When you think of smartphones, the first thing that will pop in your mind is Nokia.
No, let’s stop fooling ourselves.
But Nokia is back, and it is again with a big, inexpensive bang!
As a tradition, HMD Global, creator of Nokia, has arrived at the Mobile World Congress with a new lineup of Nokia phones. What’s interesting is that this year, the team has also brought us budget devices with some impressive new features.
HERE ARE THREE NOKIA BUDGET PHONES THAT YOU NEED TO CHECK OUT:
Nokia 4.2, a new class of phone for the company, is designed to slot in between the pricier Nokia 5 line and the cheaper Nokia 3.
The company intends for Nokia 4.2 to offer an ‘affordable flagship experience’ with premium features like a notched 5.71-inch display, glass front, and back design, dual camera system, and a fingerprint sensor without being more expensive than $200.
The phone – that is powered by Snapdragon 439 processor, so apparently, it’s not the fastest device around – comes in two storage options: 2GB RAM with 16GB of storage or 3GB RAM with 32GB of storage. It is also rounded up by a 3,000 mAh battery.
But the most exciting part of the Nokia 4 is its buttons. There’s a dedicated Google Assistant button, which Nokia is loading with a few unique features: press it once to trigger the Assistant, twice to bring up Google’s Visual Snapshot view, and press and hold to keep the mic open for a conversational, always listening mode like on a full smart speaker.
The model also features a “breathing” notification light integrated into the power button. If the device is face down, the light will gently glow to signal a new notification.
The Nokia 4 will cost either $169 or $199 depending on the storage configuration, although Nokia isn’t sure yet which configurations will come to the US when the phone launches in April.
HMD will also release an updated version of Nokia 3.1, the Nokia 3.2. The phone is getting the same dedicated Google Assistant and glowing power buttons, a larger 6.26-inch notched display, and a beefy 4,000 mAh battery.
The 3.2 has the same Snapdragon 439 processor and 2GB RAM / 16GB storage and 3GB RAM / 32GB storage options as the 4.2.
One of the significant difference between 3.2 and 4.2 is the back cover. While the 4.2 sports a beautiful back cover, 3. 2 only comes with a plastic back. The 3.2 will also not have a fingerprint sensor.
It is a bit cheaper though, set to cost $169 and $139, depending on the storage/RAM option. The Nokia 3.2 will launch in May.
NOKIA 1 PLUS
In an attempt to tap the market of those who are going to upgrade from a feature phone to a smartphone, HMD announced the $99 Nokia 1 Plus, which is an improved version of Nokia 1 they released last year.
It has a 5.45-inch 18:9 display with a removable back cover, replaceable battery, and is thinner than last year’s model.
Crucially, it’ll also run Android 9 Pie Go, instead of the more massive Android 9 Pie, and will be available in mid-March.
Nokia phones deserve a chance. With these new budget phones that the company is offering, who knows you might get what you wanted without paying a lot. /apr
All images from NOKIA website.
The FCC Wants To Give Carriers The Power To Block Text Messages But Thousands Of People Are Against It
Thousands of users have sent letters of opposition to the decision made by the Federal Communication Commission that would allow telecom companies to block or charge certain group messages differently, in a move that has triggered grassroots response questioning the FCC’s anti-consumer policies.
In essence, the decision of the FCC gives mobile carriers the ability to block or charge senders more for certain messages. The decision was first made on December 2018 and critics have claimed that the real issue in the policy that gives more power to telecom companies over text messaging is a free-speech issue that could negatively impact activists and non-profit organizations.
Previously, eight senators opposing the decision wrote a letter to the office of Ajit Pai, the chair of the agency that is tasked to regulate telecommunications. According to the letter, the controversial decision would have a negative impact on advocacy groups because “carriers could force businesses, advocacy organizations, first responders, doctors, and many others” to pay more to reach their audiences via text messages.
The FCC, in an attempt to sugarcoat the impact of the decision, neatly framed the announcement of its decision, reclassifying SMS and MMS as “information services” rather than “telecommunication services” like phone calls, as a benefit to consumers, claiming that the policy will better protect consumers from robo-texting and spamming.
While robo-texts and text spams are genuinely a problem that the FCC needs to resolve as it is the worst form of telecommunication harassment, giving wireless broadband service providers more powers over text messages (primarily that the new policy does not provide any guarantee for counterchecking) is a dangerous slope for the agency to slide into.
As a response, Public Knowledge’s attorney John Bergmeyer filed a petition for reconsideration on behalf of his organization to pressure the FCC to overturn its decision over the new policy and push back on its plan to give carriers more powers over text messaging services. Public Knowledge is an internet rights group that has been fighting for internet neutrality and freedom of information.
Tuesday marks the last day for members of the public to sign the petition and write to the FCC in support of the Public Knowledge. In addition to Public Knowledge and the eight senators who publicly expressed their opposition to the decision by Ajit Pai’s office, 20 more groups and non-profits including the Electronic Frontier Foundation, wrote a group letter to oppose the new policy.
In December, they said that “based on numerous incidents in the past, we fear that permitting carriers to block messages without any oversight will result in censoring time-critical speech, hamper efforts to organize political engagement, and severely restrict the ability of civil rights organizations, and other non-commercial organizations to use texting platforms to their full capacity.”
The decision of the FCC to give more power to carriers is not the only controversy being faced by the agency in recent years. Previously, the commission was heavily slammed over their move that would hamper net neutrality. Many people opposing the net neutrality revocation expressed their opposition to the policy through the online commenting system. The comments came in huge waves paralyzing the system altogether for a while.
Speaking of the online commenting system and net neutrality: the agency has also been criticized for refusing to grant Freedom of Information Act requests by journalists and lawmakers over the alleged identity theft that has happened in the comment system of the organization during the net neutrality revocation. Recently, the agency was ordered by the court to pay a hefty amount of money to a journalist who filed a lawsuit against FCC over violations of the FOIA, but the trial has not forced the agency to produce the requested documents.
In an earlier report, the FCC has also been in hot water after it was revealed that the agency was only able to collect $6,000 out of the $200 million in fines it issued against companies and businesses who robocalls. In recent times, the FCC and its chief Ajit Pai have been repeatedly called out for their inability to end the robocall epidemic that has been terrorizing American households. In response, many telecom companies like AT&T, Comcast, and Verizon have vowed to release features that would potentially block robocallers and auto-dialed calls.
March App Updates From Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, And More That You Might Have Missed!
The reliance of society on apps have created an ever-changing industry and has opened new opportunities for tech startups to make it big by launching new useful apps now and then.
For popular applications, tech companies are racing towards who get to release a feature and so. That’s why our apps keep on updating now and then. In most cases, we almost not feel the new update because it’s so minimal that it doesn’t matter to us.
But they’re there, and they are designed to make our lives a little bit better.
HERE ARE FIVE SOFTWARE UPDATES THAT YOU HAVE PROBABLY MISSED:
FACEBOOK MESSENGER DARK MODE
Users have been so used to Facebook Messenger being white and blue, but the tech giant is trying to change that. Recently the app has released a new update to allow users to change their FB Messenger screens to black.
It’s tricky, however. The new update has to be unlocked, and it cannot be seen in the app’s settings dock. Before a user can turn on the ‘dark mode,’ a user has to unlock it by sending a moon emoji to mother account. A message will prompt after that to ask you if you want to switch to ‘dark mode.’
The ‘dark mode’ has its benefits aside from not straining your eyes during night time when background lights are turned off. The new feature actually allows the phone to save battery light by emitting lesser light than the traditional white background.
TWITTER ALLOWS USERS TO HIDE TWEET REPLIES
Twitter has announced that the social media platform will now allow users to hide replies to a Tweet. This feature was first noticed by the famous software unpacker Jane Manchun Wong and has said that this new feature rollout is a drastic change on how conversations in the platform will be controlled by users.
Although the new update will not allow users to hide a specific comment on a tweet permanently, it will make it hard for followers to the said comment that was ‘hidden.’
The feature would let you tap the “share” icon on Twitter and choose “hide Tweet” to close down replies. From there, other users would have to click through to see the responses on a tweet, instead of seeing them automatically. There also appears to be an option to view all tweets you’ve hidden in the past and manually unhide them if you want to reopen replies at some point in the future.
IN-APP LOCAL BUSINESS PROFILES IN INSTAGRAM
Instagram has started rolling out in-app local business profiles in its platform that shows local businesses in the same manner Google local knowledge panels work.
The update will show users who have recently searched for a location and tapped the ‘View Information’ button an extensive list of local businesses in the area. They have the business address, hours, contact information, and website.
Those businesses are connected to Facebook businesses in the area, and a business-owner can ‘claim’ a page if he owns the FB business page. He then can edit the information shown in the IG business profile.
WHATSAPP ADVANCED SEARCH FEATURE
The world famous messaging application WhatsApp has recently rolled out their ‘Advanced Search’ feature in its platform allowing users to search for media like photos, links, GIF images, and even videos. This is a step up from its basic search feature that allows users to search for texts.
However, the update is only available for iPhone Users, and the company is planning to launch the feature to Android users soon.
VIBER 10 UPDATES
In early February, Viber launched the latest revision of its mobile messaging application on iOS and Android, version 10. The new update includes a new and improved user interface (UI), which is the first significant update to the app’s software in the last four years. According to the company, Viber Messenger 10 comes with a fresh look and enhanced connectivity options with additional privacy measures.
The new Viber have improved the quality of its text messaging with the ability to send messages twice as fast as before. Moreover, voice and video calls have been given a quality boost to become crystal clear. The new version of the app sports a fresh and bright header. The chat list is streamlined to display convenient access to all private and group chats, communities, and favorite public content.
The new update includes a new “Call” screen that contains recent call logs and contacts, together with the display of Viber Out balance and subscriptions shown at the top of the screen. The company also announced that a group calling feature that would soon be rolled out to all users. This feature will allow users to initiate a group voice call with up to five people.
In an attempt to improve security in the app’s public chats, Viber 10 includes a “Hidden-number Chats” option in the communities section. The company said that it is intended to “encourage spontaneous interactions among new social networking contacts while keeping the actual contact information hidden to protect the privacy of the participants.”
Huawei will release their 3D Camera feature in 2019!
The New Year is coming with newer and more advanced technology in the world – from smart to ‘genius’ home appliance, gadgets, including healthcare and education. It’s another time to discover more of technology’s ability to change how we view life and how we can make it part of our daily routines.
The rise of competition in mobile phones and its features has been one of technology’s top focus as it has been one of the most significant demands in the industry. The updates and pluses on mobile phones have been on the watch-out for most people around the world. It has been a challenging area in the industry since its demands have been rising every month and newer features are what people want.
However, the advancement of technology by different companies has gone almost similar to each other, that it takes only someone too knowledgeable to notice. It seemed nearly the same as companies ‘update’ their mobile phones. Also, the rise of new mobile phone companies that have similar features are out on the market and have been given a shot this year.
Huawei, on the other hand, has planned to unveil its newest phone model with their latest feature by next year. Accordingly, they are also to release their most recent feature on their models that are to be announced in the later months of 2019. It makes consumers think of what is going to happen in the next two years in the mobile industry.
The first model of this new feature is to be announced within this month and will go on sale next year. Huawei’s next mobile phone and its future ones will have their first ever “3D Camera” that is capable of capturing three-dimensional photos in one click.
This allows users to have pictures viewed in many different angles. As speculated, this new feature by Huawei will also enable developers in the mobile gaming industry and other apps to have a more modern and better visual function. This will also include gestures accordingly.
Huawei has been changing the game in the mobile industry starting with their super high-quality cameras this year and innovating it to 3D.
This feature has never been seen before according to Yusuke Toyoda a Fuji Chimera Research Inc. sensor analyst located in Tokyo. Huawei has been putting considerable effort to innovate their company’s technology for successful results as consumers await this new trend in the mobile industry.
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