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The Weekly Authority: 📱 Samsung's 3nm score
⚡ Welcome to The Weekly Authority, the Android Authority newsletter that breaks down the top Android and tech news from the week. The 201st edition here, with Samsung’s 3nm chips, a peek at the ASUS ROG Phone 6, HTC’s metaverse phone, and everything you missed at this week’s Nintendo Direct Mini.
🍰 Looking forward to some time off for my birthday this weekend, but I’m not letting on how old I’ll be. Shhh!
Popular news this week
- Samsung is the first company to start producing 3nm chips, which are faster, less power-hungry, and more thermally efficient.
- Samsung Galaxy XCover 6 Pro launched with removable battery, four Android upgrades.
- Galaxy S23 camera might not get an improvement in at least one area.
- Rumor: Here’s when Samsung’s Android 13 beta program could start.
- Also, Samsung could be working on a sub-$800 foldable, but don’t expect it soon.
- Plus: Galaxy Watch 5 hopefuls get a glimpse at Wear OS 3.5 and One UI Watch 4.5.
- Pixel 7 might be getting a selfie camera upgrade, could support 4K video.
- Pixel 6a wins against Pixel 6 Pro in fingerprint unlocking test.
- Here’s the Pixel 6a fingerprint sensor working faster than the 6 Pro’s.
- And here’s why there probably won’t be an Android 13L.
- Meanwhile, Google Hangouts finally gets a shutdown date: November 2022.
- Plus: The Pixel Watch might support iPhone connections after all.
- Also, these Pixel-exclusive features could be headed to other Android phones.
- You can now fix your Google Pixel phone yourself with genuine parts and tools.
- And Google TV could soon take the pain out of setting up streaming apps with automatic app installs and logins.
- YouTube Premium launches referral program to get up to 12 free months.
- Finally: Google’s Password Manager gets major usability updates.
- HTC’s metaverse phone shows without all doubt that the company is a zombie.
- Here are the (leaked) specs and prices of the Nothing Phone 1.
- It’s official: The Nothing Phone 1 won’t have a flagship processor.
- And Nothing Phone 1 black model plus European price leaks on Amazon, could be a Galaxy A53 competitor.
- Xiaomi 12T leaks, could fix where Xiaomi 12 went wrong.
- And Xiaomi’s first three Leica camera phones are coming on July 4.
- The Xiaomi 12S Ultra is on the way, but what happened to the 12 Ultra?
- Plus, the Xiaomi 12S Ultra has a $15m 1-inch camera sensor.
- Apple’s readying several new products ahead of its Fall 2022 bonanza, including its first mixed-reality headset.
- Apple is resurrecting its high-end HomePod smart speaker, after officially killing it off last year.
- Weird. According to several reviewers, base 13-inch MacBook Pro models with M2 chips tested with much slower SSD read and write speeds than M1 models.
- And rugged Apple Watch, new SE again rumored for 2022 release.
- Meanwhile, Apple exec gets nasty, says Samsung ‘ripped off our technology’.
- Plus: Supreme Court rejects Apple’s bid to continue fighting over two Qualcomm patents.
- Also: iOS users can now use Switch to Android app for non-Pixel phones.
- Finally: Meta, Adobe, Microsoft join metaverse standards body — but Apple does not.
- NASA launched a new sub-orbital rocket from a tiny Australian spaceport, the country’s first launch in over two decades.
- The Capstone launch will kick off NASA’s Artemis Moon Program: The tiny, toaster-sized probe will explore an orbit for a planned space station.
- And Thursday was international Asteroid Day, with a series of asteroid-themed talks and panels held by The Asteroid Foundation. You can catch up here.
- Plus: “Deepest image of our universe” ever taken by Webb Telescope will be revealed July 12.
- Ray tracing and 64-bit only: What you should know about Arm’s 2023 CPUs and GPUs.
- ASUS ROG Phone 6 breaks cover, looks absolutely massive with its cooling fan.
- Xiaomi Mi Band 7 Pro is on the way: A smartwatch in all but name?
- Mercedes EQXX beats own record: its Vision EQXX electric vehicle traveled 746.8 miles (from Stuttgart, Germany to Silverstone, UK) on a single charge, almost double the Tesla Model S’ range.
- Meanwhile, a wide range of routers are under attack by new, unusually sophisticated malware: ZuoRAT, a remote access Trojan has infected at least 80 known targets so far.
- And FBI says people are using deepfakes to apply to remote jobs.
- Look out: Minority Report-style crime prediction is here — can predict crime in US cities a week before it happens.
- US FCC commissioner wants Apple and Google to remove TikTok from their app stores, claiming it functions as a surveillance tool, harvesting personal data from US citizens.
- Plus: Explorers found the deepest shipwreck ever discovered: US destroyer “Sammy B” was found at a depth of 22,916 feet in the Philippines.
- UK’s Magical Mushroom Company uses mycelium to replace plastic packaging, claims the results are biodegradable in 45 days.
- Mojo Vision puts its AR contact lens into its CEO’s eyes (literally), a major milestone.
- Finally: A company aims to power the world for millions of years by digging the deepest holes ever.
- We’ve been waiting 29 years for a Hocus Pocus sequel, and the teaser trailer for Hocus Pocus 2 is finally here, with the movie landing on Disney Plus September 30.
- A trailer for Apple TV Plus’ new psychological thriller series Surface also landed, with Gugu Mbatha-Raw playing a woman with extreme memory loss after a traumatic head injury, who finds out what she’s being told may not be the truth.
- We also saw a trailer for Ron Howard’s Thirteen Lives, the true story of the 2018 Thai cave rescue, on Prime Video August 5.
- And a trailer landed for See How They Run, a 1950s murder mystery with hints of Wes Anderson, starring Sam Rockwell, Saoirse Ronan, and Adrien Brody, out September 9.
- Gizmodo‘s rounded up 10 conspiracy thrillers to check out, including 2005’s The Manchurian Candidate.
- Last Call: The best movies leaving streaming services in July 2022 — you’ve got a month to watch them all!
- The best new TV shows to stream this week, including season one of Money Heist: Korea.
- Plan for ‘Obi-Wan Kenobi’ film trilogy derailed by bad ‘Solo’ box office, according to screenwriter.
- And here’s what’s new on Prime Video in July: Chris Pratt’s The Terminal List is a must-watch…
- Also: Can you imagine Hugh Grant playing Zeus? It’s happening in darkly comic Greek-mythology spinning series Kaos.
- Tuesday’s Nintendo Direct Mini focused on third-party games: Polygon‘s roundup covers everything, but we’re most excited for Monster Hunter Rise: Sunbreak (which landed on Thursday), Square Enix’s dark farming sim Harvestella, and Lorelei and the Laser Eyes (though the latter’s not coming until 2023).
- Speaking of, Fire Emblem Heroes is Nintendo’s first mobile game to hit $1 million in revenue.
- Atari turned 50 on Monday and celebrated by releasing Atari 50: The Anniversary Celebration, an interactive history for PC and console, out November, including interviews and over 90 games — including six new classic-inspired titles — from the Jaguar, Lynx, and more.
- Summer Games Done Quick kicked off last Sunday, running until July 3, with a speed run of Shadow of the Colossus.
- And the Steam Summer Sale runs until July 7 with some great discounts.
- July’s PS Plus games are Crash Bandicoot 4, The Dark Pictures Anthology: Man of Medan, and Arcadegeddon.
- A trio of expansions landed on Thursday — Cuphead: The Delicious Last Course adds new levels and a new playable character; Monster Hunter Rise: Sunbreak expands the world with new locales, monsters, and more; and Outriders: Worldslayer attempts to revive enthusiasm for the 2021 title.
- Meanwhile, Overwatch 2’s first multi-platform beta kicked off Tuesday.
- Speaking of, the first Overwatch game will become unplayable online once Overwatch 2 launches in October.
- F1 22 reviews are in: The game landed Friday for PlayStation, Xbox, and PC and The Guardian calls it “a stunning racing game sullied by money-grubbing,” while Eurogamer said, “the best F1 game yet can’t quite match last year’s model.”
- Canceled Scarface 2 game footage leaks on YouTube.
- Niantic is laying off about 90 employees and canceling four projects, though Pokemon Go’s not going anywhere.
- Finally: Sony targets PC gamers with new hardware brand, Inzone — expect two 27-inch gaming monitors and three pairs of headphones.
- Sony WH-1000XM5 review: Long live the king — “With a complete redesign, these are some of the best ANC headphones on the market — even at an eye-watering $400.”
- Samsung Galaxy Tab A8 review: Budget streaming star — “Earns its place among the best affordable Android tablets thanks to punchy speakers and a wide display with thin bezels that’s perfect for media streaming.”
- Garmin Venu review: Garmin goes OLED — One of the best multisport watches around right now, but can’t compete with more established smartwatches like the Apple Watch Series 5 or Fossil Gen 5.
- Garmin vivoactive 4 review: All-around great — Will please those in need of a midrange multisport watch, but not as flashy as the new Garmin Venu (though that could be a good thing).
- Fitbit Charge 4 review: No contest — “The Fitbit Charge 4 is the best fitness tracker you can buy, period.”
- Arm Immortalis-G715 deep dive: Ray tracing graphics for mobile — “Shiny graphics here we come” (Android Authority).
- Arm Cortex-X3 and Cortex-A715: Next-gen CPUs redefined — “Faster and more efficient CPUs are heading our way” (Android Authority).
- The Power and Pitfalls of AI for US Intelligence: “Artificial intelligence use is booming, but it’s not the secret weapon you might imagine” (Wired).
- A centuries-old secret society is hanging out in Facebook groups: “Rosicrucianism, which once prided itself on invisibility, is still around today” (Mashable).
- Google’s powerful AI spotlights a human cognitive glitch: “There’s a big difference between fluent speech and fluent thought” (Ars Technica).
We’re going to the dark side for this edition’s Weekly Wonder… no, not that dark side… We’re taking a look at the 15-year anniversary of Apple’s iPhone, which first went on sale this week (June 29) in 2007. In some ways, it feels much longer ago.
This week we also saw an Apple exec accuse Samsung of copying the original iPhone, saying it “ripped off our technology” and just put a bigger screen on it.
- The iPhone first went on sale six months after it was first announced by Steve Jobs on January 9, 2007, with the words, “a revolutionary mobile phone, a widescreen iPod with touch controls, and a breakthrough internet communications device.” He also said, “Today, Apple is going to reinvent the phone.”
- One million units sold in 74 days.
- The first iPhone retailed for $499.
- It was tiny by today’s smartphone standards, with a 3.5-inch display and huge bezels.
- This week we also saw an early iPhone prototype dating back to 2006, worth $500k.
We never knew…
Here are a few things you probably didn’t know about the first iPhone:
- The original iPhone wasn’t as advanced as our smartphones today, but did you know it couldn’t copy and paste? You could do it on a Blackberry or Palm device, but not on the first iPhone.
- There was no app store: You couldn’t rearrange the home screen, and there was no way to install third-party apps — Apple’s original plan was to rely on web apps, but these never really took off. The App Store didn’t appear until a year later.
- Apple Maps didn’t have GPS: Apple partnered with Google to create Apple Maps — pretty much the best mapping application at the time — but without GPS there was no turn-by-turn navigation, so although you could get directions, you wouldn’t be guided to your destination.
- That touchscreen keyboard was controversial: These days we’re used to our smartphones (whether Android or iOS) having a touchscreen keyboard, but back in 2007, every other smartphone on the market had a physical keyboard. Many were doubtful Apple could pull it off, but some clever UI features and an advanced autocorrect algorithm sealed the deal.
- There wasn’t a front-facing camera or video recording: Yup, you could watch videos on your shiny new iPhone, but you couldn’t record them with that 2MP camera (which did actually still produce some pretty great photos at the time). Video recording wasn’t added to iPhones until 2009, with the iPhone 3GS. The front-facing camera came even later, debuting alongside FaceTime in 2010 on the iPhone 4.
- July 4: Xiaomi 12S series debuts in China
- July 5: ASUS ROG Phone 6 launch @ 8 AM ET
- July 12: Nothing Phone 1 launch @ 4 PM BST (11 AM ET)
- July 12-13: Amazon Prime Day
- July 13: Samsung Galaxy XCover 6 Pro and Galaxy Tab Active 4 Pro launch
- July 19: Stray lands on PS5, PS4, PC
- July 28: Pixel 6a launch
- August 10 (TBC): Samsung Unpacked? (new Galaxy foldables, Galaxy Watch 5 series?)
Tech Tweet of the Week
You’ve prob seen a viral clip of 2 shirtless men building an underground mud swimming pool with hands and primitive tools.It’s a whole YouTube genre and there are a number of similar channels based in Southeast Asia w/ 5B+ views.Who are these creators?It’s a weird story🧵 pic.twitter.com/kOFftjawy4— Trung Phan (@TrungTPhan) June 29, 2022
Something extra: Samsung’s wildest design collabs, from BTS to Supreme (Gizmodo).
See you next weekend!
Paula Beaton, Copy Editor.