By March 29, 2014 Read More →

HTC One (M8) Benchmark video

Screenshot_2014-03-28-09-40-51With the launch of the HTC One (M8), many of you are asking questions about performance, in particular the speed of the new device and how this compares to its predecessor, the HTC One (M7).

The M8 has a Snapdragon 801 chipset and Quad-core CPU clocked at 2.3GHz (The Asian market gets a 2.5GHz version!), and 2GB of RAM. Clock-speed wise this is a decent step up from the 1.7GHz quad in the M7. 

So what does this clock speed jump equate to? In general usage the difference isn’t that noticeable but in intensive apps and games you’ll notice it more.

In the video below you’ll see an HTC One (M8) Benchmark compared to the HTC One (M7). The benchmark was run simultaneously to give some impression of the speed and how much quicker the M8 completed the test.

Interesting results in that the M8 has twice the score of the M7!


By March 28, 2014 Read More →

Samsung Galaxy S5 Exclusive 4G Offer on EE

1395066723412EE are offering an exclusive deal when pre-ordering a Samsung’s flagship device, the Galaxy S5. Whether you fancy the device in Charcoal Black, Shimmery White and Electric blue this deal looks to be an attractive incentive for you to pick EE as your network of choice for your next contract. 

If you pre-order a Samsung Galaxy S5 between the 28th of March and the 10th of April EE will upgrade your contract from a 3G Plan to a 4G Plan at no extra cost. In addition, they will throw in a free return flight to one of the following destinations: Amsterdam, Madrid, Paris, Barcelona, Milan, Prague, Berlin, Munich, Rome, Brussels, Nice or Vienna. The phone will cost £59.99 on a £37.99 monthly plan. This includes unlimited calls and texts to use throughout the UK and Europe!

This deal is exclusive to EE and must have been pre-ordered online from 28th March- 1oth April. The deal is also open to those who pre-order an HTC One or Sony Xperia Z2 online through the EE Shop. This is not available in store or through any third parties.

For more information, check out EE’s website.

Posted in: Phones
By March 28, 2014 Read More →

Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 7.0 leaked

Samsung-Galaxy-Tab-4-70-leaked-press-render-2We have two pics of the upcoming Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 7.0 were leaked by @evleaks. These pics show off the smallest of the The Galaxy Tab 4 series which will eventually arrive in 7-inch, 8-inch, and 10-inch models. They contain the usual Samsung aesthetics. Additionally, these pics reveal that the Galaxy Tab 4 7.0 will continue Samsung’s trend of including the ability to make phone calls on the device. 


Posted in: News, Phones, Rumours, Tablets
By March 27, 2014 Read More →

The increasing cost of smartphone contracts

contractsIn November 2007, the first iPhone was launched in Europe. Since that time, smartphones have seen staggering success in all regions of the world. In the United Kingdom, it’s estimated that 60% of mobile device users own a smartphone. With such a significant portion of the market share, this is clear evidence of the impact that smartphones have had on our lives.

Downsides to Smartphones

Although there have been extensive benefits from the introduction of the smartphone, users have observed their contract costs slowly increasing. The National Debtline conducted a study that discovered that since the iPhone’s initial launch, there has been a 261% increase in the number of calls received regarding mobile phone debts. In 2012 alone there was a 15% increase in the number of debt calls to the hotline. From January to August of 2013, the hotline received slightly less than 13,500 callers for debt advice. Additionally, in 2006, 3.9% of the calls were mobile phone related whereas in 2013, that number swelled to 11%.


A family of four consisting of two parents and two teenagers could be paying close to £140 per month if all have smartphones – more than the average energy bill in the UK. The rising costs are said to offset the ever-increasing costs of providing web access and mobile video to smartphones. Faster networks, equipment upgrades and additional improvements all contribute to the increase in cost. Unfortunately these costs are being passed along to the customer. To make matters worse, many customers are overpaying on plans which they don’t make full use of or underpaying and being charged for exceeding the caps. Not surprisingly, many of those who are paying more than needed for a contract were formerly those who continually went over their cap.

Finding the Right Plan

Prior to signing into a one-year or two-year contract, it’s critical to determine the number of minutes, texts and data that you’ll use each month. This will help you to decide exactly what you need each month. Since there are a multitude of mobile phone contracts on the market to suit all needs and budgets, there should be no excuse for exceeding monthly allowances. After calculating the amount needed, find the right network that can accommodate those needs while providing a competitive price.

It’s important for customers to remember that smartphone contracts are essentially loans for their handset devices. While the price of smartphones can be significant, when entered into a contract, consumers typically receive a deal with a monthly fee requirement that includes expenses. Those who are unable to maintain those expenses can fall into serious financial debt, especially if the phone needs to be replaced and they don’t have insurance. Like any other loan, customers should only enter into contacts which they can afford on a monthly basis.


Written by James Grant


Posted in: Editorial, Phones
By March 25, 2014 Read More →

HTC One (M8) features and specification

HTC_One_M8_front_mainAfter months of speculation, rumours and leaks, HTC have just officially announced the successor to the 2013 Android phone of the year, the HTC One. The official name for the new flagship phone is HTC One (M8), using the internal M8 codename to distinguish it from last year’s model which now becomes known as the HTC One (M7).  This puts the rumours of the ‘All new HTC One’ and ‘HTC Two’ names firmly to bed, thank goodness!

True to form, HTC are cramming in a lot of innovation and new technology with the HTC One (M8) and it goes well beyond the dual rear cameras that seem to have become the focus of so much attention.

HTC’s focus has been firmly upon the design of the HTC One (M8) and this certainly shows. The aluminium body construction, that HTC say has taken them 12 years to perfect in terms of getting the antenna design right, now extends round the sides of the handset and right up to the edge of the 5-inch full-HD screen for a truly edgeless feel.

The Metal Grey version of the M8 has an honest metal finish with hairline striations one the back for that brushed metal finish that HTC say takes more than 120 polishing oils to get just right. If the metal look isn’t to your liking there will also be Arctic Silver and Amber Gold versions for you to choose instead.

Despite the increase to a 5-inch full HD display, the use thinner bezels and the menu buttons now being on screen means that the physical size of the HTC One (M8) is dramatically different to the M7, at 146.36 x 70.6 x 9.35 mm, it’s just 9mm larger and 17g heavier.  The screen has Gorilla Glass 3 to protect it and, like other models, has the LCD screen bonded to the back of it so there’s no air gap between the two. This leads to a huge improvement in the clarity of the display and almost insane viewing angles.

You can check out my HTC One (M8) first-look video too.

Motion Launch

Motion Launch is a new feature HTC have added to the the M8 and has both software and hardware elements. On the hardware side, HTC have created their own silicon co-processor to take care of sensory input. These sensors are in an ‘always-on’ state and the extremely power-efficient co-processor is able to continously monitor that input. This enables the user to use gestsures to interact with the phone even when it’s in sleep mode. So, for example, a double tap on the screen will wake it up and turn on the display while a swipe from one of the four sides of the screen will wake up with one of four functions.

Additionally, holding the M8 up in the landscape orientation and waking it up with the volume key launches straight in to the camera app and a second press of the volume key captures an image.


Duo Camera

The cameras on the HTC One (M8) have attracted a LOT of attention over the past few weeks as leaked images started to surface that appeared to show two rear facing cameras. This lead to a lot of theories. Was one ‘camera’ actually a fingerprint sensor? Could it take 3D photos? Would there be a 4MP ultrapixel camera and a 13/16MP ‘normal’ camera?

Finally we have the answer, HTC call them Duo Camera. Two rear facing cameras, one being the same 4.1 Ultrapixel unit that we see on the other HTC one devices but the other is of undisclosed resolution. The second camera is there purely to capture depth and spacial information when a photo is taken. The second camera cannot be used in its own right and there’s no option to switch.

The purpose of the Duo Camera feature is that every photo taken will have depth information recorded along with it. This them alows for some very cool after effects duting editing photos in the gallery. Photos can be re-forcused allowing you to focus on just one ‘layer’ of the photo. This might be a person in the foreground for a portrait picture with great bokeh or maybe you defocus the foreground objects to show of the scenery in a landscape to better effect.

There are many more effects available including desaturating the background, turning backgrounds in to sketches or cartoons and many more. There’s also a very cool 3D paralax effect called Dimension Plus that alows you to mode the phone and see different perspective in the images.

The depth information is recorded on every image and, unlike other cameras and phones that have attempted this, only one photo is taken rather than 5 or so at different focal lengths. Images are captured really quickly.

Some of the features we’ve previously seen in Zoe will be available in an HTC Zoe application that will be available from the Google Play Store later this year. This will allow users of older HTC phones and even non-htc phones to use some of the Zoe features or to collaborate with friends to create some awesome Zoe moments.

HTC_One_M8_sim HTC_One_M8_duo_cam 

We probably shouldn’t forget that front facing camera though. HTC have included a 5.0MP f2.0 front facing camera on the HTC One (M8) and it’s probably the best front-facing camera we’ve ever come across. Not only is it a very fast lens and sensor but it’s also wide-angle which is great for the ubiquitous ‘selfie’.

Both cameras benefit from Qualcomms Digital Image Processor which greatly improves and enhances the captured images without ruining them!


Dot View cases

Sometimes the best ideas are the simplest and when you see the HTC’s Dot View cases for the HTC One (M8) for the first time there’s definitely a “why didn’t anyone think of this before?” moment.

HTC are lauching a range of accessories at the same time as the HTC One (M8) goes on sale and one of these accessories is the Dot View case. Not only doe the Dot View case protect both the back and the front of the M8, it also has magnets to turn on and off the display as the cover is opened. BUT, where the Dot View case is truly unique is in the front cover, there are thousands of tiny holes. These holes allow light through from the HTC One (M8) display and allow you to see just just enough in terms of notifications and alerts.

Futhermore, the phone will also react to touch input with the case closed. A double-tap will wake the phone and it’ll display the time and weather or any missed call alerts for example





Boomsound was a feature that HTC introduced with the first HTC One and it really was groundbreaking in terms of the impact. Two large, forward-facing stereo speakers coupled with a large audio amplifier made a dramatic difference. Not only were the speakers loud but the dynamic range was also amazing, the speakers sounding much larger than their physical size would otherwise suggest.

HTC have made enhancements to the Boomsound experience with the HTC One (M8). The accounstic chambers have been redesigned and there’s a new amplifier which has better control over the sound. The result is a 25% increase in the volume level and also a marked improvement in the audio range.



HTC Sense 6.0

With the HTC One (M8) comes the new version of HTC Sense. There are lost of changes here so we’re going to be covering this in a video shortly.




HTC One (M8) specification:

 SIZE: 146.36 x 70.6 x 9.35 mm

WEIGHT: 160 grams

DISPLAY: 5.0 inch, Full HD 1080p



  • Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ 801, 2.3GHz quad-core CPU



  • Android™ 4.4 with HTC Sense™ 6
  • HTC BlinkFeed™



  • Total storage:  16/32GB
  • RAM: 2GB
  • Expansion card slot supports microSD™ memory card for up to 128GB additional storage (card not included)




  • 850/900/1800/1900 MHz



  • EMEA: 850/900/1900/2100 MHz with HSPA+ up to 42 Mbps
  • Asia: 850/900/1900/2100 MHz with HSPA+ up to 42 Mbps
  • AT&T: 850/1900/2100 MHz with HSPA+ up to 21 Mbps
  • Sprint: 850/1900/2100 MHz with HSPA up to 14.4 Mbps
  • Verizon: 850/900/1900/2100 MHz with HSPA+ up to 14.4 Mbps
  • TMUS: 850/AWS/1900/2100 MHz with HSPA+ up to 42 Mbps    



  • Sprint: 800/1900
  • Verizon: 800/1900  

  4G – LTE:

  • EMEA: 800/900/1800/2600 MHz
  • Asia: 700/900/1800/2100/2600 MHz
  • AT&T: 700/850/AWS/1800/1900/2600 MHz
  • Sprint: FDD 800/1900 MHz , TDD 2600 MHz
  • Verizon: 700/AWS/1800/2600 MHz
  • TMUS: 700/AWS MHz                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        



  • Nano SIM



  • Accelerometer
  • Proximity sensor
  • Ambient light sensor
  • Gyro sensor
  • Barometer sensor



  • 3.5 mm stereo audio jack
  • NFC
  • Bluetooth® 4.0 with aptX™ enabled
  • Wi-Fi®: IEEE 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac (2.4 & 5 GHz)
  • DLNA® for wirelessly streaming media from the phone to a compatible TV or computer,
  • HTC Connect™
  • micro-USB 2.0 (5-pin) port with mobile high-definition video link (MHL) for USB or HDMI connection  (Special cable required for HDMI connection.)
  • Support consumer infrared remote control



  • HTC BoomSound™
  • Dual frontal stereo speakers with built-in amplifiers
  • Sense Voice



Duo camera

  • Primary camera: HTC UltraPixel™ camera, BSI sensor, pixel size 2.0 um, sensor size 1/3”, f/2.0, 28mm lens
  • HTC ImageChip 2
  • 1080p Full HD video recording with HDR video
  • Secondary camera: capture depth information


Front camera

  • 5MP, f/2.0, BSI sensor, wide angle lens. with HDR capability, 1080p Full HD video recording
  • Gallery with UFocus™, Dimension Plus™, Seasons, Foregrounder, Image Match



Audio supported formats:

  • Playback: .aac, .amr, .ogg, .m4a, .mid, .mp3, .wav, .wma (Windows Media Audio 10)
  • Recording: .aac


Video supported formats:

  • Playback: .3gp, .3g2, .mp4, .wmv (Windows Media Video 10), .avi (MP4 ASP and MP3)
  • Recording: .mp4



  • Internal GPS antenna + GLONASS
  • Digital compass



  • Capacity: 2600 mAh
  • Embedded rechargeable Li-polymer battery
  • Talk time: Up to 20 hours for 3G
  • Standby time: Up to 496 hours for 3G


By March 25, 2014 Read More →

HTC One (M8) first look video

HTC_One_M8HTC’s new flagship “HTC One (M8)” saw its official annoucement and launch today during an event held here in London. We were lucky enough to get some hands-on time with the new HTC One (M8) a few days ago and recorded an initial first-look video that you can see below.

I’m hugely impressed with the new HTC One (M8) – last year’s model is now referred to as the HTC One (M7) – if you thought that last years model was well designed and engineered then you’re going to love the new one. The body is now around 90% aluminium, up from 70% previously. The boost in screen size, up to 5″ is a welcome change while the use of a slimmer bezel design and the change to on-screen menu buttons rather than off-screen capacitive buttons has enabled HTC to cram everything in to a phone that is not physically a lot bigger than the M7 model.

This video is a failry short one and I will be following this up with another series of videos looking at various features in more detail so keep an eye open for those over the next day or so but check out the HTC One (M8) features and HTC One (M8) press release posts for more.



By March 25, 2014 Read More →

HTC’s event today – We’re covering it…

AllNewHTCOne-LEAK-02-578-80HTC are holding a launch event here in London today and we’re going to see their new flagship phone, the HTC One (M8), for the first time – officially at least.

Gareth and I will be covering the event and we’ll start our coverage once we arrive at the venue at around 2PM this afternoon.

Be sure to follow our twitter and google+ updates and feel free to ask us any questions. We’ll have the full lowdown on the HTC One (M8) in pictures and video as soon we we can post it.


Posted in: News, Phones
By March 23, 2014 Read More →

HTC tease the HTC One (M8) again

HTC One (M8) Dot ViewHTC have been teasing us again with tweets and Facebook posts about their press and launch event being held on the 25th March here in London. The posts include the hastag #‎HTCOneUp‬, so that’s certainly one to watch.

We now know that flagship phone to supersede the HTC One will officially be called the HTC One (M8) but there are no further official details available as yet, HTC will release full details on Tuesday and we’ll be covering the event both on here and in video that we’ll have online as soon as we can.

Keep checking back on the afternoon of the 25th March – it’ll be worth it, promise!

Posted in: News, Phones
By March 21, 2014 Read More →

Do you know how much your mobile is actually worth?

is-developing-a-mobile-app-worth-the-cost--ec618bf2b6More and more people these days are trading their mobile phones in for cash and many of us, especially when we are in dire need of that cash won’t stop and think about how much our phone is worth. Instead we will simply just post it off, or hand it in to our nearest store and take whatever cash they’ll hand over. Have you ever stopped to think about how much your phone is actually worth? What metals are involved in the making of it?

There are three main metals that can be found in mobile phones, lead, nickel and cadmium and the use of each of these three makes recycling a phone all the more important. Cadmium is an especially toxic metal, and when a phone is dumped or sent to a landfill somewhere, trace elements can potentially find their way into food and water supplies. Recycling a phone means that you remove the chance for contamination. Lead and nickel are similarly bad for you, making recycling ever more important.

In reality, around 90% of a mobile phone can be recycled and reused, an amazingly high statistic compared with other electronics, and due to the turnaround of technology (most mobile phone contracts now last two years), it is certainly worth trading in and recycling your phone when you upgrade to a brand new one.

Often, it isn’t even mobile phones that the recycling phones wind up becoming. You can find the materials from recycled phones in everything from copper roofs on buildings, to ski-lifts, winding their way up the side of mountains to get you to your destination. It’s amazing how much variety there is in the use of these materials, and even the plastic is used, often going into benches.

Trading in a phone will even get you a bit of money, where dumping it won’t, and after a few years of use, being paid to get rid of a phone is a blessing, and certainly won’t make you feel ripped off. You’ll be able to see the effect of your recycling all over the world.

If you want to find out a good price for your phone, you can always check out a website like Albemarle Bond who value metals of many different varieties. It can interesting to see how much a phone’s metals is really worth.

Posted in: Editorial, Phones
By March 18, 2014 Read More →

Carphone Warehouse say new HTC One (M8) coming 25th March

htc_one_plus_front_2Ahead of HTC’s official announcement Carphone Warehouse has revealed that the new “HTC One (M8)” handset will be available from selected stores from around 4pm on Tuesday 25th March – just minutes after it is officially announced.

The new HTC flagship device will be officially unveiled by the manufacturer at special events in London and New York earlier that afternoon. Shortly after, the new HTC One (M8) handsets will be transported directly from the venue of the launch announcement to six Carphone Warehouse stores in London. Westfield Stratford, Westfield White City, Oxford Circus, Centrepoint and Tottenham Court Road stores will all be hosting special events celebrating the HTC launch with entertainment and giveaways as well as the first chance for customers to get their hands on the new device. Carphone Warehouse at Selfridges will also be stocking the handset from the same time. 

Full information including videos of the new handset will be shared on and customers will be able to order the HTC One (M8) over the phone from the same afternoon, before it is available from all 770 Carphone Warehouse stores and to order online shortly afterwards.

A Carphone Warehouse spokesperson comments, “The HTC One is an award winning handset that set the bar for design during 2013 and made many sit up and take notice – the new HTC One M8 is likely to continue that trend and will cement HTC’s future as a heavy-hitting smartphone manufacturer. We know how keen customers are to get hold of the latest tech as soon as possible and that is why we are so excited to be able to offer the new HTC One so quickly after it is unveiled.”

Customers can pre-register their interest in the new HTC One (M8) now at

Posted in: News, Phones