It's been a year since Android Auto was announced, and it's only now starting to hit the market. You can buy a handful of cars with support for Auto (with a software update), and more vehicles are on the way. There are also some aftermarket head units that can smarten up your dumb old car. Now that it's finally reaching consumer availability, we can see how Google's car infotainment platform works.
I've had a chance to play with one of Pioneer's NEX Android Auto kits (the AVIC-8100NEX), and have already posted some initial impressions. Now let's dig in and explore this new frontier for Android. Read More
Anyone who's been around AP for a reasonable amount of time knows that I'm a big fan of my iPad Mini simply because I love the guitar amp sims available on the platform. For roughly $50(ish), I'm able to cover essentially any tone I can imagine, most of which are very true to the amp they're recreating. While I wouldn't think about using this in a live situation, it's absolutely indispensable for practice and recording quick licks.
I've longed for this type of functionality on Android for a few years now, and while Google has done a little bit to reduce the amount of audio-in latency with Lollipop, we're still not quite there. Read More
When you hear the name "NVIDIA," the first thing that comes to mind is most likely graphics cards, or at the very least the company's Tegra chips that have been powering Android devices for several years now. Either way, it's probably not "the company that makes the killer Android TV box that's hanging out in my living room."
But after today, it honestly might be.
We've spent the last week or so playing with both the base model SHIELD and storage-laden SHIELD Pro, which at this point are unquestionably the best Android TV boxes that money can buy. Read More
I've spent time with a lot of Blu handsets over the past couple of years, and one of the biggest downsides (to me, at least) is always the outdated software. In fact, every Blu phone I've looked at so far this year has been running KitKat. Fortunately, Lollipop is set to hit a few of the company's handsets starting this month, and it also just released the Studio C - its first offering to run Lollipop right out of the box.
The Studio C is a modest midranger with specs similar to some of Blu's other more recent devices (like the Studio Energy):
Powerhouse? Read More
It takes a special skill set to make something as repetitive, boring, stressful, and annoying as blood pressure (BP) monitoring look and feel good. While I'm lucky enough to still be too young and healthy to worry about my own BP, I do manage a small town pharmacy in Lebanon, which requires me to perform routine measurements on many patients.
Unroll the cuff, slide it around the arm, correctly position the diaphragm, close the cuff, adjust the stethoscope, inflate the cuff, let it slowly deflate while listening in, and finally remove everything after the readout is done. Rinse and repeat. It always feels like there are way too many steps involved than necessary. Read More
LG has developed something of a cult following in the smartphone enthusiast world since it introduced the G2 back in 2013. With the G3, it became the first major smartphone OEM to bring a QHD (2.5K) display, among the first to use the Snapdragon 801 processor, introduced a great camera with OIS, and generally built a fast, bleeding-edge phone.
The G4 could be seen as a largely corrective measure - mostly existing to improve on its predecessor's pitfalls. The G3's display was criticized as dull and lacking much in the way of brightness. The G4's has much better contrast, improved viewing angles, output, and uses less power. Read More
It's close to a universal among those who are old enough that we all once owned a Nokia phone and played Snake. We didn't get those early cell phones to play games, but lo and behold, there was a simple and addicting game within. After many years, Read More
Snake's creator the man who brought Snake to mobile phones—Taneli Armanto—has teamed with Rumilus Design to revamp and re-release the classic with a little bit of modern flair. After their recent announcement, Armanto and Rumilus released the game to the Play Store yesterday. I've been testing it a bit longer than that and have enjoyed the way the creators stayed true to the original concept while still sprucing things up for a completely new era of mobile gaming.
Livescribe released their newest smartpen, called Livescribe 3, about 18 months ago. Why review it now? Well, with Android’s native support of Bluetooth 4.0 LE and wider adoption of KitKat and Lollipop, the smartpen finally has software support for Android. We first caught wind of the Android app back in January, its preview was released just a couple weeks ago, and now I will walk you through how the hardware and app play together. Overall, I am walking away very impressed with the experience. With that said, there are several significant drawbacks with taking notes with the Livescribe 3 that you will want to know about before picking one up. Read More
In recent years, Dropcam has been the leader when it comes to smart home security cameras. FLIR recently jumped in to the market with the FLIR FX wireless security camera. This is a mobile-centric security system that offers cool ways to review your video and receive alerts on your phone when something goes down at home. Let's see how it performs.
LG's newest smartwatch, the LG Watch Urbane, costs $350. So let me just throw it out there now: judging LG's new Watch Urbane from a value perspective is sort of completely silly. When it comes to value, I don't think any Android Wear watch has especially great appeal - after all, you're paying as much or more for one than you would a relatively inexpensive smartphone, a smartphone that does many, many more things. But the Watch Urbane has even less value appeal than most Wear devices (not that this is at all fatal to its success as a product).
If you really care about value, the Sony SmartWatch 3 with its Wi-Fi, GPS, and NFC are right here for $100 less than the Watch Urbane (if not less than that if you get it on sale). Read More