Tagged: smartphones

SXSW 2018: Comfort Bots Steal Show Floor

Meet Chappet, the talking yellow button with a voice babies must love. It can be affixed to any object and allows you to communicate remotely, or it can communicate for you. When sensing a baby is crying, Chappet will start playing lullabies to soothe it, and parents can talk to the baby through the iOS and Android app. Black Mirror applications include spooking friends at a party or bugging a meeting in states where wiretapping is legal. Battery life is 1.2 hours and the app is compatible with iOS 9.0 and Android 55.0+. Available on Amazon for $54.99. I have yet to try the one the company gave me but was able to get this demo at the booth: Japan-based comfortbot, Qoobo, the pillow with a tail, was also on the show floor, featured here playing with Sony’s robot dog, Aibo. Qoobo with Sony’s Aibo, photo credit: Qoobo Geekazine...

Sony Xperia Z3v is a Powerful Android Smartphone

Podcast: EmbedSubscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | RSSIn the last few weeks I got to use the Sony Xperia Z3v smartphone on the Verizon network. Being a big fan of the Z2 tablet, I was excited to really delve into the cool features of the Z3v phone and use in tandem with the tablet. Lets start with the specs of this device. The Sony Xperia Z3v is a LTE phone running Android KitKat. The phone has a 5.2 inch display on the 5.75 x 2.83 inch enclosure. The 3100 mAh battery allows up to 920 hours standby and more important – a 16 hour battery for Facebook, Twitter, photos and the occasional phone call. The cameras on the Z3v include a 20 MP with auto focus, but only a 2.2 front face camera. Just like the Z2, if you close up all the doors, this phone is waterproof...

Saloote is the Best Way to Collaborate with Others Through Your IOS Device

Podcast: EmbedSubscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | RSSSometimes musicians just want to jam with others. It gets difficult because there might not be others around. But Saloote might be able to help as it uses your iPhone to record and mash up videos to create your virtual band. Saloote is an app that allows you to sing or play an instrument with your favorite song. You could be all about that Bass, Happy, or just want to stay together. You record your track and look for other instrumentalists to help give you that one-of-a-kind sound. If you find someone better, simply replace them in the mash-up. Create videos and share them with friends. You might even be able to practice with some musicians in another town to see if they could actually play out when you get there. Dylan even mentioned a collaboration version, which will be in...

iRig2 for iOS, Android – Time to Rock on Your Guitar – CES 2015

Podcast: EmbedSubscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | RSSI have been a big fan of IK Multimedia and the iRig. However, since I moved to Android devices, it got tougher to use these great musical additions. At CES 2015, they changed that with the new iRig 2 guitar interface which now supports Android devices. I talked with Derek of IK Multimedia about the new iRig 2 adapter for your guitar. Along with the Amplitude for Android you can now add pedal effects to your guitar for practice or performance. With the additional bluetooth pedal board, you can preset your sounds and have them ready at a touch of a button. Of course you can also use your iOS device the exact same way with the Amplitude for iOS. The iRig 2 includes a amplifier out, headphone out, gain control and FX-through switch so you can even connect to your existing...

Motorola Droid Turbo Give Battery Life to Your Phone

Podcast: EmbedSubscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | RSSIn today’s mobile world, we want one thing from our smartphones – the ability to hold battery life. The Motorola DROID Turbo is the latest in high-end battery smartphones that not only holds charge, but can recharge 30% within 15 minutes. On the Verizon Network it becomes the workhorse you need for when you need it. Now usually I take a week or two to get to know the phone then review. Every now and then I like to slow a review period down to really get to know the phone. Would it become a phone I could use for the next two years? I also took it with me to the biggest battleground I know of. The Consumer Electronics Show. If you’ve ever went to a major event like this, you know two things – at the end of the day...

FlirOne Thermal Imaging for iOS and Android – CES 2015

Podcast: EmbedSubscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | RSSStopping at the Flir booth at CES, I learned about how Flir has improved on their new FlirOne thermal imaging system for iPhone. They retooled the device and made it an attachment working for all iOS devices. Further, they added an Android version. I talked with Travis Merrill from Flir. Now there is a new iOS platform, they decided to go with a more portable connector – for iOS anything with a Lightning connector, and Android with micro-USB connector. Flir made some enhancements to the first generation FlirOne. The major enhancement is this device is four times the resolution. The camera has two optics – one with thermal imaging and a regular camera so you can overlay the two. Auto shutter gives you a constant temperature and no manual calibration. Finally, the FlirOne has a 1,400 mAh battery, giving it a...

Motorola Moto-X 2nd Generation with Bamboo Back

Podcast: EmbedSubscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | RSSMost of my phones that I’ve owned made mostly of plastic – From the Nokia 910 to the Razr, iPhone and even the Nexus 5 I currently own. If I ever wanted another texture, I would buy the case. But a phone with a wood back – Better yet, a Bamboo back? What a change in experience THAT is… I am taking a look at the 2nd Generation Moto X in Bamboo, which is now available on the Verizon network. This is one of three backing plates for the device. Also in leather and plastic, along with a soon-to-be released teak, walnut and ebony models, the Moto X not only doesn’t need a case, it IS its own case. The best part is how well it feels in your hand. In the last year I’ve held onto some small, medium and...

AmpRidge Mighty Mic S: iPhone, Android Boom Microphone

Podcast: EmbedSubscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | RSSToday I am looking at the AmpRidge Mighty Mic S. This is a boom style microphone which you can use for your iOS or Andriod device – anything with a 3-pole headset. The microphone is small so it can fit in your pocket. A windscreen is provided to help keep wind noise down and a case is also provided so it doesn’t get pocket lint. The mic also has a headphone jack so you can monitor the recording. AmpRidge doesn’t give any specs to this microphone, but within testing via a Real Time Analyzer, the microphone can reduce the background noise by 5-10 db. That means if you are trying to record that rock concert and someone behind you is talking, you hear less of him and more of the music. Get the Ampridge MightyMic S Shotgun Video Microphone MMS at Amazon...

Jabra Solemate Max: More than a Wireless Bluetooth Speaker-Review

Podcast: EmbedSubscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | RSSIt’s tailgate time! You have your grill, you have your mini-bar. But do you have an awesome audio system to run the music through? Today, I’m going to show you the Jabra Soulmate Max – a speaker system for whatever you need. The Solemate Max is the largest of the solemate series. This 6.6 pound brick is set to blast some sound for long periods of time. This is also a great speaker system for all devices – mobile to laptop and even works well as a TV bar. The Max is a 90 Watt amplifier with 2 tweeters, 2 woofers and a passive bass radiator. This means it can sound even better if you set it on a wood surface but the rubber footed bottom keeps it from vibrating around. The 3 cell 2200 mAh Lithium Ion battery gives you...

Review: Sony Xperia Z2 with Verizon 4G vs. iPad Air

Podcast: EmbedSubscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | RSS“So slim and light, you forgetting your holding it” touts Sony in this newest tablet in the market. The Sony Xperia Z2 is a LTE-based Android tablet using Sony’s Trilumios technology. What is Triluminos? Its an approach to LED lighting that is different from most screens. Sony uses an uncoated LED inside a thin tube. The tube has what are called “Quantum Dots” of Red and Green. When electricity goes through the tubes, the wavelengths will determine the color. Blue is always the constant – emited via the main LED. The end result is a more vibrant experience. How vibrant? Well, lets put it side by side with the iPad Air to see the difference. Now we got that out of the way lets look at what Sony packs in their tablet. The Sony Xperia has a display area of 10.1...

The Crazy Facebook Messenger App Rules and a Safe Way to Install

Podcast: EmbedSubscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | RSSLast week Facebook turned off the Messenger within the main app to force the masses to download the new app. As I mentioned before, this is to control your phone’s contact list and ultimately your phone itself. But recent issues cropped up stating the apps terms of conditions were a little seedy. The Wall Street Journal talked about how when you install the app, it tries to take over your contacts. Within the small print, they found the app could use your information to their advantage. One policy would allow Facebook to message your contacts without your knowledge. I would guess that was to allow the Facebook notifications and Inbox to alert of new messages.Further, the app could take over your camera and audio at any time. This can get spun into a state where people would be in fear that...

Pressy Adds a Programmable Button via Your Smartphone Headphone Jack

Podcast: EmbedSubscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | RSSA successful Kickstarter campaign, Pressy is a cool button you can program and use when you need it. Whether it takes a photo, turns on the flashlight, or opens up your favorite app, the button can become a helpful gadget. Pressy comes with a keychain holder so you can store when not in use. Download the app from the Play store and insert Pressy. Alert the phone its inserted, then use it for whatever you programmed the button with. For example, I have one press opening the Pressy dashboard. Two presses and it opens up one of my favorite games. Three presses and a photo is taken. Programming is simplistic at this time. I forsee a lot more options – maybe a morse code system to add more functions. Short presses vs. long presses opening new apps. It’s only available for...

HTC One M8 vs. Samsung Galaxy S5: Smartphone Throwdown Part 2

Podcast: EmbedSubscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | RSSLast week I showed you the Samsung Galaxy S5 and all its glory. This week, we turn the tables and look at the HTC One M8. These phones are loaners from Verizon, so I thank them for allowing to use for comparison. Next up is the HTC One M8 phone. This device has a definite feel difference since its got a metal back design. You even have color options in gun metal grey, champagne, gold, and now red – which is a Verizon exclusive. The HTC One has added the UltraPixel module for depth of field. So if you are a shutterbug, this device not only will get you the best pictures, but also some great selfies. The phone comes with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 quad-core at 2.3 GHz. The screen is 4.7 inches with 440 ppi. The HTC One also...

Can Smartphones Be Slowing Us Down?

Podcast: EmbedSubscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | RSSYou’ve seen it before – You’re running to get to a destination, maybe get to the next flight, walk the street to your next meeting. You run into that one person looking down at their smartphone, oblivious to the world and slowing everyone down. You would like to curse at them, but you know you do it yourself. Are smartphones slowing us down? I just read an interesting article on Dineability.com. A popular New York restaurant noticed the service to be slow. They decided to bring in a group to see why. This group reviewed the surveillance system and noticed a trend that not made the servers slower, but the customer. The group had the restaurant pull up tapes from 10 years prior to figure out the problem. What they found was that the customer was slowing the process down because...

Samsung Galaxy S5 vs HTC One M8: The Throwdown Part 1

Podcast: EmbedSubscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | RSSIn this two part video, I take a look at the Samsung Galaxy S5 over the HTC One M8 – both are the latest Android phones for their respected manufacturers. Both of these phones are on loan from Verizon. After playing with the Samsung S5, I see why it s one of the top smartphones on the market. Samsung definitely takes the Android software and makes its own. A great camera, powerful battery and even more secure with its own fingerprint scanner to unlock the phone. Let s start with the screen. With a 5.1 inch phone using the AMOLED technology, you will be able to do everything from get that video shot to play Clash of Clans without squinting. The design of the phone is pretty standard, but kinda lack-luster. The plastic case phone comes in a white or black...

Voycee: Your History Free Social Network – Disrupt 2014

Podcast: EmbedSubscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | RSSThe easiest way to say it – it’s Snapchat for social networking. Voycee is an incognito social network. You create your post and send it. People read the post then it disappears into the night. I talked with Ilfan Radoncic of Voycee – suited up like the Men in Black – who showed me the network. He states there are certain celebrities and sports stars that want to post something and not have it blow up on social networks. With Voycee, there is no timeline, no archived posts. Nothing to say that post existed. You can say something that people can read in the moment and then let it go in the wind. Voycee is available now for iOS with an Android app coming soon. Sign up, post away. Or DID you? For more information, head to Voycee.me or you can Download Voycee...

Mobilizr – Get Paid for Your Selfie – Disrupt 2014

Podcast: EmbedSubscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | RSSI found a great way to make money off my selfie. That is with Mobilizr – a company that helps you promote your favorite brands and get rewarded for it. Lets say you like Geekazine. Simply send a picture through the app to promote it. This is a beta service for use. There are some campaigns up on the site right now which you would download the iOS or Android app to participate with. Earnings on Mobilizr depend on what the campaign offers. You can even set up your own campaign for other people to like. For more information, check out Mobilizr.net  

Zopaf Salary Negotiation Calculator App – Disrupt 2014

Podcast: EmbedSubscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | RSSI remember the first job where I had to negotiate the salary. I was too green to understand how the product worked. If I would have had the Zopaf Salary Negotiation app, I could have gone into the negotiations and possibly have received more. Zopaf app is currently for iOS. The app uses multiple input options to create a graph of where you should be in your negotiations. For example: a Sales representative might have to consider vehicle costs  if no company car is provided. This app also takes out any emotion. If you calculate your costs and they are more than the salary, do you accept the job? If you can walk into a negotiation and state where your costs are, you might just get what you are asking for. You might also decide the job is not worth it and...

Motorola Droid Maxx vs. Motorola Moto-X – Android Throwdown

Podcast: EmbedSubscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | RSSThere are a lot of Android, Windows and iOS phones out on the market. Old and new, it gets really confusing to try and find a phone that will work for you. I talked with the folks at Verizon and they agree – they want to get you a phone that works for your needs. That is why we are running a series of videos putting different phones together. I will be talking their good points and bad. In this video, I take the larger Motorola Droid Maxx and pit it with the Motorola Moto X. Both phones will go through a few tests with battery and software usage. I’ll report on their results. Motorola Droid Maxx The price right now is $99.99 with 2 year contract or $499 out of contract. But this Android device is really for those of...

Streambox Video Streaming Service with Google Glass App: NAB 2014

Podcast: EmbedSubscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | RSSI checked out Streambox, an alternate live stream service for those looking to stream an event. They have services for everyone from the podcaster to those expecting thousands of views. For simple streaming, Streambox has the iOS and Android app that can turn a phone or iPad into its own camera. Of course you can always use a computer and streaming software to send video to the masses. An embed code will allow you to post on your website or other locations. Streambox also has broadcast production gear including the Avenir Mini 2 – a HD/SD encoder with network bonding. You will be able to connect to Wifi, 3G, 4G, and Ethernet to get the strongest and most reliable signal possible. To help you understand the signal better, Streambox also has a Google Glass app available. This app is for the...

Absolute Lo-Jack Challenge

Absolute LoJack Challenge & My Stolen iPhone Story

NOTE: This is a post brought to you by Absolute LoJack. The Contest part is over. All opinions on software are those of Geekazine. Last week I announced a contest and talked about going #DigitallyDark for the Absolute LoJack Challenge. I have actually had this happen to me, which is a far better story than any “recreation” I could make. That is when I started thinking about better protecting my devices, especially since  I need them to do my job. Remember: A Laptop is stolen every 50 seconds. That laptop could have your vacation or kids photos, tax or other business documents, or even a list of all your passcodes for home and work. Worse yet, Consumer Reports states that 1.6 million smart phones were stolen. 100 devices stolen in 60 seconds! Some of them were NOT from cherry pickers (those who grab phones sitting on a table or bar). Some...

Is Google Hangouts Trying to Get Rid of your Phone Number?

Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | RSS What an awesome week in Austin TX for SXSW! Of course, we cannot forget the tragedy that followed the event this year. If that would have happened 24 hours earlier, I might have been part of it. That is how fragile life is. I took NAB off the schedule for now unless I find a last minute sponsor. If you would like to help out, let me know. This weekend, Jennifer and I went to her sister’s house. We watched Frozen for the first time. Its interesting how a good movie can change your mindset. Let it go. Two new products in the review bin – the AMD R7 250 video card and the Blue Mic Nessie (which I am using in this episode). I give my thoughts on these products. Show notes are getting a slight change – moving the...

Absolute Lo-Jack Challenge

I’m Taking the Absolute LoJack Challenge

We are at an age where if we lose our connected devices, we feel lost or even violated. Not only is this a gateway to our friends and family through social apps, but it also contains our pictures, documents, lives – all on a smartphone, tablet, or computer. Last July I had my iPhone stolen (also known as “Cherry picked”), which put me in a loop. I technically went through this challenge back then unwittingly. I ended up getting a $15 “burner” phone while I was on a 2 day trip, then replaced with an old smartphone to save money. Of course we know that a laptop is stolen every 50 seconds. The price of any iPhone on the black market is a couple hundred bucks – while you spend over $600 to replace it yourself. You might have insurance through renters or home owners insurance, but the...

iStopMotion by Boinx – Create Stop Motion Videos

Podcast: EmbedSubscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | RSSStop motion is an art that some excel in. Claymation and LEGO motion are both types of Stop motion video. Movies like Wallace and Grommet and Chicken Run use this technique. Now you can, too! A couple weeks ago, Boinx software sent me the iStopMotion software to play with on my Mac and iPad. I am not a stop motion expert by any means, but this software made is easy to create my own videos and animated GIFs. Advantages of iStopMotion The ghost images show you where your items were so adjustments can be made. You can load an audio track so the stop motion can sync with it. You can even load in a video to create a stop motion version. Imagine re-creating Peter Gabriel’s Sledgehammer with this software! You can also put up a chromakey background to put your...

Twitter’s IPO: Is it Facebook IPO all Over Again? Geek Smack! 6th Anniversary Episode

Subscribe: Apple Podcasts | Android | RSS 6th anniversary of the podcast is upon us! I started this show back in 2007 – named “The Show”. Fourth pair of Google Glass is going back to Google. This time, the camera died. I talk about it on TWIGG. My EmpireAvenue account is at 112 but more interesting is the numbers watching and listening increased. Crowdfund for CES is looking great – we’re planning T-shirts for backer levels. Getting closer to launching the new website to bring more validation to podcasts. I’ve been trying out StreetJelly in the last week – a website where you can listen to musicians playing live. You can even tip them tokens. I spent about 10 hours over the weekend working on my acoustic show once again. Hotline – 608-205-4378 – geekazine (at) gmail.com Download the audio version Subscribe to the podcast via: iTunes –...

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