as well.

We still have several days until then so we shouldn't be surprised by the avalanche of leaks and reports on the HTC One M9's specs and design. After the first live pictures of the alleged One M9 leaked online yesterday, today, reputed leaker @upleaks tweeted a few promotional videos of the unannounced smartphone. This kind of evidence definitely sheds light on how the HTC One M9 looks like and after seeing these videos there's no doubt that overall the next flagship smartphone to be launched by the Taiwanese company looks very much the same as HTC One M8.

Even though HTC did some tweaking with the buttons, when it comes to form factor both One M8 and and One M9 look similar in terms of design. HTC was quick to remove these promotional videos from YouTube, but not before some were able to upload them on other accounts. Unfortunately, @upleaks' Twitter account seem to have been suspended following the publishing of these videos showing the HTC One M9.

Several unconfirmed features are highlighted in these videos
Nevertheless, we can't help but notice that these promotional video confirm some of the features that were previously rumored for the One M9, such as the HTC Sense 7, BoomSound speakers and the UltraPixel camera in the front with special software. Other features highlighted in these videos include HTC Connect, which allows users to enable a new “three-finger swipe” option for streaming music and video. HTC One M9 is expected to come equipped with a 2GHz octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 processor, 3GB of RAM and 32GB of internal memory, as well as a 20-megapixel photo snapper on the back.

HTC One M9 (camera grid)

HTC One M9 (camera UI)

HTC One M9 (gallery)

HTC One M9 (home screen)

HTC One M9 (wallpaper)

HTC One M9 (left side)

HTC One M9 (back side angle)

HTC One M9 (front side)
Images credits to HTC

HTC One M9 Commericals
Video credits to Jack March

Sony Xperia Z4 Tablet with 2K Display Leaks Ahead of MWC 2015

Although Sony announced huge losses for its mobile division and its availability for partnerships with other companies, its roadmap for this year includes several smartphones and one or more tablets.

We've already seen Sony's first smartphone launched this year, the Xperia E4, which is a low-end Android handsets, but more devices might be announced next week at Mobile World Congress 2015 trade fair. Now XperiaBlog has just received evidence that Sony plans to launch a new tablet next week, which will most likely be showcased at MWC 2015. The unannounced Sony Xperia Z4 Tablet is the sequel to the Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact. The slate is expected to pack a larger 10-inch display and a more powerful processor. The Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact is already a more than decent slate, but the Xperia Z4 will aim the high-end range. The new tablet hasn't been confirmed by Sony yet, but it briefly appeared in the official Xperia Lounge application.

Someone was able to take a screenshot showing the Xperia Z4 Tablet before Sony pulled the advert, so we now know a little bit more about what it will look like and what specs it will pack.

It features the same form-factor and shape as the Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact
The most important seems to be the “stunning” 2K display, which is combined with the “latest ultra fast processor” and “industry leading battery performance.” These features have been confirmed as part of Sony's Xperia Z4 Tablet, but aside from these there aren't any other details on the slate. The rumored specs include a Snapdragon 810 processor, 4GB RAM, 13MP rear camera and 8MP front camera. Design-wise, the Xperia Z4 Tablet looks very much like the predecessor, the Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact, but with a larger display. The power on/off button remains on the mid of the right side for easier access, while the volume key is right above it.

That's about all we get from the screenshot taken inside Xperia Lounge app, but the good news is we might not have to wait too long for the tablet to go official, as Sony has already confirmed a launch event for March 2.

Sony Xperia Lounge app screenshot
Image credits to XperiaBlog

Feb 23, 2015

Take a Look at Sony Xperia Z4 Dual SIM’s UI Design

In recent times we told you Sony was expected to lose money this year on a net basis for the sixth time in the last seven years.

To do some damage control, the company is looking to shift its focus to PlayStation and the camera sensor division. At least for the next three years, Sony will be taking a different direction in the hopes of increasing operating profit by 2500% over the period. But this doesn't mean we won’t see any new Sony flagship throughout this time. As we previously told you, the company plans to unveil its next-gen Xperia Z4 handset sometimes this summer, thus skipping the major MWC 2015 event.

This is how Lollipop looks on the Sony Xperia Z4
As the rumor mill has indicated, the Xperia Z4 will arrive in single SIM and dual SIM versions. Now, the folks at Xperia Blog have spotted a bunch of screenshots showcasing the dual SIM’s variant UI. As you can see for yourself in the gallery, we just got a confirmation that the Xperia Z4 will run on a MSM8994 chipset (aka Snapdragon 810) and will run Android 5.0.2 out of the box. Although Android 5.1 should be out by summer. Anyway, the interface has the distinctive Material Design feel even if Sony has made a few modifications of its own.

Until now, Sony had a flagship refresh cycle of about 6 months. The original Xperia Z was introduced in late 2013, while the Xperia Z2 made an appearance in early 2014. In late 2014, we saw the Xperia Z3 arrive. But given that Sony’s plan is to shift focus away from its smartphone business, it does make sense the Xperia Z4 won’t come exactly after 6 months since the release of the predecessor.

Rumored Sony Xperia Z4 specs
The Sony Xperia Z4 is expected to arrive donning a 5.2-inch display with 1080p or QHD display, the rumor mill is quite ambivalent about this aspect. As spotted in the screenshots, the handset is fitted with a Snapdragon 810 chip in combination with 3GB of RAM and probably at least 64GB of internal storage. The phone should also enjoy a 21MP camera, waterproof body and stereo speakers. Sony is also reportedly planning to launch a host of other devices including the Xperia Z4 Compact, Z4 Ultra and Z4 Tablet (which is apparently going to bundle 6GB of RAM).

Sony Xperia Z4 settings

Sony Xperia Z4, About phone

Sony Xperia Z4, phone dial

Sony Xperia Z4 , watch app
Images credits to Digi-Wo

Meizu MX5 Rumors: 5.5-Inch 2K Display, MediaTek CPU and Crazy Nokia-Made 41MP Camera

Earlier today we just showed you a concept image of Meizu’s upcoming flagship, the MX5. Since the MX4 was launched back in September, we dare say we have quite a few months ahead before seeing the MX5 make a debut into the wild.

In all possibility the handset will probably launch somewhere in Q4 2015, but even so Chinese website MyDrivers has apparently managed to get its hands on the preliminary specs of the upcoming Meizu handset. According to the leak, the Meizu MX5 will arrive with a 5.5-inch QHD display (2560 x 1440 pixel resolution and bizarre 5:3 aspect ratio) and a fingerprint scanner. It’s unclear at the moment whether Meizu will continue to position the scanner on the back of the device, although a new device might bring a new design arrangement into the picture.

The Meizu MX5 has the chance to be great
We’re also told the device will be powered by a MediaTek chip, although the report doesn’t mention which one we should expect. We could speculate that Meizu will end up using the MT6795 platform which bundles some impressive capabilities, like the ability to shoot super slow-motion 1080p video at 480fps. The handset will be among those monsters which will pack a hefty 4GB of RAM, so it should run pretty swiftly. Another interesting piece of information is that the handset will be accompanied by a colossal 41MP camera with a Nokia PureView sensor running the shots. This part sounds a little wild, but at some point rumors emerged saying Nokia and Meizu are looking to partner up for the development of a handset, although the tidbit later proved to be a fake one.

On top of that, consider that the MX4 and MX4 Pro are both loaded with a 21MP Sony IMX220 camera, so Meizu will have to almost double the capacity with the next-gen flagship. Will it be able to do that? It remains to be seen. In related news, the Chinese device maker is known to have taken a partnership with major Asian retailer Alibaba which will develop an OS for its handsets. Meizu is also expected to be an important presence at MWC 2015 in Barcelona, where it will launch an Ubuntu-powered smartphone.

Meizu MX5 concept
Image credits to Phone Concept

Meizu MX4
Image credits to UnBox

Nokia Lumia 1020 has a 41MP camera
Image credits to Economic Times

HTC One M9 Gets Listed with Retailer, Shows Specs and Price

We’re just a few days away from one of the tech world’s biggest gathering, MWC 2015, which will be take place in Barcelona.

HTC is going to be one of the major brand vendors coming at the event with one purpose in mind: to unveil its latest flagship, the One M9. Many details have popped up online regarding the HTC One M9, even if they don’t all agree with each other. Anyway, not so long ago the first real-life images of the HTC One M9 showed up on the web, showing an awful resemblance to the current One M8.

The HTC One M9 shows up on website
Well, this week German retailer CyberPort has listed the upcoming flagship, thus revealing a bunch of images showcasing the model plus specs. Since then the mentions have been removed, but luckily the folks over at Mobile Geeks have managed to retain an overview of the listings before they were taken down. According to this information, HTC will be offering the flagship in either gunmetal gray or gold or silver. As for specs, we are shown the handset will boast a 5-inch display with 1080p, exactly like the One M8. Hopefully, for those of you who crave a 2K display smartphone in your life, HTC will also roll out the One M9 Plus to appease more demanding customers.

Going back to the One M9, the processor pumping life into the handset is a Qualcomm Snapdragon 810, just like in the case of the LG G Flex 2 and Xiaomi Mi Note Pro. The smartphone bundles 3GB of RAM (maybe the Plus version will take things further to 4GB of RAM), 32GB inbuilt storage which is expandable to 128GB via microSD card. In the photography department, we have a primary 20MP sensor with optical image stabilization and dual LED and dual color flash, while on the back lives a 4.0 Ultrapixel camera. The One M9 is expected to be a tad lighter than its predecessor coming in at 157 g / 0.28 inches but also a bit thicker at 9.61 mm / 0.37 inches due to its larger 2,900 mAh battery.

Last but not least, it appears the HTC One M9 will go on sale for a hefty price of €749 / $850 which might as well indicate that the handset will sell for $750 / €660 when it arrives on US grounds.

HTC One M9
Images credits to Mobile Geeks

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