Photo Credit: Xiaomi
Redmi Note 8, Redmi Note 8 Pro, and Realme XT unveiling dominated the tech news this week. The two Redmi Note 8 phones and Realme XT are among the most-anticipated smartphones in India right now. Additionally, Apple sent out invites for the 2019 iPhone launch event and Oppo introduced its new Reno 2-series phones. Realme 5 and Motorola One Action also went on sale for the first time and Vivo Z1x launch is scheduled for next week. Read on to find out more details about the biggest happenings in the world of technology this week.
Redmi Note 8 and Redmi Note 8 Pro made their debut in China this week. The two new smartphones from Xiaomi's sub-brand Redmi will succeed the company's popular Redmi Note 7 and Redmi Note 7 Pro phones. It is quite likely that Redmi will continue to offer Redmi Note 7 phones in its portfolio after a price correction as the series has been quite popular. In fact, Xiaomi recently announced that Redmi Note 7 phones have crossed the 20 million unit shipments mark since their launch.
Redmi Note 8 smartphones come with various improvements over their predecessors. The most notable of which being the presence of the quad rear cameras on both phones. Redmi Note 8 Pro is also company's first smartphone ever to pack a 64-megapixel primary camera. Redmi Note 8, on the other hand, will come with a 48-megapixel primary shooter, similar to the Redmi Note 7 Pro and Redmi Note 7S.
The three other cameras in the Redmi Note 8 lineup include an 8-megapixel ultra-wide-angle shooter, a 2-megapixel macro camera, and a 2-megapixel depth sensor. Other commonalities among the Redmi Note 8 and Redmi Note 8 Pro are the presence of a USB Type-C port, MIUI 10 software, full-HD+ display, up to 128GB of onboard storage, 3.5mm audio jack, and rear fingerprint sensor.
The Redmi Note 8 features a 6.39-inch screen with Snapdragon 665 SoC at the core, whereas the Redmi Note 8 Pro comes with a 6.53-inch display with MediaTek Helio G90T SoC inside. Additionally, you will get a 4,000mAh battery, 13-megapixel front shooter, and up to 6GB of RAM with the Redmi Note 8. The Redmi Note 8 Pro packs a 4,500mAh battery, 20-megapixel front shooter, and up to 8GB of RAM.
Unsurprisingly, Xiaomi India chief Manu Kumar Jain has already teased that Redmi Note 8 series will be coming to India. He said on Twitter that it will likely take 8 weeks for the phones to make their India debut. There is no word on the Redmi Note 8 price in India right now but it is expected to be similar to China, where Redmi Note 8 starts at CNY 999 (roughly Rs. 10,000) and Redmi Note 8 Pro will retail starting CNY 1,399 (roughly Rs. 14,000).
Realme this week gave the world a glimpse of its upcoming 64-megapixel camera phone Realme XT. The company showed off the smartphone at an event in China and also sent out a press release announcing several of the phone's key specifications. The Realme XT will be going head-to-head with Xiaomi's Redmi Note 8 Pro in India over the coming weeks as both smartphones make their debut. At this point, the exact India release dates for both phones are a mystery.
Like the Redmi Note 8 Pro, Realme XT also uses Samsung's ISOCELL GM2 64-megapixel sensor and the company had revealed at an event that it has been working with the South Korean company even before the GM2 was unveiled. It is quite likely that we might soon see other smartphone makers as well release phones using the same sensor as the craze for 64-megapixel camera phones rises among the companies and consumers.
In addition to the 64-megapixel primary shooter, Realme XT's rear camera setup will come with three other sensors – an 8-megapixel sensor with an f/2.25 wide-angle lens, a 2-megapixel sensor with a macro lens, and a 2-megapixel depth sensor for portraits. Realme XT will be powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 712 SoC, paired with up to 8GB of RAM and up to 128GB of onboard storage. Realme is also packing a 4,000mAh battery with support for VOOC 3.0 fast charging and a 16-megapixel selfie shooter.
Realme XT will feature a 6.4-inch Super AMOLED screen with a waterdrop-style notch and 92.1 percent screen-to-body ratio. Further, the phone is expected to run on ColorOS Realme Edition, based on Android 9 Pie. Realme has also stated that India will be the first market to get the Realme XT smartphone. It will join the Realme X in the company's X series in the country. Apart from the X series, Realme also offers phones as a part of the Realme series and Realme C series. The company seems to have ditched the Realme U series but it continues to offer the lone Realme U1 smartphone in the lineup.
To recall, Realme XT was first revealed alongside the Realme 5 and Realme 5 Pro smartphones last month as the company's next flagship smartphone. There is no word on the pricing of the Realme XT right now, however the company is likely to keep it aggressive in order for better complete with the only other 64-megapixel camera phone – Redmi Note 8 Pro.
Realme 5 went on sale for the first time this week. The smartphone was launched in the country last month and carries a price tag of Rs. 9,999 for the 3GB + 32GB storage variant. Realme offers the 4GB + 64GB and 4GB + 128GB models of the smartphone at Rs. 10,999 and Rs. 11,999, respectively. It is being sold in Crystal Blue and Crystal Purple colour variants via Flipkart and Realme.com.
Meanwhile, Realme India CEO Madhav Sheth has revealed that the offline availability of the Realme 5 as well as Realme 5 Pro will begin in mid-September. He did not share an exact release date but given that September has already started, we should have more clarity on the matter over the coming days. According to Sheth, the two phones will be offered via authorised retailers.
Realme 5 comes with features like a 6.5-inch HD+ screen, Qualcomm Snapdragon 665 SoC, and a 5,000mAh battery. The phone also packs a quad-camera setup, which houses a 12-megapixel primary shooter, an 8-megapixel wide-angle camera, a 2-megapixel sensor with a macro lens, and a 2-megapixel depth sensor for portraits. There is a 13-megapixel front shooter on board as well. Additionally, the Realme 5 packs a rear fingerprint sensor as well.
Apple has revealed that it will be hosting an event on September 10 at its headquarters in Cupertino, California, where the company will reveal its new iPhone 11 lineup. The specifics of the upcoming iPhone models are largely a secret at this point, still a few key details have managed to slip out. The iPhone 11 series is expected to include three models, with two sporting OLED screen and the third one carrying a LCD panel, like the 2018 iPhone models.
Apple iPhone 11 series is also likely to be powered by the A13 chip. The iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max said rumoured to carry a triple rear camera setup, whereas the iPhone 11, a successor to iPhone XR, will pack two rear cameras. Among other details, the iPhone 11 lineup is said to support Apple Pencil and keep the lightning port.
Oppo unveiled its Reno 2 series this week in India. It includes smartphones like Oppo Reno 2, Reno 2Z, and Reno 2F. Oppo has revealed the prices of only Reno 2 and Reno 2Z smartphones right now. The Oppo Reno 2 has been priced at Rs. 36,990 and will go on sale beginning September 20 in the country. The Oppo Reno 2Z, on the other hand, carries a price tag of Rs. 29,990 and will be available beginning next week.
Oppo Reno 2F will go on sale sometime in November this year and is likely to be cheaper than the Oppo Reno 2Z. The three smartphones come with features like quad rear camera, ColorOS 6.1, and 48-megapixel primary shooter. While the Oppo Reno 2 keeps the shark-fin style selfie shooter from the original Reno, the Reno 2Z and Reno 2F sport pop-up selfie camera modules.
Samsung launched a slightly upgraded version of its budget Galaxy A10 smartphone in the Indian market this week. Dubbed as Samsung Galaxy A10s, the new phone packs several improvements over the original, including a dual-camera setup, bigger battery, and a higher-resolution selfie shooter. Samsung Galaxy A10s price has been set at Rs. 9,499 for the 2GB + 32GB version and at Rs. 10,499 for the 3GB + 32GB version.
The Galaxy A10s is already on sale in the country and can be purchased via various online retailers, major physical stores, Samsung Online Store, and the Samsung Opera House. It is being offered in Black, Blue, and Green colour variants. Samsung Galaxy A10s features a 6.2-inch HD+ (720x1520 pixels) Infinity-V display and is powered by an unnamed octa-core SoC. It also packs a 13-megapixel primary shooter, paired with a 2-megapixel image sensor. On the front, the phone has an 8-megapixel selfie camera.
In other news, an IANS report tipped the price of Samsung Galaxy M30s, an upcoming smartphone from the South Korean company. The phone is said to be getting priced between Rs. 15,000 and Rs. 20,000. Samsung Galaxy M30s is rumoured to pack a massive 6,000mAh battery, 6.4-inch screen, Android 9 Pie, and a rear fingerprint sensor. The phone will also reportedly pack a 48-megpixel primary shooter on the back.
Lenovo sent out invites to the tech press in the country on Thursday revealing that it will launch the Z6 Pro, K10 Note, and A6 Note phones in India on September 5. While the Lenovo Z6 Pro has already been introduced in the Chinese market as the company's flagship model, India will be first to get the Lenovo K10 Note and A6 Note.
The company has not shared any other details at this point; however, the invite image has revealed the presence of a triple rear camera setup and a rear fingerprint sensor on the Lenovo K10 Note. Similarly, Lenovo A6 Note is seen packing dual rear cameras, waterdrop-style notch, and a rear fingerprint sensor. To recall, Lenovo Z6 Pro features a 6.39-inch AMOLED display with DC Dimming and HDR 10 support. The phone is powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 SoC, paired with up to 12GB of RAM and 512GB of onboard storage.
Lenovo isn't the only smartphone maker launching new phones next week in India, Vivo has also teased the launch of its Z1x smartphone on September 6. It will join the company's Vivo Z1 Pro in the Z series. The phone will be offered via Flipkart and has already been confirmed to carry a 4,500mAh battery with 22.5W fast charging support as well as an in-display fingerprint sensor.
A recent leak also revealed that the Vivo Z1x will run on Android Pie, and feature a 6.38-inch full-HD+ Super AMOLED display. It is said to be powered by the Snapdragon 712 SoC, paired with 6GB RAM. Vivo Z1x will also have triple rear cameras with a main 48-megapixel shooter, another ultra-wide angle camera, and a depth sensing camera.
Lastly in the smartphones, Motorola One Action went on sale for the first time in India this week. The smartphone was launched in the country last week and comes with the features like a 6.3-inch full-HD+ IPS display along with 21:9 aspect ratio, octa-core Samsung Exynos 9609 SoC, a triple rear camera setup, and a 12-megapixel selfie shooter at the front. The highlight of the phone is the 16-megapixel action camera present in the phone as a part of the triple camera setup.
Motorola One Action has been priced at Rs. 13,999 for the lone 4GB RAM + 128GB storage variant and is being offered via Flipkart in the country. The smartphone comes in Denim Blue and Pearl White colour variants. After first two flash sales, Flipkart seems to have listed the phone as open sale on its platform.
In telecom news, it was rather quiet. BSNL was the only telecom operator seen making news because of its new 4G data plans. The state-owned telecom operator has been slow in rolling out 4G but in the areas where it currently offers the service, the operator is really looking to entice the consumers. In the same bid, BSNL has reportedly introduced two new prepaid plans that offer massive 10GB of 4G data per day.
The new prepaid plans are priced at Rs. 96 and Rs. 236, and come with 28 days and 84 days validity, respectively. There are no calling or other benefits bundled with these two prepaid plans, and it is believed that the new plans will be available for a limited time only.
In other news, RedmiBook 14 Pro and Redmi TV 70 were also made official this week by Xiaomi in China. The two devices were showcased alongside the Redmi Note 8 lineup. While the Redmi TV is the first Redmi-branded smart TV from Xiaomi, the RedmiBook 14 Pro will join the first Redmi-branded laptop in the company's portfolio.
The Redmi TV 70 sports a minimalist design and packs a 70-inch 4K display with HDR support. The smart TV runs on the company's PatchWall platform and is powered by a quad-core 64-bit Amlogic SoC, paired with 2GB of RAM. Additionally, the Redmi TV supports various audio technologies such as Dolby Audio and DTS HD. It will go on sale in China beginning September 10 with a price tag of CNY 3,799 (roughly Rs. 38,000).
The RedmiBook 14 Pro is powered by 10th gen Intel processors and comes in three variants. The base variant is powered by the Intel Core i5 (10210U) CPU, paired with 8GB of RAM and 256GB of SSD storage. This version has been priced at CNY 3,999 (roughly Rs. 40,000). The middle-tier model is also powered by the same Intel Core i5 (10210U) processor, but paired with 8GB of RAM and a 512GB SSD. This model carries a price tag of CNY 4,499 (Rs. 45,000). The third and last variant is powered by the 10th Gen Intel Core i7 (10510U) processor, coupled with 8GB of RAM and 512GB SSD storage. It will carry a price tag of CNY 4,999 (roughly Rs. 50,000).
The popular document scanning app CamScanner caused a massive security incident earlier this week when it was found to be serving malware to its users. The folks at Kaspersky discovered that CamScanner's recent versions shipped with an advertising library containing a malicious module. Google was quick to remove the app from the Play Store after being notified by the Kaspersky researchers. It remains out of the Play Store even now. As the app had over 100 million installs, it is unclear how many Android devices got infected with the malicious module.
PUBG team has pushed a new update for the console players in the form of Update 4.2 this week. The update brought a number of improvements and new features. Among the highlights, the PUBG team mentions the inclusion of dynamic weather on the Erangel map as well as several visual upgrades, reduced ambient wind noise on Vikendi, more destructible objects on Erangel, and vehicle changes. A new survivor pass is also debuting with the latest version.
Revolt Motors, the company started by Micromax Co-Founder Rahul Sharma, finally revealed its pricing strategy for the RV400 electric bike. In addition, the company introduced a new electric motorcycle in the form of RV 00. Revolt will be offering both AI-enabled electric bikes as a subscription service. The Revolt RV300 is offered at a price of Rs. 2.999 per month. On the other hand, the RV400 has two pricing options, the base model starts at Rs. 3,499 per month, while the premium model is priced at Rs. 3,999.
WhatsApp released a new beta version update for iPhone. This update included the support for Memoji Stickers and brought the "WhatsApp From Facebook" branding to the app. Carrying the version number 188.8.131.52, the update is now available to WhatsApp beta for iPhone users.
Lastly, Google launched its Nest Hub smart display in India on Monday. The smart display carries a price tag of Rs. 9,999 and is now available via Flipkart, Tata Cliq, Croma, and Reliance Digital in Chalk and Charcoal colours. The Next Hub is powered by Google Assistant and features a 7-inch touchscreen panel. The device also has two far-field microphones, a full-range speaker, and an Ambient EQ light sensor. Google has provided Wi-Fi 802.11ac and Bluetooth v5.0 on the connectivity front.