Category: Android Phone

Today’s Deal – BLU R1 HD Amazon Prime Exclusive for $60

Today’s Deal over at Amazon is on the BLU R1 HD.  This 5″ HD curved display phone has been out of stock for a while but has returned at a great price of $59.99 for the 16GB storage model.  Like other Amazon Prime exclusive phones, the R1 HD comes with adverts on the lockscreen.  If you can live with that and are looking for a solid performing phone for yourself or a gift, take a look at it.  Normally it is $99 and if you order it you can get it in a couple of days thanks to free Amazon Prime shipping.

The BLU R1 HD is powered by a quad-core MdeiaTek 6725 processor running at 1.3GHz and has 2GB of RAM.  The 16GB of built in storage can be expanded up to an additional 64GB thansk to the MicroSD support.  The R1 HD is also a dual SIM phone for those who travel abroad.  The cameras on the phone include an 8MP primary camera and a 5MP front facing selfie camera that includes an LED flash for your selfies.

Today’s Deal – Sony Xperia X Compact Down to $379 on Amazon

Today’s Deal is on a great phone that I reviewed a few months ago.  The Sony Xperia X Compact has a lot of punch in a little package and right now, it is on sale for $379 at Amazon.  Normally this 4.6″ phone is $499, so this is a healthy amount of savings.  It is powered by the Snapdragon 650 hexa-core processor.  It has four 1.4 GHz Cortex-A53 cores &  two 1.8 GHz Cortex-A72 cores.  The processor is coupled with the Adreno 510 GPU which provides good graphics performance.  The X Compact has 3GB of RAM onboard and has 32GB of built-in storage.  That storage can be expanded up to an additional 256GB thanks to the Micro SD slot that is built into the SIM tray of the phone.

Display wise, the Xperia X Compact has a 4.6″ IPS LCD display that renders at 720 x 1280.  That gives you 319 ppi which is low compared to other devices out there.  I caution readers to consider that this device has a much smaller display so 319 ppi is actually very comfortable on this screen size.  Indeed for comparison, the iPhone 6 had 329 ppi so we aren’t talking about a massive difference from even larger devices.  The display is protected by Gorilla Glass 3.

Today’s Deal – Asus ZenFone 3 Max for $149 on Amazon

Today’s Deal over at Amazon is on the well appointed entry level Asus ZenFone 3 Max.  The 5.2″ phone has 2GB of RAM and 16GB of storage but what is really impressive is the battery.  It comes with a whopping 4100 mAh battery for all day performance.  Right now you can pick up this phone for $149.

The ZenFone 3 Max is powered by the Mediatek MT6737M quad-core processor running at 1.25 GHz.  It has a 5.2″ IPS display and as mentioned, has 2GB of RAM.  The 16GB of storage can be expanded thanks to the Dual-SIM/MicroSD slot.  You can add an additional 256GB of storage with a card.  The phone runs Android Marshmallow and it is unclear if Nougat will be coming to this phone.

The phone is sold unlocked and works on GSM carriers here in the United States like AT&T and T-Mobile.  Sorry Sprint and Verizon customers, the phone doesn’t support CDMA.

Camera wise, the rear shooter is a 13MP auto-focus unit with flash while the front selfie camera is a 5MP shooter.

The ZenFone 3 Max is in silver and if you are an Amazon Prime customer, shipping of this phone is free to you.

Head over to Amazon to get all the details.

Today’s Deal – Honor 5X in Gold is $169 on Amazon

Today’s Deal is on the solid performing and well priced Honor 5X from Huawei.  The 5.5″ phone is available in a Gold finish today for $169 on Amazon which is a great price on this solid mid-range phone.  It has an all metal and glass construction, has 2GB of RAM and 16GB of storage.  That storage can be expanded up to an additional 256GB thanks to the MicroSD slot built into the phone.  Powering the phone is the octa-core Snapdragon 616 processor running at 1.4GHz coupled with the Adreno 405 GPU.  The 5X is a dual-SIM phone which is great for those who travel and has 13MP rear camera and a 5MP selfie camera.

The Honor 5X is sold unlocked and works with GSM carriers like AT&T and T-Mobile here in the United States.  Sorry Sprint and Verizon customers, this phone won’t work on your network.  Here are the GSM and LTE bands of the 5x:

  • HSDPA 850 / 1700(AWS) / 1900 / 2100
  • LTE band 1(2100), 3(1800), 7(2600), 8(900), 20(800)
  • LTE band 2(1900), 4(1700/2100), 5(850), 7(2600), 12(700), 17(700)

HTC Shows Off The HTC U Ultra and HTC U Play

HTC has announced two new phones that will be coming soon to select markets, the HTC U Ultra and HTC U Play.  The new lineup is a departure in design for HTC with both phones having a curved glass design over metal designs like the HTC 10.  What’s interesting here is that HTC isn’t being real clear on if the new U lineup is replacing the 10 or if it is a complementary device.  With the 5.7″ Ultra expected to be around $749, it certainly has a flagship price tag to go along with the flagship specs.

Focusing on the HTC U Ultra, it has a 5.7″ Quad HD display along with a 2′ secondary display that is 160 x 1040 in resolution.  That secondary display is aimed for things like notifications and is strikingly similar to the second display on the LG V20.  Powering the phone is a quad-core Snapdragon 821 processor running at 2.15GHz and is coupled with the Adreno 530 GPU.  It has 4GB of RAM and either 64 or 128GB of storage which can be expanded up to an additional 2TB thanks to the MicroSD slot.  You will also find a fingerprint scanner built into the Ultra.

The main camera of the Ultra is a 12MP shooter with laser auto focus, phase detection auto focus, OIS and a dual tone LED flash.  The front facing camera is an even more impressive 16MP shooter.  The Ultra has a 3000 mAh battery which is good but battery life will be interesting to find out as the 5.7″ display is certainly going to draw a fair amount of juice.  All of this in a sleek package that is protected by Corning Gorilla Glass 5.  What is not know is which markets or even a definitive launch date for the Ultra.  It looks like the price will be around $750 but that’s about all that is know otherwise.

Today’s Deal – BLU Life One X2 with 4GB Ram and 64GB Storage for $199

Today’s Deal is on the powerful BLU Life One X2, a solid 5.2″ Android phone with 4GB of RAM and 64GB of storage built in.  Right now you can pick one up either in Grey or in Rose Gold for $199 on Amazon.  The phone is very well equipped for one in this price range, featuring a 5.2″ curved glass Full HD display and is powered by the octa-core Snapdragon 430 processor running at 1.4GHz.  As mentioned, it has 4GB of RAM which is almost unheard of in the sub-$200 range as is the 64GB of built-in storage.  That storage can be expanded an additional 64GB thanks to the MicroSD slot.

Camera wise, the BLU Life One X2 has a 16MP Phase Detection Auto Focus shooter while the front camera is an 8MP unit that has a front facing flash for improved selfie quality.

As with other deals I post on, the Life One X2 is sold unlocked and works with GSM carriers.  If you are on Sprint or Verizon, sadly it won’t work for you.  Here are the GSM frequencies and LTE bands in this phone:

  • 4G HSPA+ (850/1700/1900/2100)
  • LTE (2/4/7/12/17)

Finally, the Life One X2 is running Android Marshmallow so you are getting a solid and secure Android build on the phone.  One thing to note is that BLU is no clear on when or if there will be a Nougat update for this phone so if that is a big deal to you, be aware.

To get all the details or to order your BLU Life One X2 in Grey or Rose Gold, head over to Amazon.

Nokia 6 Launches in China Running Android Nougat

Nokia fans, it is official.  The company, at least in name, is back and has a brand new smartphone.  The Nokia 6 was launched with little fanfare late last week as CES 2017 wrapped up, pulling the covers back on the China exclusive phone.  HMD Global, the owners of the Nokia brand, had indicated they would be launched Android powered devices in 2017 and they let little time pass in the new year before making it happen.

The 5.5″ Android Nougat powered phone has some great specs for a phone that will retail for approximately $250 in China.  It fits well with HMD’s desire to offer well featured phones at competitive prices.  This certainly looks like a good start.

Today’s Deal – BLU VIVO 5R in Gold Down to $197

Today’s Deal over at Amazon is on the solid performing BLU VIVO 5R phone from BLU.  This 5.5″ phone with 3GB of RM and 32GB of storage is down to $197 if you pick it up in white and gold trim.  While BLU has always been known for their budget friendly phones, over the past year the company has made great strides in the quality and performance that you get for that budget price.  The VIVO 5R is a great example of this fact.

The phone comes with a 5.5″ Full HD curved glass display that gives you an eye appealing ~401ppi.  It is powered by the MediaTek 6753 octa-core processor running at 1.3GHz and is coupled with 32GB of internal storage and 3GB of RAM.  That storage can be expanded up to an additional 64GB thanks to the MicroSD slot.  Powering all of this is a 3150mAh battery which should keep you going all day.  The phone ships with Android Marshmallow but it is expected that BLU will update it to Nougat at some point – but when or if is unclear.

As the BLU VIVO 5R is sold unlocked on Amazon, cellular frequencies become part of the equation.  For those of you on GSM networks like AT&T, T-Mobile, Cricket and others, you should be good-to-go.  Here are the supported bands on the phone:

  • 4G LTE 2/4/7/12/17
  • 4G HSPA+ – 850/1700/1900/2100)

Unfortunately the phone does not support CDMA carriers like Sprint or Verizon.

Huawei Mate 9 Finally Coming to the US Today

After being released in Europe in November, the Huawei Mate 9 is finally coming to the United States.  This 5.9″ phablet will be available at a wide range of online retailers, including Amazon, at the impressive price of $599.  So what does that get you?  a 5.9″ phone running Android Nougat, an octa-core processor running at 2.4GHz and Leica optics dual-camera setup shooting at 20MP and 12MP respectively with OIS.  The front facing selfie camera is 8MP shooter.  You also have 64GB of built-in storage that can be expanded up to an additional  256GB thanks to the MicroSD slot.  Not bad at all for $599.

The Mate 9 is being sold unlocked so the question is always carrier compatibility.  For those of you on GSM carriers like AT&T and T-Mobile, you are good-to-go.  For those on Sprint and Verizon, the phone is CDMA compatible too. Here are the range of frequencies supported:

  • GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900
  • CDMA 800 / 1900
  • HSDPA 800 / 850 / 900 / 1700(AWS) / 1900 / 2100
  • CDMA2000 1xEV-DO & TD-SCDMA
  • LTE band 1(2100), 2(1900), 3(1800), 4(1700/2100), 5(850), 7(2600), 8(900), 9(1800), 12(700), 17(700), 18(800), 19(800), 20(800), 26(850), 28(700), 29(700), 38(2600), 39(1900), 40(2300), 41(2500)

Those frequencies are going to cover every carrier here in the United States but as always, double-check with your carrier before ordering.

Today’s Deal – Nextbit Robin in Mint Down to $149

Over at Amazon you can still pick up the Nextbit Robin for $149.   I reviewed the Robin a few months ago and at the time I said it was a pretty good deal at $299.  At $149, it is one of the best deals on a phone with these specs out there right now.  Over the holidays the phone was $169 on Amazon so this price drop makes it the lowest price the phone has ever been available.

For those that don’t recall, the Nextbit Robin has some great features and offers a unique device-meets-cloud storage solution.  It has 32GB of onboard storage merged with 100 GB online storage, so you always have the space you need. Robin seamlessly backs up your apps and photos, intelligently archives the stuff you’re not using, and easily restores items when you need them.  The idea is that you never run out of space.  Those less used apps are backed up into the cloud but then are instantly available when you want them.  You’ll know an app has been backed up into the cloud as it will be grey on your Robin.  You can read my review of the Robin to see all my thoughts on this great little phone.  I also think it is perhaps one of the most underrated phones of 2016.

Today’s Deal – Huawei Honor 8 $100 Off at Amazon

Today’s Deal is a great deal on one of the top phones for 2016.  The Honor 8 is being sold unlocked so it will work with any GSM carrier here in the US like AT&T and T-Mobile.  It has a 2.3GHz octa-core processor, 4GB of RAM and either 32GB or 64GB of storage (expandable up to 256GB with the MicroSD slot).  The Honor 8 has a 5.2″ display, fingerprint scanner and a 12MP dual-camera rear shooter. Normally the Honor 8 is $399.99 but today it is down to $289 for the 32GB model while the 64GB model is normally $449.99 and it is down to $348.

Nokia is Dead! Long Live Nokia!

The rise, fall, death and now resurrection of Nokia is nearing completion.  Finland based HMD announced today that they have secured the licensing rights to the Nokia brand for the next 10 years and that a new, Android powered smartphone will be hitting the marking in the first half of 2017.  It marks a pretty staggering comeback, if only in name, to a brand that has been in the mobile phone space for decades.  After the company was bought by Microsoft and then subsequently scuttled in the debacle that has been Windows Phone, it appeared that the brand would be gone forever.

HMD is making sure that doesn’t happen.  Comprised of several former Nokia employees, the company will be manufacturing phones under the name of Nokia that will include both feature phones (which are available now) as well as Android-based Smartphones.