Lenovo's ZUK smartphone brand to use Cyanogen OS

From PC World: Android OS developer Cyanogen is bringing its operating system to another Chinese smartphone, this time from a company founded by Lenovo.

Lenovo's new ZUK brand will use the Cyanogen OS when selling phones in the international market.

Earlier this month, ZUK announced its first smartphone, the Z1, for China. The company behind ZUK is majority funded by Lenovo, and is also targeting global consumers. On Friday, it held the international launch for the Z1.

The day before, Cyanogen announced its involvement with the Z1 smartphone.

Apple TV drops to fourth place behind Amazon's Fire TV

From CNET: A new Apple TV may be in the offing -- and just in time.

Last year's US sales of the company's streaming-media box slipped behind those for Amazon's rival devices for the first time, according to estimates Thursday from researcher Parks Associates. That put it in fourth place, also behind streaming-TV box maker Roku and online search giant Google.

Samsung, MIT say their solid-state batteries could last a lifetime

From InfoWorld: Researchers have developed a new material for a basic battery component that they say will enable almost indefinite power storage.

The new material -- a solid electrolyte -- could not only increase battery life, but also storage capacity and safety, as liquid electrolytes are the leading cause of battery fires.

Today's common lithium-ion batteries use a liquid electrolyte -- an organic solvent that has been responsible for overheating and fires in cars, commercial airliners and cell phones.

With a solid electrolyte, there's no safety problem.

Huawei's new smartphone has a 180-degree rotating camera

From PC World: Huawei's newest smartphone has a rotating rear camera that can flip forward to take high quality selfie photos.

The Chinese company unveiled in Beijing on Thursday the Honor 7i product, which comes with a Sony 13-megapixel camera attached by a hinge.

The hinge lets the camera rotate at 180-degrees, allowing users to take photos from both the device's rear and the front. Once the camera is flipped to face forward, the phone's software will automatically enter into a selfie-taking mode.

BlackBerry Venice phone, running Android, said to arrive in November

From CNET: US consumers curious about BlackBerry's upcoming Venice Android slider phone may get a chance to check it out in before year's end.

Snapchat Made $3-5 Million Last Year, But That's Not as Bad as it Sounds

From DailyTech: The last two years has brought seemingly spectacular success for mobile messaging service Snapchat. It scorned bids from $3B and $4B USD, respectively, from Facebook, Inc. (FB) and Google Inc. (GOOG). And while it weathered a data loss storm in early 2014, by late in the year users seemed to have forgiven and forgotten (aptly the premise of the service itself). Now it's raising venture capital at a valuation of a cool $15B USD.

Microsoft pushes out an emergency update for IE flaw

From ComputerWorld: Windows users are encouraged to update their computers as soon as possible, after Microsoft pushed out a patch for an issue in Internet Explorer that lets attackers remotely run malicious code with whatever privileges the current user has.

Skylake who? Intel focuses on smart devices and natural computing at IDF keynote

From InfoWorld: In years past, Intel would have used its Intel Developer Forum to unveil its processor roadmap, run some benchmarks, and call it a day. But at IDF 2015, the company's just-launched "Skylake" processor got as much stage time as the so-called vending machine of the future.

Vaio PCs to return to overseas markets this fall

From PC World: Vaio, Sony's former laptop brand, is returning to overseas markets this fall, with sales of Windows 10 devices in the U.S. and Brazil.

The high-end Vaio Z Canvas will be sold through Microsoft stores in the U.S. from October, Vaio, the company that now makes the PCs, said Wednesday.

The Vaio Z Canvas is a Windows slate that will be priced from US$2,199. The company did not release details about specs, but the version sold in Japan has an Intel Core i7-4770HQ processor and a 12.3-inch display, as well as a detachable keyboard.

Galaxy Note 5 has best smartphone display ever tested, says DisplayMate

From CNET: Samsung's new Galaxy Note 5 has the best performing screen in town, according to a new report from DisplayMate.

In a new round of lab tests analyzing the screens of both the Galaxy Note 5 and the Galaxy S6 Edge+, DisplayMate President Raymond Soneira gave both phones high marks for their display performance. The Note 5 sports a 5.7-inch high-resolution Quad HD 2,560x1,440 pixel display. The S6 Edge+ offers the same screen size and resolution but with a screen that wraps around each side. Among the two, however, the Note 5 earned Soneira's highest kudos.

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