Tag Archive | "phone"

New phone camera sensor promises dramatically improved low light photos

Vivo X50 Pro camera module

  • Vivo is working on an RGBW camera sensor that could lead to huge improvements in low-light photography.
  • It’s reportedly twice as efficient as a conventional sensor.
  • Phones using the sensor are already in the works, and expected to arrive in 2021.

It’s still challenging to take a good low light photo with your phone, but Vivo might just fix that in the near future. The Chinese brand has unveiled plans for an RGBW (red, green, blue, white) camera sensor that excels in dim lighting conditions.

The design is billed as the first sensor with both an RGBW matrix and a color filter array, and reportedly boasts a 160% higher photosensitive efficiency than a conventional RGGB (red, green, green, blue) unit — you’ll take “precise and clear” photos in low light, Vivo claimed. It’s even 60% more efficient than the RYYB (red, yellow, yellow, blue) sensors in phones like the Huawei P40 Pro, according to Vivo, and isn’t prone to their color casting issues.

Devices using the new sensor are in the works, and are expected to reach stores in 2021. Vivo said it had been “discreetly” working on the sensor for about a year.

Read more: Tips to take your photography to the next level

This isn’t the first time phone makers have used RGBW sensors. Huawei used one in the P8 from 2015 to reduce low light noise and improve brightness in high contrast situations. We generally liked its output, although it had problems with brightly-lit backgrounds as well as color saturation in dark scenes. That was five years ago, however, and we’d expect Vivo to benefit from technical progress since then.

There are no guarantees this will lead to the stellar output the company has promised. However, Vivo has developed a knack for low light photography in devices like the X50 Pro, even without relying on a night mode. The main concern is simply that the competition isn’t standing still. Samsung is rumored to be creating a new version of its 108MP sensor, and we’d expect sensor experts like Sony to deliver updates in 2021 as well. Still, this suggests Vivo won’t be left behind.

Android Authority

Posted in Android NewsComments (0)

The best phone charging accessories: A buyer’s guide

Most smartphones will comfortably last an entire day, if not longer, with moderate use. “Moderate” is the keyword. If you do things like gaming, GPS navigation, or using the camera for a long time, you’ll find your phone’s battery draining quite quickly. Luckily, there are a lot of charging accessories you can get to ensure that the panic when faced with a dying phone doesn’t set in. This is our ultimate guide for the best charging accessories you’ll need!

Looking for even more phone accessories? We have a guide for that!

OEM vs third-party charging accessories

OnePlus 7T Pro charging warp charge

Every phone comes with a charger in the box, even though that may change quite soon. Unfortunately, losing or forgetting chargers, tearing cables, or simply having a charger that no longer works are a part and parcel of owning a smartphone.

Third-party accessory makers offer a slew of products that usually bring more to the table, and often at comparatively cheaper prices. On the surface, picking the best phone charging accessories sounds easy. There are thousands of products available and all you need to do is find the right fit. However, having so many options causes the problem.

It’s important to do your homework regardless of what you buy, but that’s even more so with a charger. A bad charger or cable can cause irreparable damage to the phone, and a faulty power bank in your pocket might hurt you as well. There are a lot of excellent choices, but it’s crucial to do the research properly.

Pros and cons of first-party charging accessories

The biggest advantage with a first-party accessory is the fact that these are made with a particular phone or range of phones in mind. In most cases, you will get the best experience with the charger you get in the box. So, while the Samsung wireless charger works with other devices, it is the best option if you want to enjoy the fastest wireless charging speeds with Samsung flagships.

On the other hand, a distinct lack of variety is the major issue with first-party accessories. Only Samsung has really stepped up its game when it comes to charging accessories with excellent wireless chargers and power banks. But even it falls well short when compared to third-party accessory makers.

Pros and cons of third-party charging accessories

Third-party accessories have the leg up in a lot of aspects since they often fill existing gaps in the accessories market. Third-party companies dominate in categories like multi-port chargers, car charging accessories, and charging cables. These options are generally more affordable too.

The generic nature of these products may not always provide the best results when it comes to charging speeds. The much bigger issue though is sorting through the hundreds of options available, with many coming from companies that aren’t well known, or even unheard of. Buying a bad charger, cable, or power bank could have severe consequences, including potentially completely damaging your device. Some accessories may not work with your phone either, so it’s definitely important to do your research first.

Things to look for when buying third-party accessories

Before you buy an accessory from a brand you’re not familiar with, just be sure to check for the following:

  • Look through owner-submitted reviews on sites like Amazon. What are people saying? Do these short reviews look legit? For example, it’s possible they are paid or sponsored submissions if they are super vague and poorly written.
  • Look for oddities like if the product reviews aren’t actually for the product! This surprisingly happens a lot with 3rd party charging accessories from obscure brands. A 5-star review of a foot massager is not what I want to see when trying to buy a portable power bank.
  • Familiarize yourself with the return policy of the product. While a lot of products have return periods, some might only have a replacement window, in which case a refund won’t be possible.
  • We’re here to help! Android Authority has literally hundreds of guides to help you navigate through the convoluted world of phone and other device charging accessories. From multi-port wall chargers to numerous power bank categories, we have it all.

The charging accessories Android Authority recommends

OnePlus 8 Pro on wireless charger from side

Most charging accessories work with a lot of smartphones. However, with different charging speeds, capacities, and features available with different phones, compatibility is something you must look into. For example, while you can charge Pixel 4 with many Qi wireless chargers, you will also get fast charging speeds with the Pixel Stand.

We’ll be looking at the best charging accessories you can get for some of the newest phones available. Something to keep in mind though is that while we mention specific smartphones here, these may be great options for other phones as well. But if you own one of these phones, rest assured the options here will give you the fastest speeds and can be safely used with your device.

Samsung Galaxy Note 20 series

Samsung Galaxy S20 series

Pixel 4 series

Pixel 4a

The best third-party wall chargersbest charging accessories - anker wall charger

Credit: Ankit Banerjee / Android Authority

Any phone maker will tell you that the best way to charge your device is by using the first-party charger. That’s definitely true, especially if you want to take advantage of fast charging features, like OnePlus’ Warp charging or OPPO’s ultra-fast VOOC charging.

As long as you do your research, there are plenty of good third-party alternatives though. These will likely be cheaper, may also offer some form of fast-charging capabilities, and can be more portable. Whether you’re looking for a replacement or an extra for travel or to keep in the office, there are many things to consider.

What should you look for?

  • Is the brand trustworthy? A reputable brand is more likely to last through countless charging cycles. We highly recommend Anker, but there are tons of other great brands. We ensure every option on this list balances price, quality, and reputation.
  • What port does it have? Most new third-party chargers come with USB-C ports, and you will likely get the fastest charging possible with these. However, you’ll have a charging cable already. So if you have a USB-A to USB-C/microUSB cable, you’ll need a charger with a USB-A port.
  • How fast is it going to charge? Fast charging is almost a standard feature at this point, even if with varying degrees of capability. It’ll be unlikely for a third-party charger to offer the same speeds as proprietary charging tech like VOOC charging. You’ll have to know whether your phone supports standards like Qualcomm’s Quick Charge and USB-PD (Power Delivery) and find the right charger to make use of this feature.

Our recommendations

Anker Powerport III Pod

If you’re looking for a wall charger for your phone, tablet, Nintendo Switch, or even the laptop, the Anker Powerport III Pod 65W charger can do it all. It comes with the latest version of Anker’s Power IQ tech that ensures fast charging for most smartphones and tablets, including Samsung’s super-fast charging with its latest flagships. It’s also an impressively compact option when compared to most charging bricks.

Ravpower 30W charger

The Ravpower 30W charger is a less powerful, but much cheaper alternative to the Anker 65W charger. This charger also comes with a USB-C port and supports the USB-PD 3.0 fast-charging standard with a compatible device. Ravpower utilizes GaN technology to make a device that’s really small and portable, and also keeps cool.

The best multi-port wall chargerssatechi

Nowadays, just about everything in your home relies on a charger to keep going. From phones and tablets to earbuds and speakers, you’ve probably got more cords than outlets. One of the best ways to save space is with a multi-port USB wall charger.

What should you look for?

  • How fast is it going to charge? You might get a wall charger with 10 ports, but if it takes all day to charge up your device, that will be a problem. The best options should ideally support the fast charging standards of your phone or other portable devices.
  • Does it have the right ports? Older or budget chargers often have less than great port options. There might just be USB type-A instead of USB-C, or there might not be fast charging as mentioned above. Figure out which ports you have on your devices, and check cable and device compatibility.
  • Is the brand trustworthy? This is a point that bears repeating every time we talk about third-party charging accessories. A reputable brand is more likely to last and not cause any damage to the device.
  • What size do you need? You will also have to consider the size. Do you want something that can easily slip inside your pocket or backpack? Or do you want the most charging power encased in a big brick? Are you looking for something that sits on a desk? How long do the charging and plug cables need to be?

Our recommendations

Anker two-port

Anker Atom 2

Sometimes two ports are all you need, and this Anker option shows just what 60W of output can do. It’s equipped with two USB-C PowerDelivery ports that intelligently allocate power to ensure an even charge. Available in white or black, the Anker Power Port Atom relies on GaN to keep the temperature low and the power high. It’s a great travel companion as the prongs fold flat to fit into a bag.

Satechi four-port

usb wall charger satechi

Jumping up to four ports, the Satechi USB wall charger balances between two USB-C options and two USB-A. The two USB-C ports combine for 108W of total charging while the USB-A options add 12W between them. It’s an easy way to recharge all of your devices at once, but be ready for some varied speeds. A convenient LED light indicates when your devices are charging, and a sleek gray finish lends a touch of luxury to this handy USB wall charger.

Further reading: More multi-port USB wall chargers to consider

The best wireless chargers

OnePlus 8 Pro wireless charger back

There are few things as convenient as dropping your phone on a wireless charging pad or placing it on a stand to top it off. The sheer convenience of being able to pick up a phone, answer a call, and plop it back to charge without fiddling with cables can’t be overstated. Luckily, there are a wide variety of wireless charging accessories you can get for your phone.

What to look for when buying a wireless charger?

As is the case with any accessory, there are many factors to consider when buying a wireless charger.

  • What type of charger do you need? Mainly two types of wireless chargers are available now — pads or stands. A pad might be the better option for a nightstand, while a stand will be great on a work desk. You might also have multiple devices that can be charged wirelessly, be another phone, smartwatches, or wireless earbuds. In this case, a dual charging pad or stand is the best way to go.
  • OEM vs third-party? Once again, an OEM wireless charger will often offer the best experience. You will only get OnePlus’ fantastic Warp Charge 30 speeds with the OnePlus charger, and fast wireless charging for the Pixel 4 with the Pixel Stand.
  • How fast does it charge? A standard Qi charging pad may take a really long time to fully charge a device. To get the fastest charging possible, a first-party charger is definitely the better way to go. Some third-party chargers offer some fast charging capabilities, but that’s mostly for Samsung flagships and iPhones.

Our recommendations

Samsung Wireless Charger DUO Pad

Samsung Duo pad dual wireless charging pad

The Samsung Duo pad is as good as it gets with wireless charging pads. As the name suggests, the pad can charge two devices simultaneously. However, the Samsung wireless charger duo pad takes it a step forward by including fast charging support. This means that you can charge compatible Samsung phones at up to 15W, while charging an additional phone or perhaps your wireless earphones on the second pad.

Anker PowerWave II wireless charger

The Anker PowerWave II wireless charger is similar to other affordable wireless charging pad offerings other than one key difference. The pad sits at an angle and lets you view the phone’s display while charging it. It’ll charge the Pixel 4 and LG flagships at 15W. With Samsung hardware, the pad enables fast wireless charging to the tune of 10W. Meanwhile, it is as good as the best wireless chargers available for the iPhone and can top it off at 7.5W.

Further reading: Other wireless phone chargers worth checking out

The best portable power banks you can get

samsung wireless battery charger

Getting at least a full day of use out of your smartphone should be possible with most devices. However, many processor-intensive tasks can drain the battery really quickly, and you might not be able to get to a charger in time. The best solution to ensure that you don’t have to worry about a dying battery while out and about is to pick up a portable battery charger.

What are the best portable chargers?

When it comes to picking the right battery pack, you want to look at a few things:

  • How fast is it going to charge? You might get a power bank with a 50,000Ah battery, but if it takes all day to charge up your device, that’s going to be a problem. The best portable charger ideally should support the fast charging standards in your phone or other portable devices.
  • What capacity do you need? Some of us get the biggest portable charger we can find and don’t worry if it takes up half a bag. But if you need something smaller, there are a lot of great options. That said, we don’t recommend going under 5,000mAh in most cases and think 10,000mAh is the sweet spot for portability.
  • Does it have the right ports for your needs? Older or budget chargers often have less than great port options. There might just be USB type-A instead of USB-C, or there might not be fast charging as mentioned above. Figure out which ports you have on your devices and whether or not the charger that catches your eye fully supports your device.
  • Is the brand trustworthy? A reputable brand is more likely to last through countless charging cycles. We highly recommend Anker and Ravpower, but there are tons of other great brands.
  • What size do you need? You will also have to consider the size. Do you want something that can easily slip inside a purse or backpack? Or do you want the most charging power encased in a big brick of a portable charger?

Our recommendations

RAVPower 15000mAh PD Power Bank

ravpower 15000mAh PD power bank

The RAVPower 15000mAh PD Power Bank is a great compact option. It’s small enough to fit in most pockets and easy to store in your purse or backpack. Despite its small size, it has a great charging capacity. It has 30W total output and can charge two devices at the same time. Plus, the 18W charging input helps the device recharge up to twice as fast as standard portable chargers.

Samsung 2-in-1 Portable Fast Charge Wireless

Samsung wireless charger

Samsung’s 10,000mAh charger is unique in that it includes a wireless charging pad right on top. It’s capable of fast charging a compatible Samsung phone all the way up to 7.5W in wireless mode and 15W when connected via a USB cable. The phone is Qi-compatible which means that you should have no issue using this with other phones as well.

Other portable power banks worth considering:

The best car charging accessories available

anker car charger

Credit: Ankit Banerjee / Android Authority

If you spend a lot of time on the road, choosing from one of the many car chargers available is something you should consider. These things are affordable and come in handy whenever your smartphone runs out of juice. They plug into the power port, or what used to be known as the cigarette lighter port, and come in all shapes and sizes. Check out the best ones below!

Things to consider when buying a car charger

  • How many ports do you need? You’ll find car chargers with a single port to options that come with four or five as well. More may not always be better in this case though. Apart from size and space considerations, the charging speed for individual devices might reduce when many are plugged in at the same time. Two-port options are usually a good idea.
  • What type of ports does it have? Older or budget car chargers often have less than great port options. There might just be USB type-A instead of USB-C, or there might not be fast charging as mentioned above. These also don’t come with a cable, so you might need to buy one for the car, and remember to carry the cable you get with your phone.
  • Do you need more features? Most cars only come with one power port. If you need that port for a car charger and a Bluetooth FM transmitter, you’re out of luck. The good news is that there are a few options that combine both features. Similarly, you’ll also find phone holders that serve double duty as a Qi wireless charger.

Our recommendations

Anker Power iQ charger

Anker Power iQ car charger

The 36W dual-port Anker USB charger is a great option. This charger provides you with two USB-C slots for charging two devices rapidly at the same time. It is a very small and compact car charger, making it perfect for those that don’t want anything bulky in their car. It is compatible with most devices and has a bunch of safety features on board to keep you and your devices safe.

Aukey USB C car charger

Aukey USB C car charger

If you have a device that allows for Power Delivery charging, then this is the car charger for you. This Aukey car charger comes with two different ports, so you can charge two devices at once. The Power Delivery outlet will allow for ultra-fast charging of devices that support it, optimized to deliver 30W of power.

Further reading: The best car chargers you can get

The best charging cables you can get

Google Pixel 3 XL showing USB C and cable stock photo 3

Credit: Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority

A good charger is only one part of the equation when it comes to ensuring that your device is charging as quickly and efficiently as possible. Playing an equally important role is the charging cable. Charging cables might all have the same ports and look similar. However, there are a lot of charging speeds, standards, and capabilities to be aware of.

Things to know

The unfortunate truth is that USB-C is still a mess in 2020, even though it is the current standard. Not every cable is made equal and some can be downright dangerous for your device. It’s gotten much better than what the situation was three or four years ago, but there are things you should look out for.

  • USB-IF: USB-IF (USB Implementers Forum) announced a Certified USB Charger Compliance and Logo Program back in 2016 to offer USB chargers for compliant USB-C devices. Looking for “certified by USB-IF” or the USB-IF logo is one of the ways to check whether a third-party cable is a good choice.
  • USB 2.0/3.0/3.1/Thunderbolt 3: Currently, we have cables that could be compatible with USB 2.0, USB 3.0, and USB 3.1 (Gen 1 and Gen 2), with the version number defining function and speed. USB 3.2 and USB 4 standards were also introduced recently. The oldest, USB 2.0 offers a theoretical transfer speed of up to 480Mbps. 3.0 and 3.1 Gen 1 ups that to 5Gbps and USB 3.1 Gen 2 doubles that. Finally, Thunderbolt 3 is the fastest by far with an impressive theoretical data transfer speed of 40Gbps.
  • Wattage – This gives you an idea of charging speed. USB Power Delivery augments the basic USB charging speeds for up to 100W of output power. The amount of available power is split into different power ratings, which operate at different voltages.

Other factors to consider

  • Is the cable compatible with your charger? Checking compatibility is very important when buying a USB cable. Your charger might have a USB-A port. In that case, that is the type of cable (USB-A to USB-C or USB-A to lightning) you’ll need.
  • Is the device compatible with the cable and charger? The cable may support faster data transfer and charging speeds, but the device you are using may not. Luckily, backwards compatibility isn’t an issue.
  • Are charging cables expensive? Cables that meet higher standards are understandably more expensive. If you are simply looking to charge a smartphone, a USB-C (USB 2.0) cable may be more than enough.
  • How long should the cable be? Cable length is an important factor as well. You may want a longer cable, but this will impact data transfer speeds. However, you might need a cable that long enough to keep your phone within reach.
  • What material is used? Plastic cables will likely be cheaper, but these are prone to tearing if the cable is mishandled too much. A double-braided nylon cable might survive longer.

Our recommendations

Anker cables

anker powerline 3

The Anker Powerline III Plus is a USB-IF-certified USB-C to USB-C cable that comes in a convenient six-foot length. If you’re talking speed, the PowerLine III Plus supports 60W Power Delivery charging. Even better, the cable is fiber-wrapped from one end to the other and can endure 35,000 bends and tugs.

Another high-speed cable offering from Anker is the Intel-certified Thunderbolt 3 cable. It tops out at speeds of 100W and rapid 40Gbps data transfer. If there’s a drawback it’s that the Thunderbolt 3 is just 1.6-feet long. The Thunderbolt 3 cable is also backward compatible with previous generations of USB-C chargers.


amazonbasics cable

The retail giant has jumped into the fastest charging cable game in a big way with a variety of options under the AmazonBasics umbrella. You can grab the double-braided USB-C to USB-C cable with maximum data transfer of 10Gbps and charging speeds of up to three amps. You shouldn’t have to worry about breaking the cable either — the ends have been tested to bend 95 degrees up to 2,000 times.

Every option so far has featured a USB-C to USB-C connection. AmazonBasics is ready for those who don’t have a USB-C charging brick by offering a USB-A to USB-C double-braided cable. It’s available in one-foot and three-foot lengths and the cable comes in four different colors. AmazonBasics’ USB-A to USB-C charger matches the 10Gbps transfer speed as well as the three amp charging.

Learn more: Even more fast charging cables worth considering

The best portable solar charging accessories

anker solar charger

Credit: Ankit Banerjee / Android Authority

If you’re going on a hike or a long camping trip, you might want to invest in a solar charger. Granted, camping and hiking are ways to connect with nature and take a break from electronics. But it’s definitely nice to have the option if you want to use GPS tracking, and especially if something bad happens. There are a few things to know before buying a portable solar charger though.

The pros and cons of using solar phone chargers

The biggest advantage of using a solar charger is also the most obvious. As long as it’s a bright day outside, you have a power source at the ready. Solar power is also environmental-friendly and an ever-present renewable source of energy. Finally, solar energy is free, and your only investment is the initial cost of the charger itself.

All that sounds fantastic, but there are many reasons via solar phone chargers aren’t mainstream and are mainly niche products intended for the outdoorsman. Its advantage also works as a con in certain situations. A solar charger needs light to work. While the efficiency of solar panels has increased a lot over the last decade or so, you might see a reduced output on cloudy days, and it won’t work at all at night.

Charging your phone with a solar charger is also extremely slow. You certainly won’t get anywhere close to the fast-charging speeds you might be used to. Instead, be prepared to have your phone plugged in for at least five to six hours, if not longer, if you’re hoping to get a full charge. All said and done, a solar phone charger is great for emergency situations, so that you can keep in touch with people to let them know your location.

What to look for when buying a solar charger?

  • What type of charger is it? You can choose between a direct charger or a battery bank solar charger. The former works by charging the phone when it is plugged in, and the latter lets you store the energy in a power bank and charge the phone when you need it.
  • What is the power output? You have to make sure that the charger is powerful enough to charge your smartphone and other devices. A 10W solar charger is an absolute minimum to consider.
  • How big is it? Since the solar charger is primarily meant for the outdoors, portability is a concern. The bigger the panel and the more number of panels, the more charge you’ll get. But it defeats the purpose if the charger is too big or heavy to carry around.
  • Will it charge my phone? Compatibility is something you should check when you buy any charging accessory. You shouldn’t have a problem charging most smartphones and tablets though.
  • Are there any special features to know about? You should look for a solar charger with auto-restart technology. What this does is automatically start the charging process again even if the activity is interrupted by the passage of a cloud or if you’re in the shade.

Our recommendations

GoalZero Nomad 28 Plus

4 goalzerosolar

Goal Zero’s Nomad 28 Plus charger features an auto-restart ability that knows the difference between a fully charged device and one that has disconnected due to environmental reasons. This charger is also smart enough to optimize the charging output to match the device. There’s an LED indicator on the panel that displays the strength of solar conditions. It also comes with a detachable kickstand that you can use as a natural shade for your charging devices. You can also place devices in the vented pocket that regulates temperature so your device doesn’t overheat while charging.

Anker Portable Solar Charger

anker solar charger

This solar charger from Anker is another great option in the middle price range. Anker’s charger boasts a faster charge for two reasons. First, it has advanced fast-charging technology through PowerIQ; charging speed is up to 2.4A per port or 3A overall under direct sunlight. Second, each solar panel is made up of multiple layers to help increase charging speed. In addition to its compact size, Anker’s solar charger has stainless-steel eye-holes on each corner. This makes it super easy to attach it to a backpack or a tent.

Further reading: More solar chargers worth looking at

Tips to maximize battery life

google pixel 4 xl revisited battery

You can get a handful of charging accessories to make sure that you never have to come face to face with a dying phone battery ever again. However, battery capacity will unfortunately decline with age. You’ll already begin to notice a reduction in battery life after using a phone for a year, and it only gets worse after that.

Luckily there are some charging practices you can adopt that will help maximize the life of the battery and the phone. Here’s a quick summary of what you need to know.

What’s the best way to charge your smartphone?

  • Avoid full cycle (zero-100 percent) charging. Instead, top-up your phone more regularly with partial charges. Ending a charge at 80 percent is better for the battery than topping all the way up to 100 percent. Don’t let the battery drain completely either.
  • Overnight charging is generally a bad idea, and certainly not recommended with fast charging technologies. Using a fast charger also degrades the battery quickly.
  • Heat is the battery killer. Don’t cover your phone when charging and keep it out of hot places. If your phone gets uncomfortably warm while playing games or using the camera, stop what you’re doing and let it cool down.
  • Turn your phone off when charging if you can, and try not to use it even if it’s on. You definitely shouldn’t play games or watch videos, to avoid mini charging cycles.

See also: Charging tips to maximize battery life

Frequently asked questions

Q: Can you bring your charging accessories on a plane?

A: Absolutely. Keep in mind, most regions will not allow you to place lithium batteries in your checked luggage (it’s a fire hazard). If you are going to bring a portable power bank with you on a trip, you’re going to want to bring it via your carry on or personal bag.

Q: Is it okay to leave a power bank or other accessories in the car?

A: It’s generally a good idea to carry all your charging accessories with you when you leave a car. You should definitely not leave power banks and anything with batteries in the car, particularly in a place where it gets really hot.

Q: Can I leave my phone charging overnight?

A: It’s not recommended to leave your phone charging overnight, and definitely a bad idea if your phone and charger come with fast charging capabilities.

Q: Should I fully charge and drain my phone?

A: Fully charging and draining your phone will cause battery degradation and will affect longevity. Smaller, but regular, top-ups are the better way to go.

Q: At what percentage should I charge the phone?

A: To maximize the battery’s life, it’s a good idea to charge the phone up to around 80 percent, and put it back on charge when that drops to around 30.

Q: Can you charge one phone with another?

A: You will not be able to charge one phone with another by simply plugging a charging cable into both phones. Some phones, like the latest flagships from Apple, Samsung, Huawei, and OnePlus, come with a power share feature that uses reverse wireless charging. In this case, the phone serves as a Qi charger for another device, like a phone, smartwatch, or wireless earbuds.

Q: Is overcharging bad for the phone?

A: Continuing to charge your phone after it has reached 100 percent is a recipe for voltage and temperature stress and creates heat. High temperatures make the battery lose capacity far more quickly than if it was at normal temperatures.

Q: Is fast charging not good for the battery?

A: Fast charging is a great way to quickly and easily charge your phone, but continuous use will definitely cause more degradation. For example, Oppo’s 125W fast charging will cause much faster degradation that the company’s super-fast 65W charging.

Q: Can I charge my phone without electricity?

A: You will be able to charge your phone without electricity by using a power bank. However, the power bank will need to be plugged in and charged once it drains completely. If you don’t have a source of electricity at all, a solar phone charger might help. However, these are extremely slow and generally recommended for emergency situations.

Q: Is it okay to leave a charger in a wall unit without a phone plugged in?

A: Leaving a charger plugged in even when it isn’t charging a device will draw some power. This is usually negligible and won’t add a noticeable amount to your electricity bill. However, depending on how many chargers you have, how long they are plugged in, and how much electricity costs where you are, things could start to add up.

Q: Is it okay to charge my phone with a laptop charger and vice versa?

A: Many new laptops come with USB-C chargers, and you could potentially charge your phone with it too. A good phone and charger should ensure that the phone draws exactly how much power it needs. Whether you can use your phone charger to charge your laptop depends on the two devices. Some laptops require a 65W charger, which you’ll only get with devices like the Oppo Find X2 Pro.

Android Authority

Posted in Android NewsComments (0)

Who wants a phone with 5G, 90Hz display, and a big battery for $215? (Update)

realme v5 5g render

Credit: Realme

Update, August 4, 2020 (4AM ET): According to XDA-Developers citing a Realme spokesperson, the V series will also go on sale in most of Realme’s international markets, including Europe, at some point this year. This includes the Realme V5.

While there’s no pricing info for the phone just yet, a direct conversion from its Chinese price suggests a tag of around €180 in Europe. However, European pricing for phones is generally higher than Chinese prices.

Original article, August 3, 2020 (6:40 AM ET): The Realme V5 5G is now official in China, and with its introduction drops the price of 5G access to below the $ 250 mark.

The affordable phone adds bulk to the company’s previous device launches in 2020, like the X50 Pro and the X3 SuperZoom. But unlike this duo, the Realme V5 isn’t meant to be a flagship killer, unless you’re only buying flagships for 5G connectivity.

Aesthetically, it’s nothing we haven’t seen before this year. You’re looking at a punch-hole selfie camera with a shimmering rear plate and a large rectangular camera array in its top-left corner. The silver version also gets that now customary ‘Realme’ print at the rear of the device, although the branding is comically huge here.

See also: The best budget phones you can currently buy

Other on-trend features also make the list. The Realme V5 5G sports a 6.5-inch IPS display with 2,400 x 1,080 resolution and a 90Hz refresh rate. Buyers also get a quad-camera array at the rear, headlined by a 48MP primary camera. Joining it is an 8MP ultrawide, a 2MP macro snapper, and a 2MP depth sensor. A 16MP sensor is used for the selfie camera.

Under the Realme V5’s skin lies the Mediatek Dimensity 720 chipset which gives the phone sub-6GHz 5G support and eight CPU cores to play around with. The chip isn’t as powerful as the Dimensity 820, but does allow Realme to add 5G support at a lower cost. A 5,000mAh battery keeps the lights on and can be topped up using Realme’s 30W SuperDart charging.

The Realme V5 will be offered with either 6GB or 8GB RAM, but 128GB of UFS 2.1 storage is the only storage option. There’s also a microSD card slot to boost that figure though.

Other creature comforts include a 3.5mm headphone jack, support for Wi-Fi 5, Bluetooth 5.0, and dual SIM slots. The device runs on Android 10 with Realme UI on top.

Realme V5 5G price and availability

The Realme V5 5G will go on sale in China on August 7 starting at 1,499 yuan (~$ 215) for the 6GB RAM model. The 8GB RAM option is 1,899 yuan (~$ 270). That’s an awful lot more to pay for just a bit more RAM.

As for the colorways, buyers get a choice of silver, green, and blue.

No pricing or availability info beyond China has been announced just yet, but the V5 could kick off a fierce affordable 5G phone battle if it’s ever launched internationally.

Next: The best 5G phones you can buy right now

Android Authority

Posted in Android NewsComments (0)

Your regular reminder: More phone cameras does not equal better quality photos

The Redmi Note 8T offers more cameras, including a macro camera.

Credit: Nick Fernandez / Android Authority

Opinion post by
Hadlee Simons

It seems like just the other day that LG launched the V40 with its main-telephoto-ultrawide triple rear camera setup that would eventually form the backbone of many a premium phone’s photography suite.

The smartphone world has gone even further since then though, with brands pushing the number to four or in some ill-advised cases as many as five cameras.

Everyone from Huawei and Samsung to Xiaomi and OnePlus seem to be hopping on this trend of adding more and more cameras, but it’s worth stressing once again that increasing the number of cameras does not guarantee better picture quality — and manufacturers certainly know this.

These brands nevertheless choose this approach because it’s a cheap marketing trick to use in their promotional materials. Whether it’s the recent Xiaomi Redmi Note entries, Realme‘s budget phones, Samsung’s Galaxy A family, or Huawei’s mid-range phones, there are loads of examples of devices with unnecessary extra cameras that seem to be there simply to pad the numbers.

Related: The best Android camera phones you can buy

Quantity =/= quality

Samsung Galaxy A51 rear camera macro

Credit: David Imel / Android Authority

Macro cameras and depth sensors are two of the most popular extra cameras and, excuse me if this sounds obvious but… they don’t magically add up to deliver a better overall photo. The addition of these cameras have almost nothing to do with the actual picture quality when shooting a standard photo via the main camera. In fact, the biggest contributing factor to better image quality is the main camera hardware and a brand’s image processing software.

Whether it’s the introduction of a better main image sensor, optical image stabilization to reduce blur, or better camera software, all of these additions actually have an impact on overall picture quality. So why add these particular cameras in the first place then?

Read: What is macro photography?

A depth camera might be handy for portrait mode and depth of field effects, but it’s only contributing depth data to the main camera. Many brands these days are able to gather depth data via software algorithms or other, more useful cameras.

Meanwhile, macro cameras are used for taking close-up shots, but today’s brands are largely using token 2MP sensors (e.g. OnePlus 8 and many budget phones) that don’t offer much detail at all.

So clearly most brands seem to be using depth sensors and macro cameras to make up the numbers rather than as part of a concerted effort to actually deliver better image quality. But there are extra cameras worth having on a phone though, either offering a wildly different perspective or improving overall image quality.

When more cameras are welcome

Xiaomi Mi Note 10 back of the phone

Credit: David Imel / Android Authority

One of the more common additions these days is the ultra-wide camera, taking snaps that are wider than a typical main camera. This is ideal for buildings, landscapes, group photos, and other situations where you want to cram as much as possible into the frame. Many ultra-wide cameras are also capable of taking macro shots too, and at a higher resolution than those sketchy 2MP macro sensors. Ultra-wide cameras are available on everything from the low-end Samsung Galaxy A11 to high-end phones like the Galaxy S20 series and iPhone 11 family.

Zoom cameras such as periscope or telephoto lenses are another truly handy addition too. These cameras offer much better zoom quality than phones relying on digital zoom alone. These cameras allow you to get Instagram-worthy images from afar rather than a blurry mess. Examples of phones with zoom-enabled cameras include recent Huawei flagships, the OnePlus 7T, and Samsung’s recent flagships.

We’ve even seen the likes of Huawei, Oppo, and Xiaomi offer two zoom cameras on a phone, with one being for short-range zoom (2x to 3x) and the other handling long-range zoom (5x or 10x). This way, image degradation is kept to a minimum across a variety of zoom factors. Phones with two zoom cameras include the Xiaomi Mi Note 10 and Huawei P40 Pro Plus.

When it comes to cameras, quality is more important than quantity.

Some older phones like the Huawei P20 series and Nokia 8 offer monochrome cameras as secondary sensors too. This type of camera can have a direct impact on overall image quality (especially at night), as it can gather more light than a traditional camera sensor. It can also be used for true monochrome shots and to gather depth information as well.

So why don’t more brands adopt these useful cameras then? Well, at least one manufacturer told us that macro cameras were considerably cheaper to implement than something like a telephoto lens. Furthermore, most brands already offer ultrawide cameras as the secondary shooter. As for monochrome cameras, they have fallen out of favor in recent times as brands use computational photography smarts or RYYB camera sensors to improve low-light picture quality instead.

Better extra cameras or none at all

Redmi Note 9 Pro in hand with camera

Credit: Dhruv Bhutani / Android Authority

It’s time for manufacturers to either bring truly useful extra cameras to the table or to ditch them completely. Sure, the average consumer might be swayed by fancy “quad-camera” marketing at first, but what happens when the user realizes the extra cameras are pointless? What if the offending brand decides to launch a quad-camera phone with useful extra cameras down the line? It has the potential to turn into a “boy who cried wolf” situation.

Please wait.. Loading poll

Instead, the money that would’ve been spent on a depth sensor or macro camera can go towards improving the main camera. Whether it’s by implementing a better sensor, optical image stabilization, or improved software, this would all have a more meaningful impact on photo quality. We’d even be happy to see brands taking the cash that would’ve been spent on a depth sensor or macro camera and spending it on improving ultra-wide cameras and selfie snappers too.

So the next time you see a smartphone manufacturer boasting about having a quad-camera phone, just remember that it’s likely a case of quantity over quality.

More posts about photography

Android Authority

Posted in Android NewsComments (0)

Despite disappointing Pixel 4, 2019 was Google’s best year for phone sales yet

Google Pixelbook Go Review closed with Pixel 4

  • A third-party analyst firm says Google Pixel sales hit 7.2 million in 2019.
  • This would make it the best year yet for the Pixel line, although that number pales in comparison to the top-five brands.
  • It’s very likely sales of the Google Pixel 3a make up the bulk of that 7.2 million figure.

A few weeks ago, news broke that Google was allegedly disappointed with the Google Pixel 4, even prior to that device’s launch. However disappointing it may have been, it doesn’t appear to have stopped Google Pixel sales from hitting a record high in 2019.

According to third-party analyst firm International Data Corporation (IDC), Google Pixel sales hit 7.2 million units in 2019. Although the numbers don’t get broken down by device, it’s likely most of those sales come from the two 2019 phones launched — the Google Pixel 3a and Google Pixel 4. At least some of the shipments are probably made up of Google Pixel 3 sales, too.

However, it’s estimated that the Google Pixel 4 only sold around 2 million units over its first six months, which would mean a portion of that number wouldn’t count towards the 2019 total. Therefore, it’s basically a guarantee that the bulk of the Google Pixel sales in 2019 came from the Pixel 3a line.

Google Pixel sales likely dominated by the Pixel 3a

The budget-oriented Pixel 3a line was a big hit critically, so it likely being the best-selling phone in the line would make a lot of sense. The series is also easily accessible from many major carriers around the world and is available in India, the world’s second-largest smartphone market. The Pixel 4 is not available in India, which likely didn’t help its sales.

Related: Google Pixel 3a review: The phone made for everyone

While 7.2 million Google Pixel sales might be great for Google when compared to its previous years, it should be noted that it pales in comparison to the top-five manufacturers. Huawei, the second-largest smartphone OEM in the world, shipped 230 million phones in 2019, to give you an idea of Google’s market share.

However, the apparent success of the Pixel 3a gives more credence to the rumor that Google’s Pixel 5 phone will be a more mid-range affair with a weaker processor but a cheaper entry price. This news also makes us even more excited than we already are for the Google Pixel 4a, which still does not have a confirmed release date.

More posts about Google Pixel 3a

Android Authority

Posted in Android NewsComments (0)

Redmi K30 Racing Edition goes official as first phone with Snapdragon 768G

Redmi K30 5 of 8

Credit: David Imel / Android Authority

Xiaomi has launched a new phone in the Redmi K30 series. Called the Redmi K30 5G Racing Edition (although machine translation also calls it the Extreme or Speed Edition), it’s the first phone to feature Qualcomm’s upgraded Snapdragon 768G chipset.

The new 5G-enabled processor brings a slight performance increase over the existing Snapdragon 765 and 765G. It boosts the CPU clock speed from 2.4GHz to 2.8GHz. It also ups the performance of the Adreno 620 GPU by about 15%.

Elsewhere, the new Snapdragon 768G includes an integrated 5G modem, making the Redmi K30 Racing Edition compatible with dual mode SA/NSA 5G. The phone also gets 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage.

Besides the upgraded silicon, the Redmi K30 5G Racing Edition gets the same 120Hz refresh rate as its predecessor. The display size is also the same at 6.67-inches. It has an FHD+ resolution (1080 x 2400 pixels) and a 20:9 aspect ratio.

What else to know about Redmi K30 variant?

There’s a vertically aligned quad camera setup at the back consisting of a 64MP Sony IMX686 primary camera, an 8MP ultra-wide camera, a 5MP macro camera, and a 2MP depth-of-field sensor. As you can see, the camera setup is pretty much the same as the Redmi K30 5G.

On the front of the Redmi K30 Racing Edition is a 20MP selfie shooter assisted by a 2MP depth sensor, both housed within punch holes on the right corner of the screen.

In terms of connectivity, the phone features a 3.5mm headphone jack as well as a USB-C port. In addition to 5G connectivity mentioned before, the phone also supports dual SIM compatibility, Bluetooth, NFC, an IR blaster, and GPS/ A-GPS.

The volume buttons rest on the right edge of the phone and the fingerprint sensor is integrated with the power button.

The entire package is powered by a 4,500mAh battery and there’s 30W fast charging onboard. There’s no wireless charging on the phone.

Redmi K30 Racing Edition: Price and availability

The new Snapdragon 768G phone has only launched in China for now. It is priced at 1,999 Chinese Yuan (~$ 282).

Overall, the new Redmi K30 Racing Edition isn’t at all different from the Redmi K30 5G. The only exception is its new Qualcomm chip, which should improve the overall performance of the phone and assist with a better gaming experience given its GPU boost.

More posts about Redmi

Android Authority

Posted in Android NewsComments (0)

You can now wirelessly transfer files from your Samsung phone to Windows 10 PC

Microsoft your phone app on Samsung Galaxy Note 10Samsung

Microsoft’s Your Phone app is perhaps one of the most useful ones out there for people who use Android phones and Windows PCs. The app allows users to seamlessly access notifications, reply to text messages, as well as make and receive calls on their PCs.

Now, Samsung is extending its partnership with Microsoft to bring yet another useful feature to its phones. You can now drag and drop files from your Samsung phone to your Windows 10 PC, without having to hook up any wires.

The new file drag and drop feature requires a Samsung device running Link To Windows version 1.5 or higher. This means that most recent Galaxy phones and tablets like the Galaxy Note 9, Note 10, S9, S10, S20, and more will be able to make use of the feature. Here’s the complete list of Samsung devices that support Link to Windows.

Microsoft notes that the new file sharing system is currently available to its Windows Insider community, so we can expect it to roll out more widely pretty soon.

Types of supported files

The new drag and drop feature supports all kinds of file types apart from folders. However, you can only transfer up to 100 files at a time and no single file can be larger than 512MB in size.

You can currently drag files from your Samsung phone’s Gallery app or My Files app only. From your PC, you can drag and drop any file of your choice to the Samsung device.

How to drag and drop files from Samsung phones to Windows 10 PCs?

You will first need to download the Your Phone app on your Windows 10 PC. Once you’ve done that, follow the steps given below to transfer files from your Samsung phone to your PC.

  • Open Phone Screen in the Your Phone app on your PC
  • Navigate to a folder in the My Files section
  • Long press on the desired file until a checkmark appears
  • To transfer additional files, simply tap on them
  • Use your mouse to long-press again on the files you’ve selected and wait for a thumbnail to appear
  • Drag the files to your desired location on your PC
  • The cursor will change to show when you’re able to drop the files

If you’re transferring images from your phone’s Gallery app, follow the instructions given below.

  • Open Phone Screen in the Your Phone app on your PC
  • Navigate to Albums and select one
  • Long press on a photo until a checkmark appears
  • To transfer additional photos, simply tap on them
  • Drag and drop images the same way as mentioned above

Vice versa, if you want to copy files from your PC to your phone, follow these steps mentioned below.

  • Open Phone Screen in the Your Phone app on your PC
  • Select files from your PC that you’d like to transfer
  • Drag files to the Your Phone window
  • The cursor will change to say Copy and that’s when you can drop the files by releasing the mouse
  • Navigate to Internal Storage > Downloads folder to see your transferred files

Remember, minimizing the Your Phone app during the drag and drop process will cancel the transfer and you’ll have to start from scratch again.

Certain Samsung devices also support a text copy and paste function, as well as RCS Messaging though the Your Phone app. You can read all about it here.

More posts about Samsung

Android Authority

Posted in Android NewsComments (0)

This is why Poco hasn’t launched a Snapdragon 865 or 855 phone yet

Poco X2 and logo in focus

Poco has officially launched its second smartphone to date and it’s not the Poco F2. You don’t get a flagship killer without a flagship chipset. Instead, we got the Poco X2 — at best a mid-range phone with some cool tricks up its sleeve. It comes with a 120Hz display and quad cameras under the $ 250 price tag, but it doesn’t really cut it if you were waiting for a Pocophone F1 successor.

We asked Poco’s general manager Manmohan Chandolu why that’s the case and one of the primary reasons he cited is a slight deviation in the traditional pricing structure of flagship chipsets. According to Chandolu, Poco — a company that calls itself a startup — did not find costs of Qualcomm’s 2019 and 2020 flagship SoCs feasible. Here’s what Poco says happened.

Our verdict: Poco X2 review: A perfectly average mid-range phone

A chip off the block

“Chipsets right now, all 800-series chipsets, are extremely expensive. And [the Snapdragon 865], being the first 5G generation, is just a lot more expensive,” the executive told Android Authority at the Poco X2 launch.

The face of Poco’s newly formed independent identity, Chandolu still swears by the Snapdragon 845 and believes it to be an extremely well-priced performance workhorse. “But 845 is not there in the market anymore,” he remarked.

While we would tend to agree with the Poco GM on the Snapdragon 845’s capabilities even almost a year after its launch, the question still remains: why didn’t Poco upgrade to the Snapdragon 865, or at least the 855?

Related: The Poco X2 isn’t the Pocophone you’ve been waiting for (and that’s okay)

“The Snapdragon 865, as I told you, is already very expensive and it does not make any sense,” Chandolu said, “Then what could we have considered? [The Snapdragon] 855. Right?”

He continues to tell us that the Snapdragon 855 did not see the same price depreciation as the company expected: “The 855 was launched with a little [sic] higher price point and we expected that also to undergo some depreciation. But 865 has launched extremely high and now the transition from 4G to 5G is happening across the board. So the depreciation the 855 should have seen [did not happen].”

That’s why, Poco claims, it chose the more affordable Snapdragon 730G octa-core chipset. Chandolu believes the Poco X2, like the F1, will still stay true to being a gaming-centric device even with a 700-series Qualcomm SoC at its heart.

Why does a higher processor cost matter?

Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 in hand front

It’s a well-known fact in the smartphone industry (and in basic economics) that higher processor costs directly impact the retail prices of phones.

In this instance, the Snapdragon 845 which powered the first Poco phone reportedly cost manufacturers somewhere around $ 45 plus additional licensing fee per chip. Its price was later reduced, as Chandolu tells us, but it’s no longer available in the market.

Related: How low will 5G smartphone prices go in 2020?

Then came the Snapdragon 855 and 855 Plus, which were reportedly priced around $ 53 per chip, in addition to some extra fee that Qualcomm is said to charge. Now, industry insiders believe that prices of 5G chipsets, like the Snapdragon 865, are likely 50% more than their 4G counterparts.

This will not only unnecessarily drive up the cost of upcoming flagship smartphones in markets where 5G is a non-factor, it will also prevent the likes of Poco from pulling off an affordable flagship-grade 5G phone at the original Pocophone F1’s price point of $ 300.

Is a cheap Pocophone F2 coming with a Snapdragon 865?

While Chandolu refused to confirm the existence of the Poco F2, unlike in a previous interview, he didn’t seem too optimistic about bringing a 5G-ready smartphone to the Indian market yet.

That’s because Poco is essentially an India-only brand as of now. It is not looking to expand its horizons internationally just yet. That, combined with the lack of any 5G network in the country right now or in the near future, would not serve Poco’s interests at the moment.

“It’s not just chipsets, right? We also want the infrastructure to be ready,” said Chandolu. “Again, what’s the point of having a chipset if the infrastructure is not available?”

“My worry with 5G right now is that it requires a lot of infrastructure costs, huge infrastructure costs, so I do not know how that will play. Probably closer to that [India getting the 5G infrastructure] we will probably take a look at our strategy and formulate our thoughts on it.”

For now, a powerful Poco flagship still seems unlikely to launch anytime soon… unless the company surprises us all by pulling a rabbit out of its hat for a second time.

The future of Poco

Poco X2 and back panel

In a nutshell, the new Poco brand doesn’t seem to have a clear chipset or pricing play in mind. Chandolu says that the brand will keep its strategy dynamic and is not really ready to set things in stone.

Poco also has a bunch of other factors to consider, including how much it can compete with its former parent company Xiaomi. This is especially problematic since both brands still share many of the same resources, right down to research and development. Then there’s the matter of Xiaomi bringing its premium Mi-branded phones to India, which Poco will need to carefully weigh in order to price its flagships competitively.

For now, however, we have the Poco X2, and the promise that the Poco brand is back and, this time around, is here to stay.

More posts about Poco

Android Authority

Posted in Android NewsComments (0)

Here’s why Xiaomi hasn’t delivered a 100W charging phone just yet

100 watt charging demonstration by Xiaomi.Weibo/Bin Lin

Xiaomi made waves almost a year ago when it revealed that it was working on 100W charging technology, capable of charging a 4,000mAh battery in 17 minutes. The company said Redmi phones would get the tech first, but we haven’t heard anything else since then.

Now, Redmi general manager Lu Weibing has taken to Weibo to reveal five technical difficulties associated with 100W charging (and fast charging in general).

Major battery degradation

Perhaps the biggest consideration is battery capacity, with the Redmi executive saying faster charging results in greater capacity loss. And this is a big issue when you’ve got 100W charging.

“According to preliminary estimates, the capacity of a 100W fast charge battery is about 20% less than that of a 30W PD fast charge. In short, 5,000mAh becomes 4,000mAh,” Lu said according to a machine-translated version of his post.

In other words, it seems like 100W charging requires a big battery right now in order to off-set the degradation. Otherwise, your 4,000mAh battery will eventually become a 3,200mAh battery due to charging-induced degradation.

This isn’t the only technical difficulty cited by the Redmi executive, as he also points to the technical architecture, charger compatibility, charging protections throughout the device (e.g. for battery, motherboard etc), and general performance as four other hurdles to overcome.

Nevertheless, the Xiaomi executive says 100W charging has “reached the early stage of mature production and can be expected in the future.” So it definitely sounds like we can still expect a 100W smartphone, but it will probably have a massive battery to fight off the effects of degradation.

More posts about Xiaomi

Android Authority

Posted in Android NewsComments (0)

Looking for an affordable phone? Wait for Qualcomm’s new mid-range chipsets

Qualcomm Snapdragon 460 662 and 720G Mobile Platforms Chip Case

Following the launch of the flagship Snapdragon 865 and a series of high-performance, 5G options, Qualcomm is setting its sight at overhauling its entry-level and mid-range chipset portfolio.

At an event in New Delhi, India, the company announced a range of new SoCs that focus on improving connectivity, audio, and performance. Additionally, all three chipsets gain support for India’s homegrown NavIC GPS navigation constellation. Let’s take a closer look.

Snapdragon 460

The Snapdragon 460 represents a fairly big leap for entry-level smartphones. Qualcomm claims that the use of performance cores should help it gain a 70% leap in computing power. Meanwhile, the GPU from the 600 series of chipsets finds a place on the Snapdragon 460. This should have an impact for gamers on a budget since you’ll be able eke out a few more frames on more affordable phones.

Snapdragon 460

Elsewhere, the phone has a new Spectra 340 ISP which should allow for improved imaging. The Qualcomm Spectra 340 ISP enables up to a 25MP camera or dual 16MP modules. The configuration will let OEMs opt for a triple-camera set up as well but might have to compromise on the resolution.

Qualcomm claims that the chipset is WiFi 6 ready including support for FastConnect 6100 which is essentially a subset of features that are a part of Wi-Fi 6 compliance. It remains to be seen if the Snapdragon 460 series will spearhead the adoption of affordable Wi-Fi 6 enabled smartphones.

Snapdragon 662

While the Snapdragon 460 will service the entry-level segment, I fully expect the Snapdragon 662 to become a mainstay of the mid-range segment once devices equipped with it start shipping towards the end of the year.

Snapdragon 662

From a performance perspective, this is an octa-core chipset that pairs four Cortex A73 cores clocked at up to 2Ghz with four Cortex A53 cores that can run at up to 1.8GHz. This performance and efficiency combination is similar to what we’ve already seen on the Snapdragon 660. However, the 662 gains the better Adreno 610 GPU from the Snapdragon 665 to boost its gaming cred.

Bigger changes lie on the imaging front. The Spectra 340T ISP enables mainstays like a 48MP sensor, but also allows for HEIF capture which should go a long way in reducing file sizes of images. Additionally, the ISP allows for smooth switching between a triple camera setup to enable a camera-like user experience.

Connectivity is another area where Qualcomm has made large strides while working on the Snapdragon 662. Between Bluetooth 5.1, Qualcomm TrueWireless support, you can expect more reliable connectivity and longer range with next-gen wireless earbuds. The chipset is also Wi-Fi 6 ready, though we don’t know yet if this is just Fast Connect 6100 subset or full-blown Wi-Fi 6 support.

Snapdragon 720G

The Snapdragon 720G is positioned as a premium-tier chipset that should slot in right below the Snapdragon 730 that has found duty in phones like the Redmi K30.

Snapdragon 720G

Positioned as an upgrade from the Snapdragon 710 series, it employs dual clusters of two Cortex A76 cores paired with six Cortex A55 cores. Combined with an improved Adreno 618 GPU, users can expect a significant leap in day-to-day as well as gaming performance over the Snapdragon 712.

Imaging is one of the key focus areas for Qualcomm and the 720G gets a Spectra 350L ISP that enables image capture at up to 192MP as well as HEIF support. There are improvements in the AI engine as well that should improve reliability and speed of access for virtual assistants.

Connectivity too, gets a step up, with the adoption of the Fast Connect 6200 platform as well as Wi-Fi 6 support. In addition, Bluetooth 5.1 and TrueWireless Stereo support guarantee a reliable and latency-free connection with the latest generation of true wireless earphones.

  Snapdragon 720G Snapdragon 662 Snapdragon 460
CPU Kryo 465 octa-core
2x @ 2.3GHz (Cortex-A76)
6x @ 1.8GHz (Cortex-A55)
Kryo 260 octa-core
4x @ 2GHz (Cortex-A73)
4x @ 1.8GHz (Cortex-A53)
Kryo 240 octa-core
4x performance cores (TBC)
4x @ 1.8GHz (Cortex-A53)
GPU Adreno 618 Adreno 610 Adreno 610
DSP Hexagon 692 with Tensor Accelerator Hexagon 683 Hexagon 683
Camera Up to 192MP photo capture 48MP photo capture
Triple camera
25MP single/16MP dual
Modem Snapdragon X15 LTE

800Mbps down, 150Mbps up

Snapdragon X11 LTE

390Mbps down, 150Mbps up

Snapdragon X11 LTE

390Mbps down, 150Mbps up

Fast charging Quick Charge 4+ Quick Charge 3.0 Quick Charge 3.0
Manufacturing process 8nm 11nm 11nm

What does this mean for you?

While the world looks at a 5G-future, the fact of the matter is that 4G handsets and affordable handsets remain the company’s bread and butter. The Snapdragon 460, 662 and 720G bring tangible improvements to performance, imaging and local connectivity. All three are critical features in developing markets where mobile gaming and imaging-based applications are fast turning out to be key selling points for smartphones.

Qualcomm says that Snapdragon 720G based phones should be available started Q1 2020. Unfortunately, you’ve got a long wait ahead of you if you were looking for a new entry-level phone powered by the Snapdragon 460 or 662 platform. Those will ship towards the end of 2020.

More posts about qualcomm

Android Authority

Posted in Android NewsComments (0)

Related Sites

Powered by WP Robot