Apple unveils new iPad Air with A14 Bionic chipset, refreshes entry-level iPad too

oday Apple took the wraps off its newest tablets. We have a brand new iPad Air as well as a performance boost for the entry level iPad.

iPad Air

Let’s start with the new iPad Air. It has a fresh design, which is clearly inspired by the iPad Pro line. The screen bezels are smaller, the port is USB-C and not Lightning anymore (and you get a 20W charger in the box).

The tablet has the same footprint as its predecessor, but because of the smaller bezels it now has a 10.9-inch Liquid Retina display with 2360×1640 resolution. TouchID is integrated into the new, top-mounted power button.

The new iPad Air is powered by Apple’s new A14 Bionic chipset, which is also expected to feature in the upcoming iPhone 12 family when it launches later this year. The A14 is built on a 5nm process, and it’s the first in the industry to reach that milestone.

It has a 6-core CPU design with two high performance cores and four high efficiency cores. Performance is improved by 40% compared to the previous iPad Air. The GPU is 30% faster.

On the rear there’s the same camera as on the iPad Pro models, a 12MP shooter with f/1.8 aperture, support for 4K video recording at 60fps, 240fps slow-mo, and improved video stabilization. For selfies you get a 7MP camera with f/2.0 aperture and 1080p video at 60fps.

The tablet has Wi-Fi 6 on board, dual speakers, and support for Apple Pencil, which attaches magnetically to the side for pairing, charging, and storage. Apple will also offer a floating keyboard case for it.

The new iPad Air, running iPadOS 14, will be available next month in silver, space gray, rose gold, green, and sky blue starting at $599 (Wi-Fi-only) or $729 (Wi-Fi + Cellular) with 64GB of storage. It will also be offered with 256GB storage at $749/$879.

iPad (8th Generation)

The entry-level, eight-generation iPad (2020) now has the A12 Bionic chipset at the helm, with its 6-core CPU and 4-core GPU.

Otherwise, this tablet is exactly the same as its predecessor, 10.2-inch display and big bezels included. The price has stayed the same too, at $329 for the Wi-Fi-only model, and $459 for Wi-Fi + Cellular.

At these prices you’re only getting 32GB of storage. There’s a 128GB configuration, for $429/$559. Pre-orders start today and the 8th gen iPad will be available this Friday in silver, space gray, and gold.

La musculation,ça commence par le système nerveux

Les résultats de vos séances de musculation se font attendre? Patience…Une étude britannique suggère en effet que les premières semaines d’entraînement
renforcent d’abord le système nerveux.
Lorsque nous commandons la contraction d’un muscle, un signal électrique provenant du cortex cérébral est envoyé le long de la moelle épinière, puis vers
différents neurones moteurs du muscle à contracter. Plus ce signal est fort, plus le muscle se contracte… et se développe.

“The Journal of Neuroscience”, juin 2020

Samsung unveils new 108MP sensor, new 48MP sensor for periscopes and ultrawide cams

Samsung released the first image sensor with 0.7µm pixels last year and is now introducing four new models based on 0.7 µm pixels. The goal is to create smaller, thinner camera modules. These sensors use ISOCELL Plus but the company plans to introduce versions with the new ISOCELL 2.0 later this year.

Compared to 0.8µm sensors, the new ones are up to 15% smaller and camera modules using them will be up to 10% thinner, which will make for smaller camera bumps.

The ISOCELL HM2 is Samsung’s third 108MP sensor. Like the HM1, it uses nine-pixel binning tech and can do up to 3x lossless zoom. It also supports Super-PD autofocus (like its predecessors) and 4K @ 120 fps video recording. The HM2 is smaller than the HM1, 1/1.52” vs. 1/1.33”.

The ISOCELL GW3 is about the size of a 0.8µm 48MP sensor, but offers 64MP resolution (it’s a 1/1.97” sensor). This one uses Tetracell (4-in-1 binning) and Smart-ISO to capture light more effectively. The GW3 can record 4K video at 60 fps and supports electronic image stabilization.

The first two are aimed at main cameras, the ISOCELL GM5 will be used in periscope zoom and ultra wide cameras. It has 48MP resolution and when used in an ultra wide module, it can record 1080p at 480 fps and 4K at 120 fps. As a periscope cam, it can do 4K at 60 fps instead.

As the industry’s smallest 32 MP sensor, the ISOCELL JD1 is meant for punch hole and pop-up selfie cameras. It’s about the size of a 16 MP 1.0 µm sensor. The GM5 above and the JD1 are one of the first sensors to support staggered HDR.

This mode leverages Tetracell (so it works on 1.4µm pixels) and sends three exposures to the image processor – long, medium and short. Compared to traditional HDR, Samsung says that staggered HDR is faster and more power-efficient.

The ISOCELL HM2, GW3 and JD1 are already being mass produced, the GM5 has been sent to manufacturers for evaluation.

Again, all four new sensors use ISOCELL Plus. Samsung will introduce ISOCELL 2.0 later this year, which enhances the walls between individual pixels and increases light sensitivity by up to 12% compared to Plus (which itself offered a boost of up to 15% compared to the original ISOCELL).

Apple event 2020 live blog: the big Apple Watch 6 and iPad Air 4 reveal as it happens

Apple’s iPhone 12 event may have been delayed this year, but we’re set to hear about new gadgets from the company at a livestreamed keynote set to take place later today.

The Apple event is set to start today (September 15) at 10am PT / 1pm EST / 6pm BST (3am AEST on September 16 in Australia).

It’ll be a livestream that you can watch along with, and we’re expecting to see a variety of new gadgets from the company with rumors of the Apple Watch 6, Apple Watch SE, iPad Air 4 and even Apple AirTags.

Leaks suggest this will just be an event for those products – and maybe a few other surprises – so there probably won’t be an iPhone 12 announcement later today, but Apple has yet to confirm that’s the case so it may still happen.

Verizon announces plans to acquire Tracfone Wireless in 2021

Verizon is officially announcing its plans to acquire Tracfone (from Mexican telecom company America Movil), the largest reseller of mobile service in the US for more than $6 billion between cash, common stock, and future cash. Among the Tracfone brands combined, there are about 21 million subscribers in the US (most of which are in the low-income segment) and the parent brand already connects 13 million subscribers to Verizon towers.

Tracfone services (and sometimes even devices) is(/are) sold at more than 90,000 retail locations in the US, including Walmart, Dollar General, CVS Pharmacy, Target, Family Dollar, and best Buy. There are several MVNO brands under Tracfone including Net10 Wireless, Walmart Family Mobile, SafeLink Wireless, Clearway, Total Wireless, Simple Mobile, Straight Talk Wireless, and PagePlus.

With the acquisition, Verizon hopes to “further develop Tracfone’s distribution channels, and expand Tracfone’s market opportunities,” It also plans to add LTE and 5G connectivity to Tracfone subscribers and begin offering new services like wireless home broadband.

Verizon has always had a reputation for being the more expensive one among all major US service providers, but the carrier has always had a strong network to justify that. With the Tracfone acquisition, Verizon will diversify its offerings and be able to compete in the pre-paid segment where other carriers like Cricket and Metro are already widely successful.

The acquisition still needs to be approved by US regulators, but Verizon expects for the deal to be closed in H2 of 2021.

A gas found on Earth that signifies life has been detected in the clouds on Venus

A gas on Earth has also been detected in the atmosphere of Venus. The “entirely surprising” discovery of phosphine could hint at unknown processes occurring on Earth’s “twin.”Phosphine suggests the presence of life on Earth. And the idea of aerial life in the clouds of Venus is intriguing. But it’s not likely.On Earth, phosphine is a flammable, foul, toxic gas produced by bacteria that doesn’t require oxygen — like those in swamps, wetlands, sludge or even animal guts. Its odor has been likened to decaying fish or garlic. It can also occur when organic matter breaks down.Venus is similar in size to Earth and often referred to as Earth’s twin, but it’s not really.Venus is an unusual planet that scientists are still trying to understand. It’s our closest planetary neighbor, but it spins backward compared to other planets. The planet’s thick atmosphere helps to trap heat, and its surface is hot enough to melt lead.

Venus has crown-shaped hotspots that form its own 'Ring of Fire'

Venus has crown-shaped hotspots that form its own ‘Ring of Fire Above its hot surface, which is 900 degrees Fahrenheit, the upper cloud deck that’s 33 to 39 miles above the planet’s surface is much more temperate. But Venus’ clouds are very acidic, which should quickly destroy phosphine. So how did it get there?

Samsung to manufacture all Snapdragon 875 chipsets

Qualcomm is on pace to introduce its next flagship chipset in December, and we expect the name to be Snapdragon 875. According to reports from South Korea, Samsung Semiconductor Company has managed to offer a better deal than TSMC and will manufacture the whole batch of chipsets for next-year’s flagship phones.

Samsung Semiconductor Company is a division of Samsung Electronics and is the biggest semiconductor manufacturer in the past 20 years. The latest deal will help the Korean giant to reinforce this position, and reports are the deal is for all the Snapdragon 875 chips, which will cost Qualcomm about between $850 million and $1 billion.

The San Diego chip company had a keynote during IFA 2020 earlier this month, where many smartphone company owners showed up on stage to pledge their allegiance to Snapdragon chipsets. Among them are Oppo and Xiaomi, and we expect to see the next Mi flagship arrive with the Snapdragon 875 as early as March.

Introduce Yourself (Example Post)

This is an example post, originally published as part of Blogging University. Enroll in one of our ten programs, and start your blog right.

You’re going to publish a post today. Don’t worry about how your blog looks. Don’t worry if you haven’t given it a name yet, or you’re feeling overwhelmed. Just click the “New Post” button, and tell us why you’re here.

Why do this?

  • Because it gives new readers context. What are you about? Why should they read your blog?
  • Because it will help you focus your own ideas about your blog and what you’d like to do with it.

The post can be short or long, a personal intro to your life or a bloggy mission statement, a manifesto for the future or a simple outline of your the types of things you hope to publish.

To help you get started, here are a few questions:

  • Why are you blogging publicly, rather than keeping a personal journal?
  • What topics do you think you’ll write about?
  • Who would you love to connect with via your blog?
  • If you blog successfully throughout the next year, what would you hope to have accomplished?

You’re not locked into any of this; one of the wonderful things about blogs is how they constantly evolve as we learn, grow, and interact with one another — but it’s good to know where and why you started, and articulating your goals may just give you a few other post ideas.

Can’t think how to get started? Just write the first thing that pops into your head. Anne Lamott, author of a book on writing we love, says that you need to give yourself permission to write a “crappy first draft”. Anne makes a great point — just start writing, and worry about editing it later.

When you’re ready to publish, give your post three to five tags that describe your blog’s focus — writing, photography, fiction, parenting, food, cars, movies, sports, whatever. These tags will help others who care about your topics find you in the Reader. Make sure one of the tags is “zerotohero,” so other new bloggers can find you, too.

Introduce Yourself (Example Post)

This is an example post, originally published as part of Blogging University. Enroll in one of our ten programs, and start your blog right.

You’re going to publish a post today. Don’t worry about how your blog looks. Don’t worry if you haven’t given it a name yet, or you’re feeling overwhelmed. Just click the “New Post” button, and tell us why you’re here.

Why do this?

  • Because it gives new readers context. What are you about? Why should they read your blog?
  • Because it will help you focus your own ideas about your blog and what you’d like to do with it.

The post can be short or long, a personal intro to your life or a bloggy mission statement, a manifesto for the future or a simple outline of your the types of things you hope to publish.

To help you get started, here are a few questions:

  • Why are you blogging publicly, rather than keeping a personal journal?
  • What topics do you think you’ll write about?
  • Who would you love to connect with via your blog?
  • If you blog successfully throughout the next year, what would you hope to have accomplished?

You’re not locked into any of this; one of the wonderful things about blogs is how they constantly evolve as we learn, grow, and interact with one another — but it’s good to know where and why you started, and articulating your goals may just give you a few other post ideas.

Can’t think how to get started? Just write the first thing that pops into your head. Anne Lamott, author of a book on writing we love, says that you need to give yourself permission to write a “crappy first draft”. Anne makes a great point — just start writing, and worry about editing it later.

When you’re ready to publish, give your post three to five tags that describe your blog’s focus — writing, photography, fiction, parenting, food, cars, movies, sports, whatever. These tags will help others who care about your topics find you in the Reader. Make sure one of the tags is “zerotohero,” so other new bloggers can find you, too.

Introduce Yourself (Example Post)

This is an example post, originally published as part of Blogging University. Enroll in one of our ten programs, and start your blog right.

You’re going to publish a post today. Don’t worry about how your blog looks. Don’t worry if you haven’t given it a name yet, or you’re feeling overwhelmed. Just click the “New Post” button, and tell us why you’re here.

Why do this?

  • Because it gives new readers context. What are you about? Why should they read your blog?
  • Because it will help you focus your own ideas about your blog and what you’d like to do with it.

The post can be short or long, a personal intro to your life or a bloggy mission statement, a manifesto for the future or a simple outline of your the types of things you hope to publish.

To help you get started, here are a few questions:

  • Why are you blogging publicly, rather than keeping a personal journal?
  • What topics do you think you’ll write about?
  • Who would you love to connect with via your blog?
  • If you blog successfully throughout the next year, what would you hope to have accomplished?

You’re not locked into any of this; one of the wonderful things about blogs is how they constantly evolve as we learn, grow, and interact with one another — but it’s good to know where and why you started, and articulating your goals may just give you a few other post ideas.

Can’t think how to get started? Just write the first thing that pops into your head. Anne Lamott, author of a book on writing we love, says that you need to give yourself permission to write a “crappy first draft”. Anne makes a great point — just start writing, and worry about editing it later.

When you’re ready to publish, give your post three to five tags that describe your blog’s focus — writing, photography, fiction, parenting, food, cars, movies, sports, whatever. These tags will help others who care about your topics find you in the Reader. Make sure one of the tags is “zerotohero,” so other new bloggers can find you, too.