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PUBG Will Gain Cross-Play Support on Consoles This Fall

Popular battle royale game PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds, commonly known as PUBG is gaining support for cross-platform play on consoles, announced the company during Inside Xbox Gamescom presentation yesterday.

“Cross platform play between Xbox One and PlayStation 4 gamers will be available for testing on the PUBG Public Test Server (PTS) beginning in late September and will hit live servers in early October,” reads the official blog post of Xbox.

This essentially means that you could finally team up with that one friend who always purchases the opposite of the gadgets you own. However, the blog post has not explicitly made it clear if players could team up with opposite console mates or if it would be like an Xbox One squad vs PlayStation 4 squad kind of implementation.

That confusion would be clarified once the feature hits the PUBG Public Test Server (PTS) later next month. Also, cross-play will be available in all servers starting October if the implementation doesn’t cause any major performance flaws or hiccups. This change will effectively reduce the match-making times for both Xbox One and PS4 users and hence, players will see this update as an absolute win.

You will also be able to view the device each player is using on the leaderboard so that you can get a rough idea of where the real pros are at, and the console they use as you can see in the below image.

pubg console

PUBG Corporation is also focusing on bringing updates faster to the consoles. The company will work towards bringing any new updates within two weeks of hitting the PC version which is quite good for console enthusiasts.

Also, do not forget to check out PUBG Season 4 trailer down below which will be live on August 27 that comes with season 4 Survivor Pass, the usual rewards and visual improvements to the Erangel map.

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Realme 5 Pro Snapdragon 712 Benchmarks and Gaming Performance

Realme’s first set of quad-camera smartphones, Realme 5 and Realme 5 Pro today made their much-awaited debut in India. The latter of the two phones, the Realme 5 Pro, is the successor to Realme 3 Pro that was launched just a few months ago. It comes as a minor upgrade on the internals front, being backed by the Snapdragon 712 chipset, but with a major camera upgrade – thanks to the four sensors onboard.

Now, if you have been wondering how the Snapdragon 712 chipset on the Realme 5 Pro will compare to its competitors in the sub-Rs. 15,000 segment, well, you are the right place. You can see how the Snapdragon 712, Snapdragon 710 (Realme 3 Pro), and Snapdragon 675 (Redmi Note 7 Pro) compare to each other down below:

Realme 5 Pro: Benchmarks

  • AnTuTu Benchmark

The Snapdragon 712 may be a minor upgrade over the Snapdragon 710 chipset. It comes with the same cores, the same GPU, the same modem, and the same ISP. It only differs in one aspect – the clock speed of the Kryo 360 cores. It has a higher clock speed, and that results in 10% faster performance.

And it’s possibly due to this, the Snapdragon 712 chipset manages to outperform both of your Snapdragon 675 and Snapdragon 710 chipsets in AnTuTu benchmarks. You can see the scores attached right here:

L to R: Snapdragon 675 vs Snapdragon 710 vs Snapdragon 712
L to R: Snapdragon 675 vs Snapdragon 710 vs Snapdragon 712

  • GeekBench 4

While the Snapdragon 712 takes the win in the AnTuTu benchmark, thanks to the more powerful Adreno 616 GPU, the latest Kryo 460 cores in the Snapdragon 675 provide you more raw processing power. The older-gen Kryo 360 cores in both the Snapdragon 710 and Snapdragon 712 chipsets. The Geekbench 4 score for these chipsets tell this story:

L to R: Snapdragon 675 vs Snapdragon 710 vs Snapdragon 712

  • 3DMark

Well, the 3DMark benchmark results are clear as day. The Snapdragon 712 is backed by the Adreno 616 GPU, which is the same as the Snapdragon 710 chipset. The Adreno 616 GPU is more powerful than the Adreno 612 GPU on the Snapdragon 675 chipset, which shows in the benchmark results below. The Snapdragon 712 is possibly one of the best devices to game on, especially if you have a Rs 15,000 budget constraint.

L to R: Snapdragon 675 vs Snapdragon 710 vs Snapdragon 712

Before we move past these benchmarks and talk about gaming, I would like to reiterate that the aforementioned scores above don’t really define the real-life performance of the devices. I have tried out devices powered by all of these chipsets and the overall day-to-day performance, along with gaming experience, remains pretty much the same and not affected by the minor differences in benchmark scores.

Realme 5 Pro: Gaming Performance

Mobile gaming is one of the key aspects that consumers nowadays keep in mind before buying a new smartphone. Snapdragon 712 is a pretty powerful mid-range chipset with Adreno 616 GPU and it should easily be able to handle most things you throw at it.

We tried out PUBG Mobile on the Realme 5 Pro and it assumed ‘high’ frame rate and ‘smooth’ graphics settings by default. We jumped into a couple of Team Deathmatch games, which we found to be more taxing as you respawn, and the game runs perfectly fine. I didn’t notice any stutters or frame drops, so you can comfortably enjoy graphics-intensive games on the device. We also tested out Asphalt 9 on the Realme 5 Pro and it also runs without any issues.

So ultimately, we can say that the Snapdragon 712 chipset is a powerful processor that holds its ground against the other Snapdragon 600- and 700-series chipsets in the sub-15,000 price segment. It not only offers you a smooth user experience on the daily over the brief time I spent with the Realme 5 Pro. The gaming performance also looks pretty great, so I’m pretty satisfied with the Snapdragon 712. What are your thoughts on this? Tell us in the comments down below.

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Official Redmi TV Render Shows Thin Bezels, Possible Camera Housing

Just over a week before unveiling the Redmi TV on August 29, Xiaomi has shared an official image of the upcoming device, giving us a definitive look at its design. The image shows what seems to be a standard flat panel TV with thin bezels surrounding the display, and a prominent ‘Redmi’ branding on the bottom bezel. The image further reveals a small, protruding part just below the branding, with online speculations suggesting that it might house a camera to facilitate face unlock and video chats.

Image Courtesy: Xiaomi (via Weibo)

At least two Redmi TV models have been certified by China’s official certifications agency, 3C over the past weeks. While the listings themselves didn’t reveal too many details about the upcoming products, online rumors suggested that the lineup may initially include at least two models with model numbers L70M5-RA and L40M5-FA. According to a tweet from tipster Xiaomishka (@xiaomishka), last month, the two aforementioned will offer 4K UHD screens, measuring 70-inches and 40-inches, respectively.

#Xiaomi #Redmi #RedmiTV
The models of Redmi's two smart TVs are L70M5-RA and L40M5-FA, 4K ultra-high-definition screens, and the price is very low. pic.twitter.com/RjlzpDWzvR

— Xiaomishka (@xiaomishka) July 26, 2019

Following the launch of RedmiBook laptops and even a Redmi-branded washing machine earlier this year, Xiaomi is all set to enter the smart TV category with its value-for-money brand. While the company already sells Mi-branded televisions, the latest initiative is expected to allow it to reach newer consumers in developing markets.

The exact launch date, pricing and availability details of the Redmi TV remain a mystery for now, as do all of the other key details, including hardware specs and software features. However, given that the company is also said to launch its Redmi 8-series smartphones on the same day, August 29 promises to be massive for Xiaomi and its fans worldwide.

Image Courtesy: Xiaomi (via Weibo)

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Microsoft’s SMS Organizer is No Longer Limited to India

Microsoft has a variety of essential apps for Android and iOS, one of which is SMS Organizer, an app that was limited to India for a long time but has now expanded to other regions like US, UK, and Australia.

Microsoft SMS Organizer is much more than your usul SMS app. It is a feature-rich application that has the potential to replace almost all the SMS apps out there. Once you install the application, the app will sort all the current messages into categories depending on the type of the message, thanks to machine learning algorithms.

The three categories offered by SMS Organizer are Personal, Transactions, and Promotions which are available as tabs that can be accessed from the bottom panel of the app. Also, you won’t be getting annoying notifications of promotional messages when you set SMS Organizer as the default SMS app.

sms organizer ui

Yes, there is a dark mode for the app. You can switch the theme of the app by heading to Settings -> Theme. You will find seven themes namely Classic, Sapphire, Royale, Ocean, Raspberry, Rouge, and Midnight. The only theme with a dark interface is Midnight and hence I chose it as you can see on the above screenshot.

One of the features I liked the most is the account balance history. The app will automatically list all the credits and debits from the bank notification SMS which you usually swipe away. It is pretty cool and makes a difference in real life to keep track of your expenses.

The app also has a lot of other features like starring messages, scheduling messages, reminders, live train tracking, discount coupons for food delivery apps, bill payment, hotels, and so on. You can also backup all your chats to Google Drive which the app prompts upon setting the app up for the first time. However, you won’t be able to send MMS with this one.

So, is SMS Organizer available in your country? Let us know in the comments.

Download Microsoft SMS Organizer (Free)

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‘Call of Duty: Modern Warfare’ Multiplayer Gunfight Mode Hits PS4 August 23

The 2019 reboot of the cult classic ‘Call of Duty: Modern Warfare’ will release later this year, but gamers will be able to check out the game’s multiplayer ‘Gunfight Mode’ starting this week. At the Gamescom 2019 on Tuesday, developer Infinity Ward announced that the game’s new 2v2 mode will be available as part of a free Alpha program on PlayStation 4 from August 23-25.

The Alpha will include five close-quarters maps, including two never-before-played locales: Docks and Speedball. The other maps will include Stack, King and Pine. In a press release, Sony said that unlike Modern Warfare’s core multiplayer experience, “Gunfight Mode will be all about adapting to unpredictable loadouts in intimate 2v2 maps” as part of a refreshing, intense contrast that will enrich the overall experience.

Sony has also launched a gameplay trailer (see above) for the new 2v2 mode, which will be available for one weekend only, from August 23-25. According to the company, each team will begin a given round with a random weapon loadout that might include anything from pistols to rocket launchers and shotguns. “The opposing team starts with the same loadout, which makes predicting enemy strategies crucial”, said the company.

Infinity Ward officially announced the Call of Duty: Modern Warfare reboot last May, much to the excitement of gamers worldwide. According to Infinity Ward, the game will be not so much a remake of the beloved 2007 title, but a ‘re-imagining’ of the cult classic. It will be launched October 25 on Windows PCs, Xbox One and PlayStation 4. The new version will include two parts, one with players taking the roles of special forces soldiers, and the other with players taking the role of rebel fighters from the Middle East.

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Samsung Galaxy Buds Tops Headphones Test; Apple AirPods Ranks 49th

A new report from a reputable US consumer media outlet seemingly bears out the notion that Apple’s AirPods maybe insanely popular among casual music listeners, but they’re not exactly the best in terms of audio quality. In the latest Stereo Headphones test by Consumer Reports, Samsung’s Galaxy Buds were ranked at number one with 86 points, while Apple’s wireless earbuds ranked a lowly 49th with just 56 points.

In its review, Consumer Reports described the Galaxy Buds as “one of the best-scoring portable Bluetooth headphones Consumer Reports has ever tested” with “true wireless design (and) exemplary audio quality packed into a pair of unobtrusive earpieces”. The report also noted that the Buds offer easy-to use touch controls for playback, volume, and skipping tracks.

Alongside the sound quality, which received an ‘Excellent’ rating from Consumer Reports, another important feature that came in for high praise is the battery life, with the review noting that not only do the Galaxy Buds offer higher battery capacity with up to six hours of audio playback, the carry case, which offers a further seven hours of use, comes with wireless charging as standard.

Launched in February 2019, the Galaxy Buds are compatible with Android devices running Android 5.0 Marshmallow and above. It comes with Bluetooth v5.0 LE connectivity and, packs a number of built-in sensors, including Accelerometer, Hall Sensor and Proximity Sensor. It sports a 58mAh battery, plus a 252mAh battery in the case. It is also priced lower than the Apple Airpods, which should make it an obvious choice for people looking to buy a new pair of premium earbuds.

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Disney+ Supported Platforms and Rollout Plans Revealed

Disney had earlier announced that its upcoming streaming platform, Disney+, will launch November 12 in the US, but the company has now revealed that it will also be available in a number of international markets either on the same day as the US, or in the weeks following the US launch. In an official press release on Monday, the company said that the service will be rolled out in Canada and the Netherlands on November 12, and in Australia and New Zealand exactly a week later.

According to Disney: “Disney+ will launch in Canada and the Netherlands in tandem with the US on November 12th, priced at $8.99CAD per month (or $89.99 per year) and €6.99 per month (or €69.99 per year), respectively. The following week, Disney+ will launch in Australia and New Zealand on November 19th, priced at $8.99AUD per month (or $89.99 per year) and $9.99NZD per month (or $99.99 per year), respectively”.

Disney+ will be natively available on a number of platforms at launch, including the web, Android, iOS and more. The entire list is as follows:

  • Apple TV (tvOS)
  • Android mobile devices
  • Android TV
  • Chromecast
  • Desktop web browsers
  • iPad (iPadOS)
  • iPhone (iOS)
  • PlayStation 4
  • Roku streaming players
  • Roku TV
  • Xbox One

Disney earlier this year announced that its upcoming streaming service will offer extensive content from the company’s iconic entertainment brands, such as Star Wars, High School Musical, Marvel, Pixar, National Geographic and more. The service will support 4K HDR content, all of which will be available to download and view offline. In its first year, Disney+ plans to release more than 25 original series and 10 original films, documentaries and specials by some of the most prolific and creative storytellers.

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Samsung Galaxy Note 10, Note 10+ Launched in India, Starting at Rs 69,999

Less than two weeks after unveiling the Galaxy Note 10 and Note 10+ at a glittering ceremony in New York, Samsung has launched the two devices in India. The devices are expected to go on sale in India from August 23. Both the models will be offered in Aura Black, Aura Glow and Aura White color options, while the Note 10 will also have an additional Aura Red color variant.

While the Note 10 has been priced starting at Rs. 69,999 for the 8GB RAM + 256GB model, the Note 10+ starts at Rs. 79,999 for the 12GB of RAM and 256GB version. Launch offers include a cashback of Rs. 6,000 when using HDFC credit/debits cards at brick-and-mortar retailers and ICICI credit/debit cards on Amazon, Flipkart, Paytm Mall and Tata Cliq.

The Galaxy Note 10 features a 6.3-inch Full HD+ Dynamic AMOLED Infinity-O display, while the Note 10+ comes with a massive 6.8-inch QHD+ panel of the same description. However, while the standard Note 10 sports a triple rear camera set-up on the back, the larger model incorporates a quad-cam module. The Indian versions will be powered by the Exynos 9825 SoC, and Samsung has also added S-Pen handwriting recognition support for four Indian languages.

Somewhat surprisingly, the prices of the Galaxy Note 10 and Note 10+ in India are almost identical to their US prices. While the smaller device starts at $949 (around 67,000) stateside, the larger phone comes with a $1,099 (around Rs. 77,000) price-tag there. Additionally, the Galaxy Note 10+ 5G model is priced starting at $1,299 (roughly Rs. 92,000) in the US, although, that particular device may not make its way to India.

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Realme XT with 64MP Quad Camera to Arrive in September

One could say that Realme today kicked off the second phase of their assault against its arch-nemesis Redmi in India. The Chinese giant has just launched two quad-camera phones, the Realme 5 and Realme 5 Pro, to tackle the crowded budget segment. Both the devices are quite powerful, to say the least, but Realme caught us off-guard with the announcement of the name and launch details of its hotly-anticipated 64MP quad-camera smartphone.

While most of us were speculating that it’ll be called the Realme X Pro, well, Realme CEO Madhav Sheth on stage said that their upcoming device will be a 64MP quad-camera Xpert. So, it is only fitting to name this smartphone – Realme XT and it will launch in India towards the end of September. Yes, we will see the Chinese giant return for another smartphone launch next month – in line with their claims of launching the 64MP camera phone before Diwali.

realme XT launch date

We recently went hands-on with Realme’s 64MP camera phone at its Camera Innovation Event. It’s where the company revealed that it will be using the same Samsung ISOCELL Bright GW1 sensor, which Redmi is baking in its upcoming smartphone.

The Chinese giant was closely following in the footsteps of Redmi for over a year, but it’s now making a leap. Realme has confidence in its quad-camera modules, which is evident with the launch of the Realme 5 series. It aims to continue the same momentum with the launch of Realme XT in the coming month. However, it would be interesting to see if the Realme XT will be the first 64MP camera phone to launch in India.

The Redmi Note 8 is launching in China later this week, possibly with the 64MP sensor in tow, and could land in India really soon. So, we will soon have two 64MP camera phones among us, which makes me both excited and fatigued at the same time. What are your thoughts on this? Too soon to put 48MP cameras in the past? Let us know your thoughts down in the comments section.

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Need for Speed Heat GamePlay Trailer: Our Impressions

Ghost Games, the developer company behind Need for Speed, is finally bringing the heat in racing video games back with its latest Need for Speed Heat. The company unveiled the trailer of the game last week and it has now posted an almost 4-minute long gameplay trailer.

The trailer shows what to expect from the upcoming NFS Heat and to be honest, I’m quite impressed. It appears like the company has put in a lot of effort, as minute details like reflections and shadows are given more emphasis.

The official trailer flaunts the gameplay experience in day and night conditions. During the day, you will be able to participate in racing events along with the usual police patrol. However, things get really heated up in the night time when you can participate in illegal races evading the cops.

The major improvement in the game is for sure, the customizations. You can customize and personalize almost all the aspects in your avatar and car ranging from altering the exhaust sound of the car to the color and brand of the shoe worn by the avatar.

You can download the NFS Heat Studio for Android here and iOS here to customize your car and avatar right now which is a neat addition for the fans who can’t wait to personalize their characters. The customizations you do in the app can be seamlessly linked to your account and can be used in the game when it comes out later on November 8 this year.

The game will be available for Xbox One, PS4, and PC. You may preorder the game for the Xbox One here, PS4 here, and PC here. There are two editions to choose from – Standard Edition which costs Rs.3,999 and Deluxe Edition which costs Rs. 4,499. The extra Rs.500 on the Deluxe Edition will unlock a few cars, 4 character outfits, a 5% boost in REP and BANK rewards.

Take a look at the official reveal trailer and the gameplay trailer and let us know your thoughts in the comments.

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