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Huawei Mate 20 Pro: The Best Android Phone of 2018?

This episode of Orbital is dedicated to flagship smartphones – the Huawei Mate 20 Pro and the Asus ROG Phone. Reviewers Roydon Cerejo and Aditya Shenoy join host Pranay Parab to talk about these two smartphones. We begin the episode by talking about the Mate 20 Pro, which prides itself for camera performance. The smartphone has three rear cameras and a single front camera. Roydon explains what the cameras are for and how they perform. Here we mention how the photographs on the Mate 20 Pro compare with those taken by the iPhone XS, Pixel 3, and the Galaxy Note 9. We then talk about the performance of the Mate 20 Pro, which uses Huawei’s own Kirin 980 chip. The results that we mention might surprise you. Then we talk about the battery life of the Mate 20 Pro and talk about how the software holds up against stock Android. Finally, we mention the Mate 20 Pro price in India and whether it offers good value for money.

The next part of the podcast is dedicated to the Asus ROG Phone. This phone is marketed as a gaming smartphone and we examine those claims in this segment. This includes looking at whether it offers features that gamers will appreciate, if it performs, and whether people should pay the ROG Phone’s price in India. We look at all the accessories that are available for this phone and wonder whether they will find a market. Next we talk about the software platform and if there are enough games on Android. In a world where we have Nintendo Switch for portable gaming, is there room for an Android gaming phone? Aditya shares his thoughts on this. Finally, we wrap up the episode by talking about the ROG Phone’s performance in regular usage for things such as taking photos. 

That’s all for this week’s episode of Orbital, which you can subscribe to via Apple Podcasts or RSS, download the episode, or just hit the play button below.






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Fortnite Leaks Crackdown: Epic Games Forces Closure of FNBRLeaks

With Fortnite Season 7 in full swing, it isn’t just fans of Epic Games’ battle royale sensation Fortnite who have had their hands full. The company’s lawyers have been busy as well, sending out a legal notice to Fortnite leaker, FNBRLeaks. This comes after elements of Fortnite Season 7, such as its snow-themed map were datamined and made public. The FNBRLeaks Twitter account tweeted that Epic Games had threatened legal action if various FNBR social media profiles and GitHub Page weren’t deleted. What this means is, leaks of what to expect from Fortnite could come to a crawl. More importantly, it highlights how heavy-handed Epic Games can get with its own community and fans.

“I am not going to go into specifics with this,” the tweet reads. “Due to the request of an Epic Games Attorney who i’m not going to disclose, my Twitter, Discord, YouTube, Instagram, and GitHub must be deleted, or else they will take action. Thank you all for the support and followers over my 7 month span of the FNBRLeaks twitter. Sadly, everything comes to an end.”

In addition to this, the now deleted FNBRLeaks Discord had images of the legal notice that were posted by an FNBRLeaks staffer. It states that FNBRLeaks “spoiled the game for millions of of people who play and/or watch Fortnite, and negatively impact[ed] those who work hard to create and update Fortnite. The fact that he is a teenager makes this no less true”.

Considering how the Fortnite community has reacted to previous leaks, it appears that little has been spoiled because Fortnite doesn’t have a deep story or narrative that plays out. Besides, it’s rare to see players feel angry over a leak of something as trivial as a new cosmetic item in a game.

Nonetheless, this Fortnite leaks crackdown could be just the beginning. For a company that champions open platforms, Epic is rather close-minded about how its fans should enjoy Fortnite.


If you’re a fan of video games, check out Transition, Gadgets 360’s gaming podcast. You can listen to it via Apple Podcasts or RSS, or just listen to this week’s episode by hitting the play button below.






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SoftBank Telecom IPO Said to See Strong Demand Despite Huawei, Network Disruption

Domestic investors have sought nearly double the number of shares offered by SoftBank Group Corp’s soon-to-list wireless unit, two sources from a lead IPO underwriter said, underscoring strong demand for Japan’s third-largest telco.

Overseas institutional investors have sought more than three times the number of available shares, the sources said on Friday on condition of anonymity as they are not authorised to disclose the figures publicly. Domestic investors will buy more than 80 percent of the offering.

Strong retail demand for the float was further underscored by Japan’s SBI Holdings, which earlier in the day said it had sold all its allotted shares in SoftBank’s telecoms unit.

SBI is one of the lead underwriters for the domestic portion of what is set to be Japan’s largest-ever IPO. An error with its allocation of shares to investors had earlier led to rumours of lower-than-expected appetite.

The telecoms unit, SoftBank Corp, priced its IPO this week at an indicated JPY 1,500 ($13.22) per share, and said it would sell an extra 160 million shares to meet the demand, raising about $23.5 billion.

There are, however, some concerns weighing on investors’ minds ahead of the unit’s trading debut in Tokyo on December 19.

Among those is the scrutiny of SoftBank’s relationship with Huawei Technologies as governments around the world move to shut out the Chinese firm amid worries its gear could facilitate Chinese spying.

SoftBank plans to replace 4G network equipment from Huawei with hardware from other suppliers, two sources said, a process that is likely to be time-consuming and expensive.

There are also concerns around reliability of alternative suppliers after a software glitch in Ericsson equipment caused widespread network disruption for SoftBank customers last week, said one of the sources who is a senior government official.

The disruption sent SoftBank Corp CEO Ken Miyauchi rushing to the telecoms ministry to apologise. Japan is considering officially reprimanding SoftBank and telling it to ensure the disruption does not reoccur, the source said.

Shares of SoftBank Group closed down 4.6 percent on Friday, taking this month’s decline to about 11 percent. The benchmark index dropped 2 percent.

© Thomson Reuters 2018






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Xiaomi Redmi 7 Series May Just Have Received 3C Certification in China: Report

Xiaomi has been spotted building three new smartphone models. While the company hasn’t made any confirmation around the development, three Xiaomi smartphones have allegedly received certification from China’s Compulsory Certificate (3C). These new models are likely to be a part of the Redmi 7 series. The smartphones could, therefore, be the Redmi 7A, Redmi 7, and Redmi 7 Pro. The 3C listing also shows that the new Xiaomi smartphones come with 5V/2A charging, suggesting 10W charge support. This again hints at the new Redmi models as the company generally offers 10W charging support with its affordable models.

The 3C listing, as spotted by technology blog Nashville Chatter, shows three new Xiaomi smartphones carrying model numbers M1901F7E, M1901F7T, and M1901F7C. These are likely to be the Redmi 7 series models – could precisely be the Redmi 7A, Redmi 7, and Redmi 7 Pro – as the successor to the Redmi 6 family that debuted in June this year.

Among other developments, a screenshot shared by the source indicates that the new Xiaomi handsets have received 3C certification on November 29. All three models have 4G LTE support and 5V/2A charging that could translate into 10W charge support.

It is worth noting here that since all the Redmi models launched this year internally carry model numbers begin with “M18”, the new series that apparently has model numbers starting with “M19” could be the Redmi models of 2019.

Xiaomi hasn’t launched the Redmi Note 6 Pro in China that debuted in Thailand back in late September. Thus, it is speculated that the company might skip that model now and bring the next-generation Redmi 7.






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