Smartphones, other gadgets in China: Will the decline end in 2nd half?

China has a huge consumer electronics market. /CFP

China has a huge consumer electronics market. /CFP

Smartphones and other gadgets – or consumer electronics as some call them – have witnessed a decline in sales in the first half of 2022 in China. The reason behind that is not only related to COVID-19 control measures, as some may think. And the future seems to be getting better but is still not clear.

A 10-week decline in smartphone sales took place in China from late January to April, according to data from market researcher Counterpoint.

Many media outlets said this signified that the once rapture market has finally calmed down after years of tumbling. But the latest data from the China Academy of Information and Communications Technology (CAICT), a government research institute, showed that shipments bounced back by one-third in June compared to that in May. The June data also beat last year’s numbers by 9.2 percent.

It seems like the decline in the smartphone market is coming to a stop. But the sales data during the “618” shopping season told us another story.

Source: Counterpoint Weekly Tracking Service

Source: Counterpoint Weekly Tracking Service

During the season, the only major brand that saw year-on-year growth was Honor, which separated from Huawei in 2020 to become a standalone. Other brands, including Apple, performed strongly in China with the iPhone 13 series, all saw a sizable decline in sales.

Many Chinese smartphone reviewers expressed their complaints about the heating problems in Qualcomm’s recent Snapdragon chips, which power many flagship smartphones in China. Like many of Apple’s A-series products, the chips get too hot under heavy use that they have to “throttle” – run slower – to prevent breaking.

“It seems that the chip’s design is great, but it was ruined by Samsung’s problematic manufacturing tech,” one reviewer concluded after testing dozens of recent Snapdragon-powered phones. “Newer chips may be built by TSMC so expect them to be a bit better.”

The Snapdragon 888 and 8 Gen 1 chips are not so welcomed like many of their previous products in China. /CFP

The Snapdragon 888 and 8 Gen 1 chips are not so welcomed like many of their previous products in China. /CFP

People’s will to upgrade their smartphones also seems to be fading, as the recent devices have become so powerful that many light users no longer need to get a new one – they just replace the aged batteries instead, as the hardware is still fast enough to keep WeChat running.

A similar thing is happening to TVs as well. One of the most important upgrades in recent years – HDR – is not even understood by a lot of Chinese buyers. Most people just go for larger sizes without looking at other features. After all, most Chinese people can only watch less than a handful of 4K channels and a few dozens of 1080i ones, and the mainstream streaming services only provide content at a pathetically low bitrate with which many

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The 7 coolest artifacts & gadgets stored away inside ‘Warehouse 13’

Without a history-spanning treasure trove of artifacts to line its musty, dusty shelves, Warehouse 13 (streaming all month long on Fridays as part of July’s nostalgia-bound SYFY Rewind) would feel like a pretty barren and boring place. It’s the artifacts, after all, that give the magic-sleuthing series its raison d’être; the stuff that makes an unassuming giant metal shed in windswept South Dakota far, far more than the sum of its rusted, rickety parts.

We’re not gonna lie: There’s really no way to rank the relative greatness of all the (sometimes literally) killer artifacts that crossed our fearless agents’ paths over the course of five seasons and 64 insanely imaginative episodes. Artifacts are the show’s sci-fi lifeblood, and nearly every Warehouse 13 episode comes packed to the gills with magical relics both important and insignificant. Some of them — like Ferdinand Magellan’s Astrolabe — are seriously high profile, serving as season-spanning plot devices; while others appear only in fleeting moments as comic-relief afterthoughts…usually just to mess up the workflow for Artie (Saul Rubinek) and the gang, who have a bad habit of casually leaving them lying around.

But in a show that’s all about whipping the unexplained into safe, securely-stored shape, a handful of artifacts still stands out in our memories — even nearly a decade on from Warehouse 13‘s 2014 series sign-off. Here’s how we rate our favorites, with a friendly reminder from Pete (Eddie McClintock) and Myka (Joanne Kelly) about how to listen to your vibes whenever something in the immediate vicinity feels just a little bit off: “When something has no explanation, then the explanation is there’s an artifact involved!”

7: Harriet Tubman’s Thimble

In series lore, Harriet Tubman’s thimble once belonged to the famous Civl War-era activist, imbued from the start with the power to infuse light-bending qualities into the garments she sewed for escaped slaves fleeing oppression via the Underground Railroad. But a pinky-sized device that can fool people into thinking you’re someone else can come in pretty handy in the present day, too — especially if you’re up to no good. Helena G. Wells (Jaime Murray) had exactly that in mind when she debuted the magic-infused thimble early in Season 2, though it would go on to pop up in later episodes, after HG was on friendlier terms with the gang, as a useful good-guy tool.

6: The Tesla

The Tesla gun in WAREHOUSE 13 Episode 410

The Tesla gun in WAREHOUSE 13 Episode 410 “We All Fall Down”

Eddie McClintock as Pete Lattimer with the Tesla gun in WAREHOUSE 13 Episode 410 “We All Fall Down” . Photo: Steve Wilkie/Syfy/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images

Our heroes wouldn’t get very far without wearing a standard-issue enemy neutralizer at their hip, and when you’re up against specters, spirits, and mad scientists from the restless past, no ordinary weapon will do. Carrying the prestige of a Nikola Tesla pedigree, the Tesla serves as one part stun gun and one part Men In Black-style memory eraser, wiping the minds of hapless

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I’ve spent years testing kids gadgets, and these are the best on Prime Day

With my two young boys, I am never without something to do. But, of course, they seem to find plenty of moments to say they are bored — even with the 5 acres of country property to explore. I am constantly looking for ways to keep them learning, having fun, and safe with the devices I test. So, to help parents in a similar situation, I have found some of the best Prime Day deals on kid’s tech that you can still take advantage of.

While there are a lot of great smartphones for kids, with some of the best being from smaller brands you haven’t heard of, not all kids are ready for a phone. That’s where a smartwatch designed specifically for kids comes in — and Amazon has some good deals on mine and my kids’ favorites.

TickTalk 4

(Image credit: Chris Wedel/Android Central)

The TickTalk 4 sits atop our list of best smartwatches for kids for various reasons. Even after the review, my oldest son has continued to go back to it. The dual-camera setup makes it easy to use the video calling feature and to take pictures of his adventures. He also loves the free iHeart Radio Family streaming. But I like the companion app’s parental controls, safety features, and options for messaging and voice calls.

Spacetalk Adventurer kids smartwatch

(Image credit: Chris Wedel/Android Central)

If your child isn’t ready for a smartwatch with as many features, check out the Spacetalk Adventurer for an option with a more mature look but not quite as many features. Don’t get me wrong, during the review with my younger son — we found a lot of things to like about this watch. It has amazing build quality, a great-looking display, and a great companion app tying it all together.

Amazon Fire HD 10 Kids Pro, HD 8 Kids & 7 Kids

(Image credit: Chris Wedel/Android Central)

Of course, it’s hard to go wrong with any of the excellent Amazon kids devices. Almost all of these devices are on sale right now, with $80 off the super capable Amazon Fire HD 10 Kids Pro and the Fire 7 Kids Pro all the way down to $50! Don’t forget the fun and cute Amazon Echo Dot Kids for only $25 or the Echo Show 5 Kids for $40 (opens in new tab).

All of these products take advantage of the fantastic Amazon Kids+ software to ensure your child is accessing age-appropriate content, and you get a full suite of parental controls.

BuddyPhones kids Headphones

(Image credit: Chris Wedel/Android Central)

Does your kid already have a tablet, phone, or smartwatch, and you want to get some kind of accessory to go with them? I suggest taking a look at some of the best kids headphones. Aside from having fun colors and patterns and offering a size designed for smaller heads, they also have volume-limiting technology to keep little ears safe.

My kids love the ONANOFF Buddyphones, and Amazon has the latest versions on sale. When my kids and I reviewed these headphones, we were surprised not only by the features each option

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Crypto gadgets and accessories are everywhere these days—which ones should you buy? » Gadget Flow

Want to secure your cryptocurrencies and make them easier to use? Check out today’s roundup. These are the crypto gadgets and accessories you should buy.

Crypto gadgets and accessories are everywhere these days. From cryptocurrency wallets to gadgets that facilitate NFT purchase and storage, there are so many to buy. These are the ones you should consider.

Related: Best smart tech gadgets to buy under $500

A cryptocurrency wallet that safeguards your NFTs, crypto, and tokens is a worthwhile investment. So are crypto wallets that secure your wealth with your fingerprint. Give yourself peace of mind about your digital assets and get these useful crypto gadgets and accessories.

1. The Ledger Nano S Plus cryptocurrency wallet has a larger screen and more memory, so you don’t need to worry about storage.

Ledger Nano S Plus cryptocurrency digital wallet
Ledger Nano S Plus side view

Get all the storage space you need with the Ledger Nano S Plus cryptocurrency wallet. It has a larger memory of over 100 installed apps. Meanwhile, you can even use it to send and sign NFT transactions with full transparency.

Get it for $79 on the official website.

2. The OPOLO high-security crypto wallet secures your cryptocurrency with a high-security, EAL6+ certified chip, preventing threats.

OPOLO in a YouTube video

Keep your crypto security robust but straightforward with the OPOLO high-security crypto wallet. With its EAL6+ certified chip, it’s impressively secure. Then, the large 3.2-inch touchscreen makes entering your passphrase, password, and address a breeze.

Get it for $313.44 on the official website.

3. The D’CENT Biometric Wallet supports a wide range of cryptocurrencies and has a built-in fingerprint reader for security.

D CENT Biometric Wallet
D’CENT Biometric Wallet in use

Own multiple cryptocurrencies? The D’CENT Biometric Wallet probably supports them all. What’s more, the integrated fingerprint reader keeps everything secure, and the private key generator gives you a new key without additional software. It’s one of our favorite crypto gadgets and accessories right now.

Get it for $139 on the official website.

4. The Material Bitcoin safe bitcoin wallet seed phrase protector can withstand pretty much anything thanks to its 77-gigapascals modulus.

Crypto gadgets and accessories are everywhere these days—which ones should you buy?
Material Bitcoin front view

Free of electrical components, no one will hack the Material Bitcoin safe bitcoin wallet seed phrase protector. Best of all, it’s practically indestructible, with standing temperatures of over 900°C. Simply use the bitcoin address on the back to withdraw funds, check your balance, and more.

Get it for $93.30 on the official website.

5. The Solana Saga flagship Android smartphone is the first smartphone built for crypto lovers, giving you mobile freedom.

Solana Saga in a video

Tired of having to run out of meetings and conferences just to sign a crypto transaction? It can be a thing of the past with the Solana Saga flagship Android smartphone. This smartphone runs Solana Mobile Stack for Android, which allows native Android web3 apps. Moreover, it has the Seed Vault, a security protocol for signing transactions.

Preorder it for $1,000 on the official website. The estimated shipping is early Q1 of 2023.

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The Best and Coolest New Gadgets of May 2022

For more of the latest and greatest product releases, check out our full collection of the best new gear.

May was a mammoth month in terms of new product announcements. Sony finally released new noise-canceling cans, the WH-1000XM5. Sonos announced the Ray, its most affordable soundbar to date. And Google gave us a preview of the next-gen Pixel smartphones that will be released later this year. But that’s just the starting point. Below, we’ve rounded up all the cool new gadgets that were announced this month.

(For the best announcements of last month, April 2022, click here.)

Sony WH-1000XM5

sony wh 1000xm5 wireless industry leading noise canceling headphones


The Sony WH-1000XM5 are the company’s newest flagship noise-canceling headphones and the successor to the 2020-released Sony WH-1000XM4. The new models have been redesigned with a more lightweight body and wider earcups. They have more powerful active noise-cancellation and improved microphones for call clarity. They also have a new fast charging ability. The downside? At $400, they’re pretty pricey. Available now.

Read our review of the Sony WH-1000XM5.

Price: $400


DJI Mini 3 Pro

dji mini 3 pro


DJI announced its most capable lightweight drone, the DJI Mini 3 Pro. It weighs just 249 grams, exactly the same as the company’s other “Mini” drones, but it packs a high quality camera, as well as advanced sensors and capturing capabilities that allow it to fly and shoot as if it were a way larger drone. It also can be bought with a remote controller with an integrated touchscreen display so, unlike DJI’s other drones, it doesn’t occupy your smartphone while you fly.

Price: $909+

Read our review of the DJI Mini 3 Pro.


Sonos Ray

sonos ray


The Sonos Ray is the company’s new entry-level soundbar. It costs $279, which is $180 less expensive than Sonos’s other budget-friendly soundbar, the Beam (Gen 2), but it comes with some key tradeoffs. It connects to your TV via optical (instead of HDMI) and doesn’t support Dolby Atmos; Sonos’s pitch is that it’s a good fit for people with older TVs that only have an optical connection. The Ray also lacks a microphone for smart voice controls.

The Ray is available to preorder right now, with an expected delivery of June 7.

Read our review of the Sonos Ray.

Price: $279


Sonos Roam’s New Colors

sonos roam


Sonos announced that the Roam, its smart ultra-portable speaker, will be available in three new colors: olive, wave (light blue) and sunset (orange). They are priced at $179, which is exactly the same as the existing white or black models. You can order the Roam in these fresh colors right now.

Price: $179


KEF LS60 Wireless

kef ls60 wireless


The KEF LS60 Wireless is the company’s first pair of active floorstanding speakers. They work very similarly to the company’s LS50 Wireless II music system (which is our pick for the best active speaker system), so you can stream music in a myriad of different ways. But the LS60 Wireless also borrow acoustics technologies from KEF’s

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