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CES 2017: LG to unveil new smartphone range

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LG will unveil its K Series of smartphones at CES 2017 in Las Vegas as it plans to bring some of the high-end features found on its premium phones to the mid-level market.

LG Electronics (LG) will unveil four new mass-tier K Series smartphones and a new Stylus 3 at CES 2017 in Las Vegas, as the mid-range segment continues its strong growth as the market matures. The new mid-range devices are designed to bring popular technologies from LG’s more premium flagship smartphones, such as the 120-degree wide angle front camera lens and the rear fingerprint scanner.

LG’s updated K Series carries over a philosophy that all customers do not want the same things in a smartphone, rather than offering one main smartphone model and expecting customers to adapt.

The K10 delivers a “best-in-class” 5.3-inch HD In-cell Touch Display for both indoor and outdoor use. Its 5MP front camera with 120-degree wide angle selfie lens complements a premium, 13MP rear camera that has been employed in LG flagship G series devices. Other advanced features not usually available in smartphones in this category include a fingerprint scanner, a metallic U-frame for a sturdy but slim 7.9mm profile and 2.5D Arc Glass design.

The K8 features a 5-inch HD In-cell Touch display and delivers high-quality camera performance with 5MP in the front and 13M on the rear. These are enhanced by LG’s intelligent UX features, such as Auto Shot and Gesture Shot for selfies. Auto Shot automatically triggers the front camera’s shutter when a face is detected and Gesture Shot takes a selfie in response to a hand signal, eliminating the need to press the shutter button and shaking the phone at the most critical moment.

The K4 is equipped with a sensitive 5-inch In-cell Touch display and 5MP front and rear cameras as well as the popular Auto Shot and Gesture Shot features found in the K8. The K4 offers a slim 7.9mm profile and removable 2,500mAh battery as well as a microSD slot for additional storage.

The smallest in the series, the K3 comes with a 4.5-inch On-cell Touch display, a 5MP rear camera and a 2MP lens in the front supported by Gesture Shot. With a microSD slot and 2,100mAh removable battery, the K3 offers many features unavailable on other competing smartphones in this category.

LG will also debut the third generation Stylus 3, the latest version of its mid-range Stylus smartphone (Stylo in the United States). The Stylus 3 delivers an improved writing experience with a 1.8mm diameter fiber-tip stylus to provide the feel and feedback of an actual pen when writing on the screen. The Stylus 3 also features a fingerprint scanner and enhanced UX with Pen Pop 2.0 as well as the popular Pen Keeper and Screen-off Memo. With Pen Pop 2.0, your memos are never out of sight and can be set to display on the screen whenever the stylus is removed. Pen Keeper displays a warning when the stylus strays too far from the phone, and Screen-off Memo enables note-taking directly on the screen even when the display is off.

“Our 2017 mass-tier, mid-range smartphones focus on giving our customers a wide variety of options and choices for their smartphone lifestyles,” said Juno Cho, president of the LG Electronics Mobile Communications Company. “What’s consistent in all our K Series and Stylus 3 devices is that they look and feel premium, offer replaceable batteries and all come with expandable memory slots, what customers consider key factors when buying smartphones in this category.”

* Information regarding launch dates and markets will be announced locally in the weeks to come. The company’s newest mobile products will be on display at LG’s stand at CES, in the Las Vegas Convention Center, Booth #11100, Central Hall.

K10 Key Specifications:

  • Chipset: MT6750 1.5 GHz Octa-Core
  • Display: 5.3-inch HD In-cell Touch (1280 x 720 / 277ppi)
  • Memory: 2GB LPDDR3 RAM / 32GB eMMC ROM / microSD (up to 2TB)
  • Camera: Front 5MP (Wide) / Rear 13MP (Standard)
  • Battery: 2,800mAh (removable)
  • Operating System: Android 7.0 Nougat
  • Size: 148.7 x 75.3 x 7.9mm
  • Weight: 142g
  • Network:  LTE / 3G / 2G
  • Connectivity: Wi-Fi (802.11 b, g, n) / Bluetooth 4.2 / USB 2.0 / NFC
  • Color: Black / Titan / Gold
  • Other: Fingerprint Scanner

K8 Key Specifications:

  • Chipset: MSM8917 1.4 Quad-Core
  • Display: 5.0-inch HD In-cell Touch (1280 x 720 / 294ppi)
  • Memory: 1.5GB LPDDR3 RAM / 16GB eMMC ROM / microSD (up to 32GB)
  • Camera: Front 5MP / Rear 13MP
  • Battery: 2,500mAh (removable)
  • Operating System: Android 7.0 Nougat
  • Size: 144.8 x 72.1 x 8.09mm
  • Weight: 142g
  • Network: LTE / 3G / 2G
  • Connectivity: Wi-Fi (802.11 b, g, n) / Bluetooth 4.2 / USB 2.0 / NFC
  • Color: Silver / Titan / Gold / Dark Blue

K4 Key Specifications:

  • Chipset: MSM8909 1.1GHz Quad-Core
  • Display: 5.0-inch FWVGA In-cell Touch (854 x 480 / 196ppi)
  • Memory: 1GB LPDDR3 RAM / 8GB eMMC ROM / microSD (up to 32GB)
  • Camera: Front 5MP / Rear 5MP
  • Battery: 2,500mAh (removable)
  • Operating System: Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow
  • Size: 144.76 x 72.6 x 7.94mm
  • Weight: 135g
  • Network: LTE / 3G / 2G
  • Connectivity: Wi-Fi (802.11 b, g, n) / Bluetooth 4.1 / USB 2.0
  • Color: Black / Titan

K3 Key Specifications:

  • Chipset: MSM8909 1.1GHz Quad-Core
  • Display: 4.5-inch FWVGA On-cell Touch (854 x 480 / 218ppi)
  • Memory: 1GB LPDDR3 RAM / 8GB eMMC ROM / microSD (up to 32GB)
  • Camera: Front 2MP / Rear 5MP
  • Battery: 2,100mAh (removable)
  • Operating System: Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow
  • Size: 133.9 x 69.75 x 9.44mm
  • Weight: 132g
  • Network: LTE / 3G / 2G
  • Connectivity: Wi-Fi (802.11 b, g, n) / Bluetooth 4.1 / USB 2.0
  • Color: Black

Stylus 3 Key Specifications:

  • Chipset: MT6750 Octa-Core
  • Display: 5.7-inch HD In-cell Touch (1280 x 720 / 258ppi)
  • Memory: 3GB LPDDR3 RAM / 16GB eMMC ROM / microSD (up to 2TB)
  • Camera: Front 8MP / Rear 13MP
  • Battery: 3,200mAh (removable)
  • Operating System: Android 7.0 Nougat
  • Size: 155.6 x 79.8 x 7.4mm
  • Weight: 149g
  • Network: LTE / 3G / 2G
  • Connectivity: Wi-Fi (802.11 b, g, n) / Bluetooth 4.2 / USB 2.0
  • Color: Metallic Titan / Pink Gold
  • Other: Stylus Pen / FM Radio / Fingerprint Scanner

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Get your passwords in shape

New Year’s resolutions should extend to getting password protection sorted out, writes Carey van Vlaanderen, CEO at ESET Southern Africa.

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Many of us have entered the new year with a boat load of New Year’s resolutions.  Doing more exercise, fixing unhealthy eating habits and saving more money are all highly respectable goals, but could it be that they don’t go far enough in an era with countless apps and sites that scream for letting them help you reach your personal goals.

Now, you may want to add a few weightier and yet effortless habits on top of those well-worn choices. Here are a handful of tips for ‘exercises’ that will go good for your cyber-fitness.

I won’t pass up on stubborn passwords

Passwords have a bad rap, and deservedly so: they suffer from weaknesses, both in terms of security and convenience, that make them a less-than-ideal method of authentication.  However, much of what the internet offers is independent on your singing up for this or that online service, and the available form of authentication almost universally happens to the username/password combination.

As the keys that open online accounts (not to speak of many devices), passwords are often rightly thought of as the first – alas, often only – line of defence that protects your virtual and real assets from intruders. However, passwords don’t offer much in the way of protection unless, in the first place, they’re strong and unique to each device and account.

But what constitutes a strong password?  A passphrase! Done right, typical passphrases are generally both more secure and more user-friendly than typical passwords. The longer the passphrase and the more words it packs the better, with seven words providing for a solid start. With each extra character (not to mention words), the number of possible combinations rises exponentially, which makes simple brute-force password-cracking attacks far less likely to succeed, if not well-nigh impossible (assuming, of course, that the service in question does not impose limitations on password input length – something that is, sadly, far too common).

Click here to read about making secure passwords by not using dictionary words, using two-factor authentication, and how biometrics are coming to web browsers.

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Code Week prepares 2.3m young Africans for future

By SUNIL GENESS, Director Government Relations & CSR, Global Digital Government, at SAP Africa.

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On January 6th, 2019, news broke of South African President Cyril Ramaphosa’s plans to announce a new approach to education in his second State of the Nation address, including:

  • A universal roll-out of tablets for all pupils in the country’s 23 700 primary and secondary schools
  • Computer coding and robotics classes for the foundation-phase pupils from grade 1-3 and the
  • Digitisation of the entire curriculum, , including textbooks, workbooks and all teacher support material.

With this, the President has shown South Africa’s response to a global challenge: equipping our youth with the skills they’ll need to survive and thrive in the 21st century digital economy.

Africa’s working-age population will increase to 600 million in 2030 from a base of 370 million in 2010.

In South Africa, unemployment stands at 26.7 percent, but is much more pronounced among youths: 52.2 percent of the country’s 15-24-year-olds are looking for work.

As an organisation deeply invested in South Africa and its future, SAP has developed and implemented a range of initiatives aimed at fostering digital skills development among the country’s youth, including:

AFRICA CODE WEEK

Since its launch in 2015, Africa Code Week has introduced more than 4 million African youth to basic coding.

In 2018, more than 2.3 million youth across 37 countries took part in Africa Code Week.

The digital skills development initiative’s focus on building local capacity for sustainable learning resulted in close to 23 000 teachers being trained in the run-up to the October 2018 events.

Vital to the success of Africa Code Week is the close support it receives from a broad spectrum of public and private sector institutions, including UNESCO YouthMobile, Google, the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), the Cape Town Science Centre, the Camden Education Trust, 28 African governments, over 130 implementing partners and 120 ambassadors across the continent.

SAP’s efforts to drive digital skills development on the African continent forms part of a broader organisational commitment to the UN Sustainable Development Goals, specifically Goal 4 (“Ensure quality and inclusive education for all”)

A core component of Africa Code Week is to encourage female participation in STEM-related skills development activities: in 2018, more than 46% of all Africa Code Week participants were female.

According to Africa Code Week Global Coordinator Sunil Geness, female representation in STEM-related fields among African businesses currently stands at 30%, “requiring powerful public-private partnerships to start turning the tide and creating more equitable opportunities for African youth to contribute to the continent’s economic development and success”.

Click here to read more about the Skills for Africa graduate training programme, and about the LEGO League.

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