HTC One A9 Review

The HTC One A9 has received a lot of attention for looking a lot like the iPhone, and rightfully so. It looks a lot like the iPhone, but there’s a lot more to the phone than that. This isn’t an iPhone running Android; it’s an HTC phone through and through. The A9 feels like the culmination of everything that HTC began to do back in 2013 with the release of the original HTC One (M7). HTC has come a long way since then and it shows in the A9.

This is our HTC One A9 review. (more…)

Nexus 6P Review

Leading up to the announcement of the Nexus 6P and Nexus 5X, there was plenty of excitement throughout the Android world. We were finally getting two Nexus phones from Google, one for the fans of larger phones, and one for fans of smaller phones. It was like a dream come true.

Once the devices were shipped to reviewers and the spec sheets were released, a clear picture was painted – the Nexus 6P was the flagship phone with premium specs and build, and the Nexus 5X was the more affordable, Nexus 5 (2013) sequel made out of plastic that everyone seemed to be clamoring for.

Without further ado, let’s find out if the Nexus 6P is everything Google envisioned when they set out to create it – a premium device with awesome display, powerful camera, and long-lasting battery.

This is our Nexus 6P review.  (more…)

Nexus 5X Review

“The all around champ is back.” That’s Google’s description of the Nexus 5X, which in a way marks the return of a phone that most people would consider to be the best Nexus phone ever made. They are referencing the original Nexus 5 in that quote, of course, a phone that like this 5X was made by LG. Google heard the cries last year of people not wanting an oversized phone when it introduced the whale-esque Nexus 6, and they answered those tears for 2015.

The Nexus 5X is a lot like the original Nexus 5. Again, it’s made by LG, but it also looks very similar, is finished very similar, and carries that similarly low price tag. The goal seems to have been to make the Nexus 5 all over again, but upgrade its parts and hopefully, address the one weak point – the camera. In our early tests, we found the camera to be quite good. So if they made right on that weak point, what about the rest? Is this really the return of the champ? Let’s find out.

This is our Nexus 5X review.  (more…)

Huawei Watch Review

First teased at MWC earlier this year, the Huawei Watch has finally landed in the US. During those months of waiting, Huawei was reportedly tweaking the device to no end, making sure it would be the perfect Android Wear smartwatch, capable of lasting buyers for years to come.

With such a premium design and build, the device also comes with quite the premium price tag. Starting at $349 for the base model, it is one of the most expensive Android Wear devices available, so we wanted to make sure to review it in depth to give you our opinion before you go dropping a few hundred dollars for it.

This is our Huawei Watch review.  (more…)

Moto 360 (2nd Gen) Review

The original Moto 360 was the best smartwatch released in 2014. It had the looks of a modern yet traditional timepiece, along with the feature set of the current vision of a smartwatch, all at a price that wasn’t insulting to consumers understanding that it was a first gen product. Sure, it had its faults, but in the end, when you are talking about a fashion accessory that also has smarts, it’s all about aesthetics – and the Moto 360 was king by a mile.

With the release of the Moto 360 (2nd gen), Motorola had a lot to live up to, but they also had a chance to improve upon last year’s best watch. We all know that this year’s watch needed a major bump in processor to help in performance, so Moto took care of that. They also introduced size options, because not everyone wants to lug around a tank on their wrist. They even tweaked the design a bit, making it more classic looking than ever, while offering even more custom options through their Moto Maker software. Overall, the new 360 is upgraded in all of the right places.

So is it still king? Let’s find out in our Moto 360 (2nd gen) review.  (more…)

OnePlus 2 Review

OnePlus launched a fantastic phone last year in the OnePlus One. It was even good enough to earn a spot in our list of the top 5 smartphones of 2014. That’s saying something. So, of course, when OnePlus began the #hype for the OnePlus 2, many in the Android community seemed genuinely excited.

Fueling a bit of this excitement was OnePlus insisting that the device would be much, much easier to acquire. Before launch, the company claimed it would be 30-50x easier to purchase the device, even though they were still relying on an invite system to purchase it. Along with the claims of better availability, OnePlus also called this phone the “2016 flagship killer.” Not 2015, but 2016, as in, this phone should be better than next year’s phones too.

While the simple fact still remains that it is very difficult to purchase this phone, and it is no one but OnePlus’ fault, we aren’t even sure if this phone is even a 2015 flagship killer, let alone a 2016 killer.

This is our OnePlus 2 review.  (more…)

Moto X Pure Edition Review

The Moto X Pure Edition has a lot to live up to around these parts. For two straight years, its predecessors have grabbed the “Phone of the Year” crown in our end of year top 5 list. That’s a pretty big deal when you consider all of the phones that come out each year. Obviously, we love the approach Motorola takes to Android phones and so if you have used any of the Moto X products, you probably aren’t surprised that they won even with a couple of troublesome areas (their cameras, for one) that certainly weren’t best-in-class. Motorola gets Android – that’s about the best way I can explain their phones.

So what about this year’s model? Can this phone 3-peat with its incredible combination of specs, price, and availability? Well, I’d be spoiling this whole review if I told you that now before we even get into this. What I will say is that we’ve spent a good week+ with a custom designed Moto X Pure Edition and have a ton of opinions to share about it.

This is our Moto X Pure Edition review.  (more…)

Thoughts on the Galaxy Note 5 from an iPhone User [Opinion]

Late last year I was sitting in my car playing with my tiny iPhone 5c. I had just finished reviewing the Sony Z3v and it dawned on me. I missed Android. I started messaging with everyone at Droid Life and within a few minutes I decided I was going to switch to Android. I have an upgrade coming up in October so I figured I would upgrade to the Note 5 since it would be the latest phone out then. Then I got to spend some time with the Galaxy S6. It was a great phone with some shortcomings, but surely the Note 5 would be the phone for me.

More time passed and I continued to evaluate. Would the Note 5 meet my needs? Can I live with a more advanced OS that doesn’t get apps or updates first? Can I give up iMessage for SMS? I had lots of questions and few answers. Read on to get my impressions of the Galaxy Note 5 and what I decided.  (more…)