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Samsung’s $99 Gear VR launches in November

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Samsung at Oculus Connect 2 Developer Conference announced a new Gear VR headset that will ship starting this November in the US. The new Gear VR is 22-percent lighter than the Innovator Edition, and comes with a $99 price tag. Now, that’s really consumer-ready.

“Samsung has been at the forefront of delivering mobile experiences and ‘Gear VR Innovator Edition’ launched last year was no exception,” said JK Shin, CEO and President of IT & Mobile Division, Samsung Electronics. “We see virtual reality as the next computing platform, and we are thrilled to partner with Oculus on Gear VR to set the standard for mobile VR and bring this revolutionary product to consumers.”

Like the original headset, the consumer-ready Gear VR will also require a compatible Samsung smartphone to work. And this time, Samsung has added support for the Galaxy S6, Galaxy S6 Edge, Galaxy S6 Edge+, and Galaxy Note 5.

“Together with Samsung, we’ve redefined virtual reality and created the best mobile VR experience available today,” said Brendan Iribe, CEO, Oculus. “On Gear VR, people are playing immersive VR games with friends, sharing 360 video experiences, and teleporting around the world with photos and videos – and it’s only the beginning for what’s possible with mobile VR.”

The new Gear VR will be offered in Frost White color, and as touched above, it’ll be available to purchase starting this November in time for Black Friday in the US.

Samsung Mobile Press

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HTC U11 Plus receives TENAA certification

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HTC U11 Plus TENAA

A new HTC phone has recently passed through TENAA certification, and it’s likely the U11 Plus. The images obtained are somewhat similar to what the leaks have suggested lately.

Spotted by Mobilissimo, the listing from TENAA reveals the device in pictures, but fails to provide any specific information. From the images, what we know is the upcoming HTC phone — likely the HTC U11 Plus — will have an all-display front with higher screen-to-body ratio (and no buttons), rear-facing fingerprint sensor, and a single camera setup on the back.

Meanwhile other reports coming from over the internet suggest the HTC handset will pack a 6-inch display, 12-megapixel rear and 8-megapixel front camera, and a Snapdragon 835 chipset.

/ TENAA

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Apple Pay Now Supports ANZ Eftpos Access Cards In Australia

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Apple Pay on iPhone

Apple Pay has expanded to support Eftpos cards from ANZ Bank in Australia. Eftpos (Electronic fund transfer at point of sales) is a popular debit payments network in Australia. The partnership will bring in-store Apple Pay support to 1.6 million ANZ Access cardholders, according to Eftpos.

Apple’s partnership with Eftpos should get more people to use Apple Pay as Eftpos is the most used debit card network in Australia, and offers a much lower processing fee to retailers as well as customers.

High fees have been one of the biggest hindrances for Apple Pay in Australia, but with today’s move things are starting to get better. When a debit card is used via Apple Pay in Australia, there’s about 0.55 percent fee to the merchant; however, Eftpos drops it significantly to 0.15 percent. (Thanks, Business Insider!)

“About 1.6 million ANZ eftpos Access cardholders now have the opportunity to make payments on an iPhone or Apple Watch, many of whom may not have had the opportunity to make in store mobile payments before,” said Eftpos acting CEO Paul Jennings.

“As Australia’s most used debit card network, we are thrilled to be providing ANZ eftpos Access customers with more payment choice, with added benefits of enhanced security and comfort.”

Eftpos ANZ users can switch between a Cheque and Savings account with ease. More details can be found on the Eftpos website. And yes, Apple has also updated its Australian version of Apple Pay website to reflect the Eftpos partnership.

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Google shares first unedited Pixel 2 photos and videos

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Google Pixel 2 Camera Sample

Google’s Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL, which the company unveiled during its October event past week, have a highly rated camera. The cameras in both the Google phones have scored 98, the highest-ever on a smartphone camera in DxOMark’s rating.

Last year’s Pixel line-up scored 88X, which was the highest-ever on a smartphone camera back then, therefore it’s not surprising to see Google focusing more on camera lenses in Pixel phones. No matter how greater the rating figure is, it’s much more important to test the device in real world, and camera samples take a perfect stand to all the pixel-and-lens specs the company had touted during the product announcement.

Thanks to Google’s Isaac Reynold, who shared a bunch of unedited photos taken from the Pixel 2 camera, we now know (to some extent) how amazingly Google has improved Pixel’s camera. Reynold also posted two videos comparing the video stabilization that’s on offer with Pixel 2. Some of the sample photographs are attached in this post, while you can watch Reynold’s entire upload here.

For a quick recap, Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL both have a 12.2-megapixel camera with f/1.8, Optical Image Stabilization (OIS), Electronic Image Stabilization (EIS), and laser and dual pixel phase detection autofocus.

/ Pixel User Community 

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