Posts tagged with: Editorial
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    As Android users, most of us have the ability to sideload apps directly onto our smartphones and tablets - no app store needed! People who use other operating systems on their mobile devices aren't always so lucky. To load apps on their devices from sources other than those officially sanctioned by the company that makes their phone, many have to go through a jailbreaking or unlocking process. While not necessarily a "bad" thing, jailbreaking brings with it many other implications that reach significantly deeper than simply installing an app. Most Android-powered devices provide the ...

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    I remember how free I felt the first time I dabbled in alternative operating systems on my old family PC. After growing tired of using Windows Vista, I started looking around and asking friends what I should do. One suggested trying Windows XP Black Edition, a hacked version of XP, and another suggested trying various builds of Linux. Ultimately, I gave Ubuntu a try. I never looked back. From that day, I stopped using Windows. It felt incredible to load whatever software I wanted onto my hardware. This instilled a certain mentality in me that carried over to smartphones, which were ...

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    Even before HTC built the "first Android", the G1 for T-Mobile, the company was well known for making hardware that really stood out. Its phones were built really well and stood out from the competition. That trend has continued through to today: HTC makes really good looking hardware! But you and I know that hardware is only half of the equation. Now that HTC is starting to release some of its most desired software to the public, how will HTC stand out from its competition? Hardware My first hands-on experience with HTC was with the HP iPaq line of Pocket PCs. They weren't slabs like ...

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    The stylus has had a pretty traumatic life. It was a necessary tool back in the beginning of the smartphone and PDA era, as mobile operating systems weren't designed with stubby fingertips in mind. Rather, buttons, soft keyboards, and entire UIs were fixated beneath resistive touch screens, which didn't discriminate between a user's fleshy digits or retractable pen tips. Quite literally, you could use just about any ol' object as a stylus, so long as it was strong enough to squeeze the protective plastic coating and digitizer together. The finer the point, the better. The stylus all but ...

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    As efforts like After The Buzz, the Pocketnow U-Review, and Empty Nest demonstrate, we’re constantly searching for fresh ways to review mobile technology. The newest product of those efforts is Pocketnow’s “Review Rebuttal” series, in which a member of our team is assigned to test a smartphone or tablet that’s already gone through our standard review process. While the resulting video or editorial doesn’t affect the “official” Pocketnow review score, we hope it provides added context by showcasing an editor’s personal opinion, rather than a team-wide consensus. We ...

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    The selfie phone is an actual thing – or it's becoming a thing. As much as that makes me not want to live on this planet anymore, it's actually a good thing. No, the word "selfie" itself is a monstrosity. But that front cameras on smartphones are finally getting the attention they deserve is a wonderful thing. Today, the front camera is where fond memories and borderline narcissistic social culture meet. A group of friends out for an increasingly rare night on the town all huddle around one person's phone to capture the fleeting moment forever. Meanwhile, fishing for compliments, a ...

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    We've spent the last week or so talking about smartphone security and how the privacy-centric Blackphone can help keep your communications as well as your data private. We've looked at all the technical stuff that's going on to keep you secure, as well as given it our full hands-on review treatment. But what if you don't have a Blackphone? If you're running (virtually) any Android-powered smartphone or tablet, you're in luck! Here are three Android security tips that will improve your security and privacy right now! 1. Encrypt Not long ago we heard of people buying old smartphones and ...

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    There comes a time in every tech geek’s life when they have to ask themselves a question – “What else is out there?” There was a time when every platform – iOS, Android, Blackberry, PalmOS/webOS, Symbian, etc – offered something unique to the mobile space. They offered something compelling to keep you locked into their own ecosystems, so that you wouldn’t dare stray afield.  These days, that is becoming less and less of a concern. Platforms are catching up with other platforms and there is a lot more parity then there used to be. This isn’t universally the case, but the ...

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    The debate over build quality, design, and materials in the smartphone realm will never end. The matter is largely, if not entirely, subjective and typically boils down to preference and personal experiences. No one material is wholly better than another. Plastic bends, scratches, cracks, and it often feels incredibly cheap. Metal typically feels nicer and gives phones some much-needed heft, but scratches and dings even worse than plastic. Unlike easily replaceable plastic battery doors, metal usually is not easily or affordably replaced. And glass is also weighty, but it shatters, ...

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    The Amazon Fire Phone is a pretty interesting device, but it comes with the Amazon Appstore instead of the Google Play Store. What if you want some other apps? Because the Fire Phone is based on Android, you're in luck! Just like other Android-powered devices, you can sideload applications right onto the device, but the process looks a little different than you may be used to. Here's how you can sideload apps on the Amazon Fire Phone. Enable Sideloading Head into the Settings by pulling down on the top of the screen and tapping the Settings cog. From there, find Applications & Parental ...

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    If there was a unicorn of a device for mobile tech geeks the world over, it was a Lumia device running Android. Well, we finally got one, and it kind of sucked. But if there’s a step below a unicorn, maybe a pegasus, or leprechaun, or even a portly saint in a jolly red suit, it’s probably the HTC One M8 running Windows Phone. Yesterday, we got our Santa Clause. The HTC One M8 for Windows was released yesterday, bringing Microsoft’s operating system onto arguably the most beautiful phone of the year. Of course, Windows Phone is no stranger to high-quality hardware thanks to Nokia’s ...

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    The HTC One M8 for Windows is official as of this morning, and we're right this very minute getting some video coverage of the device for those of you who value sweaty, jittery hands-on phone footage above all else. But we also managed to snag a few minutes with the device formerly known as the HTC One W8 prior to this morning's festivities, and we've prepared some first impressions for those who prefer the written word to the spoken one. First the basics, in case you missed the official news post in this morning's flurry of releases. The HTC One M8 for Windows is a carbon copy of the ...

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    When we went hands-on, and gave Amazon's Fire Phone the full review treatment earlier this month, we didn't have many nice things to say about its battery life, rating it as "poor to fair". This rating carries with its own measure of irony since Amazon touts "uncompromised battery life" as one of the selling points of its phone. "You'll definitely want to take a charger with you if you're planning on anything close to heavy use. We haven't once reached 4 hours of screen-on time with the Fire Phone's embedded 2600 mAh battery, and charging it every night has been a non-negotiable ...

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    "You know what I hate? Handing my tablet over to one of my kids to keep them entertained 'for a few minutes' only to discover that their 'entertainment' was changing my wallpaper, rearranging my icons, and messing up my tablet!" That's what I said back in 2012 when we started learning about Android 4.2 A New Flavor of Jelly Bean. Since then, two out of the three tablets in my house has multiple logins. My wife shares her original Nexus 7 with our seven year old son, and I have a "guest" account set up on my 2013 Nexus 7. The practicality of multi-user support on a tablet is almost without ...

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    Interesting news hit the feeds last week. HP former smartphone maker and barely-tablet maker wants to make its own smartwatch. Yes. A smartwatch. There have been some rumors and teaser graphics surrounding this device and that’s all fine and good. Some speculation came to our attention regarding this HP smartwatch, and it has some merit, or at the very least should be considered. HP’s smartwatch should run webOS. Now, I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking, “Did I leave the oven on when I left the house this morning?” I have good news for you. Probably not. But now ...

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