Google introduces location data auto delete feature

Google storing your location data is a blessing and a curse. Of course, it is optional and you can turn it off any time, but then many of our favorite features wouldn’t work. Things like restaurant recommendations, search results, Google Timeline and more are all thanks to your location data being stored.
However, having all that data stored by Google is scary. Everywhere you’ve been, everything you’ve searched for in the last decade is all on a server. While Google is a relatively secure company, anything can happen and that info could be stolen. Is it that important? Not really, but it’s definitely eerie. If you don’t believe us, check out Google Timeline and scroll back a few years.
Thankfully, Google is now giving us an “in-between” for those who are privacy-focused but still want to take advantage of the aforementioned features. The company is adding a new auto-delete option that will delete your activity data either every 3 months or every 18 months. This allows you to enjoy the short term benefits of location data without having it permanently stored by Google.
Choose a time limit for how long you want your activity data to be saved—3 or 18 months—and any data older than that will be automatically deleted from your account on an ongoing basis. These controls are coming first to Location History and Web & App Activity and will roll out in the coming weeks.
We think this is a fantastic move, especially in our current times where security is being taken more and more seriously. The feature will be rolling out in the coming weeks so keep an eye out in the Location History menu in Google settings for the prompt!

Source: Google Blog

Google teases new “Tiles” in Wear OS video

Wear OS isn’t exactly getting the love it deserves from Google, though the latest interface redesign was a big step in the right direction. However, the company isn’t done with our favorite smartwatch operating system, as an even newer interface update is coming soon.
This update will introduce “Tiles”, which are cards to the sides of the watchface. You can swipe side to side to see bit of data like texts, news, weather, flight data, Google Fit, and more. You can also rearrange these Tiles by holding and dragging, making your favorites easier to access.
This will replace the current interface, where a swipe left will reveal Google Fit and a swipe right reveals Assistant. This brings it more in line with Huawei’s LiteOS on the Watch GT, which features almost identical data cards accessible by swiping away from the watch face.
We’ll be getting more details about this new feature at Google I/O next week, and it should be rolling out over the next month. You probably won’t see it for a little while, and we don’t know what watches it will come to, but we hope to see it on older models that got the UI redesign last year. Take a look at this video which showcases the tiles at the end.

Source: Google
Via: Droid-Life

Huawei P30 Pro trolled by Xiaomi after it poked fun at Apple

Never ones to miss a marketing opportunity, both Huawei and Xiaomi are having fun on social media to promote its own products at the expense of the other. It all started when Huawei responded to Apple’s event yesterday in preparation for its Huawei P30 Pro launch today and is now getting a taste of its own medicine as Xiaomi respond.
Following Apple’s event yesterday where the company announced a bunch of new services, including the new Apple Credit Card and News+ subscription, Huawei used the opportunity to bring focus on its upcoming event. The company sent the below tweet thanking Apple for its pre-show, but the Huawei P30 Pro launch would be the main event.

Thanks for the warm up, now on to the main event… #RewriteTheRules #HuaweiP30#AppleEvent
— Huawei Mobile IE (@HuaweiMobileIE) March 25, 2019

As the saying goes, if you can’t take it, don’t dish it, as Xiaomi is now poking fun at the Huawei P30 Pro.

— Xiaomi UK (@XiaomiUK) March 26, 2019

While it’s like comparing apples and oranges since the P30 Pro is powered by the Kirin 7nm 980, while Xiaomi uses Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 855 for its flagships, you can’t knock the effort.
The Huawei P30 Pro was launched today with a heavy focus on the camera setup and 5x optical zoom capabilities. Be sure to read our comparison on how it stacks up against the competition.

European parliament votes for controversial copyright reform #Article13

Europe is changing the internet again. Lawmakers have approved a sweeping overhaul of copyright rules, dealing a blow to major tech companies that argued the changes will be costly and limit free expression.
The European Parliament voted Tuesday to approve fiercely contested changes that make platforms such as YouTube responsible for copyright infringements committed by their users.
Sites like Google News could also be required to pay publishers for using snippets of their content. The proposal was opposed by tech companies, which warned they would need to build expensive content filters and stop linking to publications. Internet activists argued that the changes would lead to censorship.

Dark day for internet freedom: The @Europarl_EN has rubber-stamped copyright reform including #Article13 and #Article11. MEPs refused to even consider amendments. The results of the final vote: 348 in favor, 274 against #SaveYourInternet
— Julia Reda (@Senficon) March 26, 2019

On the other side of the two-year battle were record labels, artists and media companies. They said reforms were needed to update copyright protections for the internet age and to ensure they’re fairly paid for content.
This is the latest clash between tech giants and European officials, who have taken a much more robust approach than the United States over competition issues, data protection (think GDPR) and tax.
Antonio Tajani, the president of the European Parliament, said the vote would “put an end to the existing digital Wild West by establishing modern rules.”
Critics say provisions included in the bill are far too broad and could hit material that is not protected by copyright, such as quotations or parody. They warn the law could even kill off internet memes.

Update: The European Parliament has now voted on the EU Copyright Directive. Thanks to all the creators who spoke up about how #Article13 will impact them and their communities. Here’s our statement on today’s vote ⬇️
— YouTube Creators (@YTCreators) March 26, 2019

Google said the measure will “lead to legal uncertainty and will hurt Europe’s creative and digital economies.”
“The details matter, and we look forward to working with policy makers, publishers, creators and rights holders as EU member states move to implement these new rules,” the company said in a statement.
Eleonora Rosati, a lawyer and copyright expert at the University of Southampton (UK), said that courts will play a key role in interpreting the law.
“Some of the concepts are meant to be flexible, so that they will give room for flexible interpretation … but of course that also leaves room for significant uncertainty,” she said.
Critics of the law have argued that its vague wording will encourage tech companies to preemptively block content, and avoid linking to news websites, in order to stay out of trouble.
Julia Reda, a member of European Parliament from Germany, said the vote marked a “dark day for internet freedom.”
Tuesday’s vote paves the way for the bill to become law once it has been endorsed by the European Council, which represents the bloc’s member states. The European Council has said it will approve the measure, but implementation will take two years.
Story from: CNN

Here’s where to watch the Huawei P30 launch livestream

Huawei is hosting an event in Paris today to announce the new P30 series of flagships. The devices have been the focus of many leaks, one even coming from Huawei itself. Current rumors say that the P30 and P30 Pro will use Samsung-sourced 6.1-inch and 6.47-inch 1080p displays respectively along with a Kirin 980 processor, 6-8GB of RAM, and 128GB of base storage with more available for the P30 Pro.
The focus of these devices will be on the Leica camera setup, with both sharing a 40MP main sensor (with the Pro getting OIS). The P30 should get a 16MP wide angle camera and 8MP zoom camera with 5x hybrid zoom (this is likely the Mate 20 Pro’s 3x zoom lens). The P30 Pro steps up to a 20MP wide angle camera, 8MP zoom lens with 10x hybrid zoom, and a Time-of-Flight sensor.
We’ve also seen how the devices reportedly look, ruining most of the surprise of the official announcement. Nonetheless we hope Huawei has something in store for us, like potentially announcing a 10x hybrid zoom system. The Paris event begins at 9 AM Eastern or 6 AM Pacific and will be livestreamed to YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter. Hit those links to be taken to the livestream shortly before it begins ad watch with us to see the P30 be released!

MediaTek wants to take on Qualcomm with 5G, 7nm chipset of their own

These days if you look at any of the specs of a smartphone, there is a very high chance you will see that it is powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon chipsets, but from time to time you might catch a budget handset being powered by MediaTek’s chipsets. Now it seems that the company could be looking to shed its budget image by taking on Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 855 flagship chipset.
Speaking to Android Authority, MediaTek’s vice president of corporate sales and business development Finbarr Moynihan revealed that the company is working on a 5G chipset built on the 7nm process that they plan on launching later this year. If this sounds familiar, it is because the Snapdragon 855 is also a 5G-support chipset built using the 7nm process as well.
According to Moynihan, he expects this upcoming chipset to be a huge step up from the company’s previous Helio P90 chipset which was built on the 12nm process. That being said, MediaTek did not mention which devices we might be able to see this chipset launch in, and we have no idea how it will hold up against the Snapdragon 855 which is currently the chipset to beat.
“I think you’ll see something moving up-tier from us. How we brand it and what it shows up as, I’m not sure. But you’ll certainly see more high-end capability than, say, we’ve exhibited on the P90.”
Hopefully the company will have more details later this year, but in the meantime this is good news for consumers as it means that we can look forward to more budget handsets being powered by a decently-specced chipset.
Source: Android Authority

Samsung Good Lock is making a return to One UI

Samsung Good Lock was an intriguing but not often talked about app hailing from Samsung’s own app store called Galaxy Apps. On the Galaxy S9 and Note 9 it allowed for some serious customization to the lockscreen, recent tasks view, quick settings, and a lot more, all without root.
Unfortunately, this app stopped working on devices once they were updated to Android Pie. While the software update to Pie (and Samsung’s new and redesigned One UI) is definitely worth it, the loss of this functionality is unfortunate, if not understandable considering how much has changed thanks to the One UI redesign.
Now Samsung has announced that Good Lock is making a return with full One UI and Android Pie compatibility, along with a couple of new features. You’ll get some extra multi window features as well as new styles for the recent tasks view.
The app should be updated to work with the new One UI software sometime today so open up Galaxy Apps (enable it first if you disabled it when you bought the phone) and make sure to update all of your apps! And if you haven’t tried this feature before, now is the perfect time to give it a shot.
Source: Samsung
Via: SamMobile

First 3nm chips to hit the market sooner than you think

We’re already living in a world with 7nm chips, but 2019 will be the first year that all flagship devices will be equipped with chips built on the 7nm process. The Kirin 980, Apple A12 have already proven that moving to 7nm chips offers an incredible boost in performance and efficiency, but we’ll have to wait until early 2019 to get our hands on Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 855 which will likely be the most common 7nm chip next year.

Getting to 7 nm wasn’t an easy feat, but chip makers are already putting in the work to deliver 5nm and 3nm chips. Needless to say, moving to 5nm and then down to 3nm will be a challenging and expensive endeavor. With the continued reduction in size, chip makers will likely be forced to change the underlying architecture from FinFET to a multi-gate or gate-all-around architecture to further improve efficiency. This will require new manufacturing techniques and new facilities and machinery to build them.

TSMC has already announced plans to bring its 5nm production facility online by late 2019 or early 2020, but the company has just revealed that its 3nm production line which is expected to cost $19 billion has just passed its environmental assessment and is scheduled to be operational sometime in 2022. TSMC may not be a name you recognize, but you’re likely familiar with their works since they are the ones who build the chips for Qualcomm, NVidia, AMP, MediaTek and dozens of other “chips makers.”

The announcement comes as a surprise since TSMC has been quiet on the subject of 3nm chips for a long time. According to an internal report, the company didn’t want to show its hand, giving it a potential lead over Samsung and Huawei’s chip-making businesses.

With 2019 right around the corner, 2022 will be here sooner than you think. Just to give you an idea of how far we’ve come over the past few years, 2012 was the year that the Nvidia Tegra 3 was the most sought-after chip. The chip was built on the 40nm process with 4 main cores and a 5th battery-saver core. By the time 2022 rolls around, the 3nm process will allow TSMC to cram in nearly 1,000% more semiconductors on the same size chip. 

It may be hard to get excited about a 3nm SoC that you won’t be able to use for another 3-4 years, but the process takes a lot of time. TSMC is planning to start construction of the 3nm chip facility in 2020 with the installation of the equipment to build the chips scheduled for 2021. Once that’s done, it’ll be about a year before the manufacturing process is completed, tested and refined before the fir commercial chips from Qualcomm, MediaTek and others start rolling off the line.

The 7nm chips we have now are already extremely powerful and efficient. What new and amazing features are you hoping to see on smartphones and other gadgets running 3nm chips in 2022?

Source: GizChina

World’s first SD855 smartphone benchmarks kill the competition

When Qualcomm
announced the new Snapdragon 855 last month, they promised that the new 7nm
chip would be significantly more powerful than the Snapdragon 845 and would
also give Huawei’s Kirin 980 and Apple A12 a run for their money. While it’s
easy to get excited about claims like that, we’ve been waiting for some
real-world numbers to back them up.

Thanks to today’s unveiling of the Lenovo Z5 Pro GT which is powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 SoC, we can now get a better look at howmuch more powerful Qualcomm’s new chip actually is.

During the Z Pro GT’s unveiling, Lenovo shared some numbers, revealing that the phone managed to score a mind-boggling 368,480 points onAntutu. When compared to the Antutu benchmark numbers of the iPhone XS, the Lenovo Z Pro GT has a 3-5% performance advantage. But that gap grows to 20% when matched up against devices running the Kirin 980 and there’s an astounding 25% gap when you look at devices running the Snapdragon 845.

To be fair, the Lenovo Z5 Pro GT’s Antutu benchmark numbers area little skewed since the benchmarked device was equipped with 12GB of RAM. By removing the RAM “advantage” that the phone has over its competitors, Antutubelieves that the phone would still manage a score in the 360,000 point range. Even with this drop, the Lenovo Z5 Pro GT is still the most powerful smartphone to be benchmarked by Antutu and should give us a good baseline for how other Android smartphones running the Snapdragon 855 should perform. For those who don’t know, a leaked Antutu benchmark score for the upcoming Samsung GalaxyS10 surfaced recently with a score of 343,051. Since the device isn’t expected to make its debut for at least two more months, those scores couldeasily reach 360,000 as the software is finalized and performance optimizationsare made.

While few of you will likely be buying the new Lenovo Z5 ProGT, the performance numbers we’re seeing from the Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 lookpromising. The new chipset will deliver incredibly powerful smartphones in 2019 and the new 7nm manufacturing process will also give those devices improved battery life.

What’s your take on the performance of the new Snapdragon
855? Do you think it’ll be worth upgrading from a high-end 2018 smartphone to
one running a SD855 in 2019? Share your thoughts in the comments.

HTC tries to get back in the game with Desire 12s

HTC has introduced its latest Desire series smartphone in Taiwan. The new HTC Desire 12s isn’t exactly the smartphone Android enthusiast will be clamoring over, but at least its spec sheet sheet mirrors its price. 

The budget device is 8.3 mm thick and sports a unique dual-material design which has shiny texture and double lines matte texture. The handset is light weight and sports a 5.7-inch 18:9 aspect ratio multi-touch display with HD+ resolution.

The HTC Desire 12s specs include octa-core Snapdragon 435 SoC and has options of 3GB RAM with 32GB RAM and 4GB RAM with 64GB ROM. There is a 13MP front and 13MP rear camera both accompanied with LED flash.

HTC Desire 12s Specifications

Dimensions: 154.2 x 72.7 x 8.3 mmWeight: 150 gramsFingerprint sensors: RearSIM: Dual Nano SIMOperating System: Android 8.1 Oreo with HTC Sense UIDisplay: 5.7-inch 2.5D curved glass display with 1440 x 720 pixels resolution HD+ resolution, 18:9 aspect ratio, multi-touch supportChipset: octa-core (1.4GHz A53 x 4 + 1.1GHz A53 x 4) Snapdragon 435 mobile platform with Adreno 505 GPURAM and Storage: 3GB RAM with 32GB storage, 4GB RAM with 64GB storage. Expandable using MicroSD cardFront camera: 13MP with LED flash, F/2.4 Aperture, BSI Sensor, Fixed Focal length, Face detectionRear camera: 13MP with LED Flash, F/2.2 Aperture, PDAF, 1080p video recordingBattery: 3075 mAh with 5V/1A chargingConnectivity: 4G VoLTE, Wi-FI 802.11 b/g/n, Wi-Fi Hotspot, Bluetooth V4.2, GPS/GLONASS, MicroUSB, NFC, 3.5mm Audio JackSensors: Ambient Light, Proximity, Gravity, Compass, Magnetic

The HTC Desire 12s 3GB/32GB model is priced at NT$ 5990 (US$ 195 / Rs. 13,900 approx.). The Desire 12s 4GB/64GB variant costs NT$ 6990 (US$ 225 / Rs. 16,250 approx.). The device comes in Red Bloom, Refreshing Silver and Personalised Black colours and is already on sale in Taiwan.

There’s no indication that the HTC Desire 12s will be making its way to the US market, but we could see the phone pop up in a handful of countries across Asia and Europe. It’s doubtful that this device will do much of HTC’s bottom line, but it’s nice to see that HTC hasn’t yet thrown in the towel. 

Source: HTC