At least two companies that sell mobile accessories on Amazon seem to have had all their product listings removed a few days ago. Search the site for a set of Mpow wireless headphone or earbuds and you’ll find that everything is “currently unavailable”.
The same goes for Aukey, which normally sells a much wider range of gadgets including audio and charging accessories, hubs, adapters, cables, cameras, and other gear.
While Amazon, Aukey, and Mpow haven’t explained what’s happened, the timing is interesting – SafetyDetectives recently posted about a data breach revealing that some Amazon vendors had collaborated with customers millions of times to provide free products in exchange for positive reviews.
That’s not to say that some of the products aren’t actually decent – I’ve owned a few pairs of Mpow earbuds over the years, and while they’re not incredibly durable (thus the reason I’ve bought several), they sound pretty good and don’t cost a lot. But the problem with this sort of pay-to-play scheme is that it makes it unclear whether you can trust the reviews on sites like Amazon, which could dupe folks into buying products that may not live up to the expectations.
Here’s a roundup of recent tech news from around the web.
- Amazon removes popular tech accessory brands amid fake review scheme leak [Digital Trends]
Wireless headphones, phone chargers, batteries, and other accessories from Aukey, Mpow and other brands have disappeared from Amazon. This could be fallout from a report that some brands game Amazon by offering refunds in exchange for 5-star reviews.
- HTC Vive takes business to the next level with two new VR headsets [HTC]
HTC introduces Vive Pro 2 PC VR headset with dual 2.5K displays and 120 Hz refresh rate, priced at $1399 for the full kit or $749 for upgraders. The business-focused Vive Focus 3 is a standalone headset with Snapdragon XR2. It’s coming June 24 for $1300.
- Samsung to jump into laptop processor market with Exynos chip in H2 [The Korea Economic Daily]
Report: Samsung will launch a “premium Exynos” processor in the second half of 2021 that can work in laptops as well as smartphones. It’s expected to be one of the first Exynos chips to feature AMD graphics, something we’ve been expecting since Samsung first licensed AMD graphics tech for mobile chips a few years ago.
- Using a PCIe Slot to install DRAM: New Samsung CXL.mem Expansion Module [AnandTech]
Samsung introduces the first DDR5 memory module that will connect to a PC or server via a PCIe 5.0 interface using the new CXL (Compute Express Link) standard. It looks like an SSD, but it’s RAM.
- Windows 10 now runs more smoothly on Lumia phones [@gus33000]
The LumiaWOA project brings Windows on ARM to the Lumia 950 and 950XL smartphones (unofficially). The latest drivers bring stability improvements, new options, and much, much more.