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iPhone 12 launch, Amazon has deals, and more tech news you need to know today
Your tech news digest, by way of the DGiT Daily tech newsletter, for Tuesday, 13 October 2020.
1. Apple introduces us to speed, apparently
Apple’s event goes down today with a virtual stream at 10am PT. Given it’s an iPhone event it’ll be super interesting to see what we get there, but beyond the iPhone, what we’re getting today is a little mysterious. Which is always fun, and makes for more close watching.
- iPhone: The rumors have been solid for awhile now on an all 5G lineup across four devices: iPhone 12 mini, iPhone 12, iPhone 12 Pro, and iPhone 12 Pro Max.
- Most likely Apple will tell us these are the fastest iPhones ever, including download speeds. Will networks step up to better support 5G with the pressure of Apple joining Samsung and so many other Android brands already there?
- MagSafe iPhone wireless charging? I like what I see from this magnetic wireless charger for the iPhone 12 that seems to have leaked out of Japan (MacRumors). It may just be part of a new official case, but MagSafe was always a great Mac feature.
- Audio: We’ve seen Apple stop selling third-party audio devices from its own stores, and Apple also removed the Beats page off its website ahead of today’s launch, but then it went back online. So, possibly nothing there?
- But we should see a new HomePod at least, and possibly a set of headphones.
- AirTags: Then there’s the promised AirTags, for tracking and finding other devices, like Tile.
- Apple TV? The Apple TV 4K is now three years old. And it’s expensive for what you get. We saw reports that there is a new model or even models in the works, but they may be early 2021 releases.
- Probably no Arm-based Macs. The Macs with Apple Silicon are more likely November releases, per Bloomberg.
Update: Apple’s website is down in advance, too.
2. Amazon Prime Day deals
Amazon Prime Day is here and I know what it can be like when overwhelmed with deals and discounts and what’s actually a good buy (and if you really need it!).
Let me try and help. Here’s a page of all relevant deals across streaming, smartphones, smart home, TV, audio, laptops, and so on. Here are the best Prime Day deals in the UK, too. There’s a lot there.
So, although I don’t get into monitors or laptops too much, here are just some of the best deals for things you likely have been looking at chosen by me!
- The Samsung Galaxy S20 is on Amazon with a big $320 discount, bringing the unlocked version down to $679.
- You can get a Google Pixel 4 flagship for a cheaper price than the Pixel 4a 5G: 64GB Pixel 4 now starts at just $449, 128GB Pixel 4 for $549.
- The audio deals stack up really nicely: the new Sony WH-1000XM4 headphones are $52 off, at $298, while the Samsung Galaxy Buds Plus are $87 at Amazon, save $63. Both great deals, in my book.
- I am told the best audio deal available is on the Shure AONIC 50, which is $100 off, down to $300. I’ve linked to the SoundGuys review since you’ll want to know why this is good, but click through there for the Amazon deal.
- Apple gear has some deals: Apple AirPods for $115 ($44 off). That’s the best deal on them so far. Apple AirPods Pro for $199 are $50 off, too.
- There’s also up to $120 off microSD cards, and robot vacuum deals are always welcome.
- As always, Amazon loves to offer deals on its own devices, too. The new Echo Dot (4th Gen) hasn’t shipped yet but is already on promotion, a two-pack for $80 ($20 off), while the Kindle Paperwhite for $80 is the cheapest ever, but there are also refurbished models for $49.
- One more from Amazon: I do think the Fire HD 10 for $80, $70 off, is a pretty good deal for the top of the line range of tablets. 32GB of storage for a basic device isn’t a lot though so add $50 for the 64GB, and paying the fee to remove the ads is always a good idea!
- The Yubikey Security Key NFC is down to $16.20 too, $10 off (40%!)
Deals come and go across today and tomorrow so keep an eye on the best deals and flash sales.
3. Here’s the new Nest thermostat: a colorful, more affordable smart thermostat at $130. Instead of its smart learning capabilities, the device will now use Soli, radar to tell whether you’re present in your home or office, and modify the temperatures accordingly. It’s lost the touch dial too, replaced with a strip. I’ll have to see more on this as I’m not sure it’s a complete set of improvements yet! (Android Authority).
4. OnePlus co-founder Carl Pei has left the company. Reports are he’s founding a new venture… will that mean something new in smartphones with a OnePlus vibe? (Android Authority).
5. Apple on designing the A14 Bionic for the iPad Air and beyond: digging into Apple’s new chipset with platform architecture VP Tim Millet (Engadget).
6. Facebook bans Holocaust denial, distortion posts, as Zuckerberg says his “thinking has evolved”. Finally. (AP).
7. Interesting insight into how Microsoft used courts to take down a ransomware botnet (Reuters).
8. Disney wants to be Netflix now (Gizmodo).
9. Here’s Doom running on a Samsung fridge thanks to xCloud (The Verge).
10. The Pentagon is contracting SpaceX to develop rockets that can deliver packages anywhere on the planet in under an hour (Vice).
11. Alphabet’s latest X project is a crop-sniffing plant buggy, hoping to use computing to figure out and optimize plant nutrition. It’s a little unclear what’s going on exactly, but it’s a data collection model first. I think? (The Verge).
12. “Why is it that natural hair has only so many natural colors, while feathers, scales, etc., have a wide spectrum?” (r/nostupidquestions)
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