With Republic Day in the middle of the week, many people ended up taking things a little easy. Not so in the world of tech though, as we saw a number of launches, and major updates. Here's a look at all the news you can use from the week.
The selfie-focused Vivo V5 Plus was launched in India this week, priced at Rs. 27,980. The Vivo V5 Plus has a 16-megapixel rear camera, and a dual camera setup for the front, with a 20-megapixel sensor and an 8-megapixel sensor, which captures depth information to help create the digital 'bokeh'.
Other Vivo V5 Plus key specifications include a 5.5-inch full-HD (1080x1920 pixels) display, a 2.0GHz octa-core Snapdragon 625 SoC, 4GB of RAM, and a 3055mAh battery, as well as 64GB of internal storage. The Vivo V5 Plus also comes preloaded with the Face Beauty 6.0 app. It sports a metal unibody design, supports dual-SIM cards, and runs on Funtouch 2.6 OS that's based on Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow.
There was another launch this week, also of a beefed up variant of a phone that's already in the market. We're talking about the Lenovo K6 Power 4GB variant. While the Lenovo K6 Power is priced at Rs. 9,999 for the 3GB variant (Review), the 4GB RAM version that launched this week is priced at Rs. 10,999.
The Lenovo K6 Power sports a 5-inch full-HD (1080x1920 pixels) IPS display and is powered by a 1.4GHz octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 430 SoC and Adreno 505 GPU. The K6 Power bears a 13-megapixel rear camera with a Sony IMX258 sensor, PDAF and LED flash, apart from an 8-megapixel front camera with a Sony IMX219 sensor and a wide-angle lens.
Meanwhile, demand for the new Nokia continues unabated. Just last week, the available Nokia 6 units were sold out and the smartphone went out of stock within a minute in its first flash sale. Two days ahead of that Nokia 6 flash sale, registrations crossed the mark of 1 million. Registrations for the second flash sale for the Nokia 6 have already crossed 1.4 million.
If you've been looking to buy a Nokia 6 in China, HMD Global has said that the smartphone will not be available in white. Recently, several media publications claimed that the Nokia 6 smartphone was available to buy via a third-party online retailer in Philippines and come in a brand new White version. It turns out that the Nokia 6 smartphone being sold via Lazada platform is not from an authorised seller.
Speaking of Nokia 6, a Nokia-branded Android phone running on a Snapdragon 835 SoC appears to be in the works, though the company has hinted that this phone will not come out soon. A Snapdragon 835-powered Nokia P1 smartphone was leaked recently and is expected to be the premium offering from Nokia. There's also something called a Nokia Heart Android phone, which is rumoured to be priced lower than the Nokia 6. The Nokia Heart smartphone has been tipped in GFXBench benchmark listing and is believed to be a toned down version of the Nokia 6 smartphone that was launched earlier this month.
Meanwhile, WhatsApp for iPhone finally gets a feature that's been on Android for a really long time - you now have the ability to queue messages on WhatsApp. This means that you can respond to people when you're offline (say on a flight) and the WhatsApp messages will automatically be sent when you connect to the Internet.
In other phones-related news, we had the launch of the Honor 6X (Review) this week. The phone, priced at Rs. 12,999, packs in two rear cameras - one with a 12-megapixel sensor, and the other with a 2-megapixel sensor for depth detection to provide the 'bokeh' effect.
Going back to rumours, the Samsung Galaxy S8 specifications and release date have been leaked - once again. The new leak shows the upcoming Galaxy S8 flagship smartphone in all its metallic glory. According to the leak, the Samsung Galaxy S8 variants will sport 5.8-inch and 6.2-inch displays.
They will supposedly run on the latest Snapdragon 835 SoC (or a 10nm in-house SoC, depending on regions) paired with 4GB of RAM, and 64GB inbuilt storage that could be expandable via microSD card (up to 256GB). The phone is likely to be unveiled on March 29 and to go on sale on April 21, according to the leak.
At the start of the week, Samsung also confirmed that the battery was to blame for Note 7 fires, but it also acknowledged that it provided the specifications, and dismissed the possibility of suing the manufacturers.
Also at the start of the week, Hugo Barra, the Global VP for Xiaomi, announced that he is leaving the Chinese smartphone company and moving back to Silicon Valley, citing health reasons and a desire to be closer to his family. A couple of days later, it was revealed that Barra was joining Facebook, to lead all VR efforts within the company.
These were the biggest highlights of the week, but there were also a number of interesting launches. We saw two new tablets launched this week, the Asus ZenPad 3S 10 LTE, which is the LTE version of the ZenPad 3S 10 (Z500M) tablet, and the iBall Slide Nimble 4GF, which is a voice-calling tablet with 4G VoLTE support. We also had the launch of the Intex Cloud Q11 4G, with selfie flash, and VoLTE.
A new report shows that Reliance Jio is now the primary data connection in India, and is leading in consumption as well. This is of course due to "welcome offer" of Jio that offered unlimited data to its subscribers till March 31 this year - it's only after people have to start paying to use Jio that we're going to see this change. Meanwhile, we're seeing more of the "Reliance Jio effect", as BSNL announced a new Rs. 149 plan for customers, offering 30 minutes of free calls to any network per day, and 300MB of data usage.
Two other interesting pieces of news related to apps - FreeCharge now lets you buy Google Play recharge codes. These codes can then be used to buy apps, books, movies and so on through Google's digital storefront. Last week, Paytm also unveiled this option on its app. And Netflix added a handy new feature to its Android app - SD card support. Earlier, when your Netflix downloads would be stored on the phone's internal storage, which could be a bit of a problem, and Android users now have the option to keep the files on their SD cards. However, you can't move files that have already been downloaded.
These were the highlights of the week for us, and if there's some other news that you think we missed here, let us and the other readers know via the comments.
Disclosure: Paytm's parent company One97 is an investor in Gadgets 360.