Lenovo launches Vibe X3 line of phones for Chinese markets

Known stateside for their purchase of Motorola, Lenovo makes and sells their own branded smartphones in China and some European countries. The Vibe X3 continues the Vibe series, but it’s now a lineup of three models. All three share a 5.5-inch full HD Gorilla Glass display and rather serious audio tech, but differentiate in other specs…

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Chinese search giant Baidu’s self-driving car successfully hits the road

Google has said that its goal is to reach widespread distribution of its self-driving car by 2020, but Chinese search giant Baidu might beat the Mountain View company. Today, Baidu, often referred to as the “Chinese Google” announced that its self-driving car successfully completed its first route through Beijing.

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Samsung & Apple lose smartphone market share as Chinese brands continue to grow

The latest Gartner data (below) shows that both market leader Samsung and second-placed Apple lost market share in the first quarter of the year as Chinese brands continued to increase their sales.

Samsung saw its market share fall from 23.3% in Q1 2016 to 20.7% in the same quarter this year. Gartner said that the company was suffering from strong competition in low-cost smartphones in particular …

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Chinese brands Huawei and Oppo boost market share at expense of Samsung & Apple

The latest figures from Strategy Analytics show that Chinese brands Huawei and Oppo were the main winners in a year that saw the first ever fall in global smartphone sales, with established brands Samsung and Apple both seeing falls in their share.

Linda Sui, Director at Strategy Analytics, said, “Global smartphone shipments fell 3 percent annually from 345.0 million units in Q1 2015 to 334.6 million in Q1 2016. It is the first time ever since the modern smartphone market began in 1996 that global shipments have shrunk on an annualized basis. Smartphone growth is slowing due to increasing penetration maturity in major markets like China and consumer caution about the future of the world economy.”

While Samsung held its number one place in the rankings, it saw its sales drop by 3.7M year-on-year, while Apple’s iPhone sales dropped by 10M in the same time-frame. It was Chinese brands which picked up these lost sales …

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Here’s what Lenovo’s ‘One UI’ looks like on a Chinese Moto Z

Lenovo/Motorola have finally launched the new Moto Z here in the United States, but that’s not the only place we’ll see it go up for sale. After a brief period of exclusivity at Verizon Wireless, the phone will go on sale in markets around the world as a GSM unlocked device. One of those markets includes China, but there the Moto Z will be getting some major changes in the software department.

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Comms chip company Qualcomm fined almost $1B in Chinese anti-trust case

Qualcomm, which licenses 3G and 4G communications patents to smartphone manufacturers, has been fined almost a billion dollars by the Chinese government in an anti-trust case. The company was found to have abused its dominant position in wireless chip technology by charging “unfairly high” licensing fees to manufacturers of smartphones and tablets.

The 6B Yuan (0M) fine is the largest fine ever imposed on a foreign company, reports the GuardianChina’s National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) said that the fine was calculated as 8% of Qualcomm’s 2013 revenue in China. China is responsible for around half of Qualcomm’s total revenue.

Chinese regulators said that Qualcomm bundled together patent licenses, forcing Chinese companies to buy unwanted licenses in order to get the core 3G and 4G ones they needed. Qualcomm said that it was disappointed by the ruling, but has agreed to separate out its licenses to allow companies to purchase only the ones they need.

The ruling should reduce costs for Chinese smartphone makers, but it isn’t known how significant the saving may be, and it’s unlikely to show up as a price-reduction for consumers.

Photo: Mike Blake/Reuters

OnePlus X listed at Chinese retailer with $249 price-tag, 5-inch FHD display, 3GB RAM, more

Just days after OnePlus invited the world it its London event on October 29 to release its upcoming smartphone, its next device has shown up on Oppomart. The retailer specializes in shipping Chinese-made smartphones to markets where they’re not currently available, with devices from the likes of Xiaomi, Meizu, Oppo and ZTE all available. The OnePlus X is listed at just 9, making it far more affordable than the OnePlus 2 and — if the listed specs are accurate — far better value for money.

Although you can’t order it yet, the OnePlus X placeholder page does reveal some of the expected specifications. They include the following:

  • 5-inch full HD screen (1920 x 1080)
  • 2.5GHz Snapdragon 801 processor
  • 13MP Sony camera
  • 8MP front camera
  • 3GB RAM
  • 16GB/64GB Storage
  • 2450mAh battery
  • Global LTE support

The OnePlus X, by the sound of things, is shaping up to be a follow-on from the OnePlus One. It looks like it’ll have similar specs, a similar price, but a different design.