HTC Desire 12 Goes Official Alongside Desire 12+: Available This April

HTC today has unveiled two new smartphones with 18:9 display under its Desire series. While they might look similar at a glance, there are quite a number of things that separated these phones which are called Desire 12 and Desire 12+.
The smaller of the two, the Desire 12 is equipped with 5.5-inch HD+ IPS display and powered by a MediaTek MT6739 processor. It also carried 3GB of RAM alongside 32GB internal storage as well as 2730mAh battery.
HTC Desire 12+.
As for the Desire 12+, the phone comes with a slightly larger display at 6-inch IPS display even though it still feature the same HD+ resolution. It also powered by a different processor in the form of Qualcomm Snapdragon 450 while its RAM and internal storage still the same as per Desire 12. The battery on Desire 12+ also has bigger capacity but not by much at 2965mAh.
Another factor that differentiate both devices is their cameras. Specifically, the Desire 12+ is equipped with dual rear camera which features 13MP and 2MP sensors alongside an 8MP front camera with an LED flash of its own. The Desire 12 on another hand offers a much more straight forward setup with 13MP rear camera and 5MP front camera.
HTC Desire 12.
Scheduled for release this April, HTC has yet to reveal the local pricing for either of these devices for Malaysia. Nevertheless, the company has stated that these devices wouldn’t break the bank which is not surprising since they are part of the Desire family after all.
(Source: HTC Malaysia)
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Oppo And Dolby Strike Intellectual Property Sharing Deal

Oppo and Dolby have announced a partnership deal that will see both companies sharing their precious intellectual property. The focus of the partnership lies on two technologies: the High-Efficiency Advanced Audio Coding (HE ACC) and Dolby’s JPEG-HDR.
The HE ACC is a digital audio compression system usually used for streaming purposes. It’s not the best possible encoding for audio quality, but it does provide good enough sound reproduction at low bitrates; which might indicate a more budget focus for Oppo’s application of the technology.
On the other hand, JPEG-HDR is a “format allows for capturing multiple exposures with today’s 12-bit or greater sensors, and it outputs 20-bit or greater true HDR images.”
Director of Oppo IP Department, Adler Feng, said that “This partnership will enable us to create more remarkable smartphones with exciting technological innovations and spectacular user experiences.”
Dolby already has a history of making its brand and technology available on smartphones. Its Dolby Atmos sound technology can be seen on models such as the Lenovo Phab2, ZTE Axon 7 mini and Nokia 6. While Atmos hasn’t been mentioned as part of this agreement, we wouldn’t be surprised to see it appear on future Oppo devices either.
(Source: Global News Wire via Android Headlines)
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Huawei P20 May Feature 40MP Camera Sensor & 960fps Video Recording

It’s not until next week when Huawei will officially unveil its latest P20 smartphones, but more and more leaks surrounding these phones keep surfacing. Now, some reports are saying that the P20 Pro will come with a massive 40MP camera sensor; it’s also said to be capable of recording videos at 960fps.
That’s right: it appears Huawei will be able to match the Samsung Galaxy S9 phones’ Super Slow Mo mode. According to XDA Developers, which went through alleged firmware files of the P20 and P20 Pro, both of these phones will be able to record at 960fps.
However, this slow motion recording is only limited to 720p, much like the Galaxy S9 devices. In contrast, the Sony Xperia XZ2 and XZ2 Compact can record at a similar frame rate at 1080p.

Aside from that, another report from WinFuture claims that one of the P20 Pro’s three rear cameras will come with a whopping 40MP camera sensor. Of course, it remains to be seen if this is done through software trick or if it’s a true 40MP sensor.
WinFuture’s report also mentioned that the P20 Pro will come with a 20MP monochrome sensor and an 8MP telephoto lens. Thanks to these three cameras, the Pro can supposedly do 5x hybrid zoom too.

While these information are quite interesting, we won’t know for sure if the Huawei P20 phones will feature them until Huawei itself officially introduce the devices next week on 27 March. If these features are indeed legitimate, the P20 Pro certainly has an interesting camera system.
(Source: XDA Developers, WinFuture)
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Samsung Patent Filing Shows A Sliding Expandable Display

An application with the US Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO) has revealed an expandable display technology. The technical drawing shows a device that can be pulled apart to enlarge the screen; not unlike how those extending dinner tables work.
According to the patent filing, the screen consists of three different panels sandwiched in the body of the device. Pulling on the side allows the hidden panels to slide into position on the front of the device, which increases the amount of viewable space on the display.
More than a few things are still unclear about how Samsung would actually deploy this technology. Seeing that it looks like a lot of moving parts just to get a questionable amount of additional space. Stacking three displays on top of each other would also result in an extremely thick device; even if most of the electronics are moved into the scroll-like handles on the sides.

It’s a novel idea for Samsung to patent, and one that might have real world applications. That said, this is unlikely to see the light of day any time soon. Samsung has been patenting a variety of display ideas as of late; none of which seem to have resulted in a physical product.
(Source: UPTPO via Android Police)

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Sonic The Hedgehog To Receive His Own Puma Shoes This June

Sega’s lovable blue mascot Sonic The Hedgehog will apparently receive his own shoes from Puma later this year. This was revealed during an official panel at SXSW 2018 last week which also saw the confirmation of Sonic Mania Plus package and a preview of Sonic Mania Adventures new animated shorts as well as a teaser for what might be a new Sonic Racing game.
However, the exact detail behind the design of the upcoming shoes which is called Puma x Sega RS-0 Sonic is still a secret at the moment. Even though the design has been masked inside the teaser video, it is quite clear that the shoes will at least include color scheme that is related to Sonic’s universe.

In general, collaborations between video game companies and shoe companies are not as rare as you might have thought. Aside from this upcoming Sonic x Puma release, some examples of such collaborative products include the Nike PlayStation 4 basketball shoes as well as the Vans x Nintendo collection.
Whether Puma will release the upcoming Sonic shoes in Malaysia is not yet known at the moment but nevertheless, we’ll keep you updated once we heard any updates for the company.
(Source: Sonic The Hedgehog via Aksiz)
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The Nimbus Data ExaDrive DC100 SSD Has the Largest Storage at 100TB

Data storage company, Nimbus Data, has announced the ExaDrive DC100, an SSD with the largest storage capacity to date at 100TB. Primarily designed for data center use, the ExaDrive DC100 is also claimed to be the most energy efficient SSD in the world, consuming only an 1/8th of the power that is usually consumed by current SSDs.
Specs-wise, the ExaDrive DC100 has sequential read and write speeds of 500MB/s, 4K read and write speeds of up to 100,000 IOPS, and is controlled via a 3D NAND controller. Nimbus Data is also providing the SSD with a five year warranty.
To give you an idea of just how massive 100TB is; you could store as many as 20,000 Full HD movies, up to 20 million songs in FLAC format on it, and you’d still have some space leftover.

There’s no official pricing for the SSD yet, but Nimbus Data is saying that the company will make it available sometime during the second or third quarter of 2018, and that it will have “prices comparable to other business-grade SSD on a per-terabyte-basis.”
(Source: Nimbus Data via The Verge, Engadget)
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NVIDIA Announces New Ray Tracing Tech To Help Developers Boost Realism In Games

NVIDIA has officially announced a new ray tracing technology called RTX at the on-going Game Developers Conference in San Francisco. This technology is designed to provide developers with an extra layer of realism to add into their games.
For the uninitiated, ray tracing is a rendering technique used to generate an image by tracing the path of light as pixels in an image plane and simulating the effects area shadows, surface reflections, as well as ambient occlusion on virtual objects.

Among the industry that relies heavily on ray tracing is the film industry. For example, the technique helps animation studios to create more life-like scenarios and characters. At the same time, it is also being used to blend computer generated assets or characters into the real world in order to deliver seamless realism in movies.
However, ray tracing requires significant computing power to the extent that they can’t be done in applications that utilize real time rendering such as games. NVIDIA’s new RTX Technology is meant to change that by being a highly optimized ray tracing technology which works in hand with the newly announced Microsoft DirectX Raytracing (DXR) APIs via NVIDIA GameWorks Ray Tracing feature.

To be clear, consumers will not able to see RTX technology in action anytime soon though. As it stands, the technology is still very new and only available for games developers for the time being so that they will be able to find ways to implement RTX into their work.
Furthermore, RTX can only be supported by Volta GPUs which has yet been mass produced for the consumer market. Unless you want to count NVIDIA TITAN V which is something that not exactly meant for gaming anyway.

All in all, the new NVIDIA RTX Technology provides a path for game developers to further boost realism in their games through the usage of real time ray tracing which is something they might not able to be done before.
(Source: NVIDIA – 1, 2)
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Epic Games Releases Paragon Assets For Free To Unreal Engine Developers

Epic Games has one last hurrah for the failed Paragon MOBA. Releasing all assets from the game for free on the Unreal Engine Marketplace; allowing other developers to make use of the painstakingly designed character models, animations, VFX, voice lines and more.
The company had originally spent some $12 million (RM47 million) to develop these assets for Paragon; which entered into an open beta in February 2017. Unfortunately, it failed to attract a large enough playerbase, with Epic ultimately deciding to shutdown servers next month.
When that happens, everything used for the game will be released to others using the Unreal Engine for their own development efforts. This includes all 20 characters that were created for Paragon, complete with animation models, meshes, textures, and dialogue. Epic is also releasing 1,500 environment assets along with a sample map for testing or customisation.

Paragon seems to have simply had the misfortune of appearing at the end of the MOBA trend. Quickly losing ground to the multiplayer battle arena games that have taken over the gaming sphere. It doesn’t help that Epic Games is also doing very well with the Fortnite Battlegrounds, a development pivot that seems to have cannibalised the Paragon team.
[Source: Unreal Engine]
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PUBG Mobile Now Available In Malaysia

After a soft launch in Canada last week, the mobile version of PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds (PUBG) is finally available in Malaysia. Originally launched in China as the PUBG: Exhilarating Battlefield last month, it can be obtained for both Android and iOS devices.
Developed by Tencent Games, the PUBG Mobile provides the similar battle royale experience as per the original PC version alongside a number of tweaks to make it suitable for mobile devices. Just like the Windows version, the PUBG Mobile still supports 100 players in a single map.

Meanwhile, do note that the game requires Android devices with at least Android 5.1.1 and 2GB of RAM. As for iOS devices, it can be run on devices as old as iPhone 5s although the developer has stated that the oldest recommended device is iPhone 6.
In terms of download size, the Android version has a file size of 706MB while the iOS version is 892.7MB big. Given the massive file size, it goes without saying that we do recommend you to download PUBG Mobile via Wi-Fi.
(Download: PUBG Mobile – Android, iOS.)
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LG Folder LM-Y110 Clamshell Phone Leaked

LG could be releasing a clamshell smartphone targeted at the elderly according to Roland Quandt. The LG Folder LM-Y110 comes with mid-tier specifications, in a body that looks like it was designed in the late 90s.
Make no mistake – this is still an Android smartphone. Underneath the classic design is a MediaTek chip running at 1.1GHz. The screen is a tiny (by today’s standards) 3-inch WQVGA 360 x 240 pixels, and is accompanied by 1GB RAM, 8GB of internal storage and a dedicated FM radio button.

This is the LG Folder LM-Y110. An Android flip-phone with dedicated FM radio button for the elderly. 3in WQVGA 360×240 screen, MediaTek 1.1GHz CPU, 1/8GB, 5MP rear cam, 1470mAh battery. And it runs Android 6.0.1. Yes. 6.0.1.
— Roland Quandt (@rquandt) March 16, 2018

Powering everything is a 1470mAh battery and it comes with Android 6.0.1 out of the box. Which is a rather peculiar choice considering that Google has been trying to push Android Go as the low budget operating system.
When it comes out sometime this year, it will be available in two colours – black and rose gold hues. It may not be the latest and greatest Android, but as a device to connect the elderly and their family members, it should be enough. That said, there’s no telling where this phone will be made available.
(Source: Roland Quandt via Android Headlines)
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