Notebookcheck

Notebook, Smartphone, and Tablet News

On this page you will find developing stories and top news on notebooks, tablets, smartphones, and related technology. Our news items are also available as an RSS feed.

     restrict settings
additional restrictions: News, Columns
Mar 20
Margrethe Vestager: The European Commissioner for Competition who today announced Google's third fine in under two years for antitrust violations (Image source: WIC News)

Google fined €1.49 billion by the EU for yet another antitrust breach

The European Commission has today announced that it has fined Google €1.49 billion for abusing its market dominance of online search adverts. The company has now been fined over €8.25 billion by the Commission in less than two years for illegal practices.
Lenovo ThinkPad T490s using the same motherboard as smaller X390 may explain feature loss

Lenovo ThinkPad T490s using the same motherboard as smaller X390 may explain feature loss

As the release of Lenovo's newest business laptops of the well known ThinkPad brand comes closer, we discovered an interesting fact in the support documentation of the ThinkPad T490s and the smaller ThinkPad X390: Both use the same mainboard design.
The new case leak apparently pertains to the Meizu 16s. (Source: SlashLeaks)

Alleged Meizu 16s case leak suggests departure from predecessors' design

A phone that may be the next generation of the Meizu 16 line is yet again the subject of a post on SlashLeaks. This time, it is described as a case for this new phone. It indicates that the OEM will drop the usual central position for the rear cameras for a triple-sensor in one corner.
Android Pie-based Color OS 6 now official (Source: Oppo Global)

Android Pie-based Color OS 6 coming soon to older Oppo handsets

Although handsets like the Oppo F11/F11 Pro and the RealMe 3 have been shipping with it onboard for a while, Android Pie-based Color OS 6 has finally received a proper official launch as well. This piece of code should be rolling out as an update for older Oppo handsets soon, but the roadmap is not available yet.
Look familiar? These are the new Apple AirPods. (Source: Apple)

Apple releases AirPods 2 with new wireless charging case option

Apple's latest press release has unveiled the AirPods 2. These new earbuds integrate handsfree Siri activation, faster switching between different devices and wireless charging. However, their design is largely unchanged compared to their preceding generation.
Motorola One Vision will be released as the Motorola P40 in China. (Source: Times Now)

Motorola One Vision mid-range specs leaked

Motorola's One Vision smartphone appears to be the same as the previously leaked P40 model, which is intended for the Chinese market only. Surprisingly enough, Motorola chose to add a Samsung Exynos 9610 SoC and only 3/4 GB of RAM, with 32/64/128 GB storage options. The 6.2-display will get FHD+ resolution and a punch-hole selfie, while the rear dual cam setup will include a 48 MP sensor.
Google Stadia is set to bring the best gaming experience to devices like smartphones, tablets, laptops and even PCs with no gaming GPUs. (Source: CNet)

Hands-on Google Stadia testers report noticeable lag and mild image artifacts

While Google has the performance side of Stadia covered with a custom hyperthreading CPU plus and AMD GPU capable of delivering 10.7 TF of processing power, testers of the demo version pointed out that input lag is quite noticeable, and the image quality may be affected in dynamic scenes. Hopefully Google is taking notes and the final version releasing this summer will be better optimized.
The purported Xperia 4 compared to the Z5 Compact and XZ2 Compact. (Source: SumahoInfo)

The Sony Xperia 4 could be a disappointing successor to the Xperia Compact flagships

Sony is set to launch a new Xperia device, the Xperia 4, in the coming months. The Xperia 4 is said to be a replacement for the Xperia Compact flagship line, but it's looking more and more like a poor one.
Renders of the Pixel 3a. (Source: OnLeaks)

Details of the Pixel 3a and 3a XL surface - AMOLED, 64 GB, and an iffy camera app

The Pixel 3a and 3a XL are set to be launched in the coming months, and a new report has now given us our clearest view yet of the smaller of the devices, the Pixel 3a. Notable features include Active Edge, an AMOLED display, 64 GB of storage, and a 3000 mAh battery.
OWC offers memory kits for the new 27-inch iMac. (Source: OWC)

OWC has prepared RAM upgrades for the 27-inch 2019 iMac already

OWC is a company that caters to iMac fans who want to upgrade their new Apple all-in-ones. It has announced its new Memory Kits for the 2019 27-inch iMac (the 5K model). As this new 2019 variant has 4 user-accessible slots, OWC is also currently testing out the possibility of maxing its RAM to 128GB.
The Blue Yeti is apparently the best USB mic. (Source: Amazon)

The best USB microphone is made by Blue: new analysis

In a world where everyone seems to be a streamer or caster or some kind, a USB microphone may be a viable purchase. They combine the possible advantage of improved audio with a power source that is already built into your machine. A recent "data-driven" review puts the Blue Yeti at the top of a new list of the best of these devices.
The LumiCharge is back with wireless charging this time. (Source: Lumicharge)

LumiCharge II: The teched-out desk lamp returns with a wireless-charging upgrade

LumiCharge made a good impression among tech correspondents with its first-gen desk lamp. This product had an LED clock, not to mention ways to charge iOS and Android smartphones with built-in wired connections. Now, the company is back on Indiegogo with the LumiCharge II, which adds wireless charging to this set-up.
Mixed results. (Source: NDTV)

Q4 2018: Xiaomi's smartphone division sees 28% drop in revenue

A new report has detailed Xiaomi's sales numbers for the fourth quarter of 2018. The company managed to beat its profit estimates for the quarter but also suffered from a heavy quarter-on-quarter drop in revenue from smartphone sales.
Epic Games store-exclusive RollerCoaster Tycoon Adventures for PC now available (Source: Atari)

RollerCoaster Tycoon Adventures for PC hits the Epic Games store

Released at the end of November for the Nintendo Switch hybrid console, RollerCoaster Tycoon Adventures is now finally reaching PC gamers all over the world. However, this release comes with a twist that Steam fans will not enjoy: Atari's new game is exclusively available via the Epic Games store.
The Alienware Alpha R2 PC/console hybrid could be fitted with a GPU from Nvidia or AMD. (Source: Dell)

Dell's Frank Azor says no to Alienware gaming phones and more consoles

During a visit to India where he has been discussing newly launched Dell and Alienware laptops for the Indian market, Dell executive Frank Azor had time to make a few interesting comments about what direction Alienware won’t be taking in the near future. It seems an Alienware gaming phone certainly isn’t in the picture.
Dell's G7 15 gaming laptop has a 15.6-inch FHD (1920x1080) IPS 144 Hz display. (Source: Dell India)

Dell launches G7 15, Alienware m15, and Alienware Area-51m gaming laptops in India

Dell has announced that the G7 15 gaming laptop, the Alienware m15 notebook, and the powerful Alienware Area-51m computer are now available to customers in India. The devices can currently be ordered from the website for Dell India, and they will be made available in retail outlets such as Reliance Digital and Croma from April 1.
The Blackview A60. (Source: Blackview)

The new Blackview A60 is an Android Go phone with a big 4080 mAh battery

Blackview's latest offering is one for those looking for a cheap phone with decent software and adequate battery performance. The A60 features a 6-inch HD display, dual rear cameras, and a beefy 4080 mAh battery.
The Samsung Galaxy Fold has a 7.3-inch main display. (Source: YouTube/phoneoftime)

Hands-on video of Galaxy Fold show it may not be as seamless as Samsung hoped for

A hands-on video of a Samsung Galaxy Fold has been uploaded to YouTube. The clip in question is actually focused on unlocking the smartphone; however, the thing that is immediately apparent is how noticeable the crease down the middle of the device is. The Galaxy Fold will be officially launched on April 26.
The Galaxy A40. (Source: AndroidPlanet)

Samsung launches the Galaxy A40 in Europe - Exynos 7885, 25 MP selfie camera, One UI

Samsung is on a roll. The company released the Galaxy A20 in Russia yesterday and has now launched another device, the Galaxy A40, in the Netherlands. The A40 sports a 5.9-inch Super AMOLED display, dual rear cameras, 4 GB of RAM, and 64 GB of storage.
Google's Stadia has access to over 7,500 edge nodes around the world. (Source: Google)

Custom AMD GPUs will help power Google Stadia beyond current-generation consoles

Google has officially announced its Stadia cloud gaming service at the 2019 Game Developers Conference in San Francisco. Google Stadia will allow users to play games from any computer, smartphone, smart television or tablet that has an Internet connection. The GPUs that have been selected for the service’s hardware are custom Radeon chips from AMD.
The Alienware Area-51m laptop can utilize desktop processors. (Source: Dell)

Alienware Area-51m with GeForce RTX 2080 and i7-9700K achieves amazing score in 3DMark Fire Strike

An Alienware Area-51m laptop with an Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 GPU and an Intel Core i7-9700K processor has recorded a very impressive score of 25,039 in 3DMark’s Fire Strike 1.1 test. According to the chart details for the run, this puts this particular system ahead of 98% of all other results. The Graphics score was 30,306.
Alienware Area-51m review coming soon; ask your questions here (Image source: Dell)

Alienware Area-51m review in progress; ask your questions here

Can a laptop equipped with the Core i9-9900K CPU and GeForce RTX 2080 GPU match or exceed the performance of a desktop PC with the same core specifications? If you have any other pressing concerns before investing in the pricey purchase, just let us know below.
Shadow of the Tomb Raider is the latest game to offer "RTX on". (Source: YouTube/Square Enix)

Ray tracing and DLSS now available for Shadow of the Tomb Raider

A new patch for Shadow of the Tomb Raider has been announced that contains software for ray tracing and DLSS support. Users will need to have an Nvidia GeForce RTX 20-series GPU in their system to enjoy the new features. The action-adventure game was released in September 2018 with Nixxes Software developing the Windows port.
Mar 19
The Xiaomi Redmi AirDots, a US$15 alternative to the Apple AirPods, for those who live in China at least (Image source: Xiaomi)

Xiaomi Redmi AirDots: The AirPods alternative that cost less than US$15

Xiaomi only released its first set of completely wireless headphones a few months ago, but it has now followed them up with the even more affordable Redmi AirDots. The headphones will be available in China from April 9 for CNY 99 (~ US$14.75) and look remarkably like the AirDots Youth Edition, which Xiaomi currently sells for CNY 199 (~ US$29.65).
In addition to the growing game library that already has more than 500 titles, GeForce Now will allow users to bring their own games from platforms like Steam. (Source: Nvidia)

Nvidia's GeForce Now cloud gaming platform is ready for launch

Nvidia's own game streaming service is currently featuring more than 500 game titles, and users will be able to bring more games from platforms like Steam. Backed by new RTX blade servers with scalable RTX 2080 performance and blazing fast connections all across the world via the GeForce Now Alliance, Nvidia is aiming to provide the smoothest gaming experience for more than a billion systems that do not integrate gaming GPUs.
Vectordash aims to bring smooth gameplay for systems that do not integrate a gaming GPU by tapping the power of unused cryptomining GPU rigs. (Source: ebay)

Vectordash looking to provide cloud gaming infrastructure through cryptomining GPUs

The game streaming infrastructure envisioned by Vectordash puts GPU-based cryptomining rigs to good use in order to bring a smooth gaming experience for computers that do not integrate dedicated gaming GPUs. The service will first be available only on the West Coast, but there are plans to expand support for the East Coast.
New iMacs are now available. (Source: Apple)

Apple has updated its iMac line-up for 2019

In a move that aligns with relevant rumors from days ago, Apple has upgraded its take on the all-in-one (AIO) PC. However, these new desktops are iMacs, not iMac Pros. Nevertheless, they now come with 8th- or 9th-gen Intel processors, graphics that go up to Vega 48s and new prices.
The Redmi 7. (Source: Redmi)

Redmi 7 launched - Snapdragon 632, 4000 mAh, US$105

Xiaomi's sub-brand, Redmi, yesterday, launched its latest device, the Redmi 7, in China. The budget phone features a 6.26-inch display, dual rear cameras, a Snapdragon 632, and a massive 4000 mAh battery. Prices start at US$105.
The Vivo X27 has a Nex S-esque selfie camera. (Source: Vivo)

Vivo has launched the X27 and X27 Pro: its newest pop-up selfie-cam phones

Vivo has announced its newest devices in a Chinese event today (March 19, 2019). They are the X27 and X27 Pro. The X27 has 2 variants with either the Snapdragon (SD) 675 or 710, although they both have the same screen and single pop-up selfie camera. The Pro version has a larger display, and a more novel wider pop-up module with a dedicated flash.
Xiaomi Mi Pay hits India (Source: Android Authority)

Xiaomi finally launches its mobile payments service in India

Already available in China, the Xiaomi Mi Pay mobile payments service has been tested in India in the second half of 2018. In the meantime, the Chinese company obtained the approval of the Reserve Bank of India, and Mi Pay is now ready to take on PayU, WhatsApp Pay, and the other similar services.
Armored Warfare 0.28 with Arabian Nights 2 campaign loading screen

Armored Warfare 0.28 now live with new French vehicles, Battalion Ranked Battles, and more

After a rather long wait, the French and Italian vehicles are finally joining Armored Warfare as the offerings of a new dealer, named Francine De Laroche. The Arabian Nights campaign is now moving on with new events, but the 0.28 update also comes with Battalion Ranked Battles, new achievements, as well as many tweaks and fixes.
Upcoming HP ProBook 445R G6 and 455R G6 will carry AMD Ryzen Zen+ processors (Source: HP)

Upcoming HP ProBook 445R G6 and 455R G6 will carry AMD Ryzen Zen+ processors

The ProBook 445 and 455 are barely three months old and they will soon be updated with faster models come this summer. Much like the upcoming Lenovo IdeaPad C340 series, the newer SKUs will have second generation AMD Zen APUs for potentially cheaper starting prices than the usual Intel U-class options.
2019 HP Envy 13, Envy 15, and Envy 17 coming with AMOLED and GeForce MX250 options (Source: HP)

2019 HP Envy 13, Envy 15, and Envy 17 coming with AMOLED, Optane, and GeForce MX250 options

HP will be bringing some of its previously exclusive Spectre features to its mid-range Envy lineup this year. The 15.6-inch Envy 15 in particular will get an AMOLED option while all models will have a physical camera kill switch to electronically disable the webcam.
Qualcomm's QCS400 SoCs aim to bring advanced audio capabilities to smart speakers. (Source: MobileSyrup)

Qualcomm unveils the QCS400 series SoCs for smart speakers and next-gen audio applications

Qualcomm has revealed the new QCS400 series SoCs dedicated for smart audio applications in smart speakers, soundbars, home theatre systems, AV receivers, and IoT hardware. The QCS400 series comes in four SKUs and offers a tri-radio coexistence, AI enhancements, up to 32-channels of Dolby Atmos and DTS:X decoding, low-latency streaming, and next generation voice capabilities. The higher-end SKUs also come with an Adreno 306 GPU for visual output. The QCS400 series aims to be more power-efficient and can be tailored by developers to offer specific experiences to the user.
The Galaxy S10+ shoots photos worthy of its flagship status. (Source: Notebookcheck)

Shot on Galaxy S10+ Pro mode: Australian F1 GP Tesla Road Trip - Part 2

In the second instalment of this two-part Shot on Galaxy S10+ story, I’ve spent the last couple of days in Melbourne at the Albert Park Street Circuit and in around town. The Galaxy S10+ has proved to be a reliable companion with excellent battery life and the ability to take great shots in a range of conditions.
The iPad Air comes in 64 GB and 256 GB storage variants. (Source: Apple)

Apple A12 Bionic SoC in latest iPad tablet destroys Android competition in alleged Geekbench single- and multi-core tests

Apple has just launched the new iPad Air and iPad mini tablets, and it seems one of them may have already been tested on Geekbench. Apparently, the integrated A12 Bionic chip scored an incredibly high multi-core score of 11,607, putting it way beyond the reach of even the Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 or the Exynos 9820 variants of Samsung’s Galaxy S10+.
Call of Duty now official (Source: Call of Duty | Home)

Activision unveils Call of Duty Mobile

Call of Duty Mobile is now official and should hit Android and iOS handsets later this year. Although there will not be a battle royale mode at launch, Activision has confirmed that this free-to-play title should offer this treat at some point in the future. Obviously, this "unique Call of Duty battle royale experience" will be accompanied by more content.
The GeForce GTX 1660 Ti was recently given an MSI GAMING X makeover. (Source: MSI)

MSI variant of Nvidia's GeForce GTX 1650 graphics card spotted in EEC product registration; Ti SKU also rumored

An MSI GeForce GTX 1650 GAMING X 4G graphics card has been spotted in a listing on the website for the Eurasian Economic Commission (EEC). Scant details are offered in regard to the product; however, it does seem to confirm that Nvidia will be adding to its GTX 16-series soon. There is also a rumor that a GeForce GTX 1650 Ti card is in the works.
Samsung Galaxy A20 launches in Russia, Exynos 7884 and Infinity-V display in tow (Source: SamMobile)

Exynos 7884-powered Samsung Galaxy A20 launches in Russia

Although Samsung will reveal at least three Galaxy A models on April 10, some members of this family are already available for purchase here and there. The latest arrival is the ~US$215 Exynos 7884-driven Galaxy A20, a 6.4-inch device with an Infinity-V display, 3 GB of memory, and 32 GB of internal storage.
The Atari VCS (2019) console will now feature a 14 nm processor. (Source: The Verge)

Atari VCS ditches custom AMD Bristol Ridge A10 for an unannounced dual-core Ryzen APU; console still not available though

The team behind the much-delayed Atari VCS has announced an APU replacement for the game console. Previously, a customized A10 chip from AMD’s Bristol Ridge series was going to be installed, but perhaps wisely the developer has now upgraded that choice to a more modern dual-core Ryzen processor. Graphics will be processed by a Radeon Vega GPU rather than the R7 GPU.
The developer kit version of the Nvidia Jetson Nano costs just US$99. (Source: Nvidia)

Machine learning from US$99: Nvidia unveils tiny Jetson Nano AI computer

Nvidia has launched the Jetson Nano, a small computer that offers machine-learning capabilities at an entry-level price. The developer kit costs US$99 while a production-ready module will cost US$129. The Jetson Nano module offers 472 GFLOPS of computing performance in a 69.6 mm x 45 mm package. Worldwide distribution for the module version will begin in June; the developer kit is available now.
Ray tracing is coming to the masses thanks to DXR. (Source: Nvidia)

Nvidia to bring DirectX ray tracing to the GeForce GTX 1060 6 GB and other Pascal cards in April

Nvidia has announced that a number of Pascal-based graphics cards will soon be enabled to utilize DirectX ray tracing (DXR). GeForce GTX 1060 6 GB cards and higher will receive a Game Ready Driver update, which is currently expected in April, to allow their users to enjoy limited ray tracing technology in certain games.
The latest LG OLED TVs will be available for purchase soon. (Source: LG USA)

LG announces US availability of 2019 OLED TVs - and that they will be super expensive

LG has stated its US dollar prices for its new OLED TVs. These state-of-the-art panels were previewed at CES 2019, and come with Dolby Vision, ThinQ AI and inbuilt Google Assistant. They start at US$2,499 - and work their way up to US$12,999.
Mar 18
Myspace has lost all the music that once made it the world's most visited website. (Image source: Myspace)

Myspace has corrupted and lost 12 years of music uploaded to its website

In an embarrassing admission, Myspace has confirmed that it has lost every piece of music that users uploaded between 2003 and 2015, which equates to over 50 million files. The company reports that there is no way to recover the lost data.
Image via Kingston

Kingston introduces DC500R and DC500M, two new SATA SSDs aimed at the enterprise market

Kingston has just announced two new lines of enterprise-grade SATA SSDs. The drives offer similar features of other enterprise-level flash storage solutions, including ECC, onboard power loss protection, and more. Compared to other enterprise solutions, Kingston's drives are competitive and look to be aimed at smaller cloud service providers.
Alienware Area 51m coud get the UHD option by the end of September, confirms Frank Azor

Alienware Area-51m laptops should get the UHD option in six to eight months

Currently available only with a Full HD display option, the Alienware Area-51m gaming laptop will get UHD as an option in six to eight months, according to Frank Azor. He also said that the arrival of this option "wasn't supposed to take this long" so the machine was not designed for DIY display upgrades.
The Black Shark 2 has been released. (Source: GizmoChina)

The Xiaomi Black Shark 2 is now available: SD 855 and Pixelworks HDR for US$477

The Xiaomi Black Shark 2 has been launched today (March 18, 2019) in China. As expected, it is powered by the Snapdragon 855 processor, has a 6GB RAM base model and has a 6.39-inch FHD+ AMOLED display. This panel has some interesting HDR features, touted to enhance gaming and media experiences.
Snapchat is planning to launch its own gaming platform. (Source: Businessofapps.com)

Snapchat to launch its gaming platform "Project Cognac" next month

Snapchat is likely to launch its gaming platform for developers and content partners next month. Codenamed "Project Cognac", the platform will allow third-party developers to create games that run within the Snapchat app. With Snapchat's acquisition of game studios Prettygreat and PlayCanvas, first-party titles can also be expected.
UMIDIGI S3 Pro with MediaTek Helio P70 and 48 MP main camera available globally March 18 2019 (Source: UMIDIGI)

UMIDIGI S3 Pro now globally available at US$279.99, still a pretty good deal

Not long after the successful completion of the Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign with twice the initial goal of US$100,000, the UMIDIGI S3 Pro is now available globally. The price tag has gone up to US$279.99, but this Helio P70-powered handset with a 48 MP main camera setup remains an attractive handset.
Apple iPad Air with smart keyboard and Apple Pencil (Source: Apple Newsroom)

Apple might upgrade the iMac Pro soon, 10.5-inch iPad Air and refreshed iPad mini revealed today

Although Apple has already announced a March 25 event, it seems like the updated tablets will not be there, because the Cupertino-based tech giant has just introduced the new 10.5-inch iPad Air and 7.9-inch iPad Mini. However, there is still no official info regarding the rumored iMac Pro upgrade.

All news articles from Sept. 2010 on are located in our News Archive.

Please share our article, every link counts!
> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > News
Notebookcheck, 2005-09-20 (Update: 2019-01-17)