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By Jay Bonggolto
Samsung Galaxy A12 will go on sale in Singapore on January 9 for $228
by Jay Bonggolto
Samsung today announced that the Galaxy A12 will be available to purchase in Singapore from January 9. The entry-level smartphone was first unveiled late last year with a price tag of HKD1,398 (approximately $180).
In Singapore, the smartphone will go on sale in Cosmic Black and Cosmic Blue color variants for $228 via Samsung's online and physical storefronts. It can also be purchased through the telecommunication providers in the country including M1, Singtel Business, and StarHub. A soft clear cover in black and transparent versions will also be available to purchase separately for $25.
The Galaxy A12 sports a 6.5-inch HD+ display with an Infinity-V notch design on its screen housing its 8MP selfie camera. At the back of the device, there's a quad-camera setup consisting of a 48MP main sensor, a 5MP ultra-wide camera with a 123-degree viewing angle, 2MP depth sensor, and 2MP macro camera.
It's powered by MediaTek's octa-core Helio P35 SoC paired with 4GB of RAM. It has 128GB of internal storage that can expand up to 1TB with a microSD card. The phone's battery is 5,000mAh with support for 15W fast charging.
By Ather Fawaz
Apple's ambitious floating dome retail store in Singapore opens on Thursday
by Ather Fawaz
Image via AppleApple has been known for its unique retail stores around the world. A year after renewing its famous Fifth Avenue store, the Cupertino firm is preparing to launch its most ambitious retail store in Marina Bay Sands, Singapore.
Image via AppleCome Thursday, Apple Marina Bay Sands will be open to customers. The retail store is a large floating dome in Marina Bay, which is one of the most iconic locations in Singapore. Borrowing from its glass cube structure at the Fifth Avenue store, Apple's new retail store will be an all-glass, fully self-supported dome structure, comprised of 114 pieces of glass with 10 narrow vertical mullions. The glass will be lined with custom baffles designed to counter sun angles and provide a uniform, nighttime lighting effect.
Image via Apple Inspired by the Pantheon, an oculus will sit at the apex of the dome that will provide a ray of light that will illuminate the interior, providing a captivating experience for all visitors. Inside, apart from Apple's products, of course, will be trees that will provide soft-shadows and foliage.
Image via Apple Apple Marina Bay Sands will be the Cupertino firm's third retail store in Singapore. It will open almost 40 years after Apple opened its first corporate office in Ang Mo Kio that dealt with the production of PCBs for Apple II computers.
A team of 148 people will be welcoming visitors for the first time on Thursday, September 10 at 10:00 AM SGT. Given the special circumstances due to the COVID-19 pandemic, visits to the store on Thursday will be by appointment only to ensure the health and safety of the visitors and staff. If you are interested, reservations for visiting Apple Marina Bay Sands can be made here.
Amazon Project Zero arrives in seven more countries
by Paul Hill
Amazon has announced that its Project Zero anti-counterfeit tool is now available in seven more countries including Australia, Brazil, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Turkey, and the U.A.E. Project Zero combines Amazon’s “advanced technology, machine learning, and innovation” with brands’ knowledge of their intellectual property to crack down on counterfeit products.
By using Project Zero, over 10,000 brands including Arduino, BMW, ChessCentral, LifeProof, OtterBox, Salvatore Ferragamo, and Veet can ensure that customers always receive authentic products when using Amazon to do their shopping. This, in turn, may encourage customers that have had a positive experience to come back to Amazon to shop in future.
Discussing the product, Dharmesh Mehta, Vice President of Worldwide Customer Trust and Partner Support at Amazon, said:
Businesses that are enrolled with Amazon Project Zero and have an existing trademark in one of the new countries will automatically be able to use Project Zero in these areas. If you’re a brand on Amazon that’s not yet using Project Zero, you can learn more and sign-up on the dedicated page.
By Usman Khan Lodhi
Singapore suspends use of Zoom by teachers following 'very serious incidents'
by Usman Khan Lodhi
After schools were closed in Singapore on account of the coronavirus outbreak on Wednesday, classes switched to home-based learning through video conferencing apps. Singapore has now stopped teachers from using Zoom following "very serious events" that occurred during the lessons, according to its education ministry.
During a geography lesson involving teenage girls, unidentified individuals entered the stream, making inappropriate remarks and displaying obscene images on the screen. Aaron Loh, Divisional Director, Educational Technology Division at Ministry of Education, Singapore, remarked:
He further said that teachers are being told to use the security features deployed in the video conferencing app, such as using a secure sign-in method, and not widely sharing the meeting link. In a bid to avoid "zoombombing," Zoom recently announced that virtual meeting rooms would be turned on by default.
Zoom has been facing backlash after several security vulnerabilities were reported within the app. Eric Yuan, the company's CEO, later announced that Zoom was enacting a 90-day feature freeze to fix the current security issues with the service. Until then, no new features would be released.
By Usman Khan Lodhi
Singapore launches a mobile app to boost COVID-19 contact tracing efforts
by Usman Khan Lodhi
To assist the ongoing contact tracing efforts amid the COVID-19 outbreak in Singapore, a contact-tracing smartphone app has been launched to track people who have been exposed to confirmed coronavirus cases. Worldwide, governments have employed the use of technology to curb the spread of the virus.
The TraceTogether app, developed by Singapore's Government Technology Agency and the health ministry, works by exchanging short-distance Bluetooth signals between phones to detect users in close proximity of 2 meters. The records of these encounters will be stored locally on users' phones, and the health ministry would need to request the users to access these logs.
The efforts of Singapore in curbing the spread of the virus have been appreciated globally which include the use of police investigators and security cameras to track suspected carriers of the virus. Information like the user's location will not be accessed by the app, and the data stored on it will be encrypted. Janil Puthucheary, a senior minister of state, informed reporters that “the engineering has preserved the privacy of the users from each other.”
Last month, Singapore charged a Chinese couple with providing inaccurate information regarding their movements to authorities tasked with tracing their contacts. Although the use of the app is voluntary, the government stated that it would encourage people to download it. As per its description in the Apple App Store, TraceTogether's functionality will be suspended after the epidemic subsides.