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Will the Apple Watch 3 Change the Way We Game?

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Image:Dailystar.co.uk
Image:Dailystar.co.uk

The Apple Watch was a huge deal when it was first released. It really was the first quality smart watch of its kind, and its sleek Apple design and customizable bands made it all the more appealing. However, the initial smart watch phase had a functionality problem.

Most smart watches, the Apple Watch included, basically amounted to fancy fitness trackers that you sometimes checked text messages on. We have seen some great advancements since then, but not nearly enough. However, the Apple Watch 3, set to launch later this year, could be the big jump the product needs to really become a mainstream necessity.

The big question, the one that will make the Apple Watch truly relevant, is whether or not it can be used for casual entertainment. Or, in other words, can it game?

New Design, Bigger Display?

The Apple Watch 3 will almost certainly have a new design, and that may come with a slightly larger face display. Part of the challenge in designing a smartwatch is balancing the size of the watch with functionality. The 42mm design of the Apple Watch is a little on the large side for watches, but perhaps a clever redesign could give us a few more millimeters to enjoy.

A larger display would make it easier to play games on the Apple Watch without squinting or holding it directly in front of your face.

Improved Battery Life

The original Apple Watch and Apple Watch 2 already had great battery life. Both models lasted between two and three days on a single charge, putting it at the top of the smart watch market in that regard. However, that doesn’t mean it couldn’t be better.

One of the rumors spreading about the Apple Watch 3 suggests there will be modest battery improvements, which means we could see the watch last for 4 or even 5 days. Could you imagine having a device that lasted almost a full week on one charge? Not only would it be less tedious to maintain, but it would also be ideal for people who love using it to play games.

Dedicated LTE Support

Smart watches with LTE isn’t a new thing. Samsung introduced it with the Galaxy Gear S2. However, Apple likes to do things in their own time to make sure they get it just right. It’s likely they have put it off this long so they can find a way to include LTE without sacrificing battery life.

The rumor mill is suggesting that the Apple Watch 3 will have LTE support, and that can only be a good thing for gamers. LTE support will allow players to finally connect with games that have leaderboards, chat options, or really any other kind of online feature. That greatly increases the amount of games one could potentially play on the Apple Watch 3.

Wider Support for Games

The Apple Watch has already seen a decent amount of support from mobile game developers, and the inclusion of LTE will likely expand that support. There are already some great games on Apple Watch, such as turn-based puzzler Best Fiends and Runeblade, a fantasy adventure created specifically for the Apple Watch, but we could always use more. Could you imagine what life would be like if we had great games like Candy Crush on our Apple Watch? Enjoyment of the device would exponentially improve, while productivity would undoubtedly plummet.

Quite a few developers have already jumped on board with the Apple Watch, and not just with games designed for the Apple Watch. Some online slots have also recently become playable on smartwatches, with Microgaming’s Thunderstruck II considered the first casino game available on Apple Watch. The online casino industry is known for its early adopter tendencies, and smartwatches are no exception. One of the reasons this happens is the intense competition between online casinos, which also bring no deposit bonuses and other attractive offers to the table.

Custom Gaming Bands

The Apple Watch 3 will supposedly support modular “smart bands” that come with their own unique features. There aren’t any other details on what these features are, but there will likely be some great options for Apple Watch gamers. For instance, what if one of these watches improved battery life or added additional storage to your Apple Watch? Both of those things are great options for someone who uses their Apple Watch to play games.

We Will Know Very Soon

The Apple Watch 3 will likely launch sometime this year, and it wouldn’t be surprising if it launched alongside the new iPhone. Those normally launch in September, so that’s probably when we can all expect to see the Apple Watch 3 and what it offers to gamers.

Ericsson sues Wiko for infringement of patents essential for 2G, 3G & 4G cellular technology

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Ericsson has sued smartphone maker Wiko, in the regional courts of Düsseldorf and Mannheim in Germany, for infringement of patents essential for 2G, 3G and 4G cellular technology, as well as implementation patents.

Wiko has been infringing Ericsson’s intellectual property rights for six years without any license or compensation. Ericsson has tried to establish a fair, reasonable, and non-discriminatory license agreement (PDF) with Wiko since May 2013, but has not succeeded. As a last resort, Ericsson has decided to exercise its legal rights to enforce its patents against Wiko’s infringing products.

According to Gustav Brismark, Chief Intellectual Property Officer at Ericsson: “Global sharing of technology and open standards are the force behind the smartphone revolution and have allowed new entrants, such as Wiko, to quickly build successful businesses. This ICT eco-system only works, however, if all market players respect the basic rules of FRAND licensing. It is unfair for Wiko to benefit from our substantial R&D investment without paying a reasonable license fee for our patented technology.

“Our ambition has always been to reach a mutually fair and reasonable license agreement with Wiko, just as we do with all of our licensees.”

Ericsson has one of the industry’s strongest intellectual property portfolios, which includes more than 42,000 granted patents worldwide. Ericsson’s patent portfolio covers 2G, 3G and 4G/LTE technologies, and the company plays a key role in the global organizations that are developing standards for 5G technologies.

Tencent, Amazon & Access Technology Ventures Invest $300 Million into the Essential Phone

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Access Technology Ventures, Redpoint Ventures, Tencent Holdings Ltd., Altimeter Capital, Vy Capital and Amazon Inc.’s Alexa Fund have invested $300 million into Essential Products Inc., the smartphone maker founded by Andy Rubin, the creator of Android.

Access led the round with $100m and will join the company’s board of directors. Access’s portfolio includes leading technology companies including Amazon, Alibaba, Facebook, Snapchat, Spotify, Square, Rocket Internet, Zalando, Digital Ocean, Opendoor, and Yelp.

“We are thrilled to work with Andy, one of the preeminent mobile entrepreneurs in the world. His experience, industry knowledge and proven ability to innovate, will help Essential as it develops a complete hardware-software ecosystem that puts users first,” said Pueo Keffer, Managing Director, Access Technology Ventures. “There is consistent demand in the mobile industry for new and enhanced technology which Essential is uniquely positioned to attract.” The investment is consistent with Access’s mandate to invest in and help build foundational companies that touch millions of customers across the consumer and enterprise technology ecosystems.

Today’s investment brings Essential’s total capital raised to $330 million as the creator claims the Essential PH-1 smartphone is set for mass production of the  Essential PH-1 which was unveiled in May and could hit the market soon. The investment from Amazon will help in the distribution of the PH-1 Essential smartphone, a $700 phone with a titanium body and a Ceramic back. The Phone comes with a Corning Gorilla Glass 5 cover glass and is 141.5mm high, 71.1mm wide and 7.8mm thick and weighs 185 grams.

Hands on: Nokia 5 is surprisingly much better than the Flagship Nokia 6, here’s why

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During the Kenyan re-launch of the Nokia brand by HMD, I got the privilege of getting some hands on time with the entire portfolio of new phones. Naturally, I spent more time with the Nokia 5 and 6 since they are the crown jewel of the company.


As I worked my way from the Nokia 3 then the 5 and lastly the 6, I realized something quite intriguing, but before I reveal my findings, let’s first run down the specs to create a foundation.

  Nokia 5 Nokia 6
Screen 5.2 inches 5.5 inches
Resolution 720p HD 1080p Full HD
CPU Snapdragon 430 Snapdragon 430
GPU Adreno 505 Adreno 505
RAM 2GB 3GB/4GB
Storage 16GB 32GB/64GB
Rear Camera 13MP

f/2.0

1.12µm pixel size

16MP

f/2.0

1.0µm pixel size

Front camera 8MP 8MP
Battery 3000mAh 3000mAh

 

As you can see, the Nokia 6 has an edge over the Nokia 5 in its specifications. The 6 comes with a bigger display which has more resolution, more pixels in the camera and more RAM; so how exactly can the 5 be better?

Well, the CPU, GPU and battery is the same on both devices; however, since the Nokia 5 has fewer pixels to push on its display, it translates to a battery life that is much longer than that of the six. In fact, gsmarena did a battery test endurance of their own and the results speak for themselves.

The lower resolution of the Nokia 5 also makes it utilize only a small chunk of the graphics processor (GPU), the bulk of its power is left for games and other graphics intensive applications. In other words, the Nokia 5 is much smoother in gaming than the Nokia 6, loading times and frames are faster too.

Finally, at the launch, I took pictures with both phones. It was at night so low light photography was the main agenda. Apparently, the Nokia 5 has better color representation than the flagship 6. Also, if objects are moving, the flagship Nokia 6 produced blurry images due to longer exposure times, while the 5 made crisp snaps. One of the reasons for this difference in low light photography is the size of the pixels. The 5 has larger pixels than those of the 6; that is, 1.12µm vs 1.0µm respectively. More pixels equals to more light getting in hence better photos in dim conditions.

Lastly, the Nokia 5 comes at KES 5,000 ($50) lower than the price of the 6 (KES 19,999/$199 versus KES 24,999/$249). So there you have it; the decision boils down to your preferences. If you want a bigger display, more resolution on it, and more RAM then go to the Nokia 6 flagship otherwise, if you want more battery life, better camera, better gaming performance, a more compact one handed phone and still save KES 5,000 ($50), then the Nokia 5 is the best bet.

Infinix Smart full specifications and price

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Infinix Smart marks the return of the brand to entry level smartphone, despite its low cost and specs, the phone still packs amazing audio features thanks to Dirac Stereo Widening technology that contains 2 front facing stereo speakers and a 2 day long battery life.

  Infinix Smart
Display 5.0 inch

IPS

HD resolution

297 pixels per inch

Internet 2G,3G, NO 4G
Camera Rear 8MP  Dual  LED flash

Front 2MP

OS Android 7.0 Marshmallow + XOS 2.2
CPU 1.3 GHZ Quad core,

Mediatek 6580

GPU Mali 400 GPU
RAM 1GB RAM
Storage 64 (Expandable up to 128GB)
Battery 3060mAh
Body 144.9*71.9*8.35mm

Plastic body

145g weight

Colours Gold, black , white, green, blue and red
Special features ·         Dirac Stereo widening technology

·         2 day battery life

·         Dual SIM + SD card slot (3 total slots)

PRICE KES 7,999 at Jumia

 

 

It’s official: Infinix Smart is unveiled, has dual front speakers and 2 day battery life

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Back when Infinix came into Africa, it established itself as a budget entry level brand. It’s hot series offered affordable 5 inch smartphones that sold like hot cakes. Everywhere you looked, especially in urban areas and amongst campus students, you were bound to find an Infinix Hot series.

The company has decided to return to its roots with a new smartphone to mark the transition. Meet the Infinix Smart, a smartphone with entry level specs but still being able to maintain high standards for the features that matter the most. These signature attributes include a 2 day long battery life thanks to a 3060mAh pack.

Even better, the Smart maintains the really great speakers found on infinix gadgets, this time the bar has been raised higher by incorporation of Dirac Stereo Widening technology. This tech involves 2 front facing speakers that give out realistic stereo sound. This is a feature that you won’t find on any other budget devices from popular manufacturers. It will be interesting to see how it competes with the music oriented Boom series from its sister company Tecno. Finally, we have the latest Android version 7 Nougat running under the XOS 2.2 interface. We hope that the company will not turn of the split screen multitasking feature due to the small 1GB RAM available. We believe that amount of RAM can still do some slight multitasking.

The rest of the specs remain modest, as expected, to keep the cost down. They include a 5.0 inch IPS HD screen, quad core Mediatek 6580, 8MP rear camera with dual LED flash and 2MP front facing shooter. The storage is set to 16GB but it is expandable up to 32GB. Refilling the battery is done via a standard USB 2.0 port with no fast charging technology mentioned. A 3.5 mm head phone jack is present as well for wired audio. This entire tech is held in a small 8.3mm thin body. You can get the full specifications over here.

The phone is already present for purchase at Jumia Kenya and is selling for 7,999. It is available in colors that appeal to the young and vibrant customers, they include black, red, green , blue, gold and white.

Huawei Mobile launches the P10 Lite in the Kenyan market

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Huawei Mobile Kenya has launched the P10 Lite in the Kenyan market at a recommended market price of ksh 34,999 across the country.

The new dual Sim P10 Lite comes with a high performance Kirin 658 Chipset; 4GB RAM and EMUI 5.0 processor and has a 12MP rear and 8MP front facing camera to keep in line with the P Series reputation for quality photography, inventive technology and precise workmanship.

The P10 Lite comes in a range of color variants is smaller but more sophisticated than its predecessors the P10 and P10 Plus.

Speaking on the new P10 Lite, Huawei Mobile Kenya Country Director Derek Du said the introduction of the new P series phone was out of extensive market research in line with Huawei’s global strategy to manufacture products that integrate humanity and technology.

“Our products are geared at creating a worthwhile and unique experience for our customers seamlessly incorporating the latest technology and human elements to provide relevant solutions for our smartphone users in the market.” said Mr. Du

The phone boasts the latest fast charging technology with a 3000mAh battery capacity that takes the phone about 100 minutes to fully charge and provides 2 days of uninterrupted usage of the phone.

OPPO to unveil a limited black edition of its OPPO F3 dual selfie camera phone in Kenya

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OPPO Mobile Kenya will in mid-July unveil a limited black edition of its OPPO F3 dual selfie camera phone.

The new version which will be available at authorized resellers comes with a pre-installed screen protector, jelly case, fingerprint reader, a 16 megapixel front camera and a two years official warranty for added value and protection.

“The matte black colour is in response to our users varied lifestyles and fashion preferences,” said OPPO brand manager Jessie Wu.

“The device’s metallic stylish exterior and dual selfie qualities replicate the premium gold edition that we introduced back in May,” he added.

The F3’s 16MP lens creates high quality selfie plus an 8MP lens for wide angle group selfies. With both lenses working in tandem, users are guaranteed a new level of selfie experience in the modern and social lifestyle.

It also possesses other leading design features including the ColorOS 3.0 operating system, thin body design with 6-inch screen dual-slot card tray and an octa-core processor backed by 4GB RAM. A 4,000mAh built-in battery gives the F3 and endurance of more than 17 hours.

The phone’s price will be announced on the day it’s unveiled.

 

Are Infinix phone models degrading after every new release?

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I have been a long time fan of Infinix, right from the days of the Hot One. I always preferred Infinix products over their rival/sister company Tecno. They are not only more affordable and value packed, but also seem to be more focused on details like camera quality, performance, battery life and more. However, I have been following the company’s smartphone launches and I have realized a worrying pattern.

Zero 2 was a work of art, had a colorful AMOLED display, special Kevlar back casing and a super slim 6.5mm thin body

Infinix phones seem to be getting better after every new release, but after a closer look, you will discover that they are actually degrading. Here’s an example, the Zero 2 was a masterpiece, it had an AMOLED display, a technology that was only reserved for high end flagships at the time. It also had rear casing that was made from Kevlar, a material so tough that it is used for bullet-proof vests. Finally it was 6.5mm thin, effectively making it slimmer than the 6.8mm Samsung Galaxy S6, the top flagship device that year. A friend of mine still uses the Infinix Zero 2 and it still turns heads up to date. With such a premise, I was expecting the successor to be mind blowing, but was it?

Zero 3 lost the AMOLED screen, Kevlar back and is much more bulkier than the prior Zero 2

Infinix Zero 3, launched the following year, was a nasty surprise. The first time I read about it online, I was hoping it was an early prototype. It lost the AMOLED in favor of a dull LCD, the Kevlar got replaced with a cheap plastic cover that was designed to fool the user into thinking that it was a glass casing, the phone also gained weight…a lot! The only major upgrade was the processor (Mediatek Helio X10), bigger battery and a 20.7MP camera. Not a bad phone, I particularly loved the photos taken by its camera but so much was sacrificed from the Zero 2 to keep the price at Ksh 18,000.

This year’s Infinix Zero 4 has a slower processor than last year’s Zero 3. Its a shame.

The Zero 4 wasn’t lucky either, it got an inferior chipset compared to the one in its predecessor (Mediatek 6753 vs 6795 Helio X10), this is unheard of for a flagship device. The Mediatek 6753 is a year older than the Helio X10 that was in the Zero 3. This was a huge deal breaker for power users. Sure there is a much more powerful Zero 4 Plus, but its price is almost double that of the Zero 3 and 4, it targets a whole new audience altogether.

Moving on, the Infinix Note series seems to be the only one that was not compromised, not until they launched the Note 4. You see, the Note 3 had the same processor (Mediatek 6753 ) that is running on the current Zero 4, add that to a bigger battery, decent photos and metallic build, I found myself wondering which among the two was the flagship. The current Zero 4’s only feature that beats the Note 3 (pro) is the camera, yet the latter is more expensive the former.

Covering old internals with new designs might not work for Infinix for long

Now to the Note 4, it has maintained the KSh 14,000 price tag, but what was sacrificed? The processor used is still unclear but some publications state that a the Mediatek 6753 is still running the show, it has been recycled from last year’s Note 3. To make matters worse, this is a chipset that was released back in 2015 yet it is currently being used all across all Infinix 2017 products, from the just released Note 4, Infinix S2 Pro, and Zero 4. It’s sad. Maybe the goal is to unify performance across the board, but, they are better chipsets out there with newer architectures that strike the right balance between performance, battery life and cost.

In conclusion, I hope Infinix gets a better way of making new iterations like other manufactures. Instead of degrading certain features, it would be best to leave them intact while only changing what is being upgraded. Covering up inferior technology with new designs and cameras might not work for them in the long-term. Tecno has figured out better upgrades, they are also utilizing newer chipsets over the aging Mediatek 6753, perhaps Infinix needs to borrow a leaf from their sister company before they are beaten at their home turf.

Rent-to-own solar firm Mobisol acquires Lumeter, a cloud software firm to grow its market share

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Mobisol, German-based rent-to-own solar home and business systems and one of Africa’s largest rent-to-own solar service provider has acquired Lumeter, a pioneer pay-as-you-go (PAYG) software firm for the off-grid solar industry to build new generations smart meters for its solar systems and mini-grid solutions.

“While pay-as-you-go software pioneers like Lumeter and Angaza Design have very successfully paved the way to meet consumer needs, we will now be able to take this approach to a new level, offering opportunities to manufacturers and distributors on a larger scale” said Stefan Zelazny, Chief Innovation Officer at Mobisol. “We are able to provide a hardware agnostic software suite that makes major consumer and commercial implementations possible. We see the Lumeter acquisition as a key step in our plan to expand the pay-as-you-go market for Mobisol, its off-grid partners and other technologies beyond solar.”

Lumeter Networks has developed an affordable pre-paid off-grid electricity meter and cloud accounting software for renewable energy providers who are servicing the poorest populations in developing countries. LuMeters have a payment mechanism similar to a pre-paid cell phone system, where customers can use their cell phone’s text message service (SMS) to buy electricity credit.The deal gives Mobisol the ability to offer the most complete solution, including hardware, software and operational expertise, for off-grid solar pay-as-you-go power for large consumer uses as well as commercial systems (up to 600Wp). In addition, the acquisition achieves short-term cost savings as well other long-term strategic opportunities for growth and new revenue opportunities.

Following this acquisition, the Mobisol platform now supports more than 500,000 people globally with access to clean, reliable and affordable power.

Mitra Ardron, founder of Lumeter adds: “I am glad to see Lumeter’s technology developed further with Mobisol. By bringing together the customers, hardware, and back end solutions of the two leading companies in PAYG will bring advantages to all of our partners.“

Mobisol has installed nearly 10 megawatts of capacity in Tanzania, Rwanda and Kenya, providing clean and reliable electricity to households and small businesses in low-income communities. In this way, the company enables rural families and business owners to power a range of appliances, such as televisions, stereos and refrigerators to improve their standard of living and earn incremental income through solar-powered businesses, such as mobile phone charging stations, barber salons, movie theaters and more.

Mobisol estimates that its software saves up to 80% in daily operations. Through a comprehensive feature set, like automated invoicing, remote monitoring to reinforce payments, complete control of the supply chain from production facilities to sales outlets, and automated credit checks, overhead is reduced and digitalization of operations possible.

OPPO Mobile Targets Kenya Expansion Lifted By Global Growth

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Following the launch of its OPPO F3 smartphone in the local market, OPPO Kenya has signed up online and off-line partnerships to scale up its operations in Kenya to meet the growing smartphone demand in the Kenyan market.

It’s first ever move to boost its market share in Kenya was a recent partnership with online retailer JUMIA, followed up by physical distributors countrywide who are pushing the Kshs. 32,990 OPPO F3 and gearing up for launch of several OPPO devices in the market this year.

Speaking on its Kenyan investments, OPPO Kenya CEO Mr. Andrew Peng said the Kenyan market will strategically be among the most important African markets foreseeable in driving its camera-phone revolution.

“Kenya has proved to be one of our African strongholds, having a population that finds the selfie feature impressive which is a success niche for OPPO. We are looking forward to satisfy the audience by introducing products that will inspire and excite,” said Mr. Peng.

Mr. Peng said OPPO is now confident that these partnerships will increase sales of its products and provide a secure and convenient way for consumers to shop both online and offline.

”Kenya’s mobile phone market offers a favorable competitive landscape. We believe that these partnerships will offer our users a thrilling shopping experience of our products at the most competitive prices,’’ he added.

According to global marketing intelligence firm IDC, OPPO shipped 18.9 million units in 2017 opening quarter and had an 18.2 per cent global market share, up from 15.3 per cent a year earlier. OPPO’s growth in Q1 was stronger outside its main center with nearly a quarter of shipments from international markets.

Over the last decade, OPPO has focused on manufacturing camera phones, while producing mobile photography technology breakthroughs.

“Part of our investment in Kenya is a dedicated indigenous human resource in marketing, R&D, customer service, brand management and internet operations that makes up for our 15,000 strong global employee ecosystem,” said Mr. Peng.

OPPO F3 launched in Kenya

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Today saw the unveiling of the new OPPO F3 into the Kenyan market; the phone has been making headlines in other regions where it has already been launched. OPPO has been a trend setter in the selfie photography sector, it invented the beauty mode that has now become standard with all leading manufacturers among other milestones. With the new OPPO F3, the company looks to cement their self-proclaimed title of ‘Selfie Expert’  by introducing Dual Selfie cameras.

It’s a first for OPPO and none of the other top 4 global manufacturers have done this so far. The phone promises to get rid of the selfie stick by offering ultra-wide 120 degrees selfie pictures with an 8MP sensor that covers double the angle that other group selfie cameras do. In case you are taking a solo selfie, there is a 16MP shooter at your disposal. The 16+8MP dual camera combo enables you to take bokeh effect photos too. Round back is a 13MP camera.

OPPO F3 comes with a 5.5 inch Full HD IPS with the latest Gorilla Glass 5 protection. It is powered by an octa core Mediatek 6750T, coupled with a huge 4GB of RAM that will make multi-tasking a breeze. The same generosity extends to the 64 GB base storage version expandable to 128GB. Running the show is Android 6.0 Marshmallow with ColorOS 3.0 interface on top of it. A 3200mAh battery comes built-in but still manages to keep the dimensions at only 7.3mm thin. The whole package is wrapped in an attractive metallic body which houses the fingerprint scanner up front.

Pre-orders for the phone are starting from 16th May to 23rd May when the delivering with be honored. OPPO promised to give away gift hampers to all the customers that will pre-order. To make your order, visit OPPO’s website or any of their authorized dealers. The phone retails at KES 32,990.

 

Huawei regains smartphone lead in China as top three take a 50% share-Report

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After spending two quarters in second place, Huawei moved past Oppo to recapture the lead in China’s smartphone market in Q1 2017. The Chinese smartphone giant, which launched the P10 and P10 Plus during MWC, shipped close to 21 million units to secure an 18% market share.

Despite strong annual growth of 55%, Oppo fell to second place with shipments of just under 20 million units. Third-placed Vivo had the lowest annual growth of the top three, capturing a 15% share with its shipment of 17 million units.

“China’s smartphone market continues to grow, with shipments increasing by over 9% year on year this quarter,” said Canalys Research Analyst Lucio Chen. “But there is a clear indication that the market is consolidating. The top three vendors are pulling away at the head of the market, accounting for more than 50% of shipments for the first time this quarter. In the corresponding quarter a year ago, Huawei led with Vivo second and Oppo fourth, together accounting for 42% of the market. Xiaomi took third place but has since fallen to fifth behind Apple, shipping just over 9 million units in Q1 2017.”

Xiaomi faces increasing pressure from Huawei’s online efforts with Honor, as well as Oppo and Vivo, whose marketing activities have been taking attention away from Xiaomi. “To grow this year, Xiaomi will need to quickly switch from being a value-for-money vendor to become an aspirational brand,” said Canalys Research Analyst Mo Jia. “Xiaomi’s desire to move up the value chain in China will be an uphill struggle, considering Oppo and Vivo’s lead and Huawei’s plans to increase investment in its offline channel in 2017.”

Canalys estimates 114 million smartphones shipped in China in the quarter ending 31 March 2017

New Technology To Help People With Hearing Loss

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There is nothing better than using technology to better people’s lives and particularly health. Currently, 360 million people worldwide lack some or all of their ability to hear, technological interventions have come a long way although yet to be perfect. The problem with hearing aids is that certain frequencies as well as regular hearing cannot be translated. Many users have complained that hearing aids are uncomfortable or are simply not fit for them. However, scientists might be transforming this changes to better techniques that will better hearing interventions.

The last major innovation in hearing technology occurred in 1985 but there is current need to improve the quality for millions who have been waiting. Normal hearing is more simple than it may appear. Sound waves move through the ear canal and pulse the ear drum, which then moves the tiny bones inside the middle ear. They in turn tap the cochlea, a snail shell–looking structure that contains thousands of delicate hairs and fluid. The cochlea converts mechanical signals into electrical ones, which it then passes to the auditory nerve, which transmits it to the brain for processing.

The problem comes in when the ear presents an engineering problem. If any of the ear parts are disturbed then someone may lose some or all of her hearing. People who might lose their hearing later in life either due to toxin or loud noise would simply need a hearing aid to amplify sounds. Currently the device that has been used is known as the cochlear implant which was approved in 1985 but as time has gone by hearing aids have become uncomfortable and of little benefit. This is why more sophisticated devices are been made as the first step to better hearing.

A cochlear implant will now be an optical device instead of an electric one. Instead of turning sound into electrical signals to be transmitted to the brain, as current cochlear implants do, this technique turns sound into light. Micro-LEDs flash onto genetically altered neurons, which send the information to the brain. Researchers will work to target cells that cause hearing loss and work on genetic mutation to avoid hearing loss.

 

Is This The Best Television In Town?

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If you’re looking at buying a new TV in 2017, you’re likely to get hit with a barrage of buzzwords: 4K, OLED, QLED, HDR… it’s enough to make your head spin. All you’re looking for is a good TV, at a great price, and you don’t want to waste money on things you don’t need. Totally reasonable.

When you’re checking out the TVs though, don’t make the mistake of thinking “I don’t need a High Dynamic Range (HDR) TV.” Even if you haven’t the foggiest idea what that means, and have no intention of watching HDR content, buying an HDR TV is the right move. Here’s why.

  1. Everything you watch looks better.

Older, pre-HDR TVs (sometimes now called SDR, or standard dynamic range) were required to hit certain minimum requirements for the light and color they could produce. But despite the “HDR” buzzword just permeating the market, TVs (by the logic of being capable of more than minimum requirements) have been capable of “higher” dynamic range for a long time.

This means pretty much any HDR TV out there cannot only still play all of the non-HDR content you’re watching, but it can play it with more control, precision, and accuracy than many older TVs. With its standards set higher (to play HDR content), playing SDR content is a piece of cake for these TVs. Basically, most non-HDR content is going to look better, or at least more accurate, on an HDR TV.

  1. Better Wi-Fi streaming

This is a similar argument to the first, but it’s worth hearing out. While knowing the exact Wi-Fi capabilities of every TV in the store is a discouraging task, you can bet that 99% of HDR TVs are going to stream regular content Netflix, or whatever without missing a beat. Because they’re spec’d to be able to handle HDR streaming—which means 4K resolution content with an extra layer of data, to boot—they generally handle less demanding streaming tasks with aplomb.

  1. it’s a catch-all for the latest tech.

HDR has been defined as “better pixels,” and that means a lot more than just “brighter, more colourful TVs.” The HDR standard includes 4K resolution as a spec, and also means any HDR TV is outfitted with the latest HDMI inputs and audio pass-thru standards.

This means you don’t really have to choose between “HDR,” “4K,” or any of the latest TV “buzzwords.” HDR TVs encompass and deliver all of those upgrades by default.

  1. Future-proof now, worry about it later.

HDR content is coming down the pipeline very quickly. There’s already a decent amount of HDR content on streaming services, and a bunch of HDR Blue-rays, to boot. While broadcast HDR content isn’t here yet, it’s rapidly developing as well.

That means even if you don’t have any way to watch HDR content, it’s eventually going to be so ubiquitous that you won’t have to try very hard to find and enjoy it. What’s more, it means buying a non-HDR TV is planning for some level of obsolescence.

  1. You’re not paying any more for it.

TVs with HDR compatibility have become mainstream very quickly—even the entry-level sets from big players like Samsung, LG, Sony, and Hisense are HDR-compatible this year.

Rather than an additional luxury, HDR compatibility is already so widespread that it hardly needs advertising. Suffice to say that buying an HDR TV means buying all the R&D that’s gone into making it capable of hitting the latest benchmarks.

In short, even if a TV is a “sub-par” HDR TV, they’re almost all home runs where standard content playback is concerned.

The OPPO A57 is launching this month in Kenya, here is what to anticipate.

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The OPPO A57 was launched in China in November 2016 before making its way to India in February this year. The company already made headlines with its selfie-centric FIs and FI Plus which featured a 16-megapixel selfie camera and it looks like the company wants to continue with the same trend with the launch of the A57.

So what should Kenyan consumers expect? First, the OPPO A57 is clad in a metal unibody design and its home button also doubles as a fingerprint sensor. Available in two color options of gold and rose gold, the phone features a sleek back finish with curved edges.

The OPPO A57 Review,camera,specs.

The Oppo A57 is powered by 1.4GHz octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 435 processor and it comes with 3GB of RAM. The phone packs 32GB of internal storage that can be expanded up to 256GB via a micro SD card. As far as the cameras are concerned, the Oppo A57 packs a 13-megapixel primary camera on the rear and a 16-megapixel front shooter for selfies.
The Oppo A57 runs Android 6.0 and is powered by a 2900mAh non removable battery. It measures 149.10 x 72.90 x 7.65 (height x width x thickness) and weigh 147.00 grams.The Oppo A57 features a non-removable 2900mAh battery which easily lasted us a full day on a single charge. Our HD video loop test gave us a runtime of 12 hours and 7 minutes, which is very good. There’s no fast charging, so the battery does a take a fair while to fully charge.

The Oppo A57 is a dual SIM (GSM and GSM) smartphone that accepts Nano-SIM and Nano-SIM. Connectivity options include Wi-Fi, GPS, Bluetooth, USB OTG, FM, 3G and 4G (with support for Band 40 used by some LTE networks in India). Sensors on the phone include Compass Magnetometer, Proximity sensor, Accelerometer, Ambient light sensor and Gyroscope.

 

 

Samsung woos Galaxy S8 buyers with accessories

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Following the global release of the new Galaxy S8, Samsung Electronics East Africa has opened up pre-orders of the device ahead of its arrival in Kenya forecasted for May.

Pre-orders in Kenya for the device open on April 10, and the first 2,000 customers will get the Level Box Slim, a portable Bluetooth speaker that was launched at the Consumer Electronics Show earlier in the year. The portable speaker is light- weight at just 236 grams and has a powerful 8-watt audio. With a microphone, noise reduction and echo cancellation features, the speaker can be used to take calls. The portable speaker also has an *IPx7 water resistance rating and can additionally be used as a power bank when you plug in your device via USB cable.

Globally, the phone will go on sale on April 21 in select markets.

Making the announcement, Jung Hyun Park, the Vice President and Managing Director Samsung Electronics East Africa said the Galaxy S8 will be available starting on May 5th in Kenya, and will be offered in a rich colour palette including Midnight Black, Orchid Gray, and Maple Gold.

“We continue to evolve our smartphone portfolio to provide our customers with devices that enhance their lives and open the possibilities to new experiences. The Galaxy S8 is our testament to regaining your trust by redefining what’s possible in safety and marks a new milestone in Samsung’s smartphone legacy,” added Mr. Park.

This Stove Will Recharge Your Gadgets

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Smart companies have noted the one way to lure a client is by making sure that they can still connect to the WIFI or at the very least recharge their gadgets. This why there is a new camping stove that you can cook with while also charging your gadgets so you never miss out on posting your memories online.  The BioLite Campstove2  has been there for a while especially for campers who know these particular products. The award-winning Camp stove has an updated LED dashboard that’s for better control and feedback.

The heat produced from cooking actually turns into electricity and just like that you can recharge your phone, no matter where you are camping. It can run the internal fan that turbocharges your fire and via the built-in USB outlet, power an assortment of optional LED lights. It can even recharge your phone, no matter how deep into the woods you’ve gone. It may seem a bit obscene to have a stove that can charge your phone while you can simply invest in a power bank but then again it is highly likely that you will carry a stove for cooking for an outdoor activity.

The stove is a small gadget to carry considering you will use it cook your food for survival’s sake. Just like every gadget, it has a battery but one that can apparently last a while as its yet to be tested by more people.  It is equipped with three columns of LED lights to gauge your fire’s strength, fan speed, and available battery life. The module nests neatly within the stove body for easy transportation and storage. Of course charging your phone while the fire is on may seem absurd, but the process is very simple.

When you’re ready to cook, the fire is easy to get started. Simply connect the power module to the stove body and fill the combustion chamber with wood, twigs or sticks and simply ignite. Shortly after, a four-speed fan forces air into the combustion chamber through holes that encourage more efficient burning, up to 95 percent less smoke emissions compared with a regular wood fire. The question is, do you want your heating appliance to be your gadget recharger?

TECNO launches the Camon CX across various markets in Africa

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TECNO Mobile, has launched the much anticipated Camon CX  across 41 markets in Africa, Middle East and Latin America, including in Kenya and Nigeria.

Introduced in 2015, the Camon series has sold over 5 million handsets globally giving the firm over 25 per cent of market share in Sub-Saharan African countries since 2014.

Sales in the African market reached 25 million devices in 2015, including 9 million smart phones. Globally, it sold 60 million devices last year while the sale of smart phones manufactured by the company increased by 40 per cent.

Nigeria, Tanzania, Egypt, Kenya and Cameroon are among the firm top markets in Africa.

TECNO Camon CX uses a smart image sensor composed of 16 mega pixel sensors in the front camera, coupled with unique ‘4 in 1’ technology.

Each pixel sensor detects light, captures individual images and converts the information into signals before forming the final image, resulting in selfies that are 30 per cent brighter, capturing special moments perfectly.

The phone’s dual-front flash feature allows Camon CX users to take amazing quality selfies in dark environments where previous artificial light would blur and distort images.

It also has a customised ring flash, light speed charge and a 5.5 inch FHD (Full High Definition) screen, all allowing for ease of use on the go as well as the best quality images.

Below are the phone’s key specs

SPEC Camon CX
Basic
Size Design Size 152.8*75.8*5.6mm (visual)
Thickest Size 152.8*75.8*7.65mm
Weight 155g
Color Champagne gold/Sky gray/Elegant Blue/Rose Gold
CPU MT6750T 8 corte
GPU ARM Mali-T860 MP2 650MHz
processor type 8x Cortex-A53, up to 1.5GHz
Frequency Range 1.5GHz
Camera
Sensor IMX298
Back Cmaera 16M AF
Aperture f/2.0
Optic angle 77degree
Lens type CMOS
Flash type Four Flash/Circle Flashlight
Front camera 16.0M FF
Optic angle 78.4degree
Screen
Size 5.5inch
Material TFT
PPI 404
Image resolution FHD
Network
SIM card Dual SIM(micro+nano)+ T Card(support to 128GB)
Main Cellular GSM/WCDMA/FDD
Data service GPRS/EDGE/WCDMA/LTE
Frequency band GSM:850\900\1800\1900
WCDMA:900\2100
FDD:Band 3\7\20\28A\40
GPS support
Blue tooth support BT 4.0
WIFI support
Battery Battery Storage 3200mAh polymer lithium battery
Music format mp3
Video format mp4
Picture format jpg png bmp gif
Video format 3gp mp4
Video player 3gp
Memory
Storage 2GB
EMMC 16GB
Sensor
Gravity sensor support
Distancce sensor support
Electronic compass support
Gyroscope software support
Mic support
PIN
Earphone Jack 3.5mm headphone jack
Charge jack support Micro 5pin USB
OTG function support
Accessory
Charging plug 5V2A
USB link support

Qualcomm 205 mobile platform brings 4G connectivity to entry-level feature phones

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Qualcomm has introduced the Qualcomm® 205 Mobile Platform, designed to bring 4G LTE connectivity and 4G services to entry-level feature phones.

The Qualcomm 205 Mobile Platformwill allow feature phones to access Wi-Fi like their smartphone counterparts.

“Qualcomm Technologies is committed to the migration of users and networks from 2G, 2.5G, and 3G to 4G,” said Kedar Kondap, vice president, product management, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. “Feature phones are a lifeline in many emerging countries and the Qualcomm 205 Mobile Platform allows us to bring 4G connectivity and services to the masses with devices at price points never seen before.”

The Qualcomm 205 Mobile Platform is designed for emerging regions, such as those in India, Latin America, and Southeast Asia to help operators in this regions take advantage of robust LTE network rollouts to support consumers use advanced LTE data services such as Voice over LTE (VoLTE) and Voice over Wi-Fi (VoWi-Fi).

Africa was not mentioned but it has a huge population of users who will benefit from this technology.

The Qualcomm 205 SoC features include LTE Cat 4 modem with up to 150 Mbps download, 50 Mbps upload; support for 4G, 3G and 2G networks; support for 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.1, ANT+, FM radio.

The Qualcomm 205 SoC also features Dual Core CPU at 1.1 GHz; Qualcomm® Adreno™ GPU;3 megapixel rear camera, 0.3MP selfie camera, VGA display at 480p 60 frames per-second; HD Video streaming and support for Linux based OS; Support for dual SIMs.

The Qualcomm 205 Mobile Platform is available today with devices expected to reach consumers in Q2 2017.