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Motorola Might Also Be Making a Foldable Smartphone

Motorola gets patent for foldable smartphone: Report

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Motorola
Motorola updates its 'One Power' smartphone with Android 9 Pie. (Wikimedia Commons)

Chinese smartphone maker Motorola has reportedly been granted a patent in the US to make a flexible, foldable organic light-emitting diode (OLED) smartphone that would flex, both inward and outward.

It is designed to have a thermal element in the hinge.

“The technology is very clever. There’s a temperature sensor that works even when the phone is off and when it’s folded. If the temperature becomes too low the screen starts to deform, so the hinge heats up to automatically correct it,” GSMArena reported on Monday.

motorola
Representational image. (IANS)

The document issued by the United States Patent Application Publication on June 14 describes the design as “a method, electronic device and computer programme product for countering a semi-permanent deformation at an area of a foldable display.”

The patent was originally filed in September 2016 and earlier in May it got approval from the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO).

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Notably, Motorola’s parent company Lenovo started working on foldable device prototypes before anyone else.

But Samsung looks likely to bring out a flexible OLED phone in the market first — by next year, the report said. (IANS)

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MediaTek to Launch Improved 5G-Integrated Chip for Smartphones

Improved 5G-integrated chip for smartphones unveiled by MediaTek

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5G mobile chip
Improved 5G-integrated chip unveiled by MediaTek. Pixabay

Taiwanese fabless semiconductor company MediaTek has unveiled an improved version of its flagship 5G chipset called Dimensity 1000+ with upgraded features for gaming, video and power efficiency.

The Dimensity 1000+ is based on the same core hardware as the Dimensity 1000 and showcases an incredible, flagship-grade user experience for smartphone users globally.
“The single chip integrates in a suite of world-leading innovations in 5G connectivity and power-efficiency, plus unique display, video and gaming technologies that make it stand out,” Yenchi Lee, Assistant General Manager of MediaTek’s wireless communications business unit said in a statement.

The MediaTek Dimensity 1000+ supports 144Hz refresh rate screens with resolution maxing out at 1080p+ and up to a 21:9 aspect ratio.

It uses the latest MiraVision technologies to improve per frame picture quality.

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Improved 5G chip introduced by Mediatek. Pixabay

Similar to its predecessor, the Dimensity 1000+ is built on a 7nm process and features an identical 5G modem.

MediaTek has added something called “5G UltraSave”, a built-in power saving mechanism that can dynamically switch between different power states to maximize the battery life.

There are also new technology additions to HyperEngine 2.0 to optimise the phone for a more fluid and immersive gaming experience.

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It comes with a Resource Management Engine to intelligently manage CPU, GPU and memory resources, an upgraded Networking Engine for call and data concurrency, an intelligent switch between 5G and 4G networks based on application needs. (IANS)

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Smartphone Users Beware! You May Reveal Personal Information Online

Smartphone users more likely to reveal personal info online

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smartphone
Smartphone users know this effect well -- when using their phones in public places, they often fixate so intently on its content that they become oblivious to what is going on around them. Pixabay

People are more willing to reveal personal information about themselves online using their smartphones compared to desktop computers, says a study.

The study, published in the Journal of Marketing, suggests that the device people use to communicate can affect the extent to which they are willing to disclose intimate or personal information about themselves.

For example, tweets and reviews composed on smartphones are more likely to be written from the perspective of the first person, to disclose negative emotions, and to discuss the writer’s private family and personal friends.

Likewise, when consumers receive an online ad that requests personal information (such as phone number and income), they are more likely to provide it when the request is received on their smartphone compared to their desktop or laptop computer, said the study.

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Using both automated natural-language processing tools and human judgements of self-disclosure, the researchers found robust evidence that smartphone-generated content is indeed more self-disclosing. Pixabay

“Writing on one’s smartphone often lowers the barriers to revealing certain types of sensitive information for two reasons; one stemming from the unique form characteristics of phones and the second from the emotional associations that consumers tend to hold with their device,” said the co-author Shiri Melumad from University of Pennsylvania

First, one of the most distinguishing features of phones is the small size; something that makes viewing and creating content generally more difficult compared with desktop computers.

Because of this difficulty, when writing or responding on a smartphone, a person tends to narrowly focus on completing the task and become less cognizant of external factors that would normally inhibit self-disclosure, such as concerns about what others would do with the information.

Smartphone users know this effect well — when using their phones in public places, they often fixate so intently on its content that they become oblivious to what is going on around them.

The second reason people tend to be more self-disclosing on their phones lies in the feelings of comfort and familiarity people associate with their phones.

“Because our smartphones are with us all of the time and perform so many vital functions in our lives, they often serve as ‘adult pacifiers’ that bring feelings of comfort to their owners,” Melumad added.

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The downstream effect of those feelings shows itself when people are more willing to disclose feelings to a close friend compared to a stranger or open up to a therapist in a comfortable rather than uncomfortable setting.

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When consumers receive an online ad that requests personal information (such as phone number and income), they are more likely to provide it when the request is received on their smartphone compared to their desktop or laptop computer. Pixabay

“Similarly, when writing on our phones, we tend to feel that we are in a comfortable ‘safe zone.’ As a consequence, we are more willing to open up about ourselves,” said study co-author Robert Meyer from University of Pennsylvania.

The findings are based on analyses of thousands of social media posts and online reviews, responses to web ads, and controlled laboratory studies.

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Initial evidence came from analyses of the depth of self-disclosure revealed in 369,161 tweets and 10,185 restaurant reviews posted on TripAdvisor.com, with some posted on PCs and some on smartphones.

Using both automated natural-language processing tools and human judgements of self-disclosure, the researchers found robust evidence that smartphone-generated content is indeed more self-disclosing. (IANS)

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Smartphone Sales Witnesses Significant Decline in India Amid Lockdown

The month of March saw a steep annual decline in smartphone shipments, at -19 per cent, due to COVID-19 nationwide lockdown that settled in from March 24

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Samsung
The month of March saw a steep annual decline in smartphone shipments, at -19 per cent, due to COVID-19 nationwide lockdown that settled in from March 24. Wikimedia Commons

The extended lockdown in India has resulted in zero shipments for the smartphone players in India in the month of April as factories are shut and it will take two-four weeks time for the manufacturing units to resume normal operations once lockdown is relaxed.

The month of March saw a steep annual decline in smartphone shipments, at -19 per cent, due to COVID-19 nationwide lockdown that settled in from March 24. Since then, factories are closed, retail shops are shut and online sellers are busy delivering groceries and other essential items.

Result: April has seen almost zero sales.

“We see zero activity on smartphone shipments part in April and lockdown now entering May amid uncertainties, the Q2 2020 is going to be real challenging for the smartphone makers in the country,” Tarun Pathak, Associate Director, Counterpoint Research, told IANS.

“We have been hearing some absolute essential sales happened behind the scenes during the lockdown but yes, those will be in hundreds as against potential 11-12 million smartphone sales which happen in a normal month,” Pathak added.

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All smartphone brands — from Samsung to Xiaomi to Realme — suspended manufacturing/assembling at their respective plants in the country almost from March 20 onwards. At Realme, there has been a complete suspension on sales and manufacturing since the first 21-day lockdown was announced.

“As per the government directives, our Greater Noida facility in Uttar Pradesh suspended operations from March 21, along with sales coming to a halt. We also postponed our Narzo series launch event and a few Artificial Intelligence of Things (AIOT) products that were scheduled for April,” Madhav Sheth, Vice President, Realme and Chief Executive Officer, Realme India, told IANS.

Samsung
The extended lockdown in India has resulted in zero shipments for the smartphone players in India in the month of April as factories are shut and it will take two-four weeks time for the manufacturing units to resume normal operations once lockdown is relaxed. Pixabay

“The bigger uncertainty comes on the demand side. If the nation’s economy and people’s income got hampered, then the smartphone demand in 2020 may not be optimistic. We will need to evaluate further how the economy recovers post the market reopen,” Sheth added. In a mobile-first nation, the mobile is a crucial gateway that empowers consumers with communication as well as education, retail, payments, entertainment.

According to Prabhu Ram, Head-Industry Intelligence Group (IIG), CMR, during the lockdown, consumers with faulty phones were in a quandary as they could not replace or repair it. “Retailers lost out on a window of over five weeks without any sales. Once we move beyond the lockdown, we will see a reset in retail strategies, with social distancing norms in place. Online channels will seek to attract consumers with discounts to clear existing inventory,” Ram told IANS.

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“Over the mid- and long-term, online to offline will emerge as a sustainable strategy, with consumers placing orders online and fulfilling it at offline retail stores,” he added. If lockdown persists for the month of May while staggered opening of the economy takes it own sweet time, smartphone makers will have no option but to write off Q2 2020 from their list — a big blow amid supply-demand uncertainty that may last for several months, usurping the all-important festival season. (IANS)