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Reviews

46

Fossil Hybrid HR review: Not quite the next Pebble, but a good start (Updated)

Fossil announced its new line of hybrid smartwatches earlier this month, after weeks of rumors. While the company has made hybrid wearables before, the e-paper screen makes this iteration much closer to what you might get from a full-blown smartwatch.

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86

Pixel 3a, revisited: Android 10 makes this an even better budget phone

The Pixel 3a was Android Police's Smartphone of the Year, and for good reason. It marked Google's return to the budget phone arena, which it left after the Nexus 5X and 6P were retired in 2016. More importantly, the 3a is just a really good phone, with decent performance and one of the best cameras in the smartphone world.

In light of the Pixel 3a's recent update to Android 10, and the impending release of its sequel, we thought it was a good time to check in again on the 3a. In what will likely be a surprise to no one, Android 10 makes it better than ever.

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54

OnePlus 7T Pro 5G McLaren review: Trading battery life for an extra G

OnePlus came out of nowhere barely five years ago, offering a compellingly cheap flagship phone with... questionable marketing. OnePlus has grown up a lot over the years, and it's no longer reliant on unlocked phone purchases. Not only has OnePlus partnered with carriers over the past year, it has produced some of the first 5G phones in the US market. The new OnePlus 7T Pro 5G McLaren has a mouthful of a name, but it's probably the first 5G phone that's even worth your consideration.

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32

Schlage Encode Smart WiFi Deadbolt review: A lock this good is 'key' to smartening up your home

Some smart home gadgets seem like solutions in search of a problem, shoehorning IoT connectivity into something that was working just fine without it — unless you're that one guy who really needs to talk to Alexa while playing the keyboard. But on the opposite end of the spectrum, you've got the smart lock, an early leader into the world of the connected home that managed to reinvent a "dumb" product with some genuinely useful new functionality.

There's no shortage of smart lock options out there, running the gamut from fully integrated replacements to add-ons that quickly attach to existing locks.

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7

Apollo Max review: Graphene is finally more than science fiction, but don't buy this portable charger

Graphene has been dangled in front of us for over a decade as a new, magical material capable of solving all our technical problems, while steadfastly staying out of consumer products. It's a materials science fact with the mythos of science fiction, but it's finally percolating down into stuff you can actually buy, like this portable charger/battery. Made by a Chinese company called Elecjet, the Apollo Max promises 37Wh (10,000mAh) of capacity, 100W charging, 60W discharging, and a 19 minute recharge time. Unfortunately, that last claim is just science fiction.

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71

The best cheap true wireless earbuds you can buy (Winter 2019)

True wireless earbuds have come a long way in a few short years. What was once an expensive extravagance for early adopters that offered inconsistent performance and subpar audio quality can now be made to a far higher standard at a more accessible price point.

The market has been flooded by affordable wireless earbuds over the past couple of years, so much so that it's hard to decide which ones are worth spending your hard-earned cash on. After trying a few pairs out and researching a few more, we're able to recommend some of the best true wireless earbuds you can buy for less than $50 or $100.

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123

Fossil's fifth-gen smartwatches showcase Wear OS at its best (Update: four months later)

Google's Wear OS platform is in a bit of a weird place. The operating system itself is still being periodically updated with new features and improvements, like the Tiles function that was released in May, but the third-party app library is still minimal, and Qualcomm has been slow to improve the underlying hardware. Still, Wear OS isn't going anywhere, and the closest thing to a flagship watch is the new fifth-generation Fossil Q lineup.

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17

Lenovo Smart Display 7 review: Not dethroning the Nest Hub any time soon

If you haven't already bought a smart display and you aren't skipping out over privacy concerns, you really should pick one up. They're a lot more than just a "digital photo frame," providing all the same utility as a smart speaker, plus piles of extra interaction from a touchscreen. But you might want to be careful about which smart display you buy. Lenovo's newest Smart Display 7 might have an attractive design, but it's got piles of little problems that might make the identically-priced (and often discounted) Nest Hub a better choice. Sadly, it doesn't quite live up to the high standards set by Lenovo's previous models, either.

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332

Google Stadia review: This could be big (Update: Three weeks later)

Cloud gaming isn't a new idea. Companies like OnLive (RIP) have been trying to make it work for the better part of a decade. Google's effectively limitless resources and software wizardry make it an ideal fit to work the kinks out of such a complicated problem, and with Stadia, it seems it may have done just that. In my time with the platform, streaming performance has been wildly impressive — but lackluster day-one game selection and plenty of half-baked features make for a rocky start for the fledgling gaming platform.

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13

SnapTo by Moshi review: Magnetic, fast wireless chargers for your desk and car

Qi wireless charging's popularity has seen an ebb and flow since the tech's introduction. After growing slowly but steadily for several years, it stalled for a while, but is seeing a resurgence now with many popular smartphone makers supporting the standard. Flagships from Google, Samsung, Huawei, and several other Android brands are Qi compatible nowadays, and accessory makers have jumped on the trend.

Beside wireless charging pads and stands, many have combined the convenience of plopping a device on a surface and seeing its battery fill up with the simplicity of magnetic mounts, to create a product that's nearly seamless to use.

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