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2
Jan

APK app unlocks Pixel 2 portrait mode on older smartphones (sort of)


Itching to get your hands on the Google Pixel 2’s camera effects, but don’t have the cash? A developer just unlocked one of the flagship smartphone’s camera features using software. Charles Chow recently shared an update to Camera NX, a Google Camera mod app, that unlocks part of the Pixel 2 portrait mode on older phones, including the original Pixel, Nexus 5X and Nexus 6P.

The mod app brings a variation on portrait mode to older phones, all using software. Chow explains that Google used a hardware-based solution on the rear-facing camera, but a software variation on the front-facing camera. By adapting that software, Chow says Camera NX will allow users with an older phone to access the portrait mode.

The camera mod won’t quite match the Pixel 2’s portrait mode however — because it’s only a software fix. On the rear-facing camera, the Pixel 2 uses dual-pixel autofocus and adapts the dual-pixel sensor to take data from slightly different locations. Much like using two lenses, accessing data from different locations on the sensor allows the smartphone to access depth data. With access to that information, the Pixel 2 can determine what’s closest to the camera and what’s in the background, allowing for an intelligent blur effect to be applied to the shot automatically in post.

Since the feature on the rear camera is all hardware, Camera NX doesn’t quite have the same features. While the portrait mode on Pixel 2 works with any subject, Camera NX requires a person for the effect to work. When a face shows up in the photo, the app will save the original plus a version with that background blur, but face-free photos means just a single photo without the blur effect.

Chow, who has previously brought HDR+ and AR stickers to earlier models with the mod, says the portrait effect does work on both the front and back cameras, modifying the software from the front of the Pixel 2 to work in both cameras on older smartphones. As version 7.3, the Camera NX update also gets a handful of other updates, including some bug fixes.

Camera NX doesn’t create quite the same hardware-based portrait mode — and users will still have to buy the Pixel 2 for other hardware solutions like optical stabilization and the highest DxOMark smartphone rating yet. But the mod app could be a way for some users willing to try a third-party APK download to access some of the portrait mode features without an upgrade. The download and details on the update are available from Chromaloop.com.

Editors’ Recommendations

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  • How to Use Portrait Mode on an iPhone 7 Plus, 8 Plus, or X
  • The Google Pixel 2 camera already earned the highest scores yet — here’s why




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2
Jan

Intel’s chip-packing Radeon graphics slips a brief tease just before CES 2018


Over the last several days, Intel India listed the Core i7-8809G processor module containing AMD’s Radeon graphics. Intel has since pulled that particular listing, but not before screenshots appeared online to give us a glimpse into the currently unannounced chip. It’s expected to see a formal release during the CES 2018 technology show starting January 9, given that resulting products will hit the market during the first quarter.

Here are the specifications:

Model:
Core i7-8809G
Cores:
4
Threads:
8
Base speed:
3.1GHz
Cache:
8MB
Max power consumption:
100 watts (target use)
Supported memory type:
DDR4 @ 2,400 dual-channel
Graphics:
Radeon RX Vega M GH Graphics
Intel HD Graphics 630

Keep in mind that the Core i7-8809G is a module, and not a processor cramming AMD’s graphics cores into the typical CPU package. There will be three chips mounted on a small, enclosed circuit board with an embedded “superhighway” that connects all three together. One chip will contain the CPU and what appears to be HD Graphics 630 graphics cores, one will contain the Radeon cores, and the third will play host to HBM2 memory dedicated to the Radeon graphics.

The leaked specs show that the processor cores are likely based on Intel’s seventh-generation Kaby Lake architecture, and not the most-recent Coffee Lake design. The clue is in the integrated HD Graphics 630 component, which was tweaked and renamed as UHD Graphics 630 in the new eighth-generation Core processors. The memory support is also a clue given it matches Kaby Lake while Coffee Lake supports DDR4 memory at 2,666MHz.

That said, the part number may bear an eighth-generation number, but it’s likely based on an eighth-generation design. What’s interesting is that internet sleuths found the unannounced module listed among unlocked desktop processors that sit on motherboards the old-fashioned way — via a socket. There are also no mobile chips on the list, indicating that Intel classifies the upcoming module as a desktop product that may be seated/unseated just like any other desktop processor.

But current renders and possible leaked images show the module to be rectangular in shape whereas desktop processors are typically squared. That means the module likely isn’t compatible with any eighth-generation motherboard unless Intel’s renders are for illustration only, and don’t reflect the product’s final shape. Intel may also take the Atom route by locking the module in place, thus the only way to get the Core i7-8809G is to buy the complete chip/motherboard package.

As for the 100-watt power use, that’s the combined power draw of the CPU cores, Intel graphics cores, Radeon graphics cores, and HBM2 memory. Speculation points to 45 watts for Intel’s portion followed by around 50 watts for AMD’s graphics. The Radeon aspect could contain up to 24 compute units given that AMD already crams 10 “Vega” CUs in its Ryzen 7 2700U all-in-one processor (APU). AMD’s chip only consumes 15 watts of power.

Given that CES 2018 starts next week, we should have a clearer picture regarding Intel’s collaboration with AMD during the show.

Editors’ Recommendations

  • Leaked photo shows upcoming Intel/AMD module on a compact motherboard
  • Time to upgrade your gaming PC? These are the best processors to choose from
  • Intel and AMD’s love/hate relationship spilled in benchmarks detailing two chips
  • Intel is cramming custom AMD Radeon graphics into an eighth-generation chip
  • Apple iMac Pro news: everything you need to know about the professional desktop




2
Jan

Samsung C-Lab debuts smartglasses, portable speakers, and a breathing device


From smartphones to televisions to refrigerators, it’s difficult to find technology today that doesn’t sport the Samsung name. And now, the conglomerate is stretching its innovation muscles even further with its C-Lab, or Creative Lab, program. At CES 2018, we can expect to see three new projects from Samsung’s special team, including a portable directional speaker, a device to help folks breathe better, and a pair of smart visual-aid eyeglasses.

“Since launching five years ago, our C-Lab program has gained exciting momentum across Samsung, helping foster an innovation culture, and providing an avenue for our creative, talented employees to pursue innovative new projects,” said Jaiil Lee, vice president and head of the Creativity & Innovation Center at Samsung Electronics. “We will continuously introduce innovative projects through our C-Lab program.”

First up is the S-Ray, or Sound-Ray, an entirely mobile speaker that will bring its directional features just about anywhere you’d like. Offering to be smaller, lighter, and more affordable than existing directional speakers, the S-Ray promises the same quality of sound (and privacy) as earbuds. These speakers are said to transmit sound more directly to the listener, which means that you’ll be able to hear your music without distracting those around you.

Then there’s the GoBreath, described as “a recovery solution for people who have experienced lung damage and suffer from postoperative pulmonary complications after general anesthesia.” The device comes with a companion mobile app that claims to enable patients who have undergone surgery due to lung pain how to recover faster. The device is said to teach patients breathing techniques including inspiration, coughing, and deep breathing. Moreover, patients can look into exercise guidelines and observe their lung progress by way of the companion app, and send this information to their doctors for constant monitoring.

Finally, C-Lab is debuting the Relúmĭno glasses, which are designed to help those with visual impairments see images or objects more clearly. The companion Relúmĭno app was first introduced at Mobile World Congress 2017, and Relúmĭno glasses provide the hardware component. These spectacles pair with the app, utilizing a smartphone’s processors and batteries. The smartphone actually processes images from videos that are received through the camera of the glasses, and the processed images are then retransmitted to the display of the Relúmĭno glasses.

We’ve yet to see these new inventions in action, but will be able to do so in just a few short days.

Editors’ Recommendations

  • Samsung’s new SeeColor app adjusts hues to assist color-blind viewers
  • Squeeze the most out of your phone with these handy HTC U11 Life tips and tricks
  • Assistive tech is progressing faster than ever, and these 7 devices prove it
  • Riva Festival multiroom speaker review
  • Huawei Mate 9 review




2
Jan

Samsung C-Lab debuts smartglasses, portable speakers, and a breathing device


From smartphones to televisions to refrigerators, it’s difficult to find technology today that doesn’t sport the Samsung name. And now, the conglomerate is stretching its innovation muscles even further with its C-Lab, or Creative Lab, program. At CES 2018, we can expect to see three new projects from Samsung’s special team, including a portable directional speaker, a device to help folks breathe better, and a pair of smart visual-aid eyeglasses.

“Since launching five years ago, our C-Lab program has gained exciting momentum across Samsung, helping foster an innovation culture, and providing an avenue for our creative, talented employees to pursue innovative new projects,” said Jaiil Lee, vice president and head of the Creativity & Innovation Center at Samsung Electronics. “We will continuously introduce innovative projects through our C-Lab program.”

First up is the S-Ray, or Sound-Ray, an entirely mobile speaker that will bring its directional features just about anywhere you’d like. Offering to be smaller, lighter, and more affordable than existing directional speakers, the S-Ray promises the same quality of sound (and privacy) as earbuds. These speakers are said to transmit sound more directly to the listener, which means that you’ll be able to hear your music without distracting those around you.

Then there’s the GoBreath, described as “a recovery solution for people who have experienced lung damage and suffer from postoperative pulmonary complications after general anesthesia.” The device comes with a companion mobile app that claims to enable patients who have undergone surgery due to lung pain how to recover faster. The device is said to teach patients breathing techniques including inspiration, coughing, and deep breathing. Moreover, patients can look into exercise guidelines and observe their lung progress by way of the companion app, and send this information to their doctors for constant monitoring.

Finally, C-Lab is debuting the Relúmĭno glasses, which are designed to help those with visual impairments see images or objects more clearly. The companion Relúmĭno app was first introduced at Mobile World Congress 2017, and Relúmĭno glasses provide the hardware component. These spectacles pair with the app, utilizing a smartphone’s processors and batteries. The smartphone actually processes images from videos that are received through the camera of the glasses, and the processed images are then retransmitted to the display of the Relúmĭno glasses.

We’ve yet to see these new inventions in action, but will be able to do so in just a few short days.

Editors’ Recommendations

  • Samsung’s new SeeColor app adjusts hues to assist color-blind viewers
  • Squeeze the most out of your phone with these handy HTC U11 Life tips and tricks
  • Assistive tech is progressing faster than ever, and these 7 devices prove it
  • Riva Festival multiroom speaker review
  • Huawei Mate 9 review




2
Jan

Microsoft officially draws the curtain on its Groove Music streaming service


If the name “Groove Music” rings absolutely no bells for you, don’t worry — you’re not alone. Microsoft’s attempt at a streaming music service was a valiant one but it was ultimately unsuccessful. In October, the company announced that it would discontinue support for its music platform, opting instead to expand its partnership with Spotify and help Groove Music Pass customers move their curated playlists and collections directly into the far more successful service. At that point, Microsoft noted that after December 31, the Groove Music app would no longer offer the option to stream, purchase, or download music. And today, the company made good on that promise.

Originally debuted in 2015 alongside the release of Windows 10, Groove Music was never particularly successful in the midst of a crowded streaming landscape. In June, the platform introduced a new feature that was meant to mimic Spotify’s Discover Weekly playlists, helping folks discover new music. This, however, proved insufficient in helping the service gain ground.

There were a few advantages Groove Music had over other platforms, however. For example, you could play your own MP3s from your OneDrive account, and Groove would analyze these files as well as what you listened to via the music service to recommend personalized track listings. It also was said to track artist activity, offering playlists based on bands that were touring in your neck of the woods.

But as of Tuesday, January 2, the online components of the Groove Music app are completely shut down. You can indeed no longer stream music, purchase songs, or play music videos through the app. The Radio, Explore, and Recommended features have also been removed. And if you open the Microsoft Store app on a Windows 10 device, you won’t see a music tab any longer.

You can still access the local playback feature of the app, and Groove still supports streaming from OneDrive. But if you’re really looking for some tunes to start your new year, you may want to look elsewhere. And while Groove recommends Spotify, there are plenty of other options available for your listening pleasure.

Editors’ Recommendations

  • Spotify vs. Pandora: Which is better for you?
  • An emoji is all you need to find a playlist with new Apple Music Messenger bot
  • Jam out to a ‘Hipster Brunch’ playlist with Pandora’s Featured Playlists
  • Meet the playlist curators minting new music stars one pick at a time
  • Music junkie? Here are the 25 best music apps for consuming and creating tunes




2
Jan

Microsoft officially draws the curtain on its Groove Music streaming service


If the name “Groove Music” rings absolutely no bells for you, don’t worry — you’re not alone. Microsoft’s attempt at a streaming music service was a valiant one but it was ultimately unsuccessful. In October, the company announced that it would discontinue support for its music platform, opting instead to expand its partnership with Spotify and help Groove Music Pass customers move their curated playlists and collections directly into the far more successful service. At that point, Microsoft noted that after December 31, the Groove Music app would no longer offer the option to stream, purchase, or download music. And today, the company made good on that promise.

Originally debuted in 2015 alongside the release of Windows 10, Groove Music was never particularly successful in the midst of a crowded streaming landscape. In June, the platform introduced a new feature that was meant to mimic Spotify’s Discover Weekly playlists, helping folks discover new music. This, however, proved insufficient in helping the service gain ground.

There were a few advantages Groove Music had over other platforms, however. For example, you could play your own MP3s from your OneDrive account, and Groove would analyze these files as well as what you listened to via the music service to recommend personalized track listings. It also was said to track artist activity, offering playlists based on bands that were touring in your neck of the woods.

But as of Tuesday, January 2, the online components of the Groove Music app are completely shut down. You can indeed no longer stream music, purchase songs, or play music videos through the app. The Radio, Explore, and Recommended features have also been removed. And if you open the Microsoft Store app on a Windows 10 device, you won’t see a music tab any longer.

You can still access the local playback feature of the app, and Groove still supports streaming from OneDrive. But if you’re really looking for some tunes to start your new year, you may want to look elsewhere. And while Groove recommends Spotify, there are plenty of other options available for your listening pleasure.

Editors’ Recommendations

  • Spotify vs. Pandora: Which is better for you?
  • An emoji is all you need to find a playlist with new Apple Music Messenger bot
  • Jam out to a ‘Hipster Brunch’ playlist with Pandora’s Featured Playlists
  • Meet the playlist curators minting new music stars one pick at a time
  • Music junkie? Here are the 25 best music apps for consuming and creating tunes




2
Jan

The 5 biggest computing trends to watch for at CES 2018


CES is a preview of a lot of the trends we see in technology throughout the year. In the world of computing and laptops, CES 2018 is already shaping up to be an important one. While there will be plenty of surprises at the show, we have some ideas about what manufacturers will be showing off — and what they won’t be.

CES is just around the corner, and soon enough we’ll be feasting our eyes on everything the tech world has to offer us in 2018. For now, here are the five computing trends to have your eye on heading into the world’s biggest tech trade show.

Qualcomm LTE PCs galore

Matt Smith/Digital Trends

Qualcomm made the announcement of its big move into PCs in November at a press conference in Hawaii — and we’ve been thinking about the ramifications of it ever since. The two laptops Qualcomm showed off, the Asus NovaGo and the HP Envy x2, were both impressive devices, boasting both built-in-LTE and 20+ battery life. Those two features alone make them interesting devices and have us interested in what these other “Always Connected” PCs will be like.

The performance capabilities of Qualcomm’s Snapdragon CPUs is one of the biggest remaining questions, but with portability as the primary focus, it may not matter all that much. In addition to those aforementioned computers, we’re expecting similar devices to show up at CES from companies like Lenovo.

Whether Qualcomm’s effort is a game-changer or a complete bust, these new devices are going to turn heads with their unparalleled portability. A couple years from now, we may even be talking about these PCs as one of the most significant changes to computing in years.

Now, everything is a 2-in-1

Matt Smith/Digital Trends

Speaking of 2-in-1s, don’t expect them to go away anytime soon. In fact, we’re predicting that in 2018, they’re only going to become more important for the PC market. With all the innovation happening around battery life, connectivity, and build quality, it’s hard not to have high hopes for what manufacturers will do with 2-in-1s this year.

They’ll still come in all sorts of flavors: folio designs with detachable keyboards, touchscreen laptops with 360 hinges, and, of course, the aforementioned ones with built-in LTE. What’ll change is not their existence, but their availability.

Whether it’s a cheap 2-in-1 from Asus or a $2000+ Surface Book 2, it’s becoming increasingly hard to find traditional, clamshell laptops. 2018 may not be the year that laptops disappear altogether, but many more companies are throwing in 2-in-1 flexibility as a standard feature. Even Chromebooks are going the way of the 2-in-1, with the Pixelbook leading the way.

Intel 8th-gen chips, Intel CPUs with AMD Graphics

We’ve been using 8th-generation Intel Core CPUs for many months now, but we’re expecting the rest of the stragglers to embrace the new hardware continuing into the first half of 2018. Intel is almost certain to expand its roster of 8th-gen processors, too, so we’ll see the chips show up in laptops that currently don’t have an ideal 8th-gen option, like high-end mobile workstations.

In addition, we’re anticipating the launch of more laptops with the unprecedented combination of Intel CPUs and custom AMD Radeon graphics cards. Squeezed onto a single module, Intel claims the goal is to create thin and light notebooks with serious gaming performance. This could be an awesome choice for mobile workstations and even budget gaming laptops.

The announcement that the partnership could exist within the heated rivalry between the companies came as a shock when it was announced in November, so we’re excited to see what kind of computers could come from the collaboration.

New VR headsets will be MIA

VR headsets have had a big impact on CES in the past, especially when they were first being labeled as “the next big thing.” These days, companies are talking a lot about stand-alone VR headsets that don’t depend on a PC or smartphone. But don’t expect these new headsets to have a huge presence this year at CES.

Oculus has its own stand-alone VR headset that it showed off in October, the Oculus Go, but Oculus doesn’t even have a booth at CES. HTC has its own Vive Focus stand-alone headset, but so far it’s only been announced to be available in China. Outside of these, both of these large companies have been relatively quiet on the premium VR front. Instead, Oculus has been offering price cuts as a solution to getting more units in the hands of VR first-timers.

In addition, Google has begun its own push toward stand-alone headsets on the Daydream platform, though very few have been announced yet. In fact, HTC recently announced that it canceled its Daydream headset in favor of making the Vive Focus. So far, the only rumored VR headset in the line — and the only one likely to make an appearance at CES — is Lenovo’s stand-alone Daydream headset.

It sounds like we’ll have to wait until later in the year to try the rest of out.

HDR monitors aplenty, but not OLED

Bill Roberson/Digital Trends

CES is the perfect place to show off new monitor technology — and this year it’ll be all about HDR. The ones we’ve used so far have been impressive, though we felt like Windows 10 wasn’t quite ready to handle it just yet. HDR monitors are just getting started, and we’re expecting a host of them to be shown off at CES.

OLED displays have already invaded smartphones and television, but we’re anticipating that they’ll still be rare among computers — including laptops, all-in-ones, and monitors. Dell’s attempt to sell an OLED monitor didn’t go so well, and the early OLED options shown on laptops in 2017 didn’t expand to other models.

Also, in terms of technologies and size, monitors tend to take one step at a time each year — and again, this year will most likely belong to HDR. OLED will no doubt be the future of monitors at some point, but it may be a couple more years before they start showing up in large numbers.

Editors’ Recommendations

  • AMD lands prestigious award for its beastly Ryzen Threadripper 1950X
  • What kind of crazy TVs will we see at CES 2018? It starts with LG’s 8K OLED
  • Samsung refreshes its Notebook 9 laptops for 2018, adds model supporting S Pen
  • Refreshed LG Gram laptops head to North America in January for CES 2018
  • TWB Podcast: Apple slows down iPhones; Future of TVs; Magic Leap One




2
Jan

Microsoft once again boasts the Edge browser’s battery life prowess


Although Windows 10 is making progress in becoming the favorite operating system of PC users, Microsoft’s attempt to position its Edge browser as a viable alternative to Google Chrome hasn’t met with as much success. To date, Edge maintains a paltry four percent or so of the browser market, a number that’s remained flat for months. To help bridge the gap, Microsoft has been pushing Edge’s greater efficiency, and it’s just released another video with some lofty claims of battery-life superiority.

As the video above attests, Edge was able to outlast Mozilla Firefox by 63 percent and Chrome by 19 percent. Microsoft provided few details about the test, only indicating how long each browser was able to “stream video” on identical Surface Book notebooks. The video’s fine print indicates that the test used a continuously looping HD streaming video, but we don’t know what video codec was used nor if it was streaming from a local server or the internet.

In our own testing, Edge was the battery-life champ. It beat out all competitors in most of our tests, which included Netflix binging, running the Basemark web benchmark, and simple web browsing. We tested on two machines, the HP Spectre x360 15-inch laptop and the HP EliteBook x360 G2, with mainly consistent results across both. While the differences weren’t always as dramatic as Microsoft’s video attests, they nevertheless largely corroborated Microsoft’s claims that Edge provides a distinct advantage in battery life.

Interestingly, Microsoft did not post results for the Opera browser in this video, which is an unfortunate omission. In our testing, Opera came in second behind Edge, beating out both Firefox and Chrome. In fact, Opera was even more efficient than Edge on the EliteBook, and it was roughly comparable on both test machines in terms of streaming Netflix video.

We should note that Microsoft does not indicate which versions of each browser were used in the test, which could have a significant impact on the overall results. Generally speaking, we’re comfortable agreeing with Microsoft Edge lasts longer on a charge than Firefox and Chrome, while adding that Opera is also a viable option for the energy conscious.

Editors’ Recommendations

  • Which browser gives the best battery life? The winner is a shocker
  • Rumored tests of early Windows 10 on Qualcomm processor fail to impress
  • Microsoft’s Android apps offer the best Windows mobile experience
  • Microsoft Surface Pro (2017) review
  • Microsoft Surface Book 2 15-inch Review




2
Jan

Monument Valley is free on the Play Store in certain countries


The United States and Canada need not apply.

blank_7.jpg?itok=nCyMWBAo

The first Monument Valley made its debut on Android in 2014, and despite its age, is still a ton of fun to play in 2018. Its sequel was finally released this past November so that fans could jump back into the beautiful puzzle-solving world, but if you’ve never experienced the magic that ustwo games created with Monument Valley, now might be the time to do it.

monument-valley-moto-x.jpg?itok=kaqb6Jpj

Spotted by Android Police, the first Monument Valley is free on the Google Play Store in certain countries. Markets where the game is free are apparently ones where prices in the Play Store have not be localized to match the currency of those areas, and countries that have been confirmed to offer this deal include:

  • Argentina
  • Armenia
  • Azerbaijan
  • Brazil
  • Iceland
  • India
  • Indonesia
  • Mexico
  • Russia
  • Taiwan
  • Venezuela

There are possibly many other countries where the game is also being offered for free, but ones where it’ll still cost you $3.99 include the likes of Australia, Canada, various countries in Europe, Japan, Korea, multiple regions in South America, and the United States.

Monument Valley 2 is now on sale for $4.99

2
Jan

These are all the phones Sony is launching in 2018


sony-xperia-xz1-pink-1.jpg?itok=mAvepRov

Here’s a look at Sony’s smartphone lineup for 2018.

Sony has an…interesting…position in the Android smartphone space. Sony produced some darn good phones in 2017, such as the Xperia XZ Premium and XZ1, but compared to handsets like the Galaxy S8, Pixel 2, and even the OnePlus 5T, Sony’s offerings usually fall flat in one area or another that hold them back from true greatness.

We’re just now getting started with 2018, but we’ve already got a good idea of what to expect from a few of Sony’s Xperia handsets later this year. A lot of what we’re seeing so far looks to be more of the same, but there are a few interesting bits here and there. Let’s take a look.

Sony Xperia XZ2 Premium

As great of a phone as the XZ Premium was, there were more issues than we usually like to see for devices that cost $799 USD. We’re expecting Sony to release a sequel this year, and while exact details are still quite sparse, Concept Creator has created a video showing their idea of what they’d like to see in the XZ2 Premium.

The video shows a phone with the slimmest bezels we’ve ever seen on a Sony phone, front-facing speakers, glass back, and dual cameras. We wouldn’t be surprised to see Sony finally get on the dual camera bandwagon, and as great as it’d be to have a flagship Xperia handset with bezels this slim, we aren’t all that sure if 2018 will be the year Sony makes this jump.

Sony Xperia XA2/XA2 Ultra

If you’re going to be in the market for a small mid-ranger this year, Sony’s Xperia XA2 might be worth checking out. The phone is expected to have the same 5-inch display as its predecessor, and it’ll be just a bit shorter and wider at 141.6 x 70.4 x 9.6mm.

As for the XA2 Ultra, this will once again be a large phone with a screen that measures in at 6-inches. It’ll be slightly shorter than the XA1 Ultra with dimensions of 162.5 x 80.0 x 9.5mm, but it’ll retain the same screen resolution of 1920 x 1080. The XA2 Ultra will be powered by the Snapdragon 630 and 4GB of RAM, and you’ll have 64GB of storage for all your local files.

Both the XA2 and XA2 Ultra will keep the traditional 16:9 aspect ratio and large top/bottom bezels, but what’s interesting is that Sony is ditching the side-mounted fingerprint sensor for one that’s on the back. This would mark the first time Sony’s had a fingerprint sensor on the back of its phones, and while the implementation of it on the power button was cool, hopefully this will enable customers to finally have a fingerprint sensor on a Sony phone in the U.S.

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Sony Xperia L2

The Xperia L2 falls in between the XA2 and XA2 Ultra size-wise with a 5.5-inch screen, and it features the same Snapdragon 630 processor and 4GB RAM. There’s no word just yet as to what the resolution of that display will be, but we wouldn’t be surprised to see it stay at 1280 x 720 like it is on the L1.

Android Nougat should be shipping on the L2, but considering Sony’s track records for past software updates, we don’t imagine it’ll take too long before Oreo arrives on it.

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