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Sony WH-1000XM4 noise-canceling headphones are $51 cheaper this Prime Day - Android Authority
Grab Sony's best over-ear headphones on the market for 15% less.
Everyone needs a good pair of noise-canceling headphones, and Sony makes some of the best on the market. You cant really get much better than its WH-1000XM4 this Amazon Prime Day. Usually listed for $349.99, a pair of Sony WH-1000XM4 noise-canceling cans is now listed at just $298 (15% off). Thats a saving of $51.99. In our review, we lauded its noise-canceling smarts, its battery life, and auto-pause functionality. We could only find fault with its unreliable touch controls, limited button customizations, and that eye-watering price. Now, thanks to this Amazon Prime Day deal, you can snag one for much cheaper than its usual sticker. Want something a little cheaper? Boses QuietComfort 35 II cans are also $100 less on Amazon today. Looking for something that fits in your ears? Sonys WF-1000XM3 TWS buds are even cheaper, too! Looking to save on some of the best smartphones, audio products, wearables, and more? Amazon Prime Day takes place Tuesday, October 13 and Wednesday, October 14. Head here to see all the best deals!
Google Pixel prices: How have they changed over the years? - Android Authority
With premium and affordable phones, Google's Pixel has something for everyone. Here's how the series' prices have changed.
Googles first smartphone line the Nexus series definitely wasnt synonymous with ultra-premium design and features. Google has attempted to change that perception with its current phone family, the Google Pixel series. But that Nexus-to-Pixel name and strategy shift also resulted in another key change higher prices. While flawless hardware still isnt Googles strong suit, the companys software innovation has taken the Pixel series from zero to tech-enthusiast hero in just four short years. In 2020, the Pixel price range now spans $349 to $999, which is quite a departure from the early years. More recently, Googles mid-range Pixel a series has put Google hardware on the radar for mass consumers too. To see how the companys roadmap has changed since 2016, weve compiled price tags and some key product talking points for every Pixel handset so far. Read more:All Google Pixel phones released so far Google Pixel price: $649 $869 At $649, the original Pixel seems quite cheap compared to todays flagships, but this wasnt a particularly affordable debut. Samsung launched its Galaxy S7 flagship for $689. Meanwhile, the swanky S7 Edge variant retailed for $769, just a fraction more expensive than the Pixel XLs $769 debut. The 128GB Pixel XL cost an eyewatering $869, while the ill-fated (see combustible), but far more sophisticated, Galaxy Note 7 cost $850. The Pixel series clearly intended to play with the big kids from day one. See also: Google Pixel redux review: Proof of the power of software Google didnt shy from charging premium prices, even though, frankly, the first-generation Pixels hardware was hot garbage. The metal and glossy finish chipped too easily, the phone lacked the increasingly standard IP68 water and dust resistance rating, and the rear camera didnt even feature OIS. There really wasnt a lot of hardware on offer for such a high price tag. Instead, Google Assistant, the Pixel Launcher, and Googles impressive HDR+ photography software won Google some early fans. To this day, software remains one of the most compelling reasons to purchase a Pixel handset. Google Pixel 2 price: $649 $949 Google sought to keep the entry point to the Pixel series reasonably affordable with the arrival of the Pixel 2, sticking to its $649 base entry point for 64GB storage and $749 for the 128GB version. However, Google saw room for a price hike with the Pixel 2 XL. Its base cost leapt to $849 and $949 for the 128GB variant, a full $80 more than its first-generation equivalent. See also:Google Pixel 4a vs older Google phones: Should you upgrade? $80 is hardly the largest price hike in history, but that put the Pixel 2 XL directly up against the $850 Samsung Galaxy S8 Plus. Perhaps not the best move for a phone that would prove to have some battery life and display issues, while also daring to ditch the headphone jack ahead of the curve. Google made strides with in-house hardware though, introducing the Pixel Visual Core to enhance the phones AI and image processing capabilities, giving rise to one of the best cameras phones on the market. Even with the considerably high cost in mind, Google did enough to refine its original vision and just about justify the higher price. As we said at the time, you dont buy a Pixel just for the hardware. Instead, the Pixel 2 series was carried by its stellar software, three years of OS updates, and a best-in-class camera system. Google Pixel 3 price: $799 $999 After leading the way with 2017s Pixel 2 XL, it was only a matter of time until the smaller entry in the series saw its price go up too. That happened a year later with the $799 Google Pixel 3. Thats a full $150 more than the most basic original Pixel and Pixel 2. See also:Google Pixel 3 XL redux: It hasnt aged well At the same time, the Pixel 3 XL saw its price rise by $50 compared to its predecessor. This put the 128GB storage option right on the $999 mark. Pretty pricey for a phone sporting just 4GB of RAM and a single rear camera. This was the year that Apple and Samsung normalized the idea of $1,000+ smartphones, which caused plenty of backlash at the time. Perhaps Google felt justified just keeping pace with the big players. The Pixel 3's $150 price hike is Google's most controversial (so far). Google did make efforts to justify its higher price with more competitive hardware this time around though. An IP68 water and dust resistance rating, cracking P-OLED display, wide-angle selfie camera, wireless charging, and a revamped premium look launched the Pixel series from a flawed but plucky underdog into a mainstream worthy smartphone. Just dont mention the unsightly bathtub notch on the Pixel 3 XL or the dubious battery life. Google Pixel 3a price: $399 2019s Pixel 3a marked a major shift in Googles smartphone strategy. With an affordable $399 price tag ($479 for the 3a XL), the Pixel 3a halved the cost of entry into Googles ecosystem. Googles less than perfect hardware was easier to overlook at this price point. Plastic bodies, thicker bezels, and slower memory were all perfectly acceptable trade-offs. Especially as the Pixel 3a packed in many of Googles previously high-end software features, including its industry-leading camera capabilities. Better still, the lower end specs helped ensure Googles more affordable phones could easily last a full day of use. Overall, the Pixel 3a XL may have been a tad on the expensive side, especially in markets with plenty of affordable alternatives. But the smaller and cheaper Pixel 3a was a really competitive package, priced just right for Western audiences. Google Pixel 4 price: $799 $999 After testing its fans with the Pixel 3 series, there was a collective sigh of relief when Google held off on any further price increases with the Pixel 4 and 4 XL. Both models and storage variants cost exactly the same as the previous generation. In a year of $1,000 smartphones, the Pixel 4s stagnant price strategy defied the broader industry. At the same time, the Pixel 4 and 4 XL packed in more hardware than ever before. The phones featured dual-rear cameras and a wide-angle rear lens for the first time. Display quality led the field and Google was quick onto the 90Hz display trend. The Pixel 4 series also introduced Googles Motion Sense and Soli radar system. While perhaps not worth the hit to already weak battery life, Motion Sense showcased Googles continued efforts to marry unique hardware with improved software experiences. See also:Google Pixel 4 vs Pixel 4a Which should you buy? But Googles willingness to experiment continued to be its greatest strength and weakness. While the Pixel 4 offered some of the best camera and software features around, its other features couldnt quite shake that lack of polish that plagued early Pixels. Until thats addressed, a flagship Pixel above $1,000 would be a tough sell. Google Pixel 4a price: $349 This brings us to Googles latest offering the Pixel 4a. Priced at $50 less than the Pixel 3a, this is the first time Google has actually lowered the asking price for a new generation. And talk about a bargain. Better processing hardware does away with the 3as occasional jitters, the camera is sublime, and theres Googles top-class software, of course. All that for a third of the cost of some flagships. As we said in our review, it represents the best Google experience for way less cash. However, the Pixel 4a has even more competition this year. The Apple iPhone SE, the OnePlus Nord (outside the US), and the Samsung Galaxy A51 are all fighting it out at similar price points. Not forgetting a slew of other affordable phones from brands like Xiaomi and Realme in Europe and Asia. But the Pixel 4as slight price cut gives it an edge in this increasingly busy market segment. Theres no XL model this generation, but the Google Pixel 4a 5G is on the way. However, this phone will retail for $499, making it $20 more than last years 3a XL and more expensive than the 5G-enabled OnePlus Nord. $20 is not a huge mark-up for 5G, but it definitely puts the phone in a different market segment to the 4a. The $150 price gap with the Pixel 4a is Googles biggest yet. Well have to see if the Pixel 4a 5Gs hardware does enough to convince consumers of its value proposition. Read more:Google Pixel 4a 5G: Everything we know so far Google Pixel price history: The big picture At the time of writing, the cheapest entry point into Googles Pixel flagship range costs $150 more than it did when the range launched four years ago. Thats a pretty steep markup over just four generations, but actually quite typical for the mobile industry. Googles phones have never been cheap, but a price freeze after the Pixel 3s jump has helped them remain competitive as flagship rivals Apple and Samsung pushed for four-figure sums. Even the highest spec entries in the Pixel series havent dared yet venture north of the $1,000 mark. However, after the Pixel 4s price freeze, theres the ominous feeling that future Pixels could cost more still, especially as we enter the era of 5G. While the Pixel flagship range has become increasingly expensive, Googles affordable series has gone in the other direction. The Pixel 4a is a crisp $50 cheaper than the Pixel 3a and comes with some much-improved hardware and Googles blend of software excellence. The upcoming Pixel 4a 5G is set to retail at $499, making it Googles most expensive mid-range phone yet. But thats to be expected with the move 5G and further hardware upgrades. Googles product portfolio has (so far) attempted to please everyone. Expensive flagships for the enthusiasts and affordable versions for the more budget-conscious. Google doesnt like to talk sales, but the Pixel a range looks to be the more commercially successful of the two approaches. With that in mind, its not surprising that the Pixel 4a is even more aggressive on the price. This brings us to the Google Pixel 5. All of the Pixel 5 rumors so far have suggested it will be powered by a more affordable mid-tier chipset from the Snapdragon 700 series. That could help keep the Pixel 5s price down. Well just have to see if Google views the future of its flagship Pixels as ultra-premium and expensive, or more mass-consumer and affordable. What do you think about Google Pixel pricing and its two-tier approach to devices over the past four years?
iPhone 12 sizes: If Apple gives us small phones then so should Android - Android Authority
Apple seems to understand that not everyone wants a pocket tablet. Meanwhile, Android has nothing similar to offer.
You told us: A ton of you would buy a pricier Note 20 with a headphone jack - Android Authority
Nearly 25,000 of you voted, and the results are in: Samsung should probably bring back the headphone jack on the Note 20.
Samsung Access gives you a new phone, extra perks for one monthly fee - Android Authority
Samsung's Galaxy flagship subscription plan also tosses in 1TB of cloud storage and other perks.
Apple was one of the first manufacturers to offer a subscription service for phone upgrades, allowing users to get the latest iPhone for one flat monthly fee. Samsung offered a similar program too, and its now offering an all-new upgrade program called Samsung Access (h/t: XDA-Developers). So how does it differ from the legacy Samsung Phone Upgrade Program, then? The Samsung Access initiative includes a number of perks aside from being able to upgrade your phone. These perks include Premium Care protection and support, and Microsoft 365 Personal (including 1TB of OneDrive storage and premium Office apps). There are a few caveats though, as you need to return your current device before upgrading. Furthermore, you can only upgrade after a minimum of nine months, and you can only cancel after three months. Want to upgrade or cancel earlier than that? Then youll need to splash out $100, Samsung says. Its also worth noting that there are separate prices for each Galaxy S20 device, with the standard S20 retailing for $37 a month on Samsung Access. Opt for the Galaxy S20 Plus and youll be paying $42 a month (or $46 for the 512GB option), while the Galaxy S20 Ultra retails for $48 a month. The S20 and S20 Ultra models are only available in 128GB flavors via this initiative. Furthermore, you cant trade in your current phone to join Samsung Access. Meanwhile, Samsungs legacy upgrade plan allows you to do this. Like the idea of this Samsung Galaxy subscription program nonetheless? Then check out Samsung Access via the button below.
Android accessibility updates include new Action Blocks app and more - Android Authority
Google is also updating Live Transcribe, Sound Amplifier, and Google Maps with new accessibility features.
Its Global Accessibility Awareness Day, and Google is updating several Android apps with new accessibility features thatll be rather useful for just about anyone who uses the mobile OS, and especially those with disabilities. The main feature coming to Android through a new app is called Action Blocks. The feature lets users create big widgets on their home screen that can perform complex actions with a single tap. Its not necessarily a new feature, as its been in testing for some time, but today is the finalized public release of it. Action Blocks could be a game-changer for anyone with a cognitive disability, but it could also be useful for anyone looking to speed up some of the functions they perform on their device regularly. To take advantage of Action Blocks, users will need to download the app. From there, users can choose from a list of predefined actions or create their own custom ones based on what they need to do. Googles Live Transcribe app is getting some improvements as well. It has always been a useful way to interact with an Android device, but the new update now gives it the ability to learn custom words such as a name or technical term. Google also added the ability to search transcriptions using keywords. Importantly, the data is stored locally and not on Googles servers. Another really cool feature coming to Live Transcribe is the ability to set a name as a keyword. This will cause the device to vibrate whenever it hears that keyword mentioned. For anyone with hearing disabilities, this could be a fantastic way for others to get their attention. Sound Amplifier is another app thats getting a nice update. Before, users could only take advantage of the boosted volume with wired headphones, but Google has rolled out support for Bluetooth now. One final update thats coming to both iOS and Android versions of Google Maps is the ability to show wheelchair access right away instead of hiding it under an extra button press. Its a small tweak, but its one that could save some time for users who need to know whether a location is wheelchair accessible regularly.