Tech wrap Jun 17 Apple Intelligence WhatsApp voice transcription more



Apple is reportedly planning a gradual rollout schedule for Apple Intelligence features on its new operating systems for iPhones, iPads, and Macs. According to a Bloomberg report, artificial intelligence (AI) features unveiled at the Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) 2024 will be available as a preview when iOS 18, iPadOS 18, and macOS Sequoia launch officially around September.


WhatsApp is reportedly testing a feature to transcribe voice messages for users. According to WhatsApp update tracker WABetaInfo, to transcribe voice notes, users will have to download 150MB of new app data. This feature will reportedly work on language-specific speech recognition, allowing users to select different languages for different voice notes. 


Samsung’s new category of smart wearable, the Galaxy Ring, will likely get a Galaxy Buds-like charging case. According to a report by 9To5Google, Samsung has dropped the idea of using a magnetic cable to power the Galaxy Ring and has opted for a charging case instead. The charging case will not only refuel the upcoming fitness tracker but also provide secure storage to the device when not in use.


Apple is reportedly developing a “significantly skinnier” iPhone model for 2025. According to a Bloomberg report, with its new iPad Pro model, Apple has figured out how to make its devices thinner while still landing major upgrades. The company aims to do the same with other devices, including the iPhone 17 series. Additionally, the Cupertino-based technology giant is also likely working on slimmer MacBook Pro and Apple Watch models, which are expected to hit production within the next two years.


Chrome for Android has been testing its own text-to-speech (TTS) capability for the last few months, and the “Listen to this page” feature is reportedly being rolled out server-side with Chrome 125. According to 9To5Google, the feature is not accessible to all and is expected to be released to more users in the coming days.


Samsung is reportedly planning to unveil its next-generation foldable smartphones, the Galaxy Z Fold 6 and Galaxy Z Flip 6, next month at the Galaxy Unpacked event, which is likely scheduled for July 10. While not much has been revealed about the possible devices, a report by 9To5Google stated that the next-generation book-style foldable by Samsung is not expected to bring a major overhaul in terms of hardware changes, apart from a slightly wider cover display and a new frame design.


Motorola Razr 50 foldable smartphone series will reportedly launch early next month. The series is expected to comprise Moto Razr 50 and Motorola Razr 50 Ultra smartphones and will likely make its debut in the Indian market alongside other regions.


A recent study by Surfshark’s research hub, the ‘Smart Home Privacy Checker,’ has uncovered troubling trends. Shockingly, one in 10 smart home apps is found to collect user data for tracking purposes. Major players like Amazon and Google stand out as significant collectors, their apps consuming vast amounts of personal information from millions of users daily


Google is reportedly working on an ‘App Auto Open’ feature that will automatically open an app once it is installed. According to a report by Android Authority, a new version of the Google Play Store has code that references this feature, which will, by default, launch the downloaded application once the installation process is completed.


Global concerns about the use of AI in news production and misinformation are growing, a report published by the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism found, posing fresh challenges to newsrooms already struggling to engage audiences.


Personal computer (PC) manufacturer Lenovo India is looking to gain a stronger foothold in the Indian consumer PC market this financial year on the back of its artificial intelligence (AI)-powered PCs and the gaming devices’ portfolio, a senior executive at the firm said.

First Published: Jun 17 2024 | 8:03 PM IST



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Indian websites saw 261 increase in cyberattacks from JanMar 2024 Study



Indian websites witnessed a jump of 261 per cent in cyberattacks in the first quarter of 2024 compared to Q1 CY23, according to a report released on Monday by application security firm Indusface. Globally, the rise during the same period was 76 per cent.


The report, titled “State of Application Security” by Indusface, revealed that power and energy companies faced up to 500 times higher number of attacks than the industry average. This was because hackers and threat actors were found to be targeting less regulated industries in an attempt to charge heavy ransom, said the report.


“A 2.5x increase in attacks on Indian applications is a matter of great concern. Compared to last year, we are also seeing more attacks on unregulated industries such as power and manufacturing. Consistent with global trends, DDoS and bot continue to be the top two threat vectors employed by attackers in India,” said Ashish Tandon, founder and chief executive officer, Indusface.


According to the report, the Distributed Denial-of-Service (DDoS) attacks increased by 76 per cent in the first three months of 2024, compared to Q1 CY23.


DDoS is a cyberattack methodology where the attacker floods a server with internet traffic to prevent users from accessing connected online services and sites.


In most industries, DDoS came out to be the prominent attack vector except retail, manufacturing, and healthcare, where bot attacks were more prevalent.


The top DDoS attack origin countries were India, the United States, Hong Kong, and the Netherlands.


In terms of bot attacks, India, the US, Germany, and Japan were some of the major countries from where the maximum bot attacks were generated.


“Bot attacks are spreading rapidly with 100 per cent of healthcare apps and 90 per cent of Banking, Financial Services and Insurance (BFSI) sector apps witnessing a bot attack throughout the quarter. Overall, bot attacks rose 147 per cent compared to Q1 CY23,” said the report.


Around 9 out of 10 BFSI sites experienced bot attacks across the world, the report found.


In the BFSI sector, hackers were also found to be using evasion techniques to bypass security measures and probe into sensitive data, leading to four times higher encoding attacks in the sector.

First Published: Jun 17 2024 | 5:33 PM IST



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Soon Google Play Store may automatically launch newly installed apps



Google is reportedly working on an ‘App Auto Open’ feature that will automatically open an app once it is installed. According to a report by Android Authority, a new version of the Google Play Store has code that references this feature, which will, by default, launch the downloaded application once the installation process is completed.


In Play Store version 41.4.19, there exists a string of code for the new App Auto Open feature that will notify the user when the feature is enabled through a prominent banner towards the top of the screen. The notification will ring or vibrate depending on the device settings, and users will have the option to silence it. Additionally, the line of code that enables the feature suggests that the notification will last up to five seconds.


True to its name, the upcoming App Auto Open feature would likely launch the newly installed app from the Google Play Store automatically instead of the current procedure that offers the option to either open or uninstall the app. While the feature will likely be optional and will allow users to disable it, it will be enabled by default when the feature launches.


Currently, the App Auto Open feature is not available publicly and is only available as a preview for select users. Android Authority said that they were able to make the preview page live, but the feature does not appear to be working. It should be noted that the feature is still under development, and Google could decide to discard it completely.

First Published: Jun 17 2024 | 4:57 PM IST



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Motorola Razr 50 series foldable smartphones expected to arrive in July


Motorola Razr Photo: Official portal


Motorola Razr 50 foldable smartphone series will reportedly launch early next month.

The series is expected to comprise Moto Razr 50 and Motorola Razr 50 Ultra smartphones and will likely make its debut in the Indian market alongside other regions.


Unlike last year, where the company announced the launch of the Moto Razr series in early June, there has been no official confirmation yet. This is presumably due to Samsung’s Galaxy Unpacked event, which is likely scheduled for July 10.


Going by the information available in the public domain, the Razr 50 Ultra will have a 4-inch cover screen.


The device is expected to boast the Qualcomm Snapdragon 8s Gen 3 chipset and feature a new telephoto lens with 2x optical zoom capabilities.


The smartphone is also expected to sport a larger battery and IPX8 rating for resistance against water and dust ingress.


Razr 50 is expected to be powered by the MediaTek Dimensity 7300X chip, paired with up to 8GB RAM. The device is also expected to sport a larger cover screen than the previous generation model.


Both the smartphones are expected to feature a dual-camera set-up on the rear, featuring a 50-megapixel primary sensor and a 13MP ultra-wide-angle camera.


According to the reports, the foldable smartphone duo would carry a 32MP on-display camera on the inner foldable display.


Motorola Razr 50: Expected specifications


Display: 6.9-inch OLED main, 3.6-inch OLED cover


Processor: MediaTek Dimensity 7300X


RAM: up to 8GB


Rear camera: 50MP primary + 13MP


Front camera: 32MP


Battery: 3,905mAh


Charging: 33W


Motorola Razr 50 Ultra: Expected specifications


Display: 6.9-inch OLED main, 4-inch OLED cover


Processor: Qualcomm Snapdragon 8s Gen 3


RAM: up to 8GB


Rear camera: 50MP primary + 13MP


Front camera: 32MP


Battery: 4,200mAh


Charging: 68W

First Published: Jun 17 2024 | 4:30 PM IST



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Samsung Galaxy Ring to get Galaxy Budslike case for charging Report



Samsung’s new category of smart wearable, the Galaxy Ring, will likely get a Galaxy Buds-like charging case.


According to a report by 9To5Google, Samsung has dropped the idea of using a magnetic cable to power the Galaxy Ring and has opted for a charging case instead.


The charging case will not only refuel the upcoming fitness tracker but also provide secure storage to the device when not in use.


According to the report, images of a potential charging case design for the Galaxy Ring has surfaced on the internet, showing a white plastic case in a squared off design.


The case reportedly features a raised section in the middle that would likely hold the ring-style smart wearable in place. This raised section would also likely feature a coloured marking that would indicate the correct positioning of the ring within the case. Similar to how a charging case works with the buds, it will offer additional battery life to the Galaxy Ring as well.


Although not much is known about the case’s battery capacity, a report by The Verge last month stated that the Galaxy Ring would get a battery ranging from 17mAh to 22mAh depending on the size of the ring.

Samsung is reportedly estimating battery life of up to nine days on the Galaxy Ring itself and an included charging case would probably extend it even further.


Samsung Galaxy Ring: Expected features


Samsung has already confirmed that the upcoming Galaxy Ring will be offered in black, gold and silver colours and in nine different sizes. The battery capacity of each ring will be determined by its size and would likely be in the range of 17mAh to 22mAh.


Samsung has not officially revealed any specification details about the Galaxy Ring. But the company — during its showcasing at the Mobile World Congress in February — said the Ring will have the ability to work alongside the Samsung Galaxy Watch.


Samsung said both the devices will work intelligently to collect and track different metrics depending on what they are best at. In some cases, both the devices might work together for better results. The Galaxy Ring will likely get a heart rate sensor, sleep monitoring feature, electrocardiogram (ECG) functions and a few physical activity trackers, similar to the Galaxy Watch.


The Samsung Galaxy Ring is expected to be launched at Samsung’s next Galaxy Unpacked event likely to take place in Paris on July 10. The ring-style fitness tracker is expected to be priced around $300-$350 in the US and nearly ~35,000 in India.

First Published: Jun 17 2024 | 3:23 PM IST



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Apple reportedly working on iPad Proinspired slim iPhone model for 2025


Representative image: Apple iPad Pro (M4) and iPhone 15 Pro Max


Apple is reportedly developing a “significantly skinnier” iPhone model for 2025. According to a Bloomberg report, with its new iPad Pro model, Apple has figured out how to make its devices thinner while still landing major upgrades. The company aims to do the same with other devices, including the iPhone 17 series. Additionally, the Cupertino-based technology giant is also likely working on slimmer MacBook Pro and Apple Watch models, which are expected to hit production within the next two years.


According to the report, the 5.1mm thick iPad Pro that Apple introduced last month at its Let Loose event marked the return of the sleek form factor. Now, Apple wants the iPad Pro M4 to be the beginning of a new class of Apple devices that should be the thinnest and lightest products in their categories.


Apple iPhone 17 Slim: What to expect


Aligning with recent reports, The Information had previously reported that Apple is working on an “iPhone Slim” variant for 2025, which will bring a major design change to the iPhone line after the iPhone X. The report stated that the iPhone Slim model could be priced higher than the Pro Max model and would feature a complete design overhaul with a slimmer chassis.


Although the company has not finalised the design of the smartphone and is currently testing different variants for the model, the current iteration features a screen size between the 6.1-inch of the vanilla iPhone and the 6.69-inch of the Pro Max variants while featuring a smaller dynamic island size. As per the report, the model under testing features an aluminium chassis with a centrally aligned rear camera module.


The Information also stated that this sleek iPhone model could be branded as the “iPhone Ultra” model if Apple decides to price it higher than the Pro Max model.

First Published: Jun 17 2024 | 3:20 PM IST



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