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Samsung acquires Canadian telecom NewNet to bolster its RCS offerings

Rich Communications Services, more frequently abbreviated to RCS, is something of a hot-button topic in the mobile tech world right now. It's essentially a replacement for SMS that incorporates a lot of the functions of popular new messaging systems like WhatsApp, supplanting the antiquated text messaging standard with something more capable and flexible. The problem is that "RCS" is something of a generic term, and every gigantic international megacorp and their gigantic international mother wants their own standard.

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Samsung Rewards will let you earn free stuff by using Samsung Pay

Samsung has a history of running promotions to encourage people to give Samsung Pay a shot. Now, it's launching a revamped rewards program to keep you coming back. Samsung Rewards gives you points each time you use Samsung Pay, and that can eventually lead to free gift cards, cash back, and even free Samsung gear. It's a more extensive program compared to the Samsung Pay Rewards card that rolled out a few months ago.

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Samsung acquiring Harman for $8 billion in cash to beef up connected car tech

You have almost certainly heard the name Harman when it comes to audio products, but the company has spent the last few years getting big into automotive technology as well. That's what piqued Samsung's interest in the company, and now the Korean tech giant is putting a lot of cash on the table to become a player in connected car tech. The $8 billion deal will be Samsung's biggest acquisition to date when it closes.

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[Deal Alert] Samsung SmartThings Hub v2 only $50 ($50 off) on Amazon

Samsung's SmartThings is one of the most popular smart home product lines. The company has developed outlets, light bulbs, sensors, and more all designed to work seamlessly together. Tying everything together is the SmartThings Hub, which acts as the bridge between your smart devices and your home's internet connection. Now you can get the second-generation SmartThings Hub (the latest model) for $50 on Amazon, half off the original $100 price tag.

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Samsung's Gear S3 can now be purchased in South Korea, will be available in other countries from November 18th

Samsung's Gear line of smartwatches has come a long way since 2013's geeky-looking, Android-powered Galaxy Gear. The latest additions to the family, the Gear S3 frontier and Gear S3 classic, were announced over two months ago at IFA, and now, they're finally available - in South Korea.

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Samsung's Galaxy S8 will reportedly come in two large sizes, including a bezel-less 6.2-inch "plus" variant

Out of all of the Galaxy S7-series phones that I've seen, the majority of them have been the smaller, 5.1-inch model. That's odd, considering the fact that the S7 edge outsells the S7, but it's entirely understandable why people would choose the S7 over the edge model; it's easier to hold, less prone to accidental screen touches, more durable, and less expensive.

With those things in mind, have a look at this: according to VentureBeat's Evan Blass and The Bell, a Korean publication, the Galaxy S8 will come in two phablet-sized, dual-edged variants, and the larger of the two will feature an enormous edge-to-edge display.

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Patent drawings of a Samsung foldable phone design published

Samsung has a tendency to throw stuff at the wall, and see what sticks. I don't mean that in a negative way - many of their seemingly-bizarre experiments became wildly popular (see: S7 edge). A patent application submitted by Samsung shows their concept of a foldable smartphone, and it's interesting to say the least.

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Samsung Pay is now live in Canada with support for CIBC

You still can't use Android Pay in Canada, but Samsung is now happy to offer mobile payments for whatever it is Canadians buy. Maple syrup, I imagine. If you have an account with CIBC, your card can be added to Samsung Pay as of today. Everyone else will have to wait.

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[Update: Official] Samsung's Galaxy Beta Program will allow the S7 and S7 edge to beta test Nougat, starting November 9th

Late last week, an eagle-eyed XDA user and Galaxy S7 edge owner noticed an app in the Galaxy Apps store entitled "Galaxy beta program." Not unexpectedly, many owners of Galaxy S7-series phones, myself included, got excited. Now, thanks to a major oversight on Samsung's part, we've got a ton of information about Samsung's upcoming Galaxy Beta Program.

Starting November 9th, select Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 edge models in the United States, United Kingdom, South Korea, and China will be permitted to enroll in the Galaxy Beta Program. This program will allow participants to try out Android 7.0 Nougat, in hopes that they'll provide feedback helpful to engineers.

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Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge are the first devices compatible with T-Mobile's new 4x4 MIMO and 256QAM technologies for faster data speeds

Back in September, T-Mobile announced several improvements to its network's infrastructure that would help speed up data transfers significantly. There were two folds to the strategy, 4x4 MIMO and DL-256QAM/UL-64QAM, as well as two devices promised to be compatible with these options first: the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge.

First, 4x4 MIMO is already available in 319 cities and has the potential to double the data paths between the cell network and phones for better speeds in congested areas. It turns out that 4x4 MIMO was already enabled in the update that rolled out to the T-Mobile Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge back in September, but it wasn't mentioned in the official changelog. Cellular Insights tested out firmware G935TUVU4APIA on the S7 Edge and verified that 4x4 MIMO was working on it.

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