The canceled unicorn known as the Nokia McLaren gets its 15 minutes of fame

Codenamed the McLaren, the phone was supposed to be the Nokia Lumia 1020’s successor, and was expected to include Kinect-like 3D touch gestures. Unfortunately, it never saw the light of day as Microsoft reportedly opted to cancel the project, though some have doubted its existence. Windows Central put those doubts six feet below ground, however, as the outlet got its hands on the mystical McLaren and showed us its ways.

Starting with the more mundane, the McLaren features a 5.5-inch, 1,920 x 1,080 resolution display, with a 2-megapixel camera right above it. Around back, the McLaren includes a similar camera sensor crater to that on the Lumia 1020. Whereas the Lumia 1020 packs a 41MP whopper of a camera, the McLaren steps things down to a 20MP PureView sensor with optical image stabilization.

Unfortunately, since the camera software was not finalized, the McLaren can only shoot 8MP pictures.

Elsewhere, a 2.3GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 chipset and 2GB RAM power the phone, with the 32GB of native storage augmented by up to an additional 128GB through the MicroSD card slot. A battery with unknown capacity keeps the lights on, with the McLaren running Windows Phone 8.1 Update 1 out of the box.

Where the McLaren truly stands out from other phones is its 3D Touch implementation. Using a variety of sensors in the phone, including sensors on the sides, 3D Touch responds to your hand both when it hovers over the phone and when it applies pressure. For example, you can silence an incoming call by either gripping the phone or having your hand hover over the display. You can also wave your hand over the phone to answer calls, as well as keep the screen on by gripping the device.

Using the sensors, the McLaren can also tell how you hold it in order to avoid accidental orientation changes. The phone also mutes the speaker phone if you hover your hand over the lower half of the display. Finally, and rather impressively, hovering above certain apps executes the “exploding” Live Tile MixView feature, which theoretically allows developers to show more information on a Live Tile when a user’s hand hovers above it.

Unfortunately, it is unknown why Microsoft and Nokia canceled work on the McLaren. According to Windows Central, reasons range from users not properly understanding 3D Touch’s concepts to Microsoft not getting past the proposal stage regarding 3D Touch’s uses. Regardless of the reason, the McLaren could have been a unique, groundbreaking offering had it been released.

Microsoft Research is still working on 3D Touch, though, so time will tell if we will see its implementation in a future product.

Mobile

Nubia’s two-screen wonder is a new solution to our all-screen selfie problems

Nubia has added a second screen to the back of the Nubia X so the rear camera can be used for selfies -- and a lot more -- and the front is all-screen. We tried the phone out at CES 2019.
Mobile

On a budget? We found the best affordable smartphones you can buy

Here are the best cheap phones for anyone working with a tight budget, whether you're a fan of stock Android or marathon battery life. Find out what you can get for under $500 or far, far less as we round up the best budget smartphones.
Mobile

We tried all the latest and greatest smartphones to find the best of 2019

Smartphones are perhaps the most important and personal piece of tech on the planet. That’s why it’s important to pick the best phone for your individual needs. Here are the best smartphones you can buy.
Mobile

Here's everything we know about the upcoming Nokia 8.1 Plus phone

Nokia will be looking to kick off 2019 will a cracker of a phone, and the Nokia 8.1 Plus could be that phone. From the rumored pinhole display to the Zeiss cameras, here's everything we know about the Nokia 8.1 Plus.
Mobile

Samsung's advanced folding phone needed 'total reconfiguration' to make it real

Samsung has been showcasing bendable display tech for a few years and now a folding smartphone might finally arrive. The Galaxy X, or perhaps the Galaxy Fold, may be the company's first example. Here's everything we know about it.
Mobile

The Sony Xperia XZ4 shines in case renders from accessory maker Olixar

Sony may have released the Xperia XZ3 in the past few months, but already it's preparing to release a follow-up, the Xperia XZ4. We're learning plenty about the phone now some details have started to leak out, and it's getting exciting.
Mobile

Benchmark scores surface for Google's midrange Pixel 3 XL Lite

The Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL are considered to be two of the best Android smartphones, but it looks like Google could be prepping a midrange line. Say hello to the Pixel 3 Lite and Pixel 3 Lite XL.
Apple

Rumors say Apple's AirPower wireless charger may finally be in production

At its September event in 2018, Apple unveiled the AirPower, a new wireless charging mat that will allow you to charge multiple devices at one time. It has not yet been released. Here's everything we know about the device so far.
Computing

Beam up the videos: AirPlay support is coming to VLC player

At CES 2019, the developers of VLC player announced they are adding support for Apple's Airplay feature, allowing consumers to beam video and other content from their iPhone and Android devices to an Apple TV. 
Mobile

The LG G8 ThinQ may arrive at MWC 2019 with an on-screen speaker

LG is expected to release a successor to the LG G7 ThinQ, possibly called the LG G8 ThinQ, this year and rumors about it are already spreading. Here's everything we know about it so far.
Mobile

Oppo could reveal a new smartphone with a 10x optical zoom

Cracking a solid zoom on smartphones has been a riddle many years in the solving. One company may have finally cracked it though: Oppo may be about to show off a phone with a 10x optical zoom.
Outdoors

Nike’s Adapt BB shoes let you tighten your laces with an iPhone

The new Nike Adapt BB shoe comes with smartphone connectivity that allows the user to tighten the laces using a smartphone while providing the ability to adjust tension throughout the game.
Wearables

How to switch TicHealth to Google Fit on the Mobvoi TicWatch C2 and TicWatch Pro

The Mobvoi TicWatch C2 and TicWatch Pro are both much-loved and feature-packed watches, and they offer excellent fitness tracking. Recently, Mobvoi has switched out Google Fit for TicHealth, but you can switch them back. Here's how.
Mobile

If you're looking for a good laugh, here are 70 questions to ask Siri

Siri has come a long way since her first appearance on the iPhone 4S in 2011. We know she can make appointments and give directions, did you know she can make you laugh too? If you want proof, here are lots of funny questions to ask Siri.