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Jun
8
Samsung Galaxy Note 9 release date, price, news and leaks
Posted by Matt Swider,James Rogerson on 08 June 2018 01:18 PM

Update: We've now had our first real look at what the Samsung Galaxy Note 9 might look like, thanks to leaked renders.

The Samsung Galaxy Note 9 launch date is likely two months away, according to a new leak that hints at a release date weeks sooner than previous years.

The Note 9 is always big news because it's an Android phone with a large screen and handy S Pen, although rumors of an in-screen fingerprint sensor may be premature.

Instead, we're likely to see Bixby 2.0 and an improved dual-lens camera, maybe one with the HDR video recording left out of the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus.

Today, we're sorting through the rumors and leaks (there are a lot of them), and to do that we've gotten out our trusty S Pen stylus ready to declare which are plausible, and which are just wishful thinking.

Here's everything we know about Samsung's extra-big Android phone.

Cut to the chase

  • What is Note 9? Samsung's next flagship phablet
  • When is Note 9's launch date? Likely August 9, 2018 in New York
  • When is Note 9's release date? Before Apple's new iPhone announcement
  • What will Note 9 cost? Probably at least $929 / £869 / AU$1,499

Samsung Galaxy Note 9 release date

  • Earlier launch date expected: Thursday, August 9 at Samsung Unpacked
  • Earlier release date expected: Before the next iPhone launch event

You may be able to get your hands on the Galaxy Note 9 sooner than anticipated, as the Samsung Unpacked launch event may be in early August.

Thursday, August 9 is the rumored launch date, with the announcement expected to happen in New York City. Last year's phone was announced on August 23.

There's been a lot of evidence backing this up. The Note 9, said to be codenamed 'Crown', supposedly had a prototype ready in the first quarter of 2018, noted The Investor. It cites market watchers who pinned the phone for early to mid August.

Samsung was also said to be testing firmware for the phone ahead of schedule, two weeks earlier than where it was with the software for the Note 8. And remember, the S9 firmware was tested earlier than the S8 and that went on to launch earlier, too.

Supply chain sources are also reporting that screen panels were being built for it two months earlier than normal, going as far as calling out a late July launch date. That's a little too ambitious. August 9 sounds like a much more likely date.

Why the earlier release date?

Samsung needs the Note 9 is be attention-grabbing enough to outlast the iPhone X2 and iPhone 9 phones that Apple is likely to unveil in early September.

Sure, the Note series is always announced first, but by the time Note phones actually comes out, the hype surrounding Apple's new iPhones is already at a fever-pitch.

That's the No. 1 reason why we expect Samsung to give us the Galaxy Note 9 earlier. It needs to get its phone in its first customers hands in August or early September at the very latest.

Big phone, little design change

The Note 9 is poised to be a big deal because it'll be a massively sized update to the Galaxy Note 8, and slightly bigger and better than the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9 Plus, which launched around the world in March.

Of course, that's not to say it'll be a massive update to last year's phone with a 6.3-inch screen. No, we're expecting iterative, but important changes, mostly to the internal specs, rather than a complete redesign on the outside.

Early leaks back that up, specifically some renders based on a factory CAD (computer-aided design), which you can see below, and which come from a fairly reliable source, namely @OnLeaks (who shared them on behalf of 91mobiles), who has been right about things plenty of times before.

The images show a design that looks very similar to the Samsung Galaxy Note 8, complete with a quite rectangular shape, a metal frame and a likely glass back. You can also see that there’s once again a dual-lens camera and a fingerprint scanner on the back – so an in-display scanner looks unlikely.

However, the scanner has been moved below the camera lens, somewhat similar to its position on the Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus, but where that phone has its cameras stacked vertically, the Note 9 shown here has them side by side.

Other details include a 3.5mm headphone port, USB-C port, speaker grille, S Pen silo and microphone on the bottom edge, slim bezels (but no notch) on the front, power and volume buttons on the left edge and a Bixby button on the right. As well as the images above, you can also see all these things in the video below, which came from the same source.

The dimensions of the Galaxy Note 9 have also been supplied, with the phone apparently coming in at 161.9 x 76.3 x 8.8mm, making it slightly shorter but marginally wider and thicker than the 162.5 x 74.8 x 8.6mm Galaxy Note 8. So the size is similar overall, which is no surprise, since the screen will apparently also stay at roughly 6.3 inches.

As there haven’t been any other images yet there’s nothing to compare these to, so take them with a grain of salt, but the source is solid and they look convincing enough.

Samsung Galaxy Note 9 price

  • It'll be an expensive whether or not it sees a price increase

The Note 9 price is unlikely to have the same good news that we're seeing from the early release date. Whenever it does arrive, it's bound to be expensive.

The Galaxy Note 8 retailed for $929 / £869 / AU$1,499 at launch and we can’t see Samsung lowering the price for the Note 9, especially now Apple has pushed smartphone prices even higher with its iPhone X.

Here's the Note 9 price wildcard: The S9 and S9 Plus saw a price increase in most countries. However, it was cheaper in the US. We may see another split decision, depending on where you buy the Note 9.

For now, you'll have to be satisfied with the Note 9's predecessor if you want a phone with a stylus on the cheap. Check out today's best Galaxy Note 8 deals.

Watch the video below to see our Samsung Galaxy Note 8 review.

Note 9 in-screen fingerprint sensor

The biggest Samsung Galaxy Note 9 rumor relates to its fingerprint scanner, which months of rumors have indicating could be built directly into the phone screen.

We've seen (and tested) in-screen fingerprint sensors in phones out of China, and A Samsung is testing multiple in-screen solutions and will probably use one of them, a move which could also apparently allow room for a larger battery in the Note 9.

That tallies with a source who's said the Note 9 will have both an in-screen scanner and a big 3,850mAh battery.

However, a slightly earlier rumor points to the in-screen fingerprint sensor skipping the Note 9, just like it did on the S9 and S9 Plus, Note 8 and S8 and S8 Plus before. There's more reason to believe it'll show up on the Galaxy X (Galaxy S10 next year).

Both Samsung and Apple have been rumored to be working on this but failed to achieve it in time for their most recent handsets, pushing Samsung to move the scanner to a sub-optimal position on the back of the Samsung Galaxy S8 and Note 8, while Apple ditched it altogether from the iPhone X.

There's hopeful news on the subject in the form of a Samsung patent, showing a handset with a scanner built into the screen. Supposedly it would digitally show where users need to place their finger, and could potentially provide vibrations as feedback. 

Huawei and Vivo have demonstrated this tech in a phone this year, but Samsung is said to be using an ultrasonic-based in-screen fingerprint sensor for the Note 9, whereas the Huawei and Vivo use light-based optical under-glass fingerprint sensors.

This could be the form the Samsung Galaxy Note 9 will take. Credit: WIPO

But we've seen many sources in the supply chain claim Samsung has settled on placing the scanner on the back, just like its current flagship phones, so right now we'd say an in-screen scanner is looking unlikely.

Other Note 9 leaks and rumors

As noted above one source has said the Note 9 could have a 3,850mAh battery, which would be a lot bigger than the 3,300mAh one in the Note 8, but only slightly larger than the 3,500mAh one in the Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus, so it's believable.

But the newest rumor about the Note 9 battery is that it could climb to a 4,000mAh capacity, a new high for a Samsung flagship device. The same rumor has the screen at 6.4 inches, so we're unsure if the source just likes big numbers or if this is true. We're taking this leak with a grain of salt.

The Samsung Galaxy Note 9 has also seemingly been benchmarked with predictably high scores, revealing in the process that it has a Snapdragon 845 chipset, 6GB of RAM and runs Android 8.1 - the same specs in other words as the US version of the Galaxy S9 Plus. There's also been talk that Samsung could push the top configuration up to 8GB of RAM and 256GB of storage.

In more unlikely news, there's a chance that Samsung will go even further than an in-screen scanner with the Note 9, as it's patented a smartphone concept that has not just the fingerprint scanner but also the front-facing camera and sensors embedded in the display, for a truly bezel-free design. This might be too ambitious for a 2018 launch though.

This could be an idea used by the Galaxy Note 9. Credit: WIPO/LetsGoDigital

That said, an even more ambitious goal for the Galaxy Note 9 could be for it to have a bendable display. This is something Samsung’s been working on for even longer, and there's suggestion that the tech could land in a phone late this year.

However, it might still arrive too late for it to be used in the Note 9, and Samsung might not want to debut such an experimental tech on a major flagship.

Elsewhere, another patent may have given us a glimpse at what the Note 9 will look like, as Samsung has published a phone design with a screen that curves at the right edge, but oddly not at the left.

It’s an unusual look for a phone, and quite different to the Note 8, so we’re skeptical that it will be used for the Note 9, but you never know.

Could this be an early look at the Samsung Galaxy Note 9's design?

However the Note 9 looks, there's a chance that it will be made from a new material, as Samsung has trademarked 'Metal 12' - a material that's both strong and light.

And moving from the outside to in, The Korea Herald reports that Samsung might equip the Galaxy Note 9 with an NPU (neural processing unit). That's essentially an AI chip like Apple and Huawei have begun using in their flagships.

It's unclear what Samsung would use the chip for, but it could potentially speed up certain functions of the phone.

It’s almost certainly going to have a large curved Super AMOLED display, an S Pen stylus and at least 6GB of RAM. The internal storage should start at 128GB given that Samsung bills this as an enterprise class smartphone. The S8 Plus has 128GB of space in most countries, but just 64GB in the US. 

The Note 9 is also likely to sport the top-end Snapdragon 845 or Exynos 9810 chipset, exactly like we see in the S9 and S9 Plus. 

However, there are rumors that Samsung is working on an Exynos 9820 chipset. That could bring about faster speeds or, more likely in our minds, HDR video recording. This feature is already supported by the Snapdragon 845, but noticeably absent from all S9 devices across the board, likely because the Exynos 9810 doesn't support it. With new Android phones, like the Sony Xperia XZ2 having HDR video recording, Samsung needs to play catchup.

What we want to see

There are only a few Samsung Galaxy Note 9 rumors so far, but we have a good idea of the sorts of things we want to see from it, such as the following.

1. An in-screen scanner

This has been rumored and it would be a great headline feature for the phone. Having the scanner on the back is awkward, but building it into the screen would both be convenient and the sort of high-tech, futuristic thing that could see the Galaxy Note 9 stand out among other handsets.

We’re pretty sure Samsung is working on it, it’s just a question of whether it’s ready in time for the Note 9’s 2018 launch.

2. Room-filling sound

The Samsung Galaxy Note 8's single speaker fails to impress

There are plenty of great things about the Samsung Galaxy Note 8, but its speakers aren’t among them. 

It has just a single bottom-firing speaker, so for the Note 9 we want at least two speakers, and ideally for them to be positioned on the front of the phone, for sound that travels towards you when you’re looking at the screen.

Given how large the Note 9 is likely to be though, it could maybe even manage four speakers, for truly big sound.

3. Better Bixby

Bixby is one of the key new features of this year’s crop of Samsung flagships, but in its current form it leaves something to be desired, especially when it comes to understanding what you’re saying. 

By the time of the Note 8’s launch we want it to be a true Google Assistant and Siri rival.

But however good it ends up being we also want to be able to remap the inevitable Bixby button, because not everyone is going to want to use it.

4. Two-day battery life

Samsung’s been conservative with the size of the battery in the Galaxy Note 8, understandably given what happened with the Note 7, but it’s meant that while the Note 8 should last you a day you’ll probably be plugging it in at night.

And it doesn’t charge as fast as earlier fast charging Samsung phones either. 

That may have been a safety precaution as well, but if Samsung can find a way to deliver two-day life and truly fast charging with the Note 9, without risking an inferno, we’d be very happy.

5. Improved face scanning

Samsung's face scanner isn't secure enough to replace a fingerprint scan

Although the iPhone X’s Face ID is perhaps its headline feature, it’s not the first phone to sport face scanning. Nor is the Samsung Galaxy Note 8, but it does have it, it’s just not very secure, to the point where a still image can fool it.

So for the Galaxy Note 9 we want face scanning to return, but only if it’s a lot better. If it can prove more reliable than even Face ID then Samsung could be on to a real winner.

6. A similar price

Given that it’s likely to be one of the most high-tech phones of 2018 we don’t really expect Samsung to launch the Galaxy Note 9 at a lower price than the $929 / £869 / AU$1,499 Samsung Galaxy Note 8.

But if it can keep it around the same that would be something, and would see it undercut Apple’s top-end phones, given that the new iPhone X starts at $999 / £999 / AU$1,579.

7. Even less bezel

The front of the Galaxy Note 8 is almost all screen, but there’s still a sliver of bezel at the top and bottom.

We’d like to see Samsung reduce or remove that for the Samsung Galaxy Note 9, perhaps along the lines of the Essential Phone or the iPhone X. Doing so would allow what’s always going to be a very big phone to be a bit more manageable, without having to shrink the screen.

  • We might also see the HTC U12 in 2018

Read more »



Jun
8
Best UK tax software of 2018
Posted by David Nield on 08 June 2018 01:07 PM

Taxes are said to be one of only two certainties in life, besides death, so if you're going to have to pay your dues then it's well worth getting a software program to help.

Fortunately, there are now a number of top-quality packages out there ready to take the stress and confusion out of managing, calculating and filing your taxes – leaving you to get on with the more important job of maximising your profits (or enjoying spending your hard-earned cash rather than filing tax returns).

These are the five programs we think impress the most in terms of UK-compatible tax management, but which one suits you best will vary depending on the size of your business, how much automation you want, and any other software you've got set up.

Because this is such a broad area – you might want an app that takes care of your whole accounting process, in partnership with an accountant, or you might just want a program that simply organises and files the records you've already got – we've tried to pick a range of different options.

Freeagent

As we said in the intro, you can get tax software that simply collates all the records you've already got and sends them off to HMRC. At the other end of the scale you've got packages like Freeagent – fully featured accounting suites that cover tax records as well.

Freeagent is a powerful, comprehensive option that suits small to medium businesses or individuals with a lot of records to keep. You can either opt to manage everything yourself or grant your accountant access to Freeagent as well, with the software able to make life easier for both of you along the way.

It's certainly one of the most modern tools here, with a slick and stylish interface on the web and mobile, and a pile of useful features: automatic bank feeds, project time tracking, support for invoices and payroll, and so on.

For tax management specifically, Freeagent keeps records of everything as you go, so you know exactly what you owe and why at the end of the year. You can submit your returns directly to HMRC through Freeagent with just a few clicks of the mouse, with tax forecasting and real-time updates included too.

GoSimpleTax

Unlike Freeagent, GoSimpleTax isn't a complete accounting solution for freelancers and businesses – it focuses specifically on getting your taxes in order, and it does a very good job of this. Depending on your setup though, you'll have to do more work or get extra software to handle all the other components like invoicing and payroll.

The software takes you step-by-step through the process of filing your taxes, making sure you're using the right terms and preparing the right forms, and looking out for any errors that might be creeping in (which could really cost you). You'll also get suggestions on where you could make some savings, which is always welcome.

Everything slots in neatly with the online HMRC interface, so you don't have to waste time jumping from one app to another. As well as the web interface, you've got mobile apps you can use to input figures and get a handle on how your tax burden is looking (the mobile apps can even scan in receipts).

What we like most about the software though is that you don't really need any expertise to complete a self-assessment of your tax responsibilities. As much as possible, the interface is written in jargon-free language, with clear indicators for where you need to input figures and how they get processed.

TaxCalc

TaxCalc is on a mission to make filing your taxes as simple as possible, and we'd say it's doing a pretty impressive job of it: the software is packed with useful features for getting your documentation in order, and the system is officially recognised by HMRC, so all submissions should go smoothly.

Whether you're an individual, a limited company or an accountancy firm, TaxCalc has a software solution tailored specifically for you, and it can even plug straight into bigger accounting packages such as Xero. In some cases you can get your documentation in order in as little as 30 minutes, TaxCalc claims.

The intuitive, step-by-step web interface guides you through the process of filing your taxes from start to finish – from picking the right form, through entering all the details about how much you've earned, to submitting the form and making sure there are no errors. The tax you owe is calculated in the background as you go.

This isn't the most comprehensive or the most well-designed tax software we've ever come across, but it is friendly, functional and accessible, and comes with all the tools you're going to need to hit that tax deadline.

Nomisma

No one wants to spend an age getting their tax affairs in order, and few products take you through the process of filing returns as quickly and as simply as Nomisma does. It also gives you a variety of basic bookkeeping tools, so if you're looking for something that does more than just taxes, Nomisma might be it.

On the business management side, the software lets you track invoices and orders, keep on top of bills and contracts, and produce a variety of reports on the state of your financial affairs (including VAT comparisons where needed). Not only can it save you time, it can save you money by letting you know where everything is at any given point.

In the tax filing and self-assessment components, you'll find the software is fully HMRC compliant and registered with the government, so you can submit your documents without leaving Nomisma. A lot of the data you're going to need can be auto-populated from the bookkeeping module, but you can buy the tax module separately if needed.

Throughout, Nomisma gives you a clean and modern-looking interface to work with on the web, and if you've got a mobile phone there's an app available for keeping tabs on expenses while on the go. It can also help your accountant calculate the figures at the end of the year, if you've got one.

ABC Self-Assessment

As we said at the outset, tax software packages come in all shapes and sizes, from very basic tools to get you over the line right at the end of the process, to fully fledged accounting suites that include everything you need to run a small business. If you just want some straightforward help as tax deadline day approaches, give ABC Self-Assessment a try.

Whether you're submitting your self-assessment as an individual or a partnership, or you have some other complication to contend with – you're non-resident in the UK maybe – ABC Self-Assessment will point you towards the right form.

While ABC Self-Assessment presents an interface that's not much different to the one you'll get if you log into the HMRC website and do your self-assessment there, it does streamline the process so you only see the questions and fields that are relevant to your circumstances. It's perfect if you don't want to spend much money but find the HMRC site a little overwhelming.

What you don't get are any accountancy or bookkeeping features, so the onus is on you to have kept decent records up until this point. You might find that ABC Self-Assessment works well with your existing financial software (or just your existing Excel spreadsheet).


Read more »



Jun
8
Best Amazon Prime TV shows (June 2018): great series to watch today
Posted by Marc Chacksfield,Gerald Lynch on 08 June 2018 12:54 PM

These days an Amazon Prime membership comes with a lot of perks, super fast deliveries, access to the Kindle Lending Library, Prime Music, (some) free Audible content, photo storage and access to lots of great movies and TV shows, which you can stream anytime via Amazon Prime Video. 

But as extensive as Amazon Prime Video’s back catalogue is, it can be tricky to navigate because there plenty of mediocre options, as well as lots of truly terrible ones, which we'd prefer you didn't waste your time on. 

That's why we're here to help you make that all important decision about what to binge watch this weekend and what we recommend you should skip. We've collected together a big selection of TV shows for you to choose from, including shiny new series through to Amazon's own original shows. 

In our guide you'll discover our pick of the best Amazon Prime TV shows that are currently on offer. We have options for fans of thrillers, comedy lovers and those who enjoy nothing more than a fantasy police drama. 

[Update: This week Amazon Prime Video has launched a new original TV series called Dietland. Based on a novel by Sarai Walker, it's a dark comedy about diet culture and feminism.]

A promo shot for The Americans

Amazon has been developing and creating titles itself over the past few years, which are called Amazon Originals or Amazon Original Series.

These homegrown TV shows are arguably some of the best that the Amazon Prime Video service has to offer (think The Tick and Transparent), which you can watch instantly when you have Amazon Prime access. There are many more shows you can watch through Amazon too of course, but some of these have to be purchased in order for you to start streaming. 

We'll be keeping this list constantly updated – if any paid shows become free that we feel need to be included, they'll be added too. Scroll through to see our picks that we've divided up into the following categories: drama, comedy and thriller.

If you can only watch one...

A promo shot for the new TV show Dietland

New Entry: Dietland: Amazon's latest homegrown TV show Dietland is a TV adaptation of Sarai Walker's popular novel of the same name. It's about an obese woman called Plum (played by Joy Nash) who is ghost-writing a column for a magazine called Daisy Chain for the editor Kitty Montgomery (played by Julianna Marguiles). Plum is about to get gastric bypass surgery, but encounters a group of women under the blanket name Jennifer, who kill men accused of sexual assault. It's a dark comedy that takes a very disturbing (and in many ways very real) look at diet culture, feminism and sexual abuse.

Amazon Prime or Netflix? Check out our comparison video below!

Absentia 

If you've had a Stana Katic shaped hole in your life since Castle ended in 2016, you'll be glad to know she's starring in a brand new series on Amazon Prime. Katic takes up the role of FBI agent Emily Byrne who, six years after being declared dead, returns to the world and has to try and piece her life and memory back together. 

Seasons on Amazon Prime Video: 1

American Gods

Based on the novel by Neil Gaiman and brought to the screen by the ever-excellent Bryan Fuller, American Gods is a existential look at what would happen if gods were to walk the earth. Starring Ricky Whittle (who has made the transition from Hollyoaks to Hollywood with ease) and Ian McShane, the show is both bizarre and brazen, cultish and controversial. It may take a while to figure out just what the hell is going on, but this is one smart, celestial slice of entertainment that's already got us hooked. 

Seasons on Amazon Prime Video: 1

Animal Kingdom

Looking for a new crime drama to get stuck into? Animal Kingdom could be what you're looking for. The show follows teenager J Cody who moves in with extended relatives in Southern California after the death of his mother. Far from being boring, Cody finds his relatives live a wild life of excess and it's all funded by crime.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 2 

Black Sails

Johnny Depp may have spent the latter half of his career convincing the world that pirates all look, smell and talk like a Rolling Stone but we prefer Black Sails' interpretation. Exclusive to Amazon Prime, Black Sails treats the pirate legend with a touch more reality and this is pretty much all down to Shakespearean thesp Toby Stephens.

Number of seasons on Amazon Prime: 4

New Season Added: Bosch

With 20-something novels to mine for source material, Bosch is a character that was always destined for the small screen. Created by Michael Connelly but brilliantly brought to life by actor Titus Welliver, the series follows the exploits of LA Homicide detective Harry Bosch and features enough grit to pave the longest of driveways.

This is no surprise - the series has been created by Eric Overmyer, who was part of the alumni that created The Wire. Bosch is another show that has been put together by Amazon Studios - proving that streaming services are becoming just as powerful as the HBOs of the world when it comes to producing compelling drama.

Bosch Season 4 has now landed on Amazon Prime, continuing the saga of Harry Bosch and it comes with a nice uplift in quality too, building season upon season to become one of our favourite shows on Prime at the moment. 

Number of seasons on Amazon Prime: 4

Goliath

Billy Bob Thornton stars as a washed-up lawyer looking for a big break who stumbles on to a big case that may well give him the solace he needs. Made by David E Kelly who loves a bit of courtroom drama, having already created Boston Legal, The Practice and Ally McBeal, the show works well as a standalone series but there's talk that it may get a second season. Goliath is part of Amazon's Original series of TV shows.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 1

A promo shot for the good fight

The Good Fight

If you were a fan of US legal and political drama The Good Wife, then you're going to love The Good Fight. It's set one year after the events of the final episode of the The Good Wife and this time shifts the focus of the story to Diane Lockhart.

Season one has been a success and now the second season is available to stream via Amazon, but unfortunately it's not free. But while you either wait for it to become free (it may take a while) or wait to decide whether it's worth it, catch up on the first season now to help you make your mind up.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 1 (The 2nd is available, but you'll have to pay for it.)

Hand of God

Last seen in Sons of Anarchy, Ron Perlman has moved from the mad world of biker gangs into the stranger world of law. Perlman plays a vice-riddled barrister who, after suffering a breakdown, starts to believe he is a messenger from god.

The full first season for Hand of God arrived on Amazon Prime, after a successful pilot. A second season is also available, which will sadly be the last as Amazon has decided to not renew the show. This is a shame as it may not be a light-hearted ride - but it is one drama that takes dark turn after dark turn and is all the better for it.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 2

Hell on Wheels

Hell on Wheels sounds like it should be a Sons of Anarchy rival, about motorcycle gangs or the like. But it’s actually centred on the construction of the US’s First Transcontinental Railroad. The first season begins soon after the assassination of President Lincoln and from there the show plays out like a western, showing myriad sides of the railway being built - from slaves to their owners, to the money me behind the scheme. It’s a show that’s been a massive hit for AMC - falling just behind The Walking Dead in their ratings for original shows.

Seasons on Amazon Prime Video: 5

The Last Tycoon

F Scott Fitzgerald may be known for The Great Gatsby and Tender Is The Night but The Last Tycoon - his last and unfinished novel - is perhaps his most ambitious piece of work. It peels away the glitz and glamour of Hollywood in the '30s to show a time when backstabbing was the norm, fascism was on the rise and everyone had an unbelievable amount of money. Kelsey Grammer is superb as movie mogul Pat Brady, while Matt Bomer is also great as Monroe Stahr, the up and coming film exec who wants to make it big. The Last Tycoon is occasionally flawed but it's a sumptuous watch.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 1

Amazon Prime show The Looming Tower

The Looming Tower

The 8th episode of The Looming Tower are now available on Amazon Prime Video, but despite the fact there still aren't many compared to most TV shows, it hasn't stopped this tale of threat and politics from proving to be a hit. Based on the book by the same name, it's about the unease around Al-Qaeda and Osama Bin Laden in the 1990s, as well as the rivalry between the CIA and FBI.

Seasons on Amazon Prime Video: 1

Downton Abbey

Like watching fictional posh people live their lives in early-twentieth century opulence? You're not alone – millions of people tuned in to Downton Abbey during its TV run, and it's now available to stream in its entirety on Amazon Prime Video.

Following the trials and tribulations of the Crawley family on the titular Downton Abbey estate, it's a kitchen sink drama of sorts – except all the cutlery is made of silver, and it's an army of servants doing the washing up. 

Seasons on Amazon Prime Video: 7

Masters Of Sex

Yes, Masters Of Sex could have ended up being a Mad Men rip-off when it first arrived in 2013 but thanks to the brilliance of Michael Sheen and Lizzy Caplan the show soon elevated above being a copycat.

Sheen is Dr William Masters, a fertility expert who turns his hand to researching the world of sex. Turns out researching sex means having a lot of it, which would all be rather gratuitous if it wasn't wrapped in some of the most intelligent script work around.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 2

Outlander

Game of Thrones with kilts and time travel, Outlander was a solid show in its first season - by the second it was a great one. Based on the eight-book series by Diana Gabaldon, Outlander is about Claire Randall, a nurse who is transported from 1945 to 1743, where she meets a Scottish outlaw and a simmering romance ensues. Given it’s shot in the Scottish highlands, the show looks fantastic, is well acted and should be your next binge watch.

Seasons on Amazon Prime Video: 3

The Path

Aaron Paul is back on TV, thanks to The Path. And while his role might not be as enticing as Jesse in Breaking Bad, The Path is decent enough. Revolving around the Meyerist movement, and its ‘not a cult / definitely a cult' cult, the show is a gripping and beautifully shot look at what happens when people truly believe.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 2 (episodes happening weekly)

Rogue

Now in its fourth season, Rogue has matured into a great crime drama. While it may not be the Sopranos in its scope, it has a realness to it that makes the violence that's shown on the screen hit home hard. Thandie Newton stars a Grace Travis, an undercover detective who is trying to balance being a wife and mother with the illicit affair of a crime boss. Gritty stuff.

Seasons on Amazon Prime Video: 4

Sneaky Pete

Sneaky Pete's plot maybe a little cliche - a con man assumes the identity of someone else to try and make a new break in the world - but Giovanni Ribisi is superb as Marius, the titular character and there's plenty of intrigue to keep you glued to this new Amazon Original. 

Interestingly, the show is co-created by Bryan Cranston which makes him the streaming king, given he's done so well with Breaking Bad on Netflix. Don't expect Sneaky Pete to be as intense as Breaking Bad - it's a crime caper, yes, but it doesn't take itself too seriously. 

As of March 2018, the second season of Sneaky Pete has landed on Amazon. The premise is that Marius is on the cusp of starting fresh and leaving all of his mess behind. But that'd hardly make a compelling second season, would it? Luckily for fans he's dragged back into the drama kicking and screaming.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 2

Startup

Not content with becoming a Hobbit, starring in the Marvel universe or playing Dr Watson, Martin Freeman goes back to his TV roots for Startup - a great look at what happens when a bunch of tech entrepreneurs create something that is much bigger than they ever thought it would be. It may occasionally be too gritty for its own good, but it's great to see Freeman hamming it up as the big bad. 

The second season of Startup has started up on Amazon Prime and it feels even more prescient, as it continues the story of those behind the unregulated cryptocurrency and the trouble this brings. The superb Ron Perlman stars.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 2

UnREAL

Two seasons of UnREAL have landed on Amazon Prime and you will be pleased to hear that a third season has been commissioned. UnREAL focuses on the fictional goings-on behind the scenes of a fictional reality show. It's a show that holds a broken mirror up to the vacuous and plentiful reality shows that litter TV channels at the moment and actually goes into some rather dark territory. Yes, it's melodramatic and will wave numerous moral flags at you while you are watching it, but it's nonetheless engrossing television.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 2

Transparent

Anything Netflix can do, Amazon Prime can do better it seems, especially when it comes to winning a Golden Globe. Netflix may have made history by being the first streaming service to win a Golden Globe, courtesy of the acting talents of Kevin Spacey in House of Cards, but Amazon went and topped this by winning the Best TV Show prize in 2014 for Transparent.

It was much deserved. Transparent is everything you want in a TV show. It's heartwarming, funny and packs a real punch about a subject that doesn't get enough attention: transgenderism. Jeffrey Tambor's Maura Pfefferman is a television character we hope will be around for a long time.

The fourth season will be available to stream from 22 September.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 3

Comedy

Black-ish

Black-ish is brilliant. Not brilliant-ish, but brilliant. It's made by two Nightly Show writers and is about adman Andre, who thinks his kids aren't, er, black enough because they've lived in the very white suburbs all their life. This means a (car)crach course in black culture ensues. Two seasons of the show are on Amazon Prime and it's well worth a watch, filled with the warm humour ABC has brought to the world with the likes of Modern Family and The Goldbergs.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 2

Jean-Claude Van Johnson

Okay, we'll admit this show isn't quite as good as its teaser promised us. But it is still a fun, meta look at the man, the myth Jean-Claude Van Damme who plays, well, Jean-Claude Van Damme. It's only six episodes long but it's a lot of fun, showing Jean as a black-ops spy who has been covering as an actor all along. Yeah, right. This means that he's still an ass-kicking action hero but a real life one. Well, an actor playing an actor playing a black-ops operative who pretends to be an actor. If that sounds like your thing, then Jean-Claude Van Johnson is for you. 

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 1

Catastrophe

From the minds of Sharon Horgan and Rob Delaney comes one of the funniest, most well-written sitcom in years. The plot is slight: a one-night stand turns into a relationship once Sharon announces she is pregnant. But the series contains some of the most cut-to-the-bone humour seen on TV. Combine this with a nice slab of pathos - nestled among many a sex joke - and what you have is a modern classic.

The third series, which recently aired on Channel 4, is now available on Amazon Prime Video - it features the last ever performance from the imitable Carrie Fisher.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 3

Comrade Detective

Comrade Detective is a weird gem on Amazon. Starring Channing Tatum and Joseph Gordon-Levitt, the show is a parody of gritty American buddy cop shows and Communist Propaganda from the Cold War.

It's an unusual combination, but it works. Each episode is presented as though it's a remastered real episode of a lost Romanian Communist Propaganda series from the 80s which was used to entertain and promote Communist ideals. The entire show was filmed in Romania with Romanian actors and then dubbed over by Tatum and Gordon-Levitt.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 1

The Tick

We like a dark twist on the superhero genre as much as the next person, and The Tick delivers it: it's about an accountant with mental health issues, who may or may not be a superhero - it could all be in his head. Peter Serafinowicz is the eponymous Tick, and despite that rather sombre-sounding plot outline, this is a black and surreal comedy worth seeking out.

The first half of the first season of The Tick has been on Amazon Prime since 2017, but as of March 2018 the second half is here and it manages to be even more baffling, entertaining and laugh-out-loud funny than the first.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 1

The Grand Tour

Clarkson, Hammond and the other one are back for Grand Tour: Season 2. Well, we kind of knew that they would be as they all have massive contracts that mean we will be seeing quite a few seasons of the Definitely Not Top Gear But Quite A Bit Like Top Gear show. This season sees Clarkson drive a fast car, Hammond drive a faster car and nearly die, and the other one drive a fast car considerably slower than the rest. If you enjoy watching middle aged men burn rubber in the middle of the desert, like a scene out of Mad Max: Fury Road, then this is for you. And if we haven't quite convinced you yet - Gizmodo offered up this quote about the show: "Some men doing stuff for no clearly defined reason." Lovely stuff. 

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 2 (new episodes weekly)

I Love Dick

Recently graduating from Amazon Originals pilot to fully fledged TV show, I Love Dick is a great subversive watch. The show stars Kevin Bacon and is based on the celebrated book that looks at a married couple who are having marriage issues and their relationship with college professor, Dick. Bacon is on top form as the charismatic Dick and the show's multiple POV storytelling (Rashomon style) works well.

Seasons on Amazon Prime Video TV: 1

The Last Man On Earth

Not many people can find the funny in the post-apocalypse, but Will Forte has managed it with The Last Man On Earth. He writes and stars in this comedy where he is the only survivor on earth after a virus kills everyone else. The cast is brilliant, with the likes of January Jones and Kristen Wiig join him on his adventures and there’s a smattering of decent cameos to - including Will Ferrell and Jon Hamm in season 3. Unfortunately, Amazon Prime Video only has the first two seasons, so you’ll have to hold your breath for Mad Men’s Hamm to come aboard.

Seasons on Amazon Prime Video: 2

The League

Created by Jeff and Jackie Schaffer and starring Mark Duplass, The League is very much a US focused comedy - based around a group of friends in an American Fantasy Football league - but don’t let that put you off as it’s nearly always hilarious. The lengths the group go to to win The Shiva - the league trophy - is great to watch, as is there balancing of trying to win week in week out with their normal lives. All seven seasons of the show are available on Prime Video. 

Seasons on Amazon Prime Video: 7

The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel

A new series from Gilmore Girls creator, Amy Sherman-Palladino, The Marvelous Mrs Maisel tells the story of 1950s Jewish housewife Miriam Maisel. After her husband confesses he's been having an affair, Midge drunkenly gets on stage at a comedy club and discovers that she's utterly hilarious. In a time when women aren't encouraged to be publicly funny, Midge pursues her new-found comedic talent in the male-dominated stand up comedy world. 

Season one is on Amazon now, but a second has already been ordered.

Seasons to watch on Amazon Prime: 1

Mad Dogs

The UK version of Mad Dogs was a breath of fresh air when it first aired. Well, the first season was then it all went a little too strange. This remake - green-lit from Amazon's burgeoning Originals series - takes the best from the UK version and mixes it with a plot that's a little easier to follow and humour that's more laugh out loud than pitch black.

The premise is the same: a bunch of mates go and visit one friend at his luxury villa to celebrate his early retirement, only for murder, mayhem and mind-boggling plot developments to ensue. A touch of genius is the recasting of Ben Chaplin. While he played the rich, retiring Alvo in the UK version here he gets to try his luck in a bigger and better role.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 1

Mozart in the Jungle

Now into its fourth series, Mozart in the Jungle was this surprise winner at the 2015 Golden Globes, where it won Best Comedy Series. The show is a comedy set in the strange world of classical music. Gael García Bernal plays young conductor Rodrigo who replaces a retiring conductor played by Malcolm McDowell. Based loosely on a true story and created by the likes of Jason Schwartzman and Roman Coppola, it's well worth a watch.

Seasons on Amazon Prime Video: 4

Parks and Recreation

Parks and Rec is a joy of a show. Originally seen as a quasi spin-off of the Office - using the same documentary style camerawork, awkward pauses, asides to camera - it soon grew from an amusing first season, about the goings on in the parks department of Pawnee, to a comedy phenomenon that spanned a fantastic seven seasons. It's not just the script that makes it great, it's also the characters - headed up by the ever-brilliant Amy Poehler.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 7

Red Oaks

The '80s is the en vogue decade when it comes to nostalgia. Not only are Seth Gordon and Adam Goldberg mining the era for their superb prime-time sitcom The Goldbergs, Red Oaks has appeared to prove that it is respectable to set shows in the '80s. Amazon-exclusive Red Oaks - made by another Green, this time David Gordon - focuses on David, a tennis player at the Red Oaks country club and his summer shenanigans. Great casting - Jennifer Grey! - some brilliant nods to '80s films, a short run time means this is a series you can eat up in one neon-fuelled sitting.

The third and final season is now available to stream in its entirety on Amazon Prime and is a fitting end to one of the best shows around at the moment. 

Seasons on Amazon Prime Video: 3

Seinfeld

Seinfeld is comedy gold. It’s the sitcom that was self reflexive and knowing. It was about Jerry Seinfeld who was played by Jerry Seinfeld but was playing a version of himself. It’s a similar trick Larry David used when spinning off his character for the show Curb Your Enthusiasm. He even took it a step further to make a whole season of Curb dedicated to bringing back Seinfeld. Over nine seasons this show, which is essentially about nothing, will captivate you, make you laugh and think. It’s fantastic.

Seasons on Amazon Prime Video: 9

Thrillers

NEW SEASON: The Americans

The Americans was cruelly mishandled when it originally came to UK TV, so we are glad it has finally found a decent place to reside. The show is a cracking crime period thriller that follows the exploits of a couple of KGB agents posing as US citizens around the time Ronald Reagan became US president.

It may occasionally flit between the ridiculous and the sublime but you would expect nothing more from a show that's main conceit comprises characters duelling with duality. The '80s setting is fantastic, too, though there aren't enough shell suits for our liking.

The final sixth season of The Americans has now landed on Amazon (but you have to pay for it), but the fifth season is now available to stream for free with Amazon Prime Video.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 5

A promo shot for The Crossing on Amazon Prime

The Crossing

This sci-fi thriller has a really interesting premise. A group of refugees trying to escape a war arrive in an American town looking for somewhere to live. The sci-fi twist? They seem to be from 180 years in the future. Gasp! The story centres around a local sheriff, a federal agent and a mum looking for her missing daughter. It's full of conspiracy, mystery and there might be a superpower or two thrown in for good measure. But shh, we don't want to spoil anything.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 1

The Exorcist

There has been an influx of TV adaptations of movies recently, with many of them actually hitting the mark. The ones that succeed the most are those that take the theme/feeling of the films they are adapting and go in their own direction - Fargo is a perfect example of this. Another example is The Exorcist. Although it takes a couple of episodes to get going, the TV series is a decent spin-off of the movie, with just a slither of a thread attaching the two. 

Don't expect full-on scares, as this is definitely a slow burner. But when the exorcisms come (and there are a few) they will send a chill down your spine. The show is now into its second season, too, so you can watch the first season with the knowledge that the tale of terror is set to continue.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 1

The Fall

Before he was whipping up a storm as Mr Grey, Jamie Dornan played an effortlessly charming and equally chilling serial killer in The Fall, a fantastic Irish drama that deserves all the acclaim it gets.

Dornan is Paul Spector, a care worker who has a sideline in killing woman. To help track him down, hard-nosed detective Stella Gibson (Gillian Anderson) heads to Belfast to try and capture the murderer. The Fall is a perfect blend of intelligent scripting, nuanced acting and a fantastic premise. Knowing who the killer is from scene one amps up, rather than releases, the show's tension.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 3

Fear The Walking Dead

Fear The Walking Dead is a show that tries its hardest to be more than a spin-off. Set in Los Angeles, the show follows high school guidance counselor Madison Clark (a brilliant Kim Dickens fresh from Treme) and English teacher Travis Manawa (Cliff Curtis) as they adapt to a life after the 'zombie' outbreak. The show is slow paced, each episode is an hour and there's a 90-minute pilot, but it manages to approach the Walking Dead world in a wholly different way.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 2

Halt And Catch Fire

Now in its third season, Halt And Catch Fire is another surefire hit by AMC - the folks that brought us Mad Men and Breaking Bad. Set around a fictionalised version of the computer revolution of the 1980s and the rise of the web in the '90s, Catch Fire is a fantastic look at how technology has improved all our lives, while nearly tearing apart the innovators at the same time. 

A fourth and final season began airing in October, but you can watch the first three on Amazon Prime now. 

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 4

Hap and Leonard

Filmed in Baton Rouge and based on the stories of Joe Lansdale, Hap and Leonard is a great swampy noir thriller of a show that’s based on the relationship of two friends and the sometimes violent scrapes they get into. James Purefoy and Michael K Williams are superb as the pair, one a Vietnam vet, the other a draft dodger. Set in the 80s, the show is similar to Cold In July, the movie from the same writer and is only six episodes long, so perfect for a binge watch.

Seasons on Amazon Prime Video: 2

Haven

Stephen King has had a rocky journey to the big and small screen. For every adaptation that works (Misery, Shawshank Redemption), there’s a dozen that don’t (The Langoliers, Under The Dome TV show). Haven is a strange one - it’s a show that started as an adaptation of a Stephen King short story, The Colorado Kid, and has mutated into a love letter to King and his stories. Over the course of five seasons, the show has becomes a great watch - especially if you are a King fan and can spot the many references. 

Seasons on Amazon Prime Video: 5

Into The Badlands

Into The Badlands is a heady mix of brilliant martial arts and high drama as trained fighter Sunny (Daniel Wu) takes a group of people on a twisted road trip through the mystical badlands, a post-apocalyptic landscape some 500 years after a devastating war. There's plenty of bite in each episode, and it also contains some of the best fighting seen on television.

Amazon has recently started adding the third season of Into The Badlands to Prime. Each episode will be uploaded over the coming weeks, so be sure to keep checking back. 

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 3

Mr Robot

It was an agonising wait for Mr Robot in the UK - the first season had all-but ended in the US before we even got a sniff of it. But its popularity meant that there was something of a bidding war to see who would show it in the UK. Amazon, Netflix and other more traditional broadcasters fought for it, proving that even bean counters can see the worth in counter culture.

Amazon won in the end and is the perfect place for a show that focuses on the exploits of hacker Elliot (a superb Rami Malek). Mr Robot is Fight Club for the Tor generation, lifting a lid on a world where what Linux kernel you use is not just a badge of honour but a way of life.

Now in its third season, Mr Robot is proving to be one of the most addictive things on television right now.

Seasons on Amazon Prime Video: 3

Man In The High Castle

There have been a number of successful Amazon pilots that have made it to a full series but none have the epic potential that Man In The High Castle has. This Philip K Dick adaptation is finally available to stream - with all episodes ready for your consumption. High Castle imagines what the world would be like if Germany had won World War II and the Nazis had taken global control. Turns out it's a bit worse than us all driving around in VW Beetles and wearing Hugo Boss coats.

Season 2 is now available and expands on the mythos. Given this is a cautionary tale about what could happen when the hard right takes over America, things suddenly don't feel too far fetched.

Seasons on Amazon Prime Video: 2

Preacher

Amazon of a Preacher, man! Preacher is the next big comic-book adaptation and my god it's good. It takes the deranged feel of the graphic novels and translates it well to the small screen. Dominic Cooper is great as small-town preacher Jesse Custer who, inhabited by a strange spirit, starts to do God's work in a small America town with his ex girlfriend (a brilliant Ruth Negga) and an Irish vampire, played by Misfits' Joe Gilgun as his cohorts.

The whole first season of Preacher is available on Amazon Prime and episodes of the second season are available weekly.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 2

Ripper Street

For a show that’s steeped in murder, it’s pleasing to note that we all have Amazon to thank for breathing new life into Ripper Street. After two series of the show, which focuses on the lives of the East End of London in the 19th Century where there is a copycat Jack the Ripper on the loose, it was cancelled by the BBC. Amazon decided there was enough fan love out there, thankfully, and revived the show for three more series. Great acting masks some of the hokier moments of the script but this is all good, grizzly fun.

Seasons on Amazon Prime Video: 5

Sons Of Anarchy

Seemingly always vying for the top spot of Best Recently Finished Drama (we may have made up that award) with Breaking Bad, Sons Of Anarchy is a long brooding menace of a show that deserves your attention. Centred on a motorcycle gang that live by their own rules (you can probably guess what their name is from the title) the show is positively Shakespearean in its storytelling and will have you gripped from episode one.

While Ron Perlman steals the show as Clay, Charlie Hunnam's Jax is one of the best tortured souls you will see on any television show. All seven seasons of the show are now streaming on the service.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 7

Turn: Washington’s Spies

Anything featuring spies is going to get a watch from us but instead of overcoats and a 1940’s setting, Turn: Washington’s Spies is about a team of secret agents who helped George Washington in his fight for American Independence. The cast is stellar, including Jamie Bell, but it’s the setting that’s key here. Seeing the US in the 1700s and the on-going fight with the British is great fun.

Season on Amazon Prime Video: 3

Vikings

If you have any interest in Norse mythology then the name Ragnar Lothbrok will mean a whole lot to you. Basically he was a king and powerful ruler that was a right git to the English and the French.

Vikings is a series that traces his Norse-based goings on with enough charm and scope to take on Game of Thrones in the sword and sandals stakes. Yes it takes a number of liberties with its source material but the acting is top class, as is the cinematography in a historical romp that's now deservedly in its fourth season - the second half of which is now available.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 4

The Walking Dead

The Walking Dead has been reanimated more times than the zombies that harruange the group of survivors we have all come to know and love. Initially created with Frank Darabont at the helm, he left after the first season then his replacement was eventually replaced and their replacement replaced.

With this in mind, it's amazing that not only has the show consistently managed to improve season after season it has become one of the most successful series ever. Yes it sometimes slumps along slower than a zombie with its legs hacked off but give it time and it will reward you with more drama than you can shake a bloody stump at.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 6

The X-Files

The X-Files was one of the first shows that embraced event TV. Yes, it had many 'monster of the week' storylines but creator Chris Carter managed to produce a nine-season long mythology arc that kept viewers coming back for more. That and the brilliant casting of David Duchovny as Fox Mulder and the ever-excellent Gillian Anderson and Dana Scully. With a new 10th season on the horizon, Amazon has put all nine previous seasons on to Prime - all remastered in widescreen. Lovely stuff.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 9

A still from the tv show you are wanted

NEW ENTRY: You Are Wanted

The first season of this German cybercrime thriller has been on Amazon Prime for just over a year, but now the second season is available too. Set in Berlin, the TV show is about a man called Lukas who has all of his online accounts hacked and gets accused of being involved in criminal, terrorist activity. In the age where it feels like big companies know more about our data than we do, it's a compelling contemporary tale that might leave you feeling like you really go and tweak your privacy settings or delete your online presence altogether.

Seasons on Amazon Prime: 2

The best of the rest, and coming soon

A promo shot/title screen from the original Tomorrow's World

Tomorrow's World

Tomorrow's World was a ground-breaking BBC documentary series that ran for 38 years from 1965 to 2003. In 2017 the brand was 'revived' as part of a new series that explores the same themes of technology, science and the future as an umbrella brand for BBC's science programming. 

The latest season has recently landed on Amazon Prime and it covers artificial intelligence, nanotechnology, biometrics, the quest for immortality and how researchers, big corporations, doctors, scientists and inventors are shaping the future. 

Seasons on Amazon Prime Video: 1

Batman: The Animated Series

You've seen all the Nolan and Burton Bat flicks, and you're wisely avoiding the new Batfleck films. If you're still hankering for a Batman fix, you could do far, far worse than jumping into Batman: The Animated Series. Kicking off back in 1992, it bridges the gap of the Burton aesthetic and the comic book series, and is regarded by Batman fans as having perhaps the definitive onscreen take on the Dark Knight.

It's ostensibly a kids cartoon, but the ongoing storylines are captivating and stylishly noir-like in delivery. And to cap things off, the voice cast is superb – Kevin Conroy is an assuredly-good Batman (reprising the role for the recent Batman: Arkham games), while Star Wars' own Mark Hamill is a fantastically unhinged Joker.

Seasons on Amazon Prime Video: 4

All Or Nothing

Anyone who wants something to fill their Friday Nights Lights hole need to look no further. This documentary is a superb look at how gruelling a season of American football is. It gives the viewer unprecedented access to the coaches, the staff and, most importantly, the players and it's a fantastic watch. Tying the whole thing together is also some superb narration from Mad Men's Jon Hamm.

Grand Prix Driver

This new Amazon Original documentary takes viewers underneath the glitz and glamour that is the surface of Formula 1, to explore the inner-workings of the 2017 McLaren team. Narrated by Michael Douglas, this documentary follows  rookie driver Stoffel Vandoorne over four episodes, as he and his team prepare for the 2017 Formula 1 World Championship. 

Season on Amazon Prime Video: 1

A promo shot from TV show Grimm

Grimm

Merge a fairy tale fantasy with a police drama and you get Grimm. It's all about Nick Burkhardt, a detective based in Portland in the US who discovers he's a Grimm. Which basically means he's a kind of mystical guardian who must keep the peace between humans and creatures called Wesen. As you might expect, a lot of the characters are inspired by Grimms' Fairy Tales, but the show draws from many other sources too to create a story that's a little like Buffy The Vampire Slayer, but with fairy tale creatures.

Seasons on Amazon Prime Video: 6

Coming soon to Amazon Prime: Oasis

The works of Michel Faber nearly always translate well to the big and small screen. The Crimson Petal and the White was given a great mini series adaptation by the Beeb in 2001. And Under The Skin is one of the most inventive films ever made. Another one of his works, The Book of Strange Things, has been given the Amazon Originals Pilot treatment. Called Oasis, the show is a twisty opaque look at a priest who is living in a human colony on another planet.  Richard Madden, last seen in Game of Thrones, stars. 


Read more »



Jun
8
iPhone XI: what we want to see
Posted by James Rogerson,Matt Swider on 08 June 2018 12:53 PM

Update: An Apple patent suggests the company is working on a clever camera, capable of effectively depth-sensing with just a single lens.

Apple's iPhone 11 – whether it's called the iPhone XI or iPhone X2 – could launch as soon as September, meaning we may already be halfway to the official release date.

The timing for the new iPhone 2018 shouldn't surprise anyone. Apple's smartphone-focused keynotes routinely take place in early September. That's news for no one.

Two more telltale signs that we're reaching an iPhone X sequel. The Product Red iPhone 8 and iOS 11.4 have already launched, signaling the mid-lifecycle for both Apple's phone hardware and software.

When will the iPhone X2 launch? What new features will it have? And will it still have a notch? Let's investigate what we expect from Apple's new iPhone in 2018.

Cut to the chase

  • What is it? Apple's next flagship
  • When is it out? Probably early September 2018
  • What will it cost? Likely the same price as last year's new iPhone

iPhone XI release date

We have every reason to believe that the iPhone XI will launch in early September or October again, as Apple tends to stick to a schedule with its phone launched. It also has to keep pace with the iPhone upgrade program so everyone renews with them.

More specifically, based on past launches, it will probably be announced one or two weeks into September. Apple’s phones usually arrive in stores a couple of weeks later, so late September is probably when you’ll be able to buy the iPhone X2.

Sure, the iPhone X took longer to ship, but that was rumored to be down to delays in producing components, so unless Apple wishes to artificially hold back the new X - possibly to create demand, chances are the iPhone XI will appear in September 2018.

Indeed, it's rumored that Apple might begin trial production of the iPhone XI in the second quarter of 2018, which is earlier than usual and said to be precisely to prevent the delays we saw last year.

iPhone XI price

Even without the official iPhone XI price, we know it'll cost a lot. After all, Apple priced the iPhone X starting at $999 / £999 / AU$1,579. We could see identical prices.

Apple reportedly managed to reduce the cost of some components by 10% - a saving which could be passed on to buyers. It may also quit bundling a headphone adaptor with its new phones to further reduce costs, some analyst predict.

But we're not holding out for a cheap iPhone XI. Instead, Apple may be planning to release a phone with many of the iPhone X’s features at a lower price, alongside a premium model, according to multiple sources.

We're calling this the iPhone 9 for now, and it may have a cheaper LCD display. It's an intriguing proposition, though early adopters are likely still going to be more interested in the iPhone XI.

iPhone XI video renders

Apple's premium iPhone for 2018 may come in two sizes, and there are already video renders of what the iPhone XI Plus version may look like.

This version in these CAD schematics acquired by MySmartPrice and OnLeaks are said to be based on iPhone with a 6.5-inch screen, while the normal-sized update may get a 5.8-inch OLED display size we saw with the iPhone X.

Everything looks the same, on the outside, down to the dual-lens camera on the back. But we're fully expecting Apple to give the iPhone XI some internal surprises.

iPhone XI news and rumors

There might be not one iPhone XI but two, with several rumors suggesting that Apple has a pair of OLED screen phones in the works.

We first heard about them back before even the iPhone X had launched, with the earliest rumors saying that one would be 5.85 inches and the other 6.46 inches, sizes that have since been echoed.

More recently, noted analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has said similar, claiming that there will be two OLED iPhones with stainless steel frames this year.

He added that Apple probably won’t put a version of the TrueDepth camera used for Face ID and Animoji on the back of the phone. Separately he’s also said that the iPhone XI might support faster mobile data speeds and come with a dual-SIM card slot.

You might get a choice of screen sizes with the iPhone X2

Even more recently we’ve heard another similar screen rumor, with a source saying that Apple will launch OLED phones in 5.8 and 6.3-inch sizes, along with a third 6.1-inch phone which will have an LCD screen and a metal back (rather than glass).

None of the phones are named but the LCD-shod handset will presumably be cheaper and likely follow the design of the iPhone 8.

And Ming-Chi Kuo has since come back with additional details on these phones, claiming that the iPhone XI will come in 5.8 and 6.5-inch sizes, so there's not total agreement on the size just yet.

Apple could launch these three phones this year. Credit: KGI Research/MacRumors.

He added that the 6.5-inch handset will have a pixel density of 480-500 pixels per inch (ppi), while the 5.8-inch one will apparently be 458ppi.

Both phones will apparently have dual-lens cameras, stainless steel frames and 4GB of RAM, and are said to land alongside a cheaper 6.1-inch handset - which might be the iPhone 9.

Kuo also claims the 5.8-inch model may have a roughly 10% larger battery than the iPhone X, while the 6.5-inch model might have a battery of around 3,300/3,400mAh, which would be roughly a 25% size increase.

And he's said separately that Apple will probably exclusively use Intel modems for 2018's models, rather than splitting the order between Intel and Qualcomm.

Elsewhere, we've heard that the iPhone XI Plus could have an iPhone 8 Plus-sized body, despite an inch of extra screen. That's believable since the bezels will probably be a lot smaller, however changes to the camera could mean the phone is 0.2mm thicker, meaning it would be 158.4 x 78.1 x 7.7mm.

The same source claims that the standard iPhone XI will have the same size shell as the iPhone X, except again that it will be slightly thicker, thanks to a larger rear camera sensor and lens, which suggests we might see camera improvements.

The new models might also charge faster, as a separate source claims Apple might pack a fast charger in the box, rather than requiring you to buy one separately.

And the iPhone XI might have an even smarter front-facing camera than the iPhone X, as an Apple patent points to a single-lens camera system that can sense depth as well as a dual-lens one, though this may well not be ready in time for the next iPhone, if it comes at all.

Beyond all that we can assume that the design of the iPhone X2 will be probably be similar to that of the iPhone X, since Apple doesn’t redesign its phones every year. Indeed, the picture below supposedly shows the screen of the larger model, which looks similar to the style of the iPhone X.

This might be a display panel for the largest iPhone XI model. Credit: Macx.cn

It’s also sure to have Face ID, a new chipset (possibly called the A12, but with a new name to follow the A10 Fusion and A11 Bionic), and a dual-lens rear camera – though likely one that’s improved in some way.

What we want to see

While we don’t yet know much about the iPhone XI we have a good idea of what we want from it and the following things top our list.

1. A lower price

Arguably the biggest problem with the iPhone X is simply that it costs so very much. It’s an ambitious, forward-thinking handset packed full of high-end tech, so it was always going to be expensive, but it would be great if Apple could lower the price at least a little for the iPhone XI.

However, let's be realistic: it's not going to happen. Many of the components will likely be similar and it’s possible that the cost of producing them will have dropped by then, but the upgrades to certain elements will mean - at best - price parity to 2017's phone can be achieved.

2. An improved camera

The iPhone X has a very good camera, but it could always be better

The iPhone X has a great camera, but we didn't find it to deliver the most jaw-dropping snaps, so there are ways in which it could definitely be improved.

Low light performance, while an upgrade on past iPhones, isn’t perfect so we’d like to see that further improved for the iPhone XI. Brighter HDR shots would be appreciated too, and how about a pro mode for people who want more control over their camera?

3. No notch

While the almost bezel-free screen on the iPhone X impresses, we can’t imagine there are too many fans of the notch, so for the iPhone X2 we’d like to see Apple get rid of it and have a truly all-screen front.

That may not be possible, especially with the fancy TrueDepth camera that needs to be included, but if Apple could manage it then the iPhone XI would almost perfect what’s already a very good design.

4. No camera bump

The iPhone X would look slightly better if the camera didn't stick out

One other tweak to the design that we’d like to see is a rear camera that sits flush with the back of the handset.

Given how thin the iPhone X is it’s no surprise that Apple didn’t manage it on the current model and we wouldn’t hold our breath for it on the iPhone XI either, but it would slightly improve the aesthetics of the phone, as well as making it easier to use when on a desk.

5. In-screen Touch ID

Given that Apple has gone all-in with Face ID on the iPhone X and ditched Touch ID this is probably a long shot, but there are those who prefer a fingerprint scanner, and having one built into the screen would be ideal.

Rumors of such a feature have surrounded both Apple and Samsung handsets for a while now – although it actually looks like Vivo will be first to market.

But that’s no bad thing. It gives Apple time to polish the tech, and the company has always seemed more interested in being the best than the first. Again though, the company is probably going to focus on improving Face ID instead, which is easier to use than Touch ID anyway.

6. Two screen sizes

One size doesn't fit all, so with the iPhone XI hopefully it won't have to

Although three different size iPhone handsets were released in 2017 the iPhone X only landed in one size, so if you wanted all Apple’s latest technology you had to be alright with a 5.8-inch screen. For the iPhone XI we want some choice.

Fortunately, early rumors suggest that’s exactly what we’ll get, with talk of two OLED handsets being developed in different sizes.

So far it sounds like Apple will be going bigger with one of them, rather than smaller, so fans of the iPhone 8 might still be out of luck, but if you want a truly powerful Apple phablet then 2018 could be your year.

7. Dual front-facing speakers

The iPhone X already has stereo speakers, but one of them fires downwards, whereas for the iPhone X2 we want them both to face forward so the sound comes towards you when watching videos and playing games.

If Apple can also improve the speaker quality then all the better. The iPhone X already impresses in that regard, but the Razer Phone has shown that more is possible.

  • We're also expecting an iPad Pro 3 in the coming months

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Jun
8
iPhone 9: what we'd like to see
Posted by Cameron Faulkner on 08 June 2018 12:48 PM

Apple is posed to launch a cheaper iPhone 9 in 2018, and whether or not it goes by that specific name, we are expected a new all-screen phone closer to the iPhone 8 price than the iPhone X price.

Of course, we do expect an new flagship phone too in the form of the iPhone XI with a September launch window, but everyone holding out for a more affordable device from Apple should look no further than the iPhone 9.

Update: A render video shows off how the iPhone 9 might look, revealing an iPhone X-like design but with a single-lens camera and a 6.1-inch screen. Plus, an Apple patent has revealed a single-lens camera that can sense depth like a dual-lens one, so there's a chance this is headed for the iPhone 9.

Apple will likely want to offer cheaper iPhone options below the 'X' series, so the door is open for successors to the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus.

So, in a way, we will get the iPhone 9 and iPhone 9 Plus as far as incremental upgrades to the 8 and 8 Plus are concerned, it's just that Apple will probably go back to the drawing board when it comes to naming.

We don't have any solid information on the iPhone 9 at this point, but rumors are starting to trickle in, pointing to a larger screen and a mix of a iPhone 8 and iPhone X features.

You'll find all the information so far in the sections below, followed by a wishlist of sorts, comprised of features that we really want Apple to double-down on for 2018's smartphone.

Cut to the chase

  • What is it? A cheaper upgrade we're currently dubbing 'iPhone 9'
  • When is it out? Probably a September 2018 launch
  • What will it cost? A lot, but less than the iPhone XI

iPhone 9 release date and price

The iPhone 9 will almost certainly land in September 2018, given Apple's typical release date schedule.

When it does it's sure to be expensive - though possibly less so than you might expect. 

The only real price rumor we've heard so far comes from an analyst, who estimates a price of $700-$800 (around £500-£570, AU$870-AU$990).

That would put it at a similar price to the iPhone 8, but far below the iPhone X, and likely well below the iPhone XI - if such a phone launches.

The cost might further be kept down slightly if Apple decides not to bundle a 3.5mm headphone adaptor with it, as one analyst reckons might happen. But that just means you'll have to buy one separately if you have normal wired headphones.

The iPhone 7 and iPhone 8 missed out, so will the iPhone 9 get a dual camera?

iPhone 9 news and leaks

It's worth noting that the iPhone 9 probably isn't the iPhone XI. The latter is expected to be the super-premium successor to the iPhone X, while the iPhone 9 might be more of a sequel to the iPhone 8.

That assumes Apple continues to split its range up in such a way, but early iPhone 9 rumors suggest it will, and one of the rumors includes a render video, showing how the phone might look.

As you can see in the video below, it looks a lot like the iPhone X, but with a single-lens camera. The source adds that it has a 6.1-inch OLED screen.

Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo also reckons Apple will launch a 6.1-inch handset with lesser specs than other 2018 iPhone models.

This phone will supposedly have an aluminum (rather than stainless steel) frame and according to Kuo will have an LCD (rather than OLED) screen, but could have just a 0.5mm bezel.

It's also said to have a single-lens camera and innards that are more reminiscent of the iPhone 8 than the iPhone X, as the chart below details.

This could be Apple's 2018 iPhone lineup. (Credit: KGI Research/MacRumors)

Kuo also notes that the resolution of the 6.1-inch model (which we'll call the iPhone 9) could be lower, at 320-330 pixels per inch (ppi), while the iPhone XI could have a screen of 458ppi or more, and that it could have 3GB of RAM while the other upcoming models might have 4GB.

Most surprisingly, he says that it may not have 3D Touch, a feature every iPhone since the iPhone SE has had.

This isn't the only talk of a 6.1-inch iPhone 9 either. Prior to this we'd heard rumors of a 6.1-inch LCD phone elsewhere, with the source - who's supposedly privy to Apple's product designs - adding that it might have a metal back.

That would be an odd move when Apple switched to glass for all of 2017's models, a switch which also allowed for wireless charging, so if the iPhone 9 really does have a metal back you might not be able to charge it wirelessly.

However, while most rumors point to a 6.1-inch screen, one of the most recent rumors is that it will actually be 6.0 inches, and that it will have a single-lens rear camera and a TrueDepth front-facing one.

That's something we've heard before, as unnamed supply chain sources have supposedly said that a lower price handset will include Face ID, though they also said it might have an OLED screen, which recent rumors dispute.

Further confusing matters, while most sources reckon that Apple will launch three new iPhones in 2018 and that two of them will be OLED-packed iPhone X successors, one source claims that two (a 5.7 to 5.8-inch one and a 6.0 to 6.1-inch one) will be LCD, while only one will be OLED.

We've also heard reports that Apple might include a fast charger in the box with the iPhone 9 and any other 2018 iPhone models, letting you juice it up quickly, though given that this is likely to be a cheaper handset than the iPhone XI the company might reserve this for its flagship.

In more minor news we've also heard that the iPhone 9 might use an Intel modem. With current iPhone models there's a split between Intel and Qualcomm ones, but Apple is rumored to be relying purely on Intel in 2018.

And an Apple patent suggests that the company is working on a single-lens camera that can sense depth like a dual-lens one, making it ideal for Portrait Mode. We wouldn't expect to see this on the iPhone 9, but it's possible, and could give it iPhone X-like camera skills with one less lens and likely at a lower cost.

What we'd like to see

A Home button, one last time

What once was a hardware staple for the iPhone is well on its way out. If you buy an iPhone X, you'll get a glimpse into Apple's home button-less future, which is now, well, its present.

After some adjustment time, most will forget about the trusty button's absence in the iPhone X, but it'd be a nice send-off if Apple kept the home button for one last appearance in the iPhone 9.

Touch ID

As well as losing the home button, the iPhone X also lost Touch ID - something we weren't all that happy about. 

While Face ID works well, there are still occasions where a fingerprint scanner would be more useful. We don't mind if Apple pops it on the rear, but what we'd really love to see if its embedded in the display itself. Yum.

AirPods included

Apple is ahead of most smartphone manufacturers in that it includes a set of earbuds in each and every box. But once the headphone jack disappeared in the iPhone 7, you could either listen to music with the Lightning-connected EarPods or charge the phone, but not both.

While it's unlikely, it'd be a dream come true if the iPhone 9 came with AirPods included in the box. Apple's easy-to-lose but beloved wireless headphones would be a huge selling point for the next iPhone.

This way, you can enjoy some tunes wirelessly while your phone is charging.

Wireless charging

Apple's investment in wireless charging is young, though it's essential enough that we'd be pleased to see it show up in the iPhone 9.

Moving from the iPhone 7 to the 8, enabling the wire-free charging feature required Apple to make the phone's back all-glass, as to allow the charging signal pass through the device.

Keeping this feature hints that the iPhone 9 might not look all that different from what's available today, and will likely be just as easy to break.

AMOLED display

Apple reportedly lacked the resources to put AMOLED displays in any phone except its new iPhone X. Give the supply chain about six to eight months to calibrate and Apple should see about using the impressive display tech in the iPhone 9.

It’s a bit baffling for the company to dodge including a AMOLED display in the iPhone 8, only to reserve it for the high-end iPhone X. 

We'd like to see the richer colors and deep blacks that only this type of screen can provide to come to the next iPhone, namely the iPhone 9.

Dual rear-facing cameras

The iPhone 9 will feature a set of dual rear-facing cameras – that much is almost certain. However, as it has done in the past few years, Apple will only include it in the plus-sized model, the iPhone 9 Plus.

It'd be an awesome move for the company to give this feature to those who don't want to shell out plus-sized dollars, but still want all of the bells and whistles associated with Apple’s nifty feature. 

Adjusting portrait lighting and shooting photos with depth is great to have on your phone as a DSLR replacement. And as Apple continues to pour its efforts into these competitive features, it’d be wise to homogenize the results from its broad range of devices moving forward.


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Jun
8
Google Pixel 3: what we want to see
Posted by James Rogerson on 08 June 2018 12:37 PM

Update: Leaked images have given us our best look yet at the Pixel 3 XL and also revealed that it might have a glass back, which points towards support for wireless charging.

The Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL are among the best phones of 2017, so there’s a good chance the inevitable Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL will be among the best phones of 2018. And, today, we’re already hearing early rumblings about both Android phones.

Little is known yet, but we’ll update this article as we hear more, and in the meantime we’ve taken some educated guesses at the likely release date, price and features.

We’ve also come up with a list of all the main things we want from the next phones in the range, from a customizable Active Edge to screen improvements and more.

Cut to the chase

  • What is it? The next pure Android flagship from Google
  • What will it cost? Likely upwards of $649 / £629 / AU$1,079
  • When is it out? Probably October 2018

Google Pixel 3 release date and price

The Google Pixel 3 launch date could be on October 4, 2018, and we arrived at this date due to the fact that the Pixel 2 launched launched on October 4, 2017, while the original Pixel and Pixel XL launched on October 4, 2016. Google clearly likes to stick to a schedule.

An early October launch event would put the likely Pixel 3 release date in October (last year, it was October 19), and it might not be alone. Google is reportedly going to launch the Pixel 3 an and Pixel 3 XL with an official Google Pixel Watch that runs Wear OS.

Before that, we could also get a lower-cost Pixel model that's been rumored to be in the works. It's said to be launching in July or August.

Price is another thing we can only guess at for now. As the Pixel 2 starts at $649 / £629 / AU$1,079 and the Pixel 2 XL starts at $849 / £799 / AU$1,399, the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL may well have similar prices.

But if anything they’re likely to cost more, since the Pixel 2 XL costs more than the Pixel XL launched at, and since smartphone prices at the high-end seem to be rising in general.

But as noted above, a cheaper version of the Pixel 3 might also be in the works, so if it is, and if it launches globally rather than just in emerging markets, then you might be able to pick up a new Pixel for less than that.

The Pixel 2 XL is even more expensive than its predecessor

Google Pixel 3 news and rumors

A recent report talks about both the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL, with 'people familiar with the matter' saying that while the Pixel 3 will look a lot like the Pixel 2, the 3 XL could have a notch and a dual-lens front-facing camera.

They go on to say that the Pixel 3 XL will have a bezel at the bottom of the screen, and that both phones will have an upgraded single-lens rear camera and could be built by Foxconn for the first time (that being the company that builds iPhones).

The claim that the Pixel 3 XL will have a notch while the standard Pixel 3 won't has been echoed elsewhere, with the source (@OnLeaks, who's reliable as leakers go) adding that the Pixel 3 XL will be around 6.2 inches, while the Pixel 3 is roughly 5.3 inches.

Another source also claims that at least one Pixel 3 model will have a notch, and that it will use an OLED screen provided by LG. The Pixel 2 range already uses OLED screens, so this is no surprise.

Want an idea of how the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL might look? We've got you covered, as two sets of images from the same source have leaked, supposedly showing a prototype of the Pixel 3 XL.

You can see them above, and will note that there's a notch, but that the rear of the phone has a similar two-tone design to the Pixel 2 range. However, apparently it's all glass here, which might mean it supports wireless charging.

You can also see that there's a rear-mounted fingerprint scanner and a USB-C port, but no 3.5mm headphone port.

Screen protectors supposedly for the two phones have also leaked. You can see them below and they match the design rumored above.

Credit: SlashLeaks

Google itself may also have slightly shown off the Pixel 3, as illustrations in the Android P beta show a phone with an edge-to-edge display - though this could just be a placeholder.

In any case, the images don't give away much, and don't quite match up with the other leaks we've seen, but you never know, they might be representative of the final phones.

We've also seen the Pixel 3 name mentioned by Google. Specifically, a mention of Pixel 3 has been found in code on the Android Open Source Project (AOSP) site, which all but confirms it's in the works.

In fact, three new Pixel phones might be in the works. According to a “trusted source” speaking to Droid Life, the phones are codenamed “crosshatch”, “albacore” and “blueline”, and supposedly two of them will be considered premium, while one is thought of as high-end.

That split sounds like it might be similar to what Apple’s done with the top-end iPhone X and the slightly lower-end iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus. So in other words we might get a Pixel 3, a Pixel 3 XL and then something even higher-end above them.

That’s if this rumor is accurate and all three models launch, which they may well not, especially as three models were for a while rumored for the Pixel 2 range.

One of those three Pixel 3 models has additional evidence for it, as mentions of crosshatch have been spotted in a comment on an AOSP listing.

It’s worth noting also that all these codenames are types of fish, which was true of previous Pixel handsets as well.

What we want to see

The Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL got 4 stars and 4.5 stars in our reviews respectively, so there’s still room for improvement, and adding the following features to the Pixel 3 would be a step in the right direction.

1. Smaller bezels

The Pixel 2 has sizeable bezels, hopefully the Pixel 3 won't

From the iPhone X to the Samsung Galaxy Note 8, many 2017 flagships have all but eliminated bezels, but not the Pixel 2.

This is a phone which still has quite large bezels above and below the screen, and while they serve a purpose (housing the front-facing speakers) we’d like to see them worked on for the Pixel 3.

Hopefully Google and its manufacturing partners will find a way to significantly slim down the bezels without sacrificing speakers on the front.

2. Customizable Active Edge

Active Edge on the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL lets you squeeze the sides to launch Google Assistant. It’s a handy feature, but unlike on the HTC U11 that’s all it does and it can’t be re-mapped.

For the Pixel 3 we want the feature to return, but we want it to be context-sensitive, so for example if used in the camera app it would perhaps take a photo, and for the core functionality to be customizable, so you can use it as a shortcut to whatever app or feature you want.

3. Camera app improvements

The Pixel 2 has a great camera, but the app is far from perfect

Despite just being a single-lens one, the camera on the Pixel 2 is among the best you’ll find on a smartphone, but the software could use some work.

For example, we’d like gesture controls for timed photos and the ability to switch between the main and selfie cameras with a swipe, like you can on Samsung and LG phones.

They’re little tweaks, but they’d make using the camera a little faster and a little more pleasant.

4. A return of the headphone jack

Despite taking a dig at Apple for ditching the headphone jack when launching the original Pixel, Google has also got rid of it for the Pixel 2, which is a decision we’d like to see reversed for the Pixel 3.

We don’t expect that to happen, if anything ever more handsets are going to start removing the port, but for many users it’s an inconvenience and the benefits of its removal just don’t seem overly compelling.

5. Wireless charging

The Pixel 2 range has reasonable battery life and supports fast charging, but doesn’t have wireless charging, which is a major omission, especially now even Apple is supporting it.

We expect wireless charging to become a lot more popular in the next year, thanks to the iPhone 8 and iPhone X, so it will stand out even more if the Pixel 3 doesn’t support it.

6. Screen improvements

The screens on both the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL show room for improvement

The standard Pixel 2 has just a 1080p screen, which isn’t particularly sharp for a flagship in 2017, so we’d like to see it upgraded to QHD for the Pixel 3.

The Pixel 2 XL meanwhile is sharp enough, but in our review we found that the viewing angles aren’t great and nor is it especially vibrant, so we’d like to see work done to improve those aspects for the Pixel 3 XL.

7. Better water resistance

The Pixel 2 range sports IP67 certification, which means it can survive being submerged up to 1 meter deep for up to 30 minutes.

That should be plenty, but these are flagship phones we’re talking about and some rivals offer more. The Samsung Galaxy S8 for example has IP68 certification, meaning it can be submerged 1.5 meters deep for the same duration.

It’s a small change, but one that could at the very least give buyers more peace of mind that their expensive purchase is fully protected against rain and spills.


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