You've already read about the HTC One M8 Dot View case — the innovative folio that shows information and protects your phone will maintaining an interesting level of functionality, all while still looking cool. Now watch the video.
As you'll see, though, there's still the matter of the front cover not sitting flush against the back of the phone, due to one being flat and the other decidedly curved. And that's a pretty major bone of contention for us.
Today Amazon sent out an invitation for an event on April 2nd, and by all expectations we'd be surprised if we didn't see a TV media streamer announced. The invite — sent to TechCrunch and others — simply reads "Please join us for an update on our video business". It also displays a couch (a living room staple, if you were not aware) and popcorn (which, you know, people eat while watching things).
Bulbs provide 10 years of efficient light before burning out
Never to be outdone in any consumer electronics category — especially by LG — Samsung is introducing a new range of LED "Smart Bulbs" for residential lighting. The new line consists of a standard lightbulb shape, a higher-performance lamp style (in two variants) and a more efficient tube form factor. The basic Smart Bulb (shown above) will provide up to 15,000 hours — equivalent of 10 years of normal use — of lighting, with the ability to dim down to just 10 percent brightness and tune from 2700K to 6500K for different ranges of whites.
For more advanced applications, there's also a PAR (Parabolic aluminized reflector) style light, which offers a swivel head and improved lighting suitable for professional lighting applications. There's also a "Classic Lamp" that's designed to fit larger light fixtures and provide a simple light that is reminiscent of incandescent lights. Finally there's the L-Tube style light, which is most likely to be used in commercial or garage applications, and comes in 600, 1200 and 1500mm sizes.
What sets these new Samsung Smart Bulbs apart from others is that they're controlled directly by your phone over Bluetooth rather than via Wifi with a router in the middle. By just installing an app on your phone or tablet you'll be able to control up to 64 Smart Bulbs at a time. While this cuts down on the usability when you're not in the room, it makes setup and control drastically simpler for a number of applications where a router just isn't available.
Samsung isn't spilling the beans on pricing or availability on these, but you can expect them to make their way out at prices higher than your average lightbulbs.
Spring is finally here! Well, according to the calendar at least. It's warming up now, the snow is melting and it's almost time to get back outside and enjoy the weather. That means you'll want to make sure all your Android phones and tablets up the challenge as well.
Fitbit has expanded the sync capabilities of their wearable fitness trackers, and now 44 Android and iOS devices are fully supported. Devices that can wirelessly synchronize with Fitbit products require Bluetooth 4.0 on-board, but in the past even devices with the required hardware we not officially supported, and users were forced to try a reverse-engineering approach to get sync up and running. With today's news, that should no longer be an issue for folks with recent Android phones.
In addition to the new devices — we've got the full list below — Fitbit was pretty pumped to announce that their app will come pre-installed on the new HTC One (M8). This should expose more people to their products, which leads to more sales and happy customers.
An innovative case for your HTC One M8, with one major flaw
HTC's got a pretty intriguing phone in the new HTC One M8 — be sure to read our review — and it's got a pretty intriguing case to go along with it. The Dot View case does a few things at once. First and foremost, it protects your phone in that folio style that everyone seems to be doing these days. And it does so while still allowing information to come through, and while allowing you to interact with your phone, but in a much different way.
High-end charger accessories with a few neat tricks will keep all of your mobile devices charged up and ready to use
There's no shortage of ways to keep your phone and tablet charged up nowadays. Between reverse-charging technologies, battery packs, wireless charging mats and plain old wall chargers, you have more choices than you probably need. At the same time, every single manufacturer you've heard of — and dozens you haven't — make these accessories.
Ventev is one of the companies you probably haven't heard of, but it makes some pretty nice charging accessories to keep your phones, tablets and other accessories charged up and ready to go. Its latest lineup consists of the Powercell 6000+ dual-port battery pack, the Wallport r2200 dual-port 2.1A wall charger and some great no-tangle colored USB cables.
If you're in the market for a new microSD card — and we can think of a couple reasons (Exhibit A and Exhibit B) coming on why you should be — they're on sale today as Amazon's Gold Box deal. The bottom line? a 64GB card for as low as $35. Head on over there now and check it out.
The 'Bright Red' Nexus 7 Folio is pretty great, except when it tarnishes your Nexus 7
One of Google's official Nexus 7 cases, the Nexus 7 Folio, came out back in December as it started to build up first-party case offerings for the tablet. It set folks back a cool $49, but when I reviewed it I found that it wasn't as extravagantly expensive as it may seem at first glance. The case is solid, has sleep/wake functionality, a nice dual-mode stand and kept out of the way as much as possible. I liked the case so much I've kept it on my Nexus 7 pretty much permanently since then.
Fast forward three months, and I took the case off my Nexus 7 for a change of pace. What's that? Deep reddish-orange lines all around the back of my tablet. Around all four corners and everywhere there's a cutout on the case, a deep red line on my otherwise pristine black Nexus 7. I can scrub all I want, and the lines don't seem to want to come off.
The big culprit here is likely the slightly loose nature of the case because it has an open-backed design. The edges are pretty rigid and have a ribbed design on the inside to make them tough, but they flex just enough that they can move around on the tablet over the course of daily use. everywhere the case can flex, it's leaving its mark on the back of the tablet.
As we ready ourselves for the official release, we've added over a dozen cases for the Samsung Galaxy S5 here at ShopAndroid.com, including popular names like Spigen, Incipio, Trident, Belkin, Qmadix and Amzer.
Jump past the break to get a closer look at some of the skins, hybrids, hard cases and flip cases for the Samsung Galaxy S5 that you can call first dibs on!
Take a peek at Belkin's 2-in-1 Wallet Folio Case for the Galaxy S5 which gives you incredible protection against drops and scratches while providing you with plenty of storage space for your credit cards, cash, receipts, you name it. When it's not managing your loot, fold it out into your own personal viewing stand to comfortably watch movies or browse the web.
Looking for a dedicated AC to micro USB wall charger? Google has your answer, and you can grab it from Google Play for just $15.
It's a nine-watt charger, which means it's going to charge the heck out of your phones compared to their puny factory-issue chargers. And don't worry, because the circuitry should keep things from catching on fire. Just kidding. These are surely UL and CE mark certified and safe. Just like that HP charger was ...
All kidding aside, this looks like a great way to charge all your Nexus devices quickly. Grab one before they sell out.
They have two 4,500mAh Qi wireless Power Banks in the works to dole out all sorts of electrons to keep your compatible device going and going. The standard Power Bank charges via USB, and the huge capacity means you're always close to power when you need a top off or when that battery dips into the red. Since it uses the Qi standard, there are hundreds of different devices that are compatible. Set the Power Bank down, drop your phone or tablet up top, and the magic flows.
Their next product takes everything above, and adds a wireless speaker to the mix. Using Bluetooth, the two 5-inch speakers should deliver a lot of sound, even when you're charging your Qi-compatible device up. The ZENS Qi Wireless Portable Audio Speaker also uses NFC to tap and pair with phones or tablets automatically.
The Power Bank will retail for about € 69.99, and should be in stores by March 30. The Qi Wireless Portable Audio Speaker will retail for € 99.99 and will also be available March 30. The units are a little pricey, but as we've all experienced, you get what you pay for sometimes. We'll be checking them out as soon as we can.
$250 price drop as Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo get ready to hit stores
With the official launch of the Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo on the horizon, Bell Canada has cut the price of the original Galaxy Gear to $99.97 at its online store. No special strings to pull or promo codes to apply -— the price has simply been cut by $250 for the smartwatch. You'll even have your choice of black, ivory (white) or orange.
We saw Best Buy drop the price of the Galaxy Gear to $150 recently, but this drop to $99 is as low as we've seen it. If you're in Canada and want to give the Gear a shot, it may be worth a look from Bell.
Just use code green14 at checkout to save 20 percent on your entire order!
St. Patrick's Day is Monday, and to celebrate ShopAndroid.com is saving you some green not just through the holiday, but all the way to March 19. That is, you can take 20 percent off your total haul. That's 20 percent off all Android cases. Headsets. Batteries. Just about whatever. It's 20 percent off.
To take advantage of the savings, all you need to do is enter in coupon code green14 during the checkout process. Free shipping is available on all orders over $50 (domestic U.S./Canada), and you have lots of payment methods beyond standard credit card including Amazon payments, Paypal and Bitcoin!
And for those of you have multiple-revelers in your life, don't forget the green14 coupon also works at ShopCrackBerry.com, the iMore Store and Windows Phone Store. Your shopping cart will follow you through all four stores, so you can buy from all four stores and checkout once. You gotta love that!
New accessory tracks daily activities and shows 'simple' notifications
Samsung is betting big on mobile fitness gadgets this year. Exercise and health tracking a major focus of the Galaxy S5, as well as the new Gear 2 series smartwatches, and of course the Gear Fit. But the Korean company might have another trick up its sleeve, in the form of a competitor to traditional low-powered fitness accessories, as this morning Samsung fansite SamMobile has published images of a new Samsung "Activity Tracker."
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