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11 months ago

Hands-on the PLAYBULB LED Bluetooth Candle

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Forget traditional candles. Now you can control colors and effects on just one, or an entire group of these LED Bluetooth candles.

I don't use candles often unless the power goes out or I'm enjoying some Frasier Fir scents during the holidays. The PLAYBULB LED Bluetooth Candle has me considering different setups around my house where these mini lights would look best, and I'm certain that 1 just isn't enough for the full effect I'm after.

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11 months ago

Android gadgets of the week: D-Link Water Sensor, SmartPrompt Pan and more!

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We're hauling out the best Android gadgets of the week again! We're always on the lookout for the snazziest in wearables, smart home devices, cases, wireless speakers, and anything else that can connect to your phone or tablet. This go-around, D-Link has a new way of letting you know when your basement's flooding, and a new frying pan on Indiegogo pings your phone when you're ruining dinner. Take a look!

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11 months ago

Samsung Galaxy S6 edge+ may have a keyboard case option

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Samsung is pretty close to making the Galaxy S6 edge+ official, but that doesn't mean that the leaks stop. The latest, which comes from evleaks, shows the phone sporting a keyboard case. That's right, a case that adds hideous physical keys to what could potentially be an otherwise beautifully designed phone.

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11 months ago

Five Samsung Galaxy Note 5 cases to check out early

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If you're not going naked, these Galaxy Note 5 cases are worth a looksy.

Sure, the Samsung Galaxy Note 5 isn't here yet, but there's nothing wrong with ogling the cases up for grabs this early in the game. As we've seen before, OEM options should start trickling out soon enough including a new S-View cover. Right now, though, let's take a look at some cases for Galaxy Note 5 already available that look great and have stood strong on previous devices.

READ: Five Samsung Galaxy Note 5 cases to check out early

Spigen Slim Armor Case

It's the popular dual-layer defender making its return for the Samsung Galaxy Note 5. The Spigen Slim Armor case packs its air cushion technology on each corner and features a built-in kickstand for convenient viewing when you see fit. The smooth polycarbonate shell of this cover looks great in any color, too. You can expect there to be cutouts for the Note 5's S-Pen, and charging/auxiliary ports. The gunmetal option is currently the cheapest, but you can also pick from champagne gold, metal slate, and violet for an extra 10 bucks.

Buy from Amazon ($15)

Ringke Slim Crystal Case

We love clear cases, especially on devices that deserve to sport their original looks. The Ringke Slim Crystal Case snaps on around the Galaxy Note 5 for casual protection against scratches and impacts. The tapered lip on the front promises to keep your display elevated on any flat surface. You'll find access to all your Note 5's features and it even comes bundled with an HD screen protector. If the clear isn't for you, the Ringke Slim also comes in solid gold and black options.

Buy from Amazon ($10.99)

OBLIQ Thin Fit Bumper Case

Bumper cases are some of our favorite covers for their ability to leave bulk out of the picture while providing just enough protection. The OBLIQ Thin Fit Bumper does just that, and comes in a handful of different color combinations to choose from. Each cover is airbrushed for a unique look and leaves complete access to the Note 5's camera, ports and buttons.

Buy from Amazon ($9.99)

Spigen Case Wallet

We had to toss in a flip case for good measure. Spigen's Case Wallet is designed to house your Galaxy Note 5 inside with a slim polycarbonate shell, while the synthetic leather exterior keeps the rest covered. You've got a few storage slots to keep your cards in, as well as a larger slot behind those for cash. Keeping it all together is a secure magnetic closure. A solid option for consolidating the basics for a night out.

Buy from Amazon ($16)

Ringke REBEL Extreme Case

Last up is the Ringke REBEL, a rugged TPU case for the Galaxy Note 5 that's more than adequate for absorbing those harsher impacts and adding excellent grip. The unique patterns on the back and edges of this case are designed to reduce drops without feeling overly bulky. There aren't any port covers to battle with, which is nice — leaving easy access to everything the Note 5 has to offer.

Buy from Amazon ($7.99)

Your favorite Galaxy Note 5 cases

That's our list of cases for the Galaxy Note 5 that look great for the grabbin's as we wait for the official launch. What cases are you most looking forward to getting your hands on? Let us know in the comments below.

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11 months ago

Purchase a Spigen case for the Galaxy Note 5 or S6 edge+ and get a free selfie stick

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With Samsung being so close to taking the wraps off of the Galaxy Note 5 and Galaxy S6 edge+, accessory makers are looking to push its cases and more into the spotlight. We have already seen a few cases for the Galaxy Note 5 and Galaxy S6 edge+ surface already, and Spigen is hoping to keep its name in the conversation with a new deal.

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11 months ago

HBO Now, Food Network and Travel Channel apps add Chromecast support

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Chromecast owners who also have a subscription to the recently-launched HBO Now stand alone service can now stream content to their Chromecast. It's one of many app updates for Google's HDMI dongle that have now become available.

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11 months ago

Urban Armor Gear reveals its Galaxy Note 5 case

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With plenty of Galaxy Note 5 cases certainly on the way, Urban Armor Gear (UAG) has unveiled its first case for the upcoming Samsung Galaxy Note 5, which combines protection and style. The case, which is now available to be pre-ordered, will come in a variety of colors such as Magma (translucent red), Ice (clear), Ash (translucent gray), black, white and orange.

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12 months ago

Cover-Up's natural wood grain cases for Android

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These wood grain cases keep your Android looking good while adding grip and protection.

Hand-crafted in the UK, each WoodBack Snap Case is designed to resist stains with their special finish made from vegetable oils and waxes, changing slightly in appearance as the wood ages. We got our hands on a few of these unique cases for the Samsung Galaxy S6, S6 edge, and HTC One M9 to see how they look up close.

Cover-Up offers different wood grain options for a variety of devices including the Nexus 6, Galaxy Note 4, HTC One M8, and many more outside the ones we're looking at here. Since they're quite slim, wireless charging is never an issue, and there's ample room to access your camera, side buttons, and charging/auxiliary ports. Along the edges of each case is a smooth black polycarbonate that helps to enhance grip, too. The company states that the wood they use for these covers is sustainably sourced and laser cut before being hand-sanded. No matter what grain you go with, the cut will always be different for a truly unique appearance.

READ NOW: Cover-Up's natural wood grain cases for Android

Carpathian Elm Burl for Samsung Galaxy S6 edge

This cut sports a more rich, and darker look compared to the others. You can pinpoint the small knots in the wood along with slight crevices where the wood has opened up. The blend of light and dark brown looks amazing from top to bottom.

Buy from Amazon ($29)

Cherry for HTC One M9

For a lighter, more subtle grain is the Cherry option, which we're using on the HTC One M9. While this case definitely isn't as busy in pattern, its linear look makes the case seem even slimmer than it already is.

Buy from Amazon ($26)

Cedar for Samsung Galaxy S6

Similar to the Cherry, the Cedar case presents a linear look but with slightly darker accents and more knotting. There are even hints of light streaks throughout that make this cover pop.

Buy from Amazon ($26)

Would you go wood?

These cases aren't made to provide heavy duty protection, but rather casual coverage that doesn't bulk up your device with multiple layers. They're not scratch resistant, however imperfections are much harder to spot on the wood grain. I've been rocking the Carpathian Elm Burl on my Galaxy S6 edge for a couple weeks now, and I'm interested to see how its look develops over time. If these style covers are your thing, take a look at the other options available and let us know which ones you like best!

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12 months ago

This is the PLAYBULB Garden Solar LED Light

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The PLAYBULB Garden provides unique lighting features for any special spot in your yard.

Since our first hands-on with the PLAYBULB Rainbow Light, we've had a chance to check out the rest of Mipow's fancy lighting lineup. The outdoor option we're looking at here is the PLAYBULB Garden — a solar LED light that stakes claim anywhere outside you see fit for novelty nighttime lighting. Included with the Garden are 2 monopods that can be fitted together for extra height if needed. Snap that into place underneath, stick it in your preferred location, and let the sun do the rest.

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12 months ago

A quick look at the Body Glove ShockSuit Case for LG G4

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The ShockSuit Case is built to battle, but isn't quite what Body Glove claims as "shockingly slim."

Using both TPU and polycarbonate materials, this rugged case is built to MIL-STD-810G military standards and has been drop tested for your G4's safety. The ShockSuit Case comes in two pieces — the hero being the chunky back cover next to the screen shield sidekick. We also know what your leather battery door means to you, and you'd never consider covering it up with a case like this (or any case at all), but rest assured that this brute is only friendly with the plastic G4 battery cover.

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12 months ago

The Amazon Echo speaker can now also be purchased from Staples.com

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People who want to purchase the Amazon Echo connected speaker now have another option besides Amazon itself. It is now for sale on the Staples website for the same price of $179.99.

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12 months ago

Best Android gadgets of the week: Moto Surround, Amazon Dash Button, and more!

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This weekend we're rounding up the best new Android accessories to hit the market again. Amazon pulled the trigger on the public launch of their incredibly convenient shopping button, while Motorola offered up two new pairs of headphones. There's plenty more, so dive in!

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12 months ago

CHOETECH 15600mAh Dual-USB Quick Charge power bank

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Feed the need for Quick Charge speeds.

Weighing in at 12.5oz, this power bank is solid in design, featuring a glossy black finish that's a real stickler for fingerprints. You'll find the power button on the top, along with a series of LED lights that provide percentages of remaining battery life at any given time.

What's unique about the CHOETECH power bank is its ability to be charged using either a microUSB cable or Apple Lightning cable. Both ports are featured on the front lip of the power bank next to 2 USB ports — 1 standard and the other Quick Charge 2.0 certified. Both inputs charge at a max rate of 2.1A, regardless of what cable you end up using to replenish the power bank. Output 1 (standard) provides 1A, and output 2 (QC 2.0) at 2.4A. Bundled with the power bank is a single 4ft. microUSB cable for charging your phone or the portable battery.

To completely charge the power bank, you're looking at approximately 7 hours using a Quick Charger, or about 10 hours with a standard charger. It comes with the standard protection features built-in, including over-current, over-charge, and short circuit protection. It happily charges 2 devices simultaneously, as long as you have an extra USB cable laying around. Given the brute size of this power bank, it's definitely not ideal for pocketing, but would still do well for traveling or weekend camping trips. Just keep it away from water, because this isn't a rugged power bank meant for that kind of abuse.

Our take

$39.99 Buy Now

It's got plenty of backup power with its 15600mAh battery, dual-USB ports, a Quick Charge 2.0 option, and can be charged up with a microUSB or Lightning USB cable. It's quite the beast for its $39.99 price tag. If you're really only keeping one device alive for a trip, you could probably go with something a bit slimmer like the Aukey 10k Quick Charge Power Bank. For 2 or more devices though, this is a pretty solid option.

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1 year ago

How to use Tasker to shuffle your playlists on Sonos by voice

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If there are two things we love in the modern home, it's Tasker and Sonos. Tasker is an absurdly powerful Android app that can fire off actions when certain triggers are met. Sonos is a polished lineup of connected home speakers that talk to each other seamlessly and plug into every streaming music service out there.

Without an IFTTT channel, it can be a little hard dealing with your Sonos using anything but the official apps, but with a bit of elbow grease you can get Tasker to play nice with your beloved sound system. Here we'll break down how to get a fresh, random playlist started with the bare minimum of fiddling with your phone.

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1 year ago

Android Central's summer accessory guide

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The best summer accessories

Gear up for the summer!

We've spent a little over a week diving into phone accessories that are perfect for the summertime. Now we're ready to wrap it all up. There's been a big focus on rugged and waterproof accessories to handle your extreme adventures, though you're likely to find many of these useful year-round.

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