New Year 2017 Wishlist: What Gadgets 360 Staff Are Looking to Buy for Themselves – and Why

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Predictably, there’s a couple of new iPhones in there
  • VR gets a couple of shouts too
  • Gaming seems to be the most in-demand category for 2017

Now that 2017 is upon us, the talk inside the Gadgets 360 lab has shifted to things such as CES, MWC, and of course, iPhone 8 rumours. And, since we spend too much time shopping for tech, we’re also predictably talking about all the gadgets we want to buy.

For many of us, this is also a bit of a break from reality – we’ve had people in our team dream of buying an Xbox One for a couple of years before taking the plunge – but who doesn’t enjoy planning that next big tech buy?

If you’re curious about the gadgets that will be filling the Gadgets 360 office in the coming months – hopefully – then read on to see everyone’s top pick for buying in 2017.

Abhinav Lal: HTC Vive – While this will also entail a PC upgrade for me, I want to enter the world of PC gaming VR, and the HTC Vive looks like the best bet so far.

Akhil Arora: 4K HDR TV – Good 4K HDR TVs are way too expensive right now. I was lucky enough to witness the capabilities of one such TV when it landed in our office, and when Netflix showed off the high-end version. Despite the lack of content heading into 2017, I’m sold on the idea of buying one – if money was no barrier – more so because of how much TV I tend to watch.

Sony Z9D

Devika Chitnis: JBL GO – I am in dire need of a portable speaker. JBL Go has a clean design which is awesome and comes in different pop colours that make the speaker look alive. I am eyeing the orange one. The sound quality is surprisingly good for an affordable portable speaker.

Gagan Gupta: Bose QC35 – Now that I’ve said goodbye to the 3.5mm jack thanks to my iPhone 7 Plus, I need a good pair of over the ear headphones that can keep out noise, expecially on flights and cabs. While the Bose QC35 may not be every audiophile’s headphones of choice, it’s still the best when it comes to active noise cancellation, and it sounds just right with my classic rock collection.

Gopal Sathe: Zotac VR GO Backpack – I’ve been interested in VR since the Oculus Kickstarter first got off the ground. That we are finally “there” is hard to believe. That you can now put on a backpack and enjoy a (largely) mobile yet high quality VR experience is nothing short of magical. If I have the money, I’d absolutely be getting the Zotac VR GO Backpack.

zotac vr go box contents

Jamshed Avari: Geforce GTX 1070 – It really is time to get serious about tackling my Steam backlog. I’ve been putting this off for a long time, but looking at the kind of performance that both Nvidia and AMD have both brought to the table this year, it’s finally time. I’m leaning towards the GTX 1070 because I want enough performance headroom to drive top-tier games at 1920×1200 pixels for at least a few years. The specific graphics card will depend on prices and availability at the time of purchase.

Ketan Pratap: Next iPhone – I have been an Android user all of my life but I guess it’s about time to go for my first iPhone. Considering this year is the tenth anniversary of the first iPhone launch, I expect the next one to come with decent changes both in terms of innards as well as design.

Kunal Dua: What Gagan said.

Naina Gupta: Next iPhone – I have heard too much about iPhone around me but never used it. I want to take experience of 3D Touch, Live Photos, and other unique features of iPhone.

Pranay Parab: Board/ Card games – I’ve been meaning to reduce screen time and spend more time with my friends and family. Card games and board games sound like a way to accomplish this, without spending obscene amounts of money at cinemas and restaurants.

We’ve all played and hated Monopoly (aka Business), but there are great alternatives such as Pandemic, Resistance, Catan, Game of Thrones, Star Wars: Rebellion. I’m also planning to play funny card games such as Exploding Kittens with my friends.

Ravi Sharma: Nintendo Switch – I am not much of a gamer, but the Nintendo Switch (and its hybrid form factor) may finally be the device that pulls me into the fold. The rumoured price tag of $250-300 makes the Switch cheap enough for me to afford it, without sacrificing my budget for a mid-range laptop that I am also planning to buy in 2017.

And games such new Sonic, Mario, Dragon Quest X, Legend of Zelda titles that are expected to be released for Nintendo Switch are enough to satiate my appetite for nostalgia, while the exclusives will hopefully be engaging enough to retain me on the platform.

switch

Rishi Alwani: Project Scorpio – The PS4 Pro has a one year headstart over Microsoft’s next iteration on the Xbox One, that will remain a highly competent piece of kit in 2017. However I’m extremely curious to see how Microsoft leverages its fantastic first-party franchises, such as Forza and Halo to make full use of Project Scorpio, more so with the likes of Scalebound and Crackdown 3 on the way.

Rohan Naravane: Google Pixel 2 – It was great to see Google finally taking hardware into its own hands, and launch the Pixel phones. Since there’s been only one Pixel phone till now, there’s no guarantee if, or when, we’ll see another one. If Google does release a ‘Pixel 2’, which I’m hoping will happen around the end of 2017, then I would certainly want to buy one.

Roydon Cerejo: Manfrotto Advanced Camera and Laptop backpack – I’ve been looking to replace my Lowepro Photo Hatchback (which is still serving me brillliantly) with something that can accommodate a laptop too. This particular Manfrotto backpack seem like the prefect combination of size, versitality and price, for me anyways.

manfrotto bag backpack

Sandeep Kumar Sinha: Sony Smart TV – I need to synchronise my playlists and other streamable content on the devices I own, and, in 2017, my television should have this feature. A Sony Smart TV is a likeable product that I am looking to buy in 2017 as most of the apps I use could be mirrored and projected easily.

Sanket Vijayasarathy: PlayStation 4 – I’ve been meaning to get my hands on the PlayStation 4 for a while now. I’ve played a bunch of PS4 titles at friends’ places, but seeing as how the console is now available for around Rs. 26,000 (for the 500GB model, whenever there’s a sale on), I think the time has come for me to move on to a current-gen console.

ps4 black white

Shekhar Thakran: Tekken 7 – I still have fond memories of playing Tekken 3 as well as Tekken 5 on my Playstation 2 from several years ago. As the game franchise is finally coming to PC with Tekken 7 next year, it is a no-brainer for me. With much-improved graphics and the same old characters, nothing that can go wrong.

Shubham Verma: Microsoft Surface Studio with the Microsoft Dial – The beautiful, large-screen monitor is worth swooning over, and the Microsoft Dial takes things to another level. I keep making different art designs on my laptop, and the Microsoft Dial and Surface pen would make this so much easier. While the price will probably keep me from ever actually buying this gadget, if I had the money, the considering the features and the advanced actions enabled by them, this would be the must-buy package of 2017.

Honor 8 Lite, UberPOOL Ola Share Ban, Reliance Jio Playing by Rules, and More: Your 360 Daily

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Stop using Windows XP or Vista by end of the year to continue using Gmail
  • LG’s Android Wear smartwatches priced close to Apple Watches
  • PS, Xbox piracy forums hacked, user details out in the open

Globally, carpooling is seen as a viable solution for semi-public transportation. But a technicality is preventing services like UberPOOL or Ola Share to operate in the state of Karnataka. Today, a day before the deadline for the operators to shut carpooling services, Uber seems to suggest that it is operating within legal bounds with UberPOOL. It will be unfortunate to see this service get disrupted because of an outdated law, as many people we personally know rely on it to get around the city at a reasonable price. Now, we continue with today’s other top stories.

Honor 8 Lite, UberPOOL Ola Share Ban, Reliance Jio Playing by Rules, and More: Your 360 Daily

1) Gmail will stop working on old Chrome browsers, Windows XP and Vista OS
All users of Google Chrome version 53 and below will not be able to use Gmail, the popular email service, by the end of this year. And since the last version released for Windows XP and Vista was Chrome 49, the two ancient operating systems will be affected as a result of this. Users will have to upgrade to the newest Chrome, the most recent being version 55, to continue, and upgrade from an OS newer than XP or Vista.

2) Huawei launches Honor 8 Lite in Finland
Huawei has launched a watered-down version of its popular Honor 8 smartphone. Dubbed the Honor 8 Lite, it comes with a comparatively inferior HiSilicon Kirin 655 SoC (Honor 8 had Kirin 950) and 3GB of RAM instead of 4GB available on the big brother. It does seem to retain the same shiny, slippery glass body of the superior model. Pricing when converted from euros comes to about Rs. 20,000.

3) Reliance Jio free usage plans playing by the rules, says TRAI
The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has concluded that Reliance Jio’s free usage plans, which have strongly disrupted the telecom market in India, are compliant with regulations. This was in response to rival operators calling the plans ‘predatory’.

 

4) LG’s upcoming high-end Android Wear smartwatch to cost $349
We have been hearing rumours about LG launching two smartwatches that will run the latest Android Wear 2.0. Today’s rumours suggest that the more expensive of the two will cost $349 (roughly Rs. 23,500), while the other will cost $100 less. Incidentally, the pricing is in line with the Apple Watch Series 2 and Series 1 in the US, respectively. It is also said that the new watches will support Android Pay.

In other smartwatch news, MIT made a smartwatch app that can understand the tone of a conversation. The technology could have some medical applications.

5) YouTube iOS app brings controls to lockscreen, Chrome for Android has new features too
The YouTube app for iOS got an update that got the much-needed playback controls to the lockscreen, when you’re playing videos via a streaming device like a Chromecast.

In other Google product related news, Chrome for Android got many new features too.

6) Apple may use in-house chip inside new MacBook Pro
Apple may be taking small steps to remove the reliance on Intel for its Mac computers. It is rumoured that the company is working on an in-house chip that may not entirely replace Intel Core chips on Macs in the near future, but integrate with it to perform low-end tasks.

7) PlayStation, Xbox piracy forums user data hacked
Popular sites for pirated content playable on the PlayStation and Xbox gaming consoles were hacked, with data of over 2.5 million accounts said to be compromised. Details such as usernames, passwords, IP and email addresses were exposed due to the hack.

iPhone 8 Price, HTC 10 evo Launch, YouTube Go Comes to India, and More: Your 360 Daily Rohan Naravane, 09 February 2017

HIGHLIGHTS

  • It doesn’t seem like the sell-kidney-for-iPhone jokes are going to stop
  • YouTube Go is a dedicated app for watching and sharing videos offline
  • SoftBank loses $300 million in India after investing in Ola, Snapdeal

The world has already had enough of the selling-kidney-to-buy-iPhone jokes, but unfortunately those may not stop, as the high-end variant of the iPhone 8 is said to cost $1,000 (roughly Rs. 68,000) in the US. If true, after all the taxes and duties added, this iPhone SKU might end up costing upwards of Rs. 80,000 in India. One of the reasons cited for the price bump is a switch to OLED displays instead of LCD. Fortunately, this is said to be the pricing of the highest-end model in the lineup, with a cheaper ‘iPhone 7s’ and ‘iPhone 7s Plus’ starting out at the usual $649.

Let’s move on to the remaining top stories of the day.

iPhone 8 Price, HTC 10 evo Launch, YouTube Go Comes to India, and More: Your 360 Daily

1) HTC 10 evo launched in India at Rs. 48,990
The HTC 10 evo is available for sale in the country at a price tag of Rs. 48,990. It’s got a 5.5-inch Quad HD display, water-resistance and comes with Android 7.0 Nougat. What sticks sorely for this otherwise interesting high-end device is the use of the Snapdragon 810 chip from 2015, which was known for notorious heating issues in phones like the Xperia Z3+. We wonder at the response HTC will receive for the product.

2) YouTube Go launched in India for shareable, offline videos
A common sight when using public transport today in India is of people watching videos on their smartphones. To push YouTube adoption without paying for mobile data, the YouTube Go app is a standalone app from Google that lets you download videos and watch them offline later. It also has a convenient ‘send’ and ‘receive’ feature, that allows for transferring downloaded videos to other YouTube Go users locally, without using mobile data.

 

3) Android Wear 2.0 launched with two new LG smartwatches
After a delay of several months, the next major update to Android Wear – dubbed Android Wear 2.0 – is out. Two new watches from LG, namely the LG Watch Style and LG Watch Sport, run this new operating system, while other compatible watches will get the update eventually. Android Wear 2.0 brings the Google Assistant to the wrist, along with other features like the ability to install apps directly on the watch, Android Pay integration, keyboard input, etc. Those LG watches mentioned above are priced at $249 (roughly Rs. 17,000) and $349 (roughly Rs. 24,000) respectively.

4) 170 days after its release, Android Nougat only runs on 1 percent of all Android devices
This should come as no surprise, considering there are many stakeholders in the Android update process. Android 7.0 Nougat, the most recent version of Android, despite being launched almost half a year ago, only runs on 1 percent of active Android devices. Android 5.0 Lollipop, which was out in 2014, is still the most used Android version to date.

5) SoftBank loses $350 million on India investments like Ola, Snapdeal
Japanese company Softbank has reported an investment loss of $350 million (roughly Rs. 2,345 crores) on its investments in India, which include cab-hailing service Ola and e-commerce platform Snapdeal. The Japanese firm has so far invested close to $2 billion in India and earlier this year it stated that it is looking to scale up investments to $10 billion in next 5-10 years.

6) 5G is official now, has its own logo
The 3GPP cellular standards group has officially christened the next generation of wireless communication technology as 5G. The logo has a familiar design as the official 4G logo that came before it. The final specifications of 5G are said to complete by 2018, with the next phase being completed by 2020.

7) Flipkart, Snapdeal, Amazon argue GST’s tax collection at source provision
At a press conference organised by FICCI on Thursday, the heads of Amazon, Flipkart, and Snapdeal all found common cause as they expressed their worries about the TCS (Tax Collection at Source) provision of the GST (Goods and Services Tax). Under this provision, online marketplaces are responsible for collecting – and paying – taxes on behalf of their sellers. This is something that all three companies, the major players in the e-commerce space in India, are against, as they argue it will hamper the growth of e-commerce.

8) Idea Money Adopts USSD-based digital payments
Idea Cellular today said it has enabled USSD-based platform for shopkeepers and customers to conduct digital transactions using Idea Money service. USSD is mobile short code that enables financial and banking transactions even on feature phones.

Moto G5 Plus India Launch, Airtel Free Roaming, Paytm’s 200 Million Users, and More: Your 360 Daily

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Moto G5 Plus to be launched in India on March 15
  • Airtel ends roaming charges on incoming and outgoing calls
  • Paytm user base hits 200 million, new Paytm Mall app launched

Just a day after the Moto G5 and Moto G5 Plus global launch, Lenovo has sent out invites announcing the India launch date of the latter. The invite says that the Moto G5 Plus will be launched in India on March 15, but there was no mention of the Moto G5 for the domestic market. At the MWC 2017 event, Moto G5 Plus price for the 2GB RAM + 32GB variant was announced as $229 (roughly Rs. 15,300), whereas the 3GB RAM + 32GB model has been priced at $279 (approximately Rs. 19,700). Price of the 4GB RAM + 64GB storage model has not been announced so far.

Moto G5 Plus India Launch, Airtel Free Roaming, Paytm’s 200 Million Users, and More: Your 360 Daily

The new Moto G5 Plus has a 5.2-inch full-HD screen, 2GHz octa-core Snapdragon 625 chipset, microSD card expansion up to 128GB, 12-megapixel rear camera with dual-LED flash, 5-megapixel front camera, 3000mAh battery with TurboPower fast charging technology. On the software side, the Moto G5 Plus runs the Android 7.0 Nougat operating system and supports Google Assistant AI-based digital assistant, along with features such as Moto Display, Moto Actions, Twist, and a new One Button Nav that allows users to navigate the interface using the fingerprint sensor.

But this is not the only launch to get excited about, as MWC 2017 saw a number of smartphones and other devices being announced. Let’s take a look at those, and more, in 360 Daily. For other MWC stories including all the announcements from Nokia, LG, Moto, Samsung, and others, check out our MWC hub.

Oppo unveils 5x Dual Camera Zoom system
At the ongoing MWC 2017, Oppo unveiled its new 5x Dual Camera Zoom system, which features a periscope-style setup that is claimed to kill the need of the camera bump on the back because of its 5.7mm thickness. The 5x Dual Camera Zoom system packs more than 50 parts which have been stacked in a 5.7mm module. Oppo’s new camera zoom system diverts light through a prism into a stabilised telephoto lens set at a 90-degree angle. The new imaging system will make its way to Oppo smartphones later this year.

Airtel announces ‘war on roaming’ with free incoming calls in all circles
Airtel has repealed roaming charges for users for incoming calls outside their home circle, terming this a “war on roaming.” India’s biggest telecom operator also said that it will stop premium charges on outgoing calls while roaming. For international roaming starting April 1 2017, the company will offer customers protection from bill shocks. Call charges have been reduced by up to 90 percent to as low as Rs. 3 per minute on international roaming, while data charges by up to 99 percent to Rs. 3 per MB in popular roaming destinations, Airtel said on Monday.

Paytm Mall app launched for standalone e-commerce services
Paytm has spun off the e-commerce part of its app into a standalone app named Paytm Mall, while the wallet business remains in the main app. The Paytm Mall app features the expected categories, such as electronics, fashion, furnishings, and so on. Cashback offers that were provided on the Paytm app e-commerce transactions till now are offered on the Paytm Mall app. The company also announced today that its user base has crossed the 200 million mark.

 

Lenovo Tab 4 series Android tablets launched
While Samsung’s Galaxy Tab S3 and Galaxy Book were the tablets of note at MWC 2017, Lenovo launched its new Tab 4 series models at the event. The four Lenovo tablets, named Tab 4 8, Tab 4 10, Tab 4 8 Plus, and Tab 4 10 Plus, run Android 7.0 Nougat and offer battery life of up to 12 hours, the company said. The four models are being targeted at both kids and adults, and come with multi-user mode.

The Lenovo Tab 4 8 and Tab 4 10 sport 8-inch and 10.1-inch displays, respectively; both feature HD screens, Snapdragon 425 SoC, 2GB of RAM, and come in 16GB and 32GB storage options. The respective Plus models feature the same screen size but come with Snapdragon 625 processor and 3GB of RAM.

Samsung Gear VR 2017 edition launched, comes with touch controller
The Samsung Gear VR virtual reality headset received an update at MWC 2017, and it will now come with a VR controller which, Samsung says, makes it easier for the user to interact with VR apps and games. With the controller, users will be able to “point, drag and drop, tilt, shoot, among other actions, while the Trigger allows for enhanced gaming experiences.” The new Gear VR headset has 42mm lenses with 101-degree FOV (Field of View) and “advanced distortion correction technology” to minimise users’ motion sickness.

Sony Xperia XZ Premium, the first phone with Snapdragon 835 processor, launched
Sony surprised one and all with the launch of its Xperia XZ Premium smartphone, the first model with the new Snapdragon 835 chipset. However, while Sony beat Samsung – which has dibs on the new Qualcomm SoC – in announcing the first such smartphone, the new Xperia XZ Premium will not be available for purchase till Spring this year. The new Sony Xperia XZ Premium has a 5.5-inch 4K display, 4GB RAM, 64GB internal storage, up to 256GB microSD card support, 19-megapixel rear camera with the new Motion Eye camera system, 13-megapixel front camera, Android 7.0 Nougat software, and a 3230mAh battery.

This was, however, not the only Sony launch at MWC 2017, as the company also unveiled the Xperia XZs, Xperia XA1 Ultra, and Xperia XA1 smartphones. Along with these, the company also launched the Xperia Touch interactive Android projector that can turn any surface into a touchscreen panel; it will be launched in April.

Gionee A1, A1 Plus selfie phones with big batteries launched
While for most brands selfie phones and big battery phones are two distinct niches, Gionee has gone ahead and combined the two with the new Android Nougat-based Gionee A1 and Gionee A1 Plus smartphones. Launched at MWC 2017, the new Gionee A1 has a 16-megapixel front camera and 40101mAh battery, while the Gionee A1 Plus comes with a 20-megapixel sensor in front and packs a 4550mAh battery.

Gionee A1 has a 5.5-inch full-HD screen, Helio P10 processor, 4GB of RAM, 64GB internal storage, microSD support, 13-megapixel rear camera, and fingerprint sensor on the back. The Gionee A1 Plus has a bigger 6-inch full-HD screen, MediaTek Helio P25 SoC, 4GB of RAM, 64GB inbuilt storage, microSD expansion, and dual 13-megapixel and 5-megapixel cameras on the back.

Disclosure: Paytm’s parent company One97 is an investor in Gadgets 360

Samsung Galaxy J7 Max, J7 Pro Launched, OnePlus 5 Price Leak, Reliance Jio Growth Slows, and More: Your 360 Daily

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Samsung Galaxy J7 Max and J7 Pro run Android Nougat
  • OnePlus 5 might cost $479 (about Rs. 30,800)
  • Reliance Jio added 3.87 million new subscribers in April

Samsung launched two mid-range Android phones in its J-series on Wednesday in New Delhi. They are called the Samsung Galaxy J7 Max, which costs Rs. 17,900, and the Samsung Galaxy J7 Pro, which comes in at Rs. 20,900. While the former will be available June 20, the latter won’t go on sale until mid-July, weirdly. Both run the latest Android 7.0 Nougat underneath. Samsung has partnered with Reliance Jio to offer up to 120GB of additional data. Both phones also have Samsung Pay digital payments service, though it’s scaled down as Samsung Pay Mini (no card functionality) on Galaxy J7 Max, since it doesn’t have NFC capability.

In terms of specifications, Samsung Galaxy J7 Max gives you a 5.7-inch full-HD display, powered by a MediaTek Helio P20 octa-core processor, with 4GB RAM. It has 32GB internal storage, which is expandable via microSD card. The phone has a 13-megapixel rear (f/1.7) and front (f/1.9) camera, with flash on both ends as well. There’s a 3,300mAh battery inside. The Galaxy J7 Pro, on the other hand, has a 5.5-inch full-HD Super AMOLED display, powered by an Exynos 7870 octa-core SoC, with 3GB RAM. It has 64GB internal storage, which is expandable via microSD card. The phone has the same camera and flash setup. There’s a 3,600mAh battery inside.

Samsung Galaxy J7 Max, J7 Pro Launched, OnePlus 5 Price Leak, Reliance Jio Growth Slows, and More: Your 360 Daily

OnePlus 5 price, specifications leaked once again
Less than a week ahead of its global launch, the OnePlus 5 has faced more leaks. This time, it’s the price, specifications, and pictures of the new flagship from the Chinese manufacturer. According to a blog, the OnePlus 5 will start at $479 (about Rs. 30,800). In India, the phone is expected to start from Rs. 32,999 for the base variant. Meanwhile, registrations for the phone have been opened on Chinese ecommerce website JD.com. If you register, you’ll be able to take part in a flash sale on June 22, the listing says.

The same website also provided the specifications and images, which show that the OnePlus 5 will indeed look similar to the iPhone 7 Plus in terms of its design, and rear camera setup. It will run Android 7.1.1 Nougat on a 5.5-inch full-HD display, with two RAM options: 6GB and 8GB. OnePlus has already confirmed the presence of Snapdragon 835, so there’s no point debating about that. The OnePlus 5’s camera setup will most likely have a 20-megapixel f/2.6 and 16-megapixel f/1.7 sensors on the back, and a 16-megapixel sensor on the front. The phone is also said to have a 3,300mAh battery.

Reliance Jio’s growth was slowest in April
According to TRAI data, Reliance Jio experienced its slowest growth in April, though its numbers were ahead of all competitors. It added 3.87 million new subscribers to take its total up to 112.55 million, with Airtel (2.85m), BSNL (0.81m), and Vodafone (0.75m) following behind. The total number of telecom subscribers in India now stands at 1198.89 million, after an increase of 4.31 million over March.

Samsung Galaxy Note 8 will reportedly launch mid-August
Samsung isn’t shying away from the Note brand after last year’s Note 7 debacle, with the Galaxy Note 8 expected to arrive mid-August, as per a new report. A launch in that month would give it a head start on the iPhone, something Samsung has always been keen on with its Note series.

Meanwhile, a tipster on Weibo has revealed the Galaxy Note 8 will have a dual camera setup on the back. Some section of the consumers were disappointed with the lack of rear camera upgrade on the Galaxy S8/ S8+, and it seems Samsung is happy to oblige with the upcoming new smartphone.

LG G6 now available at Rs. 38,990 in India
LG’s latest flaghship – the LG G6 – arrived in India at the tail end of April, and it’s already seeing interesting price drops. The phone is now available at a Rs. 13,000 discount, which puts the price of LG G6 at Rs. 38,9990. There are two caveats though: only Amazon Prime members can avail the offer, and it’s only applicable to Ice Platinum and Astro Black colour options. There are a couple of other offers as well – for Bajaj Finance card owners, and Reliance Jio extra data – which you can check out here.

Intel invests Rs. 1,100 crore in Bengaluru R&D centre
Intel is putting in Rs. 1,100 crore with its upcoming Bengaluru R&D centre, the company’s India GM Nivruti Rai said in a press conference on Wednesday. Set on an eight-acre campus in the city’s south-east suburbs, it’s also expected to add 3,000 jobs over the next year and a half. This is in addition to the $2 billion (roughly Rs. 12,852 crores) Intel has already invested until 2016.

Google hires Apple chip architect to help with Pixel
Google is looking to drive up its in-house product innovation, and it has hired Apple’s long-time chip architect Manu Gulati to do just that. Gulati announced the job change publicly on his LinkedIn profile on Tuesday, stating that he now works as Google’s “Lead SoC Architect”. He has over 27 years of experience in the industry.

One of the biggest reasons for iPhone’s success is the home-grown nature of its chips, something Samsung has started to emulate with its own Exynos line. Google had earlier shown interest in doing so, and Gulati’s hiring shows that it’s very much on that path now. Expect the Pixel phones to have Google’s home-made chip designs in the near future.

Meanwhile, a leak discovered by 9To5Google and Android Police’s sources have revealed that the Pixel 2 might be manufactured by LG. The nitty-gritty has to do with a bug entry filed by an LG employee for a device codenamed Taimen, which seems to be the internal name for Pixel XL successor. If you didn’t already know, HTC made the first Pixel line.

Instagram’s Archive feature now rolling out to everyone
Instagram’s Archive feature, which lets you store away previously-shared photos to a private section, is now rolling out to all users worldwide. Think of it as Facebook’s “Only Me” setting, which means you don’t have to delete something if you’d rather just hide it from everyone. To access it, you’ll need the latest 10.21 version of the Instagram app, on Android and iOS.

IRCTC offers Rs. 50 cashback for mVisa payments
As part of a digital payment promotion running till September 4, IRCTC is offering Rs. 50 cashback to travellers who use the new mVisa payment option. To do so, you’ll need to first get the mVisa app on your smartphone, link your Visa debit/credit card, and then scan the mVisa QR code on the IRCTC website.

Uber CEO takes indefinite leave, and Yahoo CEO steps down after Verizon takeover
Uber CEO and co-founder Travis Kalanick has decided to take time away from the company, after a months-long internal investigation pointed out the various flaws in Uber’s work culture. In an email to staff, he said he needed to become a better leader to run the highly-valued Silicon Valley startup.

Meanwhile, Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer ended her five-year reign after her position was made redundant due to Verizon’s completion of its takeover of the once Internet giant. She will receive a compensation package estimated to be worth about $125 million (roughly Rs. 804 crores).

 

Moto Z2 Play Launch Teased, OnePlus 3T to Get Android O, Yu Yureka Black to Launch Soon, and More: Your 360 Daily

HIGHLIGHTS

  • iPhone 8 dimensions tipped at 143.59×70.94×7.57mm
  • Oppo F3 Black Edition will be auctioned on June 3
  • The Samsung Notebook 9 Pro runs Windows 10

Moto’s new ‘bold phone’ announcement on Thursday will most likely be the Moto Z2 Play, a phone that’s been extensively leaked in the past. The most recent leaks tip the smartphone looks very similar to its predecessor and will continue to support Moto Mods.

For specifications, the Moto Z2 Play is said to come with a 5.5-inch full-HD display and be powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 626 processor coupled with 4GB RAM. The phone is said to pack 64GB storage and come with expandable storage support via microSD card.

OnePlus 3, 3T will receive Android O update

Here’s some reassuring news for current OnePlus 3 and 3T owners. The company’s CEO has announced that above mentioned smartphones will receive an update to Android O, however we don’t have a timeline as to when this will actually happen. OnePlus seems committed to its flagship offerings as this will be the second major update for the phones, following Android Nougat.

Yu Yureka Black launch set for Thursday
Yu Televentures appears to be gearing up for a new launch this Thursday and the phone in question is the Yu Yureka Black. The company has been creating a lot of hype around this and has now confirmed that the phone will be exclusive to Flipkart. We don’t know many details about the phone yet as not much has been teased nor leaked so we guess we’ll just have to wait to find out.

Moto Z2 Play Launch Teased, OnePlus 3T to Get Android O, Yu Yureka Black to Launch Soon, and More: Your 360 Daily

Panasonic Eluga I3 Mega launched in India
Panasonic has taken the wraps of its brand new smartphone called Eluga I3 Mega, priced at Rs. 11,490. The phone features a 4000mAh battery, 5.5-inch HD (720×1280 pixels) IPS display and is powered by a 1.3GHz quad-core MediaTek MTK6735. It will run Android 6.0 Marshmallow and sport a 13-megapixel rear camera and a 5-megapixel front camera.

Apple MacBook lineup refresh expected at WWDC 2017
Looking to buy a new MacBook? It would be wise to hold off on your purchase for now as according some recent information, Apple might just refresh the entire lineup next week, at WWDC 2017. The indication comes from Apple’s own online store as delivery times of the 15-inch MacBook Pro have now been delayed to June 5-June 6 which is one day after company’s WWDC keynote. This is a departure from the usual delivery period of either the same day or in 3-5 business days.

iPhone 8 dimensions and renders leaked
In more Apple news, we have have the purported dimensions of the upcoming iPhone 8.Renders have also been leaked alongside, and the iPhone 8 is seen being compared to the iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, Samsung Galaxy S8, and Samsung Galaxy S8+. As for the display on the new phone, LG is reportedly eyeing OLED display orders from Apple next year and is already setting up the necessary infrastructure for mass production.

Freedom 251 maker Ringing Bells MD Mohit Goel granted bail
The man behind the infamous ‘cheapest smartphone in the world’ has been granted bail by the Allahabad High Court. Mohit Goel, Managing Director of Noida-based Ringing Bells which ‘made’ the Freedom 251 smartphone was arrested in February after Ghaziabad-based Ayam Enterprises alleged that Goel ‘defrauded’ the company of Rs. 16 lakh.

Oppo F3 Black limited edition smartphone launched
Oppo launched its F3 smartphone earlier this month and now, the company has announced a limited edition version that’s available in Black. Oppo, being the official sponsor for the Indian Cricket team is launching the Black Edition to commemorate the commencement of the ICC Champions Trophy. This new edition will be auctioned one day before the India vs. Pakistan match this Sunday.

Essential Phone to begin shipping next month
Hailed as the ‘father of Android’, Andy Rubin’s new smartphone called Essential Phone will start shipping next month. This was revealed during an interview with Walt Mossberg. The phone is said to ship with an AI assistant and a new OS called Ambient OS. It will also have today’s flagship specification onboard and is available for pre-order in the US starting at $699.

New product launches from Computex 2017
At the annual technology trade show in Taipei, Taiwan, companies from all around the globe gather under one roof to show off their latest products. Microsoft shed more light on its upcoming Mixed Reality (MR) headsets from partner brands like HP, Acer, Dell, Asus, and Lenovo.

Asus announced a slew of products including the ROG Zephyrus, which is being touted as the ‘world’s slimmest gaming laptop with a GeForce GTX 1080’ inside. After looking at it, we have to say that the design looks very similar to Acer’s Predator Triton 700, which was unveiled only last month. The company also announced new tablets like the ZenPad 3S 8.0 and the new ZenPad 10.

Samsung announced a new Windows 10 laptop called the Notebook 9 Pro with support for its S Pen stylus. The laptop will be available in multiple configurations ans is said to be made available later this year.

YouTube for Android gets redesigned
After being tested for about a year, YouTube’s new redesigned layout is finally official. The new design repositions the navigation bar, earlier placed at the top of the screen, to the bottom half just like on the iOS counterpart of the app. The redesign is claimed to allow for easier navigation within the app.

AMD details Ryzen Mobile, Threadripper, Radeon Vega, and Epyc at Computex
At the ongoing Computex trade show, AMD made several announcements including Ryzen desktop and mobile CPUs, Threadripper enthusiast CPUs, and Radeon Vega graphics processors and its new Epyc platform for servers. All desktop Ryzen processors, including the upcoming budget-oriented Ryzen 3 lineup, have been certified as Oculus VR ready.

Twitter now filters Direct Messages from people you don’t follow
Popular social networking app, Twitter, has added a new feature Direct Messages (DMs) that will now filter DMs from people not followed by users. DM’s from such people will be stored in a “Requests” section, in the new Messages tab inbox in the iOS and Android app.

Microsoft, Qualcomm partner to bring Windows 10 to Snapdragon-powered laptops
At Computex 2017, Qualcomm and Microsoft announced the new Snapdragon 835 Mobile PC Platform, capable of running Windows 10. No specific time models, prices or time frames have been disclosed, but the companies have previously stated that they will ship products later this year. Prices for such products is expected to be around the $700-800 mark.