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Feb 02, 2016 - 11:57 AM - by dgstorm
If taking the best photos and videos is your top priority for a smartphone, then you might want to take a look at the latest Asus device over at B&H Photo. They are now selling the Unlocked version of the Asus ZenFone Zoom for just $399.99 here in the United States. What makes this device stand out is the 13MP PixelMaster rear camera, which includes a 3X optical zoom and optical image stabilization without a protrusion.
Here's a recap of the rest of the phone's specs:
- 5.5-inch 1080p display
- Intel Atom quad-core processor
- 4GB of RAM
- 13 megapixel camera sensor with 10-element lens, 3x optical zoom without protrusion, optical image stabilization
- 5 megapixel selfie camera
- 64GB of storage
- microSD up to 128GB
- 3,000mAh battery
- 2.5G (EDGE, GSM/GPRS ) MHz:850, 900, 1800, 1900
- 3.5G (HSPA+, UMTS/WCDMA ) MHz:850, 900, 1700, 1900, 2100
- 4G (LTE ) Bands:1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8, 17, 20
Above and below we included links for your to buy one. You can also check out our dedicated Asus ZenFone Zoom section for further discussion: ASUS Zenfone ZOOM | Android Forum at DroidForums.net
Source: B&H Photo - Asus ZenFone Zoom
Feb 02, 2016 - 11:24 AM - by dgstorm
According to the latest rumors, Sundar Pichai, the current CEO of Android, and his colleagues might be considering switching up the strategy with the Nexus line to be more "Apple-like." Specifically, the rumor-mill is suggesting that Pichai wants Google to take more control of the direction of both hardware and software for the Nexus series of phones. Here's a quote with more of the details from the source of this rumor,
"Google CEO Sundar Pichai and his lieutenants have signaled to colleagues and outsiders that the company wants to take greater control over its program for making “Nexus” smartphones, which are powered by Google’s Android software. The change would effectively reduce the level of involvement of hardware partners that make the phones with Google, a group which has included Samsung, Motorola, LG and Huawei."
We can see two sides to this move. On the one hand, if Google takes more control over the hardware and software of Nexus phones, it could be a boon for reducing fragmentation and for increasing security, performance and reliability for Nexus Android devices. On the other hand, it's possible that the various potential Nexus OEMs (like LG, HTC, Samsung, etc) might balk at the idea that they have to give up more control to Google. It would do the Nexus line no good if no one wants to make it. Share your thoughts.
Feb 01, 2016 - 5:22 PM - by dgstorm
The NVIDIA Shield Tablet K1 just started receiving a new update from NVIDIA. The hottest gaming tablet on the planet needs some extra love and attention because the cutting edge sometimes develops more issues. This update improves security, fixes some bugs and more. Here's a quick breakdown of the changelog:
- Optimized behavior of legacy apps that lead to instances of increased power consumption
- Improvements to Wi-Fi connectivity
- Fixed crashes in Performance, Power, and Display settings
- Fixed crashes in Gamepad Mapper
- Fixed Doom 3 not launching
- Added back SHIELD controller touch pad functionality
- Added support for Stylus Lasso Capture functionality
- Update to Android 6.0 Security Patch Level January 2016
- Fixes to App Optimization feature
Sound off if you have already received your update 1.1 for the NVIDIA Shield Tablet K1.
Jan 22, 2016 - 11:38 AM - by dgstorm
From today through to Monday, January 25th, Sprint has a 4-Day Dash promo that might be worth checking out. You can save up to $200 when you trade-in a working smartphone toward a new LG G4 and Sprint's service. This offer is in addition to (stacks with) all of Sprint's other current offers. Here's a quote with more of the details,
- Sprint offers the opportunity to switch and save 50% off most AT&T, T-Mobile and Verizon rate plans.
- Sprint delivers the fastest LTE Plus download speeds according to Nielsen Mobile Performance data—faster than Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile.
- Sprint covers your switching fees up to $650 per line, via American Express reward card after online registration.
- Switching is easy! You can visit a Sprint store, go online or call 1-800-SPRINT1 to make the switch from your current carrier to Sprint. And, you can keep your same phone number.
- With Direct2You, you can have a Sprint expert deliver a new phone to you virtually whenever and wherever you want – for free.
- This weekend, you can get a minimum $200 trade-in on any smartphone when you purchase an LG G4. Check back at www.sprint.com for future limited-time-only offers.
For more info, here's Sprint's promo link: Now’s the Time to Switch to Sprint and Save $200 When You Purchase LG G4 and trade in any smartphone | Sprint Newsroom
Jan 19, 2016 - 11:14 AM - by dgstorm
The latest Nexus intel suggests that Google is letting HTC jump back in the ring for at least two new Nexus devices. The rumor doesn't specify any details on these devices, except that they will be a 5-inch and a 5.5-inch device. If true, it seems that HTC will be the primary Nexus device maker this year. Alternatively, it could be that Google plans to introduce two new Nexus devices along with some from other OEMs, or some combination thereof.
Either way, if the rumor is true, you could easily infer that Google is trying to help HTC stay in the game. It's no secret that HTC's business is on critical life support. Last year their revenues slid 34%. Giving them a crack at the next Nexus infuses them with some much needed capital and clout in the Android world In retrospect, HTC was the first OEM to make a Nexus device: the HTC Nexus One (shown above). The only other Nexus device to come from HTC was the Nexus 9 tablet. It could be argued that it's simply their turn again.
We will keep an eye out for an corroborating evidence of this rumor.
Jan 13, 2016 - 4:46 PM - by dgstorm
It's not too often that we get free gear from the various mobile vendors of the world. Today breaks that trend. The folks at Gearbest were kind enough to send us a cool new toy to try out. We have the Onda V820W Android & Windows 10 Dual-Boot Tablet!
Of course, we felt compelled to review it, so that's what we have brought you today! First, here are the internal specs of the Onda V820W:
- 8-inch 1280x800 IPS Retina capacitive touchscreen
- Intel Atom X5 Z8300 Quad-Core CPU 1.84GHz / Intel HD Gen8 Graphics
- 2GB DDR3L RAM + 32GB ROM, microSD support up to 128GB
- Front and rear camera at 2.0MP
- Bluetooth/OTG/WiFi/HDMI functions
- 4200mAh battery
- Dual-boot between Android 4.4 KitKat and Windows 10
The first question that comes to mind for the review is why Onda decided to include Android 4.4/KitKat instead of (at least) Android 5/Lollipop? Considering the timetable of the release of this device, it seems like an odd choice. Ultimately, it didn't hinder the experience of the tablet too much, so we will give it a pass.
Instead of the usual multi-page monstrosity that you folks normally see reviewers use, we will respect your desire for brevity and throw down a bullet-point of all of our primary thoughts regarding this intriguing dual-boot tablet. This should serve as a quick summary to most of the relevant things that matter when considering a purchase of the Onda V820W.
Case Design & Aesthetics -
- Good looking outer case design and aesthetics
- Nice light weight and surprisingly thin for a budget-friendly tablet
- We liked the texture on the back - it makes the tablet easier to hold
- No included wall-charger could be a turn off (but includes USB transfer and charging cable for PCs/Macs)
- Connectivity is pretty robust with microSD, HDMI & More
Display Quality -
- Good but unremarkable display quality with bright colors and sharp images/text
- The glass of the display is a bit too glossy for background lights
- The glass doesn't feel as smooth as other tabs - not rough, just a bit "dull"
Performance & battery life -
- Dual-boot between Windows 10 and Android is quick and easy - (really cool selling point)
- Snappy performance in Android, with only some minor and rare lag in Windows 10
- Surprisingly good gaming performance in Windows 10, especially considering the anemic 2GB of RAM
- Solid WiFi connection
- Audio is pretty bad - the onboard speaker is practically unusable, but using the headphone jack was marginally better
- Relatively mediocre battery life (for a tablet), but fits about what you would expect for the price
- Tablet Shuts off in Windows 10 when left for a long time (and must be rebooted with a long press of power button) - this is obviously the power saving settings of the OS as the same thing did not occur with the tablet in Android mode
Camera Quality -
- Both cameras are terrible - wouldn't use them for pictures or video, but maybe Skype if you are desperate
Other things... [Read More]
Jan 12, 2016 - 12:34 PM - by dgstorm
It looks like Amazon is trying to blow out their old inventory of Motorola Nexus 6 smartphones. They dropped the price down to a super-low $249.99 for the 32GB and just $299.99 for the 64GB version. That's $400 bucks off their normal price (and is lower than- or about the same as - a few of the other Nexus 6 deals we have seen before).
In fact, this isn't the first time we have seen this price for this device on Amazon. They did the same thing during the holiday season. It would seem they didn't get rid of all of their inventory. Regardless, if you don't mind the giant size of a 6-inch device, this is a deal alert that offers tremendous value.
Here's the link to grab this deal before it's gone: Amazon.com: Motorola Nexus 6 Unlocked Cellphone, 32GB, Midnight Blue (U.S. Warranty): Cell Phones & Accessories
Jan 08, 2016 - 12:39 PM - by dgstorm
Say hello to the Casio WSD-F10. It's a rugged outdoor Android Wear watch with a 1.32-inch dual layer display, and it just showed off its behemoth shape for the press. Despite its impressive size, there are some other impressive things the Casio WSD-F10 has going for it.
Before we list all of the potent specs, the most stand-out cool thing about this watch is its dual layer display.
The display of the WSD-F10 includes both a bright TFT LCD for indoor use, and a monochrome LCD for use outdoors.
Here's a breakdown of the rest of its features:
- 1.32-inch dual layer display - TFT LCD and monochrome LCD
- Military standard environmental durability MIL-STD-810 - that basically means it's very tough
- Pressure (air pressure, altitude) sensor, accelerometer, gyrometer, and compass (magnetic) sensor
- A built-in microphone
- Bluetooth 4.1 LE
- Wi-Fi IEEE 802.11 b/g/n
- A Tool button, a Power button, and an App button
- Similar styling to the G-SHOCK series
- Size of Case: Approx. 61.7mm×56.4mm×15.7mm (H×W×D)
- Weight: Approx. 93g (including watchband)
- Touchscreen: Capacitive touchscreen
- Water Resistance: 50 meters
- Battery charges in approximately 2 hours and stays powered for a full day - can stay powered for a month in the LCD "timepiece mode" only
- Green, Orange, Black, or Red
The Casio WSD-F10 will be available starting in April for around $500 USD. You can check out a video demo of it in the thread below. Don't forget to drop by our dedicated Android Wear section for further discussion: Android Watches | Android Forum at DroidForums.net
Jan 05, 2016 - 1:29 PM - by dgstorm
The most recent Nexus factory images with the January Android security update are now available to download. This is Version number MMB29S for the Nexus 5, 6, and 9 (Wi-Fi and LTE). Also included is the MMB29O for the Nexus 7 (Wi-Fi and LTE), build MMB29P which is the latest version available for the Nexus 5X and 6P, and the new MMB29T update for the Nexus Player.
The update addresses 5 that are classed as critical, 5 moderately severe problems and 2 of high importance. These security patches are still based on Android 6.0.1, so that hasn't changed. For those who want to grab it manually, just hit up the link above. Otherwise, you can be on the lookout for the OTA to hit your corresponding device within the next couple weeks.
Jan 05, 2016 - 11:52 AM - by dgstorm
If you are a fitness fan at all (or even just a fan of fitness apparel), then you will surely have heard of Under Armour. They are one of the top makers of fitness clothing globally. In the recent past, Under Armour has also dabbled with wearable fitness tech, but these devices have gone largely ignored for various reasons. Their latest endeavor is likely to buck that trend.
Under Armour and HTC have partnered to create an entire ecosystem of connected fitness tracker devices that are all managed by a single app and hub. The whole product is called the Under Armour Healthbox, and it is actually three interconnected gadgets. This includes the UA Band, UA Scale and UA Heart Rate chest strap.
These devices are designed with various tasks in mind and will communicate seamlessly using Under Armour's mobile fitness app called Record that works on iOS and Android. This fully fledged fitness ecosystem is designed to help budding athletes track their workouts, daily activity, sleep, weight, body fat percentage and nutrition. The UA band will cost $180, the UA scale will also cost $180, and the UA heart rate monitor is $80 when purchased separately. You can get all three devices in the UA HealthBox for just $400. Pre-orders for any of these will supposedly be delivered on January 22nd, 2016.
That's not all that Under Armour has cooked up for the technological fitness world of the future. They also created something called the SpeedForm Gemini 2 smart sneakers. These fitness shoes include a sensor to track and store running data such as time and date, duration, distance and splits. These shoes also sync with the Record app. Supposedly the shoes never need to recharge because the battery will outlast the tread on the shoes. These connected fitness tracker shoes will supposedly be available February 29th for $150.
Finally, Under Armour also created a set of bluetooth earbud headphones. These headphones are actually
two different sets of wireless earbuds using JBL sound. Both are sweat-proof and will connect to any iPhone or Android handset. They also feature a no-slip design. The upgrade to the base model will feature in-ear heart rate monitoring. The headphones will launch sometime in the Spring of this year and will be priced at $180 for the base model and $250 for the model with built-in, in-ear heart monitoring.
Dec 30, 2015 - 1:59 PM - by dgstorm
Even though it isn't until Friday, we will be out of the office for New Year's Eve and New Year's Day. Before we left for the 4-day weekend, we wanted to wish all of our members a hearty and happy new year!!!
Enjoy your celebrations, remember to focus on something you were grateful for in 2015, and envision what you intend to be grateful for in 2016! Have a fun and safe holiday, and thanks for making 2015 so amazing!
Dec 29, 2015 - 10:58 AM - by dgstorm
It could easily be argued that Google Glass was a big flop, even though it never actually became a true mass-market retail product. Still, that doesn't mean Google has completely given up on the project. In fact, they have already created a second generation version of the device.
Google has wisely decided to focus on the enterprise market with this new version (for at least the time being). It's called the “Google Glass: Enterprise Edition.” This makes sense, because the device was basically just too far ahead of its time. Most consumers are not ready for this level of "connected tech" just yet. It also makes more sense for the device to be useful in the enterprise segment, where business users, construction managers, medical techs, etc., can get full benefit of its functionality.
This next gen version of Google Glass features a few notable enhancements. Here's a quote with the details,
Do you think Google can eventually develop this into a viable product?
All of the details we previously reported about the device’s internals have been corroborated by The Wall Street Journal
, including its Intel Atom processor, improved battery life, and improved “wireless connectivity” (which includes the addition of a 5 GHz WiFi band for video streaming applications). We also mentioned better heat management which is a result of the new chip, and its improved performance. There’s also a yet-to-be-seen Google-made external battery pack, which attaches to the device magnetically.
The device has a more robust build, a larger prism, and has a hinge that allows it to fold and is built to withstand bumps and bruises in the workplace. Additionally, the power button has been moved from its awkward location on the inside to the back of the device, and the front light comes on when the camera is being used. We also reported that the device is waterproof and closed-off, as to protect it from debris and other substances that may damage the hardware.
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