Tag Archive | "this"

WhatsApp could soon rival Skype and Zoom with this planned feature update

WhatsApp by Facebook stock photo 7

In a recent response to the COVID-19 crisis, WhatsApp introduced more forward limits on the app to limit the spread of misinformation. Now, WhatsApp seems to be preparing yet another feature that would make it more useful during the ongoing pandemic.

Possibly prompted by the sudden rise in video calling, WhatsApp is reportedly looking to increase the group audio and video calling limit. The WhatsApp Beta watchers at WABetaInfo claim to have discovered a revealing string of code in the messaging app’s Android beta version 2.2.128.

Currently, WhatsApp restricts group video and audio calls to a maximum of four participants. This limit is tiny in comparison to video chatting platforms like Skype and Zoom, which allow a much larger number of people to participate in group calls.

There is no word on WhatsApp’s new group calling limit, but if Messenger is anything to go by, then we could see a refreshed limit of as many as 50 participants. After all, both platforms are owned by Facebook.

How many people do you think WhatsApp should allow on group calls? Take our poll below and let us know your preference.

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This could be the OnePlus 8 Pro fast charging wireless dock

OnePlus 8 charging dock side profile leakEvan Blass

The OnePlus 8 series is coming in hot and leaks just don’t seem to be subsiding. The latest one is a series of images showing the alleged wireless charging dock, a screen protector, and a transparent bumper case for the OnePlus 8 flagships.

The leak comes courtesy of tipster Evan Blass who also previously outed images of official case variants for the OnePlus 8 line.

While images of the OnePlus 8 screen protector and transparent bumper case are pretty self explanatory, the wireless charging dock is something we’ve not seen from OnePlus before (see images above and below).

This is the first time OnePlus is incorporating wireless charging on its phones and as per previous rumors the OnePlus 8 Pro will feature 30W wireless charging. We still don’t know for sure if the same tech will also be incorporated on the standard OnePlus 8 variant, but rumored specs suggest otherwise.

What’s that at the back?

When seen from the front, the supposed OnePlus wireless charging dock seems to have a tiny LED indicator to show when the phone is on charge. A Warp Charge symbol with battery percentage is also seen on the display of the OnePlus 8 phone placed on the dock.

OnePlus 8 wireless charging dockEvan Blass

The back of the white colored dock shows something that looks like a speaker grille. However, it could very well be a cooling vent with an in-built fan to keep the phones cool.

Wireless charging usually tends to heat up phones more than wired charging and a cooling vent would make a lot of sense, especially if the phones are equipped with high-speed wireless charging.

On the other hand, a speaker at the back could make the OnePlus 8 phones function more like a smart display. It could allow users to have a better hand-free experience while taking calls or listening to music and other audio content.

Nevertheless, we’re just happy that OnePlus could finally be giving us wireless charging on a flagship. The company is now a part of the Wireless Power Consortium (WPC) which  supports the Qi wireless charging standard. So it would be reasonable to assume that whichever OnePlus 8 phone gets wireless charging will also work with other third-party Qi wireless chargers.

Do you like this apparent OnePlus wireless charging dock? How much do you think the company should charge for it? Drop us a line in the comments section below.

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Deal: Save 30% on this 9-in-1 laptop docking station

laptop docking station

If you’re using your laptop more than ever recently, you may have found yourself a bit short of ports and outlets. This handy 9-in-1 docking station from Tech Deals solves the problem, and it’s 30% off for a limited time.

There isn’t much this docking station can’t handle. It features HDMI, SD card, USB, and more ports so that you can run a one-person command center. Either that or you could turn your laptop into a gaming station.

The docking station does more than just add ports to your setup. You can set it under the back of your laptop and use it as a stand. Now you can type in comfort while attaching all of your peripherals to stay productive. You can even set up 4K mirroring as long as your laptop has the right type of processor and graphics card.

The 9-in-1 docking station at a glance:

  • Connect up to nine peripherals with the HDMI, RJ45, SD Card, and USB ports.
  • Enjoy improved ergonomics as the device doubles as a laptop stand.
  • Mirror your display in high-quality with the 4K output.
  • Connect any Windows 7, 8.1, or 10.1 laptop or MacBook.

This powerful 9-in-1 docking stand has a retail value of $ 99.99 but you can grab it right now for just $ 69.99. It’s the perfect work from home accessory as you’ll feel like you have your full office right in front of you.

This deal won’t last long and stock is limited, so check it out via the widget below.

$ 69 .99
9-in-1 Laptop Docking Station

Save $ 30 .00

Buy it Now

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Is this deal not quite right for you? To see all our hottest deals, head over to the DEALS HUB or follow AA Deals on twitter.

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5 Android apps you shouldn’t miss this week! – Android Apps Weekly [311]

AAW Gwent screenshot
Welcome to the 311th edition of Android Apps Weekly! Here are the big headlines from the last week.

  • A few Google services went down earlier this week. This seems to happen a lot with all of the extra load on networks due to stay-at-home orders. However, this particular failure was a router problem in the southern United States. The issue was swiftly solved and things are back to normal. However, do expect some connection issues with how hard the Internet is used right now.
  • Huawei introduced Celia this week. It’s basically Huawei’s version of Google Assistant. It works a lot like a super basic version of a voice assistant app. You can use it to set alarms, check weather, create reminders, and send messages. In other words, it does the usual stuff. It also only uses certain search engines in certain regions. It comes pre-loaded on the Huawei P40 Pro.
  • Last week, we talked about the US partnering with companies to track your phone and the coronavirus. It turns out the same thing is happening in the EU. The commission promises to make the data anonymous, but use smartphone movements to track people to get an idea of how the coronavirus spreads. Of course, people are concerned as they are in the US. Hit the link to learn more details.
  • The Weather Channel app is a surprisingly good spot to track COVID-19’s spread through the US. The new feature is a new section within the official app and lets you track things across the country, or state by state. For instance, you can check Montana and see the progression of the illness. We highly recommend it because it is from a neutral source with a long history of reliability.
  • There were many smaller incidents involving coronavirus this week, especially with the new stay-at-home orders. For instance, a 77-year old man in Spain was fined for playing Pokemon Go in public. In addition, YouTube and Netflix are cutting stream quality to 480p to relieve data usage across the world and not just in the EU. However, it’s not all bad news. Google Play Movies may provide some free movies for people to watch while they’re stuck at home. Hit all the links for more details!


Price: Free to play

DragonSky is a new idle and merge game from Com2uS, the developers of Summoners War and other games. It plays like most idle and merge games. You start with a single character, merge it with a copy of itself to make a new character, and continue on this path until you have a massive collection of characters. Characters are dragons in this game and, to be honest, they’re fairly adorable. You clear stages with your dragons, earn experience points, and do other stuff as well. The game has its ups and downs and we expect it to improve more over time. However, the free to play aspects are a little strong with this one and Com2uS should probably calm down with the in-app purchases a little bit.

Almighty Volume Keys

Price: Free / $ 2.49

Almighty Volume Keys is a customization app for your volume keys. You can change the functionality to do a variety of things, including control music, record sound, turn your flashlight on and off, turn Bluetooth on and off, and do some other stuff. In addition, the app includes Tasker support and, of course, you can change the volume as well. It worked well in our testing and most people seem to have little if any trouble with it. This is an excellent app for remapping your volume keys.

Almighty Volume Keys screenshot

War of the Visions FFBE

Price: Free to play

War of the Visions FFBE is the follow up to Square Enix’s insanely popular and good Final Fantasy Brave Exvius game from a few years ago. This one takes place in the same game universe, but instead uses Final Fantasy Tactics style game play instead of the traditional mobile RPG. It has the usual gacha elements, including character summons of various rarities along with upgrades, gear, and stuff like that. The combat is a bit slow, but the game makes up for it by giving you an auto-battle button for easier grinding. We have no doubt this will climb in popularity just like the regular Final Fantasy Brave Exvius.

Facebook Creator Studio

Price: Free

Facebook Creator Studio is the latest app from the social media giant. This one lets creators mess around with their creations before it goes live on Facebook. You can check out analytics about your videos, manage your Facebook posts, and even respond to messages from fans of your page. The app started out quite poorly with a lot of bugs, hiccups, and sections not working properly. However, it should improve over time and, hopefully, this is the last app Facebook releases for this sort of thing for a while.

Facebook Creator Studio screenshot

Gwent: The Witcher Card Game

Price: Free to play

Gwent: The Witcher Card Game is, well, a mobile version of the card game from The Witcher series. The game boasts a fair progression system free of pay-to-win elements, plenty of cards to collect, plenty of deck combinations to build, and plenty of online PvP. The game isn’t a 100% faithful rendition of the version from The Witcher series, but it’s more than close enough to scratch that itch. The Witcher fans have already left to go download the game, but it’s good even if you haven’t played the games.

More posts about Android apps and game lists!

If we missed any big Android apps or games news, updates, or releases, tell us about it in the comments or hit me up on Twitter!

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This tool lets you share streaming services without sharing your passwords

Netflix best TV Shows section on smartphone 1

As the years go on, more people are ditching cable in favor of streaming services. That’s because cutting the cord is usually cheaper, easier, and more flexible. It’s also possible to share subscriptions with friends and family, giving users access to multiple services without paying for them all. Unfortunately, sharing streaming services means handing out your passwords, thus handing over a piece of your privacy. Well, that’s all about to change thanks to a new Google Chrome extension called DoNotPay.

DoNotPay is a tool that promises users the ability to share streaming services without sacrificing private passwords. From our experience, this tool works just as expected, and it’s super easy to setup.

How to use the DoNotPay extension

After you install the extension in a compatible Chromium-based browser, you will need to verify your identity. To do so, you need to submit your mobile number and enter the code DoNotPay sends to you via SMS. Then, once you are logged into the streaming website of your choice, click the DoNotPay extension icon in your browser to generate a link.

You can send this link either by entering someone’s email address or manually copying and pasting it. Once the recipient clicks the link, they will be prompted to go through the same process you did earlier to download the extension and verify their identity. Once that’s all done, they can access your subscription services without knowing your password.

Read also: A look back at how the last decade shaped video streaming, and what’s next

There are no limits to how many links you can create, but the standard subscription device limits will still apply. Note that even though people you share your subscriptions with won’t be able to change your passwords or two-factor authentication mechanisms, you are still giving them some control over your accounts. It’s essential to always take caution when deciding who to share your subscription services with.

DoNotPay’s functionality isn’t limited to streaming services either. The technology behind the tool allows users to safely share login information from any website.

How does it work?

DoNotPay works by effectively passing on the login session via encrypted cookies from the websites you choose to share. Founder Joshua Browder promises this method is safe, secure, and that DoNotPay cannot access these cookies.

“We use VGS [Very Good Security], which provides encryption and PCI II compliance and is trusted by many fintech companies,” Browder told VentureBeat. “The cookies are also encrypted in transit and can only be seen by the people you are sharing them with.”

Read also: Disney Plus vs Netflix: Which streaming service should you choose?

It’s also worth mentioning that DoNotPay offers this service entirely free without selling any of your data. The company makes money through its legal services for a small $ 3 monthly fee, which you can also access from the extension.

As of right now, DoNotPay is only available for Google Chrome and Chromium-based browsers like Microsoft Edge, though that may change in the future.

“We have plans to expand to Firefox, and even our DoNotPay mobile app if this service becomes popular,” Browder said. “The Chrome extension is a test to see if it catches on, which we imagine it will.”

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This all-in-one charger is a wireless charger and a power bank

Three-port Charger with Qi Enabled Wireless Charger and Power Bank

As you accumulate more devices with different charging methods, an all-in-one charger becomes increasingly handy. We’ve come across a great option, and you can save almost $ 100 with today’s deal.

This versatile three-in-one charger has two high-speed USB ports and one USB-C port. It can also act as a wireless charging pad for any Qi-compatible device, so it’s the only adapter you’ll need.

Never run out of power again.

There’s another handy feature in case you’re out of juice and nowhere near a socket. It doubles as a 6,700mAh power bank, so it should be able to restore any phone to full charge.

The compact design is the key to its portability. The charger looks bulky in the promo shots, but it’s actually only around three inches square and one inch thick, making it sufficiently small for a pocket or bag. The LED display shows how much power is left, as well as adding to the sleek look.

The three-in-one charger at a glance:

  • Use the USB-C outlet to power your compatible laptop.
  • Use the wireless charger with any Qi-compatible device.
  • Plug into any 120/240 VAC outlet and even use it in foreign countries.
  • View how much power is left with the built-in LED display.

There’s a huge 73% price drop on this device right now, meaning the usual asking price of $ 130 is temporarily reduced to just $ 34.99.

The price shoots back up soon so don’t miss out. Hit the button below to find the deal.

$ 34 .99
3-Port Charger with Qi-Enabled Wireless Charger and Power Bank

Save $ 95 .00

Buy it Now

3-Port Charger with Qi-Enabled Wireless Charger and Power Bank Buy it Now
Save $ 95 .00 $ 34 .99

Is this deal not quite right for you? To see all our hottest deals, head over to the DEALS HUB.

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Connect classic controllers to your Nintendo Switch with this cool adapter

The Nintendo Switch is a great gaming system with tons of options for portability. However, the Joy-cons can be annoyingly small sometimes (and expensive). It can make you yearn for the days of classic controllers like those of the Gamecube. The Gbros. Nintendo Switch Adapter lets you bring your favorite controller to the Switch, and it’s under $ 13 with our Tech Deals promo code.

The best part about the Gbros. Nintendo Switch Adapter is that it couldn’t be easier to use if you tried. Just plug your controller into the adapter and use the Bluetooth connection to pair it to your Switch. If Gamecube isn’t your controller of choice, you can also connect NES, SNES, SFC Classic Edition, and Wii Classic controllers with the same easy setup.

You can also connect the Gbros. Nintendo Switch Adapter to Windows-based systems with X-Input. The process is very similar and very simple.

Gbros Wireless Adapter for Nintendo Switch

When you want to change your button mapping, all you have to do is hold a few buttons and hit Start to make your changes. If you’re having a game night and you don’t have enough Joy-cons, you can also connect with 33 feet of Bluetooth range to enhance your multiplayer experience.

Gbros. Switch Adapter at a glance:

  • Connect your original wired Gamecube controller to Switch just like a Wii Remote.
  • It supports Switch and X-input with Windows.
  • Swap the button mapping between GameCube and Switch Pro.
  • Game from further away with up to 33 feet of Bluetooth range.

The Gbros. Nintendo Switch Adapter has a $ 20 retail value, but you can save extra with our promo code. By combining the Tech Deals price drop with the promo code PRESIDENT15 at checkout, the total you’ll pay is just $ 12.74.

The promo code is only valid this weekend, so check out the deal via the widget below.

$ 12 .74
Gbros. Nintendo Switch Adapter Use offer code: PRESIDENT15

Save $ 7 .25

Buy it Now

Gbros. Nintendo Switch Adapter Buy it Now
Save $ 7 .25 $ 12 .74

Use offer code: PRESIDENT15

Is this deal not quite right for you? To see all our hottest deals, head over to the DEALS HUB.

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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.

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Poco’s next smartphone confirmed to launch in this quarter

Poco Season 2

Xiaomi-backed Poco recently spun off into an independent company. At the time, it was unclear how Poco would operate without Xiaomi and the kind of devices it’ll launch as a standalone entity.

Now, in a series of interviews with Gadgets 360 and Hindustan Times (HT) , Poco India’s General Manager, C Manmohan has revealed what’s in store for the company and its consumers.

When is the next Poco phone coming?

Manmohan has confirmed that Poco’s next smartphone will launch as early as this quarter. That means we can expect a successor to the Poco F1 by March this year. The company has already started teasing a Season 2 for Poco, hinting at the imminent launch of the new device.

Related: The next Poco device could be a rebranded Redmi K30

As per Manmohan, the brand will stick to its core philosophy of offering a value-for-money proposition. He reportedly said that the next Poco phone will feature a “top-end SoC” and a “large amount of RAM”.

What about the phone’s software?

The upcoming Poco phone and its successors will continue to use MIUI for Poco. “Some of my Poco fans say that it is much more stock Android-ish,” Manmohan told Gadgets 360.

“So essentially, we are kind of, leveraging that and with our Poco fans feedback and the community feedback, we’ll work towards making it much more better and better,” he added.

Will Poco share resources with Xiaomi?

The Poco India GM confirmed that the company will use some of Xiaomi’s resources for the time being.

Speaking to HT he said that the Poco would leverage Xiaomi’s supply chain and after sales resources. It will pay for Xiaomi’s services and have its own sales, marketing, and product teams.

He also admitted that Poco will compete with Mi and Redmi in the market. However, the company is yet to decide the price segment in which it’ll operate.

What about launching Poco phones globally?

Poco’s comeback plans are currently limited to India. Gadgets 360 reports, “It doesn’t have any relation with the global operations of the brand Poco that is named Pocophone.”

According to Manmohan, Poco’s global launch plans are still undecided. He said, “It might take some more time for us to kind of validate that.”

What are your thoughts on Poco’s comeback strategy? Do you think it can recreate the success of the Poco F1? Do you have a wish list for the next Poco smartphone? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.

Android Authority

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Smartphone quiz: Does it have this feature?

Samsung Galaxy Buds sitting on phone

This quiz will test out just how familiar you really are with some of the best Android phones out there. All you have to do is figure out whether a phone in question has a feature like an in-display fingerprint scanner, a headphone jack, a pop up selfie camera, or any other that’s mentioned.

Are you up for the challenge? Press the Start button below and show us what you got — and don’t forget to share your score on social media at the end.

Note: If you don’t see a Start button, click here.

This is the 71st quiz in our regular weekly series. You can take a few of the most popular ones via the links below or check out all of them by clicking here.

Let us know which questions you thought were the hardest and share your result with others in the comments!

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