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iPhone bricked with the 'Error 53' problem going around? Don't worry about it - Apple has your back. No really, they do.
If you haven't already heard, thousands upon thousands of iPhone 6 users have lost their devices to 'Error 53', which is bricking expensive smartphones. Why? Error 53 has something to do with the Touch ID-powered Home button on the iPhone, which can be used as a fingerprint sensor to unlock your smartphone, compared to the four-digit code that's usually required.
But, if your iPhone has been damaged and you've had it fixed by a non-Apple approved repairer, then you're... well, screwed. A new update to iOS now detects non-standard components and shuts down your iPhone - bricking it - aka, your expensive iPhone is now useless. This is all because you didn't go to an Apple Store, and have your phone fixed. Apple has released a statement to The Guardian, where they said: "We take customer security very seriously and Error 53 is the result of security checks designed to protect our customers. iOS checks that the Touch ID sensor in your iPhone or iPad correctly matches your device's other components".
AMD's technology initiative GPUOpen is primarily intended for PC development, but because of its open source nature, it's already appeared in console games -- Rise of the Tomb Raider being one of them. AMD's Head of Global Technical Marketing Robert Hallock says an interview with XDA Developers it's "very easy for developers to port and scale them" to this end.
Hallock also states GPUOpen could possibly be used for smartphone and tablet graphics purposes should a developer be willing to do the work.
The project isn't going to rake in huge wads of cash for AMD as far as we can tell, but gamers everywhere are already enjoying the benefits, and statements like these encourage that further.
Russian blogger Eldar Murtazin claims the upcoming Samsung Galaxy S7 lasts 17 hours on a single charge. You might be thinking that's nothing with light use, but Murtazin was playing video and had screen brightness at 100%. He also tested a dual-SIM version with 75% brightness and LTE always-on. With this test environment, the phone lasted a full two days.
The S7 is expected to include a 3,000 mAh battery and feature a more efficient CPU and GPU. More about it will be known at its unveiling later this month.
USB Type-C is the new connectivity standard that aims to do it all--video, sound, and data--and even allows mobile devices to be charged super fast. Given the format's capabilities, a Google engineer proves that you can't get away with cheap third-party USB Type-C cables lest you fry your precious new gadgets.
Google engineer Benson Leung has been reviewing various brands of USB Type-C cables to ensure and check performance. His findings are actually quite surprising: only three out of the ten USB Type-C cables he's reviewed are spec compliant to charge his Chromebook Pixel. If that wasn't enough, one of the cheap third-party cables actually fried the $1,000 laptop's ports.
Surjtech's 3M USB A-to-C cable is the culprit, and Leung says that the cord was so badly wired that it burnt out both of the Pixel C's USB Type-C ports and fried two separate USB PD Sniffer devices. "I directly analyzed the Surjtech cable using a Type-C breakout board and a multimeter, and it appears that they completely miswired the cable. The GND pin on the Type-A plug is tied to the Vbus pins on the Type-C plug. The Vbus pin on the Type-A plug is tied to GND on the Type-C plug," the Google engineer said in his review.
We know that the Galaxy S7 will be unveiled in just a couple of weeks time, but now we have confirmation that LG will be launching its G5 smartphone on February 21.
The news comes directly from LG, which posted a huge tease on their Twitter page with a picture of a person pretending to hold a smartphone with the number '5' in the middle. LG also said: "#LGG5, February 21st. #MWC16". When it comes to the G5 itself, we should expect a totally new design - that has me super excited.
I reached out to my good friend Anshel Sag of Moor Insights & Strategy, who had the following to say when it comes to the mysterious slot on the G5: "The purported expansion slot is a very interesting idea that will very likely harness the power and flexibility if USB Type-C which allows for more power and data than ever before. It also should give the LG G5 something to differentiate with and I think one of those accessories will be a VR headset of some sort. Expect to see LOTs of VR at MWC this year. LG has tried it in the past, but put almost no effort behind it. However, I expect it to be Google Cardboard-based rather than like GearVR".
Today's chemically-charged lithium ion batteries can be quite disastrous when they overheat, and even lead to explosions. While hardware-makers have pushed to make mobile batteries more powerful, we don't always hear about making them safer--but it looks like a new prototype from Stanford could do just that.
Stanford University has created a new lithium ion battery that won't overheat, potentially opening up the doors for everlasting Stanford's new battery has a safety function not unlike thermal trips in CPU hardware that automatically shuts itself off when it gets too hot. "People have tried different strategies to solve the problem of accidental fires in lithium-ion batteries," said Stanford professor of chemical engineering Zhenan Bao. "We've designed the first battery that can be shut down and revived over repeated heating and cooling cycles without compromising performance."
The science behind the new tech depends on a combination of thermally-responsive polymer, which acts as a conduit for the electricity, and graphene-coated nanoscale nickel particles to carry the charge. The polyethylene film expands when heated up, separating the nickel particles from the electrodes and thus cutting off the flow of electricity. Once the temperature drops back to a stable point, the film will shrink and enable a steady flow of electric current--and the process can be repeated many, many times without losing efficiency.
It's been a hard road for the adoption of the latest version of Android, but 4 months later we're now looking at 1.2% of reported Android devices running Android 6.0, Marshmallow.
The update process used to be far more complicated and lengthy as carrier testing sometimes prohibited devices from receiving the newest updates and then sometimes even becoming abandoned. There are still issues with manufacturers' ability to quickly roll-out updates, and with KitKat (4.4) being the most prevalent version installed, it doesn't seem like the roll-out process is becoming any more streamlined.
The meager 1.2% is likely attributed to the numbers of Nexus 6P and 5X phones sold, and not because of older devices being updated. This points to their new phones not really selling very well, or even to a market dilution with so many Android phones available.
Google CEO Sundar Pichai is said to have told "colleagues and outsiders" that his company wants greater control over its Nexus program. Speculation says this means Google will adopt the Apple model, controlling its Nexus line from top to bottom and not relying on partners as much (and not at all publicly). In fact, Google is supposedly going down this road specifically to better compete with Apple at the high-end.
One might hope Google elects to give control of the program over to Pixel, who made the wonderful Chromebook Pixel and Pixel C.
Adding to the lower-end of the smartphone market is LG Electronics with its new announcement of the K4 and K10 devices, aiming to offer "affordable mass-tier phones with advanced features" to the wider market, as claimed by President and CEO Juno Cho in a recent press release.
The K10 smartphone comes packed with LG's new 2.5D Arc Glass, a 5.3-inch HD touch display, an 8MP front camera, a 2,300mAh internal battery, a front camera that is claimed to be "up to 13MP" and finally a "woven back cover [that] provides optimal grip."
The K4 is a lower model and is marketed by LG to be a widely affordable and completely entry-level product. Brandishing a 4.5-inch FWVGA display, 8GB of memory and LTE connectivity, this device comes further packed with a 1,940mAh battery and cameras which offer 5MP on the rear-facing and 2MP on the front. Both devices come packed with quad-core-processors, however, the K10 offers up the ability for users to purchase an Octa-Core processor device with the LTE-enabled version. As for processor speeds, the K4 offers a 1.0GHz Quad-Core only, whereas the K10 can be optioned with either a 1.3GHz Quad-Core in the 3G phone, a 1.2GHz or 1.3GHz Quad-Core in the LTE or the previously-mentioned Octa-Core LTE which runs at 1.14GHz.
We aren't far from the launch of the Samsung Galaxy S7 smartphones, with the latest rumor surrounding the 'new generation' battery Samsung is preparing for its new handset.
According to blogger Eldar Murtazin, the Galaxy S7 requires 100 minutes of charge to go from 0-100%, thanks to its 'new generation' battery. We don't know what the 'new generation' battery is just yet, so we could be looking at Samsung increasing the capacity of the battery without requiring too much room inside of the body - or, Samsung is using new technology that will charge the Galaxy S7 much faster.
The Galaxy S6 edge+ and Galaxy Note 5 already charge quick, taking around 110 minutes to get to full charge, so the 100 minutes on the Galaxy S7 would be pretty impressive to see. We should also expect the Galaxy S7 to rock wireless charging, so I'd like to see just how fast the new smartphones from Samsung charge over wireless charging. Give me 100 minutes of 0-100% on wireless charging, and I'll be very, very impressed.