Vivo’s Dual Display NEX Phone; OnePlus 6T McLaren Edition; Amazon Gives Alexa Location Based Reminders & Routines; Daimler Buying $23 Billion Worth of Batteries for EVs

Vivo has come out with what they call an all-screen NEX smartphone. According to engadget.com, there’s NO selfie cam…but you won’t need one, they say. You can flip the phone around and just shoot your selfie with the pop up back cam…the back of the phone has a rear screen so you can set up your shot! The phone is called the NEX Dual Display Edition. The phone is out in China for $725 December 29th.

OnePlus has showed off a fancy new McLaren Edition 6T. The phone comes with 10 Gigs of RAM and 256 Gigs of storage, according to businessinsider.com. Part of the back is carbon fiber, and it has a beautiful but tough carbon fiber case….and of course, a racing stripe and the McLaren logo. Even with the vanity edition tweaked by the performance car maker, the phone is just $700…$300 less than an iPhone Xs…which doesn’t have that kind of memory or storage, and comes with no case at all to protect that glass back!

A major update has hit Alexa devices. Amazon has opened up new features, including location based routines and reminders, timer enhancements, app notifications, email support, and more. 9to5mac.com says the update was announced in September, but has just rolled out. An example given would be ‘Alexa, remind me to feed the dogs when I get home.’ When the Alexa device detects your phone inside the house, it will remind you. You can also program multiple routines with wait times…like turning on lights when you get up, but pausing for 20 minutes or so before switching on music or news.

Mercedes parent Daimler is going all-in on electric vehicles. The German giant is going to buy $23 billion worth of battery cells by 2030 to go into Mercedes-Benz EVs and commercial trucks. The company presently has supplier deals with LG, SK Innovation, and China’s CATL. Daimler plans to launch 130 electric and hybrid vehicles by 2022, and a number of commercial trucks, busses, and vans, too. Battery production for the cars with all those lithium-ion cells will be in 8 factories on 3 continents.


HTC Rolls Out New All Glass Phone With AI; CVS Announces Cheaper Alternative to EpiPen; Amazon Will Hire 100,000 Full-time the Next 18 Months

Getting the drop on both Samsung and Apple, HTC has made an early announcement about its new flagship phone, the U Ultra. Bgr.com reports it has a 5.7 inch screen, a small second screen next to the camera and above the main screen, AI to learn your habits and offer suggestions, and a glossy glass back. It has a 3000 mAh battery, but no headphone jack. It’s on presale today at $749, but won’t be out aside from Taiwan until March.

CVS Pharmacy has partnered with Impax Labs to make a much cheaper alternative to the EpiPen from Mylan, which has been priced at $600 brand name, $300 generic for the two pack. According to arstechnica.com, the CVS generic version of Adrenaclick will sell for $109.99, with or without insurance. A factory coupon cuts that to $9.99 for qualifying patients.

Amazon has announced that it plans 100,000 new full time jobs in the US over the next year and a half. Theverge.com says they will be in all areas of the company, but you can bet most will be in their fulfillment centers…Amazon is planning more of the warehouses around the country. While this is great news, it is likely to be much of a wash, as a number of big retailers seem to be on the verge of folding due to sagging sales…while Amazon grows at warp speed. Some analysts see the expansion as a move by Amazon to curry favor with the incoming administration.