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Catching up with the trend to launch gaming smartphones, Chinese smartphone maker vivo has brought Z1Pro to India with an in-display camera, dedicated button to wake up Google Assistant and Qualcomm’s latest Snapdragon 712 chipset with an aim to give gamers a reason to cheer.
The vivo Z1Pro comes in three variants — 4GB RAM+64GB internal storage, 6GB+64GB and 6GB RAM+128GB onboard storage configuration that costs Rs 14,990, Rs 16,990 and Rs 17,990, respectively.
In the recently-concluded “PUBG Mobile Club Open 2019” India edition, Z1Pro was used as the official device of the tournament, attempting to pitch it as a “gaming smartphone” in the mid-price segment.
However, during the review of the Sonic Blue coloured Z1Pro with 6GB RAM+128GB storage that costs Rs 17,990, we realised that the device, that fared well in most areas, failed to justify the “gaming smartphone” tag.
Design-wise, the plastic body has been built in a way that rendered a flashy shade of blue to the device. Since the rear is not matte, it retained fingerprints that triggered a constant urge to keep wiping the device.
Along with 16MP primary sensor, there is an 8MP wide-angle sensor and 2MP lens to shoot pictures in Bokeh mode.
The triple rear camera system accompanied by the flash sits on the left side of the smartphone; housed in the middle is a snappy rear fingerprint sensor.
The almost bezel-less handset features notch-less 6.53-inch FHD+ touchscreen display with rounded edges that also featured a 32MP in-display camera on its upper left edge.
The front camera gave a larger screen space and saved from bezels as well as the notch.
The phone supports dark mode which was easy on eyes. However, the display did not perform well under direct sunlight. Even on full brightness, the screen looked pretty dull which could be a downer for many.
The primary camera, however, performed satisfactorily in bright as well as dark lighting conditions.
The camera app supports several image-enhancing features like Artificial Intelligent (AI)-filters, AI beauty, HDR, Bokeh mode, slow motion and time-lapse photography, among others.
In addition, the camera app also has an in-built feature called “Jovi Image Recogniser” that lets you click images of any object and help you shop them online.
The left edge of Z1Pro sports the dual-SIM tray alongside the dedicated Google Assistant button while the volume rockers and power buttons are placed at the right edge. The charging port, audio jack port and speakers are placed at the bottom.
The Google Assistant button is helpful as it eliminated the need to wake up the voice assistant by having to say “Ok Google.” However, not confusing the Assistant button with the power button needs some time with the device.
vivo Z1Pro is powered by Qualcomm’s newest mid-range Snapdragon 712 chipset, introduced earlier this year.
The handset is fueled by a massive 5000mAh battery which outpaced premium smartphones like OnePlus 7 Pro and OPPO Reno 10x Zoom. The hefty battery lasted almost a day and a half on a single charge and average usage.
The phone’s facial recognition was as snappy as its rear fingerprint sensor.
The handset runs Funtouch operating system (OS) based on Android Pie 9. The interface of the smartphone looked like a rip-off of iOS — stale and mundane.
The device comes with a pair of iPhone-like earphones bundled in-the-box which was a nice addition.
vivo has incorporated the dual-engine, fast-charging technology on Z1Pro that charged the device rapidly.
However, simultaneous activities like charging and video browsing or calling heated up the device.
The sound produced by the handset was not comfortably audible even in less noisy environments.
Facing issues like heating, poor sound quality and inadequate brightness, the device did not fair well as a “gaming phone”. The smartphone hung a couple of times during continuous gaming.
Conclusion: A decent phone that charges fast. One can also look for other options in the same price range like Samsung Galaxy M20 or Xiaomi Redmi Note 7 Pro devices. (IANS)
By Nikhila Natarajan
In a continuing study on the effects of machine learning (ML) on public conversation, Twitter has confirmed that its algorithms amplify right-leaning political content. "In six out of seven countries - all but Germany - tweets posted by accounts from the political right receive more algorithmic amplification than the political left when studied as a group," Twitter blogged.
"Right-leaning news outlets, as defined by the independent organisations, see greater algorithmic amplification on Twitter compared to left-leaning news outlets." Since 2016, Twitter users are able to choose between viewing algorithmically ordered tweets first in their home timeline or viewing the most recent tweets in reverse chronological order.
"An algorithmic home timeline displays a stream of tweets from accounts we have chosen to follow on Twitter, as well as recommendations of other content Twitter thinks we might be interested in based on accounts we interact with frequently, tweets we engage with, and more. "As a result, what we see on our timeline is a function of how we interact with Twitter's algorithmic system, as well as how the system is designed."
The new research is based on tweets of elected officials of House of Commons members in Canada, the French National Assembly, the German Bundestag, House of Representatives in Japan, Congress of Deputies of Spain, House of Commons in the UK, and official and personal accounts of House of Representatives and Senate members in the US, as well as news outlets, from April 1 to August 15, 2020.
Tweets about political content from elected officials, regardless of party or whether the party is in power, do see algorithmic amplification when compared to political content on the reverse chronological timeline. | Photo by Sara Kurfeß on Unsplash
The study was conducted by Ferenc Huszar (Twitter, University of Cambridge), Sofia Ira Ktena (now at DeepMind Technologies), Conor O'Brien (Twitter), Luca Belli (Twitter), Andrew Schlaikjer (Twitter), and Moritz Hardt (UC Berkeley).
The questions probed were:
How much algorithmic amplification does political content from elected officials receive in Twitter's algorithmically ranked Home timeline versus in the reverse chronological timeline? Does this amplification vary across political parties or within a political party?
Are some types of political groups algorithmically amplified more than others? Are these trends consistent across countries?
Are some news outlets amplified more by algorithms than others? Does news media algorithmic amplification favour one side of the political spectrum more than the other?
Tweets about political content from elected officials, regardless of party or whether the party is in power, do see algorithmic amplification when compared to political content on the reverse chronological timeline. (IANS/ MBI)
Keywords: algorithmically, timeline, algorithmic, tweets, political, survey, twitter, study, germany, skew
Even as India celebrates reaching a milestone of 100 crore Covid vaccine doses, Snapdeal co-founder and COO Rohit Bansal on Friday lauded a man who facilitated 64 registrations for the vaccine on the CoWin portal. In a video shared on his Facebook and Twitter page, Bansal hailed Sonu Kumar as a "citizen celebrity".
Bansal said that Kumar not only helped "just co-workers and family but complete strangers too. With patience, empathy and uncanny jugaad". He added that Kumar joined him "many moons ago" and completed his open school from a parking lot.
"Education has helped this wonderful man enable others to get India back on track. Bravo! The CoWin portal on Thursday mentioned that a total of 100 crore vaccine doses has been administered so far to the eligible population under the vaccination drive in India, nine months after the nationwide inoculation programme was started to protect the people against Covid-19.
"It's a cause of significant celebration and happiness," Bansal said in the video. He said that while people just help a few around them, Kumar "bridged the digital gap" for 64 people, who were finding it difficult to register themselves online on the vaccine portal. Kumar said he doesn't feel that he has contributed much towards the 100 crore vaccine dose count. "I have been able to help only 64 people, if I was able to help more I would have been happier." (IANS/ MBI)
Keywords: cowin, covid, india, people, Rohit bansal, Sonu kumar, vaccine, snapdeal, registrations
KAMPALA, UGANDA — Uganda has kickstarted a trial for the injectable HIV drugs cabotegravir and rilpivirine. Researchers and those living with HIV say the trial will likely end pill fatigue, fight stigma, improve adherence and ensure patients get the right dosage.
The two drugs have been in use as tablets. The World Health Organization last year licensed their use as injectables.
While the two injectables already went through trials in Europe and North America, this will be the first time they are tested in an African population for efficacy and safety in an African health care system.
Uganda is one of three African countries, along with Kenya and South Africa, which got approval from the WHO to carry out the trials. However, Kenya and South Africa have yet to acquire approvals to start their trials, expected by the end of the year.
Uganda and Kenya will both have three trial sites and there will be two in South Africa, with a total of 512 participants -- 202 from Uganda, 160 from Kenya and 150 from South Africa.
Dr. Ivan Mambule, the lead project researcher at the Joint Clinical Research Center, says participants will need one injection every two months.
"We are going to choose participants who are already on ART [anti-retroviral treatment] and are stable on ART. And we will randomize them to either continue on their normal treatment, which is the pill that they've been taking, or to switch them to this injectable. The injection is on the buttock," he expressed.
In this photo taken in Nov. 15, 2012 a patient, right, is attended to, at the US sponsored Themba Lethu, HIV/AIDS Clinic at the Helen Joseph hospital in Johannesburg, South Africa Image credit: VOA
Uganda has 1.4 million people living with HIV/AIDS. Barbara Kemigisa who is living with HIV and founded the Pill Power Foundation working with rural women, says the injectable drugs will increase adherence to treatment and ensure people get the right dosage.
"One of the things that affects adherence is the fact that people have to hide medicine. In the village, people are hiding medicine in the kitchen roof, in trees, in bushes, in a baby's shoe…If someone is wrapping the medicine in like five plastic bags and digs a hole in the garden and keeps the medicine there, by the time someone is taking that medicine, it's no longer medicine, it's poison," Kemigisa points out.
Nicholas Niwagaba, who has worked with young people living with HIV welcomes the trial, saying it will reduce the pill burden and fight stigma.
"Young people feel like, this is a lot of pills to take. Those who are on the first line, they will have to take one tablet a day. There are those who are on second line and they have to take more than one pill and they have to take it in the morning and in the evening. And of course, this requires you to have actually a balanced diet which is really a challenge for most of young people especially those from vulnerable communities," he says.
According to the WHO, there are 25.7 million people living with HIV in Africa. With only the pill currently available to manage the scourge, this injectable may come as a relief for people living with HIV/AIDS. (VOA/RN)
(This article is originally by Halima Athumani)
Keywords: HIV, WHO, Africa, Research, Uganda