Posts by Adam Doud

Adam joined the tech world after watching Jon Rubenstein demo the most epic phone ever at CES 2009. He is webOS enthusiast, Windows Phone fan, and Android skeptic. He loves the outdoors, is an avid Geocacher, Cubs/Blackhawks fan, and family man living in Sweet Home Chicago, where he STILL hosts monthly webOS meetups (Don’t call it a comeback!). He can be found tweeting all things tech as @DeadTechnology, or chi-town sports at @oneminutecubs. Read more about Adam Doud!

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    Microsoft Continuum is one of Microsoft’s answers to bringing Windows 10 to every screen size. It’s very simple. Plug your phone into a dock, and it fires up a monitor, mouse and keyboard, and you’re suddenly using a full sized computer. This is awesome. Actually, it’s better than awesome, it’s outstanding. Or at least, it will be. Some day. But not today. Tomorrow’s not looking good either. Don’t get me wrong, Continuum is a great concept. It’s one of those things that looks great on paper, not unlike the 2015 White Sox. But as that team taught us – paper is not a ...

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    On Thanksgiving, I decided to “invest” in a $35 tablet. Amazon’s Kindle Fire, normally a $50 tablet, dropped to just $35, and it was too cheap not to get. I even chronicled the experience in an editorial the following week. But then I started...you know…using the tablet, as one tends to do. It has largely been a Netflix/Instant Video machine with a game or two thrown in for the train. But here’s the thing. It’s not very good at it. This is exactly $35 worth of tablet. At $35, it barely justifies it's existence. What I mean is, the tablet is thoroughly unimpressive in every way ...

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    “Hey everyone. I lost/broke/replaced my phone and I lost all of my contacts. PM me with your number so I can store it.” If you're like me - or rather your friends are like mine - you see this message every few months on Facebook. To a phone reviewer, this would be an almost weekly occurrence if we weren’t prepared for the possibility (read: certainty) of replacing our phones. The holidays are fast approaching, so maybe that special someone in your life is about to grace you with a little bundle of joy – a Note 5 or an iPhone 6S. So, I decided I should take the opportunity to help ...

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    I’ve talked a lot lately about portability. When it comes to laptops, tablets, keyboards, I’m on the go a lot and I sometimes need to write away from my comfortable little desk at home. So I could carry around a laptop, but there are times when a tablet is more convenient. Beyond that, there are times that a phone is even more convenient. But typing a full editorial or review on a phone isn’t feasible, right? It’s madness! Well, unless that phone happens to be a Lumia 950 that has Continuum capability. One aspect of Continuum that is particularly nice is the extreme portability of ...

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    In case you didn’t hear the trumpets and fanfare, or you missed the citizenry lining the streets throwing rose petals in my path, you might not know that I’m toting a Lumia 950 these days. OMG! Android boy came back to Windows 10 mobile? Say it ain't so! Well, ok, it ain't really so. I mean, I do have a Lumia 950 I’m using, somewhat regularly. But the Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge is still my primary phone. But that’s not what we’re here to talk about. I’m back to using Windows Phone, now known as Windows 10 Mobile, so I wanted to share with you three of the best Windows Phone ...

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    Samsung tripped up a few of us last summer when it decided to release the Galaxy Note 5 and Galaxy S6+ ahead of IFA. Traditionally, Samsung’s release cycle has been Barcelona/Berlin and why not? The entire mobile news world is already on site – it saves a bundle on catering. But last summer, Samsung released its large flagships a month earlier than usual, and some rumors indicate it may do the same with its plans for the Galaxy S7 release. Just recently, our own Joe Levi asked the question, would Samsung be better off releasing early?  Well, we in the weekend debate club can’t just ...

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    One of the more disappointing aspects of Google’s lineup of devices of late has been the lack of seven inch representation. The Nexus 7 was, at the time, one of the best devices that Google introduced, from screen size to price point to specifications. The Nexus 7 has since grown old, with nary a replacement to be seen. The Nexus 9 came around, which in my experience was just fine until Marshmallow came along and hit it in the face with a frying pan. I suppose individual results will vary, but my Nexus 9 continually disappoints me, and I find myself longing for a replacement. But I ...

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    @evleaks recently leaked that HTC would finally be joining the smartwatch space with the HTC One watch (or some similar name). The only surprising thing about this is how long it took HTC to join that fray. This is pretty consistent with what we’ve seen of HTC of late. HTC has been looking to expand it repertoire of devices for some time now, such as fitness tracking and VR, so an HTC watch makes sense. The only problem is, HTC is once again late to the party, with a number of already-established smartwatches out there. Like VR and fitness bands, HTC is getting to the smartwatch party ...

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    When the apocalypse hits, will you be ready? Ok, the answer to that question is, “no.” Because let’s be honest; who is ever ready for an apocalypse? Let’s scale it back a little bit. When you need to go away camping for a week, with no access to power, will you be ready? Of course, the answer to that question might still be no, but Innori thinks it can get you a little closer. The Innori 22,400 mAh 3 USB Universal Portable Power Bank has a ton of power for you to tote along with you for those times that you’ll be away from power for a very, very long time. We tested the Power ...

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    I was browsing Kickstarter as I tend to do from time to time, when I came across this interesting item. The Haize (pronounced Hi-zeh) watch (for lack of a better word) calls itself a “minimalist navigation device for urban cyclists.” I’m an urban cyclist, so I was intrigued. Before we get into our debate, let’s talk about what I learned. What is Haize? The Haize is a sort of smart watch/compass that attaches to your bike or your wrist whose sole purpose is to facilitate navigation. But how it goes about doing that is a little different and intriguing. It works with a very ...

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    These days mobile internet is pretty great. Mobile data speeds are getting to the point where they’re substitutes for what you’ll get on your home internet connection. Toss in a couple of kids streaming Netflix and maybe you might find yourself better off disconnecting from WiFi and hitting the mobile data for your Facebook posting pleasure. Many households are getting to the point where a phone/tablet combination represents the sum total of their home computing power. Phones and tablets are getting good enough to replace your home computer for things like surfing and gaming. Maybe you ...

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    One of the coolest things our smartphones do today - you know aside from all that computational stuff – is wireless charging. There is nothing so satisfying as setting your phone down at the end of the day and knowing it’ll start charging without fumbling with cables and wondering which way is up. Completely one-handed; you can start charging your phone while holding bags of groceries. It’s pretty great. We had the opportunity to try out a few chargers from our friends at Choetech. On our desk sit the T516, T517, and T518. Just for fun, let’s add the Samsung Fast Charger, Tylt Vu ...

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    In the future, we’ll be able to walk to the nearest wall, ask for something, and watch it materialize before our eyes. We are not there yet, obviously. But really, how far away are we? This past Thursday, while preparing the house for Thanksgiving, my wife offhandedly mentioned that Amazon’s Fire tablet was on sale for $35. That’s thirty-five dollars for a 7-inch tablet. Holy crow! So I decided that $35 was too cheap to not get one. As I was ordering something else occurred to me. I can have this tablet today. Unfortunately, I live too far out in the suburbs to use Amazon Prime Now's ...

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      Looking at the smartphone landscape, there is a lot to take in. The question of “What phone should I buy” is no longer so easily defined by questions such as “What is your budget?” Time was, if you wanted a phone, you first had to decide in what tier you belonged – the upper, midrange, or lower. From there you could start to define what you’d be looking for in a smartphone such as NFC, camera, front-facing camera, wireless charging, etc. Most importantly, you could start deciding where to cut corners. But the lines between smartphone tiers have started to blur. The high ...

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    Ever found yourself kicking back, surfing the net and just chillin’ – not Netflix and chillin’ - but actually chillin’ and suddenly you find your brains on the floor. Not literally of course, but you come across something that blows your mind and you start to see a lot of implications and possibilities? Well that’s just how I felt when I first came across transparent aluminum. That Star Trek stuff? Yep. That Star Trek stuff. For those of you not familiar with the reference, I’ve included a clip below. Our intrepid crew of the NCC-1701 had just had their ship blown up and ...

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    The CD player is one of those items that you probably have in your car, and if you’re like us, you don’t use. It just kinda sits there. It’s a slash that cuts right through our dashboard which used to be somewhat useful, but hasn’t been used in who knows how long and hasn’t worked in who cares how long. So now that something has finally come along that makes that feature useful, we’re excited. The Innori CD Slot phone mount does just that. We have been using a similar mechanism in our car for some time now. But this particular version by Innori has us intrigued enough to give ...

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    The holiday season approaches and along with it come wish lists for every conceivable holiday that falls in December. So, what better time to take stock of all the brand new flagship phones that are coming out just in time for the holidays. Well, ok, that’s not why I’m here. I’m going to take stock of just two of them coming out for the holidays – the Lumia 950 and the Lumia 950 XL. Both of these flagships are hitting the streets right as people are gearing up for some hard core holiday shopping. Don your helmets and flak jackets; Black Friday is nearly upon us. Microsoft is right ...

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    Blackberry released a very intriguing device recently and brought to us something we thought had been lost to the ages. That’s right; Blackberry has revived the vertical slider! Blackberry fans the world over celebrated. But it left some wondering if this physical keyboard really is a thing. The Blackberry physical keyboard is legendary in the mobile field, but the smartphone industry in general has moved on from that. But here comes Blackberry with the Priv, toting a feature that has been left behind for a year now, and in a form factor that was outdated about four years ago. Honestly, ...

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    We are living in a time when every phone has to be the thinnest and the lightest and yet the biggest on the block. I suppose there's nothing wrong with that, but things are getting a little silly. More than that, we've entered a time when we are slimming and trimming our phones at the expense of functionality. That could be seen as a distinct backwards step in our smartphone development. Insert obligatory #Bendgate hashtag here. But what OEMs have lost sight of is that bulk and thickness aren't necessarily the enemy here. I've had the opportunity to review a couple of phones that would be ...

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    One of the biggest obstacles to actually getting things done on a tablet is a lack of a keyboard. Sure the software keyboard is large enough you can actually get pretty good at banging things out, but for many of us, nothing beats the feel of a physical keyboard for tablet computing. This is why the Surface Pro is sold with a keyboard. This is why the iPad Pro is sold with a keyboard. But sometimes, you don’t want a keyboard, or it adds unnecessary bulk to your bag – not good for anyone. Enter the LG Rolly keyboard. The Rolly keyboard is exactly what it sounds like: it’s a keyboard ...

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    This isn’t so much of an "Empty Nest" piece as it is a “Why I keep coming back to Android” piece. You see, before these past three weeks, the only real experience I had with iOS was on an iPhone 5C, plus a couple of two-day stints on the iPhone 6 Plus. Well, the 5C is a tiny little baby phone, and two days isn’t enough to really form an opinion on a device, so up until recently, I was missing out. Then I got my hands on an iPhone 6 in order to write my Apple Pay write up, and I decided to try it out for a while. This really freaked out a few friends on mine who remember back to my ...

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    Users of mobile, much like all users of technology, are always concerned about getting the latest and greatest. When it comes to Android updates, this is one of the biggest concerns in a potential smartphone purchase. What is the company's track record when it comes to updates? I know I consider those things. But there are two considerations when it comes to updates: what's coming and when is it going to show up? Consider last year, when Lollipop showed up. Some phones got the Lollipop update before the Nexus line of phones picked it up. There was much consternation. It really wasn’t ...

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    Motorola raised the bar for smartphone OEMs when it released the Droid Turbo 2. A shatterproof screen on a smartphone. Sure, that “shatterproof” claim comes with a hefty disclaimer - “normal use” and all that - but still, the concept of a shatterproof screen it an intriguing one. I walk down the aisle of my train every morning, glancing left and right, and the number of shattered phones I come across is enough to make you cry. So, now that Motorola has released its shatterproof screen, it's up to other OEMs to keep up with the trend. Or is it? Because the shatterproofiness (not a ...

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    The Samsung Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge are both spectacular in so many different ways. Both deliver high quality, performance, and a fabulous camera in a package that is also beautiful. It is, by some standards, the best smartphone of 2015. But there is one small thing that keeps it from being our perfect smartphone. And by "small" we mean that the battery is literally too small to keep this powerhouse running. As we mentioned in our Galaxy S6 review and rebuttal, the battery life on the GSM variant of the GS6 is less than optimal. Actually, we won't sugarcoat it. The battery life is ...

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    Perhaps one of the more underrated features of Windows 10 and Windows 10 Mobile is the slick looking Windows Hello feature that takes biometric authentication to the next level. Windows Hello is poised to start accepting your face, your fingerprint, or your iris and unlock your phone or computer in a blink - No pun intended. Well, ok maybe it was intended. But there are a couple of outside-the-box considerations to take into account when you think about what this really means. First, let's get some of the negatives out of the way. Not every computer is going to have Windows Hello. As a ...

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