Posts by Michael Fisher

Michael Fisher has followed the world of mobile technology for over ten years as hobbyist, retailer, and reviewer. A lengthy stint as a Sprint Nextel employee and a long-time devotion to webOS have cemented his love for the underdog platforms of the world. In addition to serving as Pocketnow's Editorial Director, Michael is a stage, screen, and voice actor, as well as co-founder of a profitable YouTube-based business. He lives in Boston, MA. Read more about Michael Fisher!

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    I'm more connected than ever before, and I have the smartwatch to thank for it. To those who think we're already too deeply mired in the muck of always-on communications, that might not sound appetizing – but smartwatches don't exist merely to bring us more connectivity; the good ones connect us to the world in a smarter way. Skeptics of the new category focus mainly on its redundancy, which is a fair point (why wear a smartwatch when I can just pull my phone out instead?). But once you've worn one for a while, you realize just how useful it can be to have notifications and simple ...

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    Update: Edited podcast with download links has been added below the YouTube embed, courtesy of our excellent podcast editor, Jules Wang! Get to downloadin', folks! The big guys have enough time in the limelight. It seems every week we're spending 80% of the podcast talking about the huge players in the mobile space, along with their commensurately huge smartphone and tablet offerings. While we're not ignoring those established forces in this episode, we are devoting a bit more time to newcomers: from Amazon to OnePlus to a little firm called GoTenna, there's a lot going on in mobile's ...

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    AT&T was kind enough to host us at a hands-on event in NYC last night, and of all the things we came away with, one of the biggest was a renewed appreciation for what a crazy-busy review season it's been. We'd already reviewed almost every single one of the devices AT&T had on display, from wearables like the LG G Watch to affordable smartphones like HTC's Desire 610 to outliers like the not-quite-so-durable Samsung Galaxy S5 Active. Standing apart from these devices, though, was the holy grail of the event: thanks more to its rarity than any one distinctive feature, the ...

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    At its core, the mission of a smartwatch is to make life easier. To improve on the smartphone experience by giving you leave to keep it in a pocket or leave it on the table across the room, because your messages, calls, emails, and other notifications are coming straight to your wrist. The nondescript, water-resistant G Watch does a fairly good job of delivering those notifications, popping up inbound messages alongside weather reports, calendar items, pedometer readings and much more on the 1.65-inch IPS LCD. But it's not until the Snapdragon processor spins to life that the G ...

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    Updated with time codes, download links, and the contest winner's name! Thanks to all who participated in our giveaway contest; stay tuned for another one next week as Pocketnow's month of giveaways rolls on! If there's one thing we're about, it's devices. And from Sony's new "Selfie Phone" to the new Android Wear-ables to the rumors of new Droids, a new Lumia 1525, a back-from-the-dead Surface Mini and the lingering possibility of the Nexus 8, we've got no shortage of hardware talk on this episode of the Pocketnow Weekly: the podcast that leaves the broad implications to others, so we ...

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    Most new device launches go the same way: usually the press gets review units before they’re widely available, and we get to use them for a few days -or a week if we’re lucky- as we work on our review. Then press day arrives. The embargo on media coverage lifts, and everyone posts their reviews and videos at the same time. It’s a huge frenzy, commenters go nuts, and it’s a giant explosion of frantic opinion-sharing activity. For about … a day. And then it all goes away. Sure, there’s followup coverage as people find bugs and hidden features, but after that initial blast, not ...

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    As you might've guessed, we're big on saving pocket space here at Pocketnow ... and we sometimes miss the days when phone holsters were a "thing." I talked about this in a short editorial almost exactly one year ago, where I made a case for the return of the phone pouch: The added utility of freeing up a pocket is almost magical – especially in the summertime when fabric is at a premium. Also, phones don’t clang around on a belt like they do in a pocket, keeping your stride steady and your center of gravity … centered. You’re much more likely to feel vibration alerts when the ...

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    We've unboxed and directly compared the first two official smartwatches from Google (and if you need a refresher, the videos are embedded below for your viewing pleasure). It's gonna take us a few days to rassle up a full review of each new Android Wear device though, so in the meantime we thought those of you who aren't so hip to the YouTubes might like to see the smartwatches in still life in an Android Wear gallery. Below you'll find a series of snapshots taken during the course of filming our latest round of Android Wear videos. The LG G Watch and Samsung Gear Live came to us in ...

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    Neither is the smashing circular sensation of the Moto 360, but neither is by any means ugly – and aesthetic considerations aside, sometimes there's something to be said for promptness. The LG G Watch and Samsung Gear Live are the two devices gracing our review desk on today's Android Wear unboxing, the smartphone accessories Google has chosen to redefine the role of a smartwatch. We're not strangers to wearables around these parts, of course. Some of us backed the Pebble long before that device and its descendents came to our professional attention, while others put their money on ...

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    I’ve learned that there are two things about being a mobile technology reviewer. The first thing: you get to handle awesome gadgetry days or weeks ahead of its official release date, and you’re not just allowed to use the heck out of it; you need to, in order to do your job. That’s the awesome thing. The other (less-awesome) thing: you eventually have to give it all back. Empty Nest is a recurring column discussing what I miss -and what I don’t- about the devices I’ve had to return. • All this talk about the maybe-real, probably-fake Sony Xperia Z3 Compact has me ...

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    There are folks out there who don’t have the time for a ten-minute video or a 3,000-word review, and they certainly don’t have an hour to absorb a meandering podcast (no matter how many awards it’s won). These people might be sneaking a quick YouTube fix on a bathroom break, trying to make a point to a rival smartphone owner at a bar, or even standing in line at a wireless retail store, waiting to make a purchase. They need the facts delivered quickly, with a minimum of window dressing and a firm conclusion in as little time as possible. For them, we’ve created the 60-Second ...

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    Galaxy S5 Prime. Galaxy S5 LTE-A. Galaxy S5 SUPREME. Whatever you call it, we've spent the week getting to know Samsung's most polarizing Quad-HD flagship, and we know you've got questions. So we've got our review unit all charged up and ready for an on-air "live Galaxy S5 Prime review" of sorts, along with some compelling Samsung topics a few eager readers have already sent in, on today's Pocketnow Weekly podcast! But there's more to life than Samsung, so we're mixing in a whole lot more mobile tech talk for your expectant eardrums. We'll cover HTC's newest financials, Lenovo's obscene ...

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    While we don't consider the Galaxy S5 a particularly tough act to follow, we didn't think Samsung would try to one-up itself so soon after its launch (historical precedent aside). Nevertheless here we are: not even three months after the original Galaxy S5 hit store shelves, a revised version with a more powerful processor, more memory, and a higher-resolution display is upon us. Its official name is the Galaxy S5 LTE-A, but others have taken to calling it the "Galaxy S5 Prime." If that doesn't sound right to you, you're not alone: there's considerable confusion surrounding the Galaxy ...

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    The rage was palpable in comment sections across the internet when Samsung announced the Galaxy S5 LTE-A (a.k.a. "Galaxy S5 Prime") a mere two months after releasing the "stock" Galaxy S5. Despite the fact that the company had pulled a similar move with 2013's Galaxy S 4, folks were incensed: how dare the company release a Quad-HD, Snapdragon 805-powered upgrade so soon, effectively rendering its 2014 flagship outdated just eight weeks after release? The answer to that question is known only to the glam gods at Samsung, so we sought out the answer to a different question with our ...

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    Depending on whether you bought a Galaxy S5 this season or decided to hold out for something better, the "Galaxy S5 Prime" is either one of the most intriguing or one of the most infuriating smartphones of the year. Released just a few months after its flagship predecessor, the SM-G906S packs a faster processor, more RAM, more advanced LTE connectivity, and a 2560 x 1440 display with a pixel density of 576ppi. All this makes it, in the eyes of some, the smartphone the Galaxy S5 should have been. But despite its upgraded internals, the Galaxy S5 Prime seems reluctant to stray too far from ...

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