• Devices

    by Published on 03-05-2020 02:30 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices



    The good folks at Samsung Canada want you to know that their foldable clamshell Galaxy is back in stock as of tomorrow. Here's a copy/paste from an email sent to Howard:

    Hi Howard,

    Hope you're doing well!

    After selling out on its first day of sales, consumers eager to get their hands on the new Samsung Galaxy Z Flip are in luck as the device will officially be back in stock, in stores and online, March 6th in limited quantities.

    “The demand for this device truly exceeded our expectations, and we’re pleased to release a new batch of Galaxy Z Flip devices to Canadians tomorrow,” says Jennifer Safruk, VP, Mobile Business, Samsung Electronics Canada.

    The Galaxy Z Flip is created for those who see technology as a way to express themselves. Designed for ultimate portability, Galaxy Z Flip folds into the size of a wallet, so you can easily fit it in your pocket or bag. For more information about Galaxy Z Flip, please visit https://www.samsung.com/ca/smartphones/galaxy-z-flip/
    Good hunting to anyone who wants to jump on this...

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
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    by Published on 02-11-2020 05:25 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices



    Galaxy Z Flip
    6.7 inch 21.9:9 FHD+ AMOLED ultra thin glass display
    1.1 inch 300 x 112 pixel AMOLED cover display
    Snapdragon 855+ processor
    8 GB RAM / 256 GB storage
    12 MP wide + 12 MP ultra-wide rear cameras
    10 megapixel selfie cam
    3,300 mAh battery
    Android 10
    Mirror Black, Mirror Gold, Mirror Purple
    Available February 14th, 2020
    $1,380 USD

    Source: Liliputing

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
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    by Published on 02-11-2020 02:50 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices



    Galaxy S20
    6.2 inch 20:9 curved AMOLED / 3200 x 1440 pixels / 120 Hz
    Snapdragon 865 processor
    12 GB RAM / 128 GB storage
    108 / 48 / 12 megapixel rear cameras
    10 megapixel selfie cam
    4,000 mAh battery
    GSM / HSPA / LTE / 5G
    Android 10
    Cosmic Black, Cosmic Grey, Cloud Blue
    Available March 6th, 2020

    Galaxy S20+
    6.2 inch 20:9 curved AMOLED / 3200 x 1440 pixels / 120 Hz
    Snapdragon 865 processor
    12 GB RAM / 128 or 512 GB storage
    108 / 48 / 12 megapixel rear cameras plus TOF depth sensor
    10 megapixel selfie cam
    4,500 mAh battery
    GSM / HSPA / LTE / 5G
    Android 10
    Cosmic Black, Cosmic Grey, Cloud Blue
    Available March 6th, 2020

    Galaxy S20 Ultra
    6.9 inch 20:9 curved AMOLED / 3200 x 1440 pixels / 120 Hz
    Snapdragon 865 processor
    12 GB RAM / 128 or 512 GB storage
    108 / 48 / 12 megapixel rear cameras plus TOF depth sensor
    40 megapixel selfie cam
    5,000 mAh battery
    GSM / HSPA / LTE / 5G
    Android 10
    Cosmic Black, Cosmic Grey
    Available March 6th, 2020

    Source: Mobile Syrup

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
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    by Published on 01-29-2020 11:39 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices,
    3. Commentary and Analysis,
    4. Reviews and Hands-on
    Article Preview



    When Samsung launched the Note line, there were 3 things that were significant about it. First off, it gave ...
    by Published on 01-27-2020 01:49 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices,
    3. Commentary and Analysis,
    4. Reviews and Hands-on
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    Back in November Aliexpress had their 11.11 sale. While I’ve shopped before there for inexpensive stuff, I always ...
    by Published on 01-13-2020 09:00 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices



    So you don't have to squint, the sticker reads:

    CONFIDENTIAL
    (Unauthorized use prohibited)
    No photo allowed
    Not For Sale
    Do not leak info

    ... But that didn't stop an anonymous leaker from sharing these exclusive photos with XDA's Max Weinbach. The device in question? Samsung's Galaxy S20+, not due for its official unveiling until next month.

    The four camera array on the back is still up for debate, but XDA is predicting a main lens, ultra-wide, telephoto and macro.



    Here's a blurry boot screen. US-bound S20 variants are to be powered by the Snapdragon 865 processor and X55 modem, supporting both sub-6 GHz and millimetre wave 5G networks.



    Here's the device all powered up. Samsung's latest Infinity-O display is reportedly more flat than the curved glass on their current flagships. And wonder of wonders, there's apparently no Bixby button, which I actually find kind of hard to believe.

    Whatever the case, all will be revealed on Tuesday, February 11th at Samsung Unpacked 2020 in San Francisco, CA.

    Source: XDA

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
    ---------
    by Published on 12-18-2019 02:20 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices

    'Tis the season, it seems, for year-end (even end-of-decade) retrospectives. So here's my contribution, my last Wearable Wednesday post of 2019, and of the 2010s...

    Back in the summer of 2014 I strapped my first-ever smartwatch to my wrist and never looked back. I haven't always been loyal to Android-powered wearables in particular, but in 2019 I returned to the fold in a big way—adding no less than five new pieces to my existing collection:

    Fossil Sport and Gen 5



    After testing the Fossil Sport last summer I decided to keep it as a beater watch, and when the all-metal Gen 5 went on sale for Black Friday, I grabbed one of those too. I particularly like how complications are laid out on Fossil's "Essential Digital" face, even if it reveals in no uncertain terms where my winter vacation is and when I'm leaving.

    Wear OS snobs continue to rave about how the Gen 5's extra 512 MB of RAM make the Sport pale in comparison. Me? I think they're both fine.

    Skagen Falster and Falster 2



    As much as I like Fossil's complications I've always been a sucker for the clean look of Skagen Falster's default face—and its physical design as well. I had returned my original Falster from 2018, but took a Falster 2 with me to New Zealand last summer. Despite the anemic Snapdragon 2100 processor and only half-gigabyte of RAM, the ongoing improvements to Wear OS have made it quite usable. Ditto for the original Falster, which I ended up repurchasing on eBay for a price I couldn't refuse.

    Casio WSD-F30



    Casio's Pro-Treks are the closest I'll ever get to a true G-Shock smartwatch, and the latest model is their best yet. Not only is it smaller than previous iterations (it's still huge) but there's now a compass built right in to one of the default faces.

    I happened to be at my local Best Buy when they were discounting it by some $200 CAD, so I took the bait. It's not a smartwatch that I'll wear every day, but I'll definitely take it with me when I travel.

    The point of all this is not some weird flex, just to say that Wear OS isn't necessarily as terrible as people make it out to be. I'd say that the worst time you'll have with it is during the initial setup, where an on-wrist tutorial is literally fighting with software updates that are downloading and installing at the same time. Once all that is done you'll be left with a quite capable wrist-based computer, housed in a chassis suitable for your own personal style.

    It certainly sucks that you have to charge these things every day, and I still occasionally see that annoying offline icon from time to time. But I do genuinely look forward to deciding which smartwatch I'll be wearing on a given day, or taking with me to some far-flung destination. With two watch rolls, a display case and a drawer full of quick release straps I'm really no different than any other watch collector. It's just that my collection might not hold as much value for generations to come.

    Links to product pages: Casio, Fossil (1) (2), Skagen (1) (2)

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
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    by Published on 11-27-2019 02:10 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices



    Howard just passed on an email from his contact at Samsung Canada, who wanted you all to know that the Galaxy Fold will be available for in-store pre-order starting Thursday, November 28th. More from the official release:

    MISSISSAUGA, ON, Nov. 21, 2019 /CNW/
    Samsung Electronics Canada Inc. today announced that the highly anticipated Galaxy Fold will be available starting December 6th, 2019 exclusively at Samsung Experience Stores located at:


    The category-defining Galaxy Fold represents the biggest leap forward in smartphone design and engineering since the first smartphones launched more than a decade ago. Engineered with new materials and technologies, it reimagines everything you can do with a device that fits in your pocket and inspires a new mobile experience. When closed, you can access all of your apps comfortably in one hand on the cover display. When opened, you can explore new ways to multitask, watch videos, play games, and more on an immersive 7.3-inch Infinity Flex Display.

    "Canadians have overwhelmingly shared their excitement for the Galaxy Fold, and we're thrilled to now be offering it at our Samsung Experiences Stores across Canada," said Jennifer Safruk, VP Sales and Product Management.

    The Galaxy Fold, available in Cosmos Black, introduces a whole new smartphone category built for the future. Breakthrough materials and a revised, sophisticated hinging mechanism make the device flexible and highlight its elegant design that delivers a book-like fold. Featuring the world's first foldable 7.3-inch Dynamic AMOLED Infinity Flex Display, the Galaxy Fold turns into an ultra-slim compact device when closed.

    The Galaxy Fold App Continuity feature allows intuitive, seamless app transitions between the phone's cover and the Infinity Flex main display, collaborating with Google to enable an ecosystem of apps that are simple and easy to use. The Galaxy Fold features Samsung's largest-ever screen on a Samsung Galaxy phone, with a Multi-Active Window that allows users to easily multi-task across three open apps at once.

    Every Galaxy Fold comes with exclusive access to Galaxy Fold Premier Service, including Fold Concierge and a screen replacement offer. Exploring the groundbreaking design of Galaxy Fold may require additional support in the beginning. Specially trained experts are available 24/7 to provide you with personalized and exclusive support for your Galaxy Fold.

    In Canada, the Galaxy Fold will be available for purchase in Cosmos Black exclusively at Samsung Experience Stores beginning December 6, 2019. Pricing starts at $2,599.99 (regular price).
    Source: Newswire.ca

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
    ---------
    by Published on 11-13-2019 04:44 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices,
    3. News,
    4. From The Forums,
    5. Carriers



    Tonight Motorola unveiled their own version of a foldable phone in the form of the classic RAZR design, running on Android 9. They're calling this one lowercase "razr."

    Priced at $1,499 USD, it is set to release early January 2020 on Verizon as a carrier exclusive. Pre-orders start the day after Christmas.

    More specs, pictures and info on Motorola's site here: https://www.motorola.com/us/products/razr

    Sources: The Verge | CNET
    by Published on 11-05-2019 02:10 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices



    Some clever person has managed to find an Amazon Canada listing for the Collider, the code name for Fossil's new line of hybrid smartwatches featuring a physical dial over a monochrome e-ink display. The watches will be available for sale on Black Friday (November 29th), and this particular model will retail for $195. Not sure if that's CAD or USD, but I suspect the latter.

    The cached Amazon.ca product page provides the following details:

    Product Description
    Where smart meets style—this 42mm Collider hybrid smartwatch features a dark brown leather strap and an always-on readout display so you can get your heart rate, message previews, weather and more at a glance, with 2+ weeks of battery life on a single charge. Powered by the Fossil Smartwatches App, Fossil Hybrid Smartwatches are compatible with Android™ OS 5.0+ and iOS 9.0+ devices. The Fossil Smartwatches App is provided by Fossil Group, Inc. so your data will be stored in the USA.

    Product Specifications
    Brand: Fossil
    Model Number: FTW7008
    Item Shape: Round
    Band width: 22 millimeters
    Calendar: Date
    Movement: Hybrid
    Water resistant depth: 50 meters
    Warranty type: Manufacturer
    For additional product images (from prior leaks) check the referring link below.

    Source: Android Police

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
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    by Published on 10-28-2019 12:40 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices,
    3. From The Forums,
    4. Commentary and Analysis
    Article Preview


    It’s been about a year since the XS Max came out. The Max kind of filled a hole in the iPhone lineup. When Apple ...
    by Published on 10-25-2019 07:12 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices,
    3. Commentary and Analysis
    Article Preview

    Smartphones have been maturing for over a decade now. A while back we reached a point where even phone enthusiasts stopped ...
    by Published on 10-15-2019 02:45 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices

    In a livestreamed event this morning Google unveiled their worst-kept secret of the year, the fourth-generation Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL. But that's not all—also revealed were second-gen Pixel Buds, a new Pixelbook and more home tech from Nest.

    The Verge and CNET have already posted several videos of the new gadgetry; of the two sources I'm more partial to The Verge so I've included their latest below, and after that some text links from various sources. Enjoy!











    The biggest announcements from Google’s 2019 Pixel event

    Here's where you can buy the Google Pixel 4 and 4 XL in the US

    Google Pixel 4 and 4 XL Canadian pricing and availability

    Google announces Pixel Buds 2 w/ $179 price-tag, up to 24 hour battery, more

    The $649 Pixelbook Go is lighter, better and cheaper than Google's last Chromebook laptop

    The Google Nest Mini Can Now Hang on Your Wall Like a Piece of Art That's Always Listening to You

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
    ---------
    by Published on 10-10-2019 01:25 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices

    An event livestreamed from London on YouTube earlier today confirmed the Pro and McLaren editions of the latest OnePlus device, the 7T.



    OnePlus 7T Pro
    6.67 inch 90 Hz QHD+ AMOLED display
    Snapdragon 855+ processor
    8 GB RAM / 256 GB storage
    48 MP / 8 MP 3x telephoto / 16 MP wide-angle rear cameras
    16 MP pop-up selfie cam
    4085 mAh battery, Warp Charge 30T
    Oxygen OS 10.0 (based on Android 10)
    Haze Blue
    £699



    OnePlus 7T Pro McLaren Edition
    12 GB RAM
    Papaya Orange accents
    Alcantara case
    £799

    The devices will be sold officially by OnePlus and their carrier partners in the EU, India and UK; unofficially they'll almost certainly be available through Amazon resellers and other grey market importers.

    Sources: Android Police, Mobile Syrup, OnePlus Forums

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
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    by Published on 10-09-2019 06:50 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices

    The following was posted to Essential's official Twitter account last night:



    "We've been working on a new device to reframe your perspective on mobile. It's now in early testing with our team outside the lab. Look forward to sharing more in the near future! #ProjectGEM"


    Additional photos were tweeted by Andy Rubin himself:





    This new device seems to have caught the Internet off-guard; all that's been leaked prior to this are a few snippets of code on XDA. There is, however, plenty of speculation at the referring links below.

    via Android Police, The Verge

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
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    by Published on 10-03-2019 12:00 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices

    Thanks to the sources cited below we won't have to wait for the Made by Google event on Tuesday, October 15th for details on the 4th generation Pixel phones. I believe the only unknown at this point is their price.

    Here are the leaks that have broken in the last 24 hours:

    Official Press Renders



    Black



    White



    "Oh, so Orange"

    Specs

    Pixel 4:
    5.7 inch full HD+ smooth OLED display (up to 90Hz), ambient EQ
    Snapdragon 855 processor with Pixel Neural Core™
    6 GB RAM / 64 or 128 GB storage
    12 MP dual-pixel and 16 MP telephoto rear cameras
    2800 mAh battery
    Stereo speakers
    Titan M security module
    Face unlock, motion sense
    Android Q with 3 years of security and OS updates

    Pixel 4 XL:
    6.3 inch quad HD+ smooth OLED display (up to 90Hz) – ambient EQ
    Snapdragon 855 processor with Pixel Neural Core™
    6 GB RAM / 64 or 128 GB storage
    12 MP dual-pixel and 16 MP telephoto rear cameras
    3700 mAh battery
    Stereo speakers
    Titan M security module
    Face unlock, motion sense
    Android Q with 3 years of security and OS updates

    What's in the box:
    Pixel phone (obviously)
    1 metre USB-C to USB-C cable
    18 watt USB-C power adapter
    Quick switch adapter (female USB-A to male USB-C)
    SIM tool
    Quick start guide

    Sources: 9to5Google, Android Police, Mobile Syrup

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
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    by Published on 09-30-2019 10:30 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices



    They might not be the biggest player in the horological racket, but they are almost certainly the most prolific hardware partner for Google's Wear OS. Each of these brands fall under the Fossil Group umbrella:

    Armani Exchange
    Diesel
    Emporio Armani
    Kate Spade
    Marc Jacobs
    Michael Kors
    Misfit
    Skagen

    ... Though I'd wager that the majority of units moved are the ones bearing the parent brand.

    Fossil's story began in 1984, when two brothers in Dallas, Texas formed a company called "Overseas Products International". As the name implies, the scheme was to import cheap watches from Asia (mostly Hong Kong) and sell them on the American market. After some initial success the enterprise went public under name Fossil in 1993.

    The company's winning formula was affordable fashion watches with a vintage look, but I remember them more for their limited runs of collectibles—in particular a Spider-man watch I spied back in the day at an outlet mall in Buffalo, New York:



    It was the Amazing Fantasy #15 edition, in case you were wondering. And I should have bought it, but didn't.

    Fossil's history with wearable tech dates back to 2003, when the company released the Abacus:



    ... A wrist-based PDA that required a stylus.

    Fossil's first Wear OS device (then Android Wear) was the Q Founder, released in late 2015; the company is now on its 5th generation of Android-powered smartwatches. Wear OS has likewise come a long way since then—perhaps not far enough, but without Fossil I can't help but wonder if there would still be a Wear OS at all.

    Links: CGC Comics, Gizmodo, WatchTime, Watchonista, Wikipedia (1) (2)

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
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    by Published on 09-26-2019 01:00 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices



    OnePlus apparently has a new twist to their 6-month release cycle; while it was the 7 Pro only that came to North America last spring (officially), it looks like our Autumn harvest will only yield the non-pro 7T. More on that via the links and videos below. Also, R.I.P. OnePlus gestures.

    Links:

    OnePlus 7T review: An unbeatable package for under $600
    First impressions of the OnePlus 7T: Just don't call it a smaller 7 Pro
    OnePlus 7T Canadian pricing and availability
    OnePlus 7T Review: A Top Android Phone of 2019
    OnePlus 7T Review: A Premium, Practical Smartphone without Gimmicks

    Videos:







    Image source: OnePlus Forums

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
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    by Published on 09-25-2019 12:00 PM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices,
    3. Commentary and Analysis,
    4. Reviews and Hands-on
    Article Preview


    The past few years have seen the emergence of Huawei in the high-end of the market. They’ve gone from a provider ...
    by Published on 08-30-2019 07:12 AM
    1. Categories:
    2. Devices



    Invitations have gone out for what will almost certainly be the unveiling of this year's iPhones on Tuesday September 10th. As always, Apple's September event will kick-off at 10:00 am Pacific Time and you'll likely be able to watch it live from wherever you may be.

    I myself will be away on a late summer vacation, but be on the lookout for some post-event coverage by people smarter than me when I return. In the meantime check out Mark Gurman's annual preview over at Bloomberg for what to expect.

    See you in September!

    Sources: AppleInsider, Bloomberg

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    Andrew Currie has been blogging about mobile phones since 2001, smartphones (depending on how you define them) since 2002 and smartwatches since 2014.
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