The Apple iPhone XS has started shipping out to customers, who are discovering something in the owner’s manual: instructions on how to charge it using the AirPower wireless charging mat, which Apple hasn’t even given a release date.
The AirPower is (or was, as its fate is uncertain) a Qi-certified mat that Apple claimed would be able to wirelessly charge three devices at once at different wattages, like an iPhone and Apple Watch 4. A report hinted that the mat runs on an iPhone-like processor running a simplified iOS to interact with Apple products.
Apple introduced the AirPower in September 2017 and stated it would come out in 2018, but hasn’t officially mentioned it since. Sources suggested it would come out in March 2018 and, when the AirPower didn’t come out then, another stated it might come out in September.
But the Apple event revealing the iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max, iPhone XR and Apple Watch 4 came and went nary a word on the AirPower. Insider reports posited that the complexity of multi-device charging caused the delays.
It’s unlikely that a company as meticulous as Apple accidentally mentioned the AirPower in the iPhone XS manual. That could mean they’ll release it at some point soon. There’s at least evidence that Apple is continuing to develop the AirPower: iOS 12.1 updated the part responsible for managing a charging interface, according to 9to5Mac.
But other reports aren’t so optimistic. Shortly after the recent Apple event, leaker Sonny Dickson cited several sources inside the company said that many who work on AirPower feel it ‘may be doomed to failure.’ It currently produces way too much heat to charge devices efficiently, inter-device communication is buggy, the charging itself is finicky and slow, and other issues plague the product-in-development.
Just when you think that Three mobile has set the SIM only bar to unreachable heights, it comes along and pushes it up even further. It's our favourite ever sim only deal - and it just got even better.
Just a few weeks since the numerical network relaunched its best ever Black Friday SIMO sensation, it's gone and reduced the price...again. So now you get that incredible mound of 100GB data to use for all your streaming, surfing and downloading needs every month - together with unlimited calls and texts - for only £18 per month! That's another two quid less a month, and almost half of the £31 price Three's been flogging it at for most of 2018.
Possibly trying to take advantage of the new iPhone XS launch (released proper today), all Three SIM plans include travel upgrades with EasyJet, 4G hotspot, free international roaming and 'Go Binge' which allows you to stream the likes of Netflix and Apple Music without using up your data allowance - although the last of those seems pretty redundant when you already have 100GB to swim in.
We're still waiting for the OnePlus 6T, but in the meantime the OnePlus 6 has just got a little bit better, as the company has announced that Android 9 Pie is now rolling out to the handset.
The update brings a new interface, Android Pie's gesture navigation, and adaptive battery life, which uses on-device machine learning to predict which apps you're likely to use and leave them open in memory, while closing those that you're unlikely to use for a while, thereby extending life.
The Android Pie update also includes a new do not disturb mode with adjustable settings, accent color customization and changes to the Gaming Mode, such as the addition of notifications for third-party calls.
Those are the highlights, but OnePlus says the update also includes other new features and system improvements, as well as the latest Android security patch.
A gradual rollout
If you don't see the OTA update (which will be called OxygenOS 9.0) on your OnePlus 6 yet, don’t panic. It's being rolled out in stages, with a limited number of users getting it today (September 21) and a wider rollout in a few days.
The initial rollout isn't region-based, it's luck of the draw as to whether you get it now or later.
And if you're on an older OnePlus handset you won't necessarily be left out, as the company is working on bringing Android Pie to the OnePlus 5T, OnePlus 5, OnePlus 3T and OnePlus 3 as well.
Samsung only recently launched the Galaxy J6, but it’s already back with the Galaxy J6 Plus, which has just been announced along with the Samsung Galaxy J4 Plus.
Highlights of the two phones include big 6.0-inch 18.5:9 screens with a HD+ resolution, facial recognition, 3,300mAh batteries, Dolby Atmos audio, a quad-core Snapdragon 425 chipset and a glass-like back cover, seemingly designed to help them look premium without upping the price.
The Samsung Galaxy J6 Plus (pictured above) is the higher end and more interesting option, as it additionally has a dual-lens rear camera, which has both a 13MP f/1.9 lens and a 5MP f/2.2 one, allowing it to take photos with the ever-popular bokeh effect (blurred backgrounds).
It also has an 8MP front-facing camera, a side-mounted fingerprint scanner, 3GB or 4GB of RAM, 32GB or 64GB of storage (in both cases the actual amount depends on your region), and a microSD card slot.
Lower end, fewer cameras
The Samsung Galaxy J4 Plus meanwhile has a single-lens 13MP rear camera, a 5MP front-facing one, 2GB or 3GB of RAM, 16GB or 32GB of storage and a microSD card slot. So the J4 Plus has potentially less RAM and storage, one less camera lens and no fingerprint scanner.
The big question is how much these phones will cost and when they’ll be available. Sadly we don’t know the answer yet, but we do know that they’ll both be coming to the UK and that you’ll be able to get the Galaxy J6 Plus in black, grey or red, while the Galaxy J4 Plus will come in black, gold or pink.
Today is the big day - you will soon be getting your iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max or Apple Watch 4 if you've already pre-ordered, plus you'll now be able to buy them from your local Apple store.
If you've already pre-ordered your phone, you should find it'll arrive later today. Some have found their pre-orders have been delayed until September 24, but if that's the case you'll have been notified by now.
Not pre-ordered? You can always head down to your local Apple Store to buy either of the phones or the newest Apple Watch when the stores open wherever you live. Be warned, there is the chance the products have already sold out.
That may mean you're not able to get your device immediately, and if that's the case we've put together a selection of our best deals we've seen for the phones so far. You can find them for wherever you live below:
HMD Global – the company behind the recent Nokia phones – is holding an event on October 4 where it’s set to announce a new smartphone.
We know this because we've got an invite and it reads that the event will be used to “welcome the latest addition to the Nokia smartphone family," so there’s no doubt that we’ll get a new Nokia-branded handset there, what remains in question though is which one.
The invitation doesn’t contain any clues, but there are two obvious candidates, namely the Nokia 9 and the Nokia 7.1 Plus, as both these phones have been rumored.
Flagship or mid-range?
Of those the Nokia 9 is the most exciting option. This is a rumored flagship which is said to have a curved OLED screen, four or five cameras in total (split between the front and back), an iris scanner and a Snapdragon 845 chipset.
In other words it sounds like it could be the first ‘true’ Nokia flagship in a long time, since the Nokia 8 Sirocco was let down by a dated chipset.
However, exciting as that possibility is the Nokia 7.1 Plus is probably more likely to be revealed, as that has been leaked recently, whereas news has been quiet on the Nokia 9 lately.
The Nokia 7.1 Plus is rumored to have a Snapdragon 710 chipset, up to 6GB of RAM, a dual-lens rear camera and a Full HD+ screen, which would put it in the upper mid-range. Of course, if the price is right it could still be an exciting handset.
We’ll let you know exactly what actually is announced as soon as we find out on October 4.