Ity Bytes 8 June – in this edition
- Trump edict starts to bite Huawei;
- Google Maps gets a digital speedo and new SOS features;
- Samsung to bring super speedy AMD RDNA GPU to smartphones;
- Samsung Galaxy Note9 rates top in customer satisfaction;
- Motorola Z4 5G;
- Wearables may be coming of age;
ITy Bytes 8 June
The impact of the US Presidential Order begins to bite Huawei
US companies can neither supply to or buy from Huawei.
Facebook has announced its apps (Facebook, WhatsApp and Instagram) will no longer be part of pre-installed apps for Huawei phones made from the date of the Presidential Order. The same applies to Twitter, Uber, YouTube (Google) and other US-owned apps. These apps can still be post-installed from Google Play.
It is a two-part blow. Huawei charges these companies to have their apps installed, and in return, the worlds #2 smartphone maker propagates these apps wider use.
We remind users and potential buyers that the US ban (applying to companies including Google, Microsoft, Facebook, Amazon, etc.) applies for phones built from 21 May. It does not apply to phones in-stock at that time. Google has obtained a reprieve until 18 August to provide Android security updates to existing Huawei phones, and its Play Store remains available to these.
We are hoping this may be a storm in a teacup, but it has hit Huawei hard. Analysts say its stellar sales in Q1, 2019 have dropped 20-30% in Q2 and it has cut production orders by a further 30% for Q3. While Huawei’s China market share is solid sales in the five/nine/fourteen ‘eye’ (western) countries have stalled due to uncertainty about Google Android’s future on Huawei handsets.
Google Maps gets a digital speedo and new SOS features
Coming soon to Australia, Google Maps, when used for in-car navigation, will display the GPS speed (which is more accurate than most car speedos) as well as speed limits.
SOS Alerts introduced last year provide access to authoritative, real-time information during times of crisis. New visual information about natural disasters and a new navigation warning system enable drivers to reliably know where a disaster is and anticipate where it is going. It is also adding (not globally yet) crisis navigation warnings crowdsourced from users. These include road closures, accidents and more.
Samsung to bring AMD Radeon to smartphones
These days most Android smartphones have a Qualcomm Adreno, ARM-design Mali or PowerVR Graphics processing unit.
Samsung has signed a licence agreement to implement AMD’s RDNA graphics into its high-end Exynos Chips. Ironically AMD sold its smartphone development to Qualcomm in 2009 as the basis of its Adreno GPU. Adreno is an anagram of Radeon.
The RDNA technology powers AMD’s Navi desktop GPU and is for high-performance gaming. Google will be using RDNA technology to power its Stadia gaming cloud. Analysts say that Samsung is looking for a distinct edge over other smartphones that can use the ARM-designed Mali even in lower powered SoCs.
Don’t expect to see the new Exynos SoC until 2021 at the earliest.
Samsung Galaxy Note9 rates top in customer satisfaction
The Samsung Galaxy Note9 topped the 15th annual American Consumer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) scoring 86-out-of-100 from a poll of 19658 users. Samsung has held the top rating for the past seven years.
Second place (all tied) were Apple’s iPhone 8 Plus and X, Samsung’s J7 Prime and S8+, Motorola Moto G-series.
The majority of the other brands/models scored closer to 70.