Архив метки: CES

Royole looks to move flexible displays beyond the foldable phone

If nothing else, Royole grabbed our attention a couple of years back by bringing the first foldable smartphone to market. There’s something to be said for being first, I suppose. It raised the profile of a largely unknown name in amongst the tech press, even if it didn’t exactly kickstart a form-factor revolution. Among other things, the FlexPai seemed firmly stuck in the prototype stage, to be perfectly honest.

RoTree, manufactured by Royole, consists of 500 units of fully flexible screens. As light and thin as real tree leaves, RoTree offers more than that – people can change images or videos on the leaves! The tree is «planted» at Shenzhen Bao’An Int’l Airport as new airport landmark! pic.twitter.com/8J7HNH9ONF
— Royole Corporation (@RoyoleOfficial) June 28, 2019

But, okay, fine. Royole, you’ve got our attention. I’ve seen your foldable phone tree firsthand at the Shenzhen airport. So, what do have for us now? More interesting stuff, surely. The company was showcasing a pair of new devices at CES this week, all seemingly filling a similar function as the FlexPai: demonstrating the potential for flexible display technology. That, in fact, seems to be Royole’s primary M.O.

A closer look at Royole’s foldable display

Leading the bunch is the Mirage Smart Speaker. It’s basically an Amazon echo with an eight-inch flexible AMOLED wrapped around the body. So, a flexible display that can’t be actively flexed by the user — though honestly, the act of flexing it tends to be where we start running into trouble. Instead, it offers a wraparound visual, so, like a built-in Winamp visualizer on your device. Kind of fun.
There’s also a camera built-in, which, I don’t know. Maybe smart speakers don’t need cameras? Maybe that’s just me?
There’s a new version of the company’s RoWrite, which is basically a standard pad of paper with sensors embedded that let you digitize your writing and drawing. The idea is to give the feel of paper with the benefits of digital. The new RoWrite is significantly smaller and lighter, with better battery.

Royole looks to move flexible displays beyond the foldable phone

Samsung confirms February 11 event for its next flagship launch

The Saturday night before CES seems like a less than ideal time to drop some big smartphone news — but it appears Samsung’s hand was forced on this one. Granted, the smartphone giant has never been great about keeping big news under wraps, but this morning’s early release of a promo video through its official Vimeo channel was no doubt all the motivation it needed.
The company has just made the February 11 date officially official for the launch of its upcoming flagship. As for what the flagship will be called, well, that (among other things) leaves some room for speculation. Rumors have pointed to both the more traditional S11, along with the more fascinating jump to the S20.

Say hello to a whole new Galaxy. Unpacked on February 11, 2020 #SamsungEvent pic.twitter.com/ln1pqt2vu7
— Samsung Mobile (@SamsungMobile) January 5, 2020

I’ve collated a bunch of the rumors into an earlier post. The TLDR is even larger screens across the board, coupled with a bunch of camera upgrades and a healthy battery increase. The invite art, which matches the earlier the video, appears to confirm the existence of two separate devices, with different dimensions. That could well point to the reported followup to the Galaxy Fold. In additional to better reinforced folding (a follow up to last year’s issues), the device reportedly adopts a clamshell form factor, more akin to the newly announced Motorola Razr.
More info (and rumors) to come. As ever, we’ll be there (San Francisco) as the news breaks.

Samsung confirms February 11 event for its next flagship launch

Google Pixel 4a renders include a headphone jack and hole-punch display

It’s the slowest week of the year for gadget news. Christmas is in the rearview, and it’s a few days until the new year. After that, it’s a straight shot to CES and then MWC. Meantime, best we’ve got going for us are a handful of rumors, including a peek at what Google’s next budget handset might could potentially possibly conceivably look like.
Per renders from OnLeaks and 91Mobiles, a vision of the Pixel 4a has appeared — or, a render, rather. The handset will no doubt be an important one for Google. After all, the 3a (pictured at top) helped the company recover from some lackluster sales last year. A couple of pieces jump out at first glance. The display appears to finally buck the company’s longtime notch dependency, in favor of a hole punch camera on the front.

Perhaps even more compelling, the device seems to hold the torch for the headphone jack. In 2020, that could well be a standout feature even among mid-range handsets. As the company eloquently put it around the time of the 3a’s release, “a lot of people have headphones.”

And here comes my last late #Christmas gift in form of your very first and early look at the #Google #Pixel4a! 360° video + gorgeous 5K renders + dimensions, on behalf of my Friends over @91mobiles -> https://t.co/rsvRkjVOln pic.twitter.com/sqG6J5knSR
— Steve H.McFly (@OnLeaks) December 28, 2019

Other notable features on the forthcoming device includes the addition of the squircle phone bump on the rear, a design element borrowed from the Pixel 4. Likely the handset will stick to a single camera, instead of adopting the flagship’s truly excellent dual-camera setup. Even so, Google’s been able to accomplish some solid imaging technology with just the one sensor, courtesy of clever ML software.
The display, too, will be slightly larger than its predecessor, bumping up one or two tenths of an inch. The handset is reportedly dropping around May, probably just in time for I/O 2020.

Google Pixel 4a renders include a headphone jack and hole-punch display

What we know about Qualcomm’s next-gen Snapdragon 865 and 765 chips

Qualcomm’s holding its big annual get-together this week in Hawaii, portioning off Snapdragon news, piece by piece. Yesterday’s event was the big unveiling of the Snapdragon 865 and 765, the chips that will power most of next year’s premium and mid-tier handsets, respectively.
Today, the components came into sharper focus. Expect more from both tomorrow, as well, as the company continues to milk them for the multi-day event, but we’re starting to get a pretty solid picture of what these chips will be able to do.
Let’s start top-down with the 865. Expect the premium chip to start showing up in announcements around CES and MWC, if past years’ road maps are any indication. As anticipated, 5G is one of the key focuses. After all, 2020 is generally believed to be when 5G-driven purchases will start helping to right long-flagging smartphone sales.

Qualcomm unveils Snapdragon 865 and 765 platforms

No integrated 5G has been announced for the chip. Instead, it will work in tandem with Qualcomm’s 5G modem, the X55. Keep in mind, there are still going to be plenty of non-5G alternative flagships released in the next calendar year. For starters, the devices are bound to be prohibitively expensive. Also, in many markets, 5G coverage will be spotty, at best. Unfortunately, however, it seems that manufacturers will have to buy them as a pair.
Notably, there’s support for a wide range of 5G frequencies. That’s necessary, because carrier approach to 5G has been pretty piecemeal. It varies a good deal from carrier to carrier — and in the case of some, like T-Mobile, a good deal within the carrier.
AI’s the other big marquee bit. Again, no surprise. It’s been an increasingly important aspect of smartphone evolution for several years now. That’s powered by a fifth-gen AI chip that doubles the performance of its predecessor.
There’s also on-board support for wake word listening for use with the likes of Alexa and Assistant, at low power. Imaging improvements include support for 200 megapixel photos and 8K, along with much-improved speeds. On the display/gaming front, there’s now support for 144Hz refresh rates.
The arrival of the 765, meanwhile, highlights Qualcomm’s ambitions to speed up 5G adoption across a wider range of devices. The new chip, which features an option with integrated 5G, could certainly help on that front, keeping cost and power usage down.
Expect devices to start arriving in early 2020.

What we know about Qualcomm’s next-gen Snapdragon 865 and 765 chips

Samsung teases a clamshell foldable form factor

Last year at its developer conference, Samsung showed off an early glimpse of its upcoming foldable. In hindsight, the Galaxy Fold’s rollout could have gone more smoothly, but sometimes first-gen products go that way, I suppose. At the very least, it’s clear that the company won’t let a rocky start stand between it and broader foldable phone ambitions.

Life with the Samsung Galaxy Fold

Onstage at this year’s event, the company showed off another take on the foldable display. A video shows the Galaxy Fold form factor morphing into a clamshell more akin to traditional dumb phones.

Attendees of #SDC19 got a sneak peek at a brand new form factor Samsung is exploring for the foldable category of devices. #SamsungEvent pic.twitter.com/rGtpvNj0SJ
— Samsung US Newsroom (@SamsungNewsUS) October 29, 2019

Unlike last year’s event, this one shouldn’t be taken as a pre-product announcement. Rather, the company says it’s “explor[ing] a range of new form factors in the foldable category.” It’s something that’s been pretty clear from the outset: these earliest days of foldables are very much about seeing which form factors click. Samsung is currently working with developers to explore these concepts.
This latest is more in line with leaks we’ve seen of the rumored Motorola Razr reboot, with an elongated screen that can easily be folded up and stashed away in a pocket. Perhaps we’ll get more insight into the company’s plans as CES or MWC.
Perhaps.

Samsung teases a clamshell foldable form factor