In today's smartphone climate it makes a change to see something different – and whatever else the Fairphone 2 is, it's certainly different. Built with sustainability and repairability in mind rather than joining the high-end-specs race, this is a phone for the environmentally conscious – which, really, should be just about all of us.
That said, its specifications aren't actually that bad, putting the Fairphone 2 firmly in the mid-range section of the market, but the focus of this handset is on where its components come from, and how long they're going to last.
The Dutch startup behind the phone has been in operation in some form or another since 2010, and this new phone follows up on the first Fairphone, which had a production run of 60,000 devices.
Fairphone has grander ambitions for the Fairphone 2, bumping up the capabilities of the handset, introducing a new design from Fairphone itself and making itself available to a wider market.
The aims of its makers are two-fold: first to produce a smartphone built from materials that are all ethically and sustainably sourced, and second to reduce e-waste with a modular approach that makes the handset simple to repair (and potentially upgrade in the future).
It can be yours today for €525 (around £395/US$570/AU$805. That's by no means cheap – you can get a Nexus 5X or a 16GB iPhone 5S for less – but you're buying into an ethos as well as picking up some hardware.
You're also getting a phone that should last you a long, long time (five years, says Fairphone), which makes price comparisons somewhat tricky to make.
The Fairphone 2 has an eye-catching look, but not in the conventional sense: the back of the phone case I was sent is transparent, so its components are on show, x-ray-style (other backings, including solid colours, are available).
Its inner modules – seven components in all, from the camera to the speakers – are easy to swap out. And yes, that does include a removable battery. Read the complete FAIRPHONE 2 REVIEW on Flagshipblog.com
Meyer-Optik Gorlitz, a company known for launching fancy lenses, has launched a campaign on Kickstarter which is aimed at bringing back to life the Trioplan 50mm f/2.9 soap bubble prime lens.
Back in the golden era of film photography, Trioplan lenses were known for their bokeh effects. They were considered a bit too much by some, but others believed that they were simply perfect.
Well, Meyer-Optik Gorlitz has decided to allow this series to make a successful comeback to the market. First, the company launched the Trioplan 100mm f/2.8 telephoto lens on Kickstarter. The campaign received the funding from the users, so now it is time for another project.
The target is a modern Trioplan 50mm f/2.9 lens, which is here as a celebration of Trioplan’s centennial. The project is now up on popular the crowd-funding website and it has already been funded.
Meyer-Optik Gorlitz introduces modern Trioplan 50mm f/2.9 lens
This lens has a famous nickname: the soap bubble bokeh lens. The name was given thanks to its overdone bokeh effects. It is a great product for portrait photography, albeit it can be used for other purposes, too.
the optic comes packed with a secondary front focus element. Despite this fact, the product remains compact and lightweight. According to the announcement, the new Trioplan 50mm f/2.9 lens weighs only 200 grams / 7 ounces. For more Digital Camera Rumors visit Flagshipblog.com
The front focus element can be moved, thus allowing photographers to focus on subjects located at a distance slightly under 30 centimeters. As a result, the manufacturer says that it can be used for macro photography.
Its main goal is to make bokeh balls create a swirling effect in the corners. However, contrast and image sharpness have been turned up a notch, so that that quality of your shots reaches the highest levels yet for a Trioplan-series product.
Kickstarter campaign has been funded successfully in less than one day
The company has confirmed that the Trioplan 50mm f/2.9 lens will be released in Canon, Nikon, Sony, Fujifilm, Micro Four Thirds, M42, and Leica M mounts. It is worth noting that the rangefinder of Leica cameras will not be supported, meaning that users will have to rely on the Live View mode to focus.
The project had a goal of $50,000. Well, in less than 24 hours, it has been exceeded, as more than $200,000 have been pledged to the cause at the time of writing this article. More Camera Rumors at theSonyblog.
So, Pakistan have flexed their muscle and sent out a strong message to the rest of the competition. It is India lined up next for them and what a cracker that will be on the 19th. However, there's plenty of action before that. Right as I type, the toss is about to take place in Mumbai where England take on West Indies. Over to the other tab. See you!
Mortaza: "200 is always difficult. After six overs it became almost impossible. Shakib batted really well and we got 150, so not so bad. Looking ahead, we need to bowl better and make more use of the first six overs with the bat. Bengaluru wicket is flat so the bowlers need to come up with plans. Mustafizur is getting better, hopefully he'll be back."
Afridi: "My performance always plays a key role but I haven't done well recently. It's a big event and I should take responsibility as captain and senior player. Spoke with the coach regarding the batting order today and he was happy with me promoting myself. From last two-three series, our batsmen have struggled to find runs. But today they did well. Likes of Mohammad Hafeez and Ahmed Shehzad. Openers play a very important role. Sharjeel is a good attacking cricketer too. If he gets going, he can score 60 runs in the first six overs. I expect good things from him, especially on these pitches which are heaven for batsmen. We don't want to live in past. Need to play good cricket against India, and learn from our previous mistakes against them. Our morale is pretty high after this win. Captaincy isn't an easy job (chuckles), but team is giving 100% and I am enjoying captaincy as well."
Afridi is Man of the Match for a scintillating all-round display
So a win today will answer a lot of questions for Pakistan. Or will it only establish what we have known for years? That Pakistan forget every problem as they enter a big tournament. Their batting looks weak in comparison to other teams but when it clicks, it is capable of tormenting any attack. And Afridi is still their biggest match winner. Was not he all over the Bangladeshis today? First used his bat as a mace and then marshalled his troops from the front to defend the target.Talking about Bangladesh, they should not get disheartened. Their much-awaited outing at the Eden Gardens did not go as planned. Perhaps it was one of those days for them when nothing fell in place. Regrouping as a unit and forgetting about the loss should be high on their agenda for the matches to come. After all, one match does not decide fate! (India nod)
Chasing 200 in T20Is is cricket's equivalent of scaling the Mount Everest. No matter how frequently it is being done these days, it remains a feat. Unfortunately for Bangladesh, they lacked certitude against the mighty Pakistani bowling to hunt down the mammoth target. Mohammad Amir continued with his habit of sending an opener back in the first over. And when Afridi, with his sheer smartness, removed Sabbir Rahman, Bangladesh would have known that nothing but a miracle could save them. But as is the case with miracles, they are not a regularity. Shahid Afridi continued flaunting his skills and choked Bangladesh.
KOLKATA: Cornered tigers Pakistan are all set to take on high-flying Bangladesh in their WT20 opener at Eden Garden Kolkata.
This would be second time both the sides are coming head to head in this month. Bangladesh had defeated Pakistan by 5 wickets when the two sides clashed in Asia Cup 2016 match in Sher e Bangla cricket stadium, Dhaka.
Watch Ball By Ball Score Here: Pakistan Vs Bangladesh Live Score
Pakistan, who had been having a poor run in shorter format of the cricket, have finally got some momentum in their last two games against Sri Lanka, one in Asia Cup, and then in WT20 warm-up.
Pakistan batting line-up has yet to perform, as in India, conditions and pitches are quite different then in Bangladesh.
Bangladesh on the other hand have improved in all three departments, their batsmen have producing runs, their bowlers producing breakthroughs and fielders giving more than hundred percent. Overall, they are way better team than they were in last Wt20 tournament.
MS Dhoni is not often prone to such grandiose statements, least of all in front of a cadre of journalists searching for big, bold headlines and hashtaggable quotes. He even confessed to changing the speech he had cooked up for a function at the Indian High Comission last Sunday upon hearing the media would also be present. So when a man who measures his words so carefully felt the Asia Cup "was an important one to win", you get curious.
On the surface, it doesn't look particularly startling. An eight-wicket victory in a rain-curtailed game where India were chasing 121 in 15 overs. It was their sixth on the trot, meaning they were in form, and everyone from the opposition captain to umpteen cricket experts had tagged them as the favourites. India were ranked No. 1. Bangladesh were at No. 10. Things merely panned out to establish that, right?
Sure. If Twenty20 cricket cowed down to logic like that.
Dhoni seemed acutely aware of the format's penchant to make anything happen and he worked tirelessly to ensure he wasn't caught off guard. He had assessed this to be the "best batting wicket in the tournament", but keeping the runs down was crucial because "it is a knockout game. If it's an off day for you, you're completely out and you have to start all over again."
Going back to the drawing board with a World T20 waiting for them when they return home was not an option. So Dhoni was adamant to stay ahead of the game. He brought Ashwin on for the first over to perhaps see if the ball turning away from the left-handers could offer India an edge. It didn't so he was quick to bring on Ashish Nehra and Jasprit Bumrah, who have been absolute nuisances to opening batsmen since the start of the year. Soumya Sarkar fell in the fourth over, Tamim Iqbal followed him in the fifth.
Dhoni drew Ashwin out of his sleeve again the minute the Powerplay was done, but that also meant he had only one over left from each of his three lead bowlers for the rest of the innings.
He kept Bumrah for the final over - which yielded only seven runs - knocked Nehra's quota off in the 13th so he needn't feel too much pressure on the one day he didn't seem at his best and sprung Ashwin on Shakib Al Hasan in the 10th after the batsman had crashed Hardik Pandya's pace for a brace of boundaries in the eighth. A lazy sweep resulted in a top-edge and short fine leg was perfectly placed.
Misbah-ul-Haq says Pakistan are well-placed for the World T20, and speaks about the positive influence of some Australians on his PSL-winning Islamabad side
Although Pakistan lost the opening match against India in the Asia Cup, they shouldn’t lose hope. That their bowlers made 83 look difficult against a strong batting team like India, is something that will encourage them in the next games.
After this bowling performance I think the pressure on our batsmen will be less. The batsmen need to understand that the pitches in the Asia Cup are different from the Pakistan Super League and even if they score 130 or 140 their bowlers can defend it.
I still feel that Pakistan can make the final of the Asia Cup, and will do well in the World Twenty20 as well.
All the Asian teams appear to be in good shape in the WT20, especially India, because they can give a tough time to any team in the subcontinent. They have a brilliant batting line-up and spin-bowling attack, and that’s why I feel they are the team we need to look to.
But then it is T20 cricket and any team can upset any other on the given day. You can’t predict much in this format and that is not simply a diplomatic statement.
Pakistan Super League: A dream come true
I have been playing professional cricket for nearly 15 years and captained Pakistan for five of them but what I experienced last week while playing for Islamabad United in Dubai was something new.
To win the Pakistan Super League was a moment of intense pleasure for me. Our team batted so well in the last few matches that I wasn’t even required as a batsman, yet I got the chance to hit the winning runs of the PSL’s inaugural edition. It is a matter of huge pride for me and I am thankful to Allah for giving me this honour.
I can safely say the PSL was better followed than many international matches we have played in the UAE. I always knew whenever it would happen it would be a massive hit because I have seen large turnouts in the domestic T20s we have played in Faisalabad and Rawalpindi.
Most of the Pakistanis who are based in Dubai belong to the working class and to see them in the stadium on the weekday was remarkable. If this league happens in Pakistan you can’t imagine how successful it will be.
Our journey towards victory was not smooth. We started off poorly and at one stage we were looking like being eliminated even before the play-offs. The injuries to players weren’t helping our cause either.
In tournaments like this sometimes you need time to understand the foreign players who are playing in unfamiliar conditions therefore we needed time to gel. We started off poorly, losing four out of the first six games, but we did not panic. As soon as we understood each other and got the combination right the same team won five matches in a row and lifted the trophy.
People say T20 is young man's game but I think experience is as necessary as any other format. If you don’t have experience it becomes difficult for the team to get out of the pressure situations. You have to make quick decisions and that you do from the past experiences.
The PSL and the Big Bash League in Australia last month will vindicate this notion. The average age of both the winning teams – Sydney Thunder and Islamabad United – was nearly 33 years and that proves experience is the key even in 20-over cricket.
Having world-beaters in your team also helps. The team director Wasim Akram and the coach Dean Jones both have won World Cups and their presence in the team made a huge impact.
We were also lucky to have three Australians – Shane Watson and Brad Haddin as players and Jones as coach – in our dressing room. All of them have won World Cups therefore their winning experience was a huge influence on our team.
Haddin was magnificent in the playoffs. Both Jones and Watson knew him well and they wanted him to bat up the order when the ball is new and comes onto the bat nicely as he is more effective against the new ball. He scored three fifties in four games, but he didn’t just perform with the bat - his on-field presence was equally important as he helped us in making bowling changes and setting fields.
He always talked about the ways of winning primarily because he had been part of Australia’s victories on many occasions. Being positive in difficult moments is the best thing about the Aussies. It instilled the confidence in the other players as well.
Confidence is what really matters to win the big games. Even in the final I felt that the moral of our team was a little down after Quetta had posted 174. It could have happened to any team in a high-octane game after seeing a total of 150-plus on the board. I sensed there was a feeling in the team that it would be difficult for us to chase the target.
During the innings break I spoke with the team and shared my honest feelings. I told them that even though 174 is a daunting task, the pitch we have in this match is different from the previous ones. It is the best strip we have had in the PSL. The bounce and pace is excellent and the boundaries are just 65 meters long. We have lots of depth in our batting and by depth I mean decent batsmen like Imran Khalid and Mohammad Sami coming at numbers eight and nine. We have got some quality players. We have to score a boundary an over. We knew that Quetta were mostly relying on spinners but the wicket in the final had hardly anything for the slow bowlers. I told the team we were in the hunt.
I told them to believe that we can win from any situation and that was mentioned in my speech, and also by Samuel Badree, Haddin and Deano so many times. We were asked to fight until the end.
Similarly, before the eliminator, Badree and Andre Russell delivered a motivational presentation where they showed us a video of a rugby player. The video was about not losing hope – even if the start is not good we can finish it well. It became a great motivation factor for all the players and left a huge impact on us. Players got mentally strengthened. It was a good learning curve.
Also I think we had the best owners. They never interfered in the cricketing matters. They supported us even when we were losing. They did not interfere in the team selections even when the results were not coming our way. The captain and the coaches were given full authority to make the decisions. They never asked us why this and that player is not playing. That was a big encouraging sign. Sometimes it doesn't happen like this as the people who have invested money want positive results due to commercial interests. But Islamabad’s owners left it to the professionals.
We had many get-togethers with the owners and were gelled as a family. A day before the final we had a get together at a yacht in Dubai Marina. Everyone really enjoyed it as people must have seen it through a video from that day where Mohammad Irfan making use of his long arm was seen catching a flying seagull. It was fun and such gatherings help you to gel and live as a family. We had food and pictures together. It helped us in building harmony.
Islamabad United is an amazing team with amazing players. I look forward to playing for them the next year as well. If fitness permits I would love to lead this team again in 2017.
Islamabad’s success can be gauged from the fact that four players from this team that will be playing in the World T20.
The team Pakistan has selected for the Asia Cup and World T20 has in-form players and I feel it has become even better after a few late changes. The players will enter these tournaments on the back of the PSL experience which will surely help them. You will soon see the PSL’s positive effects.