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⚡ Welcome back to another edition of The Weekly Authority, the Android Authority newsletter that keeps an eye out for the top Android and tech news from the week.
👋 Tristan Rayner with two hands on the steering wheel at all times. No feet from the backseat! (See the tweet of the week if you're not sure what's going on...)
- Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro: A leaker shared some renders of the Google Pixel 6 and an as-yet-unheard-of Google Pixel 6 Pro this week. It’s unclear how many of the render details could be final as the source of the leaks is a little sketchy. Other leakers did help to confirm at least some of what we might see, though. If accurate, it could be exciting! Will Google offer a Pro with a leading camera and more bleeding-edge specs? Will the crowd go wild?
- Google I/O 2021: Don’t forget this big event is next week! Obviously, the rundown of what to expect includes Android 12, plus the Google Pixel 5a (maybe) and Google Pixel Buds A. But perhaps the most major could be Google’s own chipset, codename Whitechapel.
- Asus Zenfone 8 launch: The Zenfone 8 and Zenfone 8 Flip launched this week. Oddly enough the smaller, cheaper non-Flip version is the one Asus declared as its flagship; the company explained why via an interesting chat we published with Asus director Chih-Hao Kung. A good quote here as to where these two new devices fit in the current landscape: “There are a lot of options if you want a flagship phone that’s very large, has three, four, maybe five cameras, and costs €1,000. So for us, we’re also about offering options that aren’t necessarily in the market anymore.”
- Earbuds: Sony’s WF-1000XM4 true wireless earbuds saw some leaks spill out all week, including press-quality images, and detail around sound, ergonomics, and more. They need to be good to help Sony climb back towards again being a leader in the space, with the previous XM3 just starting to age. Also, on a related note, Nothing’s first earbuds are coming in June The company also confirmed its first product will be called the Ear 1.
- New Intel CPUs: Intel unveiled its new Tiger Lake-H mobility CPUs for laptops, bringing new 45W CPUs for 14-17-inch designs. And, Intel says they beat AMD’s Ryzen 5000 series (Ars Technica). The first mainstream computers with these onboard are Dell’s 2021 XPS 15 and XPS 17 laptops, also unveiled this week. They also pack Nvidia’s RTX 30 series GPUs into the familiar XPS look and styling. Also joining in the 11th-gen H-Series fun are new laptops from Razer, HP, Asus, Lenovo, MSI, Alienware, Gigabyte, and Acer. Many of these have RTX 30 series GPUs as well (The Verge).
- HTC: The former smartphone giant is still working hard at VR, with the HTC Vive back again. The new Vive Focus 3 and Pro 2 5K headsets want to be professional alternatives to the Oculus Quest 2 (CNET).
- Blood-glucose monitoring: Previous reports hinted that the upcoming Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 could’ve landed with blood glucose monitoring, but a new report suggests the sensor hasn’t made the final cut. Disappointing, but at the same time the tech was always going to be tough to get into a conventional consumer device. Check out this “wearable” version we saw earlier this year at CES 2021. Will Apple get there with the next Apple Watch?
- Crypto weirdness: Elon Musk said Tesla will stop accepting bitcoin for car purchases, citing environmental concerns (CNBC). Meanwhile, Ethereum co-creator Vitalik Buterin decided to flush his “gifted” meme coins, donating a peak worth of $1 billion in fiat to help India fight COVID-19 (TechCrunch). It’s a pretty detailed story, involving “dog” tokens/borderline scams, rising gas fees for Ethereum, and the fight to legitimize crypto and squash the “hustle” coins.
Zenfone gets to 8:
- The team checked out the Zenfone 8 and gave the Zenfone 8 Flip an early hands-on as well. The Zenfone 8 review has this classic line: “Asus made a deal with the devil in order to pull off the small-sized Zenfone 8.” That explains that to keep it at a compact 5.9-inches, battery life and overall camera quality suffer just a bit.
- Apple AirTag review: Finding your lost keys has never been this easy, as long as you’re not an Android-only household!
- Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 2 review: Second time’s the charm
- May 18-20: Google I/O 2021
- May 19-20: Qualcomm 5G Summit 2021
- June 7-11: WWDC 2021
- June 28- July 1: MWC 2021 — still on for now, apparently!
Tech Tweet of the Week
Just a bizarre turn of events:
This whole thread is incredible. Dude gets busted driving a Tesla from the backseat, car gets impounded. He goes out and *BUYS A NEW TESLA* immediately, and says he’s going to keep driving that way. “I pioneered this” he says missing the fact that people have died doing this. https://t.co/D5fZVn7Ocd
— Mike Masnick (@mmasnick) May 13, 2021
All the best,
Tristan Rayner, Senior Editor.