• OnePlus 6T to launch later today

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    • The OnePlus 6T will go official today in New York at around 8:30 pm IST. Previously, the phone was to be revealed on October 30, but the event was advanced to avoid clash will Apple’s event.
    • While the phone will be revealed today in New York, OnePlus will hold a dedicated in India launch event tomorrow, October 30. Therefore, the India price of the phone will be announced then.
    • The OnePlus 6T will feature a 6.4-inch FHD+ AMOLED display with a new waterdrop style notch up top. The phone will also introduce an in-display fingerprint scanner.
    • The device will not have a 3.5 mm headphone jack, however, OnePlus has promised the eliminating this port has allowed it to fit a bigger battery in the device.
    • Internals of the OnePlus 6T are very likely to be borrowed from the OnePlus 6. Therefore, powering the device will be the high-end Snapdragon 845 SoC with 6/8GB of RAM depending on the variant chosen.
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  • Bajaj Dominar gets fourth price hike in 2018

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    • The Bajaj Dominar is now dearer by a marginal Rs 1,000. However, this is the fourth time in 2018 that the bike’s price has gone up.
    • The Dominar 400 arrived in early 2017 at a very competitive price tag. However, despite its lucrative price and general capabilities, it struggled to meet Bajaj’s 1,0000 units/ month sales target. Therefore, Bajaj has been steadily hiking the Dominar’s price to make up for its mediocre sales.
    • On the bright side though, Bajaj is preparing to give an update to the Domiar very soon. The new model has been spied previously with upside-down forks and a new exhaust can. This update will likely launch early next year.
    • The Bajaj Dominar offers absolutely the best price to performance ratio of any bike under Rs 2 lakh. It uses a KTM-sourced 373.3 cc, single-cylinder engine that generates 35 bhp of peak power and 35 Nm of torque. A 6-speed gearbox is standard, so is a slipper clutch.
    • Currently, the Dominar comes in both non-ABS (Rs 1.49 lakh) and ABS (Rs 1.63 lakh) variants. However, it’s speculated that the former will be discontinued with the updated model since the ABS variant is much more popular among buyers.
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  • Huawei AI-enabled smart speaker announced

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    • During the China launch of the Mate 20 series, Huawei also announced an AI-enabled smart speaker for the Chinese market.
    • It’s not hard to figure out that this device strikingly resembles the Apple Home Pod. The Huawei speaker also has an Echo-esque LED ring on top with four control buttons – volume up, volume down, mic mute and call receive. When connected to a phone, the device can directly take calls.
    • The Huawei AI speaker boasts the company’s ‘Histen’ tuning. The audio is provided by a 10W speaker by the Danish brand Dynaudio. The speaker makes use of a 2.25-inch sound driver. Also built-in is the ability to recognise different users by their voices.
    • Unlike other smart speakers which are powered by Alexa or Google Assistant, the Huawei AI speaker uses a Chinese voice assistant called Xiaoyi.
    • Huawei has priced the device super competitively at CNY 399, which roughly converts to Rs 4,000 or US $58. It’s quite certain that this device will remain limited to the Chinese market. In global markets, Huawei sells another Google Assistant-powered speaker called the AI Cube.
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  • Focals are new Alexa-powered smart glasses

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    • North, an Amazon-backed startup has revealed its smart glasses called Focals. These are priced at US $1,000.
    • While smart glasses never really took off because of their hefty designs and privacy concerns due to their cameras, the Focals smartly address both of these issues. First up, these glasses look remarkably normal as compared to something like Google Glass, and then, there’s no camera on the device.
    • The North Focals have a heads-up display which provides all the essential information, but since there’s no camera, the device cannot see the user’s view of the real world. Also, the onboard microphone on the device enables Alexa, but it turns on when the user decides to activate it.
    • North has come up with an intuitive user interface for the Focals. Users get a ring-like wearable called Loop. The Loop has a tiny joystick on it to help users navigate through the heads-up display without touching the glasses.
    • With Focals users can see information like weather, text messages, navigation directions, calendar events, etc. Alexa functionality can further perform various voice-enabled tasks.

     

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  • Samsung foldable phone, Galaxy S10 detailed in insider report

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    • In a conversation with Bloomberg, Samsung insiders have revealed some key details of the company’s 2019 flagship phones.
    • The Galaxy S10 lineup will allegedly consist of three phones next year. Two of them (regular and Plus) will sport cutting-edge tech including triple rear cameras, in-display fingerprint sensor – and more importantly – an under display front camera. An under display front camera would likely eliminate bezels.
    • Then, there would be a relatively affordable S10 model (maybe an iPhone XR rival) with a flat AMOLED display, side mounted fingerprint scanner and single/dual rear cameras.
    • The long under development Samsung phone with a foldable display will also see the light of the day in 2019. It will be a super high-end device which will cater to a niche market. The phone will also be an image builder for the company since Samsung will potentially be the first brand to launch such a device.
    • The Samsung foldable phone will likely have top-notch internals from the Galaxy S10. However, reports suggest that it would not have an in-display fingerprint scanner, as combining the two technologies is hard at the moment.

     

     

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  • Tata Tiago JTP, Tigor JTP launched

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    • The Tata Tiago JTP and Tigor JTP have finally arrived as the first affordable performance-oriented cars from an Indian manufacturer. The former costs Rs 6.39 lakh while the latter is priced at Rs 7.49 lakh (both ex-showroom).
    • The Tata Tigor JTP and Tiago JTP draw their mechanical force from a 1.2-litre, 3-cylinder turbo-petrol engine that pumps out 113 bhp of max power and 150 Nm of peak torque. This motor is mated to a 5-speed manual gearbox. As per Tata, the Tiago JTP can dismiss 0-100 km/h in 9.95 seconds, while the Tigor JTP can do the same in 10.38 seconds.
    • At 166 mm, both JTP models are lower than their standard counterparts to provide that all-important sporty feel. Not just that, the suspension is now stiffer for added dynamic abilities. Tata’s signature multi-drive modes are carried over here as well.
    • Sportier design changes differentiate the JTP models from the standard Tiago and Tigor. The cars get new bespoke front & rear bumpers, jet black interior, contrasting roof colour, red exterior & interior accents, rear spoiler, special side skirts, clear-lens tail lamps (Tigor JTP only) and dual exhaust pipes.
    • Initially, the two cars will be sold only through 30 dealerships in 11 major cities. However, Tata will eventually sell them through all of its authorised dealers in India.

     

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  • Users can now follow businesses on Google Maps

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    • Google Maps has added a new way for users to follow their favourite businesses. The functionality comes in the form of the new ‘follow’ button.
    • Once users follow a specific business, like a restaurant, store, or bar, Google Maps will show keep them updated with the latest happening from those places from those places. Latest offers and upcoming events from these places will appear in the For You tab.
    • This will very likely increase footfall for local brick and mortar stores. Google is allowing upcoming businesses to create a free Business Profile on Maps up to three months before opening so that potential customers stay updated with the developments.
    • In recent times, Google Maps have incorporated a lot of new features like ETA sharing, music controls, personalised recommendations, trip planning, etc. in order to make the app more than just a navigation tool.
    • The new For You tab is already available to some users in certain markets. The feature will soon roll out to most countries.
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  • Volkswagen T-Cross compact SUV breaks cover

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    • The Volkswagen T-Cross has been revealed as the German carmaker’s smallest SUV for the European market. This vehicle is rumoured to heavily influence a future VW compact SUV for India.
    • The T-Cross sits atop Volkswagen Group’s MQB A0 platform that also underpins other Euro-spec hatchbacks such as the Audi A1, Seat Ibiza and sixth-gen VW Polo. The compact SUV is 4.11 metres long.
    • Even though the T-Cross isn’t dimensionally much larger than the sixth-gen Polo, it wears a bolder, more squared-off design to grand it that rugged SUV vibe. It takes a lot of design cues from the bigger T-Roc and the flagship Touareg.
    • Powering the T-Cross in Europe is a 1.0-litre, 3-cylinder turbo-petrol engine that comes in two states of tune – 94 bhp or 113 bhp. There’s also a 1.6-litre, 4-cylinder diesel that generates 94 bhp. Gearbox options will be 5-speed/6-speed manual or a 7-speed dual clutch auto.
    • Inside, the T-Cross’ cabin looks a lot similar to the sixth-gen Polo’s, however, its seat height is 100 mm higher than the latter’s. The T-Cross’ boot has 455 litres of space, which can expand up to 1,281 litres with the rear seats folded.

     

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  • Xiaomi Mi A2 6GB RAM variant launched

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    • The Xioami Mi A2 has got a new top-end 6GB RAM/ 128GB ROM variant in India. It carries an introductory price tag of Rs 17,999. The device will be sold via Amazon India and mi.com.
    • This price brings the Mi A2 quite close to the base Poco F1, which retails at Rs 20,999. However, it should be kept in mind that the Mi 2 is based on Google’s Android One program, thereby ensuring a cleaner UI experience and relatively faster OS/ security patch updates.
    • The phone has a 5.99-inch FHD+ screen with an 18:9 aspect ratio. Powering the device is the Qualcomm Snapdragon 660 SoC, which is the same you’ll find on the similarly priced Realme 2 Pro.
    • Optics on the Mi A2 are taken care of by a 12MP f/1.75 primary sensor which is coupled with a 20MP secondary lens. There’s another 20MP camera up front with a flash for selfies. The phone has an average sized 3,000mAh battery, but Quick Charge 4+ is standard.
    • The base 4GB/ 64GB Mi A2 costs Rs 16,999, just Rs 1,000 less than the new variant. The small price gap makes the new 6GB/ 128GB variant better value for money.
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  • Realme to launch MediaTek Helio P70-powered phone

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    • Taiwanese chipset maker MediaTek revealed its new mid-range Helio P70 SoC a few days back. Now, Oppo-backed Realme has already confirmed that it will launch a new smartphone powered by this new chipset very soon.
    • Realme’s current lineup uses chipsets from both Qualcomm and MediaTek. The Realme 1 is powered by the Helio P60, the Realme 2 & C1 use the Snapdragon 450, while the flagship Realme 2 Pro houses the Snapdragon 660.
    • The new MediaTek Helio P70 is based on the 12nm FinFET process. It’s an AI-centric SoC that claims to give 10-30 per cent increase in AI tasks and a 13 per cent boost in general tasks when compared to the Helio P60.
    • Given all the performance enhancements on the Helio P70, it is expected to outperform the Snapdragon 660. Therefore, the new P70-powered Realme phone will likely be more expensive than the Realme 2 Pro.
    • Currently, Realme’s range in India starts at Rs 6,999 for the C1 and goes all the way up to Rs 17,990 for the 8GB RAM 2 Pro.
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