Google Pixel 3a alleged specs leak in full just hours ahead of launch

It seems Google is not very good at keeping secrets. The Pixel 3 XL was dubbed as the worst kept secret because it was “the most leaked phone ever (at the point)”, and now the specs of an affordable Pixel device have leaked just a few hours ahead of the launch. Shared by famous tipster Roland Quandt on Twitter, the detailed spec sheet of the Pixel 3a seems to be translated from another source. The spec sheet confirms some of the specs that we know so far. It also lists the features of the phone.

The spec sheet confirms earlier reports that suggested that the Pixel 3a would sport a 5.6-inch display. What’s new is that we now know that it is an OLED display, has Full HD+ (1080p) resolution, an 18:9 aspect ratio and the Always-On display feature Under the hood, the phone is seen having an Octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 670 mobile platform, paired with 4GB of RAM and 64GB. Just like the Pixel 3 devices, this is also suggested to come with a Titan M Security module.

Google Pixel 3a specsheet (translated)

— Roland Quandt (@rquandt) 6 May 2019

In the camera department, the phone comes with a single 12.2 MP sensor with dual-pixel autofocus and 1.4 micron-sized pixels, and it features a lens with an f/1.8 aperture – the same that is offered on the Pixel 3. Moreover, the selfie shooter is identical with an 8MP sensor and a lens with f/2.0 aperture. Unfortunately, there is no secondary wide camera on the front like the Pixel 3 devices.

The spec sheet shows that the rear camera will be able to record videos in 4K quality @ 30fps, and the the front camera, 1080p @ 30fps. There is also a mention of Active Edge, a feature that lets users squeeze the sides of the phone to summon the Google Assistant. The phone is compatible with USB-Power Delivery 2.0 for 18W quick charge. There’s a 3,000 mAh battery on-board, a 3.5mm jack and the phone is said to be made of polycarbonate material.

Twitter finally lets us add GIFs, images and videos to retweets

Twitter has announced that its users can now retweet with GIFs, images and videos. The feature was asked by users for quite some time now and the micro-blogging platform announced that the new update would be available for users on Android, iOS and the mobile site. The company’s developers say that implementing the new feature was a design challenge since it was initially difficult to distinguish between the original tweet and retweet. @TwitterDesign says it was challenging for people to understand all the content in a retweet that featured media because of the layout where two tweets were stacked on top of each other. 

“To improve comprehension, we focused on creating hierarchy, prioritizing the author’s voice, and providing more context around the Tweet being Retweeted,” Twitter says. Then the company ran a usability test where it introduced a condensed inner tweet to help users discern the components of the retweet and apparently, participants reacted well to the new change. In addition to the new design change, there would be some more updates, which are touted to make “Retweets with media more interactive and easier to read.” The company might be hinting towards the addition of ‘author’, ‘mentioned’ and ‘following’ labels on replies, which it is currently testing. 

Today we are introducing an update you’ve been waiting for — drum roll please — Retweet with GIF, photos, and video!  Read on to get the behind-the-scenes process of why and how we designed this feature.

— Twitter Design (@TwitterDesign) May 6, 2019

The new changes come soon after Twitter announced a new ‘Lights Out’ option, which adds a darker colour scheme on its app. While there was an option to switch to dark mode, it was a bit greyish in colour rather than being true black. Those who want to use the new colour scheme can do so from the Display and Sound tab under the Settings and Privacy Menu. There is an option to turn on dark mode and once done, two new options called Dim and Lights Out will appear as sub menus. 

Apple WWDC 2019: Dark Mode in iOS 13, iPad apps for Mac, and more in offing

Apple’s annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) is a month away but a latest report from Bloomberg might be giving us a sneak peek of what the Cupertino-based company is likely to announce at the conference. Citing people familiar with the plans, the report said that the iPhone-maker would bring a slew of features in iOS 13, macOS 10.15 and watchOS 6, as well as new apps and development tools. The WWDC will be held from June 3 to 7 in San Jose.

iOS 13:

Codenamed “Yukon,” the iOS13 is said to be aimed at making the device faster, and reduce bugs. Reportedly, there will be user interface tweaks, including a new animation when launching, multitasking and closing apps, and the home screen is also said to have a cleaner look. The most anticipated feature would be the Dark Mode, a black and grey-heavy interface optimised for viewing at night.

The company is reportedly testing a new keyboard option that allows users to swipe across letters on the keyboard in one motion to type out words. This is already available in Gboard. Apple’s version would compete with third-party iPhone apps, such as SwiftKey. The update will also let users use their iPad as a second Mac screen with the ability to draw with an Apple Pencil, expand the viewing area, and get Mac notifications.

Apple is also bringing updates to Health, Apple Books and Reminders apps. There is a new feature in Screen Time (Apple’s tool for controlling device usage) that will let guardians limit whom their kids can and cannot contact at certain times. iMessage is said to get an upgrade with a WhatsApp-like enhancement that lets people set a profile picture and display name. There is also a mention of an update in the Maps app that will likely make navigation easier.

A new system-wide Sleep Mode that will tie into an upgraded version of the Bedtime tab in Apple’s Clock app is expected, Bloomberg reported. The new version is claimed to be more extensive and could integrate with future Apple sleep-tracking devices, like a new Apple Watch. Interestingly, the company is also already working on iOS 14, codenamed “Azul,” for 2020. This update is expected to support 5G and new AR functionality for next year’s iPhone.

macOS 10.15:

Bloomberg reiterated that the biggest change coming to the Mac this year is the ability for iPad apps to run on laptops and desktops. Apple is expected to allow developers who write iPad apps to develop apps that can also run on Mac. However, developers will still need to submit separate versions of the app to Apple’s iOS and Mac App Stores. In addition, Apple is reportedly planning to expand this support to iPhones.

Other in-house software coming to the Mac includes: Screen Time; effects and stickers for the Messages app; integration with the Siri Shortcuts app, the new Reminders app; new Apple Music app and upgrades to Apple Books. Apparently, Apple will also debut a revamped Mac Pro desktop computer, and is developing a new external monitor, codenamed J290, with HDR support.

watchOS 6:

Apple Watch is currently the company’s most successful hardware and is leading the market with almost a 25-percent difference between itself and the second best shipped smartwatch, according to analysts. Apple is reportedly adding the App Store onto the Apple Watch so that users can directly install apps from the watch itself. Currently, users have to install new apps via the Watch companion application on their iPhone.

“Apple is bringing the Voice Memos app from the iPhone, iPad, and Mac so users can record voice memos from their wrist. Apple is also planning to add Animoji and Memojis stickers, an Apple Books app for listening to audio books from the wrist and a Calculator app,” Bloomberg’s report added. Apart from that, there will be two new health-related apps for the Watch called “Dose” for pill reminders, and another called “Cycles” to track menstrual cycles. The watch is also expected to have new watch faces.