Wednesday, 3 September 2014

End of Summer Giveaway 2014 [contest]

It's that time of year.  If you've followed us over the past couple years you'll know we like to find some way to repay our readers with our annual event.  This is our second summer here at +Android Coliseum and I think you'll enjoy it.

As per usual we're going to dole out the items in different parcels

  1. 8bitdo NES 30 (Sylvain's review | Ryan's review)
  2. Tylt Galaxy S5 screen protector x2 (Ryan's S5 review)
  3. Tylt Moto X screen protector x2 (Tom's Moto X reviewRyan's Moto X review)
  4. Tylt Galaxy S4 screen protector 
  5. ColorCables x2 (Ryan's review)+ Tylt NFC Stickers (Ryan's NFC article)
  6. Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 White 10.1"
  7. Nomad ChargeCard (Tom's ChargeCard review)

Thank you to our sponsors for supplying us with these items to give away.  And thank YOU our readers for continuing to follow us.  Without you we wouldn't be able to get these items to give out.

So how do you win?

Simply fill out this form and we'll have your name in the draw.  Of course we have to have something in there to make it not only fun, but to help promote us as well...  So we ask that you follow us (on G+, Twitter, or FB) to be included in the giveaway and share this link.

My little 'disclaimer':

  • Giveaway runs until September 3rd as we'll announce the winners during the hangout show (~ 10PM EDT).
  • Limited to one entry per person per social media (i.e. share to Facebook, then Twitter, then Google+ would net that person 3 entries)
  • Anybody who writes for Android Coliseum and their immediate families (i.e. if they live in the house with you) are ineligible... just looks bad.
  • When you're selected, you'll be given 24 hours to respond, or we'll have to redraw.
  • If we don't get many applicants (minimum 20 different folk) we'll hold on to the prizes for a later date and another giveaway down the road.
  • All entries will be sorted according to their time of entry, and then a random number generator will pick the position of the winner for prize #1.  If that person has any other entries, they will then be removed as we then draw for prize #2, and so on.
  • Facebook, Twitter and Google+ are in no way associated with this giveaway.  By providing your information in this form, you are providing your information to me and me alone.  I do not share or sell information and will use any information only for the purpose of contacting the winner.
  • Unfortunately as we're paying for the shipping out of our own pockets, I'm limiting the allowable shipping addresses to be in Canada

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

What would an "Ingress Glove" look like to you? [poll]

So it's September... end of summer (hint, still time to enter the giveaway contest).

End of summer means a pretty sharp turn in the temperature for us around my part of the country.  This means a few things.  For one, the shorts go back in the drawer for another 10 months.

It also means starting to bundle up again, a fall jacket, maybe a a light toque or skullcap ... see I like to take my walks around the area for my lunches - you know, to hit up some Ingress portals.

Also, during my long weekend I've been reviewing the site's analytics and looking over what's been successful and not.  One which was highly successful was any time we talked about Ingress.

Now, recently, I've given up on the game (yes, I know... again), but still doesn't mean I'm not thinking about it.  Like how I used to do laps around the block when it was -40C freezing my fingers off and killing the battery.

For those of you still playing the game, what would you see as the best Ingress accessories?  For me, it'd be gloves.  If I were to start playing again - I'd need a good pair of gloves for it  The G2 and others are sensitive enough to detect through some gloves... so I'd need to make it something that sets them apart.

But how would you deck them out best for the game?  In the colour of your faction, or the symbols embroidered in?  How will you show off form and function in the best Ingress gloves out there?

There's a fair number of players out there these days in our neck of the woods, I need something to make them jealous.  Let's hear your best ideas!

Thursday, 28 August 2014

Samsung's Gear S

Samsung's having their own Unpacked event coming up soon, and to not be left out of the "show what we've got" trend, here's their new smart watch; the Gear S.

  • 2"@ 360x480
  • 1GHz x2
  • 4GB storage
  • 512MB RAM
  • 300mAh
  • 2G/3G/Wifi/BT
  • Tizen
  • IP67

So, it'll run Tizen, and best of all it's got a sleek curved display.  Very nice.

Now, if Tizen will allow it to match to other devices than just specific TouchWiz ones... it might be interesting to me.

Is it interesting to you?

LG's G Watch R

So they teased us recently, and instead of waiting for IFA, they're just going to show it all off... leave nothing to the presentation then.

/le sigh

The LG G Watch R is now officially announced.  Here's the details:
(it looks sexy!)

  • 1.3" @ 320x320 (again how do they count that array for a round screen)
  • Plastic OLED
  • 1.2GHz Snapdragon 400
  • 4GB storage
  • 512MB RAM
  • 410mAh battery
  • IP67
  • Heart Rate sensor (as well as gyro, acceleromator, compass and barometer)

And it's Android Wear (meaning it'll be good for any Android device, not just LG).

Now, we have to find out about the charging and price.  There's 2 reasons to watch the announcement.

LG shows of the G3 Stylus before IFA

So as we're just so close, there's some folks are just showing off the devices they'll have at their booth.

One such is the LG G3 Stylus.  It was rumoured, but they just revealed it.  You'd hope with the G3 in the name you're expecting some cool things... add in the "Stylus" and we're looking at competing against the 'to-be-announced' Note 4.

You'd think that... but not really.

In a similar vein for S4 and S4 mini, there's not much in common with the 'parent device'.

Let's take a look at the G3 Stylus:

  • 5.5" @ 960x540
  • 1.3GHz x4
  • 1GB RAM
  • 8GB storage + microSD
  • 13MP / 1.3MP
  • Android 4.4.2

So, just to give you context.  The Galaxy Nexus came with that qHD display.  Yes, over 3 generations of devices ago.  The 'normal' G3 comes with 2560x1440... that's almost 9x the pixels.  

I'm just scratching my head here.  The only thing it will have going for it is the stylus.  Hopefully it's a good one.  We'll have to wait to see more details next week in Berlin at IFA.  My guess is that the price will definitely be lower.

Degauss Labs brings 3 button control to your headphones

So I spend most of my breaks these days walking about and... well, I can't walk about in silence, I need music.  I've reviewed a lot of different headphones (most recently the 808 duo).  Mostly for portability I've been using just earbuds for my walks.

And, because I had a few kicking around the house and I liked the sound the iPhone ones are usually my go to.  The only thing is that the iPhone have 3 buttons (volume +/- and play).  It's never really bothered me that I can't change the volume on my headsets before using this.  I remember those 'inline potentiometers' you used to get that would limit... but that wouldn't raise the volume of the device output.

Well, +DegaussLabs has come up with a new set of headphones that will allow you to take advantage of the 3 buttons.

This will be interesting to see.  And it would be nice to stop using Apple products.

Then there's the design of the "Dual Driver" headphones.  As I've said before I'm not much of a earbud guy, but these look great.

And without getting too technical they have listed on their site "comes with twice as much speakers tech".  So I'll be interested in trying it out myself.

Yes it says compatible with iOS, but they do have Android listed on their site as well

At $80 it's less than some of those 'Beats', which I still never understand their popularity.

They also have an app that will let you set it up to trigger your music app of choice on putting in your headphones (some UI's already do this, like LG, or TouchWiz, etc...); but has the added feature that you can customize your 'click #', like 5 clicks means to play the 5 song, or ... whatnot.


#AppColiseum picks from #88

With us getting back into the swing of the Hangout shows again, it also means getting back to sharing with you our picks of the week for apps... our aptly named #AppColiseum.

Here's the choices from show #88:

Martin - Now Browser Pro

Give a plus one below to the app(s) you like this week.

Hangout Show #88 [we're a little rusty edition]

After almost a full month off of enjoying some summer time we're back at it with the weekly hangouts.  We were a little rusty on some of the features again, but we still had a great show and got to talk tech and apps and announced our giveaway.

If you missed the show, no worries, we've got you covered:

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Hangout Shows are back! #88 August 26th @ 10PM EDT

I don't know about you, even though we've had a terrible summer, it's still been fairly busy.  Which is why it's been hard to get together for our weekly Hangout show over the past month.

But that dry spell ends tonight as we gather at 10PM EDT to discuss the latest news and reviews.  Plus we've got a little secret to reveal as well.

Hope to see you there!

Hangout Show #88
Tuesday, August 26th
@ 10PM EDT

As always, you can watch on our site via the hangouts tab, and we have our online chat there.

I think next week we'll go back to Wednesdays.

Monday, 25 August 2014

Rogers and Fido want to help you 'tune up' your phone'

So Rogers and Fido have launched a new service that will be at every Rogers location soon.

It's going to be a "Device Tune-UP" where you can bring in your device and have a 'health check'.

To me it sounds a little ephemeral, but remember, I'm not the average user.

From their video on the site it looks to be a kiosk where the diagnosing and tools are via some software.

What can it help with?

  • Get a Device HealthCheck
  • The first step in the diagnostics process, we’ll run a Device HealthCheck to make sure your smartphone is up to date and running like new
  • Depending on your operating system we can check what apps are running, what is using up your battery, if you have the latest OS and more
  • Safeguard your data
  • Are you passing your phone down to a friend or family member? Device Tune-Up can securely wipe you data and even back it up.
  • Transfer data from one device to another
  • If you’re getting an upgrade, Device Tune-Up can transfer your data from your old smartphone to your new one so you can be up and running right away
  • Depending on your OS or where your data is saved, contacts, images, videos and SMS can be transferred

Having worked at a cell repair location, I really am somewhat 'dubious' of this.  I'm sure it'll be peace of mind for many, but what I've found is the 'one solution fits all' scenarios really don't.

Looking at the laundry list of issues it can help with, I'm what it's really doing.  I've asked Rogers to see what software they're using, but I'm doubtful I'd get an answer.

Aside from the "HealthCheck" (which I'm really curious about), the rest should be very simple for anybody else to do on their own (I showed my dad how to back up his phone in a matter of minutes when the carrier told them they were going to do a complete wipe to fix his network issues).  But again, this is a good customer service play for the 'average' customer.

If you need help and you're not a Rogers or Fido customer (or even if you are), you can check out my articles on "Disaster" or just hit me up on Helpouts.

Rogers -
Fido -