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Apple unveils Apple Watch Series 3 with LTE connectivity

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Apple Watch Series 3

Apple has announced the new Apple Watch Series 3. The official welcome to the third-generation Apple Watch took place at the company’s Special Event in Apple Park’s Steve Jobs Theater.

The new Apple Watch Series 3 looks and feels same as its predecessor, although the back is 0.25mm more thick, but packs big surprises inside (if you’re not aware of any Apple leaks prior). Among all, the Apple-branded wrist wearable now comes with LTE support. Yes, and that’s changing almost everything here. But, there’s a non-LTE version, too.

Apple Watch Series 3

The Apple Watch Series 3 with LTE helps you stay connected even while your iPhone is away, or is not within the range with your watch. Making calls, receiving texts don’t require an iPhone now, of course, only if you’ve an Apple Watch Series 3 with LTE that ships later later this month. The watch has room for water resistance outfit and can go up to 50 meters under water. Although, you can’t use it for scuba diving or waterskiing. There’s also a biometric altimeter that helps with tracking and outdoor workouts.

Apple Watch is now the world’s number one watch

Apple Watch Series 3 features a full LTE and UTMS cellular radio that switches to cellular when away from iPhone. There’s no need to maintain an additional number, as the watch will use your iPhone’s. Apple has gone too small for the SIM card on Apple Watch, with an electronic SIM that is over one-hundredth the size of a nano SIM.

Thinking about antenna? Well, the Apple Watch Series 3’s display itself is an antenna, an industry-first approach to antenna design. What that means is the display is used for both transmitting and receiving signal for LTE and UTMS. The Watch Series 3 will allow you to stream 40 million songs right from the wrist, no iPhone required, to your AirPods.

Now moving to the part that you don’’t see until you open up the Apple Watch literally. The Apple Watch Series 3 is powered by the S3, Apple’s architecture featuring faster dual-core processor. Courtesy of the S3, Apple Watch now has quicker app launch times, smoother graphics, and a very interactive Siri. For the first time, Siri on Apple Watch can talk to you!

Making WiFi 85-percent faster, and Bluetooth and WiFi 50-percent more power efficient, Apple Watch Series 3 uses a new chip called W2, which is likely the successor to the W1 chip found on AirPods. Battery life remains the same, 18 hours long.

Apple Watch Series 3 Ceramic

Running watchOS 4, the new Apple Watch Series 3 will come in gold, silver, or space gray color, with new band colors and styles. The LTE edition has a red digital crown and an exclusive “explorer” watch face that will display cellular connection. Apple is also offering a dark gray ceramic case. Continuing the partnership, Apple and Hermes are launching new models that will feature designer bands and watchfaces, pricing starting at $1,149.

Apple Watch Series 3 starts at $399 (USD) for the LTE edition, while the non-LTE model settles at $329 (USD). Additionally, the Watch Series 1 will be available for $249 (USD). Pre-orders start on September 15, with retail availability beginning September 22. Please refer to this page for supported carriers around the world for Apple Watch Series 3 with LTE.

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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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Apple TV 4K, iPhone 7, iPhone 8 and iPhone X Support FLAC Audio Playback

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iPhone X and Tim Cook

Apple has quietly added support for FLAC audio playback to the recently-announced iPhone 8, iPhone X and Apple TV 4K. Also included in the audio standard’s support list is the iPhone 7.

In case you’re wondering, FLAC stands for Free Lossless Audio Codec. It’s an audio format similar to MP3, but it’s lossless. What that means is the audio is compressed without any loss in quality, providing a lossless compression.

iPhone FLAC Audio

In order to listen to FLAC audio files on your iPhone, you’ll need to use the native Files app or a third-party app such as VLC, as Apple’s Music app doesn’t support the FLAC standard just yet. Plus, a Lightning-connected headphone is recommended to listen to FLAC audio files, as it offers more bandwidth than a connection over Bluetooth.

The new iPhones and Apple TV 4K ship with FLAC playback support, whereas the iPhone 7 gets it with the release of iOS 11 on September 19.

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