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Samsung Confirms Galaxy Launch, This and more

PC Tech Magazine brings you your weekly gadget news round up for your weekend fill

Taking a look back at seven days of news and headlines across the world of Android, this week includes Galaxy S22 launch dates, final S22 Ultra details leak, the folding Pixel Notebook, Pixel update issues, Xiaomi’s new Redmi Note, Surface Duo finally gets Android 11, more OnePlus handsets, and a 2022 warning from BlackBerry.

PC Tech Magazine is here to remind you of a few of the many things that have happened around Android in the last week (and you can find the weekly Apple news digest here).

Get Ready For The Galaxy To Open

Samsung has set the date for its next Galaxy Unpacked event, which is widely expected to see the new Galaxy S22 family launched. The date for your diary is February 9th, just ahead of Mobile World Congress:

“True innovations don’t just evolve with the world – they help shape it. To create the devices that push us ahead, rewrite the future and bring light to the dark, we must continue to break the rules of what is possible with a smartphone ”

But What Can We Expect?

As to the Galaxy S22, S22 Plus, and S22 Ultra, the official event announcement seems the herald a wave of leaks, giving us a better look at the flagship handsets sure to set the high water mark in 2022’s Android world:

“The upcoming Samsung flagship trio will be powered by the Exynos 2200 chipset in some regions, and the Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 SoC in others. Earlier today, Samsung released another teaser video for the Exynos 2200 SoC, detailing some of the things that supposedly make it a great choice for mobile gamers, such as VRS and AMIGO technology.

All three smartphone models should feature Dynamic AMOLED displays with a high 120Hz refresh rate for smooth scrolling and animations”

Folding Your Pixel

Following the success and scene-setting of the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro, Google’s next smartphone looks to follow the trend of folding devices, with an upcoming collapsible square. No word on release date, but we have the top-line specs and design on the grapevine:

“Google’s foldable will reportedly be called the Pixel Notepad, not the Pixel Fold as previously rumored. What’s more, Google hasn’t given up on it and plans to have it out by the end of 2022. Apparently, Google is aiming for a $1,400 (UGX 4.9M) price tag for its foldable phone, which undercut the Galaxy Z Fold3 by $400 (UGX 1.4M).

The Pixel Notebook takes after the Oppo Find N rather than the Galaxy Z Fold3 in that it will be shorter and wider instead of overly tall.”

A New Wave Of Redmi Notes

This week saw Xiaomi update its affordable range of handsets with the new Redmi Note 11 series, offering four different variants all tailored to provide that classic soundbite of a flagship experience at mid-range prices.

The lineup consists of the Redmi Note 11, Redmi Note 11S, Redmi Note 11 Pro, and Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G — all with various intricacies to help differentiate between each model. Let’s start with the entry-level Note 11, as this device is the outlier in the new series and comes with a 6.43-inch FHD+ 90Hz display, Qualcomm Snapdragon 680 processor, 4/6GB RAM, and 64/128GB of internal storage with microSD card support up to 1TB.

The Surface Duo Joins 2021

Fourteen months after the release of the Surface Duo, Microsoft has updated the software to Android 11. This brings it into line with the Duo 2, and now both dual-screened mobile devices are running the same core experience, the hope is that developers will find it easier to code for the specific user experience:

“Key points from Microsoft’s change log include various UI changes from Android 10 to Android 11 (such as new launcher widgets, controls for volume and brightness, and a mew look in the Settings app). Features such as automatic app-spanning at launch, bringing the Photos app closer to OneDrive both for presentation and file management, and greater support for the Surface Pen.”

A New Wave Of Redmi Notes

This week saw Xiaomi update its affordable range of handsets with the new Redmi Note 11 series, offering four different variants all tailored to provide that classic soundbite of a flagship experience at mid-range prices. Damian Wilde has all the details:

“The lineup consists of the Redmi Note 11, Redmi Note 11S, Redmi Note 11 Pro, and Redmi Note 11 Pro 5G — all with various intricacies to help differentiate between each model. Let’s start with the entry-level Note 11, as this device is the outlier in the new series and comes with a 6.43-inch FHD+ 90Hz display, Qualcomm Snapdragon 680 processor, 4/6GB RAM, and 64/128GB of internal storage with microSD card support up to 1TB.”

The Surface Duo Joins 2021

Fourteen months after the release of the Surface Duo, Microsoft has updated the software to Android 11. This brings it into line with the Duo 2, and now both dual-screened mobile devices are running the same core experience, the hope is that developers will find it easier to code for the specific user experience:

“Key points from Microsoft’s change log include various UI changes from Android 10 to Android 11 (such as new launcher widgets, controls for volume and brightness, and a mew look in the Settings app). Features such as automatic app-spanning at launch, bringing the Photos app closer to OneDrive both for presentation and file management, and greater support for the Surface Pen.”

We’re also expecting the Nord CE2 5G to show up just before MWC, with February 11th mooted as a date for the lower-specced affordable handset.

And Finally…

Where do old Android phones go to quietly retire? And what happens if you decide to give one a spin in the modern world? We briefly return to the Blackberry Key2 to find that nostalgia is not enough, and device security is the biggest concern:

“To recap, the $650 Key2 is only three-and-a-half years old but still runs software originally released four-and-a-half years ago and hasn’t had a sniff of an automatic security update for coming up to two years. The treatment of this otherwise perfectly usable phone, with its desirable and well-built hardware, borders on the criminal. If you’d have spent that extra $50 in 2018 and bought an Apple iPhone 8, it still receives software updates today, while Android 11 was the last update to the similarly aged Google Pixel 2.”

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Joan Banura

A journalist at heart 💜 with a passion for Tech.
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