Asus ZenPad 7.0 and ZenPad 8.0 India Availability Detailed

Asus India on Friday finally revealed the availability of its ZenPad 7.0 (Z370CG) and ZenPad 8.0 (Z380KL) tablets for the Indian market alongside launching the ZenPad C 7.0 (Z170CG). Both the tablets wereinitially announced for India in August.

The Taiwanese manufacturer confirmed that the ZenPad 7.0 will be available starting Friday itself. The ZenPad 8.0 and ZenPad C 7.0 tablets on the other hand will go on sale by end of October. All three new ZenPad tablets will be available via exclusive Asus stores and Flipkart.

As before, the Asus ZenPad 7.0 (Z370CG) will come at Rs. 11,999 and the tablet will also be available with a bundled Audio Cover at Rs. 14,999. The tablet will come in Obsidian Black and Aurora Metallic colours. The Asus ZenPad 8.0 (Z380KL) has been is priced at Rs. 14,999 and with an Audio Cover at Rs. 17,999. It will be available in two colours – Obsidian Black and Aurora Metallic. The ZenPad C 7.0, priced at Rs. 8,999, comes in three colours – Obsidian Black, Glamour Red, Aurora Metallic.

All these tablets were showcased at Computex 2015 trade show this year. The tablets come integrated with DTS-HD Premium Sound technology, which the company touts is a highlight of both the devices.

The Asus ZenPad 7.0 (Z370CG) features a 7-inch (1280×800 pixels) HD display with Corning Gorilla Glass for protection. It is powered by a 64-bit quad-core Intel Atom x3-C3230 processor coupled with 2GB of RAM. It comes with 8GB or 16GB of built-in storage that’s expandable via microSD card (up to 128GB). It sports an 8-megapixel rear and there is a 2-megapixel front camera also on board. The Android 5.0 Lollipop-based tablet runs Zen UI on top. The ZenPad 7.0 (Z370CG) supports Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0, and Micro-USB connectivity options. The tablet also comes with Micro-SIM and support GPRS/ EDGE and 3G via SIM. For battery life, Asus claims that the ZenPad 7.0 can deliver up to 8 hours battery life and comes with 13Wh Li-polymer battery. It measures 189×110.9×8.7mm and weighs 272 grams.

The ZenPad 8.0 (Z380KL) comes with LTE connectivity along with a Micro-SIM slot. It runs on a 64-bit octa-core Snapdragon 615 (MSM8929) processor coupled with 2GB of RAM. It features an 8-inch 1280×800 pixel LED-backlit IPS display and comes with 16GB of storage that is expandable via microSD card (up to 64GB). Apart from 4G, connectivity options include Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0, Micro-USB, GPS, and Glonass. It bears a 2-megapixel front camera, and an 8-megapixel rear camera with autofocus. It measures 209x123x8.5 mm and weighs 350 grams. Its 15.2Whr battery is rated to deliver up to 9 hours of battery life.

Finally, the new Asus ZenPad C 7.0 features a 7-inch 1024×600 pixel LED-backlit IPS display, and is powered by a 64-bit quad-core Intel Atom x3-C3230 processor, with 1GB of RAM, and a choice of 8GB of storage that is expandable via microSD card (up to 64GB).

Connectivity options on the ZenPad C 7.0 (Z170CG) include Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0, Micro-USB, GPS/ A-GPS, and Glonass. It bears a 0.3-megapixel front camera, and a 5-megapixel rear camera with autofocus. It measures 189x108x8.4mm, and weighs 265 grams. Its 13Whr battery is rated to deliver up to 8 hours of battery life. The Asus ZenPad C 7.0 (Z170CG) also sports 3G connectivity and comes with two Micro-SIM card slots.

Force Touch Could Be Headed To Android Smartphones Next Year

iPhone 3d touch

The new iPhone 6S and 6S Plus come with Apple’s 3D Touch and the Apple Watch also features Force Touch technology and now it would appear that the technology could be headed to Android smartphones next year.

Synaptics has announced their new ClearForce technology which is similar to Apple’s 3D Touch and the company is already manufacturing display with this technology built in.

“Our broad patent portfolio and years of proven experience in touch technology has once again enabled us to provide smartphone OEMs and LCMs with cutting-edge user experience solutions,” said Kevin Barber, senior vice president, general manager, Smart Display Division, Synaptics. “The latest ClearPad family of products extends into multiple market segments with exciting new functionality and underscores Synaptics’ innovation and leadership in creating unmatched touch solutions.”

As yet there are no details on which Android smartphones will come with this new Force Touch technology, although we may see it in the new Samsung Galaxy S7 when it launches next year.

WhatsApp Now Allows You To Backup Your Content on Google Drive

WhatsApp

WhatsApp is one of the most popular instant messaging client, which is available on all major mobile operating systems.

WhatsApp has partnered with Google to allow users to create a private backup of their chat history, voice messages, photos, and videos in Google Drive.

Google said in a blog post,

Of course: you don’t want your memories stuck on your phone. (What if something happens?!) So starting today, WhatsApp for Android lets you create a private backup of your chat history, voice messages, photos, and videos in Google Drive. And once you do, you can restore everything on a new device with just a couple taps.

Later, if something happens to your device or you decide to replace it with a new one, you can easily restore everything on WhatsApp from Google Drive in a few simple taps.

You can simply enable the feature in your WhatsApp and select the frequency at which you want the app to backup your messages and content to Google drive, whether its daily, weekly or monthly.

The new backup feature is available for Android, and is rolling out over the next few months. So make sure to keep an eye on your WhatsApp settings to see if it’s available. Let us know if you can see the new backup options on your device.

Samsung Galaxy View Tablet Appears At The FCC

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The other day we heard some more specifications on Samsung’s new tablet and now the Samsung Galaxy View has appeared at the FCC, which suggests that the device may launch soon.

The Samsung Galaxy View will be Samsung’s largest tablet in its Galaxy range, the device will come with an 18.5 inch display.

The recent benchmarks revealed that the 18.5 inch display on the tablet will have a Full HD resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels, it will be powered by an octa core Samsung Exynos processor and will also come with 2GB of RAM.

We also found out that the device would come with 32GB of built in storage and a front facing 2 megapixel camera, there is no rear camera on the tablet.

Galaxy View

The GFXBench listing also revealed that the tablet would come with Android 5.1.1 Lollipop when it launches. The device listed at the FCC has the model number SM-T677A and it looks like it is headed to AT&T in the US.

It is not clear as yet on whether this tablet will be made available to all of the US carriers or whether it will be exclusive to AT&T, as soon as we get some more details about the device, including a launch date, we will let you guys know.

LG V10 Launched In South Korea

LG V10

The new LG V10 smartphone, with its dual display was announced recently and now the handset has gone on sale in South Korea.

The V10 is available for 799,700 KRW which is about $680 at the current exchange rate, this is for the unlocked version of the handset.

The LG V10 comes with a 5.7 inch display with a QHD resolution of 2560 x 1440 pixels, it also has a secondary display above the main display which measures 2.1 inches and has a resolution of 161 x 1040 pixels.

The handset is powered by a hexa core Qualcomm Snapdragon 808 processor and it also comes with 4GB of RAM, For storage the device is equipped with 64GB built in, plus a microSD card slot that supports up to 2TB cards.

On the front of the handset there is a dual lens 5 megapixel camera which is designed for Selfies, on the back there is a 16 megapixel camera OIS. The handset also comes with WiFi, LTE-A-Bluetooth and Android 5.1.1 Lollipop.

The device is available in a range of colors, the colors are Space Black, Opal Blue, Modern Beige, Luxe White and Ocean Blue.

Moto X Style Headed To India 15th October

moto-x-style

Motorola has announced the launch of the Moto X Style smartphone in India, the handset will be sold through Flipkart and it will go on sale on the 15th of October.

The 16GB of Moto X Style will retail for the equivalent of $450 and the 32GB model will retail for the equivalent of $485.

As a reminder the Moto X Style comes with a hexa-core Snapdragon 808 processor from Qualcomm, there is also an Adreno 418 GPU and 3GB of RAM.

Other specifications on the handset include a 5.7 inch display that has a Quad HD resolution of 2560 x 1440 pixels  and a choice of 16GB of 32GB of built in storage.

The handset also comes with Android 5.1.1 Lollipop and front and rear facing cameras, on the front is a 5 megapixel camera for selfies and on the back there is a 21 megapixel camera for photos and videos.

Swipe Ace Strike Voice-Calling Tablet With 4G Support Launched

Swipe has launched its new 4G tablet, the Ace Strike, priced at Rs. 6,999. The new tablet from Swipe is now exclusively available via Snapdeal.

The Swipe Ace Strike tablet comes with dual 4G SIM support, a highlight of the tablet at this price point. Another highlight is it support for voice calling.

It runs on Android 5.1 Lollipop out-of-the-box and features a 6.98-inch screen with a resolution of 1024×600 pixels. The tablet is powered by a 1.3GHz quad-core processor clubbed with 2GB RAM.

It sports a 5-megapixel rear camera with LED flash and a 2-megapixel front-facing camera. The Swipe Ace Strike tablet comes with 16GB of inbuilt storage which can be expanded up to 32GB via microSD card. The tablet features regular wireless connectivity options such as Bluetooth, GPRS/ EDGE, 3G, Wi-Fi, USB OTG, and Micro-USB. Unfortunately, there is no HDMI port on the tablet.

A 4000mAh battery backs the tablet which the company claims can deliver up to 6 hours of HD video playback and up to 480 hours of standby time. The tablet is listed to be available in Ivory White and Champagne Gold colours.

Swipe Technologies back in August had launched a 3G-enabled tablet, the Ace, priced at Rs. 7,299. The company had stressed that the Swipe Ace tablet was designed to be used for one-handed operations.

Much like Ace Strike, the tablet comes with dual-SIM support (one regular SIM and another Micro-SIM) and the voice calling feature. The Swipe Ace tablet features a 6.95-inch (1024×600 pixels) display and is powered by a quad-core processor clocked at 1.3GHz coupled with 1GB of RAM. The Android 4.4 KitKat-based tablet comes with 16GB inbuilt storage that is further expandable via microSD card (up to 32GB).

Android One Users Start Receiving Android 6.0 Marshmallow OTA Updates

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Google, while announcing the rollout of its Android 6.0 Marshmallow to Nexus devices, also added that it would be reaching Android One devices as well. The search giant had promised to keep its Android One handsets a priority for OS updates, and it seems to be making good on its word, with users reporting the rollout of the OTA update.

Android One users should soon start receiving the Android 6.0 Marshmallow OTA update, with several users globally reporting having received it. While Google has not yet given a particular time-frame for the Android One Marshmallow update rollout, users who want to jump the gun and upgrade before the OTA rollout hits their region, XDA Developers forum has the OTA update files for some handsets, including the Micromax Canvas A1 and Karbonn Sparkle V. The update is said to bring the device to build number MRA58M.

Google earlier this week released the factory images of the latest version of its mobile operating system for a handful of Nexus devices – Nexus 6, Nexus 5, Nexus 9 Wi-Fi, Nexus 9 Cellular, Nexus 7 (2013) Wi-Fi, Nexus 7 (2013) Cellular, and Nexus Player. These factory images would require you to flash your device (manually install the software update), and you will need to follow simple instructions. OTA updates have also started rolling out.

Tech companies such as HTC, Sony, and Motorola have also detailed their plans for the Android 6.0 Marshmallow roll out. Separately, a leaked roadmap for a large range of Android OEMs made its way to the Internet earlier this week, tipping update details for manufacturers like Samsung, Asus, Huawei,OnePlus, and Xiaomi.

Synaptics’ New Touchscreen Controller to Bring 3D Touch to Android Phones

When Apple took the wraps off its new iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus last month, 3D Touch was one of the features that was considered to be the highlight of the new models. Huawei however is considered to be the ‘first’ to debut the Force Touch pressure-sensitive touch technology on smartphones with itsMate S smartphone at IFA.

We may soon see more smartphones coming with the similar technology thanks to Synaptics’ ClearForce pressure-sensitive touch solution for Android smartphones. The company claims that its new ClearForce solution will allow handset manufacturers to offer interfaces which can differentiate between speed scrolling, zoom, gaming, and text or even allow performing certain functions such as photo editing by applying variable force with a finger or stylus.

Synaptics expects its new touch controller to ship with force-enabled smartphones in early 2016 and notes that it has been working closely with OEMs and LCMs. The company lists some of the functions that can take benefit of its new ClearForce solution including variable speed scrolling, picture zoom and panning, function preview and selection, variable gaming control functions, unlock and wake up, right-side mouse click behaviour, line thickness control while drawing, image editing, and upper case and symbol selection.

Apple’s 3D Touch pressure-sensitive touch technology present on the new iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus allows the iPhones to differentiate between a quick tap and a long press and triggers actions consequently.

Announcing the new ClearForce solution, Kevin Barber, Senior Vice President, General Manager, Smart Display Division, Synaptics said, “This exciting next step in human interface for smartphones will soon become the norm and highlights Synaptics’ leadership in force. Early adopters of ClearForce include industry leading OEMs and LCMs seeking advanced technology that drives an enhanced and more productive user experienced.”

Synaptics ClearForce force-sensing solution for smartphones can be expected to be used in multiple OEMs next year and is likely to be the next highlight feature of 2016 flagship Android smartphones.

Android Auto Doesn’t Ask for a Lot of Data, Says Google

Google has refuted Motor Trend’s finding which claimed that Android Auto collects all of sort of data. The report in question stated that Porsche opted to not include Android Auto in its new 911 Carrera and 911 Carrera S because Google’s Android solution for automobiles collects information such as vehicle speed, throttle position, oil temperature etc., and transmits it to the company.

The Mountain View-based company said that it accesses only few pieces information through its Android Auto, and that information is used to bolster the navigation suggestions provided through the car’s GPS. The company offered the explanation to The Verge.

“Steering this story straight – we take privacy very seriously and do not collect the data the Motor Trend article claims such as throttle position, oil temp and coolant temp. Users opt in to share information with Android Auto that improves their experience, so the system can be hands-free when in Drive, and provide more accurate navigation through the car’s GPS.”

American automobile magazine Motor Trend in an article on Monday, citing its own sources, claimed that the reason Porsche chose only Apple CarPlay and didn’t include Android Auto is over its concerns for its customers’ privacy. In the article, the publication alleged that Google wants a complete OBD2 dump (the dashboard that contains all sorts of diagnostic and performance information). “Basically Google wants a complete OBD2 dump whenever someone activates Android Auto,” the report stated. Google has denied the allegations.

TechCrunch reports that Google had initially asked for deeper data set – much more information – and that Porsche could have declined Google’s solutions long back. At this point, it is unclear whether that is indeed the reason why the car company made the decision to switch to Apple’s CarPlay, whose products are supposedly stronger from privacy standpoint.