Category: Mobile hardware
Switch view

LG Chem outs a hexagonal battery for smartwatches

by 26 comments

LG Chem has developed a hexagonal battery for smartwatches. The solution improves the capacity by 25% in comparison to the currently available rectangular batteries.

The Korean manufacturer has reportedly started offering the new battery to hardware manufacturers worldwide. Read more »

New Samsung technology promises to almost double lithium ion battery capacity

by 68 comments

We’ve heard it time and time again and add some. A new revolutionary battery that is going to prolong the life of our tech, unshackle it from the bounds of the wall socket, well, maybe not quite as dramatic, but, you definitely get the idea.

Joking aside, however, we are in dire need of a portable power revolution if we are going to keep up with the ever-increasing needs of our sophisticated tech. Given that the basic principles under which batteries operate, as well as their size limitations have become pretty fixed, the only salvation seems to be in new materials to enhance the controlled electro-chemical reaction we rely on. Researchers at Samsung have done just that and promise to deliver whopping 1.5 to 1.8 times greater charge in future commercial batteries. Read more »

New Samsung commercial mocks the iPhone’s lack of wireless charging

by 152 comments

Wireless charging is definitely the new craze and with integrated support for both major standards – Qi and PMA in the Galaxy S6 edge, Samsung has earned some bragging rights. And a new commercial seems to prove that the Korean giant is not above dangling its new toy in the face of Apple and its “wall hugging” fans.

This advertisement tactic is really nothing new, but still exploiting the “look at what you are missing out on” angle has a powerful effect on users, especially trend-conscious ones. The real situation might be far from the tangle ball of cables the video portrays, but, there is some grain of truth, as Apple is guilty of requiring a ton of adapters and cables, just to get everything working together. For a company that puts such great value on simplicity and user experience, this is an issue that has persisted for surprisingly long. Read more »

Snapdragon video sheds some light on hybrid auto focus technology

by 29 comments

Mobile camera tech has really taken off recently, thanks to the introduction of advanced technologies, like OIS, color sensors, laser auto focus and PDAF. But, this technological leap can easily be overlooked by the average user, simply due to lack of understanding. Qualcomm has realized the need for more palatable explanations of recent advancements and has put out a short, upbeat video with a quick overview of how current Snapdragon chips achieve camera focus.

The technology in the company’s current SoCs is dubbed – “hybrid auto focus”, simply because it features intelligent algorithms for switching between laser and phase detection focus and for using them in tandem. There is nothing really hard to understand about both technologies, once you get a proper explanation. Read more »

AMD allegedly considering a split to return to profitability

by 60 comments

It is no secret that AMD has been struggling to earn money lately. Historically, the legendary chip maker has maintained a steady “runner-up” position behind Intel, especially in terms of desktop hardware, but it looks like the huge shift to mobile devices took the US company by surprise and it is yet to fully adapt.

The possibility of various partnerships and buy-outs has been tossed around quite a lot recently and it really seems like AMD is way overdue for some kind of restructuring if it is going to survive. Industry sources now suggest that chief executive Lisa Su is considering the possibility of splitting AMD businesses, a move which was previously protested against internally and is still officially denied by the company. Read more »

Benchmarking Asus ZenFone 2 ZE551ML with Intel Atom Z3580 SoC and 4GB of RAM

by 52 comments

We got our hands on a retail unit of the range-topping version of Asus ZenFone 2 with 4GB of RAM, so we decided to put it through our set of benchmark tests. The smartphone packs a beefier chipset, which aims to compete with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 family.

Asus ZenFone 2 with 4GB of RAM packs an Intel Atom Z3580 SoC with 2.3 GHz quad-core CPU, coupled with PowerVR G6430 GPU. For comparison, Asus ZenFone 2 with 2GB of RAM features Intel Atom Z3560 with 1.8GHz quad-core CPU. Read more »

MediaTek promises 30%-40% power savings with 10-core Helio X20 chipset

by 90 comments

MediaTek took the lead in CPU core count with the Helio X20 chipset, which packs a whopping 10 cores. That’s good for computing power, but what does it do for power usage? The chipmaker promises lower power usage for various tasks.

MediaTek likens it to driving a car uphill – conventional big.LITTLE has two gears, while Helio X20′s tri-cluster design has three, so it can more closely match the demands of the software. Read more »

Intel announces Thunderbolt 3

by 42 comments

After two years since Thunderbolt 2, Intel has taken the wraps off the new Thunderbolt 3 protocol, and there are some major and exciting new features here.

By far the biggest improvement is the switch from the standard DisplayPort that we saw for Thunderbolt 1 and 2 to the more modern USB Type-C. Along with making it more modern and infinitely easier (since there is no wrong way to plug in a USB Type-C cable) it also provides Thunderbolt access to the USB protocol with Intel’s new Alpine Ridge controller, which was absent in the previous versions of Thunderbolt. This means Thunderbolt 3 has support for USB 3.1, Thunderbolt, DisplayPort, and PCI-Express protocols. Read more »

Apple patents hybrid keyboard with touch-sensitive keys

by 78 comments

Apple received a patent for a hybrid keyboard with touch-sensitive keys. The innovative setup will allow users to to apply multitouch gestures without removing their hands from the keyboard.

The keys of the “Fusion keyboard” feature capacitive touch sensors. Read more »

LG G4 teardown reveals an easy to repair flagship

by 57 comments

LG G4 is the newest flagship on the market introduced just last week. It packs a 5.5″ improved IPS Quad HD display and is the first to run on the Snapdragon 808 chipset with a 6-core processor. The device is already on sale in South Korea and naturally is first teardown is now live.

Unlike many other top smartphones today, the LG G4 still offers removable rear cover and user-replaceable battery. This suggests a simpler assembly and construction of the inner parts and indeed this turned out to be true. In fact, LG G4 seems to be the easiest top-tier smartphone for repair this year. Read more »

MediaTek introduces Pump Express Plus fast charging to duel with Qualcomm

by 35 comments

MediaTek continues its push to become the Qualcomm of the East, the latest step in that direction is fast battery charging for mobiles. The tech is called Pump Express Plus and is found in the MT6732 and MT6595 chipsets, along with newer chips that come out.

There are current devices that use those chipsets (like the Sony Xperia E4g and Meizu MX4), but it seems they are not Pump-enabled. Read more »

AMD releases official info on the new Carrizo-L CPU cores and product line

by 62 comments

After months of speculation. AMD has finally cleared the smoke around its next line of chips, based on the new Carrizo-L CPU cores. This gives us a clearer picture of what the 2015 low-power computing scene might looks like with the new microarchitecture, dubbed Puma+.

This new family of chips is the new AMD мид-tier, intended to replace the 2014 Beema chips with Puma cores. The new SoCs use a 28nm production process and share the same socket as the high-end Carrizo chips. Just like their predecessor, Carrizo-L chips cover the power range from 10W, all the way up to 25W, so we can expect to see them in various tech and form-factors. Naturally, Carrizo-L is an AND APU, which means, it is equipped with some dedicated graphics processing power as well. It comes courtesy of GCN Graphic Compute Units. Read more »

Snapdragon 818 specs leak, 10-core processors inside

by 96 comments

Snapdragon 810 didn’t turn out as great as many was hoping for – it is plagued by overheating issues and one major player – Samsung – has even opted out of Qualcomm’s services. Mediatek announced recently a new lineup of high-end SoC models with 10 and 12-core CPU configuration and the race for the next generation is now officially on.

The chip maker seems to be working on the 810 successors already – the Snapdragon 818 – and the purported specs are now out. Apparently the S818 SoC will also offer a 10-core processor, new and powerful Adreno 532 GPU, and LTE Cat. 10 connectivity. Read more »

Samsung Gear VR Innovator Edition for Galaxy S6 and S6 edge is now available in the US

by 18 comments

Just as previously announced, the Samsung Gear VR headset for the company’s Galaxy S6 and S6 edge smartphones is now available to buy in the US. Not only that, but it can also be found in stock, both at Best Buy and at Samsung’s own online store.

This version of the Gear VR, dubbed Innovator Edition, will only work with the Galaxy S6 or S6 edge – unlike the original Gear VR which was tailor-made for the Galaxy Note 4. Read more »

Samsung’s new South Korean chip plant to begin production in first half of 2017

by 5 comments

Back in October last year, there were reports that Samsung is planning to invest a whopping 15.6 trillion won (over $14 billion) in a new chip-making factory located in Pyeongtaek, which is 75 km south of Seoul (South Korea). At that time, it was expected that the plant will start production in the second half of 2017, however, Samsung has now said that production will begin in H1 2017.

The South Korean company is also said to invest an additional 10 trillion won on the plant to boost capacity, although it isn’t yet clear when. As for what the factory will create, it is being said that while Samsung is planning to produce DRAM memory chips, some capacity could also be allocated to mobile processors if required. Read more »