Tag Archives: Android

Google Pixel XL Review: Hal 9000 Includes the Best Smartphone Camera

Android smartphones have come an incredible distance since their origins in Verizon-exclusives, like the first “DROID” devices in 2009. From plastic, chunky, and cheap flip-out keyboards (Motorola DROID) and trackballs (HTC DROID Eris),  Android devices have evolved into polished art pieces made with aluminum and glass. And although Apple’s attention to detail definitely inspired the emulation, it’s difficult to argue the flattery of repeating such design concepts is a negative thing.

Moto X Owners Receiving Verizon’s 4.4.2 KitKat Updates Today

Owners of the Motorola MotoX on Verizon have started receiving an update to the latest Android 4.4.2 KitKat today. Soak test  invites (A program where people can beg to receive Beta software updates) for the MotoX update on Verizon Wireless went out last week, and reports of the update roll-out have already been coming in, including on my own personal phone. Updates to security, roaming, battery life, and their proprietary software are included. Also, Verizon’s preferred mobile wallet payment app, ISIS, will have new enhancements. Stay tuned as we play around with it to see if any drastic changes are noticed. You can see the full rundown of updates in 4.4.2 KitKat from Verizon below.

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AT&T Samsung Galaxy Gear Review: A Half-baked Device with Shiny Features

TV shows such as The Jetsons, Knight Rider, and Inspector Gadget have been brought back into the limelight this fall, and it’s all for one Samsung’s revolutionary product–a smartwatch. The Samsung Galaxy Gear is here, and it’s attempting to fulfill all of your favorite science fiction television shows dreams. Phone calls from your wrist, spoken memos to your Captain’s log, incognito spy-cam shots, and even tracking your footsteps are all features of the Galaxy Gear. But is it worth the $300? Does it add any more functionality to you life? That’s what I’ll be discussing in this review of the paired duo, the Samsung Galaxy Gear and its partner in crime, the Samsung Galaxy Note III on AT&T.

Nexus 5 Now Available from Google Play Store

UPDATE: You can now register for Nexus 5 availability from T-Mobile here.

UPDATE 2:  The Nexus 5 is now sold out. Thanks +Terry Boccarossa!

UPDATE 3: We are hearing reports that the black Nexus 5 is still available but stock is limited. Keep checking the Google Play Store if you aren’t able to purchase the device immediately.

After various rumors and leaks, Google has finally made their latest Nexus device available for purchase via the Google Play Store. Available in both black and white with your choice of 16GB ($349) and 32GB ($399) storage capacities, the Nexus 5 is the first Android device with Google’s latest version of Android 4.4 (KitKat).

Google’s Nexus 5 was built by hardware partner LG, similar to the Nexus 4, and sports a 4.95″ 1080p display (445 ppi) with Gorilla Glass 3,  a Snapdragon 800 processor running at 2.3GHz, 2GB of RAM and an 8 megapixel rear camera/1.3 megapixel front.

You can buy the device unlocked, directly from Google and use on T-Mobile and AT&T’s network. The device is currently shipping buy November 8 so if you want to be the coolest cat on the block with Android 4.4, you better place your orders now as Google tends to move very quickly through Nexus inventory.

For more information, and to purchase the Nexus 5, visit the Google Play Store.

 

 

AT&T HTC One Mini Review: Hot, Fast, and Beautiful

Android phone “families” are synonymous with overkill this year when you consider the lineup of Nokias, Verizon Droids, and, of course, the HTC One lineup. But the One Mini, the miniaturized version of the HTC One, is not a cheap feeling or superfluous device. It fits perfectly in you hand (something less prominent these days) and its specs aren’t watered down. The HTC One Mini on AT&T redesign keeps its smooth aluminum shell, speedy zip, while also being functional. Below is our full HTC One Mini review.

Design

So let’s talk about design. Or is it redesign? The One Mini keeps that gorgeous, high-end aluminum shell but also adds a white, plastic rim around the device giving it a different accent than its larger HTC One counterpart. That’s not to say it feels any cheaper or less sturdy a device. The phone keeps literally the same shape, and it arcs in your hand perfectly for a nice, average-sized hand fit. The problem? It’s the exact same issue the original HTC One has: It’s just too damn slippery. As comfortable as the device is in hand  (light too), I couldn’t help this constant fear of it slipping out of my hand and cracking it on the concrete.  And for a device this attractive, a case would be blasphemy. The other problem was the heat. Aluminum is expected to transfer temperatures quite well and the hardware and burning hot battery inside can honestly make your palms sweat. Sometimes I wondered if I’d been holding a laptop’s heat vent on my palm it was so warm. Slips and sweaty palms aside, the phone will catch eyes of those passerby, and it’s one of the most attractive Android handsets ever created (like the One was).

A Few Days with Google Hangouts Pt. I

With all of the announcements out of Google’s I/O developer conference this past week, the one that stands out the most for me personally is the introduction of Google Hangouts. No, this isn’t the video chat built-in to Google+ that we all know (and some love). This is the product, formerly referred to as “Babel,” that unites the old Hangouts with Google+ Messenger, Google Talk and very soon Google Voice and SMS.

Google has been developing the new Hangouts for the last two years, working with engineers across Google to bring the first truly “unified” experience to a cross-platform messaging service. Built to compete with the likes of BBM, WhatsApp and even Facebook Messenger, Hangouts allows users to communicate with their contacts from a Chrome, Android or iOS device. The old Talk within GMail is even upgraded to Hangouts so that conversations will always be synced across all of your devices.