Tim and I just wrapped up our special CES 2016 edition of the Droid Life Show, where we talked about a bunch of takeaways from the conference, including our thoughts on VR. We strapped on HTC Vive and Oculus Rift in their newest forms. They were cool. Were they completely mind blowing experiences that will forever change our lives? Eh, not really. Again, they were very cool and we both see how under the right circumstances (read: with the right game and powerful enough setup) VR could be a hell of a time; I just don’t think we have sipped enough of that hype Kool-Aid surrounding each.
That sort of brings me to today’s poll. We’re – obviously – interested to see where VR goes on at least some level. There is a mobile tie-in, thanks to Samsung with Gear VR, but even the PC-powered versions like Vive and Oculus have at least captured our attention after demoing them. What about you? Has all of the overblown VR hype caught your attention? Are you interested in any implementation, whether that be in conjunction with your phone or as a full-blown room-required gaming experience?
Let us know. Feel free to explain why.
Last year around this time, we asked all of you to weigh in on your current wireless situation. We kept it simple, only asking if you were in some sort of month-to-month type of plan or if you were locked into a contract. The vote showed that most of you (59%) had ditched long-term contracts in favor of a month-to-month plan, which is something you should be proud of.
This year, we want to ask again to see how things have changed. This time, though, we’re tossing in an extra answer or at least breaking out the month-to-month option. You see, if you are in a month-to-month plan, but still have a device payment plan, you are still basically under contract, just without the nasty ETF fee typically associated with a contract. So in this poll, you can vote for a straight up contract, month-to-month without a payment plan, or month-to-month with a payment plan.
We’re closing in on the end of 2015, if you can believe it, so we need to start figuring out who won the day in terms of best smartphone. We want to know who you think made the Android phone of the year.
I honestly can’t recall a year that was filled with so many good phones from so many different players. And it wasn’t just a year where everyone had a single, pretty good phone. We had multiple great phones from some manufacturers that just kept getting better throughout the year. In a time where people keep talking about smartphone plateaus, I’m starting to wonder if we really are that close. Even if we are, we are at a time where phones are so good on so many levels, that I’m not so sure this plateau is a bad thing for you and I.
What’s interesting, is if we go back to this same poll we ran last year, I said the complete opposite. In fact, last year was a pretty terrible year for smartphones. We got a bunch of in-betweener, so-so phones, that all had pretty major flaws in some category. This year, we really had to nitpick to find things that were wrong.
So, you tell us – what is the Android phone of the year?
How many amazing phones have been released within the last three or four months? Seriously, think about it for a second. We got the Moto X Pure Edition, Galaxy Note 5, and the new iPhones around the same time. Then Google introduced the Nexus 6P and 5X, before LG could show off the V10. And even more recently, Motorola gave us two new DROIDs in the Turbo 2 and MAXX 2, plus the HTC One A9 snuck in there. There are amazing choices for phones everywhere you look, from every major manufacturer.
So in today’s poll, we are keeping it simple. Which of the new phones introduced in recent months did you buy or are considering buying? If you want, feel to tell everyone why, as we get asked constantly which phone we would recommend. Because we trust the reader voice, we would appreciate your feedback as a place to direct readers from time to time.
It’s time to decide after seeing each’s official unveiling from Google – are you going Nexus 5X (specs) or Nexus 6P (specs)? Are you going smaller, less-powerful Nexus 5X or are you going full-on flagship Nexus 6P? Are you ready to make the all-around champ a part of your life again or is it time to give a new player, like Huawei a shot?
Next Tuesday, Google is hosting an event in San Francisco that will more than likely be a showcase for the launch of Android 6.0 Marshmallow, two Nexus phones, and a new Chromecast. We’ll be there to get you the latest on whatever it is they do show off, but as we approach, because we like doing these types of things, we want to ask which (rumored) part of the event has you the most excited.
Do you care the most about the new Nexus phones, the Nexus 5X and Nexus 6P? If so, which one in particular? Are you ready to swap out your couple-of-year-old Chromecast for new, more powerful and flexible hardware? Or maybe you just want Android 6.0 to become official, so that you can start the countdown to when your current phone will get it?
Three round smartwatches stole headlines this week, all of which will be available at some point over the next few weeks. We have the new Moto 360 (2nd gen), Huawei Watch, and Samsung’s Gear S2 and S2 Classic. All look pretty fantastic, but each are different in their own way. Moto wants you to customize the hell out of theirs, while Huawei has given you options, but wants you to think of its watch as a high-end premium device. Samsung, well, it’s positioning itself somewhere in the middle, though it seems to have realized all that was wrong with previous watches and fixed them this time around, making watches that are worth considering.
We spent time with all of them over the last couple of weeks. Tim went hands-on with the Huawei Watch here. I also did my thing with the new Moto 360 here, and the Gear S2s here.
I’d have to say that if I were choosing one today, I’d probably go Huawei Watch. The combination of the premium experience, design, and choice has won me over. But that doesn’t mean I’m not super excited to spend ample time with the new Moto 360 and Gear S2. Decisions will be made here shortly, once our reviews are ready.
What about you? If you were picking a smartwatch today, which way would you go?
I posted up the newest images of the Blackberry Venice this morning, thinking it had a substantial amount of hype surrounding it. I now know that I underestimated said hype. You are all crazy in love with the idea of a Blackberry keyboard attached to a Blackberry phone that runs what appears to be mostly-stock Android. I can’t say I fully understand the need for such a device in 2015, now that on-screen keyboards are as good as they are today, but hey, nostalgia is a thing, a real thing.
So, because I need to see the actual numbers that prove this isn’t just a few select fanboyistic droolers who love sliders known as the Blackberry Venice, it’s time for a poll. I need to know – are you really interested in the Blackberry Venice? Like, really really?