Archive for July 22, 2020

TELUS Launches Track+ LTE Connected Tracker

Posted in Commentary with tags on July 22, 2020 by itnerd

TELUS is launching Track+, a new connected tracker that enables consumers to easily track and locate what they care about most , from pets, to luggage, purses and more. 

Users can enjoy the benefits of TELUS Track+ anywhere in Canada or the US using LTE connection for added peace of mind when travelling. Other core features include:

  • Custom Safety Zones – Set invisible boundaries for your tracker around important locations, like your house or backyard, and get notified when your tracker enters or leaves a Safety Zone. For example, with included accessories like the pet collar attachment, users will be notified if their pet wanders out of their backyard. 
  • Locate Now – Check the location of your tracker at any time to ensure what’s important to you is where they’re supposed to be and easily locate items when they go missing with location updates.
  • Light sensors: If the lighting around your tracker changes from dark to light, you’ll know that your luggage or bag was opened without you.
  • On-device ringer: If you know you’re close to your tracker but can’t see it, ring your tracker directly from the app until it’s found. 

For more information, please visit www.telus.com/track

ASUS Republic of Gamers Announces All-New Peripherals For Mobile Gaming

Posted in Commentary with tags on July 22, 2020 by itnerd

ASUS Republic of Gamers (ROG) today announced all-new gaming peripherals that deliver the ultimate mobile gaming experience: the ROG Falchion gaming keyboard, ROG Cetra RGB in-ear gaming headphones, and the ROG Strix XG16 gaming display.

The ROG Falchion wireless mechanical keyboard offers a space-saving layout that is 65 percent of the size of a standard keyboard, a user-friendly multi-use interactive touch panel, and wireless Aura Sync lighting. ROG Cetra RGB in-ear gaming headphones feature active noise cancellation (ANC) technology and customizable RGB lighting. To round out this all-new peripheral lineup, the ROG Strix XG16 is a 15.6- inch portable gaming display with a built-in battery and user-friendly kickstand design that supports an up to 144Hz refresh rate and 1080p HD resolution. These gaming peripherals deliver the high-caliber portable controls, audio, and graphics needed to take mobile gaming to the next level.

ROG Falchion: An ultra-portable wireless mechanical keyboard

ROG Falchion is a wireless mechanical keyboard with an innovative design that’s 65 percent of the size of a standard keyboard. It offers a versatile cover case and an interactive touch panel that can adjust volume, play and pause music, and zoom the screen in and out. The touch panel can also be programmed for use as a macro key, and the RGB LEDs inside the touch panel indicate battery status in real time. It provides gamers with ultrafast 1ms response time, 2.4GHz connectivity and up to 400 hours of battery life. With a cutting-edge design and user-friendly features, ROG Falchion empowers gamers with next-level control and performance.

ROG Cetra RGB: In-ear gaming headphones with active noise cancellation technology and RGB lighting

The ROG Cetra RGB in-ear gaming headphones support multiple platforms via a USB-C® connection, including mobile phones, PC, Mac and Nintendo Switch . The active noise cancellation (ANC) technology

and innovative Ambient mode on the earbuds enable users to adjust their listening experience, allowing them to either fully immerse themselves in games, music and other media without distraction, or tune into their surroundings and external sounds. Exclusive 10mm ASUS Essence drivers deliver optimized gaming audio and strong bass. Users have a choice of three sizes of silicone tips and ear fins, as well as a pair of foam ear tips ― all to provide flexibility to ensure a comfortable fit. The customizable RGB lighting on the headphones allow users to enjoy high-quality audio in style.

ROG Strix XG16: The ultimate portable gaming display

ROG Strix XG16 is a 15.6-inch portable gaming display with a built-in battery that supports an up to a 144Hz refresh rate and 1080p HD resolution. Its IPS panel enables wide viewing angles and displays high- quality colors and brightness. For I/O options, the XG16 offers two USB-C® ports and one Micro HDMI port, which provide flexible connectivity and the ability to charge during gameplay. The user-friendly kickstand on the back can be opened up to 70 degrees and provides the display with stability on a flat surface in landscape or portrait orientation for comfortable viewing on-the-go. Underneath the kickstand is a mesh design with cybertext patterning, which adds to its futuristic aesthetic. The ROG Strix XG16 is also compatible with ROG Tripod, which allows gamers to position the display above a laptop for use in a portable dual-screen setup.

AVAILABILITY & PRICING

The ROG Falchion will be available in Q4 2020 in North America.
The ROG Cetra RGB will be available in September 2020 in North America. The ROG Strix XG16 will be available in December 2020 in North America.

ASUS Republic Of Gamers Announces The ROG Phone 3

Posted in Commentary on July 22, 2020 by itnerd

ASUS Republic of Gamers (ROG) today announced the new ROG Phone 3, the latest generation of the world’s most powerful and exciting gaming smartphone.

The ROG Phone 3 is the most powerful ROG Phone ever, using the latest Qualcomm® SnapdragonTM 865 Plus 5G Mobile Platform with advanced 5G mobile communications and Qualcomm Snapdragon Elite GamingTM capabilities. Featuring the uprated GameCool 3 cooling system, ROG Phone 3 is engineered to deliver non-stop, ultrasmooth performance for the ultimate mobile gaming experience.

A 144Hz / 1ms AMOLED 6.59-inch display provides Delta-E color accuracy of less than one to ensure vivid and accurate imagery, and an industry-leading 25-millisecond touch latency allows a near-instant touch response. The 10-bit display also supports HDR10+ high-dynamic range content for ultimate visual realism.

The distinctive ROG Phone 3 design retains the core gamer-centric benefits of its predecessors, including the unique side-mounted charging port and a high-capacity 6000 mAh battery. The intuitive AirTrigger 3 system now includes a motion sensor in addition to the programmable ultrasonic touch sensors, giving gamers even more ways to control the action. The X Mode performance-optimization software now supports the adjustment of multiple system parameters, making it easier than ever to unlock the full power of ROG Phone 3.

The most powerful ROG Phone ever

The ROG Phone 3 is the most powerful ROG Phone ever, using the latest Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 Plus 5G Mobile Platform, which enables staggering multi-gigabit 5G connectivity and advanced Wi-Fi 6 performance, desktop-level gaming with ultra-realistic graphics, professional-quality high-resolution photography, and intuitive AI experiences. ROG Phone 3 also features Snapdragon Elite Gaming, which delivers ultra-smooth HDR gaming experiences with sustained performance for longer gaming sessions.

With up to 16 GB of the latest LPDDR5 RAM and up to an ultrafast 512 GB UFS 3.1 ROM, ROG Phone 3 delivers next-level performance, so gamers can enjoy a super-smooth gaming experience with no limitations or compromises.

The enhanced X Mode performance-optimization software now allows customization of different system parameters to suit any gaming or other usage scenario. In conjunction with carefully calibrated defaults for optimum performance, it’s easier than ever for serious gamers to unlock the full power of ROG Phone 3.

The upgraded GameCool 3 cooling system has a redesigned 3D vapor chamber, a large graphite film behind the screen to maximize heat transfer, and an enlarged heat sink that’s precisely located to eliminate hotspots. The new cooling system is one of the most effective thermal solutions available on a mobile device, and can remove and dissipate the heat generated during full-speed operation via specially designed vents in the back cover. This allows ROG Phone 3 to easily sustain peak performance during heavy gaming sessions, eliminating throttling to give gamers an expert edge against the competition. For extra cooling during marathon gaming sessions, the new AeroActive Cooler 3 clip-on external fan accessory has been completely redesigned to deliver increased airflow to hotspots on the casing for long-term performance.

Groundbreaking new ROG HyperFusion technology combined with multi-antenna Wi-Fi and 5G allows simultaneous connections to Wi-Fi and the mobile network, with intelligent redirection to whichever has the best signal. This allows mobile gamers to enjoy the strongest possible signal at all times for uninterrupted connections.

Stunning visuals tailored for the ultimate gaming experience

ROG Phone 3 is equipped with a stunning 144Hz / 1ms AMOLED 10-bit display. It’s combined with an industry-leading 270Hz touch-sampling rate that dramatically decreases touch latency to an unprecedented 25ms, delivering the extreme responsiveness needed to sustain a winning streak. To ensure that visuals on ROG Phone 3 look just like the developer intended, each display is carefully color- calibrated to ensure a Delta-E color accuracy of less than one — making it one of the most color- accurate displays available on a smartphone. There’s also HDR10+ high-dynamic range support for enhanced visual realism. To minimize eye strain while delivering impeccable visuals, ROG Phone 3 passes TÜV Rheinland Low Blue Light (Hardware Solution) and Flicker Reduced certifications.

Keep gaming with the high-capacity 6000 mAh battery

The monster 6000 mAh battery in ROG Phone 3 has stamina that can be relied on for even the longest battles. There are multiple passive power-saving mechanisms, including an exclusive hibernate function that can proactively limit background data and power usage in selected apps. These mechanisms significantly prolong the time between charges and also increase battery lifespan.

Built for gamers, by gamers

Fully immersive gaming with total control is the design goal of ROG Phone 3, which retains the pioneering landscape-oriented ergonomic design of its predecessors.

Upgraded AirTrigger 3 technology provides extra-precise ultrasonic touch controls along the edges of the phone. The gesture capabilities of the AirTrigger 3 side sensors have been further enhanced, including a newly added swipe gesture and dual-partition button emulation, giving gamers a console- level gaming experience. There’s also a brand-new motion sensor that adds another gesture to the armory, allowing gamers to control the action by shaking the device: it’s a whole new way to interact with the device. AirTrigger 3 gives gamers the very best controls available on a gaming smartphone, and sets the ultimate bar for the competition.

The unique side-mounted USB-C® charging port lets users keep their battery topped up without cramping their style while gaming. The port also connects accessories such as the AeroActive Cooler 3, which features a pass-through USB-C connector, a 3.5mm audio jack, and a new kickstand on the back to support ROG Phone 3 on a desk or table for a better viewing and gaming experience.

ROG Phone 3 also receives a significant upgrade to its audio performance, tuned in collaboration with audio specialist Dirac. The DXOMARK Audio review gives ROG Phone 3 a high score of 75 for its audio performance, the reviewer stating that “ROG Phone 3 seriously upped its audio game, achieving true flagship level.” DXOMARK Audio also noted that “Despite noticeable bass resonances, audio played back through its speakers demonstrates good overall tonal balance, good dynamics, and good intelligibility even at minimum volumes.”

There’s now a dedicated Game Mode to further enhance in-game sound effects for immersive gameplay. The powerful dual front-facing speakers positioned at the top and bottom of the phone are now even more capable of delivering richer and detailed sound, giving perfect stereo imaging in landscape mode. ROG Phone 3 also supports Qualcomm aptXTM Adaptive for low-latency high-quality audio over Bluetooth® connections.

ROG Phone 3 introduces ROG Connect, a new online social community — built into the Armoury Crate app — that allows ROG Phone 3 owners to join and play with friends or squads, or even wow the crowd with their uploaded gameplay footage and screenshots.

The unrivaled range of modular accessories for ROG Phone 3 includes the new modular ROG Kunai 3 Gamepad which adds physical console-like gamepad controls to ROG Phone 3; the new ROG Lighting Armor Case for a stunning appearance; and the ROG Clip to attach the phone to selected console controllers for the ultimate mobile gaming experience. ROG Phone 3 can also be expanded to provide true 144Hz dual-screen gameplay with the new TwinView Dock 3, and the Mobile Desktop Dock allows gamers to connect a desktop keyboard and mouse for a desktop-like gaming experience on an external TV or monitor.

ROG Phone 3 is also proudly partnering with Google Stadia and Unity Technologies to establish a truly integrated gaming ecosystem. Together, the partnership aims to build a more complete mobile gaming experience for today’s gamers by providing their favorite gaming content on the go.

AVAILABILITY & PRICING

The ROG Phone 3 will be available in September 2020 in North America. Please contact your local ASUS representative for further information.

TikTok Tries To Curry Favor With The US By Saying It Will Create 10K Jobs In The Country

Posted in Commentary with tags on July 22, 2020 by itnerd

There’s been a lot of talk about TikTok. Most notably that it is a security risk because of how aggressive the popular app is at collecting data off smartphones. That’s led to it being banned in India and has also led to discussions about it being banned in the US. Thus you cannot be shocked that TikTok is trying to fight back against this by saying that it will create jobs in the US, presumably to give the US government a big incentive not to lower the boom on it:

The announcement comes as the company faces mounting criticism over its handling of user data and its ties to China through its parent company, ByteDance. “These are good-paying jobs that will help us continue to build a fun and safe experience and protect our community’s privacy,” a TikTok spokesperson said in a statement provided to CNN on Tuesday. TikTok said it has already tripled its US workforce this year, and the new jobs will be based in California, Texas, Florida and New York — focusing on areas including sales, content moderation, engineering and customer support. The jobs announcement is part of a wider game of defense that TikTok has been playing to meet allegations by policymakers that TikTok poses a national security risk. The move also appears to follow a tried and true playbook for tech companies: when under fire, play up the job creation potential. Lawmakers including Sens. Chuck Schumer, Tom Cotton and Josh Hawley worry the company’s user data could ultimately find its way to the Chinese government.

My take on this is simple. TikTok is a app that needs to be banned ASAP. This really shouldn’t be a discussion as it is clear that it slurps up data like a vacuum cleaner. The International Association of IT Asset Managers (IAITAM) has warned that this is a risk for companies and companies like Wells Fargo have banned it from devices that their employees use for company business. And you can add the DNC and RNC to that list as well. This isn’t about being anti-Chinese as TikTok supporters have alleged. It’s about the fact that TikTok is a bad actor and have done nothing to alter that image. By that I mean by changing their data collection habits. Just look at this report on what it collects and how it does it and you’ll see it shouldn’t be within a million miles of your phone. Or any phone for that matter. And the fact that TikTok has offered up jobs in the US shouldn’t make any difference.