HugoQueiriga

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About HugoQueiriga

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  1. If you have been waiting for Samsung to update your Samsung Galaxy S7/ S7 Edge to the latest Nougat goodness, then you are in luck, sort of. Samsung has started the Nougat Beta programme in the UK for their flagship devices. So how do you get access to this program? You can do this by going to the Galaxy Apps store on your phone - if like me you disabled it, then make sure you enable it again and update the app - then search for Galaxy beta program. Install the app because you will need to use it to register for the program. Samsung intends to run this program from 9/11/16 to mid December in the UK, you should expect the latest Samsung UX based on Android 7.0 (Nougat). The programme is only open to Galaxy S7 / Galaxy S7 Edge and both devices have to be unlocked and network free versions. The Olympic and Batman editions are not supported. To register for the programme you need to open the app and click the settings menu - the three vertical dots - and press the Registration option in the popup menu, this will take you to the Terms of Service for the programme, agree to it and it will register you with the Beta programme. You will need to have a Samsung account to be able to take part. If you want to leave the program you can open the app again and click on the settings menu and choose deregister, this will remove you from the beta programme. As with any beta software, this will likely have bugs, so if you are updating your main driver ensure you backup your device first. The instructions say that to download the beta software you will need to go to Settings - About device - Download updates manually to be able to download the software. It seems this hasn't gone live yet, once it has we will have more information to share. Let us know how you get on with the program and share your feedback with the rest of the community here at MoDaCo. View full item
  2. If you have been waiting for Samsung to update your Samsung Galaxy S7/ S7 Edge to the latest Nougat goodness, then you are in luck, sort of. Samsung has started the Nougat Beta programme in the UK for their flagship devices. So how do you get access to this program? You can do this by going to the Galaxy Apps store on your phone - if like me you disabled it, then make sure you enable it again and update the app - then search for Galaxy beta program. Install the app because you will need to use it to register for the program. Samsung intends to run this program from 9/11/16 to mid December in the UK, you should expect the latest Samsung UX based on Android 7.0 (Nougat). The programme is only open to Galaxy S7 / Galaxy S7 Edge and both devices have to be unlocked and network free versions. The Olympic and Batman editions are not supported. To register for the programme you need to open the app and click the settings menu - the three vertical dots - and press the Registration option in the popup menu, this will take you to the Terms of Service for the programme, agree to it and it will register you with the Beta programme. You will need to have a Samsung account to be able to take part. If you want to leave the program you can open the app again and click on the settings menu and choose deregister, this will remove you from the beta programme. As with any beta software, this will likely have bugs, so if you are updating your main driver ensure you backup your device first. The instructions say that to download the beta software you will need to go to Settings - About device - Download updates manually to be able to download the software. It seems this hasn't gone live yet, once it has we will have more information to share. Let us know how you get on with the program and share your feedback with the rest of the community here at MoDaCo.
  3. A few weeks ago Android Developers at Google had announced that Android 7.1 would come in the form of a Developer Preview, first for the older Nexus devices to the dismay of many Nexus owners. Almost a week ago they officially announced that the preview would come to Nexus users within the month of October. Well it is finally out today. Android 7.1 Developer Preview 1 (NPF10C) is an incremental update to Android 7.0, so if you are expecting major features found in the Google Pixel, you may be disappointed. What you will find are launcher shortcuts, round icons, and image keyboard support. Below is the changelog for the Android 7.1 Developer Preview. We’ve finalized the new APIs as API Level 25 We’ve opened up publishing on Google Play for apps targeting the new API level, so you can update your apps soon as you are ready. This is currently available to the Google Nexus 5X, 6P and Google Pixel C. To get the 7.1 release on your eligible device, enroll your device in the Android Beta program. If your device is already enrolled, you'll receive the update automatically. If you do not want to enroll in the Beta program, you can download the OTA images and flash these manually to your devices. As always be careful - this is not a finalversion so may contain bugs and as such is not recommended for your daily driver. More devices are expect to be supported by the end of November with a final build to come by the end of the year. source: Android Developers
  4. A few weeks ago Android Developers at Google had announced that Android 7.1 would come in the form of a Developer Preview, first for the older Nexus devices to the dismay of many Nexus owners. Almost a week ago they officially announced that the preview would come to Nexus users within the month of October. Well it is finally out today. Android 7.1 Developer Preview 1 (NPF10C) is an incremental update to Android 7.0, so if you are expecting major features found in the Google Pixel, you may be disappointed. What you will find are launcher shortcuts, round icons, and image keyboard support. Below is the changelog for the Android 7.1 Developer Preview. We’ve finalized the new APIs as API Level 25 We’ve opened up publishing on Google Play for apps targeting the new API level, so you can update your apps soon as you are ready. This is currently available to the Google Nexus 5X, 6P and Google Pixel C. To get the 7.1 release on your eligible device, enroll your device in the Android Beta program. If your device is already enrolled, you'll receive the update automatically. If you do not want to enroll in the Beta program, you can download the OTA images and flash these manually to your devices. As always be careful - this is not a finalversion so may contain bugs and as such is not recommended for your daily driver. More devices are expect to be supported by the end of November with a final build to come by the end of the year. source: Android Developers View full item
  5. With the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 truly finished, what other devices are out there to replace this device? First of all let's look at what made Galaxy Note 7 great - it had a great camera, screen, performance, build and battery life. Our choices for these alternatives are based in the following categories, Camera, Screen, Performance, Build and Battery. We didn't just look at the latest Android options but also the best option that Apple has to offer. The alternative phones picked were the Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge, Google Pixel XL and the Apple iPhone 7 Plus. We rounded up these devices because you can buy them now. Also these are the closest devices to the Galaxy Note 7 we can find, that tick almost all the features the Galaxy Note 7 packed, be its size and features. We understand that some of these devices have different size options, whenever this occurs we have chosen the larger device, because that is the one closest to the Galaxy Note 7, Phablet size. Camera One of the greatest things about the Galaxy Note 7 was the camera. It was the same camera found in the previous Samsung flagship Galaxy S7/ S7 Edge, which interestingly is one of the reasons the phone is in our list. The Galaxy Note 7 came packed with a 12MP F1.7 aperture sensor with OIS, making this an ideal point and shoot - like the device before it packing the same sensor - for low light photography and quick pictures. Using the double press on the home button to open the camera app, it made capturing the moment easy and quick, and in the majority of situations it took great pictures and videos. All three phones are packing a 12MP sensor with an aperture of F1.7-2.0, however each has brought something different to the table. The Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge packs the same sensor as the Galaxy Note 7, so you can expect the same performance from it. The Google Pixel XL on the other hand is packing a smaller aperture at F2.0 and no OIS, however because it uses a bigger sensor than any other device in the list at 1.55µm pixel size and with Google's engineering know how they have done an amazing job to address those shortcomings - utilising the Gyro sensors in the device and with software magic* - they are able to mostly mitigate the need for OIS. For early impressions of this device have a look at Paul's article. The Apple iPhone 7 Plus this year brings a dual 12MP F1.8 - F2.8 camera setup - one wide lens and another zoom lens, allowing for 2x optical zoom - offering OIS on the wider lens, ensuring that every picture you take is blur free. The camera app has been improved to allow for zoom and a later update will add software bokeh combining input from both lenses. If you are using one of these devices you have the latest and greatest device in camera photography. The above phones provide the best image quality you can get out of a mobile phone and I would add replace the need for point and shoot cameras. Screen I’m just going to say it, Samsung have one of the best looking screens in the market and Galaxy Note 7 was the best, offering a curved 5.7” QHD Super AMOLED display with HDR hitting 1000 nits - it was a beautiful screen to look at. Yes, it was a Super AMOLED display and it made all the colours pop, but if you didn’t like it you could change this in the settings to a different profile. From all the devices we have discussed only the Galaxy S7 Edge comes close to the Galaxy Note 7. It was the obvious inspiration for the design choice for Samsung, to take their best selling device design and implement it on the Galaxy Note 7. The display on the Galaxy S7 Edge is a bright colourful 5.5” QHD Super AMOLED display and curves that give it a nice edge (pun intended) over the competition. Some would question the practicality of the Edge, however it allows the form factor to feel smaller than any other device with the same screen size. The Google Pixel XL brings with it a 5.5” QHD AMOLED display, which promises to deliver a bright display also, although I’ll reserve my full comments until I’m able to handle one for more than a few days. This leaves the iPhone 7 Plus display falling behind if you look at the specs on paper, offering only a 5.5” 1080P IPS LCD display, however you will be surprised by the actual quality of the display when in use. It has a very accurate display reproducing very good accurate colours. They do not pop like the AMOLED based displays do, but are closer to real life colours. As for the smaller resolution it is very subjective to the person viewing the device, if there is any big difference between the resolutions. Performance The Galaxy Note 7 packed one of the best chipsets available in 2016, the Exynos 8890 chipset introduced this year on the Galaxy S7 range, providing great performance for graphics intense applications while also being very battery friendly. If you live in the North America, Samsung in their wisdom went with the Qualcomm SD820 chipset, however performance between the two models is very similar, with some negligible difference on battery and GPU performance. With the introduction of the Google Pixel XL, Google decided to go with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 821, best described as a factory overclocked Snapdragon 820, so you know it will be snappy. Considering this is the first phone made by Google - where they control hardware and software - the experience of this device makes it a very smooth device indeed, with no lag and great for multitasking, the performance is on par if not better than the Galaxy Note 7. This offers a true Google experience with no additional bloat that Samsung often adds to their devices. I’ll be honest - I’m an android user through and through, however I’m not a die hard fan of Android in that I cannot appreciate other devices, even Apple made ones. The iPhone 7 Plus is one of those devices that not only offers hardware but software optimisations that make its performance never leaving you wanting. This the also the first time that Apple has matched specs on paper to other manufacturers, offering a Quad core CPU and 3GB of RAM, not that it ever needed a lot of RAM in the first place. The A10 Fusion chipset really packs a punch, it is fast and the apps are quick to open, when playing games on this device there is rarely any slowdown - actually I’m still yet to see one - because in the iOS ecosystem app developers in general really optimise the apps for these devices. Considering the the Android ecosystem has hundreds of different devices, you can perhaps understand why. Battery Battery is one of those subjective topics that is is hard for one user to be able to replicate the performance of another user, this is due to mobile network signal, user usage etc. There are many factors to take into account to be able to provide a benchmark that could be reproduced by every user. We know however that the biggest drain of battery of a phone is the screen on time and playing games with the device. Obviously having a bigger battery will help with any device, the previous Note models had removable batteries allowing a user to go from 0 to 100% battery in a matter of seconds just by swapping their battery. On the Galaxy Note 5, Samsung introduced a non removable battery and also a smaller battery with only 3000mah - Samsung received a lot of complaints regarding these choices. With the Galaxy Note 7, Samsung took on board the user feedback and increased the battery capacity to 3500mah - still smaller than the Galaxy S7 Edge with its 3600mah - but with their new Exynos chipset allowing the Galaxy Note 7 to have great battery life, people reported SOT of 5+ hours. The Galaxy S7 Edge with its 3600mah has one of the best battery performances we have seen in a flagship device this year, generally lasting more than 1 day usage consisting of browsing, watching YouTube, messaging and calls. And thanks to its Qualcomm QC 2.0 feature you are able to charge the phone very quickly indeed. We have yet to formulate a conclusion for the Google Pixel battery performance, but from early impressions of this phone, we can report that it’s 3450mah battery delivers above than average battery performance, though we will reserve judgment for our forthcoming review of this device. Don't forget Google touts fast charging with these devices saying 15 minutes of charging will give you 7 hours of usage. If you are an Apple user then you know that if you want the best battery life experience, you pick the iPhone Plus, because they use a bigger battery than the normal iPhone. Also having a 1080P display helps with battery consumption with less pixels being pushed by the GPU. With the iPhone 7 Plus the battery performance really doesn’t disappoint. However don’t expect quick charging on this device so if you need a quick top up you are out of luck. Build The build of the Galaxy Note 7 was superb minus the exploding battery (Hey, that is the reason why you are reading this article!), it felt nice in the hand with its glass back, and the design made it feel smaller than most devices of its class. If you want the exact same build feeling the Galaxy S7 Edge offers you almost exactly the same experience in the hand and you don’t have to worry about those pesky exploding batteries. The Google Pixel form factor and its build quality are great, very reminiscent of the HTC 10 design, enclosed in an anodised aluminium body with Corning Gorilla 4 glass protecting its screen, it definitely feels premium. it is arguably a slightly a bland design choice by Google, the Nexus 6P at least had a unique design. Apple iPhone 7 Plus again offers a recycled look, with the only stand out difference from its previous iteration being its dual camera setup. You could say removal of the antenna lines distinguishes it from its previous iterations but it is barely noticeable. All the devices except the Google Pixel XL offer water resistance, so if you were to dunk it in the toilet or a pool of water, they would survive, not so for the Google Pixel XL. With this being a standard feature for for every flagship device in 2016 you have to wonder why Google opted not to add this feature to it’s Pixel range. Conclusion As you can see you are able to find great alternatives to the Galaxy Note 7, and it maybe that this is why it feels like Samsung rushed this device to market, allowing for defects to pass through their QA process. However this is great for other manufacturers as they are able to swoop in and offer good alternatives such that you won’t feel that you are missing out by not having the Galaxy Note 7. A few features that neither of our alternative phones offer are a Stylus S Pen and a MicroSD slot. We would question how much use users really get out of a S Pen. However should you feel that this is one of the killer features which you must have in your phone, then look no further than the Samsung Galaxy Note 5, it has a great 5.7” QHD Super AMOLED display, great battery performance, the chipset can still punch above some of the 2016 release phones and it comes with a stylus. Oh and the screen is flat, I never understood why Samsung chose to combine a curved display with a stylus.Try and sign something on the edge of the display, I dare you! As for external storage I feel that with all these device offering various storage solutions, the only negative of this is the cost, which may seem high, but you are getting fast storage and some devices offer a 256GB option. We would like to give worthy mention to two other devices, which even though they are not in the same class as the Galaxy Note 7, are still options if you don’t mind sacrificing the latest and greatest hardware there is. They come in at a considerably lower price than the Galaxy Note 7 and the alternatives. Before Google introduced the Google Pixel recently, it had the Nexus brand, and the Nexus 6P still has one of the best cameras in the market - it takes amazing pictures and with the HDR+ feature from Google it can really show how capable the camera is. It also offers a 5.7" QHD AMOLED display, with 32GB and 64GB storage options. This phone can be had for really silly prices right now. The other device is the Honor 8 with its dual 12MP camera setup - introduced earlier on their Huawei P9 flagship model - offering a RGB sensor and a monochrome sensor. It comes with a 5.2" 1080P LTPS display, plenty of storage and external storage for almost half the price of a Galaxy Note 7. So what phones do you think could fill the Galaxy Note 7 boots? Do you agreed with our choices? Would you change to Apple or have you because of this? Let us know in the comments below. View full item
  6. With the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 truly finished, what other devices are out there to replace this device? First of all let's look at what made Galaxy Note 7 great - it had a great camera, screen, performance, build and battery life. Our choices for these alternatives are based in the following categories, Camera, Screen, Performance, Build and Battery. We didn't just look at the latest Android options but also the best option that Apple has to offer. The alternative phones picked were the Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge, Google Pixel XL and the Apple iPhone 7 Plus. We rounded up these devices because you can buy them now. Also these are the closest devices to the Galaxy Note 7 we can find, that tick almost all the features the Galaxy Note 7 packed, be its size and features. We understand that some of these devices have different size options, whenever this occurs we have chosen the larger device, because that is the one closest to the Galaxy Note 7, Phablet size. Camera One of the greatest things about the Galaxy Note 7 was the camera. It was the same camera found in the previous Samsung flagship Galaxy S7/ S7 Edge, which interestingly is one of the reasons the phone is in our list. The Galaxy Note 7 came packed with a 12MP F1.7 aperture sensor with OIS, making this an ideal point and shoot - like the device before it packing the same sensor - for low light photography and quick pictures. Using the double press on the home button to open the camera app, it made capturing the moment easy and quick, and in the majority of situations it took great pictures and videos. All three phones are packing a 12MP sensor with an aperture of F1.7-2.0, however each has brought something different to the table. The Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge packs the same sensor as the Galaxy Note 7, so you can expect the same performance from it. The Google Pixel XL on the other hand is packing a smaller aperture at F2.0 and no OIS, however because it uses a bigger sensor than any other device in the list at 1.55µm pixel size and with Google's engineering know how they have done an amazing job to address those shortcomings - utilising the Gyro sensors in the device and with software magic* - they are able to mostly mitigate the need for OIS. For early impressions of this device have a look at Paul's article. The Apple iPhone 7 Plus this year brings a dual 12MP F1.8 - F2.8 camera setup - one wide lens and another zoom lens, allowing for 2x optical zoom - offering OIS on the wider lens, ensuring that every picture you take is blur free. The camera app has been improved to allow for zoom and a later update will add software bokeh combining input from both lenses. If you are using one of these devices you have the latest and greatest device in camera photography. The above phones provide the best image quality you can get out of a mobile phone and I would add replace the need for point and shoot cameras. Screen I’m just going to say it, Samsung have one of the best looking screens in the market and Galaxy Note 7 was the best, offering a curved 5.7” QHD Super AMOLED display with HDR hitting 1000 nits - it was a beautiful screen to look at. Yes, it was a Super AMOLED display and it made all the colours pop, but if you didn’t like it you could change this in the settings to a different profile. From all the devices we have discussed only the Galaxy S7 Edge comes close to the Galaxy Note 7. It was the obvious inspiration for the design choice for Samsung, to take their best selling device design and implement it on the Galaxy Note 7. The display on the Galaxy S7 Edge is a bright colourful 5.5” QHD Super AMOLED display and curves that give it a nice edge (pun intended) over the competition. Some would question the practicality of the Edge, however it allows the form factor to feel smaller than any other device with the same screen size. The Google Pixel XL brings with it a 5.5” QHD AMOLED display, which promises to deliver a bright display also, although I’ll reserve my full comments until I’m able to handle one for more than a few days. This leaves the iPhone 7 Plus display falling behind if you look at the specs on paper, offering only a 5.5” 1080P IPS LCD display, however you will be surprised by the actual quality of the display when in use. It has a very accurate display reproducing very good accurate colours. They do not pop like the AMOLED based displays do, but are closer to real life colours. As for the smaller resolution it is very subjective to the person viewing the device, if there is any big difference between the resolutions. Performance The Galaxy Note 7 packed one of the best chipsets available in 2016, the Exynos 8890 chipset introduced this year on the Galaxy S7 range, providing great performance for graphics intense applications while also being very battery friendly. If you live in the North America, Samsung in their wisdom went with the Qualcomm SD820 chipset, however performance between the two models is very similar, with some negligible difference on battery and GPU performance. With the introduction of the Google Pixel XL, Google decided to go with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 821, best described as a factory overclocked Snapdragon 820, so you know it will be snappy. Considering this is the first phone made by Google - where they control hardware and software - the experience of this device makes it a very smooth device indeed, with no lag and great for multitasking, the performance is on par if not better than the Galaxy Note 7. This offers a true Google experience with no additional bloat that Samsung often adds to their devices. I’ll be honest - I’m an android user through and through, however I’m not a die hard fan of Android in that I cannot appreciate other devices, even Apple made ones. The iPhone 7 Plus is one of those devices that not only offers hardware but software optimisations that make its performance never leaving you wanting. This the also the first time that Apple has matched specs on paper to other manufacturers, offering a Quad core CPU and 3GB of RAM, not that it ever needed a lot of RAM in the first place. The A10 Fusion chipset really packs a punch, it is fast and the apps are quick to open, when playing games on this device there is rarely any slowdown - actually I’m still yet to see one - because in the iOS ecosystem app developers in general really optimise the apps for these devices. Considering the the Android ecosystem has hundreds of different devices, you can perhaps understand why. Battery Battery is one of those subjective topics that is is hard for one user to be able to replicate the performance of another user, this is due to mobile network signal, user usage etc. There are many factors to take into account to be able to provide a benchmark that could be reproduced by every user. We know however that the biggest drain of battery of a phone is the screen on time and playing games with the device. Obviously having a bigger battery will help with any device, the previous Note models had removable batteries allowing a user to go from 0 to 100% battery in a matter of seconds just by swapping their battery. On the Galaxy Note 5, Samsung introduced a non removable battery and also a smaller battery with only 3000mah - Samsung received a lot of complaints regarding these choices. With the Galaxy Note 7, Samsung took on board the user feedback and increased the battery capacity to 3500mah - still smaller than the Galaxy S7 Edge with its 3600mah - but with their new Exynos chipset allowing the Galaxy Note 7 to have great battery life, people reported SOT of 5+ hours. The Galaxy S7 Edge with its 3600mah has one of the best battery performances we have seen in a flagship device this year, generally lasting more than 1 day usage consisting of browsing, watching YouTube, messaging and calls. And thanks to its Qualcomm QC 2.0 feature you are able to charge the phone very quickly indeed. We have yet to formulate a conclusion for the Google Pixel battery performance, but from early impressions of this phone, we can report that it’s 3450mah battery delivers above than average battery performance, though we will reserve judgment for our forthcoming review of this device. Don't forget Google touts fast charging with these devices saying 15 minutes of charging will give you 7 hours of usage. If you are an Apple user then you know that if you want the best battery life experience, you pick the iPhone Plus, because they use a bigger battery than the normal iPhone. Also having a 1080P display helps with battery consumption with less pixels being pushed by the GPU. With the iPhone 7 Plus the battery performance really doesn’t disappoint. However don’t expect quick charging on this device so if you need a quick top up you are out of luck. Build The build of the Galaxy Note 7 was superb minus the exploding battery (Hey, that is the reason why you are reading this article!), it felt nice in the hand with its glass back, and the design made it feel smaller than most devices of its class. If you want the exact same build feeling the Galaxy S7 Edge offers you almost exactly the same experience in the hand and you don’t have to worry about those pesky exploding batteries. The Google Pixel form factor and its build quality are great, very reminiscent of the HTC 10 design, enclosed in an anodised aluminium body with Corning Gorilla 4 glass protecting its screen, it definitely feels premium. it is arguably a slightly a bland design choice by Google, the Nexus 6P at least had a unique design. Apple iPhone 7 Plus again offers a recycled look, with the only stand out difference from its previous iteration being its dual camera setup. You could say removal of the antenna lines distinguishes it from its previous iterations but it is barely noticeable. All the devices except the Google Pixel XL offer water resistance, so if you were to dunk it in the toilet or a pool of water, they would survive, not so for the Google Pixel XL. With this being a standard feature for for every flagship device in 2016 you have to wonder why Google opted not to add this feature to it’s Pixel range. Conclusion As you can see you are able to find great alternatives to the Galaxy Note 7, and it maybe that this is why it feels like Samsung rushed this device to market, allowing for defects to pass through their QA process. However this is great for other manufacturers as they are able to swoop in and offer good alternatives such that you won’t feel that you are missing out by not having the Galaxy Note 7. A few features that neither of our alternative phones offer are a Stylus S Pen and a MicroSD slot. We would question how much use users really get out of a S Pen. However should you feel that this is one of the killer features which you must have in your phone, then look no further than the Samsung Galaxy Note 5, it has a great 5.7” QHD Super AMOLED display, great battery performance, the chipset can still punch above some of the 2016 release phones and it comes with a stylus. Oh and the screen is flat, I never understood why Samsung chose to combine a curved display with a stylus.Try and sign something on the edge of the display, I dare you! As for external storage I feel that with all these device offering various storage solutions, the only negative of this is the cost, which may seem high, but you are getting fast storage and some devices offer a 256GB option. We would like to give worthy mention to two other devices, which even though they are not in the same class as the Galaxy Note 7, are still options if you don’t mind sacrificing the latest and greatest hardware there is. They come in at a considerably lower price than the Galaxy Note 7 and the alternatives. Before Google introduced the Google Pixel recently, it had the Nexus brand, and the Nexus 6P still has one of the best cameras in the market - it takes amazing pictures and with the HDR+ feature from Google it can really show how capable the camera is. It also offers a 5.7" QHD AMOLED display, with 32GB and 64GB storage options. This phone can be had for really silly prices right now. The other device is the Honor 8 with its dual 12MP camera setup - introduced earlier on their Huawei P9 flagship model - offering a RGB sensor and a monochrome sensor. It comes with a 5.2" 1080P LTPS display, plenty of storage and external storage for almost half the price of a Galaxy Note 7. So what phones do you think could fill the Galaxy Note 7 boots? Do you agreed with our choices? Would you change to Apple or have you because of this? Let us know in the comments below.
  7. Hi, When buying online there is no need to purchase top up. In store I always found if you have a sim with O2 I haven't needed to pay top up either. Although there is always a sales assistant that tries his luck with me, which I kindly decline. Talking of top up, I walked into a Three store yesterday to check a Honor 8 and asked for the price, they told me £349+£20, told the sales assistant thank you very much and walked out. Considering that I can purchase online with £349+£10 top up, she must have thought I was a fool. Like I said in store you just have to stand your ground and be willing to walk out and go elsewhere. But I understand your frustration and really hope networks one day will stop this locking down. Regards
  8. If you are looking for a cheap and cheerful device that won’t break your bank account, O2 right now is offering the Alcatel Idol 3 4.7” at the low low price of £49.99 and because it is O2, you don’t even need to buy a top up. So what can you expect to get for £49.99? Quite a lot really, we are not talking about a premium device, but for that kind of money you do get a lot. It is great as a backup phone or a general travel device, just make sure you unlock it first before you travel. Now you may be wondering if the 8GB is enough for you, well to fix that you may want to check out Paul’s article on how to double your storage size that he created last September. As with every modification you do to a device, we should warn you that this will void your warranty and it is not for the faint hearted among you out there, but it is an option. *Update. Having purchased one of these, it looks like the O2 variant device may only come with the 8GB internal storage, reading XDA there seems to be a few variants of this device with 8GB or 16GB NAND storage. To see which one you have just install a terminal from the playstore and run the following command. cat /proc/partitions If the returned partitions show that mmcblk0 is 7634944 then you have the 8GB variant and this cannot be changed to increase your storage. However if it reports a higher number like 15267840 then you are in luck and you can try the process Paul has written about. Either way the device is still a good bargain for the price. So for £49.99 what are you waiting for? Online delivery is out of stock but you can still purchase for store pickup. source: O2 PAYG View full item
  9. If you are looking for a cheap and cheerful device that won’t break your bank account, O2 right now is offering the Alcatel Idol 3 4.7” at the low low price of £49.99 and because it is O2, you don’t even need to buy a top up. So what can you expect to get for £49.99? Quite a lot really, we are not talking about a premium device, but for that kind of money you do get a lot. It is great as a backup phone or a general travel device, just make sure you unlock it first before you travel. Now you may be wondering if the 8GB is enough for you, well to fix that you may want to check out Paul’s article on how to double your storage size that he created last September. As with every modification you do to a device, we should warn you that this will void your warranty and it is not for the faint hearted among you out there, but it is an option. *Update. Having purchased one of these, it looks like the O2 variant device may only come with the 8GB internal storage, reading XDA there seems to be a few variants of this device with 8GB or 16GB NAND storage. To see which one you have just install a terminal from the playstore and run the following command. cat /proc/partitions If the returned partitions show that mmcblk0 is 7634944 then you have the 8GB variant and this cannot be changed to increase your storage. However if it reports a higher number like 15267840 then you are in luck and you can try the process Paul has written about. Either way the device is still a good bargain for the price. So for £49.99 what are you waiting for? Online delivery is out of stock but you can still purchase for store pickup. source: O2 PAYG
  10. Google has today announced that the Android 7.1 Developer Preview is coming out later this month to the Developer Preview programme. In a blog post on the Android Developers website, they have confirmed they have been working with their device partners to get them ready for Android 7.1 (Nougat). This release will also allow app developers to prepare their apps for the new Android version. Below is the changelog provided by Google. Google is reporting that they will initially rollout the Developer Preview to Nexus 5X, Nexus 6P and the Pixel C, with further supported devices being added by the end of the preview. They are are aiming to roll out the Final version of Android 7.1.X by December to all supported devices - Nexus 6, 5X, 6P, 9, Player, Pixel C, and supported Android One devices - as well the Pixel and Pixel XL. If you want to receive the Developer Preview automatically, visit Android Beta and enroll your device. If you previously enrolled a device and haven’t unenrolled, your device will receive the update. If you already enrolled but don’t want to receive the update, visit Android Beta to unenroll the device as soon as possible. As previously mentioned before, if you are looking for Google Assistant or Pixel Launcher - these are exclusive to the Google Pixel phones and will not be coming to any other device. source: Android Developers View full item
  11. Google has today announced that the Android 7.1 Developer Preview is coming out later this month to the Developer Preview programme. In a blog post on the Android Developers website, they have confirmed they have been working with their device partners to get them ready for Android 7.1 (Nougat). This release will also allow app developers to prepare their apps for the new Android version. Below is the changelog provided by Google. Google is reporting that they will initially rollout the Developer Preview to Nexus 5X, Nexus 6P and the Pixel C, with further supported devices being added by the end of the preview. They are are aiming to roll out the Final version of Android 7.1.X by December to all supported devices - Nexus 6, 5X, 6P, 9, Player, Pixel C, and supported Android One devices - as well the Pixel and Pixel XL. If you want to receive the Developer Preview automatically, visit Android Beta and enroll your device. If you previously enrolled a device and haven’t unenrolled, your device will receive the update. If you already enrolled but don’t want to receive the update, visit Android Beta to unenroll the device as soon as possible. As previously mentioned before, if you are looking for Google Assistant or Pixel Launcher - these are exclusive to the Google Pixel phones and will not be coming to any other device. source: Android Developers
  12. Well Samsung did make Windows Phone devices, unfortunately with Microsoft pushing their Mobile business down the cliff, there isn't really a market for anyone else to make a Windows phone again, unless your HP. ;) The numbers Samsung was providing in recent reports they said that they were getting above 90% returned devices(I'll try and find their statement), the initial number was low as people did not know when they would get a device, so continued using their devices like there was nothing wrong with them. Samsung has done exactly what you have mentioned in the last few hours, however once again they try and use less strong words, but only instructions for users is to power device down and stop using it and contact retailer/network provider/samsung.
  13. After days of silence by Samsung, regarding reports by consumers of replacement Galaxy Note 7 exploding. Samsung has on the 11th of October 2016 released a statement addressing the issue. Samsung has stated that they will be asking all global partners to stop sales of the Galaxy Note 7 and requesting all clients of the device to power down their devices and stop using their devices with immediate effect. This is for all Galaxy Note 7 devices, including the replacement devices, which were thought to be safe. Soon after the statement above was issued, it was reported by Wall Street Journal that Samsung had filed a report with South Korean regulators informing them that would cease selling the Galaxy Note 7, on grounds of "consumer safety". Samsung UK has since released a statement through their twitter account, confirming this and also stating that they have ceased production of the Galaxy Note 7. Thus ending this long running saga. If you own a Samsung Galaxy Note 7, for your safety and others, please power it down and stop using it. Contact the retailer where you purchased the device or if you have got the device on a contract, contact your network provider. You can find contact details on Samsung UK website on the Galaxy Note 7 exchange programme page. View full item
  14. After days of silence by Samsung, regarding reports by consumers of replacement Galaxy Note 7 exploding. Samsung has on the 11th of October 2016 released a statement addressing the issue. Samsung has stated that they will be asking all global partners to stop sales of the Galaxy Note 7 and requesting all clients of the device to power down their devices and stop using their devices with immediate effect. This is for all Galaxy Note 7 devices, including the replacement devices, which were thought to be safe. Soon after the statement above was issued, it was reported by Wall Street Journal that Samsung had filed a report with South Korean regulators informing them that would cease selling the Galaxy Note 7, on grounds of "consumer safety". Samsung UK has since released a statement through their twitter account, confirming this and also stating that they have ceased production of the Galaxy Note 7. Thus ending this long running saga. If you own a Samsung Galaxy Note 7, for your safety and others, please power it down and stop using it. Contact the retailer where you purchased the device or if you have got the device on a contract, contact your network provider. You can find contact details on Samsung UK website on the Galaxy Note 7 exchange programme page.
  15. This year like everyone else I looked forward to the Samsung Unpacked event in August. Why? Because they were going to announce the next Galaxy Note. Having previously owned the Galaxy Note 5, I was looking forward to the next iteration. Had it not been the lack of MicroSD on the Note 5 and its availability in the UK, I would still be holding onto it. As the event happened, I said to myself that 'I’ll definitely be getting this phone'. Hours after the event reviewers and tech journalists praised the Galaxy Note 7 as the best Samsung device yet and highly recommended it. Who would have guessed that almost 2 months later they would be telling you to return it. Let’s step back for a moment and look at how we got here. Rumours about the next Galaxy Note leaking months before its official launch, suggesting Samsung was taking the same approach to design as the Galaxy S7 series, piqued a lot of people's interest in the device. These rumours suggested that Samsung was going to introduce a dual camera setup very similar to the iPhone 7 Plus rumours and that the Galaxy Note would skip a number going from Note 5 to Note 7 - this was to align it to the Galaxy S7 range, ensuring people don’t attach a lesser value to it. Fast forward a few months to 2nd of August 2016 and the launch event. We were shown the new Galaxy Note 7, stand out features being the new S Pen, Iris scanner, IP67 rating, bigger battery, smaller body and a curved display (very much like the Galaxy S7 range) and finally one important addition: the MicroSD slot. As you can read from the specification this is a powerhouse of a phone, no wonder Samsung had a hit on their hands, with pre-orders of the phones selling like hot cakes, pun intended (more on this later). However not everything was right in the Galaxy universe, the first release date for the phone was meant to be the 19th of August 2016, with pre-orders starting on the 16th of that month in the US. The UK had a release date of 2nd of September. But by the 30th of August Samsung had issued a statement saying they were halting sales while they investigate some issues with the phone, this was on the back of consumer reports that their phone had exploded. These reports kept popping up all over the internet and hysteria set in - any report about a phone going up in flames was reported as “Galaxy Note 7 [insert fire synonym here]”. Source: Reddit While it is understandable that a phone like this would draw attention, it received a lot of press from major outlets to tech blogs, almost to the level of the iPhone “Bendgate”. Even my non-tech friends were talking about Samsung phones exploding, these are the same friends that think Android is Samsung, so just keep that in mind. Early reports on the matter reported an issue with the battery supplied with the phone as the likely cause of the issue. Samsung like any major manufacturer sources parts from other manufacturers, especially with a popular device, so that they can meet expected demand. In the case of the Galaxy Note 7, Samsung sourced batteries from two suppliers - a subsidiary of Samsung and a Hong Kong battery manufacturer, however Samsung has not officially confirmed the identity of their battery suppliers in their statement. Initial reports pointed fingers at the Hong Kong battery manufacturer, because of this most users assumed that they were safe with their Galaxy Note 7 with a Samsung battery and went about using their phone. Samsung on the 30th of August released a press statement acknowledging a battery cell defect with the batteries on the Galaxy Note 7. Samsung reported that they had only found 35 units had been faulty. On paper 35 units doesn’t seem a lot, but with lives at risk, even 1 unit exploding and causing damage or loss of life is a risk no one should take and subsequently Samsung initiated a Global recall of all Galaxy Note 7s sold - a reported 2.5 million units. In the UK, Samsung began the exchange programme on the 19th of September in very similar way to their global programme, if you had a “bad” Galaxy Note 7, you could take it back to the shop where you purchased it or your network provider and they would provide a replacement phone or refund - those that went through the exchange programme would receive a new Galaxy Note 7 defect free. When consumers received their new Galaxy Note 7, the way to differentiate the new Galaxy Note 7 from the old one would be by the battery icon colour, if it is green the device is a replacement device, if it is white it is a old device that needs to be exchanged. Those devices that did not have to be sent back and exchanged would receive a software update to change the battery icon colour. To ensure people complied and returned their devices Samsung issued a software update that limited the charging of the Galaxy Note 7 to 65% ensuring people would exchange their phone. The exchange programme took 2 weeks after the halt of sales was issued, so consumers started receiving their replacement devices around the 21st of September, but by this time Samsung had lost some consumers and with concerns relating to the quality of the manufacturing many turned to the newly released iPhone 7 range and other devices. Other consumers felt that Samsung had been slow with issuing a recall or addressing the issue, in the UK particularly many consumers had purchased their devices through their network providers or Carphone Warehouse found that the organisation of the exchange programme was poor, with some network providers providing unclear information to consumers. Some buyers decided to keep their devices as they did not know when they would get a replacement, while sellers and network providers offered small tokens of compensation, providing loaner devices, credit to accounts or allowing consumers to keep any gifts that came with their contracts if they were to return for refund their devices. The exchange program has been underway since and it seemed all was well and balance had been restored in the Galaxy universe. But as I write this, there are growing and numerous reports from consumers and media outlets stating that their replacement Galaxy Note 7 phones are once again exploding and Samsung has yet to issue an official statement. A news article this week by the Korean YONHAP News agency is reporting that a Samsung supplier has stated anonymously to them that Samsung have halted production of the Galaxy Note 7. It seems if this is correct, any of the good will people had towards Samsung might have been thrown out of the window. Reputation is key in this day and age and if consumers do not have confidence in Samsung this might not only affect the Galaxy Note brand but all of their other products. So you must be asking yourself right now… What should I do if I have a Galaxy Note 7? If you are an owner of this device, contact Samsung ASAP, the Galaxy Note 7 exchange programme can be found on their site here. If you received your device as part of your upgrade or new contract reach out to your network providers. As for this writer's opinion, FOR YOUR SAFETY STOP USING YOUR DEVICE. Do you think that this has damaged Samsung reputation? Do you think that the Galaxy Note brand is tarnished beyond repair? Would you ever buy another Galaxy Note? Let me know your thoughts below. View full item

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