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Black Shark 2 wants to be an Android Nintendo Switch
The release of the gaming phone Black Shark 2 is upon us, despite the major lack of games to make the device worth the effort. Both Android and iOS have very few games that make use of any major amount of processor power in a smartphone or tablet, and the mobile gaming universe continues to be a stumbling block for the gaming industry as a whole. But that isn’t about to stop the folks at Black Shark!
To take on the Nintendo Switch fairly directly, this machine has two controllers that attach to its sides, called collectively “GamePad 3.0”. These controllers can be used with games on the smartphone, on-the-go, or at home with a giant television. The Black Shark 2 works with HDMI connectivity to deliver “the world’s lowest delay from any smartphone gameplay to any big screen.”
The GamePad 3.0 system can detach from the phone and connect with the Black Shark stand to create a wireless controller system. With the controllers connected wirelessly and the phone connected to your TV with HDMI, this makes for a home gaming console – Android and 1P only, of course.
The Black Shark 2 is a gaming phone for China, primarily. “Black Shark is a gaming company, composed of passionate gamers,” said Peter Wu, Founder & CEO at Black Shark in a statement about the company and the new phone. Wu wanted to express this morning that for Black Shark, the user can rest assured “that developing the best gaming experience will always lead our path.”
The smartphone has a 6.39-inch AMOLED display with 1080 x 2340 pixels across its face, giving the device’s display panel 403 pixels-per-inch. This device’s display has an aspect ratio of 19.5:9, and rolls with MEMC, “image enhancement” support, and support for DCI-P3 108.9% (typical). It’s a highly decent display – as far as specs can say. We’ll be the judge of the display in real once we’ve got our review unit in-hand.
Also in the display is “Industry-leading HDR Tone Mapping and Always HDR” with what the company says is “realtime SDR-to-HDR conversion of games and videos.” Up front are a pair of front-facing speakers that are “25% larger than a standard smartphone.”
This display is pressure-sensitive. This sensitivity will only be used by the custom interface created by Black Shark, at first, but it MIGHT be able to be used by other apps in the future. There’s a liquid cooling system under the hood to keep the device from overheating, too.
There’s a 4000mAh battery inside, it works with Qualcomm Quick Charge 4.0 27W, and connects with USB type-C. There’s an in-display fingerprint scanner up front and a 20MP f/2.0 camera to take some selfie photos and video. On the back is a set of cameras rolling with 12MP f/1.7 and 12MP f/2.2.
The logo and the 2 side lights light up with RGB colors that work with “music intelligent recognition” and user customization. There’s also intelligent recognition of environments/weapons/movements/hits in games that’ll translate to different vibrations in the handset.
Black Shark 2 has a Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 processor with a few different options for RAM and internal data storage. There’s one that has 8GB RAM and 128GB internal storage, and another that has 12GB RAM and 256GB internal storage. But when’s the last time anyone had a need for 12GB RAM on a mobile device? What app or game could possibly make use of such an amount of processing grunt?
This machine also has two color options: one that’s Shadow Black, and another that’s Frozen Silver. At this time Black Shark has not shared release dates or pricing for any version of the phone.
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Like on every electronic device, it’s a good idea to shut down your Nintendo Switch after an extended session.
Shutting the console off rewards it with a much-needed rest. It allows the console to cool off, erase some of its temporary files, and clean up its cache.
Powering off the Nintendo Switch is relatively easy. Here’re the detailed steps:
Find the power button at the top-right of the handheld console. It’s next to the volume buttons.
A menu will pop up. Select “Power Options” on the new menu. You would see the same menu if you use the Nintendo Switch on the dock or in its handheld or tablet mode.
Go to “Turn Off” and press the controller’s “A” button to select it. You can tap the option if your Switch is not on the dock.
Like so, you can turn the Switch off completely.
The process above may yield various errors if your console is glitchy. For example, it may not bring the power menu.
If this is the case, and you can’t turn the console off, there’s a secondary way to switch off Nintendo Switch:
Press and hold the console’s power button for 12 seconds. It will force a shutdown, but it won’t damage the console.
You can also use this method if the console crashes or freezes.
If the method doesn’t work, or if you’re experiencing constant issues, you should factory reset the Nintendo Switch.How to Put the Nintendo Switch on Sleep Mode?
The Sleep Mode puts the console on standby. It shuts down most of its functions, which allows the console to rest. It will also suspend whatever game you’re playing or whatever you’re doing.
So, when you go back to the console, it will resume whatever you were doing fairly quickly.
However, the Sleep Mode won’t erase potential bugs or glitches or clean the console’s temporary cache.
Similarly, the Nintendo Switch on Sleep Mod can charge the controllers. In comparison, if you plug the controllers into a completely turned-off Nintendo Switch, the peripherals won’t charge.
That said, here’re the instructions:
Another way to reach Sleep Mode is like so:
Select “Sleep Mode” from the Home menu. The option is on the far right and has a power icon.
Lastly, to wake up the console, you must press the power button or the Home button again. The console should go right back to its previous task, unless something is wrong with the Nintendo Switch.When Should You Turn Off Nintendo Switch?
You should turn off the console every day before you go to sleep or after you finish playing.
Turning the hardware off allows it to rest. Its internal components cool off and stop the spinning and the grind. Moreover, it resets some system configurations to put all of its software back in working order.
Additionally, the software takes care of minor glitches and bugs created as you play. These glitches are made by constantly loading and going in and out of games. They also generate due to heat throttling the speed and performance of the hardware pieces.
When you shut it down, it’s also a good idea to disconnect the Nintendo Switch. That means disconnecting the dock from the TV or disconnecting the screen to the power outlet.
A total disconnection will protect the console against power surges. Additionally, it will allow it to clean up potential minor glitches and bugs.
Lastly, turning the console off regularly will protect its battery life and allow it to charge faster. Speaking of which, you should follow these general rules:
Turn the Nintendo Switch off when the battery is depleted or nearly depleted
Tun the Nintendo Switch off when you finish playing for the day.
Charge it to its fullest before you play again
If you’re not charging or using the console, keep it off, with the cables unplugged.
Put it on Rest Mode if you’re going to play again soon, and the battery is okay.
Gaming phone makers strive to offer the ultimate performance to its users. Be it in terms of raw power or features that complement your gaming experience. Black Shark 2 arrived earlier this year with some notable features such as 240Hz touch response, Liquid Cooling 3.0 and more.Black Shark 2 Pro: Price and Availability
Black Shark 2 Pro has been priced starting at 2,999 yuan (roughly Rs. 30,000) for the 12GB RAM and 128GB storage variant. You will, however, have to shell out 3,499 yuan (roughly Rs. 35,000) for the 12GB+256GB variant.
Apart from this, Black Shark has partnered with Chinese e-sports team LNG to unveil three custom edition Pro variants too. Black Shark 2 Pro has been available to pre-order in China for close to a week now and will officially go on sale from 2nd August.Black Shark 2 Pro: Specs and Features
Black Shark 2 Pro features a design and build not much different fro its predecessor. The metal and glass build has been carried forward but refined to now offer a trendy gradient finish to gamers. The company has placed a ton of focus on bettering the design with the addition of a green gradient to the black glass. It looks awesome as the green colour glass reflects light. Black Shark 2 Pro has also upped the ante on RGB lighting with the addition of two LED lights along the mid-frame on the rear.
Similar to its predecessor, Black Shark 2 Pro features a 6.39-inch Full-HD+ AMOLED display as well – without any punch-holes or notch. It has an aspect ratio of 19.5:9 and 2340×1080 pixels resolution. The display still has a 240Hz touch response, offering much-improved latency and response time dropping down to 34.7ms – which is lower and even better than its predecessor.
Black Shark 2 Pro is powered by the recently launched Snapdragon 855 Plus chipset. It’s the second phone to be launched with this overclocked chipset — after the ROG Phone 2. This is paired with 12GB RAM and up to 512GB of internal storage. There’s no other RAM configuration – neither 6GB nor 8GB – available for this Pro variant.
This smartphone also sees the company make the shift to the faster UFS 3.0 storage in comparison to UFS 2.1 on the Black Shark 2. This improves the read & write speeds by 82%, along with faster game startup times as well.
Much like its predecessor, Black Shark 2 retains the dual front-facing speakers for an immersive gaming experience, along with three microphones for improved in-game voice communication. There’s Liquid Cooling 3.0+ onboard here, offering heat dissipation using two vapour chambers and a massive copper plate. The heat sinks are now in direct contact with the major components, so heat is eliminated quickly and more efficiently.
Black Shark 2 Pro comes equipped with the same 4,000mAh battery pack as its non-Pro variant, coupled with a USB Type-C 27W fast-charger (which supports quick charge 4.0) too. It also has the usual connectivity options and a fingerprint sensor under the display.
Nintendo Switch V1 won’t run cloud gaming – Why V2 might
An insider tip this week says Nintendo will never put game streaming services on the Switch. Today we’re taking a peek at why this is the situation, and what most likely has to happen in order for Nintendo to consider working with companies like Microsoft, Google, and NVIDIA to bring game streaming subscription services to their next big hardware release.
Nintendo is a massively successful hardware and software company that’s been in the business for decades of delivering game consoles and unique, primarily family-friendly experiences to the public. Nintendo is so very protective of their IP in games that it was a big deal when they released Super Mario Run for mobile devices running iOS and Android.
— David Gibson (@gibbogame) April 21, 2023
They’re even more protective of their gaming hardware, making their family-friendly focus a significant part of the process a publisher must go through to get approved to deliver a game to a device like Nintendo Switch. It is in part because of this focus that Nintendo hasn’t allowed a 3rd-party game streaming service on their platform. With such a service, Nintendo would not necessarily be able to curate the content as it’s delivered to Nintendo Switch owners.
It is almost certainly due MORE to the process with which hardware is made, promoted, and sold, that Nintendo will not likely enable cloud gaming on their first Nintendo Switch. It’d make a LOT more sense for Nintendo to wait and make cloud gaming services a major selling point in a new Nintendo Switch, complete with better support for connectivity.
Imagine a Nintendo Switch Pro, complete with support for a 5G cellular data connection. Not only would you be able to play the games you like, you’d be able to play said games wherever you like. This is effectively the story already when it comes to game streaming services running on mobile phones and tablets, but…
Nintendo Switch controllers might need to be readdressed. If a Nintendo Switch Pro device were to be released with a game streaming subscription service attached, Nintendo might do well to make their Switch controllers friendlier for larger hands.
Game streaming services today largely concentrate on the idea that games you’d normally play on your gaming PC or big powerful gaming console can be played on-the-go. This means we’re talking about games that are normally played with far more robust, adult-sized-hands friendly controllers.
Nintendo Switch V1 uses an NVIDIA chipset for its main brain. Processing power in the Nintendo Switch Pro, or Nintendo Switch V2 will also very likely be made by NVIDIA. the potential with such a device with NVIDIA and their various game streaming services means Nintendo would be in a prime position to be the go-to hardware for the most excellent AAA title portable game streaming device in the world. They’ve just got to pull the trigger.
You’ve also got the handheld-only Switch Lite for those that don’t care about gaming on the big screen, and the Switch OLED for those that want to upgrade to the best visual experience possible.
All those options come with the potential (and arguably need) for a wealth of accessories. Want to play a lengthy action game on the TV at home? You might want the official Pro Controller. Want to play a motion-controlled racing game? Joy-Con wheels could help. Taking the Switch on a trip? Well, you’ll need a portable battery pack to keep you going and a case to keep the console and your game cartridges safe.
Luckily for you, we’ve rounded up the best Switch accessories around to help you find the ones worth buying and make the most of Nintendo’s portable powerhouse.Best Nintendo Switch accessories 2023
Charmast 10,400mAh Power Bank – Best power bank
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One of the Switch’s undeniable weak points is battery life. We’ve never managed more than three hours of Zelda time while using the system as a portable, which isn’t much good if you’ve got a long flight coming up.
Luckily, Nintendo planned around this by letting the Switch charge via USB-C, which means it’s compatible with a whole range of third-party power banks, some of which hold enough charge to power the Switch’s battery several times over.
One recommendation is the Charmast 10,400mAh power bank, but your preference will depend on capacity, ports, size, and more – check out our full ranking of the best power banks for some alternatives.
WaterField Switch Pouch – Best Switch case
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You can find cheaper carry cases for the Switch elsewhere, but if you want to travel in style (and with some decent durability) it’s hard to beat this pouch from San Francisco-based WaterField Designs.
Available in a choice of black or waxed canvas, and sized for either the classic Switch and OLED or a smaller Lite model, this durable case comes with a padded interior to keep your Switch safe, plus an external zipped pocket to hold cables and other bits. If you can afford it, an extra $19 gets you a 10-cartridge game case made out of leather in a matching finish, which will fit neatly inside the main compartment.
We also love the simpler slip case WaterField also makes for the Switch, which comes in a few more colours, but it’s the pouch’s extra pocket that makes it the better buy in our eyes.
SanDisk SD Card – Increase your storage
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The Switch comes with 32GB of onboard storage, but by the time you include the operating system and your first few games – plus updates – that space can fill out fast. That’s why we recommend picking up a microSD card to expand your storage.
There are all manner of cards to choose from but SanDisk knows how to make an SD card that Nintendo fans will love. Having nabbed the official Nintendo license, the company offers 64GB, 128GB, 256GB, and even 512GB microSDXC cards, coloured and detailed with iconic Nintendo imagery.
We’re particular fans of the red 128GB card, complete with a Super Mushroom front and centre, but the Triforce, a Super Star, and the Animal Crossing leaf also feature if you opt for one of the other capacity cards. There are also Apex Legends and Fortnite cards if that’s more up your street.
All of these cards are also competitively priced and perfectly fast for your Switch needs, making it easy to take and play more games with you at all times.
Nintendo Pro Controller – Classic Switch controller
Nintendo’s official Pro Controller is one of the most straightforward Switch accessories around. Its appeal is pretty obvious: it’s a traditional gamepad to use with the otherwise untraditional console.
The Pro Controller is ideal for anyone who finds the Joy-Cons uncomfortable, even with the included grip, and wants to use a pad that’s more similar to both the Xbox One and PS4 controllers – especially for extended sessions.
The price point may seem high just for a gamepad but bear in mind that not only does it include motion controls, HD rumble and Amiibo support, it also has best-in-class 40-hour battery life, and it can connect to a PC or Mac to work with compatible games there too.
For a little bit more, you can also pick up a version with either a Splatoon 2 or Xenoblade Chronicles 2 design.
It offers great wireless audio quality that suits both gameplay and casual music listening, making it a great all-rounder, although the lack of Bluetooth means you probably won’t use it with your phone. The inclusion of a USB-A adaptor makes it compatible with most PCs, Macs and PS4, and it’ll probably be compatible with the USB-C enabled PS5 at launch later this year too.
If you want a wireless gaming experience, the ROG Strix Go 2.4 is a decent option.
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Nintendo Switch Joy-Con Pair – Play together
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Still, sometimes you might want to have a few more people round for Mario Kart chaos or might want to enjoy multiplayer for games like Arms that require a pair of Joy-Cons for each player.
In that case, you’ll want to grab extra controllers. You’ve got plenty of options here – you can buy pairs of controllers or you can buy left and right controllers individually. Just remember that they are different – two left controllers won’t make a pair.
Since launch Nintendo has also added more colour options. In addition to the original neon red, neon blue and grey Joy-Cons, you can now buy a pair of neon yellow controllers, a pair with one neon green and one neon pink, a pair with one royal blue and one neon yellow and a pair with one neon purple and one neon orange.
Syncwire Nylon-Braided USB-C Cable – Make charging easier
Speaking of charging, you’ll get a lot of benefit from picking up one or two extra USB-C cables. Keep one in your rucksack and one in the office, you’ll be able to charge your Switch anywhere you find a USB port, taking the pressure off the limited battery life.
PowerA Nano – A portable, feature-packed controller
PowerA’s Nano wireless controller for the Switch (and Switch Lite) may look small, but that doesn’t mean it has skimped on features. Sporting the same general design as the official Nintendo Pro controller in a smaller form, the Nano is the perfect controller to chuck into a rucksack – or for those with smaller hands, like kids.
There’s access to all the standard Switch controls, and it even includes support for motion-based controls like the official Joy-Cons, and as an added benefit, there are three remappable rear-facing buttons that help give you an edge in games like Splatoon and Zelda. It’s wireless, connecting via Bluetooth 5.0, and there’s around 20 hours of battery on offer before it’ll need a top-up via USB-C.
It sports the familiar red and blue branding of the most popular Switch colour option, with highlights not only on the analogue sticks but on the rear triggers too. It may not be a Nintendo-branded product, but it certainly won’t look out of place next to the Switch.
Hori Switch Game Card Case – Keep your cartridges safe
Nintendo has come under some (light) criticism for its game cases for the Switch, which seem distinctly over-sized for the minuscule cartridges. You don’t want to be lugging them around with you, so some more compact cartridge storage might not be a bad idea.
We haven’t had the chance to test it ourselves but Hori’s Nintendo-approved cartridge case looks like a solid bet. It holds up to a whopping 24 Switch carts, along with two microSD cards for downloaded games.
You can get it in clear or black (though, confusingly, even the black version is transparent – it’s just a little darker) and you can’t complain too much about the price.
Nintendo Switch Joy-Con Wheels – Have more fun driving
More of a luxury than a necessity, you might still want to consider picking up a pair of Nintendo’s official Joy-Con Wheels.
Released to coincide with the release of Mario Kart 8: Deluxe Edition, these are essentially just plastic wheels and anyone who was burned by the similar steering wheel accessory for the Wii might be tempted to steer clear.
We’d recommend giving them a second look though. They’re small enough to be portable but big enough to be much more comfortable to hold than a Joy-Con on its own, especially thanks to the larger shoulder buttons – essential for any serious Karter.
Even better, you get two of them in a pack, and they don’t cost much, so it’s a small investment for a big upgrade if you expect to play a lot of Mario Kart or other racing games.
You wouldn’t know it from Apple’s launch show yesterday. Sure, the iPad 2 has a faster processor with jacked up graphics and the inside pipeline to an App Store insanely flush with games. But if we’re talking gaming as serious business here, where were all the game developers lined up with “killer” demos?
Nowhere, as usual. Blame Apple. For all the company’s magical “post-PC” preachifying, it’s never been any good at getting out in front of its technology and selling it more than conceptually to gamers.
At the original iPad launch, Apple devoted a fractional few minutes to a handful of upscaled iPhone games before abandoning the topic altogether. Apple’s Game Center, an elegant albeit simplistic matchmaking and achievement tracking tool, is really just a watered-down imitation of Microsoft’s Xbox Live. And at yesterday’s iPad 2 event, no one bothered to mention gaming at all, much less raise a flag for it.
Apple’s reluctance to promote itself as a vanguard of the games industry hasn’t stopped developers from all but hijacking the company’s technology to truck in games by the semi-load. And it hardly takes a genius to look at a physics puzzler like Angry Birds, which its developer Rovio claims has been downloaded nearly 100 million times–a figure that dwarfs the estimated 20 million copies sold by Activision’s Modern Warfare 2–to see just how meteoric a force “AppleGaming” has become.
So what if Apple hasn’t happened to gaming. Gaming happened to Apple.
Apple vs. NintendoSony
And looking at where the iPhone is today, it’s easy to imagine Apple going rounds with the 3DS. Sure, Nintendo’s handheld offers auto-stereoscopic 3D (no need for glasses), dual screens, access to Nintendo’s IP stable (Mario, Donkey Kong, Zelda, etc.), and a deterministic (buttons) interface.
Who knows what that demographic adds up to out of an estimated 140 million Nintendo DS units sold worldwide. But during its peak months, the DS sold around two million units (in the U.S.). Apple’s iPhone routinely doubles that, and–chew on this figure–some analysts believe Apple’s on track to sell a cool 75 million iPhones worldwide in 2011 alone.
And the NGP? It’s pretty simple: Sony doesn’t seem interested in Apple’s demographic, and I’m pretty sure they’re already positioning their upcoming “portable console” to sell more to mainstream-enthusiast gamers like me.
Apple vs. XboxPlayStation
Enter the iPad. It offers a screen that’s at least netbook-worthy. You can plug it into a cradle and type on it with a keyboard. True, it’s still miles away from an Xbox 360, PS3, or PC, and if you want to play Call of Duty or StarCraft II, you’re definitely reaching for a gamepad or keyboard and mouse, not a slate.
But what if Apple let you run the iPad out to another display and drive with a more traditional gaming interface? Right–it’s as liable to happen as Apple dismantling its “Checkpoint Charlie” approach to the App Store.
But what if, right? Shoot the moon with me. What if Apple shoehorned something like its Apple TV technology into the iPad? What if the iPad could connect to a larger screen either wirelessly or through a docking cradle and let you channel retooled versions of applications (chiefly games, but alternatively Netflix, Hulu, etc.) culled from its over 300,000 App Store apps?
What if the iPad became your set-top console?
And you know, what’s so fanciful about any of that? The first-generation iPad’s already pretty adept at rendering visually complex games. Have you seen EA’s Dead Space running on the iPad at near-720p resolution?
What do you think? Am I off the reservation here? Or is Apple sitting on a potential NintendoSony, XboxPlayStation (and beyond) killer?
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