Items tagged with review

One of the sharpest, classiest, most alluring Android Wear smartwatches yet has arrived, and it's manufactured by a company that many American consumers may not be familiar with. The Huawei Watch is just about as good as it gets for a smartwatch currently. The reason? It's a watch first, and a smartwatch second. For those clamoring for a timepiece that looks like a tried-and-true premium wristwatch, look no further. Huawei has made phones, tablets, and other gizmos for years, though it has had more success in Asia than in the U.S. Standing out in the U.S. marketplace is difficult. A company typically won't get very far without wide distribution and a massive marketing budget. The Huawei Watch... Read more...
Technology moves quickly, but when it comes to smartwatches, things seem to be moving more rapidly than usual. We published our Moto 360 review early last year and here we are merely half a year later testing the second generation of that device. In many ways, the original Moto 360 felt like the hero device for Android Wear. Google still hasn't created a watch of its own, nor has it partnered with a manufacturer to ship a "Nexus" branded Android Wear device. So, the Moto 360 continues to carry the torch. But much has changed since the 360 was ushered onto the scene. LG, Huawei, and Samsung have all shipped at least one smartwatch, and the round face -- which was the original Moto 360's unique... Read more...
Apple and Samsung have already launched their latest flagship devices for 2015, and now, Motorola is taking its turn. For the third year in a row, a new Moto X has arrived that's built upon the successes of the original. There's no mistaking the design -- visual cues that created the silhouette of the original still remain on the Moto X Pure Edition, but it's clear that the company is evolving its flagship phone based on market demands. For instance, the 5.7-inch Quad HD (2,560 x 1,440) display would've been viewed as monstrous in 2013, but today, it feels wholly natural. Moto has also included a few useful extras like TurboPower (which injects 10 hours of life into the phone after just 15 minutes... Read more...
The wait is over. The time is nigh for sci-fi super-spy gadgets, cigar-smoking, and rampant exclamation points. Oh yes, the one-eyed one has returned. Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain has landed on the PC and it’s a doozy. Utilizing the same Fox Engine for its visuals, this latest effort nicely follows-up last year’s Metal Gear Solid V Ground Zeroes—the prequel which set the stage for this, the epic and more open-ended Phantom Pain. Despite being one of the industry’s most beloved visually-challenged protagonists--with numerous sequels, prequels and remakes under his belt, Snake is a veritable stranger to the PC platform, visiting the master race all of three times before now (unless you... Read more...
AMD has certainly kept our test benches busy lately, with the debut of two Fiji-based flagships, namely the liquid-cooled Radeon Fury X and its surprisingly capable air-cooled little brother, the Radeon Fury. Now it’s time to turn our attention to the Radeon R9 390X, specifically Asus' handsome STRIX offering. Don’t Call It Hawaii! “Rebadge” or “rebrand” are dirty words in the GPU space. Those are words that describe a GPU maker taking an existing architecture, wrapping it up with some new software features, tweaked frequencies, and perhaps updated aesthetics, and presenting it with a shiny bow as a new product. Initially that’s the impression we got about AMD’s Radeon 300 series, and for reference... Read more...
When Xotic PC asked us to be judge and jury of its Executioner gaming system, we thought to ourselves, "this better be one helluva setup to warrant its killer moniker," and spoiler alert, it is. We'll get to the benchmarks and other particulars in due time, but there's more to this $6,500 PC than raw performance alone. Yes, we said $6,500, which is the rounded up cost of the version Xotic PC sent us. When shopping an Executioner, you begin by picking one of four baseline setups dubbed Stages 1-4. Ours is a Stage 4 configuration that starts at just shy of $5,100, though with the custom upgrades Xotic PC decided to showcase, the final price tag is around $1,400 higher. All four Stages come standard... Read more...
The wealth of ultraportable laptops continues to grow, and we're seeing a more varied array of options than ever before. Be it 2-in-1s like Asus' T300 Chi or a tablet-gone-laptop like Microsoft's Surface 3, those in the market for a mobile computer have plenty of options these days. As manufacturers seek out their own differentiation, we're seeing Lenovo carve out its own special space in the sector with their new LaVie Z series of ultralight notebooks. The LaVie Z and LaVie Z 360 are similar machines, hence our doubled-up review here. The innards are identical, and their dimensions are too. The only marked difference between the two is the 360's price tag (it's $200 more than the standard LaVie... Read more...
For years, the notion of a tablet replacing one's laptop was a novel idea, but hardly feasible. Much has changed in recent times, however, with Microsoft going so far as to claim that its newest Surface units are indeed powerful enough to take the place of a bonafide laptop. It's that push that has gotten the attention of the entire industry, with everyone from Lenovo to Asus and now Dell pushing out potent 2-in-1 units that manage to straddle the line between slate and laptop with very little compromise.The Inspiron 13 7000 is Dell's latest two-faced unit, and the one we're testing is a top-spec Special Edition model that's faster and more beautiful that the other models in the line-up.... Read more...
Microsoft's third iteration of the Surface Pro was a monumental improvement over the first two incarnations. For many, the third time really was the charm. It was powerful enough to replace most laptops, and versatile enough to serve as two device types without major compromises on either side. A year later now, and Microsoft presents us with the third iteration of the standard Surface. You know, the one without the "Pro" dangling from the end. It's cheaper, slimmer, and toned down, but it's also aimed at a broader swath of consumers. The base Surface 3 checks in at an alluring $499, but that's probably not the machine you'll want. The upgraded spec, which gets 4GB of RAM and 128GB of storage,... Read more...
The engineering wizards at Apple have designed a laptop that's lighter than Air...the MacBook Air, that is. It's the new MacBook (early 2015 edition), a forward-thinking laptop that measures just 11.04 inches (W) by 7.74 inches (D) by 0.14-0.52 inches (H), and weighs a mere 2.03 pounds. The super thin and light profile is what prompted Apple's clever tagline, "Light. Years ahead."At 2.38 pounds, the 11.6-inch MacBook Air is slightly heavier than the 12-inch MacBook we'll be showing you here. It's also marginally thicker at its highest point (0.68 inches), though a tad thinner where it tapers off (0.11 inches). Comparing the size and weight of the two really comes down to splitting hairs and isn't... Read more...
The rate at which the industry is pumping out smartphones these days is staggering. Even more impressive is the rate at which truly outstanding phones are shipping, even from names that weren't significant just a few years ago. BLU, Xiaomi, OnePlus, and ASUS (just to name a few) have all produced handsets in recent months that rival the best offerings from Apple, LG, Samsung, and other historical greats. It signals a shift in the industry where we've reached a certain level of market maturity at the hardware, software and ecosystem level. It's just that much easier to launch a smartphone in market than it was a few years ago.The ASUS ZenFone 2 is one of the more interesting devices to hit the... Read more...
Calling the smartphone market "mature" is likely misguided, even if you consider its increasing saturation levels. In the U.S., however, much has changed over the past half-decade, but more important perhaps is what has become commonplace. While the initial players all jockeyed for their share of the smartphone pie, companies such as Kyocera and Sony have all but vanished, while Apple and Samsung are the only two options that some mainstream users even consider. LG's mobile CEO is aware of the current landscape, stating recently that it hopes to sell around 8 million G4 handsets by the end of 2015. Apple sells 8 million iPhones in a good month, so the scale and scope is well-defined. The LG G4,... Read more...
About a year ago, we were in a similar spot. We had the latest Galaxy smartphone in hand, rand were comparing it to rivals from LG, Motorola, Apple, and Sony (just to name a few). Twelve months have passed, and as fate would have it, we've got yet another pair of Galaxy phones in the labs. This time, however, Samsung's got something that clearly stands out for previous generations. After years of success, Samsung's profits began to lag right around the launch of the Galaxy S5. The press largely criticized it for being too plasticky, not innovative enough, and not fast enough to set it apart or justify its price tag. Many wondered if the company's next flagship Galaxy would get Samsung back on... Read more...
At this point, it is clear that virtually all of the major mobile device manufacturers are laser focused on the wearables market.  While one could argue that the war for the wrist began a couple of years ago, most of the smartwatches that have shipped thus far have served only a small niche. Early adopters have peeked at the Moto 360, Samsung Gear, and Sony SmartWatch, but none have sold at a clip that would make the mainstream really take notice. To date, the smartwatch has been seen as a nifty luxury, but hardly a necessity in the way that a smartphone is viewed. Now that Apple's involved, however, the question looms larger: is the wearable market poised to explode, or will it exist only... Read more...
Ever since Grand Theft Auto V’s initial release back in September 2013 for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, PC gamers have been eagerly waiting for Rockstar Games to bring title to the PC. 18 months later, and the long-awaited game has finally been released. Unfortunately, while Rockstar Games is known for releasing some top-notch titles, its track record with porting its games to PC hasn’t been stellar. When Grand Theft Auto IV came out for the PC platform back in 2008, about eight months after the console version, it was criticized as a poor port at the time. Suffering from performance issues and requiring users to be signed in to Windows Live to save their progress, it frustrated many users... Read more...
As has become the norm, major smartphone manufacturers are expected to launch a new version of their flagship phones annually. On top of that, the average consumer expects greater improvements and features with each successive release. It’s a tall order to meet such demands on an annual cycle, but that’s exactly where many of the major players find themselves. Now on its third iteration, the One line of high-end Android phones by HTC is hitting the market. It comes right around two years after the One M7, and just under a year after last year's HTC One M8. Casually glancing at the One M9, you’d be forgiven for mistaking the handset for last year’s version. The 5-inch display size hasn’t changed,... Read more...
Not long ago, the battle for consumer dollars occurred on a field littered with ultralight notebooks. A few years later, that transitioned to smartphones and tablets. Today, the next major tussle is occurring on one’s wrist, in the red-hot "wearables" market in general. Motorola’s Moto 360 made waves by being the first major smartwatch to actually look like a watch - a real timepiece, not just a gadget. Most of its primary rivals are more akin to something Dick Tracy would wear, but Moto zigged when everyone else zagged. Instead of selling a computer with a band, the 360 is a timepiece that just so happens to run Android Wear. Despite being on the market for a few months now, the Moto 360 is... Read more...
The most hotly anticipated smartwatch launch of 2015 will soon be upon us. Pre-orders for the Apple Watch open up at 3 AM EST on Friday, and the device officially goes on sale April 24. But reviews of the Apple Watch have already touched down, and predictably, not everything is lilies and daffodils in Apple land. The usual suspects have been playing around with the Apple Watch for the past week and we’ve put together a sampling of what these reviewers have to say about the first all-new Apple product launch since the death of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs. The Verge Nilay Patel has been skeptical of the Apple Watch ever since its initial announcement, and has often questioned Apple’s approach with... Read more...
It was being hunted... The monster had been avoiding a team of four hunters ever since it saw them jump out of the spaceship. But by the time the hunters’ feet had touched the ground, the monster was already distancing itself, jumping over large boulders and running through trees in order to get away from the human threat. Along the way, it would slay any of the indigenous wildlife in its path, to devour, in order to evolve and become stronger. Time passed, as the monster played a dangerous game of cat and mouse with the four hunters, while continuing to feed. Now, it felt strong enough to take on its pursuers. But before it could take the fight to them, a blue dome came down around it, trapping... Read more...
Google created Android as an open platform with the intent that software developers and hardware manufacturers would create new, useful, and innovative things for the platform. Since Android was introduced, we’ve seen a number of interesting devices from cameras to HDMI dongles that utilize the OS. But tablets and smartphones remain the key focus for most manufacturers. Most Android tablets are cookie-cutter slates. The major differences from one model to the next are generally a combination of software features and variations in key hardware specifications such as the processor, screen resolution, or storage capacity. Over the years, we’ve also seen some spins... Read more...
We applaud companies willing to push the envelope with innovative new design approaches. Sometimes their efforts aren't rewarded with complete market acceptance, but unique features and hardware that attempt to blaze new trails in existing markets, are always interesting to say the least. In a way, the Galaxy Note Edge fits this description. Similar to 4K curved televisions, one has to wonder if the world truly needs a flagship smartphone with 160 extra pixels along its right edge with an additional curved display. But, as was the case when the original Note launched and many experts shook their heads in disapproval, the Note Edge could strike a chord with consumers and usher in... Read more...
When you're on the path to becoming a power user, you begin to notice certain things that the average person might not. One of those is the difference between typing on a sweet mechanical keyboard with luxurious key action versus pounding away on a run-of-the-mill squishy plank that relies on mushy membranes to register your keystrokes. The difference may seem subtle to the uninitiated, though even casual typists can recognize that there's something inherently superior about typing on a mechanical keyboard, even if they can't pinpoint what exactly it is. Of course, we know it's the mechanical key switches that are responsible for elevating the typing experience. These are better than the... Read more...
First ... Prev 6 7 8 9 10 Next ... Last