Posts by Taylor Martin

Based out of Charlotte, NC, Taylor Martin started writing about technology in 2009 while working in wireless retail. He has used BlackBerry off and on for over seven years, Android for nearly four years, iOS for three years, and has experimented with both webOS and Windows Phone. Taylor has reviewed countless smartphones and tablets, and doesn't go anywhere without a couple gadgets in his pockets or "nerd bag." In his free time, Taylor enjoys playing disc golf with friends, rock climbing, and playing video games. He also enjoys the occasional hockey game, and would do unspeakable things for some salmon nigiri. For more on Taylor Martin, checkout his Pocketnow Insider edition. | Google+

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  • by | February 24, 2014 2:09 PM

    Russian phone maker, Yota Devices, is at it again. At MWC 2013, we here at Pocketnow finally got some hands-on time with the unusual creation from Yota Devices, a diversion from the typical one-screen smartphone: the YotaPhone. This phone, from the front looked pretty normal. But flipping it around to the backside revealed a large and very useful e-ink display. But by the time it released, just over two months ago, the phone's internals were dated, making the phone seem rather expensive, even for its progressive design. A full year after our first look at YotaPhone, and the Russian phone ...

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  • by | February 24, 2014 1:04 PM

    Running out of storage on your smartphone? Is a 64GB microSD card simply not enough anymore? Flash storage company SanDisk aims to fix the dilemma more and more mobile users are facing every day: cramped storage space. The company just unveiled the world's highest-capacity microSD card in Barcelona, Spain for MWC. SanDisk has doubled the capacity of its impressive 64GB microSDXC cards to 128GB. The cards are said to have double the write speed as your standard microSD card, or 10MBps. In order to squeeze 128GB into such a tiny area – about the size of a fingernail – SanDisk developed a ...

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  • by | February 24, 2014 12:13 PM

    Huawei wants in on the wearables category, or so it seems, as the Chinese company just announced its own fitness tracker at Mobile World Congress. Aptly named the TalkBand B1, Huawei's fitness tracker does more than simply work as a wrist-mounted pedometer and track your sleep, it also doubles as a Bluetooth headset. The device itself pops out of the wrist band and can be used to take calls. The 1.4-inch OLED display is not a touchscreen, so navigation is done via various button presses, and the device itself can be managed through an application on your smartphone. With NFC pairing, ...

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  • by | February 24, 2014 11:50 AM

    Lenovo is a company rarely in the spotlight in the mobile space. It's tried its hand at mobile devices several times, to a mostly uninterested audience. But Lenovo found itself all over headlines at the end of last month, after Google announced it agreed to sell Motorola Mobility to Lenovo. Fresh off the heels of that announcement, Lenovo just announced three new Android-powered smartphones: the S660, S850, and S860. Priced at $229 sans contract, the S660 (pictured above) is the cheapest model of the three. It will ship with a 4.7-inch qHD display, 1.3GHz quad-core MediaTek MT6582m chip, ...

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  • by | February 20, 2014 3:14 PM

    ZTE has never been a strong smartphone competitor here in the States, but it aims to change that in 2014. Our own Jaime Rivera reviewed the Nubia 5 back in December, and he was rather smitten with the unlocked device from ZTE. The real question is: can ZTE keep building the momentum with quality devices for the US market? That's at least the plan with the Boost MAX on the Sprint MVNO Boost Mobile. It wants to provide a sufficient competitor to oversized devices like the Galaxy Note 3 for substantially less. With the exception of Samsung's Galaxy Mega series, every so-called phablet to date ...

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  • by | February 20, 2014 7:01 AM

    Samsung's Galaxy S 4 is easily one of the most popular and successful Android handsets … ever. However, it's quickly approaching the one-year mark and its successor is just around the bend. While we wait for the next-gen Galaxy S, we're curious how well the existing Galaxy S 4 can hold down the fort. Nokia's Verizon flagship, the Lumia Icon, launches today. How does it compare with Samsung's nearly one-year-old smartphone? Should you invest in the Galaxy S 4 or the underdog Icon? We aim to answer those questions and more in this Lumia Icon vs Galaxy S 4 comparison! Watch the video below, ...

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  • by | February 19, 2014 7:01 AM

    Nokia's Lumia 1020 was easily one of the most impressive smartphones of 2013. Better yet, it's one of the more innovative handsets of the decade, with its 41-megapixel image sensor, paired with optical image stabilization. Its solid design and Nokia's reputation for quality didn't hurt matters either. However, CDMA users have been left mostly to feed on the Windows Phone scraps of late, and Nokia stepped up to the plate with yet another stellar entry, the Lumia Icon for Verizon Wireless. With specifications that rival even some of the most popular and powerful Android handsets, it's sure ...

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  • by | February 17, 2014 6:16 PM

    Being that smartphones very rarely leave our sides, even the most ruggedized ones can incur a small amount of damage over time. Sometimes, that damage can be much, much worse. While contact with the elements – especially water – can be fatal to your handset, every smartphone still has an Achilles' heel: glass. Whether you paid $30 for a Lumia 520 on sale to upwards of $1,000 for your smartphone, no phone is entirely shatter-proof. I've seen Mil-Spec phones get shattered, as well as a Nexus 4 drop a few inches onto a tabletop to spider webbing on the back glass. That hasn't stopped some ...

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  • by | February 17, 2014 3:14 PM

    Nokia's latest handset, the Lumia Icon, is headed to Verizon Wireless later this week. The Icon is a rarity, at least for CDMA folks, in that it's a true high-end Windows Phone handset – something CDMA customers have effectively missed out on since the beginning of Windows Phone. The Lumia Icon from Nokia features a snappy 2.2GHz quad-core Krait 400 CPU and Adreno 330 GPU to make the Snapdragon 800 SoC, 2GB RAM, 32GB fixed storage, a 5-inch 1080p display, a 20-megapixel primary camera, and a 2,420mAh battery. At least on paper, it's enough to compete with even some of the most powerful ...

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  • by | February 12, 2014 8:23 PM

    We first saw Pebble Steel at CES last month, and we immediately fell in love with the hardware imrpovements over the original Pebble. We were a bit surprised, however, when CEO Eric Migicovsky told us it would sell for $100 more than the original, or $250. Inside, they're practically the same, save for the 8MB storage in Pebble Steel vs 4MB in the original. It has Gorilla Glass 2 covering the display, a machine-cut, marine grade stainless steel chassis, and a choice of two finish styles – brushed or PVD coated. It also ships with two premium watch straps: a genuine leather and matching ...

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  • by | February 11, 2014 12:44 PM

    We first saw Pebble Steel at CES last month, and while many feel the upgrade over the original Pebble to be a disappointment, there is no denying how good looking the new Pebble is. It's internals and specs are practically the same as the original, except this model has double the internal storage. It bears the same display, battery, CPU, etc. But its frame is smaller, it weighs a little more, and it looks infinitely more classy. While we put this smartwatch to the test and determine if it's worth an additional $100, feast your eyes on the Pebble Steel unboxing video below, and tell us why ...

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  • by | February 11, 2014 7:01 AM

    At launch, the Moto G was groundbreaking. It's an Android-powered budget phone that doesn't make you want to pull your hair out and punch innocent, living beings. And today, alongside the Lumia 520, it's one of the best bargains in the mobile space. Period. However, as per the norm, competitors will come along. The first to do so in the budget phablet space is ZTE. The Iconic Phablet we saw at CES has manifested as the Boost MAX for Boost Mobile here in the United States. For $299 with a ridiculously cheap prepaid plan (only $35 per month with the current promotion), it's not quite a cheap ...

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  • by | February 10, 2014 7:01 AM

    To date, essentially all manufacturers who have attempted to mimic Samsung's success with the Galaxy Note line of oversized smartphones have done so by packing as many great specifications as possible inside the phone and slapping a premium price tag on it to boot. But not everyone who wants a smartphone-tablet hybrid wants or needs an over the top smartphone. And they may not want to pay premium prices to get such a phone. Much smaller phones, like the Moto G, have impressively replicated the performance and experience provided by the much more expensive Moto X. So why can't a so-called ...

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  • by | February 6, 2014 7:33 PM

    We were all very surprised when it was announced Google had moved to purchase Motorola Mobility in the second half to 2011. As I noted in my piece from Monday, we were all taken aback and curious as to why Google had moved to purchase a hardware company. Obviously, the purchase was heavily – if not entirely – fueled by Motorola's immense, mobile-related portfolio of over 20,000 patents. But when Google's own Dennis Woodside moved over to Motorola as the new CEO, we could only speculate that Google, despite making it very clear Motorola would remain a separate company, wanted Motorola ...

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  • by | February 6, 2014 4:25 PM

    ZTE told us at CES last month that it wants to be a part of the U.S. smartphone market. The Nubia 5, which Jaime reviewed last year, was among the first of its devices targeted at U.S. consumers. But as we're learning, that was just one of many to come. We saw a handful of handsets at CES, and among those was a rather large, entry level smartphone, the Iconic Phablet (not to be confused with Acer's Iconia brand, as I unwittingly did in the below unboxing). This phone is coming to the US in the form of the Boost MAX on Boost Mobile. The innards and outsides are practically identical. To ...

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