Monday, September 4, 2017

Moto G5 Plus Review: An excellent mid-range phone that suits all of my needs!

Please keep in mind that I am rating this phone with 5 stars because it really met my expectations. I can say I am a tech savvy guy who likes to do some research before purchasing any electronic product.
So having said that, I can tell you that upgrading from a Huawei Y-330 (a low-budget phone) was a huge step forward. The result: a very satisfied costumer who would like to recommend the Moto G5 Plus for people like me who are looking for a mid-range affordable phone.
The Moto G5 Plus is an excellent choice for you everyday tasks: phone calls, social media, email and taking pictures.
After a couple of weeks I have no complaints about this phone. Android OS 7 has never crashed, every app runs smoothly, picture-quality is really good (you can shoot 4K video), speaker might be not be the best in the market but it is more than enough when it comes to phone calling, watching videos and listening to music. Seriously, I am enjoying my music while having breakfast and don't need to turn the volume up to the maximum.
Now let's talk about my favorite technical spec: the fingerprint reader. It is very fast, accurate and IMO very useful. I just love it because I don't have to draw any patterns or type in a password. If you want to take more advantage of it, try the Moto App and give the swipe options a try.
But what about the things I dislike? Well, like I said before: I don't have any complaints about this phone. What I didn't like so much was the front-camera. I don't know much about other front-camera lenses but this one is like a fish-eye lens when you hold it too close to your face, haha! In my case this is not a deal-breaker since I don't use it that much. The farther you keep it from your face, the lesser fish-eye effect you will get.
Remember I said I was upgrading from a Huawei Y-330? I also have to say to I have previously owned an iPhone 5S. Is the Moto G5 Plus better? It might be. The fingerprint sensor is faster, display quality is better, camera is better... I know it is not fair to compare this phones since the G5 was released 4 years after the iPhone 5S, I just want you to know a little more about my experience with cell phones. The G5 Plus is heavier, bigger, thinner than the iPhone 5S. It is not as tall nor as heavy as the iPhone 7 Plus but it is just a little bit thicker than it (a difference that you might not even notice).
Before I finish this review let me say that I don't do mobile-gaming so I haven't pushed the graphics to the limit. Display quality is really good, you can choose between natural-color mode and enhanced-color mode. I have never been a fan of adaptive brightness on any of my electronics devices so I can't say anything about it. You won't have any annoying HISS when you plug in your headphones, and the volume levels are very well distanced from each other, even the lower ones. Battery charges very fast thanks to Turbo-Charging. But does it last long? In my case, sometimes it lasts the whole day. Just be sure to take the charger with you to the office (which I bet you do).
Please take note on the following: I am not saying this is the best phone in the market but it might be the best mid-range phone for my needs (which are not extremely demanding). If you want a phone that runs fast, that lets you browse the web with no hiccups, takes good-quality pictures, and provides good-quality phone calls, then this should be your choice. What makes it even more attractive? Its price. Really. You won't be disappointed.
UPDATE 1: I forgot to say I am residing now in South America and have no problem with my service provider so far. Just switched the SIM card from the old phone to this new G5 Plus.
UPDATE 2: Phone works with USB On-The-Go Flash Drives. I have been using Sandisk 64GB OTG Dual Drive USB 3.0 and it works like a charm. Transferring files between the G5 Plus and the USB Drive is easy and super fast.


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Friday, July 21, 2017

Best Dog Muzzle in the World

I have a 6 lb. Chihuahua who was rescued from a puppy mill when he was quite mature (10+ years old). While he has settled in at our house, he has issues with company and with the vet and strangers. He's so cute that everyone wants to pet him, but I can't trust that he won't bite them. This muzzle is soft enough and has enough room so that he can breathe and it doesn't pinch him. He doesn't get upset when I put it on him, which is kind of unusual for his normal behavior! I believe that it must be comfortable for him. It prevents him from the incessant barking when he's scared and he can't bite anyone. This makes me feel so much better. I have been worried that he may bite someone and that would cause a huge problem and even result in a lawsuit or having him taken from our home. He's a good boy when he's with us at home. I have been trying to take him out and about a bit to get him socialized. It has been working, slowly, of course, but I am hopeful that some day he will overcome all his fears and anti-social behavior. But this muzzle gives me peace of mind that I can try my best to get him socialized and prevent him from biting someone. I hesitated to get a muzzle, but I always thought it was cruel to muzzle a dog. But I've never had a dog in the past who needed muzzling. This dog is an exception and this muzzle is working well.

Duck Mouth Shaped Dog Muzzle
Well made, cute muzzle that fits our shih tzu puppy! We live in an apartment building with some aggressive dogs who have made trouble for the rest of our loyal four-pawed friends, and now all dogs must be muzzled when entering or leaving the building. I was very concerned about the new muzzle requirement for two reasons. One, we live in Manila and most muzzles do not allow a dog to pant adequately to cool themselves. Two, well, have you ever seen a shih tzu's face? They are pretty flat and most muzzles won't fit a puppy shih tzu. I talked to the vet who told me to find an open style muzzle, and then I researched Amazon. Based on other reviews, I ordered a large. This muzzle is perfect! It has a soft, flexible silicon bill, covers my puppy's mouth but is open enough to allow him to pant, and he is the center of attention when he goes out to play. All the kids love him and want to see him with his muzzle. Of course, we take it off once we are outside, but they hang around to see him when we go back inside after play time. So not only does this product satisfy the building's muzzle requirement, it helps with my dog's socialization.
Pros -
Quality materials, design, and construction;
Clasp is easy to snap, holds firmly even when my dog shakes his head, and is easy to open when removing muzzle
Duck bill can be washed quickly and easily with hand or dish soap and water
Open style keeps mouth covered while allowing plenty of room to pant and get fresh air
Bill shape ensures muzzle does not push into eyes
Cons
Sizing is hard to estimate
All products have room for improvement and perhaps this product could publish best sizes by breed; however, there is also a burden on the shopper to research a product. It is unfortunate when people give a product a bad review because they did not buy the proper item. If you are looking for an open style muzzle for a small dog, I highlth recommend this product.
If you need one, click here to order: Cute Duck Mouth Shaped Dog Muzzle

OnePlus 5 Review: Vs. Honor 8

OnePlus 5
I am an android geek and an enthusiast for many years. I have rooted phones, written xposed modules and am deeply familiar with android phones. I have moved on, though. All i now want is a good stable, responsive phone. Coming from LG G3, i narrowed my choices to Axon 7, Honor 8 and OnePlus 5 (based on true value). I don't believe there are many other choices.
I read numerous reviews on each of these phones, however, i want to decide for myself. Bought all 3 phones and used it as daily driver for a week. I am not gonna bore you with all with processors/technical specs/etc. Phone Arena has those info.
Here's my summarized version on usability of the phones.
Axon 7
Pro:
+ Best value for the money among all three phones.
+ ZTE is very generous; they don't skimp on anything; Phone comes with everything; including a case, extra set of screen protector.
+ Phone is snappy; not many junk Apps; can even disable most of the junk;
+ ZTE Custom UI is decent (not great); but customizable
+ Dual Sim; but one of slot is either SD card or 2nd sim
+ Excellent speaker; although i rarely use it. I always use headphones, so this feature really didn't tip the scale.
+ Wifi Calling and VOLTE are available.
Con:
- Slow fingerprint reader for unlocking the phone. In my opinion, this is a serious flaw since you will be constantly unlocking the phone. Even though you might overlook this flaw initially, it will get to you after some time.
- Cellular bands are not wide. Works well with GSM carriers in USA (like TMobile, AT&T etc). Does not work with CDMA. However, if you want to take your phone over seas (asian countries) not all LTE bands are compatible
- Among the three, this is the heaviest phone. Also, phone is slightly big to use it in 1 hand.
Honor 8 (FRD L04):
Pro:
+ Best looking phone. Phone feels very slippery. I was afraid i might drop the phone.
+ Very fast and good finger print reader. Best of all, you can customize few commands in the reader.
+ Good customizable UI. Best part is, you can dim the screen for reading, will be easy on your eyes.
Con:
- This is NOT a dual sim phone. This phone may have a slot to put the second sim. The phone sold in usa does not have dual sim support in OS.
- The cellular bands are not wide. Works well with GSM Networks in USA (like TMobile, AT&T, etc). Not with CDMA. However, if you want to take your phone over seas (asian countries), not all LTE bands are compatible
- Junk apps
- no WiFi calling available.
OnePlus 5:
Pro:
+ Phone is lighter than Axon7
+ Broadest Cellular band. Works well with all GSM Carrier in USA; And, if you plan to take it to asian countries, it works well with all GSM carriers there as well.
+ Dual Sim; Also, you can dim the screen for reading, will be easy on your eyes
+ BEST of all; insanely fast fingerprint reader; The fastest phone, by far. Has the largest RAM, 6GB; fastest processor.
+ Closest to the native android experience. Not many bloatwares
+ Wifi Calling available; so is VOLTE.
Con:
- Phone is the same size as Axon7; big for one hand; but much lighter than Axon 7
- No SD Card slot
- Most expensive of all 3
- Compared to ZTE (see Axon 7 above) OnePlus is very cheap. Phone comes with wall charger and a cable, that it. No ear phones, nothing.
- Not many UI customization available;
- WORST Customer Service. This takes the cake, when it comes to bad customer service.
In summary, it all came down to finger print reader. The delay in reading and unlocking the phone will slowly get on your nerves. If you do not care about dual sim (or broadest cellular band), Honor 8 is a good choice. However, if you want dual sim and the fastest
finger print reader, you may have to choose OnePlus 5. I know i will hate OnePlus customer service. I may buy square trade warranty just to avoid talking to OnePlus.

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Wednesday, July 19, 2017

LG G6 User Reviews

LG G6 User Reviews
Wow, what a great phone! Moving up from an LG Flex, and was reluctant to let the Flex go, because I loved it so much. The screen of the G6 is as tall as the Flex, but slightly narrower. The photo quality is far superior. (But of course, the G6 does not "flex," alas. I liked it!)

I had never had an unlocked phone before, so wasn't sure if I would have technical challenges. I didn't. The unlocked version has an Android OS tailored by LG, but no add-ons from my cell carrier, thank goodness! So it is cleaner and easier, and I still have the option to download apps from my carrier (T-Mobile) if I choose to.

I transferred every iota of data and nearly all apps from the Flex to the G6, using Google. (The easy step by step process pops right up on both new and old phones.) Interestingly, the transfer did not "empty" my old Flex, so I now have duplicate contents on the phones. (Without a SIM card, the Flex will not handle calls and texts, but it still receives notifications, news, and everything else. Every morning I read the New York Times and other news on the Flex, saving the G6 battery!)

The phone arrived a bit more quickly than predicted, and with a few hours of charge, it was up and at it! It was well-packaged, with all the right accessories and paperwork. I would buy from this seller again, or refer others to them!
By night owl
I crashed my Nexus5 hard and with replacing the screen and the battery, I decided it was time for a new phone. Wow, did I find a winner. It's screen is huge but the phone still fits in my packet securely. I had a Galaxy Note II that spent as much time on the floor as in my pocket that was a slightly large phone, This one is just the right size for me.

PROS:
* After having fried a Nexus 6 in the toilet (yes, yuk) I really like the water resistant feature. I can slip it on the back of my bike jersey and not worry if it rains or how much I sweat.
* The finger print feature I wasn't sure about but I really like it now that I have it. Not a must have on future phones, but I like being able to open lots of apps w/o entering a complicated password (like banking apps) being entered correctly. Quicker, too.
* Battery life is exceptional. I use it and it runs all day w/o charging.
* Love the dual SIMM card. I put a 128GB card in it and the new android saves data there for movies, pictures, music, the stuff that takes up lots of room.

CONS:
* Honestly non yet. I bought in as an unlocked T-Mobile phone, but I have T-Mobile as my carrier so the T-Mobile specific applicatins are working for me, or I just removed the ones I had no use for.

I recommend this phone highly. Especially now that the G6 has come out with a higher speed processor and all the international bells and whistles, this version (North American, Snap Dragon 815 vs, 820) is an even better bargain that will probably get cheaper.
By South Texan
Good design. It is good to see LG going back to the nailing the basics that make for a great phone.

Pros:
1 slim and not too heavy
2 generous screen with excellent colors
3 fingerprint reader doubles up as power button
4 Good UX customization of android with not too much customization

Cons:
1 Clean right edge of the phone but volume buttons are on the left edge, and get in the way holding the phone up reading in bed (will stop me from using phone eventually)
2 Speaker is ok better than others such as the Pixel but not any where close to the excellent sound of the Sony XZ Premium, for example.
By Z2000
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Monday, June 19, 2017

HUAWEI Mate 9 Review

I am extremely impressed with this phone. I went from the S7 Edge to this phone and I thought it would be a drop off in performance, but boy was I wrong. I've actually gotten better performance out of this phone versus my other one. I am pleasantly shocked and don't regret my decision to switch.
I have been in the cell phone industry for much of my career. I worked for Motorola and was one of the first to get my hands on the newest cell phones in the 90's. Startacs, Razors you name it. I have had my share of Motorola smart phones, which I loved at the time and Samsungs. Though I have ‘allowed' my wife to have an Apple I could never bring myself to over pay for one myself as I am deeply rooted in the Android eco-system.
When I finally got my hands on a Nexus 6P (from Huawei) I thought all my prayers were answered but along comes the Mate 9. Faster, better battery life and BIGGER. I have come to the conclusion that bigger is better and the Mate 9 is bigger (battery, screen, faster, more beautiful) in every way. I even love the EMUI interface which surprised me, Huawei has really listened to its customers and create a wonderful product.
Let's look at the most important features:
The battery – When the 6P came out and it's a great phone many reported it would last all day but not like the Mate 9. It really does.
The finger print reader – Never again am I fumbling to get to my phone, fast and accurate as they come.
The camera – This is awesome, my son is a profession photographer and he loves all the features I can barely understand and the beauty mode makes even an old guy like me look good.
The performance – Bar none the best I have ever had. I never wait and everything is so smooth.
Connectivity – Again I have had nothing like this. The Mate 9 seamlessly switched you back and forth to the best connection and automatically reconnects to WIFI for an exceptional experience. Until you have experienced WIFI+ you are missing the best speed you can get! Add to that more cellular bands and better coverage than ever.
Dual sim cards for you business guys, such a cool feature.
Storage – Comes with a lot but it actually has a SD card slot, imagine that Apple and Pixel.
So if there is a con to this phone what would it be? Most likely the fact you don't have one! Maybe you should get one and figure that out for yourself, I bet it will be hard to find.
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Wednesday, May 31, 2017

JJRC H37 Elfie Pocket Drone Review

JJRC H37 Elfie Pocket Fold Portable Photography Wifi FPV With 0.3MP Camera Phone Control RC Drone

  • martphone WiFi Remote Control - You can control your drone with wifi connection to your phone(ios or android),your phone will receive real-time transmission from the camera on the drone! The pictures and video store in your phone ,it`s easy to share them with your friend.
  • High Hold Mode: When you release the throttle stick after using it, the rc drone will automatically set the height and still hover at the released height. Thus you can fly the drone easily and steadily.
  • Headless Mode - When enters into headless mode, you don't need to worry about the direction problem. You can fly the quadcopter drone easily without knowing the direction. One Key Return - Recall the drone effortlessly, just touch a button on the app interface.
  • Equipped with 3 speed modes, low, medium and fast. This allows you to fly, for instance, in a small spaces with low speed and maximum control or in more spacious areas with a very fast speed
  • Aerobatic Flight - 3D flips and rolls make the 360 degree rotations towards various directions to give you the spectacular performance. LED Light - With LED light, more fun when you play it on a dark night, it will be a shining star.
This pocket drone is the coolest little drone that I own. It's so small and can fit anywhere. I mostly keep it in my backpack so that way I can fly it whenever I want. In the box you get the drone, extra parts, a battery, and a charger for the battery. The way you fly the drone is by using a app on your phone. I felt like it was easier to fly on my Galaxy S7 edge because it was a bigger screen. At first the Drone was a little hard to fly but once I got the hang of it it got easier. I can fly the drone and have full control over it. The controls on the app are easy to use and work just as they should. They stay connected to Drone throughout my entire flight time. I have not had any problems with this Drone at all. The only thing I don't like about the Drone is the flight time but with such a small battery it's to be expected. It lasts just as long as any other small toy drones which is about 5-6 minutes. The selfie camera works really good and the Drone is also capable of filming videos. All your pictures and videos are saved on the app.
JJRC H37
It's a little tuff to get used to the controls being on an iPad, but once you do, this is a great little drone. I also bought a set of 5 extra batteries and a little multi charger to go on trips with. Picture quality is pretty good too, and the thing is surprisingly durable! This drone is so small and light that it actually qualifies as a toy, which might get you around certain restrictions in some areas, where larger drones are not allowed to fly. An excellent value for the price.
Click to check the current prices: JJRC Foldable Selfie WIFI FPV Quadcopter Drone

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Samsung Galaxy S8 Hands-on Review

Samsung Galaxy S8
Excellent phone, beautiful aesthetics, and a taste of the future worth paying for: 9/10.

TL;DR

It's hard to choose your next phone because there are so many good options today, and potentially good phones coming later this year (2017). By now you've probably seen a million reviews on the S8, but it doesn't make the decision easier. Here's my suggestion, in two quick steps. Make sure none of the cons below are deal-breakers for you. Then, look over the list of unique advantages, and see if they get you excited enough to pay the hefty $750. If you're still here after that, then welcome to the club! Be sure to check out my final tips for maximizing your S8 experience.

CONS:
1. Edge screen is beautiful, but annoying in two situations. It creates visual distortions a little (less than S7 Edge though). It is also difficult to hold the phone up in the air, face down (e.g. before sleep), as the phone is prone to accidentally registering side touches. A case remedies the latter problem, but I dislike putting a case on such a beautiful phone (see pro tip #1).
2. Samsung is not very good with software updates. If you take great pleasure from trying new Android in a timely manner, this isn't for you -- the only two options are iPhones and Pixels. That said, keep in mind that new software updates typically slow down the phone.
3. Fingerprint scanner location has been mentioned a gazillion times. Yes, I wish it was on the front. No, it really isn't that bad on an S8 (S8+ is a different story). You know, we have this thing called "muscle memory".. It took me two days to adjust to the new location, and now I have no problems. If you really hate it, try facial recognition or iris scanner, they're very good (see pro tip #8)
4. The phone has glass back that’s prone to cracking, so watch out if you’re clumsy. But see pro tip #1
5. S8 doesn’t have monster battery life, and it needs to be charged once a day. If you need to go past a day, look elsewhere.
6. Some are disappointed about a lack of dual-camera. Personally, the rear camera is wide enough that I am rarely in a situation where I feel the need for a wide-angle lens (like in LG). An optical zoom would have been nice (like in Iphone 7+), but not really an issue for me (see pro tip #6)

UNIQUE ADVANTAGES
1. Futuristic aesthetics of a bezelless all-screen phone. This doesn’t really improve the functionality of the phone, but there’s just something satisfying about this futuristic experience.
2. The screen is just so damn beautiful, no contest here. Always-on display is useful.
3. As of today, it’s the only phone that checks ALL of my needs: Excellent rear camera, excellent front camera (reviewers too often ignore this), water proof, dust proof, wireless (fast) charging, full-day battery life, a headphone jack, a micro SD card slot, fingerprint scanner, and after using the S8, Bluetooth 5.0!
4. Bluetooth 5.0 is amazing. S8 is a first phone to come with this, and it’s awesome. I frequently use the ability to connect to two different speakers at once, for a surround-sound like experience in my room. You can also listen to the same music with your friend in a library, by connecting to two different headphones.
5. S8 is also the first phone to come with Gigabit LTE, which is nice for future-proofing the phone, but it doesn't quite help us yet.

PRO TIPS
1. Consider getting a tempered-glass screen protector (they’re better on S8 than on S7 Edge) and a Slickwraps/dbrand skin for the back. The skins make your phone look unique, improves grip, and it also helps cover up cracks if you’ve dropped your phone. Slickwraps frequently has discount promotions on their website, so watch out for that. Don’t use a case, enjoy the beautiful phone!
2. Bixby is useless, and if you’re like me, most “Smart” assistants are still generally not helpful and just raises privacy concerns. You can remap the Bixby button (as of April 2017): See https://www.xda-developers.com/3-applications-bypass-bixby-restriction/
3. General Android tip: Go to Settings, Developer Options, set Window/Transition/Animator animation scales to x0.5 to speed things up (Google this if you don’t know what I mean)
4. General AMOLED tip: Take advantage of black wallpapers to save battery life
5. Set screen resolution up to QHD. In my experience it barely affects battery life in everyday use. Going HD will significantly improve battery life if you are a heavy gamer, or use CPU intensive apps a lot.
6. If you really miss dual-camera set-ups in other phones, consider getting a separate smartphone camera lens kit that sells for ~$20. They’re less convenient than a built-in dual lens, but on the upside they’re much more versatile and fun.
7. If you are still not convinced whether to buy S8, then wait. Most phones (except iPhones and Pixels) drop prices relatively quickly, and you may be able to snatch one up cheap refurbished in auction sites.
8. Contrary to some reviews, the facial recognition and the iris scanner are reliable and fast. In my experience, how you register your face/iris determines how effective it will be. If you wear glasses, register with glasses on. Also, register under medium lighting conditions and not in extreme conditions. You want the phone to be able to recognize you under different environments.
Gorgeous & futuristic phone, industry-leading screen, excellent and reliable (rear AND front) camera, full-day battery, water and dust proof, wireless (fast) charging, and Bluetooth 5.0! On the downside, it won't receive timely software updates, and fingerprint scanner location is a minor setback.

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