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The Weekly Authority: 📱 OnePlus Nord N20 en-route
⚡ Welcome to The Weekly Authority, the Android Authority newsletter that breaks down the top Android and tech news from the week. The 191st edition here, with the imminent OnePlus Nord N20 launch, Sega’s Crazy Taxi reboot, HP’s foldable laptop, and much, much more.
🚗 It’s been quite the week here, with a breakdown and subsequent four-hour-plus wait for a tow truck. On the positive side, having no car means more time for gaming and the DIY I’ve been putting off since before the pandemic…
Popular news this week
- Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 battery capacity report suggests it’ll be the same as the Fold 3, but if it’s a slimmer design overall that might be no bad thing.
- The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 3 Pokemon Edition is a thing and coming soon, but a Korea-only release for now. Want!
- And Samsung Galaxy S9 gets one last surprise update on its way to smartphone heaven.
- Meanwhile, Samsung may ditch the Galaxy Watch 5 Classic model, though unclear yet if the Pro will pick up the Classic’s features.
- It looks like the Google Pixel 6a will be missing a camera feature, may be more closely related to the Pixel 5a’s camera, with no Motion Mode photos.
- Meanwhile, Google Pixel Watch leaks again showing Fitbit integration and round, all-glass design — and we finally have solid evidence a Google-branded smartwatch could be coming soon as Google officially files a trademark.
- Remember Google Wallet? Looks like it’s making a comeback.
- And a Windows 11 tool to enable the Google Play Store was …actually malware.
- Google’s Nearby Share could soon offer more seamless sharing between your devices.
- Google will kill call recording apps on Android for good starting May 11.
- And there are more details on Google’s Switch to Android iPhone app for those switching from iOS.
- Finally this week in Google news: Google made a tasty cookie change in Europe, will now display a “reject all” button on its cookie consent banner following fines from watchdogs, but we’d like to see it across the web.
- Everything you hate about Apple could change thanks to leaked EU bill — could force Apple to open up its services and work with competitors, affecting iMessage, FaceTime, and more.
- Nice: Judge says Apple must pay man $1,000 for not including charger with iPhone — this is in Brazil, but will this set a legal precedent for other companies in the country?
- Apple is readying a bunch of new features for Apple Watch line including satellite connectivity and a new low power mode.
- And Apple TV 4K successor could incorporate a video camera and a HomePod speaker.
- Meanwhile, the iPhone 14 line could include a new model, the iPhone 14 Max, with 1 6.7-inch screen, but take this rumor with a big grain of salt.
- Apple’s MagSafe Battery Pack can charge iPhones faster with a new firmware update (7.5W, so 50% more juice) — but you might want to hold off getting it, given past heat problems.
- Most M1 Mac Thunderbolt 4 ports don’t support the 10Gb/s transfers of USB 3.1 Gen 2, show tests.
- Finally, it looks like Apple’s M2 chip could continue to include Samsung parts.
- Kamala Harris to announce US will no longer conduct anti-satellite tests, basically to stop problems with space junk.
- NASA to roll back its mega rocket after failing to complete countdown test.
- And NASA’s InSight caught a lonely Martian sunrise.
- Meanwhile, here’s what to expect for the next 10 years in space.
- ALAC bug left millions of Android devices vulnerable to takeover: Qualcomm and MediaTek taking the heat.
- EU is close to forcing every manufacturer to use USB-C chargers for everything, with huge implications for Apple.
- Motorola Moto G (2022) is here for $400, along with Moto G Stylus 5G (2022).
- And a new foldable is coming from HUAWEI on April 28: The Mate XS 2 could be an out-folding phone, China-only for now.
- Meanwhile, Vivo’s preparing to launch the X80 series in China on April 25, no word on a global launch yet.
- And Sony’s WH-1000XM5 headphones could pack a sleek design, longer battery life.
- From Ars Technica: Smart home company Insteon seems to be dead: “The app and servers are dead. The CEO scrubbed his LinkedIn page. No one is responding.”
- A report from The Elec suggests HP is working on a 17-inch foldable laptop: Measuring 17 inches unfolded (11 inches folded), it’ll be a 4K OLED model, to be unveiled later this year or at next year’s CES.
- Powered chopsticks use electricity to make food taste 50% saltier.
- And Envision smart glasses for the blind can read documents, scan faces, and aid navigation.
- Finally, hopes for small Android phones dashed by dismal US sales of iPhone 13 Mini.
- Netflix announces it’ll look at offering cheaper, ad-supported plans after losing 200,000 subscribers, and makes clear that password sharing won’t exactly remain a free-for-all.
- And CNN Plus realized no one wants it, will shut down April 30 just a month after launch!
- Netflix reportedly spent $30 million on each episode of the upcoming fourth season of Stranger Things.
- Looks like the Minecraft movie’s still a thing and will star Jason Momoa.
- Robert Morse, star of Mad Men and Broadway, dies aged 90.
- A new teaser for Chris Pine’s Dungeons & Dragons movie dropped, revealing the official title, coming March 3, 2023.
- And a new Lightyear trailer gives us a better look at Buzz’s adventures.
- Meanwhile, the first teaser for Thor: Love and Thunder landed, in theaters July 8.
- Ready for Russian Doll season 2? It’s on our list of the best new TV shows to stream this week, along with season 2 of The Flight Attendant, and more.
- Finally, our roundup of the best new streaming movies this week includes Alice Wu’s romantic comedy Saving Face and zombie horror Virus: 32 (don’t watch it if you’re a cat lover).
- Ayn Odin reviews are in: a Nintendo Switch with Android for under $300.
- Panic Playdate reviews are also out, though it’s hard to get your hands on one of these pocket-friendly handhelds — and reviews on the included games are also here.
- Netflix announced a mobile game based on popular card game Exploding Kittens, coming via the Netflix app next month (and an animated series, too).
- Meanwhile, Sega’s rebooting Crazy Taxi and JetSet Radio.
- Chris Novak, Xbox’s head of research and design, is leaving after nearly 20 years.
- And Assassin’s Creed Origins is coming to Xbox Game Pass, sometime in the next two months.
- World of Warcraft’s ninth expansion was revealed on Tuesday: Dragonflight will focus on the return of the Dragon Aspects, Azeroth’s magical guardians.
- A new Star Wars game’s coming from Amy Hennig’s studio: The Uncharted creator is working with Lucasfilm Games on the “richly-cinematic action-adventure game.”
- The Meta Quest Gaming Showcase had plenty for us: Ghostbusters VR, Moss 2, and the first VR NFL game.
- Finally this week: Naughty Dog recruiter hints at more Uncharted games.
- OnePlus 10 Pro review second opinion: An imbalanced reset — “The limited memory and storage configurations are a little disappointing.”
- iPhone 13 Pro revisited: The good and bad six months later — “This remains one of the best phones you can buy, even six months down the line.”
- Roborock S7 MaxV Ultra review: The indulgent robot vacuum for lazy people — Roborock’s most complete robot vacuum yet, it ships with a do-it-all dock that empties the dust bin, cleans the mop, and absorbs dirty water.
- Bose Sport Earbuds review: Comfort at a cost — The most comfortable workout earbuds around, with an ergonomic design, IPX4, and great sound quality — but they don’t come cheap.
- Fossil Gen 6 review: Fighting with one hand behind its back — Plays better as a well-designed generalist’s watch, offering a balanced experience that’s a cut above entry-level watches.
- Facial recognition on smartphones: Is it secure and should you use it? Arguably the quickest and easiest way to unlock your device, but caveats make it an ill-suited solution for those who care about security (Android Authority).
- Google Pixel Watch: Everything we know so far — Including new evidence of the device’s imminent launch (Android Authority).
- Spiritual hustlers are all over social media. Don’t let them scam you — “The telltale signs that the “healer” in your feed is using Native spirituality for their financial gain” (Mashable).
- The Future of the Web Is Marketing Copy Generated by Algorithms — “The killer app for GPT-3 could help marketers lure clicks and game Google rankings” (Wired).
- Adult life is boring. Watch toddlers run errands on Netflix instead: Long-running Japanese reality show New Enough! is a wholesome, magical experience (Mashable).
- This Startup Wants to Get in Your Ears and Watch Your Brain — “Born from Alphabet’s “moonshot” division, NextSense aims to sell earbuds that can collect heaps of neural data—and uncover the mysteries of gray matter” (Wired).
We’re keeping things short and sweet this week with a look back at one of the most memorable tech demo fails in history (and a couple of other corkers). Cast your mind back to April 20, 1998…
The COMDEX Spring 1998 and Windows World shows are taking place in Chicago, and there’s set to be a public demo of the new Windows 98. Bill Gates’ assistant, Chris Capossela (now Senior Vice President, Consumer Channels and Central Marketing Group, prepares the demo.
Then it all goes horribly wrong when plugging in a scanner causes an operating system crash. Instead of demonstrating the plug-and-play capabilities that should have wowed the audience, there’s instead a blue screen of death (BSoD), followed by plenty of laughter. Then Bill Gates says, “That must be why we’re not shipping it yet.”
That’s far from the only tech fail messing up a demo, though.
Honda Asimo demo fail
The Honda Asimo demo in 2006 didn’t go quite according to plan. Picture this: you’re a robot, and your task is to walk up a flight of stairs in view of the audience. Only, it’s not quite that easy, and you fall down. Not to worry — to save your embarrassment the tech team will simply place screens around you to hide you from the crowd. The level of panic that ensues after this demo fail makes it truly memorable.
Apple’s WWDC fail
These days Apple’s events are slick and perfectly orchestrated — but it wasn’t always that way. Back in 2010 at the World Wide Developer’s Conference, Steve Jobs tries — and fails — to show off the new iPhone 4’s features when his Wi-Fi connection keeps failing.
Got a favorite tech demo fail? Share it with us in the comments.
- April 28: OnePlus Nord N20 US launch
- April 28: OnePlus event (India, 7 PM IST)
- April 28: HUAWEI Mate XS 2 launch
- April 29: Nintendo Switch Sports released
- May 9-11: Qualcomm 5G Summit (San Diego)
- May 11-12: Google I/O 2022
- June 6-10: Apple WWDC 2022
Tech Tweet of the Week
— james hennessy (@jrhennessy) April 21, 2022
A little bonus: Twitter user FakeEnormous documents ridiculous names in video games — the latest additions include gems such as “Toulouse L’attack.”
Until next week,
Paula Beaton, Copy Editor.