Today’s day started off with Apple’s iOS 11.2.5 for iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. The update was followed by Google bringing audiobooks to its Play store. Further, HMD Global’s flagship device, Nokia 8 has also started getting the Android 8.1 Oreo beta update. Apart from that, Xiaomi has kicked off MIUI 10 development. Here are the top tech stories that you need to know.
iOS 11.2.5 is now available
Apple has officially released iOS 11.2.5 for iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. The release build version is 15D60. The update primarily adds support for HomePod ahead of its release next month. Additionally, the new update also enables Siri to read the news. Users in the US, UK, and Australia can initially avail the new feature. The new iOS 11.2.5 update also comes with HomePod support. This allows you to set up and automatically transfer your Apple ID, Apple Music, Siri, and Wi-Fi settings directly to your HomePod unit.
Google brings audiobooks to its Play store
Google has announced it’s now selling audiobooks on the Google Play Store. Google Play Books rolls out in 45 countries and nine languages. The audiobooks are available on Android, iOS, the web and with Google Assistant-enabled devices like Google Home smart speakers. No subscription for the same is required, and audiobooks can be purchased individually.
Nokia 8 gets Android 8.1 Oreo beta update
Nokia 8, is reportedly receiving the Android 8.1 Oreo update. The update is rolling out via the company’s beta program. The improvements will include battery indicator for Bluetooth devices, safer browsing, and better notifications and fingerprint management and Wi-Fi speed labels. The version for the Android 8.1 update is v4.82A. You will have to sign up to the beta program by heading over to the ‘Nokia Phone Beta Labs’ page and sign up for a Google account.
Apple to launch 6.1-inch LCD iPhone with 18:9 screen
A new rumor that the screen panel to be used on the iPhone is JDI’s Full Active panel which was launched in June 2017. Apple is expected to adopt Japan Display’s “Full Active” LCD technology. This comes with 18:9 aspect ratio, thin bezels, and a 2160 x 1080 px resolution. Rumors also suggest that we might see three iPhones launches. Two out of three iPhones might come with an iPhone X like OLED display, while the third model will be an entry-level device with a more advanced LCD display.
Xiaomi kicks off MIUI 10 development
Xiaomi has officially announced that it has kicked off the development of MIUI 10, its custom software skin based on Android. The manufacturer broke the news at the annual MIUI assembly meeting in China that was held on January 23. At the event, Hong Feng, co-founder, and VP of Xiaomi said that the main focus for developers will be artificial intelligence and machine learning. MIUI 10 is expected to be based on Android 8.0 Oreo. Meanwhile, Xiaomi has started rolling out the MIUI 9.2 update for some smartphones.
Airtel’s new prepaid plans
Airtel has launched new plans for prepaid customers. The Rs 199 pack has a validity of 28 days, the Rs 448 pack has a validity of 82 days, and the Rs 509 pack come with a validity of 90 days. All the three packs now offer 1.4GB data per day.
Vodafone partners Flipkart to offer a range of 4G smartphones
Vodafone partnered Flipkart to launch entry-level 4G smartphones at an effective price of Rs 999. To avail the new offer, Vodafone pre-paid subscribers will have recharge their accounts with Rs 150 per month for 36 months. At the end of the first 18-month, the subscribers will receive a cash back worth Rs 900, after another 18 months, a cashback worth Rs 1,100 will be given rounding up to a cash back of Rs 2,000. The cash back will be credited to their Vodafone M-Pesa wallets.
Xiaomi becomes top smartphone vendor in India
Xiaomi has managed to beat Samsung to become the top smartphone vendor in India in Q4, 2017. The company shipped around 8.2 million smartphone units in the quarter, while Samsung, which now ranks second shipped 7.3 million devices.
The reports further say that Xiaomi now owns 27 percent share in the Indian market while Samsung owns 25 percent. The top two vendors now contribute to more than 50 percent of the smartphone market in India.