Xiaomi Mi A1 now getting official Android Oreo update
Oreo goes official.
Since early December, Xiaomi’s been seeking individuals to participate in a beta of Android Oreo for the Mi A1. News broke later in the month that Oreo for the phone introduced fast-charging, but there was still no timeframe as to when it’d be available for all. However, as a treat for ringing in the new year, Xiaomi’s announced that Oreo is officially rolling out to all Mi A1 units.
Xiaomi will push Oreo to the Mi A1 in batches, so if you don’t have an OTA update quite yet, it should arrive on your handset within a couple days.
In addition to the previously mentioned fast charging, Oreo for the Mi A1 adds picture-in-picture, notification dots, Google’s Autofill API, improved battery/performance, and everything else that we’ve come to love with Android’s latest.
If you own a Xiaomi Mi A1, have you gotten the Oreo update yet?
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You’ll be able to use Android Auto without any wires this year
Wireless Android Auto is almost here.
In November of 2016, Android Auto became a lot more accessible with the ability to run the car-centric version of the OS directly on your phone without the need for a compatible receiver. Android Auto receives do have the advantage of offering a larger display and being a more seamless integration into your vehicle, but the disadvantage is that they require your phone to be plugged into your car.
Thanks to JVC Kenwood, this won’t be an issue for too much longer. The company will be showcasing two new Android Auto receivers at CES 2018, and they’ll be the first ones that allow you to run Android Auto wirelessly without having to plug your phone into them.
Exact specs are mostly unknown, but CNET reports that both units will come equipped with 1280 x 720 HD displays and support for Apple CarPlay as well.
The current wired method of using Android Auto works fine, but the advantage of going wireless means that you can run Android Auto on your receiver and have a free port on your phone for fast-charging while on the way to work.
Pricing and availability for the JVC Kenwood Android Auto receivers is unknown, but we’ll have all these details and much more in just a few short days.
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Telegram 4.7 adds multiple accounts and quick replies on Android
Telegram now supports up to three unique accounts/phone numbers.
Telegram is one of the world’s most popular messaging services around, and with the latest 4.7 update that’s rolling out to Android now, it’s picking up a couple new tricks that we think will be greatly appreciated by users everywhere.
The biggest feature being added with Telegram 4.7 is support for multiple accounts. You can now add up to three accounts on the Telegram app that each have their own phone number, and switching back and forth between your different ones is as easy as opening the hamburger menu, tapping the arrow by your number, and choosing which account you want to use.
You’ll get notifications for all of your numbers by default, but you can turn these on and off in your notification settings.
Also new in 4.7 is quick replies. When in a conversation, just swipe left on any message and you’ll see an option for quickly replying to that specific message.
Telegram 4.7 is available to download in the Play Store now, and you can grab the update by clicking/tapping the button above.
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Some Galaxy Note 8 owners have reported battery charging issues
Some Galaxy Note 8 owners have been reporting that they couldn’t charge or turn on their handsets after the batteries ran dry — a problem that plagues other phones as well. While Samsung reps have been trying to address individual issues, a company spokesperson told Engadget that it has received “a very limited number of reports which could be associated with the power management circuit.”
This issue does appear to be confined to a relatively small number of users, and thankfully doesn’t appear to be safety-related. It seems more likely to do with power management — specifically that a small amount of energy needs to remain in the phone to help kickstart charging control. It’s an issue that plagues some other phones as well.
Samsung reps have been advising affected users to get warranty replacements for their Note 8s, but those who don’t want to hand over their phones or aren’t covered by warranty can try something called stack charging. By plugging your charger in and out of your phone for 10 to 15 seconds at a time about 30 seconds apart, you could generate enough energy after about 20 minutes or 100 attempts to get your phone going again.
Of course, that is quite a tiresome task, and its safety and effectiveness isn’t guaranteed, but it could save you a trip to the store. Meanwhile, if you’re a Galaxy Note 8 (or S8 Plus) owner, it’s probably a good idea not to let your phone run out of juice.
According to the Samsung spokesperson, “we are unable to comment further until we obtain more specific information from the phone. Any consumers with questions about their device should contact us directly at 1-800-SAMSUNG so that we can help them.”
What Do You Want to See From Apple in 2018?
In our recent What to Expect post, we covered everything we think we’ll see from Apple in 2018 based on the current rumors that are circulating about the company’s 2018 plans.
Three new iPhones are on the horizon, one a followup to the iPhone X, one that will serve as an “iPhone X Plus” with a larger OLED display, and one with an LCD display that will be positioned as a low to midrange device with a cheaper price tag. Apple’s first smart speaker, the HomePod, will come out in 2018, and we’re also expecting a revamped iPad Pro, refreshed Macs, and new software, but there’s always a chance for a wildcard update or new product that will surprise us all.
A high-end modular Mac Pro, new original TV shows, AR smart glasses, and autonomous driving software are all products Apple is working on, with no official release date known. We want to hear from the MacRumors community — what are you expecting or hoping to see Apple release in 2018?
Are there specific features you’re hoping Apple will implement in iOS 12, tvOS 12, watchOS 5, or macOS 10.14? Popular wishlist items for last year included a dark mode for iOS, a customizable Control Center (which happened!), animated icons, iPhone complications, a swipe-based keyboard, offline Maps and Siri, and more.
Let us know what you want to see in the comments, and make sure to check out our What to Expect post to get a glimpse at the current rumors. Apple’s plans for 2018 will become more clear in the early months of the year, and as always, we’ll be covering every rumor that pops up in-depth here at MacRumors.
The MacRumors forums are also a rich resource for discussing upcoming products and rumors, and with so many exciting changes on the horizon for 2018, our forums are the place to be for lively discussions on what’s coming.
We’d like to thank all of our readers and forum members for making MacRumors the absolute best source for Apple news, rumors, and advice on the web. We wouldn’t be here without you, and we look forward to yet another rumor-packed year in 2018.
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China’s acoustic probe heard sound from the Mariana Trench
A team of Chinese scientists have completed the country’s first acoustic test in the Mariana Trench, and the results could lead to a breakthrough in understanding how sound is transmitted in the deepest parts of the ocean. The researchers from Northwestern Polytechnical University in Shanxi province dropped and retrieved an acoustic probe into a valley at the southern end of the trench, which is about 11 kilometers (approximately 6.83 miles) under the surface.
The valley in question is the Challenger Deep, and is the deepest recorded point on the earth’s seabed, according to the South China Morning Post. At such depths, sound is crucial for communication, since there is no light.
The researchers were able to hear sounds from the deepest part of the ocean and they’ve left six acoustic sensors in the trench to collect information about ambient sea noise for a year. These will be retrieved in November. This is the first such experiment for China, and its results could not only help understand how deep sea creatures communicate with sound, but could also have military applications.
Via: South China Morning Post
Source: Ren Min (Chinese)
Elon Musk starts 2018 with $1M for tunneling plan after ‘boring’ caps sell out
Elon Musks starts 2018 with a million bucks for his ambitious tunneling project that he claims could help to banish traffic congestion at street level.
The pile of cash comes thanks to sales of the “boring” caps that Musk began offering in October, 2017.
The $20 cap comes with the name of Musk’s tunneling outfit — The Boring Company — emblazoned on the front, and the CEO recently revealed the headwear has sold out.
Musk, who also leads SpaceX and Tesla, set the sales limit to 50,000 caps and hit the target within just two months.
While $1 million is admittedly a tiny fraction of the project’s expected costs, the tongue-in-cheek hat-based venture has at least helped to spread the word about what The Boring Company wants to achieve.
If you’re still not in the know, then allow us to explain: The Boring Company wants to build a kind of futuristic freeway, first beneath the streets of Los Angeles, as part of a transportation system that would see cars whizzing through tunnels on track-based electric-powered sleds at speeds of up to 150 mph.
A vehicle would be lowered from the street to the sled using an elevator system, while pedestrians and cyclists would enter large pods available for public use. The high-speed sleds would move from numerous side tunnels onto the main track in order to keep all passengers constantly on the move. “This is a big difference compared to subways that stop at every stop, whether you’re getting off or not,” Musk said.
The Boring Company claims it can drill tunnels more efficiently than current systems, and in October revealed it had already started work on its first route, “roughly parallel” to Interstate 405 from Los Angeles International Airport to Route 101.
Musk has also said the company is in talks with officials about using his tunneling equipment to build subterranean Hyperloop systems connecting major cities on the East Coast.
Whether Musk can drill his way to subterranean success depends on a bunch of factors, not least green lights from regulators and sufficient funding.
And whether that funding comes from another sales effort by Musk remains to be seen, though he has on more than one occasion hinted at a particularly offbeat plan: “Hats sold out, flamethrowers soon!” he tweeted recently. Is a “boring” flamethrower really on the cards? Somehow we wouldn’t put it past the guy …
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Pilot of world’s biggest passenger jet calms the nerves of anxious fliers
A new year hopefully promises new adventures, some of which could involve taking a flight to a faraway place.
That’s all well and good if you don’t mind flying, but for nervous plane passengers, booking a ticket could mark the beginning of a steady increase in anxiety levels as the big day approaches.
While some particularly nervous fliers may be convinced they only have a 50 percent chance of making it to their destination on any given flight, the truth is that flying is an extremely safe way of getting around thanks not only to advances in technology, but also the highly trained pilots pressing knobs and pulling levers to ensure the aircraft’s safe passage.
Hoping to calm the nerves of anxious travelers, British Airways pilot Dave Wallsworth recently posted a video on YouTube showing him taking the world’s largest passenger plane, the Airbus A380, into the air.
It’s true that YouTube offers a ton of take-off videos shot from airplane cockpits, but Captain Wallsworth’s offers informative explanations about exactly what’s going on as he taxis toward the runway, as well as what’s happening shortly after the plane gets off the ground.
Accompanied in the cockpit by Senior First Officers Jeremy Goodson and Phil Gillespie (an extra pilot is on board so they can each have breaks during the long flight), Wallsworth and his team are reassuringly calm as they make all the necessary checks before whizzing down the runway at London Heathrow, one of the world’s busiest airports.
Wallsworth told the Independent that he never gets nervous before a flight. “According to the heart-rate monitor on my watch, my pulse during take-off is lower than it is when driving to work on the [freeway],” he said, adding that one of his main reasons for making the video is “to show how relaxed our working environment is. I hope that our more nervous passengers will see we are totally at ease when flying.”
The flight took place in July, 2017, and was posted on YouTube on Saturday. A similar video, showing the same flight landing in Johannesburg, South Africa, hit YouTube a few weeks ago, and also takes viewers through the various steps the pilots take to bring the aircraft safely in.
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Scanning technique reads hidden writing in mummy boxes
Historians can use scanning to peek inside mummies without risking damage, but that hasn’t been true for the papyrus boxes those mummies were placed in before entering the tomb. If you’ve wanted to read the discarded everyday writing on that papyrus, you’ve typically had to destroy the boxes. That won’t be necessary from now on, though: researchers at University College London have developed a scanning technique that lets you read a mummy case’s writing while leaving it intact.
If you scan the cases with light at different frequencies, you can make the ink glow and thus see under the paste and plaster that would normally obscure the text. A lot of the writing is unspectacular (the BBC describes them as shopping lists and tax returns), but that’s the point — it’s about discovering Egyptian history beyond royalty and other famous people.
The technique has already found success with one mummy stored in Kent. It’s not certain that it’ll find widespread adoption, but it’s hard to see historians turning this down. Much as with techniques used to read closed books, this lets researchers have the best of both worlds: they can read ‘secret’ text without having to sacrifice priceless relics.
F-35 may see combat in 2018
After a very long and problematic development process, the F-35 Lightning II is about to serve on the front lines. The US Marine Corps is deploying the F-35B (the short takeoff and vertical landing variant) to ships in the Central and Pacific Command theaters in the spring and summer of 2018. The 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit is traveling aboard the USS Essex, which is headed to the Middle East, while the 31st will be attached to the USS Wasp and might head to the coast of North Korea.
While it wouldn’t exactly be heartening news if the F-35 did have to see combat, it would put the multi-role stealth fighter’s many technological systems to the test. The B’s clever STOVL system is its centerpiece, letting it operate from Marine ships and bases that don’t have the space for conventional aircraft. It’s also a pioneer inside the cockpit, with giant touchscreen displays and an in-helmet display that replaces the conventional HUD. Basically: where the F-22 is a relatively familiar design in some respects, the F-35 is more of a clean break.
The Marines will eventually field 420 F-35s, 67 of them being the carrier-oriented F-35C. They should eventually replace combat aircraft ranging from the Harrier (the original VTOL combat jet) to the Hornet. Not everyone is as thrilled with the design, though. Its development was plagued by numerous glitches, including software bugs and hardware design flaws (including one that led to a pre-takeoff accident). Also, cost overruns and high prices have led to scaled back orders. The F-35 may be a technical marvel, but there were many, many sacrifices involved in putting it into service.
Via: Popular Mechanics
Source: Marine Times