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The Best Smartwatches to Buy in India

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Smartwatches have gained popularity over the years. These wearables can be called an extension to your smartphone on your wrist. Many of these new smartwatches are also capable of working as standalone devices when the need arises. Manufacturers have constantly innovated to bring new features to these smartwatches and they have also gained new health and activity tracking features. With so many smartwatches in the market, which one should you pick? In this guide, we help you pick the best smartwatch to suit your needs.


Best smartwatches in India

Smartwatches in India Gadgets 360 rating (out of 10) Price in India (as recommended)
Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2 8 Rs. 11,990
Oppo Watch 7 Rs. 14,990
Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 Classic 8 Rs. 34,999
Apple Watch SE 8 Rs. 29,900
Apple Watch Series 7 9 Rs. 41,900

Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2

The Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2 is among the most affordable smartwatches on this list. It was launched at a starting price of Rs. 26,990, but has gradually dropped down to a reasonable Rs. 11,990 making it accessible to a wider audience. The Galaxy Watch Active 2 comes in one dial size only, and there are GPS-only as well as LTE-enabled variants. The cases are made out of aluminum or stainless steel depending on the model you choose.

Samsung has used a dual-core Exynos 9110 SoC to power the Galaxy Watch Active 2. It has 1.5GB of RAM and 4GB of internal storage. It runs Samsung’s TizenOS which separates it from some of the other smartwatches on this list. TizenOS has limited support for third-party apps but you get most of the functionality you’d need out of the box.

Since the Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2 was originally launched a few years ago, it does not have any blood oxygen (SpO2) tracking capability. The Galaxy Watch Active 2 can track activities quite well. It also offers good battery life but charging speed isn’t impressive.

 

Oppo Watch

The Oppo Watch runs Google’s Wear OS and is available in two case sizes, 41mm and 46mm. This smartwatch has a rectangular dial with rounded corners, and resembles older Apple Watches to some extent. It has an AMOLED display, and depending on the case size you choose, it’ll either have a 300mAh or a 430mAh battery.

The Oppo Watch is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon Wear 3100 SoC and has a secondary Ambiq Micro Apollo 3 SoC for background tasks. It also has 1GB of RAM and 8GB of internal storage. The watch supports Google Assistant, so it can listen to your queries and display results or even reply to messages using dictation. The Oppo Watch can be paired with Android phones as well as iPhones, but the experience is much better on the former.

With the Oppo Watch you can track steps, heart rate, walking distance, and sleep. Step tracking had a minor deviation in our experience, but the Oppo Watch tracked other parameters quite well. Battery life on the Oppo Watch wasn’t the best but this device was quick to charge.

 

Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 and Galaxy Watch 4 Classic

The Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 series was developed in partnership with Google, making them the first smart devices from the company to run Wear OS. The Galaxy Watch Series 4 is available in 40mm and 44mm case sizes, both with Bluetooth-only and LTE-enabled options. The Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 has a sporty look while the Galaxy Watch 4 Classic is designed more like a traditional watch.

Samsung has powered the Galaxy Watch 4 series using the Exynos W920 SoC, and all models have 1.5GB of RAM and 16GB of storage. You can use the internal storage to store music which you can listen to using Bluetooth earphones. An important point to note is that the Watch 4 series can only be paired with Android devices and do not support iOS, at least not yet. Also, even though they run Google’s Wear OS, Bixby is the only virtual assistant available on the Galaxy Watch 4 Classic, at least when we tested it.

Apart from the usual health parameters, the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 series can also track body composition using electrodes on its buttons. It is capable of SpO2 tracking throughout the day, even while you are asleep. Step, distance, sleep, and SpO2 were tracked fairly accurately by the Watch 4 Classic. The devices are technically capable of taking ECG readings as well but this is currently not supported in India. Charging is slow, so you will need at least a full hour to charge each model completely. Those looking for an affordable alternative can also consider the Samsung Galaxy Watch 3, which is still available.

 

Apple Watch SE

Apple Watch SE was launched alongside the Apple Watch Series 6 as a more affordable model. The Apple Watch SE is available in two case sizes, 40mm and 44mm. It has an LTPO OLED display and has a digital crown for navigating the UI.

The Apple Watch SE can only be paired with an iPhone. It is powered by the Apple S5 SiP and runs watchOS. You get 32GB of internal storage, which is the highest capacity on this list (and the same as on the Apple Watch Series 7). You can also save music on the Watch SE for offline listening.

The Apple Watch SE is capable of tracking a wide range of fitness parameters but does not have SpO2 tracking. If you are looking for a smartwatch that can track SpO2, you’ll have to look at the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 or Apple Watch Series 7. In our tests, the Apple Watch SE was fairly accurate to track steps and distance. Sleep tracking offered very limited information and wasn’t the best. The Watch SE is also slow to charge, needing more than an hour to charge completely.

 

Apple Watch Series 7

The Apple Watch Series 7 was launched in September 2021 and is the flagship wearable from Apple. It is offered in aluminum, stainless steel, and titanium finishes, and you get a bunch of colour options to choose from. You also have a choice between GPS-only and cellular-enabled variants.

Apple Watch Series 7 has larger displays with slimmer bezels compared to the Series 6, and charges quicker too. However, in India, this fast charging feature isn’t yet available. The Apple Watch Series 7 is powered by the new Apple S7 SiP. Apple also claims to have improved the thickness of the front glass for better crack resistance (the aluminum models have Ion-X glass, while stainless steel and titanium ones sport sapphire glass). The Apple Watch Series 7 can track a wide range of metrics such as SpO2 and ECG, apart from the usual activity parameters.

In our experience, the Apple Watch Series 7 was accurate with tracking every metric except sleep. Apple still needs to work on improving sleep tracking to make the Apple Watch unbeatable. The Apple Watch Series 7 did deliver good battery life but the lack of fast charging in India is disappointing.

 



Aditya Shenoy reviews smartphones, wearables, headphones and speakers for Gadgets 360, out of Mumbai. Aditya is a reviewer for Gadgets 360 and has written extensively about smartphones, software updates, and upcoming devices. Aditya is available on Twitter at @adishenoy, and you can mail him at adityashenoy@ndtv.com, so please send in your leads and tips.
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All You Need to Know About Battlefield 2042

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Battlefield 2042 is the latest game in the first-person shooter franchise by Electronic Arts (EA). The new multiplayer game is the first title in the franchise that supports crossplay. However, players on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One can only play each other, and not with other platforms. This is the first time a Battlefield title doesn’t have a single-player mode. Players do have the option to play offline but there is no campaign or story mode.

The latest Battlefield title lets 128 players destroy their surroundings and create chaos in a 30-minute all-out war. Players were able to experience the game early through the open beta version that was released in early October 6. EA Play subscribers have had a chance to try out the game for a limited period, and players who have purchased the Gold and Ultimate editions gained early access to the game on November 12.

Battlefield 2042, developed by EA DICE, is available for all players on Origin, Steam, Epic Games, PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox Series S/ Series X, and Xbox One.

With that, here’s all you need to know about Battlefield 2042, from when it’s out for everyone, how much it costs, what your PC rig needs, and what the critics are saying.

Battlefield 2042 release date

Battlefield 2042 is set to release on Friday, November 19. It wasn’t supposed to. Originally, it was scheduled for October 22 — however, it has had almost a month-long delay in getting launched owing to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

“Building the next generation of Battlefield during a global pandemic has created unforeseen challenges for our development teams,” EA DICE CEO Oskar Gabrielson said.

While Battlefield 2042 arrives for everyone on Friday, it has been available to EA Play subscribers since last Friday, November 12. However, their exposure to the game is limited to only 10 hours. EA’s subscription service is available on PC, PlayStation, and Xbox consoles. It is priced at Rs. 315 per month, while the yearly subscription costs Rs. 1,990.

If you want to experience the game completely, you will need a subscription to EA Play Pro that is exclusive to PC. EA Play Pro is priced at Rs. 999 per month, with the yearly subscription costing Rs. 6,499.

battlefield 2042 helicopter battlefield_2042_helicopter

Battlefield 2042 lets players use a handful of vehicles during combat
Photo Credit: EA Dice

Battlefield 2042 PC system requirements

EA Dice has listed the minimum and recommended specifications requirements for PC players.

Battlefield 2042 minimum PC requirements

  • Processor: AMD Ryzen 5 1600/ Intel Core i5 6600K
  • GPU: AMD Radeon RX560/ Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050Ti
  • RAM: 8GB
  • VRAM: 4GB

Battlefield 2042 recommended PC requirements 

  • Processor: AMD Ryzen 7 2700X/ Intel Core i7 4790
  • GPU: AMD Radeon RX 6600 XT/ Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060
  • RAM: 16GB
  • VRAM: 8GB

In addition, players would need a minimum of 100GB of free space on their hard drives with their PCs running on 64-bit Windows 10 with DirectX 12. There is no information if Battlefield 2042 is supported on Windows 11, but you would expect it to be.

Battlefield 2042 editions

Battlefield 2042 has three editions — Standard, Gold, and Ultimate. The following benefits are available for players who pre-order the game.

The Standard Edition players would get Irish – Battle hardened legendary skin, Baku ACB-90 Epic melee takedown knife, “Mr. Chompy” Epic weapon charm, and “Landfall” player card background and “Old Guard” tag.

Gold Edition players would get Year 1 Pass with four new specialists, four Battle Passes, and three Epic skin bundles over and above the Standard Edition.

Similarly, Ultimate Edition players would get Midnight Ultimate bundle, official digital artbook, and exclusive digital soundtrack along with all the Gold Edition perks.

Battlefield 2042 price

If you can’t/ won’t go down the EA Play Pro route, Battlefield 2042’s Standard Edition is priced at Rs. 2,999 on Origin, Steam, and Epic Games (for PC). The Gold Edition is priced at Rs. 4,799, while the Ultimate Edition is priced at Rs. 5,999.

battlefield 2042 characters battlefield_2042_characters

Battlefield 2042 players can play as four characters
Photo Credit: EA Dice

On PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, the Standard Edition is priced at Rs. 3,999, while the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series S/X version is priced at Rs. 4,499. The Gold and Ultimate Editions are priced at Rs. 6,499 and Rs. 8,499, respectively.

Battlefield 2042 size

On the Xbox One S, the game has a download size of 27.9GB. Battlefield 2042 size is around 33GB on Xbox One X. And on the next-gen Series X, you are looking at a 51GB download or so. As per our testing, on PC it has a download size of 49GB but could later expand to 100GB as the developers have mentioned the latter on their website.

Pre-load for Battlefield 2042 has been available for a while now.

Battlefield 2042 gameplay

Players can experience three modes in Battlefield 2042: All-Out Warfare, Battlefield Portal, and Battlefield Hazard Zone. The All-Out Warfare mode contains two sub-modes — Conquest and Breakthrough — and features dynamic weather. Battlefield Portal lets players experience Battlefield 1942, Battlefield: Bad Company 2, and Battlefield 3. Players also have the option to use their arsenal from Battlefield 2042 in the above three games. The Hazard Zone mode teams up four players who must locate crucial data drives while fighting the opposition.

Additionally, EA has incorporated seven maps that include Hourglass based in Doha, Qatar, Discarded based in Alang, India, Manifest based in Brani Island, Singapore, Kaleidoscope based in Songdo, South Korea, Orbital based in Kourou, French Guiana, Breakaway based in Queen Maud Land, Antarctica, and Renewal based in Eastern Desert, Egypt.

Battlefield 2042 players have the ability to respawn in fighter jets, attack helicopters, or just call-in for an available vehicle near their location.

Since the new Battlefield title is set in the near future — 2042 — it gets a gamut of futuristic weapons and gadgets. A “Plus” system allows players to customise their weapons on the spot.

Players still get to choose from the four traditional Battlefield characters under Assault, Engineer, Medic, and Recon classes. Each character can be equipped with all the weapons and gadgets a player has unlocked, while each character does have its own unique skills and gadgets.

Dynamic weather — tornadoes and sandstorms — will affect the gameplay and ‘Levolution’ and destructive environment from Battlefield 4 can be experienced in the upcoming game.

battlefield 2042 combat battlefield_2042_combat

Battlefield 2042 does not have a story or campaign mode
Photo Credit: EA Dice

Battlefield 2042 review

Early reviews of Battlefield 2042 show the game has lived up to critics’ expectation. Some critics say that going the multiplayer route gives the game a breath of fresh air.

On Metacritic, Battlefield 2042 currently has a total score of 76 out of 100, based on 39 critic reviews.

On the other hand, on Open Critic, the new Battlefield title has scored a total of 74 points out of 100, based on 49 critic reviews.

You can read our review of the Battlefield 2042 open beta till the review of the final version of the game is published in the following days.


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Xbox November Update Brings Big Improvements to Xbox Consoles, Controllers

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Xbox November 2021 update has been rolled out by Microsoft and it brings new features and improvements to Xbox Series S/X and Xbox One consoles. The company has added accessibility enhancements in the form of new colour filters for current-gen console owners as well as new audio settings for all Xbox consoles that improve the user experience when wearing headsets. Alongside improvements to some Xbox controllers and an updated Xbox mobile app, developers will also be able to use accessibility feature tags to games in Microsoft Store, according to the company.

In a post detailing the changes that are part of the November Xbox update, Microsoft stated that it has added new and improved colour filters to Xbox Series S/X consoles to help gamers with colour blindness or colour vision deficiency play titles that have been inaccessible to them in the past. After the update, users will be able to head over to Settings > Accessibility > Color filters and choose from three filters: Deuteranopia, Protanopia, and Tritanopia. Unlike some games that have such a feature built-in, Microsoft says that an applied colour filter’s effects will be visible on all games, movies, apps, and menus across the system. Gamers can also use the guide in Profile & system > Quick settings to toggle these filters while viewing on the console.

The company has also added another accessibility feature that allows game developers to specify which accessibility features like adjustable difficulty, custom volume controls, colour options, and input remapping their gaming titles support. These will be visible on the Microsoft Store, the Xbox website, the Xbox Game Pass mobile app, and the Xbox app for Windows PC; over 325 games including Sea of Thieves and Microsoft Flight Simulator already display accessibility data, according to Microsoft.

Xbox update also brings new firmware for the Xbox One Wireless Controller, Xbox Elite Wireless Controller Series 2, and Xbox Adaptive Controller. These controllers will now benefit from lower latency, better cross-device connectivity, and Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE), features that are seen on the more advanced Xbox Series S and Xbox Series X controllers.

Microsoft has also changed the way Xbox Series S/X and Xbox One consoles handle audio, with an option to “Mute speaker audio when headset attached”. This setting, found under Settings > Additional options, will eliminate the need for gamers to separately change their speaker volume while putting on a headset. Meanwhile, the company has also added a new Audio testing & details screen under Settings to better control volume and output settings.

The Xbox app for mobile has also been updated with a new link sharing feature that allows gamers to get a link to screenshots and special in-game moments, which can then be shared with anyone on the Web. Gamers will also be able to view content on the app based on what is trending and watch or comment on game captures shared by other players. The Xbox November update is available for all Xbox Series S/X and Xbox One consoles, and owners can navigate to Profile & system > Settings > System > Updates to make sure they have the latest software installed on their console.


PS5 vs Xbox Series X: Which is the best “next-gen” console in India? We discussed this on Orbital, the Gadgets 360 podcast. Orbital is available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, and wherever you get your podcasts.

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Google Meet for Web Gets Five New Immersive Backgrounds

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Google Meet has added new immersive backgrounds and styles that allow Web users to change their backgrounds during a video call. The platform has added two new animated backdrops called Cafe and Condo which will help users represent their current time zone and climate. Both the interiors will have multiple iterations including rainy, sunny, or snowy weather, along with morning and night time zones. Google Meet previously offered background options including classroom, party, and forest. Additionally, Google Meet is offering options to add several light and colour filters and more stylised backgrounds to customise the video.

Google on November 17 announced the new update for Google Meet via a blog post. The five new immersive, subtle animations will make a background livelier or change the lighting settings, said Google. As mentioned, Google Meet desktop users can select Condo (morning or night) and Cafe (Rainy, Snowy, or Sunny) for animated video backgrounds before joining a call or during a call from the effects settings panel.

The new animated background options are rolling out for Google Workspace customers, and G Suite Basic and Business customers. Personal Google accounts can not avail it currently. Google said that it may take up to 15 days for eligible devices to see the new options. Google also warns that changing the background may slow down the device.

In an effort to rival Zoom, Google introduced custom backgrounds for video calls back in 2020. Since then, the video calling platform was bringing updates and modifications to the feature. In September this year, it added a new settings panel to offer quick access to effects such as background blur, background images, and styles. Also, the company announced a functionality to correct poor lighting during video calls. The feature automatically detects when a Web user appears underexposed during a video call and enhances the brightness of their device to improve visibility.


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Samsung Galaxy A13 Renders Tip Waterdrop-Style Notch Display

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Samsung Galaxy A13 launch seems to finally be around the corner as official-looking renders of the handset have surfaced online, indicating some key specifications and design details. The upcoming Samsung A-series smartphone is said to launch both in 4G and 5G variants. The leaked renders show the device in Black colour and suggest a new design compared to its predecessor, the Galaxy A12, which made its global debut in November 2020. The renders of Galaxy A13 show a waterdrop-style notch display at the front to house an 8-megapixel selfie shooter. Other previously tipped specifications include a triple rear camera unit with a 50-megapixel main sensor.

As per the renders shared by GizNext, Samsung Galaxy A13 is seen to have a waterdrop-style notch display and a Black back panel. The triple rear cameras are arranged vertically, one after the other, on the upper left corner of the handset. The build material of the handset is being speculated to be plastic. The renders also show that the right spine of the handset has the power and volume buttons, while the left spine has a SIM card tray. The power key is said to integrate a fingerprint scanner for authentication.

Samsung Galaxy A13 specifications (expected)

Samsung Galaxy A13 specifications have been leaked on multiple occasions in the past. The phone is said to launch both in 4G and 5G versions and is expected to come in Black, Blue, Orange, and White colours. Past leaks also suggest the presence of a MediaTek Dimensity 700 SoC on the phone. It is tipped to sport a 6.48-inch full-HD+ LCD display and feature three RAM and storage configurations — 4GB + 64GB, 6GB + 128GB, and 8GB + 128GB.

Past leaks also mention that Galaxy A13 could be priced at around $249 (roughly Rs. 18,600).


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Moto G200, Moto G71, Moto G51, Moto G41, Moto G31 Launched: All the Details

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Motorola Moto G200, Moto G71, Moto G51, Moto G41, and Moto G31 smartphones have been launched. Of the five phones that have been unveiled, Moto G200 is the most premium of the lot. It is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 888+ SoC and features a 144Hz refresh rate. Moto G71 has a triple rear camera setup and a Snapdragon 695 SoC. It features a 60Hz OLED hole-punch display and a 5,000mAh battery. Moto G51, on the other hand, is powered by the Snapdragon 480 Pro SoC and features a 120Hz display refresh rate. Moto G41 and Moto G31 are the more affordable models of the lot.

Moto G200 price, specifications

The new Moto G200 will be priced in Europe at EUR 449 (roughly Rs. 37,800) and will be available in a few weeks. It is also slated to be available in Latin America as well. The phone has launched in Glacier Green and Stellar Blue colour options.

On the specifications front, Moto G200 runs on Android 11 out-of-the-box. It features a 6.8-inch IPS LCD display with 144Hz refresh rate, HDR10, and DCI-P3 colour gamut coverage. It is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 888+ SoC, paired with 8GB RAM and 256GB of storage.

Moto G200 sports a triple rear camera setup. It comes with a 108-megapixel primary sensor, an 8-megapixel ultra-wide sensor, and a 2-megapixel depth sensor. The phone packs a 5,000mAh battery with 33W wired charging. Connectivity options include a USB Type-C port.

Moto G71 price, specifications

As for Moto G71, it will be arriving in Europe in the coming weeks with a starting price of EUR 299.99 (roughly Rs. 25,200). The smartphone will also roll out to select markets across India, Latin America, and the Middle East.

 

moto g71 Moto G71

Moto G71 runs on Android 11

On the specifications front, Moto G71 also runs on Android 11. It also features a 6.4-inch full-HD+ (1,080×2,400 pixels) OLED display with 60Hz refresh rate and 409ppi pixel density. The phone is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 695 SoC, paired with 8GB RAM. Internal storage is listed to be at 128GB.

Moto G71 comes with a triple rear camera setup which includes a 50-megapixel primary sensor, an 8-megapixel ultra-wide angle lens, and a 2-megapixel macro lens. At the front, Moto G71 will feature a 16-megapixel selfie camera. The phone packs a 5,000mAh battery with Turbo Power 30 fast charging. Connectivity options include USB Type-C port, Bluetooth v5, and Wi-Fi ac.

Moto G51 price, specifications

Moto G51 is priced in Europe at EUR 229.99 (roughly Rs. 19,300). It will be available in the coming weeks in the market. The smartphone will also roll out to select markets across India, Latin America, and the Middle East.

moto g51 1 Moto G51

Moto G51 comes with a triple rear camera setup

The new Moto G51 runs on Android 11. It features a 6.8-inch full-HD+ (1,080×2,400 pixels) LCD display with 120Hz refresh rate and 20:9 aspect ratio. The phone is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 480 Pro SoC, paired with 4GB RAM. Internal storage is listed to be at 64GB and can be further expanded using a microSD card.

Moto G51 comes with a triple rear camera setup which includes a 50-megapixel primary sensor, an 8-megapixel ultra-wide angle lens, and a 2-megapixel macro lens. At the front, Moto G51 features a 16-megapixel selfie camera. The phone packs a 5,000mAh battery with 10W charging. Connectivity options include USB Type-C port, 3.5mm audio jack, Bluetooth v5.1, and Wi-Fi ac.

Moto G41 price, specifications

The new Moto G41 is priced at EUR 249.99 (roughly Rs.20,900) and will be available in Europe in the coming weeks. The smartphone will also roll out to selected markets across Latin America and the Middle East.

moto  g41 Moto G41

Moto G41 is powered by the MediaTek Helio G85 SoC

On the specifications front, Moto G41 runs on Android 11. It features a 6.4-inch full-HD+ (1,080×2,400 pixels) OLED display with 60Hz refresh rate and 20:9 aspect ratio. The phone is powered by the MediaTek Helio G85 SoC paired with up to 6GB RAM. Internal storage is listed to be at 128GB and can be further expanded using a microSD card (up to 1TB).

Moto G41 comes with a triple rear camera setup which includes a 48-megapixel primary sensor, an 8-megapixel ultra-wide angle lens, and a 2-megapixel macro lens. At the front, Moto G41 features a 13-megapixel selfie camera. The phone packs a 5,000mAh battery with Turbo Charge 30 fast charging support. Connectivity options include USB Type-C port, 3.5mm audio jack, Bluetooth v5, and Wi-Fi ac.

Moto G31 price, specifications

Lastly, Moto G31 is priced at EUR 199.99 (roughly Rs. 16,700). The phone is arriving in the coming weeks in Europe. It will also roll out to selected markets across India, Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East in the coming weeks.

moto  g31 Moto G31

Moto G31 features a 6.4-inch full-HD+ display

On the specifications front, Moto G31 runs on Android 11. It features a 6.4-inch full-HD+ (1,080×2,400 pixels) OLED display with 60Hz refresh rate and 20:9 aspect ratio. The phone is powered by the MediaTek Helio G85 SoC, paired with up to 4GB RAM. Internal storage is listed to be at up to 128GB and can be further expanded using a microSD card (up to 1TB).

Moto G31 comes with a triple rear camera setup which includes a 50-megapixel primary sensor, an 8-megapixel ultra-wide angle lens, and a 2-megapixel macro lens. At the front, Moto G31 will feature a 13-megapixel selfie camera. The phone packs a 5,000mAh battery with 10W charging. Connectivity options include USB Type-C port, 3.5mm audio jack, Bluetooth v5, and Wi-Fi ac.

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Samsung Galaxy A73 Design, Specifications Tipped via Renders

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Samsung Galaxy A73 computer-aided design (CAD) renders have surfaced online, giving smartphone enthusiasts an idea of what the upcoming phone might look like. The phone is speculated to be available in two colour variants. The Samsung Galaxy A73 could come with a plastic build and punch-hole display. It may feature a 108-megapixel sensor and could be launched as part of the company’s 2022 midrange smartphone lineup. It must be noted that Samsung has not yet announced anything regarding this smartphone.

According to renders shared by Dutch website LetsGoDigital and created by Technizo Concept based on leaks and rumours of the phone, the Samsung Galaxy A73 is shown sporting a similar design to its predecessor, the Galaxy A72, down to the quad-camera layout at the back. The volume and power buttons are seen on the right side of the device, while the bottom edge houses both the USB Type-C port and the SIM card tray. The renders show the Samsung Galaxy A73 without a 3.5mm jack, but Samsung is yet to reveal any information about this smartphone and this might change.

Back in September, the Samsung Galaxy A73 was tipped to come with a 108-megapixel primary sensor, which has also featured on some other smartphones launched by the South Korean company. The company is speculated to bring optical image stabilisation (OIS) to all A-series smartphones launched in 2022, a feature that was added to this year’s Samsung Galaxy A52 and Samsung Galaxy A72 smartphones.

Citing the South Korean publication, The Elec, the report says that Samsung could equip the rumoured A-series with a screen from a Chinese manufacturer in order to keep costs low and compete with Chinese brands. Both China Star Optoelectronics Technology (CSOT) and Beijing Oriental Electronics (BOE) are said to be potential suppliers for the device, according to the report. The Samsung Galaxy A73 could reportedly be launched with Android 12 out of the box and powered by a Snapdragon 750G chipset, which means it would support 5G connectivity unlike its predecessor. However, it is better to take these claims with a pinch of salt as Samsung has not yet confirmed the Galaxy A73 smartphone.


Are the Galaxy Z Fold 3 and Z Flip 3 still made for enthusiasts — or are they good enough for everyone? We discussed this on Orbital, the Gadgets 360 podcast. Orbital is available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Amazon Music and wherever you get your podcasts.

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Instagram to Say Goodbye to Snapchat-Like Threads App Next Month

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Instagram is discontinuing its Snapchat-like messaging app Threads that was launched in 2019. As a result of the update, users will start seeing a prompt to move back to the original Instagram app. Instagram has separately started allowing select users to add music to their feed posts — just like how it’s already possible with Reels and Stories. India is amongst the countries where the new feature will first be tested — alongside Brazil and Turkey.

As confirmed to TechCrunch, Instagram will no longer support Threads by the end of December. Users will also start seeing an in-app notice about its departure from November 23.

The discontinuation of Threads was first brought into notice by reverse engineer Alessandro Paluzzi. He also posted a screenshot showing the notice that Instagram is yet to start showing to its users.

Threads was launched for both Android and iOS devices as Instagram’s standalone image-centric messaging app in October 2019. The app was found to have some similarities with Snapchat as it allowed users to share their photos and videos in a visual form with their close friends. It, though, moved beyond close friends last year and was updated to allow users to message anyone on Instagram.

Although the exact reason for shutting down Threads has not yet been provided, an Instagram spokesperson told The Verge that the photo-sharing platform will now focus its efforts on enhancing how users connect with their close friends on Instagram itself.

In addition to shutting down Threads, Meta-owned Instagram has started testing the ability to let users add music to their feed posts. This will allow people to have a song or a music track featured alongside their photos and videos shared on the feed.

Once a user taps on the song, they will be taken to an audio page from where they will see all feed posts using the same song.

Instagram said in a press note that the feature is being tested with a small percentage of Instagram’s global community and is initially live for some users in India, Brazil, and Turkey. It will be expanded based on the learning and feedback from the community, the company said.

instagram music feed post update Instagram

Instagram is testing the ability to let users add music to their feed posts
Photo Credit: Instagram

 

If the new music-focussed feature is live for your account, you will be able to add a song to your feed photo by tapping Add Music after starting to upload your photo on Instagram. The app will show a search field to let you look for specific songs or browse for music in the ‘Trending’ or ‘For You’ sections of the prompt.

After the song you want to add appears on the screen, you can select it for your photo. You will also be able to select the clip duration — just like Stories — and choose the length of time you would like to include for the song.




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Shiba Coffee Company Burns SHIB Tokens for Every Bag of Coffee It Sells

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Shiba Inu’s (SHIB) mainstream popularity has skyrocketed over the past few weeks and the crypto coin’s strong community has now introduced a one-off token-burning mechanism which invites coffee lovers from across the world to show their support. Launched earlier this month, the Shiba Coffee Company sells a variety of SHIB-branded coffee at a starting price of $16.99 (roughly Rs. 1,262). Customers can buy their coffee in SHIB too, of course, and 10 percent of the company’s proceeds are then directed towards SHIB burning.

The Shiba Inu community, or the ShibArmy, already has a host of community-driven token burning projects and the Shiba Coffee Company is the latest to join the fray. These include the SHIB Burner playlist and the Bricks Buster mobile game. These projects, however, only exist in the digital world. The Shiba Coffee Company, on the other hand, intends to remind people of their “favourite local coffee roaster” and connect the digital world of Shiba Inu with a physical product.

“Bridging the digital community that SHIB has created with the physical world is key to making a lasting impact and movement,” a company spokesperson said. “When people can touch and smell something, they can feel that this isn’t just something online.”

Coin burning is essentially the act of sending cryptocurrency tokens to a wallet that has no access key, eventually taking them out of circulation. This reduces the overall number of tokens in circulation, making tokens scarce and boosting the cryptocurrency’s valuation.

The spokesperson also goes on to talk about how the ShibArmy community’s burning efforts were commendable, saying it shows “how strong the SHIB community is.” The most recent burn event hosted by the larger ShibArmy was the Shiba Burn Party in which 1 billion Shiba Inu tokens (worth $46,280/ roughly Rs. 34.3 lakh) or 0.0000018 percent of the circulating supply were destroyed.

Other than marketing its coffee, the Shiba Coffee Company’s website features the names of companies which contribute towards burning SHIB. A number of companies have already pledged to burn a portion of their profits in support of the token burn. Among them are Bigger Entertainment and The Vibe Maquillage which will burn 20 percent of royalties and 15 percent of all sales in SHIB, respectively.

Since the company only recently launched, it is yet to complete any planned burn event but the company does intend to host a burn event once every month, details of which will be shared on its website.


Interested in cryptocurrency? We discuss all things crypto with WazirX CEO Nischal Shetty and WeekendInvesting founder Alok Jain on Orbital, the Gadgets 360 podcast. Orbital is available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify, Amazon Music and wherever you get your podcasts.

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Xiaomi, Redmi Said to Launch Several Devices in India by Year End

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Xiaomi will reportedly launch many devices in India before the end of this year. Earlier this week, the Chinese tech giant announced that it will be launching the Redmi Note 11T 5G later this month. Late last month, it was reported that two Redmi Note 11 series smartphones will launch in India as Xiaomi branded smartphones. Now, fresh reports suggest that several smartphones may get launched under Redmi and Xiaomi monikers. However, the exact timeline and the number of devices being launched is unclear as of now.

As per a tweet by notable tipster Mukul Sharma (@stufflistings), many Xiaomi and Redmi devices will be launched in India before the end of this year. However, Sharma did not mention which smartphones, tablets, or other devices will be launched in the next few weeks.

As mentioned, Redmi announced that it will launch the Redmi Note 11T 5G in India on November 30. The smartphone is speculated to be a rebranded Redmi Note 11 5G that was launched in China in October. The Xiaomi sub-brand has not yet disclosed any specification of the smartphone apart from it being 5G-enabled.

Furthermore, it was also reported that Xiaomi may launch the Redmi Note 11 Pro and the Redmi Note 11 Pro+ in India as the Xiaomi 11i and Xiaomi 11i HyperCharge. However, the exact timeline of the launch of these smartphones has not yet been confirmed. The tipster, who shared this information, also mentioned that the Redmi smartphones won’t be rebranded as Xiaomi smartphones in the global market.

Earlier this month, the Redmi Note 11 5G was rebranded and launched as the Poco M4 Pro 5G in Europe. The Poco smartphone sports a 6.6-inch full-HD+ Dot display with a 90Hz refresh rate. Under the hood, it is powered by MediaTek Dimensity 810 SoC paired with up to 6GB of RAM and up to 128GB of onboard storage. For optics, it gets a dual rear camera setup with a 50-megapixel primary sensor and an 8-megapixel ultra-wide angle sensor. Poco M4 Pro 5G gets a 16-megapixel selfie camera. It packs a 5,000mAh battery with 33W Pro fast charging.




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