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CES 2023

ASUS: Seeing an incredible future

HP: Leading in hybrid and gaming experiences

Lenovo: Feature-packed devices that deliver more personalized experiences

Sony: Technologies and initiatives that move people’s hearts and expand the possibilities of entertainment

MSI: The leap to singularity

Google: New Android features, products, and milestones

LG Signature: A differentiated luxury experience

The in the post-pandemic world Pre-Pandemic Finances: What Generations Z And Alpha did not experience A Cashless Future? 8 22 32 40 46 60 64 72 78 FEBRUARY 2023 VOLUME XXIII • Issue V 66 8 78 40

Gadgets Lab

4 Contents Mobility Fintech Cross The Current 6th-Gen Honda Civic Type R GAC Empow All-New GAC GS8 ARB 4X4 Accessories for Ford vehicles Toyota Digital Logistics Platform NLEX major projects for 2023 Isuzu Philippines welcomes new president Official lifestyle motorcycle for Gilas Pilipinas Mitsubishi Strada GLS Ralliart Innovation Award for first-tomarket initiatives Pitaka makes buying crypto easier Travel Master with COVID-19 insurance Jumpstart your money goals this 2023 Shop global online 110 118 124 128 132 136 138 140 141 142 144 146 150 152 155 Parade
Acer Nitro 16 | Nitro 17 Acer eKinekt BD3 Canon imagePROGRAF TC-20 Sony Walkman NW-ZX707 | NW-A306 Kingston IronKey Vault Privacy 50C OnePlus Buds Pro 2 OPPO A17 Synology DS923+ HONOR X9a 5G Razer Naga Pro V2 FIFINE K688 82 86 88 90 94 95 96 98 100 104 108 82 118
5 Newsbytes Innovation Enterprise Telco Wellness Gaming Employment Relic Epson launches Virtual Demo Channel to connect with customers ZTE releases new G5 Series Servers to boost digital economy Darwinbox and Microsoft announce collaboration to redefine the future of work Wilcon Depot and Converge strengthen connectivity partnership Alibaba Top Technology Trends 2023 917Ventures Startup Accelerator Program What exactly happens if you fail to register your SIM? KonsultaMD: Early diabetes detection Fire Emblem: Engage Jobs On The Rise DigiCash 176 177 178 179 166 170 172 174 156 160 180 FEBRUARY 2023 VOLUME XXIII • Issue V 110 174 177 156 172
gadgetsmagazine.com.ph 6 February 2023

CES 2023

It’s that most wonderful time of the year for tech fans. ‘Tis the season for new tech announcements and tech prototypes we hope to get our hands on. It’s CES 2023, and here are just some of the great tech launched and previewed in this year’s expo.

7 February 2023


Consumer Electronics Show 2023 ASUS gadgetsmagazine.com.ph 8 February 2023

ASUS revealed its latest lineup of innovations, world-debuting products, and sustainable actions during its Seeing An Incredible Future virtual launch event for CES 2023. New featured innovations include the world’s first glasses-free 3D OLED laptop display technology, providing creators with a unique visual and working experience. ASUS also announced its out-of-this-world

creator solutions, including Windows 11-ready with up to the latest 13th Gen Intel Core i9 HX series CPU and GeForce RTX 40 series Laptop GPU. A range of new commercial products was also announced, each delivering incredible performance, versatility, and expandability for business.

During the show, ASUS emphasized the brand’s pioneering role in innovating for a

sustainable future. “As we progress on this incredible journey towards sustainability, we continually leverage our technological leadership, data-driven rigor, and humancentered philosophy,” said ASUS Co-CEO S.Y. Hsu, “our goal is to ultimately create a net-zero enterprise that drives the shift towards a circular economy — with a responsible supply chain creating shared values for each and every one of us.”

9 February 2023



Over a decade ago, ASUS introduced the world’s first carbon-neutral laptop, followed closely by the revolutionary ASUS Bamboo-series laptops and, more recently, its first carbon-neutral business laptop in 2022.

This year, over 90% of ASUS consumer laptops will meet EPEAT and ENERGY STAR 8.0 standards. By focusing on product quality, functionality, durability, and upgradability, ASUS ensures longer product lifecycles by building products from the ground up with sustainability in mind. ASUS uses sustainable materials in product manufacturing and packaging — and has actively procured and employed 1,500 tons of PCR (Post-consumer recycled) plastic since 2017, along with over 20,000 tons of recycled paper in 2022. To do more, ASUS consistently pushes recyclability, resulting in over 40,000 tons of electronic waste (e-waste) being recycled in recent years.

Furthermore, by building more durable products, Asus is able to reduce waste and prolong the life of its laptops, as well as ensure users have incredible experiences no matter where they are. That is why the all-new 2023 ASUS consumer laptop models and beyond will undergo the strictest durability testing of any product in the consumer laptop market — the extraordinarily stringent MIL-STD 810H US military-grade standard based on 12 test methods and 26 test procedures — to deliver long-lasting value, reliability, and durability.

ASUS has partnered with Ishizuka Glass for antimicrobial treatments, using its IONPURE antimicrobial agent on select products. ASUS was the first in the laptop industry to introduce the ASUS Antimicrobial Guard Plus, which can inhibit the spread of 99% of viruses and bacteria ― including COVID-19 ― over a 24-hour period.

Consumer Electronics Show 2023
gadgetsmagazine.com.ph 10 February 2023


ASUS introduced a range of new and updated software and hardware innovations for content creators. ProArt Creator Hub 2.0 is designed to ensure creators can best utilize their powerful ASUS hardware and software to bring their best ideas to life. This new version hosts a refreshed, modern user interface and an exclusive new feature — Color Control- combining all the color solutions specific to creators. ProArt Creator Hub 2.0 updates the ASUS Dial and ASUS Control Panel capabilities to allow new customizations for Adobe apps and productivity, entertainment, and content creation apps — including Microsoft 365, Spotify, YouTube, and popular web browsers. ProArt Creator Hub 2.0 will be available for all Studiobook, Zenbook, and Vivobook models with ASUS Dial, ASUS DialPad, or ASUS ScreenPad Plus. It will also be available for the ProArt mouse range and all ASUS touchscreen monitors.

To push the limits of the creator experience, ASUS has joined forces with Pantone, the world-leading authority on color, to provide an opportunity for creators to gain access to and utilize the Pantone resource database, including the Pantone Libraries, Color Space data, Color Harmonies, and much more. All these features will be available on all ASUS creator laptops via the ASUSexclusive ProArt Creator Hub 2.0 software.

In an exciting industry first, ASUS also introduced ASUS Spatial Vision, the world’s first glasses-free (autostereoscopic) 3D OLED technology, which allows immersive 3D experiences on a laptop — with no wearables required. This is made possible using a lenticular lens and advanced eye-tracking camera technology, enabling the display to weave distinct images for each eye, resulting in an autostereoscopic 3D image. Users can also switch effortlessly between 2D and 3D. This new technology can totally change creator workflows; they will be able to see the details of 3D objects and effects directly on the screen without needing to review physical prototypes, saving time and money while making their workflow more efficient.

These incredible OLED displays offer a 1,000,000:1 contrast ratio, a 0.2ms response time, and a 120Hz refresh rate for seamless visuals ― all while minimizing crosstalk for the smoothest viewing experience. They also offer great potential for rapidly growing metaverse applications. This glasses-free 3D OLED technology integrates with the ASUS Spatial Vision Hub’s exclusive apps, allowing users to watch 3D videos and movies, play 3D games, and enjoy 3D model visualization or content creation while offering unlimited potential for developers to build their own ecosystems.

11 February 2023


ASUS ProArt Studiobook 16 3D OLED (H7604) 3D OLED creator mobile workstation

ASUS ProArt Studiobook 16 3D OLED (H7604) is the world’s first 3D OLED creator mobile workstation, transcending the ordinary to go far beyond the everyday. It has a refined Mineral Black finish and features a step-wise design that enables slimmer screen bezels and makes room for the rear air vents. This design also allows the laptop screen to lie flat, offering any viewing angle up to 180°.

Creating 3D visual content is made faster and more intuitive, and ASUS Spatial Vision technology allows 2D visual content to be seamlessly converted to immersive 3D in real-time with the flick of a switch. With its groundbreaking new glasses-free 3.2K 120 Hz 3D OLED display, content creators and gamers can view 3D photos, videos, or even games ― without cumbersome glasses or headsets. The super-bright OLED panel delivers stunning detail and vivid colors, featuring adaptive dimming technology to maximize display life.

Its unstoppable 13th Gen Intel Core i9-13980HX processor, NVIDIA GeForce RTX 40 series laptop GPU, up to 64 GB of upgradeable memory, and ultrafast storage frees creators to do what they do best: create and design without boundaries. The certified color-accurate 16-inch 3.2K 120 Hz 3D OLED display does full justice to every creative vision, providing unrivaled visuals.

A large, stylus-compatible haptic touchpad and the intuitive ASUS Dial rotary control offer ultimate precision and control in apps. It also enables seamless connectivity to all the latest peripherals via dual Thunderbolt™ 4 ports, with up to 40 Gbps transfer speeds.

Additional benefits include advanced ASUS IceCool Pro thermal technology, which gives the ProArt Studiobook 16 3D OLED the edge regarding performance and quietness. It also has the ASUS Dial for precise and intuitive creative control.

A traditional 2D OLED touchscreen panel is also available for those who prefer a more conventional display. Later, in Q2 2023, the ProArt Studiobook 16 OLED family will be updated with a model featuring a pro-certified NVIDIA RTX laptop GPU.

Consumer Electronics Show 2023 gadgetsmagazine.com.ph 12 February 2023
13 February 2023

ASUS Vivobook Pro 16X 3D OLED (K6604): Wow the world in 3D

ASUS Vivobook Pro 16X 3D OLED (K6604) is an innovative 16-inch laptop for creators that also features ASUS Spatial Vision technology with the world’s first glasses-free autostereoscopic 3D OLED 3.2K 120 Hz display.

This powerful creator-focused laptop is powered by a 13th Gen Intel Core i9 HX series processor, with graphics provided by the latest NVIDIA GeForce RTX 40 series Laptop GPU, along with a MUX Switch and NVIDIA Studio Driver support for an on-demand performance boost during content creation and gaming.

Vivobook Pro 16X 3D OLED has advanced ASUS IceCool Pro thermal technology and the ASUS DialPad for precise and intuitive creative control. It also benefits from dual Thunderbolt 4 ports for ultrafast transfer speeds of up to 40Gbps and a standard SD card reader.

Consumer Electronics Show 2023 gadgetsmagazine.com.ph 14 February 2023
15 February 2023

ASUS Zenbook Pro 16X OLED (UX7602BZ): The most powerful Zenbook yet

Partnering with Intel, ASUS has redesigned the impressive Zenbook Pro 16X OLED (UX7602BZ) with a unique Intel processor with the latest ASUS Supernova System-on-Module (SoM) Design. This design adopts low-loss substratelike materials and shortens the distance between the CPU and memory by placing both components on the circuit board, allowing the memory to hit an incredible 7500MHz. In addition, the laptop adopts a liquid metal thermal compound, reducing its temperature by 7°C in high-performance mode, allowing it to achieve a total TDP of up to 155W. This module packaging technique reduces the motherboard core area by 38%, increasing the overall cooling efficiency of the system and leaving extra room for the GPU power components, giving users more stability and higher GPU performance.

gadgetsmagazine.com.ph 16 February 2023
Consumer Electronics Show 2023

The ultra-compact ASUS Supernova SoM enables ultrapowerful performance from the 13th Gen Intel Core i9 H series processor, NVIDIA GeForce RTX 40 series laptop GPU, and fast LPDDR5X DRAM. The new 2023 Zenbook Pro 16X OLED offers 1.4X faster video editing and up to 8.9X faster 3D rendering times compared to the previous model, enabling creators to finish creative projects in record time.

This laptop has a world-leading 16:10 3.2K 120Hz OLED HDR NanoEdge touchscreen. The Active Aerodynamic System Ultra (AAS Ultra) auto-tilting keyboard ensures a comfortable typing angle and enhances system cooling for maximum performance. There’s a White RGB intelligent keyboard lighting system with smart interactivity features. The innovative ASUS Dial allows precise fingertip control in Adobe and most other apps, while the larger ASUS NumberPad features haptic feedback and enhanced pressure sensitivity for easier number entry.

With its ASUS Supernova SoM, LPDDR5X DRAM, and optimized GPU, Zenbook Pro 16X OLED redefines what a compact creator laptop should be, helping to take creativity to the next level.

17 February 2023
gadgetsmagazine.com.ph 18 February 2023 Consumer Electronics Show 2023 Zenbook Pro 14X OLED (UX3404)

ASUS Zenbook Pro 14 OLED (UX6404) and Zenbook 14X OLED (UX3404): All about

performance and portability

Weighing just 1.65kg and measuring less than 1.8cm thick, Zenbook Pro 14 OLED (UX6404) has top-tier performance, best-in-class visuals, surprising innovations, and a compact chassis, expanding the possibilities for creators on the go. An all-new, cutting-edge 2.8K 120Hz OLED NanoEdge Dolby Vision display produces jaw-dropping detail, super-smooth motion, and ultra-vivid colors. It is also Pantone Validated for color accuracy and has a cinema-grade 100% DCI-P3 gamut. Creating or enjoying visual content has never been better, thanks to its bright and clear HDR imagery and deep blacks.

For outstanding performance during any creative task, Zenbook Pro 14 OLED is powered by up to the latest 13th Gen Intel Core i9 H-series processor and studio-grade NVIDIA GeForce RTX 40 series laptop GPU, matched with fast, expandable DDR5 RAM.

Zenbook Pro 14 OLED includes enhancements to productivity and creativity, such as the ASUS DialPad for intuitive app control, ASUS Pen 2.0 support, and a full set of I/O ports. Furthermore, a long-lasting high-capacity 76Wh battery makes Zenbook Pro 14 OLED the perfect match for serious on-the-go creation.

Zenbook 14X OLED (UX3404) puts mobile life on a rock-solid footing. This powerful model has a thin-and-light chassis and comes in two colors, Sandstone Beige and Inkwell Gray. The Sandstone Beige version has a lid made from a new eco-friendly Plasma Ceramization coating technique that creates a ceramiclike finish and stone-like feel. And inside, there’s up to the latest 13th Gen Intel Core i9 H-series processor, studio-grade NVIDIA GeForce RTX graphics, and fast LPDDR5 memory. There’s also a bigger 14.5-inch 16:10 2.8K 120Hz OLED HDR NanoEdge display and a longer-lasting 70Wh battery.

19 February 2023
Zenbook Pro 14 OLED (UX6404)


ASUS ExpertBook B9 OLED (B9403CVA): Ultralight, uncompromised performance for business executives

ASUS ExpertBook B9 OLED (B9403CVA) is the first all-metal ASUS laptop to employ an eco-conscious manufacturing technology. This eco-friendly manufacturing process helps to reduce production materials by up to 29% and shortens manufacturing time by up to 75% to maximize energy efficiency. The upshot is a more robust finished product created using fewer overall resources, minimizing carbon emissions.

This laptop is powered by a 13th Gen Intel CPU supporting the Intel vPro platform, has an upgraded 2.8K display with a 90% screen-to-body ratio, a smart cooling system consisting of dual fans with smart dust removal to reduce fan noise, enhanced FHD IR camera resolution, and benefits from a touchpad that’s 26.8% larger than the previous generation. While sustaining multiple improvements, it remains one of the world’s lightest 14” business laptops, lighter than most other 13” laptops. The 16:10 OLED display provides vivid and accurate colors and

a more prominent visual workspace, perfect for managing data analysis and market intelligence tasks. Crafted from an ultra-lightweight magnesium-lithium alloy, it offers US militarygrade durability and is lighter, stronger, and more portable.

ExpertBook B9 OLED also delivers superior security and privacy, including NFC login, a Kensington lock slot, a physical webcam shield, a camera, and a fingerprint sensor for Windows Hello login. Extremely portable, powerful, and tough, ExpertBook B9 OLED is perfect for daily work and frequent business travel.

In 2023, all ExpertBook series products will be EPEAT Gold verified and exceed ENERGY STAR standards, aligning with the ASUS commitment toward a circular economy. This is made possible using environmentally friendly materials and ensuring energy efficiency across the entire product lineup.

Consumer Electronics Show 2023
gadgetsmagazine.com.ph 20 February 2023

ASUS Chromebook Vibe CX34 Flip (CX3401FBA

Increased versatility for exceptional gaming experiences

ASUS Chromebook Vibe CX34 Flip (CX3401FBA) pairs incredibly realistic visuals and exceptional performance to deliver unmatched cloud gaming experiences and nonstop productivity on the go. This remarkable device offers an immersive gaming experience, featuring a 16:10, 144 Hz WUXGA display with an 83% screen-to-body ratio and full 360° ErgoLift hinge, an antighosting keyboard with four-zone RGB lighting, and ultrafast WiFi 6E technology. ASUS Chromebook Vibe CX34 Flip has a durable chassis and a distinctive Pearl White finish that includes exclusive orangeaccented WASD keycaps for added flair. Integrated Harman Kardoncertified spatial audio adds to the immersive experience, and testing to MIL-STD 810H US military-grade standards ensures durability.

Powered by up to a 12th Gen Intel Core i7 processor and 16 GB of memory, ASUS Chromebook Vibe CX34 Flip delivers performance and responsiveness to empower users with the ultimate device for cloud gaming, work, and everything in between. Quickly access over 1,400 games through cloud gaming platforms, Google Workspace apps, and other productivity apps on Google Play to breeze through projects or enjoy entertainment on the go, with a spacious PCI Express SSD giving fast-access storage. The laptop runs for up to 10 hours on a single charge, ready for work or play throughout the day ― even when on the move.

21 February 2023


At the recent CES 2023, HP Inc. announced new products and solutions designed to recharge hybrid experiences so people can thrive in today’s digital world.

Work happy in an environment as productive as your home setup

Hybrid work is here to stay. 92% of Filipino employees prefer a hybrid model, but being productive in a hybrid environment comes with challenges. Employees now need more efficient and productive workspaces – whether at home or in the office. This means companies need to cultivate an inclusive and innovative environment where everyone has access to tech that can keep up with today’s work demands. Just in time, HP is elevating all workspaces with new devices and solutions so employees can work safely, securely, and productively wherever their work takes them.

HP Consumer Electronics Show 2023 gadgetsmagazine.com.ph 22 February 2023
23 February 2023 HP EliteBook 1040 G10

Enhanced by HP Presence, the HP Dragonfly G4, HP EliteBook 1040 G10, HP Elite x360 1040 G10 deliver more meaningful collaboration experiences with new intuitive video conferencing innovations to recharge hybrid work. This includes:

• Multi-Camera Experience supports dual video streams and camera switching so users can easily show their faces and an object or a whiteboard at the same time, picture-inpicture, or side-by-side. The new commercial PCs are the world’s first business notebooks to support the simultaneous use of two cameras.

• Auto Camera Select uses intelligent face tracking to recognize which camera a user is facing to keep audiences engaged without breaking eye contact.

• HP Keystone Correction makes sharing a whiteboard or a physical document easy by automatically cropping and flattening images from the camera feed with a single click.

• HP Be Right Back lets users change their video feed to a still picture without disrupting meetings when they need a break.

As users move throughout the day, new features help intelligently optimize performance and power consumption, including:

• Intelligent Hibernate learns PC usage patterns, so the device will go into hibernation mode automatically to minimize battery usage at the end of the workday. Over time, the PC can eventually predict when a user typically uses the device the following day and convert to modern standby mode for an instant-on experience.

• Smart Sense optimizes PC thermal performance using AI to learn and adapt to PC usage patterns. The result is a quieter and cooler laptop that is more comfortable to work with while still delivering the power needed to get work done.

The newest HP Dragonfly and Elite 1000 Series PCs contain 90% recycled magnesium in the enclosure case, 5% ocean-bound plastics in the speaker enclosure, and bio-circular content such as used cooking oil to help lower CO2 emissions.

Consumer Electronics Show 2023 gadgetsmagazine.com.ph 24 February 2023 HP Elite x360 1040 G10
25 February 2023
HP Dragonfly G4
Consumer Electronics Show 2023 gadgetsmagazine.com.ph 26 February 2023

Enriching a hybrid workspace at home or in the office is about having the right tools and technologies to reflect preferred workstyles. By using the right tools, employees can bring the best version of themselves to work, resulting in greater productivity and comfort throughout their workday. Completing the PC ecosystem, HP is announcing new monitors, accessories, and services.

With display sizes ranging from 21.5 to 44.5 inches diagonally, the HP E-Series G5 Monitors blend seamlessly into the home or office with sleek and elegant designs. The series offers a variety of choices to help hybrid workers stay focused and connected with 4K resolution on select models, curved and ultrawide screens, 99% sRGB, and matching accessories. Users can work comfortably with HP Eye Ease to reduce blue light exposure, and an Ambient Light Sensor automatically adjusts the screen brightness. The HP E45c G5 Monitor is the world’s first 45-inch super ultrawide dual QHD curved monitor for a more immersive experience. Replace two 24-inch QHD monitors with one massive 44.5-inch diagonal monitor with the new Virtual Dual Display feature. All monitors in this series feature 90% recycled and renewable materials, like coffee grounds and recycled aluminum.

For home workers, learners, and entertainment users, the HP M24h and M27h FHD Monitors upgrade home setups with improved ergonomics to find their perfect posture and viewing angle, so users always feel their best. It’s also the world’s first monitor series with a comfort setup guide through integrated display software.

27 February 2023

Leveraging the power of Poly audio technology, HP is introducing the Poly Voyager Free 60 Series lineup of pro-grade wireless earbuds for hybrid lifestyles. Whether taking part in a conference call or listening to your favorite hits, the Poly Voyager Free 60 Series provides up to five hours of talk time with adaptive active noise canceling (ANC) and WindSmart technology to block out distracting background noises. The standard version includes a charging case that offers 10 additional hours of talk time, and the Poly Voyager Free 60+ comes with a smart charging case. The smart charge case features an OLED touchscreen display with easy access to volume and mute functions, fast insight into battery life and call status, and a 3.5mm analog input ideal for in-flight entertainment systems. Available in carbon black or white sand, the wireless earbuds feature a sleek, modern design for all-day comfort and flexibility. With the Poly Lens Mobile App, users can personalize their Poly device settings while IT teams can manage and receive insights.

Consumer Electronics Show 2023
gadgetsmagazine.com.ph 28 February 2023

The HP 620/ look and sound their best throughout the day. This Zoom-certified FHD 1080p webcam has dual noise-reduction microphones, an adjustable field of view, and video features, including auto-focus, AI face framing, and background light enhancement. For easy, fast, and secure logins, the webcam saves precious seconds with Windows Hello facial recognition compatibility. The webcam captures every angle with a 360-degree swivel and 90-degree tilt for extra flexibility. Sustainability features include 71% postconsumer recycled plastic and 100% recyclable packaging.

The HP 710 Rechargeable Silent Mouse allows users to work where they need to with a compact design, silent clicks, and up to 90 days of battery life. With six programmable buttons for custom shortcuts, users can maximize their workflow and work seamlessly with multi-OS compatibility across three saved devices. The device is made from 60% post-consumer recycled plastics. Engineered for the Intel Evo laptops accessories program, the mouse provides seamless connectivity and reliability when paired with Intel Evo laptops.

HP Carbon Neutral Computing Services help organizations drive toward a lowcarbon future with two options to offset the carbon footprint of their eligible HP business PCs. Customers can choose to offset the carbon released during production and system delivery or through the entire device lifecycle, so their PCs remain carbon neutral through the end of use. HP integrates high-quality carbon offsets into each device, from product manufacturing to daily PC use, to help organizations accelerate their carbon neutrality goals. HP also offers customers a Sustainability Benefit Report that easily captures the sustainable impact of their carbon-neutral HP PC fleet.

29 February 2023

Innovating in Sustainability with Unique Materials for HP’s New Consumer PCs

Products designed for sustainability should be accessible to everyone, which is why HP is introducing highly innovative and unique products across its new consumer devices. The HP 14 and 15.6 inch Laptop PCs are available with either Intel or AMD Processors, and their beautifully compact design is made from ocean-bound plastics, post-consumer recycled plastics, as well as recycled metals.

The HP 24 and 27 inch All-In-One PCs also leverage unique materials to create the innovative frame, making these HP’s most sustainable all-in-one offering yet. This is the world’s first PC with recycled coffee grounds, which are used as speckles in the finish of the PC. More than 40% of this all-in-one’s enclosure contains post-consumer recycled plastics, 75% recycled aluminum is used on the arm stand, and 100% reclaimed polyester is used on the stand base.

And for HP products, once you’re done with the device, HP Planet Partners helps to get them either reused or recycled.

gadgetsmagazine.com.ph 30 February 2023

OMEN Gaming Goes to the Cloud

With the global gaming industry continuing to increase, HP is introducing cloud gaming through OMEN Gaming Hub and is the first Windows PC manufacturer with an integrated NVIDIA GeForce NOW solution. This huge addition gives gamers across the globe access to play over 1450 titles from AAA to indie within a best-in-class cloud gaming service, regardless of the PC they game on. Combined with the ability to access local games with My Games and OMEN Optimizer, gamers have easier access than ever before to play their favorite titles with higher quality and framerates.

The OMEN 17 Laptop levels up to become HP’s most powerful gaming laptop with the addition of up to 13th Gen Intel Core i9-13900HX processor and the latest NVIDIA GeForce graphics, which utilizes OMEN Tempest Cooling Technology for desktop-caliber gaming. The OMEN Laptop is HP’s first to feature optical mechanical keys, which are 25 times faster than traditional keys, ensuring gamers have the tools they need to breeze through their favorite titles at home or on the go.

The OMEN 40L Desktop unlocks new levels of extreme power with up to 13th Gen Intel Core i913900K processor and up to NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4090 to enable glorious 4K visuals and blistering high FPS in resolutions used for competitive gaming. The OMEN 25L Desktop also gets an upgrade with the latest 13th Gen Intel Core processors to keep games running faster than ever.

31 February 2023


Lenovo unveiled the latest lineup of devices and solutions focused on innovation and improving the user experience. From new form factors, beautiful design-led products, and innovative uses of AI, the new portfolio gives consumers and business users a more personalized technology experience.

LENOVO Consumer Electronics Show 2023 gadgetsmagazine.com.ph 32 February 2023
33 February 2023


consumer devices spotlight innovation in unexpected ways

Lenovo introduced bold new products to address the wide-ranging needs of the modern consumer. The new, cuttingedge Yoga Book 9i hails a new chapter for Yoga with incredible innovation, premium style, and performance for versatile experiences. Redefining what an all-in-one desktop computer could

tablet yet, featuring a dual-hinge keyboard design. A unique, protective storage compartment is created within the main hinge of the stand for the included Lenovo Precision Pen 3

Lenovo’s Project Chronos forthcoming) is a new technology that captures a user’s movement. It enables them to interact with and perform activities in 3D virtual worlds without glasses or wearables, making it easier for users to enter the virtual world.

Consumer Electronics Show 2023
gadgetsmagazine.com.ph 34 February 2023
Yoga 9i Yoga Slim 7i Carbon

Innovative technology for SMBs with a twist

Lenovo announced an innovative new model in the ThinkBook Plus series that reimagines its strong heritage of the twistable form factor, with a dual rotating display that features an OLED panel on one side and a colorful e-Ink screen on the other. Lenovo also unveiled its latest ThinkBook 16p Gen 4 laptop powered by high-performance components. This device features an innovative Lenovo Magic Bay modular accessory design with a magnetic pin connector allowing easy expansion for optionally included Lenovo Magic Bay 4K Webcam Magic Bay LTE, or Lenovo Magic Bay Light accessories.

Also, Lenovo introduced a new ThinkBook 13x Gen 2 Wireless Dock combining several wireless technologies to create a virtually cable-free docking and charging solution. Finally, Lenovo unveiled the latest in the portfolio of Tiny form factors. ThinkCentre neo 50q is a 1L space-saving desktop designed specifically for SMB customers.

35 February 2023
ThinkBook 16p Gen 4 Magic Bay 4K Webcam Magic Bay Light ThinkBook 13x Gen 2 Wireless Dock

Stylish and smarter ecosystem of gaming products

The 2023 Lenovo Legion lineup of battle-ready PCs, monitors, and accessories sets a new standard in PC gaming that give gamers the edge they need to top leaderboards. New for 2023 is the Lenovo LA AI chip, the world’s first dedicated AI chip on a gaming laptop, installed on the Lenovo Legion Pro 7 and 7i (16”, 8) laptops and the Lenovo Legion Pro 5 and 5i (16”, 8) laptops. Lenovo AI Engine+, powered by the Lenovo LA AI chip, deploys a software machine learning algorithm to optimally tune system performance.

On the desktop front, the new generation of Lenovo Legion towers stands at the pinnacle of extreme power and performance, with the Lenovo Legion Tower 7i (34L, 8) and Lenovo Legion Tower 5i (26L, 8) featuring up to 13th Gen Intel® Core™ desktop processors and NVIDIA® GeForce RTX™ 40 Series GPUs. The Lenovo Legion Tower 5 (26L, 8) features up to AMD® Ryzen™ 9 processor and AMD Radeon™ RX 7000 series or NVIDIA GeForce RTX 40 Series GPUs. To round out the portfolio, Lenovo Legion’s newest monitors include the new 27-inch Lenovo Legion Y27f-30 FHD and 27-inch Lenovo Legion Y27qf-30 QHD displays that are engineered to meet the demands of gamers and content creators alike.

Consumer Electronics Show 2023
gadgetsmagazine.com.ph 36 February 2023
Lenovo Legion Tower 5 Lenovo Legion Y27f-30 FHD Lenovo Legion Pro 7i

ThinkPad X1, ThinkPhone, ThinkVision, and Lenovo Go power hybrid working

Lenovo revealed its latest ThinkPad X1 laptops featuring recycled materials, updated Lenovo Commercial Vantage software designed to highlight settings that can improve energy efficiency, and a new View application, offering advanced computer vision technology for enhanced video image quality and tools for collaboration, security, and digital wellness.

The latest line of ThinkVision monitors leads with the ultrabright ThinkVision P27pz-30 and P32pz-30 mini-LED displays, followed by ThinkVision’s new T-series VOIP monitors built for hybrid work, featuring an integrated Microsoft Teams functionality, 5MP cameras, dual microphones, and speakers. Lenovo also introduced its latest professional-grade 4K ThinkVision P-series monitors and, for the home, new value-conscious Lenovo L-series monitors. Completing an efficient hybrid ecosystem are new accessories, including the unique Lenovo Go Desk Station, Lenovo Go Lenovo Professional Wireless Rechargeable

37 February 2023
ThinkPad X1 Lenovo Go 4K Pro Webcam Lenovo Professional Wireless Rechargeable Combo Keyboard and Mouse ThinkVision P32pz-30
Consumer Electronics Show 2023 gadgetsmagazine.com.ph 38 February 2023

Consumer devices delivering next-gen features for performance, versatility, and convenience

Lenovo’s latest generation of consumer devices is loaded with standout features and enhancements designed to help people connect with their passions and achieve their daily goals. With five new performance-driving and portable IdeaPad laptops (IdeaPad Pro 5i, IdeaPad Pro 5 Gen 8, IdeaPad Slim 5i, IdeaPad Slim 5, and IdeaPad Flex 3i Chromebook), the sleek and compact IdeaCentre Mini (1L, 8) desktop, a 9-inch Lenovo tablet and the versatile Lenovo 500 USB Type-C Universal Dock, these devices are designed for all the spaces and places in line with the on-the-go lifestyle of today’s consumer. Whether working, studying, creating, or just catching up with friends out of town, these new products offer speed, versatility, and convenience to suit their needs wherever they are.

Supporting services and software

In addition to these premium hardware options, Lenovo offers a range of device health, support, and protection services to help keep products running at peak condition and more secure, like its latest cloudbased security software Lenovo Smart Lock. For an added level of convenience in supporting the laptops introduced today, Lenovo Premium Care Plus incorporates many of its services into one solution. This comprehensive service includes advanced hardware and software support, Accidental Damage Protection, an extended battery warranty, Lenovo Migration Assistant, and Lenovo Smart Performance – a self-diagnostic system health check found within Lenovo Vantage.

39 February 2023
IdeaPad Pro 5i



Consumer Electronics Show 2023
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At the press conference ahead of the opening of the Sony exhibit at CES® 2023, Kenichiro Yoshida, chairman, president and CEO of Sony Group Corporation, took the stage and explained that collaboration with creators who create Kando (emotion) is essential to advancing Sony’s Purpose to “fill the world with emotion, through the power of creativity and technology”.

He also emphasized that the “live” sharing of time and space is the essence of entertainment and that Sony’s creation and interaction technology will support the virtual world to provide live experiences and connect them with the physical world in exciting ways.

Under the theme “Moving People Forward,” the exhibit focused on Sony’s efforts to move people’s hearts and expand the possibilities of entertainment through various technologies and initiatives relating to the metaverse, mobility, and other areas, and through its collaboration with creators.

As an environmental initiative, some of the booth panels were made of “Original Blended Material,” a paper material developed by Sony. Original Blended Material is an environmentally conscious paper material made from bamboo, sugar cane, and postconsumer recycled paper, whose origins are specified.


Star Sphere

STAR SPHERE is a project to bring space closer to all and to discover the “space perspectives” to provide an opportunity to think about the global environment and social issues. On January 3, 2023, a remote controllable nano-satellite “EYE” equipped with a camera capable of shooting from space, was launched. Sony exhibited the “Space Shooting Lab,” an experimental simulator that proposes a “space” for experiential photography from space that STAR SPHERE plans to offer in the future, and a mock-up of a nano-satellite equipped with Sony camera equipment.

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Technology for creators

Sony supports a wide range of production activities to get closer to various communities, from top creators to future creators. This booth showcased vast image production solutions, including digital cinema cameras such as VENICE 2, the full-frame mirrorless camera Alpha™ series, the VLOGCAM series, the professional drone Airpeak, Xperia™ smartphones, and the Creators’ Cloud, a cloud-based media production platform. In addition, Sony proposed high-quality sound content production through microphones and headphones for professionals and general creators.


Virtual fan engagement

Sony conducted a PoC (proof of concept) with the English Premier League football club Manchester City, aiming for the realization of the next generation of online fan communities and engagement through the combination of physical and

virtual to excite and engage with both new and existing sports fans. In the booth, visitors experienced metaverse content as if they were in the Etihad Stadium, Manchester City’s home, reproduced in virtual space. Fans could express their feelings and passion for the team by creating their own customizable avatars on their smartphones and, in the future, connect with millions of fans across the globe, in addition to accessing various services to increase engagement.

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New sports fan experiences created from live sports data

This exhibit introduced initiatives related to new data-driven sports fan experiences, taking visitors through the journey of sports data from data capture on the field, creating virtual content in real-time, and offering it on various platforms to fans. Multiple technologies from Hawk-Eye Innovations (“Hawk-Eye”), Beyond Sports, and Pulselive, all Sony Group companies, showcased Sony’s sports businesses’ ability to truly revolutionize how we capture, visualize, deliver and make interactive live-action data for the fans.

Portable volumetric capture

This exhibit showcased a prototype of a new system that can capture and distribute animated 3D reconstructions of people, objects, and spaces with low latency in any location. The system only requires seven sensors, which allows it to be set up anywhere quickly, meeting the demand for live 3D video distribution. The booth allowed visitors to enjoy experiencing a 360-degree view of Manchester City players and the audience shown in a 3D metaverse space, through tablets and Sony’s Spatial Reality Displays.

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Electronics Show 2023

Spatial Reality Display: New Prototype with a Large 27-inch Screen

Sony unveiled a 27” prototype of the Spatial Reality Display (SR Display) which reproduces the real world with 3D spatial images. The larger screen format enables the display of life-sized objects so that medical images and product designs can be reproduced more realistically. At the booth, the SR Display showed 3D computer graphics content with applications in various fields, such as point cloud data used in VR (virtual reality) and AR (augmented reality), as well as architecture and computer-aided design (CAD), in a virtual space. In addition, multi-view video created by Hawk-Eye’s live sports data and virtual characters were reproduced on the SR Display as a new style of entertainment.

Previsualization powered by “mocopi”

Previsualization technology was demonstrated using Sony’s mobile motion capture system “mocopi,” which allows creators to check their camerawork and character positions with VFX (visual effects, the process where imagery is created or manipulated outside of live-action shooting) editing at the pre-production stage. A CG model was shown on the viewing monitor, which was synchronized in real-time with the movement of a performing model who is wearing the “mocopi” device. This technology contributes to streamlined production workflow, allowing creators to simulate production at an early stage, improving the quality of their work.

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PlayStation®VR2 and PlayStation®5

Sony exhibited PlayStation®VR2 (PS VR2), the next-generation virtual reality headset for PlayStation®5 (PS5™) that brings an immersive gaming experience. PS VR2 has some key features that are realized through PS VR2 Sense Technology, such as headset feedback, eye tracking, 3D Audio, and adaptive triggers, as well as haptic feedback from PS VR2 Sense™ Controller. Select PS VR2 and PS5 games were available to try, along with PS5 accessories that were showcased at the booth.

Sony Honda Mobility

A new prototype vehicle was exhibited by Sony Honda Mobility, whose purpose is to “Move people, through the pursuit of innovation with diverse inspirations”. Check out Sony Honda Mobility’s website for more information: https://shm-afeela.com/

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"CES is one of the world’s most influential tech events where all tech giants, including MSI, proudly showcase the latest and greatest in tech,” said Sam Chern, MSI vice president of marketing. “The Leap

to Singularity is our theme for the year. It brings to light how MSI utilizes the most innovative and advanced technology to surpass all limits and make a significant change to the lives of mankind with persistent endeavor.”

The MSI display featured 14 products that won 15 CES® 2023 Innovation Awards, consisting of monitors, laptops, desktops, and components. The awards were first announced in November 2022, with additional awards given on January 3, 2023.

Consumer Electronics Show 2023
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MSI GeForce RTX™ 40 Series Graphics Cards

Powered by the new ultra-efficient NVIDIA Ada Lovelace architecture, MSI GeForce RTX 40 series graphics cards unite the latest graphics technology, high-performance circuit board design, and advanced cooling. Among the new series cards, GeForce RTX 4090 SUPRIM LIQUID X 24G won an award under the “Gaming” category in November. SUPRIM LIQUID applies a closed-loop liquid cooling system, a single TORX 5.0 fan, and a 240mm radiator that keeps temperatures even lower to allow new performance levels.

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Consumer Electronics Show 2023

M.2 HS, with blazing-fast read/write speeds of up to 10GB/s, unites PCIe Gen 5 controller technology with MSI’s bronze-colored aluminum heatsink for a performance storage package that unleashes phenomenal transfer rates in 1TB, 2TB, and 4TB capacities for professionals, content creators, and gamers.

The SPATIUM M570 PCIe 5.0

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MSI VIGOR GK71 SONIC Keyboard is a mid to high-end gaming keyboard that aims to enhance the user’s experience by focusing on comfort, practicality, and aesthetics. The exclusively-developed MSI SONIC BLUE mechanical switches are made to be a light 45g clicky keystroke with audible feedback so that gamers can achieve “Light Touch, Instant Kill.” The VIGOR GK71 Sonic’s award was recognized under the “Computer Peripherals & Accessories” category, which was announced on January 3.

MSI RadiX Series Gaming Router

MSI RadiX lineup is a series of gaming routers that features AI QoS, which can reduce the ping rate by 90% to provide extremely low latency for gamers. RadiX BE22000 Turbo adopts Wi-Fi 7 technology and auto-detecting antennas that change antenna patterns to follow your device location, enhancing signal coverage. The prime thermal module ensures RadiX AXE6600 and AX6600 ultra-performance even in heavy traffic.

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Consumer Electronics Show 2023


Gaming Mouse

MSI CLUTCH GM51 LIGHTWEIGHT WIRELESS weighs only a mere 85g and is designed for FPS gamers. It features an ergonomic shape with patented MSI Diamond Lightgrips as well as a top-notch optical sensor offering up to 26000dpi. It maximizes any gaming experience and enhances the performance and precision of every micro-movement.

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Curved Gaming Monitor

Designed for ultimate immersive gaming, the latest of MSI’s renowned QD series combines the newest OLED panel technology. MSI QDOLED products provide the best gaming with super-fast 0.1ms response time, fascinating image quality, and a truly wide color gamut. The MEG 342C QD-OLED won an award under the “Computer Peripherals & Accessories” in November and the 491C QD-OLED Monitor won two awards, recognized under the “Gaming” and “Computer Peripherals & Accessories” categories.

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MSI MEG 342C QD-OLED 491C QD-OLED Curved Gaming Monitor

MSI MAG 275CQRX Curved Gaming Monitor

Winning in the “Computer Peripherals and Accessories” category in November, this monitor will no longer have users choosing between a curvature or a monitor’s response time thanks to the latest advancements in Rapid VA technology. With a 1000R curvature, 250Hz refresh rate, a 1ms response time, and a 2560x1440 resolution, users can take advantage of immersive gaming on a curved display without having to sacrifice image clarity or fluid gameplay.

Consumer Electronics Show 2023
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MSI MEG Z790 GODLIKE Motherboard

The MSI MEG Z790 GODLIKE motherboard rises to the challenge with an advanced design built for overclocking, gaming, and demanding workloads. The MEG Z790 Godlike was awarded under the “Gaming” category in November.

MSI MEG Ai1300P PCIE5 Power Supply

The MEG Ai1300P PCIE5 is an 80 PLUS platinumcertified power supply unit that is fully ready for ATX 3.0 and PCIe 5.0. It can safely sustain 2x total power excursion and 3x GPU power excursion while featuring software-integrated functions that make it simple and direct to use. The MEG Ai1300P PCIE5 Power Supply was awarded under the “Computer Peripherals & Accessories” category in November.

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Consumer Electronics Show 2023 gadgetsmagazine.com.ph 54 February 2023

MSI MEG Trident X2 13th Gaming Desktop

MEG Trident X2 has an exclusive HMI 2.0 function. In addition to monitoring system status and adjusting performance, it can even operate the GI function of MSI gaming monitors. The MEG Trident X2 is powered by the top-tier Intel Core i9 processor and RTX 40 Series graphics cards. Based on MSI exclusive Silent Storm Cooling 3 technology with air baffle design, the MEG Trident X2 can offer the smoothest gaming experience in a 3A game title. The MEG Trident X2’s award was recognized under the “Gaming” category in November.

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Modern MD271UL 4K monitor with a sleek, curved, and elegant rear cover comes with 1.07 billion display colors and Type C with 65W PD. The exclusive app MSI Display Kit & Eye-Q Check system both ensure productivity and eye-care technology for users. The Modern MD271UL Monitor was awarded under the “Home Audio/Video Components & Accessories” category in November.

Consumer Electronics Show 2023
MSI Modem MD271UL Monitor
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EV Charger Premium/EV Charger AI is a smart Electric Vehicle AC charger compliant with SAE J1772 Type1 and IEC 62196-2 Type 2 which offers rapid charging power up to 13.2KW through 60A output current. The built-in 7” display clearly indicates the charging status. Its stylish design with an IP55 rating is perfect for both indoor and outdoor use. Moreover, it supports remote management, payment system, and license plate recognition (EV Charger AI) via wireless connections.

MS-98M3 is the embedded 3.5” SBC that supports multiplexing with 11th generation Intel IOTG Core processor, codenamed Tiger Lake-UP3 series of ultra-low power and high-performance, providing reliability and high durability with lower power consumption, and actively deploy in multiple applications such as AMR-AI-PJ-UVGI Robot, which was verified by Texcell/France to effectively inactivate the new SARS-COV2 virus within seconds.

MSI MS-XP01 EV Premium MSI MS-98M3 3.5 Single Board Computer Build in AMR-AI-PJ-UVGI Robot
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Enjoy a truly immersive virtual 7.1 sound through your standard stereo speaker and hear the difference

Nahimic Easy Surround is an innovative audio solution that turns any Bluetooth speaker into a surround sound system — allowing for a real surround experience. It is best for immersion in single-player games or for improving the spatial situation awareness of the surroundings in competitive games. It is now supported in MSI laptops and desktops.

Electronics Show 2023
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CES is one of the biggest technology events in the world that showcases manufacturers, developers, and suppliers of consumer technology hardware, content, technology delivery systems, and more. This year’s CES ran from January 5-8, 2023, in Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S.A.

This year, Google is rolling out Android Auto — with a new design that brings easier viewing and access to your favorite Android phone experiences (navigation, media, and communication) on your car display.

Meanwhile, cars with Google built-in have Google Assistant, Google Maps, and more apps from Google Play integrated directly into the vehicle, so you can control the car temperature with just your voice and even turn on house lights from your car before you get home. Currently, seven brands offer vehicles with Google built-in: Honda, Polestar, Volvo, Chevrolet, GMC, Renault, and Cadillac.

Consumer Electronics Show 2023
NEW ANDROID FEATURES, PRODUCTS, AND MILESTONES gadgetsmagazine.com.ph 60 February 2023

From cars to portable devices, Google is expanding its connectivity features to enable seamless switching between devices. In particular, Phone Hub in ChromeOS makes it easy to view and respond to your Android phone’s notifications from messaging apps directly from your laptop. Chromebooks are also packed with productivity features that help you get more done with your Android phone, like grabbing the latest photos from your phone’s camera roll, sending files with Nearby Share, or sharing and connecting to saved Wi-Fi networks.

These features are available on the new Chromebooks announced at CES, including the ASUS Chromebook Vibe CX34 Flip and HP Dragonfly Pro Chromebook.

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Connectivity milestones

Aside from new products and features, Google highlighted various connectivity milestones at the CES. These include Fast Pair, a feature that allows users to instantly find and connect nearby accessories to your devices. This speeds up the setup process for pairing your favorite devices, including 300 headphone models from brands like Beats, JBL, OnePlus, and Sony. The feature also works with Matter, so you can connect smart home devices to Google Home and other apps, right from your mobile devices.

In 2022, over 320 million Fast Pair pairings were made to instantly find and connect nearby accessories to your devices.

Nearby Share, which allows Android devices to share content easily, has seen 3 billion devices using the feature since its launch in 2020.

Consumer Electronics Show 2023
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perfect for any type of entertainment for every user. In the same vein, Google TV — an app that allows Android devices to be turned into a remote control and cast shows and movies from apps directly to compatible TVs with a single tap — has reached 150 million monthly active devices.

More Google TV devices are also set to launch within the year, including the TCL Q-Series TV and the Hisense ULED TVs, Laser TVs, and Laser Cinema lineups.

The wearable ecosystem has also seen quite a growth as Google reported that the active Wear OS devices have tripled since May 2021. Wear OS is an operating system specifically designed for smartwatches and other wearable devices. Wear OS 3, the latest version, lets you use the Camera app to level up your selfies and remotely control the camera shutter on Pixel phones or use the Google Home app to control compatible smart home devices like your thermostat and lights. Pixel Watches, Samsung Galaxy Watch5 series, and Fossil Gen 6 Wellness Edition are only some of the devices that use the OS.

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LG Electronics (LG) unveiled its second-generation LG SIGNATURE home appliance lineup at CES 2023. Offering timeless design and innovative technologies for a more convenient, stylish, and sustainable life at home, the sophisticated, new products were on show in the LG SIGNATURE zone of LG’s booth under the theme of ‘Live Beyond.’

Consumer Electronics Show 2023
LG SIGNATURE gadgetsmagazine.com.ph 64 February 2023

Seven years after its launch, LG SIGNATURE continues to redefine ultra-premium; delivering elegant, highly-advanced appliances and living solutions that take performance, design, and usability to new heights. While remaining true to the brand’s philosophy and craftsman-like quality, the second-generation lineup adds differentiated features and technologies that offer even more convenience, as well as new colors, materials, and finishes that bring a sleeker, more minimalist look to the home.

The models on display at CES included the brand-new LG SIGNATURE 4-Door French-Door refrigerator with Dual InstaView, a washer and dryer pair with 7-inch LCD touch panels, Over-the-Range Microwave Oven with smart InstaView, and the double Oven Slide-in Range with builtin cameras and automatic time and temperature-setting functionality. Among other LG SIGNATURE products

appearing in the exhibit were an air conditioner, air purifier, OLED TV, and the Wine Cellar.

The LG SIGNATURE zone, comprising of living room, laundry room, and kitchen was created in partnership with Italian designer furniture brand, Molteni&C. The aesthetically refined, technologically advanced products from the LG SIGNATURE range were complemented in each stylish appointed interior scene by Molteni&C’s stunning furniture pieces.

“LG SIGNATURE second-generation appliances combine our exclusive technologies, an array of enhanced features of convenience and efficiency, and gorgeous, modern design for a smart, sustainable, and more luxurious life at home,” said Lyu Jae-cheol, president of LG Electronics Home Appliance & Air Solution Company.

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Financial technologies (or Fintech) have come a long way since their “inception” in the late 19th century. Yes, Fintech is that old, but not for the reasons you might think.

Fintech is typically defined as the technology to improve financial and banking services. Ever since the development of banks, Fintech has technically existed.

Cover story
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History of Banking and Fintech

Banking has its roots in ancient Mesopotamia. Historians point out that as early as 2000 BCE, there were prototype banks that loaned grain to farmers in the Assyrian civilization. There were also prototype banks among the ancient Greeks, Romans, and many other civilizations. There are stories of a “banking” system used by the Templars Knights to aid pilgrims in their journey to the Holy Lands in medieval times.

However, the consensus is that the modern banking system has its roots in the merchant banks of renaissance Italy, where wealthy merchant families started lending money and offering loans. This persisted until the 15th century, when the English created banknotes and, later, the Bank of England, one of the first central banks in the world.

But if we speak of Fintech, its root would be in the 19th century, when the first transatlantic cables enabled electronic fund transfer using the telegraph or morse codes. Fintech would boom from the late 1960s with the arrival of the first ATM in 1967 and the founding of NASDAQ (the first digital stock exchange) and SWIFT (a communication protocol for financial institutions) in the 1970s.

The age of computers and the internet would be the next giant leap in Fintech, most notably in the late 1990s with the launch of Paypal, which sparked a boom in e-commerce transactions. It became the number one choice of payment when buying from internet auctions from sites like eBay. Coincidentally, eBay bought Paypal in 2002 to become its primary mode of payment before it became a separate site in 2015.

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Banking moves to the digital sphere

The internet age saw the rise in digital banks. Digital banks are banks that, at every level, have been digitalized or adopted new technologies to give patrons a much more convenient banking experience.

Initially, brick-and-mortar banks started offering online banking solutions for traditional services. Now, banks can offer far more services than simple balance inquiries or fund transfer transactions. Online banking now includes services such as accepting payments and even cheque deposits via your smartphone’s camera. Eventually, banks expanded their online offers, with some starting their e-wallet services, thus kicking off the cashless revolution.

The continuous development of telecommunication created the infrastructure

that paved the way for digital banks, which no longer have physical offices but instead have all their services accessible on your smartphone. In the Philippines, the Banko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) has accredited six digital banks as of 2022, with more expected in the coming years.

Accrediting digital banks and financial institutions was also part of the BSP’s digitalization goal. The country’s central bank aimed to shift the country’s transactions from the traditional coin and paper to a heavily digital economy by 2023, with 50% of all transactions becoming digital. To achieve this, the central bank wants 70% of the adult population to have a bank account by 2023. We’ll have to wait and see if this goal is achieved by year-end.

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The pandemic and the future of Fintech

The trajectory of Fintech innovation has skyrocketed in the past few years. In the last three years alone, many embraced Fintech and e-commerce as their primary choice of transaction, no thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic.

A study by PwC in 2020 saw a 35.5% global traffic increase in retail e-commerce platforms from January to June 2020. At the same time, a March 2020 Forbes poll found that the pandemic was the primary cause of digital transformation for many businesses.

Fintech provided a possible backbone for the continuation of the world’s economy. During a time when physical contact needed to be limited, cashless payments became the norm. Shopping shifted from your usual mall browsing to online browsing on different platforms.

Two years since the worst of the pandemic, our reliance on Fintech solutions and platforms continues. E-wallets have become the norm of

payment in major retail establishments. Most banking is done on smartphones, and online shopping has never been better.

A 2022 article in the Harvard Business Review pointed out that fintech companies have a collective global value of USD5-trillion, with growth expected to be above 23% in the next four to five years. This, the article explains, can be credited to Fintech’s promise to reach the unbanked while strengthening financial health and promoting digital security.

Fintech will continue to grow in the foreseeable future, although how remains an enigma. There are possibilities for integration with blockchain technologies to provide a safer and more transparent banking system. Another possibility already being considered by several countries is a central digital currency. Technology will definitely impact the world of finance in many ways, and one thing is for sure, it will be for the betterment of all.

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hile Fintech started its rise during the latter half of the 2010s, it was only during the pandemic that all these different digital banking, virtual wallet, and online payment platforms got into their stride in terms of their userbase. Due to the dangers of physical cash transactions then, we saw how all varieties of businesses — restaurants, retail chains, mom-and-pop stores, and even sari-sari stores — adopted and thrived on digital payments and transactions. Even taho and fishball vendors got into the trend and used QR codes for payments. That’s how popular Fintech became due to COVID-19.

But before the conveniences of today’s financial landscape for consumers, there was a time when financial services weren’t as accessible nor as speedy. For our Gen Z and Gen Alpha readers, here are some things that we Millennials and the older generation had to deal with for the sake of money.

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Sending and receiving money

Today, if you are sending or receiving money for whatever purpose — allowances, purchases, or your share in the group’s kaniyakaniyang bayad meal — and you aren’t using cash, the same bank, or the same payment platform, then you can use Instapay or PESOnet for a minimal fee. It is so convenient not having to worry about carrying stacks of cash for a hefty purchase or having enough change to split the dinner bill.

These now-invaluable fund transfer services were established in 2017. However, before they were the norm, digital cash transactions were, in hindsight, quite inconvenient. I still remember having to go to a courier shop or a pawnshop to receive my allowances. This involved riding jeeps, queuing in line, manually filling up forms, and commuting back to my dorm, wary of thieves or hold-uppers who prey on newly cashed-up college students. Sometimes, if I was particularly unlucky, the shop would not have enough cash to cover the remittance, and I would have to try again the next day.

The GCash and the Maya we know today have come so far in terms of features and conveniences. Before evolving into multi-function virtual wallets, they were just text-based domestic money transfer services that you could cash out from, courtesy of your nearest sari-sari store or neighbor. Unfortunately, they also had the oftenoccurring problem of not having enough cash on hand to cover the transaction.

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Photo by Clay Banks on Unsplash


Digital banking is such a boon for those without the patience or social energy to go to a physical bank. Today, you can open a bank account, request statements, and order checkbooks from the comfort of your sofa at whatever convenient time. Sure, platforms and systems are sometimes buggy, and there’s always the fear of being hacked. But I believe that as long as you practice proper cybersecurity protocols such as using a strong password, enrolling in two-factor authentication, not sharing your one-time PINs, and staying away from scam links and sites, then you’re golden for the most part.

In contrast, physical banking was and continues to be such an exercise in patience. Going into a brick-and-mortar bank for tasks such as opening an account, amending your record, or encashing checks can easily eat up a

few hours out of your day. Banking hours are also quite inconvenient, as most are only open during weekdays for at least six hours. Before, if I was not among the first people in the door at the start of the banking day — especially during paydays — then I had to resign myself to taking a half-day off from work.

To be fair, though, physical banking does feel more secure as bankers are pretty thorough in ensuring their clients are who they say they are. Also, machines and FAQs cannot yet entirely replace the human touch of being able to answer complicated questions such as “I lost my PIN for my first account, but I would like to open another account. Can I just link the first account number to the second one’s ATM card?” Additionally, getting your transactions done by going into a bank just feels more like an adulting accomplishment versus online banking.

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The value of cold hard cash

No, I’m not talking about monetary value. A PHP1,000 bill will always have the value of a thousand pesos. I’m talking about physical currencies’ non-monetary attributes. For instance, being tangible means that it can be physically held, stored, and used for transactions. Being physically real also means having to be face-to-face with your transaction partner to use it. Back then, it was unthinkable to send your hardearned money to a stranger over the internet who claims that they’ll send you that limited edition Funko Pop or a whole tray of cookies. On the flip side, sellers had to be extra cautious with buyers sending screenshots of bank deposit slips as these may be faked or edited. Thankfully, digital cash trails can be easily tracked and monitored nowadays, so this problem is not as prevalent as before.

Previously, the internet was also not as strong. If all you had was your virtual wallet and you didn’t carry cash with you, your financial wellbeing could come crashing down if the internet goes kaput.

Lastly, carrying physical cash can put a damper on your spending. It’s easy to go gung ho and spend your entire virtual wallet in one afternoon because of how easy it is to scan QR codes. With cash, you can feel your real wallet thinning. Nothing brings a spending spree in check like a very light wallet that was once full.

“The GCash and the Maya we know today have come so far in terms of features and conveniences. Before evolving into multifunction virtual wallets, they were just text-based domestic money transfer services that you could cash out from, courtesy of your nearest sari-sari store or neighbor.”

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nline payments have been around for years in the form of debit and credit cards, although most Filipinos remain unbanked. When the pandemic struck, telcos and fintech companies offered consumers a solution for contactless transactions. The momentum has picked up in the past three years, with transactions such as banking, bills payment, savings, investment, insurance, and lending now happening online.

Other industries have latched onto this trend, with supermarkets and many other establishments offering cashless payment options. E-wallets have evolved into super apps that bring multi-faceted benefits to our daily lives.

Now, more people find an e-wallet more convenient than having a bank account. For instance, to set up an e-wallet account, there’s no need to go to an actual bank, fill up some forms, submit required documents, and wait to get approved. Signing up for an e-wallet account is painless, as all you need is an active sim card and a valid ID.

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We may not have perfected the technology yet, but we’ve managed to leverage it to our advantage, making our daily tasks effortless. Just like any tech advancements, e-wallets have their own pros and cons:

• It’s convenient to pay cashless in major retail establishments. However, small businesses like sari-sari stores and wet/dry markets don’t typically use this payment channel, so you’d still need to use cash.

• Linking your debit card to your e-wallet is as easy as ABC, but not everyone has a bank account. Cashing in when you need to top up your wallet or cashing out when you need cash could get tricky since this service is not available everywhere.

• E-wallets offer more security and eliminate the risk of loss and theft as it lets you authorize your every transaction. Caution is still adviced, though, as your e-wallet account can still be exposed to hacking and fraudulent activities and breach of data privacy.

E-wallets have taken over Southeast Asia by storm and the Philippines is in step with this global trend with over 100M registered users. A cashless society in the Philippines sounds surreal, with the possibility of using online payments everywhere, even in public transportation. As the country develops technologically, we are inevitably transitioning to a cashless society. This brings some potential challenges, particularly in terms of security, such as losing your privacy to a third-party application or leaving a digital trail for every transaction that you make. Another issue that we may encounter in the long run could be increased transaction fees, which can impact those living in poverty.

While the transition to cashless finance will benefit most of us, we could be overlooking sectors that may be adversely impacted, like senior citizens, persons with disabilities, and the low-income families affected by economic inequality.

The thought of a cashless society has been embraced by many, while others are slow to adapt. Companies looking to go completely cashless are at the leading edge of a new world, but could be alienating those who do not have the means and technology to participate in this development. A cashless future is only possible if telcos and Fintech companies create inclusive solutions that consider the unique needs of all sectors of society.

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Acer Nitro 16 | Nitro 17

THE LATEST ACER NITRO LAPTOPS, designed to provide casual gamers with a new level of immersive gameplay experience, come with 16-inch WUXGA/ WQXGA displays or 17.3-inch FHD/QHD displays and are supported by liquid metal thermal grease on the processor.

The new AMD Ryzen mobile processors deliver poweroptimized performance and a plethora of enhanced user experiences. Leveraging its new Zen 4 core architecture designed for high performance and efficiency, gamers and mobile workers are treated with accelerated performance for outstanding productivity and power efficiency. In addition, select models feature AMD’s Ryzen +AI technology for magical video effects like eye gaze correction.

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The 16-inch Nitro 16 (AN16-41) gaming notebook features an upgraded WUXGA or WQXGA display with a 165Hz refresh rate and 5% more screen area than its previous model. With up to NVIDIA GeForce RTX 40 Series Laptop GPUs, it also supports NVIDIA Advanced Optimus, which lets players seamlessly switch between integrated graphics and discrete graphics.

Users can appreciate a color-rich and immersive viewing experience with 100% sRGB color gamut support and a whopping 84% screen-to-body ratio while also integrating a large 125.0mm x 76.7mm touchpad and a 4-zone RGB backlit keyboard.

The Nitro 17 (AN17-41) houses the latest AMD Ryzen 7000 Series processors and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 40 Series GPUs within its slim but solid construction. The 17.3 display comes in either an FHD display with 144Hz or 165Hz refresh rates or a quad high-definition display (QHD) with a 165Hz refresh rate, supported by an 81% screen-to-body ratio for stunning visuals. Its ample gaming space is topped off with a massive touchpad (125.0mm x 81.6mm) and an RGB 4-zone backlit keyboard that all types of players will be excited to play on.

The two Acer Nitro devices come with up to 32GB of DDR5 5600 MHz memory and up to 2TB of M.2 PCIe Gen 4 storage, so gamers and content creators can do more at once. The laptops utilize dual fans, four fan outlets strategically-placed at their sides and rear, upper air intake, and are further supported by liquid metal thermal grease to improve cooling. These are also integrated with

NitroSense software and a NitroSense key, so users can monitor their systems’ temperatures and easily manage the devices’ performance settings.

Players can fully immerse themselves in-game and while streaming with the laptops’ HD camera, two microphones, and two speakers with DTS:X Ultra for clear-cut audio. The AMD-powered gaming notebooks also provide a full range of connectivity options with an HDMI 2.1 port, a microSD card reader, USB 2.0, USB 4, a Type C USB3.2 Gen 2 display port supporting Power Delivery,

and two USB 3.2 Gen 2 ports, with one that allows for offline charging. Each model comes with LAN E2600G and is WiFi 6E-enabled, providing greater bandwidth and faster connectivity for wired and cordless connections. Both laptops also include one month of Xbox Game Pass or PC Game Pass, providing access to hundreds of high-quality PC games.

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Acer eKinekt BD3

THE ACER EKINEKT BD 3 is a desk combined with a stationary bike to empower sustainable and healthier lifestyles. This bike desk lets users exercise as they work by using kinetic energy from the rider’s pedaling to power the machine and charge devices.

As the rider pedals, the eKinekt converts kinetic energy into an electric charge. One hour of constant cycling at 60rpm on the bike desk can generate 75watts of self-generated power. The useable energy is then utilized to charge laptops and other devices, so users can get work done and stay active at the same time. Embodying its long-term commitment to finding the balance between creating innovative solutions while protecting the planet, the eKinekt BD 3’s desktop and the casing that protects the bike’s components are made from post-consumer recycled (PCR) plastic.

The multi-function bike desk features two USB Type-A ports and a USB Type-C port, allowing multiple mobile devices to be charged simultaneously. An LED charging indicator on the back of the bike lights up when pedaling, signaling that kinetic energy is being converted. The eKinekt’s wide desk surface provides the user with ample working space, while the adjustable table height and seat let them sit in a comfortable position at all times. For added convenience, a

bag hook allows users to easily hang their belongings, while a designated beverage holder lets them stay hydrated and avoid spillage when on the bike.

In Working Mode, the desk surface moves closer to the chair to let riders sit in an upright position while typing and pedaling. In Sports Mode, the desktop sits further forward, giving more room to lean in, similar to the position on a standard bike or trainer, for added leg space and increased pedaling power. The well-thought design lets users take advantage of downtime in between work periods to stay energized and do some exercise

within a small area. Riders can then seamlessly revert to Working Mode by just sliding the desk surface back into its original position.

The eKinekt’s user-friendly companion app provides real-time information to check riding duration, distance, and speed, while indicating the estimated number of calories burned and watts generated when pedaling. For more accurate tracking, riders can input personal information such as height, weight, gender, and age on their app profiles. It also records workout history for users to track their progress and compare results over time.

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Bike Desk

Canon imagePROGRAF TC-20

THE IMAGEPROGRAF TC-20 is Canon’s first desktop 4-color pigment ink large format printer with A1 plus capability. Addressing the growing need for high-quality large-format printing in small workspaces, the compact TC-20 facilitates hybrid and remote work in various industries, particularly the architecture, engineering and construction, education, and retail sectors. The TC-20 also supports roll paper of up to A1 plus width and comes with a standard built-in Auto Sheet Feeder (ASF) that enables continuous A3 A4 printing for maximum

productivity. Compatible with free software and applications such as the PosterArtist, the TC-20 offers superb ease of use.

The large format printer sits easily on desks or shelves. It allows users to conveniently perform printrelated operations such as loading paper, refilling ink, and replacing maintenance cartridges from the front of the printer. Equipped with a new shaftless roll holder, the TC-20 allows users unfamiliar with large format printers to replace roll paper effortlessly, even in tight spaces.

The TC-20 supports up to 50 A3 or 100 A4 cut sheets with auto-switching between cut sheets and roll paper. For maximum productivity, users can load up to 100 A4 cut sheets in the standard ASF for continuous printing and effortlessly print CAD drawings or posters on A1/24-inch roll paper from various applications. Other productivity-enhancing features include 70ml ink bottles for all four colors (cyan, magenta, yellow & black) to cater to continuous printing of technical drawings, GIS maps & posters, and an optional desktop basket for easy collection of prints.

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Large format printer

Using all-color pigment ink, the TC-20 produces clear, high-quality prints with fine lines and small characters on drawings comparable to prints from high-end large format printers. The prints do not smudge easily from highlighter marks or water spills.

Delivering excellent ease of use, the TC-20 works with various free software and applications to help users work efficiently. With the PosterArtist web application, users can create their own designs from a wide selection of templates, and print marketing collateral, such as posters and flyers on the TC-20, to meet different business needs. The large format printer works with free

software, Direct Print Plus, to help users send multiple prints in different formats, such as PDF and TIFF. Users can preview the layout of files without launching a dedicated application, thus reducing time spent and print wastage effectively.

With the Canon Print Inkjet/ SELPHY application, users can check the usage of roll paper and ink via smartphones or tablets and keep the TC-20 up to date with the latest firmware. Users can also print documents stored in the cloud via PIXMA Cloud Link on the application.

It is the first Canon large-format printer registered as a gold product in the field of imaging equipment products under the U.S. “EPEAT” environmental assessment system. Its low power consumption is just approximately 28W during operation and 1.8W during standby. It uses more than 5% recycled plastic.

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SONY HAS ADDED new music players — the NW-ZX707 and the NW-A306 — to the Walkman family. Both players are designed for listeners to enjoy music the way the artist intended, with high-quality sound and sleek design.

Built with updated components of high-end models, the NW-ZX707 offers astonishing sound quality. With enhanced battery life, a balanced connection, a larger 5” display, and Wi-Fi compatibility for easy downloading and streaming functions, it is also portable and stylish for the most demanding music lover.

Inheriting the philosophy of the Signature Walkman, the NW-ZX707 has upgraded fine-tuned capacitors, an FTCAP3 (High polymer capacitor), and a large solid high polymer capacitor that offers large capacitance and low resistance. An OFC milled block covering the digital block allows the NWZX707 to bring listeners sound that appears to rise-up from silence. Additionally, a large 8mm coil for balanced output creates an improved sound resolution across all frequencies. The NW-ZX707 integrates a DSD Remastering Engine where PCM (Pulse Code Modulation) audio is resampled into an 11.2 MHz DSD (Direct Stream Digital), offering even more ways to enjoy music.

Sony Walkman NW-ZX707 | NW-A306

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PHP44,999 – NW-ZX707 HP19,999 – NW-A306 Music Player
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Meanwhile, the NW-A306 is designed for discerning users looking for high-quality sound and style. This stylish and compact music player lets consumers download and stream more of the music they love. With full Wi-Fi compatibility, weighing just only 7 ounces, and with the comfort and function of both a 3.6” touchscreen and tactile physical music controls, the NWA306 series is dedicated to delivering exceptional music experiences right from the users’ pocket. The premium aluminum milled frame on the NWA306 provides superior rigidity for low impedance and clear, stable sound and solid bass.

The NW-ZX707 and the NW-A306 both feature independently-developed S-Master HX digital amp technology that is compatible with the native DSD format. It reduces distortion and noise across a wide range of frequencies, for rich and full-bodied sound, further enhanced by a new high-quality sound lead-free solder. Just like the latest Signature Walkman model, both models apply a reflow solder containing gold, whose effect is significant in the overall improved sound localization and wider sound space. To realize both music players’ evolutionary sound, a dual clock, film capacitor, and fine sound register have been precisely placed within each Walkman.

The NW-ZX707 and the NWA306 both use Edge-AI (Artificial Intelligence), and DSEE Ultimate (Digital Sound Enhancement Engine) which upscales compressed digital music files in real-time. The evolving algorithm now delivers even greater benefits for CD-quality (16-bit 44.1/48kHz) lossless codec audio. Restoring acoustic subtleties and

dynamic range provides a richer, more complete listening experience. With further progress from its predecessor models, consumers can enjoy DSEE Ultimate for upscaling their music, whether it is Wi-Fi streamed or downloaded. Now, listeners can also enjoy DSEE Ultimate with wireless headphones.

The NW-ZX707 and the NW-A306 both feature a longer battery life compared to previous models. The NW-ZX707 has a battery life of up to 25 hours of 44.1kHz FLAC playback, up to 23 hours of 96kHz FLAC HighResolution Audio playback, or up to 22 hours when streaming. The NW-A306 has a battery life of up to 36 hours of 44.1kHz FLAC playback, up to 32 hours of 96kHz FLAC high-resolution audio playback, or up to 26 hours with the streaming service apps to meet the demand of consumers.

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Kingston IronKey Vault Privacy 50C

AS WORK-FROM-HOME continues to grow, so does the need for proper measures to secure sensitive data. Kingston IronKey™ launched its first USB Type-C® Vault Privacy 50C (IKVP50C) drive. Now, users on any system can protect their data against BadUSB and Brute Force attacks with the FIPS 197 Certified & XTS-AES 256-bit hardware-encrypted Vault Privacy 50 series.

The Multi-Password Option with Complex or Passphrase modes lets users choose a numeric PIN, sentence with space characters, or list of words so their password is easy to remember but harder for others to guess. The award-winning line of hardware-encrypted storage offers a myriad of other features designed to protect you and your data.

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USB Flash Drive

OnePlus Buds Pro

THE ONEPLUS BUDS PRO 2 is one of the first TWS earbuds to adopt Google’s signature spatial audio feature developed for Android 13. This creates a multi-dimensional experience within a pair of tiny earbuds. Because of this, the sound always comes from a fixed position regardless of movement, with the same quality of 3D audio as in the cinema.

In collaboration with Google, OnePlus has optimized the spatial audio of the Buds Pro 2 to simulate the immersive

multi-dimensional experience found in theaters. Using OnePlus’ spatial rendering algorithm and IMU sensor, the OnePlus Buds Pro 2 takes the spatial audio feature to the next level, with added stability, compatibility with app expansions, and enabling other applications to use its technology.

In its pursuit of creating seamless connections, the Buds Pro 2 increases its efficiency with Android’s Fast Pair feature, which lets you quickly connect to nearby Android devices in one tap.

With Android’s audio switching feature, the Buds Pro 2 is able to connect to two Android devices simultaneously, and seamlessly switch the audio between them based on your actions, without the hassle of having to fiddle with Bluetooth settings.

Furthermore, considering the compatibility of most audio sources in the market, OnePlus developed a bespoke stereo up-mixing algorithm, creating multi-dimensional sound from mainstream audio and video apps.

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True Wireless Stereo Earbuds



SAY GOODBYE TO SLOW, lagging performance as the OPPO A17 showcases a default 4GB of RAM integrated with a RAM Expansion feature that provides an additional 4GB for upgraded multitasking needs. This ensures that nothing will stop you from opening several apps at a time and switching from one app to the next.

It has 64GB internal storage, expandable to 1TB via a microSD card. This gives you the freedom to store all your documents and files for work and personal photos worth keeping, as the bigger memory can hold up to 26,000 2MB images.

The OPPO A17 has a powerful 5000mAh battery with a 10W charging feature that can power up your phone for the whole day.

Make every milestone extra special by capturing them with the OPPO A17’s impressive 50MP main camera. The rear camera is complemented by a 5MP selfie camera, to ensure all your images are clear and crisp.

The cameras also feature Portrait Retouching to provide social-media-worthy photos, Night View Selfie to enable you to capture clear and bright photos in low-light or dark environments, and Portrait Mode to blur your images’ backgrounds.

Other than boasting a reliable performance, the OPPO A17 also looks really good. Its premium leather-feel design is a fashion statement on its own. Available in Lake Blue and Midnight Black, the OPPO A17 features a skin-like texture

and UV soft touch coating with an Ultra-Slim Retro Design, making it easier to grip and pleasing to the eyes.

The device underwent tougher testing to ensure its enduring quality. The OPPO A17 surpassed 20,000 USB insertions, 28,000 micro-drops, 150,000 volume button pushes, and 500,000 power button presses while being water, high temperature, and high humidity resistant.

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Synology DS923+

POWERED BY THE VERSATILE Synology DiskStation Manager (DSM) operating system, the DS923+ delivers comprehensive solutions to protect and manage business data, easily collaborate on documents, access files remotely, and monitor physical assets, all within a compact desktop format. It offers consistent performance out of the box, with the option to easily upgrade networking and further boost data transfer speeds through network cards.

The DS923+ can function as the primary storage and data protection solution for homes and small offices or as an edge node for multi-site deployments. Capable of storing over 50 TB across its compact 4-bay setup, it can easily be scaled to accommodate over 120 TB across nine drives with a DX517 expansion unit. Users can further boost performance by upgrading to 10GbE networking and by adding M.2 NVMe SSD drives through the built-in PCIe slot to enable fast caching or create additional all-flash storage pools.

For teams working remotely and businesses operating across multiple locations, site-tosite file syncing enables content mirroring between Synology devices. Synology Drive delivers intuitive file management and sharing, combining convenient remote file access with privacy and 100% data ownership of onpremises storage.

The DS923+ allows users to use highperformance local storage while simultaneously reducing their footprint using hybrid cloud technology. Synology Hybrid Share efficiently stores cold data in the cloud and keeps frequently accessed files cached on the device for access at LAN speed.

Ensuring that critical or sensitive data is always protected against modern cybersecurity threats is essential to avoid irreversible loss of valuable information. Synology’s Active Backup Suite allows IT infrastructure, such as Windows and Linux systems, Hyper-V/VMware VMs, and Microsoft 365/Google Workspace accounts, to be safely backed up onto the DS923+ and easily restored when needed. For increased redundancy, backups and point-in-time

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Network Attached Storage

snapshots of data stored on the NAS can also be created and sent offsite to another server or cloud service.

The device can also serve as a fullfledged video management system with full local data ownership. Synology’s Surveillance Station is a powerful VMS that is currently implemented in and protecting over

500,000 sites. Flexible ONVIF support and more than 8,300 validated IP cameras make deployment simple and easily suited to each location’s requirements.

Surveillance Station makes it easy to set up and manage up to 40 cameras with a modern and customizable interface. For larger or multiple

building environments, the option to overlay floor plans and Google Maps or OpenStreetMap maps is available for maximum situational awareness. Important footage can be retained for increased resiliency with support for recording server backup, multidevice management, and even endto-end encrypted, simultaneous dual recording to the Synology C2 cloud.

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After their comeback last year, HONOR is looking to make a statement in the new year with their new “budget-premium” smartphone, the HONOR X9a 5G. The phone straddles the world of premium smartphones with its gorgeous looks and the world of budget smartphones with its mid-range price point. But how does it stack up? 100 February 2023


Gorgeous is the only way to describe the HONOR X9a 5G. If HONOR had not told us that this would be a “budget” phone, I would have assumed that this phone would be priced somewhere on the higher end.

Our test unit came in the refreshing Emerald Green color. The back is made of premium plastic that’s great for two reasons: (a) it’s not a fingerprint magnet; (b) you can confidently display the phone even without a case.

The phone has a 6.67-inch curved OLED display with a 120Hz refresh rate. HONOR takes pride in the 0.65mm Super Reinforced Glass display, which our drop test demonstrated can withstand even the most absurd accidental drops.

The curved display also helps minimize the phone’s body, making the HONOR X9a 5G one of the slimmest smartphones in the market at just 7.9mm thin.

On the display are the selfie camera and the earpiece. At the back is the triple camera setup which resembles HONOR’s flagship Magic series. On top is a mic hole and an IR-blaster, and below are the downward firing speaker, USB-C port, and sim tray. The volume and power buttons are located on the right of the device.

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Hardware-wise, the HONOR X9a 5G has all the right stuff, considering that for a budget phone, HONOR had to balance things out. Powering the phone is a Qualcomm Snapdragon 695 processor that is almost a year old and not the speediest out there, but it’s good enough to get the job done.

Paired with the processor is 8GB of RAM expandable up to 13GB by utilizing 5GB from your storage, thanks to HONOR’s RAM Turbo utility. Internal storage is a whopping 256GB.

I ran several benchmarks which, surprisingly, went beyond expectations. The phone scored 402526 in Antutu V9.5, as well as 666 for Single Core and 1900 for Multi-Core in Geekbench 5 — very decent outcomes for the processor. In actual use, the phone performed very well. I ran League of Legends: Wild Rift and Genshin Impact with both running well. Wild Rift ran at 60fps on “Super High” resolution while Genshin Impact was able to run on the highest setting at around 20-30fps.

Moving on to the camera, the HONOR X9a 5G has a triple camera setup at the rear with the main shooter being 64-megapixel. It has a secondary 5-megapixel ultrawide camera and a 2-megapixel macro lens. In daylight, it captures get images, but low light shooting could stand some improvement.

For video, it can capture only up to 1080p at 30fps. It does have some other features like

multi-video recording which can be useful for vlogging, and some video story templates to capture those memorable moments.

Lastly, the X9a 5G has a 5100mAh battery with HONOR’s 40W Super Charge. The battery lasted about a day and a half with moderate use (YouTube binge and a bit of gaming). The 40W fast charging is able to fully juice up the device in around 40-45 minutes.


HONOR has surprised me with the X9a 5G. Rarely do I see a phone that makes me say, “That’s a looker!” When the X9a 5G arrived for testing, I was stunned by how thin it was and by the bold choice of having a curved display.

Despite their aesthetic appeal, curved displays have gone out of favor because of accidental touches. Considering its

after horrific drop tests.

Another great thing about the device was the choice of an OLED display. To be honest, I think the display is the best part of this phone, and I have been enjoying my nightly movie binge sessions on it. Even with only a single downward-firing speaker, it can be loud.

The last thing I want to commend is internal cooling. The phone stayed surprisingly cool even during benchmarking and heavy gaming sessions.

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Coming in at PHP16,990, HONOR has brought their A-game to start the year. The HONOR X9a 5G is one to look out for. The premium look and design paired with the nearly indestructible body make it a pretty good steal for the price


Display: 6.67-inch Curved OLED

Display (1080 x 2400) with 120Hz refresh rate and 800nits max brightness. 0.65mm super-reinforced glass.

Processor: Qualcomm Snapdragon

695 5G Chipset

OS: MagicUI 6 over Android 12

RAM: 8GB (plus 5GB with HONOR

RAM Turbo)

Internal Storage: 256GB

Camera: Front: 16-megapixel; Rear: 64-megapixel (main), 5-megapixel (ultrawide), 2-megapixel (macro)

Battery: 5100mAh with 40W HONOR Super Charge

Connectivity: Dual-band Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, NFC, IR Port

Dimensions: 161.6 x 73.9 x 7.9mm

Weight: 175g


Great looks

Solid build

Not the latest processor

Single firing speaker


HONOR has kicked off their A-game with the X9a 5G

103 February 2023
Sample of a daylight shot using the main camera A sample from the ultra-wide angle lens The 2x zoom on the main camera


Games are as distinct as the gamers they cater to. Every gamer needs to have their distinct arsenal depending on the way they play. Take MMORPG players. The number of skills they constantly need to cast (I feel you priest and sorcerer mains) means they need more actions per minute when gaming. Similarly, RTS gamers need to macro manage their units speedily and efficiently. Regular gear can’t cut it for these gamers, which is why they need something like the Razer Naga V2 Pro, a mouse with up to 22 programmable controls and up to 12 side buttons.

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The Razer Naga V2 Pro bears a striking similarity to its predecessor, the Razer Naga Pro. This right-handed mouse has a matte black body and RGB on the Razer logo and side button (for 12 button panel only). The major difference is that the V2’s body size is larger, thanks to a larger finger rest on the right. Another slight difference is the lack of RGB on the scroll wheel, which I initially overlooked when comparing the two.

The main draw for the Razer Naga Pro series is their interchangeable side panels that let you fit either a standard

traditional MMORPG 12-button panel. Beyond the side panels are six other buttons — the left and right clicks, the scroll wheel, the DPI adjustment button, the scroll wheel adjustment button, and the profile switch button beneath the mouse. The scroll can also be clicked left and right, and can be further customized for macros shortcuts for a total of 8 programmable actions without the side panel.

Also underneath the mouse are the power, Bluetooth, the 2.4Ghz wireless mode switch, and the replaceable puck for Razer’s wireless charging. In addition to the mouse, the box comes with Razer’s 2.4GHz Wireless USB, a USB dongle, and the black Speedflex cable, which doubles as the mouse’s USB charger. The side panel

also houses the wireless USB when not connected.

One thing I would have appreciated, design-wise, is a white-colored variant for the Naga V2 Pro since it currently only comes in the standard black.

February 2023
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The Razer Naga Pro V2 features Razer’s Focus Pro 30K Optical Sensor, similar to the Razer DeathAdder V3 Pro. It has a max sensitivity of 30,000DPI and a max speed (IPS) of 750 with a max acceleration of up to 70G. For the switches, it has Razer’s new third-generation optical switches that are rated for up to 90 million clicks.

Performance-wise, the Razer Naga Pro V2 is similar to the Razer DeathAdder V3 Pro, mainly because of the similar sensor. That said, it is significantly heavier than the DeathAdder V3 Pro due to the added components, such as RGB and Bluetooth support.

The battery life of the Naga Pro V2 is rated to last up to 150 hours on wireless and 300 hours on Bluetooth. Since receiving the mouse a couple of weeks ago, I only needed to charge it thrice — quite impressive, as I always forget to turn the mouse off when not in use.


Just when I thought that Razer couldn’t impress me more, the Naga V2 Pro simply blew me away. The DeathAdder V3 Pro was a battery powerhouse, lasting almost a month without charging. While the Naga V2 Pro didn’t last as long, this time I was impressed with all the customization I could do with it.

Using the Razer Synapse, you can store up to 5 profiles from which you can customize lighting, DPI, polling rate, and even the scroll tension and steps. You can also set macros for Windows and other apps within it.

The Naga V2 Pro shines in MMORPGs like World of Warcraft and Final Fantasy XIV with the 12-button panel, but if you’re not a fan of MMORPGs, the 12-buttons can be customized as macro shortcuts in the Razer Synapse app.

As someone who prefers FPS and MOBA, I found myself using the six-button panel

the most. The six-button was great for my hotkeys in Dota 2 and surprisingly useful in Valorant for certain skills like Phoenix’s and Harbor’s wall. The six-button and twobutton panels also have an excellent rubber grip that is comfortable to use.

The panels are also easily removed. The whole system is held on by two surprisingly strong magnets. No matter how much I shook the mouse, the panels never came off. If you need to change panels, just pull it from the bottom, and it comes off without a hitch.

As mentioned earlier, the Razer Naga V2 Pro also has Bluetooth support. For someone who uses a tablet on the go, I thought this was awesome. That said, entering pairing mode can be tricky as you must press the wheel and the two buttons beneath it simultaneously. Once paired, you can bring over your custom profiles like DPS and scroll tensions.

In terms of use and feel, the Naga V2 Pro feels great on the hands. The finger rest on the right keeps the device comfortable during long gaming sessions. Its short body is also perfect for those with smaller hands like me. However, the Naga V2 Pro is quite heavy at 134g. FPS gamers who prefer flashy flicks could have difficulty with the Naga V2 Pro. I also wouldn’t recommend it for left-handed folk, mainly because of its righthanded design.


Retailing at PHP11,590, the Razer Naga V2 Pro is among the most expensive mice on the market. But is it worth it? It depends on the user. If you’re an MMORPG fan or love macro controls on the daily, the up to 22 customizable buttons are definitely worth it. But for most ordinary gamers, it can be a stiff asking price for what it offers compared to other gaming mice.


Sensor: Razer Focus Pro 30K

Optical Sensor

Sensitivity/ DPI: up to 30000

Max Acceleration: 70G

Max Speed: 750

Switch type: Razer Optical Switch

3rd Gen (rated up to 90 million clicks)

Number of Programmable Buttons: 10/14/20

Connectivity: USB Type-C, 2.4GHz wireless, Bluetooth 5.0

Dimension: 119.5 x 75.5 x 43.5mm

Weight: 134g (12 button panel and w/o USB and Dongle)

Battery: up to 150 hrs (2.4GHz wireless); 300 hrs (Bluetooth)


Razer Focus Pro 30K


Interchangeable side panels

Bluetooth and 2.4GHz wireless support

Ultimate customizability

A bit heavy


The Razer V2 Pro is a gaming luxury with great performance for everyone.
107 February 2023


The Fifine K688 XLR/USB Dynamic Microphone came to our attention some months back, as an affordable upgrade to our home audio setup. More and more, audio quality is becoming an essential component for content creation and live streaming, and there is a sizable market for high-quality yet affordable microphones. Let’s check out how this podcast microphone performed through three months of regular use.


The Fifine K688 came in a lovely black and red cardboard box inside which the microphone was securely nestled in cut-out foam compartments, along with a 2.5m USB-C to USB cable, a 5/8” male to 3/8’ female screw adapter, and a user’s manual. The microphone itself is attractive and well-built, thanks to its matte black all-metal construction. Its shock mounting and grey foam cover are not only utilitarian but also add to the overall visual appeal.

A tap-to-mute button/LED indicator is located on one side of the capsule, just above the shock mount. At the bottom end are the XLR port, Type-C port, headphone jack, headphone volume control, and microphone gain knob. The included


As a dynamic microphone with a cardioid polar pattern, the Fifine K688 picks up sound straight on as well as from the sides, but eliminates sounds from behind, thus ensuring clear vocal recordings with minimal ambient noise. Its shock mounting is both functional and aesthetic, isolating the mic from distracting bumps and rumbles while adding to its looks. Dual XLR and USB capability deliver both flexibility and ease of use.

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screw adapter is useful for attaching the mic to an arm stand.


My home office doubles up as a “studio” for recording a 1-hour tele-radio show that airs on a local station weekly. There is absolutely no professional setup, except for a green screen to simulate a studio background in the Zoom recording, we just plugged the Fifine K688 directly to the iMac for use as the audio input source. Start-up was painless, as no configuration was needed. The machine immediately recognized it, and it was good to go. The headphone jack and the headphone volume control knob provides a convenient way to monitor audio quality. Also, since you’re able to control mic sensitivity through the microphone gain knob, you don’t need to exert too much effort to speak louder and can position the mic at a comfortable 2-6 inches away

from your lips. This seemingly minor detail is a boon when recording video since the mic does not have to cover your face. Compared to the USB condenser microphone that it replaced, the Fifine K688 delivered noticeably clearer and richer voice reproduction, so it seems like you actually sound better.

One issue we experienced with the Fifine K688 were the occasional sound breaks, or audio cut-offs when using the mic. These are very slight, almost imperceptible breaks in the recording but can be a nuisance as they affect the overall broadcast quality.


I paid PHP5,099 for the Fifine K688 on Lazada, but you might be able to get it at a

discounted price during one of the regular sales promotions. This price point is very reasonable for the package you’re getting and should be considered a sound (pun definitely intended) investment.


Element: Dynamic

Polar Pattern: Cardioid

Connector: USB-C and XLR

Power Supply: 5±0.25V

S/N Ratio: >75dB

Sensitivity: -58±3dB


Excellent vocal reproduction

Looks good, well-built


Intermittent audio cut-offs


Good microphone, especially for live use.

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itsubishi Motors Philippines Corporation (MMPC) has officially unveiled the much-anticipated 2023 New Mitsubishi Xpander Cross. This latest iteration of Mitsubishi’s best-selling model is set to redefine the MPV segment with its more advanced and progressive looks and combination of luxury and comfort in premium vehicles. A modern 7-seater MPV Crossover with SUV capabilities, it is perfect for individuals and families who prefer performance and functionality in one aggressively styled package.

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The New Xpander Cross takes the sense of adventure up a notch by enhancing the practical essence of the Xpander with an SUV-like design structure. Perfect as a daily city cruiser, it can also take you off the beaten path during the weekends.

The New Xpander Cross was developed to exude a more “active” and “outdoorsy” image. The black wheel arch moldings, door garnishes, and side sills give it a taller stance, while the rear and front bumpers are more masculine with the guard bar motif rails. Roof rails are standard equipment.

It also sports T-shaped LED headlights with daytime running lights (DRL) and LED fog lamps at the bottom. The redesigned rear also shows a bolder appearance with its T-shaped LED taillights that seamlessly integrate into the refreshed tailgate garnish.

From the side, the newly designed 17” alloy wheels give the car a more rugged stance.


The interior has been reimagined with comfort and convenience in mind. The

New Xpander Cross offers an exclusive combination of luxury and high-tech features, some of which can only be seen on Mitsubishi’s premium vehicles.

The New Xpander Cross projects a “Horizontal Axis” dashboard that smoothly integrates all the interior elements at the front. Soft padded materials with actual stitches in a new navy blue shade run across the dashboard.

In the driver’s seat, you’ll immediately notice the new 4-spoke leatherwrapped steering wheel reminiscent of Mitsubishi’s premium mid-size SUV, the Montero Sport. It is tilt and telescopic adjustable, and with its more

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robust layout, drivers enjoy a better grip on the steering wheel. Moreover, the steering wheel return control is faster for better maneuverability at low speeds. Behind the wheel is a new, highly-visible 8-inch LCD digital meter cluster that offers easy access and viewing of multiple information essential for driving.

The center console ensures seamless pairing with your devices, and all controls are within your reach. An intuitive digital AC system has a max cool button for rapid in-cabin cooling. All the seats are wrapped in innovative leather, finished in navy blue soft-touch padding with stitching. Its heat guard technology suppresses any increase in surface temperature.

Rides are now more enjoyable with the 7-inch Smartphone-link Display Audio (SDA-3) system, a touchscreen infotainment system that supports hands-free functions and is compatible with both Apple CarPlay and Google Android Auto. For improved convenience, the front console has been converted into a larger capacity open tray while still having a 12V outlet and USB port

Taking an outdoor adventure with the New Xpander Cross has never been easier, thanks to its spacious luggage

room, adaptive seating arrangements, and versatile storage compartments.

At the center is the leather-wrapped armrest that can hold a tissue pack on the back of its lid and four 600 ml-sized bottles in the main space. All these enhancements offer better organization and maximization of space.

In the second row, it can be seen that the two rear USB ports have 1 TYPE-A and 1 TYPE-C embedded on the back of the console. An armrest with built-in cup holders gives added convenience for passengers at the back. Front-row and luggage under trays, multi-function seat-back pockets, and third-row power outlets are present for additional storage and utility. All these contribute to overall ergonomics inside the vehicle.

With all seats up, this 7-seater has enough room to fit seven full-size adults plus their luggage as it is configured to have more hip-width and ample space from the head to toe while being able to fit four 4-gallon water bottles or a stroller directly behind the last row. The rear cargo is versatile, making it easier to load bikes, camping gear, or any bulky items.

Drivability and Safety

Driving comfort and safety has been optimized for this model. The New

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Xpander Cross’ rear suspension system has adopted the same components as the Mitsubishi Montero Sport. The enlarged rear shock absorbers ensure a more comfortable and stable ride, even on rough roads. Together with advanced safety features such as Active Stability Control (ASC), Hill Start Assist (HAS), and Traction Control (TCL), every drive is safe and enjoyable. Cruise Control reduces fatigue on long drives, while a highdefinition reverse camera provides better visibility while backing up.

Electronic Parking Brake (EPB) and Brake Auto Hold (BAH) buttons contribute to creature comforts inside the New Xpander Cross. This technology reduces driver stress by retaining the braking force and maintaining the vehicle in a stopped state while in traffic.

The New Xpander Cross ensures precise stability when cornering with the New Active Yaw Control system, or AYC, that electronically and intelligently guides and stabilizes the car on sharp turns, especially on slippery road surfaces.

With 225mm of high ground clearance, the New Xpander Cross continues to be the best in its class. This gives the driver a higher eye-point for better recognition of road conditions and added confidence especially during floods. Under the hood is a 1.5 MIVEC

DOHC 16-valve with 104hp and 141nm torque mated with a 4-speed Automatic Transmission.

“With the New Xpander Cross, customers can comfortably and confidently go out and experience the scenic places of the Philippines. Hence our tagline: Cross the Current — where your family can expand horizons in comfort and style. It is as if you are crossing into a new world filled with memorable experiences.” said MMPC president and CEO Takeshi Hara.

Pricing and colors

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Color Price Blade Silver Metallic (monotone) PHP1,328,000 Graphite
PHP1,328,000 Sunrise
Metallic (2-tone) PHP1,338,000 Quartz
Pearl (2-tone) PHP1,353,000
Gray Metallic (monotone)
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onda Cars Philippines, Inc. (HCPI) welcomes 2023 with the local debut of its highperformance icon, the 6th-Generation Honda Civic Type R, by far the most powerful model in Type R’s 30-year history.

Exterior design that combines function and form

The sporty looks of the All-New Civic Type R serve a purpose. Designed with input from aerodynamic development members of the HRC Sakura Super

GT race team, this iteration is more aerodynamically efficient, generating significantly more downforce for improved high-speed stability. It has a new bumper that reduces side wake, functional front fender air outlets, and a side sill garnish that enhances efficiency, contributing to a lower overall drag coefficient.

Compared to its predecessor, the All-new Honda Civic Type R is 0.8 inches longer, 0.6 inches wider, and 0.5 inches lower. Its A-pillars have been pulled rearward by 1.96 inches

to improve visibility. This also gives the sports hatch a more elongated hood, improving its overall stance. A more aggressive front bumper design features a sporty honeycomb grille mesh echoing the intricate honeycomb trim inside the cabin. The more aggressive stance is accentuated by wider rear doors and a reshaped rear bumper revealing its updated signature three-round exhaust outlets. A redesigned rear spoiler with aluminum stanchions and a new rear diffuser increase downforce and reduce drag.

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Other notable exterior features of the Civic Type R include LED headlamps and its redesigned LED taillamps, Matte Black finished 19-inch alloy wheels wrapped in 265/30 high-performance tires, a tailgate spoiler, its tri-tip tailpipe diffuser, and the Type R badges found both on the front grille and tailgate along with the red Honda logo. The 2023 Civic Type R will be available in two colors —Championship White and Racing Blue Pearl.

The All-New Civic Type R combines its class-leading, track-ready performance with a sleeker, more sophisticated look that beautifully integrates advanced aerodynamics for a powerful low and wide form. Its muscular exterior is more aerodynamically efficient, generating significantly more downforce to improve high-speed stability. Improved power-to-weight ratio has also been achieved, all thanks to the usage of lightweight resin.

Be in control with its immersive cabin

The All-New Civic Type R cabin was designed to support intense driving experiences. Interior ergonomics were developed based on two core principles: “instantaneous recognition” and “intuitive operation.” This combines easy-to-understand

information with natural-feeling controls providing the ultimate pleasure for the driver.

It shares a familiar cabin layout with the standard Civic with some exclusive and interesting quirks. An aluminum shift knob adds sportiness. It has a serialized Type R plate on the dashboard. The interior supports a black and red motif, with the red color dominating the racing-inspired Type R bucket seats, carpeting, and other finishes.

Thinner pillars, outer mirrors relocated to the doors, and a lower hood provide greatly improved visibility. Blind spots have been minimized, and reflective elements reduced. New lightweight, heavily bolstered front sports seats with suede-effect upholstery offer exceptional support and comfort on the track and during long drives, helping drivers sharpen their concentration levels.

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Tech that delivers ultimate driving pleasure

The 6th Generation Honda Civic Type R is equipped with many technology features. For in-car entertainment, it comes with a 9-inch touchscreen that supports Wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and a 12-speaker Bose sound system. Other creature comforts include a 10.2-inch fullydigital instrument cluster, automatic airconditioning, smart entry with a smart key card and one push start system, a wireless charging pad, and many more.

Honda LogR Performance Datalogger

Exclusive on the All-New Civic Type R is a new enhanced version of the Honda LogR Performance Datalogger,

which combines its onboard computer and sensors with a new built-in vehicle app that helps drivers monitor and record a variety of performance parameters in real-time when driving on the road, on track and other closed courses, helping to improve driving skills. Key features are as follows:

• Performance Monitor - provides vehicle information to the driver, such as 3D Display, Tire Friction Circle, cornering G-forces, the status of oil and coolant temperatures, oil pressure, and more.

• Auto Score- Shows how the car behaves and helps you improve your driving skills. Autoscore measure your driving performance using key driving parameters.

• Data Log - analyzes driving data to help you understand your driving

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habits. It also scores your track performance and provides lap time and Heat Map.

A thrilling powertrain for a thrilling drive

Under the hood of this beautiful beast is a 2.0-liter 16-valve DOHC VTEC, Turbo Charged In-line 4 Cylinder engine that churns out a mighty 320PS and 420Nm of torque. The said mill is paired with a 6-speed manual transmission with a Rev Match Control System, which has been improved for more precise and smoother shifting while on the go.

On top of its thrilling powertrain, the All-New Civic Type R comes with four driving modes, which include Comfort, Sport, +R, and a new individual mode that is customizable by the driver.

It’s a big step in terms of safety

The standard Honda Sensing suite of driver-assistive and safety technologies has been thoroughly reengineered for the 2023 Civic Type R, which uses a single camera mounted behind the windshield coupled with an exceptionally fast processor and sonar sensors. The new single-camera system features a field of view that is twice as wide (100 degrees vs. 50 degrees) and can see farther down the road. Its camera detects feature points of a target and recognizes attributes of objects such as a vehicle or pedestrian, while the sonar sensor system, on the other hand, detects objects, including other vehicles, located near the front.

The fast processor, meanwhile, allows the system to measure the distance and the lateral position of objects based on the change in the size of the target object, how long it takes for the change to occur, and the speed of the vehicle. This enables the camera to recognize white lines, road boundaries such as curbs, other cars, pedestrians, bicyclists, and road signs.

Given the new mechanism, the system now has better recognition. Honda SENSING features include Collision Mitigation Braking System (CMBS), Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC), Lane Keeping Assist (LKAS), Road Departure Mitigation (RDM), Lane Departure Warning (LDW), Forward Collision Warning (FCW, and AutoHigh Beam (AHB).

Aside from its state-of-the-art driverassist features, the Honda Civic Type R also comes with a multi-view rear camera, walk-away auto lock, driver attention monitor, airbags (front, side, side curtain, knee), rear seat reminder, Anti-lock Brake System (ABS), Electronic Brake-Force Distribution (EBD), Vehicle Stability Assist (VSA), Hill Start Assist (HSA), ISOFIX Child Seat Anchor, security alarm, and an Electric Parking Brake (EPB) with Auto Brake Hold (ABH).

The superior safety features of the 6th Generation Honda Civic Type R reflect Honda’s global goal of achieving ‘Safety for Everyone’ sharing the road.

The All-New Honda Civic Type R retails at PHP3,880,000.

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A Unique and Sporty Sedan Set to Conquer

he EMPOW represents a bold new era for GAC MOTOR: an era of far greater confidence in its brand identity, international strategy, and in-house technology.

Bold and original, the EMPOW’s exterior is characterized by futuristic lines and a sleek, muscle car-esque silhouette that gives the EMPOW an aggressive stance. The sculpted form and attention-grabbing design elements define its sporty profile, while its interiors, driving performance and technology are engineered to thrill the senses.

“The EMPOW is most ideal for customers who want a sports sedan that looks as great as it drives. It provides the performance advantage without compromise at a price point that is well within reach. The EMPOW is, without a doubt, a vehicle that makes a strong statement on the road,” said Jun Cajayon, brand head of GAC MOTOR Philippines.

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Design details like the oversized front grille, beautiful 18-inch alloy wheels and quad exhausts at the rear give the car a distinctly muscular appearance. Sharp, angular design details such as the eye-catching automatic LED headlights, LED daytime running lights and extended rear lights add to its overall visual appeal on the road.

The sporty design is continued in the interior with vibrant supercarstyle colored leather panels, fighterjet inspired seats, and carbon fiber materials. Two screens – a 7-inch digital instrument panel and a 10.25inch infotainment display with Apple

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Variant Colors Introductory Price 1.5L GE DCT Matte Fighter Green (exclusive) PHP1,283,000 1.5L GB DCT Ivory White Moonlight Grey Elegant Black PHP1,215,000 1.5L GS DCT Ivory White Moonlight Grey PHP1,135,000

CarPlay support – complete the look of the EMPOW’s futuristic and sleek front console.

The experience inside the vehicle is further enhanced by a power sunroof, a leather multifunction steering wheel with paddle shifters, dual-zone automatic air conditioning with a built-in negative ion air purifier, multiple USB type-A ports, power adjustments to the driver’s seat, and leather upholstery with softtouch interior trims among others.

The EMPOW is equipped with multiple safety and driving assist

features. A total of six airbags come standard in the vehicle along with a tire pressure monitoring system for added peace of mind. A suite of advanced driver assistance systems such as Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC), Forward Collision Warning (FCW), Lane Keep Assist (LKA), Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB), Traffic Jam Assist (TJA) and High Beam Assist all help to ensure the safety and comfort of passengers.

Under the hood, the EMPOW has a 1.5L turbo power engine that utilizes GAC MOTOR’s in-house developed MegaWave technology. It does 0 to

100kph in 6.95-seconds, believed to be the fastest acceleration for a compact sedan in its segment. Mated to a 7-speed Wet-type Dual Clutch transmission, the impressive engine puts out 168hp and 270Nm of torque.

The EMPOW will be offered in three variants at special introductory price points and colors. On the GS and GB variants, the introductory prices incorporate a PHP90,000 discount. The introductory price of the GE incorporates a PHP65,000 discount. These special prices are valid until March 31, 2023.

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Power and Prestige

The GS8, a full-size seven-seater SUV and one of GAC MOTOR’s most successful nameplates, has been upgraded to bring prestige to premium buyers. The brand’s flagship SUV combines form and function with its bold and futuristic design style, surging power, and pioneering smart configurations.

The robust silhouette gives the all-new GS8 a stately and executive persona. The model’s signature four-bulb metric automatic LED headlights come perfectly together with a powerful V-shaped chrome grille arranged in a symmetrical layout for an aggressive and bold stance. Twenty-inch aluminum alloy wheels, double chrome exhaust pipes, and LED daytime running lights complete its stellar look.

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The interior is designed to give comfort and convenience to the driver and passengers. Seats upholstered in finely crafted leather with diamond stitching are equipped with power adjust controls and memory settings for the driver and front passenger. The leather-wrapped multifunctional steering wheel with paddle shifters, electrochromic rear-view mirror, three-zone automatic air conditioning, and one-touch power windows offer added convenience, while multi-color intelligent ambient lighting and a panoramic sunroof give a touch of luxury.

In addition, the upgraded cabin of the GS8 has a host of smart and interactive features, including a 14.6-inch HD touch screen with phone mirroring capabilities, a 7-inch digital instrument cluster, four USB type-A ports, a wireless mobile

phone charging pad, and a Bluetooth handsfree phone system.

Safety and security are not compromised as the all-new GS8 comes with multiple airbags, ISOFIX child safety seat anchors, seatbelts with disengage alarm, an engine immobilizer with anti-theft alarm, tire pressure monitoring, and many more.

The vehicle is equipped with GAC MOTOR’s latest cuttingedge technology, including a wide array of driving assistance capabilities as standard. Among these are Adaptive Cruise Control, Traffic Sign Recognition, Forward Collision Warning, Autonomous Emergency Braking, Lane Departure Warning, Front & Rear Parking Sensors with HD Surround Vision Parking System, and Traffic Jam Assist. Driving is more efficient and dynamic, with three modes to

choose from (ECO, Comfort, and Sport).

A 2.0 Turbo GDI engine, which delivers a power output of 248-horsepower and an upgraded torque of 400Nm, is paired with a megastar chassis and a third-generation 8-speed automatic transmission for smooth and balanced power.

The all-new GS8 is available in four colors: Ink Seal Green, Crystal White, Moonlight Grey, and Elegant Black. It is offered at a special introductory price of PHP 2,298,000 incorporating a PHP100,000 special discount valid until March 31, 2023.

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ord Philippines has joined forces with global off-road accessories provider ARB to give owners of the next-generation Ford Ranger and Everest access to various 4x4 accessories for their vehicles.

The partnership offers a wide range of accessories that have undergone rigorous evaluation processes by Ford and ARB engineers to ensure compatibility with next-gen Ford vehicles that will deliver optimal integration and vehicle performance.

Owners of the next-gen Ranger and Everest will be able to equip their vehicles with best-in-class off-road accessories such as suspension kits, bull bar, side steps and rails, base rack, under-vehicle protection (UVP), and snorkel.

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All ARB accessories come with a 3-year warranty. ARB suspension kits also come with a 3-year warranty or 60,000km, whichever comes first.

“We are very proud to welcome this collaboration with ARB as they are known and respected in the global off-road accessories community for the craftsmanship, quality, and reliability of their products,” shares Patrick Manigbas, director, Ford Customer Service Division. “Through this groundbreaking partnership, we are able to offer world-class 4x4 accessories to our next-gen Ford customers as we see more of them enjoying various activities with their vehicles, such as car camping and off-roading. At Ford, we recognize that our vehicles enable our customers’ various needs, lifestyles, and interests. We are thankful that our partnership with ARB will continue to allow us to make our vehicles part of our customers’ ultimate weekend adventures and explorations.”

ARB and Ford are working together to ensure that the accessories are compatible with Ford vehicles and that the vehicle systems maintain full functionality with each accessory fitted.

ARB 4x4 Accessories holds a global reputation for high-quality off-road accessories and is considered to be

Australia’s largest manufacturer and distributor of 4x4 accessories. The company has international offices in the United States, Europe, and the Middle East, with an export network that extends through more than 100 countries around the world.

ARB accessories are now available in Ford dealerships nationwide. Customers can easily avail of their accessory of choice when they get their next-gen Ford vehicle from the dealership, while those who have previously purchased their next-gen Ranger or Everest can visit a Ford dealership to avail of ARB accessories.

Visit any Ford dealership for the list of available ARB accessories and their corresponding prices. Separate labor and/or installation fees apply. For more details on ARB accessories, log on to www.ford.com.ph/owner/fordaccessories/ranger-accessories/

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Toyota Mobility Solutions Philippines, Inc. (TMSPH) introduces one of its flagship new mobility solutions, a logistics platform that aims to digitalize logistics processes and support the operating efficiency and growth of local enterprises.

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he specialized system is designed to automate daily planning, which covers delivery routing, loading optimization, vehicle assignment, and trip booking. TMSPH’s Logistics Platform also offers real-time delivery status tracking for the day-to-day management of business.

In this initial phase of launching the digital platform, TMSPH has started supporting the logistics operation of Mida Food Distributors Inc., a leading seafood importer, distributor, and processor in the Philippines. Mida Food provides quality frozen seafood products for businesses in the food service industry, as well as individuals and households through its retail brand, Pacific Bay.

Through TMSPH’s Logistics Platform, Mida Food can address the limitations in its delivery operations, such as the difficulty in route planning due to various client restrictions, challenges with truck capacity vis-à-vis demand and product load, and lack of visibility in delivery status.

The Logistics Platform streamlines administration and generates the ideal route and loading plan that integrates

variable delivery conditions easily. This supports Mida Food’s goal to achieve optimal truck utilization, which is one of the considerations in lowering delivery costs. Drivers are also equipped with a mobile application for real-time sending of delivery status updates to Mida Food.

Before the platform introduction, TMSPH, together with Mida Food, conducted a series of ground operation studies to improve end-toend processes — from order taking to warehouse operation and dispatch. In this process, TMSPH applied Toyota’s quality management principles and effective practices based on its solid experience in manufacturing, warehouse management, logistics, and distribution in the Philippines.

“TMSPH has been instrumental in modernizing the way we plan, manage, and track our goods movement during our last mile fulfillment. Their inputs, as we continue to improve our systems, have been invaluable, and together we are realizing efficiencies through their logistics platform,” said Mida Food president and chief operating officer Enrique Miguel Valles. “We are thankful for TMSPH’s assistance

in helping us continually add value to the products & services we offer our customers.”

This collaboration is just one of the many projects that TMSPH has to offer to help build successful businesses. TMSPH continues to innovate its products and services to further help Filipino business owners improve their operations.

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Enrique Miguel Valles, president and chief operating officer of Mida Food
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NLEX Corporation will continue to implement infrastructure developments and enhancement projects that will further contribute to the country’s economic growth.

“We will invest in major expansion and enhancement projects that are vital to the country’s economic resurgence and, at the same time, ease the travel of the motoring public as we seek to support the government’s call for the private sector to take part in nation-building,” said NLEX Corporation president J. Luigi L. Bautista.

These major projects geared towards improving mobility, safety, and connectivity for motorists are the NLEX Connector and Candaba Third Viaduct.

The entire NLEX Connector stretches eight kilometers starting from Caloocan Interchange on C3 Road up to the vicinity of the Polytechnic University of the Philippines (PUP) in Sta. Mesa, Manila. It is seen to decongest significant thoroughfares in the metro. Its first section between Caloocan and España interchanges is at 94 percent completion and is expected to open within the first quarter of the year. The second section, connecting España and Sta. Mesa, is now 29 percent complete.

Part of the construction of the second segment is the redevelopment of the Magsaysay Boulevard that features on and off ramps in Magsaysay and Sta. Mesa, improving portions of the local road network such as Osmeña Highway, Nagtahan, Rizal Avenue Extension, G. Araneta Avenue, and A. Bonifacio Avenue. It will also enable easier travel to various areas like Manila City Hall, Quiapo Church, University Belt, Intramuros, Rizal Park, Gilmore, Cubao, and San Juan.

The construction of Candaba Third Viaduct is also set to commence in the first quarter of 2023. The project will expand the five-kilometer bridge from existing three lanes without a shoulder to three lanes with an inner and outer shoulder per direction. Aside from making travel safer and more convenient, this new bridge, once finished, will also enable faster journeys as it will increase the maximum speed at the Viaduct from 60kph to 80kph.

Also in the pipeline is the construction of new expressway lanes in Pampanga from San Fernando to the SCTEX Spur in Mabalacat.

Apart from building new roads, NLEX is looking to enhance its assets for a better customer experience by undertaking regular pavement repair and bridge strengthening programs, replacing traffic safety devices, and continuously enhancing its toll systems. It is also set to install more

closed-circuit television cameras along NLEX, SCTEX, and SFEX and upgrade the NLEX-SCTEX traffic control center.

To reduce its carbon footprint, NLEX will start using electric vehicles in its operations. These EVs, which will be used by NLEX-SCTEX patrol crews, intend to drive decarbonization as part of the MVP Group’s thrust toward sustainability. The tollway company will also continue its resource-saving initiatives of harnessing solar power in select toll plazas this year.

At the end of 2022, NLEX reported finishing the road-raising project in SCTEX, upgrading Pampanga bridges, improving Balintawak Cloverleaf, and enhancements in infrastructure, toll collection system, and account management system.

NLEX Corporation is a subsidiary of the Metro Pacific Tollways Corporation (MPTC), the toll road arm of the Metro Pacific Investments Corporation (MPIC).

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Solar-powered plaza NLEX Connector


suzu Philippines Corporation (IPC) officially introduced Tetsuya Fujita, replacing Noboru Murakami as president of the company. Apart from welcoming the new president, the ceremony also served as an avenue for outgoing president Murakami to express his gratitude for the support he received during his term. He also expressed his confidence that Fujita’s leadership skills will further drive the company into new heights.

Working for Isuzu Motors Limited (IML) since 1991, Fujita has extensive experience in sales and operations. Some of his international experiences include being the corporate planning

manager of Isuzu Commercial Truck of America (ICTA) in California, USA from 2005 to 2010; general manager for sales department at Isuzu Motors International Operations Thailand (IMIT) in Bangkok, Thailand from 2014 – 2017; and the chairman & CEO of Isuzu Motors de Mexico from 2020 –2021.

With his broad involvement in international sales and operations, Fujita accepted the challenge of maintaining IPC’s long reign as the number one truck brand in the country. He intends to do this by continuing to expand and improve the dealer network, as well as maintaining

IPC’s strong relationship with customers by providing significant contributions to their business. Not only that, he also promised to keep steering the company towards a more sustainable and greener path by further cultivating the Road to Progress vision that Murakami kicked off during his term.

New IPC president Fujita stated, “As the leading truck brand in the industry, we will continue innovating new products that will assist in the progress of the country while displaying more responsibility to the society and the environment through our Road to Progress vision.”

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(From left) Outgoing President –Noboru Murakami and Incoming President – Tetsuya Fujita


ith a firm belief in cultivating Filipino potential, Yamaha Motor Philippines, Inc. (YMPH) has partnered with Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) to be the Official Lifestyle Motorcycle of the Gilas Pilipinas Men’s Basketball Team for the FIBA World Cup. The global event will be held in three countries, with the final round hosted in the Philippines, and presents is an opportunity for Yamaha to champion those who always push boundaries.

Yamaha Motor Philippines president Hiroshi Koike notes, “We hope we can

work together as one team to reach the ultimate goal.” This includes not only performing well in the tournament but also spreading happiness and enthusiasm throughout the entire nation.

Yamaha is no stranger to national team competition with its own roster of Filipino riders contending around the world in global tournaments and trail blazing a path for the next generation of racers.

The collaboration was officially formalized at the SBP office and was

attended by YMPH president Hiroshi Koike, sales and marketing division head Shinsuke Iida, and marketing assistant section manager Toni Acuesta. They were welcomed by SBP executive director Sonny Barrios, deputy event director FIBA World Cup Philippines LOC Erika Dy, and Gilas Pilipinas team manager Butch Antonio.

With their shared values of unwavering enthusiasm and uncompromising commitment, Yamaha Motor Philippines will be fully behind Gilas Pilipinas starting with the sixth window of games.

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Beyond its Ralliart badge, the Mitsubishi Strada GLS Ralliart is a car built for people who want a vehicle that not only plays but also means serious business. And nothing says serious business and play than a camping trip.

For the uninitiated, Ralliart was Mitsubishi’s racing division for rally racing. They were one of the best in Dakar and the World Rally Championship for a time. Now they’re back, and Mitsubishi has launched two Ralliart models, the Mitsubishi Strada GLS Ralliart and a Montero Sport Ralliart.

The Mitsubishi Strada Ralliart is mostly similar to the Strada GLS Model save for the exterior. Powering the Strada Ralliart is a 2.4-liter 4N15 Turbodiesel engine that delivers 178 horsepower and 430 newton-meters of torque. The engine is mated to a six-speed automatic gearbox.

What makes the Mitsubishi Strada Ralliart stand out from the regular Strada line are the decals and the new, bolder front grille. There is also the Ralliart bedliner that keeps your cargo space safe during those tough and heavy hauling runs.

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Despite its serious rugged looks outside, the interior of the Strada Ralliart was made for comfort and convenience. Here you can bring your friends and family for long trips knowing they’ll have the comfort akin to a sedan or SUV ride.

Mitsubishi also made the Strada Ralliart safer, including safety features and driver aids such as ABS with Electronic Brakeforce Distribution and Airbags to take care of driver and passenger safety. Hill Start Assist and Trailer Stability Assist make the driver’s job easier when on an incline or pulling a load. Tiptronic Paddle Shifters give you total control over the transmission, so you get the drive you want.

So that’s the Mitsubishi Strada Ralliart. There’s also the 2-DIN multimedia system with a massive seveninch touch screen, USB connectivity, and Mirror Link, so you can pair your phone and control the media functions with ease. Steering-mounted controls give you convenient access to vehicle and entertainment

functions. Rear-accessible USB charging ports make sure your devices remain topped up even on long drives, and purpose-built trays keep your smartphones within hand’s reach, so your passengers won’t be fumbling for them in the cabin.

Made for the most extreme terrains yet offers comfort and convenience for your everyday drive.

Visit your nearest Mitsubishi dealership to book a test drive or to see their complete lineup of Strada and other vehicles.

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GoTyme Bank was recently honored for its excellence in the field and efforts to expand Visa’s payment services in the Philippines in 2022.

The award for Best Innovation of Card Acquisition was bestowed on GoTyme Bank in recognition of its milestones in innovation and performance that stem from its high standard of client-first mentality, which made all its transactions and processes smooth and easy for clients. Such an award from Visa is no easy feat and is undoubtedly held in high regard, making this one of GoTyme Bank’s biggest wins of the year.

One highlight of its various innovations is the first-to-market digital kiosk, currently available in Robinsons Supermarkets branches, where consumers can claim their debit card instantly and for free. This effort is a great initiative that readily welcomes newcomers and existing bank users to GoTyme’s committed client services. Other notable features include signing up for an account which only takes five minutes or less, and talking to a bank ambassador for any assistance and bank-related questions consumers may have.

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GoTyme Bank plans to expand its debit partnership with Visa in the coming years to move away from a product-centric system and spearhead the journey to a digital and cashless Philippines. Clients can expect various solutions on the horizon for enhancing services and payment convenience with GoTyme soon enough!

Apply for your GoTyme debit card today and join this exciting movement! You can find GoTyme Bank’s digital kiosks here to open an account and collect your free ATM debit card. To get started, you can also download the GoTyme Bank app via IOS or Android.

GoTyme is regulated by the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas and is a joint venture of Tyme, a multi-country digital banking group, with members of the Gokongwei Group of companies, namely Robinsons Bank, Robinsons Land Corporation, and Robinsons Retail Holdings, Inc. GoTyme Bank aims to unlock its customers’ financial potential with the convenience and security of digital banking. With a high tech-high touch approach, GoTyme Bank combines the ease of immediate account opening with a personalized debit card released through kiosks located in shopping malls throughout the Philippines, plus the power of self-serve financial solutions accessible through an intuitive “all in one” banking app. These, along with other industry-leading offerings, set GoTyme Bank on-track to revolutionize banking in the Philippines.

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Transak and Unstoppable Domains will seamlessly integrate within the Pitaka, the digital wallet developed by Filipino-led web3 firm Tetrix, providing customers with a simple and convenient way to buy crypto.

Users of the digital wallet Pitaka can now purchase cryptocurrencies directly with Philippine Peso and pay using their debit cards, credit cards, GCash, Maya, GrabPay, and ShopeePay within the app. Tetrix, the Filipinoled web3 company behind the digital wallet, has announced its partnership with Transak as its fiat onramp support.

Pitaka is a self-custodial digital wallet that allows users to store their crypto assets and interact with NFT marketplaces, play and earn games, decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs), and decentralized finance (DeFi) applications. With Transak’s integration, users do not have to switch to another service and go through many intermediate steps to buy crypto.

Transak is a Web3 onboarding infrastructure provider that enables applications to accept fiat-to-crypto deposits from a global user base. It is known for its API-driven solutions that enable web3 platforms to onboard users to more than 130 crypto assets from more than 125 countries and is backed by top venture

capital investors including Consensys and Animoca Brands.

“Transak is a trusted and reliable provider of fiat on-ramp services with a track record of successful partnerships with leading cryptocurrency companies. The integration of Transak’s fiat on-ramp is a key step in Pitaka’s mission to make it easy for users to buy, sell, and use cryptocurrencies,” said Ralph Acabado, founder and chief operating officer of Tetrix.

“Self-custody wallets are on the rise as more people become aware of the importance of keeping their assets safe. They offer a high level of security, sovereignty, privacy, and control over their money and private financial information. Pitaka, now integrated with Transak, makes it even easier for customers to access crypto and Web3 with peace of mind,” he said.

“We’re glad that we are able to provide new payment methods for Pitaka, and we hope more and more users benefit from this as we strive to make onboarding easier and more seamless for mainstream adoption,” said Etienne Gandon, business development analyst at Transak.

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How to use Transak within Pitaka

To add crypto to your Pitaka with Transak:

1. Login into the Mobile Pitaka App.

2. Navigate to the “Buy” section of the Pitaka platform.

3. Select the cryptocurrency that you want to purchase and enter the amount that you want to buy.

4. Follow the prompts to complete the Transak payment process. This may include entering your personal and financial information, as well as any additional security measures required by Transak.

5. Once the payment has been completed and verified, the purchased cryptocurrency will be credited to your Pitaka account.

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Custom wallet address names

To make crypto transactions simpler and more intuitive, Tetrix has also teamed up with NFT domain provider Unstoppable Domains to give users a new feature where they can use humanreadable domain names when buying or sending crypto assets.

Unstoppable Domains is a platform that allows users to create and use a special kind of website address called “crypto domains.” These domains are stored on a blockchain, which means they can’t be taken down or censored by anyone and belong to their holders forever.

Instead of having to share a long and confusing wallet address, Pitaka users can purchase crypto wallet address names provided by Unstoppable Domains and use them to send and receive crypto or other digital assets.

“NFT domains provide a secure and user-friendly way to store and manage non-fungible assets on the blockchain. Because they are stored on the blockchain, they are resistant to censorship and control by any single entity, and they can’t be lost or stolen like physical assets can. Additionally, because they use a standard domain name format, they are easy for users to understand and use,” Acabado explained.

“Pitaka is committed to providing a seamless and secure experience for its users, and our partnership with Transak and Unstoppable Domains is an important part of this effort. We want to provide Pitaka users with an easy and convenient way to transact with cryptocurrency and to promote the use of decentralized technologies such as blockchain and cryptocurrency,” he added.

“We’re thrilled to partner with Tetrix and Pitaka to give more people ownership and control of their identity,” said Sandy Carter, senior vice president and channel chief at Unstoppable Domains.

The Tetrix Network is a project that began in 2020 as an effort to change the way blockchains are designed and developed for the digital space where communities, enterprises, governments, and individuals interact and coexist in the same ecosystem without having to worry about different blockchains. It is a collection of projects that build the products, tools, and infrastructure for resilient, sustainable, and inclusive communities. Designing and building for security, equality, and the sovereignty of individuals.

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Ralph Acabado, COO of Tetrix

Regional insurtech firm Igloo, in partnership with GCash and leading local underwriter Malayan Insurance, recently launched Travel Master with COVID-19, a comprehensive travel insurance product to be offered and purchased on the e-wallet. The brand-new product offers coverage for personal accident, emergency medical treatment, hospital cash allowance, travel inconvenience benefits, and COVID-19 protection. With tourism on the upswing due to the easing of restrictions, Travel Master with COVID-19 will enable Filipinos to undertake trips with assured protection in the event of a medical emergency due to the pandemic.

In the forum titled The Philippines and Revenge Tourism – Are We Ready? Tourism Secretary Bernadette Romulo Puyat shared that ‘Revenge Travel’ or leisure travel that follows a period of being unable to travel is driving the tourism boom in the country. Since easing restrictions in February 2022, the country has seen a gradual

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regional insurtech partners with GCash and Malayan Insurance

rise in travel — particularly to local destinations — among Filipinos. In fact, 85% of tourism contribution to the gross domestic product can be attributed to domestic travel, which is expected to grow further with the opening of more local destinations. Travel Master with COVID-19 will protect Filipinos from health and travel risks during their trips.

“As more Filipinos become more comfortable with traveling, our new travel insurance product, in collaboration with our long-term partner GCash, will work as a key enabler to facilitate safe travel for Filipinos. Being an affordable yet comprehensive product that addresses common travel risks, including contracting COVID-19, it will offer travelers the coverage they need so they can enjoy their trip and have peace of mind,” shared Mario Berta, country manager for the Philippines at Igloo. “GCash Travel Master with COVID-19 once again highlights Igloo’s commitment to co-creating insurance products that are relevant and accessible to all Filipinos.”

Underwritten by Malayan Insurance, the benefits of Travel Insurance include Personal Accident with Emergency Medical Treatment for COVID-19 for up to PHP2,500,000, Hospital Cash Allowance due to COVID-19 of up to PHP4,000, and Travel Inconvenience of up to PHP50,000. It also has valueadded features such as Car Rental Protection of up to PHP500,000 and Sports Activities Extension of up to PHP100,000. The insurance product is also supported by 24-hour worldwide travel assistance in partnership

with Assist America for the medical needs of the insured.

Available through GCash’s GInsure marketplace, premiums start at PHP950 for local or inbound, PHP970 for Asia, and PHP1,190 for worldwide travel with up to a 90-day maximum coverage period.

GCash Travel Master with COVID-19 is the fourth product launched under Igloo and GCash’s partnership. In September 2021, the partners launched the first Online Shopping insurance in the market, followed by Mobile Insurance products and Pet Insurance in 2022.

Igloo is the first full-stack insurtech firm to emerge from Singapore. It has offices in Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, the Philippines, Vietnam, and Malaysia. It has tech centers in China and India. With a mission of making insurance accessible for all, the firm leverages big data, real-time risk assessment, and end-to-end automated claims management to create B2B2C insurance solutions for platform companies and insurance companies. Igloo’s insurance solutions enable companies to eliminate their exposure to operational risk, create new revenue streams, and optimize and enhance existing products and services. Igloo has partnered with over 55 wellknown brand names across the markets in various verticals, including insurance, telecommunications, e-commerce, hospitality, health tech, and financial services.

Topline benefits

Personal Accident with Emergency Medical Treatment for COVID-19

Hospital Cash Allowance due to COVID-19

Travel Inconvenience

Value-added benefits

Car Rental Protection

Sports Activities Extension

Up to PHP2,500,000

Up to PHP4,000

Up to PHP50,000

Up to PHP500,000

Up to PHP100,000

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GCash Travel Master with COVID-19 powered by


New year, new goals! We all want to live through the year in a financially secure position. If you’re looking for a way to jumpstart your money goals this 2023, fret not! Maya, your all-in-one digital bank, has got you covered.

Whether you are looking for ways to save on shopping, travel, boost your savings, or get your bills covered, Maya runs down tips and tricks to master your money and get you closer to your 2023 money goals!

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Boost your

Grow your hard-earned savings with up to a massive 6% p.a. with Maya Savings for deposits up to PHP100,000. All you have to do is spend a total of PHP250 on bills, load, or Maya payments (QR code, card, or online). In excess of PHP100,000, you also earn a base interest rate of 4.5% p.a. on your deposits up to PHP5-million. You also get to watch your money grow as savings interests are credited to your account, daily.

Maya Savings also lets you set up Personal Goals and earn a guaranteed 6% interest per annum on deposits of up to PHP1-million. What’s more, you can create up to five different Personal Goals. Think one for each life goal like emergencies, home, car… just what being in control of your own finances looks like.

savings Save on fees

Get cash in your Maya wallet for a minimum of PHP1,500 via InstaPay and get your InstaPay fee (up to PHP 25) as a cashback!

No need to worry about transfer fees when you cash in your Maya wallet from any of your linked banks, or from other over-the-counter channels (up to PHP 8,000 per month).

Shop at Robinsons Malls and get some money back with Maya! For a minimum PHP1,000 single-receipt spend, you can receive a PHP100 cashback from your first-ever Maya QR transaction and PHP50 consecutively after.

Need mobile load? Collect 5% cashback each time you accumulate PHP 500 worth of load. New to Maya? Enjoy 20% cashback (up to PHP 50) when you load up with Smart or TNT!

Enjoy 50% off (up to PHP 1,500) on hotels and 1,500 AirAsia points by booking a hotel worth at least PHP1,500 through the AirAsia super app or website. Simply enter your Maya Visa card details upon checkout and input the code “VISA50”.

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Get 8% off when you book for hotels via agoda.com/visaph and pay using your Maya Visa card. Spend and save
Traveling? Save on these deals!

Completely free to download and register, Maya packs a feature-rich money app, an inclusive digital bank, and everything else you need to manage your money – save, borrow, spend, invest and more, right from your smartphone.

Maya is the leading digital bank in the Philippines with the most comprehensive payment ecosystem. Its all-in-one money platform enable Filipinos with bolder ways to master their money. It leads millions of Filipinos — consumers, businesses, communities, and government agencies alike — into a digital economy that’s more inclusive, transparent, and empowering.

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Maya’s digital banking services are powered by Maya Bank, Inc., a digital bank supervised by the BSP. Deposits are insured by the Philippine Deposit Insurance Corporation (PDIC) for up to PHP500,000 per depositor.


Filipino consumers can now use the buy now, pay later (BNPL) card-free installment option to shop at more global brands online. This is after BillEase, one of the country’s top-rated consumer finance apps welcomed 2023 with a landmark partnership with Alipay+, a global crossborder digital payment and marketing solution.

Operated by Ant Group and launched in 2020, Alipay+ provides global cross-border mobile payment solutions which enable merchants, including small and medium-sized businesses, to serve mobile-savvy consumers better. To date, Alipay+ has reached over 2.5 million global online and offline merchants and helped them to unlock the consumption potential of over one billion e-wallet users. Alipay+’s online merchant network includes regional and international digital entertainment providers, lifestyle services, and e-commerce platforms.

Launched in 2017, BillEase now has over 2,000 merchant partners, such as Philippine Airlines, Power Mac Center, Anson’s, Vivo, Kimstore, and Focus Global Inc., among others. Merchant partners of BillEase can offer shoppers these card-free installment options at checkout: (a) For small-to-medium ticket purchases, Pay Later in 10 or 20 days or Pay in 4 installments; and (b) For big purchases, Pay Monthly over three, six, nine, or 12 months with interest rates between 0% or 3.49 percent. Aside from shopping, the BillEase app can be used for e-wallet top-ups, gaming credits, mobile load purchases, and bills payment.

BillEase is the first Philippine-based BNPL provider to partner with Alipay+. Through the collaboration, BillEase and Alipay+ aim to revolutionize the digital payment landscape through BillEase’s consumer credit solutions. Filipino shoppers with the BillEase app can now leverage Alipay+ to complete online purchases at global merchants and pay in light and card-free installments via BillEase.

Jia Hang, General Manager of Alipay+ Global Partnerships, said: “BillEase brings inclusive financial services to the underbanked and underserved consumers in the Philippines. We are excited to reach this partnership to enable BillEase’s customers to enjoy seamless and convenient crossborder online payment services and enrich their daily lives through an expanded global shopping experience.”

“We look forward to working closely with Alipay+ to help BillEase expand its global online merchant coverage. This partnership is also a major boost for financial inclusion in the Philippines as it will make not only financial services more accessible to millions of Filipinos but also global online merchants reaching wider and more diverse customers like ours,” remarked Georg Steiger, CEO & co-Founder of BillEase.

Like in other Southeast Asian countries, an increasing number of consumers in the Philippines have turned to digital payment methods during the pandemic, which resulted in the expanding adoption of BNPL. According to Research and Markets,

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DEVELOPER PUBLISHER PLATFORM Intelligent Systems Nintendo Nintendo Switch
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Words by Jose Alvarez

Tactical RPGs are often a test of one’s patience and ability to think several moves ahead to defeat challenging enemies. There are many comparisons to chess, except that there are many dimensions to characters in tactical RPGs. In contrast, chess is primarily a measure of playing better than your opponent. Fire Emblem has been around since 1990, but since I never owned a Nintendo system until 1998, I had largely heard of the franchise through friends and articles in various gaming publications. This month, I decided to take a closer look at Fire Emblem: Engage to see precisely what I was missing and to draw my own conclusions about the franchise through a fresh perspective.

After a thousand years, the divine dragon Alear is awoken to help defeat the Fell Dragon, Sombron. The player must then gather the Emblem Rings spread across Elyon. Players get a free-roaming hub area with shops and activities named Somniel. Every character you recruit can be found in Somniel. Aside from preparing them for battle through the Armory, Item Shop, and Smithy, you can give them gifts and change their attire. The Flea Market sells rare items. You can improve Emblem Rings and create Bond Rings to improve your characters’ battle stats in the Ring Chamber. Characters that have Emblem Rings cannot equip Bond Rings. Emblem Rings are more powerful, so choose wisely based on your play style. I prefer a mix of physical and magic users for balance, but you can do whatever you wish.

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Powering up units can be done through story battles, but you can use the Arena to further power up your characters, although it is limited between missions. You can do Emblem training, but it will cost you bond fragments. In my experience, bond fragments are better off for creating bond rings as there is a slight chance you can get an S-ranked item and use extras of the same ring to get a higher-ranked item. For those who want to test their mettle, you can enter the Tower of Trials. On top of that, you can create your own trials for your friends and the Fire Emblem Engage community to take on.

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Combat in Fire Emblem Engage is determined by the weapon triangle: swords beat axes, axes beat lances, and lances beat swords. The addition of fist weapons beats magic, bows, and daggers. If you have a weapon advantage over your enemies, you can inflict Break on them, preventing them from counterattacking you. You either have personal skills or skills learned from bonding with Emblems, which can work in your favor if you combine them well. You also form support bonuses between allies, so make sure you have synergy in your team. You can even rewind choices you’ve made during battles or restart them entirely if you’ve made a mistake using the Draconic Time Crystal. Certain maps will be hidden by the fog of war, which can be dispersed with magic, torches, or lighting beacons around the map.

For people who play RPGs for the story, you’ll be disappointed as it lacks the story depth of previous Fire Emblem games. The story is rather basic, and the characters have little depth. Some of the best tactical RPGs also have some of the best stories and most memorable characters, and the series has proven in the past that it is capable of the storytelling RPG fans know and love. While the art style and music are solid, RPGs are like reading a novel where you decide how the story progresses, and that was lacking from this installment as of this writing.

Fire Emblem Engage is definitely something I’d play to kill a weekend or something I’d do on a long road trip. There are plans for more content and DLC in the future, and hopefully, this expands on the foundation that is in place to create a Fire Emblem game that both long-time fans and new fans can enjoy.

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gadgetsmagazine.com.ph 160 February 2023 New data from LinkedIn shows that roles in medical, tech, and those that help drive business growth are among fastest-growing in the Philippines

From the rise in skills-based hiring to the demand for hybrid work, the employment landscape has been undergoing a wave of changes. As professionals in the Philippines enter the new year, understanding where some of the fastest-growing jobs lie can help them better prepare for the next move — whether they are looking to make a career pivot, get back in the workforce, or invest in skills that will prepare them for the future.

LinkedIn’s Jobs on the Rise list reveals that the need to drive business growth in an uncertain environment is creating opportunities in jobs focused on acquiring new customers and retaining existing ones, with demand for Business Development Representatives (ranked 2nd), Customer Success Specialists, and Delivery Specialists on the rise.

Jobs that require using data for translation to actionable insights to help business leaders and marketing communication professionals make more informed decisions, such as Insights Analyst (3rd) and Media Analyst (6th), are also in demand.

The rapid and continued shift towards digitalization leads to job growth for tech specialists, such as Data Engineers, DevOps Engineers, and Cloud Engineers. There is a growing need for niche knowledge fields in financial compliance (Anti-Money Laundering Analyst) and processes (Tax Associate).

Clinical Research Associate is the fastest-growing job role in the Philippines, with Virtual Medical Assistants among the country’s most in-demand professionals.

LinkedIn’s career expert Pooja Chhabria, says: “While the economy is likely to be uncertain throughout most of 2023, there are bright spots in the labor market with macro-trends such as the rapid acceleration towards greater digitalization and jobs focused on business growth powering some of the strongest opportunities for job seekers. The Jobs on the Rise list provides professionals insight into the skills they need to prepare for emerging roles. Professionals must embrace lifelong learning to remain competitive and relevant in the fast-evolving world of work.”


Research Assistant or Clinical Research Coordinator

What they do: Clinical research associates are responsible for the setup, conduct, and supervision of clinical trials and studies designed to determine the effectiveness and safety of drugs, products, and procedures.

Most common skills: Good Clinical Practice (GCP), Clinical Monitoring, Clinical Trial Management System (CTMS)

Most common industries: Manufacturing, Professional Services, Hospitals, and Health Care

Current gender distribution: 72% female; 28% male

Median years of prior experience: 3.3

Top roles transitioned from: Pharmacist, Clinical Research Coordinator

Remote job availability: 24.2%


What they do: Business development representatives help a company’s marketing and sales departments by identifying, connecting, and nurturing new clients to generate new revenue.

Most common skills: Lead Generation, Business Development, Cold Calling

Most common industries: Technology and Media, Professional Services, Entertainment Providers

Current gender distribution: 52% female; 48% male

Median years of prior experience: 2.7

Top roles transitioned from: Customer Service Representative, Sales Development Representative, Account Manager

Remote job availability: 60.5%

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Clinical Research Associate
Business Development Manager, Development Representative Business Development Representative

What they do: Insights analysts are responsible for translating a company’s financial, customer, and market data into insights that can help the business make informed decisions.

Most common skills: Microsoft Power BI, Business Insights, Data Visualization

Most common industries: Professional Services, Manufacturing, Technology, and Media

Current gender distribution: 34% female; 66% male

Median years of prior experience: 3.2

Top roles transitioned from: Data Analyst, Business Analyst

Remote job availability: 13.3%

What they do: Delivery specialists manage projects on behalf of clients, ensuring that projects are completed within deadlines and budgets and that projects meet every client specification.

Most common skills: Service Delivery, Alteryx, Business Process Improvement

Most common industries: Professional Services, Technology and Media, Administrative and Support Services

Current gender distribution: 49% female; 51% male

Median years of prior experience: 2.8

Remote job availability: 1%

What they do: Anti-money laundering analysts help organizations comply with anti-money laundering regulations by monitoring financial transactions and investigating any suspicious activity.

Most common skills: KYC Verification, Anti-Money Laundering, Due Diligence

Most common industries: Financial Services, Professional Services, Technology, and Media

Current gender distribution: 67% female; 33% male

Median years of prior experience: 2.8

Top roles transitioned from: Salesperson, Customer Service Representative, New Account Specialist

Remote job availability: 4.8%

What they do: Media analysts measure the success of advertising campaigns and other marketing activities by monitoring media channels and analyzing media data.

Most common skills: Media Analysis, Media Monitoring, Data Analysis

Most common industries: Professional Services, Technology, and Media, Financial Services

Current gender distribution: 60% female; 40% male

Median years of prior experience: 1.7

Top roles transitioned from: Customer Service Representative

Remote job availability: 48.3%

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Insights Analyst
Consumer Insights Analyst or Data Insights Analyst Media Analyst
Paid Media Analyst Delivery Specialist
Service Delivery Specialist
AML Surveillance Analyst, AML Compliance Analyst, or AML Investigator Anti-Money Laundering Analyst

Customer Success Specialist

What they do: Customer success specialists help businesses retain existing customers by responding to inquiries, resolving issues, and providing other support that ensures customer satisfaction.

Most common skills: Account Management, Customer Success, Customer Relationship Management (CRM)

Most common industries: Professional Services, Financial Services, Technology, and Media

Current gender distribution: 48% female; 52% male

Median years of prior experience: 3.7

Remote job availability: 36.3%

What they do: Virtual medical assistants take care of many administrative and clerical duties for clinics or hospitals, including the maintenance of medical databases, appointment scheduling, patient billing, and insurance coverage processing.

Most common skills: Virtual Assistance, Medical Assisting, Appointment Scheduling

Most common industries: Professional Services, Hospitals and Health Care, Administrative and Support Services

Current gender distribution: 70% female; 30% male

Median years of prior experience: 2.7

Top roles transitioned from: Customer Service Representative, Registered Nurse, Nurse

Remote job availability: 15%

Salesforce Consultant

What they do: Salesforce consultants help companies use the Salesforce CRM software, providing expert guidance during the setup, implementation, and optimization of the tool to suit the company’s needs.

Most common skills: Salesforce.com Administration, Apex Programming, Salesforce Sales Cloud

Most common industries: Professional Services, Technology and Media, Manufacturing

Current gender distribution: 32% female; 68% male

Median years of prior experience: 3.3

Top roles transitioned from: Salesforce developer, software engineer, Salesforce Administrator

Remote job availability: 46.3%

What they do: Data engineers work with raw data and transform it into a format that’s more accessible and usable for further analysis by data scientists.

Most common skills: Data Engineering, Load (ETL), Python (Programming Language)

Most common industries: Professional Services, Financial Services, Oil, Gas, and Mining

Current gender distribution: 32% female; 68% male

Median years of prior experience: 3.3

Top roles transitioned from: Software Engineer, Data Analyst, Business Intelligence Developer

Remote job availability: 17.9%

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Virtual Medical Assistant
Data Engineer

Security Operations Center Analyst

Cybersecurity Analyst or Information Security Analyst

What they do: Security operations center analysts protect a company’s computer network by monitoring system activity, identifying and responding to threats, and patching any system security flaw.

Most common skills: Security Information and Event Management (SIEM), Security Operations Center, Cybersecurity

Most common industries: Professional Services, Financial Services, Technology and Media

Current gender distribution: 27% female; 73% male

Median years of prior experience: 2.7

Top roles transitioned from: Cyber Security Analyst

Remote job availability: 13.70%

What they do: Product owners take the lead in all aspects of new product development and are responsible for setting the vision for the product, deciding what features the product should have, and managing the whole process from start to finish.

Most common skills: Agile Methodologies, Scrum, Product Management

Most common industries: Financial Services, Professional Services, Technology, and Media

Top locations hiring: Makati

Current gender distribution: 48% female; 52% male

Median years of prior experience: 4.3

Top roles transitioned from: Business Analyst

Remote job availability: 17.5%

What they do: DevOps engineers sit between software development and software operation teams to improve end-user experience, balancing the rollout of new features with maintaining the stability and security of the software.

Most common skills: DevOps, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Kubernetes

Most common industries: Professional Services, Financial Services, Technology, and Media

Current gender distribution: 22% female; 78% male

Median years of prior experience: 3.7

Top roles transitioned from: Software engineer, System Administrator, System Engineer

Remote job availability: 21.4%

What they do: Cloud engineers manage a company’s cloud-based systems and are responsible for setting it up, ensuring its stability, implementing updates, and customizing its features to suit end users’ needs.

Most common skills: Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, Cloud Computing

Most common industries: Professional Services, Technology, and Media, Manufacturing

Current gender distribution: 23% female; 77% male

Median years of prior experience: 3.3

Top roles transitioned from: Software Engineer, System Administrator, Application Developer

Remote job availability: 40.9%

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DevOps Engineer
Product Owner
Cloud Engineer

Tax Analyst, Tax Specialist, or Tax Preparer

What they do: Tax associates help organizations file their taxes correctly, find opportunities for tax deductions, and provide guidance on taxrelated matters.

Most common skills: Tax Preparation, Tax Compliance, Accounting

Most common industries: Professional Services, Financial Services, Real Estate, and Equipment Rental Services

Current gender distribution: 67% female; 33% male

Median years of prior experience: 1.2

Top roles transitioned from: Audit Associate, Accountant, Accounting Associate

Remote job availability: 7.3%

Supporting professionals to navigate their careers in 2023

As the job market continues to evolve, LinkedIn shares tips on how Filipino job seekers and professionals can attract career opportunities in 2023:

• Create a standout profile: Be sure your LinkedIn profile is up to date to stand out to recruiters. LinkedIn members with a profile photo have 21 times more views and up to nine times more connection requests than members who don’t. Be sure to include a summary of your background and highlight your key skills. By enabling the Open to Work feature in your profile, you may let recruiters and your network know you’re open to new opportunities.

• Look for in-demand roles: While the job market is tightening, our Jobs on the Rise data shows that roles in areas such as medical, technology, and those that help drive business growth are among the fastest-growing jobs. If you’re looking at a career change, choosing wisely the industry that you enter next is essential.

• Stay on top of the latest updates: In a shifting, competitive job market, the latest information may give you the necessary advantage. LinkedIn’s Get Hired newsletter provides timely job search advice and shows which companies are currently hiring and the Top Voices to follow to stay in the know.

• Get interview ready: Employers will be looking for the best fit, so before each application, think long and hard about why the role is for you. How can you demonstrate your qualifications? Why should they hire you over someone else? By using tools such as LinkedIn interview prep, you’ll be able to prepare yourself.

• Invest in yourself: Online courses may bridge the gap when learning new skills or brushing up on existing ones. For job seekers, it’s vital to understand the skills in demand, which of your current skills are transferable and what new skills you need to learn. Over 40% of companies globally rely on skills to find candidates, so identify the five most relevant skills in the job you want, acquire them, then add them to your profile.

LinkedIn Learning has over 18,000 courses available for anyone looking to upskill, including free access to Build a Career You Love No Matter the Market, A Career Strategist’s Guide to Getting a Job, v, and A Bold New Approach to Goal Setting with Michael Bungay Stanier to help job seekers.

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In 2023, DAMO expects to see technology progress with a surge of related applications in the following fields:

Alibaba DAMO Academy, the global research initiative by Alibaba Group, shared its annual forecasting of the leading technology trends that could shape many industries in the years ahead.

By analyzing public papers and patent filings over the past three years and conducting interviews with almost 100 scientists, entrepreneurs, and engineers worldwide, DAMO presents the top technology trends in 2023 that are expected to achieve accelerated breakthroughs and impact positively across core industries economically and socially.

“Looking towards 2023, the advancement of various technologies will drive software/ hardware co-design and the integration of computing and communications technologies. The wide application of technologies will facilitate the rollout of AI and other digital technologies in vertical markets and promote the collaboration of public and private sectors and individuals in security technology and security management. The innovation driven by the advancement of technologies and their industry-specific application has become an irreversible trend,” said Jeff Zhang, head of Alibaba DAMO Academy.

Generative AI generates new content based on a given set of text, images, or audio files. Currently, Generative AI is mainly used to produce prototypes and drafts and is applied in scenarios like gaming, advertising, and graphic design. Along with future technological advancement and cost reduction, Generative AI will become an inclusive technology that can significantly enhance the variety, creativity, and efficiency of content creation.

In the next three years, we will see business models emerging and ecosystems maturing as Generative AI becomes widely marketized. Generative AI models will be more interactive, secure, and intelligent, assisting human beings in completing various creative work.

Trend 1: Generative AI
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In the past, the traditional decision-making method is based on Operations Research. Due to its limitations in handling problems with great uncertainty and its slow response to large-scale problems, academia and industry began to include machine learning in decision optimization. The two engines are perfect complements to each other, and when used in tandem, can improve the speed and quality of decision making. In the future, this technology is expected to be widely used in various scenarios to support dynamic, comprehensive,

and real-time resource allocation, such as realtime electricity dispatching, optimization of port throughput, assignment of airport stands, and improvement of manufacturing processes.

In the future, dual-engine decision intelligence will be applied in more scenarios. It will increase the number of entities, expand the scale in regional resource allocation scenarios, and eventually achieve dynamic, comprehensive, and real-time resource allocation.


Cloud-native security is implemented to not only deliver security capabilities native to cloud infrastructure but also improve security services by leveraging cloud-native technologies. Security technologies and cloud computing are becoming more integrated than ever before. We have witnessed applied technologies evolve from containerized deployment to microservices and then to the serverless model, and security services embraced

the shift to become native, fine-grained, platformoriented, and intelligent.

In the next three to five years, cloud-native security will become more versatile and can adapt more quickly to multi-cloud architectures. It will also become more conducive to building security systems that are dynamic, end-to-end, precise, and applicable to hybrid environments.

Trend 2: Dual-engine Decision Intelligence 3: Cloud-native Security
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Pre-trained multimodal foundation models have become a new paradigm and infrastructure for building artificial intelligence (AI) systems. These models can acquire knowledge from different modalities and present the knowledge based on a unified representation learning framework. In the future, foundation models are set to serve as the basic infrastructure of AI systems across tasks of images, text, and audio, empowering AI systems with cognitive intelligence capabilities to reason, answer questions, summarize, and create.

Cloud computing is evolving towards a new architecture centered around Cloud Infrastructure Processor (CIPU). This software-defined, hardware-accelerated architecture helps accelerate cloud applications while maintaining high elasticity and agility for cloud application development. CIPU will become the de facto standard of nextgeneration cloud computing and bring new development opportunities for core software R&D and dedicated chip design.

Predictable fabric, a host-network co-design networking system driven by advances in cloud computing, aims to offer high-performance network services. It is also an inevitable trend as today’s computing, and networking capabilities gradually converge on each other. Through the full-stack innovation of cloud-defined protocols, software,

chips, hardware, architecture, and platforms, predictable fabric is expected to subvert the traditional TCP-based network architecture and become part of the core network in next-generation data centers. Advances in this area are also driving the adoption of predictable fabric from data center networks to wide-area cloud backbone networks.

Trend 6: Predictable Fabric based on Edge-Cloud Trend 4: Pre-trained Multimodal Foundation Models
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Trend 5: Hardware-Software Integrated Cloud Computing Architecture

Computational imaging is an emerging interdisciplinary technology. In contrast with traditional imaging techniques, computational imaging uses mathematical models and signal processing capabilities and thus can perform unprecedented in-depth analysis on light field information. This technology is already used on a large scale in mobile phone photography, health care, and autonomous driving. In the future, computational imaging will continue to revolutionize traditional imaging technologies and give rise to innovative and imaginative applications such as lensless imaging and Non-line-of-sight (NLOS) imaging.

Chiplet-based design allows manufacturers to break down a system on a chip (SoC) into multiple chiplets, manufacture the chiplets separately by using different processes, and finally integrate them into an SoC through interconnects and packaging. The interconnect standards of chiplets are being unified into a single standard, accelerating the industrialization process of chiplets. Powered by advanced packaging technologies, chiplets may bring a new wave of change to the R&D process of integrated circuits and reshape the landscape of the chip industry.

Processing in Memory (PIM) technology is the integration of a CPU and memory on a single chip, which allows data to be directly processed in memory. In the future, compute-in-memory chips are projected to be used in more powerful applications such as cloud-based inference. This will shift the traditional computing-centric architecture towards the data-centric architecture, which will have a positive impact on industries such as cloud computing, AI, and the Internet of Things (IoT).

The concept of the urban digital twins has become a new approach to refined city governance. So far, large-scale urban digital twins have made significant progress in scenarios such as traffic governance, natural disaster prevention and management, carbon peaking and neutrality. In the future, large-scale urban digital twins will become more autonomous and multi-dimensional.

Trend 7: Computational Imaging Trend 8: Chiplet Trend 10: Large-scale Urban Digital Twins
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Trend 9: PIM

917Ventures Startup Accelerator Program

en promising startups are all set to unlock the next stage of growth and scale after completing a 10-week accelerator program conducted by 917Ventures in partnership with global venture capital firm and startup accelerator 500 Global.

The 10 participants are

• Capitan

• Carsada

• EdVenture

• FundSpace

• Housify • KodeGo • MemoApp




The program aimed to replicate the successful accelerator experience of Silicon Valley startups by tapping into 500 Global’s expertise, resources, and capacity to support high-potential businesses and expand their opportunities beyond the Philippines.

Through the partnership, 917Ventures was able to offer its startups access to 500 Global’s extensive network of mentors, corporate partners, alumni, and proprietary accelerator curriculum and resources.

The participants underwent over 10,000 learning hours, tapping into the expertise and experience of global startup founders via exclusive sharing sessions. They

also got the chance to have one-on-one sessions with mentors to get personalized feedback and guidance on their specific business challenges.

“The 500 Global Accelerator Program has been a huge success, providing our startups with valuable feedback, new partnerships, and a wealth of knowledge to take their businesses to the next level. We are confident that they will continue to grow and thrive in the future, and we cannot wait to see what they will accomplish next,” said Vince Yamat, managing director of 917Ventures.

Ee Ling Lim, executive director of Market Launch at 500 Global, also shared her excitement about the program

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results, noting: “Our partnership with 917Ventures has been a fantastic opportunity to support and guide these startups on their journey to success. We are proud to have been a part of their growth and look forward to seeing the impact they will have in the years to come.”

Through the program, Capitan received valuable client feedback and testimonials and gained a new partnership idea to be rolled out soon.

One-stop used car shop Carsada conducted weekly customer discovery sessions, which provided the basis for its sales strategies, while online tutorial services EdVenture gained insights about customer discovery, identifying pain points, and measuring the right metrics.

Business loan provider FundSpace received information on product-market fit and applied frameworks on customer profile and customer journey. Housify conducted weekly customer discovery sessions, which provided the basis for sales and supply acquisition strategies,

and gained two sale offers by applying customer insights.

Coding boot camp KodeGo was able to pivot and find product market fit for 2023 and streamline sound and effective tactical projects. Template-based memo system MemoApp received essential frameworks on customer discovery, product development and sales to monetize this quarter and develop its freemium model.

New revolutionary TV and digital channel PIE, short for Pinoy Interactive Entertainment, gained valuable learnings that helped it focus and simplify its overall approach and mindset to the business.

Online grocery store Rappit identified key points for customer conversion, retention, and churn, reviewed current communications design, and restructured scheduling, creatives, and overall messaging.

End-to-end e-commerce platform provider RUSH found the program to be a great refresh and reminder of the importance of fundamentals they tend

to overlook in the day-to-day activities, and released product enhancement that increased order success rate and fulfillment speed.

Having a total of 12 portfolio companies since 2019 and with more ventures in the pipeline, 917Ventures remains the country’s largest corporate venture builder that generates startups from concept and development to growth and expansion.

Its accelerator program was aligned with the company’s plans for this year to explore new areas in climate technology and focus on digital transformation to help small and medium-sized businesses recover and grow.

917Ventures is set to produce more ideas in the areas of finance, media and entertainment, e-commerce, digital health, and education. It also plans to work with other companies to create new ventures.

Learn more about 917Ventures and its startups by visiting https://917ventures. com/.

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Since the telcos launched their SIM Registration platforms last December 27, 2022, millions of Filipinos have already registered their SIMs.

According to the Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT), all subscribers are given a period of 180 days or until April 26, 2023, to register their SIMs. The registration may be extended by the DICT for a period not exceeding 120 days.

What exactly happens if you fail to register your SIM?

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But what exactly happens if you fail to register your SIM within the deadline? The SIM Registration Law states that all unregistered SIMs shall be automatically deactivated, which comes with all these hassles:

1. No outgoing and incoming calls. You can’t make or take urgent and important calls to and from your family and friends, as well as communicate with your colleagues at school, work, or business.

2. No sending and receiving messages. On top of being unreachable to family and friends through text, you’ll also go through the horrors of not being able to get your One-Time Password (OTP), which is now a common security feature in many social media apps, digital banking services, and online shopping sites linked to your account.

3. No internet access. The Internet has become essential in our increasingly digital world. And more than not being able to enjoy your favorite apps and sites, having no internet access also means getting cut off from important information and services that make life simpler and easier.

4. No load balances. Once your SIM is deactivated, all your remaining load balances will be forfeited.

Users who missed the deadline and got their SIMs deactivated may still process the reactivation of their SIMs not later than five days after the period set by the law.

Avoid all these hassles by registering your Smart and TNT SIM now

Avoid all these hassles by registering your Smart and TNT SIM now! Smart Prepaid and TNT subscribers can register their SIM and get 3 GB FREE data upon completing these three easy steps:

Step 1. Visit the portal at http://www. smart.com.ph/simreg

Step 2. Input your information and upload your valid ID Step 3. Wait for an SMS confirmation and get 3GB FREE Data

Smart is also making SIM Registration more convenient for postpaid subscribers, who simply need to confirm the personal information and IDs they submitted for their postpaid plan application. To do this confirmation, subscribers just need to text YES to 5858. They shall then receive a confirmation message from Smart upon successful SIM Registration and get 3GB FREE data.

By registering your SIM now, you can continue to enjoy all the value-packed offers and amazing experiences from both Smart and TNT, powered by the country’s widest LTE network.

Know more about registering your Smart and TNT SIM at https://smart.com.ph/ Pages/simreg-faqs

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Diabetes is among the highest causes of death in the Philippines, making early detection essential to avoid serious complications. Still, many Filipinos lack access to proper resources to get the care they need.

Due to this pressing concern, leading health app KonsultaMD makes it easier for patients to take the first step to better health through the Diabetes Screening package, the newest addition to its line of tailored health packages targeting illnesses prevalent among Filipinos.

“We recognize the difficulties many people experience in finding the right tools to address their health problems. So we are helping them take the first step in achieving a healthier lifestyle,” said Cholo Tagaysay, KonsultaMD CEO.

“This new offer is perfect for those who may be at risk of diabetes or are experiencing symptoms consistent with diabetes,” he added.

The all-in-one screening package includes convenient at-home lab tests necessary in screening for diabetes: FBS, CBC, CREA, Lipid Profile, Urinalysis, and HBA1C. It also has a free video consultation with a doctor for lab test interpretation.

The package comes with one-month unlimited Concierge access for a hassle-free service. Concierge is KonsultaMD’s VIP Service experience, where a customer representative

will personally handle all appointments and bookings.

Those interested can avail of the Diabetes Screening Package for only PHP3,999 through the KonsultaMD app. Just input the code “KMDDiabetes” on the homepage to talk to a Concierge customer representative.

KonsultaMD offers accessible and affordable healthcare through its app. It provides 24/7 ondemand doctor consultations via chat, video, and voice as well as access to e-Medical documents, diagnosis services, and mental health support, among others.

gadgetsmagazine.com.ph 174 February 2023 Download the app at use.konsulta.md/kmddiabetes. To learn more about KonsultaMD, visit www.konsulta.md


Global technology leader Epson Philippines has launched its Virtual Demo channel where customers can inquire about Epson’s wide range of consumer and enterprise products and schedule product demonstrations. Available on Viber, customers are given a more personal experience as they chat or call one-on-one with an Epson Virtual Demo Specialist.

Even as COVID-19 protocols are slowly being lifted, Epson Philippines still anticipates the need for virtual touchpoints where customers can easily access information. Through the Virtual Demo on Viber, Epson Philippines provides an avenue that enables customers to efficiently engage with an Epson Virtual Demo Specialist at their convenience for concerns specific to product specs and demo schedules. This newly available Viber channel addresses customers’ demo requests through online chat, call, or video conference.

“Epson is committed to giving full support and accessibility to its customers,” said Eduardo Bonoan, general manager of the Marketing Division at Epson Philippines. “We have made sure that our customers can easily get in touch with our Epson Virtual Demo Specialist for product demo schedules. We also want to ensure that customers are able to choose the Epson product best suited for their needs, which is why we encourage them to schedule product demonstrations at their preferred times.”

In line with Epson’s commitment to providing our customers prompt, efficient, transparent, and courteous assistance, the Virtual Demo channel takes product demonstrations a step further by giving customers the option to either hold an on-the-spot

product demonstration or schedule a demonstration at the customer’s preference. Product demonstrations can be held either online via video call, on-site at an Epson Solutions Center, or even at the customer’s office space. The demonstration is preceded by a detailed consultation with an Epson Virtual Demo Specialist, where customers give their complete requirements, and the Epson Virtual Demo Specialist recommends a product for demonstration.

Interested customers can add the Epson Virtual Demo channel with Viber number 09686641312 or visit Epson Philippines’ Facebook page for more details.

Epson Philippines remains committed to further improving its customer service experience to ensure that its customers are well-informed, engaged, and empowered to continue choosing Epson.

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ZTE Corporation, a global leading provider of information and communication technology solutions, recently launched the fourth-generation Intel Xeon Scalable Processor (Sapphire Rapids)-based G5 series servers in Beijing.

A company committed to boosting the digital economy, ZTE released five types of servers, including the 5200 G5 highdensity server, R5300 G5 full-scenario universal server, R5500 G5 mass storage server, R6500 G5 heterogeneous computing power server, and R8500 G5 high-performance server.

The new G5 series servers support liquid cooling heat dissipation. They possess high-density computing power, flexible expansion, heterogeneous computing power, mass storage, stability, and reliability, which will provide more powerful computing power for the development of the digital economy.

ZTE’s G5-Series servers adopt the latest Intel Xeon fourth-generation scalable processors with up to 120 cores in 2 sockets, providing powerful computing power support. The servers have high memory bandwidth design with 32

DDR5 memory slots. The highest rate is up to 4800MT/s, and bandwidth performance is promoted by 50%. The servers support Intel Optane persistent memory 300 series (Crow Pass). The new PCIe 5.0 improves bandwidth by 150% and provides powerful hardware acceleration capabilities.

Specifically, ZTE’s R6500 G5 heterogeneous computing power server has a built-in 10-20 computing intelligent acceleration engine. According to different application scenarios, it can flexibly schedule various computing power resources to achieve the best combination of computing power, such as CPU + GPU and CPU + GPU + DPU, to meet the requirements of various computing power scenarios such as AI and supercomputing.

Meanwhile, the new G5-series servers can be flexibly expanded. For instance, the R5300 G5 provides a maximum of forty-one 2.5” disk positions or twenty 3.5” disk positions and four 2.5” disk positions and provides high-speed I/O interfaces. It is designed based on hardware modularization and software platforms, which is configured

as required to meet differentiated requirements in different application scenarios. In addition, the customized R5300 G5 server can be designed to meet different customer requirements and meet different application scenarios.

Guo Shubo, deputy general manager of server and storage product line at ZTE, said: “With the rapid development of the digital economy, the computing power scale has also increased rapidly in recent years. ZTE, the fastest growing server manufacturer in China in the past three years has deployed its server and storage products in 40+ countries and regions around the world, covering communications, Internet, finance, power, government, transportation, and other industries.”

ZTE Philippines president Wan Min, anticipates that the new servers will be a boon for Philippine businesses. “As one of the worldwide leaders in the digital economy, we believe that these new servers will help facilitate and improve the digital transformation of numerous Philippine companies. The powerful G5 servers are reliable, stable, and costeffective, making it the perfect choice for any industry.”

Guo Shubo, Deputy General Manager of Server and Storage product line of ZTE
177 February 2023


Darwinbox, the fastest-growing HR tech unicorn, and Microsoft have announced a collaboration to empower organizations globally with the right tools to succeed in the evolving world of work. The partnership will include deep integrations between Darwinbox and the Microsoft product ecosystem and co-innovation on solutions to enhance employee experience. The relationship will also accelerate joint go-to-market motions in all markets in which the leading Human Capital Management player operates. In addition to the co-innovation roadmap, Microsoft has also made an equity investment in Darwinbox to accelerate its mission of empowering organizations to unify their entire employee lifecycle.

Darwinbox’s cloud-based Human Capital Management (HCM) platform caters to HR needs across the entire employee lifecycle with new-age employee experiences and disruptive AI-powered technology. Powering 700+ enterprises and 2 million employees across the globe, the company has seen 6.5X revenue growth and 300% headcount growth in the Philippines since its Series D Unicorn funding round in January 2022.

The Microsoft and Darwinbox collaboration will fuel the global HR tech leader’s growth further while enabling organizations to unlock their workforce’s highest potential.

Jayant Paleti, Darwinbox co-founder, commented on the collaboration, saying, “We’ve always had the highest regard for the Microsoft brand and ethos. As we align on the joint vision of helping our customers unlock new levels of employee experience and productivity, we’re excited to co-innovate on multiple lines of IP

development and take these solutions to our customers globally.”

In the Philippines, Darwinbox works with leading enterprises, namely JG Summit Holdings (now Gokongwei Group), Maxicare Healthcare, Shakey’s Pizza, Robinsons Bank, Straive, UNO Digital Bank, PLDT, GT Capital Group, Delbros Group, Security Bank, Toyota Motor Philippines, Radius Telecom amongst others.

Microsoft Asia president Ahmed Mazhari said, “In the new world of work, connected and energized employees are a competitive advantage for every organization. We’re pleased to collaborate with leaders like Darwinbox to reimagine employee experience and enable HR teams with the power of technology. Co-innovating with our customers is key to how Microsoft is empowering organizations across Asia to do more with less.”

Deep integrations and multiple lines of co-innovation between Darwinbox and Microsoft will allow Darwinbox

to deliver a radically unique and differentiated value proposition to its customers worldwide. As part of this collaboration, Darwinbox will adopt Microsoft Azure to enhance its Human Capital Management (HCM) SaaS platform.

Darwinbox’s mobile-first platform continues to enhance and personalize employee experience (EX) by bringing HR transactions and experiences into the flow of work with Dynamics 365 and Office 365 platforms like Microsoft Teams, Viva, and Active Directory. Darwinbox has leveraged Microsoft’s Power BI to further augment its AI-based predictive analytics engine, to build rich visual analytics dashboards, helping employees across customer organizations use data more effectively and power faster business decisions. Strategic product and engineering collaborations between the two companies will amplify innovation around workforce management, payroll management, benefits, talent management, and acquisition.

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Jayant Paleti, Cofounder Darwinbox


The Philippines’ top construction supplies and home improvement retailer, Wilcon Depot, emerged a victor during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic as the company adapted a new business model to serve the repair, renovation, and building needs of its loyal customers during lockdown. As a trailblazer in the home and construction supply and improvement industry for the past 45 years, Wilcon Depot needed a trusted connectivity partner to make sure it could keep addressing accessibility pain points to be able to continue delivering highquality products and solutions.

In order to adapt to the new working environment and innovate towards a more digital retailing model, Wilcon Depot partnered with Converge ICT Solutions, Inc. with their enterprise-grade product, Direct Internet Access (DIA), which allows them to have a dedicated and secured internet service.

Having DIA assured the company that it could maintain the smooth flow of operations and continue providing excellent customer service. The Direct Internet Access granted Wilcon Depot a well-orchestrated operational process of virtual video conferences between various departments, comprehensive data sharing, and coordinated logistical communication to ensure continuous business productivity.

“The IT infrastructure is very important to any growing company. Especially for us as a retailer, we need data very quickly. We need the data to be consolidated back at our head office. And we need data to be consistent and available to our teams so we can make proper decisions. Operationally, we cannot run our costs, we cannot run our systems without connectivity,” said Lorraine BeloCincochan, president and CEO of Wilcon Depot.

“We needed to have stable connectivity when we realized that video conferencing is here to stay for a while. One of the things that we are looking into is upgrading our connectivity. Not just in the head office because people worked from home, but we also needed to communicate with our branches. When we reopened, we amped up our bandwidth because we offered our Browse Call Collect service on Viber. It’s still available today and Converge helped us make it possible. We couldn’t have done it with the existing bandwidth that we had before Covid,” Belo-Cincochan added.

For the majority of their branches, Wilcon Depot is currently subscribed to the Converge iBiz product, a pure fiber internet plan created to provide businesses with quality connections at an affordable cost. As the company evolves and expands with an increasing need for more bandwidth, they are hand in hand with Converge as they transition from iBiz to flexiBIZ—a business-grade connectivity solution designed for maximum efficiency during daytime business peak hours.

Direct Internet Access – Time of Day, an innovative and unique product from Converge, helps boost Wilcon Depot’s operations and aids in their plans

for nationwide expansion through a premium, dedicated, and secured internet service with double of their subscribed bandwidth as they need it during the most critical hours of their operations, providing them flexibility and unrivaled value for money.

“We’re happy to be Wilcon Depot’s longtime partner in connectivity. Helping them maintain their status as a pioneer in construction supply and home improvement retail in the Philippines despite the challenges of the pandemic is in line with our guiding belief in accessibility, innovation, and growth,” said Converge chief operating officer Jesus C. Romero. “We are proud to be their continued partner in providing solutions for every Filipino home as they continue to expand nationwide. Converge remains committed to supporting businesses as they adapt to new operating models to improve efficiency and increase productivity.”

Converge has been providing businesses and companies with secure, flexible, and dynamic enterprise-grade fiber solutions to help retail businesses like Wilcon Depot ensure their businesses run smoothly. To learn more about Converge Business Solutions, visit www. convergeict.com/business.

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(L-R): Wilcon Depot President and CEO Lorraine Belo-Cincochan and Converge Chief Operating Officer Jesus C. Romero.


Many great ideas can live and die at the hands of venture capital. Having grown up in the San Francisco Bay Area, I have been fortunate enough to have had a front-row seat at many groundbreaking events in Silicon Valley. Many major companies we associate with technology, lifestyle, and fintech were all within an hour’s drive of my house. But what if that idea is the very way we use capital? The recent collapse of FTX led me down a deep rabbit hole of research to bring you an often-forgotten yet critically important step in fintech history: DigiCash.

Today, the rise (and fall) of FTX is a cautionary tale of risk regarding a popular fintech trend: cryptocurrency. As of this writing, the ultimate fate of FTX, its founder Sam Bankman-Fried, and other FTX executives is still in (and on) the air. Allegations of their mismanagement of customer funds continue to dominate the financial news headlines, leading governments worldwide to probe into the nature of cryptocurrency itself and how it should be regulated.

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Words by Jose Alvarez Original technical team, from left to right: Marius, Paul, Branko, Kai, and Mercal. (1994)

The idea of cryptocurrency is nothing new. David Chaum’s vision of making online payments fast, safe, and anonymous started in his 1982 doctoral dissertation “Computer Systems Established, Maintained, and Trusted by Mutually Suspicious Groups” for a doctorate in computer science at the University of California, Berkeley. Chaum’s 1982 dissertation proposed every element of the blockchain found in Bitcoin except the proof of work (PoW). PoW is a cryptographic proof in which one party (the prover) proves to other parties (the verifiers) that a certain amount of a specific computational effort has been expended and has been the foundation of a permission-less decentralized network along with proof of stake (PoS).

While PoW would not be invented until 1993, and the term would not be coined and formalized until 1999, Chaum’s proposed vault system included achieving a consensus state between nodes, chaining the history of consensus in blocks, and an immutable time stamping of the chained data. The code was also included in this paper, but discussing that would be an entirely new article. While the Internet was technically available to universities, businesses, and the government, it was not yet available to average consumers. These average consumers like you and I would be the most likely to use these digital payment systems. This meant that Chaum was taking a (digital) leap into the unknown.

In a 1983 paper, Chaum was credited for inventing secure digital cash, introducing the cryptographic primitive of a blind signature. This proposal allowed users to obtain digital currency from a bank and spend it however the user wants without the bank or any other party knowing about it. By 1988, Chaum expanded this idea to offline transactions to detect double-spending. Chaum’s most significant breakthrough was the founding of DigiCash in 1989 to commercialize his research. By 1994, the first electronic payment was sent, the same year the commercial Internet

was born. The Internet would shape fintech, for better or worse, for the following decades to come.

How did DigiCash work? It required software to withdraw notes from a bank and designate specific encrypted keys before they could be sent to the recipient. The fact that DigiCash payments escaped detection from banks, the government, and any third parties also made it a crucial step forward regarding privacy issues. One bank, The Mark Twain Bank of Missouri, was the only US-based bank that supported DigiCash. DigiCash even became large and significant enough to gain the backing of Germany-based Deutsche Bank, one of the world’s most powerful banks today.

The idea of DigiCash was so far ahead of its time that it filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in 1998, and the company was eventually sold in 2002. Why did it fail despite its promise of privacy safeguards and (relative) ease of use?

All signs point to timing. For reference, Amazon didn’t begin selling products outside of books, music, and videos until 1999. Chaum said in a 1999 interview that the technology around DigiCash and DigiCash itself entered the market long before e-commerce was fully integrated into the Internet, which wouldn’t take place until the mid-2000s. If the commercial Internet had been around earlier, it might have been possible that Chaum’s work may have been more recognized.

Chaum remains active in technology to this day, mostly in vault systems, digital signatures, anonymous communication, and even in developing trustworthy voting systems. While Chaum isn’t a household name in technology like Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, or Mark Zuckerberg, he made a pivotal contribution to fintech that we can see today, for better (popularizing e-commerce and digital payments) or worse (bad actors that contributed to the collapse of FTX).

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Later photo of the DigiCash team. (1995)
Proud member of Digitally powered by Follow us on Social Media gadgetsmagazine.com.ph E-mail: info@gadgetsmagazine.com.ph All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission from the publisher is prohibited. GADGETS Magazine is a registered trademark of Great Minds Media Inc. GADGETS Magazine is published monthly by MEET THE TEAM EDITORIAL Editor-in-Chief MARIBELLE ALBA Editors-at-Large PRESY ALBA REN ALCANTARA Mobility Consultant ARNEL DORIA Editor GABRIEL PE Writers/Contributors FRANCESKA AGUILA JOSE ALVAREZ CHRIS NOEL HIDALGO JEWEL STA. ANA CREATIVES Creative Consultant RAYMUND RAVANERA Creative Lead JERICO LUTRANIA Creative Staff CHINI YU SORIANO ADVERTISING Sales and Advertising Manager MARISA CONSUELOZ Account Executive CAROL AGABIN ADMINSTRATION President & CEO MARIBELLE ALBA Accounting Manager MARITESS MAULION HR & Administration Manager AMY CHRISTINE GIRAY Circulation Officer LORIE BERNARDO Administration Staff RAMIL ALMOJANO Legal Counsel ALBA LAW OFFICE Volume XXIII Issue V February 2023 You want more? We recommend you check out our other issues