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Google bids farewell to Allo

Prajyot Mainkar

Google has announced that the company has given up on Allo after several efforts to keep it in existence against the growing IM messaging competition. The company has also made it clear that the app will become non-functional in March 2019. This move will also ensure that Google’s primary focus would be on upgrading users to Hangout Chat and Hangout Meet at some point in the future. Hangout Chat and Hangout Meet have been a great success for G Suite users and this ensures that Google will now synergize its efforts to make it even better. Since Hangouts Chat and Meet are primarily focused on team collaboration for G Suite customers, Google will surely look to make the trend made available for existing Hangouts users in the near future.

Facebook is looking to launch Live Video Feature for merchants in the messenger, which lets them demonstrate and describe their items for viewers. This would mean that Facebook is trying to upgrade the messenger feature to help people set-up home shopping networks. Customers can simply screenshot something they want to buy and use Messenger to send it to the seller. Using the in-app payment feature, the seller can then request payment through the app. Note that this feature is currently available only to specific test groups. Facebook is testing this feature with a limited set of pages in Thailand which has been a test bed for shopping features and has a strong marketplace community. This feature could help sellers demonstrate the items in a clearer manner. For example: Showing off how a particular item could be used or worn and ensuring the seller provides more information about the product instead of juts images. This feature will also have Live Interactions which will enable buyers to ask questions about the products they wish to buy. The reports also suggest that Facebook is also working closely with its test partners to gather feedback and iterate on the live video shopping experience. This would enable Facebook to receive an immense response when this feature opens to a global audience.

After Max Pro M1 and Max M2, ASUS has launched Zenfone Max Pro M2 in Russia. The phone comes with 6.3-inch Full HD+ display with 94 per cent NTSC colour Gamut. It also features a Corning Gorilla Glass 6 protection. The phone comes with Snapdragon 660 with 4GB RAM and a 5000mAh battery. The storage is supported with a 64GB/128GB option with an expandable memory up to 2TB using microSD. It runs on Android v8.1 Oreo edition. The phone has a glass back and comes with a rear-mounted fingerprint sensor. On the optics side, this device comes with a 12-megapixel rear camera along with a 5-megapixel secondary camera. For selfies and video calling the phone comes with 13-megapixel front camera sporting LED flash. Network features include Dual 4G VoLTE, WiFi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth v5 and GPS + GLONASS. ASUS Zenfone Max Pro M2 comes in blue and grey colours. The starting price of the device is $269 and it will go on sale in Russia this month.

The company has also launched ASUS Zenfone Max M2 that features a 6.3-inch HD+ display featuring 2.5D curved glass. It is powered by 1.8GHz Octa-core Snapdragon 632 14nm platform with Adreno 506 GPU. The phone comes in two variants – one with 3GB RAM and 32GB storage and the other with 4GB RAM with 64GB storage. Storage can be expanded up to 2TB using a microSD card. It is a dual-SIM card supported device that comes with a 13-megapixel rear camera and a secondary 2-megapixel camera. On the front-facing side there is an 8-megapixel camera with LED flash. The phone supports fingerprint sensor and its network features include Dual 4G VoLTE, WiFi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth v4.2 and GPS + GLONASS. Backed by a 4000mAh battery, ASUS Zenfone Max M2 is available in black, blue and gold colours. The starting price of the device is $195.

Meizu has launched a budget android phone C9 in India for `5,999. The device comes with 5.45-inch HD+ 2.5 curved glass display featuring a screen resolution of 1400 pixels x 720 pixels. It runs on 2GB RAM and 16GB internal storage that can be expanded up to 128GB using a microSD card. This dual-SIM supported phone is powered by 1.3 GHz Quad-core processor with Mali-T720 GPU. Running on Android v8.0 Oreo edition, it sports a 13-megapixel rear camera with LED flash and an 8-megapixel front-facing camera with LED flash. The device weighs 140 grams and comes with Face unlock feature. Its network features include 4G VoLTE, WiFi 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth v4.1 and GPS + GLONASS. The device has a 3000mAh battery.


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