News digest №65. Life after the announcement

About the hysteria around the 'terrible marriage' of the new Galaxy Note, iPhone, which worked on the prototype of a hydrogen battery for a whole week, the disadvantages of TouchWiz, a full-fledged qwerty slider on Android and other



The announcement of a new iPhone or flagship of the Galaxy line can be compared to a stone thrown into the water. The depth of the lake or the relief of the coast will not change from this, but circles on the water will go. These are the circles that could be observed all last week.

Representatives LG couldn't resist giving Samsung a little trick on the Samsung Galaxy Note 5's delay for most markets.

To everyone that marked a note on their calendar. Sorry. We'd never do that to you. # G4TheWorld

– LG Jordan (@ LG Jordan) August 19, 2015

On the one hand, it turned out funny. Let me remind you that Samsung likes to play up the name of its flagship, using the slogan 'Note the date' in teasers, so they really deserve this hairpin. On the other hand, there is such a wonderful saying, “the dog barks, but the caravan moves on.” For LG, the best answer to the delay of Samsung's Note would be the release of an equally significant product, but alas, the LG G4, which the company suggests paying attention to, clearly falls short of Samsung's new product.

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Speaking of the Galaxy Note 5, it's worth mentioning the tantrum that swept across the net a couple of days ago. Even if by itself it is not worth a damn. The bottom line is very simple – it turns out that if you push the stylus into the smartphone backwards, it can get stuck in it. And if you then tug it properly, then the latch in the smartphone may well break, with the help of which Note determines exactly when the user pulled the stylus out of the slot. Did you feel the scale of the tragedy? No? Here I am too. For me, this is most reminiscent of a story about an old woman in the United States who tried to dry a cat in the microwave and then sued the manufacturer of this microwave.

However, if you wish, you can make an elephant out of any fly. Especially if you start discussing this fly on the Internet. Nobody really understood what it was about yet, but there were already a couple of hundred witnesses to this terrible marriage, rumors circulated that the smartphone was falling apart almost in the hands of users, and long arguments about the fact that 'after THIS I have never been Samsung products buy '.

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On the other hand, despite all the idiocy of the situation, the Korean company really should have been concerned with 'foolproofing'. Even if the customer is a complete idiot, unable to insert a disc into a computer, a USB flash drive into a USB, and a stylus into a slot, he still remains a customer. And the company is vitally interested in the fact that this same buyer was satisfied and after a year or two ran for a new smartphone. Any part should always be inserted in one single way (or fully work with any installation), this will certainly reduce all troubles to nothing. Yes, the same DVD can really be inserted into the drive with the wrong side, but because of this it does not get stuck there and will not lead to any damage.

However, before making any final conclusions, you need to see what and how is implemented there in practice, but I don't have a smartphone.

I don't know how bad this story is from a PR point of view, but there are a lot of people who want to buy a new Note anyway. Including in Europe, where Samsung does not plan to sell the new product before winter. Although there is still a chance that the Korean company will pay attention to the collective petition of users, in which they ask not to postpone the start of sales in Europe.


Interestingly, the petition was posted on the site of, a well-known store for fans of 'gray' smartphones.

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Samsung itself is still more interested in promoting not the Galaxy S6 Edge +, but not the new Note. They do this in different ways, including filming various videos about the smartphone. For example, the video below shows how this smartphone is assembled from components.

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It was interesting to watch the video, but I have doubts about how good it is as an advertisement. No, in theory, everyone knows that most of the mobile equipment is assembled by the Chinese manually at factories like Foxconn, and often also from about the same components. But all the same, to see how the flagship device, which, according to Samsung's assurances, has no and cannot be equal in the whole world, is assembled 'on the knee' from several quite ordinary-looking parts, it will be strange for many. Still, the imagination draws secret robotic factories, unique assembly technology and other unknown wonders. And here everything is so banal, they assembled like a simple house from Lego bricks. Well, how does it differ from any smartphone assembled in the Middle Kingdom after that?

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However, really bad advertising is not a YouTube video. This is advertising in the smartphone itself. Especially unsolicited advertising, which, moreover, is sent by the device manufacturer, and even appears not just anywhere, but in the status bar. Not so long ago the company HTC was noticed for something like this, now it came to Samsung.


According to Android Police, so far only a small fraction of users have received such advertising messages. Of course, I would like to believe that all this is an accidental 'bug' of one of the proprietary programs pre-installed in the phone, but it looks more like this is just the first test of a new function.

My attitude to such things is very simple – such actions are completely unacceptable for device manufacturers. Sending spam to your customers in the hope of getting an extra couple of cents on it is extremely dubious and will not benefit any manufacturer. Unless, of course, you do not take the model Amazon, which produces a special version of the device with advertising, but at a significantly lower cost.

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And Samsung programmers will clearly have something to do besides testing spam in the notification bar. It's no secret that the TouchWiz shell has always been considered quite controversial. Firstly, because of its design, which from the very beginning was very peculiar there. And secondly, which is much more important, because of poor optimization and constant slowdowns even on the top-end hardware.

TouchWiz is now much more 'clean' Android than before, although the shell still has a 'Korean' flavor. Yes, and those performance problems that were observed a couple of years ago, now seem to be gone. Rather, no at first glance. But if you dig a little deeper, it turns out that Samsung's solution loses to the 'clean' one Android anyway.

Of course, if you believe the journalists Android Police, who tested the multitasking work on the new Galaxy S6 Edge + with 4GB of 'fast' LPDDR4 RAM and the old Nexus 6 with 3GB of 'slow' memory.

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The smartphone, which, in theory, is one of the fastest, in practice again turned out to be out of work. On the one hand, this is not fatal, most smartphone owners will not even notice it. On the other hand, what are all its technical characteristics and additional gigabytes of memory worth against this background?

However, there is hope that this is just some kind of firmware bug, which will be corrected in the next update. In any case, I would like to believe in this.

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Finally, there is a small leak about a new smartphone BlackBerry, which is believed to work on Android. Or rather, a new version of an old smartphone – BlackBerry Passport.

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While Samsung is coming up with qwerty keyboard overlays, BlackBerry may represent a real qwerty candy bar with a hardware keyboard. Moreover, by this time, many users will just think that such a thing may be needed even in the age of swype and touch screens, for which it is worth saying thanks to the recent presentation of the Koreans.

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And it also happens that the circles on the water are visible, but who and when threw the stone is not clear from the side. And was there really a stone at all, or the fish living in the pond, in a fit of collective insanity, began to beat their tails in the water, muddying the clear and calm water with all their might?

Technology manufacturers have been trying to convince users for years that facial recognition features are extremely important and useful. And they tell in detail how simple, convenient and safe it is. Users, on the other hand, shrug their shoulders over and over again, after which this idea is once again sent under the carpet. Both in different laptops and in Android smartphones, the user face unlock function has been implemented for a long time, but I highly doubt that in real life it is really often used. It is more of such a feature, a toy for a couple of times, than something really necessary.

Then a fingerprint scanner appeared in iPhone, which, unlike face recognition, turned out to be really in place. No, such a sensor clearly cannot be called a 'killer feature', but in certain situations it is useful. Many Android smartphones already have such sensors, and soon their extended support will officially appear in the OS itself.

The trouble is that there is nothing unique in such a solution now, so it will not work to stand out in this way among competitors. And many (if not all) manufacturers really want this. And now companies are starting to reinvent the wheel, trying to convince everyone and everything that fingerprint scanners are far from the best option and instead it is better to use something else. The same face recognition function, for example.


This is what Microsoft emphasizes with its technology Windows Hellow. And it should be noted that it works really well. Just the other day, The Australian journalists decided to take a laptop Lenovo Yoga 3 14 and test Windows Hellow with the help of several pairs of twins. And, despite all the tricks like changing hairstyles and other similar things, it was not possible to deceive the system. That already says a lot.

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ZTE is doing about the same thing, but instead of face recognition, it focused on eye scanning. This technology is called Eyeprint IDTM, and its essence lies in the analysis of the pattern of blood vessels in the whites of the eyes.


You don't have to worry about the safety of the data – not only is it encrypted with a 128-bit key, it is also stored exclusively on the smartphone, without getting into the cloud.

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In general, no one doubts that all such technologies work. The question is rather to what extent they are needed in mobile devices. Maybe spies and secret agents will find all this useful, but for ordinary users who do not have access to the secrets of the Pentagon, why should they?

And then, as ordered, a study by an employee of the Norwegian University of Life Sciences and Technology appears on the network, which tells about how unreliable standard passwords and pattern keys are. The fact is that although no one bothers users to set a furious password for unlocking, which you won't remember from the tenth time, they mostly prefer something like 'password' or “123”. And the graphic keys are usually not much better. The authors of the study came to this conclusion after analyzing 4,000 pattern keys and passwords.


To be honest, I could say all this without any abstruse research. As well as the fact that many do not put a password on unlocking a smartphone at all. This is a personal matter for everyone, and I don't see any tragedy in this. For example, I have a pattern with the sole purpose of preventing accidental unlocking of my smartphone. Initially, I did not consider it as a protection from secret agents of the CIA hunting for my smartphone, and relatives, friends and colleagues do not have the habit of digging into other people's phones anyway. But even if I became afraid of something like this, I would simply set the password more difficult, and not run to look for a solution with a retina scanner or something similar. What do you think of such technologies?

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Hydrogen accumulator

Well, in conclusion of the issue – very strange news, which may well turn out to be a duck.

Employees of the British company Intel ligent Energy said they had developed a prototype hydrogen fuel cell battery for iPhone 6. And now the smartphone has been working on it for a whole week. True, the invention turned out to be rather controversial, because such a battery does not need to be charged, but to be filled, for which a 3.5 audio jack was used in the prototype. How exactly the refueling process takes place is not entirely clear now, but in the future, special replaceable cartridges will be used for this, which everyone can buy for future use.


And now the most interesting (and most dubious) detail – it is reported that the development is extremely interested in the company Apple.

Despite the impressive battery life, it still seems obvious that a smartphone recharging exclusively from some kind of special cartridges is outright nonsense. On the other hand, Apple is exactly the kind of company that is able to push any ideas, even frankly insane at first glance. Both the user base and the credibility of this company are still very large, and it needs to surprise the public with something. And putting analysts and experts Apple in a puddle is no stranger to it. So laughter is laughter, but I would not renounce. Who knows, maybe one day some special version iPhone with a similar battery will actually appear on sale?

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