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Reviews

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I'm going to use Amazon's "Prime Exclusive" $60 smartphone for a month

A $60 smartphone (or rather, $50 - but hold on) is basically a headline unto itself. It is a novelty solely because of its cost. And that makes talking about it in a way that doesn’t always use “yeah, but it’s only $60” as a reflexive crutch difficult. (Which is not to say I won't do that, because I will. Probably even in this post. Several times.)

BLU’s Amazon-supported R1 HD is far from the cheapest smartphone ever. And it’s far from being a revolutionary product - the only thing interesting about it is, frankly, the business model. And in particular, Amazon’s proposition that it being a nag on your lockscreen and in your app drawer is worth $50 if you’re already a Prime member.

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Review: The JBL Clip 2 is a pint-sized speaker that punches above its weight

Last week I reviewed the largest portable Bluetooth speaker I've ever seen. This week, the speaker we're looking at slots in at the opposite end of the spectrum. It's called the JBL Clip 2 ($60), and you'd need 44 of them to balance the scales with one Braven BRV XXL. Sure it's smaller, but its compact size makes it about a thousand times more portable, giving it a complete different set of uses. Is it any good? Read on and you'll find out.

What's in the box

  • The JBL Clip 2
  • MicroUSB charging cable
  • Instructions & warranty information

Notable features

  • IPX7 waterproof: Go ahead and dunk it, it can take it, as deep as 1 meter of water for up to 30 minutes.
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Video review: OnePlus 3

While you may have read our OnePlus 3 text review, you might be waiting for another take before pulling the trigger on the latest from the sometimes-controversial smartphone manufacturer. Well, another take is what we've got: Facundo Holzmeister takes it away in our video review of the OnePlus 3.

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Sony Xperia X Performance quick review: A flawed phone with an obscene price

Sony is now accepting pre-orders for its line of Xperia X phones in the US, including the X and X Performance. We've already covered the Xperia X in detail, learning that it's a disappointing phone. But what of the top-of-the-line Xperia X Performance? It solves a few of the issues with the Xperia X, but it comes with a much higher $700 price tag. Is this the Sony phone you should buy, or should you buy none of them? Let's use the Xperia X as a thoroughly mediocre and overpriced yardstick to find out.

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LG G5 Friends review, take 2: 360 Cam! 360 Cam! 360 Cam! Oh... other modules too

When I published my review of the LG G5, my personal take on the device itself was positive and divergent from David's more criticizing review. However, there is one aspect both David and I agree on almost to the letter: the Friends. They are, in my opinion, fun to try, but you can tell they were rushed, with a poorly executed mechanism, and some highly doubtful usefulness factor. Well, all but the 360 Cam. That one is pure awesome bundled in magic and wrapped in 360 degrees of cool.

Here's how some of the modules work. The G5's bottom chin can be removed with a small button/latch on the side of the device.

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Review: The Braven BRV XXL - If Thor, the God of Thunder, were to design a Bluetooth speaker, it would probably look and sound a lot like this

Here at Android Police we've tested devices of all different shapes and sizes. Well, the Bluetooth speaker I'm reviewing today is the largest and heaviest portable speaker I've ever used – by a lot! This is the Braven BRV XXL ($350), and it lives up to its name in both size and sound. Let's have a look, shall we?

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OnePlus 3 review: Learning how to cut the right corners

OnePlus started talking a big game before its first phone even came out. The company's attitude can be irksome, but the OnePlus One turned out to be very good thanks to a combination of high-end internals and highly customizable Cyanogen software. Plenty of people still use this phone, but the OnePlus 2 does not seem to have the same dedicated fan base. It omitted several features like NFC and quick charge technology. Now, the third flagship phone from OnePlus is out, and you don't even need to beg for an invite to buy it. Is this the true successor to the OnePlus One? Let's dig in.

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Samsung Galaxy S7 Active (AT&T) review: a phone that's tough to kill and tough to recommend

This review is about 4500 words long. We do that a lot here at Android Police, and if you want an exhaustive breakdown of the hardware and software in the Galaxy S7 Active, then by all means, read on. But if you want the long and the short of it, here it is: the S7 Active is a Galaxy S7 with a permanent "tough" case around it and an extra 1000mAh of juice. If that sounds like a good thing, and good enough that the $100 premium AT&T asks is reasonable, then the phone is right up your alley.

If you'd rather have something smaller, or more trendy, or with a bigger screen or a modular capacity, look elsewhere.

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LG G5 review, take 2: Don't judge a very capable book by its unassuming cover

In my surroundings, I am known as the "LG girl." I switched to the brand in 2013 when the G2 was announced and fell in love with the big screen, the great camera, and even LG's own software additions on top of AOSP. I recall showing friends and acquaintances photos I'd taken with the G2 while hiking, flipping the phone to landscape, and telling them to swipe through the pics. "It's like holding only a screen, the bezels disappear," was my own way of explaining why I loved the G2 so much. It never failed to impress.

Then the G3 came along.

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Review: RIVA S compact bluetooth speaker - premium sound and build quality with a price to match

Since I took over audio reviews at AP from Cam, I have been asked to share my opinion on speakers from dozens of brands. One brand that pops up often in these discussions is RIVA. I hadn't heard of the company before so I did some research and discovered that the newcomers to the portable audio industry are building speakers that are turning heads (or maybe just ears) with their smooth sound and sophisticated styling.

I asked RIVA to send me one of their speakers to check out, and they obliged, so today we'll take a look at the newest speaker in their lineup, the RIVA S ($250).

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