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TP-Link unveils Neffos X series smartphones at IFA 2016

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At the IFA 2016 electronics show in Berlin, TP-Link launched the latest Neffos series smartphones that establish the company as a serious contender in the mobile space. Created to seamlessly connect people to each other, and to the world around them, the Neffos X1 and the Neffos X1 Max push the boundaries of smartphone design, imaging prowess, mobile security, and processing performance.

“The new Neffos X Series smartphones are the perfect combination of smart technology and stylish design. They bring unparalleled value to our customers by prioritizing features that help them stay closer to everything and everyone around them,” said TP-Link co-founder and chairman Jeffrey Chao.

Stylishly sleek and built with premium materials, the Neffos X1 and X1 Max share the same metal unibody exterior that was inspired by the rocks found in streams — smoothed by the water over time without losing their mettle. Every detail has been refined to make the phones look and feel familiar, and give consumers the best user experience.

One highlight of the design is the dual-curved back that tapers towards the sides and allows for a more ergonomic fit. The subtle curves also make the X1 and X1 Max easier to hold and operate one-handed compared to other devices of similar size.

The Neffos X1 Max has among the narrowest edges in the industry at 2.75 mm, while the X1 has edges of 2.95mm. Both phones achieve these remarkably thin edges even with the side mute button. The X1 Max is also incredibly slender at 7.75 mm, and the X1 comes in at 7.95mm.
The X1 and X1 Max also have super-thin bezels and smooth, chamfered edges that measure only 0.6mm. With the length of the phones kept to a minimum, screen-to-body ratio is high at 76 percent.

The screen makes use of full in-cell technology with “touch and display driver integration” or TDDI, which is light and 0.2mm thinner than the usual lamination used on other smartphones. It also provides high control precision in games and apps, and seamless screen integration for much improved image quality while also extending battery life.

A 2.5D Corning Gorilla Glass sits on top of the X1 Max’s display to make swiping through screens feel natural. The display — gorgeous at 5.5 inches — has a high, 1,000:1 color contrast for best-in-class entertainment.

Colors are rendered with utmost accuracy and vibrancy. Details are sharp and viewing angles are excellent even at awkward angles. The Neffos X Series devices are perfect for playing graphics-rich games and watching TV shows and movies.

The smartphones come with a rear camera backed by a 13-megapixel Sony sensor with backside illumination, 5P lens, and fast PDAF (phase-detection auto-focus) of just 0.2 seconds. It also features an f/2.0 aperture lens for taking clearer shots in low light and providing a shallow of depth of field.

The Neffos X1 and X1 Max feature Real-time Night shooting, so even in low light, the image users see is the image they capture – taking the guesswork out of low light photography. The cameras also include standard features such as HDR, Time Lapse, and Panorama.
The live-shooting mode crosses over to the 5-megapixel front camera, and the Real-time Beautify mode makes taking selfies more intuitive. The perfect selfie is just one tap away with the Neffos X1 and X1 Max.
Super-fast fingerprint unlocking

The inclusion of a fingerprint sensor on the back of the X Series underlines the importance of mobile security in today’s interconnected world. This provides an additional unlocking option that’s more secure than a password. Better yet, fingerprint ID unlocks the phone in a mere 0.2 seconds.

Because the sensor makes use of sophisticated algorithms, it can refine fingerprint data with use. So the more a user unlocks the phone, the more accurate and fast it gets over time.

Powering the Neffos X1 and X1 Max is the octa-core MediaTek Helio P10 chipset with up to 4GB of RAM and 64GB of internal storage, which can be expanded with a microSD card up to 128GB. The phone supports dual-band Wi-Fi and multiple LTE bands for fast internet access where available.

This means the X Series can handle anything from typical smartphone activities, like web browsing and video streaming, to demanding games. It also means steadier and more consistent wireless connections over Wi-Fi or mobile data.

The long-lasting 3,000mAh battery inside the X1 Max can go through a full day’s use and supports fast charging of up to 50 percent on a 30-minute charge, which makes recharging the phone more convenient.
Both the Neffos X1 and X1 Max run on the latest Android 6.0 Marshmallow software, which has been tweaked to deliver a balance of ease-of-use, longer battery life, swift and seamless multitasking, and smooth gaming.

With the X Series, consumers get more value for their money. Prices start at only €199 for the Neffos X1 and €249 for the bigger, more powerful Neffos X1 Max.

The smartphones, which will be available in cloudy grey and sunrise gold, will roll out in stores by Q4 2016.

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HID Recognized for Its Design Expertise as Bahrain’s ePassport Wins Multiple Prestigious Awards

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HID has recently achieved global recognition for its Bahrain ePassport project, clinching several top honors. These include the distinguished London Design Awards, the High Security Printing Award, and the iF Design Award. This suite of praises reinforces HID’s leadership in security design, showcasing its innovative approach to integrating cutting-edge security features with aesthetic and cultural elements.

Craig Sandness, Senior VP and Managing Director for Citizen Identity at HID, shares, “Our design philosophy is centered around seamlessly weaving security into the fabric of the document’s design. The Bahrain ePassport is a prime example of this approach, where innovation meets artistry. This is not just our success; it’s a shared victory with our Bahraini partners, local artists, and calligraphers. Together, we’ve crafted a document that is as secure as it is symbolic of Bahrain’s rich heritage.”

The Bahrain ePassport, celebrated for its innovative design, marks a milestone in document security by introducing the world’s first document-embedded hashtag, #teambahrain. This feature is more than a nod to digital savviness; it’s a strong symbol of national unity and a testament to HID’s ability to integrate modern digital elements with traditional security measures.

HID’s work on the Bahrain ePassport has been recognized across several categories in the London Design Awards, including Gold awards in Service Design for Government, Cultural, and Best User Experience categories, underscoring the project’s excellence in functionality, cultural sensitivity, and user engagement. The High Security Printing Award for Best New ePassport for EMEA and the iF Design Award in the Publications and Communications category further validate HID’s skill in creating secure, user-centered design.

The collaboration between HID, Bahraini authorities, and local artisans highlights HID’s commitment to incorporating local culture into its security designs. This partnership approach not only enriches the document’s aesthetic appeal but also enhances its acceptance and significance among citizens, demonstrating HID’s leadership in creating identity solutions that respect and celebrate cultural heritage.

“As we celebrate the one-year anniversary of the Bahrain ePassport, we look forward to continuing our journey of innovation,” adds Sandness. “We invite governments and organizations worldwide to join us in this journey of creating secure, innovative solutions that pave the way for the future of identity documentation.”

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Fitness First Marks Mother’s Day with Four Days of Free Access

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As Mother’s Day approaches, Fitness First is proud to honour and celebrate all mothers with a special gift of health and wellness. From 21 to 24 March, Fitness First invites all mums to enjoy complimentary access to its state-of-the-art facilities at any of its UAE-based clubs.

Recognising the invaluable role of mothers in our lives, Fitness First is opening its doors to mothers of all ages and fitness levels, offering them the opportunity to prioritise their well-being and embark on a journey to better health. Whether it’s a rejuvenating yoga session, an invigorating cardio workout, or a strength training class, Fitness First provides a wide range of fitness options tailored to meet the diverse needs and preferences of every mother.

In addition to offering access to top-notch gym facilities and equipment, mums visiting Fitness First during this special period will also have the opportunity to participate in group fitness classes led by certified instructors, and connect with other like-minded individuals in a supportive and motivating environment.

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Visa-free countries for UAE residents looking to book last-minute getaways this spring term break

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As UAE schools gear up for the upcoming spring term break starting from 25 March, residents are planning for their well-deserved getaways, ready to embark on new adventures and explore the world. Global travel marketplace, Skyscanner recommends these visa-free travel destinations for UAE residents this spring term break.

Ayoub El Mamoun, Skyscanner Travel Expert, invites families and adventure seekers alike to explore these captivating visa-free destinations

Seychelles starting from AED 2,711 – “A tropical haven with pristine beaches and lush greenery, Seychelles is perfect for family retreats. Explore Anse Lazio’s white sands or snorkel in vibrant coral reefs for a blissful escape.”

Georgia starting from AED 1,703– “Steeped in rich history, Georgia welcomes UAE residents to explore ancient monasteries, stunning landscapes, and vibrant cities. Georgia is becoming a regular tourist haunt for UAE residents given the sudden influx of Georgia tour packages and the family activities to be experienced.”

Jordan starting from AED 1,752 – “A treasure trove of ancient history and natural wonders, Jordan is a captivating family destination. From the rose-red city of Petra to floating in the mineral-rich waters of the Dead Sea, Jordan promises a timeless family adventure.”

Malaysia starting from AED 1,903 – “A melting pot of cultures and landscapes, Malaysia invites families to explore bustling Kuala Lumpur, beautiful Langkawi beaches, and vibrant neighborhoods in Georgetown. Trek lush rainforests in Taman Negara or dive into the colourful underwater world of the Perhentian Islands. Try Skyscanner’s multi-city search too to explore all that Malaysia has to offer.”

For travellers still deciding on a destination to visit this upcoming break, a Skyscanner ‘Everywhere’ search is one of the easiest ways to be inspired. Ordered by cheapest price, a search to ‘Everywhere’ shows travellers all the destinations available for your desired travel departure.

Skyscanner’s Everywhere search tool reveals return flights to visa-free destinations such as Thailand from AED 1,891, Philippines from AED 1,932, Azerbaijan from AED 1,634 and Malaysia from AED 1,976 round trip.

With the convenience of visa-free travel to various destinations, the options for an unforgettable getaway are endless. So pack your bags, book your tickets, and get ready for a stress-free holiday.

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