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ICYMI: the week’s 7 biggest tech stories, from the Meta Quest 3 to the Pixel 8 Pro

ICYMI: the week’s 7 biggest tech stories, from the Meta Quest 3 to the Pixel 8 Pro

If you’re looking to get caught up on everything that’s happened in the world of tech over the last seven days, then you’ve come to the right place – we’re about to round up the biggest stories to hit TechRadar in the last week, and there’s lots to get through.

Our dedicated reviewers have been busy, taking close looks at the Google Pixel 8 Pro phone, the Meta Quest 3 VR headset, and the Apple Watch Ultra 2 smartwatch – and giving you the most comprehensive reviews of these devices that you’ll find on the web.

There’s been lots of other news too, from leaked benchmarks to new Netflix shows, so let’s dive into what’s been happening.

7. We got a hint of just how powerful the Galaxy S24 will be

The Samsung Galaxy S23 series

The Samsung Galaxy S23 series (Image credit: Samsung)

The Samsung Galaxy S24 series could pack a serious punch in terms of performance, if newly leaked benchmarks are to be believed. These benchmarks aren’t of the phones themselves, but rather the chipset that’s likely to be powering them.

That chipset is supposedly going to be the Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 from Qualcomm, the successor to the Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 that’s inside some of the best Android phones of 2023 – and the processor should be unveiled at the end of this month.

Based on the benchmarks, the Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 is going to offer substantial leaps in CPU and GPU performance, and the Samsung Galaxy S24 could be one of the first phones to take advantage of it in 2024.

6. Kia showed off some cool new electric car concepts

Kia EV Day 2023

Kia has new EVs to show off (Image credit: Kia)

The very first Kia EV Day happened this week, and the car maker certainly had a lot of electric vehicle news to share – expanding on its plan to shift at least 1.6 million EVs before the end of the decade.

We got updates on the EV1, the EV2, the EV3 and EV4 concepts, and the EV5. We’re big fans of a sensible and straightforward naming strategy, and Kia is clearly sorted in that regard as it prepares to get these models ready to roll out.

Head to the full article below to see imagery from Kia, and to find out which features these vehicles are going to be boasting – features that might convince you to make one of them your next electric car purchase.

5. The Apple Watch Ultra 2 brought the best smartwatch screen yet

Apple Watch Ultra 2

The stand-out feature of the new Apple Watch Ultra 2 is the screen (Image credit: Future)

The Apple Watch Ultra launched last year was a significant upgrade on what Apple had previously offered in terms of smartwatches, so it’s perhaps no surprise that the successor is only an incremental upgrade – although it’s still an upgrade well worth looking at.

Our full Apple Watch Ultra 2 review is now live, and we’ve been busy testing everything from the feel of the watch on the wrist, to the battery life it manages between charges. There’s a new processor inside, plus a handy new Double Tap gesture to make use of.

To give you an idea of what we thought of the watch, our review focuses in on an amazing screen, and even includes the phrase “best Apple Watch ever” – though we stopped short of giving the wearable full marks.

4. Netflix’s spooky new show attracted some rave reviews

The Fall of the House of Usher

The Fall of the House of Usher is available to stream now (Image credit: Netflix)

The spooky season is on the way, and this week did include a Friday the 13th in it – so it’s an ideal time for Netflix to push out its spooky new series based on the works of Edgar Allen Poe, The Fall of the House of Usher.

Based on the reviews that have hit the web so far, critics love the show: it’s been described as “gripping”, “gleefully terrifying”, and “some of [director Mike] Flanagan’s best work”, so the series certainly isn’t short of fans.

All eight episodes of The Fall of the House of Usher are now up and available to stream on Netflix, so you can see for yourself what all the fuss is about – though be prepared for some scares along the way if you are going to start watching.

3. The Meta Quest 3 proved to be the best VR headset for most people

Meta Quest 3

The Meta Quest 3 in action (Image credit: Meta)

The long-awaited successor to the Oculus Quest 2 has arrived, and we think that the combination of features and price point that the Meta Quest 3 puts together make it the best virtual reality headset for most people right now.

Technically, it’s actually a mixed reality headset as well as a VR one. The new passthrough technology that Meta has fitted inside it means that you can see the real world through the digital one – and have aliens invading your living room, and so on.

The Quest 3 can play everything that was available on the Quest 2 as well, with new titles launching soon. As our Meta Quest 3 review puts it: “At this price its VR and MR performance can’t be beaten, and the Quest Store’s VR software catalog is superb.”

2. OnePlus confirmed when its foldable phone will launch

OnePlus Open

An official glimpse of the OnePlus Open (Image credit: OnePlus)

We’re just about all set for the arrival of the first foldable phone from OnePlus, with the OnePlus Open now confirmed to be launching next Thursday, October 19 – the launch date that had previously been rumored for the device.

OnePlus has teased the design of the foldable with a handful of images, but unofficial sources continue to fill in the rest of the details. A fresh leak has outlined most of the phone’s specs, with some high-resolution photos included too.

So far, we like what we’re hearing. The OnePlus Open is tipped to have the biggest battery in a foldable so far, as well as one of the slimmest designs we’ve seen from this form factor, and we will of course be covering the launch this Thursday.

1. The Google Pixel 8 Pro blurred the line between phone and reality

Google Pixel 8 Pro

The Google Pixel 8 Pro (Image credit: Future)

The final review of this week’s reviews that we want to showcase is for Google’s new flagship phone for 2023, the Pixel 8 Pro. The handset comes with numerous AI tricks to improve your photos and videos, which is why we describe it as blurring the lines of reality.

We also call this phone the best Pixel that Google has ever made – though it would be something of a disappointment if it wasn’t, what with the new Tensor G3 chipset inside and a triple-lens camera system around the back.

If you’re weighing up whether this is the next phone upgrade for you – or you just want to see whether the top-tier Pixel is a serious iPhone competitor – then the full TechRadar Google Pixel 8 Pro review is the only one you need.

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