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Samsung Galaxy M31s India Launch Today at 12 Noon: Expected Price in India, Specifications

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Samsung Galaxy M31s will be launched in India today, July 30, at 12pm (noon) and will succeed the Galaxy M31 that was launched earlier this year. The new mid-range Galaxy M31s will be launched in the country today at 12PM IST and it will be sold through the e-commerce platform, Amazon. The Samsung Galaxy M31s will go directly against the likes of OnePlus Nord, Redmi Note 9 Pro Max, Realme X3, and more. Like the other M-series smartphones, the upcoming Galaxy M31 is expected to be priced around Rs 20,000.

Samsung Galaxy M31s India launch event time and expected price

The Samsung Galaxy M31s launch event will begin at 12:00 pm IST today i.e July 30th. The launch will likely be streamed on Samsung India’s YouTube channel. The Galaxy M31s price in India, first sale date and more will be officially announced during the launch event.

Based on the price of the Galaxy M31, we expect to see the Galaxy M31s to cost around Rs 20,000. It will be available on Amazon and Samsung India website.

Samsung Galaxy M31s specifications (expected)

The Galaxy M31s is expected to run on Android 10 with One UI on top. It is said to feature a 6.5-inch Super AMOLED Infinity-O display with 407ppi pixel density. The Galaxy M31s may be powered by the Exynos 9611 SoC and come with 6GB and 8GB of RAM with 128GB of storage for both.

As for the optics, the Samsung Galaxy M31s will come with a 64MP primary sensor that could be accompanied by a 12MP ultra wide-angle lens, a 5MP depth sensor and a 5MP macro lens. Lastly, the phone houses a large 6,000mAh battery and supports a faster 25W fast-charging system. Connectivity features could include 4G LTE, dual-SIM, Bluetooth 5.0, dual-band Wi-Fi, and GPS

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Mobiles

Apple Faces Antitrust Investigation Over Market Dominance in Germany

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By Reuters | Updated: 21 June 2021

Germany’s antitrust watchdog said on Monday it had launched an investigation into whether Apple was exploiting its market dominance, following similar proceedings into US tech rivals Facebook, Amazon, and Google.

Based on new competition law rules specifically intended for large digital companies, Germany’s Federal Cartel Office (FCO) said it would assess whether Apple has a “paramount significance across markets” in a first step.

“Based on this first proceeding, the (FCO) intends to assess in more detail specific practices of Apple in a possible further proceeding. In this regard, the authority has received various complaints relating to potentially anti-competitive practices.”

The FCO said one complaint came from an association in the advertising and media industry and was aimed at Apple restricting user tracking with the introduction of its iOS 14.5 operating system.

An Apple spokesperson said: “We look forward to discussing our approach with the FCO and having an open dialogue about any of their concerns.”

© Thomson Reuters 2021

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Apple CEO Tim Cook Says Proposed EU Tech Rules Threaten iPhone Security

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By Reuters | Updated: 17 June 2021

Apple boss Tim Cook took aim on Wednesday at proposed European rules aimed at curbing the power of US tech giants, saying they could pose security and privacy risks to iPhone handsets.

Cook, in his first public comments about the Digital Markets Act (DMA) proposed by EU antitrust chief Margrethe Vestager, said parts were good but others were not. He said he feared the draft rules would lead to more installing of apps that do not come via Apple’s App Store, or “side-loading”.

“You take an example here where I don’t think it’s in the best interest (of the user): the current DMA language that is being discussed would force side-loading on the iPhone,” the Apple CEO, speaking remotely, said at VivaTech, France´s biggest tech conference.

“And so this would be an ultimate way of getting apps onto the iPhone,” he said. “It would destroy the security of the iPhone, and a lot of the privacy initiatives that we’ve built into the App Store or the privacy intrusion labels and app-tracking transparency,” he added.

Earlier this month, EU lawmaker Andreas Schwab, who is leading the European Parliament scrutiny of the draft rules, said he wanted to beef up the legislation and narrow its scope to just big companies like Google, Amazon, Apple, and Facebook.

Apple would take part in the debate and try to find a way forward, Cook said.

© Thomson Reuters 2021

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Apple, Google to Be Investigated by UK Watchdog Over Mobile Phone System Dominance

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By Reuters | Updated: 16 June 2021

Britain’s competition watchdog said it would investigate whether Apple and Google’s dominance of mobile phone operating systems, app stores, and Web browsers hurt consumers, launching its latest probe into the tech giants.

The Competition and Markets Authority said it would undertake a “market study” into the matter to see whether the pair’s effective duopoly was stifling competition and ripping off consumers, or hurting businesses like app developers.

Governments around the world are looking at strengthening the regulation of US tech giants that have become even more powerful during the COVID-19 pandemic, and there are multiple investigations globally into their market positions including in the United States and the European Union.

Britain is setting up a dedicated unit within the CMA to keep the tech giants in check and encourage digital competition but said it needed to start work probing iPhone maker Apple and the Google-powered Android system as soon as possible.

“Our ongoing work into big tech has already uncovered some worrying trends and we know consumers and businesses could be harmed if they go unchecked,” CMA chief executive Andrea Coscelli said in a statement on Tuesday.

The CMA said the new study into mobile ecosystems would be broader than some of the other competition probes it already has into Apple’s App Store and Google’s Privacy Sandbox.

Last year, the CMA concluded an investigation into digital advertising, concluding that Google and Facebook have developed unassailable market positions, with the two accounting for nearly 80 percent of UK’s digital advertising spend. It recommended regulatory changes as a result.

© Thomson Reuters 2021

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Apple, Google to Face Antitrust Probe in Japan: Report

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By ANI | Updated: 14 June 2021

The Japanese government will probe the activities of Apple and Google, amid growing allegations of antitrust violations by US tech giants.

A government panel will be formed this month to probe the connection between domestic smartphone manufacturers and US companies, the Nikkei Asia reported citing a government source.

The current share of the operating smartphone systems Apple iOS and Google Android makes up around 90 percent of the Japanese market.

According to the Japanese newspaper, if the panel uncovers any suspicious activity, Japan may toughen its antitrust regulations.

The European Commission launched an investigation last June to assess whether US tech giant Apple was violating EU antitrust rules for app developers on the distribution of their products through the App Store.

The probe concerned Apple’s own in-app shopping system was launched after complaints from music streaming apps and e-book distributors on the impact of App Store regulations on their streaming services.

As per the preliminary report by EU Commission, Apple hinders the free competition in the EU market in the field of music apps.

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Apple Subpoenaed by Donald Trump Administration for Lawmakers’ Data: Report

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By Reuters | Updated: 11 June 2021

The US Justice Department under former President Donald Trump subpoenaed Apple for data from the accounts of at least two Democrats on the House of Representatives Intelligence Committee in an attempt to find out who was behind leaks of classified information, the New York Times reported on Thursday.

The records of at least a dozen people tied to the committee were seized in 2017 and early 2018, including those of Representative Adam Schiff, then the panel’s top Democrat and now its chairman, the Times said.

The paper cited unnamed committee officials and two other people briefed on the inquiry for the report.

Prosecutors under Jeff Sessions, the first attorney general in Trump’s Republican administration, were seeking to find the sources behind media reports about contacts between Trump associates and Russia, the Times said.

“Ultimately, the data and other evidence did not tie the committee to the leaks, and investigators debated whether they had hit a dead end and some even discussed closing the inquiry,” the paper said.

Apple turned over only metadata and account information, not photos, emails or other content, the Times said.

The Justice Department also seized Apple data from the accounts of committee aides and family members, the Times said. It did not name any other member of the House beside Schiff.

William Barr, attorney general in Trump’s latter years in office, revived the investigation, it said.

Schiff said in a statement to Reuters that the Justice Department had informed the committee last month that the investigation was closed.

“I believe more answers are needed, which is why I believe the Inspector General should investigate this and other cases that suggest the weaponization of law enforcement by a corrupt president,” Schiff said.

In a statement to Reuters, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, a Democrat, called the news “harrowing” and said she supported Schiff’s call for an investigation.

The Times said the Justice Department “secured a gag order on Apple that expired this year, according to a person familiar with the inquiry, so lawmakers did not know they were being investigated until Apple informed them last month.”

The Justice Department and Apple did not immediately respond to Reuters requests for comment.

© Thomson Reuters 2021

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‘Third Eye’ Camera Can Help ‘Smartphone Zombies’ Walk Safely Without Bumping Into Obstacles

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By Reuters | Updated: 7 June 2021

A South Korean industrial designer has come up with a satirical solution for “smartphone zombies” who can’t take their eyes away from their screen long enough to stop themselves walking into a wall or other obstacle.

Paeng Min-wook, 28, has developed a robotic eyeball he has dubbed “The Third Eye”, which obsessive mobile phone users can strap to their foreheads so they can browse injury-free on the go.

The device opens its translucent eyelid whenever it senses the user’s head has been lowered to look at a smartphone. When the user comes within one to two metres of an obstacle, the device beeps to warn of the impending danger.

“This is the look of future mankind with three eyes,” Paeng, a postgraduate in innovation design engineering at the Royal College of Art and Imperial College London, told Reuters as he demonstrated use of The Third Eye around Seoul.

“As we cannot take our eyes off from smartphones, the extra eye will be needed in future.”

Paeng’s invention uses a gyro sensor to measure the oblique angle of the user’s neck and an ultrasonic sensor to calculate the distance between the robotic eye and any obstacles. Both sensors are linked to an open-source single-board microcontroller, with battery pack.

Paeng’s demonstration of the device in Seoul this week garnered attention from passersby.

“I thought he looked like an alien with an eye on his forehead,” Seoul resident Lee Ok-jo said. “These days many young people can get into accidents while using their mobile phone. This would be good for them.”

Paeng said The Third Eye was meant as a warning, not a real solution for smartphone addicts who won’t pay attention to where they are going.

“By presenting this satirical solution, I hope people would recognize the severity of their gadget addiction and look back at themselves,” he said.

© Thomson Reuters 2021

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