If you missed out on the news this week then you've come to the right place, as we can get you caught up to all the important events that took place this week. There was a lot that happened, and one of the things that you might want to know more about is that the new Samsung Galaxy C9 Pro is now available for pre-order in India, priced at Rs. 36,900. Samsung India last month unveiled the Galaxy C9 Pro, and it was launched in China back in October.
The dual-SIM (Nano+Nano) 4G-enabled Samsung Galaxy C9 Pro runs Android 6.0 Marshmallow out-of-the-box. The Samsung Galaxy C9 Pro sports a 6-inch full HD (1080x1920) AMOLED display, and is powered by an octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 653 SoC, with four cores clocked at 1.95GHz and the rest at 1.4GHz, alongside 6GB of RAM. For photography, Samsung's new Galaxy C9 Pro smartphone packs a 16-megapixel camera on both front and rear. The rear 16-megapixel camera comes with an aperture of f/1.9 and a dual-LED flash. The Samsung Galaxy C9 Pro selfie camera too has the same aperture sans the flash module.
Another phone that got a fair bit of attention was from Xiaomi - the Chinese company unveiled the Redmi Note 4X this week which packs a 4100mAh battery, and has the Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 octa-core SoC, and a 5.5-inch display. Xiaomi has not announced pricing yet, but the phone will be available from February 14.
Xiaomi has introduced a new Hatsune Miku Limited Edition Redmi Note 4X variant as well, which will be available on Valentine's Day i.e. February 14. At launch, none of the other specifications of the new Xiaomi Redmi Note 4X were announced, with the idea that they are similar to the Xiaomi Redmi Note 4.
Asus was also in the news this week, thanks to the ZenFone 3S Max, which was launched at Rs. 14,999. The Asus ZenFone 3S Max bears a 5000mAh battery, and 3GB of RAM, with a 1.5GHz octa-core SoC. The Asus ZenFone 3S Max sports a 5.2-inch HD (720x1280 pixels) display with 2.5D curved glass and a brightness of 450-nits, and it's powered by a 1.5GHz octa-core MediaTek MT6750 SoC that's coupled with 3GB of RAM and the Mali T860 GPU.
There were plenty of other interesting launches through the week as well. The HTC 10 evo was unveiled in Taiwan, priced at TWD 17,990 (approximately Rs. 38,500) for the 32GB variant. The HTC 10 evo is the global variant of the Sprint-exclusive HTC Bolt which was launched recently in the US.
Other launches included the Zen Cinemax 4G with VoLTE support, launched at Rs. 6,390, and the Gionee F5 mid-range smartphone with a 4000mAh battery, priced at CNY 1799 (roughly Rs. 17,600). Intex also launched a number of phones this week, including the dual-SIM (Micro + Micro) Intex Aqua 4.0, the Intex Aqua Crystal, and the Intex Aqua Supreme+.
Apart from all the launches, there were also a number of interesting leaks about the upcoming phones from Motorola. As far back as January, we'd been seeing case renders of the upcoming phones, and this week we got a plethora of leaks. A countdown clock was released teasing the launch of the Moto G5 and Moto G5 Plus. The countdown is set at 20 days and few hours to go - hinting at the company's February 26 event just ahead of MWC. A leaked image of the Moto G5 Plus suggests a 5.2-inch screen instead of 5.5-inches. The leaked live image of the Moto G5 Plus smartphone claims a 2GHz octa-core processor; a 3000mAh battery with Turbo Power technology for fast charging; a 12-megapixel rapid focus camera, a fingerprint reader, and NFC. A second leak confirmed a physical button on the front of the device, and circular camera design.
Speaking of leaks, the upcoming iPhone, the so-called iPhone 8, which is releasing on the 10th anniversary of the original iPhone, might actually be called the iPhone X. Rumour has it that the phone may cost above $1,000 (roughly Rs. 67,100) - thanks to the introduction of OLED displays. It's also expected to sport a 5.8-inch display, and a much bigger battery.
There were some important news items from India as well. For one thing, people in Delhi-NCR might have had trouble getting a taxi since Friday. Ola and Uber drivers have reportedly gone on strike from Friday. The strike has been called by Sarvodaya Driver Association of Delhi, which claims to have 2,000 drivers in its group, and they demand better perks and relaxed hours for targets - similar strikes have taken place in Hyderabad and Bengaluru recently.
Amongst other things, the drivers are agitating against ride-sharing, which they say reduces their earning potential. Earlier this month, Uber and Ola also ran into trouble in Karnataka where the government wants to crack down on ride sharing.
Meanwhile, the NPCI's app for UPI payments, BHIM crossed 14 million registrations, according to IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad. It's worth pointing out that the app only became available on iOS after this statement, and the Google Play install stats still show between 5 million and 10 million installs. However, Google Play download stats do lag behind registration figures which the NPCI would have. Earlier this week, the government also stated that BHIM app users have made transactions worth Rs. 361 crores till date.
However, another piece of news that came out this week shows the importance of caution when dealing with digital money. Hitachi Payments Systems, which provides software for ATMs, accepted this week that its systems were compromised by a sophisticated malware in mid-2016, that led to one of the biggest cyber-security breaches in country with 3.2 million debit and credit cards affected, and losses of over Rs. 1.3 crore, according to the NPCI.
In what poses more scope for worries, the company said the amount of data exfiltrated is "unascertainable due to secure deletion by the malware".