BlackBerry Passport Price Slashed By 20% In US


BlackBerry has officially discounted the well-received “Passport” with a square-display in its online store.

The unlocked BlackBerry Passport is now being sold with 20 percent discount. Speaking of color, black, white and silver variants are on discount.

Both black and white BlackBerry Passport handsets can now be availed for $399.20, whereas the original price used to be $499. The silver variant, on the other hand, will set the buyers back by $439.20. This version used to retail at $549.

To top it off, BlackBerry has also cut the price of phone accessories by 30 percent. It is worth noting that the Passport does not work under Verizon, Sprint or U.S. Cellular networks.

In case, readers need a quick recap of the configurations, here is the summary. The Blackberry Passport comes with a 4.5-inch “square” display, aided by 1,440 x 1,440 pixels resolution.

In trademark BlackBerry style, this smartphone features a physical QWERTY keyboard with three rows of buttons. The same keyboard doubles as a trackpad.

Under the hood, the device comes powered by Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 801 SOC and backed by 3 GB of RAM. It runs on BlackBerry OS 10.3, which is upgradable to 10.3.1.

This handset sports a solid 13-megapixel rear-facing camera unit with autofocus, optical image stabilization (OIS) and LED flash. There is also a 2-megapixel front-facing sensor for selfies.

When it comes to memory configuration, the Passport comes equipped with 32 GB of native storage space with microSD card slot for further expansion. BlackBerry has housed a killer 3,450 mAh battery unit. According to the company website, this phone can offer up to 30 hours of battery life (mixed use).

Apart from the standard connectivity options, this device comes with a USB 2.0 high speed port, which allows charging and data synchronization of the handset via a USB cable. It is worth noting that the “BlackBerry Passport won Reddot Award 2015 for the best of the best of innovative design.”


Apple’s 9.7-Inch iPad Pro Has 2GB RAM, Slower Clock Speeds Despite A9X Chip


Apple announced the iPhone SE and the new 9.7-inch iPad Pro on Monday and gave journalists and reviewers the chance to try out both iOS devices.

Apple is known for not disclosing the RAM of its devices when announcing new products.

Luckily, a new report has surfaced listing the specs of the new devices.

The iPhone SE comes with 2GB RAM, which matches what the iPhone 6s and the iPhone 6s have under their hoods, TechCrunch Editor-in-chief Matthew Panzarino confirmed on Twitter.

The 9.7-inch iPad Pro, on the other hand, isn’t as fortunate. The new tablet has 2GB of RAM, instead of the 4GB that the 12.9-inch iPad Pro has, according to Ars Technica.

The size of RAM is important in gauging performance and usability as it’s responsible for making sure multiple apps can run smoothly at the same time.

Currently, the 2GB RAM may yet be troublesome in terms of performance, but the longterm effect of this on the tablet will become obvious when it can no longer be supported by future software updates.

It will also limit the usability of the tablet, since developers will be limited to just 2GB of RAM instead of 4GB when creating their apps.

In addition, Apple claims that the smaller version of the iPad Pro has the same A9X processor found in its larger counterpart.

But while this is true, it has been discovered that the smaller tablet’s CPU actually has a slightly slower clock speed, according to 9To5Mac. The 9.7-inch iPad Pro scored 3022 on a single Geekbench run.

However, although the 9.7-inch iPad Pro is considered to be less powerful than its 12.9-inch counterpart, it does come with some better features.

The new iOS tablet comes with a 12-megapixel camera capable of 4K video recording, similar to the iPhone 6s.

The tablet also has the new True Tone technology for its display, which provides more accurate whites.

With these disparities between the two versions of the iPad Pro, users will surely have to think twice before picking either one.

Google’s cloud business nabs Home Depot as client


Google Inc, long an also-ran in cloud services, has scored an important victory in its effort to win corporate clients: Home Depot is moving some of its data to Google’s cloud.

The deal, flagged Tuesday by Google executive Greg DeMichillie in a briefing and expected to be announced formally on Wednesday, highlights the momentum Google Cloud Platform has gained under the leadership of Diane Greene, a co-founder of VMWare who joined Google late last year.

VMWare sells its “virtualization” technology for improving the efficiency of data centers to many of the same customers that Google Cloud is targeting.

Many of Google Cloud’s more prominent customers, including message service Snapchat and accommodation service Airbnb, are new Internet-based companies – not always the best references for chief information officers at more traditional companies.

Landing Home Depot, the Atlanta-based construction and home-improvement retailer with over 2,000 stores in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico, bolsters Google Cloud’s standing among bricks and mortar businesses. Home Depot declined to provide any details on its deal with Google.

Google’s cloud business generated about $500 million in revenues last quarter, according to analysts at Goldman Sachs, up from $400 million the quarter before. That compares to $21.32 billion overall for parent company Alphabet Inc, but the cloud business is one of its fastest-growing business areas.

Overall, Google is the No.4 player in cloud infrastructure services, according to Synergy Research, with 4 percent market share last year. Amazon’s AWS took 31 percent of the market, Microsoft’s Azure 9 percent, and IBM, 7 percent.

But there are signs Google is gaining ground. Apple, long a user of Amazon’s AWS and Microsoft’s Azure, has started using Google’s cloud for its iCloud, the service that allows Apple customers to store music, photos, and documents, according to an industry executive.

And last month, music service Spotify, a high-profile customer of Amazon’s AWS, said it would use Google’s cloud for some computing infrastructure.

Google is also building up its data centers across the world, launching two new regional centers in Japan and Oregon to bring the number of regions it serves to five.

Google kicks off its cloud conference in San Francisco Wednesday.