Next iPhones-Bigger Batteries; New Surface Book 2; Walmart Taps Google For Voice Grocery Shopping; Zillow Launches Home Loan Biz

It had previously been leaked that Apple was planning to add reverse wireless charging to the upcoming iPhones. That would allow you to charge your AirPods or Watch, for example, using the phone. According to businessinsider.com, the usually accurate analyst Ming-Chi Kuo says the next batch of iPhones will rock bigger batteries to support the feature. Kuo says the successor to the iPhone XS will have a bump in battery of 20-25%. The bigger Max model will only get a 10-15% bigger one, but it has a notably bigger battery already. The XR replacement will get a modest bump of 5% or less in battery capacity.

Microsoft has refreshed the Surface Book 2 base model. Theverge.com reports that it will be powered by Intel’s latest 8th ten quad-core i5 processor for the 13 inch model. The present dual-core 7th ten processor will still run the previous model, which drops to $1299. The new one is priced at $1499. Microsoft has bumped the storage on the midrange model to 256 gigs and it comes with 8 gigs of ram. Microsoft will show more, including the Surface Hub 2 at an event April 17th in New York City.

“OK Google, talk to Walmart.” Walmart has partnered with Google on Walmart Voice Order, which works over Google Assistant devices for ordering groceries. Techcrunch.com says it can be used on Google smart speakers, and displays, smartphones and smartwatches. A cool feature…the service learns from your orders, so you don’t have to repeat the entire item. An example they gave was that you could just say ‘milk,’ instead of ‘XYZ 1% organic milk’. Voice shopping for pickup will be available at more than 2100 Walmart stores, and online delivery at 800 locations.

Last year, Zillow bought Mortgage Lenders of America. They have been quietly originating mortgages for several months, and have now launched a Home Loans division. According to geekwire.com, the rebranded mortgage division will complement Zillow Offers, the company’s direct home sales operation. They are reportedly shooting for streamlining and simplifying the process of buying a house. The company noted that you don’t have to use Zillow Offers to take advantage of their loans division.

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