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May 12, 2021

👋 Good morning! A note of housekeeping that this newsletter will be off tomorrow — back Friday to end the week.

🎞️ And, today's newsletter is brought to you by Movavi! One of the best video editing apps on Android, helping you to craft professional video projects. The Movavi Clips app, features easy drag-and-drop, and high-quality 1080p exports, while Movavi's Video Editor Plus is a powerful desktop (and in-browser) video editor with both manual and automatic creation modes, and features, for fast, easy editing.

Chip shortage takes down Samsung?

The chip shortage continues to spiral downwards and continues to impact consumer devices:

And now we have fresh detail that even one of the biggest players, Samsung, and its world of products, is suffering.

  • Reports from South Korean media suggest the Galaxy A52 5G and Galaxy A72 are reportedly facing launch delays in key markets due to a lack of chipsets.
  • My colleague Andy Walker writes: “Samsung is reportedly finding it tough to procure chipsets from Qualcomm, namely the Snapdragon 720G and Snapdragon 750G — the two 8nm chips that power its mid-rangers. Without a reliable supply of this silicon, it’s impossible for Samsung to produce a steady stream of these devices.
  • While the Galaxy A52 5G and A72 are available in parts of the US and EMEA, respectively, neither phone is available beyond these regions.”
  • Not mentioned in the report is the Samsung Galaxy A82, which we expect to launch shortly, but with an older flagship chipset in the Snapdragon 855 Plus.
  • And it’s unclear if the coming flagships, in the foldable Galaxy Z Fold 3 and Galaxy Z Flip 3 might be impacted, or the Galaxy S21FE.

I’ve been saying it for a little while, but if you really really need a new device, you might want to jump before discounts and offers disappear.


📈 10 years on from the first Chromebooks: Google was right about them (Android Authority).

🔙 US agrees to remove Xiaomi from controversial blacklist (Android Authority).

🎮 Nintendo’s OLED ‘Switch Pro’ name-dropped by a display exec (Android Authority).

🤭 Google Pay takes on PayPal, starts cross-border transactions: from the US to India and Singapore, one way only, and no fees for now (Android Authority).

🚄 Intel claims its new Tiger Lake-H mobility CPUs for laptops beat AMD’s Ryzen 5000: 45W CPUs for 14-17-inch designs (Ars Technica).

💻 Dell’s 2021 XPS 15 and XPS 17 laptops unveiled: now with those just-announced 11th-gen Intel mobility CPUs and Nvidia’s RTX 30 series GPUs laptops, packed into the familiar look and styling (Android Authority).

🎨 “The Acer ConceptD 7 Ezel is the dream computer I’ll never own,” which is a headline explained mostly by price. But check this out, it’s a pretty interesting creator device (The Verge).

🥽 The HTC Vive is back: New Vive Focus 3 and Pro 2 5K headsets want to be professional alternatives to Oculus Quest 2 (CNET).

📺 YouTube announces a $100M fund to reward top YouTube Shorts creators over 2021-2022: the blatant TikTok attack starts in months (TechCrunch).

🆚 Epic v. Apple Day 7: Case keeps coming back to the gap between ignorance and inconvenience (The Verge).

📺 Now Vizio is a public company, we can see it makes almost as much from data and advertising as it does from TVs (Engadget).

🐤 Army of fake bots boosts China’s diplomats and state media messaging on Twitter (AP).

🔐 Tech industry quietly patches FragAttacks Wi-Fi flaws that have existed for 24 years and leak data, weaken security (The Register).

🌬️ First 800MW offshore wind farm in the US gets federal approval (

Wednesday Weirdness
cat yawn

There’s a weird correlation between brain size and yawning. And yes, this is good news for you long yawners.

A study of 1,291 separate animal yawns from zoo trips and online videos, across 55 mammal species and 46 bird species, found “robust positive correlations” between how long an animal yawns for and the size of its brain (ScienceAlert).

  • In other words, big brains seemed to equal big yawns
  • The detail backs up a 2016 study where across 24 species, the shortest yawns (0.8 seconds) came from mice, and the longest yawns (6.5 seconds) from humans.
  • No specific correlation between intelligence and yawns, just brain size.


  • The theories are convalescing around the idea that yawning cools the brain. (My dog yawns when she’s unhappy and wants us to hurry up taking her outside, which may be the same thing if she’s getting too excited??)
  • “Through the simultaneous inhalation of cool air and the stretching of the muscles surrounding the oral cavities, yawning increases the flow of cooler blood to the brain, and thus has a thermoregulatory function,” wrote ethologist Andrew Gallup from the State University of New York (SUNY).


Tristan Rayner, Senior Editor

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