Smartphones http://www.stuff.tv/smartphones/reviews en-GB SIM-free Amazon Fire Phone will be £99 for the next 24 hours http://www.stuff.tv/amazon/sim-free-amazon-fire-phone-will-be-99-next-24-hours/news <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> It&#039;s a fire sale. Get it? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="567" height="425" title="SIM-free Amazon Fire Phone will be £99 for the next 24 hours" alt="SIM-free Amazon Fire Phone will be £99 for the next 24 hours" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/instant-video.jpg?1422403381" /> </div> </div> </div> <p>Amazon will be selling its <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/amazon/amazon-kindle-phone/review" target="_blank">Fire Phone</a> for just &pound;99 until midnight today (Wednesday).</p> <p>The one-day deal will slash the price of the 32GB handset right the way down from &pound;400, following disappointing sales and reviews since its launch.</p> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/esat-dedezade" title="View user profile.">Esat Dedezade</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>News Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/amazon/sim-free-amazon-fire-phone-will-be-99-next-24-hours/news" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.stuff.tv/amazon/sim-free-amazon-fire-phone-will-be-99-next-24-hours/news#comments Amazon Fire Phone Smartphones Tue, 27 Jan 2015 17:07:16 +0000 Esat Dedezade 1458615 at http://www.stuff.tv Group test: the best cheap smartphone you can buy http://www.stuff.tv/moto-g/best-cheap-smartphone-you-can-buy/feature <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Looking for a sub-£150 smartphone? We&#039;ve tested every budget handset that matters </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The best cheap smartphones - reviewed" alt="The best cheap smartphones - reviewed" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/Cheap-smartphones-main-pic.jpg?1422379916" /> </div> </div> </div> <p>The bad budget smartphone is dead.</p> <p>Never again should you put up with pixelly screens, sluggish web speeds and cameras so bad that an Etch-a-Sketch would be better, because you can now get an all-round reliable phone for less than &pound;150. So while there still are plenty of bad phones out there, you needn&#39;t concern yourself with them any more.&nbsp;</p> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/sophie-charara" title="View user profile.">Sophie Charara</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Moto G 4G (£150) </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The 2013&nbsp;<a href="http://www.stuff.tv/motorola/motorola-moto-g/review">Moto G</a>&nbsp;is now ludicrously cheap, frequently dipping below &pound;100 - but 4G makes this new model ever better.&nbsp;</p> <p>It&#39;s sturdily built and fits snugly into one hand, while its use of swappable Motorola Shells give you the option to customise its look on a daily basis. The 4.5in, HD, 326ppi screen is the real selling point over its fuzzier-screened rivals; it matches the much pricier <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/htc/htc-one-mini-2-hands/review">HTC One Mini 2</a>&nbsp;on this front. Next to most other phones in its class it looks pin-sharp, with vivid but natural colours and good contrast.</p> <p>It&rsquo;s not without problems - the 5MP camera does still disappoint sometimes, especially in low light, and you only get 8GB of built-in storage. But the addition of a microSD card slot means you can now add up to 32GB of space, and in day-to-day use nothing comes close.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The Moto G 4G takes the top spot " alt="Best cheap smartphone 2014 test " src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/moto-g-review_0.jpg?1422379916" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="4000" height="3000" title="Both Moto Gs - with and without 4G - are worth considering " alt="Best cheap smartphone 2014 test " src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/moto-g_0.JPG?1422379916" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-title"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Motorola Moto G 4G tech specs </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-body-text"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Body Text:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>Screen</strong>: 4.5in 1280x720 (326ppi) with Gorilla Glass&nbsp;<br /><strong>Power</strong>: 1.2GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 400/1GB RAM<br /><strong>Camera</strong>: 5MP 720p rear, 1.3MP 720p front&nbsp;<br /><strong>Battery</strong>: 2070 mAh&nbsp;<br /><strong>Connectivity</strong>: 3G/4G, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0<br /><strong>Storage</strong>: 8GB (microSD up to 32GB)&nbsp;<br /><strong>Dimensions</strong>: 129.9 x 65.9 x 11.6mm/ 143g&nbsp;</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Moto&rsquo;s also left the 4G with an almost-untouched version of Android KitKat, adding a few genuinely useful features but nothing more. That helps everything run smoothly and you can can expect speedy downloads, streaming and browsing over 4G. The best bit? Even with more pixels to push than most cheap phones, the Moto G still lasts a day between charges.&nbsp;</p> <p>If you have specific criteria - for instance you&rsquo;re a n00b who likes the look of Windows Phone or taking pics is your priority - then other budget phones down this list might make more sense. But for most people, the Moto G 4G will do very nicely indeed.&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Stuff says</strong>:&nbsp;<strong>✭✭✭✭</strong><strong>✭</strong><br />Fantastic and futureproof, this is as close to budget phone perfection as you can get in 2014</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Hisense Sero 5 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The Hisense Sero 5 offers a feature list that&rsquo;ll make your jaw drop when you hear the phone costs just &pound;130. 4G, a 5-inch 720p screen plus an 8-megapixel camera mean the Sero 5 offers even more gumpf than you get in the Moto G.</p> <p>Sure enough it is a real bargain, a stunner for penny-pinchers, but there are some elements that ensure it&rsquo;s not quite the very best option in the world. Build quality isn&rsquo;t up there with the best as the screen flexes a teeny bit under pressure, causing wobbles in the display. That&rsquo;s not necessarily a deal-breaker but tells you the Sero 5 doesn&rsquo;t use Gorilla Glass like the Moto G: not good news for the butter-fingered.</p> <p>The software won&rsquo;t dazzle, either. Using Android 4.3 it&rsquo;s a bit out of date and the interface isn&rsquo;t exactly pretty: it&rsquo;s workmanlike at best. With display colours a bit undersaturated, the screen does look a tiny bit glum until you get used to it too.</p> <p>We&rsquo;re just trying to manage your expectations here, though, because on paper the Hisense Sero 5 sounds like the best budget phone in the universe. It isn&rsquo;t, but it is very, very good if you don&rsquo;t want to spend a lot but do want 4G.</p> <p>Battery life and performance are solid, and with a few tweaks you can improve the interface no-end. For the more advanced Android user, the Hisense Sero 5 is fab.</p> <p>The screen is big and sharp, a Snapdragon 400 provides enough grunt for gamers and the camera isn&rsquo;t even too bad, offering similar performance to the Moto G but with slightly worse colour reproduction.</p> <p>Only the finishing touches are missing here: the Hisense Sero 5 does feel a little bit cheap and thanks to its non-Gorilla Glass front you won&rsquo;t want to treat it too carelessly. Hisense seems to admit this itself by putting a plastic screen protector on the thing direct from the factory. Other than that, though, it&rsquo;s grand.</p> <p><strong>Stuff says</strong>:&nbsp;<strong>✭✭✭✭</strong><strong>✭</strong><br />The Sero 5 is a bargain winner with just a couple of niggles keeping it behind the Moto G</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Hisense Sero 5" alt="Hisense Sero 5" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/sero-3%20copy.jpg?1422379916" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Hisense Sero 5" alt="Hisense Sero 5" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/sero-5.jpg?1422379916" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-title"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Hisense Sero 5 Tech Specs </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-body-text"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Body Text:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>Screen</strong>:&nbsp;5in 1280x720 (293ppi)<br /><strong>Power</strong>:&nbsp;1.2GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 400/1GB RAM<br /><strong>Camera</strong>: 8MP 720p rear, 1.3MP 720p front&nbsp;<br /><strong>Battery</strong>:&nbsp;2500 mAh&nbsp;<br /><strong>Connectivity</strong>:&nbsp;3G/4G, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0<br /><strong>Storage</strong>:&nbsp;8GB (microSD expandable by up to 32GB)&nbsp;<br /><strong>Dimensions</strong>:&nbsp;143 x 71.8 x 8.9mmmm / 133g&nbsp;</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Sony Xperia M2 (£150) </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The Xperia M2 is the best way to get a big screen from a big brand on a little budget. It&rsquo;s just a shame that 4.8in screen isn&rsquo;t very sharp at 229ppi and suffers from poor viewing angles. Because otherwise you get a ton of Sony for your money here.</p> <p>Its blocky plastic design, available in purple, white and black, is based on the high-end <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/android/samsung-galaxy-s5-vs-htc-one-m8-vs-sony-xperia-z2/feature/1-sony-xperia-z2">Xperia Z2</a>. There&rsquo;s no waterproofing as you&#39;d find on that premium Xperia, but for &pound;150 PAYG, we&rsquo;re not complaining.</p> <p>Performance is much better than previous mid-range Sony phones we&rsquo;ve encountered thanks to a Snapdragon 400 processor which powers every handset on this test bar the Moto E and HTC Desire 301. Battery life is pretty good, too, matching the Moto G 4G. Plus Sony has thrown in extras you won&rsquo;t find on other budget blowers such as small apps, Stamina mode for the battery and a pulsing notification light to stretch to over a day of use.</p> <p>Its more than decent 8MP camera is the highlight, though. AF can be a little sluggish but it&rsquo;s easy to use, with Sony&rsquo;s quick Superior Auto mode plus lots of settings to dig into and reliably good 1080p video. It doesn&rsquo;t get close to the top smartphones for picture quality, but it&rsquo;s the best all-round snapper of all the cheap phones we&rsquo;ve tested.</p> <p>If Sony had stuck a higher res screen on the M2 and added support for 4G, this would be more of a rival for the Moto. As it is, it falls just short.</p> <p><strong>Stuff says</strong>:&nbsp;<strong>✭✭✭✭✩</strong><br />Fine features and the best choice for shutterbugs, only the screen lets the M2 down</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The M2 gives you camera chops on a shoestring " alt="Best cheap smartphone 2014 test " src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/sony-xperia-m2-review_0.jpg?1422379916" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Big screen, small money " alt="Best cheap smartphone 2014 test " src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/sony-xperia-m2-2.png?1422379916" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-title"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Sony Xperia M2 tech specs </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-body-text"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Body Text:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>Screen</strong>: 4.8in 540x960 (229 ppi)&nbsp;<br /><strong>Power</strong>: 1.2GHz quad core Qualcomm Snapdragon 400/&nbsp;<br /><strong>Camera</strong>: 8MP 1080p rear, VGA front&nbsp;<br /><strong>Battery</strong>: 2330 mAh<br /><strong>Connectivity</strong>: 3G, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0, NFC&nbsp;<br /><strong>Storage</strong>: 8GB (microSD up to 32GB)&nbsp;<br /><strong>Dimensions</strong>: 139.6 x 71.1 x 8.6mm/ 148g&nbsp;</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-4"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Nokia Lumia 630 (£90) </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>In a sea of cheap Androids, the Lumia 630 stands out like an alien-goo-green buoy keeping Windows Phone fans safe from ridicule. Sure, Android has more games and the 630 is far from the highest specced device here, but this Nokia gets a lot right.</p> <p>The battery life is the best for the money - not by much, but the 630 will give you an extra hour or so over the rest. It&rsquo;s the lightest at 134g, comes with a decent, if low-res, screen and some excellent freebies including Nokia Drive.</p> <p>Windows Phone 8.1 is both friendlier than stock KitKat for beginners and now has useful Android-style features and settings, too. Even the 5MP camera has its moments - outdoor and macro shots look great and low-light images aren&#39;t the grainiest we&#39;ve ever encountered. It&rsquo;s a little slow in use next to the likes of the Moto G but it&#39;s easy to forgive that at this low, low price. If you can&rsquo;t live without 4G speeds, try the similar but more expensive Lumia 635.</p> <p><strong>Stuff says</strong>:&nbsp;<strong>✭✭✭✭✩</strong><br />Cheap, cheerful and reliable, the Lumia 630 is only outclassed by the best budget Androids</p> <p><strong>READ MORE</strong>: <strong><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/nokia/nokia-lumia-630/review">In-depth Nokia Lumia 630 review&nbsp;</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Representing Windows Phone - the unbelievably cheap 630 " alt="Best cheap smartphone 2014 test " src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/nokia-630-review_0.jpg?1422379916" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-title"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Nokia Lumia 630 tech specs </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-body-text"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Body Text:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>Screen</strong>: 4.5in 854x480 (221 ppi)&nbsp;<br /><strong>Power</strong>: 1.2GHz quad core Qualcomm Snapdragon 400/512MB RAM&nbsp;<br /><strong>Camera</strong>: 5MP 720p rear, no front&nbsp;<br /><strong>Battery</strong>: 1830 mAh<br /><strong>Connectivity</strong>: 3G, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0<br /><strong>Storage</strong>: 8GB (microSD up to 128GB)&nbsp;<br /><strong>Dimensions</strong>: 129.5 x 66.7 x 9.2mm/ 134g&nbsp;</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-5"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Moto E (£90) </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Does budget mean less than &pound;100 to you? Serving up tidy, reliable, loveable Android for the masses, the 4.3in Moto E is your best bet below a ton.</p> <p>A compact and sturdy build, slick performance and close-to-stock-Android OS impress, with only the quality of its 5MP camera, the miserly 4GB of storage and the lack of a front cam letting it down majorly.</p> <p>The 1980mAh battery isn&rsquo;t swappable and will conk out an hour before most here, but it still comfortably lasts a day of light use on one charge, and there are swappable Motorola Shell covers to keep things fresh on the desaign front. The screen, though lower-res than the Moto G, is still a cracker at this price, with apps, games and webpages all looking lovely on it. Motorola really has the monopoly on value brilliance and if your budget is truly tight you should look no further.&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Stuff says</strong>:&nbsp;<strong>✭✭✭✭✩</strong><br />Moto does it again. This is the best smartphone you can buy under &pound;100</p> <p><strong>READ MORE</strong>: <strong><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/android/motorola-moto-e/review">In-depth Moto E review&nbsp;</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The Moto E is easy to love " alt="Best cheap smartphone 2014 test " src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/moto-e-review_0.jpg?1422379916" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Moto&#039;s budget brilliance in 4.3in and 4.5in sizes " alt="Best cheap smartphone 2014 test " src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/moto-g-and-e-group.png?1422379916" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-title"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Motorola Moto E tech specs </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-body-text"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Body Text:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>Screen</strong>: 4.3in 540x960 (256 ppi)<br /><strong>Power</strong>: 1.2GHz quad core Qualcomm Snapdragon 200/1GB RAM<br /><strong>Camera</strong>: 5MP 480p rear, no front<br /><strong>Battery</strong>: 1980 mAh<br /><strong>Connectivity</strong>: 3G, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0<br /><strong>Storage</strong>: 4GB (microSD up to 32GB)<br /><strong>Dimensions</strong>: 124.8 x 64.8 x 12.3mm/ 142g</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-6"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Moto G (2014) (£145) </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Another Motorola! The 5in Moto G (2014) isn&#39;t a direct replacement for the 4G model or last year&#39;s handset (now priced at &pound;100). It&#39;s the Moto G for people who don&#39;t mind sacrificing a bit of battery life here, a splash of 4G there for a big screen and much better camera than the original 5MP snapper.</p> <p>So what&#39;s been improved? It performs just as fast as the first Moto G and Android is just as clutter-free. The main difference is the bigger build (it&#39;s the biggest here) - it&#39;s sturdy, though, and still sits nicely in the hand. It&#39;s sacrificed the old Moto G&#39;s neat, tidy look; there&#39;s just more plastic, so that couldn&#39;t be helped without impressive - and costly - engineering. But Moto has included some very decent (for the money) stereo speakers on the front. They don&#39;t match the <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/htc/htc-one-2/review">One (M8)</a> but you won&#39;t be ashamed to use them in the back garden either.&nbsp;</p> <p>Battery life, again, isn&#39;t quite as great as the Moto G 4G. Streaming video on a commute, the bigger 5in screen sucks up 22% an hour versus the 4.5in phone&#39;s less worrying 16%. Still, it lasts the day so we&#39;re not complaining too much. Speaking of the screen, it&#39;s 720p and chances are you won&#39;t notice the slightly-less-sharp picture compared to the original. Colours are slightly more natural too.&nbsp;</p> <p>The real stars are the two new cameras, both welcome improvements. Images look a lot less blurry and smudgy than before with clear, in-focus shots and accurate colours. Video too is much more usable. The new 8MP cam on the back takes a while to focus at night but if you hold steady, you can get some impressive pics for a &pound;150 phone. All round, we&#39;d still recommend the 4G Moto G &ndash;&nbsp;but if phone photography is your thing, consider the 2014 model.&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>Stuff says</strong>:&nbsp;<strong>✭✭✭✭</strong><strong>✭</strong><br />Moto has done it again - big screen, almost-stock Android and one of the best cameras for the money&nbsp;</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="604" height="453" title="It&#039;s the Moto G but not as you know it " alt="Best cheap smartphone 2014 test " src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/DSCN5121%20with%20Annotation.jpg?1422379916" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-title"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Motorola Moto G (2014) tech specs </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-body-text"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Body Text:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>Screen</strong>: 5in 720x1280 (294 ppi)<br /><strong>Power</strong>: 1.2GHz quad core Qualcomm Snapdragon 400/1GB RAM<br /><strong>Camera</strong>: 8MP 720p rear, 2Mp front<br /><strong>Battery</strong>: 2070 mAh<br /><strong>Connectivity</strong>: 3G, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0<br /><strong>Storage</strong>: 8/16GB (microSD up to 32GB)<br /><strong>Dimensions</strong>: 141.5 x 70.7 x 11mm/ 149g</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-7"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="4600" height="900" alt="" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/also-rans_0.jpg?1422379916" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-8"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> EE Kestrel (£100) </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>4G is no longer a luxury. With the EE Kestrel available for &pound;99 outright, or &pound;14 a month, you might be tempted to choose this tweaked and rebranded 4.5in Huawei handset over the Moto G 4G.</p> <p>Before you do, bear in mind that it&rsquo;s not as easy to love. For starters, it lacks the lovely HD screen and smooth performance of the top Moto. It also has the most retro design of the bunch, both in terms of hardware and its Emotion UI software. Still, the battery life is brilliant, the expandable storage is handy and unlike some, it has both an OK front camera and a rear flash. It&rsquo;s silly-slim too, at 7.85mm thick. The fastest browsing and streaming this side of &pound;150 then, but not quite the full package.</p> <p><strong>Stuff says</strong>:&nbsp;<strong>✭✭✭✭✩</strong><br />Still the cheapest way to get 4G, but there are better all-rounders for the money&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>READ MORE</strong>:<strong><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/android/ee-kestrel/review">&nbsp;In-depth EE Kestrel review&nbsp;</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Afforda-4G from EE " alt="Best cheap smartphone 2014 test " src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/ee-kestrel-review.png?1422379916" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-title"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> EE Kestrel tech specs </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-body-text"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Body Text:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>Screen</strong>: 4.5in 540x960 (245 ppi)<br /><strong>Power</strong>: 1.2GHz quad core Qualcomm Snapdragon 400/1GB RAM<br /><strong>Camera</strong>: 5MP 720p rear, 1MP front<br /><strong>Battery</strong>: 2000 mAh<br /><strong>Connectivity</strong>: 3G/4G Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0<br /><strong>Storage</strong>: 4GB (microSD up to 32GB)<br /><strong>Dimensions</strong>: 131 x 65.3 x 7.85mm/ 145g</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-9"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> HTC Desire 310 (£130) </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The Desire 310 is a&nbsp;smart looker both outside and in. Exterior attractiveness is conferred by a tidy, slightly curved plastic build, while on the interior HTC&rsquo;s Android skin Sense looks good and runs without a hiccup. Like the Sony Xperia M2, it also packs a few features you&rsquo;d be more likely to see on a &pound;500 phone. So the Desire 310 gets HTC&rsquo;s excellent BlinkFeed RSS reader (searchable and with offline reading), plus the ability to make short video montages with the nifty Zoe Video Highlights tool.</p> <p>But while colours look nice and natural on the 4.5in screen, it&rsquo;s just not got the pixels to show off Android games and HD movies. Plus, it always seems to look a bit grubby even with brightness on full whack, it can get a little warm when taxed, you might need to charge it up before bedtime and the 5MP camera isn&rsquo;t anything special. Maybe HTC should&#39;ve worried about getting the basics right rather than lavishing software treats on us?</p> <p><strong>Stuff says</strong>:&nbsp;<strong>✭✭✭</strong><strong>✩</strong><strong>✩</strong><br />Nice looking and packed with features but the Desire 310 doesn&rsquo;t nail the essentials well enough&nbsp;</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="It&#039;s like a small One (M8) - if you squint " alt="Best cheap smartphone 2014 test " src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/htc-310-review.jpg?1422379916" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-title"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> HTC Desire 310 tech specs </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-body-text"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Body Text:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>Screen</strong>: 4.5in 480x854 (218 ppi)<br /><strong>Power</strong>: 1.3GHz quad core MediaTek/512MB RAM<br /><strong>Camera</strong>: 5MP 1080p rear, VGA front<br /><strong>Battery</strong>: 2000 mAh<br /><strong>Connectivity</strong>: 3G, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0<br /><strong>Storage</strong>: 4GB (microSD up to 32GB)<br /><strong>Dimensions</strong>: 131 x 65.3 x 7.85mm/ 140g</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-10"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Vodafone Smart 4 Turbo (£135) </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The 4.5in Smart 4 Turbo doesn&rsquo;t live up to its tantalising promise: a quad-core, 4G, KitKat budget phone for less than &pound;150. While performance is generally good, the overall feeling with the &lsquo;Turb&rsquo; is frustration - with the low-res 480x854 screen that looks a bit 3D (in the bad way), with the very slow 5MP camera that takes fuzzy, mostly unusable shots, with the dark front camera and with the cheap-feeling (and looking) plastic build.</p> <p>Vodafone&rsquo;s tinkering with Android is lighter than EE&#39;s - you get just a handful of widgets, there&rsquo;s capacitive buttons to free up screen space and the battery does last a day. But anyone looking for afforda-4G should turn to the Moto or, as a cheaper option, the Kestrel.</p> <p><strong>Stuff says</strong>:&nbsp;<strong>✭✭✭</strong><strong>✩</strong><strong>✩</strong><br />A valiant effort but Vodafone has cut too many specs to keep up with the best budget phones</p> <p><strong>READ MORE</strong>: <strong><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/smartphones/top-ten">The ten best smartphones money can buy</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="There&#039;s smarter phones than the Smart 4 Turbo " alt="Best cheap smartphone 2014 test " src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/vodafone-smart-4-turbo-review.png?1422379916" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="The unusual suspects " alt="Best cheap smartphone 2014 test " src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/best-cheap-smartphone-test-main.png?1422379916" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-title"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Vodafone Smart 4 Turbo tech specs </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-body-text"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Body Text:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>Screen</strong>: 4.5in 480x854 (218 ppi)<br /><strong>Power</strong>: 1.2GHz quad core Snapdragon 400/1GB RAM<br /><strong>Camera</strong>: 5MP rear, VGA front<br /><strong>Battery</strong>: 1880 mAh<br /><strong>Connectivity</strong>: 3G/4G, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0<br /><strong>Storage</strong>: 4GB (microSD up to 32GB)<br /><strong>Dimensions</strong>: 134.5 x 67.5 x 10.4mm/ 138g</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-carousel-item"><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-text field-field-carousel-item-title"> <div class="field-label">Carousel item title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Budget smartphones tested </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-carousel-item-standfirst"> <div class="field-label">Carousel item standfirst:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Every sub-£150 handset that matters </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/moto-g/best-cheap-smartphone-you-can-buy/feature" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.stuff.tv/moto-g/best-cheap-smartphone-you-can-buy/feature#comments Android Hisense HTC Moto G Motorola Nokia Smartphones Sony Windows Phone Tue, 16 Sep 2014 11:54:11 +0000 Sophie Charara 1444737 at http://www.stuff.tv Samsung Galaxy S6 http://www.stuff.tv/samsung-galaxy-s6-review <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Update 27/01/15: Galaxy S Edge pops up on Vodafone Netherlands page </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Samsung Galaxy S6: What we’d like to see from Samsung’s next flagship" alt="Samsung Galaxy S6: What we’d like to see from Samsung’s next flagship" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/samsung-g-s5_1.jpg?1422370477" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/sam-kieldsen" title="View user profile.">Sam Kieldsen</a> </div> </div> </div> <p>We&rsquo;re big fans of Samsung&rsquo;s current flagship phone, the Galaxy S5. We even awarded it a full five stars in our review. But that&rsquo;s not to say it&rsquo;s perfect, and it&rsquo;s certainly not the best smartphone around &ndash; in fact the S5 sits a fair old way down the chart when it comes to <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/smartphones/top-ten">our best-rated mobiles</a>.</p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-pricing"><legend>Pricing</legend><div class="field field-type-number-float field-field-test-price"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> £-1.00 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-price-from"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 0 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-ratings"><legend>Ratings</legend><div class="field field-type-hcmreviewrating-rating field-field-overall-rating"> <div class="field-label">Overall rating:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="hcmrating-default"> stars</div> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>Review Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> What&#039;s in a name? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>Update 27/01/15: </strong>So it&#39;s not like we really needed confirmation or anything, but it looks like Samsung&#39;s next flagship will indeed be called the Galaxy S6.</p> <p>Vodafone Netherlands has accidentally put up a <a href="http://www.androidworld.it/2015/01/26/samsung-galaxy-s6-galaxy-s-edge-confermati-vodafone-olanda-269978/" target="_blank">placeholder page</a> (now removed) for the Galaxy S6, confirming what we&#39;ve pretty much known all along.&nbsp;</p> <p>More interesting however is a chunk of text hidden in the page&#39;s source code, which refers to a Samsung Galaxy S Edge, suggesting that we&#39;ll be seeing an S6 variant with a curved screen. Given that Samsung hals already released the Note Edge alongside the Note 4, this could very well be a possibility.&nbsp;</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="600" height="450" alt="" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/s6.jpg?1422370477" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Build: Very metal </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The world keeps wondering when Samsung will ditch polycarbonate (that&rsquo;s &ldquo;plastic&rdquo; to you and us) and join the likes of Apple, Sony and HTC in delivering a flagship phone with a slinky metal or glass body &ndash; and yet the company doesn&rsquo;t seem to take the hint.</p> <p>There&rsquo;s nothing wrong with plastic smartphones per se. Nokia&rsquo;s higher-end Lumia Windows Phones are plastic and quite glorious, as are the <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/apple/iphone-5c/review">iPhone 5c</a> and new <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/desire-eye/htc-desire-eye/review">HTC Desire Eye</a>, but the Galaxy S range has always fallen a little short of expected standards. That could and should change with the Galaxy S6.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/galaxy-alpha/metal-last-samsung-galaxy-alpha-ditches-plastic/news">Metal at last: Samsung Galaxy Alpha ditches the plastic</a></strong></p> <p>Some sources have hinted at a &ldquo;more premium build&rdquo; for the S6, with Samsung going for an aluminium build, or even using super-advanced material graphene (which the company has <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/samsung/samsung-speeds-production-graphene-wonder-material/news">found a way to manufacture in greater quantities</a> than previously). While the latter would be a bold, memorable move, it&rsquo;d probably push the S6&rsquo;s manufacturing costs a little too high, and to be honest at this point we&rsquo;d be happy with metal rather than another year of uninspiring plastic.</p> <p>We&rsquo;d also expect to see some measure of dust and waterproofing. The S5 is sealed against the elements, and its successor is sure to follow. It might even kick things up a notch so you can take it even deeper &lsquo;neath the waves: bumping the spec to IP68 from the S5&rsquo;s IP67 rating would mean you could completely immerse the phone for a prolonged period of time without water getting inside. No more desperate bags of rice and crossed fingers if your phone tumbles into the bath or the bog.</p> <p><strong>Update 22/12/14:</strong> French site<a href="http://www.nowhereelse.fr/samsung-galaxy-s6-coque-metallique-103469/" target="_blank"> nowhereelse.fr</a> has outed pictures of metal aluminium phone shells that are reportedly for the Galaxy S6. The shells themselves appear to be hewn from a single piece of aluminium, HTC One (M8)-style, suggesting that the S6 will be the first truly premium metal smartphone from the Samsung camp. Assuming the shots are genuine of course.</p> <p><strong>Update 19/01/15:</strong> Uh oh. The latest whispers now point to a Galaxy S6 that isn&#39;t fully metal. But it&#39;s not all bad.</p> <p>According to Korean news site <a href="http://www.ddaily.co.kr/news/article.html?no=126530" target="_blank">DDaily</a>&#39;s &quot;Samsung Electronics official&quot; source, the Galaxy S6 will feature a metal frame with a glass front and back, taking a design cue from the Sony Xperia series.</p> <p>The apparent reason for this decision is to set the Galaxy S6 apart form Samsung&#39;s recently announced all-metal A3, A5 and A7 devices.</p> <p>If true, then the S6 should still feel premium and luxurious, so we&#39;re not too worried about that. We are however concerned how a removable battery will be possible in a device with a glass back. Let&#39;s hope Samsung&#39;s engineers have some design magic up their sleeves, assuming this latest rumour is true of course.&nbsp;</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="604" height="453" title="The Galaxy Alpha proves Samsung can do metal phones" alt="The Galaxy Alpha proves Samsung can do metal phones" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/samsung-galaxy-alpha-01_2.jpg?1422370477" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="714" height="451" title="Hello metal" alt="Samsung Galaxy S6" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/metal-s6.jpg?1422370477" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The render above is a concept created by 3g.co.uk. It&#39;s just one example of what the Galaxy S6 could look like, but for now, we&#39;re limited to speculation and guesswork. Until the rumour mill delivers more, that is.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="video-wrapper youtube-player-wrapper"> <iframe width="640" height="385" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/1ZDN-qLFV4g" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe> </div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Screen: time for 2K? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The Galaxy S5 has a very solid screen: 5.1in; 1080p resolution; AMOLED technology. We like its lush, vibrant colours a lot &ndash; but we very much doubt Samsung will stick with it for the S6.</p> <p>The company&rsquo;s great Korean rival LG has already launched a phone with a 2K screen (the <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/g3/lg-g3/review">G3</a>&rsquo;s display has a grand total of 2560 x 1440 pixels), you see, and Samsung loves to be seen to be outdoing &ndash; or at least matching &ndash; its compatriot. We think the chances of a 2K screen making its way into the S6 are very high indeed, especially as the Note 4&#39;s 2K screen proves that Samsung&#39;s got the capability to churn them out.</p> <p>The screen will probably get a slight size bump too, but maybe not too much. It wouldn&#39;t want to compete with its Note 4 brother, after all.</p> <p>We&rsquo;d personally be more than happy with 2K and 5.2in &ndash; going any bigger risks making the phone too big for the hands of normal folks and going sharper strikes us as pixel overkill on a screen this size, especially as more pixels require more power and put more strain on the battery.</p> <p><strong>Update 05/12/14:&nbsp;</strong>According to <a href="http://www.sammobile.com/2014/12/01/exclusive-next-galaxy-s-flagship-to-be-called-galaxy-s6-galaxy-s6-edge-variant-coming-too/" target="_blank">Sam Mobile</a>&#39;s sources, Samsung will also release a Galaxy S6 Edge variant which will have - you guessed it - a curved screen, fashioned after the <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/samsung-galaxy-note-edge/review" target="_blank">Galaxy Note Edge</a>.&nbsp;</p> <p>This wouldn&#39;t be the craziest thing in the world given that Samsung has already shown it can produce such a device, but given the higher price of the<a href="http://www.stuff.tv/samsung-galaxy-note-edge/review" target="_blank"> Note Edge</a>, we don&#39;t expect the curved screen variant will be pushed as the main product. If it even exists at all that is.</p> <p><strong>Update 08/12/14: </strong>The Galaxy S6&#39;s specs have leaked online, courtesy of an AnTuTu benchmark spotted by Chinese site cnmo. According to the leak, the S6 will land with a 5.5in, 2560 x 1440 screen. While the resolution was expected, the size bump up to 5.5 inches is rather drastic, given that the current Note 4&#39;s screen is only slightly larger at 5.7 inches.</p> <p>This suggests that the Note 5 could hit the 6in mark, following in the footsteps of devices like the Nexus 6, but we&#39;ll have to wait and see.</p> <p><strong>Update 16/01/15:</strong> A leaked <a href="http://wap.samsungmobile.com/uaprof/SM-G920A.xml" target="_blank">User Agent Profile</a> spotted on <a href="http://www.reddit.com/r/Android/comments/2sl4o8/samsung_leaked_uaprof_directly_confirms_samsung/" target="_blank">reddit</a> shows off specs for a device with a model number which we believe refers to the Galaxy S6. In it, a&nbsp;1440x2560 is mentioned, confirming that the S6 will indeed land with a 2K screen. Assuming the specs are genuine of course.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/g3/lg-g3/review">LG G3 review</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Will Samsung match LG with a 2K screen? We hope so" alt="Will Samsung match LG with a 2K screen? We hope so" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/samsung-g-s5-screen_0.jpg?1422370477" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="387" height="250" alt="" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Screen%20shot%202015-01-16%20at%2012.32.08.png?1422370477" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-4"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Curved screen? Sure, why not </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/samsung-galaxy-note-edge/review/" target="_blank">Note 4 Edge</a> (pictured above) has a curved screen, with the right of the display bending around past the edge of the device.</p> <p>It&#39;s not that unusual to entertain the possibility of Samsung blessing the Galaxy S6 with a similar screen.</p> <p>The chief Note Edge designer Kim Na-su himself recently stated that &quot;a change in the platform can bring about a variety of new considerations [and] a curved screen is a big solution for overcoming those challenges&quot;.</p> <p>Jerry Kang, a<a href="http://www.koreaherald.com/view.php?ud=20141106001109" target="_blank"> senior analyst at IHD</a> has previously stated that the Galaxy S6 will have a dual-edged screen which curves on both sides.&nbsp;</p> <p>Add all of the above together, and curved screen in the next Samsung flagship could be a real possibility.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/samsung-galaxy-note-edge/review/" target="_blank">Samsung Galaxy Note 4 Edge hands-on review</a></strong></p> <p><strong>Update 14/01/15:</strong>&nbsp;According to Business Insider&#39;s sources, Samsung will reveal two versions of the Galaxy S6 - one with a regular screen, and one with a display that&#39;s curved towards one side, Note Edge-style.</p> <p>If true, it&#39;ll be interesting to see the pricing and availability of the curved variant. The Note Edge comes with limited availability and a premium price tag, and we&#39;re not sure if Samsung&#39;s production costs for curved smartphone displays are yet low enough to enter the regular flagship smartphone pricing bracket. We&#39;ll just have to wait and see.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.stuff.tv/samsung/samsung-unveil-two-s6-smartphones-and-round-smartwatch-mwc/news" target="_blank">Samsung could unveil two Galaxy S6 smartphones and a round smartwatch at MWC</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="604" height="453" alt="" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/samsung-galaxy-note-edge-02_1.jpg?1422370477" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-5"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Power: Quad-core, you know the score </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Many are predicting that the Galaxy S6 will come with a new Qualcomm chipset &ndash; either the Snapdragon 808 or 810. Both are quad-core, 64-bit and more powerful on paper than any smartphone processor at the time of writing, and we&rsquo;d be pretty happy to see either of them on the S6 (they seem likely to require more power than the S5&rsquo;s Snapdragon 801, however, which could put extra strain on the battery life &ndash; see below for more on that), especially if they were paired with at least 3GB of RAM.</p> <p>Samsung has form in launching its flagship phones with octo-core Exynos chipsets too, albeit not in the UK. While eight cores might sound twice as powerful as four, in reality it doesn&rsquo;t quite work like that: in benchmarks, the Exynos-equipped S5 only performs marginally better than the Snapdragon 801-equipped S5. We think Samsung can stick to a quad-core Snapdragon 808 or 810 and still offer the performance a phone like the S6 will require.</p> <p>We&rsquo;ll talk about storage here too. If it goes down the removeable backplate design route, Samsung is likely to support expandable storage via microSD, and thus the built-in storage doesn&rsquo;t need to be huge &ndash; let&rsquo;s say 32GB. If, however, the phone is has a metal unibody design and memory isn&rsquo;t user-increasable, we&rsquo;d like to see 64GB and maybe even 128GB as an option, just to keep pace with the Apple iPhone 6. And Samsung does like to be seen to be trying to keep up with Apple.</p> <p><strong>Update 08/12/14:&nbsp;</strong>Leaked AnTuTu benchmarks show off what could be the S6&#39;s final specs. Power-wise, we&#39;re looking at a 64-bit octa-core processor, 3GB of RAM, 32GB of storage and, of course, Android 5.0 Lollipop.</p> <p>Samsung traditionally also launches a variant with a Qualcomm processor, which is expected to be the 64-bit Snapdragon 810.</p> <p><strong>Update 21/01/15:&nbsp;</strong>While the HTC One (M9) and LG G4 are expected to land with the Snapdragon 810 processor, the most recent reports to arrive from the Samsung rumour mill suggest that Samsung might actually skip the 810 chip altogether this time.&nbsp;</p> <p>According to <a href="http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2015-01-20/samsung-said-to-drop-qualcomm-chip-from-next-galaxy-smartphone.html" target="_blank">Bloomberg</a>&#39;s source, the company is &quot;dropping its use of a Qualcomm Inc. chip that overheated during the Korean company&rsquo;s testing&quot;.</p> <p>If true, Samsung is likely to stick to its own Exynos processors across all international varaints of the S6.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="We&#039;d love to see a powerhouse CPU like the Snapdragon 808 or 810" alt="We&#039;d love to see a powerhouse CPU like the Snapdragon 808 or 810" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/qualcomm-snapdragon_0.jpg?1422370477" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="379" height="600" title="Tasty specs" alt="Samsung Galaxy S6" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/galaxy-s6-antutu-benchmark.jpg?1422370477" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-6"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Battery: Bigger and better </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The Galaxy S5 has a 2800mAh battery that matches up to the majority of its Android rivals by lasting around a day in normal use conditions (but not all: the <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/sony/sony-xperia-z3/review">Sony Xperia Z3</a> lasts at least half a day longer), and it holds an advantage over most too in that it&rsquo;s user replaceable. If Samsung decides to go with a seamless metal body that could change, and if it does we&rsquo;d like to see better battery life, either owing to a larger battery capacity or increased efficiency.</p> <p>The LG G3 has a 5.5in 2K screen and markedly longer battery life than the 5.1in, 1080p Galaxy S5, so it&rsquo;s certainly possible for Samsung to improve its power efficiency. Much of this will depend on the processor it chooses for the S6, and if that&rsquo;s the Snapdragon 808 or 810, neither seems likely to offer lower energy use than the S5&rsquo;s Snapdragon 805. So it could well be that a larger battery is required.</p> <p>Of course, Samsung may want to retain its user replaceable battery selling point, in which case it&rsquo;ll probably hint that those looking for more battery life could simply buy a second battery to carry around with them.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/sony/sony-xperia-z3/review">Sony Xperia Z3 review</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="567" height="425" title="The S5&#039;s battery is OK, but there&#039;s room for improvement" alt="The S5&#039;s battery is OK, but there&#039;s room for improvement" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/samsung-s5-battery_1.jpg?1422370477" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-7"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Camera: Better in low light, please </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Were we betting types, we&rsquo;d put a significant wedge on the S6&rsquo;s camera outstripping the S5&rsquo;s when it comes to megapixel count. The S5 has a 16MP sensor, and we&rsquo;d be surprised if the S6 doesn&rsquo;t take things above 20MP.</p> <p>But megapixels alone don&rsquo;t make a good photo, and we&rsquo;d much rather see some measures taken to boost performance in low light conditions: larger megapixels (Apple&rsquo;s favoured method), optical image stabilisation, a wider aperture, or a combination of those. Optical image stabilisation is a distinct possibility, we&rsquo;d say, as Samsung has already used it in the <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/samsung/samsung-galaxy-note-4/review">Galaxy Note 4</a>.</p> <p>We&rsquo;re not personally much inclined to take selfies, but we hear a lot of &ldquo;the young people&rdquo; are, and Samsung may well attempt to entice them to the S6 with a higher resolution front-facing camera. The HTC Desire Eye manages to squeeze a 13MP snapper on its front side, and while we wouldn&rsquo;t expect (or want) Samsung to go to those lengths, we wouldn&rsquo;t be surprised to see something in the 7 or 8MP range.</p> <p><strong>Update 08/12/14:&nbsp;</strong>Leaked AnTuTu benchmarks point to a massive 20MP rear-facing camera, bringing the S6 up to the Sony Xperia Z3 and Z3 Compact, in terms of megapixels at least. Higher numbers aren&#39;t the final word when it comes to image quality however, but given the high standard of Samsung&#39;s past smartphone cameras, we&#39;ve got high hopes.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/samsung/samsung-galaxy-note-4/review">Samsung Galaxy Note 4 hands-on review</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The S5&#039;s camera could perform better in low light conditions" alt="The S5&#039;s camera could perform better in low light conditions" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/samsung-s5-camera_0.jpg?1422370477" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-8"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Can Touch This </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>Update 19/01/15:</strong> <a href="http://www.sammobile.com/2015/01/16/exclusive-samsung-opts-for-a-touch-based-fingerprint-sensor-for-the-galaxy-s6/" target="_blank">SamMobile</a>&#39;s sources believe that the Galaxy S6&#39;s fingerprint-scanning home button will be upgraded to better compete with is Apple counterpart.</p> <p>The current home button on the Galaxy S5 requires users to swipe their fingerprints across it. While it does work well, it&#39;s still fiddlier and less convenient than its iPhone 6 alternative, which requires a simple press.</p> <p>According to the latest source, the home button on the Galaxy S6 will be larger and have a touch-based sensor, allowing full fingerprints to be read without requiring a swipe.</p> <p>We expect the news sensor to support the Galaxy S5&#39;s existing features - namely locking the phone, signing into websites and making payments with PayPal.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-9"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Simpler software </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>Update 14/01/15: </strong>One criticism that Samsung has always faced is regarding the complexity, bloat and clutter of its TouchWiz Android software.</p> <p>While the Galaxy Note 4 and S5 have taken welcome steps in the right direction, the current iteration of TouchWiz still feels bloated in comparison to HTC&#39;s Sense 6.0 and the Android experience served up by Motorola and Sony.</p> <p>A recent report from <a href="http://www.businesskorea.co.kr/article/8534/misc-features-going-samsung%E2%80%99s-user-interface-touchwiz-become-less-featured-galaxy-s6" target="_blank">Business Korea</a> states that Samsung has been working hard to optimise TouchWiz, in addition to scrapping unnecessary/little-used features.</p> <p>The UI is also apparently being simplified, building on the pastel colours and flat icons that are currently present.</p> <p>These optimisations are said to be drastic enough to make the S6 run as smooth as stock Android on the Nexus 6, which is the holy grail when it comes to slick Android use.</p> <p>Let&#39;s hope the rumours are true then, eh?</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="4000" height="3000" alt="" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/DSCN5425_2.JPG?1422370477" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-10"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Truly wireless charging? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>Update 21/01/15:&nbsp;</strong>A Korean report picked up by <a href="http://www.patentlyapple.com/patently-apple/2015/01/samsungs-galaxy-s6-rumored-to-be-packing-heavy-specs.html" target="_blank">Patently Apple</a> states that the Galaxy S6 will make use of magnetic resonance charging technology.</p> <p>While existing induction charging pads are now commonplace, they still require you to leave your device on a physical pad. Resonance charging on the other hand, is truly wireless, letting you charge your device while it&#39;s in your hands, without a single cable attached.</p> <p>Magnetic resonance chargers work by sending electromagnetic energy to devices that are tuned to the same resonance, and it&#39;s able to work through walls, albeit without delivering 100% of the electricity taken from the socket.</p> <p>It sounds a little far-fetched to us, but we imagine regular microUSB charging would be on the cards too. If true, Samsung will bring something to the table that&#39;ll make the S6 stand out from the crowd.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="604" height="453" alt="" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/magnetic-charging.jpg?1422370477" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-11"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Release date: No hanging about </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>With Mobile World Congress 2015 running from 2nd-5th March, we&rsquo;d expect Samsung to make its big Galaxy S6 reveal around that time (March/April is the period when Samsung traditionally unveils its flagship Galaxy S devices). Price-wise, we&rsquo;d expect it to be on a par with previous Galaxy S models - so don&rsquo;t expect it to be cheap and don&rsquo;t expect it to be vastly pricier than the &pound;579 the S5 cost at launch.</p> <p>As is traditional in Android circles, we also expect to see many a leak about the S6 between now and its likely launch date. So keep an eye on Stuff.tv for all the news as we get it.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/smartphones/top-ten">The 10 best smartphones you can buy right now</a></strong></p> <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="180" src="http://pages.haymarket.com/stuff_signup/enews_embed" width="300"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-review-rating"><legend>Review Rating</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 0 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-preview"> <div class="field-label">Preview:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Preview </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-carousel-item"><legend>Carousel Extras</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-text field-field-carousel-item-title"> <div class="field-label">Carousel item title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Samsung Galaxy S6 preview </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/samsung-galaxy-s6-review" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.stuff.tv/samsung-galaxy-s6-review#comments Galaxy S6 Samsung Smartphones Wed, 21 Jan 2015 09:18:42 +0000 Sam Kieldsen 1450479 at http://www.stuff.tv The dimple on the back of the Nexus 6 was going to be a fingerprint scanner - until Apple came along http://www.stuff.tv/apple/dimple-back-nexus-6-was-going-be-fingerprint-scanner-until-apple-came-along/news <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Motorola&#039;s ex-CEO confirms what could have been </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The dimple on the back of the Nexus 6 was going to be a fingerprint scanner - until Apple came along" alt="The dimple on the back of the Nexus 6 was going to be a fingerprint scanner - un" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/nexus-6-20_0.jpg?1422276236" /> </div> </div> </div> <p>That dimple on the rear of the <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/google/google-nexus-6/review" target="_blank">Nexus 6</a> looks rather nice. Bordering Motorola&#39;s &#39;M&#39;, it brings a little design flavour to the mix, and that&#39;s always a good thing.</p> <p>But it could have been much more.</p> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/esat-dedezade" title="View user profile.">Esat Dedezade</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>News Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/apple/dimple-back-nexus-6-was-going-be-fingerprint-scanner-until-apple-came-along/news" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.stuff.tv/apple/dimple-back-nexus-6-was-going-be-fingerprint-scanner-until-apple-came-along/news#comments Apple Google Motorola Nexus 6 Smartphones Mon, 26 Jan 2015 12:37:13 +0000 Esat Dedezade 1458536 at http://www.stuff.tv Those leaked images of the HTC One (M9) could be fake http://www.stuff.tv/android/those-leaked-images-htc-one-m9-hima-could-be-fake/news <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> We might not know what HTC&#039;s upcoming flagship looks like after all... </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="790" height="598" title="Those leaked images of the HTC One (M9) Hima could be fake" alt="Those leaked images of the HTC One (M9) Hima could be fake" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/HTC%20one%20M9%20%2813%29.jpg?1422330523" /> </div> </div> </div> <p>&quot;The company put the guts of the phone into a dummy case, and sent these decoys to its partners who needed access to it pre-launch.&quot;</p> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/max-langridge" title="View user profile.">Max Langridge</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>News Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>These are the words of retired Twitter tipster&nbsp;Evan Blass&nbsp;a.k.a @evleaks, who believes that the upcoming HTC One M9, or Hima, will look nothing like its M8 predecessor.</p> <p>Evan&#39;s reasoning behind this claim? He says that on New Year&#39;s Eve, HTC&#39;s Senior Online Global Communications Manager Jeff Gordon said on Twitter, &quot;If you&#39;re an HTC fan, 2015 is going to blow you away.&quot; <p>He went to say he was &quot;...looking forward to great competition and a grade A trolling in 2015&quot;, which was likely directed at Samsung.&nbsp;</p> <p>Evan says these statements aren&#39;t from a company who will simply copy the design of their previous phone and <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/android/htc-one-m9-images-surface-online/news">just change the camera, from UltraPixel to megapixel.</a> He even goes as far to say &quot;they look less like the M8 than the M8 looked like the M7&quot;. He&#39;s referring to both the HTC Hima and HTC Hima Ultra, a larger version of the flagship device.</p> <p>While he refutes claims the One M9 will look similar to the M8, he does agree with the tasty specs (which include a Snapdragon 810 processor and 20.7MP camera), that have been outed. So it&#39;s not all bad news.</p> <p>But of course, there&#39;s always the possibility Blass is wrong and that the One (M9) will follow a similar design language. We just don&#39;t know for sure now.</p> <p>That leaves us all playing waiting game until March 1st, when HTC will hold aloft its new smartphone at MWC.&nbsp;</p> <p><strong>READ MORE:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.stuff.tv/htc/htc-one-m9-hima/review">HTC One (M9) preview</a>&nbsp;</strong></p> <p>[<a href="http://htcsource.com/2015/01/htc-hima-and-the-launch-day-conundrum/">HTC Source</a> via <a href="http://www.ubergizmo.com/2015/01/htc-one-m9-leaks-have-apparently-been-clever-plants-all-along/">Ubergizmo</a>]</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> http://www.stuff.tv/android/those-leaked-images-htc-one-m9-hima-could-be-fake/news#comments Android HTC Smartphones Mon, 26 Jan 2015 11:08:26 +0000 Max Langridge 1458528 at http://www.stuff.tv Oppo N3 http://www.stuff.tv/oppo/oppo-n3/review <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Heavy, chunky and quirky, Oppo has a different take on what a flagship phone should be </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Oppo N3 review" alt="Oppo N3" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/oppo-promo.jpg?1422267162" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/andrew-williams" title="View user profile.">Andrew Williams</a> </div> </div> </div> <p>The last Oppo phone we looked at was the thinnest in the world, the <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/oppo/oppo-r5/review" target="_blank">R5</a>. The Oppo N3 is its ugly sister, being twice as thick and far chunkier even though the screen is only a touch bigger.</p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-pricing"><legend>Pricing</legend><div class="field field-type-number-float field-field-test-price"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> £-1.00 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-price-from"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 0 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-price-notes"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> $650 in US. UK price not yet confirmed </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-ratings"><legend>Ratings</legend><div class="field field-type-hcmreviewrating-rating field-field-overall-rating"> <div class="field-label">Overall rating:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="hcmrating-default">8 stars</div> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-pros"> <div class="field-label">Pros:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Great camera </div> <div class="field-item even"> Decent processor </div> <div class="field-item odd"> Feature-packed </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-cons"> <div class="field-label">Cons:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Chunky and heavy </div> <div class="field-item even"> Marmite looks </div> <div class="field-item odd"> A bit glitchy </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>Review Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Beauty vs beast </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The Oppo N3 was never going to be a normal-looking phone. It&rsquo;s the successor to the <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/android/oppo-n1/review" target="_blank">Oppo N1</a>, last year&rsquo;s swivel camera oddball.</p> <p>What&rsquo;s new this year? All the specs have been updated, the screen&rsquo;s a bit smaller and now the camera can be operated with the touchscreen, rather than just manually.</p> <p>This is not a normal phone, and the Oppo N3 embraces its weirdness. Rather than trying to make its swivelly camera meld into the rest of the frame as much as possible, it features a completely different design.</p> <p>With a fake leather finish rather than the smooth matt plastic used over the rest of the Oppo N3, it&rsquo;s as if the phone has been given a skin transplant from a Galaxy Note 3. There&rsquo;s even fake stitching around its edge for an extra attention-grabbing hit.</p> <p>If an out-there design isn&rsquo;t your bag, it&rsquo;s time to close the case on the Oppo N3. It&rsquo;s probably not for you.</p> <p>Its sheer dimensions are also a bit of an issue. In the last couple of years, phones with gigantic screens have gone from being a joke to the norm, but the Oppo N3 has the large screen of today&rsquo;s phones with a frame of yesteryear.</p> <p>The bezels are that much bigger, the frame that bit fatter, and it results in a mobile that&rsquo;s a real hand-stretcher. It may just be a couple of millimetres wider and thicker than an&nbsp;<a href="http://www.stuff.tv/g3/lg-g3/review" target="_blank">LG G3</a>, but they really matter. This phone doesn&rsquo;t feel all that comfortable to hold. And while the metal band around the middle adds strength, it ensures you don&rsquo;t get an at all smooth feel.</p> <p>Unlike the similarly-huge&nbsp;<a href="http://www.stuff.tv/google/google-nexus-6/review" target="_blank">Nexus 6</a>, the Oppo N3 does at least put the frequently-used back button within reach of your thumb, although the light-up soft keys are bizarrely, inexplicably dim.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.stuff.tv/google/google-nexus-6/review" target="_blank">Google Nexus 6 review</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The swivel camera is particularly... swivelly" alt="Oppo N3 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/oppo-n3-23_0.jpg?1422267162" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="The camera section&#039;s fake leather finish makes it look like an off-cut from a Galaxy S5" alt="Oppo N3 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/oppo-n3-67.jpg?1422267162" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Geek points </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Thankfully the Oppo N3 isn&rsquo;t just a selection of weird and wonky bits cobbled together. For one, the fingerprint scanner on the back is really quite good.</p> <p>It works well, sits right where your index finger naturally lands when extended, and is its own button. You press it to fire-up the Oppo N3&rsquo;s lock screen, after which it automatically scans your finger. As has become the norm for phone fingerprint scanners, you can teach the phone five fingerprints.</p> <p>This isn&rsquo;t the end of the phone&rsquo;s neat hardware extras either. In the slide-out SIM tray there&rsquo;s a second slot that can take either another SIM or a microSD card: you can&rsquo;t knock that sort of flexibility.</p> <p>The Oppo N3 also gets you some neat wireless extras. It supports ac-grade Wi-Fi, which gets you super-juiced-up Wi-Fi range and power when used with an ac-compatible router. 4G support is primed for the UK too, with all the bands we use here supported - that&rsquo;s an improvement on the Oppo R5.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/ex-machina-just-how-close-reality-alex-garland-s-robo-thriller/feature" target="_blank">Ex Machina: Just how close to reality is Alex Garaland&#39;s robo-thriller?</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The fingerprint scanner sits neatly in the middle of the phone" alt="Oppo N3 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/n3-fingerprint.jpg?1422267162" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Hollywood screener </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>These days, of course, a few little hardware extras aren&rsquo;t enough to court the enthusiast crowd. You need a gigantic screen, too. The Oppo N3 has a 5.5-inch IPS LCD screen, which is big but a shade smaller than the go-to geeky favourite the <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/samsung/samsung-galaxy-note-4/review" target="_blank">Galaxy Note 4</a> (it has a 5.7-inch display).</p> <p>Resolution isn&rsquo;t quite as good either. The Oppo N3 has a 1080p screen where the big boys of the phone world are starting to use QHD displays. Do you need those extra pixels? For bragging rights maybe, but we&rsquo;re more than happy with the resolution on offer here given this phone costs a fair bit less than the Note 4.</p> <p>Screen freaks take note, though: the&nbsp;<a href="http://www.stuff.tv/g3/lg-g3/review" target="_blank">LG G3</a>&nbsp;has a higher-res display and costs around the same cash, if not less.</p> <p>The Oppo N3 has a pretty attractive screen, with the natural-looking colours and pure whites we&rsquo;ve come to expect from an IPS LCD display. You can tell it doesn&rsquo;t have remotely OLED-like blacks when you take the phone in a room with slightly dimmed lighting, but outdoors you&rsquo;d be hard-pressed to notice.</p> <p>There is one issue, though, and it comes down to something we&rsquo;ve noticed a few times in the Oppo N3. Its software isn&rsquo;t that well optimised. In the display end, this shows up in the auto brightness setting, which seems to be a bit slow to respond, a bit jaggedy in its changes and simply not always on the money.</p> <p>We had to fiddle with the brightness slider manually a few times during testing, and you need to make sure the camera&rsquo;s the right way around as the ambient light sensor&rsquo;s on the reverse side of the camera lens. If the screen suddenly goes dim, that&rsquo;s probably why. D&rsquo;oh.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.stuff.tv/g3/lg-g3/review" target="_blank">LG G3 review</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The Oppo N3 has a 5.5-inch IPS LCD screen, which is big but a shade smaller than the go-to geeky favourite the Galaxy Note 4" alt="Oppo N3 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/oppo-n3-1.jpg?1422267162" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Colour-in android </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Who can we blame for the sketchy bits? It seems down to the changes Oppo has made to Android in its custom ColorOS software. This is largely a custom UI, just like the other interfaces you&rsquo;ll find on the phones of almost all the big names.</p> <p>The Oppo N3 uses ColorOS 2.0, and it&rsquo;s not quite the 100 per cent bug-free piece of software you might hope for. We&rsquo;ve noticed a few little glitches in our testing, such as the Home button suddenly not responding for a while. We&rsquo;ve seen similar little buggy bits in the Oppo R5. The software is clearly a few updates away from perfection, so be sure you&rsquo;re ready to be pelted with a few software gremlins if you pick one up sooner rather than later.</p> <p>ColorOS 2.0&rsquo;s style is a bit off the norm too. Rather than having the usual Android arrangement of a bunch of home screens sitting on top of an apps menu where everything on the phone lives, the Oppo N3 just has home screens. You can arrange your apps into folders, but everything on the phone needs to have a spot on these screens.</p> <p>This can make it a bit hard to pretty-up your home screens, and the zillions of white app icons that greet you when you first fire-up the Oppo N3 can feel like a bit of an assault. However, there are plenty of tweaks you can apply.</p> <p>The Oppo N3 supports themes, and you can download plenty more using the Theme Store app that comes nailed to the phone&rsquo;s lead home screen. They range from the tasteful to the frankly bizarre &mdash;&nbsp;there&rsquo;s one where all your icons are replaced by little cat-like monsters, for example.</p> <p>There are also custom gestures on hand that let you open apps with just a quick on-screen doodle.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/android/android-45/review">Android 5.0 Lollipop review</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Rather than having the usual Android arrangement of a bunch of home screens sitting on top of an apps menu where everything on the phone lives, the Oppo N3 just has home screens" alt="Oppo N3 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/n3-theme-1.jpg?1422267162" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="The Oppo N3 supports themes, and you can download plenty more using the Theme Store app that comes nailed to the phone’s lead home screen" alt="Oppo N3 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/oppo-st-66.jpg?1422267162" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-4"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Top of the class of 2014 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Thanks to the odd little glitch, the Oppo N3 doesn&rsquo;t feel quite as super-slick as it arguably should, but it certainly has enough raw power on tap to get there in the end. It has a Snapdragon 801 quad-core 2.3GHz CPU, the same used in the <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/htc/htc-one-2/review" target="_blank">HTC One M8</a>, and 2GB of RAM.</p> <p>This processor is primed for retirement now that the Snapdragon 805 is here and the 64-bit Snapdragon 810 is about to be plugged into 2015 Android kings, but it&rsquo;ll serve you pretty well into 2016 and beyond.</p> <p>In the Geekbench 3 tool, it earns the Oppo N3 2797 points. That&rsquo;s around 10 per cent better performance than that of the mid-range Snapdragon 615 used in the Oppo R5.</p> <p>Come mid-2015, the Oppo N3 won&rsquo;t look all that powerful, but as it uses such a popular chip you get the same sort of visual wizardry as last year&rsquo;s flagships. That&rsquo;s not always the case when other lesser-known brands are jammed in. <em>Dead Trigger 2</em> looks great and runs just-about perfectly for example.</p> <p>Oppo still has some work to do in liquidising bugs, but if you have the patience to wait for that to happen, we think you&rsquo;ll be pretty happy with the overall performance.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/htc/htc-one-2/review" target="_blank">HTC One M8 review</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="In the Geekbench 3 tool the Oppo N3 2797 points" alt="Oppo N3 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/oppo-n3-6_0.jpg?1422267162" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-5"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Johnny 5 all up in your mobile </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>What you can start to appreciate right now, though, is the Oppo N3&rsquo;s wonderfully bizarre camera. It uses a single lens and sensor that can move from pointing back to front, and most angles in-between.</p> <p>We first met this kind of phone camera design back with the <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/android/oppo-n1/review" target="_blank">Oppo N1</a>, but this time it has a higher-end sensor and a new motorised design. You can swivel the camera around manually, use a two-finger gesture on-screen to get it moving or there&rsquo;s even a special mode in the video camera section that makes it track a subject automatically. It doesn&rsquo;t do it very well, with the sort of jerky movements that make the Bourne films look like David Lean flicks, but is fun to play around with.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The swivel camera is the Oppo N3&#039;s standout feature" alt="Oppo N3 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/oppo-n3-89.jpg?1422267162" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-6"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>You can also take auto panoramas, where the Oppo N3&rsquo;s lens slowly pans around making it easier to take shots without looking quite as silly as you normally do.</p> <p>Just as important, the normal experience of snapping with the camera is very good. It&rsquo;s fast and responsive, and it is capable of taking some excellent shots. Colours are punchy and vivid, there&rsquo;s plenty of detail and contrast is very good.</p> <p>Clearly the lens and sensor of the Oppo N3 are a cut above most out there. You do need to use specific modes on occasion to get the best results, though. For example, Auto doesn&rsquo;t cut it for really low-light conditions. Instead there&rsquo;s a custom Colorful Night mode: it sounds like it&rsquo;ll give your night shots day-glo colours but actually mostly boosts sensitivity and cranks up noise reduction. &nbsp;</p> <p>There are quite a few extra modes on offer, from enthusiast ones that let you fiddle with the focus and exposure to more &lsquo;fun&rsquo; ones that let you create double exposures and change which parts of the image are in-focus after shooting. It&rsquo;s a cracking camera, all considered.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/stuffs-guide-photography/feature" target="_blank">Stuff&#39;s Guide to Photography</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="5920" height="1872" title="Oppo N3 sample panorama" alt="Oppo N3 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/IMG20150118090043.jpg?1422267162" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="4608" height="3456" title="Oppo N3 sample photo" alt="Oppo N3 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/IMG20150115093156.jpg?1422267162" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-3"> <div class="field-label">Image #3:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_3" width="4608" height="3456" title="Oppo N3 sample photo" alt="Oppo N3 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/IMG20150115180550_1.jpg?1422267162" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-7"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> It’s all me, me, me </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Selfies are, as you&rsquo;d hope, about ten times as detailed as those of other phones. You&rsquo;ll be able to pore over every bit of dry skin, every wrinkle on your mug.</p> <p>There&rsquo;s a Beautify mode that lets you hide all these bits too, but at the moment it doesn&rsquo;t seem to work properly, causing the preview image to go completely black. It could be the Oppo N3 telling us we&rsquo;re just too ugly to beautify. But we hope not.</p> <p>To give you a bit of extra photo flexibility, the Oppo N3 also comes with a little gadget called the O-click. This is a little Bluetooth key fob that uses a flat watch-style battery and can be used as a remote for the camera shutter.</p> <p>It can do plenty more too &mdash;&nbsp;you can set it so a double press sets off the phone&rsquo;s ringer (should you lose your phone), use it to control music and make the phone give you an alert when the O-click goes out of range. You could use that last one to make sure you never forget your keys.</p> <p>Given how many features the Oppo N3 packs-in, we were a bit surprised to see it can&rsquo;t shoot video at 4K resolution or with HDR - high dynamic range. However, with great quality video and stills on offer, it doesn&rsquo;t ruin the phone&rsquo;s camera by any means. It&rsquo;s an odd one, but a goodie.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Selfies are incredibly easy with the O-click" alt="Oppo N3 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/oclick.jpg?1422267162" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="The Oppo N3 also takes decent videos - but no 4K" alt="Oppo N3 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/oppo-st-3.jpg?1422267162" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-8"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 3000mAh of pure joy </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>As a phone much larger than the <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/oppo/oppo-r5/review" target="_blank">Oppo R5 we took a look at recently</a>, you&rsquo;d hope it&rsquo;d offer much better stamina as well as a better camera. Thankfully, it does. It has a 3000mAh battery, which is roughly on-par with what you get in the 5.5-inch competition. The <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/g3/lg-g3/review" target="_blank">LG G3</a> has a 3100mAh battery, and a higher-res screen to boot.</p> <p>You&rsquo;ll get around 12 hours of constant video playback off a charge, or a day and change&rsquo;s normal use. With the usual near-constant Whatsapp checks and a quick spot of gaming &mdash;&nbsp;maybe 15 minutes &mdash;&nbsp;we were at 30 per cent stamina by bed time.</p> <p>That&rsquo;s not too bad. However, given how chunky the Oppo N3 is, we had hoped for a little better. As-is it&rsquo;s at best on-par with the middle-weight competition from last year. It&rsquo;s roughly on-par with something like the <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/galaxy-s5/samsung-galaxy-s5/review" target="_blank">Galaxy S5</a>.</p> <p>What is genuinely stand-out, though, is the charger. The Oppo N3 comes with a VOOC fast charger that gets you to 75 per cent charge from flat within a half-hour. It then tails off, taking about 90 minutes for the full whack.</p> <p>The extra space in that chunky frame does seem to benefit the internal speaker more than the battery. Its sound has a bit more warmth to it than the skinnier <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/galaxy-s5/samsung-galaxy-s5/review" target="_blank">Samsung Galaxy S5</a>, although the sound quality isn&rsquo;t flat-out better. It&rsquo;s certainly not <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/htc/htc-one-2/review" target="_blank">HTC One M8</a>-grade.</p> <p>The Oppo N3&rsquo;s speaker sits right on the bottom, behind the curvy lower part of its metal frame. There&rsquo;s just the one speaker, but at least its positioning makes it very hard to block off.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.stuff.tv/meridian/ces-2015-tidal-bringing-hi-res-audio-streaming-uk/news" target="_blank">Tidal is bringing Hi-Res Audio streaming to the UK</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The extra space in that chunky frame does seem to benefit the internal speaker more than the battery. Its sound has a bit more warmth to it" alt="Oppo N3 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/oppo-n3-0o.jpg?1422267162" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-9"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Oppo N3 verdict </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The Oppo N3 is a phone for people who want features you just don&rsquo;t see elsewhere. A swivelling camera, smart Bluetooth fob and ultra-fast charger aren&rsquo;t normally first on the list of anyone&rsquo;s smartphone priorities, but they do enrich the experience of using this phone.</p> <p>If those sound like worthless gimmicks to you, it&rsquo;s probably time to get your coat and head to the next smartphone station. The Oppo N3 doesn&rsquo;t get any of the core phone bits totally wrong, but its ColorOS software is a bit buggy and quirky, and the phone feels downright huge.</p> <p>So it&rsquo;s a priorities thing. If you&rsquo;re a bit bored of all of the me-too phones that imitate and evolve rather than innovate and experiment, this may be just the device to to reignite your gadget enthusiasm. Just don&rsquo;t also expect your journey on the good ship Oppo to be pure smooth sailing.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/smartphones/top-ten" target="_blank">The 10 Best Phones in the World right now</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Oppo N3 review" alt="Oppo N3 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/oppo-n3-6_1.jpg?1422267162" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-review-rating"><legend>Review Rating</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> power </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 8 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> screen </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 8 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> build </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 6 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> apps </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 8 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-4"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Camera </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 9 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-verdict"> <div class="field-label">Verdict:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>It&rsquo;s a chunky blighter, but the Oppo N3 offers some features the techier gadgeteer will love</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-preview"> <div class="field-label">Preview:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Disabled </div> </div> </div> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/oppo/oppo-n3/review" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.stuff.tv/oppo/oppo-n3/review#comments Oppo Smartphones Mon, 26 Jan 2015 10:04:58 +0000 1451642 at http://www.stuff.tv It's official: Three is forking out £10.25bn to snap up O2 http://www.stuff.tv/its-official-three-forking-out-1025-billion-snap-o2/news <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> The unlimited data network looks set to become the biggest in the UK </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="It&#039;s official: Three is forking out £10.25 billion to snap up O2" alt="It&#039;s official: Three is forking out £10.25 billion to snap up O2" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/three-o2.jpg?1422030301" /> </div> </div> </div> <p>The rumours were true, and now it&#39;s official. Three is buying O2 for a hefty &pound;10.25billion.</p> <p>Well, if you want to get technical, Three&#39;s serving up an initial &pound;9.25billion in cash, while the remaining &pound;1billion will be deferred.&nbsp;Once the deal goes through, Three will become the largest operator in the UK, jumping from 7.5 million customers to 31.5 million, edging out ahead of EE and Vodafone with a 41% market share.</p> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/esat-dedezade" title="View user profile.">Esat Dedezade</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>News Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/its-official-three-forking-out-1025-billion-snap-o2/news" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.stuff.tv/its-official-three-forking-out-1025-billion-snap-o2/news#comments Smartphones Fri, 23 Jan 2015 15:42:59 +0000 Esat Dedezade 1458361 at http://www.stuff.tv Samsung Gear VR Innovator Edition http://www.stuff.tv/oculus/samsung-gear-vr-innovator-edition/review <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Oculus Rift + Galaxy Note 4 = portable VR perfection? Not quite yet. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Oculus Rift + Galaxy Note 4 = portable VR perfection?" alt="Samsung Gear VR Innovator Edition review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/samsung-gear-vr-with-phone.jpg?1422218018" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/sam-kieldsen" title="View user profile.">Sam Kieldsen</a> </div> </div> </div> <p>What do you think of when you think of Samsung?</p> <p>The world&#39;s finest phablets? Possibly. <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T8nJKWJTsUg" target="_blank">Creepy smartwatch video ads</a>? Maybe. A marketing budget that dwarfs the GDP of many developing countries? Perhaps. Making powerful phones and TVs that sell shedloads? Almost certainly. But partnering with the world&#39;s coolest tech company to bring to market before anyone else an accessory that&#39;ll fling you headlong into the metaverse? Not so much.</p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-pricing"><legend>Pricing</legend><div class="field field-type-number-float field-field-test-price"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> £185.00 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-price-from"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 0 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-price-notes"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> (£240 with gamepad) </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-ratings"><legend>Ratings</legend><div class="field field-type-hcmreviewrating-rating field-field-overall-rating"> <div class="field-label">Overall rating:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="hcmrating-default">6 stars</div> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-pros"> <div class="field-label">Pros:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Delivers a strong VR experience </div> <div class="field-item even"> Comfortable to wear </div> <div class="field-item odd"> Free apps and videos </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-cons"> <div class="field-label">Cons:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Very limited supply of content right now </div> <div class="field-item even"> Expensive when you factor in a Note 4 and gamepad </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>Review Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Design and build quality </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The Gear VR is constructed chiefly of hard white plastic and&nbsp;looks... well, like a virtual reality headset. But it also look like a real, finished product, a fact which instantly sets it apart from many of its current rivals. The headset is lightweight, but feels sufficiently solid to withstand regular use &ndash; there are no ominous creaks when you give it a squeeze.</p> <p>A <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/samsung/samsung-galaxy-note-4/review">Galaxy Note 4</a> phone is a requirement for the Gear VR, and it slots into the front of the headset, connecting directly to a microUSB plug on one side. On the other, a catch locks the phone into place securely. You can then place a transparent plastic cover over the front of the headset, which we suppose serves to give the phone&rsquo;s back a little more protection but mainly seems intended to make the whole thing look a bit more presentable. Which it does.</p> <p>The headset&rsquo;s light weight and padding, both on the eyepieces and the straps that go over and around your head, make it reasonably comfy to wear for extended periods. The straps are adjustable (great news for people with unusually large or small bonces), while a dial above the eyepieces allows you to shift their focus to compensate for short- or longsightedness.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/samsung/samsung-galaxy-note-4/review">Samsung Galaxy Note 4 review</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The Gear VR is solidly built and comfy to wear" alt="Samsung Gear VR Innovator Edition review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/samsung-gear-vr-front-on.jpg?1422218018" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="The Gear VR is solidly built and comfy to wear" alt="Samsung Gear VR Innovator Edition review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/samsung-gear-vr-left.jpg?1422218018" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> User friendliness </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The Gear VR comes supplied with a 16GB microSD card carrying a handful of virtual reality demos (you&rsquo;ll be prompted to pop this into your Galaxy Note 4 before use). You&rsquo;ll still need to download and install a few pieces of software, including an Oculus app, but this only takes a few minutes.</p> <p>When you slot the Note 4 into the Gear VR, the phone&rsquo;s screen automatically switches to the correct mode, allowing you to simply don the headset (a proximity sensor lets the Gear VR know when it&rsquo;s being worn) and get straight into the virtual reality fun &ndash; the Oculus Home app opens automatically.</p> <p>The UI is simple: you look around to move a cursor and use a touchpad and back button on the right hand side of the headset to navigate and select options. There&rsquo;s also a volume rocker on the left side. The touchpad can also be used to control many of the apps and games available &ndash; but Samsung also sells a Bluetooth gamepad which should make things less awkward, especially with faster-paced games. We say &ldquo;should&rdquo;, because the gamepad wasn&rsquo;t included with our review sample, and we haven&rsquo;t tried it yet - one is on the way and we&rsquo;ll update this review once we&rsquo;ve tested it.</p> <p>One useful feature is the pass-through camera, which enables you to see the outside world without taking off the headset by feeding the screen a live stream from the Note 4&rsquo;s camera.</p> <p>From within the Gear VR UI you can visit an app store or browse the apps you&rsquo;ve already downloaded. Which brings us nicely to&hellip;</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Slotting the Galaxy Note 4 in is easy, and it feels secure once inserted" alt="Samsung Gear VR Innovator Edition review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/samsung-gear-vr-front-phone-in.jpg?1422218018" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="The controls are all located on the right side panel" alt="Samsung Gear VR Innovator Edition review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/samsung-gear-vr-right.jpg?1422218018" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Apps </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>With no way to (currently) hook the Gear VR up to a PC, all of your virtual reality content has to be downloaded through the Oculus Home app running on the Galaxy Note 4. This divides the content into three broad areas: games, apps and experiences. The former are fairly self-explanatory, while the latter section contains mostly videos and animations designed to inform and/or entertain &ndash; a Cirque du Soleil performance in which you&rsquo;re an audience member, or live footage from a Coldplay gig in which you&rsquo;re, again, an audience member.</p> <p>There isn&rsquo;t a huge selection of content available at the time of writing: we count 20 games, five apps and 10 experiences &ndash; all of them available free of charge, but that is expected to change. Still, given that the Gear VR SDK is in the hands of developers right now, we&rsquo;d expect that number to rise in the coming months.</p> <p>As mentioned above, without the gamepad we&rsquo;ve been a little limited in what we can play. Some of the games don&rsquo;t require manual controls (you just look around to control things), while others &ndash; the interesting VR take on <em>Temple Run</em>, for instance &ndash; allow you to use the touchpad on the side of the headset to perform basic moves. That&rsquo;s a fairly unwieldy solution, though, and we imagine anyone serious about playing games on the Gear VR will invest in the gamepad.</p> <p>The games themselves are fairly casual mobile affairs tailored for 3D and VR and, as demos of what the technology can do, they&rsquo;re impressive. As pure games? Not so much &ndash; and we suspect hardcore gamers will gravitate towards the Oculus Rift and other PC-friendly headsets, rather than the Gear VR, to get their VR fix.</p> <p>The apps and experiences are mostly demonstrations of what the Oculus VR technology is capable of: there are 360-degree videos and photos to gawp at (and we did); a fake VR cinema that you can sit in to watch movie trailers on a virtual big screen; an app that lets you view your phone&rsquo;s videos and photos in a VR gallery; an experience that puts you in a virtual ocean and lets you watch fish, crabs and turtles move around you.</p> <p>If none of the above sounds life-changing, that&rsquo;s probably because it isn&rsquo;t &ndash; but there&rsquo;s definitely a moment of joyful realisation the first time you experience the new generation of VR, and many of these apps are capable of providing it.</p> <p>In terms of real, meaty content to get your teeth into, there&rsquo;s not much here &ndash; but you&rsquo;ll definitely want to show your friends what the headset can do, and the apps, games and experiences let you do just that.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/android/25-free-apps-android/feature">The 35 best free apps for Android</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The Oculus Home app store is your source of all VR content" alt="Samsung Gear VR Innovator Edition review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/samsung-gear-vr-app-store.jpg?1422218018" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> VR quality </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>A few critics have mentioned that the Oculus Rift headset&rsquo;s image, which comes from a 1920 x 1080 screen split across two eyes (so each each is seeing a 960 x 1080 image), is too pixellated. You might think that the Galaxy Note 4&rsquo;s 5.7in 2560 x 1440 AMOLED screen would provide a pixel-free virtual reality experience, but once that&rsquo;s split in half and magnified by the headset&rsquo;s eyepieces you can still make out the pixel structure of the display.</p> <p>The videos, for example, feel low-res compared to the pristine HD stuff we&rsquo;re used to watching. It&rsquo;s a minor annoyance, really &ndash; and once you start to feel immersed in virtual reality it fades into the background. The headset&rsquo;s built-in sensors work well to track your head movements and there&rsquo;s very little lag &ndash; at least we didn&rsquo;t find it left us feeling uncomfortable or nauseous. Audio comes through the Note 4&rsquo;s speakers, or a pair of earbuds you connect to the phone, and it works quite nicely.</p> <p>The Gear VR affords a 96-degree field-of-view, which is about the same as that of the Oculus Rift. There are headsets that offer wider fields of view out there, but 96 degrees feels absolutely sufficient here with the apps and videos on offer.</p> <p>One thing we should mention is that the Gear VR provides a mobile VR experience &ndash; it doesn&rsquo;t need to plug into anything other than a Galaxy Note 4, and it&rsquo;s small and lightweight. That means you can VR pretty much anywhere you like.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.stuff.tv/vr-challengers/feature">10 VR rivals to give Oculus Rift a virtual reality check</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The eyepieces magnify the screen, which means you can see individual pixels" alt="Samsung Gear VR Innovator Edition review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/samsung-gear-vr-front-cover-off.jpg?1422218018" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-title"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Samsung Gear VR tech specs </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-body-text"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Body Text:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>Field of view:</strong> 96 degrees</p> <p><strong>Sensors:</strong> Accelerometer, gyroscope, geomagnetic, proximity</p> <p><strong>Display:</strong> 5.7in 2560 x 1440 AMOLED screen (on Galaxy Note 4)</p> <p><strong>Connectivity:</strong> Micro USB</p> <p><strong>Dimensions: </strong>198 x 116 x 90mm</p> <p><strong>Weight:</strong> 379g</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-4"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Verdict </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>If Samsung wants to be regarded as an innovator, it needs to produce more devices such as the Gear VR. While the lack of content makes it feel a little like a prototype, it&rsquo;s an actual, buyable product that gives the user an impressive glimpse of things to come. It&#39;s really the first major VR headset of the new generation to go on sale.</p> <p>We were quite taken aback by some of the apps and videos on offer, but they&rsquo;re all quite short-lived and simple, and we think headsets such as this will live and die on whether or not they get a steady (and improving) supply of new content.</p> <p>The headset itself seems affordable, but it should be remembered that a Galaxy Note 4 is a requirement. And given that the Note 4 is&nbsp;a flagship phone that costs &pound;600 SIM-free,&nbsp;you&rsquo;re probably not going to want to shell out for the Gear VR&nbsp;unless you already own the phablet. We certainly don&rsquo;t feel like what&rsquo;s available at present is worth an &pound;800 outlay, but for existing Note 4 users who want to see what VR has to offer, it&rsquo;s an upgrade that might well be worth it.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/how-indie-games-conquered-world/feature">How indie games conquered the world</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The Gear VR is impressive, but needs more apps and content" alt="Samsung Gear VR Innovator Edition review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/samsung-gear-vr-package.jpg?1422218018" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-review-rating"><legend>Review Rating</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> build </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 8 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> picture </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 8 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Performance </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 7 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-content-taxonomy field-field-review-type"> <div class="field-label">Type:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> apps </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 5 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-verdict"> <div class="field-label">Verdict:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>It&rsquo;ll wow VR newbies, but the lack of content and the overall price make the Gear VR a niche product</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-preview"> <div class="field-label">Preview:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Disabled </div> </div> </div> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/oculus/samsung-gear-vr-innovator-edition/review" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.stuff.tv/oculus/samsung-gear-vr-innovator-edition/review#comments Oculus Samsung Smartphones Virtual Reality Thu, 22 Jan 2015 17:50:52 +0000 Sam Kieldsen 1457988 at http://www.stuff.tv This is (probably) the HTC One (M9) http://www.stuff.tv/htc/probably-htc-one-m9/news <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Say hello to HTC&#039;s next shiny superphone </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="805" height="604" title="This is (probably) the HTC One (M9)" alt="This is (probably) the HTC One (M9)" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/htc-m9.jpg?1421939269" /> </div> </div> </div> <p>See that right there? That&#39;s HTC&#39;s new flagship for 2015. Probably.</p> <p>It&#39;s a render picked up by French site nowwhereelse.fr, which allegedly shows off the rear of the new <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/htc/htc-one-m9-hima/review" target="_blank">HTC One (M9)</a>, which is set to be unveiled on 1 March, just before Mobile World Congress kicks off.</p> <p>While we&#39;ve seen blurry shots of the alleged M9 in the wild already this week, this render, if genuine shows off the clearest view of the eagerly waited device we&#39;ve seen yet.</p> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/esat-dedezade" title="View user profile.">Esat Dedezade</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>News Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The French site has also managed to obtain shots of a prototype M9 unit, sat next to an&nbsp;M8. There&#39;s very little to distinguish between the two models, but the front ambient light sensor is larger, and the bottom and side bezels appear to have shrunk, which is good news.</p> <p>The M9 has also leaked sporting a rugged case, though there&#39;s no much information that can be taken from that particular shot. But if you like wrapping your phones in car tires, then there you go. You&#39;re sorted.</p> <p>Stay tuned for more HTC leaks (there&#39;s bound to be plenty more on the way) ahead of its official reveal in just over a month&#39;s time.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/htc/htc-one-m9-hima/review" target="_blank">HTC One (M9) preview</a></strong></p> <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="180" src="http://pages.haymarket.com/stuff_signup/enews_embed" width="300"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="634" height="475" title="This is (probably) the HTC One (M9)" alt="This is (probably) the HTC One (M9)" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/htc-m9-prototype.jpg?1421939269" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="600" height="449" title="This is (probably) the HTC One (M9)" alt="This is (probably) the HTC One (M9)" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/htc-m9-case.jpg?1421939269" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/htc/probably-htc-one-m9/news" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.stuff.tv/htc/probably-htc-one-m9/news#comments HTC One (M9) Smartphones Thu, 22 Jan 2015 15:07:50 +0000 Esat Dedezade 1458244 at http://www.stuff.tv 9 ways Windows 10 shakes up Microsoft's smartphone experience http://www.stuff.tv/microsoft/9-ways-which-windows-10-shakes-smartphone-experience/feature <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> If you&#039;re using a Windows Phone 8 device, the next big upgrade has several new features and tweaks in store for you </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Windows 10" alt="Windows 10" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/opener_3.jpg?1422014444" /> </div> </div> </div> <p>Microsoft won&#39;t be using the official &quot;Windows Phone&quot; moniker going forward, but that&#39;s a good thing &ndash; because Windows 10 is designed to work on all platforms, and a lot of the apps and interface elements will be shared and familiar between devices.</p> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/andrew-hayward" title="View user profile.">Andrew Hayward</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 1. It&#039;s your home </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The Start screen mostly looks familiar here: big, customizable live tiles that you can stretch and maneuver around as desired. But there&#39;s one welcome tweak: the ability to set a background image and have it bleed through the translucent tiles, instead of lay on top of them. That&#39;ll let you make the Start screen much more attractively personalized than ever before.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Windows 10" alt="Windows 10" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/1-start.png?1422014444" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 2. Universal apps </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Microsoft emphasized that due to the shared codebase between devices, its core apps will be very similar in functionality on phones, desktops, and tablets, albeit with design tweaks made for each form factor.</p> <p>That&#39;ll be strongly felt in the Office apps, in particular, and they&#39;ll all be bundled with the OS on the phone side of things. Microsoft says it&#39;s a &quot;nearly no-compromises experience&quot; with the new Office on mobile, with almost all of the same actions and functionality available. And PowerPoint can utilize the advanced chips of modern smartphones to power slick animations on the smaller screens.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="774" title="PowerPoint on Windows 10 smartphones" alt="PowerPoint on Windows 10 smartphones" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/2-powerpoint.png?1422014444" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 3. Outlook overhauled </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>One of the more notable universal apps shown was Outlook, which shares functionality between devices but seems especially enhanced in this rendition for smartphones. For example, Word is built right into the app for better composition on the go, and your inbox has Mailbox-esque gestures to triage your emails, letting you easily swipe to delete, archive, and whatnot.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Outlook in Windows 10" alt="Outlook in Windows 10" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/3-outlook.jpg?1422014444" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 4. Actionable actions </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The Action Center is about to get a whole lot more functional in Windows 10 on phones, as you&#39;ll be able to dismiss individual actions as desired. And notifications are synced to other devices &ndash; so clearing it in one location does the same elsewhere, as well.</p> <p>You can also pull down to access additional action buttons quickly. Essentially, that means there&#39;s more available in a hurry, so you don&#39;t have to dig through menus. That said, the Settings screen looks to be a lot more organized than in current and previous Windows Phone versions, plus the apps listing puts recently installed apps in a category up top. Both strongly appreciated tweaks.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/microsoft/windows-10-8-stellar-new-enhancements-coming-pc-and-tablets/feature">Windows 10: the 8 biggest new features coming to PCs and tablets</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Action Center in Windows 10" alt="Action Center in Windows 10" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/4-actioncenter.png?1422014444" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-4"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 5. Speak a hashtag </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Anywhere you can type in Windows 10 on smartphones, now you can speak as well. A small microphone button will appear on the screen, and tapping it lets you vocalize your needs and thoughts instead.</p> <p>Not exactly a new innovation in the smartphone scene, but there&#39;s nothing wrong with catching up to competitors. And it looks pretty intelligent: during the demo, the Microsoft exec mentioned both an uncommon name (albeit stored in contacts) and a Twitter hashtag, and it all came out perfectly with correct punctuation. Just try to avoid saying &quot;hashtag [anything at all]&quot; in public, if you can.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Cortana in Windows 10" alt="Cortana in Windows 10" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/5-cortana.png?1422014444" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-5"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 6. Messaging upgrades </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>When messaging notifications pop up along the top of the screen in Windows 10, you&#39;ll be able to respond inline without needing to fire up the Messaging app. Again, seen before on rival mobile phones, but great to have.</p> <p>And Microsoft also intends to blend Skype functionality into Messaging, with the ability to switch between SMS and Skype in the same thread. Additionally, IP-based carrier messaging services will also be handled via Skype services.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Messaging in Windows 10" alt="Messaging in Windows 10" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/6-messaging.png?1422014444" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-6"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 7. Project Spartan </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>We didn&#39;t get a great look at the event, but indeed, Microsoft&#39;s brand new web browser &ndash; codenamed Project Spartan as of now &ndash; is headed to phones, as well. It has a sleek new look and some added functionality, such as the ability to draw notes on a webpage and send a copy to friends. No official word yet on whether Internet Explorer will be completely absent, or just tucked away for optional use (<a href="http://www.stuff.tv/internet-explorer/microsoft-reportedly-replacing-internet-explorer-new-windows-10-browser/news">as rumoured</a>).</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Project Spartan in Windows 10" alt="Project Spartan in Windows 10" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/7-spartan.png?1422014444" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-7"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 8. Lumia Camera </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Since the event wrapped, Engadget <a href="http://www.engadget.com/2015/01/21/lumia-camera-app-windows-10/">confirmed with Microsoft</a> that the camera app that&#39;s bundled with Windows 10 on all smartphones &ndash; even ones that aren&#39;t Microsoft&#39;s own Lumia models &ndash; will be based on the enhanced Lumia Camera app recently brought to Windows Phone 8.1 Lumia devices (see above). It&#39;s been praised for some helpful features, like automatic HDR along with easy 4K video shooting, so that could be a nice upgrade over what some manufacturers might&#39;ve included instead.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="video-wrapper youtube-player-wrapper"> <iframe width="640" height="385" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/ZyXpRhyHMVI" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe> </div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-8"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 9. Microsoft&#039;s maps </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Moving past the current mish-mash of available mapping apps, Microsoft will provide its own solution for Windows 10 on phones, although Nokia&#39;s HERE Maps will power the app (via <a href="http://www.theverge.com/2015/1/21/7869441/windows-10-for-phones-features-hands-on">The Verge</a>). It&#39;ll offer turn-by-turn navigation with contextual directions (such as walking instead of driving) given based on your proximity to the destination.</p> <p>It&#39;ll also have Cortana integration built in, letting you ask her to repeat missed steps along the way. You can even have Cortana remember where you parked. Among all features, we hope that&#39;s a truly reliable one.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/windows-10/windows-10-will-be-free-upgrade-windows-7-81-and-windows-phone-8-users/news">Windows 10 will be a free upgrade - even for Windows 7 users</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="752" title="Maps in Windows 10" alt="Maps in Windows 10" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/9-maps.png?1422014444" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/microsoft/9-ways-which-windows-10-shakes-smartphone-experience/feature" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.stuff.tv/microsoft/9-ways-which-windows-10-shakes-smartphone-experience/feature#comments Microsoft Smartphones Windows 10 Windows Phone Thu, 22 Jan 2015 07:50:08 +0000 Andrew Hayward 1458215 at http://www.stuff.tv HTC One (M9) snapped in the wild, showing off its 20.7MP camera http://www.stuff.tv/android/htc-one-m9-images-surface-online/news <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> New leak suggests that the M9 has plenty of the M8&#039;s handsome genes </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="HTC One (M9) could ditch the 4MP Ultrapixel camera for a 20.7MP snapper" alt="HTC One (M9) could ditch the 4MP Ultrapixel camera for a 20.7MP snapper" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/HTCOneM9leak.jpg?1421774249" /> </div> </div> </div> <p>If good design ain&#39;t broke, don&#39;t fix it. That seems to be HTC&#39;s mantra when it comes to the eagerly anticipated <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/htc/htc-one-m9-hima/review" target="_blank">One (M9)</a>. Assuming the news set of leaked pictures is genuine of course.</p> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/max-langridge" title="View user profile.">Max Langridge</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>News Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The images show off a phone that looks incredibly similar to its <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/htc/htc-one-2/review">M8</a> predecessor, with what appears to be a slim, curved, sexy metal body. Which, given the M8&#39;s gorgeous design and premium feel - is just fine by us.</p> <p>Take a closer look at the rear of the leaked phone however, and you&#39;ll notice a different looking camera. The French site claims this will be where the new 20.7-megapixel sensor will sit, meaning that HTC will ditch its UltraPixel technology in favour of something that&#39;ll likely produce better pictures, especially for people who like cropping into images.</p> <p>While none of this has yet to be confirmed, it&#39;s highly likely this could be the case. HTC opted for a 13MP snapper in its <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/desire-eye/htc-desire-eye/review">Desire Eye</a> &quot;selfie-focused&quot; smartphone, and seeing as that is targeted at the mid-range market, the flagship M9 should receive a better camera.&nbsp;</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The One (M9) isn&#39;t expected to make the jump to a 2K screen though. Instead, HTC is expected to stick to a Full HD 1920 x 1080 display, but will use the Snapdragon 810 processor, which we&#39;re expecting to see in almost all new flagship devices this year.</p> <p>We&#39;ve just over a month to wait until MWC and Stuff will be at HTC&#39;s press conference to bring you all the details of the new release, so mark your calendars, and stay tuned.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/htc/htc-one-m9-hima/review" target="_blank">HTC One (M9) preview - everything we think we know</a></strong></p> <p>[<a href="http://www.nowhereelse.fr/photos-proto-htc-one-m9-2015-104309/">Nowhereelse.fr</a>&nbsp;via&nbsp;<a href="http://www.gsmarena.com/htc_one_m9_photos_leak_confirm_new_camera-news-10838.php">GSM Arena</a>]</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="HTC One (M9) snapped in the wild, features a 20.7MP camera" alt="HTC One (M9) snapped in the wild, features a 20.7MP camera" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/HTCOneM9leak2.jpg?1421774249" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/android/htc-one-m9-images-surface-online/news" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.stuff.tv/android/htc-one-m9-images-surface-online/news#comments Android HTC Smartphones Tue, 20 Jan 2015 17:15:08 +0000 Max Langridge 1458093 at http://www.stuff.tv Google Project Ara: The last smartphone? http://www.stuff.tv/google/last-smartphone/feature <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Tired of upgrading your phone every few years? Meet the modular chameleon that might just be the only portable gadget you’ll ever need… </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Google&#039;s Project Ara smartphone" alt="Google Project Ara - the last smartphone you&#039;ll ever need?" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/project-ara-main.jpg?1422356366" /> </div> </div> </div> <p>In the future, your phone won&rsquo;t be a single chunk of gadgetry.</p> <p>It&rsquo;ll be a collection of things that you can click together into phones of different sizes depending on how you&rsquo;re feeling, what you&rsquo;re wearing and what you plan to do. It&rsquo;ll have every sensor under the sun, but only if you decide to add them, and it&rsquo;ll be permanently future-proof, because adding a new processor will be as simple as slotting in a SIM card.</p> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/will-dunn" title="View user profile.">Will Dunn</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> A phone you can break </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>How many gadgets have you bought? As a <em>Stuff</em>-reading technology wizard, we&rsquo;re guessing your answer will be: &ldquo;Oh, most of them.&quot; But how many of them have eventually stopped working and been thrown away? Sadly, your answer is likely to be the same: most of them.</p> <p>For decades we&rsquo;ve bought things we can&rsquo;t repair, with screens that break and batteries that lose their juice after six months. And every time that happens, we check our insurance, summon a shiny new replacement and send the old gadget to be buried in a mountain of VHS tapes, broken furniture and those bags of salad that never get finished. There has to be a better way.</p> <p>It was exactly these kinds of thoughts that began bouncing around the brain of Dutch product designer Dave Hakkens last year when his camera broke. Or rather, when part of it broke. That part was easily replaceable &ndash; although he&rsquo;s not an engineer, Hakkens was able to spot the defective lens motor and remove it. The only problem was, he couldn&rsquo;t get a replacement, because camera companies don&rsquo;t sell lens motors. They sell cameras.</p> <p>&ldquo;That&rsquo;s the weird thing about electronics,&rdquo; says Hakkens. &ldquo;If your car or your bike is faulty, you fix it. But with the camera, they said I should just throw it away and buy a new one.&rdquo;</p> <p>Instead, Hakkens began thinking about how to make gadgets that could be repaired and upgraded, rather than replaced. He quickly realised the ubiquitous smartphone was the best place to start, and began designing a phone with removable components that could be swapped when they break or get old.</p> <p>But while Hakkens has a gift for ideas, he&rsquo;s not an electrical engineer. &ldquo;I had an idea for a phone, but I couldn&rsquo;t build it,&rdquo; he says. &ldquo;So I thought, what&rsquo;s the best way to get this done?&rdquo;</p> <p>The answer was to do what no large company in its right mind would do with an idea like this: he made a video explaining his idea, and put it on the internet.</p> <p>The response to Hakkens&rsquo; concept phone, which he called Phonebloks, was huge. Within days he had over 900,000 supporters on the Thunderclap public speaking platform and the campaign reached an estimated 380 million people on social media, not to mention TV, newspapers and magazines (yes, you did see it in <em>Stuff</em> magazine&#39;s Hot Stuff section).</p> <p>Among the huge number of responses, there was an email that would make Hakkens&rsquo; dream a reality.</p> <p>&ldquo;We got a lot of people and companies responding, and one of them was Motorola. They said they were working on something similar, but they&rsquo;d been doing it secretly in their lab.&rdquo;</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1137" height="853" title="Pavement, meet glass" alt="Google Project Ara - the last smartphone you&#039;ll ever need?" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/broken-screen.jpg?1422356366" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Project Ara enables users to swap in new modules" alt="Google Project Ara - the last smartphone you&#039;ll ever need?" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Project-Ara-Sliding-Screen-2.jpg?1422356366" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> ENTER ATAP </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>One of the people who had been hard at work in that secret lab was another designer, Gadi Amit. Gadi&rsquo;s own company, New Deal Design, has shaped a significant portion of the tech that&rsquo;s graced our website in the last few years, including the FitBit, the Lytro camera, the Airocide air purifier and designs for Dell and Netgear.</p> <p>Gadi&rsquo;s team was recruited by ATAP, the secretive Advanced Technology And Projects group within Motorola (and then Google following its buyout of Motorola in 2012) that cooks up futuristic technologies in unmarked buildings on Californian business parks. ATAP describes itself as &lsquo;a small band of pirates&rsquo;, which is exactly the kind of thing nerds like to call themselves, and has the motto &lsquo;We like epic shit&rsquo;, which sounds confusing and disgusting but apparently means something quite different in American.</p> <p>ATAP&rsquo;s brief is to pick wildly ambitious goals and deliver them in two years. The brief they gave Gadi&rsquo;s team was unlike anything they&rsquo;d been asked to do before.</p> <p>&ldquo;They said they wanted a modular phone that could serve six billion people,&rdquo; explains Gadi. &ldquo;They wanted it to have a malleable configuration, a high-technology core that can work with low-cost, detachable parts, and they wanted people to be able to 3D-print elements of it.</p> <p>&ldquo;We came up with around 10 kinds of phone. We had a design that looked like a normal phone, but you would &lsquo;pop the hood&rsquo; at the back and inside you&rsquo;d see a variety of components attached with flat cables or connectors, very much like a PC. The problem with that concept was that if someone like my mum wants to swap a component&hellip; well, she probably won&rsquo;t do that, because she&rsquo;s not the sort of person who opens a PC to replace the RAM. So this concept would appeal to tech enthusiasts, but it&rsquo;s not for six billion phones. Then we looked at a hybrid model &ndash; half the phone was closed, and then half of it had interchangeable modules that were visible from the outside.</p> <p>&ldquo;We looked at phones that came in layers, like a cake, layer on layer on layer. And we had a concept that was similar to Phonebloks in the sense that there wasn&rsquo;t a skeleton, only blocks that connected to each other, which we called the &lsquo;Lego phone&rsquo;.</p> <p>&ldquo;Both of these had a fundamental problem, though, which was that if you want to make the platform reliable, you have to be able to control the core communication bus between the different components. You don&rsquo;t want to have one component communicating with another by way of the component in-between, because if the component in the middle is slower, it&rsquo;ll limit the performance of the whole phone.&rdquo;</p> <p>&ldquo;So we kept trying new ideas, but the concept that was a winner every time was the idea of a phone with a rigid grid of modules of three sizes that slotted into an inner skeleton. It&rsquo;s just like having a spine and a central nervous system, and that&rsquo;s why we used the word &lsquo;endoskeleton&rsquo;, in a biological sense.&rdquo;</p> <p>But Project Ara&rsquo;s endoskeleton isn&rsquo;t just a dumb connector. &ldquo;You can swap out a battery,&rdquo; says Gadi, &ldquo;while you&rsquo;re making a call. The endoskeleton will maintain the call for up to five minutes because it has its own internal battery.&rdquo;</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/facebook/ces-2015/ces-2015-interview-palmer-luckey-founder-oculus-vr/feature">Stuff meets Palmer Luckey of Oculus VR</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Some of Project Ara&#039;s many modules" alt="Google Project Ara - the last smartphone you&#039;ll ever need?" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Project-Ara-Modules_0.jpg?1422356366" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-title"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> How to buy an Ara phone </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-body-text"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Body Text:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>1 - Choose your &#39;Endo&#39;</strong><br />Google envisions there being three types of Ara frame, or &lsquo;endo&rsquo;. There will be a Mini version, that&rsquo;s about the size of a candy-bar feature phone, a Medium option with iPhone 5s-like dimensions, and a Large model that&rsquo;s in phablet territory. All three will be 9.7mm thick, with the &lsquo;grey phone&rsquo; coming in the Medium size.</p> <p><strong>2 - Pick your modules</strong><br />Now for the fun bit. Using the Ara Configurator app (either on your smartphone or via a friend who has an Ara invite) you can play around with and choose which modules you want to slot into your endo. Google wants this to be an app store for modules. Those looking to try before they buy will be able to visit pop-up demo stores.</p> <p><strong>3 - Get customising</strong><br />Chosen all your modules? Now it&rsquo;s time to design their 3D-printed &lsquo;shells&rsquo;. Google is planning to go big on personalisation: for example, you&rsquo;ll be able to import a holiday photo into the app, get a colour palette based on its hues and use this as your design. You&rsquo;ll also be able tweak the shell&rsquo;s materials and texture until it&rsquo;s just how you want it.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Magnets from the future </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>When Dave Hakkens visited Google for his first look at Project Ara, his favourite part of the design was the way the modules are held in place. &ldquo;My design had a board with modules held in by pins, but Google is using electropermanent magnets, which are quite a magical thing. It&rsquo;s like an electromagnet, only usually an electromagnet always requires current. This one doesn&rsquo;t &ndash; you can flip the polarity to turn it &lsquo;on&rsquo; or &lsquo;off&rsquo;, but while it&rsquo;s on or off it&rsquo;s not using any current. And when it&rsquo;s stuck, it&rsquo;s stuck.</p> <p>&ldquo;So to release the modules, you have to tell Android to release them and it&rsquo;ll switch the magnets off, but while they&rsquo;re on, they won&rsquo;t fall out and you can&rsquo;t pull them off &ndash; it really feels like a solid phone. It&rsquo;s a really nice, futuristic piece of technology.&rdquo;</p> <p>The skeletons themselves come in three sizes: a small &lsquo;candy bar&rsquo; format that Gadi Amit says was chosen for its &lsquo;pocketability&rsquo;; a standard smartphone size; and a phablet. Because swapping modules takes seconds, this means if you own all three you can change the size of your phone (but keep using the same memory, processor, camera and so on) depending on what you&rsquo;re doing. And as far as extras are concerned, the possibilities for modules are almost endless.</p> <p>&ldquo;It&rsquo;s like an app store, basically,&rdquo; says Dave Hakkens. &ldquo;I&rsquo;ve heard some good ideas for solar modules, to add solar charging. One of my favourites came from a woman who has diabetes, who responded to our video saying you could have a glucose meter block, so she could measure the amount of sugar in her blood. I would never have thought of it myself, and I don&rsquo;t think any phone maker would ever have come up with an idea like that, but if you think about it there&rsquo;s a really big group of people who would want that in their phone.&rdquo;</p> <p>But what Hakkens says he&rsquo;d like to see is more established companies lending their expertise to modular phones. He&rsquo;s currently working with Sennheiser on audio blocks, such as DAC modules for audiophile-quality headphone sound or better built-in speakers, but he&rsquo;s eager to get other firms to bring their expertise in making cameras, batteries, processors and anything else you care to imagine into modular phones.</p> <p>And he&rsquo;s particularly keen to get chip manufacturers involved (Qualcomm, not McCain&hellip; although some sort of tiny deep-fryer module could be handy for mid-call snacking). If you can replace the processor each time Nvidia or Intel brings out a newer, more powerful system-on-chip, the old processor can be easily recycled, the upgrade process takes place piece-by-piece, and your phone is always the most powerful phone you can buy.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="A view of Project Ara from the back" alt="Google Project Ara - the last smartphone you&#039;ll ever need?" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Project-Ara-View-of-the-Back_0.jpg?1422356366" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="The three available sizes" alt="Google Project Ara - the last smartphone you&#039;ll ever need?" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/Project-Ara-Three-Different-Sizes_0.jpg?1422356366" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-title"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> How to change an Ara module </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-body-text"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Body Text:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>You won&#39;t have to click, screw or glue your fun-squares into place - Ara&#39;s much more clever than that...</p> <p><strong>STEP 1</strong><br />In Ara&#39;s custom version of Android, go to the modules section and select the tile you want to change. This will be a new variant of Android, as Google&#39;s OS doesn&#39;t currently support hot-swappable hardware.</p> <p><strong>STEP 2</strong><br />Ara gives the chosen module a short pulse of current that turns its electropermanent magnets &#39;off&#39;. The magnets only use power when you switch their polarity, so they don&#39;t chomp your battery.</p> <p><strong>STEP 3</strong><br />You can now slide the module out from its port. Thanks to your Ara phone&#39;s small backup battery, you can even swap out the main battery while the phone&#39;s still on. No more faffling with external battery packs.</p> <p><strong>STEP 4</strong><br />Slide in your new module and another small pulse will automatically lock it into place. Get ready to start playing with your new camera/RAM/Geiger counter.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Upgrade everything </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>So how and when can you get hold of an Ara? Unless you happen to be in Puerto Rico right now, it&#39;s hard to know. The United States island territory is where Google plans to initially release the Ara in a &#39;limited market pilot&#39; sometime during 2015. Details and dates of this pilot are still relatively unknown and Google is yet to comment on when this product will be rolled out across the rest of the world. So for most of us, it&#39;ll simply be a matter of waiting (and wishing that everything goes to plan).&nbsp;</p> <p>If Project Ara goes down a storm then it could pave the way for a completely new breed of customisable gadgets. Module bays will become as commonplace as USB ports. You&rsquo;ll be able to add processors and sensors to TVs, coffee machines, cars and anything else to which you can legally take a soldering iron. You&rsquo;ll be able to upgrade everything you own, without throwing anything away.</p> <p>All of which has to be good for the planet, good for the tech-obsessed and, ultimately, good for our wallets.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.stuff.tv/smartphones/top-ten" target="_blank">These are the top 10 best smartphones in the world</a></strong></p> <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="180" src="http://pages.haymarket.com/stuff_signup/enews_embed" width="300"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="video-wrapper youtube-player-wrapper"> <iframe width="640" height="385" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/intua_p4kE0" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe> </div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-carousel-item"><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-text field-field-carousel-item-title"> <div class="field-label">Carousel item title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Google Project Ara </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-carousel-item-standfirst"> <div class="field-label">Carousel item standfirst:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> The last smartphone? </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/google/last-smartphone/feature" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.stuff.tv/google/last-smartphone/feature#comments Google Project Ara Smartphones Tue, 20 Jan 2015 15:03:20 +0000 samharris1 1457981 at http://www.stuff.tv Sharp's Aquos K will flip itself into nostalgic phone user's hearts http://www.stuff.tv/sharp/sharps-new-aquos-k-will-flip-itself-nostalgic-phone-users-hearts/news <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> A flip phone? In 2015? Sharp thinks it&#039;s time to bring back a classic design </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Sharp&#039;s Aquos K will flip itself into nostalgic phone user&#039;s hearts" alt="Sharp&#039;s Aquos K will flip itself into nostalgic phone user&#039;s hearts" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/sharp-aquos-k-flip-phone.jpg?1421755879" /> </div> </div> </div> <p>You know the names of the big smartphone makers like the back of your hand &ndash; and, at least outside of the Far East, Sharp isn&#39;t one of them. But its new model has piqued our interest by plucking at our nostalgic heartstrings.</p> <p>Named the Sharp Aquos K, it&rsquo;s a flip phone (when was the last time you saw one of those?) that&#39;s also a regular Android smartphone.</p> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/hafizahosman" title="View user profile.">Hafizah Osman</a> </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>News Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> There&#039;s also the Aquos mini </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Sharp&rsquo;s also announced the Aquos mini, a 4.5in, waterproof Android 4.4 KitKat smartphone with a 1080p screen and Sharp&#39;s EDGEST minimal bezel design. It has a Snapdragon 801 chipset with a quad-core 2.3GHz processor, 2GB of RAM, 16GB of expandable storage, and a 13MP main snapper.</p> <p>The Sharp Aquos mini comes in four colours &ndash; cyan, magenta, white and black, while the Sharp Aquos K comes in three colours - red, white and black. The only setback is that the units are Japan-exclusive for now &ndash; meaning you&rsquo;ll have to head over to the land of the rising sun to get one. &nbsp;</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/sharp/sharp-preparing-4k-smartphone-lcd-screens-2016/news">Sharp preparing 4K smartphone screens for 2016</a></strong></p> <p>[Sources: <a href="http://www.gsmarena.com/sharp_announces_aquos_mini_for_japan_flipphone_in_tow-news-10825.php" target="_blank">GSM Arena </a>and <a href="http://www.geeky-gadgets.com/sharp-aquos-k-flip-phone-launched-in-japan-19-01-2015/" target="_blank">Geeky Gadgets</a>, images: <a href="http://www.gsmarena.com/sharp_announces_aquos_mini_for_japan_flipphone_in_tow-news-10825.php" target="_blank">GSM Arena</a>]&nbsp;</p> <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="180" src="http://pages.haymarket.com/stuff_signup/enews_embed" width="300"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="567" height="425" title="There&#039;s also the Aquos mini" alt="There&#039;s also the Aquos mini" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/sharpsmart.jpg?1421755879" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/sharp/sharps-new-aquos-k-will-flip-itself-nostalgic-phone-users-hearts/news" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.stuff.tv/sharp/sharps-new-aquos-k-will-flip-itself-nostalgic-phone-users-hearts/news#comments Sharp Smartphones Tue, 20 Jan 2015 11:51:58 +0000 Sam Kieldsen 1458079 at http://www.stuff.tv HTC One (M9) Hima http://www.stuff.tv/htc/htc-one-m9-hima/review <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> UPDATE 19/01/2015: It&#039;s official - the M9 will be revealed on 1 March in Barcelona </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="HTC One (M9) concept by emprogadgets.tk" alt="HTC One (M9) concept by emprogadgets.tk" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/htc-one-m9-concept-01.jpg?1421663940" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/stephen-graves" title="View user profile.">Stephen Graves</a> </div> </div> </div> <p>The <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/htc/htc-one-2/review" target="_blank">HTC One (M8)</a> is one of our favourite phones &ndash; shortlisted for <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/gadget-awards-2014/stuff-gadget-awards-2014-smartphone-year/feature" target="_blank">smartphone of the year</a> in the <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/gadget-awards-2014/stuff-gadget-awards-2014-winners-announced-these-are-22-best-gadgets-year/feature" target="_blank">Stuff Gadget Awards 2014</a>, no less.</p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-pricing"><legend>Pricing</legend><div class="field field-type-number-float field-field-test-price"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> £-1.00 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-price-from"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 0 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-ratings"><legend>Ratings</legend><div class="field field-type-hcmreviewrating-rating field-field-overall-rating"> <div class="field-label">Overall rating:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="hcmrating-default"> stars</div> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>Review Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> It won&#039;t be called the HTC One (M9) </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>According to Twitter tipster <a href="https://twitter.com/upleaks/status/540405152767700992" target="_blank">@upleaks</a>, the next HTC flagship rejoices in the name &quot;HTC Hima&quot;. That could be a codename, of course &ndash; though @upleaks also claims that an affordable <a href="https://twitter.com/upleaks/status/540408804857221121" target="_blank">&quot;Hima Ace&quot;</a> variant is in the works; suggesting that it may indeed be the final product name. To be fair, &quot;HTC One (M9)&quot; doesn&#39;t exactly trip off the tongue.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Design and build quality </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>Update 02/01/2015:</strong> Chinese site <a href="http://detail.zol.com.cn/picture_index_1460/index14598745_0_p393279.shtml#/&amp;pn=3" target="_blank">zol.com.cn</a> has posted a raft of leaked images purporting to show the HTC (M9)/Hima in all its glory. It looks a lot like the HTC One and HTC One (M8), we think you&rsquo;ll agree &ndash; albeit with a different front panel.</p> <p>Given the popularity of the One&rsquo;s design, we don&rsquo;t think many people will take issue with HTC&rsquo;s decision to stick with the brushed metal unibody look (assuming, of course, that these images are genuine).</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Leaked images show a device that strongly resembles previous HTC flagships" alt="Leaked images show a device that strongly resembles previous HTC flagships" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/htc-one-m9-leak.jpg?1421663940" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="Leaked images show a device that strongly resembles previous HTC flagships" alt="Leaked images show a device that strongly resembles previous HTC flagships" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/htc-one-m9-leak-2.jpg?1421663940" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> It&#039;ll likely have a 2K screen </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>HTC looks set to follow in the footsteps of 2014&#39;s flagship phones, including the <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/g3/lg-g3/review" target="_blank">LG G3</a> and <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/samsung/samsung-galaxy-note-4/review" target="_blank">Samsung Galaxy Note 4</a>, both of which packed 2K screens. According to a report in <a href="http://www.ibtimes.co.in/htc-tipped-launch-one-m9-rival-iphone-6-release-date-specification-613474" target="_blank">IB Times</a>, the Hima will sport a 5.2in, 2560 x 1440 screen, delivering 564 ppi. That report&#39;s a little suspect&nbsp;&ndash; it suggests that a <a href="https://twitter.com/htc_concepts" target="_blank">fan concept designer</a> is actually an HTC employee &ndash; but it does seem to be&nbsp;backed up by prolific leaker <a href="http://www.nowhereelse.fr/htc-one-2015-photos-facade-103258/" target="_blank">nowhereelse.fr</a>, who has published snaps of a 5.2in display that&#39;s purportedly going to grace the next HTC flagship.</p> <p>@upleaks disputes this, though, claiming that the Hima will arrive with a 5in 1080p display. The fact that nowhereelse.fr has provided photo evidence seems to point conclusively to the rumoured 5.2in, 2K display, though.</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="HTC One (M9) Hima screen [via nowhereelse.fr]" alt="HTC One (M9) Hima screen [via nowhereelse.fr]" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/HTC-One-M9-Hima-2015-screen.jpg?1421663940" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="HTC One (M9) Hima screen [via nowhereelse.fr]" alt="HTC One (M9) Hima screen [via nowhereelse.fr]" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/HTC-One-M9-Hima-2015-VS.jpg?1421663940" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> It&#039;s got flagship specs </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>As you&#39;d expect, it being a flagship and all. IB Times claims that it&#39;ll pack 3GB RAM, 64GB and 128GB storage options, and a quad-core Snapdragon 805 processor; online publication <a href="http://news.mydrivers.com/1/342/342909.htm" target="_blank">MyDrivers</a> backs up that spec sheet, with the addition of a 3,500mAh battery. Dual BoomSound speakers, a fixture on the HTC One line, are set to appear on the One (M9) &ndash; possibly, according to MyDrivers, boosted with the addition of Bose technology. Although @upleaks can&#39;t confirm an HTC-Bose team-up, they do suggest that the Hima could feature <a href="https://twitter.com/upleaks/status/541116737677033472" target="_blank">SRS sound enhancement</a>.</p> <p>@upleaks, meanwhile, reports that the HTC Hima will feature a 64-bit Snapdragon 810 processor, 3GB RAM and a 2,840mAh battery, adding that the phone will support Cat.6 LTE. Either of those spec sheets would make for a powerful phone. Naturally, it&#39;s expected to arrive running Android 5.0 Lollipop &ndash; skinned with HTC Sense 7; though <a href="https://twitter.com/upleaks/status/541072725695926274" target="_blank">@upleaks</a> also points to evidence suggesting that a Windows Phone variant is in the works.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/htc/ultimate-setup-htc-one-m8/feature" target="_blank">Ultimate Setup: HTC One (M8)</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="video-wrapper youtube-player-wrapper"> <iframe width="640" height="385" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/AwKAE5p85tY" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe> </div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-4"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> HTC could be ditching UltraPixel </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>HTC looks set to abandon its foray into UltraPixel cameras &ndash; which used sensors with a smaller number of larger pixels for (allegedly) improved low-light performance. @upleaks expects the HTC Hima to arrive with a 20.7MP rear camera, while MyDrivers points to a 16MP camera with optical image stabiliation.</p> <p>Round the front, @upleaks claims that the Hima will feature either a 13MP camera &ndash; or a 4MP UltraPixel snapper; so it seems that HTC may not be ready to abandon the UltraPixel experiment just yet.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/htc/10-best-apps-htc-one-m8/feature" target="_blank">The 10 best apps for the HTC One (M8)</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="HTC One (M9) concept by emprogadgets.tk" alt="HTC One (M9) concept by emprogadgets.tk" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/htc-one-m9-concept-02.jpg?1421663940" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-5"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Release date </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>Update 19/01/15:</strong> It&#39;s official - we&#39;ve received an invitation from HTC, asking us to join them on Sunday 1 March in Barcelona - the day before Mobile World Congress kicks off. We&#39;ll bring you all the new straight from the front lines, so stay tuned.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/samsung-galaxy-s6-review" target="_blank">Samsung Galaxy S6 preview</a></strong></p> <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="180" src="http://pages.haymarket.com/stuff_signup/enews_embed" width="300"></iframe></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="634" height="475" alt="" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/htc-invite.jpg?1421663940" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-review-rating"><legend>Review Rating</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 0 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-preview"> <div class="field-label">Preview:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Preview </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-carousel-item"><legend>Carousel Extras</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-text field-field-carousel-item-title"> <div class="field-label">Carousel item title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> HTC One (M9) Hima preview </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-carousel-item-standfirst"> <div class="field-label">Carousel item standfirst:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Everything we know about the M8&#039;s follow-up </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/htc/htc-one-m9-hima/review" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.stuff.tv/htc/htc-one-m9-hima/review#comments HTC One (M9) Smartphones Mon, 19 Jan 2015 10:34:13 +0000 Stephen Graves 1454990 at http://www.stuff.tv Oppo R5 http://www.stuff.tv/oppo/oppo-r5/review <div class="field field-type-text field-field-standfirst"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Simply the slimmest phone in the world </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-enable-hero"> <div class="field-label">Enable hero:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Enable full width image </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-main-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_main_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Oppo R5 review" alt="Oppo R5 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/images/news/oppo-r5-9-resized.jpeg?1421630904" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-userreference field-field-byline"> <div class="field-label">Byline:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/users/andrew-williams" title="View user profile.">Andrew Williams</a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Some phones try to be fast. Others try to be cheap. However, the R5 is all about thin-ness.</p> <p>It&#39;s the thinnest phone to date, if you&#39;re willing to forget the little bit of camera lens that sticks out from the rest of the body by just a smidge. At 4.85mm thick, it&#39;s only about as chunky as two After Eight mints sitting on top of each other.</p> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-pricing"><legend>Pricing</legend><div class="field field-type-number-float field-field-test-price"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> £-1.00 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-price-from"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 0 </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-price-notes"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> $450 in the US. UK price to be confirmed. </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="fieldgroup group-ratings"><legend>Ratings</legend><div class="field field-type-hcmreviewrating-rating field-field-overall-rating"> <div class="field-label">Overall rating:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="hcmrating-default">6 stars</div> </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-pros"> <div class="field-label">Pros:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Super-thin </div> <div class="field-item even"> Sharp screen </div> <div class="field-item odd"> Fast charging </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-cons"> <div class="field-label">Cons:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Buggy, quirky software </div> <div class="field-item even"> No headphone jack </div> <div class="field-item odd"> Mediocre battery life and tiny storage </div> </div> </div> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-sections"><legend>Review Section</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Size 0 Model </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>If you took an <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/apple/iphone-5s/review" target="_blank">iPhone 5S</a> (remember those?), stretched it a whole bunch and gave it a fierce going-over with a rolling pin, and managed not to crack it into a million pieces, it might look like the Oppo R5. It has a hard, dense-feeling aluminium and steel body with white accents on the top and bottom of the rear.</p> <p>Around the front, though, there&#39;s much less of an iPhone-apeing flavour. For one, there&#39;s a trio of physical soft keys that, unusually for a phone this pricey, don&#39;t light up.</p> <p>It looks like a pretty expensive phone, but how does the Oppo R5 feel? Well, thin, of course. However, it also feels a bit severe, thanks to the relatively sharp contours of its sides.</p> <p>Next to the smooth-backed Galaxy S5, it&#39;s not entirely snug in your palm. The Oppo R5 doesn&#39;t have supremely skinny bezels either - as such its handling is comparable to other slim 5-odd inch phones.</p> <p>The benefit of that searingly thin body is definitely partly visual, but we&#39;re happy with how the Oppo R5 feels. After all the fuss made about the &#39;bendy&#39; <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/apple/apple-iphone-6l/review" target="_blank">iPhone 6 Plus</a>, we tried to see if we could flex this phone at all with our hands. We can&#39;t. It feels tough, hard and just as well-made as phones from bigger names. It&#39;s partly down to the use of a tough steel inner frame.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/apple/apple-iphone-6-plus-vs-samsung-galaxy-note-4-weigh/feature" target="_blank">Apple iPhone 6 Plus vs Samsung Galaxy Note 4</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-hcmvideofield-video field-field-brightcove-video"> <div class="field-label">Video ID/URL:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <div class="messages warning">This video is not currently supported.</div> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The R5 is just 4.85mm thick - as long as you ignore the protruding lens" alt="Oppo R5 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/oppo-r5-6.jpg?1421630904" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="So thin, the camera sticks out" alt="Oppo R5 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/oppo-r5-7.jpg?1421630904" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-1"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Slim Pickings </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>But it isn&#39;t overly flexible in use, either. It doesn&#39;t have a memory card slot or even a headphone jack. These are all casualties of the Oppo R5&#39;s caring about the size of its waistline more than pretty much anything else.</p> <p>With 16GB of memory, the R5 doesn&#39;t really make a great portable music or video player as there&#39;s just not enough room, and the headphone jack issue is very, very annoying at times. Perhaps this is just the tip of a Bluetooth-only future for phone &#39;phones, and in the box you get an adapter that plugs into the microUSB jack and gives you a headphone output, but we&#39;ve found ourselves missing the normal headphone jack like a departed best friend.</p> <p>And what if you lose the adapter? It&#39;s just another thing to worry about, and it&#39;s not as if you&#39;ll want to keep this 10cm-long cable sticking out of your phone 24/7. You could keep it attached to your headphones, but that&#39;s not good if like us you also listen through a laptop or another sources at times.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/philips/ces-2015/ces-2015-we-go-ears-philips-noise-cancelling-lightning-compatible-headphones/news" target="_blank">Ears-on with Philips&#39; new Lightning-compatible headphones</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Where&#039;s the headphone socket? There isn&#039;t one." alt="Oppo R5 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/oppo-r5-4_0.jpg?1421630904" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-2"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Super AMOLED? </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Being so thin does not, thankfully, affect the screen. The Oppo R5 has a 5.2-inch Super AMOLED display.</p> <p>While we&#39;re hurtling towards a time when QHD screens will be the norm for high-end phones, this one has a &#39;normal&#39; 1080p display. It&#39;s more than sharp enough to be called &#39;Retina&#39; grade, and the size is easily big enough to make watching a bit of Netflix on the way to work a joy.</p> <p>As is common with OLED-type screens, colours are oversaturated a bit. But not to the extent that red balloons look like they&#39;re about to jump out of the screen and strangle you. They&#39;re just no 100% accurate.</p> <p>Side-by-side with the LCD-screened <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/oppo/oppo-n3/review" target="_blank">Oppo N3</a> (review coming soon), you can see the Oppo R5&#39;s colours don&#39;t have the same relaxed, natural look. Instead, though, the OLED display gets you fantastic contrast, with images looking poppier than an 80s boyband revival festival in just about all conditions from dark rooms to bright sunny days.</p> <p>Oppo plasters a plastic screen protector on the phone to try and keep it in good nick, and it doesn&#39;t seem to have any degrading effect on image quality. Plus, as it&#39;s applied in the factory there&#39;s no chance of those bubbles you can&#39;t avoid when applying a protector yourself.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/oppo/oppo-n3/review" target="_blank">Oppo N3 hands-on review</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="The Oppo&#039;s 5.2in Super AMOLED screen has fantastic contrast, if not completely natural in its colours" alt="Oppo R5 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/oppo-25.jpg?1421630904" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-3"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> ColorOS vs Android </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The eagle-eyed among you may have already noticed the Oppo R5 doesn&#39;t use a totally generic version of <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/android/android-45/review" target="_blank">Android</a>, but a custom take.</p> <p>Oppo calls it ColorOS, and like every other manufacturer&#39;s Android skin it just fiddles with how Google&#39;s mobile OS looks and feels a bit. Desperate to make its mark, ColorOS cuts out the app menu you usually get in Android, relying 100 per cent on the home screens like <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/apple/ios-8/review" target="_blank">Apple&#39;s iOS</a>.</p> <p>However, it has a tendency to make your phone look and feel a bit cluttered if you&#39;re not careful. And we&#39;re not in love with this UI&#39;s look either. Granted, it&#39;s not a million miles removed from any other take on Android, but lacks the cosy lifestyle look we saw recently in Android 5.0 Lollipop on the <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/google/google-nexus-6/review" target="_blank">Nexus 6</a>.&nbsp;</p> <p>The style is much closer to what you see on the phones of another Chinese handset maker, Huawei. As well as getting rid of the apps menu, the Oppo R5 offers themes that re-skin the device with different wallpapers and icons. They must really love them in China, because other phone makers stopped offering them about a decade ago. It&#39;s quirky, but if you&#39;re after something a bit different, perhaps that&#39;s not a negative.&nbsp;</p> <p>There are a few extra features, too, such as the ability to launch apps from standby simply by drawing a shape on the screen.</p> <p>It&#39;s also a bit, well, buggy. The Oppo R5 has enough power to keep the lights on in a small village, but we did notice the odd laggy moment that just wouldn&#39;t be there in a better-optimised phone. This is probably something that Oppo will iron out over the next few updates, but there&#39;s no telling how long that might take.</p> <p>How powerful is it? The Oppo R5 has a Snapdragon 615 CPU, an 8-core processor that while a step below the Snapdragon 801 of the Note 4 in terms of raw power, is a bonafide 64-bit CPU. In the Geekbench 3 benchmark tool it scores 2505 points - fantastic for what is a mid-range CPU.</p> <p>It also has a decent 2GB of RAM. There&#39;s enough power to take on the world here, but the Oppo R5 feels like it&#39;s held back a little by its own software.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/android/25-free-apps-android/feature" target="_blank">The 35 Best Free Apps for Android</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="ColorOS cuts out the app menu you usually get in Android, relying 100 per cent on the home screens like Apple&#039;s iOS" alt="Oppo R5 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/oppo-28.jpg?1421630904" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="1200" height="900" title="The Oppo R5 offers themes that re-skin the device with different wallpapers and icons" alt="Oppo R5 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/oppo-24_0.jpg?1421630904" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-3"> <div class="field-label">Image #3:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_3" width="1200" height="900" title="There are a few extra features, too, such as the ability to launch apps from standby simply by drawing a shape on the screen" alt="Oppo R5 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/oppo-29.jpg?1421630904" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-title"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Tech specs </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-box-out-body-text"> <div class="field-label">Box Out Body Text:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p><strong>Operating System</strong>: Android 4.4.4 with ColorOS</p> <p><strong>Screen</strong>: 5.2in&nbsp;Super AMOLED with&nbsp;1920x1080 resolution (424ppi)</p> <p><strong>Processor</strong>: Octa-core Snapdragon 615 @ 1.5GHz</p> <p><strong>RAM</strong>: 2GB</p> <p><strong>Storage</strong>: 16GB (not expandable)</p> <p><strong>Camera</strong>: 13MP rear, 5MP front</p> <p><strong>Connectivity</strong>:&nbsp;NFC,&nbsp;Wi-Fi, 3G/4G, Bluetooth 4.0</p> <p><strong>Battery</strong>: 2000mAh</p> <p><strong>Dimensions</strong>: 149 x 75 x 4.9mm</p> <p><strong>Weight</strong>: 155g</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-4"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Camera Chops </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Oppo has really stuck its oar into the camera software. But it doesn&#39;t backfire here. The Oppo R5&#39;s camera app is pretty easy to use, the thing is pretty snappy to take photos and there are plenty of modes on offer.&nbsp;</p> <p>There are a few &#39;installed&#39; as standard, but you can tool-up the app with plenty more. There are ultra macro modes, one thats ultra-high res images by combining multiple exposures, HDR, long exposure, GIF animation and even RAW capture. The Oppo R5&#39;s camera app makes it look as though you&#39;re installing these extra modes, but really are just being enabled and disabled - you don&#39;t need an internet connection to do it. There&#39;s as much, or as little, control as you like on offer.</p> <p>Underneath all the neat software extras, the hardware of the Oppo R5&#39;s camera is sound but not world-beating. It has a 13-megapixel Sony IMX214 sensor, the same used by several other phones including the OnePlus One, the Nexus 6 and Xiaomi Mi4.</p> <p>Among these Sony sensor brothers, it&#39;s one of the better performers. Speedy and with colour reproduction that&#39;s normally spot on in good lighting, with only a slight tendency towards overexposure causing minor issues. The white balance is also often on the warm side with indoors lighting.</p> <p>But in poor lighting, photos get pretty noisy and colour saturation takes a dive, because the phone prioritises speed over absolute image quality. There is a mode to bump-up saturation in night photos, though. The Samsung Galaxy S5 produces slightly better, sharper photos, but the Oppo R5 certainly isn&#39;t bad.</p> <p>The front camera isn&#39;t too shabby either. It has a 5-megapixel sensor, making it one of the new wave of selfie-conscious phones. However, like a good deal of these phones, you don&#39;t really get twice as much detail from a good 2-megapixel camera. These selfie cams tend to have pretty dinky sensors so unless you&#39;re shooting in good lighting, everything starts to get a little bit fizzy.</p> <p>The front camera is also where you notice one of the Oppo R5&#39;s obvious bugs. A fraction of a second after opening the app, the camera preview screen just goes black, leaving you to shoot blind. It&#39;ll still take photos, you just have to do so without seeing what the camera can see. With any luck this&#39;ll be solved by the time you get hold of one. But we advise getting used to the idea you might have to deal with similar kinds of issues.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/desire-eye/htc-desire-eye/review" target="_blank">HTC Desire Eye review</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Underneath all the neat software extras, the hardware of the Oppo R5&#039;s camera is sound but not world-beating" alt="Oppo R5 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/oppo-26.jpg?1421630904" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-2"> <div class="field-label">Image #2:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_2" width="4160" height="3120" title="Oppo R5 sample photo" alt="Oppo R5 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/IMG20150115143215.jpg?1421630904" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-3"> <div class="field-label">Image #3:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_3" width="4160" height="3120" title="Oppo R5 sample photo" alt="Oppo R5 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/IMG20150115142855_1.jpg?1421630904" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image-4"> <div class="field-label">Image #4:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image_4" width="4160" height="3120" title="Oppo R5 sample photo" alt="Oppo R5 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/IMG20150113182049.jpg?1421630904" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-5"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Not running Duracells </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>One element that&#39;s not going to be fixed completely by an update or two is the battery life. As is always the worry with a phone thing enough to slice cheese with, stamina is not great.</p> <p>The Oppo R5 fits in a 2000mAh battery, even smaller than the unit of a 4.5-inch Moto G 2013. This is a much larger (well at least in terms of screen size) phone, and if you indulge in a bit of web browsing you can drain it in the space of a day without too much trouble.</p> <p>With a phone of this grade, we like to see a good chunk of battery left over in the morning of the second day. And it&#39;s just not there in the Oppo R5. In our looped video test it lasted for eight hours, which isn&#39;t diastrous among phones in general, but when rivals such as the <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/sony/sony-xperia-z3/review" target="_blank">Xperia Z3</a> get into the teens of hours, it&#39;s just not really good enough.</p> <p>It does have a special trick up its sleeve, though. The Oppo R5 has a Rapid Charge adapter that gets you up to 75 per cent charge within half an hour. It uses a 5A plug rather than the 1A/2A one you see bundled with most phones. You may have to charge often, but at least it won&#39;t take too long each time.&nbsp;</p> <p>This is something you don&#39;t generally see from the bigger names: Oppo thrives on offering quirky bonus features not seen elsewhere.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/sony/sony-xperia-z3/review" target="_blank">Sony Xperia Z3 review</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="A little bit of gaming goes a long way - towards depleting the R5&#039;s rather small battery" alt="Oppo R5 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/oppo-23.jpg?1421630904" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-6"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Not all 4G is the same </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>However, its unusual approach doesn&#39;t pay off everywhere. While the Oppo R5 is a 4G phone, it doesn&#39;t actaully support every 4G band used in the UK.</p> <p>Like the <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/android/oneplus-one/review" target="_blank">OnePlus One</a>, it lacks support for LTE band 20, the 800MHz band, which is used by a whole bunch of networks: <a href="http://www.o2.co.uk/" target="_blank">O2</a>, <a href="http://shop.tescomobile.com/pay-monthly/mobile-phones/?tmcampid=22&amp;tmad=c&amp;tmplaceref=google&amp;tmclickref=tesco%20mobile_c&amp;gclid=COSd073SncMCFa_JtAodfSoAVQ" target="_blank">Tesco</a>, <a href="https://giffgaff.com/" target="_blank">GiffGaff</a> and <a href="http://www.vodafone.co.uk/" target="_blank">Vodafone</a>. If you&#39;re on <a href="http://ee.co.uk/" target="_blank">EE</a> of <a href="http://www.three.co.uk/" target="_blank">Three</a> and plan to stay there, no problem. It&#39;ll be a deal breaker for some, though.</p> <p>One other compromise you might expect of such a slim phone is speaker quality. Sure enough, the Oppo R5 has a single speaker, but it&#39;s front-loaded up where the earpiece is. Front speakers are handy, but this one is a little thin-sounding compared with the best out there - miles off what you get in the (relatively) beefy-sounding <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/htc/htc-one-2/review" target="_blank">HTC One (M8)</a> from its BoomSound speakers.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/htc/htc-one-2/review" target="_blank">HTC One M8 review</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Like the OnePlus One, the Oppo R5 lacks support for LTE band 20, the 800MHz band, which is used by a whole bunch of networks" alt="Oppo R5 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/oppo-r5-3.jpg?1421630904" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-7"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-section-paginate"> <div class="field-label">Paginate on this section:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Don't paginate </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-title"> <div class="field-label">Title:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Oppo R5 Verdict </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-body"> <div class="field-label">Body:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>The Oppo R5 is a phone made with a clear purpose. It wanted to become the thinnest phone in the world. It managed it, everyone clapped, then moved on.</p> <p>Its issue is that it needs to continue to impress in the days and weeks after you first get it out of the box and go &#39;ooh&#39; over how slim it is. It doesn&#39;t really manage that.&nbsp;</p> <p>The quirky, buggy software needs a bit more fine-tuning and - primarily - the battery life just doesn&#39;t quite give enough insurance for those with busy lives. Fast charge hardware is much appreciated, but it seems a shame it&#39;s used as an excuse for the relatively poor core stamina.&nbsp;</p> <p>In other respects the Oppo R5 is perfectly good, and worthy of its price tag. But would we actually recommend buying it over the wealth of other handset options at this price? Probably not.</p> <p><strong>READ MORE: <a href="http://www.stuff.tv/smartphones/top-ten" target="_blank">The 10 Best Smartphones in the World right now</a></strong></p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-image"> <div class="field-label">Image #1:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <img class="imagefield imagefield-field_image" width="1200" height="900" title="Oppo R5 review verdict" alt="Oppo R5 review" src="http://images.cdn.stuff.tv/sites/stuff.tv/files/oppo-r5-16.jpg?1421630904" /> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-make-full-width"> <div class="field-label">Make full width:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Do not make full width </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <fieldset class="content-multigroup-group-review-rating"><legend>Review Rating</legend><fieldset class="content-multigroup-wrapper content-multigroup-0"><div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-review-score"> <div class="field-label">Score:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> 0 </div> </div> </div> </fieldset> </fieldset> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-verdict"> <div class="field-label">Verdict:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>An alarmingly slim, very well made phone that falls short on some of the basics</p> </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-number-integer field-field-preview"> <div class="field-label">Preview:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> Disabled </div> </div> </div> <p><a href="http://www.stuff.tv/oppo/oppo-r5/review" target="_blank">read more</a></p> http://www.stuff.tv/oppo/oppo-r5/review#comments Android Oppo R5 Smartphones Sun, 18 Jan 2015 13:34:28 +0000 Max Langridge 1451650 at http://www.stuff.tv