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Weekly investor roundup: Huarong to receive $6 billion bailout; APG to invest into HK real estate with Wang On | Asset Owners – AsianInvestor

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TOP NEWS OF THE WEEK:
Chinese bad debt manager Huarong will receive a bailout totalling more than $6 billion from a consortium of five state firms.
Huarong will receive new capital totalling Rmb42 billion ($6.6 billion) from a consortium led by Citic Group, according to an exchange filing.
The consortium also includes China Insurance Investment’s Rongxin Fund, China Cinda Asset Management, China Life and a unit of Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC).
Source: Finews Asia
APG Asset Management (APG) and Wang On Properties Limited announced the establishment of a joint venture company to engage in residential development in Hong Kong on Nov 15.
In the strategic partnership, Wang On Properties and APG will work closely to acquire residential development properties across urban locations in Hong Kong with an initial total commitment of $599 million.
The joint venture company will acquire four seed projects from Wang On Properties including two residential sites in Ap Lei Chau and two residential sites in Wong Tai Sin. The four seed projects have an aggregate gross floor area of approximately 250,300 square feet.
Source: APG
State investment firm Temasek Holdings has sold off a significant portion of its shares in US-listed Chinese technology firms including Alibaba and Didi, and online education providers as the Chinese government cracks down on those sectors.
The firm cut 16% of its stake in Alibaba, and 11% in Didi, while exiting from search engine operator Baidu Inc., TAL Education Group, New Oriental Education & Technology Group Inc. and jobs service provider Kanzhun Ltd entirely.
Source: Bloomberg
Allianz Group has become China’s first wholly foreign-owned insurer after getting regulatory approval to buy its local partner’s shareholding in their joint venture.
The China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission has cleared Allianz’s acquisition of CITIC Trust’s 49% stake in the joint venture, Allianz China Life Insurance, the company says in a statement on November 17.
It did not disclose the purchase price. 
Source: Allianz
Samsung Life Insurance said on Monday that it will launch a joint fund with Korea Post to invest 400 billion won ($337 million) in foreign blue chip companies over the next 10 years, expanding cooperation in alternative investments like private equity and real estate.
The country’s top insurer and the state-owned postal firm will make investments under the recommendations of an asset management firm. A Samsung Life Insurance official declined to reveal details about the asset manager.
Source: The Korea Herald
 
MORE INVESTMENT NEWS:
AUSTRALIA
Superannuation funds in Australia are on track for double digit returns for 2021 as share markets rise.
Median growth funds were up 0.6% in October after dipping in September, according to analytics provider Chant West. Growth funds are already up 11.2% year-to-date.
Chant West senior investment research manager, Mano Mohankumar, told Super Review listed share markets remained the main drivers of growth fund performance.
“Australian shares were virtually flat in October with a return of just 0.1%. International shares were up 5.6% in hedged terms, but the appreciation of the Australian dollar over the month (from US$0.72 to US$0.75) pared that back to 1.7% unhedged,” Mohankumar said.
Source: Super Review
Troubled industry super fund EISS is in advanced talks with Cbus to create a A$70 billion fund after the former has been accused of reckless spending and given a warning from the prudential regulator.
The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (APRA) has given the A$6 billion fund to merge with a larger fund. EISS was previously in talks for a merger with the A$6 billion transport fund TWUSuper, which fell through in October.
EISS staff were reportedly told there will be job losses and possible re-deployments in the new year, after the deal, described as “more of a takeover than merger”, with Cbus has been finalised.
Source: Sydney Morning Herald
CHINA
China’s top financial regulators have issued draft rules governing the issuance of perpetual bonds by insurers in the world’s second largest insurance market.
The rules, issued by the People's Bank of China and the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission, seek to protect investors and improve the capital replenishment and resilience to risk of insurance firms operating in China. The rules also state that insurance holding firms are prohibited from issuing such perpetual bonds.
Source: Insurance Business AsiaCBIRC
 
HONG KONG
The Maryland State Retirement and Pension System (MSRPS) has committed $70 million to Hong Kong-based Baring Private Equity Asia’s (BPEA) eighth buyout fund, according to the US pension fund’s recent investment committee meeting.
MSRPS disclosed a total of $1.3 billion in commitments from September and October during the meeting which also included a private equity commitment of $15 million to a co-investment associated with Baring Asia VIII.
Source: Pensions&Investments
INDIA
Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPP Investments) and The Phoenix Mills Limited (PML) have announced, on Nov 15, a strategic partnership to develop an office-led mixed-use asset in Lower Parel, Mumbai. The asset forms part of a larger mixed-use development at Phoenix Palladium, Mumbai.
CPP Investments will invest approximately $183 million in tranches, for an ultimate equity stake of 49% in the entity, known as PCREPL, that will own the asset. PCREPL will use the funds to develop office space with a potential leasable area of approximately one million sq. ft. and flagship retail space with a potential leasable area of approximately 0.2 million sq. ft. The target completion date for the development is 2026.
The office-led mixed-use asset will complement the existing retail development at Phoenix Palladium, Mumbai and The St. Regis, Mumbai hotel. This latest joint venture brings CPP Investments’ equity commitment across multiple strategic partnerships with PML to an approximate cumulative value of  $561 million.

Source : CPP Investments
JAPAN
Nippon Life Insurance will invest $20 million in TPG Rise Climate, a dedicated climate investing fund managed by TPG, through a fund managed by Nippon Life’s subsidiary Nippon Life Global Investors Americas.
The fund seeks to deliver competitive private equity returns while generating positive environmental and social impact. It is focused on making investments that can achieve measurable reductions in carbon dioxide and contribute to decarbonization.
Source: Nippon Life Insurance
KOREA
Hanwha Life Insurance has established a partnership with Aspiration, a sustainability service solutions provider, to utilise Aspiration’s sustainability financial solutions, ESG consulting services, global reforestation program, and verified carbon offsets.
Aspiration and Hanwha Life will be working together to launch an ESG-centric blockchain ecosystem, backed by their collective experience with high-quality, nature-based carbon credits and renewable energy credits, respectively, to help bring more transparency, scale, and liquidity to the voluntary carbon markets.
Source: Business Wire
Public Officials Benefit Association (Poba) is looking to hire an asset manager for a domestic hedge fund mandate of unspecified value. The manager will be responsible for performance measurement, risk analysis and portfolio construction, Poba said in a request for proposal published on the Korea Financial Investment Association’s website on Nov 17.
Applicants must have at least 50 billion won (US$42.3 million) of hedge fund assets. The tender is open until Nov 30, with evaluation and manager selection scheduled for early January.
Source: Asia Asset Management
Korea’s bond funds received the greatest net outflows during the third quarter ended September, reversing the trend from earlier this year. The Korea bond category, for instance, bled 1.1 trillion won ($927 billion) in the third quarter after a combined 5.7 trillion won of net inflows from the previous two quarters, amid higher inflation concerns.
As a result, in ESG funds, Korea was overtaken by Taiwan by asset size in the Asia ex-Japan region, and is now ranked as the third-largest market with 5 trillion won of assets under management.
Net inflows significantly slowed in the third quarter to just 14.2 billion won, compared to 925.9 billion won in the second quarter and 2.1 trillion won in the first quarter of 2021. This is in line with the broader market trend where fixed income funds had the heaviest outflows.
Source: Morningstar
Kyobo Life Insurance, Korea’s third-largest life insurer, is resuming its push for an initial public offering amid a protracted legal dispute with its major financial investors over their exercise of put option rights.
The company said on Nov 17 (Wednesday) that it will file a review request for its IPO plan with the Korea Exchange by the end of December, with an aim to go public on the main bourse in the first half of next year.
The number of its shares on offer and other detailed procedures will be determined at a later time in consideration of market conditions, it said.
Source: Korea Economic Daily
Korea’s state-run bank Korea Development Bank (KDB) has launched its venture capital (VC) operations in California's Silicon Valley on Nov 16. The new VC, named KDB Silicon Valley LLC, has secured $5 million in capital for its venture growth project.
It will primarily invest in US-based startups founded by Koreans and Korean startups aiming to enter the US market. In addition, it will support US startups that collaborate with Korean conglomerates through business information or strategizing. The VC will also support US enterprises that operate Korea-based offices and hire employees from Korea.
Source: Korea Economic Daily
Korea Scientists and Engineers Mutual-Aid Association (SEMA) has seen growth in new members in recent years, particularly from young members in their 20s to 30s. The Korean retirement pension fund had nearly 99,000 members as of end-October of this year, nearly doubling the 55,000 members in 2016.
The number of members in their 20s and 30s increased from 30,000 in 2019 to 48,000 by end-October 2021. In particular, the proportion of new members in their 20s jumped from 20% in 2019 to 30% in 2021, which contributed to reducing the average age of members from 46 to 44 in the same period.
The increase has been driven by 0.3% higher interest rates provided to members aged 39 or lower.
Source: Korea Economic Daily
MALAYSIA
Sovereign wealth fund Khazanah Nasional’s special purpose vehicle (SPV) Danum Capital has proposed to upsize its RM10 billion Islamic bond or sukuk issuance to RM20 billion.
CIMB Investment Bank, which is facilitating the bond scheme, said that no further consent is required from the sukuk holders, the sukuk trustee or any other party under the Sukuk Danum Programme for the issuer (Danum) to exercise the option to upsize.
Source: The Edge Markets
Kenanga Investors has been appointed fund manager for the Emergency Waqf Fund.
The Emergency Relief Fund will be receiving a portion of the RM10 million allocated in Budget 2022 as part of its initial seed funding, announced in October 2021.
Funds received from institutional investors would be invested directly into a wholesale fund established by Kenanga Investors who will manage and invest it accordingly.
Source: Kenanga Investors
SINGAPORE
Sovereign wealth fund GIC must be prepared for economic uncertainties and climate change, Singapore prime minister Lee Hsien Loong said last Tuesday (Nov 16) at the fund's 40th anniversary dinner
"Since inception, it has generated steady returns on our reserves, with annual returns averaging more than 5 per cent above global inflation and this has significantly grown the international purchasing power of our reserves," he said.
Future challenges that GIC must navigate include economic uncertainties such as the impact of prolonged low interest rates and record fiscal deficits, inflation, and climate change.
Source: The Straits Times
Temasek is ramping up investments into agriculture tech as Singapore continues its pursuit of producing 30% of its food by 2030.
The state investment company has invested over $8 billion in the sector, with life-science and agribusiness investments making up 10% of Temasek’s portfolio, according to Anuj Maheshwari, managing director of its agribusiness unit.
Last week, Glife Technologies, a food and agritech company, announced that Heliconia Capital, a wholly owned investment subsidiary of Temasek Holdings had led a Series A funding round.
Other investors include Hibiscus Fund, a venture capital fund managed by Malaysia’s RHL Ventures and South Korea’s KB Investment, as part of the Dana Penjana Nasional (DPN) Programme by the Malaysian government.
Source: The Financial Times, Glife
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How to delete your recent search history in Google Chrome for Android – Android Central

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Google Delete Last 15 Minutes History LifestyleSource: Namerah Saud Fatmi / Android Central
Android 12 saw the introduction of new privacy features from Google, empowering users to have more control over their data. In line with that, Google launched a nifty “quick delete” feature to delete your recent search history in Google Chrome. Here’s how you can find and use it to delete the last 15 minutes of your history on Android.
Tap on Delete last 15 minutes.
Delete Last 15 Minutes History On GoogleSource: Nicholas Sutrich / Android Central
This feature is so accessible and incredibly easy to use. You don’t even have to step into the Google Chrome app itself to delete your recent history. It takes literally three taps to remove the last 15 minutes of your browsing history. If you change your mind, you can cancel the deletion from the toast notification at the bottom.
Whether you’re on your phone or your computer, Google Chrome functions as a powerful web browser. You can learn to use Chrome Actions to edit passwords, delete search history, or run a safety check directly from the browser. If your phone isn’t nearby, you can use Google Messages from a web browser or Chromebook. There are countless tips and tricks to make your Chrome experience more productive and efficient. We especially recommend these 15 top pointers for Google Chrome.
In love with Chrome? Embrace your love of the internet browser and invest in a Chrome OS-powered computer. The best Chromebooks provide excellent value and serve as perfect companions for students and senior citizens. Working professionals can use them for menial tasks or as secondary devices.
Unless your phone is already a Pixel or one of the best Android phones out there, chances are you don’t have Android 12 yet. Instead of wondering when your phone will get Android 12, grab the Google Pixel 6 for guaranteed updates ahead of everyone else.
Powered by Tensor
Access all the latest Android features before everyone else on the Google Pixel 6. Powered by the in-house Google Tensor chip, this fantastic phone captures images and videos like no other.
We may earn a commission for purchases using our links. Learn more.
Microsoft is offering hundreds of games through cloud streaming with Xbox Game Pass Ultimate. While all can be played with controllers, only a few dozen can be played with touch controls.
Only the U.S. is affected by potential radio interference that could lead to “catastrophe” if 5G towers are activated too close to airports. Why?
Logitech’s first Chromebook stylus is ready to take the education sector — and then the world — by storm. With all the features we’ve been missing so far and the durability that we need, the Logitech Pen is the only USI stylus worth buying in 2022.
Ready to start paying for your coffee with only your smartwatch? Here are all the Wear OS watches that support Google Pay.
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Namerah Saud Fatmi is a freelance writer for Android Central. She has a passion for all things tech & gaming and has been an honorary Goodreads librarian since 2011. When she isn’t writing, she can be found chasing stray cats and dogs in the streets of Dhaka or slaying dragons in the land of Skyrim. You can reach her on her Twitter handle @NamerahS.

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New iPhone 13 Exclusive Exposes Likely Apple Price Increases – Forbes

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iPhone 13 leaks had seemingly told us Apple’s most exciting upgrades (and disappointments), but new information has revealed one more big surprise. And it is not good news. 
Renders of Apple’s iPhone 13 range based on multiple leaks
In a new report, Digitimes reveals that Apple is set to increase iPhone 13 prices after receiving a notification from TSMC, its biggest chip supplier, that production costs would be going up. Moreover, the change looks set to have implications for every iPhone model. 
Breaking this down, Digitimes explains that TSMC will increase prices for “sub 7nm process technologies” by up to 5% and “mature process technologies” by as much as 20%. Like the iPhone 12 range, iPhone 13 models will use a 5nm chip so — even with a predictable Apple markup on these costs — you would think that means a lesser impact. But that’s only half the story. 
Even if Apple were to swallow the increased costs for the iPhone 12 and iPhone 13 ranges, the “mature” 7nm-based iPhone 11 and iPhone SE (both of which are set to stay on sale) face much bigger rises. Consequently, Digitimes states “Apple is likely to set higher prices for its upcoming iPhone and other series.” 
The iPhone 12 A14 chip – Apple’s chips are about to get a lot more expensive
If correct, the news throws a wrench in Apple’s plans. Just two weeks ago respected industry analyst TrendForce reported the company had decided against any price increases. On the flip side, following recent iPhone 13 release date leaks, at least we won’t have to wait long to find out. 
Furthermore, given the majority of iPhone buyers subsidise the cost of their devices through telcos over a multi-year period, the news is unlikely to dent the enthusiasm of the biggest Apple fans. And for those who do upgrade, they will find the iPhone 13 range sports supersized new cameras, bigger batteries, faster charging, next gen WiFi and a smaller notch. For iPhone 13 Pro buyers, there will also be globally upgraded 5G, ProMotion displays and (potentially) double the storage
One word of warning: Apple already confirmed iPhone stock will be limited for the rest of the year. So, if you are on the fence about upgrading, don’t take too long to make up your mind. 
___
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More On Forbes
Apple Analyst Teases iPhone 13 Release Date
‘No Service’ iPhone Cellular Problem Reported By iOS 14.7.1 Upgraders

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Camera comparison: These high-end smartphones take the best photos – Notebookcheck.net

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Are you a techie who knows how to write? Then join our Team! English native speakers welcome!
News Writer (AUS/NZL based) – Details here
We have already tested the current crop of top Android smartphones against each other in the summer. The Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra and Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra almost won the test themselves. These two phones are once again in this test and now have to compete against the likes of the Oppo Find X3 Pro and the Apple iPhone 13 Pro.
The prices of these three Android rivals are quite close to each other and none of these smartphones can be bought for less than 1000 Euros (~$1,000). Oppo offers the cheapest entry, but even the iPhone is only a bit more expensive with the smallest storage configuration.
However, the camera equipment couldn’t be any more different. The iPhone relies on three 12 MP sensors, which cover almost all needs. In addition to the main camera, Apple provides a 3x optical zoom and an ultra-wide-angle lens, which also allows macro shots at a distance of 2 cm.
The Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra presents itself with an in-house 108 MP sensor, which is supported by an ultra-wide angle and two optical zoom (3x and 10x) lenses. All in all, the Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra offers even more megapixels. Although the main sensor is only a 50 MP one, both the ultra-wide-angle, which is also used for macro shots, and the 5x optical zoom lenses are each 48 MP.
The zoom race is won by the Find X3 Pro without parallel. Oppo’s smartphone also offers a dedicated zoom lens, but the 2x optical magnification is already the end of the line, and the digital zoom is not really superlative either. Instead, the Find X3 Pro has a microscope camera that enables a 60x magnification. The ultra-wide-angle can fall back on a modern sensor, which is also used in the OnePlus Nord 2.
In our comparison test, all candidates have the latest software (see table) and work with activated AI support and the integrated camera app.
As soon as we get into the close-up, the first differences between the rivals become apparent. While the under-performing 2 to 5 MP macro sensors are often installed even in the mid-range, such solutions are not found in the premium smartphones. Rather, they do without them or use the ultra-wide-angle for this task like the iPhone 13 Pro and the Mi 11 Ultra. The other two smartphones use optical zoom instead.
The image quality turns out to be quite different among the contenders. The iPhone convinces with a very balanced and detailed image, but the colors remain a bit pale. We like the Mi 11 Ultra’s colors the best, but its picture is largely blurry. Only the center of the picture is reproduced appealingly. The Find X3 Pro oversaturates the colors and lacks some sharpness. The S21 Ultra is the complete opposite, chiseling the entire subject in stone and bleaching the colors.
If the iPhone performed a bit better in terms of color reproduction, it could have been the clear winner in macro photography. However, the Mi 11 Ultra does a better job but exaggerates the bokeh. The Find X3 Pro earns a plus point because it offers a unique alternative with its microscope optics.
Image Comparison
Choose a scene and navigate within the first image. One click changes the position on touchscreens. One click on the zoomed-in image opens the original in a new window. The first image shows the scaled photograph of the test device.
More megapixels do not necessarily mean better imaging performance. This hypothesis is supported by Apple with its ultra-wide-angle sensor, which offers by far the lowest resolution with just 12 megapixels, together with the Galaxy S21 Ultra. Xiaomi and Oppo rely on high-resolution sensors that work with pixel binning and thus generate similarly large final results.
The rivals perform close to each other in daylight, but the Galaxy S21 Ultra shows the most natural colors. However, it has to struggle with slight aberrations at the building edges in city scenes. These are even more noticeable in the Find X3 Pro, but Oppo’s smartphone manages a more detailed reproduction with more details being especially preserved in the depth.
The Mi 11 Ultra’s imaging performance drops in low light, but the Samsung phone also struggles a lot. The iPhone and the Find X3 Pro manage the cleanest photos in this situation although the latter sharpens the image a bit too much in some places.
Image Comparison
Choose a scene and navigate within the first image. One click changes the position on touchscreens. One click on the zoomed-in image opens the original in a new window. The first image shows the scaled photograph of the test device.
Top 10 Laptops
Multimedia, Budget Multimedia, Gaming, Budget Gaming, Lightweight Gaming, Business, Budget Office, Workstation, Subnotebooks, Ultrabooks, Chromebooks
under 300 USD/Euros, under 500 USD/Euros, 1,000 USD/Euros, for University StudentsBest Displays
Top 10 Smartphones
Smartphones, Phablets, ≤6-inchCamera Smartphones
The Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra offers the highest possible magnification with a 120x digital zoom. The Galaxy S21 Ultra also has a three digit-100x digital zoom, and it also offers the highest optical magnification with a 10x zoom lens.
In daylight, it is directly noticeable whether optical or digital zoom is used. The iPhone 13 Pro’s 2x magnification is not very convincing; the Find X3 Pro manages this best. The Mi 11 Ultra delivers really good results with a 3x zoom, but Apple and Samsung can also deliver good results in this range.
The iPhone 13 Pro and the Find X3 Pro already fall behind the competition a bit in 5x zoom, and the software irons out some structures. The Mi 11 Ultra also reproduces the most details here, but the white balance is too cool.
From 10x zoom onwards, things get muddy with the iPhone 13 Pro while the Oppo smartphone delivers an even more washed-out performance. The results of the other two models remain usable. Samsung, in particular, presents a very natural picture, while the Mi 11 Ultra’s is a bit reddish and is sharpened a lot.
Apple stops at 15x magnification and Oppo at 20x. The Galaxy S21 Ultra and the Mi 11 Ultra can offer much more zoom even though the maximum zoom levels are not really useful. The Xiaomi smartphone, in particular, needs a solid base for stabilization. Samsung, on the other hand, offers surprisingly good image stabilization even at long zooms.
Image Comparison
Choose a scene and navigate within the first image. One click changes the position on touchscreens. One click on the zoomed-in image opens the original in a new window. The first image shows the scaled photograph of the test device.
None of the smartphones deliver a usable result in low ambient light, if a real photo on paper is to be printed. We like the image composition the best in the Apple smartphone, but details are muddy in its pictures as well. The pictures of the Mi 11 Ultra also turn out to be very dark. The Xiaomi phone only manages a pretty good picture at 5x magnification; this is also very dark, but it most closely matches natural conditions.
Image Comparison
Choose a scene and navigate within the first image. One click changes the position on touchscreens. One click on the zoomed-in image opens the original in a new window. The first image shows the scaled photograph of the test device.
The iPhone 13 Pro and the Galaxy S21 Ultra take decent selfies in daylight. Oppo follows close behind, but its pictures are a bit too cool for our taste. The Mi 11 Ultra, on the other hand, exaggerates the blur in the default setting, but this can be disabled in the settings.
The situation is similar in portrait mode. All four rivals reproduce straight edges quite cleanly. All algorithms only reach their limits with wild hair; the Mi 11 Ultra is a bit less accurate here.
Things start to get problematic in low light, and none of the front cameras can really convince. Either the details are blurred and/or the white balance is off. The software of the Galaxy S21 Ultra still works best here, but it renders the subject too cool.
Image Comparison
Choose a scene and navigate within the first image. One click changes the position on touchscreens. One click on the zoomed-in image opens the original in a new window. The first image shows the scaled photograph of the test device.
All four competing devices use different main sensors. Nevertheless, all smartphones deliver good results in daylight. The difference is mainly seen in the white balance. While the iPhone 13 Pro selects a slightly warmer white balance, things get cooler with the Find X3 Pro and Mi 11 Ultra. The Galaxy S21 Ultra, on the other hand, casts a slight red tone.
The Android smartphones tend to sharpen the pictures a bit too much via their algorithms, which can sometimes lead to loss of details in the background. Oppo and Xiaomi in particular do a lot of resharpening via the software. For example, the photo at the lake was taken on a very cloudy, slightly hazy day, which can still be guessed well in the S21 Ultra and iPhone 13 Pro. The other two smartphones work harder via software and completely remove the haze from the picture.
In low light, the iPhone 13 Pro demonstrates strong imaging performance in the bunny subject, even when automatic exposure is deactivated. The other three rival phones only show washed-out details, but brighten the picture a bit more. The Mi 11 Ultra, in particular, delivers a pretty weak performance in this test. However, this changes when the night mode is activated or automatically used by the scene detection. The Xiaomi smartphone then generates a very high-contrast picture, which already looks quite artificial. It is similar with the Find X3 Pro and the S21 Ultra, but their pictures are warmer.
On a dark street, the Mi 11 Ultra and the Find X3 Pro can convince with homogeneous illumination. However, the Samsung device goes overboard with the brightening while the iPhone remains a bit too pale.
Image Comparison
Choose a scene and navigate within the first image. One click changes the position on touchscreens. One click on the zoomed-in image opens the original in a new window. The first image shows the scaled photograph of the test device.
All four smartphones offer strong camera setups. The quality is even better compared with the upper mid-range or cheaper flagship models. This is not only noticeable due to the more powerful main sensors but also due to the additional lenses. These expand the range of applications enormously, and those preferring ultra-wide-angle sensors will find much better lenses in the high-end range than in inexpensive models this year.
There is no clear winner that dominates all areas. The iPhone 13 Pro shows a very wide range of possibilities, which all rank on a good level. Richer colors would have been more appealing for the macro shots, since they otherwise differ too much from the main lens. Compromises in zooming are needed with Apple’s smartphone.
It is a tough fight among the high-end smartphone cameras. We cannot identify a clear winner; buyers should be better aware of the intended use and personal preferences.
Oppo succeeds with the Find X3 Pro. It manages a strong setup, whose shortcomings are mainly found in long zooms. There is no macro solution, but it is the only smartphone with a microscope camera.
Samsung offers a strong overall package with the Galaxy S21 Ultra but no macro mode. Close-ups can also be taken via the zoom, but they do not reach the quality of competing devices. On the other hand, Samsung’s smartphone flexes its muscles when zooming and benefits especially from its very good image stabilization, which enables shake-free pictures even at a magnification of 50x or more.
The Mi 11 Ultra also offers a strong overall package from macro to 120x magnification. However, Xiaomi goes overboard a bit with the bokeh in macro mode or rather, the focus range is quite small. A solid surface is necessary to hold the camera steady enough at long zoom levels.
The choice of cameras depends on the user’s preferences, but none of the smartphones achieve bad results.
There are bottlenecks in the smartphone availability, especially for the Mi 11 Ultra. It is not available in the manufacturer’s store or on Amazon at the time of the test, but it can be imported with an EU ROM via TradingShenzhen, among others and is available for less than 800 Euros (~$800).
Not all storage variants of the Galaxy S21 Ultra are available immediately, and delivery delays can also occur at Apple depending on the color choice and storage configuration. The Find X3 Pro is quite stable in terms of price, but it also has availability issues.

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