Reviews

LG G Watch — Review

LG G Watch — Review

LG is no stranger to smartwatches, having made an early attempt at the market with the LG-GD910. It wasn’t terribly successful, but neither were most smartwatches in those days. When Pebble launched on Kickstarter, the enthusiasm with which the public embraced the project sent a clear signal to OEMs and software makers that smartwatches were finally an idea whose time had come. Earlier this year, Google birthed Android Wear – a wearable-specific version of Android – and LG’s G Watch is one of the first devices to run the new operating system. LG has been a player in Android Wear[Read More...]

by 10:31 AM on September 22, 2014 9 comments Android Wear, Design, Reviews
Samsung Gear Live — Review

Samsung Gear Live — Review

Android Wear is here and the talk around the watercooler amongst techy types is about smart watches. And other things of course, but people are wondering if they should invest in a smartwatch. I know because I’ve been surprised by the number of people who have asked me about the one on my wrist. Samsung has had an early go at it with their own Tizen OS on the Galaxy Gear range. The Galaxy Gear watches are now in their second generation with the Galaxy Gear 2 and Neo, their latest offerings, replacing the original Galaxy Gear. So, the Gear[Read More...]

by 10:30 AM on September 22, 2014 0 comments Android Wear, Design, Reviews
Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet — Review

Sony Xperia Z2 Tablet — Review

Sony’s mobile evolution in the last 18 months, together with their experience in screen production with their television range, puts them in a really good position to produce quality hardware. After an unfortunate run of lackluster devices the company has rebuilt its reputation in the mobile space, starting with the Xperia Z at the beginning of 2013. The Sony name now stands for quality hardware that goes toe-to-toe with Samsung‘s and HTC’s own flagships, and the company’s 6-month hardware iteration cycle – on its flagship phones, at least – is ensuring that powerful hardware is always available to consumers. We’ve[Read More...]

by 1:54 PM on September 19, 2014 3 comments Design, Reviews
ASUS MeMO Pad 7 (ME176C) — Review

ASUS MeMO Pad 7 (ME176C) — Review

<!– //–> As a top 10 manufacturer of tablets, Asus has been a powerhouse when it comes to providing Android tablets. Asus has provided a full range of tablets in varying from factors, from Transformers to Fonepads, Padfones, and MeMO Pads, they know what they’re doing when it comes to tablets, especially Android tablets Asus really came to the fore when they began building the Nexus 7 tablets for Google, which as given Asus a lot of experience in building smaller form factor tablets, but with no new 7” Nexus in sight, the 7” tablet form factor is due for[Read More...]

by 9:51 AM on August 18, 2014 3 comments Design, Reviews, Tablets
Asus Transformer Book Trio TX201LA — Review

Asus Transformer Book Trio TX201LA — Review

Asus have been selling many different products in Australia for some time now. One of the pivotal moments for Asus as far as Android goes, was when the teamed up with Google in June 2012 to bring us the original Nexus 7. And, as they say, the rest is history. Since then ASUS have been bringing us various devices from a Nexus 7 clone, the Asus MeMo Pad 7 HD, through to their latest release of the Asus Zenfone 4, 5 and 6 smartphones. Now enter, the Asus Transformer Book Trio. Released late last year the Trio is a dual[Read More...]

by 10:08 AM on August 14, 2014 3 comments Design, Reviews, Tablets
Plantronics Backbeat Fit — Review

Plantronics Backbeat Fit — Review

The old 3.5mm headphone jack isn’t as widely used as it once was, at least for plugging in headphones, thanks to ever improving technology in the Bluetooth headphone market. The latest bluetooth headphones to be released in the Australian market are the Plantronics Backbeat Fit – a pair of over-ear earphones aimed at the sports and fitness user. Priced at $159, and available from a variety of retailers – Dick Smith, Officeworks and Allphones to name a few – in Blue or Green colour options, the Backbeat Fit earphones aren’t the cheapest option around, but they are pretty to look[Read More...]

by 10:03 AM on August 13, 2014 3 comments Accessories, Reviews
HTC Desire 816 — Review

HTC Desire 816 — Review

There’s long been a split in the market between the “flagship” phones manufacturers launch with much pomp and circumstance like the Galaxy S5 or One (M8) and the second-tier devices like the Galaxy Ace or F Series. While expensive high-end phones allow manufacturers to show off their latest and greatest technology, many of them are keenly aware that the real money in the market is in the midrange. Devices with “good enough” specs have become the new battleground, and midrange phones have become top-selling products for a number of manufacturers. Motorola‘s Moto G is their best-ever selling devices, while phones[Read More...]

by 2:31 PM on August 7, 2014 3 comments Design, Reviews
Samsung Galaxy K Zoom — Review

Samsung Galaxy K Zoom — Review

Let’s just get this out of the way now. Touchwiz; you either love it or hate it. My first Android smartphone was the original Samsung Galaxy S I9000 “iPhone killer”. I didn’t mind TouchWiz back then as I had nothing to compare it to, plus it didn’t feel that heavy. As for the current version of TouchWiz running on this device and all new Samsung devices, it’s very heavy. They may have stripped back TouchWiz a bit since the Samsung Galaxy S4 as Chris found out when he reviewed the Samsung Galaxy S5, but it’s still a little heavy for[Read More...]

by 1:04 PM on August 7, 2014 0 comments Design, News, Reviews
Motorola Moto E — Review

Motorola Moto E — Review

When I attended the Motorola breakfast announcing the Moto E and Moto G 4G back in May this year, I had to say that at least in relation to the E, I didn’t have high hopes. By that stage, I’d already reviewed the Moto G, and while it (then) lacked a 4G option, it seemed to me to be the quintessential ‘budget’ phone; a price-tag under $300, and features that knocked many phones out of the park even up to the $500 mark. It was the right size, the right feature set, and the right power for the market. The[Read More...]

by 3:54 PM on August 5, 2014 4 comments Design, Phones, Reviews
Samsung Wireless Audio Multiroom M7 Speaker — Review

Samsung Wireless Audio Multiroom M7 Speaker — Review

Samsung’s making a big push this year with their Multiroom Audio products under the Samsung Sound name. We had a brief introduction to the products at their Smart TV launch in April, followed by a full launch event in May and an exclusive concert series over the next couple of months. It’s taken a bit of time for the review units to arrive on the Ausdroid test bench, but arrive they have! We’ve been checking out Samsung’s M7 speaker and a Multiroom Hub (which seems to be named “M2″ this week, and it’s time to share some thoughts. Revisit our[Read More...]

by 9:04 AM on August 4, 2014 2 comments Accessories, Reviews
Oppo N1 — Review

Oppo N1 — Review

Oppo is one of the ever increasing batch of “nearly there” brands who have some nice hardware, pretty acceptable software. The Oppo N1 is a solid phone which looks great and feels nice in your hand, but can a phone that’s 6 months old with no LTE connectivity at $689 (16GB, Colour OS version of the device) stand up in the current generation of flagship devices? Does Size Matter? The market as a whole is very accepting of phones in the 4.7 to 5.2 inch form factor, and sizes above that are met with scepticism and awarded “niche” status. This[Read More...]

by 2:51 PM on August 1, 2014 1 comment Design, Reviews
Lantronix xPrintServer Cloud Print Edition — Review

Lantronix xPrintServer Cloud Print Edition — Review

The term ‘Paperless Office’ has been around for some time now, but we’re a long way away from it being a reality. Companies still require you to physically sign documents they email you before re-digitising them and returning them, and there’s no real ‘standard’ for digital signatures at the moment. As Android and ChromeOS users, of course Google has options for printing – Google Cloud Print – and though there’s a lot of printers which are compatible, there’s a longer list of printers which aren’t. There are workarounds – but leaving your PC with printer connected switched on all the[Read More...]

by 11:32 AM on July 22, 2014 3 comments Accessories, Reviews
Sony Smartband (SWR10) — Review

Sony Smartband (SWR10) — Review

Fitness trackers are a-dime-a-dozen these days. There’s a large market out there that’s ripe for the taking and with no clear dominant manufacturer there are some deep pockets out there looking for the right product. The Smartband is Sony’s first fitness tracker, and they’ve delivered just a little bit more than others. The Sony Smartband is what Sony call a ‘Lifelogger’. It’ll count your steps and track your sleep – just like the majority of fitness trackers out there – but Sony has gone a step further and the Smartband records almost everything you do. To do this recording, the[Read More...]

by 8:00 AM on July 14, 2014 6 comments Reviews