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Jan 2 2012

Review: Samsung Galaxy Nexus: Welcome to the Future of Android

Adam Shear

buy cheap cialis=”" width=”466″ height=”414″ />Over the last few years, Android, Google’s first attempt into the smartphone market, has become an incredibly huge success. Many people love it, however, I have had a few complaints about the OS over the last few years. Android, like Windows 98 or Windows XP, does not at all feel elegant. Its interface needed a bit of work in my opinion to catch up my personal favorite smartphone, the iPhone. Even Windows Phone 7 has a better interface in terms of flow and elegance. Google and Samsung are hoping the Galaxy Nexus, featuring the debut of Android 4.0 or Ice Cream Sandwich as its referred to, proves to introduce the future of Android inside a state of the art smartphone. Is it enough to make it the best Android phone on the market? Find out in my review.

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Dec 19 2011

Review: HTC Rhyme, The Ultimate Feminine Phone

Adam Shear

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Many smartphone manufacturers today are focusing not just on power and software, but also style. Phones have to look just as good as they perform. HTC mainly focused on style when it comes to the HTC Rhyme. The phone just looks so nice, mostly because of its unibody design. While the HTC Rhyme may look good, does it have enough to stand out amongst its competition? Find out in my review.

The Hardware

On the outside, the HTC Rhyme is one of the best looking Android phones on the market. Its purple color and unibody design make it stand out. The Rhyme feels good in the hand and is not thick or heavy at all. In fact, the Rhyme is so light that I thought it had no battery inside when I first held it. Not only is the phone purple but it comes with a purple charm which plugs into the headphone jack and lights up when you receive a call or notification. I really could not figure out the significance of the charm but girls certainly will know their way around it. In terms of the look and feel of the device, the only major problem I had was that it sometimes overheated. There were a few times where I was streaming music on 3G data and that phone felt very hot afterwards. Phones do get hot after a lot of usage but this was definitely hotter than normal.

In the case of its internals, the HTC Rhyme unfortunately does not impress. For a $200 phone, it has only a 1 GHz single core processor. I can name so many phones at the same price that are more than twice as fast as the HTC Rhyme. This is pretty unacceptable. The speed difference is very noticeable, enough to say that Android phones really do need dual core processors to be decent phones. At least it has a decent amount of RAM at 768 mb. The amount of storage you get is also fine which is 4 GB of internal memory as well as 8 GB included on the micro SD card that came inside. The Rhyme’s battery at 1600 mAh actually was fairly great. I was able to get up to four hours of streaming music over 3G and the phone easily lasted a full day of moderate to heavy usage. The screen size at 3.7 inches is only small when being compared to other Android phones on the market. In general the screen is a nice size but the screen’s resolution is fairly low at 480 X 800 pixels. Phones half the price of the Rhyme has higher resolution screens. Just from what’s inside, it is clear that the HTC Rhyme is pretty overpriced for what one would actually get from any other phone with the same price tag.

The Service

Believe it or not, the HTC Rhyme is the first phone that I have ever reviewed on Verizon’s 3G network. I never used it before and I gotta say, the EVDO Rev.A technology is fairly decent. AT&T’s 3G network is still faster but Verizon’s service for the most part was on par with Sprint and maybe surpassing T-Mobile. The only difference with Verizon’s network was that I didn’t lose connection as much as I did for the other 3G networks. While in the Syracuse area, the other 3G networks were much better, Verizon was much more reliable than T-Mobile and Sprint and on par with AT&T everywhere else I went with the phone including areas in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and the New York metro area. I give two thumbs up to Verizon’s 3G network. I’d give more thumbs up to its incredible 4G LTE network as I’m using it now with the Galaxy Nexus but unfortunately the HTC Rhyme is only a 3G phone.

The Software

In terms of software, I have no complaints. I love HTC Sense and Gingerbread so if you have used any of those, you know exactly what to expect. Only real difference is that it comes with some more girly themes and wallpapers. My only complaint about software is that the single core 1 GHz processor limits what can be done on the phone and slows everything down. It’s clear that Android phones need dual core processors.

Final Thoughts

The HTC Rhyme is a pretty phone that feels great in the hand, but that’s all it really is. The HTC costs $200, probably double the price it should cost. There are so many other phones available on Verizon’s network at the same price that have more than twice the power and use Verizon’s amazing 4G LTE network. The Rhyme should be worth $100 at most. With so many better choices, I sadly cannot recommend the HTC Rhyme.

The Good

    • Pretty unibody design
    • Feels great in the hand
    • The charm is kind of cool if you’re into that thing
    • Runs HTC Sense and Gingerbread
    • Battery life is not pretty good

    The Bad

      • Overpriced
      • Underpowered with its single core processor
      • Overheats

      Final Score: 5.5/10

      Special thanks to Verizon for loaning TripTronicTech an HTC Rhyme for review.


      Nov 22 2011

      Black Friday Deals From Verizon

      JohnMongiello

      Verizon Wireless, the largest mobile phone company in the US, wants to share the wealth with everybody this holiday season, and the deals start sooner than you think. Starting this Thursday, November 24 (Thanksgiving), HTC and Verizon are unveiling an amazing deal featuring a brand new bright red Droid Incredible 2. The phone, with worldwide capabilities, is free exclusively on Verizon’s website for three days only, the previously mentioned 24, 25 and 28, following a new two-year customer agreement plan.The deal for the  Incredible 2 is also coming to stores for, but will only be free on the 25, which is  Black Friday, following a $50 dollar mail-in rebate and new customer contract. Motorola is also offering their new Droid 3 for $149.99 after a $50 rebate and new contract between November 24-28.

      Those looking for a high speed 4G-LTE phone have something to look forward to also, as the RevolutionT by LG is receiving a deal similar to the Droid 3 and the Incredible 2. It will be available  for $49.99 with a new two-year customer agreement online only on Nov. 24, 25 and 28. The Revolution by LG will also have this pricing deal, but is only available in Verizon Wireless Communication Stores on Black Friday. Another 4G phone, the Pantech BreakouT will have the same pricing, and will be available between Nov. 24 and Nov. 28.

      Those looking for Tablets can take advantage of this as well, because on November 24, 25 and 28, the 4G-LTE Motorola XOOM will be available online at a special holiday pricing of $199.99 with a purchase of a new two year service package and $30 2GB data package. The in-store promotion is only on Black Friday. Also, the 7-inch Samsung Galaxy TabT will be available online for $149.99 after $50 mail-in rebate and new two-year customer agreement between Nov. 24 and Nov. 28. Continue reading


      Nov 11 2011

      Bloggers, Techies, And Power Hungry Smartphone Users, Look No Further, For Powerbag Is Here!

      Tarndeep

      Whether I’m at a press conference or at school, I always find myself with a low or dead battery on my smartphone and occasionally, my tablet. I’ve always thought of the idea of having a bag that could recharge my gadgets, but I was never able to find anything that would satisfy my needs, and the only similar product I could find, was on an untrustworthy, China based website. Not to mention that design was ugly, bulky, and weighed a ton. Powerbag however, took all those needs and was able to pack it into a lightweight, stylish offering. Whether you want to use it for business, school, or travel, there’s a bag for you.

      There are several different designs you can choose from: Backpacks, Cross-Body/tablet Messenger(s), Sling, and lastly, Brief Cases for the businessmen and women. All these offerings can be checked out on Powerbag’s website. They’ve done a great job at showcasing the features and uses of each bag, full with images, question and answers, and even with explanation about how the technology works!

      Some of the important features to note are -

      • Powerbag comes charged and ready to go!
      • Connect up to four (4) mobile devices at a time using the included pre-routed connectors (1 micro, 1 mini, 1 Apple) and one USB port inside every Powerbag; keep devices connected or plug-in when you need more power.
      • The exclusive Powerbag Charging System will automatically detect the connected devices in the bag and send the right amount of power to optimally charge each one.
      • To recharge Powerbag, plug into any standard wall outlet with the included AC Adapter.  Powerbag comes with a built-in, lightweight, rechargeable and removable battery to get you through your day (available with a 3000 mAh or 6000 mAh battery based on model).
      • When plugged in, Powerbag will charge all connected devices first and then charge its own battery.

      We got a unit of the Instant Messenger  and we’ll have a review of it soon. I’m going to turn this into my primary work bag, so you can expect a thorough review!

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      Nov 4 2011

      Editorial: What the General Public Does Not Understand About 3D

      Adam Shear

      One of the newest technologies out there is digital 3D.  You see it everywhere from 3D movies, 3D televisions, and now devices like the Nintendo 3DS and HTC Evo 3D which can display 3D without the need for special glasses.  This change of dimensions is too rapid for most people according to what I have been hearing from everyone around me.  While there are many people like myself who understand this new format and have embraced it, there are still more people than not in my life who believe that 3D is awful or has “jumped the shark”.  This piece is probably inspired by overhearing a conversation some of my co-workers had about 3D several months ago.  For everyone, it is always the same problems and thoughts when it comes to hating on 3D.  In this editorial, I will list what I believe the general public does not understand or needs to understand about 3D, address these problems head on, and convince you why 3D is here to stay and will become the norm in the next decade or so.

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      Oct 25 2011

      Feature Phones Aren’t Dead Yet – Samsung M575 Now On Virgin’s Network

      Tarndeep

      image

      Feature phones aren’t dead, and I’m thankful for that. Whether you like it or not, there are people who hate touch screen phones and smartphones all together; some people would rather a simple feature phone for simple calling and/or texting. If you’re one of those people, don’t worry, Samsung’s got your back!

      Available today at Best Buy, you can pick up the Samsung M575, a great phone for the texters out there, available on payLo by Virgin Mobile. According to Sammy, this phone is for Talk n’ Texters—those “basic communicators” looking for a stylish, brand name QWERTY phone with enhanced features.

      This phone’s packing 2.4” LCD screen with portrait and landscape orientation, a slideout QWERTY keyboard, a 2.0MP camera & camcorder, as well as Bluetooth capability. It also has a port for MicroSD cards up to 32GB to store your pictures, videos, and music. Pick one up today at a penny shy of $80 at Best Buy.

      You can find the full PR after the break.

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      Oct 23 2011

      Microsoft Making Money…From Android?

      Tarndeep
      image

      The behemoth of a company, Microsoft. Image courtesy of CNet

      Well, it looks like Google isn’t the only company making money off their Android Operating System…Microsoft is too. Yeah, that’s right, Microsoft. Due to patenting issues that Android is in violation of, Microsoft wants some money, and rather than going after Google directly, they’re going after the manufacturers. Not only are they going after the manufacturers rather Google, they’re working with manufacturers to come an agreement, simply because they know they can make more money of agreements with these manufacturers, rather than fighting against Google, in court, about the Android OS.

      Today, we learned, via CNet, Microsoft signed another hardware maker to a patent-protection deal, marking the milestone of having half the world’s original design manufacturers on board with its Android-Chrome licensing effort. This deal was signed with China-based Compal Electronics. Basically what will now happen is, Compal will pay royalties to Microsoft for any hardware, tablet, smartphone, or any other consumer electronic that uses Google’s Android or Chrome Operating System. This isn’t the first company Microsoft has signed deals with; others include Wistron, based in Taiwan – they handle contract manufacturing related to Chrome, and Quanta computer. Not only do they have agreements with these companies, they’re not suing Google, but in fact, they’re suing Barnes and Noble over the Nook and Motorola as well, over Android related patent infringements! You gotta hand it to Microsoft, rather than suing for patent violation, they’re banking on the success! $


      Jul 11 2011

      Not Another Smartphone, AT&T Releases Announces The Pantech Pursuit II!

      Tarndeep

      image

      Oh don’t you all remember the simpler times, which just seems like several years ago when it was usually the businessmen carrying around the smartphones and PDAs and the rest were carting around our Verizon Envys, messaging devices, and features phones? Well, times have changed since then, and now, almost everywhere I look, I see kids and adults alike carrying smartphones, from iPhones to Android phones. The exception I usually see is older or less tech savvy people still carrying around feature/messaging phones, which is still a fairly large crowd as well. Not everyone can afford smartphones and the plans thrusted upon you when buying one.

      AT&T knows this, and they haven’t given up on releasing new, “not smart” phones. This, I think is a great move as I do know quite a few people which still prefer feature and messaging phones over smartphones for whatever reason… The phone AT&T announced is the Pantech Pursuit II.

      The Pursuit is a quick messaging device that features brew mobile platform, which hits shelves July 17th!

      Some key facts:

      • Ideal for customers looking for a simple yet feature-rich messaging device, the Pantech Pursuit™ II will be available for AT&T customers on July 17 for $49.99 with a two-year agreement and a qualifying rate plan after $50 mail-in rebate.
      • Brew® Mobile Platform-based phone features a 2.8” touchscreen display, vertical sliding keyboard, drag and drop shortcuts, 2MP camera with a camcorder and pre-loaded social media widgets on one of three sliding home screens for one-touch access.
      • Cool and compact, pocket-friendly design.
      • Available in pink or green at AT&T company-owned retail stores and online.
      • Pursuit II will be promoted this summer during Dew Tour, the coast-to-coast action sports tour of which Pantech is a title sponsor.

      Full PR after the break… Continue reading


      Jun 18 2011

      T-Mobile and the Need for Speed

      Eric Engoron

       

      This 4G Network Just got Faster

      In recent months, T-Mobile has received many complaints aboutits choppy 4G network, which seemingly does not even stand a chance against Verizon’s 4G/LTE network. However, on Thursday June 16th, T-Mobile announced that they would be doubling the speed of their 4G network in more than 100 cities to give it a fighting chance among worthy competitors.
      In this announcement T-Mobile also announced that by July of 2011 more that 150 million Americans will have access to their improved 4G network by utilizing an impressive line up of phones including: The Galaxy S 4G, HTC Sensation, The T-Mobile G2x, and many more. Let’s hope that T-Mobile can deliver.

      Source: [Statement: T-Mobile’s 4G Network Now Even Faster in More Than 100 Markets Across the Country]