HTC officially confirms it’s bringing a new U device on November 2


Just before the latest renders of the unreleased U device leaked today, HTC had tweeted a save-the-date for its upcoming press event to announce the very smartphone that was leaked.

The image in the tweet is somewhat generic, and doesn’t offer a direct hint as to what we’re going to see on November 2. Regardless, HTC tweets that it is “bringing something new for the #BrilliantU”.


HTC will announce a new U-branded smartphone on November 2, and its official now. Rumors have pointed to a possible re-release of the HTC U11 with an updated display. Rumored specs include a 6-inch POLED display with an 18:9 aspect ratio.

The leaked renders from today reveal rumors of a taller phone with a large 4,000 mAh battery and stereo speakers. Other specs include a 12MP main camera and an 8MP front-facing camera. There’s also a Snapdragon 835 CPU expected to be paired with 4 GB or 6GB.


The Google Pixel 2 and 2 XL have a secret menu button, turns out it’s a bug


This week, more and more people will get be receiving delivery of the new Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL smartphones. Android Police first discovered a secret menu key that can be accessed through the Pixel 2’s navigation bar, which was later confirmed by CNET.

You can tap the lower right corner of the display, just to the right of the recent apps button and you’ll feel haptic feedback as if a button from the Nav bar was pressed. This button acts like the menu key, a button that used to be part of the Android’s set of Navigation keys before on-screen keys were introduced with the Samsung Galaxy Nexus and Android Ice Cream Sandwich.

Google confirmed to CNET that this button is not a feature, but actually a bug in the software. Google intends to “fix” the ghost menu key in an upcoming OTA update. This means the hidden menu button isn’t going to stick around for much longer.


Google Pixel 2 undergoes durability test


We’ve come to really enjoy YouTuber JerryRigEverything’s smartphone durability tests. They give us a comprehensive look into the materials chosen for smartphone models and the bend test gives us general idea of how well the phones are built on a structural level.

The latest device to undergo this durability test is the HTC-made Google Pixel 2. This is the smaller model with a 5-inch display.

The speaker grilled are made of metal, which is an improvement over the fabric-like material found on the first-generation Pixel.

The Pixel 2’s display is made of Gorilla Glass 5, which scratches with the Moh’s hardness level 5 and 6 picks. This is the same case with the front-facing camera, which sits behind the same glass as the display.

While many of the more recent smartphones have been coming with back-sides made of glass, they are more resilient to Zack’s razor against scratches. So you can imagine that the Pixel 2’s metal body with matte finish didn’t do well against the razor. Zack attributes this to the Pixel’s “Premium hybrid coating”, which was briefly touched on at the MadeByGoogle event.

Google’s website even mentions that color from jeans or leather may even transfer to this coating and that the coating could chip when dropped. Something to consider when deciding whether you should get a case for it or not. While many fingerprint scanners that Zack scratches work after they meet his razor blade, the Pixel 2’s was rendered useless. This is only a problem if you plan to scrape it with a blade.

Finally, skipping ahead to the bend test, the Pixel 2 doesn’t totally fail, but the frame did split right where it put a plastic antenna line insert next to the nanoSIM card tray. Putting such an insert must be strategic or the phone’s structural integrity could be compromised.

While the phone didn’t make Zack’s shelf of shame, it barely passed his durability test. The takeaways from this endurance test is you’ll probably want to throw the Pixel 2 in a case or skin to prevent the coating from rubbing on other materials or chipping when dropped.

The Pixel 2 XL is built differently than the Pixel 2 with its 3D glass, which the smaller model does not have. We’ll be waiting to see how the Pixel 2 XL does in Zack’s durability test.

vivo announces expansion to 6 new markets


vivo is among the top 5 vendors in the world, according to Gartner’s latest market report and is also an official sponsor of the next two FIFA World Cup tournaments. And to capitalize on its growing brand recognition today it announced its plans for expansion to six new markets in the following months.

The company will appear “soon” in Taiwan, Singapore, and Hong Kong. It will also make its European debut by launching official sales in Russia. The company also declared a push to the African market with sales in Morocco and Kenya.

The new countries will join the list, which already contained India, Thailand, Philippines, Myanmar, Malaysia, Indonesia, Pakistan, Cambodia and Bangladesh.

The brand aims to offer devices and “inspire confidence and self-expression in more young people”, meaning it will continue to manufacture devices focused on camera and audio experience. One of the latest phones, the vivo V7+, has a 24MP front camera with a selfie flash dubbed Moonlight Glow, Face Beauty 7.0 and Portrait Mode.

Motorola Moto X4 India launch set for November 13


Last month, Motorola revealed that the Moto X4 will be launched in India on October 3. That, however, didn’t happen for whatever reasons. But now, the company has confirmed that the phone will land in the country next month.

The company took to Twitter to announce the new launch date – November 13.

The handset was officially unveiled back in August during this year’s IFA conference in Berlin. Europe was the first region to get it. There’s currently no information on what price tag the phone will carry in India.


New Nokia phone set to be launched in China this week


HMD looks set to launch a new smartphone in China this week. The company has sent out invites for an event which will be held on October 19, a couple of days from now.

While there’s currently no official information on the star of the event, the official TMALL Nokia store currently features an animated GIF that teases a phone with the Bothie feature.

It’s the company’s Nokia 8 smartphone that brought this feature along, so it’s reasonable to assume that the teaser is the current flagship. If that’s the case, it’s highly likely that China will get the new 6GB RAM variant, which was recently launched in Europe.

However, some reports also say that October 19 will mark the unveiling of a completely new Nokia 7 smartphone – they say ‘qi’ in Chinese refers to 7, and hence the speculation. The wait to know isn’t long though, just a couple of days left.

Via 1 2 | TMALL

Samsung Galaxy S8/S8+ receive price cut in India


Samsung has given its Galaxy S8 and S8+ flagship smartphones a price cut in India. The larger model is currently going for INR 58,900 or $907 (down from INR 64,900), while the smaller one will set you back INR 53,900 or $830 (down from 57,900).

So that’s a solid INR 6,000 discount on the Galaxy S8+ and an INR 4,000 on the standard model. In addition to the price cut, buyers also get a one time screen replacement at a nominal price and those making a purchase with HDFC Credit Cards get a cash back of INR 4,000.

There’s currently no information on whether or not it’s a permanent price cut, and if not, when exactly it ends. So those interested in it may have to act fast.

Via | Samsung