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WatchOS 8's best new features: The Apple Watch tricks we're loving already in the beta – CNET

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Lexy Savvides/CNET

The Apple Watch is getting its annual face-lift with WatchOS 8. Expect extra workout modes, more flexible messaging tools and a portrait watch face, among other new features. Apple just released the public beta of WatchOS 8, which gives us a sneak peek at the operating system that will be released in the fall. While there are no big interface surprises in the new OS, Apple has refined the Watch experience to bring many features in line with iOS on the iPhone.

Read more: Apple Watch SE vs Series 6 vs. Series 3: How to choose?

WatchOS 8 will run on all Apple Watches starting with the Series 3 and later. We don’t recommend installing any beta software on your primary device, but if you do want to preview the new features coming to iOS 15 and WatchOS 8, you can find out how to download them here.

Here are the best new Apple Watch features we’ve found so far.

WatchOS 8 puts portrait photos on your wrist

The new Portraits watch face can use any portrait mode photo taken on the iPhone. But rather than displaying a static image, the watch uses segmentation data from the photo to separate the foreground from the background. This means the time appears just behind the head of your subject and if you raise your wrist or like to fidget with the Digital Crown, the subject pops in and out, too.

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Lexy Savvides/CNET

I’ve found it works best with photos that have a lot of distance between the foreground and background, plus ample headroom above your subject so you can really see the effect. Some complications are also supported, so you can put elements like battery level or heart rate on the watch face as well.

The Photos app itself gets some new tools like surfacing your memories and featured photos, so new content is synced with the Watch daily. Plus you can now share photos straight from the Watch via Messages or the Mail app.

AssistiveTouch is a mind-blowing accessibility feature

Apple announced AssistiveTouch in May along with a range of accessibility features for the iPhone and iPad.

It lets people who have the use of only one arm control the Apple Watch by detecting movement in the hand and wrist, like pinching or clenching actions. So you don’t need to be able to touch the screen to interact with the watch.

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Lexy Savvides/CNET

It’s difficult to describe how intuitive this feels until you use it. Pinch your thumb and forefinger and the watch will move the focus to navigate through menu options. A double pinch moves back, while a clench is a tap action to select something on the screen. AssistiveTouch is also customizable, so you could set a double-clench action to answer a call or bring up the action menu.

Better messaging tools

When you go to send a message, you’ll now be able to use the scribble tool, the emoji selector or the dictation option all from the same screen. Plus, if you go to dictate a message but find it makes an error in the transcription, you’ll now be able to select the word and use the Digital Crown to make corrections. It’s something I appreciate as my Australian accent often results in some pretty amusing dictation errors.

Just like on the iPhone, you can send a GIF by selecting the magnifying glass icon and either choosing from the trending list or searching for the GIF you want.

New apps coming to WatchOS

The Contacts app is finally available on your wrist so you can edit, add, browse and share without pulling out your phone. Apple has also split its Find My app into two new apps: Find Items and Find Devices. They do exactly what they say on the tin and you can ping items like the AirTag, or find devices signed in with your Apple ID from the Watch.

WatchOS 8 also works in conjunction with the Focus mode on the iPhone, so you can limit distractions coming through or customize modes so only notifications from certain contacts and apps break through. Once you apply the mode on the iPhone it automatically sets it on the Watch as well. It’s also supposed to be smart about Focus suggestions, like prompting you to turn on the mode when you start a workout. I’ll need to spend more time with the beta before it can pick up my usage patterns.

Two new workout options — and Mindfulness

There are two new workout types you can track: Pilates and tai chi. They use customized heart rate and motion algorithms to better determine your effort than if you traced these workouts using the Other option in the workouts app. Apple’s Fitness Plus also gets a picture-in-picture mode, plus additional workout filters.

Apple has also moved the Breathe app into a new Mindfulness app. In addition to animations to help guide your breathing, there’s a Reflect app that gives prompts to help focus your thoughts. I really like the new animations in the Mindfulness app and in the short time I’ve used them, they do help to focus my attention. The time you spend reflecting appears in the Health app on the iPhone (along with your heart rate) after each session.

Sleep tracking also adds respiration rate to the existing sleep metrics like heart rate and time asleep. You can also view trends over time in the Health app on the iPhone.

More features to come in the Wallet app

Apple is hoping you’ll ditch your physical wallet altogether and access everything from your wrist. Later in the year, iOS 15 and WatchOS 8 will be able to store a digital identity card like a driver’s license in the Wallet app. Access keys for hotels and offices can also be held digitally.

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You can now digitize and store your driver’s license in Apple’s Wallet app.


Apple

The Apple Watch Series 6 will support ultra wideband or UWB for car keys so you can unlock your vehicle or start it remotely, without needing to touch or tap anything on the Apple Watch. It does depend on the vehicle manufacturer and it will also roll out later in the year.

We’ll update this story as we uncover more of the best features in the WatchOS 8 public beta.

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It's official: Xiaomi 12S series with Leica-tuned cameras is coming on July 4 – GSMArena.com news – GSMArena.com

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The Xiaomi 12S that leaked last month will be officially unveiled next week – on July 4. This revelation comes from Xiaomi, which also said that the 12S will be joined by the 12S Pro and 12S Ultra at the event.

Xiaomi also confirmed its partnership with Leica for the cameras on the 12S series and gave us a glimpse of the three smartphones.

Judging by the leaked image of the 12S, we believe the smartphone with the white-colored back panel is the 12S, while the one in the center might be the 12S Pro, and the smartphone on the left might be the 12S Ultra. It has a golden metal frame with a green-colored leather panel.

It's official: Xiaomi 12S series is coming on July 4

Xiaomi hasn’t detailed the specs sheets of the 12S series smartphones yet, but the company said the 12S is a small-sized high-end flagship, whereas the 12S Pro is 2022’s new flagship standard. The 12S Ultra is touted as the “new height of mobile imaging flagship.”

You can expect Xiaomi to share more information about the 12S lineup in the lead-up to the event next Monday.

Source 1, Source 2 (both in Chinese)

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Apple MacBook Pro M2 SSD performance falls short of its M1 predecessor – XDA Developers

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Apple’s recently announced MacBook Pro 13 (2022) hit retail shelves this past week, which means it not only got into the hands of eager customers but also got into the hands of more reviewers. This latter part is important because apparently, testing of the base model has revealed what could be a major drawback for some.

YouTube creators Max Tech and Created Tech ran tests on the latest Apple MacBook Pro 13 and found that the storage speeds of the new base M2 model were slower when compared to the older M1 MacBook Pro 13. Now, this wouldn’t be a huge deal if it was a small difference, but according to Max Tech, the difference is pretty major. Running the test numerous times using Blackmagic’s Disk Speed Test app, he was able to find that the write speed of the M1 MacBook Pro was 2,215, while the M2 MacBook Pro scored 1,463. On read speed, the former scored 2,900, while the latter scored 1,446.

Apple’s latest isn’t its greatest when SSDs are involved.

Max Tech took things a step further by opening up both laptops and checking the physical differences in hardware. They spotted an immediate difference with regards to the SSD count. In the older M1 MacBook Pro 13, there are two soldered SSDs, while the newer M2 MacBook Pro 13 has just one SSD. Max Tech explains that having two chips working in tandem is much more efficient than having just one SSD chip shouldering the load. This is probably not what many would expect, but it is something to consider when purchasing the newer model.

These tests were performed on the base model, and reports have shown that higher models have better and faster SSD scores. What will be interesting is to see how well the upcoming MacBook Air 13 (2022) will perform when it is released. Be sure to check out our full review of the MacBook Pro 13 (2022).

    The Apple MacBook Pro 13 with M2 processor


Source: Max Tech and Created Tech (YouTube)
Via: MacRumors

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OnePlus 10RT camera specs leaked: New value flagship from OnePlus? – Android Authority

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Dhruv Bhutani / Android Authority

TL;DR

  • A reliable tipster has outed the camera specs of the OnePlus 10RT.
  • The phone may feature an identical setup as the OnePlus 10R.
  • This is the fourth rumored OnePlus 10 series phone.

The OnePlus 9RT launched last year as a value flagship and upgrade to the OnePlus 9R. Now, it looks like the OnePlus 10R will be followed by the OnePlus 10RT.

Leaker Yogesh Brar has outed the alleged camera specs of the OnePlus 10RT. While we haven’t heard any other leaks and rumors about the phone, this latest tip suggests that the device could launch in the next few months.

Nevertheless, the camera setup on the so-called OnePlus 10RT is expected to feature a primary 50MP IMX 766 sensor with Optical Image Stabilization (OIS). This is the same camera sensor used on the OnePlus 10R and OnePlus 9RT. It also served as the ultrawide sensor on the OnePlus 9.

The other two rear camera sensors on the phone are also expected to be the same as those found on the OnePlus 10R. This means you may get an 8MP ultrawide sensor and a 2MP macro shooter.

The selfie snapper is tipped to be a 16MP sensor, albeit from Samsung, not Sony, as is the case on the 10R.

OnePlus 10RT (CPH2413) Camera Specs

✓Rear

– 50MP (Sony IMX766), OIS, (f/1.88) (84.4°)
– 8MP Ultra-wide (ƒ/2.25) (119.7°)
– 2MP Macro (f/2.4) (88.8°)

✓Front

16MP (Samsung S5K3P9) (f/2.45) (82.3°), EIS

There’s no word on when OnePlus would launch the 10RT. If the company sticks to its previous timeline, we may see the device in October. The device could also be available in select markets, just like its predecessor and the OnePlus 10R. That means it might not launch in the US.

For now, OnePlus’s next big launch is shaping up to be the OnePlus 10T. Although, the device might end up being called the OnePlus 10. There’s also talk of a OnePlus 10 Ultra on the horizon. Of course, we don’t have confirmation about any of this since all the information about the possible OnePlus 10 series variants is based on leaks.

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