Samsung Galaxy S5 Review

The first half of the last two years has been all about the competition between HTC and Samsung’s new flagships. This year, the battle became testier than ever thanks to HTC calling out Samsung for what it perceived to be a lack of innovation and the continued use of plastics in its Galaxy S5. While you could argue that HTC is either wrong or right, there is no denying the continued success of all things Samsung, with the Galaxy S5 likely only continuing the trend.

We aren’t necessarily going to try to settle the battle between these two (that is up for you to decide in the end), but after having reviewed HTC’s new One (M8), it is now time for us to share our thoughts on Samsung’s Galaxy S5. Tim and I have spent three weeks with the phone, so as you can imagine, we feel like we have a pretty good grasp on everything it has to offer. And just like with our M8 review, we have tag-teamed this one.

This is our Galaxy S5 review.  (more…)

Samsung Gear Fit Review: Terrible Fitness Tracker and Smartwatch, Cool Display

As you guys know, I’m kind of into the whole fitness band thing. I’ve talked about my dedication to Nike’s platform, including the Fuelband (which I recently retired). I’ve picked up random Kickstarter items like the Misfit Shine, all because I’m constantly looking for something to help track my fitness goals, which mostly includes speed and distance training with some strength exercises worked in.

When Samsung unveiled the Gear Fit during their Galaxy S5 launch event, I was actually somewhat excited – a fitness band, with a beautiful little AMOLED display, that works on Android, isn’t terrible looking, and doesn’t have single-day battery life. What’s not to like? I picked one up last week when it arrived in stores and have been using it daily ever since. I’ve logged 8 mile runs, shorter sprint workouts, worn it as a smartwatch, and even tried once to get it to track my sleep. In other words, I’ve tried to make this my daily fitness tracker and more, just like Samsung claims it can be.

With that said, I’ve got a ton of thoughts to share. Let’s talk about the Samsung Gear Fit.  (more…)

App Review: Drive Autosync by ttxapps

I have been a big fan of Dropbox for a long time. It’s a great service to back up and sync documents, photos, videos, and whatever else, but when Google announced the massive price cuts to Google Drive storage plans, I made the switch. After a few days of uploading, I had all of my Dropbox data imported into Google Drive, but I still needed to find an easy way for my wife and I to upload our pictures and videos from our phones to Drive. (more…)

HTC One (M8) Review

HTC is back this year, with a new flagship device titled the One (M8). Last year’s One (M7) was mostly well-received, as the company announced they would be refocusing more on creating the best device possible and stepping away from over-the-top marketing and flooding of the market with mid-range devices. The company wants the consumer to do the marketing for them, and as we all know, word of mouth is by far the strongest form of advertising.

In 2014, major devices are on the roadmap from all of the top OEMs such as Samsung, Apple, Motorola, and LG. If HTC wants to remain competitive, it is without question that the One (M8) would need to blow the socks off of anyone who touched it. It needs the right specs, the right features, and the right build quality.

While the company was able to do most of these things, the M8 did fall somewhat short in a few categories, but if you have been paying attention, there is no shortage of people willing to argue that the One (M8) is one of the greatest smartphones ever made.

Both Tim and I have had more than a week with the One (M8), so we have tag-teamed our full review, going over the pros and cons of the device.

This is our HTC One (M8) review.  (more…)

Qualcomm Toq Review

With a stack of smartwatches having sat on the corner of my desk for the last three or four months, it’s finally time that we start running through reviews of them all. The stack is only going to grow over the coming year, so it’s probably best that we give you something to compare the new stuff to. These will be “quick” reviews that cover the basics and also offer my opinions on what I like and don’t like.

First up, is without a doubt my favorite of the moment – the Qualcomm Toq. I know what you are probably thinking, and yes, it’s overpriced, oversized, and was originally supposed to be just an outlet for Qualcomm to show off their Mirasol display. But I’m actually loving it.

Let’s talk about why.  (more…)

Pebble Steel in Black Matte: Unboxing, Initial Thoughts and Comparison

Our Pebble Steel (in black matte) is finally in house. And yes, we unboxed it.

Announced during press day at CES in January, the Steel is Pebble’s premium finished smartwatch, targeted at those looking for something a bit classier than the original plastic unit that took the smartwatch world by storm. The functionality here is identical to the original, so the focus then becomes on the materials used, appearance, and whether or not it’s worth the extra $100.  (more…)

LG G Flex Review

The hype train is always fully fueled when it comes to new phones, and with a new year beginning, the hype is bigger than ever. LG announced the G Flex  late last year right after Samsung announced the Galaxy Round, a device which we thought looked like a complete abomination. The G Flex however is curved the correct way, supposedly allowing for a perfect fit on your face (or butt), while still delivering a phablet experience for those who enjoy large phones. It was initially introduced for international markets, but has now come to the U.S. for 2014.

We had hands-on with the G Flex at CES, but now that we have had one in our own possession for about a week, we can give a detailed opinion this monster of a device. Is the curved display just a fad? Are back buttons here to stay? Is 720p a viable option for a device with a 6″ display in 2014? Let’s find out together.

This is Droid Life’s review of the LG G Flex.  (more…)