Archive for September, 2016

By September 28, 2016 Read More →

Tech Addicts UK Podcast – 28th September 2016 – Pixel, Oppo and Bluedio

Podcast logoGareth Myles, Jay Garrett and Gavin Fabiani-Laymond

RSS Link: http://mobiletechaddicts.libsyn.com/rss

Direct Download.

iTunes

Google Play Music

Show Notes

What have you been playing with?

Gareth:

Gavin:

Jay:

Discussion: Pixel and Pixel XL

Discussion: Amazon Echo finally reaches UK

Discussion: Non-explosive Note 7 coming to UK

http://stevelitchfield.com/podhubuk/
Main Show URL: www.techaddicts.uk

Join the Discussion: https://goo.gl/spaces/6FF6jraF9KHiPUyA6

Email: contact@techaddicts.uk

Twitter: @garethmyles ; @gavinfabiani  ; @GadgetyNewsCom ; @JayGarrett

Web: http://gavinsgadgets.com ; http://GadgetyNews.com

Google Plus: +garethmyles ; +gavinfabiani-laymond   ; +JayGarrett

Posted in: News, Podcast
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By September 28, 2016 Read More →

Griffin Survivor Power Pack Review

fullsizerender3Never in the history of everything have we been more reliant, more dependent on electronic devices. Separation anxiety caused by being without your mobile phone is now a recognised stress condition! So, you left the house this morning, but you forgot to charge your phone – how will you ever know what your Instagram friends had for lunch or what the latest viral cat video is?

You need a mobile power pack!

Thankfully there are roughly a bazillion models available in every imaginable shape, size and capacity. But what happens if you run up mountains for fun, or a much more likely situation; you find yourself miles from home during the inevitable zombie apocalypse? Then you need the Griffin “Survivor” Power Bank. The secrets in the name folks!

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Griffin touts this as the Chuck Norris of battery packs due to its super rugged features. It’s drop proof from a height of 2m (we’ll see about that), as well as being water, dust and zombie blood resistant thanks to being fully encased in a textured rubber exterior and port cover. The corners have a good bit of give in them to cushion impacts, so it’ll be useless as a bludgeon, but at least you’ll always be able to upload those skillful headshot videos for “Zombie kill of the week” contention.

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On closer inspection, I noticed that the rubber isn’t actually bonded to the unit, but more like a form fitting case. Where the opening is for the ports, the rubber can easily be pulled away from the unit, so water could get in and get trapped in there. The port cover does fit snugly, but as pointed out in the unboxing video, the lifting tab does make it easily removable and I imagine it could be easily snagged, although, after a fortnight of bouncing around in the bottom of my bag, this only happened once. Mercifully I was not wading through a swamp or anything at the time and my office has only the usual type of pre-coffee zombies. I did try the drop test 3 times from around the 6-foot mark and the Survivor did indeed survive with only minor scuffing to the rubber housing. Really the only area of potential wear and tear vulnerability I see is the port cover and its little rubber retention piece.

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The 10,050mAh Griffin is obviously larger than its peers because of the additional layers of protection, but it is still easily portable at 265g and the ability to just throw it into a bag and forget about it is a big bonus. Griffin makes several claims on the packaging – 2 hour charge time, 5 phone charges etc. In my (zombie-free) testing, I found that when using standard USB ports on my work PC or an iPhone plug, the charging took a lot longer. You’ll need to up the power supply if you want to get anywhere close to the 2-hour claim. Charging a two-year-old 1,810mAh iPhone 6 with a bog standard apple cable took around 90mins to get it from 15% to full, which was a little underwhelming. This is definitely a workhorse rather than a thoroughbred. I managed to get 4 full charges and it ran out of juice at 60% on the 5th. Depending on the size of your phone, your mileage may vary. It has the, now obligatory, tiny LED light for illuminating the 2 feet directly in front of you. These lights have become standard on battery packs now and are handy for when you are digging through a bag at night trying to find something, but really, little else.

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Compared to its rivals, the performance is distinctly average. The equivalent capacity Anker will charge your device noticeably quicker and cost a heck of a lot less at £15. The Survivor is priced at £56 although it can be found for £47.50 on Amazon (mainland delivery only – sorry Northern Ireland) but it’s somewhat hard to justify such a massive price difference just for the additional ruggedisation. But, and it’s a big but – the Griffin comes with a lifetime warranty! A modern electronic device, one that is designed to take some abuse and it comes with a lifetime warranty!! Unheard of!!! From their site, Griffin state that if you can provide proof of purchase and are the original purchaser, they “will repair or replace the product if due to defective parts or workmanship; it does not perform as specified.” It does not cover “misuse” however. But rubber can perish and batteries will die, so it’s a bold, yet confidence inducing guarantee by Griffin and I suppose this has to be factored into the price. Unless of course, Griffin means the lifetime of the owner and they know something we don’t………which brings us back to zombies…….

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By September 26, 2016 Read More →

Box Surge Smart Unboxing

image22Three plugs, four USBs, neatly presented with some stylish aluminium around the outside. That’s the Box Smart Surge in a nutshell. Milled on a CNC machine out of a single billet of 6061 aluminum. Four intelligent USB ports to the side of the Surge Unit to allow for simultaneous device charging.

Power often fluctuates during the day; this could be caused by high drain devices (washing machines, fridge freezers) turning on and off. I.T equipment contains sensitive microprocessors that can be damaged over time by these fluctuations in power. The MOV procession built into the Surge Smart protects devices from damage through both minor changes in power and catastrophic events like lightning strikes.

http://www.box-products.com/website/portfolio/aluminum-surge-protector-with-usb/

By September 23, 2016 Read More →

Box Car Smart USB Charger Unboxing

image20New in from Box is this rather swish looking Car adapter for charge your tech on the dashboard.

Four powered USB ports can simultaneously charge devices a single car socket. Delivering 9.6A, the Car Smart is capable of providing power simultaneously to 4 tablets (or any combination of USB powered devices).
The Car Smart features an intelligent charge circuit that automatically provides your device with the power it needs to safely and efficiently charge.

By September 22, 2016 Read More →

Rebel Tech Kit Unboxing

image17Sugru have sent me a sample of their mouldable glue. This friendly stuff is designed to make life a little more tolerable by providing a remedy for a few of life’s woes.

Sugru sticks permanently to lots of stuff like ceramics, glass, metal, wood, and most plastics and fabrics. Just push it onto something, then it’s time to build, seal, fix, create and stick things together. You’ll have 30 minutes to get the job done.

Give it 24 hours, and Sugru turns into a durable, flexible silicone rubber that stays stuck (unless you remove it).

Find out for here: https://sugru.com/

By September 20, 2016 Read More →

iPhone 7 Unboxing

vlcsnap-00042Apple has done it again. A new phone, a new controversy and new feels and emotions for the Apple Die-Hards.

Paul takes a look at his iPhone 7 in this unboxing and set-up.

Colours: Rose Gold, Gold, Silver, Black, Jet Black
Display: 4.7in (1334×750, 326ppi) Retina HD Display
Processor: Apple A10 Fusion, M10 motion co-processor
Storage: 32GB/128GB/256GB
Cameras: 12Mp wide-angle camera, f/1.8 aperture, 5x digital zoom, OIS, six-element lens, Quad-LED True Tone flash, 4K video; 7Mp FaceTime HD camera, f/2.2
Connectivity: 802.11a/b/g/n/ac Wi-Fi with MIMO; Bluetooth 4.2; NFC (for Apple Pay); A-GPS, GLONASS
Software: iOS 10
Dimensions: 67.1×7.1×138.3mm
Weight: 138g
Other: IP67 dust- and waterproof; Touch ID fingerprint sensor

 

Posted in: Phones, Videos/Unboxings
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By September 20, 2016 Read More →

BOX 6000 mAh Portable Tablet Charger Unboxing

image16A little something from Box, this portable charger packs enough charge to handle a tablet on the go, were many lack the capacity to. In addition, a second USB allows for another device to be hooked up and a combined output of 2.4A.
Internally, an IC (Intelligent Charge Circuit) chip has been built in to automatically detect the correct charge level of the device.

  • 6000mAh Lithium Polymer Battery
  • Dual USB Charge Ports
  • Shake to identify power level
  • Provides power to smartphones and tablets
  • includes micro USB charge cable

By September 19, 2016 Read More →

Sengled Boost LED and Wi-Fi Repeater Review

For over 137 years we have been used to light bulbs in our homes with thanks to Edison, Swan and Maxim. A creation that has served a single purpose to bring light to a room or a place when it is turned on until now…

Sengled, a company who have over 10 years experience within the lighting industry have sent us the Sengled Boost LED and Wi-Fi Repeater. Bringing a once revolutionary household product and combining it with a Wifi repeater is just ingenious making the Boost a must have product for any household that has dreaded Wifi dead zones.

Out of the box the Boost weighs 290g, which is roughly 180g heavier than the bulb I was replacing it with.  The weight of the Boost makes it feel like a premium product. The Boost boasts an A+ energy efficiency rating, two built-in antenna supporting high-speed data rates up to 300Mbps and support for WiFi 2.4Ghz. The LED light does not lack in brightness, the Sengled Boost provides 6 watts of warm colour.  The device is controlled by downloading the Sengled Boost  app from either Google Play or App store.

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Installation is very simple, I downloaded the app and followed the step-by-step guide, I put the Boost in my utility room, a room with limited WiFi. Sometimes when doing a mundane task such as ironing, the boredom can be lessened by watching a programme on the laptop or tablet. Until now the WiFi signal has never been strong enough to sustain a perfect stream. The Boost did exactly what it was built to do, carry the WiFi signal from my router into a zone that had very poor signal.  Not only did the Boost extend the Wifi signal to my utility room I was able to pick up the WiFi signals outside in my garden.

For those who are security savvy, do not fear, the Sengled Boost supports common security and encryption technologies like WPA/WPA2 as well as WEP making the connection secure.

When installing the bulb to your home network via the app you have the choice to rename the bulb helping you determine which bulb you are remotely turning on. The light uses the conventional light switch to turn on and the app allows you to turn off the bulb when you only need the WiFi extender. Ingenious, with the product being A+ energy efficient leaving this device turned on does not create a spike on electric usage in the house.  

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The Boost also could work as a security feature, if you hear a noise outside you could warn off a passerby using the app to have your house lit up like Blackpool illuminations within seconds.

My kids found the novelty of a light bulb being controlled by an app fascinating. They went into other rooms of the house to turn off those lights and were disappointed that it didn’t work. ‘Dad are you getting more of these cool bulbs?’

The Sengled Boost gives the ordinary light bulb a new lease of life by giving it dual functionality as a WiFi repeater. Wireless dead spots will become a thing of the past thanks to Sengled. A must have for any home that suffers from poor wireless connectivity.

Sengled have a range of other bulbs including speaker bulbs and security camera bulbs. Buying a normal bulb will be a thing of the past….

Thanks to Sengled for the sample.

sengled-bulb

Posted in: Accessories, Reviews
By September 18, 2016 Read More →

The Phones Show Chat (audio podcast)

downloadDownload Phones Show Chat episode 360 (“Loud and in Stereo!”,18/09/2016) manually (Size: 57MB, 80 minutes duration).

Phones Show Chat 360 – Show Notes
Steve Litchfield and Ted Salmon with Gareth Myles

Errata & Feedback
Michael Warner with iPhone 7 Surveys – One, two, three
Tim Evans has first impressions of iPhone 7/Plus
Android Pay comes to a new group of UK Banks
CCleaner for Android
Allen Cross on Android Beta and RMS Explained

Device Week
Nexus 6P
Moto Z & JBL SoundBoostTed’s Unboxing
(YT: Moto Z & JBL SoundBoost Unboxing)
JBL SoundBoost vs. Marshall London
(YT: Moto Z & JBL SOUNDBOOST v Marshall London Speaker Test)
iPhone 7Steve’s Camera Zoom Shootout
Wileyfox Spark X

Live Draw
We make a draw for smartphone accessories each week! And this week’s winner is…John Wright. Do get involved before the next draw by joining the Virtual Pint of Beer a Month Club – It could be you!stevelitchfield.com/paypal.htm & tinyurl.com/pspromo

The Phones Show
Tune into Steve’s YouTube Channel to watch Phones Show 288 (Moto G4 & HP Elite X3) – 289 coming very soon!

Phones Show Flickr Group (Richard Yates)
Picture of the Week/Month: Up in the Air by Marius Olar using a Motorola Moto G

Posted in: News, Podcast
By September 16, 2016 Read More →

The Future of Television

There’s no escaping it, television is a huge part of the culture of this country. According to statistics released by Ofcom, no less than 90 percent of adults tune into their favourite shows without fail every week. Our media is dominated by the lives of television stars, and as programming and technology continues to improve exponentially, there’s no way our love of television is going anywhere any time soon. Do you remember your first TV? Sometimes when we’re sat watching tiny beads of sweat on the brows of our favourite footballers, it can be hard to remember that television wasn’t always such an excellent viewing experience. Today we reveal what’s still to come in TV technology, and reminisce about days gone by…

 

Exciting developments…

Although impossible to see how picture quality can get much better than it is currently – the next leap in HD technology is said to be just around the corner, and will see 8k HD become the norm. Arguably the most exciting development on the block is organic light-emitting diodes (OLED), which is an advancement on LED technology that’s a whopping 1000x faster, and could allow hardware like roll-up screens to become a wonderful, and undeniably futuristic, reality.

In a recent interview, Paul Lever from Cheapest Electrical discussed OLED, “LG and Samsung both revealed potential models at this year’s CES, with the LG winning CNET’s Best of CES Award. Make no mistake, this is the most important advancement in TV technology in more than a decade, and a vast improvement over both LCD and plasma.”

When enjoying the perks of such advanced technology, it’s easy to forget how we got to this point. Let’s take a little look back, shall we?


In simpler times…

For 30 years, from the 1960’s up until the 90’s the predominant television found in houses across the nation was the cathode ray tube, or CRT TV for short. Usually no larger than 25”, the only real additional feature these models offered was access to Teletext.

 

A leap in quality…

As we rolled into the 90’s the latest technologies to cause a stir were plasma and LCD screens. Opinion was initially divided over which provided the best viewing experience – but eventually LCD was victorious, due to using far less energy, and having a better shelf life. Plasma screens were discontinued relatively recently in 2014.

 

A switch to digital…

Between 2008 – 2012 the country slowly transitioned from analogue to digital. This switch meant that 26 million people were instantly granted access to freeview TV – and all the additional channels, and features that came with it. Now viewers could pause live TV, record a whole series of their favourite shows with just the touch of a button, and could enjoy interactive services, which enhanced the viewing experience.

 

Along comes HD…

Next picture clarity was targeted, and 4k ultra high definition became the norm, improving the viewing experience tenfold. Digital TV meant people with the right televisions could now access multiple free HD channels, and providers like BT and Netflix made it possible for you to watch your favourite shows and sports in high definition.

 

Posted in: Editorial