Smartphone Product Reviews And News

Smartphones are like miniature super computers in your pocket these days, with the ability to get serious productivity work done or kick back with some media consumption and gaming on the go. Smartphones are also more and more serving as life moment-capturing devices with fantastic digital still image shooting and video recording capabilities. Want to know what's the best hardware or latest news for Android or iOS? Tune in here...

Android 7, aka Nougat, has been rolling out primarily to Google's Nexus and new Pixel phones, as well as a few Motorola handsets, but a new Nougat contender has entered the fray, hot off the press from LG. The LG V20 is the follow-on to last year’s LG V10 and a current follow-up to the modular LG G5 that we reviewed recently. LG’s V series focuses on high quality, premium, larger-format designs that are feature-rich and the new LG V20 very much sticks to that mantra. Sporting a large 5.7-inch QHD display with 2560X1440 resolution and powered by Qualcomm's venerable Snapdragon 820 SoC (System on Chip), the V20 brings with it a few tried and true tricks from LG's V's series, coupled with a... Read more...
Now, more than ever, manufacturers are exploring alternative ways to differentiate smartphones. One savior to the oversaturated smartphone market, that is rife with products with similar specifications, may come in the form of modularity. The promise of a modular phone, is an ability to adapt to a user’s needs in the moment. Purchasing a smartphone is traditionally a long-term investment. What might perfectly address day-to-day use, however, could come up short under specific use cases. We already took a close look at the Moto Z family and see promise in Moto Mods, but modular smartphones are not easy. The long promised modular smartphone program from Google, dubbed Project Ara, which helped... Read more...
Update - 9/2 - 8:40AM EST: Samsung has issued a global recall and replacement of all current Galaxy Note7 devices and will replace all phones. You can read more about it here. We applaud Samsung for stepping up quickly and addressing the potential battery issue for early customers of the Note7. It's an excellent smartphone and this recall does not change our view of Samsung's flagship device. Once early units are purged from the marketplace, we are confident replacement units will meet customer expectations. We did not experience any anomalies with our test unit so please read on for our full review here... The Galaxy Note line of stylus-equipped Android smartphones have carved... Read more...
Motorola recently launched two new flagship Droid offerings, the Moto Z and Moto Z Force. We really liked them for their ultra-premium design, strong performance, and innovative Moto Mods add-on features. However, Moto is also ushering in a refresh of their more mainstream, cost-effective Moto G family as well. We last looked at the Moto G in 2014. We weren't blown away by performance, however, we were impressed how much the device managed to offer for just $149. The Moto G delivered Android’s core experience with good enough web browsing and general productivity performance to stand above other budget smartphones at the time. For once, “budget” did not mean a laggy experience... Read more...
Last month, the partnership between Motorola and Lenovo seemed to crystalize when the combined company stepped out with its first co-branded smartphone products that will ship here in the United States. Lenovo acquired Motorola's Mobility division from Google a couple of years back, but has rightfully lead with the iconic Moto brand for new smartphone (and smartwatch) product introductions since the acquisition. It wasn't until we saw Lenovo's Product Engineer/Spokesman, Ashton Kutcher take the stage last month at Lenovo Tech World to launch the new Moto Z and Moto Z Force, that it became apparent the assimilation of Moto within Lenovo was complete. The Lenovo-Motorola Moto Z Droid, Moto... Read more...
On Thursday, Lenovo summoned the tech press to San Francisco where it took the wraps off two new mobile phone platforms that could both be game changers. It unveiled the world’s first Project Tango-enabled phone in the Phab2 Pro, and introduced an all-new type of modular smart phone with the Moto Z. The Moto Z has the ability to be upgraded via things Lenovo calls Moto Mods. We got some hands-on time with all of the new gear after the keynote, which we'll be presenting to you here. Lenovo's event was dubbed Tech World and drew over 400 media attendees from across the globe. Lenovo CEO Yang Yuanqing (a.k.a. YY) led the keynote presentation, and along with folks from Google, Ashton... Read more...
HTC launched its latest flagship smartphone on Tuesday, the aptly named HTC 10. The HTC 10 is the follow-up to devices the HTC M9 and M10 (sans the letter designation), and as such, it has a similar design language and high-end feature set. The HTC 10, however, packs some of the latest mobile hardware currently available, including Qualcomm’s latest Snapdragon SoC, HTC's highest-resolution UltraPixel camera sensor to date, and 24-bit Hi-Res sound, all wrapped up in a rigid, durable metal unibody. The HTC 10 HTC has also done some interesting things with the software on the HTC 10. In addition to including the newest version of Google’s Android right out of the box (v6.0.1, Marshmallow), the HTC... Read more...
Forget almost everything you’ve read about the Microsoft Lumia 950 XL up to this point. We know that’s a bold statement, but bear with us here. Save for the phone’s specifications, if there’s one thing we’ve learned evaluating the 950 XL over the last few weeks it’s that virtually everything from the OS to the camera app has been changed or updated very recently, and it has affected battery life, responsiveness, and browsing, among many other things. Information published about the Lumia 950 XL that's any more than a couple of weeks old is simply outdated. It seems that Microsoft was tweaking a large number of elements and features in preparation for Windows 10 Mobile’s “official” release on... Read more...
When it comes to technology, especially the fast-paced advancement of mobile technology, design cycles are often based on either innovation or iteration. Sometimes it's a blend of both, but often times, like Intel's tick-tock silicon design process, it makes perfect sense to innovate one design cycle and then iterate and perfect on the next. It's a common practice that Samsung's chief smartphone rival, Apple is well known for as well. The Samsung Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge smartphones are definitely iterative product designs, but my how iteration has served Samsung so very well on these two new flagship devices. Last year's Samsung Galaxy S6 And Galaxy S6 Edge, as well as the larger follow-on... Read more...
At a glance, you may assume the phone we're testing here is one you've seen before -- a Nokia Lumia 1020 clone perhaps? Despite having a similar circular camera fixture on the handset's back side, suggesting a strong focus on photography, this is actually a newly released phone produced by ASUS. The ASUS ZenFone Zoom is an interesting beast. Though it was initially released for a more international audience, ASUS has since seen fit to bring the device to North American shores. It makes sense, though. Other than calling or texting, cameras have long been a key smartphone feature that gets used most frequently and many consumers will tell you that photo image quality is paramount when it comes... Read more...
All eyes have been on Samsung and its new mobile boss, D.J. Koh, to see how he would lead the top tier handset maker into a new generation of smartphone products. And today, during Samsung's Galaxy Unpacked 2016 event, all eyes were literally focused on Mr. Koh as he hopped on stage amid a flurry of flashing lights, loud music, and a hazy, dry ice vapor-filled atmosphere all intended to hype the product unveils that would follow, like the much anticipated Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge.Be sure to check out our just-postedHands-On Video Demo Of The Galaxy S7, Galaxy S7 Edge & Gear 360 VR Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge - Platinum GoldMr. Koh and company wasted no time getting right to it. After... Read more...
Huawei may not be a household name here in the US, nor does the brand name roll off the tongue easily for many Americans, but you might be surprised to learn that the Chinese networking and telecommunications manufacturer is the 3rd largest smartphone supplier in the world, behind Apple and Samsung. Much of that global market share comes from China, but the company has been making significant inroads here in the US with devices like Google's Nexus 6P, which is a Huawei private labeled device.  Further, like Samsung and Apple, Huawei has access to significant manufacturing capabilities, including their own semiconductor design house called HiSilicon, which is a wholly owned subsidiary. In... Read more...
When ASUS released the ZenFone 2 Laser, the company’s goal was to offer a premium smartphone experience with strong camera performance at an affordable price. On the surface the ZenFone 2 Laser has many of the key features of a premium phone, including an octa-core SoC with Adreno graphics, dual active SIM capabilities, a 5.5-inch 1080p display, a 13-megapixel camera, and a removable battery. Given that many flagship Android phones sell for $599 and up for an unlocked version, ASUS’s price of $249 for the high-end 32GB model of the ZenFone 2 Laser is very reasonable. If you want to save some cash, ASUS is also offering this phone with 16GB of storage for $199. This phone is compatible with GSM... Read more...
The original Google Nexus 5 shipped right around this time two full years ago. Much has evolved in the smartphone space in the 24 months since then, but little has changed in terms of branding with this latest LG-built Nexus device. The 5.2-inch Nexus 5X we will be showing you here is positioned as the mainstream Nexus phone in the Android 6.0 (Marshmallow) lineup, with an unlocked base price of only $379, though street prices are actually lower. Nexus 5X on the left; Nexus 6P on the right Put simply, the Nexus 5X is designed for mainstream smartphone users, looking for a strong value. Google thinks this phone hits a sweet spot in the lineup, and we'd probably agree with that assessment.... Read more...
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