News in Brief: Stories you might have missed in the last week

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Huawei offering discounts ahead of upcoming virtual festivals

Huawei is doing some online deals ahead of online festivals taking place in the coming weeks:

  • FreeBuds 4i for £79.99 with a free Band 4e Active worth £39.99
  • FreeBuds Studio headphones down from £299.99 to £199.99
  • The 2021 MateBook X Pro with 11th-gen Intel i7 processor, 16GB of RAM and 1TB storage for £1,599 with a free Bluetooth mouse and classic backpack.
  • Huawei Band 6 for £59.99 with a free Huawei Smart Scale or Mini speaker.

Independent analyst CCS Insight speaks of strong 5G prospects

CCS Insight predicts worldwide connections to 5G will triple in 2021 to 670 million, as the technology is on the verge of becoming mainstream in some markets.

The company forecasts 3.6 billion 5G connections by 2025.

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“In some pioneering countries, 5G is on the verge of hitting the mass market.

“Consumers’ thirst for connectivity is stronger than ever, and accelerating network roll-outs and affordable smartphones are making 5G increasingly accessible”

Kester Mann, director of consumer and connectivity, CCS Insight

One XPlayer handheld PC console campaign starts on Idiegogo

A new console that contains a powerful 11th-gen Intel i7 CPU and 1600p display, complete with a 15,300mAh battery, is available for as little as $899 to early-birds backing the venture on Indiegogo. The final retail price is expected to be around $1,159 according to the manufacturer One-Netbook Technology.

I shouldn’t need to say it, but will anyway; Indiegogo is not an online store and backing a project has a risk associated with it – so do the necessary research before investing in products that could be delayed or not happen at all.

Oppo conducts survey to see if we can recognise exotic animals as real or not

As part of an exercise to promote the Oppo Find X3 Pro, Oppo worked with OnePoll to find out how many people actually know that some animals they see are actually real and not just fictional creations or jokes.

The survey polled 2,000 US participants. Make of that what you will…

Three-banded armadillo
Fictional: 39%
Real: 46%
Didn’t know: 15%
Pygmy Slow Loris
Fictional: 39%
Real: 39%
Didn’t know: 22%
Purple Banded Lizard
Fictional: 39%
Real: 39%
Didn’t know: 22%
Red Panda
Fictional: 39%
Real: 43%
Didn’t know: 17%
Panamanian Golden Frog
Fictional: 37%
Real: 38%
Didn’t know: 26%
Frilled-Neck Lizard
Fictional: 35%
Real: 41%
Didn’t know: 23%
Tasmanian Devil
Fictional: 40%
Real: 43%
Didn’t know: 18%
Thick-Billed Parrot
Fictional: 35%
Real: 44%
Didn’t know: 21%
Blue-Footed Booby
Fictional: 35%
Real: 44%
Didn’t know: 21%
Golden Lion Tamarin
Fictional: 34%
Real: 42%
Didn’t know: 24%

TicWatch Pro 3 LTE releases firmware update to fix bugs and improve performance

The update for the TicWatch Pro 3 LTE brings the following changes:

  • Enable the notification sound
  • New screen brightness layout
  • Improved speed of the tilt-to-wake screen
  • Improved performance on Qualcomm Snapdragon Wear 4100 platforms
  • Improved the smoothness of sliding
  • Improved pairing speed when pairing with Android phones
  • Support turning off the essential screen’s auto backlight 
  • Optimized the accuracy of off-body detection 
  • Updated security patch 

Global Smartphone market grows 28.1% year-over-year in Q1 2021

Omdia’s latest global smartphone shipment data shows a growth of 28.1% YoY to 353 million units in Q1 2021, compared to 275.7 million units in Q1 2020.

Big changes can be seen from Huawei (a 70% drop YoY), and LG’s recently announced departure from the market will also see further changes later in the year.

Samsung took the top spot, with Xiaomi reaching third place with impressive growth, followed by Vivo and Oppo.

Motorola, Realme and Tecno all showed a strong YoY increase as a percentage, albeit on a much lower number of shipments in comparison.

Shipment 1Q21M/SShipment 4Q20M/SShipment 1Q20M/SQoQYoY
1Samsung76.1m22%62m16%58.9m21%22.80%29.20%
2Apple56.416%84.522%38.514%-33.30%46.50%
3Xiaomi49.514%47.212%27.810%4.90%78.30%
4vivo38.211%34.59%19.57%10.70%95.90%
5Oppo37.811%349%20.47%11.10%85.30%
6Huawei14.74%339%4918%-55.50%-70.00%
7Motorola12.64%9.83%5.52%28.60%128.10%
8Realme11.43%14.34%6.12%-20.30%86.90%
9Tecno8.22%7.72%3.51%6.50%133.40%
10LG6.82%8.42%5.42%-18.90%26.20%
Others41.312%46.412%41.115%-11.00%0.60%
Total353100%381.8100%275.7100%-7.50%28.10%

“The smartphone market continues to show resiliency in the face of multiple challenges. The global component supply shortage is looming large over the market. On the other hand, two well-known smartphone brands will disappear from the global smartphone market this year, in Huawei and LG, opening the door for other brands to reach new markets and buyers.”

Gerrit Schneemann, principal analyst, Omdia

Sony brings Xperia PRO to UK

The Xperia PRO, launched last year in the USA, is coming to the UK – at a very premium price.

Designed for content creators, with its dedicated HDMI input that allows the 6.5-inch 4K OLED display to be used as a monitor, the phone is also packed with features that Sony hopes will justify its £2,299 retail price.

The smartphone is available exclusively via Wex Photo Video.

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