Samsung Galaxy Note 8 review: excellent, but still a tough sell
With its exceptional screen, solid performance and an improved S Pen, it’s no surprise that Samsung’s Galaxy Note 8 is its best big phone ever. It also doesn’t hurt that it has one of the best dual camera setups we’ve ever seen. The problem is Samsung’s second-biggest phone, the Galaxy S8 Plus, is nearly as good, and merely lacks the gimmicks that make the Note 8 more expensive. If you’ve always wanted to sketch or write on a phone, the Galaxy Note 8 is exactly what you’ve been looking for. For the vast majority of people, though, the Note 8 remains a tough sell.
Google taps Xiaomi for its most powerful Android One phone
You’d be forgiven for thinking Android One was dead and gone. Google’s initiative to bring stock Android to emerging nations through cheap, local handsets roared to life in 2014. By 2015, however, it was already being rebooted, with the tech giant promising to further lower prices. That same year, it arrived in Africa, and is currently available in Japan, Turkey and the Netherlands, among other regions. Now, Android One is getting fitted with upgraded hardware, courtesy of Xiaomi. The Mi A1 handset was just announced in India and will cost $234 — significantly more than the $50 Android One phones we’re used to.
‘Destiny 2’ gives Bungie’s online shooter the narrative it deserves
The second Destiny game is finally available, and if you haven’t already dived in with your clan (or are just waiting for a free moment), Sean Buckley is ready with impressions of its campaign. Even though we don’t have much to go on for the game’s other content, like strikes and raids, at least this time around the storytelling isn’t left to confusing Grimoire cards. By showing rather than telling what’s going on, Destiny 2 “is a space opera that makes full use of the interactive medium of gaming.”
Inside the Essential phone
Now that the Essential PH-1 is available, naturally the crew at iFixit has taken time to tear one apart. Unfortunately, that minimalist, big-screen design makes for a phone that’s tough to pry open and cuts down many avenues for potential repair by end users. Of course, if you just want to take a peek inside you can do that right here.
Truly wireless earbuds for your headphones are coming
The slow (and contentious) demise of the smartphone’s headphone jack is prompting a wave of interest in wireless audio. And as consumers are gently encouraged to ditch the wire connecting them to their phones, they might as well abandon the ones found in traditional Bluetooth headphones, too. At IFA, the truly wireless revolution kickstarted by Bragi and embraced by Samsung and Apple is now a bandwagon that everyone is jumping on.
Sports brands are giving wearables another shot at success
Companies making health-focused products, like smartwatches, fitness bands and even hybrids of these two, are starting to realize that their products live and die by the apps and features offered. But to have applications that lure people to your platform, whether you’re Apple, Samsung or Fitbit, often it’s better if you have a hand in developing them. That’s why, especially at IFA 2017, many tech firms are teaming up with brands from different industries to add a new element of usefulness to their wearables. In some cases, that includes special-edition products created between two companies.
Microsoft extends the free Windows 10 S upgrade period through March
If you’re thinking about buying a Surface Laptop, you now have three extra months to decide between Windows 10 S and regular Windows 10. Microsoft previously said owners had until the end of the year to upgrade its Windows Store apps-only setup for free, but now it’s extending the free upgrade period to March 2018. After that, if you decide it’s too restrictive then switching will cost $49.
Google’s new Street View cameras help map the real world
For the first time in eight years, Google has revamped its Street View camera rigs. As Wired found out, the new hardware captures high-res images that will suck up more data about the world for the company’s algorithms.
But wait, there’s more…
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