Asus ZenWatch Unboxing and Tour!

The Asus ZenWatch, an Android Wear device that is arguably the prettiest of them all, is in house and ready for us to dive into. But before we get to a full review, we first need to introduce you to it through an unboxing and tour.

At $199, the ZenWatch is one of the better deals in smartwatches, though it does lack some features that others boast, like a heart rate monitor. But if you are simply looking for a well-made, premium watch to wear on a daily basis, this may be one to keep on your short list.  (more…)

Reminder: Carriers Probably Can’t Activate Your New Nexus 6, Here are Your Options

So you received your brand new Nexus 6 today, straight from a factory in China, and you walk into a Verizon or AT&T or Sprint store to have it activated for use. As you and a sales rep get the process going, you get to the point where they need to scan the nano SIM for the phone and then your phone’s IMEI. You can almost taste the Lollipop. You will soon know how many licks it takes. You are this close. The sweat needed to give you extra grip on the 6-inch whale in front of you is starting to build in the palm of your hand. Your fresh pair of JNCOs is crisp from the dryer. The fresh Free Willy tattoo under your tribal band still has a bandage protecting its scab. You are a Nexus 6 owner. No, even better – you are an unlocked Nexus 6 owner on the verge of becoming one with a marine mammal. “I tell you what to do, carrier,” you say under your breath as you reach for your newly activated phone.

And then the sales rep gives you that look. You have seen this look before, typically when the 7-11 clerk scans your lottery ticket. You sir, do not have a winner. “Sorry, the phone won’t activate because the IMEI is not in our system. There is nothing I can do,” the sales rep says. (more…)

Download: Android 5.0 “Lollipop” OTA Update for Nexus 5, Nexus 7, Nexus 10, and Nexus 4 (Updated)

The Android 5.0 “Lollipop” over-the-air (OTA) updates are starting to arrive to more and more devices, which means that we are finally starting to capture some of the .zip files that can be shared with you for manual updating on your Nexus 5, Nexus 7 (2013 and 2012), Nexus 4, and Nexus 10.

As a reminder, Google rolls out updates in stages, so that they can catch bugs and make sure the process isn’t destroying millions of devices. Assuming the updates go well, they begin to update additional batches of devices each day. But, if you have a .zip file directly from Google for your particular device, you can manually update in a couple of steps (without root).

Each time a new OTA update rolls out for the Nexus line, we have made it a habit of putting them all together for you in a simple list, along with instructions. With Lollipop, things haven’t changed.  (more…)

Nexus 6 Review

Reviewing Google’s new Nexus 6 has been an entertaining mixed bag of an experience. This is so close to being the phone that long-time Android fanboys have been waiting for. This is a Nexus phone, made by Motorola, that has the most premium set of specs currently available in the mobile space, and that works on Verizon, along with a number of other carriers. This is supposed to be as good as it gets. This is supposed to be the Nexus phone of Nexus phones. But is it?

That’s a tough question to answer, mostly because Google created the Nexus 6 knowing that this wouldn’t be the phone for everyone. In fact, their VP of engineering, David Burke, said that he thinks about 50% of people who hold a “phablet” like this won’t want to put it down. In other words, they know that at least half of you want something much smaller or different than the Nexus 6.

And that’s exactly why the Nexus 6 is that mixed bag. For the most part, you can’t help but love everything about the Nexus 6. It feels premium. It looks great. Internally, it tops the charts. It runs Lollipop, which is ridiculously fun to use. But then it’s also a giant whale, which Google is clearly aware of since they codenamed it “shamu.” You have awesome and then huge. You have premium, but in whale form. You have the phone of enthusiast dreams, that’s available everywhere, but that only 50% of may want due to its size.

As you can see, we have plenty to talk about.

This is our Nexus 6 review.  (more…)

Samsung Galaxy Note 4 Review

Finally, DL is posting its Galaxy Note 4 review. Sure, it may be late, but as the saying goes, better late than never. We have spent a few weeks with Samsung’s large flagship device and are comfortable with now throwing our final opinion out into the open world.

With Google on the verge of releasing its very own high-end phablet device in the Nexus 6, you might be trying to decide which phone you should go with. To help you come to a decision, we tried to focus on a few select areas. They are as follows.

First, does Samsung’s TouchWiz UI bring worthy enhancements to the Android OS over Google’s plain vanilla version found on the Nexus 6? Second, the Note family has been known for having fantastic battery life. With its 5.7″ QHD Super AMOLED display, can the Note 4 also meet those high expectations in the battery department? Lastly, Note devices have been bringing the heat in the mobile photography department. Does the Note continue that trend?

These are just a few of the subjects we wanted to dive into.

Here is our Galaxy Note 4 review.  (more…)

Video: This is Android 5.0 “Lollipop” on the New Moto X

In a crazy, yet somehow completely unsurprising move yesterday afternoon, Motorola began pushing Android 5.0 “Lollipop” to the “Pure Edition” of its brand new Moto X (2nd gen) in a soak test. We talked about this on the DL Show the other day, mentioning the fact that it wouldn’t surprise us if Motorola was the first to get Lollipop ready and make it available within about a week. But even I would be lying if I said I wasn’t surprised by it showing up before the weekend.  (more…)

DROID Turbo Review

The DROID brand deserves the majority of credit for the amount of early success that the Android operating system had in 2009 and 2010. From the original Motorola DROID to the original DROID Incredible, this was the brand of phones that people flocked to if they wanted a phone outside of the iPhone, not just because of a great marketing campaign, but because these were top of the line phones. Ask most of the readers on this site which phone got them started on Android, and you shouldn’t be surprised to hear them say, “The OG DROID.” It’s an iconic phone that helped launch Android to the top.

But as the years have flown by, the DROID brand’s popularity has diminished, largely due to the Samsung Galaxy takeover and other competitors focusing on releasing a single flagship phone across all carriers. DROID has always been there, but it doesn’t seem to have been given the attention it had in early years. The DROID brand, since 2011, has become watered down, stale, and if I’m being honest, kind of annoying, leaving it with little influence.

And then came the DROID Turbo, a device that beats almost every other phone spec-for-spec, has ditched the red robotic eye and obnoxious “Drooooooooooid!” sounds, and doesn’t look like the Terminator designed it. It’s still a bit flashy depending on the color you choose, but it feels durable, can probably take a bullet, and is a serious competitor in a crowded space. It also might be the DROID phone you have been looking for, after all these years.

This is our DROID Turbo review.  (more…)