Reviews

By February 2, 2007 Read More →

iPod shuffle crystal case from JAVOedge

Matt recently bought me a new second generation iPod Shuffle which I love.

Matt also keeps telling me how good JAVOedge products are so I asked him to get me a JAVOClearCase for it.

JAVOClearCases come in seven colours and what’s more the seven colours come in one pack!

Crystal Cases

Apple have just made the iPod Shuffle available in a new range of colours but with the Crystal Cases from JAVOedge you can change the colour of your iPod every day!

The cases are really easy to fit and remove. Not only do they look good but they protect your iPod from getting scratched.

Blue iPod Shuffle Crystal Case

“Design meets form and function. The JAVOClearCase maintains a low-profile to preserve the look and size of your Apple iPod Shuffle 2nd Generation without adding bulk or weight! Get all 7 available colors with this all inclusive 7-Pack!”

Blue iPod Shuffle Crystal Case

Key Features

  • Conveniently and quickly access the front and back button functions through the crystal-clear protective shell
  • Solid construction protects your iPod Shuffle 2nd Generation
  • Snaps in and locks iPod Shuffle 2nd Gen securely into place
  • Easy removal; quick tug/pull on one side and comes right off
  • Stylish and colorful crystal-clear design
  • Custom contoured shaped to perfectly fit to the shape of your iPod Shuffle 2G
  • Blue iPod Shuffle Crystal Case

    I really like these cases, they are well designed and fit extremely well. The cut outs for the controls are in exactly the right place. I can also swap the colours as often as I like and at less than $8 for the pack of seven JAVOClearCases they are a bargain!

    Tracy

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    Posted in: Reviews
    By January 31, 2007 Read More →

    i-Mate JAQ3 Reviewed

    Jack Cook of MobilitySite has just posted a decent review of the i-mate JAQ3.

    iMate JAQ3

    “My first impression is that the JAQ3 is a device made for the mobile road warrior that wants the ability to perform all of those daily tasks quickly and easily like you can on a Smartphone but yet have that extra ability to perform more in depth functions provided by the typical device that has the Pocket PC OS incorporated in it. The JAQ3 uniquely incorporates a QWERTY keyboard, a landscape touch-screen and 4-way navigation/action button as well as a JOG Dial and an OK key on the left side to make one handed access easy.”

    Read the full review on MobilitySite.

    Remember, you can still order the I-Mate JAQ3 from Clove Technology and save £20 off the normal price with the voucher code located HERE.

    Matt

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    Posted in: Reviews
    By January 30, 2007 Read More →

    UMPC Group Test (Part 1)

    I’m sure that I have mentioned this before on the blog but I commute to and from London every day and try to get some work done on the train. As I’m doing more on the blog these days I need to use a laptop more and I need my internet access.

    At the moment I have a small Dell Latitude D420 which I carry everywhere with me. It’s light and fairly powerful and there isn’t much wrong with it. I even have a built in 3G card. The problem I have isn’t with the laptop as such but anyone that uses trains regularly and takes their laptop will know (probably) that the space between seats coupled with the tiny seat back tables makes using a laptop pretty awkward, even with a fairly small laptop. There are also few tables on most trains.

    Pocket PC mobile devices aren’t quite powerful enough for the job and they also do not run the software that I need to use. But now that UMPC devices are becoming more common I thought that one of these might solve my problem as most of these are designed for hand held operation.

    Luckily my friends from eXpansys were kind enough to lend me a few devices (the UBiQUiO and the OQO) to test for this purpose.

    So over the next few weeks I’m going to be ‘real world’ testing and reviewing three UMPC devices. I’ll be letting you know which one I think’s best.

    The devices I shall be reviewing are:

    The UBiQUiO 702
    Ubiquio 702

    The OQO Model 01
    OQO Model 01

    The Samsung Q1
    Samsung Q1

    Specification of each device:

    Samsung Q1
    UBiQUiO 702
    OQO Model 01
    Processor
    Intel Celeron M ULV 
    VIA C7®-M UL
    Transmeta Crusoe
    CPU Speed
    900MHz
    1.0 GHz
    1.0 GHz
    Memory
    1 SODIMM Socket, DDRII 400, 512MB
    1 x SODIMM slot 512MB Standard
    512MB DDR RAM (fixed)
    Screen Size
    7” Touchscreen
    7” Touchscreen
    5" transflective display 
    Screen Res
    800 x 480 Native
    800 x 480 Native
    800 x 480 Native
    Graphics
    915 GMS Internal GFX
    VIA UniChrome™ Pro graphics
    8Mb 3D Accelerated
    Hard Drive
    8mm, 1.8” SFF HDD 40GB
    2.5" 9.5mm, 40GB UDMA 
    8mm, 1.8” SFF HDD 30GB
    Ethernet
    Yes, On-board
    No
    Via Docking Cable
    WiFi
    802.11b/g, a/b/g
    QCOM 802.11b/g
    802.11b
    Bluetooth
    Bluetooth 1.1
    Bluetooth 2.0+EDR 
    Bluetooth 1.1
    USB
    2 x USB 1.1
    2 x USB 2.0
    1 x USB 2.0
    Firewire
    No
    No
    Yes
    OS
    Windows XP Tablet Edition
    Windows XP Tablet Edition
    Windows XP Tablet Edition
    Audio
    2 x 2W Stereo Speakers 
    Built-In 1W Speaker
    Built-In Mono
    Battery Type
    Re-chargeable 28w Lithium ION Battery
    Re-chargeable 26w Lithium ION Battery
    Re-chargeable 14.8w Lithium Polymer Battery
    Battery (Claimed)
    Standard Battery : over 3.5 Hrs 
    Standard Battery : 3 Hrs 
    Standard Battery : 3 Hrs 
    Dimensions
    227.5mm x 139.5mm x 24.5mm
    230mm x 150mm x 25mm
    134mm x 86mm x 23mm
    Weight
    770g
    1042g (with extended battery)
    421g
    Other
    Button : 8 Way Stick, 4 User Key, 3 button (Auto Scale/Select/Menu), Hold , Volume Up/Down, Power/MIO, CAD
    Power on/off switch, 1 x Wireless on/off switch, 1 x D-pad with enter, Left Mouse Button, Right Mouse Button,  4x Function Keys, PageUp, PageDown, Key Lock, Volume Up, Volume Down, Synaptics Transtouch Stick Cursor 
    Included accessories: universal power supply (air/auto adapters included), docking cable, desktop stand, digital pen, carrying sleeve 

    Matt

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    Posted in: Reviews
    By January 29, 2007 Read More →

    SanDisk Sansa e270 MP3 player review followup

    I just wanted to offer a quick follow up to the SanDisk Sansa review that i posted last year.

    Sansa Front

    I’ve been using my Sansa e270 every day for the past three months and one thing that has amzed me above all else is the battery life. I use the player for 2 hours each day in the three months that I’ve had the device I have have only charged it about a half dozen times. It is averaging 20 hours of playback per charge!

    I don’t think there are many other MP3 players out there that can boast the same sort of battery life.

    Posted by: Matt

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    Posted in: Reviews
    By January 29, 2007 Read More →

    Parrot SOUND SYSTEM review

    Introduction
    MP3 music can be found everywhere – on your MP3 player, your mobile phone and your PC. The Parrot SOUND SYSTEM is a new wireless hi-fi concept. Say goodbye to those cables when listening to your favourite tracks: stream by Bluetooth to the Parrot speakers.

    Parrot SOUND SYSTEM

    The Parrot SOUND SYSTEM consists of two independent speaker units. Each speaker contains a built-in digital two-channel Class-D amplifier with a 60W output. The speakers are linked together by Bluetooth. Each unit also has its own set of volume controls and a pairing button.

    Parrot SOUND SYSTEM front

    First Impressions
    I was initially surprised at just how heavy these speakers were, then I remembered that each unit had its own power supply and amp. I like design of the speakers which come in a white lacquered cabinet. The black fabric speaker covers can be removed and automatically snap in place via magnets.

    Speakers without covers

    Usage
    The initial set up of the speakers is very simple. All you have to do is plug the speakers in to the mains and press the pairing button. Then it’s just a case of discovering the speakers with either your PC or Mobile Device.

    Speakers,  back

    You can also use the speakers with non-Bluetooth devices with the supplied line-in cable. This is a pretty neat idea as you can connect your device to one of the speakers and the audio will also be output to the other speaker as they communicate with each other over Bluetooth.

    I did experience some issues with the speakers when reconnecting to them via Bluetooth with both my laptop and HTC TyTN. The first time I establish a partnership and connect they work just fine but if I disconnect and reconnect again later I cant get them to work again, I have to delete the partnership and recreate it to make it work.

    This issue may well be more to do with a problem with the Bluetooth implementation on my laptop and mobile device rather than a fault with the speakers but this does illustrate a way in which Bluetooth technology can let you down!

    The speakers sound quite impressive. The weight added by the internal transformer and amplifier make for a good bass response while the top end is nice and bright.

    Conclusion
    I use my Parrot SOUND SYSTEM speakers all the time. My laptop, like many these days, has tiny built in speakers which sound awful for anything other than system sounds. With the Parrot Bluetooth speakers I can simply connect to them when I want to listen to music and I don’t have to worry about cables. They offer a decent solution for anyone wanting wireless audio from their PC, Mobile Phone or Bluetooth Capable MP3 player. The independent speaker units mean that you can plug the speakers in to the mains at opposite ends of a room and still experience stereo sound.

    Parrot SOUND SYSTEM specification:

  • Digital two-channel Class-D amplifier
  • 60 W RMS power output per speaker
  • 7band digital graphic equaliser
  • Frequency range: 50 Hz – 20 kHz
  • Signal compatibility: audio and MP3
  • MP3, MP3 decoder: 192, 160, 128, 112 Kbps
  • SBC decoder: 320, 275, 250 and 150 Kbps
  • PC software for user settings and updates
  • Settings: Volume, R/L Balance, Mute
  • RCA line-in input for all audio sources
  • Power supply: 100 V – 240 V, 50 Hz and 60 Hz
  • Bluetooth integrated into each speaker
  • Bluetooth 2.0 & EDR
  • Bluetooth scatternet
  • Profiles supported: A2DP (Advanced Audio Distribution Profile) and AVRCP (Audio/Video Remote Control Profile)
  • Reception up to 10 metres
  • Phone pairing: by PIN code
  • Updates by PC software
  • More Wireless Speakers available at Maplin

    Matt

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    Posted in: Reviews
    By January 28, 2007 Read More →

    HTC P4350 (HTC Herald) review

    The HTC Herald was first announced towards the end of 2006 and the device generated a lot of interest. One thing that seemed to ‘excite’ people about the device was the size. At 59mm x 109mm x 17mm the Herald is a lot slimmer than the Hermes which measures 58mm x 112.5mm x 21.95mm. The Herald is also about 16g lighter than the Hermes.

    HTC P4350

    HTC’s own commercial arm released the HTC Herald as the HTC P4350 (catchy name!) and the device is now available from a number of UK retailers for around £380. So far the P4350 is not available on contract from any UK operator. Despite this the P4350 is proving to be popular.

    There have been several other reviews of the HTC P4350 so I hope mine will serve as a summary.

    FIRST IMPRESSIONS
    The first thing I noticed about the P4350 was the clean lines of the device and the neat arrangement of of the main navigation buttons below the screen. However the Email and Internet buttons present above the screen on Hermes devices are missing from the P4350.

    P4350 Joypad

    The other thing you notice is the new keyboard sliding mechanism. On the P4350 the keyboard mechanism is spring loaded and snaps open or closed smartly. This change to the keyboard mechanism is a welcome one and this is similar to the action of the keypad on the Samsung D900. The other nice thing about the sliding keyboard is that opening it turns the screen on but closing it will not!

    P4350 open

    The keyboard on the HTC P4350 is opens the other way to all of the previous HTC devices. Being a HTC TyTN user it does take a little time to get used to the device opening this other way but it now suits me better as a left hander.

    USAGE
    A very welcome addition to the keyboard area are the two indicator LED’s. These LED’s indicate the Fn and Caps lock status. I find this very useful!

    I also like the fact that you can access the microSD card externally and that the slot is hidden behind a rubber flap which helps to stop the memory card flying out if you should drop the device.

    P4350 Indicator LEDs

    P4350 SD Slot

    P4350 close

    HTC P4350 Back

    The HTC P4350 has a full size stylus. This is a welcome change as recently HTC have included telescopic styli with their devices. Being full sized might mean that I stop using my fingers so much!

    HTC Stylus

    The camera on the back of the P4350 is your usual HTC 2.0 mega pixel unit but the P4350 does not have a ‘flash’. The quality of photos from the camera is pretty average and there is no front facing video conference camera, however as the P4350 does not have 3G this would be impractical anyway.

    HTC P4350 Camera

    On the bottom of the P4350 you’ll find an Enhanced miniUSB connector. This type of connector has become standard on HTC devices lately. When HTC first added this connector to devices it was really annoying! It meant that you had to use the headphones the shipped with the device rather than your own decent headphones. I even provided a headset modding service for a while. However there are a number of manufacturers are now selling adapters.

    P4350 USB Connector

    CONCLUSION
    I’ve been using the HTC P4350 for a few weeks now and it’s currently my main device. I initially thought that the lack of 3G would be annoying and hold me back. However I have not missed the 3G service at all. I really like the new keyboard mechanism and find that the P4350 is extremely easy to use one-handed. I do miss the jog wheel which has been replaced with a slider on the P4350.

    The battery life on the P4350 is great lasting much longer than my TyTN. This is probably due to the lack of 3G which does suck power. I fond myself charging the device a lot less often.

    The WiFi on the P4350 is very easy to use and set up and one thing that is great about AKU3 is that you can paste the network key in to the box. This is extremely useful when your network key is 63 digits long! With previous AKU versions you were expected to type this in!

    I really like the HTC P4350, it is definitely my favourite device at the moment. I would like the device to the 3G and HSDPA but this isn’t a huge problem for me. Being slimmer than the HTC TyTN is good as it fits in my pocket that much easier.

    Thanks to HTC for letting me borrow the device, I really wish I could keep it!

    Here are some more photos of the HTC P4350:

    HTC P4350 bottom

    P4350 bottom

    P4350 Buttons

    Part Open

    Keyboard Open

    HTC Side

    HTC P4350 Power Button

    HTC P4350 (HTC Herald) Specification

  • Quadband GSM with EDGE
  • TI OMAP 850 processor
  • Slide-out QWERTY keypad
  • 2-megapixel CMOS camera
  • Enhanced miniUSB connector for sync / charge / audio
  • 2.8-inch 340×240-pixel LCD with 65K-color support
  • 128MB ROM; 64MB RAM
  • microSD expansion slot
  • Bluetooth v2.0 with A2DP and AVRCP
  • WiFi 802.11g, USB and infrared
  • Size: 109 x 59 x 17mm; 168g
  • See the full specification on the HTC product page.

    Matt

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    Posted in: Reviews
    By January 24, 2007 Read More →

    Repair your scratched iPod screen

    Ok so maybe this isn’t a ‘repair’ but it’s certainly the next best thing!

    I’ve had my iPod video for a little while and a few weeks ago I managed to scratch the screen, it’s a bad scratch caused by putting my keys in the same pocket as the iPod. I’m normally so careful with my devices but the mistake all but ruined the screen!

    I had an idea and called upon my old friends a JAVOedge. It may well seem like shutting the stable door after the horse has bolted but I thought that an Anti-Glare JAVOscreen might cover up the scratch and prevent any further damage.

    So today I got my screen protector from JAVOedge and after cleaning my iPod screen I applied it. I am simply amazed at the results! Have a look at the two pictures below. In the ‘before’ picture you can clearly see the nasty scratch but after applying the anti-glare screen protector it is virtually impossible to see the scratch, even up close and holding it to the light you can barely see it!

    iPod Video before

    iPod After

    Not only does the JAVOscreen hide the scratch but check out the anti-glare coating. This makes the screen so much easier to see, even in daylight it cuts out all the unwanted reflections.

    When you buy a JAVOScreen for an iPod from JAVOedge you don’t just get a screen protector that simply covers the screen area, the screen protector covers the whole of the front of the iPod. You also get a circular protector for the click-wheel and another protector for the back of the device!

    iPod Screen Protection

    So whether you are looking to protect your iPod screen from damage or you already have an scratched iPod that you want to ‘repair’ take a look at the JAVOedge JAVOscreen products – they are certainly a cheaper alternative to replacing the screen!

    JAVOEdge

    These screen protectors from JAVOedge are available for lots of other products too. So if you have scratched your mobile phone, iPod or PDA screen why not try a JAVOscreen protector?

    BTW – Images are straight from the camera, just resized for the web.

    Matt

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    Posted in: Reviews
    By January 21, 2007 Read More →

    PPC Tablet review

    PPC Tablet Remote Control Suite is a PocketPC program that uses the PocketPC screen to emulate input devices such as keyboard, touchpad or tablet.

    I discovered PPC Tablet a few weeks ago when I decided to hook up an old laptop to my TV to play back video and browse the internet in the lounge. I didn’t want to have a keyboard and mouse trailing across the living room and figured that there must be some remote control software out there that I could use, I was thinking along the lines of VNC.

    After a few minutes of Google whacking I came across PPC Tablet. According to the blurb “PPC Tablet helps users remotely control a desktop or laptop PC by sending keystrokes or mouse movements to it, through an ActiveSync connection or any TCP/IP network connection, wired or wireless. It can also help users speed up repetitive data entry or computer operation by using PPC Tablet’s macro keys.” it sounded ideal. I decided to download the demo.

    PPC Tablet comprises of two elements. First of all you have to install the ‘Host’ application on the PC that you want to control and then you install the ‘Client’ on the PocketPC device that you want to use. If you have an ActiveSync connection to the PocketPC you can do both at the same time.

    The host application allows you to configure settings such as start-up behaviour, ports etc. (see below).

    PPC Tablet Host

    The PPC Client application has a number of built in profiles that you can use (see table below) plus you can also design your own profiles or download others from the internet. There is even a profile for Windows Media Centre which emulates the Media Centre remote control.

  • Default Devices: This plug-in contains a touchpad, a tablet and a numeric keypad.
  • Display Feedback (NEW!): This plug-in contains a Display Feedback area and a touchpad.
  • Remote File System (NEW!): A plug-in that contains a remote file system browser. You can browse through the folders and files on the host computer, download the selected file to your Pocket PC, or execute it directly on the host computer.
  • iTunes: A plug-in designed for controlling iTunes.
  • Winamp: A plug-in designed for controlling Winamp.
  • Windows Media Player: A plug-in designed for controlling Windows Media Player.
  • Media Center PC: A plug-in designed for controlling Media Center PC. (This plug-in is an extra download available here.)
  • PowerPoint Presentation: A plug-in designed for controlling PowerPoint.
  • Internet Explorer: A plug-in designed for navigating Internet Explorer web browser.
  • Firefox: A plug-in designed for navigating Firefox web browser.
  • WinTV: This plug-in provides a remote-control pad for WinTV and other programs.
  • Personal Data: This plug-in allows you to save personal data (like name, e-mail, phone, address) in the profile and replay it in other applications.
  • OneNote: A convenient plug-in to control Microsoft OneNote. (This plug-in is an extra download available here.)
  • Document Viewer: This plug-in is designed for viewing documents.
  • Once you choose a profile you are asked which host you want to connect to. This is great is it will allow you to set up the host application on multiple PC’s and connect to them as required. You are then presented with the profile on the PocketPC screen.

    PPC Tablet

    The profile I use most on my HTC TyTN is the ‘Remote File System’. This gives you a large area on the screen for use as a touchpad, similar to a laptop track-pad, which emulates the mouse and then a scroll bar at the side. This also allows you to use the keyboard on the PocketPC.

    I have been using PPC Tablet for a few weeks now and I have to say I think it is a great application. I find myself using it in a variety of ways. I connect to the host via WiFi but Bluetooth and ActiveSync connections are also supported. The host application is even compatible with Vista!

    PPC Tablet definitely goes on our list of most useful PocketPC software and is highly recommended. Take a look at the PPC Tablet site where you can download a demo or purchase the full version.

    Matt

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    By January 19, 2007 Read More →

    JAVOedge PSP screen protector review

    I recently started to use my Sony PSP again and one thing that really bothered me was that the screen is so shiny and prone to finger prints and scratches. I needed a screen protector!

    I first tried one of the cheap ones that some of the high street retailers are selling at the moment. I picked up one for £7 from a store round the corner and sat the PSP on the desk and gave the screen a good clean. I peeled the screen guard from its backing and tried to apply it, I ended up with bubbles everywhere. I’ve fitted screen protectors to a number of PDA devices before and never had this much trouble! After messing with it for a few minutes I decided it would be better to remove it and start again. Big mistake! It ended up stuck to itself. The adhesive was too strong to sort it out. I had to throw it away. The further annoyance was that it had left a residue on the screen which was a pig to get rid of!

    I then remembered that my old friends JAVOedge sold screen protectors for Palm, Smartphone and PocketPC’s. I decided to see if they did anything for the PSP. Sure enough JAVOEdge were making products for the PSP so I got myself an antiglare JAVOScreen as well as one of the new Ultra Clear JAVOScreen protectors as I couldn’t make up my mind!

    JAVOEdge

    Delivery was very quick and as with other JAVOedge products that I’ve had before, everything you need is in the pack. You get a screen cleaning cloth which is made of a really soft material and a card to help apply the protector, plus obviously the screen itself.

    The first thing you need to do is give the screen a good clean, make sure you get rid of all the finger prints and dust, otherwise you will end up trapping this under the screen protector.

    JAVOedge PSP Screen Protector

    Next you peel the backing off the film and apply it to the screen. The thing I particularly liked about this screen protector is that not only does it cover the LCD area but also the area the areas around the D-pad and the buttons. The size is perfect which helps you get the thing in the right place and it’s very easy to remove or reposition if you get it wrong.

    Mine went on perfect first time, no bubbles and perfectly straight.

    One of the JAVOScreen’s has an anti-glare surface which makes a huge difference to the screen visibility, especially when you are using it outside on a bright day or, as I do, sitting on the train.

    I was pleased with the anti-glare JAVOScreen so gave the Ultra Clear JAVOScreen to my a friend. He was able to apply the film easily too.

    I personally prefer the anti-glare to the Ultra Clear but this is down to personal preference.

    This screen protector differs from others on the market in that it does not use an adhesive to fix it to the screen but rather a static coating. This means that you can remove the protector and put it on another device (If you get it replaced for example) or you can take it off and actually wash it! Also it wont leave any nasty residue on your screen if you do decide to take it off.

    If you want to get a good quality screen protector to protect your PSP investment then look no further than JAVOScreen!

    You can find the full PSP Product list on the JAVOedge website.

    Matt

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    Posted in: Reviews
    By January 16, 2007 Read More →

    Another Eten Glofiish X500 review

    PocketPC Thoughts have just published their review of the Eten Glofiish X500.

    Eten Glofiish X500

    “The Glofiish X500 is one of two debut devices in E-TEN’s emerging Glofiish series, and looks can be deceiving. Despite being incredibly slim, the X500 manages to pack an incredible punch with integrated Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, GPS, and an FM radio. Is it just what the doctor ordered, or is there a catch?”

    Don’t forget that we are hosting an offer to save you £20 when you purchase an Eten Glofiish X500 from Clove. To take advatage of this brilliant offer all you have to do is type TM2JAN07 into the voucher box on the order form once you have selected to buy the Eten X500 and £20 will be deducted at the checkout stage. Visit the Eten X500 page on the Clove site.

    This offer is for our readers only and is valid until the end of January 2007.

    Read the full review of the Eten X500 on PocketPC Thoughts.

    Matt

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