Tag Archive | "series"

Samsung updates Galaxy Note 10 series with May security patches

Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Plus Aura White back at angle

Credit: David Imel / Android Authority

Update, May 1, 2020 (2AM ET): The Samsung Galaxy Note 10 phones are now receiving the May 2020 security patches in select regions. According to XDA-Developers, the new update is rolling out with software version N97xFXXS4CTD1. It’s reportedly available in a bunch of European countries, including France, Poland, Switzerland, and Germany.

With this update, the Note 10 phones also get a new bootloader (v4), which means that you won’t be able to manually downgrade to previous builds after downloading this OTA.

The update will first hit Exynos variants of the Galaxy Note 10 and is expected to roll out in batches to all other models and regions subsequently.

Original article: Welcome to the Samsung Galaxy Note 10 and Galaxy Note 10 Plus update hub. Here, you’ll find everything you need to know about the latest Galaxy Note 10 and Note 10 Plus updates. That includes their current versions and when future updates are likely to arrive. Keep in mind that the Galaxy Note 10 and Galaxy Note 10 Plus generally receive their updates at the same time.

Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Plus The S Pen is mightier than the sword
The S Pen makes the Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Plus better than the vast majority of its competition. It offers more pro features than you can poke a stick at and packs all the top-tier specs you’d expect from a Note.

Samsung Galaxy Note 10 and Galaxy Note 10 Plus update

  • Current stable version: Android 10
  • When will the Galaxy Note 10 and Galaxy Note 10 Plus get Android 11? December 2020 (estimated)

The Galaxy Note 10 line launched in August 2019 with the then-latest version of Android, Android 9 Pie. Like most Android flagships, these are expected to receive at least two major updates in their lifetimes.

The first confirmed major update is Android 10, which publicly launched toward the beginning of September. Soon after, Samsung began a beta program for its flagships, including the Note 10 line. This beta program lasted for a few months before Samsung started rolling out Android 10 in a stable form.

At this point, nearly every device in the Samsung Galaxy Note 10 family, including the Star Wars model and the Sprint version, should have the Android 10 update. Any stragglers should get it by the end of January 2020. That update will include One UI 2.0, based on Android 10.

Samsung also beat Google to the punch with the January 2020 security patch, rolling it out to the Note 10 before Google rolled it out to the Pixel 4. Samsung’s update game has been on point lately, and the Note 10 is its sixth device to get the latest security patch.

According to a few Reddit posts, Canadian Galaxy Note 10 devices began receiving the latest Android 10-powered One UI 2.0 update January 6. Devices on carriers Telus, Bell, Rogers, and Sasktel received the update first, and other carrier devices followed suit shortly.

Two days later, a tipster over at Android Police let the world know Samsung began pushing out the latest stable Android 10 update to unlocked Galaxy Note 10 Plus 5G devices in the UK. That same day, we also saw the update roll out to Indonesian variants of the Note 10 series thanks to a post on Reddit.

The March 2020 security update officially rolled out to Galaxy Note 10 and Note 10 Plus devices in the first week of March. It landed on devices in the Netherlands, the UK, Spain, and Hungary. The update didn’t introduce anything particularly exciting, but improved security is always welcome.

On April 21, Samsung made Galaxy S20 camera features available on Canadian Note 10 devices. The features included: Single Take Mode, Night Hyperlapse, custom filters, Pro Video Mode, and more. The update also introduced new Quick Share and Music share functionality to the phones. Quick Share lets Galaxy Note 10 users easily share photos, videos, and other large files with contacts nearby, while Music share lets others play their music on Bluetooth devices connected to your Galaxy Note 10. You can read more details about the new camera features here.

You can manually check for the Samsung Galaxy Note 10 update on your own device by heading to Settings > Software update > Download and install.

Android 10 also landed on Galaxy Note 10 devices in Australia, Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Qatar (h/t: Android Police) in January 2020. A little more than a month later, the Galaxy Note 10 and Note 10 Plus got their first post-Android 10 updates. These updates brought improvements to facial recognition and navigation gestures.

Samsung Galaxy Note 10/Note 10 Plus update availability Android 10 Android 11
AT&T Active TBA
Sprint Active TBA
T-Mobile Active TBA
Verizon Active TBA
Star Wars Edition Active TBA
U.S. Unlocked Active TBA
International Unlocked Active TBA

Let us know which Galaxy Note 10 update you’re rocking in the comments. Also, feel free to tip us if you’ve spotted a recent update we’ve missed!

Looking for another device update? Check out our Android 9 Pie and Android 10 update trackers.

Android Authority

Posted in Android NewsComments (0)

The Apple Watch Series 5 convinced me to try iOS, and I don’t regret it

Since its first iteration, the Apple Watch has been hailed as a best-in-class device. So much so, in fact, that many people cite the timepiece as reason enough to make the switch from Android to iPhone. That includes yours truly. Several factors recently convinced me to make a temporary switch to iOS, and the Apple Watch Series 5 was the clincher.

Coming from the Android ecosystem as an avid fitness tracker/smartwatch user, just how much better is the Apple Watch? Was it worth making the change?

Also read: An Android fanboy spends an enlightening week with an iPhone

Apple Watch Series 5 design and hardware

Apple Watch Series 5 Lying Down

The smartwatch is an example of a device category where design really does matter. It’s something you’ll be displaying on your wrist for all to see: a fashion accessory and a statement about who you are. This is something Apple clearly understands and has put a lot of thought into. Apple’s watch has a minimal and classy design.

Everyone knows what an Apple Watch looks like by now, and it has changed very little over the years. It’s a small, rounded square that sits on your wrist — and that’s really all there is to say about it. The only notable features are the digital crown (dial) on one side and a button sitting flush just below it. Together with the highly responsive touchscreen, these controls allow you to navigate through the UI. The digital crown is a particularly fine piece of engineering that has a surprisingly varied number of uses. It offers haptic feedback to mimic an analog control. Haptics, in general, are beyond excellent on the Apple Watch Series 5.

Apple Watch Series 5

To go with the sleek body, the watch has a vibrant screen that brims with color and wraps neatly around the edges thanks to the curved glass. It comes in two screen sizes: 40mm and 44mm. These offer 394 by 324 and 448 by 368 pixels, respectively. I actually went for the smaller model, as I wanted something that would feel light on my wrist. I often found that other smartwatches would dig into my hand during push-ups, or feel uncomfortable on a desk while typing. Fortunately, the 40mm Apple Watch is something I can easily wear all day. Moreover, the screen real estate is still more than ample for interacting with the watch.

There’s also a built-in speaker that allows you to hear notifications and feedback from Siri, listen to music, and take voice calls.

The Apple Watch has a sharp, vibrant screen that brims with color.

You can get the watch in aluminum, steel, or titanium, though most will likely choose the more affordable aluminum. Both options are plenty resilient, and you get water resistance up to 50 meters.

Apple Watch on Wrist

The Apple Watch Series 5 finally gets an always-on display, meaning you can show off your favorite watch face (and check it) without the awkward, exaggerated wrist gesture to wake the screen. The always-on display is a little dimmer when not active, but it still looks great. It uses some pretty clever technology to achieve the effect without draining the battery, too. This works by combining Low Temperature Polycrystalline Oxide (LTPO) with Indium Gallium Zinc Oxide (IGZO) technology, which allows Apple to control the precise voltage supplied to each pixel. The combo enables a variable refresh rate that can go as low as 1Hz, drastically reducing the power consumed when the watch isn’t in use. Lift it up, and the regular AMOLED screen will kick in, slightly increasing the brightness.

The only downside of the design is that it has become ubiquitous. The Apple Watch is no longer unique or special, though that doesn’t detract from its quality.

Apple Watch Complications 2

In terms of sheer design, the Galaxy Watch Active 2 is arguably the closest competition. It has the same minimal aesthetic, but in a round form factor. The size options are identical (40mm or 44mm), and Samsung offers similar material choices, too.

Read also: Galaxy Watch Active 2 review: solid smartwatch, inaccurate fitness watch

samsung galaxy watch active 2 vs apple watch series 5 watch face clock face 4

The Galaxy Watch Active 2 competes with the Apple Watch in terms of design

The screen is likewise just as bright, and just as high-resolution. The big difference is that Samsung provides far more robust customization options.

This is one area where I really miss Android. While the watch faces on the Apple Watch are varied and attractive, you still can’t create or download custom ones. This limits the amount of self-expression possible.

Montblanc Summit 2

The Montblanc Summit 2 is a premium, luxury smartwatch.

Of course, if your main concern is fashion and style, there are plenty of beautiful smartwatches available from actual watch companies. These trounce the Apple Watch in terms of design, no problem, but they don’t tend to offer the same level of functionality. And no watch has quite gained the instant recognizability as the Apple Watch, for better or for worse. The Apple Watch is iconic.

Also read: The Fossil Gen 5 Smartwatch is the best Wear OS watch you can buy

Apple Watch Series 5 specs

  Apple Watch Series 5
Material Aluminum, steel, or titanium
Size 40mm 44mm
Water resistance 50M
CPU Apple S5
Storage 32GB
Battery 18 Hours
Operating System WatchOS 6.1
Celluluar Yes (Optional)
Heart rate monitor Yes
Compass Yes
Barometer Yes
Gyroscope Yes
Ambient light Yes
Microphone Yes

Powering the Apple Watch Series 5 is the Apple S5 chip, which is extremely snappy and surprisingly capable. Devs have gotten 3D games running on this thing and they don’t look awful. The Watch has an impressive 32GB of on-board storage, all the usual sensors, built-in GPS (no phone necessary), and optional cellular data.

Apple Watch Series 5 Side Profile

In terms of hardware, the Apple Watch’s biggest limitation continues to be the infamous battery life. The Watch is supposed to last around 18 hours, though it will generally go a day and a half with normal use. You’re going to need to charge it every night, which means it can’t come with you on long hiking trips (you’ll only get 4 hours of GPS tracking) and it isn’t ideal for sleep tracking, either. This isn’t a huge problem for me, as I simply charge the device each morning while I make breakfast for my daughter. That said, it does take a while to charge at 1.5 hours and this means it often misses out on some activity tracking when I’m chasing my daughter around the house.

Apple Watch Series 5 Face

Smartwatch features

Neither the specs nor the design are what set the Apple Watch Series 5 apart. Like all of Apple’s best products, the magic of the Apple Watch lies in the perfect marriage of hardware and software.

Of course, the Apple Watch Series 5 handles all your smartwatch basics. It shows notifications, it sends messages, and it lets you pay for stuff with Apple Pay. It even shows the time!

Notifications on Apple Watch Series 5

But it’s the thoughtful software features, intuitive-yet-powerful user interface, and snappy responsiveness that make this such a fantastic product.

WatchOS 6.1 really feels like a shrunken-down version of iOS. For example, you swipe down to see your notifications, and you can double-press the digital crown to call up Apple Pay. A swipe up from the bottom opens the settings menu, which includes some neat features such as the torch, and a “find my phone” function. Swipe left or right along the bottom to switch between watch faces, and raise the watch at any time to begin talking to Siri. A click of the digital crown will bring up the cluster of apps, while the button will show either a list of your currently open apps, or your favorites for easy access. Switching between open apps is almost as fast as it is on a full-sized mobile device.

Apple Watch Series 5 Moody Lighting

The Apple Watch comes with a lot of built-in apps and services. You can control media playback, communicate with other Watch owners with a walkie-talkie (great/terrible for couples), make calls, or get directions with haptic cues straight to your wrist. Talking from your wrist is not an exclusive Apple feature, but it’s only found in a handful of smartwatches, and it’s surprisingly useful. I used it a number of times in situations where my phone was inaccessible, or my hands were full. It’s perfect for making quick plans, or telling someone you’ll call them back.

Apple Watch App List

To me though, the real stand-out feature is the ability to control my iPhone’s camera. (The other big reason I switched to iOS was for the iPhone 11 Pro Max‘s camera.) For my fitness YouTube channel and Instagram account, I need to regularly record myself training and working out. In the past, this has been cumbersome and I can’t count how many times I achieved a personal best on one exercise or another only to find I was out of focus. The Apple Watch Series 5 sends a live feed from the camera right to my wrist, and I can even swap between lenses, or shift the focal point. It’s game-changing for me, and it never ceases to impress friends when we’re lining up for group photos (note that Wear OS devices can do this too).

Apple Watch Camera Training

Setting reminders is one of my favorite uses for the Apple Watch. Being able to speak to Siri as easily as raising my wrist is game-changing, and it’s much harder to miss notifications on iOS than it is on Android (this was something else that drove me away from Samsung in particular). In short, this takes a load off my mind and helps me be just a little less scatterbrained. It’s this kind of additional productivity that I was really hoping I’d be able to get from the Apple Watch.

Also read: The best Siri commands for productivity, information, laughter, and more

Of course, I’d be remiss if I didn’t point out that Google Assistant on Wear OS is a better assistant. But Siri is more than capable of most tasks you might conceivably want from a watch (and it’s miles better than Bixby).

Setting reminders is one of my favorite uses for the Apple Watch.

App support

Just like the iPhone itself, the Apple Watch really comes alive when you start installing third-party apps (which can now be done directly from your wrist). Finding these apps can be hard work, seeing as there’s no dedicated Apple Watch store on iOS (something Google does better), and the one on the watch itself is fiddly to use with few features for easy discovery.

Once you do find them, though, the selection of Apple Watch apps is pretty amazing. A lot of the big brand apps have watchOS counterparts, which includes the likes of Headspace, Todoist, Spotify, MyFitnessPal, Audible, and more. The Todoist app lets me not only tick off my to-do items, but even add new ones by voice.

Apple Watch Audible

Complications, or watch-face widgets add greatly to this functionality. You can pick several widgets for each watch face, providing a quick shortcut to the apps of your choice. This lets you see useful information at all times, such as upcoming todos. Again, this really helped me stay on task throughout the day, as I was constantly reminded of what I needed to do next. Complications can be customized to a small degree, though it’s crazy to me that WatchOS has better widgets than iOS itself.

Smaller developers are knocking it out of the park here and have found plenty of ways to be useful on the Apple Watch. Nano, for example, is a surprisingly feature-rich Reddit app; a great distraction in a pinch. I also enjoy Peak for its brain-training games. To me, brain training and smartwatches are a natural pairing.

Also read: The best workout earbuds you can buyThe best smartwatches you can buy

Apple Watch App Store

The last smartwatch I wore frequently was the Garmin Vivoactive 3. That device had a lot of apps too, available through the Connect IQ store, but the selection paled in comparison to what Apple offers. Further, a lot of the Garmin apps either didn’t work or only supported newer Garmin models. You’ll get more apps with the Garmin Vivoactive 4 or Venu, but it still falls short compared to the Apple Watch.

Wear OS fairs better than Garmin in terms of app support, but again, the Apple Watch has it beat.

Also read: Garmin Vivoactive 4 review | Garmin Venu review

Fitness tracking

For many people, the Apple Watch has become their go-to fitness tracker and there is a lot to like here.

General activity tracking on the Watch is denoted by three rings representing your calories burned, exercise, and time standing. The watch measures your heart rate roughly once every 10 minutes (though some apps will measure more frequently), and there’s an FDA-approved ECG that can alert you to potential heart conditions.

Galaxy Watch Active 2 vs Apple Watch Series 5 Activity Tracking

One of the most vaunted features of the current line of Apple Watches is fall detection. If you should fall while wearing the watch and then fail to move, your watch can call for help. There have already been stories of Apple Watches saving lives.

You can monitor your heart rate and activity more thoroughly during workouts, but automatic-workout detection leaves a little to be desired; you’ll probably be better off starting activities manually. The GPS is precise, and the Apple Watch Series 5 has everything you need for a run built-in — meaning you can confidently leave your phone at home. While a wrist-worn heart rate monitor will never be as accurate as a chest-worn strap (especially during weight lifting), the Apple Watch Series 5 is still one of the better options and does pair with a strap if you prefer. With GPS on, you’ll only manage around 4-6 hours, so it’s cutting it fine for a marathon (but still not bad!). To eke out the most battery possible, you’ll want to turn off the display and other connectivity, though.

Also read: 15 best fitness apps for Android

Apple Watch Fitness Tracker

There are dozens of stories about the Apple Watch saving lives.

Unfortunately, the Apple Watch doesn’t track sleep out of the box, which is presumably due to battery limitations.

Third-party options fill the gap, however. I used one called Sleep++  for a bit. When I found that app wasn’t logging my nightly wake-ups properly though (of which there are many, thanks to my 15-month-old daughter), I swapped it for another called Autosleep. Autosleep is excellent, and in many ways rivals the detail generated by dedicated hardware, such as the Oura Ring 2. You get a huge amount of information, including a readiness score that is based on HRV (heart rate variability), and resting heart rate.

Oura Ring 2 Review

There’s nothing to stop you from using the Oura Ring 2 in conjunction with the Apple Watch. And support for Apple Health is available out of the box!

And that’s the story of fitness tracking on Apple Watch. What’s there is robust, but basic. It’s the huge variety of fitness apps that make the Apple Watch such a strong contender. Apps like Gymatic offer to count your reps at the gym, Endomondo is one of the best running apps, and there are tons of great guided yoga apps, HIIT sessions, and calisthenics routines.

Apple Watch Series 5 Heart Rate Monitor

I really enjoyed an app called Endel, which creates relaxing soundscapes based on the time of day and personal metrics. There is a level of creativity and polish here that I simply haven’t found on other devices. If you are interested in using biofeedback to improve your health and lifestyle, the Apple Watch Series 5 has you covered.

That said, the depth of information available from a Garmin fitness tracker still trumps the Apple Watch.

An Android user’s take on Apple Watch Series 5

Apple Watch Series 5 From Side

So, how does the Apple Watch stack up compared to what’s available on Android?

The Apple Watch Series 5 base model cost $ 399 with an aluminum chassis. The stainless steel case starts at $ 699, while the titanium model costs a hefty $ 799. The cellular model starts at $ 499 in aluminum. That makes it significantly more expensive than most of the competition. In my opinion, though, it definitely justifies that price.

Apple Watch Series 5 (40mm) The best smartwatch, period.
The Apple Watch Series 5 is the best smartwatch available, period. The ECG keeps track of your heart rate and warns you if it gets too high or low. The always-on screen means you’re always aware of the time. It even senses if you’ve fallen and don’t respond to the vibrations.

While it’s true that there are some solid smartwatches for the Android platform, and Wear OS certainly has a few things going for it, the Apple Watch is a step above. There’s a reason this device has garnered so much praise: it benefits from a beautiful design, an intelligent UI, and impressive app support. It’s not perfect (battery life and sleep tracking let it down), and it’s expensive, too. Whether it’s paying for groceries with my wrist or getting reminders that I can’t possibly miss, there are countless times throughout the day I was glad to have the Apple Watch.

Another great thing about the Apple Watch is that it’s getting better all the time. Unlike Wear OS, which rarely sees updates from Google, the Apple Watch gets new features regularly and benefits from superb ongoing support.

The Apple Watch Series 5 is the first smartwatch I’ve ever used that became an essential part of my workflow, and I’ve only scratched the surface of what it can do.

More posts about smartwatches

Android Authority

Posted in Android NewsComments (0)

OnePlus 8 series to challenge the Galaxy S20 with its own 120Hz Fluid Display

OnePlus display

OnePlus has developed a new QHD+ OLED display with a 120Hz refresh rate that will debut with the OnePlus 8 series. The company revealed specifications and features for the new display at its screen technology event held in Shenzhen, China earlier today.

With a 120Hz refresh rate, the content on the display is refreshed 120 times per second. This makes for smoother playback as well as an overall fluid OS navigation experience. We’ve previously seen 120Hz screens on the likes of the Asus ROG Phone 2 and Razer Phone 2.

OnePlus 120Hz Fluid Display specs

According to information trickling in on Twitter and Chinese social media website Weibo, the display will feature a 10-bit color depth. This means that it will be able to produce a palette of 1.07 billion colors as opposed to an 8-bit panel which can display 16.7 million colors. Having a 10-bit panel is also necessary for true HDR 10 implementation.

The Verge reports that OnePlus worked with Samsung to develop the new display. The publication also reports that the company has done work on top of Android to improve animations like core OS gestures.

Additionally, OnePlus aims to have a 0.8 JNCD rating for every 120Hz display it produces. JNCD stands for Just Noticeable Color Differences and is a measurement of the bare minimum color difference a human eye can spot. By comparison, the Galaxy Note 10 Plus has a 0.4 JNCD, which means it displays colors that are near perfect.

Machine translation of the company’s presentation slides suggests that the new display will use a dedicated MEMC chip. MEMC stands for Motion Estimation and Motion Compensation and is usually a technology available on televisions. It inserts new frames between existing ones in a video to decrease motion blur.

OnePlus’ MEMC tech can apparently upscale low frame rate videos to a maximum of 120 frames per second, making the picture smoother and more natural. If this really works as intended, it could mean a much better gaming experience on future OnePlus phones.

Further, OnePlus’ 120Hz display has a touch sample rate of 240Hz and can apparently hit 1,000 nits peak brightness. It is optimized by something OnePlus calls Smooth Chain technology. However, details are scarce at the moment thanks to the official information being available only in Chinese.

Will the OnePlus 8 get a 120Hz display?

Speaking to The Verge, OnePlus CEO Pete Lau confirmed that the company’s next phone would tout the new display tech, even going as far as to say that it will be “the best smartphone display in 2020.”

That’s quite the claim! We just hope the high refresh rate displays are well optimized for power consumption. Current OnePlus devices with a 90Hz display experience significant battery drainage when the refresh rate is set to 90Hz.

OnePlus is expected to detail its display tech even further very soon. We’ll let you know as soon as we have the latest.

More posts about OnePlus

Android Authority

Posted in Android NewsComments (0)

Related Sites

Powered by WP Robot