Saturday coffee №136

Friends, “Saturday Coffee №135”, in which we launched the competition together with Moshi, came out just before the New Year holidays, and not everyone could take part in it. We decided to extend this competition, in which we will give away three pairs of winter gloves from the manufacturer, until January 21 inclusive. So follow the link and take part, we will announce the winners in “Saturday Coffee No. 137”.

Saturday coffee №136

The week has been rich in news. Thus, the Okko multimedia service, which is part of the Sberbank ecosystem, announced that it was the first of the Russian VOD services to open access to premium content in the highest ULTRA HD 8K resolution at the moment.

After a recent update, the WhatsApp messenger’s user agreement introduced clauses requiring users to share data with Facebook. Now Facebook will have access to data with phone numbers, transactions and IP addresses of users. Later, amid growing concern, customers on Facebook assured that they would not have access to messages and contact list. On the Internet, the current state of affairs is called “Agree or delete”.

Pavel Durov (founder of the VKontakte social network and the Telegram messenger) said that it would be advisable for users to switch from Apple iOS to Android. This step is necessary for the smooth receipt of information. This is how Durov reacted to the removal of the Twitter analogue, the microblogging service Parler, from the App Store.

And last week it became known that Sber was interested in acquiring Citylink, one of the country’s largest online retailers, part of the Merlion group. Such a deal will allow Sber to compete on equal terms with Ozon, Wildberries and Yandex.Market.

Content

  1. USA banned Xiaomi
  2. Samsung introduced the Galaxy S21
  3. New smart watch Amazfit Bip U Pro
  4. Laptops at CES
  5. Mesh system with smart speaker
  6. Hyundai showed IONIQ 5
  7. Hyperscreen by Mercedes
  8. … and dessert

USA banned Xiaomi

The US authorities have expanded the blacklist with nine new Chinese companies. The latest addition also includes Xiaomi, which got into it due to its alleged connection with the Chinese military. Experts associate the expansion of the blacklist with new companies with the Trump administration’s desire to consolidate pressure on China in the last days of its work and thereby prevent the new administration from mending relations with China. According to the current bans, American investors will be forced to get rid of the assets of the blacklisted companies by November 11, 2021. Previously, 35 companies from China were already blacklisted, including the largest Chinese chip manufacturer, SMIC. In November of last year, Trump signed a decree barring U.S. investors from doing business with blacklisted companies.

Xiaomi has already released an official comment on the situation:

The company complies with legal requirements and operates in compliance with the relevant laws and regulations within the jurisdiction of the business. The company reminds that it is engaged in the sale of goods and services for civil and commercial use. The company confirms that it is not the property of, affiliated with, or controlled by the Chinese Armed Forces, and does not constitute a “communist Chinese military company” as stated in the US National Defense Act (NDAA). The Company will take the necessary actions to protect the interests of the Company and its shareholders.

After Trump’s loss in the election, it seems to me, Chinese manufacturers exhaled a little, but in vain, in the end, the administration of the 45th President of the United States put another pig on them. How the new administration will act in relation to China is difficult to say. For example, according to Eldar Murtazin, there is no need to expect improvements in relations between the countries, which means that Xiaomi and other Chinese companies may face other restrictions.

While Donald Trump was “banning” Chinese companies, he himself was banned on Twitter:

And here’s another piece of our material on network restrictions:

By the way, if we’re talking about Xiaomi, next month the company will present the Redmi K40 smartphone with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 888 processor and rumored to have an OLED display with a 120 Hz refresh rate. The price of new items will be 2 yuan, which is about 999 rubles.

Saturday coffee №136

Samsung introduced the Galaxy S21

At the Galaxy Unpacked event on January 14, Korean manufacturer Samsung unveiled three of its new Galaxy S21 smartphones. The models are built on the new proprietary Exynos 2100 chipset, made in 5 nm process technology, which was presented a little earlier, they received a new generation of AMOLED displays with a refresh rate of 120 Hz, and the flagship model Galaxy S21 Ultra now supports the S Pen stylus.

Saturday coffee №136

The saddest thing that could be expected is the moment that the Koreans removed chargers and headphones from the delivery of flagship models. Moreover, after the presentation of the new iPhone 12, they actively ridiculed such a step by Apple, but on the eve of Galaxy Unpacked, they cleaned all these posts from official accounts and did exactly the same as the company from Cupertino. It is clear that the exclusion of some accessories from the delivery set of the devices is not so much concern for the environment as a real opportunity to earn, and in total, very decent money. For the end customer, this is a rather unpleasant moment, and it is even sadder that after such a step by Apple and Samsung, other manufacturers will also remove the memory from the kit.

The devices themselves turned out to be interesting in terms of specifications (and I like the design too), but expensive. So, the younger model Galaxy S21 will cost Russian buyers at least 74 rubles, and the company’s flagship, the Galaxy S990 Ultra, will start in our market at 21 rubles. Yes, the prices are, of course, high, but still it is cheaper than fresh devices from Apple. Plus, last year’s models remain on the market, the prices for which will drop a little after the new products appear on sale.

Saturday coffee №136

We already have a detailed first look at Samsung’s new products, read on to get more information:

I also suggest reading the latest Buyer’s Guide comparing the Galaxy S20 to the Galaxy S21:

I suggest that you familiarize yourself with a separate material on the new Exynos 2100 chipset:

In addition to smartphones, Samsung introduced the Galaxy Buds Pro headphones, which feature an 11mm woofer for deep bass and a 6,5mm tweeter for crisp treble with minimal distortion. For voice communication, there are three microphones and a dedicated voice receiving unit (VPU). With Active Noise Cancellation, background noise can be reduced by 99%, while nearby sounds can be amplified by more than 20 decibels. Galaxy Buds Pro support Dolby Head Tracking 360 Audio technology, and can also automatically switch the connection between smartphones and Galaxy tablets depending on the situation. The battery life of the earbuds is stated at 8 hours (20 hours when recharging from the case). When using active noise cancellation, these figures will be 5 and 13 hours, respectively.

Saturday coffee №136

The new Galaxy Buds Pro look interesting, but you still need to listen to them to draw final conclusions.

New smart watch Amazfit Bip U Pro

The Amazfit brand presented the affordable Amazfit Bip U Pro smartwatch in Russia. The model received a 1,43-inch TFT-screen with a resolution of 320×302 pixels, which is covered with tempered glass Corning Gorilla 3 with an oleophobic coating. The Bip U Pro weighs 31 grams including the strap, so they won’t be a burden all day long and even while you sleep. The waterproof case can withstand up to 5 ATM, so you can leave the watch in the shower and take it with you to the pool.

Saturday coffee №136

Amazfit Bip U Pro is aimed at users who are fond of fitness and sports, they support more than 60 modes of various activities, allowing you to track the distance traveled, movement speed, heart rate and the number of calories burned during training in any conditions. And also the new product is equipped with support for women’s health tracking functions and a built-in GPS sensor for location.

Saturday coffee №136

The smartwatch can monitor the condition of the wearer, collecting information about all sleep patterns, including short naps and phases of REM and deep night sleep. BioTracker 2 PPG system monitors heart rate with an optical sensor around the clock, and OxygenBeats is able to measure the level of oxygen saturation in the blood.

The model uses Bluetooth 5.0 BLE, which allows it to be paired with smartphones and synchronized with Amazfit’s own app and popular fitness apps. It is possible to display on the device screen notifications about the most important events, including incoming calls and messages, as well as control the music player on the smartphone. A full battery charge of the Amazfit Bip U Pro allows the watch to work up to 9 days.

The Amazfit Bip U Pro watch is already available in Svyaznoy stores at a price of 4 rubles.

Laptops at CES

As part of CES 2021, which is held this time in the online format, many laptops are traditionally presented. I will not list all the new items, I will focus on a couple.

LG has announced its 2021 Gram laptop lineup. It includes five models, including the traditional Gram 17, Gram 16, Gram 14 and convertible models Gram 2-in-1 16, Gram 2-in-1 14. The entire line of new products stands out for the traditional low weight for Gram laptops. Thus, the older 17-inch model weighs only 1 grams, while the younger one weighs 350 grams. The company said that in the new models, the screen-to-body ratio has reached 998% by further thinning the screen bezel. All models in the line are equipped with 90th Gen Intel Core processors and can be shipped with Iris Xe graphics and are also certified through the Intel Evo program. LG promises that the Gram 11, Gram 17 and Gram 16-in-2 1 models can last up to 16 hours on a single charge. Another feature of the 19,5 models is the 2021:16 aspect ratio of the laptop screen, which offers users more vertical screen real estate.

Saturday coffee №136

It is interesting, of course, to see the 17-inch model, in which the weight of the device is 1.35 kg, for comparison, the MacBook Pro 16 weighs 2 kg, and the operating time of the LG laptop is quite good.

Yes, at CES, the Korean manufacturer showed a teaser for the new LG Rollable smartphone, which can unfold the screen, thereby turning into a small tablet.

And Lenovo has announced its updated 14-inch Yoga Slim 7i Pro laptop, which now offers consumers a choice of LCD or super-bright OLED displays. The new Lenovo Yoga Slim 7i Pro (OLED) laptop featuring a 14-inch OLED display with a 90Hz refresh rate was unveiled at CES. Like its LCD counterpart, it is based on the Intel Evo platform and features new 11th Gen Intel Core mobile processors and Intel Iris Xe graphics or NVIDIA GeForce MX450 discrete graphics. The 14-inch Yoga Slim 7i Pro with OLED from Samsung Display supports resolutions up to 2.8K (2880 x 1800) and 90Hz refresh rates, and has a 16:10 aspect ratio with increased screen height.

Saturday coffee №136

Here, of course, it is interesting how comfortable it will be to work for a long time with a laptop with an OLED display.

Yes, and we had a review of the Dell XPS 13 9300 laptop this week:

Mesh system with smart speaker

TP-Link has unveiled what it claims to be the first Mesh system with a built-in speaker and voice assistant, the Deco Voice X20. The device combines the ability to create a seamless Mesh Wi-Fi network and the Amazon Alexa voice assistant. Thanks to the built-in voice assistant, the user will be able to control his smart home without the need for a separate smart device, for example, a smart speaker. In addition, Mesh Wi-Fi technology will allow the user to quickly and efficiently access the Internet, and the presence of speakers in the modules will allow audio playback in different rooms. Moreover, the system works with streaming services Amazon Music, Spotify, Pandora, Tune in and other platforms. Deco Voice X20 adopts Wi-Fi 6 standard to provide fast wireless speeds, stronger signal and stable connections.

Saturday coffee №136

This is an interesting idea, especially for Mesh systems that you place around rooms in your home. Why fence a garden of several devices when you can replace two gadgets with one. We are waiting for TP-Link or competitors to collaborate with audio manufacturers, I think someone will probably release a similar product in partnership with Harman or Sonos.

Such a hybrid device can clearly be counted among smart gadgets, so our fresh material on this topic will be recommended in the topic:

Hyundai showed IONIQ 5

Hyundai Motor has released the first image of the IONIQ 5 mid-size electric crossover. The model will be the first vehicle based on the Hyundai Motor Group’s electric modular platform (E-GMP). The world premiere of the IONIQ 5 model will take place in virtual format in February 2021.

Saturday coffee №136Saturday coffee №136

From the images, in my opinion, the electric car from Hyundai looks a little strange, but let’s wait for its official premiere, perhaps everything will be much more interesting. By the way, the IONIQ 5 is one of those electric cars that the Korean manufacturer will officially bring to our market, and this will happen either at the end of 2021 or at the beginning of 2022, while the exact dates for the start of sales are not announced.

Hyperscreen by Mercedes

Mercedes-Benz has unveiled the 56-inch Hyperscreen for the new EQS electric sedan later this year. The huge screen is the centerpiece of the new infotainment system, the second generation of the Mercedes-Benz User Experience (MBUX). The Hyperscreen is actually a 56-inch glass panel that hides three separate screens. One screen is responsible for the operation of the dashboard, another main screen, located in the center, is responsible for the operation of the navigation and information systems, and the third screen is designed to provide multimedia opportunities for the passenger. All control in the car will be carried out using touch elements and voice capabilities. The glass covering the panel is scratch-resistant, and the ventilation holes are built directly into the screen.

Saturday coffee №136

It’s great that automakers are starting to offer separate screens for front passengers, otherwise they have always remained somehow deprived in this regard. The main screen is often turned towards the driver, separate entertainment systems are offered for the rear passengers, and the one who sits in front does not get anything. Prior to that, Land Rover offered as an option a media system with a display that allows driver and passenger to see a different picture, but it did not gain much success. Porsche made it possible to order a separate display for the front passenger in the Taycan electric car, and Mercedes-Benz followed this path, I think other automakers will offer this option in the future.

But sadly, automakers are removing mechanical controls, replacing them with touchscreens or screen controls, but still inconvenient. Even in relatively inexpensive cars, such solutions began to appear, for example, in the Chery Tiggo 7 PRO, a climate control unit with touch keys and touch temperature controls, it is not so easy to quickly deal with it on the go.

Saturday coffee №136

… and dessert

Bethesda will release a new game about Indiana Jones, developed by MachineGame, known for the games in the Wolfenstein series. The project will be executive produced by Todd Howard (The Elder Scrolls, Fallout) in collaboration with Lucasfilm Games.

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