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The Weekly Authority:🛠️ Fix your own Pixel Fold!
⚡ Welcome to The Weekly Authority, the Android Authority newsletter that breaks down the top Android and tech news from the week. The 251st edition here with a first for foldables, as Google lets you fix your own Pixel Fold, new Z Flip 5 and Z Fold 5 renders and specs, a look at OnePlus’ first foldable, the ASUS Zenfone 10… plus, Meta’s new VR games subscription service, and everything you missed at Thursday’s Annapurna Interactive Showcase.
🎂 This weekend, I’m enjoying early birthday celebrations, though apparently, it’s a surprise, and I have no idea what that’s going to be. Assuming I survive, I’ll see you all next weekend! 😅
Popular news this week
- Google supports you fixing your Pixel Fold yourself, a first for any foldable.
- Google has already created a limited edition Pixel Fold and it’s incredible.
- Pixel 7 and 6 update may be causing severe battery drain and overheating.
- Tired of adding ‘Reddit’ to your web search? Google says this feature will help.
- Don’t like Google’s quick settings menu? It’s not just (Material) you.
- And Google’s Nearby Share can now send files to your sleeping devices.
- Google is (accidentally?) canceling some Pixel Fold pre-orders.
- Spot the difference: Google reveals a new Android logo and wordmark.
- Also: Don’t have NFC? Google Wallet is finally getting QR payment support.
- Plus: Google’s next-gen AR glasses join the Google graveyard.
- And YouTube confirms three-strikes test for ad blocking, here’s how it works.
- Feast your eyes on new Galaxy Z Fold 5 and Z Flip 5 renders and specs: The best look yet at all the colors and angles.
- Speaking of, the Z Flip 5 could deliver big camera, battery boosts via software alone.
- And Galaxy Buds 3 may be a no-show at Samsung’s July Unpacked event.
- You can now get the Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 and Buds 2 Pro in new Pokémon cases.
- Meanwhile, Samsung reveals plans to make world’s most advanced mobile chips, coming from 2025.
- And Samsung Galaxy A25 5G leaks, proves Samsung really loves this one design.
- Also: Samsung Galaxy S23 FE leaked renders show a phone identical to the Galaxy A54.
OPPO & OnePlus:
- Does Samsung finally have some competition? OnePlus Fold specs leak and the company’s first foldable is looking good.
- Nothing has been showing us the Phone 2 in full but many haven’t noticed.
- Nothing reveals Glyph Ringtones: Custom ringtones with Glyph lighting, coming to Nothing Phone 1 and Phone 2.
- Data suggests Reddit protests negatively affected traffic, advertiser engagement.
- And Apollo will let users decline refunds to protest Reddit’s actions: the popular Reddit client shuts down June 30 and would normally be forced to refund subscribers out of its own pocket, to a tune of around $250,000, however large numbers of subscribers have said they’ll decline refunds in solidarity.
- You can use this site to find out where subreddits have relocated amid the ongoing API changes protests (h/t: The Hustle).
- And TikTok finally admits to funding users’ lawsuit against Montana ban.
- Virgin Galactic completed its first successful commercial flight on Thursday, with a second flight slated for August.
- Meanwhile, four volunteers just entered a virtual “Mars” made by NASA. They won’t come back for one year.
- And NASA is recycling 98% of astronaut pee and sweat on the ISS into drinkable water, a huge deal for future missions.
- Microsoft gives Bing and Edge new AI tools to help you shop.
- DeepMind claims its next chatbot will rival ChatGPT: Gemini will have the ability to plan or solve problems as well as analyze text, if all goes according to plan.
- How existential risk became the biggest meme in AI: “Ghost stories are contagious.”
- And sorry, Apple fans, Bard doesn’t really think iOS is better than Android.
- Wow: Nearly 80% of women’s jobs at risk from generative AI, new research by Goldman Sachs finds.
- ASUS Zenfone 10 landed on Thursday: Here’s the price, specs, features, and all you need to know.
- Xiaomi 13T and 13T Pro specs leak, reveals faster refresh rate than the 13 Ultra.
- Nokia G42 5G announced: A more repairable smartphone.
- Here’s how you get $150 off the Razr Plus (2023) on Prime Day.
- Snapdragon 4 Gen 2 launched: Light on power, but what about efficiency?
- The overclocked Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 is coming to more phones.
- Smartphones could soon have 24GB of RAM, and it looks like OPPO or OnePlus may not be the first, as the upcoming REDMAGIC 8S Pro will be equipped with up to 24GB of RAM.
- Following news that realme is leaving the German market, the company provided us with a statement confirming it’s still available in Germany.
- Telegram announces it’s launching Stories next month.
- It’s time to say goodbye to this long-running podcast app.
- Uh-oh: LetMeSpy, a phone tracking app spying on thousands, says it was hacked.
- First up, check out this week’s best new streaming movies, including the eerie Run Rabbit Run — or dive into the week’s best new streaming shows like Netflix’s Thai sci-fi thriller Delete or Apple TV’s Hijack.
- Now that Netflix has an ads-based tier, it’s testing removing the Basic tier.
- Android TV makes buying, renting movies easier with the new Shop tab, but only content from Google-owned products will be available.
- Anime Expo 2023 is coming, and here’s what to expect from July 1 to 4.
- The Witcher: Season 3 volume 1 is now streaming on Netflix, and reviews are in: Empire says, “In his final go-around in the role, Cavill showcases everything that makes him perfect in the title role” while The Verge says, “The first half of the season gets back to what made the show so successful in the first place.”
- After a decade away, Futurama returns with a Season 11 trailer — we can’t wait.
- Warrior Nun creator confirms series will return after Netflix axe. Now we just need Archive 81 to come back!
- Seems like a strange choice: The Famous Five adaptation coming from Nicolas Winding Refn.
- YouTube tests out new gaming service months after Stadia shutdown.
- Here are the best Steam Deck docks in 2023.
- Speaking of, what wattage is the official Steam Deck charger?
- And if you’ve been lucky enough to receive a Steam gift card, here’s how to redeem it.
- Plus: Pokémon Sleep release date — When will it be available?
- Some poorly redacted documents have revealed budgets for two of Sony’s biggest games: The Last of Us 2 cost $220 million to make, Horizon Forbidden West cost $212 million, and that’s without marketing.
- Meta Quest+ is a new VR games subscription service that launched Monday, giving access to two VR titles a month for Quest 2 and Quest Pro users and costing $7.99/month or $59.99 annually — plus, if you sign up before July 31, your first month is just $1.
- It looks like IO Interactive’s fantasy RPG is an Xbox exclusive.
- Alan Wake 2 is digital-only because it gives Remedy “more time to polish.”
- Speaking of, Alan Wake 2 was supposed to have Quantum Break TV episodes.
- Google Pixel Fold review: Google finally enters the fold — “It’s so perfectly Pixel — for better and for worse.”
- ASUS Zenfone 10 review: Should you buy it? “A pocketable powerhouse and then some.”
- Google Pixel Fold vs Pixel 7 Pro camera comparison: Which is best? “Finally, a foldable smartphone with a brilliant camera setup.”
- Is the Google Pixel Fold the best foldable? This feature could convince me it is (Android Authority).
- 7 things the Google Pixel Tablet does better than my iPad Air: “It’s not a one-sided fight” (Android Authority).
- I’d love to buy a Galaxy Watch 6, but it isn’t the smartwatch for me: “Exclusive Samsung phone-only features are keeping me at a distance” (Android Authority).
- Amazon’s new robots are rolling out an automation revolution: “A wave of advanced machines is coming to the company’s facilities thanks to better AI and robots smart enough to work with — and without — humans” (Wired).
- Fast machines, slow machines: “While computers have gotten better, performance on trivial tasks has regressed” (Julio Merino).
Thursday was the day Annapurna’s Interactive Showcase happened, but if you missed it, we’ve got a roundup of some of the highlights.
New game reveals
We saw not one, not two, but four new game reveals.
Blade Runner 2033: Labyrinth
- Blade Runner 2033: Labyrinth was the highlight of the event, set in the same world as the Bladerunner film franchise.
- We saw a dystopian noir cinematic trailer, but didn’t learn too much else about the game yet, other than that its development’s being led by Chelsea Hash, former game director of Solar Ash and technical art lead on What Remains of Edith Finch.
- It’s coming to PC and consoles, but no word on a release date yet.
Lushfoil Photography Sim
- We also saw a trailer for Lushfoil Photography Sim.
- It’s hard to distinguish between real-life footage of famous locations and game footage as everything in this game looks so realistic, and so beautiful thanks to UE5.
- Developed by Matt Newell, the game is all about exploration and capturing shots with the in-game camera. Annapurna says loads of hidden objectives and secrets will “reward patient and observant players that have a good eye for angles and perspectives.”
- A reveal trailer for Ghost Bike, the new biking game in development at Messhof (the studio behind the Nidhogg series) looks pretty cool.
- Control a “streetwise kid from Freehub City on a mission to revive the last of the Ghost Bikes, the magical couriers who rode between the world of the living and the world of the dead.”
- Traveling to the afterlife on your bike, you’ll battle ghosts in speed and skill contests to win “Ghost Power” before embarking on a journey to the afterworld to save the spirit of Wheel World.
To a T
- We also saw a reveal trailer for the new episodic 3D adventure game from the creators of Katamari Damacy and Studio Uvula.
- To a T follows main character Teen, who can’t pose in any other way but a lowercase “t” and requires the help of those around them to accomplish certain tasks.
- Explore the town as Teen alongside your mom and dog, take on bullies at school, and discover unique new abilities.
Current game updates
There were also loads of updates on games we’re already hyped for.
- Stray, which landed on PlayStation and PC last year, hits Xbox on August 10.
- We saw a new trailer for Cocoon showing off new gameplay and traversing the game’s mysterious sci-fi world, plus we got a release date: September 29 on Xbox, PlayStation, Switch, and PC.
- We got another look at Bounty Star: The Morose Tale of Graveyard Clem with some gameplay, plus a release date: early 2024 on PlayStation, Xbox, and PC.
- And Thirsty Suitors got a release date trailer, coming to Xbox, PlayStation, Switch, and console November 2.
- A new trailer landed for Lorelei and the Laser Eyes, and no, we’re still totally clueless as to what’s going on — but in the game, your role is to observe patterns within numbers and images and solve mazes. We’re getting a bit of a Control vibe from this one, no bad thing!
- First-person horror game Mundaun, originally released for PS4, XBox One, Switch, and PC in 2021 has landed on PS5 and Xbox Series X/S.
- Coming to PlayStation, Xbox, and PC, we don’t have a release date yet for Flock, but we did see some gameplay, and its gorgeous, minimalistic art style looks amazing as you ride on the back of various colorful birds to explore a large open world.
- July 1: Reddit’s API changes take effect
- July 1-4: Anime Expo 2023
- July 6: HONOR 90 global launch
- July 11: Nothing Phone 2 launch @ 11 AM ET
- July 11-12: Amazon Prime Day
- July 26 (TBC): Samsung Galaxy Unpacked (Galaxy Z Fold 5, Z Flip 5)
- October 24-26: Snapdragon Summit 2023 (Snapdragon 8 Gen 3?)
Tech Tweet of the Week
Something extra: Tiring week? We need some of this guy’s zoomies (h/t: The Hustle).
Have a wonderful week!
Paula Beaton, Copy Editor.