Samsung pulled its highly anticipated Galaxy Fold phone after several units broke in the hands of reviewers. After spending months determining what caused the problems, Samsung says it made changes to the design, and the phone will release in September.
You couldn’t ask for a worse review period. Within days of reaching reviewers, at least four units broke. For a $2,000 phone, that’s a terrible rate of failure. In some cases, reviewers had peeled off the top layer of the screen, assuming it was a screen protector for shipping. In others, external particles managed to get in under the display, causing enough damage to break the unit.
Samsung put the breaks on releasing the phone and recalled all the review units to figure out what’s going on. Now, over three months, later the company says it fixed the problems. With that, it’s ready to release the phone sometime in September at the same $1,980 price as before.
The changes the company made includes extending the top layer of the screen beyond the bezel on new units. The idea is to make it clear the plastic is not a screen cling you should peel off. And the hinges, which had gaps under the screen before, now have protective caps which should hopefully keep dust and other particles out.
The changes are small enough that you would have to carefully compare an old unit with a new one to even spot the differences. But, hopefully, those changes are enough to keep the foldable—which is the price of two Carribean cruises—from breaking. [The Verge]
In Other News:
- Microsoft is removing Cortana from Xbox One: Microsoft is working on a redesign for the Xbox One Dashboard, and one of those changes includes removing Cortana. You won’t be able to call up the assistant from your headset anymore. Instead, much like Alexa, you can use external sources (like your phone) to call up Cortana and control Xbox. Let’s be honest, you never used Cortana on Xbox to begin with, right? [TechRadar]
- Robinhood admits to storing user passwords in plaintext: Robinhood, a stock trading app, is warning some users to reset their passwords. It seems the company added logging to the app, which recorded user’s passwords in plaintext. The company says it has no evidence the information was compromised, but want affected users to reset passwords out of an abundance of caution. [BleepingComputer]
- You can watch Amazon Prime Video on your Oculus VR Headset: Amazon just released a Prime Video VR app for Oculus headsets. Features include 360-degree videos, voice search, and the comfort of knowing no one can see you’re watching Good Omens for the fourteenth time. [Engadget]
- Google Photos has over a billion users: Google Photos burst onto the scene around four years ago, and now it has over one billion users. The advanced algorithms that organize your photos and identifies people and pets are probably among the reasons for its popularity. If you own a Nest Hub, you should add your pictures to the service just for the ambient screen alone. [9to5Google]
Every eleven years, our Sun’s magnetic field flips leading to a swap of its north and south poles. By comparison, the Earth’s magnetic field typically flips every 200,000 to 300,000 years. Scientists have been studying why the Sun’s magnetic field flips so often and suspected it was due, at least in part, to sunspot activity.
In the process of studying sunspots, scientists have been tracking how solar cycles come to an end (called “Terminator Events“). Those Terminator Events trigger solar tsunamis, waves of plasma traveling over 300 meters per second. Those ultimately lead to sunspots forming. Hopefully, with better knowledge of how the Sun works, we’ll be able to predict its behavior in the future. [Engadget]