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Samsung Galaxy A5 review: pedal to the metal

Published by on Apr 24th, 2015, 1 Comment

 

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There once was a time in smartphone history where the line in the sand was clearly drawn. On one side stood Apple, with a beautiful but limited operating system housed in a premium and stylish aluminium frame. On the other was Samsung, with a gaudy but incredibly flexible Android system stationed in enough plastic to make tupperware jealous.

Fast forward, and that axis still exists… arguably. Yet how times have changed; as Apple slowly and carefully extends iOS’ reach, Samsung have made the leap from plastic to metal; and what a fantastic leap that is. The Galaxy A5 is the second Samsung smartphone to stand on this precipice and reap the results.

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Huawei Mate 7 Review: Big is beautiful again

Published by on Apr 22nd, 2015, 12 Comments

d2 Huawei is making a big push in SA and we are happy to see it. They strive to bring top-notch devices at more affordable prices – something Chinese firms are very good at doing. Huawei, Lenovo and Xaomi are all top 5 smartphone manufacturers in the world and the competition is fierce. You might notice that Huawei has dropped the ‘Ascend’ name (previously this phone was called the Ascend Mate 7) – they are completely refining their branding and naming conventions.

Recently the Huawei Mate 7 has made its way into the South African market and we were lucky enough to review it for an extended period of time. I actually took it on a trip to Europe and exclusively used it as my daily driver for the two weeks, so it had a lot of work to do.

Before we get to the full review, here are some key features: (more…)

Review: Acer Chromebook C720P – Laptop evolution?

Published by on Apr 15th, 2015, No Comments

Acer-C720P-Chromebook-600x339The Chromebook is a bit tricky to understand. It looks like an ordinary laptop but we’re somewhere between tablet and PC, phone-style speed computing and an older, more old-fashioned computer. Chrome OS, which is Google’s browser-based, all-cloud operating system, tries to bridge the gap between a laptop and tablet with an OS that’s really just a fully-featured super-browser with a keyboard, storage and Webcam attached.

Partnering with Acer (and various other companies) Google brings you the Chromebook. These low cost devices, stripped down to the bare necessities – low-power processors, low-resolution screens and a minimum amount of memory and storage is a very affordable alternative to the super expensive laptops out there.

We got our hands on the Acer Chromebook C720P to see what all the fuss is about. (more…)

Sony Xperia Z3 Review: The smartphone underdog

Published by on Feb 10th, 2015, 3 Comments

SonyZ3-003Sony has been playing with the big boys over the last couple of years and the new Xperia range (from the Z1) has really put the company up there among the best. It seems like only yesterday (and probably was) that Sony released the Xperia Z2 in South Africa and now the new Z3 is here. What is even more baffling is that the Z4 might be revealed in May this year. This crazy release schedule probably has more down sides for me than up sides, but that does not mean that Sony will skimp on the details.

Famed for its super cool camera and sleek design, the Xperia range has continued to gather customers since its inception, or have they? The Z3 looks a lot like the Z2, and after a quick glance at the spec sheet (below), you might argue that it makes the same type of noises. This is important because, by its own admission, Sony isn’t doing very well at competing in the phone-making game. Will the Z3 offer enough over the Z2 to warrant an upgrade? Will the Z3 help the struggling Sony ship? Read our Xperia Z3 review to find out. (more…)

Apple iPhone 6 Review: Still the go-to smartphone?

Published by on Jan 20th, 2015, 3 Comments

iPhone-204Apple introduced the iPhone 6 models in September last year and the devices made it to South Africa by the end of October, which in itself was a great surprise for Apple consumers of our rainbow nation. The iPhone 6 range is supposed to be the “game-changer” model for the Cupertino based company. Apple finally caved on the idea of a larger phone and the iPhone 6 (at 4.7 inches) and iPhone 6 Plus (at 5.5 inches) clearly shoves Apple out of the “4-inches-is-perfect-Steve-Jobs” mentality.

As an Apple user with a perfectly timed Vodacom contract I was able to pick up the new iPhone 6 a week after its launch and have been using it for a little over two months. This review will hopefully provide an unbiased (as far as possible) view of the iPhone 6 (4.7-inch model) and whether Apple has been able to step out of their comfort zone and produce a truly top of the range smartphone. (more…)

Garmin Vivofit Review: Make every step count

Published by on Jul 21st, 2014, No Comments

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Wearable fitness tracking devices are fast becoming a trend, especially among those people conscious of their health. There are currently a lot of big names in the industry like Polar Loop, Fitbit Flex, Jawbone UP, and the new Samsung Gear Fit. 

Garmin, well known for their GPS systems and Fitness watches, joined the trend. In January of this year they announced two new devices: the Vivofit and Vivoki. The Vivoki is focused on corporate companies looking to increase their employees’ wellness and get them more active at a lower cost. The Vivofit will be available for the normal consumers to track their activities 24/7. (more…)

Nokia Asha 210 Feature Phone Review

Published by on Apr 23rd, 2014, No Comments

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Are you one of those people that love their QWERTY keyboards and don’t need a massively expensive smartphone that has one? This device might be for you, then. While the Nokia Asha 210 isn’t perfect, it certainly is a very compelling buy for people in this price bracket. Let’s find out why.

Announced last year, the Nokia Asha 210 offers the basics of what you’d expect from a modern mobile phone, in a package that is easy on your wallet. It is very similar to the Asha 201 and Asha 205, but with better specs.

Here are the specs it offers: (more…)

Feature Phone Review: Alcatel One Touch 2000

Published by on Mar 4th, 2014, No Comments

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The Alcatel One Touch 2000 is an entry level phone in any way you look at is. It is priced at a measly R459 and is meant for people who want a device that does the basics, and does it well. It is also targeting elderly people or people who are somewhat visually disabled or is hard of hearing with its great big buttons and voice-on-touch. Let’s see how it shapes up.

Compared to other feature phone targeting the same demographic, it is truly a great deal when you look at the price, as is compares favourably with similar competitors.

There is also an SOS button on the back, which can be customised to call and/or text a variety of contacts.  It also comes with a handy charging dock so no one needs to struggle with tiny ports or cables. (more…)

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