• Devices

    by Published on 10-03-2018 09:31 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices,
    3. Carriers

    Hey T-Mobile fans: LG is back and ready to showcase its latest flagship. Yes it's the V40 with the totally awkward and unnecessary adage of: ThinQ.

    LG knows what it's up against. I'm talking to you iPhone XS, Galaxy S9 and Note 9. Does the V40 have what it takes to compete? Well here's a list of some of its features, software/hardware under the hood:

    • ThinQ AI
    • 6.4” OLED display
    • 3300mAH battery
    • Snapdragon 845
    • 6GB RAM
    • 64GB storage (expandable with microSD)
    • Standard (8MP) and wide-angle (5MP) selfie cameras
    • 32-bit quad DAC
    • Headphone jack
    • Boombox speaker
    • IP68 water / dust resistance
    • Qi wireless charging
    • Android Oreo

    This device comes in Blue and Black and to sweeten the pot LG is offering a free accessory bundle which includes a DJI Osmo Mobile 2 gimbal (for all you YouTubers out there) and a 256GB micro SD for those of you not keen on using cloud storage.

    For you network geeks this thing is equipped to support: 4x4 MIMO, carrier aggregation, 256 QAM and those really hard to find / mythical License Assisted Access (LAA) speed zones.

    This thing is basically a supped up G7 but with a major difference. It has 5 cameras. More on that in the video below.

    This device is going to be priced at $920. Yikes! You know what that means. Yes you got that right there will be a down payment required even for those: "well qualified!" I know that sux. If it makes you feel better it's still $30 cheaper than AT&T, $ 40 cheaper than Sprint and $60 cheaper than Verizon.

    Pricing will be set at $200 down and $30 per month for 24 months on an Equipment Installment Plan or $200 down and $30 per month for 18 months with a JUMP! On Demand lease.

    This thing launches on October 19th so if you have an extra $920 to burn head on over to your local T-Mobile corporate store or authorized dealer and show them some love. Still not convinced? Today T-Mobile was crowned the fastest LTE network for the 19th quarter in a row so there is literally no better network to use LG's crown jewel on! https://www.t-mobile.com/news/fastest-lte-19-quarters

    Check out the video below for more about this device and its supposed AMAZING camera:

    by Published on 09-28-2018 03:15 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices

    If you're in the market for a mobile Internet device and/or you really miss your old iPhone 4, the GlocalMe G3 is here to save the day!

    Terrible name aside, they're currently running a promotion on Amazon where you can get almost $40 off the $150 USD list price with the promo code "25GlocalMe". But wait, there's more...! According to CNET, you'll also get 1 GB of free data anywhere that GlocalMe provides service. Canadians will have to pay the full $189.99 CAD list price, but will at least get the free data.

    The G3 uses what GlocalMe calls "cloud SIM technology" (sounds like an eSIM) but also has two slots for physical nano SIMs. By far the best thing about this hotspot, though, is its massive 5,350 mAh battery, which should be enough to keep multiple devices connected for multiple days.

    It's certainly not for everyone—least of all those of us who have a "roam like home" option on our existing plan—but if you travel a lot and want to get connected the moment you touch down, the GlocalMe G3 could be what you're looking for.

    Links: Amazon Canada, Amazon USA via CNET

    by Published on 09-27-2018 02:50 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices

    Nokia fans and Android modders, rejoice!

    Juho Sarvikas, the chief product officer at HMD Global, announced via Twitter this morning that Nokia will now allow the bootloaders on select devices to be unlocked. Can TWRP, Magisk and even custom ROMs be far behind?

    The first eligible product for their new program is the Nokia 8, unfortunately a phone that is now a year old. Hopefully all new hardware from HMD will also be eligible, though something tells me that the ad-supported models on Amazon probably won't be.

    To unlock the bootloader on your Nokia 8 you'll first have to register for an online account, then see if your device is eligible. That's not as convenient as it would be with a OnePlus phone or Pixel, but it's in line with other OEMs like Motorola—and at the end of the day, it's certainly better than a bootloader that's locked.

    If HMD does this right I suspect that they'll see an uptick in their North American sales in fairly short order. More info at the links immediately below.

    Source: Nokia via @sarvikas on Twitter

    by Published on 09-25-2018 10:39 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices,
    3. Reviews and Hands-on
    Article Preview

    Times up!

    Our review of the Samsung Galaxy Watch (46mm) bluetooth

    I thought I’d do something different with this review of a Galaxy Watch; I tested it paired to a OnePlus 6 rather than a Galaxy line device. I’ve used a Galaxy device with a Gear in the past so I knew how it performed under those parameters, but with Wear OS and the devices being somewhat at a stagnant point, I thought it important to review the device as it performs outside the “Samsung Experience”. After all there are those looking for another Android smartwatch option who may not be using a Galaxy handset.
    by Published on 09-16-2018 05:58 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices

    Looking for a new lower cost alternative to the super expensive iPhone XS / XS Max devices? Look no further. The iPhone XR has you covered.

    Features include: 6.1-inch Liquid Retina LCD Display with a 1792x828 resolution, Tap to Wake, True Tone and Haptic Touch. It sports the A12 Bionic processor just like it's more expensive cousin with a 6-core CPU with two high performance cores and four efficiency ones. Due to software improvements Face ID works faster as well.

    It comes with a single 12 MP wide angle camera with OIS (f/1.8 aperture), smart HDR and better low light performance.

    The phone is rounded out with an anodized aluminum band, IP67 water and dust resistance plus better batter life than the iPhone 8 Plus. And it has Dual SIM technology included via a software update.

    Pre-orders start October 19th and the phone goes on sales on October 26th. It comes in six colors: white, black, blue, yellow, coral, and red. It supports all modern LTE bands including Band's 14 and 71. Pricing will start at $749 for the 64GB version, $799 for the 128GB version and $899 for the 256GB model.

    by Published on 09-13-2018 10:02 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices,
    3. Carriers

    Stop the presses folks! We have pricing and payment options for T-Mobile fans looking to get the hottest new iPhones and wearable.

    Yes there is even a "zero down, " option for the 64GB XS for "super well-qualified," customers (whatever that means).

    Don't forget we even got trade in promotional pricing (scroll down for more info).

    iPhone XS EIP
    64GB: $279.99 down, $30 per month, $999.99 full retail
    256GB: $429.99 down, $30 per month, $1,149.99 full retail
    512GB: $629.99 down, $30 per month, $1,349.99 full retail

    iPhone XS JOD
    64GB: $279.99 down, $26 per month, $999.99 full retail
    256GB: $429.99 down, $24 per month, $1,149.99 full retail
    512GB: $629.99 down, $21 per month, $1,349.99 full retail

    iPhone XS Max EIP
    64GB: $379.99 down, $30 per month, $1,099.99 full retail
    256GB: $529.99 down, $30 per month, $1,249.99 full retail
    512GB: $729.99 down, $30 per month, $1,449.99 full retail

    iPhone XS Max JOD
    64GB: $379.99 down, $25 per month, $1,099.99 full retail
    256GB: $529.99 down, $23 per month, $1,249.99 full retail
    512GB: $729.99 down, $20 per month, $1,449.99 full retail

    iPhone XS Max EIP
    64GB: $379.99 down, $30 per month, $1,099.99 full retail
    256GB: $529.99 down, $30 per month, $1,249.99 full retail
    512GB: $729.99 down, $30 per month, $1,449.99 full retail

    iPhone XS Max JOD
    64GB: $379.99 down, $25 per month, $1,099.99 full retail
    256GB: $529.99 down, $23 per month, $1,249.99 full retail
    512GB: $729.99 down, $20 per month, $1,449.99 full retail

    Trade In Value:
    • $300 offer value: iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus, or iPhone 8
    • $200 offer value: iPhone 6s or iPhone 6s Plus
    • $100 offer value: iPhone, iPhone 3G, iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4s, iPhone 5, iPhone 5s, iPhone 5c, iPhone SE, iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus

    Apple Watch Series 4 40mm EIP

    Aluminum: $0 down, $20.83 per month, $499.99 full retail
    Stainless Steel: $171.99 down, $22 per month, $699.99 full retail

    Apple Watch Series 4 44mm EIP
    Aluminum: $0 down, $22.08 per month, $529.99 full retail
    Stainless Steel: $221.99 down, $22 per month, $749.99 full retail

    Once again: Pre-orders start @ 12:01 on Sept. 14th and all devices will be available in store pending inventory availability on Sept. 21st.


    by Published on 09-13-2018 03:00 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices

    You should all know by now that whenever I lead with this image it's a sign that OnePlus done messed up. In 2015 it was leaving out NFC on the OnePlus 2 and now, in late-2018, Carl Pei has revealed to TechRadar that there will be no 3.5mm audio jack on the OnePlus 6T.

    For some users it's potentially great news. A choice quote from the interview:

    "By removing the jack we've freed up more space, allowing us to put more new technology into the product," Pei said. "One of the big things is something our users have asked us for, improved battery life."

    Pei wouldn't be drawn on what the "new technology" will be, but we already know the OnePlus 6T will feature an in-display fingerprint scanner, which will eat up some of the space left by the exiting jack.
    But for fans who've stayed loyal to OnePlus, if for no other reason than to enjoy a dongle-free smartphone experience, it smacks of betrayal. In the launch presentations for their last two devices OnePlus employees have gone so far as to joke about there being no headphone jack, and then immediately retort: "Just kidding, we know that's a feature our customers want."

    And the desire for an audio jack persists—proof can be seen in the results of a Twitter poll conducted by Pei himself this past spring:

    Even more bizarre is that the Oppo R17 Pro—on which the 6T is supposedly based—has a headphone jack on board, as well as a bigger 3,700 mAh battery.

    Maybe the move is shameless attempt to sell more Bullets wireless earbuds? I'm very interested to hear from fellow OnePlus fans how this news affects their interest in the 6T. Personally, I'm starting to see a Pixel 3 in my future. If I can't have an audio jack I might as well have a decent camera, at least.

    Sources: TechRadar, @getpeid on Twitter

    by Published on 09-12-2018 02:00 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices

    Apple's September keynote for 2018 has just wrapped up. Here's a quick rundown of notable announcements. Check tomorrow morning's news briefing for additional reactions from the wider tech press.

    Apple Watch Series 4

    30% larger screen
    thinner - 40mm vs 44mm
    new complications, faces
    improved digital crown and speaker
    back is now ceramic & sapphire
    new s4 chip - dual-core 64-bit
    fall detection - fall, trip and slip
    automatic sos call if inactive for 1 min
    new electrocardiogram sensor & app
    same 18-hour (all day?) battery life
    new finishes - stainless, gold stainless
    nike, hermes editions
    $399 usd for gps / $499 usd for cellular
    watchOS 5 available on september 17th

    iPhone - XS, XS Max, XR

    xs: 5.8 inch oled @ 458 ppi
    xs max: 6.5 inch oled @ 458 ppi
    gold, silver, space grey
    faster faceid
    new a12 bionic chip - 7nm
    6-core cpu, 4-core gpu, neural engine
    512gb storage option
    cameras: 12mp wide + 12mp tele
    improved true tone flash
    true depth selfie cam
    improved signal processing, smart hdr
    depth of field controls after capture
    stereo sound capture with video
    longer battery life, gigabit lte
    dual sim for china only (not india...?)
    sim + esim everywhere else (b/c carriers)
    more eco-friendly component materials
    apple giveback: will buy back old devices
    xr: 6.1 inch lcd "liquid retina" lcd @ 326 ppi
    a12 bionic, faceid
    no 3d touch; haptic touch instead
    white, black, blue, coral, yellow, red
    single 12mp wide-angle rear camera
    portrait mode from software
    true depth selfie cam
    longer battery life than 8 plus
    xr: 64 / 128 / 256gb, starts at $749 usd
    pre-order oct. 19th, ships oct. 26th
    xs: 64 / 256 / 512gb, starts at $999 usd
    xs max: 64 / 256 / 512gb, starts at $1099 usd
    pre-order this friday, ships next friday

    Props to The Verge's live blog for helping me double-check the specs!

    by Published on 09-11-2018 03:00 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices,
    3. Rumors

    CNET has, somewhat suspiciously, managed to scoop every other tech blog with this, an alleged standby screen from the forthcoming OnePlus 6T. They're not saying how they got it, which leads yours truly to suspect that this "leak" is actually the latest guerrilla marketing move by Carl Pei and co.

    There's the icon indicating the presence of an in-display fingerprint scanner—which we already know from last week's box leak—but also the unusually specific time and date above that. Could it be that the official unveiling of the 6T will take place at 11am on Wednesday, October 17th? Well, duh...

    Source: CNET

    by Published on 08-22-2018 03:15 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices,
    3. Rumors

    It's the Jay Leno of phones!

    Some Russian dude has posted photos of—and also photos taken with—the forthcoming Pixel 3 XL from Google. I get the mandate for front-firing stereo speakers but damn, that bottom bezel... Fortunately, there will also be a smaller Pixel 3 for the chin and notch-averse.

    In a second blog post the same person uploaded a gallery of photos taken with the as-yet unreleased phone. They all look fantastic, particularly the subtle HDR effect on shots taken at dusk like the one above.

    But Ivan wasn't done yet (his name's actually not Ivan); he then proceeded to tweet a video demonstrating how the Pixel 3 XL supports wireless charging.

    Google's third-generation Pixels are expected to be announced in early October. At the rate we're going, expect a lot more leaks before then.

    Source: Максим Хорошев (1) (2) (3)

    by Published on 08-20-2018 03:00 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices,
    3. Rumors

    If XDA got this right, you're looking at what's going to be the next volley in the escalating arms race on smartphone cameras (or at least lenses). Expected to be made official in the next two to three months, the Huawei Mate 20—codenamed "Hima"—will apparently ship with no less than three cameras on board, just like the already-available P20 Pro. Based on leaked firmware files, notable specs are as follows:

    6.3 inch AMOLED display @ 1080 x 2244 pixels
    HiSilicon Kirin 980 processor
    Triple rear camera system
    At least 6 GB RAM / 128 GB storage
    3.5 mm headphone jack / stereo speakers
    4,200 mAh battery with wireless charging
    Android 9 Pie with EMUI

    As yet there are no specifics on the Mate 10's tri-camera setup, but there's every reason to believe that it would be similar to what's on the P20—that is:

    40 megapixel RGB sensor with OIS
    20 megapixel monochrome sensor with OIS
    8 megapixel telephoto sensor with OIS

    Unfortunately the Mate 10 will also almost certainly ship with an unlockable bootloader, as per Huawei's new policy. If you're still interested, there are more details and renders at the link directly below.

    Source: XDA

    by Published on 08-17-2018 03:45 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices,
    3. Carriers

    This was certainly unexpected... CNET is not only confirming the existence of the second OnePlus phone to be released this year, but also its first U.S. carrier partner:

    T-Mobile's version of the OnePlus 6T will be optimized for the carrier's network, including the new 600 megahertz band of spectrum being rolled out that promises better and faster coverage.
    To be clear, OnePlus will still sell the 6T without any carrier locks on their online store—come October, however, you'll be able to get one from your local T-Mobile USA shop as well.

    I'll be very interested in finding out whether or not this Tmo-branded 6T will support dual SIM cards. There is ample evidence on these forums of my unfailing belief that no North American carrier will ever sell a dual-SIM phone—for the simple reason that it makes the option for competing service easily available to the customer. Yet one of the core features of a OnePlus phone is support for dual-SIMs. Without it, it would still be a great phone, but with it, and sold by T-Mobile store, well... I guess I'd have to go find a hat to eat.

    Source: CNET

    by Published on 08-13-2018 03:00 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices,
    3. Rumors

    For those who can remember way back to the fall of 2016, OnePlus saw a literal hole in the market, created by exploding Samsung Note 7 batteries. They decided to put some new internals into their already popular OnePlus 3 and release a mid-season refresh called the OnePlus 3T. Then, last year, they upped the ante a bit with the OnePlus 5T—not only did it run on a newer processor but had a brand-new 18:9 screen as well.

    So here we are in mid-2018 already talking about the successor to a high-end phone that's barely two months old. I tells ya, this business is nuts...

    Anyway, the news: Android Authority reports that Oppo has just announced the R17, shown in the image above. It features an in-display fingerprint reader and, perhaps more importantly, an acceptably-small display notch. Why is this important? Because one, Oppo and OnePlus share the same parent company (BBK Electronics) and two, previous Oppo phones—the R11, R11s and R15—have designs virtually identical to the OnePlus 5, 5T and 6. Google those Oppos if you don't believe me.

    I don't think the fingerprint reader is going to make it over to the 6T, and that's not necessarily a bad thing; it likely wouldn't be as lighting-quick as what OnePlus users currently enjoy. But if that smaller notch shows up on the 6T then my patience in holding out for it will have been justified.

    Oh, and fast wireless charging would also be acceptable.

    Sources: Android Authority, Deccan Chronicle

    by Published on 08-10-2018 07:30 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices

    If you thought that every Google Play-enabled Android phone and tablet could play YouTube videos you're not wrong; in a move that reeks of a pointless branding exercise Google has decided to publish a shortlist of recommended "signature devices" for their video-streaming service.

    Here's their criteria for making the list:

    These smartphones can deliver the best-in-class YouTube experience by combining next generation technologies, video performance, and reliability. With a Signature Device, you can enjoy vivid HDR videos, immersive 360° video, and fast video load times—all while using less bandwidth.

    To qualify as a Signature Device, a phone must support high dynamic range, high frame rate, reliable DRM performance, 4K decoding, and use next generation video codecs. We’ve worked with manufacturers to verify these devices meet or exceed our performance expectations.
    And here are the 19 anointed "signature" devices:

    Google Pixel 2
    Google Pixel 2 XL
    Huawei Mate 10 Pro
    HTC U12+
    LG G7 ThinQ
    LG V30
    Nokia 8 Sirroco
    OnePlus 6
    Samsung Galaxy Note8
    Samsung Galaxy Note9
    Samsung Galaxy S8
    Samsung Galaxy S8+
    Samsung Galaxy S9
    Samsung Galaxy S9+
    Sony Xperia XZ2
    Sony Xperia XZ2 Compact
    Sony Xperia XZ2 Premium
    Xiaomi Mi 8
    Xiaomi Mi Mix 2S

    If you own an Android device that's not on this list—or any iPhone, for that matter—you can go ahead and throw it in the garbage now. That, or switch to Vimeo.

    Source: YouTube Device Report via The Verge

    by Published on 08-09-2018 07:45 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices,
    3. Rumors

    Way back in the long long ago my trusty sidearm was a Handspring Treo 270, a forebear to the circa-2003 Palm Treo 600 that you're seeing above. We smartphone users take such things for granted now, but back then having a PDA, mobile phone and Internet connection in a single device was nothing short of amazing. My Treo didn't even have a camera.

    That was, of course, some sixteen years ago—ancient history by mobile tech standards. So it's with some bewilderment that I report to you today on a 2018 Palm-branded device which has just stopped by the FCC and WiFi Alliance.

    The Palm PVG100 was spotted by Android Police this week. PVG apparently stands for Palm Ventures Group; it turns out that TCL, which acquired BlackBerry's handset business in 2016, owns the rights to another storied PDA phone brand as well. And as BlackBerry has migrated to Android this new Palm device will likewise be powered by the world's dominant OS.

    If TCL is really going for the whole nostalgia experience here I'd be very interested in seeing what kind of skin this thing ships with.

    Source: Android Police

    by Published on 08-08-2018 01:01 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices,
    3. Reviews and Hands-on
    Article Preview

    Until recently, my wife and I used Bluetooth speakers when we wanted to listen to music at home. I figured Bluetooth speakers were the most flexible solution. Pretty much every phone, tablet and computer sold in the last 10 years has it. Bluetooth support is also built right into Android/iOS/Windows so you don’t need any special software to use it. There are also many, many different Bluetooth compatible speakers available at all price points.

    Still, Bluetooth isn’t a perfect solution. I won’t cover all of them here, but for us the 3 biggest shortcomings are the range, support for multiple users or lack thereof, and the fact that the Bluetooth speaker will playback everything that’s playing on your phone including alerts.

    In terms of range, our phones will only stream reliably while we’re in the same room. This is inconvenient if we need to leave the room temporarily with our phone.

    However, the bigger problem is the lack of multiple users. When you turn a Bluetooth speaker on, it usually tries to connect to the last device that was using it. This is fine if I’m the only person trying to use the speaker. However, what happens when I’m around and my wife wants to use it? Switching users can be a hassle.

    Then there’s the fact that Bluetooth speakers playback alerts from your phone. It can get quite irritating when you get a bunch of alerts during your favorite song.

    With these problems in mind we figured we’d try out a Sonos. Sonos has been around for a while, so they have a fairly mature lineup of speakers. I’ve actually wanted to try one for a while but various issues with them me from trying it. ...
    by Published on 07-31-2018 07:30 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices

    Over the weekend Digital Trends published their findings from tests on the battery life of five high-powered Android devices, plus the iPhone X. The tests included extended sessions with the following activities:

    Google Maps
    Instagram Explore
    Video recording

    And here are the results:

    1st place: Huawei P20 Pro (4,000 mAh)
    2nd place: OnePlus 6 (3,300 mAh)
    3rd place: Galaxy S9 Plus (3,500 mAh)
    4th place: iPhone X (2,716 mAh)
    5th place: Pixel 2 XL (3,520 mAh)
    6th place: LG G7 (3,000 mAh)

    With the largest battery of the bunch, it's no surprise that the Huawei P20 Pro lasted the longest. But it's interesting that the OnePlus 6 outlasted the Galaxy S9 Plus and the Pixel 2 XL, which itself was beat by the relatively tiny battery in the iPhone X.

    For more on the testing methodology, and also a video summary, see the link immediately below.

    Source: Digital Trends

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