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review

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AsteroidOS 1.0 is a promising open-source smartwatch OS with plenty of room for improvement

When smartwatches first hit the market several years ago, I immediately hopped on board. As an avid lover of watches, I found myself very interested in the concept of wearing a timepiece that also doubled as a notification mirror for my phone. At the time, I worked in jobs where phone use was either discouraged or outright prohibited, whether by policy or the frantic pace of the position. But unfortunately for me, I have a compulsion to know what's going on with my phone at any and all times — I can't just ignore my phone going off. So smartwatches offered me a chance to keep my phone in my pocket, but still be kept apprised of my incoming notifications.

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RAVPower AC 27000mAh 100W Power Bank review: Big battery, low power, good price

We spend a lot of time researching the gadgets we use, but often gloss over things when it comes to accessories. That seems to be especially true in the case of power, where most of us just sort of use whatever battery or charger we have on hand—convenience is the most important thing. But if you look into the matter, not all batteries are created equal. Thankfully, RAVPower's 27,000mAh, 110V AC-compatible battery has some decent specs in an inexpensive package, and we've got a coupon that makes it even cheaper.

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Anker Roav C1 Pro & C2 Pro review: Not your average dashcams

Everyone knows you should keep a spare tire in the trunk of your car, and possibly tools like jumper cables and scissor jacks. Dashcams can be just as helpful as those, but many American drivers never install one. This can be for many different reasons — most them are ugly, the driver thinks they don't need one, and so on.

Anker makes a few car-related products under its 'Roav' brand. We already reviewed the Roav Viva car charger with Alexa, but Anker also produces several dashcams. The C1 Pro (R2120) and C2 Pro (R2220) have been on the market for nearly a year, currently priced at $106 and $140, respectively.

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Sony LF-S50G review: Novelty features don't redeem this expensive Google Assistant speaker

In the personal assistance arms race, the two real options for Android users are Google's Assistant and Amazon's Alexa, and both companies have realized that victory will require ubiquity—not as the final result, but as the means. To that end, each has opened its platform up for third-party hardware, and Sony's (un)imaginatively named LF-S50G takes advantage of Google's Assistant in the same way the first party Google Home does, seasoned with a few unique features like gesture controls and a clock.

At around $200, though, I don't think Sony's speaker is worth the extra cash for most people over the $130 Google Home, unless you have particular requirements.

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ASUS Zenfone Max Plus M1 review: A big battery alone does not a good phone make

Back at CES, Asus showed off a follow-up to the not-so-old Zenfone 4 Max, which was a phone that ultimately disappointed me. Attempting to capitalize on the love for big batteries, the Taiwanese company decided to spin off the Zenfone Max line into its own device family. These phones will offer large batteries and many of the latest smartphone trends for budget prices.

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Anker Nebula Capsule review: The best portable projector, but it'll cost you

Last year, mobile accessory company Anker released its first portable projector, the Nebula Mars. It was roughly the size of a lunch box, with powerful JBL speakers, great video quality, and Android built-in. The hardware was great, but the ancient version of Android (4.4.4, to be precise), lack of Play Store support, and high price made the product hard to recommend.

Not long after, Anker announced a smaller version, called the Nebula Capsule. It's roughly the size of a soda can, and works as both a projector and a Bluetooth speaker. It's almost certainly the best portable projector you can buy, but it commands a high price.

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Phiaton BT 150 NC review: Great sound and noise canceling in an affordable package

Taking a step away from fitness-oriented audio, I have recently spent some time with Phiaton's BT 150 NC noise canceling earphones. This is aimed at traveling professionals who want to have great noise canceling without breaking the bank. Phiaton manages that with the $150 BT 150 NC, all while providing very good sound quality and comfort.

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ASUS Chromebook Flip C302 long-term review: The laptop that brought me back to Chrome OS

I've never been a fan of buying expensive laptops, even once I could actually afford them. Just like with smartphones, there's a certain point where the added features can't justify the $1,000+ prices, unless you are doing heavy productivity or gaming. My first laptop was the ASUS Eee PC 1001PXD netbook, which I was pretty happy with at the time (now the 1024x600 screen sounds atrocious), but the casing eventually started to crack apart. I later switched to the original Dell Chromebook 13, but the limitations of the browser-only environment were too much to bear, so I bought a Surface Pro 2.

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Review: Satechi's 75W charger has USB-C PD, Quick Charge, and extra ports to keep all your gadgets going

When you travel, you get a good idea of the stuff it takes to keep your lifestyle going. It's one thing to be surrounded by all the things you need at home, but it's another to selectively pack them into a limited space with the expectation of maintaining the same standards. For me, the limiting factor has always been power: charging all my stuff means toting a pile of cables and bricks around. In fact, that's one of the biggest advantages of the growing ubiquity of USB-C and the PD spec.

So when I saw Satechi's 75W Travel Charger, with one USB-C PD and three USB-A ports, I knew I was interested, and it didn't disappoint.

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OnVocal OV Alexa headphones review: A good concept with poor, flawed execution

The thought of having a personal assistant right in your ears is an exciting prospect, which is why many of us were so hopeful for the Pixel Buds and even Bose's QC 35 II. Ahead of both of those, however, was the OnVocal OV, a pair of neckbuds that came equipped with Alexa. If you're tied into the Amazon ecosystem, then this would be quite appealing.

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