A viable option for adding wireless charging to your Note 4, but read the fine print first
The Galaxy Note 4's lack of wireless charging leads owners to the decision of buying Samsung's own first-party wireless charging back, or going with a third-party charging insert, in order to add the capability. Unfortunately the replacement Qi charging back that Samsung sells is thicker than what the phone comes with and kills any chance that you can use a case with your phone, which is a deal breaker for many.
Coming to the rescue, TYLT offers a Vu-Mate Qi wireless charging card for the Note 4 — just like previous Notes and Galaxy S phones before it — that adds wireless charging capability right underneath the stock back cover with no discernible increase in bulk. But of course nothing's perfect — you'll still be giving up in a few different areas to add Qi charging to your Note 4 this way. Read along for our review of the TYLT Vu-Mate Qi charging card.
A no-frills case that just keeps your Note 4 safe without adding much bulk
The Galaxy Note 4's metal frame is nice to look at, even nice to hold, but we all know it won't stay looking and feeling that nice for long without a case. If you're someone who's rough on a phone you'll need some protection, and the Incipio Octane case for the Note 4 adds solid coverage with no extra frills. There's no kickstand, screen cover or funky port system, but there is a great design with thick rubber in the places that need it while keeping full function of your phone available.
Read along and see our quick review of the Incipio Octane case for the Note 4 — it may be the right choice for you.
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Slim case that allows you to enjoy the beauty of the Nexus 6
The Nexus 6, with its enormous 6-inch display, is a handful to comfortably hold for most people. Since one of the main fears about owning and handling a phone this large is that you might drop it, many choose to protect it with a case. If you are like me, you love the way Motorola designed the back of phone and like to display the Nexus branding while using the device. With the Amzer SlimGrip Hybrid Case you get complete protection of your Nexus 6 while also having the ability to see the beautiful Nexus logo.
There are plenty of choices when it comes to protecting your Note from scratches and scrapes — M-Edge brings something different to the table
Like most major smartphones, the Samsung Galaxy Note 4 is backed up by a wide range of cases and other accessories. Many of them aim to blend in with the Note 4's original styling, but M-Edge's latest offering is a bit different, allowing you to choose from three designs while also keeping your device safe from knocks and scrapes.
My most-used app is Google Play Music. I never leave the house without my Bluetooth headphones if I can help it. Safe to say that I'm a heavy Bluetooth user and a somewhat picky Bluetooth user. I've used the Nakamichi Bluetooth Speaker with NFC heavily over the last month and a half with my Moto X and while I love most aspects of this speaker, and while I have loved that time, there are also some times when I have found myself at odds with some of the design choices made here. You may think these choices are fine, and this speaker may fit nicely into your life.
Qi doesn't come free on the Note 4 — get ready for a couple of compromises
Samsung put a big 'ol battery in the Note 4, and didn't even cover up the USB port with a flap like the Galaxy S5 — but that doesn't mean many of us aren't still wishing that the phone came with wireless charging capabilities out of the box. Just as it's done for the past few flagships, Samsung instead sells replacement back covers for the Note 4 that add Qi charging capabilities.
Both a standard back and S-View Flip Cover style are available — coming in at $30 and $60, respectively — that each add a little extra bulk but get your Note 4 charged up without any wires involved. There's a trade-off to be had here in either case, but for most folks it'll be worth it to forego plugging in every night — read along for a review of these two replacement charging backs.
VR experiences are making a big splash at the Sundance Film Festival this year, and Google is among the names showing up to deliver a visual thrill to attendees. Rather than leave those of us who aren't attending in suspense, you can install and watch two of the experiences being shown off inside of Google Cardboard right now. Kaiju Fury is a cinematic short that Oculus Rift users may already be familiar with, which lets you sit in the middle of a city being ravaged by giant monsters, while VRSE should be new for just about everyone. The VRSE app is actually a collection of VR experiences, with the all new Evolution of Verse headlining. Both are well worth checking out if you've got your Cardboard handy, but Evolution of Verse in particular will leave your jaw on the floor.
A durable case option that lets you decide when you need a screen protector
Sometimes you just need a thin case that protects your phone from occasional bumps, and sometimes you need a more serious case like the Seidio Capsa TouchView instead. This three-piece full-coverage case takes protection to the extreme, but honestly doesn't add as much bulk as you'd expect considering how much you get out of it. Read along and see if it could be the right case choice for you and your Galaxy S5.
LG's wraparound Bluetooth headset, the Tone Infinim (HBS-900), is now available in a white gold color variant. Boasting Harman-Kardon sound, retractable earbuds (with the wires housed in the plastic body) and the ability to read notifications out loud from a connected device, the Tone Infinim stands out from the sea of Bluetooth headsets currently available, as we've noted in our review.
We're no strangers to smartphone-controlled flying machines around these parts, especially those of us who have wandered the halls of CES, but the folks at Zano are promising something wildly different form the current experience with their mini quadcopter. While most flying experiences with smartphones happen at a 1:1 ration, Zano wants to give smartphone owners the ability to control a swarm of autonomous drones just by waving the phone in your hand around. To accomplish this, the tiny drone is packing GPS, sonar, IR, and an HD camera to capture your adventures from above. The collision detection smarts in this little casing, combined with additional instructions from the user, is apparently enough to allow some magic to happen.
We didn't get to experience this setup in person just yet due to some technical difficulties, but check out Marketing Director Reece Crowther as he walks through the details with Cali.
We've jokingly referred to the robotic toys made by Orbotix as the world's best cat toys, but the truth is there's a ton that can be done with these little rolling robots. Sphero has a huge third party following with dozens of apps that let you do everything from roll your ball in an augmented reality maze through the camera on your phone to picking the ball up and using it as a controller for games on your phone. Ollie, their brand new robot, is a little more focused on fun by offering more speed and some fun optimizations. If driving these robots around and chasing your cat aren't enough to get your attention, the Orbotix SPRK (that's Schools Parents Robots Kids) program should be all the push you need. It's a program Orbotix started to help kids learn the basics of robotics and programming, and so far it has been a huge success in the classroom.
Allen Richardson from Orbotic gives Cali and Rene the breakdown on what SPRK has been up to so far, as well as repeatedly shooting the robots off the desk during the video. Either way, it's worth a watch.
Unable to decide whether to go for over-ear or on-ear headphones? Xiaomi may have an ideal solution for you in the product that is a new pair of headphones. The company today announced the new accessory, which comes with both over-ear and on-ear covers.
Something a bit more stylish that keeps your Galaxy S5 protected
Not everyone wants a basic plastic or rubber case that just provides protection without any real appealing looks or features. While they are a bit cheaper and perhaps more rugged, plastic cases have nothing on the look and feel of a real leather case that surrounds your phone for protection while also looking great when not in use. The Krusell Kalmar FlipWallet case does just that for the Galaxy S5, and it doesn't set you back a bunch of cash to get it — read along and see our quick review.
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