Posts tagged with: Editorial
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    As is the case for most smartphones these days, the One M8's time in the spotlight was very limited. Unlike the One M7, which won awards for all of 2013 (and even some in 2014), the One M8 is quickly fading into the background as competitors pile dozens of overpowered, chiseled pieces of art on shelves. Just look at the Oppo N3, LG G3, Note 4, Nexus 6, Moto X (2nd Gen), and the Droid Turbo. On paper, these phones make the One M8 look old and dated. Many newer phones come with innovative features I only wish I could have on the M8. And some even rival the look of the M8 – something I ...

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    I walked into my local T-Mobile store in little Syracuse, Utah, USA and set a nondescript smartphone down on the counter. "I need a SIM for this, please." The clerk picked it up, observing how light and thin it was, rolling it slowly in his hands, looking for the SIM tray. Then his eyes fixed on the bottom of the screen. "Acer makes smartphones?! Where did you get this?!" Before long the store manager was over looking at the little black slab. He, too, had never seen an Acer smartphone and took a good long time taking it all in. As far as the phone itself goes, it's light (110g) and fairly ...

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    HERE Maps has sort of been the salvation for navigation for Windows Phone users, especially offline navigation. The praises of this feature are sang across the internet almost any time the service is mentioned. Many prefer Nokia’s take on mapping over the baked-in Bing Maps on Microsoft’s mobile platform and understandably so. Although Nokia’s mapping services, such as navigation or transit directions, are divided across multiple applications, it’s typically a more reliable and renowned service. HERE Maps is one of the parts of the business Nokia didn’t sell to Microsoft, so ...

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    Interesting news in the world of smartwatches has been flying of late, not the least of which are rumors of a cross platform compatible smartwartch coming from Microsoft. But even more interesting was some recent news that Google was considering some Android Wear  compatibility options. As in, perhaps going cross-platform. ORLY? Well isn’t that interesting. As our news article suggests, this likely isn’t anything more than a flight of fancy on an “Ideas to kick around” spreadsheet somewhere, but it raises a few questions. Would Android Wear be better off being a cross platform ...

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    I admittedly do not have a ton of experience with Oppo. The first Oppo phone I ever held was the Find 7a I reviewed earlier this year. The first time I even heard the name Oppo was when the N1 was announced, and that was only because it had a massive 5.9-inch display and a rotating primary camera which can be likened to some flip phones from way back when. Outside that, my knowledge of the company, its products, and its perception globally is pretty limited. That’s mainly because Oppo hasn’t thrust itself into the U.S. market like some of its compatriots have. Huawei and ZTE, two other ...

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    Google teased its new software update, previously known as the Android L Preview, back at the I/O 2014 developer conference back in June. It showed off new features a new and improved recent apps menu, lock screen notifications, and Project Volta, meant to improve battery life. Among the most important changes, however, is the all new design language, called Material Design. This new interface design is meant to make the UI react to the user’s input the same way their analog – or material – counterparts would in the real world. There is depth and a visible hierarchy to the way ...

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    Android is everywhere, but sometimes it's a little hard to tell. Samsung's Android is not the same as HTC's which is not the same as Alcatel's. Every OEM pours a little of their own flavor into its version of Android. Some for the better, others...well, not so much. But in a world where 80% of the market is using the same platform and you have no less than two dozen competitors all touting the same OS, what can you do to make your product stand out and shine? Skin it of course! Which leaves us, the consumer, in an odd and sometimes confusing place. Android is Android is Android right? ...

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    Based on how 2014 is stacking up, I think it's safe to say this year will be remembered as the year of the phablet. We saw Apple's mammoth iPhone 6 Plus, Samsung released its Note 4, Google is set to begin taking pre-orders for the Nexus 6, and others like OnePlus and ZTE even threw their hats in the ring. Now Motorola has thrown another big phone into the race, and it's being called the DROID Turbo. Interestingly enough, it looks like it's pretty much a Nexus 6 for Verizon with a cool carbon fiber back. How do the two compare, and which one should you get? Specs Let's take a look at ...

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    This newfangled tech world is some sort of heaven for pixel junkies. A few years ago, the thought of a 4K (3,840 by 2,160 pixels) monitor, television, or projector wasn’t terribly far-fetched. 4K projectors and cameras have been available since the early 2000s, but personal monitors and televisions in ultra high-definition are a far newer product of this pixel-obsessed world. Prior to 2013, however, the buy in price to the budding world of 4K was illogical for most of us normal humanoids who don’t draw six-figure salaries each year. The first 4K televisions were large and expensive. ...

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    Regardless of how large the batteries in our portable electronics are, or how efficiently their SoCs power them, we never seem to have "enough" power. Thankfully, Android lets you see what apps and processes are using your battery, so you can take corrective measures and (ideally) get the most out of the limited mAhs in your LiPo cell. Take a look at your own stats. Open Settings and tap on Battery. Depending on which version of Android you're running and how heavily your OEM has skinned your device, you'll probably see a chart with a list of apps and processes beneath it. The ...

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    I remember a time when a 4.3-inch display on a smartphone seemed absolutely absurd to most. My friends would ask me, "Why would anyone want a phone that big? I can do everything just fine on my phone." At that time, the average high-end smartphone sported a display that measured, diagonally, anywhere between 3.5- and 3.8-inches. An average person could palm any given phone and reach all four corners with their thumb without adjusting their grip of choking-up on the phone. Those days are but a faint memory now. Three years ago, when I was carrying a then-normal 4.3-inch smartphone, I ...

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    Personal privacy and device security are two ever-important concerns in an increasingly digital world. Where there is personal, private, and potentially important information being stored, there is always someone out there who seeks to use it for personal gain. Harmless or not, keeping your information and devices locked down is never a bad idea. It's always smart to keep wandering eyes out of your sensitive information, even if you have nothing to hide. Fortunately, there is an increasing number of ways to beef up security your mobile devices. Most of the security measures are ...

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    Sometimes I ask my assistant to remind me about something, and when she's sitting in the same room as me and it's time to be reminded about something important, she claps her hands twice to get my attention. If I don't look at her right away, she won't tell me what the message is, and then she'll wait a few more seconds and then close her eyes and go to sleep. If this was a real person, that scenario would sound pretty ridiculous, but that's exactly how our smartphones behave these days. I'm sorry, I don't understand what 2 hand claps means. We're in the same room though. I can hear you. ...

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    When you're talking about trucks or race cars, once you get past how one of them looks, it's the engine which is important. It's got to be built very intelligently to maximize the energy that's being put into it (in the form of gasoline and oxygen) and convert it into mechanical energy that either enables it to pull heavy loads or makes it go fast. The engine isn't the only component in the equation, that's for sure. The transmission has got to be matched to the engine, and the exhaust has to be sized appropriately or it will choke. What do race cars, trucks, and engines have to do with ...

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    Phablets have come into the mobile space consciousness in a big way (no pun intended) recently with the announcement of two, relatively large (prominent, pun a little intended) devices into the phablet space – the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 and the Motorola made Nexus 6. Both of these phones fall into the phablet category, at least by some definitions. So let’s take a look here and see if we can figure out exactly what these definitions are. Some will argue that a phablet needs something more than just a large screen. After all, a phone with a large screen is still a “phone” because it ...

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