Trending December 2023 # The Weekly Authority: 👋 Farewell, Fan Edition? # Suggested January 2024 # Top 13 Popular

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Eric Zeman / Android Authority

⚡ Welcome to The Weekly Authority, the Android Authority newsletter that breaks down the top Android and tech news from the week. The 199th edition here, with a possible farewell to Samsung’s Fan Edition, Pixel 6a unboxing, more Nothing Phone 1 news, and… a sentient AI?!

I finished The Quarry already, but still have to go back for all the different endings, plus some couch co-op. And yes, I confess, I did let Emma die…🤭

Popular news this week

Eric Zeman / Android Authority


OnePlus 10/10T renders and specs leak: Closer to the Pro model, with similar design, powerful chip, faster charging?


Later in the week, we saw a first-look clip of the Phone 1. It glows.


Xiaomi 12 Ultra specs leak: Sounds like it won’t be a huge upgrade.


The price of the Motorola Razr 3 just leaked, and it’s good news.

But first, what’s all this about websites having a carbon footprint?

The internet uses lots of electricity, a whopping 16.2TWh per year, more than the whole of the United Kingdom.

Gizmodo published an interesting piece about the internet being unsustainable, too.

And a 2023 report from The Shift Project revealed that digital technologies are responsible for 4% of greenhouse gas emissions, with their energy consumption increasing by 9% a year.

According to Website Carbon, “The average web page tested produces approximately 0.5 grams CO2 per page view. For a website with 10,000 monthly page views, that’s 60kg CO2 per year.”

There are plenty of ways to make websites more sustainable, from SEO optimization to reducing video and keeping images as minimal as possible, or switching to a green web host.

Simply: The more complex a website is, the more energy it takes to load, and the bigger its carbon footprint.

44.52kg of CO2 equivalent: That’s the same weight as 0.3 sumo wrestlers and as much CO2 as boiling water for 6,033 cups of tea.

48 billion bubbles.

Three trees: Our site emits the amount of carbon that three trees absorb in a year.

103kWh of energy: Enough electricity to drive an electric car 662km.

You’ll find much more information on sustainable skateboards, e-bikes, scooters, solar panels, and more over at Green Authority.

What about some other big sites?

PC Mag took a deep dive into the worst websites for CO2 emissions annually, shown above, and it’s hardly surprising that video-heavy YouTube is the top offender.

Wired UK had a great piece last year about the impact websites are having on the planet.

“According to figures from the HTTP Archive, websites have only become less efficient over the years: today, the average web page weighs in at around 2MB, compared with less than 500KB back in 2010.

“A simple, stripped-back website like Low Tech Magazine produces just 0.24g of CO2 per page view; in contrast, a site with video autoplay features, such as 11 Coffee & Co, generates a hefty 10.08g of CO2 per page view. (The website for Elon and Kimbal Musk’s foundation — comprised of seven lines of text on a white background — is among the cleanest on the web, producing only 0.39kg of CO2 per year.)”

Facebook is cleaner than 90% of sites tested, producing just 0.10g of CO2 for every visit and 11.86kg of CO2 equivalent (over a year with 10,000 monthly page views).

Perhaps shockingly (though we’re sure all those shiny images of vehicles has something to do with it) Tesla’s site was dirtier than 84% of web pages tested, producing 2.71g of CO2 for every visit and, over a year with 10,000 monthly page views, producing 324.75

kg of CO2 equivalent — t

he same weight as 


 sumo wrestlers and as much CO2 as boiling water for 


cups of tea. I love tea, but that’s a lot.

Samsung and Apple both disappointed, Samsung came in as dirtier than 54% of web pages tested, producing 0.52g of CO2 per visit (62.81

kg of CO2 equivalent per year),

 and Apple as dirtier than 50% of web pages tested, producing 0.47g of CO2 per visit or 56.76

kg of CO2 equivalent per year

(and neither use green hosting).

Tech Calendar

June 13-20: Steam Next Fest

June 20-23: Collision (Toronto)

June 23: POCO F4 launch @ 8 AM ET

June 26-July 3: Summer Games Done Quick

June 28: HTCLog In To The Future launch event (Metaverse phone?)

July 5: ASUS ROG Phone 6 launch @ 8 AM ET

July 12: Nothing Phone 1 launch @ 4 PM BST (11 AM ET)

July 13: Samsung Galaxy XCover 6 Pro and Galaxy Tab Active 4 Pro launch

July 19: Stray lands on PS5, PS4, PC

July 28: Pixel 6a launch

August 10 (TBC): Samsung Unpacked? (new Galaxy foldables, Galaxy Watch 5 series?)

Tech Tweet of the Week

You're reading The Weekly Authority: 👋 Farewell, Fan Edition?

The Weekly Authority: Monster March For Mobile, And More

Redmi Note 10 Pro review: Revved up specs for a great price in that super competitive $300 or so range.

Xiaomi Mi Portable Bluetooth Speaker review: Boom for your buck, looks like a winner.


Ryan-Thomas Shaw / Android Authority

Samsung Galaxy S10 redux:  The S10 launched two years ago. How does it hold up in 2023 against modern smartphones? At the price, pretty, pretty well.

HMD interview: Juho Sarvikas on what’s next for Nokia brand in 2023. This one isn’t unmissable, but a quickfire 14 minute video interview, or the written summary, tells you more about what’s coming.

Interview with Luminar CEO Austin Russell (The Verge), the youngest “self-made billionare” in the US at least. Luminar claims to have a “functioning LIDAR that works at 250 meters, which is a breakthrough,” and supplies Volvo, Audi, Toyota, and others. The questions here are super great, Russell’s answers are a bit long, but there is meat there. 

“We’re living on a planet of ants“: New book offers a fun sounding overview of ant life cycles, communication, and colony formation (Ars Technica).

Two thoughts: Huge month, and 🍪

1. Monster March

March is looking like an exciting month for the tech world.

Confirmed: Within a week we’ll see OnePlus announce its launch date and presumably its Hasselblad partnership, the Asus ROG Phone 5, along with the Oppo Find X3 series.

Rumored: There’s rumors suggesting we’ll aslo see the launch of the Samsung Galaxy A52, plus more limited availability devices including the supposed Xiaomi 10S and iQoo Neo 5

Launched: And that’s after we’ve already seen the Redmi Note 10 series, Realme GT, the Nubia Red Magic 6 with its 165Hz display and just earlier the Xiaomi Mi 11 series too.

What matters:

It looks like both the value hunters and those demanding premium flagships will each get something to play for here.

At the top end, the OnePlus 9 Pro (please let the Hasselblad partnership be more than just branding) and the Oppo Find X3 Pro with a rumored “microscope”, plus the ROG Phone 5 should be beefier than ever if non-stop gaming is your thing. All will be Snapdragon 888 beasts.

In the lower tiers will be the interesting sounding OnePlus 9R, the Galaxy A52, and something like a Find X3 Neo and/or Find X3 Lite from Oppo, offering Snapdragon 765G-type SoCs.

In any case, busy month. Which will come out on top?

2. Google, cookies, and why it matters

What might’ve once been slightly interesting — getting a dog food ad when you visit a dog food site — has become creepy. It makes you feel watched, and preyed on. Your personal interests become monetized.

This should not be normal. You have a right to privacy!

And you have a right to open the door to those you would like to hear from, too. 

But the default shouldn’t be an open door.

So, is what Google is doing good? Well…..

The important quote:

“…[W]e continue to get questions about whether Google will join others in the ad tech industry who plan to replace third-party cookies with alternative user-level identifiers. Today, we’re making explicit that once third-party cookies are phased out, we will not build alternate identifiers to track individuals as they browse across the web, nor will we use them in our products.”

So, what now?

Here’s a clue from the WSJ:

Google still wins:

Like Apple, Google’s first-party data remains in-tact for its properties and apps.

So, via Android, and Google properties like YouTube, Gmail, Maps, and so on, Google has plenty of first-party data on you. Just like Apple does (Input).

Tech Calendar

March 8: OnePlus announcement — also this month: OnePlus 9 series launch?

March 8: Google Fit’s camera-based heart and breathing rate trackers arrive on Pixel devices.

March 10: Asus ROG Phone 5 launch.

March 11: Oppo Find X3 series launch.

Also in March: Rumored launch of the Samsung Galaxy A52 and Xiaomi 10S.

Tech Tweets of the Week

The legendary chúng tôi is back, with the involvement of original founder, Billy Chasen:

Thank you all so much! The love and support is amazing. It’s good to be back!

— turntable (@turntablefm) March 4, 2023

Buuut you need a password to get in. But don’t worry, I’ve got your back.

PW: Speakeasy.

Engadget’s Cherylnn Low breaks down the news: chúng tôi is back and chúng tôi is also coming back.

A big week, and what a super week we have in store — thanks for reading, and catch you in the next one.

Tristan Rayner, Senior Editor.

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The Weekly Authority: 🔋Pixel 8’S Wireless Charging Could Disappoint

⚡ Welcome to The Weekly Authority , the Android Authority newsletter that breaks down the top Android and tech news from the week. The 247th edition here with some news about the Pixel 8’s wireless charging, the launch of the Motorola Razr and Razr Plus, a confirmed launch location for the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 and Z Fold 5, the Meta Quest 3 launch, and more…

🚀 This week, I finally made it to see Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 and it was every bit as good as I’d hoped. I might even go so far as to say it was my favorite of the trilogy?!

Popular news this week





Weekly Wonder

Ever wanted a robot butler to do your household chores? Let’s face it, since seeing The Jetsons as kids, we’ve all dreamed of it — or maybe I’m showing my age here.

The good news is, the dream might be closer than you think, as London startup Prosper Robotics, founded by Shariq Hashme, a former OpenAI employee, is working on a “robot butler.”

Though the household robot isn’t ready yet, the company hopes to start alpha testing with the first models in around eight months, with the robot on the market in around two years time.

Hashme says it can do all the mundane household tasks we hate, from laundry to folding clothes, loading and emptying the dishwasher, cleaning floors and surfaces, and even preparing simple meals, like salad.

The robot runs on wheels, with two arms it can raise and lower to do jobs. Its “hands” can straighten bedding, fold clothes, or put away dishes.

It will come with a tool kit of up to 100 tools like a specialized mop or suction cups to help it perform tricky tasks (like removing Tupperware lids).

Because the robot can hold knives, there are some safety concerns, but the company sees the home helpers as being operated remotely initially, while their owners are out at work.

Hygiene was also a concern, but the robot will wear different sets of “gloves,” preventing any cross-contamination, and it can put these in the dishwasher for cleaning between tasks.

It’s not as high-tech as it sounds quite yet, though. We’re still some way away from full automation as there’s not much data available out there to train a household robot on. These robots learn from doing the same tasks over and over, so right now, some more complex tasks (like making a salad) will need to rely on human operators.

The company will charge a subscription fee to cover the robot’s insurance and maintenance, and to pay humans to teleoperate the robot using a VR interface. If you’re thinking this could be a privacy issue, Hashme says the interface blurs out text and human faces, but ultimately still allows a human operator to see inside your home.

The real challenge here is creating a household robot at a realistic price. Prosper’s butler will cost somewhere between $5-10k plus the subscription costs. So while it’s out of reach for many of us, we can expect to see it in the homes of those who can afford it in the next couple of years!

Daily Authority: Why Samsung Wearables With Blood

Essentially, this is the level of sugar (in the form of glucose) available in your bloodstream at any one time. Steady rates are great, high or lows are bad and cause both short-term and long-term complications.

Monitoring these levels useful for people who are undiagnosed is being able to understand if you show a consistently higher-than-normal blood-glucose level, or for diabetics to track the body’s reaction to food, exercise, and so on.

Active monitoring can lead to discovering anything from the onset of Type 1 diabetes (directly related to the loss of insulin-secreting cells in the pancreas through an auto-immune response) or Type 2 diabetes (more related to problems with insulin sensitivity), or other forms like gestational diabetes.

In any case, tech and diabetics aren’t always friends. Over-promises from tech are to be expected. Healthcare is hard, understanding the endocrine system and hormones is not easy, and finger pricking for rapid, fairly low-cost blood testing is still the gold standard even if it can be painful and generally a PITA. Or PITF, as it were.

However! Smart devices do exist now: I wear a BG device with a teeny-tiny little flexible needle/wire sensor(Engadget). It that sticks to the skin and lasts two weeks at a time, tracking changes to interstitial fluid.

It’s by no means perfect, but its reports are easily good enough, and it connects to Android and iOS phone apps, although it has limitations. 

But, it’s FDA approved, and health insurances may contribute to the ongoing costs depending on what you pay for. It’s still expensive and tricky, even if it’s very good compared to occasional readings via finger pricks.

But as we talked about previously, companies are trying to go one step further: wearables that can sense blood-glucose levels.

In brief, we’ve seen:

Apple CEO Tim Cook reportedly wearing a prototype Apple Watch with BG-monitoring in years gone by, with reports the next Apple Watch (Series 7?) may offer it as a feature.

Fitbit, now owned by Alphabet, bought promising technology back in 2023 in BG-monitoring. 

Most significantly in recent times, CES 2023 saw a first prototype from Tokyo-based startup Quantum Operations of a non-invasive wearable glucose monitor that doesn’t require a needle to be inserted into the skin.

The tech here is spectroscopy, using mild lasers to track chemical composition changes, which present on the skin. 

Samsung talked about a form of this called Raman spectroscopy about a year ago.

The new news:

Jimmy Westenberg / Android Authority

What’s new is that there are signs Samsung is close to offering blood-glucose monitors via spectroscopy in its flagships wearables, not as a speciality device, but in its next Watch release: either the Galaxy Watch 4 or the Galaxy Watch Active 3, or possibly both. 

Korea’s ETNews had the scoop:

Quote: “…[Samsung] is now getting ready to include a blood glucose level measurement feature and cause the global healthcare market based on wearable devices to be in full swing [sic].”

And so, Samsung will “[…] introduce three new wearable devices that can be worn on wrist during Galaxy UNPACKED 2023 that will be held this second half [sic]. It is reported that the name of the smart watch with an ability to measure blood glucose level will be either “Galaxy Watch 4” or “Galaxy Watch Active 3”.

That detail goes further than reports I’ve seen of the Apple Watch Series 7, and may set up 2023 to be the year where blood-glucose levels are tracked both by Type 1 and Type 2 diabetics, but the general population as well.

It’s unclear if these devices will be FDA approved or if they’ll be wellness devices that offer insight, without promising to deliver accuracy.

I started to write this sentence: “It’s unclear how this will be marketed,” but wait, I do know. Levels is a startup revolving around the promise that people dedicated to fitness and regular folks worried about their health can get answers.

That may eventually lead to discretion around sugar intake. 

Or, overcaution — a big bowl of pasta will raise your blood-glucose levels, but for healthy people that’s completely normal. How will that be communicated?


💰 Huawei is reportedly in talks to sell its premium smartphone brands, P and Mate series, to a consortium, like the one that bought the Honor smartphone brand. Huawei denied it in the report, and Reuters still published it, indicating a level of confidence (Reuters).

🕹️ The Android Authority team’s favorite classic retro tech(Android Authority).

📏 New Sony Xperia Compact reportedly leaked, a 5.5-inch revival? (Android Authority).

🔜 A picture is starting to emerge of the OnePlus 9 and OnePlus 9 Pro: new leak suggests the base model will get a 6.55-inch FHD+ 120Hz flat screen, the OnePlus 9 Pro a 6.78-inch QHD+ 120Hz curved panel, other sketchy details emerging too (Android Authority).

🔎 Google Search is being updated on mobile: new design and interface is rolling out(SearchEngineLand).

📺 Netflix delivers ‘studio-quality’ sound upgrade for Android viewers (Engadget).

📊 Nvidia hasn’t been able to do anything with its $40B Arm acquisition yet, as the big tech pushback and antitrust hits the plan (Nikkei Asia).

📨 Is this the big Facebook shift, finally? Internal memo from VP Andrew Bosworth features a new, stark message on privacy. “The way we operated for a long time,” he said, “is no longer the best way to serve those who use our products.” As the WhatsApp disaster continues (OneZero).

👋 Clubhouse, the (still invite-only) audio-based social media platform, received more VC funding and announced it in the app, rather than pre-briefing media. Now it has plans to pay creators, as it starts to emerge in more countries and locations outside of early Silicon Valley and US-only chatrooms. The platform has an Android app in the works (TechCrunch).

🔊 The story of how TSMC came to dominate the world (Bloomberg podcast).

🤖 Waymo CEO dismisses Tesla self-driving plan: “For us, Tesla is not a competitor at all … We manufacture a completely autonomous driving system. Tesla is an automaker that is developing a really good driver assistance system.” (Ars Technica).

🛒 Smart grocery carts are coming to change the way we shop (CNET).

🦎 New Godzilla vs. Kong trailer “is a rock ‘em, sock ’em monster mashup” (Ars Technica).

💟 Fake Famous, a HBO documentary about turning regular people into influencers, is out next week (YouTube).

📉 Microsoft reverses Xbox Live price hike, will add free multiplayer for some games including Fortnite (Engadget).

Meme Monday

The Bernie-Sanders-in-mittens memes aptly summarized in a meme:


All the best to start your week,

Tristan Rayner, Senior Editor

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Western Digital My Book Mirror Edition Usb Raid

Western Digital My Book Mirror Edition USB RAID-1 array

Western Digital’s latest attempt to cash in on our general guilt over not backing up files is the My Book Mirror Edition.  Effectively bridging the gap between a traditional standalone USB hard-drive and a full-spec network-attached storage (NAS) device, the Mirror Edition still connects to a single computer via USB but automatically duplicates files across two hard-drives.  Both 1TB and 2TB versions are available.

Inside a RAID 1 setup takes care of all the mirroring, with users able to treat the drive as they would any other; out of the box, half of the total capacity is taken up with backup (i.e. you get 500GB of usable storage on the 1TB system).  Alternatively a RAID 0 (striped) configuration is possible, which gets you the full capacity but no redundancy.

Fanless and using Western Digital’s GreenPower system for one-third less power draw than rival twin-drive systems, the My Book Mirror Edition comes with software for regular and incremental ongoing backups.  There’s also a capacity gauge on the front of the box, which indicates how much space remains.  The drives themselves are held in a no-tool cage, which is easily opened to increase storage as HDD get cheaper and more capacious.

Of course, the big issue is the price.  Western Digital are asking $289.99 for the 1TB and $549.99 for the 2TB model; that seems a lot when you can get a decent (if not necessarily as large) NAS for similar money.  If you just have one computer which needs regular, secure backups, and you’re not planning on expanding that to other computers on a network, the My Book Mirror Edition could be a good, straightforward choice.  Anyone with more than one machine likely should look elsewhere.

Press Release:


Dual-drive System Automatically and Continuously Duplicates Users’ Data

LAKE FOREST, Calif. – June 18, 2008 – WD® (NYSE: WDC) today introduced its new My Book® Mirror Edition™ dual-drive storage systems, which can automatically store valuable personal content not once, but twice, to maximize data safety. This RAID-based continuous data protection feature, called mirroring, makes WD’s My Book Mirror Edition storage systems the safest place for storing irreplaceable data.

Personal collections of digital content, such as photos, music, and videos, continue to grow on desktop and notebook computers around the world. Consumers are increasingly aware that taking precautions to protect their data is vital and are looking for a simple solution.

When users store their personal content on a My Book Mirror Edition system, their valuable data is automatically mirrored for extra protection – making it easy and economical to benefit from the data redundancy typically found in corporate data centers. This mirroring technology makes the new dual-drive systems an ideal storage solution for photographers, home users and small offices and anyone looking for extra assurance that their data is safe.

Consumers can also use the My Book Mirror Edition storage system and the included backup software to automatically and continuously back up their personal computers. The mirroring feature provides users the added assurance of a redundant backup of their data.

Jim Welsh, vice president and general manager of branded products and consumer electronics groups for WD, said, “Personal and business content are extremely valuable – both emotionally and financially. Our new My Book Mirror system helps users sleep easy, knowing that their data is safe.”

Formatted for Windows® computers, these new storage systems feature:

USB 2.0 interface for flexibility and convenience;

Configured out-of-the box in RAID 1 (Mirrored) mode [RAID 0 (Striped) configurable];

Available in capacities of up to 1 TB and 2 TB, the My Book Mirror Edition storage systems ship in Mirrored mode and use half the capacity for file redundancy;

Cool, eco-friendly operation with GreenPower™ drives that consume approximately one-third less power than standard dual-drive external storage systems and efficient convection cooling architecture and power-saving mode;

Designed without a fan for whisper-quiet operation in a home or office environment;

Automatic and continuous backup software that allows users to simultaneously save a change and have it backed up on the second drive for the ultimate in data protection;

User serviceability1, enabling owner to open the enclosure and replace the drives inside;

Capacity gauge to see at a glance how much space is available on the system;

Intelligent drive management features, including automatic power-up, Safe Shutdown™ and LED status and activity lights; and,

3-year limited warranty.

RAID 1 (Mirrored)

Using RAID mirroring technology, this system automatically and continuously duplicates your data for the ultimate in data protection. If one drive in this two-drive system ever fails, the My Book Mirror Edition system continues to run and your data is safe. The My Book Mirror Edition storage systems ship in Mirrored mode and use half the capacity for file redundancy.

RAID 0 (Striped)

Users can choose to use the full2 capacity of this system by reconfiguring the drive to RAID 0 (Striped) mode. With RAID 0, users can have up to 2 TB of storage in an elegant, small footprint design that offers plenty of room to store an entire digital photo library and hundreds of hours of HD movies or digital video (results will vary based on file size and format, settings, features, software and other factors).

Cooler, quieter, eco-friendlier

Designed to use only WD’s GreenPower drives, this system, with its efficient convection cooling architecture, fan-less design, and power saving mode, consumes up to 33 percent less power than standard systems, is reliably cool, and remarkably quiet.

Pricing and Availability

Back It Up

Backing up data is no longer the chore that it once was. In an effort to educate and build awareness among consumers about how to best protect their precious memories and important files, WD has put together some tips and tricks to make it easier than ever to back up data. Visit chúng tôi to learn more.

About WD

WD, one of the storage industry’s pioneers and long-time leaders, provides products and services for people and organizations that collect, manage and use digital information. The company produces reliable, high-performance hard drives that keep users’ data accessible and secure from loss. WD applies its storage expertise to consumer products for external, portable and shared storage applications.

1 See instructions for details.

2 System can be reconfigured to RAID 0 (Striped) to utilize the full capacity for data storage and eliminate the extra data protection offered in RAID 1 (Mirrored) setting.  

Daily Authority: 📱 Pebble Phone To Make A Splash?

Pebble’s compact phone ambitions

The Verge

Pebble was a pioneer in the tech space, releasing the crowd-funded Pebble Watch line back in 2013 and effectively popularizing the smartwatch. The company may have been discontinued and acquired by Fitbit back in 2023, but Pebble’s founder is officially working on a compact phone.

What should we expect?

Pebble founder Eric Migicovsky previously expressed a desire to make a small Android phone, also posting a wishlist.

Now, it looks like he’s taking on this challenge himself, along with some former Pebble team members as part of a community effort.

The team outlined their vision for the phone in an interview with The Verge.

We got a look at a variety of potential camera bump designs, for one (see the image above).

It won’t use a ~100MP camera, though. Expect something around 50MP for the main shooter.

The team is also looking at using either the Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1 SoC or an unreleased mid-tier Snapdragon chipset.

It’s unclear if the latter is the brand-new and beefy Snapdragon 7 Plus Gen 2 chip that was just announced on Friday.

What about the all-important screen size, though?

Finding displays under six inches in size seems to be a problem, while one option looked too similar to Apple’s Mini displays.

So the team thinks it’ll need to get a custom screen for this phone, although this could delay the phone’s debut.

Finally, the former Pebblers think the phone will end up costing $850.

Is there still an appetite for small phones?

That’s the big question, isn’t it?

Apple stopped production of the iPhone 12 Mini and iPhone 13 Mini, purportedly due to low sales.

That says a lot about demand for phones with screens smaller than six inches.

Things aren’t much better on the Android front. Asus has the Zenfone 9, bringing a 5.9-inch screen, though.

But the pocket-friendly Zenfone 8 and 9 had limited availability and didn’t seem to sell massive numbers.

Then again, our list of the best small phones also contains notable entries like the Galaxy S23 and Xperia 5 IV.

So between Asus, Samsung, and Sony, there are indeed options out there. And in Samsung’s case, it’ll be available in your market.

We’re also seeing more clamshell foldables out there too, like the Galaxy Z Flip 4 and Oppo Find N2 Flip.

They might not have small folding screens, but the form factor is still exceptionally pocket-friendly.

Will this even see the light of day?

The other challenge for this Pebble team is sourcing cash. They’ll need up to $50 million.

That’s a big ask, and it’s suggested that the team won’t use Kickstarter for this endeavor.

So there’s a real possibility that this phone will remain a pipe dream.

Maybe the company needs to keep things small at first, like fellow crowdfunding-focused brand Unihertz.

Yes, the same company that recently offered a Nothing Phone 1 clone.

Unihertz generally uses crowdfunding to drum up some interest, while offering niche, budget-priced handsets.

Its wares include the ~$200 Jelly smartphone, which has a 3-inch screen, as well as keypad-toting phones.

So perhaps the team behind this Pebble Phone needs to walk before it can run by offering a budget phone first.

After all, the industry is littered with the remains of upstart high-end brands like Red and Essential.

But hey, I’m happy to be proven wrong.

💣 Valve announces Counter-Strike 2 for summer launch: Feels like just the other day that I was a teenager trying out Counter-Strike 1.5 at an internet café (Polygon).

🎨 Wallpaper Wednesday: I really like the reader-submitted wallpaper showing stars and a light trail (Android Authority).

💻 A journalist has suffered injuries after he plugged in an explosive-laden flash drive that was mailed to him (Ars Technica).

📷 Samsung’s photo ‘remaster’ tool apparently added teeth to baby pictures: The software seems to be mistaking a seven-month-old baby’s tongue for teeth. How weird (The Verge).

Thursday Thing

The Unreal Engine is the framework for a ton of video games today, and Unreal Engine 5 already powers the likes of Fortnite. Now, Epic Games has revealed a gorgeous tech demo for Unreal Engine 5.2. Check it out in the YouTube clip above, courtesy of IGN.

The video, which sees someone driving a car through a jungle environment, shows off some beautiful visuals. But we also see some fantastic features like fluid physics when driving through water, rocks being crunched out from under the car’s wheels, and procedural generation of high-quality environments. Can’t wait for this tech to come to real games.

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