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Thursday, July 9, 2020
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Microsoft Edge vs. Google Chrome: Performance, design, security, and more

Microsoft has completely revamped its Edge browser. Can the new kid on the block compete against Chrome?

UK says Google and Apple’s billion-dollar search engine deal stifles competition

The country's watchdog claims Google paid Apple close to a billion dollars

UK Regulators Call Google’s Search Engine Deal With Apple a ‘Significant Barrier’ for Competitors

Google pays Apple to be the default search engine on Apple's Safari web browser on iPhones and Macs, which causes

Poco F2 Pro Review

Android has become the lion share of the smartphone market. The operating system is literally the biggest software project in the world and is installed on over 2.5 billion devices globally. With that, there always seems to be new competition from numerous companies. One such company is Poco, and its latest is the flagship F2 Pro.With the F2 Pro, Poco wants to find a balance between market price and premium experience. This is not an unfamiliar story previously portrayed by OnePlus, Nokia, and Motorola in the past. Even so, let’s take a deep dive into the F2 Pro to see how well it finds that middle ground for consumers.DesignThe industrial build of the Poco F2 Pro is strikingly good. If you stripped the branding, you could easily convince me this was built by Samsung or LG. Honestly, the overall design to me is like the OnePlus 7T and 7 Pro from last year had a baby. You have the slide up camera (more on this later) and similar lines of the 7 Pro and the back circular camera and flat screen of the 7T. – neither of which is a bad thing.A quick Google search will also show more similarities to OnePlus in that the Poco brand is a direct competitor to OnePlus and is actually a sub-brand of Redmi. OnePlus is a sub-brand of Oppo in China. The F2 Pro is heavily based on the Redmi K30 Pro.The right side of the F2 Pro is flanked by the volume rocker and a metallic red power button. As a Pixel owner, I’m always fond of a colored power button. The left side is completely void of any buttons.Atop the F2 Pro, you have the motorized camera housing and an almost retro 3.5mm headphone jack. Flip the phone upside down and you see one down-firing speaker, the SIM tray, and the USB-C power port.SpecificationsInternally, the Poco F2 Pro is well-powered without overkill. It has a Qualcomm 865 processor, Adreno 650 GPU, and 6GB of RAM. Pair that with 128GB of onboard storage and you are ready for almost any mobile task.The screen is a 6.67-inch AMOLED display with 2,400 x 1,080 resolution. Both the front and back glass are Corning Gorilla Glass 5 and should be able to take a normal regimen of punishment. The refresh rate of the screen is sadly only 60Hz. In the new age of 90Hz-120Hz it’s worth a mention, but not a deal-breaker.I should also note that the Poco F2 Pro does have 5G support, but due to the lack of local options, I was unable to test this feature. Verizon was not an option with the internal radios, but T-Mobile performed well in my time with the phone.What’s omitted? There’s not an official IP rating for water and dust resistance. This is most likely done to lower expenses as the certification process is a paid license.The other missing feature is wireless charging. I’m in the camp that almost any phone above $500 should have this feature.Software and PerformanceThe software on the F2 Pro is a mixed bag for me. While at first glance it looks crisp and colorful, it slowly started to frustrate me. It comes installed with MIUI and adds layers and layers of menus, swipes, and system options that just don’t need to be there. The overlay reminds me of Samsung from a few years back in that it’s just overkill.I get that other people love Samsung, but it hurts the end-users experience when they can’t pick up two phones running Android and have them act the same way. I long for a world where changing phones due to a multitude of reasons such as money, availability, or carriers doesn’t lead users to being lost for weeks in a new UI. 1 of 6 I had very few issues in performance while using the Poco F2 Pro, however. The phone is snappy and performed very well in normal tasks. I saw no lag or stutter in multi-view or switching between apps.The only hiccups I have are that I struggled to find any way to interact with a notification from the lock screen and the notification shade didn’t always want slide down on the first try when using the swipe down gesture on the home screen.My final issue would be the embedded fingerprint sensor on the display. It’s not good. Yes, it will open the phone… eventually. And only most of the time on the first try.This tech still needs to be further brewed on most phones I’ve used with this option, but the Poco is behind in most regards to its peers here.CamerasLet’s start with the rock star of this section: the motorized selfie camera. While it’s the camera I will use the least, it’s the more impressive one. The mechanical engineering around hiding the camera is something that just makes me smile.Being able to tuck away and save screen real estate without notches or pinholes is amazing. And then you throw in the “whoa” factor of having it pop up like submarine periscope is just nerd candy.How does it work? It’s fine. It takes self-absorbed pictures just waiting to be shared on social media. It’s perfectly serviceable.On the flip side, you see a blacked-out circular camera housing four sensors. The main camera lens is a 64-megapixel shooter. This Sony sensor takes pretty good photos. I’d put the standard shots above say a Moto phone but still behind Samsung, Apple, and Google.Portrait mode is also better than average. This mainly due to the fourth sensor being dedicated specifically to depth with 2-megapixels. Images result in a good, sharp photo with nice edge detection and blurring.The macro camera on the Poco is much like most macro cameras in that it works. None that I’ve used have been great and many just… frankly seem like a gimmick. You can take super zoomed-in photos, but most are not great and don’t add much value.The ultra-wide 13-megapixel camera, on the other hand, gave great results that made me wish it were on more phones. Being able to shift from normal to a much wider focus was much more enjoyable than I thought it would be. The resulting photos also didn’t seem to be washed out or over-processed. 1 of 4 Normal camera Ultra-wide Normal camera Ultra-wide Battery lifeThis is one place the Poco F2 Pro excels. With a 4,700mAh power pack, the F2 Pro gave me a full day’s battery life without fail. Some days of less heavy usage, I could get almost two full days before needing to top off the tank.When you do need to reach for a cable there’s a 33-watt charger included in the box. This is great news as the F2 Pro supports fast-charging up to 30-watts. Smart power delivery has seen a nice evolution in recent years, and having quick charging options is a must-have feature in today’s top phones.ConclusionI really like most things about the Poco F2 Pro. It has good hardware, better than average cameras, and a great screen.Unfortunately, I think smartphone users fall under two camps: hardware people and software people. There are shades in between and I fall under the latter of needing software to be a much larger proportion of my experience pie.Despite my reservations, I think many people will find the $529 price tag to be about right. It’s a good alternative to what OnePlus and Moto provide.You can purchase through many avenues, but the most widely available one is Amazon. The F2 Pro can be purchased in Cyber Grey, Electric Purple, Neon Blue, and Phantom White.

Google cracks down on voting-related ads that mislead users to malicious sites

Nearly a third of the reviewed voting-related search ads were manipulative

Google Meet to Get Background Blur, Captioning, and Low-Light Mode

Google Meet will soon allow users to add images or a blur effect to backgrounds on video calls, reports 9to5Google.

Tipping the balance: The story of Huawei’s bold, Google-free mobile ecosystem

The smartphone is critical to Huawei's success, but it's going solo, and that's a massive challenge

Google will soon tell you why a business is calling on Android

The feature appears to be in early stages at the moment

Google Meet Videoconferencing Coming to Gmail iOS App

Google made its premium Meet videoconferencing service free to use last month, and now the company has announced that it's

Google is bringing desktop Windows apps to Chromebooks

It will be exclusive to enterprise users, however

You can now video chat with up to 32 people on Google Duo

It will soon roll out to Duo's Android and iOS clients

Google reportedly delays Pixel 4a launch again; Barely Blue variant dropped

Only the Just Black version of the Pixel 4a is now set for release

Android 11 hands-on review: Not a revolution, but a definite improvement

From notifications to permissions, Android 11 doesn’t miss a beat with its latest mobile operating system.

Google reportedly sold more phones than OnePlus in 2019

It reporteldy registered a 52% year-on-year growth

Analyst Argues Apple Should Acquire DuckDuckGo Search Engine

Apple should purchase a search engine to put pressure on Google, Bernstein analyst Toni Sacconaghi said Monday in a research

Google Search Starts Highlighting Results Directly on Webpages

Google has added a new content highlighting feature to its search engine that aims to make it easier to find

How to update your Gmail picture

Here's how to change your Gmail picture, whether you do so via the Gmail desktop site or the Gmail mobile app.

Google Improves Security Key Support on iOS Devices

Google today announced native support for the W3C WebAuthn implementation for Google Accounts on Apple devices running iOS 13.3 and

Latest Reviews

Verizon announces Samsung Galaxy A71 5G UW

Back in May, Verizon announced the Samsung Galaxy S20 5G UW, a phone compatible with Verizon’s 5G Ultra-Wideband and lowband networks.Now Verizon has come back with the Samsung Galaxy A71 5G UW, a far more affordable smartphone than the flagship S20 while still bringing 5G connectivity.SpecsThe A71 5G UW features:A 6.7″ Super AMOLED Infinity-O DisplayA quad-camera rear array with a 64MP main module, a 12MP Ultra Wide lens, a 5MP Macro lens, and a 5MP Depth CameraA 32MP front cameraA 4,500mAh battery8GB of RAM and 128GB of expandable storagePricing and availabilityThe Samsung Galaxy A71 5G UW has a retail price of $649.99, which breaks down to $27.08 a month for 24 months on Verizon Device Payment.However, if you activate a new line on any Premium Unlimited Plan, you can get the device for $15 a month or $20 a month online.Preorders for the Galaxy A71 5G UW start tomorrow, July 9 here. The phone will be available in stores starting July 16. During the preorder period, users can get 25% off cases and screen protectors.Verizon also launched three additional phones, the Samsung Galaxy A11 and A21 and the Orbic Journey L.

Just $89.95, the MagiMask is the future of AR

Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) are two topics which have been kicking around for quite some time, with the former dating back decades. And thanks to the advances in phones and consoles, they both continue to get better. And cheaper.Augmented Reality really took off with the launch of Pokemon Go, ushering in an exciting and fun way to blend the real world with collectible characters. Over on the retail front, places like IKEA and Amazon are making AR an instrumental part of their shopping experience.What does the future hold for AR technology? It looks an awful lot like what MagiMask is doing today.Whereas most conventional AR accessories have an image that’s viewed via split-screen, the MakiMask is a singular full-screen experience. What’s more, it’s four times the resolution as compared to today’s common experience. That means fewer headaches and less eye strain.Beyond the AR aspect, the MagiMask is a fun way to enjoy movies and games on your handset. Paired with a Bluetooth controller, you’ll have more fun gaming with popular such as Fortnite. Or, simply take in a cinema-like experience from the comfort of your hammock.As we’ve seen time and again, innovations like these get their start on crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter and Indiegogo. It should come as no surprise to learn that the MagiMask was successfully backed on both outlets (Kickstarter, Indiegogo).Magimask BundleMagiMask: Full resolution 4x higher than split-screen VRsMagiTools: Physical tracker objects that allow you to easily interact w/ the digital worldUniversal phone mount: Adjusts to your AR-compatible smartphoneRecommended Portable Cinema Viewing Apps: Netflix, HBO, Hulu, VLC, YouTube, YouTube 360, & Amazon PrimeRecommended Augmented Reality Apps: Sketchfab, Augment, Kubity, IKEA, Alone, Holo, Sketch AR, Geogebra AR, Jig Space, Civilizations AR, Visible Body AR, Dinopark AR, & Enter the roomGaming & Drones: Grand Theft Auto (With Bluetooth Controller), Fortnite (With Bluetooth Controller), DJI (Navigate Drone With Controller, Connect To DJI app)Ludenso Create: Create 3D models & view your masterpiece in AR on the MagiTile with your iPad.Buy it Today!Normally, the MagiMask retails for $129.99; however, AndroidGuys readers can snag the MagiMask plus a bundle of props for $89.95. That’s 30% off its regular price, plus the goodies.Best SellersEarn Credits!For every $25 you spend in the AG Deals Store you get $1 credit added to your account. And, if you refer the deal via social media or an email that results in a purchase, you’ll earn $10 credit in your account.First Time Buying?If this is your first time buying, you are also eligible for 10% discount! Just be sure to subscribe for email updates.Free StuffNot looking to spend any money today? No worries. You can still visit the AndroidGuys section for freebies and pick something anyhow.

Oukitel WP5 Pro launches globally at $129.99

Oukitel this week launched its attractive WP5 Pro rugged phone, offering it up with a full global availability. Thus far the reviews and chatter surrounding the handset has been rather positive, and it falls in line with the brand’s affordable alternatives to pricey big-name models.The Oukitel WP5 Pro landing page has gone live, giving consumers a chance to purchase the new phone for the reasonable and budget-friendly launch price of $129.99. In stock and ready to go, it’s also on sale for a short time.The Oukitel WP5 Pro has a unique owl-like camera design that may be of interest to you. It features a three-camera array with a parallel row of LED lights. It’s pretty distinctive stuff, especially for a rugged phone.With an 8,000mAh battery, the Oukitel WP5 Pro is like having a solid phone battery and a portable power bank in one. Indeed, it’s about twice the capacity that other phones offer.In terms of hardware features, the WP5 Pro comes with MediaTek’s Helio A25 processor with 4GB RAM and 64GB internal storage. It truly is a slightly more robust take on the standard WP5. Moreover, it runs Android 10 and has a customizable button on the side which can be configured as users see fit.The standard price of the Oukitel WP5 Pro will be $200, but the newly launched phone is being offered at just $130 for a limited time. Head to AliExpress to purchase the phone. For more new features and information on this phone, and others in its portfolio, please go to Oukitel’s official website.EDITOR NOTE: This is a promoted post and should not be viewed as an editorial endorsement.

Just $39.99, this 9-course bundle will help you master Microsoft Office like a pro

Looking to take your career to the next level in 2020? Maybe you’ve been hoping to round out your resume or portfolio. Or perhaps you’d like to shake things up and take your life in a new direction.Regardless of what it looks like, if want to get ahead of the curve in 2020, or really tap into your new-found down time, you will want to master data and documents like a pro. And when it comes to that, Microsoft Office still reigns supreme.If you’re ready to get serious about certification, or want to expand your horizons, look no further than the Complete 2020 Microsoft Office Mastery Bundle.The Complete 2020 Microsoft Office Mastery Bundle includes nine courses, more than 59 hours of instruction, and more than 566 lectures in how to improve your knowledge and skills by way of Microsoft Word, Excel, Powerpoint, and Access.Microsoft Teams: Supercharge Your Business Productivity & Master Microsoft TeamsMicrosoft Outlook 2019: Learn to Use Outlook Properly & Watch Your Productivity SoarExcel Beginner 2019: Know Your Way Around Spreadsheets & Learn Basic Functions, Formulas, and FeaturesExcel Advanced 2019: Delve Into High-Level Consolidation, Analysis & Financial ReportingExcel Beginner 2019 for Mac: Get to Grips for Excel 2018 as a Mac UserPowerPoint 2019: Beginner to Advanced Tools, Features & Techniques on Making Amazing Slide PresentationsWord 2019: Conquer Your Word Documents & Improve Your ProductivityAccess 2019: Start Your Database Journey by Learning the Fundamentals of MS Access 2019Advanced Access 2019: The Next Step to Supercharge Your Microsoft Access & Data Analysis SkillsThe training lays out all the critical areas covered in Microsoft’s key Office programs and also provides certification upon completion. The bundle comes with lifetime access, and you’ll be able to learn on desktop and mobile. Learn at your own pace and where it makes the most sense.The Complete 2020 Microsoft Office Mastery Bundle is valued at $870, but we’re offering it to our readers for just $39.99 (95% off). Hurry, this incredible offer won’t last forever!Best SellersEarn Credits!For every $25 you spend in the AG Deals Store you get $1 credit added to your account. And, if you refer the deal via social media or an email that results in a purchase, you’ll earn $10 credit in your account.First Time Buying?If this is your first time buying, you are also eligible for 10% discount! Just be sure to subscribe for email updates.Free StuffNot looking to spend any money today? No worries. You can still visit the AndroidGuys section for freebies and pick something anyhow.