Category: Android Phone

Review – Huawei P10 – Killer Performance in a Small Package

I’ve been reviewing mobile devices for the better part of 15 years now.  I’m often asked, “What is the best phone to get?”  My answer is always the same:  The phone that works best for you.  For some, that’s iPhones.  For some, that’s Android.  But when it comes to any phone, rarely do you find one that ticks all the boxes when it comes to performance, a solid camera, good battery life and user experience.  I’ve found one of these rare phones in the Huawei P10.  It’s not perfect, but it is close and this 5.1″ phone is once to seriously consider.

I’ve had the opportunity over the past few weeks to use the Huawei P10 as my daily driver and it has not disappointed.  It has the power to get me through the day and the performance to do anything I need it to do – from email, to streaming music and video, to playing a game or two.  It is a device that I have no reservation in recommending.  Yes there are some things to get use to with it, most notably the multi-function fingerprint scanner, but once you get the hang of it, you’ll really unlock this phone.

Review – Honor 6X – Solid Performer at a Great Price

When it comes to mid-market Android phones, there are a huge number of options at under $300.  Most of those devices have compromises of some sort to keep that price point, some of which are painful to overlook.  That’s not so much the case with the Honor 6X.  The follow up to last year’s 5X, the Honor 6X brings a lot of power and features in its 5.5″ frame and has the features that you would expect for this price point.  But it is not perfect and does have some blemishes, most of which will be addressed when this phone sees its impending Android Nougat update.  With that update, there is no reason to overlook the 6X if you are wanting a good sized, mid-range phone.

I’ve been spending the last few weeks with the Honor 6X and without giving away the plot, I don’t have a problem recommending it.  It performs well, has a good camera and plenty of battery power to get you through the day.  Here is my review and thoughts on the latest phone from Honor.

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 – The New BLU Life One X2 Mini for $180

Today’s Deal is on the all new BLU Life One X2 Mini.  This new 5″ phone was announced on Friday and for a phone priced at $180, it is reasonably well appointed.  BLU has made a name for themselves for offering good spec’d phones at a reasonable price and the X2 Mini is another example of this go-to-market strategy.  The 5″ X2 Mini has a curved Full HD display that renders at 1080 x 1920.  That gives you roughly 435 ppi for excellent color and detail while being easy on the eyes.  The display is protected by Gorilla glass 3 while the chassis of the phone itself is made of solid aluminium construction.

Internally, the phone is powered by the Octa-Core Snapdragon 430 processor running at 1.4GHz.  It is coupled with 4GB of RAM and has 64GB of internal storage.  That storage can be expanded a further 64GB thanks to the MicroSD slot.  The phone is sold unlocked at a Dual-SIM configuration that supports a wide range of GSM and LTE bands here in the United States.  You should be able to run this phone on the likes of AT&T, T-Mobile and Cricket to name a few.  Unfortunately for Verizon and Sprint customers, this phone is not compatible with your service.  Here are the frequencies

BLU Life One X2 Mini

BLU Life One X2 Mini

and bands that the X2 Mini supports:

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

Powering all of this is a 2,300mAh battery that recharges via a MicroUSB cable.  The phone supports Quick Charge 3.0 technology for rapid charging.  For security, the X2 Mini has a fingerprint scanner

Rounding out the specs of the BLU Life One X2 Mini is a solid camera configuration.  The main camera is a 13MP shooter with PDAF (Phase-Detection Auto Focus) while the front facing selfie camera is an 8MP shooter with a wide-angel and a flash.  Front flashes are a bit rare still so it’s nice to see it pop up on a budget friendly device like this one.

If there is one knock on the X2 Mini it likely will be that it ships with Android Marshmallow and not Nougat.  Even for a budget phone this is a bit of a head scratcher.

Currently the X2 Mini is available for $179.99 in Gold, Rose Gold and Grey.  If you are an Amazon Prime customer, shipping is free and all three colors at the time of this post were in stock.  To get more details & to order, head over to Amazon.

T-Mobile to Sell The LG G6 Starting April 7

The new LG G6 is coming to T-Mobile on April 7th.  The carrier announced that the latest LG flagship would be coming to them at a price of $26 per month for 24 months & a $26 down payment.  That roughly works out to $650 for the phone which is about what expected to the street price.  The G6 has already caught a lot of people’s attention with its 5.7″ display that has an 18:9 aspect ratio. Having held a near-final version of the phone, it feels long in your hand but is comfortable.

The specs of the LG G6 are solid.  It is powered by the Snapdragon 821 processor and is coupled with 4GB of RAM.  Storage wise, it has 32GB onboard which can be expanded up to an additional 256GB thanks to the MicroSD slot.  It is powered by a 33oomAh battery and supports Quick Charge 3.0 technology for rapid charging.  The G6 has a fingerprint scanner in the back which is also the

LG G6

LG G6

physical power button for the device.   Finally, do remember that the G6 is the first phone to ship with Google Assistant out-of-the-box and runs Android Nougat 7.0.

For those of you who are wanting to pick up the G6, if you place your order at T-Mobile before April 30th, you will also get a Google Home at no additional cost.  That’s a $129 value so not a bad deal at all.  Head over to T-Mobile to get all the details.

 

Today’s Deal – BlackBerry Priv Unlocked for $319 on Amazon

Today’s Deal is on the solid performing BlackBerry Priv.  Right now you can pick up the 2015 flagship for $319 on Amazon.  The Priv is a unique phone in that it has a slide-down physical QWERTY keyboard, the hallmark of BlackBerry devices in the past.  It is a solid performing phone with good specifications, especially for a late 2015 device.  It has a 5.43″ curved QHD display and is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 808 processor.  That hexa-core processor runs at 1.8GHz and is coupled with 3GB of RAM.

Storage wise, the Priv comes with 32GB onboard but that can be expanded up to and additional 256GB thanks to the MicroSD card.  It has a 3410 mAh battery to keep you going throughout the day and it supports Quick Charge 2.0 technology to get recharged quickly.  Camera wise, the BlackBerry Priv has an 18MP rear shooter with OIS and dual-tone flash while the front camera is 2MP

Blackberry Priv

Blackberry Priv

shooter.

One thing to keep in mind is that BlackBerry has given no clear indication if the Priv will receive the Android Nougat update.  That may be a big deal for some readers so bear that in mind if you consider this phone.  Overall though, for what it offers along with the security that the company has built into this device, it is a solid option at this price.

To get the details and to order, head over to Amazon.

Today’s Deal – Sony Xperia X Compact Down to $364 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 $364 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.

Honor V9 has Powerhouse Specs for a Sub-$500 Phone

Huawei’s junior brand, Honor, has pretty much always had a solid lineup of mid-market phones at a good price.  Then comes along the Honor V9 and it is nothing short of a powerhouse.  The 5.7″ QHD is powered by the Kirin 960 SoC quad-core process running at 2.4GHz, has up to 6GB of RAM and 128GB of storage and will start roughly $435.  The V9 is perhaps the most complete, high-end spec phone that Honor has released and hopefully, hopefully we will see it here in the United States at some point.

There are three configurations of the Honor V9 but regardless of which one you get, they both come with the Kirin 960 processor and Mali G71 GPU.  You can get a 4GB model with 64GB of Storage , a 6GB model with 64GB of Storage, or you can pick up the 6GB and 128GB model.  Both come with a MicroSD slot so you can expand the storage up to an additional 128GB.  So if you picked up the top-of-the-line model and added a 128GB card for roughly $40, you would have a 256GB phone for around $550.  That is a steal.

Google Pixel XL Finally Back in Stock at The Google Store

If you have been wanting to pick up the Google Pixel XL, you need to go to the Google Store.  Like, right now.  I’ll wait….

For the first time in weeks the XL is in stock and available for order.  Google has a mighty time keeping up with demand on both the Pixel and the Pixel XL and usually the phone shows out of stock in all colors and variants.  Right now at least, you can pick up the XL in Silver or Black with 32GB of storage.  The 128GB variants still remain out of stock as does the Really Blue color.

Today’s Deal – Sony Xperia X Compact Down to $369

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 $369 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 – BLU VIVO 5R Down to $149

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 $149 if you pick it up in either white and gold trim or black and grey.  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.

Today’s Deal – ASUS ZenFone Zoom With 64GB of Storage Down to $229

Today’s Deal over at Amazon is on the powerful ASUS ZenFone Zoom.  This 5.5″ display device with a 13MP rear camera, 64GB of storage and unlocked phone is on sale today for $229.  That’s a savings of $170 from the normal $399 price.  For that price, this is a well spec’d phone.  It has an Intel 64-bit Quad-Core processor running at 2.3GHz and coupled with 4GB of RAM.  Storage wise it has 64GB of storage built-in but can be expanded an additional 128GB thanks to the MicroSD slot.

The ZenFone Zoom, as the name suggests, has a 13MP camera with a 3x optical zoom on the rear camera.  Optical zooms are not completely unique but they aren’t found often on phones.  Having an Optical zoom provides much crisper images over software zooming.  The front camera on the Zoom is a 5MP shooter.