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Home MobilesMobiles News Mark Gurman, Bloomberg, 21 March 2017 Tim Cook has talked up a lot of technologies since becoming Apple's chief executive in 2011. Driverless cars. Artificial intelligence. Streaming television. But no technology has fired up Cook quite like augmented reality, which overlays images, video and games on the real world. Cook has likened AR's game-changing potential to that of the smartphone. At some point, he said last year, we will all “have AR experiences every day, almost like eating three meals a day. It will become that much a part of you.”
Investors impatient for Apple's next breakthrough will be happy to know that Cook is very serious about AR. People with knowledge of the company's plans say Apple has embarked on an ambitious bid to bring the technology to the masses-an effort Cook and his team see as the best way for the company to dominate the next generation of gadgetry and keep people wedded to its ecosystem.
Apple Working on Augmented Reality for Its Autonomous Driving Platform: KGI
Apple has built a team combining the strengths of its hardware and software veterans with the expertise of talented outsiders, say the people, who requested anonymity to discuss internal strategy. Run by a former Dolby Laboratories executive, the group includes engineers who worked on the Oculus and HoloLens virtual reality headsets sold by Facebook and Microsoft as well as digital-effects wizards from Hollywood. Apple has also acquired several small firms with knowledge of AR hardware, 3D gaming and virtual reality software.
As previously reported by Bloomberg, Apple is working on several AR products, including digital spectacles that could connect wirelessly to an iPhone and beam content-movies, maps and more-to the wearer. While the glasses are a ways off, AR features could show up in the iPhone sooner. Apple declined to comment.
It's an auspicious moment for Apple to move into augmented reality. The global market for AR products will surge 80 percent to $165 billion by 2024, according to researcher Global Market Insights. But Apple really has no choice, says Gene Munster, a founding partner at Loup Ventures who covered the company for many years as an analyst.
Over time, Munster says, AR devices will replace the iPhone. “It's something they need to do to continue to grow,” he says, “and defend against the shift in how people use hardware.”
Augmented reality is the less known cousin of virtual reality. VR gets more attention because it completely immerses users in an artificial world and has an obvious attraction for gamers. So far, however, headsets like the Oculus and HoloLens are niche rather than mainstream products. Apple believes AR will be an easier sell because it's less intrusive. Referring to VR headsets, Cook last year said he thought few people will want to be “enclosed in something.”
Building a successful AR product will be no easy task, even for a company known for slim, sturdy devices. The current crop of AR glasses are either under-powered and flimsy or powerful and overwhelmingly large. Apple, the king of thin and light, will have to leapfrog current products by launching something small and powerful.
Adding AR features to the iPhone isn't a giant leap. Building glasses will be harder. Like the Watch, they'll probably be tethered to the iPhone. While the smartphone will do the heavy lifting, beaming 3D content to the glasses will consume a lot of power, so prolonging battery life will be crucial. Content is key too. If Apple's AR glasses lack useful apps, immersive games and interesting media content, why would someone wear them? The glasses will also require a new operating system and perhaps even a new chip. Finally, Apple will have to source the guts of the gadget cheaply enough to make it affordable for the mass market.
When it was developing the Watch, Apple put together a multi-disciplinary team drawn from inside and outside the company. It has done much the same with the AR effort. In 2015, Apple recruited Mike Rockwell, who previously ran the hardware and new technologies groups at Dolby, the iconic company known for its audio and video technology. Rockwell also advised Meta, a small firm that makes $950 AR glasses and counts Dolby as an investor.
Rockwell now runs the main AR team at Apple, reporting to Dan Riccio, who's in charge of the iPhone and iPad hardware engineering groups, the people said. “He's a really sharp guy,” says Jack McCauley, who co-founded and worked at Oculus before it was sold to Facebook in 2015. “He could certainly put a team together that could get an Apple AR project going.”
Last spring, in a sign that it's serious about taking products to market, Apple put some of its best hardware and software people on Rockwell's team, including Fletcher Rothkopf who helped lead the team that designed the Apple Watch, and Tomlinson Holman, who created THX, the audio standard made popular by LucasFilm.
Apple has also recruited people with expertise in everything from 3D video production to wearable hardware. Among them, the people say: Cody White, former lead engineer of Amazon's Lumberyard virtual reality platform; Duncan McRoberts, Meta's former director of software development; Yury Petrov, a former Oculus researcher; and Avi Bar-Zeev, who worked on the HoloLens and Google Earth.
Apple has rounded out the team with iPhone, camera and optical lens engineers. There are people with experience in sourcing the raw materials for the glasses. The company has also mined the movie industry's 3D animation ranks, the people said, opening a Wellington office and luring several employees from Weta Digital, the New Zealand special-effects shop that worked on King Kong, Avatar and other films.
Apple Has 1,000 Engineers Working on AR for the iPhone 8: Report
Besides hiring people, Apple has been busy making tactical acquisitions. In 2015, the company acquired Metaio, which developed AR software. Former Metaio CEO Thomas Alt now works on Apple's strategic deals team, which decides which technologies to invest in. Last year, Apple also bought FlyBy Media, which makes AR-related camera software. Cook even visited the offices of Magic Leap last summer and displayed interest in the secretive company's AR technology, the people say. Magic Leap declined to comment.
Hundreds of engineers are now devoted to the cause, including some on the iPhone camera team who are working on AR-related features for the iPhone, according to one of the people. One of the features Apple is exploring is the ability to take a picture and then change the depth of the photograph or the depth of specific objects in the picture later; another would isolate an object in the image, such as a person's head, and allow it to be tilted 180 degrees.
A different feature in development would use augmented reality to place virtual effects and objects on a person, much the way Snapchat works. The iPhone camera features would probably rely on a technology known as depth sensing and use algorithms created by PrimeSense, an Israeli company acquired in 2013. Apple may choose to not roll out these features, but such additions are an up-and-coming trend in the phone business.
The AR-enhanced glasses are further down the road, the people say. Getting the product right will be key, of course. Wearables are hard. Apple's first stab at the category, the Watch, has failed to become a mainstream hit. And no one has forgotten Google Glass, the much-derided headset that bombed in 2014. Still, time and again, Apple has waited for others to go first and then gone on to dominate the market. “To be successful in AR, there is the hardware piece, but you have to do other stuff too: from maps to social to payments,” Munster says. “Apple is one of the only companies that will be able to pull it off.”
© 2017 Bloomberg L.P.
Coolpad Note 5 Lite to Go on Sale in India Today Reliance Jio Calls Airtel's Fastest Network Claims 'False, Misleading'; Serves Legal Notice to Ookla

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Home MobilesMobiles News Gadgets 360 Staff, 21 March 2017 Highlights Coolpad Note 5 Lite is priced at Rs. 8,199
It will be available from Amazon at 12pm IST
It runs Cool UI 8.0 based on Android 6.0 Marshmallow Chinese smartphone manufacturer Coolpad last week launched the Coolpad Note 5 Lite in India, and revealed a Tuesday, March 21 availability. The smartphone will go on sale via Amazon India at 12pm IST. The Coolpad Note 5 Lite price is Rs. 8,199, and it will be available in Gold and Grey colour variants.
A more basic version of the Coolpad Note 5, which was launched in India back in September, the Coolpad Note 5 Lite is a dual-SIM smartphone that runs Cool UI 8.0 based on Android 6.0 Marshmallow. It sports a 5-inch HD (720×1280 pixels) 2.5D curved glass IPS display with a pixel density of 294ppi and a 70.6 percent screen-to-body ratio.
The Coolpad Note 5 Lite is powered by a 1GHz quad-core MediaTek MT6735CP SoC coupled with 3GB of RAM and a Mali 720 GPU. It sports a 13-megapixel rear camera with dual-LED flash, and an 8-megapixel front camera with LED flash. It bears a fingerprint sensor on the back panel.
The Note 5 Lite has 16GB of inbuilt storage that's expandable via microSD card (up to 64GB), and also features USB OTG support. Connectivity options include 4G VoLTE, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth v4.0, 3.5mm audio jack, and Micro-USB. Sensors on board include accelerometer, ambient light sensor, and proximity sensor. It is powered by a 2500mAh battery that as per Coolpad is rated to deliver up to 200 hours of standby time. The smartphone weighs 148 grams, and measures 145.3×72.3×8.7mm.
Coolpad Note 5 LiteRs.8,199KEY SPECSNEWSDisplay5.00-inchProcessor1GHz quad-coreFront Camera8-megapixelResolution720x1280 pixelsRAM3GBOSAndroid 6.0Storage16GBRear Camera13-megapixelBattery Capacity2500mAhCoolpad Note 5 Lite to Go on Sale in India Today
Coolpad Note 5 Lite With 4G VoLTE Support, 3GB RAM Launched at Rs. 8,199
More Coolpad mobilesCoolpad mobiles price in India Gionee A1 India Launch Set for Today; How to Watch Live Stream iPhone 8 Said to Get Range of Augmented Reality Features

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Just find me a way of getting my iPhone repaired.
Photograph: Alamy

My iPhone, which I purchased from Tesco Mobile on a 24-month contract back in May 2016, stopped working in early January this year.

I sent it to Tesco Mobile repairs, which said I would have to deactivate the “Find my iPhone” lock before it could look at it. Apple support asked for proof of purchase to action this. Sounds simple, but it has been anything but.

I have uploaded all documents that I could get from Tesco Mobile to the Apple support online tool. This includes the order confirmation, the contract, and the letter obtained from Tesco Mobile. I have sent proof of purchase twice.

But Apple keeps rejecting my request saying a proof of purchase that satisfies its requirements has not been submitted. Two months on I am no nearer to getting my phone repaired.

PI, Scarborough

Tesco Mobile has long been our least complained about mobile supplier, and it’s one we regularly recommend.

You appear to be the lates..

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Home 360daily360daily Features Gadgets 360 Staff, 20 March 2017 Highlights Xiaomi Redmi 4A with 4G VoLTE support launched at Rs. 5,999
Vodafone-Idea merged entity will be India's biggest telecom operator
WhatsApp text status feature is back for Android users Xiaomi took the spotlight today with the launch of Redmi 4A entry-level smartphone, priced at Rs. 5,999. Available only via Amazon and, the Android 6.0 Marshmallow-based Xiaomi smartphone will go on sale at 12pm, Thursday. Key Xiaomi Redmi 4A specifications include 5-inch HD screen, 1.4GHz quad-core Snapdragon 425 processor, 16GB internal storage, up to 128GB storage expansion, 2GB of RAM, 13-megapixel rear camera, 5-megapixel selfie camera, 3120mAh battery, and 4G VoLTE support.
Here’s a look at what else made news today in the world of technology:
Xiaomi Redmi 4, Redmi 4 Prime to be launched in India soon
Soon after launching the Redmi 4A, Xiaomi India teased the launch of the Redmi 4 and Redmi Prime smartphones in the country. Xiaomi Vice President Manu Kumar Jain and Redmi India tweeted a teaser saying that the successor of Redmi 3S is coming soon. In China, the Xiaomi Redmi 4 is priced at CNY 699 (roughly Rs. 6,900), while the Redmi 4 Prime was launched at CNY 899 (roughly Rs. 8,900). There is no word yet on the official launch dates yet from Xiaomi, which also announced its second manufacturing unit in India.
Vodafone-Idea announce merger, joint entity to be India’s biggest telco
Vodafone India and Idea Cellular are merging, creating an entity that will be the biggest telecom operator in the country both in terms of user base and revenue. Britain’s Vodafone Group will own 45.1 percent of the merged entity, after it transfers about 4.9 percent to promoters of Idea and/ or its affiliates for Rs. 3,874 crores ($592.15 million) in cash. The Vodafone-Idea merged entity will have close to 400 million users, 35 percent user market share and 41 percent revenue market share. Their merger has been brought about by the aggressive stance of telecom upstart Reliance Jio, which is providing calls, data, and other services for free.
WhatsApp text status is officially back
After being phased out in favour of photos and videos that disappear after 24 hours, WhatsApp text status is back – at least for Android users; the new videos- and photos-based Status will remain in a separate tab as well. The old text status, on the other hand, will be part of the About section, and – as before – does not disappear after 24 hours. The text status will return for iPhone users soon, WhatsApp has said.
iPhone 6 32GB now available offline in India
iPhone 6 32GB, which popped up on Amazon India earlier this month, is now available via Apple-authorised offline retailers in India. Retailers in Bengaluru have been selling the smartphone since Friday, and others across the country have started receiving their units as well. The iPhone 6 32GB carries an MRP of Rs. Rs. 30,700 but was available via Amazon India at Rs. 28,999 at launch. This comes around the same time that the price of iPhone SE dropped to Rs. 19,999 for the 16GB model and Rs. 25,999 for the 64GB variant.
Android O features leaked ahead of Google I/O unveiling
Upcoming features of Android O have been leaked, including revamped notifications, adaptive icons, picture-on-picture feature, automatic text copying, and more. Google is expected to officially unveil Android O at its I/O developer conference, with the final version likely to be released with the new Pixel devices later in the year. Previously leaked Android O features include ‘Copy Less’ and gesture triggers.
Qualcomm’s new chip can bring 4G VoLTE to feature phones
Qualcomm has unveiled its new 205 Mobile Platform, aimed at emerging markets, which will provide 4G VoLTE support on feature phones. The main aim for Qualcomm here is to aim for 4G-capable sub-$50 (roughly Rs. 3,500) feature phones that are popular in emerging markets such as India, Latin America, and South East Asia. The new Qualcomm 205 chipset supports Cat. 4 modem, with download speeds of up to 150Mbps and 50Mbps upload speeds. This chip will allow feature phones to access high-speed Internet on the go, something features phones at present cannot offer.
Paytm hopes to launch payments bank by March-end
Paytm Payments Bank, which got the final approval from the Reserve Bank in January, hopes to start operations by the month-end, founder and chief executive Vijay Shekhar Sharma says. “If the RBI blesses us, we will be able to have our bank by this month-end,” he said. Sharma also expressed belief that with greater penetration of mobile Internet connectivity, his business will grow further. In other Paytm news, Reliance Jio customers can now buy Jio Prime membership from the digital payments platform.
Vivo Y66, Nubia Z11 mini S smartphones launched in India
Vivo and ZTE-owned brand Nubia have launched camera-centric smartphones in the Indian market. Priced at Rs. 14,990, the new Vivo Y66 is a selfie smartphone with a 16-megapixel camera with Moonlight Glow feature in front. It has a 5.5-inch HD screen, metallic body, Android 6.0 Marshmallow operating system, 64-bit octa-core processor, 3GB of RAM, 32GB internal storage, storage expansion up to 256GB, 13-megapixel rear camera with LED flash, and 3000mAh battery.
Nubia Z11 mini S, launched at Rs. 16,999, has a 23-megapixel rear camera with Sony IMX318 Exmos RS sensor and phase-detection autofocus, f/1.0 aperture, and sapphire protection glass. The Android 6.0 Marshmallow-based smartphone features 5.2-inch full-HD screen, 2GHz octa-core Snapdragon 625 processor, 64GB built-in storage, microSD expansion up to 200GB, 4GB of RAM, 13-megapixel front camera, 3000mAh battery, and USB Type-C port.
Disclosure: Paytm's parent company One97 is an investor in Gadgets 360
Intel '3D Xpoint' Optane SSD DC 4800X Launched; Merges RAM and Storage

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Gabor BaloghThis fall, Apple is expected to launch its next-generation iPhone. And because 2017 marks 10 years since Steve Jobs first introduced the revolutionary Apple product, expectations are high.

Predictions for what new features Apple might introduce with the iPhone 8 (or iPhone Edition, or iPhone X) are wide-ranging. However, the consensus seems to be that augmented reality is the new frontier for smartphones, and Apple reportedly has “hundreds” of people currently working on ways to bring AR into the mainstream.

With the expected September launch of the new iPhone still half a year away, enterprising designers have taken it upon themselves to create concepts of what the next iPhone might look like.

One of our favorite concepts comes from Budapest-based product designer Gábor Balogh. Check it out:

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More Charts
Apple last week announced its plans to set up two new R&D centers in China, its latest effort to boost its standing in the world’s second-largest economy. The company said it’ll invest more than $500 million in research in the country.

The commitment to China could help Apple curry favor with local officials. Either way, as this chart from Statista shows, any boost would be a big help for the iPhone maker. Though China remains by far the second-biggest market for Apple’s flagship product after huge gains a few years back, its sales have cooled significantly over over the past year. Analysts at UBS expect it to be the one major region where iPhone sales keep falling in 2017.

In lieu of the iPhone, Chinese consumers have flocked to increasingly competitive (and typically more affordable) devices from local brands like Huawei, Oppo, and Vivo.

Beyond those more traditional opponents, though, Apple’s success in China may also be affected by President Trump back home. As eve..

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Home InternetInternet News Ravi Sharma, 20 March 2017 Highlights YouTube will disable the option to add or edit annotations from May 2
Annotations will not be seen videos watched on mobile devices either
The company says more and more users now turn off annotations altogether YouTube has announced that it is killing off annotations, the feature that allowed creators to add highlights on top of a video, as it further transitions to the mobile-friendly era. The YouTube Annotations Editor will not be available for content creators starting May 2; only the option to delete annotations will appear for creators, not the options to add and edit them. Existing annotations will appear only on videos viewed on desktops, not mobile devices starting May 2.
On the official YouTube Creator Blog, Muli Salem, Product Manager, Google said that there has been a 70 percent decrease in the use of annotations on YouTube videos since Cards and End Screens were introduced to the platform. Cards and End Screens are mobile-friendly tools that allow creators to present videos, website links, playlists, etc. to content consumers.
Annotations have been available for YouTube creators since 2008, before content consumption on mobile devices went mainstream. Since then, mobile views have grown significantly on YouTube, and currently 60 percent of the watch-time on Google’s video platform is on mobile devices. In the blog, Salem says that End Screens and Cards generate seven times more clicks than annotations, and adds that users on an average close 12 annotations before clicking on one. Increasingly, users are turning off annotations altogether.
The blog further says that creating End Screens is as much as ten times quicker than adding annotations at the end of the video, thus ending the need for an archaic, slow tool that is not compatible with many of the devices on which YouTube videos are watched. YouTube’s move to phase out annotations reiterates its focus on mobile views, and that it sees its future in mobile devices, not clunky desktop monitors.
Amazon Alexa Voice Assistant Now Available on iPhone Xiaomi Redmi 4A vs Xiaomi Redmi 3S vs Lenovo Vibe K5 Plus vs Lyf Water 10

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Home AppsApps News Pranay Parab , 20 March 2017 Highlights Alexa is available in the Amazon iOS app
It's available for US users only at the moment
Others can access it by switching to the US store in the app Amazon’s Alexa voice assistant is now available on the iPhone. As you may have guessed, it’s not going to replace Siri anytime soon. This is because Alexa is baked into the Amazon app and there’s no way to map it to the Home Button on your iPhone.
This feature is currently only available for Amazon users in the US, although those in other regions can access it by changing country to US in the app. You can do this by – Settings > Country & Language > Country > United States. This may not be a big deal for those who live outside the US, but it could mean a lot to people in the US who use other devices connected to Alexa.
To access Alexa, you have to hit the microphone icon on the top-right in the Amazon iOS app. Once you do that you can use Alexa just as you would on an Amazon Echo. It’s fully functional inside the Amazon app and you can ask Alexa to order products, use it to run your smart home, or even ask random general knowledge questions.
This underscores Amazon’s big push for Alexa, which was one of the highlights of CES 2017. The virtual assistant is now integrated in quite a few gadgets such as TVs and smartphones. Even though it can’t replace Siri on the iPhone, this does offer diehard Alexa fans a chance to use it on one more platform.
The Amazon Echo isn't available in several regions including India, so this allows people a chance to try Alexa and see what the hype is all about. We used Alexa for the first time thanks to this update and were quite impressed with its ability to understand our questions. If you’ve never tried Alexa, you can go ahead and find out how good or bad it is.
Pranay Parab Email Pranay The job of keeping the Gadgets 360 homepage updated lies with Pranay and he is the man behind the site's social presence as well. He immerses himself in all things … More
Sennheiser HD 4, HD 2 Series of Portable Headphones Launched in India YouTube Phases Out Annotations in Favour of Mobile-Friendly Cards, End-Screens

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