Quick Review: HTC One Max

From a consumer standpoint, HTC launched the One Max to counter Samsung’s booming Galaxy Note line and enter into the “phablet” market. The only issue is that when entering a market completely controlled by Samsung and its marketing teams, you are fighting a constant uphill battle to gain traction. The One Max takes its looks from the HTC One, a device we did enjoy much earlier this year in our reviews. Although, with the Max’s 5.9″ display and extremely heavy body, is it possible that HTC designed themselves completely out of the race against other large devices?

The device has been on the market now for almost one month exactly, so we won’t be dropping a complete full-on review, but did want to touch on the essentials and go over our thoughts on HTC’s latest. Plus, it has a fingerprint scanner.

Here’s our quick review of the One Max.  (more…)

Nexus 5 Review

The Nexus 5 and Moto X are without a doubt the most hyped phones of 2013 for us. We certainly covered the HTC One and Galaxy S4 aplenty, but as we inched close to the launch of both Google and Motorola’s new phones, it’s all anyone could talk or think about. We were often greeted on unrelated stories in the comments with, “Not about the Nexus 5, not news.”

So as I received my Nexus 5 (white “panda” with 32GB of storage), it seemed only fitting that I had to put down my Moto X for a bit. As painful as that was, I told you months ago that this would happen. As good as a phone may be, including the Moto X, our job is to bring you Google’s view of Android, and nothing does that better than a Nexus.  (more…)

Quick Look: Official Nexus Wireless Charger for Nexus 5, 7, and 4

Did you pick up the official Nexus Wireless Charger that went on sale through Google Play yesterday? I can imagine that the $49.99 price tag made some of you hesitate on pulling on the trigger, so as always, we picked one (or two) up to give it a quick spin and share our thoughts. For those not familiar, the Nexus Wireless Charger (NWC) is officially supported by the Nexus 5, Nexus 7 (2013), and Nexus 4, since each has wireless charging built-in. With that said, I would be surprised if this charger didn’t work with other wireless charging-capable devices like the new DROID line. Unfortunately, we don’t have those in house any longer, so we won’t be able to test.

(more…)

Quick Look: Official Nexus 5 Bumper and Quick Cover Cases

Yesterday, the official accessories for the Nexus 5 started popping up on Google Play. Both the Bumper case (in a variety of colors) and the Quick Cover became available at $34.99 and $49.99 prices, respectively. By no means is either cheap, but if there is one thing we know about Google-branded accessories – they are made to fit like a glove. And that’s exactly the case here. (more…)

Review: Samsung Galaxy Gear Smartwatch

Galaxy Gear

The Galaxy Gear smartwatch from Samsung is the company’s first attempt to enter a market in which the industry has adopted as the next opportunity for growth. There isn’t anything on the market that is quite like this device when compared to other smartwatches, as it runs a full-color display, has a built-in camera, and supports 70+ third party applications out of the box. It’s a brave attempt at breathing new life into a growing market, but did Samsung hit it out of the park? We are about to find out.

This is our full Galaxy Gear review.  (more…)

Samsung Galaxy Note 3 Review

The Galaxy Note 2 from Samsung was a very successful device, with millions of users falling in love with its massive display, excellent battery life, S Pen integration, and non-stop A+ performance. While the size of the device might scare a few people away, there is now a dedicated group of folks who can’t imagine having anything smaller in their pockets. Back in early September, Samsung introduced the newest member of the Note family, the Galaxy Note 3, giving Note 2 members a reason to upgrade and others a chance to reconsider their fear of tablet-phone hybrid category.

The key things we kept in mind  while putting this review together were the subtle differences between this device and the Note 2. The Note 3 features a larger 1080p display, up from the Note 2′s slightly smaller 720p display. The Note 3 also comes packed with a beefy Snapdragon 800 processor and 3GB of RAM, up from the Note 2′s 2GB of RAM and less-powerful quad-core processor. Other little things to note are changes to the camera, overall hardware enhancements, and misc. S-Pen software additions.

Without further ado, let’s get to it. This is our Galaxy Note 3 review.   (more…)

Samsung Galaxy Gear Hands-on and Overview

samsung galaxy gear

The Galaxy Gear smartwatch from Samsung, along with the Galaxy Note 3 (review here), were the two biggest announcements the company made during September’s Unpacked event in Berlin (and New York City). It was already known that Samsung would more than likely be unveiling a smartwatch at the event, but it was very uncertain as to what it would look like or what it would be capable of. Without getting into all of the leaked images and phony rumors, it’s safe to say that we weren’t expecting anything this good looking.  (more…)

LG G2 Review

We knew that when the LG G2 arrived, it would be a smartphone more powerful than any we had seen before it. LG teased it for weeks, even announcing the phone’s Snapdragon 800 processor, display tech, and name before it ever took the stage to make the phone official. So when we finally got our hands on it, our concerns weren’t about the display quality or performance, they were going to be about the ecosystem that LG was trying to create with its new app suite, whether or not the camera could live up to its fancy spec list, and if those oddly placed volume and power buttons could win us over.

For the most part, I can easily say that LG has won us over on a number levels with the G2. The display is insanely good, the camera might be our favorite to date, and the UI over the top of Android isn’t as awful as we thought it would be. Let’s talk about all of that and more, to help you decide if the G2 is your next phone.  (more…)