The HTC Butterfly 2 is now officially available in Malaysia and it packs similar innards as its HTC One M8/E8 in a water resistant body rated at IP57. Unlike other water resistant phones, the Butterfly 2 comes with an exposed micro USB port at the bottom which makes charging hassle free.
In terms of specs, it gets a 5″ Full HD display which is similar with its current flagship and underneath it runs on a Quad-Core 2.5GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 processor with 2GB of RAM. The Butterfly 2 also gets an expandable 16GB of storage with a microSD slot supporting 128GB and powering the device is a slightly larger 2,700mAh capacity battery.
Microsoft is going to flood the market with more affordable Windows Phone devices. After opening up its licensing for free to OEM manufacturers, we are starting to see more non-Nokia smart phones that are running on Windows Phone OS.
Hitting at the entry level segment is the Nokia Lumia 530 that’s currently priced at RM355. If you think that’s cheap, wait until you check out Cherry Mobile, a smart phone brand from the Philippines which now offers a much cheaper alternative.
Its Cherry Mobile Alpha Style that’s priced at only P2,999, which is about RM218 is probably the most affordable Windows Phone 8.1 right now. Similar hardware to the Lumia 530, it gets a 4″ screen that uses IPS panel and it runs on a Quad-Core Snapdragon 200 processor that’s mated to 512MB of RAM. It also gets 4GB of on-board storage and it comes equipped with a 5MP main shooter while selfies are handled with a basic VGA camera.
If you want something a little better, there’s the Alpha Luxe that’s priced at P4,999 (about RM363). It gets a larger 5″ HD IPS display that’s toughen with Dragontrail glass. Underneath, it is powered by the same Quad-Core Snapdragon 200 processor but comes with 1GB of RAM for better multi-tasking. The camera gets an upgrade too with the use of 8MP for main and 2MP for the front.
This is just some of the new Windows Phone alternatives that’s coming up. Like what we’ve seen with cheap Android phones from China, the same trend would be happening as well for the Windows Platform. A few months back, one of the Chinese electrical brands Hisense had introduced their own Dual-SIM enabled smart phone that comes with 4G LTE connectivity. The Windows Phone platform is seen to be gaining momentum and they are cementing their #3 platform position for mobile.
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Apart from Maxis, U Mobile is also offering the Galaxy Alpha on contract and there’s an option to pick one up with zero upfront payment. Outright, the Galaxy Alpha is priced at RM1,899 and it can be yours from as low as RM709.
As usual, the device is offered on its U58, U88 and U Plus postpaid plans that offer 2GB, 3GB and 5GB mobile data respectively. The Galaxy Alpha bundle offering is tied with a 24 months contract duration.
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The officially launched Samsung Galaxy Alpha is now offered on contract. Retailing at RM1,899, the 6.7mm slim Galaxy Alpha can be yours from RM1,199 with MaxisONE postpaid plan with 24 months contract duration.
The full bundled pricing are as follows:
MaxisONE Plan Lite (RM78/month) – RM1,399
MaxisONE Plan (RM128/month) – RM1,199
The MaxisONE Plan Lite comes with 1GB of mobile internet while the MaxisONE Plan has 2GB each month. If you plan on topping up additional data quota for the MaxisONE Plan, you can get an extra RM10 rebate each month during the 24 months contract period. During sign up, there’s an upfront payment of 4 months subscription required which will be rebated back to your monthly bill. For port-in customers, the advance payment will be waived.
For more information, head over to Maxis’s Galaxy Alpha product page.
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The compact Samsung Galaxy Alpha is now available in Malaysia with the retail price tag of RM1,899. It is available now in Charcoal Black and Dazzling White. Frost Gold and Sleek Silver options would be released later.
The Galaxy Alpha is the thinnest Galaxy smart phone yet at only 6.7mm and it weighs just 115 grams with its 1,860mAh capacity battery and a metallic frame.
To recap the specs, the Galaxy Alpha gets a compact sized 4.7″ Super AMOLED display that does 1280×720 pixels resolution and it runs on their very own Exynos Octa-Core processor (4 cores at 1.8GHz / 4 cores at 1.3GHz). You’ll get also 2GB of RAM and there’s 32GB of on-board storage which isn’t expandable. The rest of the specs include 12MP + 2MP cameras, heart rate sensor, finger print scanner and Cat 6 4G LTE connectivity which supports speed up to 300Mbps.
Head after the break for more photos of the Galaxy Alpha in Charcoal Black and Dazzling White.
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Android L is the next major upgrade for the Android platform and it brings a host of new features along with a flatter Material Design interface. It was reported Samsung has gotten the ball rolling and they target to push Android L for the Galaxy S5 and the Galaxy Note 4 as early as end-November or early-December.
If it is true, then this could be one of the fastest update roll out for Samsung considering Google’s plain vanilla Nexus and Motorola (Moto G, Moto X, Moto E) series have yet to receive theirs. While this is just a target for its latest high-end models, do expect staggered delivery for its earlier models such as the Galaxy Note 3 and Galaxy S4.
Apart from hardware, there are users that are quite critical when it comes to software updates. In the past, it takes ages for smart phones to run on the latest versions and even now, there are smart phones that have yet to upgrade to the latest Android 4.4 KitKat. This year, most of the smart phone players have been more proactive and even HTC has pledged to deliver the latest Android update within 90 days of official release.
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Samsung’s next big thing, the Galaxy Note 4 will be making its way to the UK and the US next month. They are starting pre-orders in the US starting today, 19th September and it will hit their stores on 17th October 2014. Meanwhile, the folks in the UK are getting it earlier on 10th October. At the moment, there’s no official release date for Malaysia yet but word has it that it will be here by October.
Despite being announced earlier during IFA 2014, it is lagging behind Apple’s iPhone 6 in terms of availability which is now available from today in selected countries. Samsung has been known for releasing its flagship products in a short time frame, usually about a month from its global announcement.
At the moment, the Galaxy Note 4 hasn’t pop up yet on SIRIM’s database but interestingly the Gear S standalone smart watch with 3G (SM-R750) has already been certified. Even Sony’s latest Xperia Z3 has already passed certification this week which is an indication that it may be launching much earlier this time around.
To get to know the Galaxy Note 4 better, check out our hands-on and first impressions from IFA 2014.
The Sony Xperia Z3‘s camera does not come with an Optical Image Stabilisation which is currently offered on the Galaxy Note 4 and the iPhone 6 Plus. However it does come with a SteadyShot feature which was proven to be incredibly good on the previous Xperia Z2.
For the latest Xperia Z3, they have improved its video stability feature with Intelligent Active Mode. According to the technical guys from Sony, the new Intelligent Active mode takes in consideration the movements of the device by receiving input from the gyroscope. When the video is rolling, the device would delay the saving of the video file as it makes necessary adjustments to compensate for any unwanted shakes. According to them, this solution is superior than Optical based video stabilisation.
There are total of 3 modes available under the video’s SteadyShot feature- Off, Normal and Intelligent Active. Unfortunately Intelligent Active mode is only supported up to a maximum of Full HD 1080p resolution, while the Normal SteadyShot is available in 4K mode. To find out how much difference does it make, we recorded a 30-seconds clip in each mode while walking outdoors.
Watch the videos after the break.
Samsung is finally catching on with the Selfie trend starting with its Galaxy Note 4 which now comes with a larger 3.7MP front facing camera. To fight off with other affordable selfie centric smart phones like the Xperia C3, HTC Desire 820 and Oppo N1 mini, Samsung appears to be working on a new Galaxy Grand Prime which comes with a larger 5MP front facing camera.
If you’re having a slow internet experience, it is not just you. An undersea cable had broke recently and this is causing a slow down for international web traffic between South East Asia and the US. Considering most of our online content comes from US sites, this would greatly impact majority of internet users in the Malaysia.
The issue had started since Tuesday night and TM has issued an announcement that customers will be facing degradation of internet service. TM has updated that repair plans are under way and it is targeted to be completed by 6th October, subject to weather and sea conditions. As this is an international link, the problem isn’t isolated just to TM or Malaysia but it affects internet users around region.