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China

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Huawei Watch 2 Pro with eSIM launched in China for ¥2588 ($390) [Updated]

Huawei today announced the Huawei Mate 10 and Mate 10 Pro in China, but along with them came one surprise that we didn't see at the international launch event in Munich: a new Huawei Watch 2 Pro. It looks pretty much like the Huawei Watch 2 Classic, but with one main difference: eSIM support.

The new Watch 2 Pro has 4G/3G/2G support for its eSIM, along with Bluetooth.

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Huawei announces the Honor 7X in China with 18:9 display and aluminum chassis

Huawei's Honor sub-brand has been a vehicle for several budget smartphones in the last few years, including the Honor 6X from early 2017. Now, the Honor 7X is official, but only for the Chinese market so far. It keeps the dual camera setup from the last Honor, but it has gained a taller 18:9 display and aluminum frame.

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WhatsApp is now blocked in China

China has a long history of blocking or limiting access to websites, especially social networks and Western-owned sites. Wikipedia, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and many Google services are currently blocked in mainland China. WhatsApp has been partially-blocked in the past (for a while, video chats and some other functionality wasn't working), but now the entire service seems to be non-functional.

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LeEco takes its US site offline for a week, which is a totally normal thing for a company to do

Chinese tech firm LeEco exploded into the US market last year with a number of compelling deals on powerful smartphones. But things haven't gone as planned for the company. As its operation back in China faltered, the future of its US expansion has become unclear. It's more unclear than ever now that the LeEco US website is gone. According to the message left in place of the website, the company is busy "upgrading the system."

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Sharp announces the Aquos S2 with a near bezel-free design and mid-range specs

The year 2017 will go down in history for being the beginning of the end for bezels. Who needs 'em anyway? Samsung, LG, Apple, and others are doing everything possible to get rid of all that unused space on the front of their phones, but Sharp has been tinkering with the bezel-free approach for some time. Remember the Aquos Crystal from a few years ago? Now, Sharp has unveiled the Aquos S2, which bears a striking resemblance to the Essential Phone.

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Samsung Leader 8 is a flip phone with flagship smartphone specs

Flip phones, at least in the United States, are synonymous with iPod Minis and VHS tapes as relics of another era. But in other regions of the world, flip phones have kept up with the smartphone revolution. Samsung just announced the 'Leader 8,' a flip phone with the specifications to match flagship Android smartphones.

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HTC has announced a standalone VIVE VR headset, exclusive to China

At Google I/O back in May, we saw the announcement of standalone Daydream virtual reality headsets from companies such as HTC and Lenovo. While they have yet to materialize, HTC has just announced that it's releasing the VIVE Standalone headset, and it will be exclusive to China.

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TWRP released for Snapdragon Galaxy S8/S8+, but not the US models

Despite all having the name "Samsung Galaxy S8," there are in fact several different variants of Samsung's flagship phone. But all the S8 devices worldwide have one of two processors - the Qualcomm 835, or the Exynos 8895. TWRP for the Exynos models arrived in April, but now it's time for the Snapdragon variants.

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Finger lickin' good: Huawei made a phone for KFC's 30th anniversary in China

The first Kentucky Fried Chicken franchise opened in 1952, and it has grown into the second-largest restaurant chain by sales (second only to McDonalds). But America isn't the only place enjoying the Colonel's chicken - KFC arrived in China in 1987. To celebrate 30 years of KFC in China, Huawei is making a KFC-branded smartphone.

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The New York Times releases its Chinese Edition Android app

The New York Times website exists in 3 language flavors: English, Spanish, and Chinese, and now the latter is graduating to also become a standalone Android app. You may be wondering why a website that's blocked in China would release an app on an app store that's also not legally available in China, but you'd be forgetting that Chinese is the most spoken language in the world, with native speakers in Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, and plenty of Southeast Asian countries, not to count all the Chinese immigrants around the world. Plus those inside Mainland China who use proxies to access restricted content.

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