Posts tagged with: Editorial
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    App permissions are the big, ugly monster that no one wants to think about. We all want to play our games, update our social networks, play embarrassing farting sounds and blame our friends, and so much more. To make all that happen, we head over to our preferred app stores, search through an endless sea of apps, then download whatever app looks like it's the "best". During the installation process we're warned about all the permissions the app says it needs to be able to work correctly. We may have cared what those permissions were when we installed our first few apps, but after we ...

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    Every time a new phone comes out, no matter what crazy new features it brings to the table, there are two key factors that ultimately seem to determine its worth to consumers: camera performance and battery life. The Alcatel OneTouch Idol 3 is a terrific low-cost smartphone that could’ve even beat out some flagships … if not for its disappointing camera. On the other hand, Samsung has been selling the Galaxy S6 and S6 edge hand over fist for its an outstanding camera … but you won’t be snapping for long with that battery. The Moto X has an incredibly useful software suite … but ...

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    One of the most frustrating problems about today’s smartwatches is that once their batteries run out, they’re pretty much useless. The biggest challenge that most of these companies face, is being able to give you a smartwatch that lasts for days, or even months. Charging these can also be a challenge, as not all mechanisms are either practical, or durable. All this said, what if a company approached things differently and focused on giving you a smartwatch that you wouldn’t have to recharge? Hong Kong-based Cogito is one of the few companies with a solution to that problem, but you ...

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    It's really easy to dismiss a non-flagship smartphone as unusable. Why? Simply because of the fact that it's mid-range or low-end. Historically, these words have been used to describe smartphones which barely function, unable to muster anything more than the littlest of usability. That's probably what went through the heads of most as Motorola announced the second-gen Moto E, adding in 4G LTE and bringing the smartphone to $150. In the world we live in, in which flagship smartphones regularly retail for prices north of $600 in the United States, that's a pretty low number. It must ...

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    Smartwatches are here. Smartwatches are now. Smartwatches are everywhere. Actually, they’re not everywhere, really. Not yet. But some day, they might be. We have to wonder how pervasive these devices are going to be and if there is one thing that might prevent them from being truly ubiquitous – compatibility. Smartwatches are new ground here, and different smartwatches are taking different approaches to the smart phones that power them. Mine! On one side of the spectrum, you have smartwatches by Samsung. These Tizen-powered devices only work with a certain kind of smartphone. Not only ...

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    In this day and age, we are more connected than ever. This isn’t really news, but it is something to stand up and pay attention to. Especially in the age of the smartwatch, there’s a lot going on in life outside your circle of personal space. Some are keenly aware of this, others prefer to keep things at a distance. It all boils down to your preference for level of engagement. Hyper-connected I’m probably at the far end of the spectrum, under the column of “hyper-connected”. I’m connected all the time. My phone has two twitter accounts, my Facebook account, six different email ...

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    Whether you use a tablet, phablet, or phone, and regardless of what OS powers it or which brand is stamped on its backside, we all have one thing in common: our devices all have batteries that always need recharging. Power bricks come in all shapes and sizes. Some may feature a quick-charging standard, others may be the run-of-the mill chargers that simply get the job done. Regardless, they all require a power outlet - and there never seems to be one of those around when we need it. What we need is a compact, portable, charging station that we can take anywhere, uses power from the ...

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    The mobile world moves quickly – probably faster than just about any other industry in the world. New devices are announced on what feels like a weekly basis; perpetual software updates are hitting for the hundreds of mobile devices; one-off press events are always happening; and while phones seem to have a longer life span than they did back in, say 2010, they still become antiques in what feels like no time. Looking back, it's crazy to see how far the industry has come in less than a decade – from phones that (barely) handled email to pocket-sized computers that a increasingly ...

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    During our initial review of the HTC One M9's new camera, we came away kind of disappointed. It didn't do so well when compared to the Samsung Galaxy S6 either. Sure, it has a 20 megapixel sensor with an f/2.2, 27.8mm lens protected by sapphire cover material, and that offers a lot more detail than HTC's previous 4 megapixel cameras, but the images looked so over-processed. The heavy noise reduction killed the details while over sharpening put white halos around the edges and slight exposure differences seemed kind of random. Well, recently HTC provided an update to the camera software ...

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    If you read my last editorial, in which I criticized smartphone OEMs for no longer braving the market with daring new and crazy form factors like they used to, this might sound familiar to you. Back around the time Android first hit the market, manufacturers were going berserk with all kinds of different designs for what might be the perfect smartphone. Phones like the Kyocera Echo that folded out to reveal a whole second display, or the LG Optimus Vu with a giant 4:3 display … well, those phones were pretty bad. But at least the companies took risks! But one form factor that seemed to ...

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    What is Microsoft Continuum? Just in case you haven't heard of it before, Continuum is Microsoft's solution to let you use your smartphone as a desktop computer - wirelessly. There are times when a phone just doesn't cut it. It's too small or too limited, and the task simply requires that you pull out your tablet or laptop, or sit down at your desktop PC. I write all my articles on a computer running Microsoft Windows. I use a wireless keyboard and mouse (both ergonomic, because that's how I roll) and a 27-inch monitor. This set up lets me have plenty of room to see what I'm writing, and ...

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    As we look out into the smartwatch landscape, we see a pattern emerging. It’s a predictable pattern, but what surprises me is that it happened so fast. Like so many other products, especially those products in mobile technology, the smartwatch space has sorted itself out into three distinct tiers – low-, middle- and high-end. In the beginning Things started off pretty cut and dried. Pebble smartwatches started off with just the original Pebble. Then it introduced the Pebble Steel, which basically replaced the Pebble as the high-end option. In a very Apple-like fashion, the original ...

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    Manufacturers are always moving around the lock/standby button on their phones in search of the perfect placement. We’ve seen everything from top-mounted power buttons, to side-switches, to even moving the entire control scheme to the back of the phone. But what happens when you buy your dream phone, only to find that the power button feels nearly impossible to reach? It happens. Everybody has different tastes of course, and as a result the final solution that the engineers of a phone decide on may not match up with your ideal layout. This was the case for a lot of people last year ...

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    We all know that higher numbers are better than lower ones, right? But does that same logic apply when we're talking about two high-end mobile processors? The root of the questions falls squarely on LG, and its decision to put the Snapdragon 808 (instead of the 810) inside the flagship LG G4. The LG G Flex 2 uses Qualcomm's Snapdragon 810 SoC, but LG selected the Snapdragon 808 for use in the G4. Some have hypothesized that this decision was made due to what some are characterizing as "overheating" and "aggressive throttling" in the 810. According to a source, the decision to utilize ...

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    By far, the most popular content on websites like Pocketnow is the device reviews. We spend countless hours meticulously picking apart every aspect of every new smartphone we can cover, jotting down what we love and hate about them, and presenting our findings to you in the form of written and video reviews. But those are all reviews on specific devices, focusing on the faults and features of individual products. What about the smartphone mistakes that manufacturers as a whole make? We’ve put some thought into the errors and troubles made by the entire smartphone landscape, and compiled ...

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    "The affordable, high-end smartphone is no longer a pipe dream." Those are the words Taylor Martin used to describe the OnePlus One - and he was right. OnePlus seemed to emerge from the shadows, a Chinese manufacturer who apparently wanted to undercut everyone else, especially OEMs who create expensive flagships that come with too many compromises. Now the OnePlus Two is on the horizon. Rumors are spreading rapidly, and we have to stop and ask ourselves, what does OnePlus need to do right with  the OnePlus 2? The OnePlus One wasn't a small phone. It's 5.5-inch screen filled out even the ...

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    In listening to LG talk about the new camera in the LG G4, I was pretty excited. The camera is just about the only meaningful thing that you can really differentiate a smartphone with these days. They all have all the basic apps and the same rectangular touchscreens these days. Anyway, LG was boasting about it's new camera technologies in the LG G4. It's got things like laser auto-focus, a 16 megapixel 1/2.6" sensor, LED flash, and a color spectrum sensor. Launching the camera and taking photos is very fast. You can even double press the volume down button on the back of the phone while ...

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    You know? I was willing to let it slide when just one OEM was doing it, but now that it seems to be becoming a trend, maybe it’s time to say something. A lot of us are obsessed with the design and build quality of modern smartphones, and we’re becoming more and more aware of the materials that our phones are built out of. There is such a call out there for metal, aluminum (or al-you-min-e-yum, if you’re pretentious) or even more exotic (for a smartphone) materials – leather, bamboo, and the like. And introducing... Motorola made a splash when it announced Moto Maker. Specifically, ...

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    I recently resurrected a series of editorials called “This week in mobile history” which offers us a look back at the things that have happened in our mobile past. This is a challenge for me since I was a relative late-comer to the mobile tech space, diving in with the introduction of webOS in 2009. Woulda, shoula, coulda. Anyway. This series of columns allows me to look back and remember the things I’ve seen but also to learn about what I missed, and one thing that I missed was the Microsoft Courier. The what? The Microsoft Courier was a dual screened book of a tablet that closed ...

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    HTC is releasing a new phone called the Butterfly 3 which should launch in Asia soon. Looking at its expected list of features, which is quite impressive, we're all scratching our heads wondering why HTC's current flagship, the One M9, is so "ordinary" compared to the Butterfly 3. The HTC One M9 has a 5.0-inch, 1080P display. The Butterfly 3 is likely going to bump that spec to 5.1- or 5.2-inches, but all rumors are pointing to a quad HD display rather than "standard" HD,  just like on the One M9 Plus. That's not to say the Butterfly 3 is the One M9 Plus - despite some important ...

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    The mobile world moves quickly – probably faster than just about any other industry in the world. New devices are announced on what feels like a weekly basis; perpetual software updates are hitting for the hundreds of mobile devices; one-off press events are always happening; and while phones seem to have a longer life span than they did back in, say 2010, they still become antiques in what feels like no time. Looking back, it's crazy to see how far the industry has come in less than a decade – from phones that (barely) handled email to pocket-sized computers that a increasingly ...

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    We’re all friends here, right? We can get along just fine with each other. No one is out to destroy anyone else here. This is just a pretty little oasis and there is plenty of water around for everyone. Cool? Yeah, not so much. Now that the Apple Watch is out and getting strapped to peoples wrists in earnest, the smartwatch landscape is, like the smartphone and table space, a three horse race – Pebble, Apple, and Google. Apple is the new contender in the wearable space with its Apple watch, while Android Wear and Pebble have been around for some time now. Some have speculated that now ...

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    Let's lay some groundwork before we jump in. There are more smartphones powered by Android in the world today than there are powered by iOS. Google beat Apple to the game by releasing Android Wear an entire season before the Apple Watch hit the market. Watches powered by Android Wear come in numerous shapes and sizes - including round. Apple Watch hit the shelves, and immediately eclipsed Android Wear - or so the headlines would like you to believe. The Apple Watch has a whole bunch of features that Android Wear doesn't have, and it's got a lot of people declaring victory. Hold 'yer ...

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    The Apple Watch has been on the market for a grand total of three days, and already reports of Apple Watch problems are rolling in. On the hardware side, probably the most visible Apple Watch problem thus far comes from noted YouTuber UnboxTherapy (of #bendgate fame), who took a variety of abrasive materials to two purported samples of the Apple Watch cover glass and found that the Ion-X material scratches more easily than expected. Granted, you're not going to be taking sandpaper to your smartwatch every day ever, but this does raise the question of just how well the Watch will fare ...

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    It wasn't that long ago that almost every mobile operating system (and variant thereof) was heavily stylized after tangible items that we come across every day. Notepads apps looked like legal pads, volume controls looked like dials and knobs, toggle buttons looked like switches, and so on. Pushing beyond just tangible "things", many OEMs incorporated skeuomorphic hints in their textures and backgrounds. Patterns modeled after stitching, denim, paper, and even fine leather could be found in our UIs. Skeuomorphism One of the main arguments for skeuomorphic design is the relative ease for ...

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