Accessories – Droid Life https://www.droid-life.com An intense Android news community bringing you the latest in phones, rooting, apps, and reviews. Thu, 14 Dec 2017 23:51:21 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Razer’s Hammerhead USB Type-C Earbuds Will Work Perfectly on the Razer Phone https://www.droid-life.com/2017/11/17/razer-hammerhead-usb-type-c/ https://www.droid-life.com/2017/11/17/razer-hammerhead-usb-type-c/#comments Fri, 17 Nov 2017 22:28:47 +0000 https://www.droid-life.com/?p=208673

Razer is now selling its Hammerhead earbuds with USB Type-C, aimed directly at buyers of the Razer Phone. There are pre-existing versions of the Hammerhead buds that have a 3.5mm connector, but since the Razer Phone doesn’t have a dedicated headphone jack, these Hammerheads would make a good add-on. In fact, they’d probably make a … Continued

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Razer is now selling its Hammerhead earbuds with USB Type-C, aimed directly at buyers of the Razer Phone.

There are pre-existing versions of the Hammerhead buds that have a 3.5mm connector, but since the Razer Phone doesn’t have a dedicated headphone jack, these Hammerheads would make a good add-on. In fact, they’d probably make a good add-on for any Android device that doesn’t have a headphone jack, which is a lot of them these days.

According to the listing, these earbuds have a custom-tuned DAC for clean and unprocessed audio, in-line microphone and volume control, as well as flat cables for tangle-free storage.

The Hammerheads are priced at $79.99 through Razer’s online store. They haven’t made their way to Amazon yet, but you can expect them to show up there, too, at some point.

Razer Store Link

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Garmin Speak is a Mini Alexa-Equipped Car Accessory, Priced at $149 https://www.droid-life.com/2017/10/17/garmin-speak-mini-alexa-equipped-car-accessory-priced-149/ https://www.droid-life.com/2017/10/17/garmin-speak-mini-alexa-equipped-car-accessory-priced-149/#comments Tue, 17 Oct 2017 20:39:33 +0000 http://www.droid-life.com/?p=207273

Garmin and Amazon have teamed up to launch the Garmin Speak, a mini Amazon Echo-like device with Amazon Alexa onboard to give you voice control powers when in your car. That means access to Alexa’s skills as you drive, only this is in a tiny package that sticks to your windshield. The Garmin Speak costs … Continued

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Garmin and Amazon have teamed up to launch the Garmin Speak, a mini Amazon Echo-like device with Amazon Alexa onboard to give you voice control powers when in your car. That means access to Alexa’s skills as you drive, only this is in a tiny package that sticks to your windshield.

The Garmin Speak costs $149 and is available today if you are interested.

It works by attaching to your phone via a Garmin Speak app and Bluetooth, so that your phone’s data connection can give it access to Alexa. In other words, this device doesn’t have its own data connection or SIM card or WiFi module, but does connect to your phone to utilize a data plan you already pay for. It also connects to your car’s stereo via Bluetooth or AUX to provide audio feedback and responses.

Garmin says that you’ll be able to play your playlists and podcasts, get traffic updates, hear sports scores and stats, listen to the news, place orders for goods, control your smart home, and even get Garmin’s turn-by-turn spoke directions with a bit of lane guidance on the device’s tiny display.

It looks pretty sweet!

Garmin Speak Links:

Cheers Pops!

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‘Made For Google’ Accessory Certification Program is a Go https://www.droid-life.com/2017/10/04/made-for-google-accessories/ https://www.droid-life.com/2017/10/04/made-for-google-accessories/#comments Wed, 04 Oct 2017 22:00:08 +0000 http://www.droid-life.com/?p=206646

While new hardware is always fun, Google made another announcement that is sure to make a big impact for Google hardware owners. Reported earlier this month, the Made For Google accessory certification program is now official, paving the way for customers to purchase accessories for their Google device without fear of purchasing something that isn’t compatible … Continued

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While new hardware is always fun, Google made another announcement that is sure to make a big impact for Google hardware owners. Reported earlier this month, the Made For Google accessory certification program is now official, paving the way for customers to purchase accessories for their Google device without fear of purchasing something that isn’t compatible with the latest Google spec.

Basically, any accessory that should work properly with a Google-made device will sport a “Made for Google” badge, similar to what Apple has with its “MFi” program. We’re talking cables, adapters, and basically any and all 3rd-party accessories, so long as the company submits its accessories to go through the certification process.

To name a few companies that are already signed on to create Made For Google accessories, there is Incipio, Moshi, Belkin, dBrand, Griffin, Speck, Otter, Lifeproof, and many more.

As Belkin states in a press release to go along with Google’s announcement, “The new made for Google program complements the Belkin approach of creating people inspired products starting with consumer insights so that we give consumers exactly what they want and need. To participate in the inaugural class gives us a seat at the table as these programs are being developed and we are excited to be a part of the process from day one.”

You can peep all of the new Made for Google accessories by following the link below.

Google Store Link

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Google Announces $159 Pixel Buds With Google Assistant https://www.droid-life.com/2017/10/04/google-pixel-buds/ https://www.droid-life.com/2017/10/04/google-pixel-buds/#comments Wed, 04 Oct 2017 18:08:58 +0000 http://www.droid-life.com/?p=206614

Announced as the perfect audio accessory for your new Pixel 2 or Pixel 2XL, Google unveiled the Pixel Buds at its press event this morning. The Pixel Buds are $159 ear buds, wired to each other that connect via Bluetooth to your smartphone. Onboard is Google Assistant, allowing you to quickly access answers to whatever … Continued

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Announced as the perfect audio accessory for your new Pixel 2 or Pixel 2XL, Google unveiled the Pixel Buds at its press event this morning.

The Pixel Buds are $159 ear buds, wired to each other that connect via Bluetooth to your smartphone. Onboard is Google Assistant, allowing you to quickly access answers to whatever questions you may have. Users can also queue up music using their voice, thanks to Assistant.

The standout feature for the Pixel Buds is real-time translations, though. As shown on stage, a user can speak their native language, with Google then providing instant translations into various languages to a user nearby. It was actually quite remarkable, something we’ll hopefully get to test out once these buds arrive.

As for specs, the Pixel Buds include up to 5 hours of listening time on a single charge, “one-touch” audio control, and “high quality” audio. Google does not provide specifics for the actual audio side, but we assume it’ll be much like other earbud experiences.

The Pixel Buds are available for pre-order today, priced at $159, shipping later this year.

Google Store Link

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We’ve Got Release Dates for New Moto Mods: JBL SoundBoost 2, TurboPower Pack, and More https://www.droid-life.com/2017/06/29/new-moto-mods-jbl2-turbopower-z2/ https://www.droid-life.com/2017/06/29/new-moto-mods-jbl2-turbopower-z2/#comments Thu, 29 Jun 2017 16:50:29 +0000 http://www.droid-life.com/?p=202610

The Moto Z2 Play is now available from Verizon, but if you own a Moto Z phone already, you probably only care about the new Moto Mods that were supposed to release alongside it. I have good and bad news on that front – we know dates and pricing, but none are available just yet. … Continued

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The Moto Z2 Play is now available from Verizon, but if you own a Moto Z phone already, you probably only care about the new Moto Mods that were supposed to release alongside it. I have good and bad news on that front – we know dates and pricing, but none are available just yet.

Motorola’s online store will first sell the JBL SoundBoost 2 speaker on July 10. Best Buy will have the JBL SoundBoost 2, TurboPower Pack, and Style Shells with Wireless Charging on July 30. Verizon will have the SoundBoost 2 and TurboPower Pack on August 10.

If you were looking for the Moto Mod GamePad, it’ll arrive later this summer.

For specific details on all of these Moto Mods, be sure you check out this post.

New Moto Mods Links:

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Ring Video Doorbell 2 Arrives With 1080p, Swappable Batteries https://www.droid-life.com/2017/06/19/ring-video-doorbell-2-arrives-1080p-swappable-batteries/ https://www.droid-life.com/2017/06/19/ring-video-doorbell-2-arrives-1080p-swappable-batteries/#comments Mon, 19 Jun 2017 15:05:08 +0000 http://www.droid-life.com/?p=202163

Ring, the popular smart video doorbell company, released its newest video doorbell today, the Ring Video Doorbell 2. The naming scheme here, it’s quite technical. This new Video Doorbell 2 has been upgraded with 1080p streaming capabilities (up from 720p in the preview model) and optional battery swapping. So if you are running your Ring … Continued

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Ring, the popular smart video doorbell company, released its newest video doorbell today, the Ring Video Doorbell 2. The naming scheme here, it’s quite technical.

This new Video Doorbell 2 has been upgraded with 1080p streaming capabilities (up from 720p in the preview model) and optional battery swapping. So if you are running your Ring Doorbell 2 on a battery, you can quick swap batteries when they die rather than wait for the Doorbell to fully charge up. That means less time without your doorbell up and working.

Like previous Ring doorbells, this new model can be both hard-wired or run on battery, it features mobile alerts for things like motion or sound, night vision, and live viewing of your camera’s stream. The camera is now only 160-degree this time, though, which is a downgrade from 180-degree on the previous Video Doorbell.

The new Ring Video Doorbell 2 costs $199.99 and comes in two color options. Additional battery packs cost $29, but are currently discounted to $20.

Buy Ring Video Doorbell 2:

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Logitech Announces New Circle 2 Home Indoor/Outdoor Wired and Wire-Free Cameras With a Modular Twist https://www.droid-life.com/2017/06/13/logitech-announces-new-circle-2-home-indooroutdoor-wireless-wire-free-cameras-modular-twist/ https://www.droid-life.com/2017/06/13/logitech-announces-new-circle-2-home-indooroutdoor-wireless-wire-free-cameras-modular-twist/#comments Tue, 13 Jun 2017 21:30:31 +0000 http://www.droid-life.com/?p=201671

Logitech probably just created the smart home security cameras that will replace all of the Nest cameras I’ve picked up over the years. Why? Because Logitech seems to get it. They get that not every camera should be wired. They get that you’ll use cameras both indoors and outdoors and might want to move one … Continued

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Logitech probably just created the smart home security cameras that will replace all of the Nest cameras I’ve picked up over the years. Why? Because Logitech seems to get it. They get that not every camera should be wired. They get that you’ll use cameras both indoors and outdoors and might want to move one from indoors to out without having to buy an entirely separate unit. They also get that you might have unique situations, where a camera would be better attached to a window or stuck to an outlet, rather than sitting on a shelf or screwed into a wall.

And we know all of this because today, they announced the Logitech Circle 2, an indoor and outdoor smart camera with some modular aspects and a reasonable price. 

The Circle 2 is the follow-up to the popular Circle, only it’s been greatly improved. The Circle 2 is, again, an indoor/outdoor camera, which means you don’t have to specify when you buy one if you wwant an indoor or outdoor unit. They are the same.

logitech circle 2

The camera streams at 1080p, has a 180-degree wide-angle lens, and two-way talk and listening. But Circle 2 also includes 24-hours of free cloud storage, along with additional plans that give you 14-days of storage for as little as $3.99 per camera. Everything, as you probably assumed, is controlled through an app.

Where the Circle 2 stands out for me is in the wireless or wired options and the fact that you can kind of stick them anywhere. The Circle 2 wired costs $179.99 and the Circle 2 wire-free $199.99. The wire-free model should last up-to 3 months without needing a charge using default settings. You can buy additional 6400mAh battery packs to make for quick swapping once a battery does run out. My understanding is that you can even buy a wired camera, decide you want it to be wireless, and do so by detaching for the wire and attaching to a battery pack. (Edit: Logitech clarified to me that the wired version can’t be converted to a wire-free version. Apologies for the confusion.) And again, both cameras work indoors and outdoors.

Additionally, Logitech will sell you a Weatherproof Extension cord for your wired cameras, a Window Mount, should you want to mount a camera to a window, and a Plug Mount to plug one directly into an outlet and go wire-free.

You can pre-order the Circle 2 today. Logitech plans to ship in July.

Pre-order Logitech Circle 2:

// Logitech [2]

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Hands-on: RÖK Cases From WÜD Life for the Galaxy S8+ https://www.droid-life.com/2017/06/07/hands-on-rok-cases/ https://www.droid-life.com/2017/06/07/hands-on-rok-cases/#comments Wed, 07 Jun 2017 22:15:02 +0000 http://www.droid-life.com/?p=201463

After posting yesterday about the availability of WÜD Life’s lineup of RÖK cases, we received our sample in the mail. I saw a few questions about the cases, so with this post, I’ll show off the cases I got for my Galaxy S8+, then answer a few of the questions I saw.  My first impression … Continued

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After posting yesterday about the availability of WÜD Life’s lineup of RÖK cases, we received our sample in the mail. I saw a few questions about the cases, so with this post, I’ll show off the cases I got for my Galaxy S8+, then answer a few of the questions I saw. 

My first impression of the cases was, “Dang, these are pretty nice.” Before I opened the packaging, I was expecting the cases to be somewhat heavy and bulky. WÜD Life is using slates of real rock after all, but I was pleasantly surprised at how light the case is and how easy the rubber holding everything together molded around my device. Very easy to get the phone in and out of the case.

As for the rock itself, it’s just as advertised. Each piece is different, but the overall idea is that the rock provides a nice texture for you to grip the device with. And instead of having a boring black case, you might as well deck it out with fancy looking rocks and what not. I quite enjoy the texture and somewhat scratchiness that the rock provides in my hand, though, I feel as if I need to be careful with where I place it down. I’d hate to scratch my dining table or work desk with my phone’s rock case.

Anyway, below are some pictures of the samples I received. The lighter, green colored case is the Meteor option, while the dark grey case is the Space or Crater option, I think. It’s sorta hard to tell and the packaging doesn’t reference which option it is.

If you want to pick up a RÖK case for either a select iPhone, Galaxy, Pixel, or LG device, follow this link. Each case is priced at $39.95, made right here in the USA.

Gallery

 

  

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Video: Best Galaxy S8, Galaxy S8+ Cases Worth Checking Out https://www.droid-life.com/2017/04/21/video-best-cases-galaxy-s8/ https://www.droid-life.com/2017/04/21/video-best-cases-galaxy-s8/#comments Fri, 21 Apr 2017 16:45:23 +0000 http://www.droid-life.com/?p=199698

I’m not the biggest fan of cases for smartphones, but according to our recent poll, I am in the minority. People want to protect their smartphones, and you know what, I understand where you’re coming from. Especially on the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+, with all of its glass and hardly any bezel, there’s no … Continued

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I’m not the biggest fan of cases for smartphones, but according to our recent poll, I am in the minority. People want to protect their smartphones, and you know what, I understand where you’re coming from. Especially on the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+, with all of its glass and hardly any bezel, there’s no doubt you’ll want a case to protect it.

In an effort to show you a few of the better options out there from companies like Spigen, BodyGuardz and VRS Design, we’ve put together the below video to show you what’s out there for the S8 and S8+. 

In the video, we go over options like Thin Fit, Crystal Bumper, wallet cases, armor cases, and neo hybrid cases. There are so many options out there, it’s completely realistic to believe there is a case tailored specifically to suit your needs.

If you are looking for a direct recommendation, I really quite like the Spigen Thin Fit options for the S8 and S8+, simply because there’s no a lot of added bulk when the case is on. Yes, it covers up the gorgeous backside of the device, but at least you’ll know your corners and back glass are safe from a tumble. Another option I appreciate is the Wallet S. Not only is it a case, but can double as a wallet for anyone with big enough pockets to accommodate it. Links can be found to these aforementioned cases below, as well as a couple others that I recommend.

Spigen

BodyGuardz

VRS Design

If you missed it, we’re giving away all of these cases, so if you’d like the opportunity of winning one, you can find details here.

Will you be using a case your Galaxy S8 or Galaxy S8+?

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IKEA Introduces TRÅDFRI Smart Lighting System, Bulbs as Low as $11.99 https://www.droid-life.com/2017/03/27/ikea-tradfri-smart-lighting-system-price-availability/ https://www.droid-life.com/2017/03/27/ikea-tradfri-smart-lighting-system-price-availability/#comments Mon, 27 Mar 2017 18:09:56 +0000 http://www.droid-life.com/?p=198515

If you have yet to jump into the world of smart lights, I certainly can understand. After all, these things (Philips products in particular) are pretty damn expensive. But what if IKEA offered up a solution that wasn’t cheap, but also wasn’t ridiculously expensive? Hopefully, that sounds appealing, because their new TRÅDFRI smart lighting system is on … Continued

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If you have yet to jump into the world of smart lights, I certainly can understand. After all, these things (Philips products in particular) are pretty damn expensive. But what if IKEA offered up a solution that wasn’t cheap, but also wasn’t ridiculously expensive? Hopefully, that sounds appealing, because their new TRÅDFRI smart lighting system is on the way! 

The TRÅDFRI line will be available outside of the US in select countries on March 31, from what we can tell, but the US stores are gearing up for release too it seems. If you hit up that link below, you’ll find all of the TRÅDFRI products already listed on the US IKEA site, with pricing, descriptions, manuals, etc. You can’t buy them just yet, but I doubt the launch is far off.

So far, TRÅDFRI products include a gateway kit for $79.99 that includes two smart lights, a dimmer switch, and the hub that all of your lights attach to. Single lights (E26) cost just $11.99, plus there are additional light options, remote control switches, motion sensor kits, etc. on the way.

This new line works with ZigBee Light Link (ZLL), which is the same technology behind Philips Hue.

Android and iOS apps will allow you to control the system.

IKEA TRÅDFRI Link

Cheers Anon!

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SanDisk Introduces Even Faster 256GB Extreme A1 Rated MicroSD Card https://www.droid-life.com/2017/02/27/sandisk-introduces-even-faster-256gb-extreme-a1-rated-microsd-card/ https://www.droid-life.com/2017/02/27/sandisk-introduces-even-faster-256gb-extreme-a1-rated-microsd-card/#comments Mon, 27 Feb 2017 23:33:24 +0000 http://www.droid-life.com/?p=197442

In January, SanDisk introduced us to one of the first A1 rated microSD cards, the Ultra 256GB beast of a card that’s A1 rating meant it was able to run apps properly. Today, SanDisk is taking their 256GB offering up a notch by introducing the Extreme version of the same card.  With the new Extreme 256GB A1 … Continued

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In January, SanDisk introduced us to one of the first A1 rated microSD cards, the Ultra 256GB beast of a card that’s A1 rating meant it was able to run apps properly. Today, SanDisk is taking their 256GB offering up a notch by introducing the Extreme version of the same card. 

With the new Extreme 256GB A1 rated card, you get transfer speeds of up to 100MB/s, instead of the 95MB/s we saw in the previous card. The big deal is the A1 Application Performance Class rating, though, as the card should work quite well for those who wish to take advantage of Android’s Adoptable Storage. This card was built to run apps and will probably be a great match for your new LG G6 or Galaxy S8.

The new Extreme 256GB microSD card from SanDisk will cost $199.99 when it arrives in March. If you need a 256GB A1 rated card today, you can order the Ultra 256GB from SanDisk over at Amazon for a newly discounted price of $149.99.

Via:  BusinessWire

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Tim’s Favorite Tech Stuff Right Now https://www.droid-life.com/2017/02/15/tims-favorite-tech-stuff-right-now/ https://www.droid-life.com/2017/02/15/tims-favorite-tech-stuff-right-now/#comments Wed, 15 Feb 2017 21:54:54 +0000 http://www.droid-life.com/?p=195933

Before I got into Android, I wasn’t an overly tech-centric person. I had a few gaming consoles back in the day for playing GTA and other various titles, but to my point, I’ve never had a water-cooled PC called “n00b st0mp3r” or even a real smartphone until 2009. This can all be attributed, at least from … Continued

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Before I got into Android, I wasn’t an overly tech-centric person. I had a few gaming consoles back in the day for playing GTA and other various titles, but to my point, I’ve never had a water-cooled PC called “n00b st0mp3r” or even a real smartphone until 2009. This can all be attributed, at least from what I can tell, to where and how I was raised as a child. I’m originally from a county in Northern California where trends can take years to reach, but given the internet age we currently live in, it’s getting much better there and more connected to the outside world. 

Anyway, fast forward to 2017 and I’m on the front lines of innovation *laugh*, hanging out at CES, discussing industry buzzwords like IoT and getting to play with all of the latest and greatest toys available on the market. Needless to say, I’m now more attune to what’s taking place in the tech space and I very much enjoy the connectedness of it all.

So, now that I’m all in love with technology and have implemented much of it into my life, I wanted to share my favorite pieces of tech I currently use and maybe inspire you to do the same in the comments below. Not all of it is related to Android, but just tech in general.

Here we go.


Propel’s Star Wars Battle Drone

While we have yet to implement aerial drone footage in our video reviews (don’t think it’ll ever happen), I still enjoy playing with drones during my personal time. Recently launched are the Star Wars Battle Drones from Propel, right up my alley as a Star Wars nerd. While these drones are designed to essentially battle each other with built-in lasers (laser tag style), I enjoy flying mine around solo.

According to the tech specs, these drones can reach up to 35MPH, but I haven’t gotten quite comfortable enough to bump the controls up to Mode 3. It would also be helpful if we caught a bit of decent drone-flying weather up in Portland, so I may be waiting until summer time to really let her loose in the field.

If you go onto YouTube and check out other peoples’ flights, you will see that the entire unboxing and setting up experience is a blast. Everything, including your flights, are paired with Star Wars music and voices, perfect for fans who suffer from severe nostalgia. Even the process of putting batteries into the controller is met with voice guidance from a Rebel Commander.

Below is what you experience when first opening the box. If you happen to be into Star Wars and into drones, this purchase is a no-brainer. Only downside is that it’ll cost you $199 for one, and technically, they’re much more fun when you have two (laser tag multiplayer battles). That experience starts at $400, making it not the cheapest drone you can find. However, buyers do have their choice between a 74-Z Speeder, T-65 X-Wing, and TIE Advanced X1.

May the Force be with you.

Propel Link ($199)


Aukey Dash Cam

I have been thinking about installing a dash cam in my car for quite some time, and what really inspired me to do so are all of the videos on YouTube of people capturing amazing incidents on camera. In reality, I don’t think anyone really needs a dash cam until something actually happens to you or in front of you, so I see it as more of a “better safe than sorry” type of investment. To put that into perspective, what I’m saying is, 99% of the footage you capture will probably be quite dull, but then there’s that 1% that will kick ass or come in handy if an accident is involved.

Speaking purely about the Aukey Dash Cam, which Aukey provided for me to check out, it does its job and it does it quite well. It can record in up to 1080p with a 170° FOV (field of view), and its storage capacity it based solely on the size of microSD card you supply. Should you want a ton of footage, you can throw a 128GB card in the slot. If you don’t think you do that much driving, a 32GB should suit you just fine. For me, I use a 32GB and can get plenty of footage. When I have a clip I want to share, I simply stick the SD card into my phone and can either upload to Google Drive or YouTube directly. It’s a pretty straightforward experience.

The Dash Cam is also capable of recording your vehicle’s interior audio, but I did notice the mic is somewhat weak. At least for me, my car doesn’t provide the best insulation from road noise, so that’s also part of the problem.

Below is a bit of not-so-interesting test footage I’ve taken of both day and night driving, some with audio enabled and some without. I suppose it’s a good thing it’s uneventful, but you never know when having a dash cam might come in handy. If you have also been looking to get a dash cam, the Aukey product is on sale through Amazon, priced at $70 down from $90.

Amazon Link ($70)


google home

Google Home and Amazon Echo

I get asked quite a bit by family and friends if they should choose the Google Home or Amazon Echo. Honestly, I enjoy them both, and the only reason I stick with Google Home is because of my subscription and music library being synced with Play Music. If that wasn’t the case, maybe I’d rock an Echo. Point being, you can’t go wrong with either of them, and both will only get better as time goes on.

While I will be the first to admit that I probably don’t use the Google Home to its full potential, I will say, having such a fancy music speaker slash kitchen timer is quite nice. When fully hands-on in the kitchen, it’s good not having to lift a finger when in need of setting a timer for when that apple pie needs to be removed from the oven.

There’s another part of me that also enjoys the look on a guest’s face when they hear a woman’s voice coming from an unoccupied part of the house. “What the f@#%,” is usually their reaction and then I have to explain what Google Home is. By the time I’m done explaining everything it can do, they usually seem likely to buy one for their own home. I love that feeling.

Anyone reading this probably knows about Google Home, so I won’t dive too deep into the experience (we also have a complete review of the thing), but if you have been on the fence about either a Home or Echo, just go for it. They’re a blast.

Google Home: Google Store Link ($129) | Amazon Echo: Amazon Link ($179)


Google WiFi

I have had Google WiFi hooked up for nearly a month now, and seriously, it’s fantastic. I’m new to this whole mesh network thing, but so far, it’s been great. While I have been noticing much improved connection and speeds where I have placed the access points, it’s the smaller things I have enjoyed immensely.

In the past, whenever guests would come over, I’d typically have to provide them with my main WiFi password. This would then allow them access to cast their crappy music or YouTube videos to my media system. I’m sorry, but your taste in music sucks and I’m so burned out on James Corden and Carpool Karaoke. Needless to say, with Google WiFi and the super easy process of setting up a Guest network with its own name and password, they can get their Instagram and Snapchat on, while still not being able to access my treasured network of goodies.

On top of that, the idea that I can see each and every device that is drawing data on the network, complete with names and which point they are connected to, makes network management seem so painless. It’s as if the standard modem and router option seem archaic in comparison. I know the IT guys will start a war down in the comments about mesh networks vs. conventional routers, but you know what, I enjoy controlling everything from an app on my phone and everything just working. It makes life much less stressful, and honestly, I haven’t experienced a single hiccup during my time with Google WiFi.

While the initial investment of $299 for a 3-pack might seem pricey, I think it’s worth the plunge if mesh has been calling your name.

Amazon Link (Out of Stock) | Google Store (Out of Stock)


ecobee3 Smart Thermostat

I used to think that smart thermostats were a dumb idea. What, people are too damn lazy to change the dial themselves? However, now that I have been living with one, the ecobee3 to be exact, I take it all back. Me likey the smart thermostats.

Essentially, while one can change the dial up on their smartphone or tablet, there are other advantages to installing one. For me, I enjoy having a forecast and weather information available right from where I set my heat and cooling, allowing me to know just what to expect when setting my temperatures. On top of that, back to the ease of use concept, whenever I head upstairs for bed time and realize I forgot to turn off the heat, I can do so just from my phone. No more dragging my lazy bones downstairs and manually setting it.

With ecobee3 (the standard version, not the Lite), users also get a separate room sensor. That additional room sensor is nice if you live in a house with multiple floors, allowing the thermostat to get a better understanding of how to heat the home. For example, is the downstairs staying cool while the upstairs is getting too hot? These are things that the thermostat should know in order to adjust itself to find the perfect balance between all of the floors.

I hear a lot of the same positive feedback from owners of the Nest (Kellen uses a Nest in his home), and really, I don’t think you can go wrong with either. I originally purchased a Nest to install, but due to a wiring issue I really didn’t want to deal with, I went with the ecobee3. There was a bit of wiring I had to get through, but it’s not hard at all. I can also vouch for ecobee’s customer service, which was top notch when I was knee deep in the installation process.

Amazon Link ($248)


There you have it, a short, yet detailed list for a few of my current favorite tech things. Have your own favorite tech toys you want to share with me? I’m always interested in trying new things, so share them below!

Tim’s Favorite Tech Stuff Right Now is a post from: Droid Life

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Strava, Runkeeper, and the Polar M600 All Get Ready for Android Wear 2.0 https://www.droid-life.com/2017/02/09/strava-runkeeper-polar-m600-get-ready-android-wear-2-0/ https://www.droid-life.com/2017/02/09/strava-runkeeper-polar-m600-get-ready-android-wear-2-0/#comments Thu, 09 Feb 2017 18:34:03 +0000 http://www.droid-life.com/?p=196674

Now that Android 2.0 is official and ready to be rolled out to devices and for developers to update their apps with support, a handful have already let us know their plans. Strava and Runkeeper are both receiving updates today with 2.0 support, plus Polar is sharing information on the M600’s impending 2.0 update.  Polar … Continued

Strava, Runkeeper, and the Polar M600 All Get Ready for Android Wear 2.0 is a post from: Droid Life

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Now that Android 2.0 is official and ready to be rolled out to devices and for developers to update their apps with support, a handful have already let us know their plans. Strava and Runkeeper are both receiving updates today with 2.0 support, plus Polar is sharing information on the M600’s impending 2.0 update. 

Polar expects to push the Android Wear 2.0 update to the M600 at some point this Spring. I know that seems like we have months to go, but I’d imagine they want to get it just right, since this is a serious training watch and all. Once it does show up, users will get access to the Google Play store on the watch, new indoor swimming metrics, Google Assistant, new watch faces, and improved battery life (up to 36 hours). The full details on the update can be found in the press release below.

For Strava, the big news is that you don’t necessarily need a phone connected in order to get Strava on your watch and recording your activities. You’ll need a phone handy to get Strava setup initially, but that’s it. As you know, Google Play now comes with Android Wear 2.0, so you can install Strava straight to a watch to track activities with GPS, then record and upload them all wirelessly.

As for Runkeeper, the idea is similar. With Runkeeper for Wear 2.0, you get a standalone GPS experience, plus higher display contrast, a new activity summary screen, and improvements that get rid of the accidental stops and pauses mid-run.

Grab the updates!

Play Links: Strava | Runkeeper


Polar Announces Polar M600 Android Wear™ 2.0 Update and New Swimming Metrics

KEMPELE, FINLAND – Feb. 9, 2017 – Polar, the leader in wearable sports technology, introduces Android Wear™ 2.0 compatibility and indoor swimming metrics to their Polar M600 smartwatch. Available soon, the latest Android Wear update enables both Android and iOS users to access the Google Play store via the watch, download apps and operate them directly on the Polar M600.

A sports watch at its core, Polar M600 now offers new indoor swimming metrics such as distance and pace, as well as strokes per minute and strokes per pool length. Polar M600’s latest metrics will even determine whether a swimmer is swimming freestyle, backstroke, breaststroke or butterfly.

Recently named an International CES 2017 Innovation Awards Honoree in the Fitness, Sports and Biotech product category, Polar M600 is built for serious training while also boasting a sleek design for a connected lifestyle. Polar M600 features Polar’s proprietary 6-LED optical heart rate technology and industry-leading heart rate algorithms. These advanced technologies deliver incredible accuracy, stability and reliability that distinguish Polar from every alternative on the market. Polar M600 also offers integrated GPS, 24/7 activity tracking and Polar Smart Coaching features.

With Android Wear 2.0, Polar M600 has Google Assistant** built-in. Users can access also customize watch faces, receive calendar notifications, read and reply to texts, scroll through social media feeds and access even more apps via Google Play™. The latest update also includes an improved user interface, a newly designed watch face and additional languages including Vietnamese, Turkish, Swedish, Norwegian, Finnish and Danish.

The newest update will be available to all Polar M600 users this Spring. Polar M600 is available now in Charcoal Black and Powder White for $329.95. Interchangeable wristband accessories are available in Red, White, and Black for $29.95.

* Android, Android Wear, Google Play and other marks are trademarks of Google Inc.
**Google Assistant is not available in all languages

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Strava Available Now for Devices Powered by Android Wear 2.0

Athletes can record and upload activities on Strava via Wear 2.0 watches, untethered from their Android and iOS phones.

SAN FRANCISCO – February 9, 2017 – Strava, the social network for athletes, announces its Android Wear 2.0 app. Athletes can now take full advantage of an enhanced, untethered experience that includes built-in GPS and wireless connectivity, as well as the performance analysis Strava athletes desire such as time, distance, pace, laps and split times, and heart rate, all from their wrist.

“We welcome the highly anticipated release of Android Wear 2.0,” said Mateo A. Ortega, Head of Integration for Strava. “Wear 2.0’s standalone model is forward thinking and innovative, and pushes the limits of what we thought was possible. This platform introduces many features that benefit Strava athletes, such as the option to record and upload activities independent of their phone.”

Android Wear 2.0 smartwatches join more than 100 other GPS devices that work seamlessly with Strava. Athletes can install Strava for Android Wear 2.0 by visiting the Google Play store on their Wear device. The athlete only needs their iOS or Android phone for initial setup; they can then record and upload activities to Strava free of their mobile phone.

Strava makes it easy to connect and engage with other athletes. Download Strava for iOS or Android and upgrade to Strava Premium to access the latest features such as Beacon and Live Segments. To learn more about Strava, visit www.strava.com.

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Strava, Runkeeper, and the Polar M600 All Get Ready for Android Wear 2.0 is a post from: Droid Life

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DEAL: Google Daydream View is Still Just $49, Now at Best Buy Too https://www.droid-life.com/2017/01/30/deal-google-daydream-view-still-just-50-now-best-buy/ https://www.droid-life.com/2017/01/30/deal-google-daydream-view-still-just-50-now-best-buy/#comments Mon, 30 Jan 2017 17:12:04 +0000 http://www.droid-life.com/?p=196288

Just a reminder that Google’s Daydream View is still discounted to $49 at the moment, a $30 discount. The deal on Google’s VR headset is good until late in February, but we thought we’d point out the fact that Best Buy has finally joined in on the fun. Originally, only Google and Verizon had dropped … Continued

DEAL: Google Daydream View is Still Just $49, Now at Best Buy Too is a post from: Droid Life

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Just a reminder that Google’s Daydream View is still discounted to $49 at the moment, a $30 discount. The deal on Google’s VR headset is good until late in February, but we thought we’d point out the fact that Best Buy has finally joined in on the fun. Originally, only Google and Verizon had dropped the price.

While only a few devices are Daydream-ready as of today, you should expect that most in 2017 will be. Taking advantages of deals like this ahead of time is never a bad idea. Then again, others likely have their own similar headsets on the way as well.

Our Daydream View review could help with the decision. 

Daydream View Links: Best Buy | Verizon | Google Store

DEAL: Google Daydream View is Still Just $49, Now at Best Buy Too is a post from: Droid Life

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DEAL: Aukey’s Quick Charge 3.0 Products for as Little as $6 https://www.droid-life.com/2017/01/27/deal-aukeys-quick-charge-3-0-products-little-6/ https://www.droid-life.com/2017/01/27/deal-aukeys-quick-charge-3-0-products-little-6/#comments Fri, 27 Jan 2017 21:27:45 +0000 http://www.droid-life.com/?p=196275

Before we head into the weekend, here are a handful of good deals on Aukey’s Quick Charge 3.0 products. We have discounts (thanks to coupon codes) that take some of these down to as little as just $6 or with $8 reductions. Depending on your needs, you’ll find single or dual port chargers for both … Continued

DEAL: Aukey’s Quick Charge 3.0 Products for as Little as $6 is a post from: Droid Life

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Before we head into the weekend, here are a handful of good deals on Aukey’s Quick Charge 3.0 products. We have discounts (thanks to coupon codes) that take some of these down to as little as just $6 or with $8 reductions.

Depending on your needs, you’ll find single or dual port chargers for both wall outlets and cars. In the dual port options, we’re talking about both ports being equipped with QC 3.0.

To get the exact specs, hit up those links below. All come with Prime shipping as well.

Amazon Links:

DEAL: Aukey’s Quick Charge 3.0 Products for as Little as $6 is a post from: Droid Life

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