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Mobile Phones

  • Xiaomi Mi A1 review: the mid-range device to beat?

    Pure Android joined tall screens as being another notable trend in 2017, as HMD, Lenovo and Essential refrained from skinning their devices. You can also add Xiaomi to the mix, the firm introducing the Mi A1 at the tail-end of last year. Fortunately, MIA Group has brought the device to South Africa, coming in at R4999. Now, after a few weeks with the device, we've got a verdict. So, stock Android... Boot up the Android One phone and indeed you've got stock Android here, with little in the way of preinstalled third-party apps to be had. We say "little", because Xiaomi's remote...

  • Nokia 8 Sirocco set for MWC 2018 – report

    We've already seen the Nokia 6 2018 launch in China, packing an updated chipset. But a new report claims that HMD is working on a "Nokia 8 Sirocco" for MWC 2018. According to prominent tech publication My Drivers, the Nokia 8 Sirocco (apparent model number TA-1005) will pack a Snapdragon 845 chipset, 6GB of RAM and a 3250mAh battery. However, the website also claims that the device will offer IP67 water resistance and wireless charging, making for a welcome change over the original Nokia 8. If true, this means the new model will probably offer a polycarbonate or glass back. Metal backs...

  • Broadcom now offers ‘best and final’ offer to Qualcomm

    Silicon company Broadcom has upped its offer to fellow chipmaker Qualcomm, with the offer valued between US$120-billion and US$146-billion. The move sees Broadcom offer US$82 per share for Qualcomm, being US$60 in cash and the rest in Broadcom shares. "The significantly improved offer, which has been unanimously approved by the Board of Directors of Broadcom, represents a 50% premium over the closing price of Qualcomm common stock on 2 November 2017, the last unaffected trading day prior to media speculation regarding a potential transaction, and a premium of 56% to Qualcomm's unaffected 30-day volume-weighted average price," the interested buyer wrote in a press release. The offer is...

  • Xiaomi rolls out MIUI 9.2 to many devices, including Redmi Note 2

    You wouldn't generally place Xiaomi high on the list of brands delivering brisk firmware updates, but when it does roll out an update, it covers quite a few phones. Case in point: MIUI 9.2. Yes, the latest update for Xiaomi's Android skin is spreading to over a dozen smartphones. In fact, the list of devices extends to 2013's Mi 3 and 2015's Redmi Note 2 and Redmi Note Prime. The full list is as follows: Redmi Note 5A/Redmi Y1 Lite, Redmi Note 5A Prime/Redmi Y1, Mi Mix 2, Redmi 5, Redmi 5 Plus, Redmi 4 Prime, Mi 3, Mi 4, Mi Note, Redmi 4X, Redmi Note...

  • Mid-range Huawei P Smart coming to SA, touting dual cameras

    Huawei's got a pretty diverse portfolio of smartphones in the country, ranging from its low-end Y series to its ever-popular Lite devices and the P and Mate series. Those wanting a budget-priced dual-camera smartphone have been left in the lurch until now though. Fortunately, MTN's latest catalogue (thanks to Sumen for the tip!) shows that the Huawei P Smart is coming to fill the gap. Coming in at R249 a month on a Made for Me S package, the P Smart is also listed as having a prepaid price of R5239. This puts it squarely in P10 Lite range, the older...

  • Confirmed: LG to bring upgraded V30 to MWC 2018

    One would expect the LG G7 to be revealed at Mobile World Congress (MWC), but the Korean firm seems to have a different idea... CY Kim, managing director for LG Electronics South Africa, told reporters that we can expect an upgraded version of the V30 to debut instead. "We will introduce at MWC for V30... upgraded version (sic)," Kim told press at LG's Innofest event in Cape Town. Kim hinted that the G7 would be a "little bit late". The news comes amid claims that the G7 has gone back to the drawing board. The claim has been dismissed by an LG executive, who...

  • Now Verizon drops plans to sell Huawei phones in USA

    CES 2018 was supposed to mark Huawei's proper entry into the US market, teaming up with major networks to sell phones on contract. Unfortunately, AT&T pulled out of the deal in the days before CES, apparently due to US government pressure. It all made for a rather awkward speech by Huawei's Richard Yu. Now, Bloomberg reports that fellow US network Verizon has also decided to drop Huawei phones. The publication, citing "people familiar with the matter", said this was due to pressure from the US government as well. The network decisions come as the US government continues to grapple with Huawei, making vague...

  • Nokia 10: why would you want a multi-lens smartphone?

    Dual-camera smartphones have truly become mainstream, giving us a host of features in the process. But could we be set for another mobile camera revolution? Rumours point to the existence of the Nokia 10. But subsequent reports also claim the camera will pack a rotating camera housing with multiple lenses. More specifically, it's claimed that the Nokia 10 will have dual cameras, as well as a dial for switching between lenses. Why would you want this on a smartphone though? Well, slapping different lenses on a phone enables a variety of effects. What kind of effects? Look at snap-on lenses and traditional DSLR camera lenses...

  • Nokia 3310 4G, with Android-derived YunOS, now official [Update]

    The initial Nokia 3310 reboot was essentially a feature-phone with an entry-level smartphone price tag, HMD seemingly content to make a quick buck off the iconic brand. Earlier this month though, we saw China's TENAA regulatory body publish details regarding a new Nokia 3310 model. And yes, it looked like a firm step in the smartphone direction. Now, HMD has quietly revealed the device (spotted by Gizmochina), being a Chinese-only phone for now. The Nokia 3310 4G variant packs YunOS, being an Android-derived platform by Chinese tech firm Alibaba. In fact, the platform is apparently capable of running many Android apps in the...

  • 5G in South Africa: here’s what you should expect from networks

    The past year has seen a massive uptick in 5G connectivity talk, as cellular networks, infrastructure providers and device manufacturers gear up for the standard. We've already heard mobile chipmaker Qualcomm's take on 5G, but what about local networks? When can we expect commercial launches? And what are the main challenges here? We asked MTN, Vodacom and Telkom (Cell C hasn't responded to our query at the time of publication). MTN "Timing for commercial launch will be circa 2020 -- post 5G standardisation and the network/device ecosystem being sufficiently mature to roll out. Operators in Asia and the USA are field trialing...