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HeyWhatsNew: Apple’s “Project Titan” Electric Car Is Canceled, and the Tech Industry Converged In Barcelona This Week

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Greetings, Heyuppers. It’s been an exciting week in the tech world with plenty of announcements being made by some of the industry’s biggest players. Let’s explore the tech news highlights for the week beginning 26/02/2024.

The Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2024 Took Place This Week 

The Mobile World Congress, the largest and most influential event for the connectivity ecosystem, took place in Barcelona this week between the 26th and the 29th. It’s been happening since 1987 and is where senior executives from the top global companies, international governments, and the tech industry converge to exchange ideas and the latest innovations that are coming soon.   

Some of the world’s biggest tech brands have announced their plans to release new devices this year, including Samsung, Nothing, and HTC. One of the most notable announcements was the new Google features for Android like the ability to listen to AI-generated image captions, a feature developed with the visually impaired in mind.

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The Second Version of the Nubia Pad 3D Is On Its Way

One of the products announced at this year’s MWC is Nubia’s latest rendition of the Nubia Pad 3D, first announced in February 2023. According to ZTE, the new Nubia Pad 3D II delivers an even better glasses-free 3D experience through extensive enhancements in performance, user experience, and the overall ecosystem. 

It houses the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chipset, a huge step up from the Snapdragon 888 chipset from the first 3D tablet. The Nubia Pad 3D II is also the world’s first 5G+AI eyewear-free 3D tablet, meaning it gives users access to more content, even with the lack of native 3D content. There is no official release date or retail price yet, but the tablet has already made an appearance on ZTE’s website.

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Renders of the Upcoming Galaxy Z Fold 6 Leak

Unofficial renders of Samsung's upcoming Galaxy Z Fold 6 smartphone have been leaked, revealing a more squared design similar to the Galaxy S24 Ultra. According to The Verge, the new device is slightly shorter and wider than its predecessor, the Galaxy Z Fold 5, however, key features like the triple camera system and button placements have been kept the same. 

Nothing is official yet as Samsung hasn’t made any official announcements, but we expect the device to feature the Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 for Galaxy chipset, 12GB or 16GB memory options, and 1TB storage. More information is expected to come from the Galaxy Unpacked event happening in July.

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Apple Lets Go of the Dream of An Apple Car

Apple has reportedly abandoned its long-standing project to develop an electric car, known as "Project Titan." In a positive turn of events, many employees from this project will now be transferred to Apple's artificial intelligence division. The shift comes as electric vehicle (EV) sales in the U.S. have not met expectations, leading to reduced investments and price cuts by major carmakers. In contrast, there is a growing focus on artificial intelligence (AI), and Apple's reallocation of resources could help it compete with tech rivals like Microsoft and Google. 

The move reflects a broader trend of declining investor enthusiasm for electric vehicles and a rising interest in AI technologies. Apple's strategic pivot towards AI is seen as essential for staying ahead in technology development, and it’s just another reason Apple has to justify high product prices.

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Netflix Users Will Need to Find Alternative Payment Methods to Apple Pay

If you still use the App Store to pay for your Netflix subscription, the streaming service has announced that you’ll need to find alternative payment methods soon. This change impacts members on the basic plan who were using iTunes payment, including users in the US and Canada. The change is being implemented because Netflix no longer wants to pay Apple a 15% cut in subscription fees. 

Netflix had allowed existing subscribers to continue using iTunes billing even after stopping new subscriptions through Apple's payment system in 2018. However, this option is now being discontinued, and affected users may face a more than $5 price increase or opt for a $3 cheaper plan with ads. 

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Oppo Watch X Launched This Week

OPPO has launched the OPPO Watch X, a premium smartwatch with GPS, Wi-Fi, NFC, and Bluetooth. The design is “surprisingly” similar to the OnePlus Watch 2 and it emphasizes a traditional analog look, featuring a large dial and a round face within a 46mm stainless steel case. 

The new OPPO Watch X features the Qualcomm Snapdragon W5 Gen 1 chipset and BES 2700 MCU efficiency chipset. It has a 500mAh battery with up to four days of battery life, supporting fast charging for 24 hours of usage with a 10-minute charge.

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Snapdragon 8 Gen 4 Coming in October This Year

Android Authority reports that there’s a new Snapdragon chipset coming to the market this year, which is no surprise considering that the company has made a routine out of releasing new chipsets in October at the Snapdragon summit. 

Qualcomm Chief Marketing Officer Don McGuire says that the Snapdragon 8 Gen 4 will be equipped with Oryon CPU technology, which means we could see a major CPU boost compared to off-the-shelf Arm CPUs of the past. It’s expected that phones powered by the Snapdragon 8 Gen 4 will have a higher price tag than current devices running on the third generation Snapdragon 8.  

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That concludes this week’s newsletter, thanks for joining us. We’ll be back again next week with more interesting insights into the world of technology and how it’s shaping our world.