Welcome back to another edition of The Weekly Authority, the Android Authority newsletter that breaks down the top Android and tech news from the week. Bogdan Petrovan at the wheel of this Weekly!
I’m swapping in for fan-favorite Tristan Rayner. I know, I know! You’ll just have to do without him until next week.
Popular news this week
- OnePlus 9 Pro throttled: When you build your entire brand image around 1) performance 2) affordability and 3) honesty, you’re bound to get into trouble when you get caught 1) slowing down apps to save battery 2) on your new $1,000 phone 3) and lie about it. It’s another black eye for what used to be the default brand for Android enthusiasts.
- OLED model, oh my: You’ve got to give it to Nintendo. Where other companies make their product names sound fancy at all costs, the venerable Nintendo went the other way. Nintendo Switch (OLED model) might be the most anticlimactic name ever, but the bigger issue is the anticlimactic list of upgrades. The titular OLED is just about the only thing worth talking about, which is… Fine? Disappointing? Who knows at this point?
- Hey Google, how many lawsuits can you be involved in? 36 US states filed an antitrust lawsuit against Google, alleging anticompetitive practices related to the Play Store. The suit claims Google is stifling competition and preventing the rise of alternatives to the Play Store. Google issued a lengthy rebuttal, but some of the preliminary evidence seems pretty damning. Google has allegedly gone as far as to pay Samsung off to not promote its Galaxy Store. All while touting the openness of the Android ecosystem. It’s the latest big lawsuit targeting Google, as regulators worldwide become disenchanted with Big Tech in general and Big G in particular.
- Qualcomm shows its clients how it’s done (!?): The new “Smartphone for Snapdragon Insiders” is like the anti-Nexus. Where Google put the OS into the spotlight, Qualcomm’s phone is all about the chips inside. The device is an Asus collaboration that will cost $1,499 when it comes out in August. Should you buy it? We’re going out on a limb and telling you right now – probably not!
- It’s getting harder to buy cheap phone accessories: Another big accessories brand has vanished from Amazon. It’s Choetech this time, joining the ranks of Aukey, RAVPower, TaoTronics, and Mpow. You can bet market-leader Anker is feeling jittery right now. Apparently, it all stems from shady incentivized reviews schemes, but you have to ask – do these summary executions actually benefit customers? (The Verge)
- The highs and lows of the billionaire space race: Not even the richest man in the world is safe from trolling. At least, not when the troll is another billionaire with sky-high ambitions. Richard Branson is set to take off to space (well, at least to its edge) today at 9AM ET, beating Jeff Bezos and its Blue Origin to the punch. Blue Origin didn’t take Branson’s thunder-theft lightly, pedantically pointing out that Virgin Galactic’s VSS Unity will only soar to 89 km. That’s below the Kármán line (100 km), one of the several commonly accepted definitions of the edge of space (National Geographic).
- Whichever definition you adhere to, you can watch the whole thing live in a few hours (YouTube).
- Sony Xperia 1 II revisited: How is Sony’s big camera phone faring after a year?
- Acer Chromebook Spin 713 (2021) review: The mid-range Chromebook to get
- Huawei MatePad Pro (2021) review: All of the hardware, almost none of the apps
- Google’s first billion-dollar acquisition was a steal, reminisces Eric Zeman.
- It’s 2021, you should be using a password manager – Look, we’ll keep banging on this drum until everyone knows a password manager is essential.
- Fired by Bot at Amazon: ‘It’s You Against the Machine’ – A machine you’ll want to rage against (Bloomberg).
- Six Days in Suez: The Inside Story of the Ship That Broke Global Trade What happened when the Ever Given went sideways in the Suez Canal (Bloomberg).
- No, open source Audacity audio editor is not “spyware” A little counter-narrative reading on a story that’s been making the rounds (Ars Technica).
- Sizzling science: How to grill a flavorful steak. Nerd out at the cookout (Ars Technica).
- Special Report: China’s gene giant harvests data from millions of women. Simply chilling (Reuters).
- July 19-23: Games Developer Conference (GDC).
- July 31-August 5: Black Hat USA
- Early August: Samsung Unpacked event?
Tech Tweet of the Week
For a little fun, check out the list of slogans auto giant Stellantis came up with for its electrified brands. We can confirm these are 100% official, corporate-approved slogans, and not elaborate satire.
So here are all the mottos that Stellantis announced for each brand as part of its new “electrification approach…” pic.twitter.com/9ttMWXIzqB
— Motor1 (@Motor1com) July 8, 2021
Thanks for reading!
Bogdan Petrovan, Managing Editor.