Key retailers are geared up for the five-day shopping fiesta as many new products launched recently will be at the 29th edition of the Gitex Shopper which opens doors on Tuesday.Some of the retailers such as Sharaf DG, Emax, Jumbo and Axiom are all out to attract buyers and give a boost to weak consumer confidence despite Jacky’s not taking part. “We are not participating this year as we have two major projects to focus on. We are taking a break this year and be back again next year,” Mahesh Chotrani, assistant vice-president at Jacky’s Electronics, told TechRadar Middle East.Samsung, which used to have a huge dedicated stand, is also out of the show this time.Smartphones are expected to be the darling of the visitors as usual due to the new launches from leading brands and promotions by other brands.Sanmeet Singh Kochhar, general manager for the Middle East at HMD Global, said that Nokia has some exciting offers and promotions to give away and the launch of Nokia 7.2 smartphone in two variants.The 6.39-inch triple rear camera setup, including 48MP main Zeiss Optics plus 8MP and 5MP and a 20MP front camera, comes in 4GB and 64GB (AED 699) and 6GB and 128GB (AED 1,099).“Gitex is a destination for smartphone shopping and a good opportunity to communicate our proposition to the community,” he said.Pankaj Kumar, head of omnichannel retail at Jumbo Electronics, said that the event will be better than last year, mainly due to the venue.“This is the location where Gitex used to happen and we used to do better numbers. Ever since the organisers changed the venue, there was a slight challenge in sales. We are positive about the event and we have taken a bigger space than last year. The offers are going to be better. For us, smartphones, IT products and TVs are going to be crowd pullers,” he said.Jumbo is also having a dedicated section on smart products such as smart cameras, voice assistants, smart locks, smart bells and smart home entertainment to give visibility.
iPhone 11 Pro to help bolster premium segment
Given that 90% of the UAE smartphone market is under $800, Nabila Popal, senior research manager at International Data Corporation (IDC), said the release of the iPhone 11 at a lower price point of under $700, will certainly boost Apple’s sales. “Additionally, the subsequent price reductions in the still popular iPhone XR (previously the most popular Apple device in terms of shipments), Apple is likely to post a very healthy quarter-on-quarter growth. With many loyal Apple fans in the region, the iPhone 11 Pro series will also help bolster the premium segment that has undoubtedly seen erosion in share in the smartphone market,” she said.She added that Huawei is expected to take a slight quarter-on-quarter decline in third-quarter to balance high inventory held by partners in the second quarter – which was due to the brief market panic as a result of the news of the US-Huawei ban in late May. However, with things resuming to normal, she said that Huawei is expected to be well on its way to return to previous shipment levels by the end of the third quarter.
6.9% smartphone shipments growth in Q3
Akash Balachandran, senior research analyst at IDC, said that the third-quarter smartphone shipments are forecasted to post a 6.9% year-on-year growth. “This is a great indication of the overall recovery of the smartphone market, which same time last year suffered a 16.5% year-on-year decline,” she said.Deepak Babani, executive vice-chairman at Eros Group, said the UAE consumer electronics market is declining by 10% this year and the bigger declines are in the TV and tablet segments. Quoting a GfK report, he said that the smartphone market value is down by 5% for the year.Prominently, he said that there are three brands – Samsung, Apple and Huawei with an overall market share of close to 80% of the total market.
Craze of Gitex Shopper waning
Popal said that many consumers do not find as much incentive any longer to go out of their way, spend extra time and money, to attend and purchase smartphones at Gitex. Regardless, the event remains important during the year; she said that both for the shipment and sellout of low-end and mid-market devices as well as a placeholder for channel and market players to engage in trade and export deals and certainly helps sustain the overall smartphone market.Isam Arshad, research analyst at Euromonitor International, said that consumers, who follow Gitex sincerely, will purchase tickets and go there to see the product and the technology and make plans for future purchases. Babani said that there is really no charm in the event as the price drops at Gitex are available even after the event.“Previously, IT brands were supporting the event and the entire rental cost used to come from the brands. Now, that support has shrunk and not much money put into the event. So, it has become a challenge,” he said.
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Shop for AED 2,000 and win AED 2,000 backVisit and win daily prizes including iPhone XRs, Bissell vacuum cleaners, Honor smartphones and The Dubai Mall Emaar discount vouchersWalk-in and drive out in the mega prize of a 2019 Mitsubishi Eclipse CrossScratch and win Blueair cabin car air purifiers and Tornado watches
A gaming zone purely for Virtual Reality enthusiastsFrom PC Gaming to Playstation, Nintendo & retro games including Fortnite, CS:GO, Pokemon, Atari and moreTake part in the Fortnite tournaments on 26 and 27 and Super Smash Bros on 28, organized by IGNKidzania area for kids
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Where: Sheikh Saeed HallsWhen: September 24-28Ticket: AED 20 per person and children under five years enter free while student groups of 50 and above can get tickets at AED 10 per studentEvent timings: 11AM To 11PMFree parking: On spend of AED 300
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Oppo’s next flagship, the Reno Ace now has an official launch date. It will be unveiled in China on October 10.Until last year, the Oppo Find series was the company’s only flagship line. That changed earlier this year when the Oppo Reno series was announced, with a high emphasis on design and cameras. In less than six months, we got six Reno devices across various price segment. The Oppo Reno Ace will be the second flagship in this lineup, succeeding the Reno 10x Zoom Edition that came in April.
Oppo Reno Ace specifications
Being the company’s new top flagship, the Oppo Reno Ace is confirmed to be powered by the octa-core Snapdragon 855 Plus chipset, along with up to 12GB of RAM. The most prominent upgrade comes with the display, as the Reno Ace will be the first phone by Oppo to bring a 90Hz refresh rate. This is likely to be a 6.5-inch Super AMOLED panel with a Full HD+ resolution. Surprisingly, the teaser image suggests that the phone will go back to a waterdrop notch from a pop-up “sharkfin” camera that was introduced on the original Reno. An in-display fingerprint scanner will also be embedded.The back has a quad-camera setup, which is expected to include a 48MP primary camera, an ultrawide and a telephoto lens along with a monochrome sensor, covering a wide range of focal lengths. Considering that previous Oppo Reno flagships have brought some sort of optical zoom to the mix, the Reno Ace should follow suit.Recently, Oppo also confirmed that the Reno Ace will have 65W SuperVOOC fast charging capabilities, making it the highest voltage on any smartphone currently. The battery will be around 4,000 mAh, which is claimed to go from 0 to full in about 30 minutes.
Overall, the Oppo Reno Ace seems to be a worthy upgrade and brings it up to pace with other current flagships. In just two weeks time, we will know everything about it.
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Cleaning the house can be a real pain, but what if there was a way to have a clean home without having to clean it yourself? That’s exactly where robotic vacuums come in, allowing you to focus on more important things while they take care of cleaning the floors. The Roborock S4 is Roborock’s latest robotic vacuum, offering a ton of powerful features at a relatively affordable price.The Roborock S4 is aimed at being able to clean your home thoroughly and quietly — and all at an affordable price. It’s built to be able to easily navigate through your home with its built-in mapping and navigation tech, and it’s all in a classy-looking shell that should look right at home in any modern environment.There are plenty of things to like about the Roborock S4 in particular, but perhaps the best thing about it is that it can be scheduled to work without any human interference whatsoever. In other words, the vacuum could be scheduled to clean while you’re at work — so you’ll never see it clean, you’ll just have clean floors. That leaves more time to spend with your family, do things you enjoy, or be more productive. Of course, if you don’t have to worry about cleaning your floors, then they’ll probably get cleaned more often. That’s good news for those with busy lives, or for those with allergies — as it’ll clean up potential allergens in your home more often.The Roborock S4 is pretty powerful too. The device is powerful enough to pick up objects as heavy as AA batteries, meaning that it’ll excel at picking up dust and dirt from your carpets. It has a floating brush built right into it, which is able to adjust its height depending on the length of your carpet and drop down for hard floors. There’s no need to worry about it missing spots either. The Roborock S4 has a high-precision laser system that scans your entire room to create a map of your home that’s accurate within two centimeters — which is very impressive. Once it maps your room, it’ll work in a Z-shaped cleaning pattern to ensure that it doesn’t miss anything, and it has a side brush that can target dust in corners without letting it escape, which is a handy touch. The vacuum boasts a whopping 11 different types of sensors built right in, which work together to ensure that it cleans every spot and avoids falling down stairs or other cliffs.
There might be some areas that you don’t want the vacuum to go near — and you can program those as well. From the app, you can set up no-go zones, so you won’t have to worry about it accidentally knocking over something precious or fragile.The Roborock S4 works great for those with larger homes too. The device has a huge 5,200mAh battery, which enables it to clean for a hefty three hours before it runs out of power. That’s far longer than most humans are likely to spend vacuuming their home, so you know that the device will do a thorough job. It should last a long time too — air filters can trap mould and other dangerous particles, but the air filter in the Roborock S4 can be cleaned, so those particles won’t build up over time.The app is built to be easy to use, and the vacuum works with Alexa too — so if you prefer to use your voice to control devices like a robotic vacuum, you can do that too.So how is the vacuum so inexpensive? Well, the only real feature that it’s missing is the ability to mop, which is found on the Roborock S6. Many, however, may not need the feature — making the Roborock S4 the right way to go.Interested in getting the Roborock S4 for yourself? It’s now available for purchase, and you can get it straight from Amazon. In fact, at launch the vacuum will be available at a pretty impressive discount — it’ll come at $40 off, bringing the total to a very affordable $359. For more information on the Roborock S4, head straight to the Roborock website.
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In an effort to work towards sustainable gaming, Sony has revealed the PS5 will be much more energy efficient than its predecessor, the PS4.Jim Ryan, Sony president and CEO, announced in a post on the PlayStation Blog that the PS5 has a gameplay suspension feature that uses less energy than the PS4 – with Ryan estimating that the PS5’s consumption can be achieved at 0.5 watts.
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“The next-generation PlayStation console will include the possibility to suspend gameplay with much lower power consumption than PS4,” Ryan wrote in the blog. “If just one million users enable this feature, it would save equivalent to the average electricity use of 1,000 US homes.”This is part of a sustainability drive by Sony that sees the company joining other leaders in the gaming industry to “make formal commitments to contribute to the efforts of the UN Environment committee through a new partnership, the Playing for the Planet alliance”. This drive not only sees next-generation hardware affected, but will impact the game’s Sony considers bringing to its platform.”Our commitments are not only related to hardware and operations, we are also keen to help inform people interested in sustainability goals,” Ryan writes. “We have committed to working with the industry and climate experts to develop reference information for use by game developers that wish to include sustainability themes in games. In addition, we will investigate potential PS VR applications that can raise awareness of climate issues and climate experts.”
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We’ve been hearing quite a lot about the Ryzen 5 3500X lately, AMD’s rumored budget CPU which is supposedly incoming (alongside the Ryzen 5 3500), and now some benchmarks have been spilled showing that it outdoes the Core i5-9400F (with some illuminating non-comparative game benchmarking having been done, too).This comes from a Chinese tech site (as spotted by Wccftech) which has apparently got hold of the Ryzen 5 3500X before anyone else and given the processor the full unboxing treatment in a video, alongside the aforementioned benchmarking.
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As with any such pre-release leak, we have to chuck the usual salt around, but reportedly the 3500X was tested running in an MSI B450M Mortar Max motherboard paired with a GTX 1660 (6GB) graphics card (with the PC having 16GB of DDR4 system RAM).Various games were apparently tested at 1080p resolution, including Assassin’s Creed Odyssey where the 3500X managed to record an average of 65 fps or frames per second (and a minimum of 27 fps).Shadow of the Tomb Raider witnessed a 77 fps average, with PUBG hitting 80 fps on average. In World War Z the processor managed an average 126 fps (with a minimum 109 fps), and League of Legends hit an average of 180 fps. As mentioned, all this was with a GTX 1660 GPU.As we’ve been hearing, these allegedly incoming budget Ryzen processors are designed to take on Intel’s popular Core i5 9400F, and the Chinese site also did some comparative benchmarking with the latter.In CPU-Z, the Ryzen 5 3500X achieved a single-core result of 476.3 compared to the Core i5 9400F’s score of 451.4. In multi-threaded, the result was 2,774.9 for AMD versus 2,568.2 for Intel (meaning the 3500X is about 5% and 8% faster, respectively).Remember we’ve already seen some leaked presentation slides of game benchmarks (again with a GTX 1660) that show performance levels are pretty even between these AMD and Intel chips.
The Ryzen 3rd-gen chip was also victorious in some productivity benchmarking, again reportedly to the tune of around 5% – so the 3500X looks like a solid performance bump over the 9400F.Of course, exactly how this rumored chip (and the vanilla 3500) will stack up against that rival Intel CPU very much depends on where AMD pitches the price.The Core i5-9400F – which is a spin on the Core i5-9400 that ditches the integrated graphics to lower the price – can be had for about $140 (around £112, AU$206) these days.And as we’ve previously theorized, the 3500X might cost a little more than that, perhaps hitting $150 (around £120, AU$221), although the Ryzen 5 3500 will likely undercut Intel’s price tag.The plain Ryzen 5 3500 won’t be quite as quick as the 3500X, of course. While it allegedly runs with essentially the same specs – six-cores, six-threads, clocked at 3.6GHz with boost to 4.1GHz – it only has half the cache (16MB rather than 32MB), which will slow it down a bit in comparison.Wccftech believes the Ryzen 5 3500X is about to go on sale (presumably in Asia?), but naturally that remains to be seen. We still haven’t had these budget Ryzen chips officially confirmed, yet.
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Apple has Siri, Amazon has Alexa, and if you’ve got an Android phone, tablet or Google Home device, don’t forget that you’ve got Google Assistant built-in.It may not have captured the public’s imagination as much as its smart counterparts, particularly Alexa, but it’s just as useful. In fact, there are plenty of things the voice-activated assistant can help you with that most users don’t even know it’s capable of doing.To make sure you’re getting the most from your trusty voice-activated partner, we’ve gathered together nine handy, but not necessarily obvious, Google Assistant features that will help to make it genuinely useful in loads of situations you might not have expected.
Google Assistant FAQ: quick questions answered
What is Google Assistant? Google Assistant is Google’s voice assistant, and it’s available on smartphones and smart home devices. Powered by artificial intelligence, it’s Google’s answer to Amazon’s Alexa, Apple’s Siri, and Microsoft’s Cortana. How do I turn on Google Assistant? If you’re using a phone or tablet, touch and hold the Home button, or say “OK Google.” A the top-right of the screen, touch More Settings. Then, under Devices, select your phone or tablet. This is where we can turn on Google Assistant, by selection “OK Google” detection on or off. If you have a Google Home, you’ll just need to plug in the device and follow the set-up instructions.How to use Google Assistant? Once activated, you need to long hold the Home button and Google Assistant will ask you what you want. You should be able to trigger it by saying “OK Google” too.Is there a charge for Google Assistant? No. But you’ll need a compatible device.Can you give Google Assistant a name? If you want Google Assistant to respond to something other than “OK Google”, you can change the wake phrase to “Hey Google”. In the future, there might be a way to rename it.
Google Assistant: how to make your Google Home speaker work for you
1. Find your way home (and check for traffic updates)
Image credit: Google
Drawing on the sheer breadth of information at Google’s search engine fingertips, it’s safe to say Google Assistant has a lot of potential uses, including the ability to find the best route to a certain location.Just say “Get me home” and it will draw information from Google Maps to show you (or tell you) the best route based on your current location. You can also use the voice-activated element to check traffic updates, and get the latest information on diversions and closures. This feature is especially useful if you primarily use Google Assistant on the move.
2. Make a shopping list… with your voice
Image credit: Google
Google Assistant has been designed to assist you, after all, so it makes sense that something as mundane (yet important) as making a shopping list can be done with your voice. No more scrabbling for a piece of paper (only to lose it) or typing one out in your drafts – you just need to say “Add [item] to my shopping list.”Not only does Google Assistant collate all those items into one place, it will even read back what’s on your currently saved list to ensure you haven’t left anything out, enabling you to go about your day with one less thing to worry about.
3. Listen to the latest news headlines
Image credit: Google
Most of us are so busy these days that even taking the time to browse the latest stories on Twitter or your chosen RSS feed can feel like a drag on your time. So why not use Google Assistant to read them out for you? It’s not an obvious feature, but if you say “Play the news” Assistant will start reading out stories from your preferred news sources.You can ask it to stop, pause and play at any time, and you can even ask it to read stories from a specific source or specialist media site. If you’re running around the house trying to find your keys while grabbing a piece of toast before work, it’s a great way to keep up to date.
4. Control your smart home
Image credit: Google / TechRadar
If you’re like us and you’ve started to slowly add more and more smart devices to your home – be they thermostats, lightbulbs or ovens that preheat themselves – then you can use Google Assistant to connect you to them via a single voice-controlled hub.Open Google Assistant, press the menu icon in the upper-right corner of the screen and select Settings. From there you can add any compatible smart devices (and many devices are compatible) that are currently active in your home. From Philips Hue lightbulbs to Honeywell thermostats, plenty of gadgets will respond to your voice-activated commands.
5. Convert money, measurements and more
Image credit: TechRadar
Whether you’re looking to check how many dollars you can get to the pound or wondering how many inches there are in a kilometer, you can rely on your voice-activated servant to do the math for you. Google Assistant can perform almost any conversion calculation, and it will read out the answer.The same goes for translations. If you’re wondering what the word for ‘Hello’ is in Swedish, you just have to say “What’s the Swedish word for ‘hello’?” and Assistant will instantly respond with the correct answer: “Hej!”
6. Screen your phone calls
The Google Pixel 3 XL (Image credit: Google)
Tired of getting dogged with cold calls from automated messages and companies trying to sell you a dodgy service? Well, Google Assistant can help with that, too. If you happen to own a Google Pixel 3 or Pixel 3 XL, the voice-activated service includes a feature that will answer certain calls on your behalf.It’s one of the many ways Google is evolving Assistant, with the Call Screen feature enabling you to leave Assistant to answer the call and even record a transcript of the conversation so you can review it later. Telemarketers, beware…
7. Queue up your favorite shows on Netflix
A promotional image for Netflix’s Black Mirror anthology series (Image credit: Netflix)
Netflix has made its way onto most our smart devices, and whether you’re still mourning the cancellation of Daredevil or looking for a belly laugh or two with Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Google Assistant can help connect you to your favorite TV shows and films, all with voice commands.Simply say, for example, “Play Mowgli: Legend of the Jungle on Netflix” and – as long as Netflix is set up on your Android device, you’re signed into the app and you’ve connected it up – Google Assistant will queue up the show/film and start playing it in a matter of seconds.This is handier on a TV with Google Assistant built in than on some other devices, but it’s a simple way to call up a movie to watch on your phone too.
8. Check appointments and emails
Image credit: Google
If you’re using Google Assistant there’s a good chance that you use some of Google’s other services, including Gmail and Google Drive, so why not use Assistant to connect to some of these apps? If you use Gmail as your work account, you can ask the utility to check through your emails for certain keywords, or bring up an appointment that’s been added to your Calendar app.You can even use Google Assistant to take notes with Google Keep, should you need to jot down a quick thought or idea while you’re busy with other tasks. This feature is especially useful if you need to catch up any new emails you’ve yet to read or respond to.
9. Let Assistant entertain you
Image credit: Google
Struggling to find someone to enjoy a quick game with? Want to test your grey matter while you have a few minutes to spare? Well, Google Assistant can help on both accounts by challenging you to a game of solitaire or naughts and crosses / tic-tac-toe.It can also tell you some awful jokes or puns, and even read out an inspirational quote or message if you’re need of a little motivation – you can even ask Assistant to find something funny for you to watch by checking currently trending videos on YouTube.
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Chromium Edge has been given more security capabilities with Microsoft introducing an option to block the downloading of Potentially Unwanted Applications (PUAs, aka PUPs or Potentially Unwanted Programs) to the earliest test build of its browser.For the uninitiated, these sort of apps might not deliver viruses or immediately damage your PC as such, but as the name suggests, they are programs which you don’t want installed for one reason or another.
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A good example is a free PC system cleaner which finds lots of ‘issues’ with your computer – likely to be mostly made-up problems – in an effort to persuade you to open your wallet and upgrade to the paid version.Or more commonly, these PUAs may simply be some form of spyware or adware that compromises your privacy (sneaking its own adverts into your web browsing, and possibly tracking your browsing to better target any ads – or maybe even changing your browser’s homepage, or all of the above).With the new protection, Chromium Edge now defends testers against these kind of applications.The feature uses Microsoft Defender SmartScreen to identify and block ‘low-reputation’ PUAs, a capability introduced to Windows Defender last year.So bear in mind that you might not need this if you’re running Windows Defender anyway (which is increasingly becoming regarded as an impressive security solution, despite a recent slipup).Although it’s unclear if the two separate SmartScreen features on Edge and Defender provide exactly the same coverage. We’re guessing this is the case, though, and at any rate, far from everyone runs Defender of course.
As mentioned, at the moment, PUA blocking is an ‘experimental feature’ in the Canary version of the revamped Microsoft Edge (essentially the earliest testing version).Ghacks spotted this and explains that if you’re running the latest Canary build of Edge, you can enable the feature by typing edge://flags in the browser’s URL bar, and then searching for SmartScreen to find where it says ‘Microsoft Defender SmartScreen PUA support’.To turn the functionality on, simply click the button on the right so it’s ‘Enabled’. Finally, you need to close and reopen Edge to register the change.Following setting the flag, you must also actually turn the protection on in Edge. Type in edge://settings/private in your URL bar, go down to the Services group, and here you’ll find an option to ‘Block potentially unwanted apps’, so hit the slider to the right to turn it on.Whether or not this option will be present in the Settings of the release version of Chromium Edge isn’t clear yet, but it’s probably a fair bet.Only time will tell, though, and there’s always the possibility that the feature may not go beyond the experimental phase (as with any functionality introduced in early testing).Bear in mind that other browsers have this kind of protection built-in, of course, such as Google’s Chrome with its Safe Browsing feature which helps protect against malware and phishing sites, as well as unwanted software downloads.
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Adobe is offering huge discount on Adobe Creative Cloud, slashing 39% off an annual subscription for a limited time.With this deal, you’ll pay just £30.34 per month for Adobe’s entire suite of creative software, down from the regular price of £49.94. That’s a saving of over £200 over the course of a year.For that, you’ll get unlimited access to Adobe Photoshop, Lightroom, Premiere Pro, Illustrator, InDesign and many others. You’ll also receive 10GB cloud storage, plus access to Adobe Fonts, Adobe Portfolio and Adobe Spark with premium features.
Adobe rarely cuts more than 20% off its regular prices, so if you’ve been thinking about signing up for Creative Cloud then this is the perfect time. The deal ends on September 30, so don’t hang around.
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