Phones

By March 18, 2015 Read More →

HTC One M9 Hands-on video

onem9w2.0A few weeks ago HTC announced their latest flagship smartphone in the form of the HTC One M9. Building upon the successes of last year’s HTC One M8, the M9 shares a lot of the design heritage of its predecessors. You’ll find the aluminum uni-body construction is still a key focus of the range, albeit that this model has a new and attractive two-tone finish.

One of the more significant differences is in the camera department. Remember the 4mp camera with Ultrapixel technology that HTC have been trying to win us over with for the past two years? Well in a 180 degree u-turn, literally, the 4mp shooter has been removed as the primary camera and transplanted on to the front of the M9 as a its ‘selfie’ camera. While the primary camera now a more ‘conventional’ 20mp unit. In fact, having an Ultrapixel camera as the forward facing makes a lot of sense.

The M9 packs a decent spec, details of which you can find below, but it has been met with something of a mixed reception with claims that it’s nothing but a refresh from one side and those that hail it as a revolution.

In the video below you can see me going hands-on with the M9 and I’ll show you some of the hardware features and then run a benchmark.

There a a few more videos to follow where I look at the OS/UI in more detail as well as going in-depth with the cameras.

 

 

HTC One M9 Specification:

  • Dimensions :    144.6 x 69.7 x 9.6 mm (5.69 x 2.74 x 0.38 in)
  • Weight:     157 g (5.54 oz)
  • Nano-SIM
  • Super LCD3 capacitive touchscreen, 16M colors, 5.0 inches, 1080 x 1920 pixels (~441 ppi pixel density)
  • Corning Gorilla Glass 4
  • HTC Sense UI 7.0
  • Android OS, v5.0.x (Lollipop)
  • Qualcomm MSM8994 Snapdragon 810
  • CPU:     Quad-core 1.5 GHz Cortex-A53 & Quad-core 2 GHz Cortex-A57
  • GPU:     Adreno 430
  • microSD, up to 128 GB
  • Memory:    32 GB, 3 GB RAM
  • Primary Camera:     20.7 MP, 5376 x 3752 pixels, autofocus, dual-LED (dual tone) flash
  • Secondary Camera:     4 MP, 1080p@30fps, HDR
  • 3.5mm jack
  • Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, dual-band, Wi-Fi Direct, DLNA, hotspot
  • Bluetooth     v4.1, A2DP, apt-X
  • GPS with A-GPS, GLONASS
  • NFC
  • Infrared port
  • Stereo FM radio with RDS
  • microUSB v2.0 (MHL 3.0 TV-out), USB Host
  • Fast battery charging: 60% in 30 min (Quick Charge 2.0)
  • Non-removable Li-Po 2840 mAh battery

 

By March 15, 2015 Read More →

Huawei Honor 6 Unboxing #ForTheBrave

vlcsnap-2015-03-13-14h27m46s56Huawei have two flagship phones out at the moment The Honor 6 and Honor 6+. Whilst these are not quite up to the level of excellence you might expect from Apple, Huawei isn’t afraid of having a go at a decent high end device. The Honor 6 we have here is a premium mid-range phone with some very respectable specifications and a build quality that will make any prospective customer look twice.

  • Hisilicon Kirin 920 Octa Core Processor
  • 3 GB RAM
  • 5 Inch Full HD IPS Touch Screen Display
  • MicroSD
  • 13 MP Rear Camera With Dual LED Flash
  • 5 MP Front Camera
  • 4G
  • WiFi
  • Bluetooth
  • 3000 MAh Battery

 

By March 13, 2015 Read More →

Fancy designing helping Huawei design the Honor 6? #HonorDesign

lYCtxiDO-oOlh4eJPsI-UKh8Yo6ELEDx57izixVV9isHuawei are currently running a competition to design icons, wallpapers and the back cover for their new flagship, the Honor 6. This is the first time Honor is launching their design competition in Europe. Designers from different design disciplines are invited to enter their visionary concepts on our special theme of “#ForTheBrave”. If you have a strong visionary conception in graphic design for the Honor 6 then this is your chance to shape the look and feel of the phone for the masses, perhaps even for the future of Huawei and Android!

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Take a look into the future and develop new, bold, challenging designs for User interface Icons, wallpapers and back covers all in the theme of “#ForTheBrave”. Hauwei will be implementing the winning designs into their devices present and future.

Find out more HERE.

Posted in: Competitions, News, Phones
By March 12, 2015 Read More →

The Saygus V2 will raise your eyebrows

V2-TrioSaygus is an award winning high-end smartphone manufacturer with roots in Linux software design and development. They will soon launch a new smartphone with more than a dozen exclusive features. Some of these features include new-to-market Waterproofing Technology (IPX7 Rating,) Multi-Booting will support booting from MicroSD card, two OIS enabled cameras and dual MicroSD card slots. Alongside a flashy design this device looks to be something rather special. We look forward to following the release over the coming weeks. You can pre-order a unit for their website for $599. Have a browse of the specs and raise those eyebrows.

Screen - 5” 1920 x 1080 display (445 ppi) Full HD
Processor - 2.5Ghz Quad Core Qualcomm Snapdragon
Operating System - Android 4.4.4 (Lollipop due)
Dimensions – 67 x 137 x 9.7mm
Weight - 141g
Rear Camera –  21 MP Rear Facing with Optical Image Stabilization*, Auto Focus, and Dual LED Flash
Front Camera - 13 MP Front Facing with Optical Image Stabilization* and Auto Focus
Memory - 3GB RAM
Storage - 64GB Onboard Flash Storage, Dual MicroSDXC Slots (256GB expandable storage)
Sensors - GPS, Gyroscope, Accelerometer, Compass, Proximity, Ambient Light
Network - Dual-band Wi-Fi (2.4G/5G) 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac, NFC (Android Beam), Bluetooth 4.0, 60GHz Wireless Gaming and Mobile Beaming, IR Transmitter
Ports – micro-USB 2.0/3.0, 3.5mm Stereo Audio and Microphone Jack, Biometric Fingerprint Side Scanner
Speakers - Harman Kardon Sound Technology w/ 3D Audio* for videoHarman Kardon Speakers and Mics
Power – 3100 mAh Removable Battery, Wireless Qi Charging Built-inPower Saving Chip

Posted in: News, Phones
By March 11, 2015 Read More →

Asus Zenfone 2 pushing 4GB of RAM

asus-zenfone-2-1There was another major announcement yesterday, this time in Taiwan from Asus. We will be seeing a number of Zenfone variants based on a 5-inch and 5.5-inch handset. At the lower end a base model 5-inch Zenfone 2, ZE500CL, will ship with a 1.6Ghz Intel Atom Z2560, 2GB RAM, 720p HD display and 16GB memory for roughly $158. Another variant of the Asus Zenfone 2, the ZE550ML will feature a larger 5.5-inch panel however this is stuck with the 720p resolution. RAM and memory are unchanged. The processor manages a boost to a 1.8Ghz Intel chip for $190.

Thankfully loosing the 720p display is the Asus Zenfone 2 ZE551ML with a 5.5-inch 1080 display, 1.8Ghz processor, 2GB RAM and 32GB memory $221. Finally there is the Asus Zenfone 2 ZE551ML with a 2.3Ghz Intel Z3580, 5.5-inch FHD display, 32GB memory and and amazing 4GB RAM for $285.

Zenfone 2 is set to launch in numerous locations around the world with the same specifications and possibly featuring a Mediatek or Snapdragon version. The Intel processor will likely appeal to some as there is the potential to drop Windows 10 onto the device.

 

Posted in: News, Phones
By March 10, 2015 Read More →

Android 5.1 Lollipop arrives

android-5.1-lollipop-updateNot steal Apple’s thunder as they launch iOS 8.2 and the Apple Watch, Google have started rolling out Android Lollipop 5.1 and a new Android Wear ad campaign. What is new with Android Lollipop for 5.1? There is new support for HD voice calling, if you device supports it then you will notice a suitable upgrade to hearing someone’s salivary glands from far away. A new form of Device Protection to keep your phone or tablet secure. Lollipop now supports a dual-SIM setup and the Quick Settings have been tweaked for Bluetooth and WiFi. One authentication has been set up on your Google account locked devices will require authentication even after a reset, a great deterrent and there is no point in anyone stealing an Android device any more! 

Here is the Android Wear video release yesterday, just before another Smartwatch was spoken of…

 

Posted in: Gadgets, News, Phones, Wearables
By March 10, 2015 Read More →

Zano is a versatile drone

pjdhUQCDones are here and they are getting more versatile by the week. They are becoming more affordable and a various sizes are available. The Zano is an ultra-portable, personal aerial photography and HD video capture platform and mall enough to fit in the palm of your hand. One of the biggest features is that the Zano boasts to be intelligent enough to fly all by itself! Zano connects directly to your smart device (iOS or Android) via onboard WiFi and enables you to instantly begin capturing and sharing moments.

A size of the drone is 2.5 x 2.5 in (6.5 x 6.5 cm), which is one of the smallest out there. A collection of sensors work seamlessly together to allow Zano to avoid obstacles, hold its position and know exactly where it is in conjunction with your smart device, at all times.

This means Zano operates on a virtual tether connected to your smart device. Tilting your phone or tablet left or right, forward or backward will control the Zano. Zano can also be adopt a “Free Flight” mode, using on-screen Joy Sticks. Screen slide bars control altitude and rotation. The device will hold its position unless instructed otherwise and this allows for maximum control and freedom without the fear of piloting Zano, if Zano senses it’s strayed too far from your smart device or is running low on battery, it will automatically return to your smart device.

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Additionally there is a “Follow Me” feature. When activated the Zano locks the drone at a certain distance from the user’s smart device to capture all the action. The Zano has an infrared sensor that is claimed to already be providing prototypes with adequate obstacle avoidance.

The drone is 55 g (1.94 oz) in weight and the battery can either be charged via Micro USB while inside the drone, or externally through a special adapter. Photos are snapped at 5 megapixels, while video is captured at 720p. The company says this is limited by Wi-Fi bandwidth and the Zano is technically capable of 1080p at 60 fps, leaving the door open to higher resolution video by way of future software updates.

You can pre-order a Zano drone at their official website for £169.95

 

Posted in: Cameras, Gadgets, News, Phones
By March 9, 2015 Read More →

LG to develop a Super Flagship later this year

LG_Logo.svgIt seems logical that the LG G4 will continue LG’s flagship series with an impressive array of goodies designed to tempt you away from the iPhone, HTC One M9 and Samsung Galaxy S6, to name a few. However, Korean Press is reporting that LG executives state LG are planning to launch a smartphone in the second half of this year that is essentially a “Super Flagship.”

“We are planning to release a product that stands above the G series,” said Cho Jun-ho, who heads LG’s mobile business in a surprise move at the Mobile World Congress that runs in Barcelona, Spain, through Thursday. “It will be launched during the second half of this year.”

The obvious thought is that this might well be a Samsung Galaxy Note, iPhone 6+ rival that will push the boundaries in 6 months time, once the LG G4 is taken for granted. Churning out a flagship phone once a year must not be good business any more, with technology pushing forward every month. It is hard to say if Apple and Samsung really consider their flagship devices as flagship devices when they do technically have bigger brothers, however those bigger brothers never sell as well.

One can only hope that things stay the way they are as we are seeing a level of comfortable stability with each company keeping their flagship at the centre of attention and something we can get excited about, swaps rumours of and hope that we eventually find that perfect device. Switching flagship devices will likely leave consumers with a bad taste this their mouth, feeling abandoned after 6 months when a new baby comes. Apple have a very carefully thought out a release process to avoid alienating their consumer base. Samsung are known to dazzle each year with a massive update, packing everything in and consumers enjoy the spectacle. If LG were to push the envelope a couple of times a year, would the wonder of the flagship wane quickly? Or would be help keep things moving forward?

Posted in: Editorial, News, Phones
By March 8, 2015 Read More →

The Galaxy S6 has a removable non-removable battery

Screenshot 2015-03-08 11.40.14There has been a little bit of criticism of Samsung and their decision to drop the removable battery from the Galaxy S6 and enclose the device. However, following instructions provided by Samsung themselves users can have a go at replacing the battery down the line if they require it. Whilst it is certainly far from being as simple as swapping the battery on previous Galaxy S devices and most other Samsung phones over the years, there is still technically a removable under the cover and the directions are not exactly rocket science. Attempting this on your own is doing so at your own risk, it will possibly invalidate the warranty. If you are not a qualified Samsung engineer you should probably not try this, or perhaps you should enrol to become a Samsung engineer and then attempt it. In the Galaxy S6 manual linked above see page page 138.

Posted in: News, Phones
By March 6, 2015 Read More →

Firefox OS expanding to 28 countries

FirefoxOS_for_press_releaseRecently we found that Firefox OS was hitting the new range of Panasonic Viera televsions, now Mozilla are announcing that Firefox OS is now available on 14 smartphones offered by 14 different operators in 28 countries worldwide. The phones will soon expand over to Africa, taking the OS to a total five continents. Mozilla earlier announced agreements with African telecomms companies Airtel, MTN South Africa and Tigo for expansion throughout Africa.

Other recent launches include the Ace smartphone from Cherry Mobile in the Philippines, which Mozilla claims is the most affordable smartphone in the world. The Japanese operator KDDI recently launched a Firefox OS phone in December. A few weeks ago Alcatel Onetouch also launched a new low-cost Firefox OS smartphone in Bangladesh, adding to the Go Fox 15 already in the market.

“When the flexibility of the Web meets the ubiquity of mobile, the boundaries of what can or cannot be done are erased,” said Li Gong, president of Mozilla. “Firefox OS has proven this by re-defining the ultra-low-cost category, now including the lowest-ever priced smartphone. On the other end of the spectrum, we have seen mid-range and will soon see high-end Firefox OS smartphones. This year, Firefox OS has successfully brought different experiences for different people, but has introduced choice for everyone.”

Like it or not, Firefox OS is laying out a rather strong foundation in the budget world to build upon and we will soon see this OS arriving on our shores with the strength behind it to make some noise.

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