A mobile payment service is only useful if you can, you know, use it... which must be pretty disheartening for customers of smaller banks and credit unions. Each one of them needs to be certified with new payment systems before their customers can join in the "fun" of paying for stuff with their phones. Today Samsung Pay, the semi-proprietary system that's surprisingly interoperable thanks to some neat payment tech, adds a whopping 19 new Visa and MasterCard issuers to its list of compatible banks and similar companies. Read More
The Galaxy S6 was a drastic (and welcome) departure for Samsung, and it's looking to capitalize on that success by refining the feature set of the upcoming Galaxy S7. The Wall Street Journal has a source claiming the new phone will adopt some ideas from other devices on the market, but as usual, take this sort of thing with a grain of salt. Read More
Samsung is cranking up the promotions this holiday season, which is great if you already have or are planning to get select Galaxy devices. Signing up for Samsung Pay can net you $200 to blow on Samsung products (this one is football-themed for some reason), and a Tab S2 can keep you streaming with a free year of Netflix. As usual, many, many restrictions apply. Read More
Samsung's Galaxy View is a weird device, but Samsung isn't giving up on the jumbo tablet just because no one knows what the hell to do with it. Okay, how about this: you can play games on it with the aid of a gamepad app on your phone. Cool? Oh, but the app only works on Samsung phones. Meet the S Console Gamepad app. Read More
Samsung has updated the mid-range Galaxy A series with three new models set to debut later this month. The Galaxy A7, A5, and A3 (seen in that order above, not to scale) will come to China first, but they'll expand globally later. These are positioned as cheaper alternatives to the Galaxy S series, but they do have some solid features and Samsung's now-standard metal/glass construction. Read More
A hockey puck is made of about six ounces of hardened rubber. It's hard to put a dent in one, and it has to be, because after a few games anything weaker would look like the "after" images at the NHTSA testing facility. A smartphone is made of plastic, metal, glass, and various bits of circuit board and other electronics, none of which is designed to be smacked repeatedly by sticks and ice. Unless you have a "ruggedized" model like Samsung's various Active phones, of course.
As part of YouTube's "Awesome Stuff Week," the Unbox Therapy channel decided to see if a Galaxy S6 Active could stand up to the punishing job of being a hockey puck stand-in. Read More
We've all become accustomed to Samsung Mobile head JK Shin appearing on stage at each flagship unveiling, but no more. The company announced today that he's stepping aside to allow another executive to take the reins. Koh Dong Jin from Samsung's R&D division will be the new man in charge of Samsung's mobile business. No one seems entirely sure what Jin will do as president of Samsung's mobile division, but everyone agrees it was time for a change. Read More
Android tablets don't seem to be in high demand since the default size for flagship phones has shifted to "frickin huge," but for those who still want one, there are deals to be had right now. Adorama, a well-known US electronics retailer, is selling the latest Samsung flagship tablet for a significant discount on eBay. The 9.7-inch version of the Galaxy Tab S2, which has a retail price of $500, is just $359 on eBay right now. Both the black and white models are available, and if you live in the lower 48, you get free shipping as well.
Unfortunately, would-be buyers in Alaska and Hawaii are out of luck, as is anyone outside of Canada, Australia, and "Europe." Europe is in quotes there because the list of excluded countries also includes most of continental Europe from Ukraine all the way to Portugal - apparently Adorama thinks that Europe consists of Germany, the UK, and Ireland, and not much else. Read More
Android Wear is not everyone's thing. I splurged for a Huawei Watch with a mesh link earlier today when Amazon's $100 discount kicked off, but you may not like the look of the Hwatch or the way Android Wear works. Or you might be invested in Samsung's ecosystem and have more faith in the way they handle their wearable's platform. After all, it's your wrist, you can wear whatever you want on it.
In that case, you might want to head to Adorama today. I know, I know, it's not Amazon, and you'll have to create an account if you never shopped there, and do all of that unnecessary work while you're still under the influence of a glucose coma from your meal, but it might be worth the effort of working a few more minutes. Read More
Here's a secret about Android Wear: at the moment, even more than a year after the first Wear devices hit the market, most of these smartwatches use the same Snapdragon 400 system-on-a-chip. That means that outside of screen resolution and quality, and of course the cosmetic changes implemented by the different manufacturers, there isn't much difference between the latest models and the originals. That being the case, the first Samsung Gear Live (the square one) is still a pretty good way to get into Android Wear, if only to see if you actually like it.
So a Gear Live for $80 is still a great deal, even if it's not quite the rock-bottom price we've seen on similar models like the G Watch. Read More