Friday, December 28, 2012

Samsung announces Jelly Bean Premium Suite update for the original GALAXY Note

Samsung GALAXY Note Jelly Bean Premium Suite Upgrade

If you’re an owner of the original Samsung GALAXY Note and is deciding whether to get the Note II or not, well you can now stop bugging yourself. Samsung just revealed that the first GALAXY Note will be getting another major update to Android 4.1 Jelly Bean soon.

On the product website, the Korean manufacturer detailed the new features the GALAXY Note will be getting. One of those features is the multi-window capability, which the Note II users have been enjoying for a while already. The other features that will be shipped with the update include the pop-up note/video/browser, photo note, photo frame, easy clip which allows users to conveniently crop an image from any part of the screen, and the enhanced S Planner, e-mail, and S Note apps.

The update will also bring new features included in Android Jelly Bean like the Google Now, which brings relevant information based on your search history, and Project Butter that keeps everything running smoothly.

Samsung hasn’t revealed when the GALAXY Note will get the update, though we expect it sometime early next year.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Nokia Asha 205 Dual SIM now available in the Philippines

Nokia Asha 205 Dual SIM Philippines

Nokia just announced that the Nokia Asha 205 Dual SIM is now available for purchase in the Philippines. It is the most affordable QWERTY phone and is the newest addition to the Asha range. It features a dedicated Facebook button, making it perfect for social people who want the fastest access to their Facebook accounts. The Nokia Asha 205 Dual SIM is designed to ensure that people are never more than a few clicks away from their social networks.

The Nokia Asha 205 Dual SIM is also one of the first devices to feature Nokia’s exclusive Slam feature. Slam allows consumers to share multimedia content like photos and videos with nearby friends almost instantly. It works with most Bluetooth-enabled mobile phones without the need to pair devices, and without the recipient needing to also have Slam. In just a few clicks, people can ‘Slam’ their content to another device faster than with Bluetooth alone and without consuming Internet data. Now that’s a lot of slams.

Nokia Asha 205 Dual SIM Specifications and Features
2.4-inch LCD screen with 320x320 resolution
VGA camera
GSM / EDGE - 900/1800
64Mb internal memory, expandable using microSD
Bluetooth 2.1
1020 mAh battery capacity (25 days standby time)
40 free EA Games available for download
Nokia S40 OS

The Nokia Asha 205 Dual SIM is now available at stores with colors Cyan, Magenta and Orange. It retails for P2,680.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Review: Lenovo S405

Lenovo S405 B

Ultraportable notebooks or simply ultrabooks which take beautiful designs, and offers mobility with their light weight have been starting to grab a lot of attention this year, but what seem to prevent them from taking off is their high price tags. The Lenovo Ideapad S405 carries those characteristics sans the expensive price.

The IdeaPad S405, which comes from Lenovo’s line of ultraportable notebooks, offers a balance between performance and mobility, this line of laptops are the in-betweens of the ultrathin and the powerful, yet larger variants. It’s exterior is of practicality and overall functionality. It boasts a thickness of only 21.9mm making it a snug fit to any backpack or laptop bag. Having a weight of only 3.97 lbs. the S405 proves to be a good computing buddy for travelers and those on the go. It features a metallic finish available in a variety of colors including, crimson red, silver grey and cotton-candy pink.

Lenovo S405

The system packs a punch as it is powered by an AMD A-series processor that is bundled with a Radeon HD chip. Through AMD’s Fusion Technology, the central processor and graphics processor are molded together into one chip, making the heat distribution and power consumption more manageable.

Thinking of the needs of its user, Lenovo’s S405 employs a number of peripherals for faster and more comfortable usage. The device employs a USB 3.0 for high-speed data transfers and also a pair of USB 2.0 ports. For storage, the laptop comes with a hefty 500 GB or 1TB disk space. It also has a 32GB SSD variant for faster loading and responsiveness. It comes with an HDMI port, a 14-inch HD widescreen display, stereo speakers and Dolby Advanced Audio v2 certification. The setup makes the unit perfect for entertainment.

The S405 comes with a boatload of Lenovo’s application designed for the convenience of the user. One of such is the Intelligent Touchpad, a feature that allows the user to zoom, scroll, and manipulate files through gestures. In case of drive failure, the OneKey Rescue System comes to rescue which resets the computer back to its factory state at a press of a button.

Be it at work, entertainment, or for gaming, the Lenovo’s IdeaPad S405 proves to be a welcome companion made for any application at any given time. The marriage between AMD’s processor and Lenovo’s systems makes the S405 a powerful machine that conserves both space and time, not to mention cheaper compared to its counterparts. Undoubtedly, Lenovo’s Ideapad S405 gives you the best deal when it comes to price, power, and comfort.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Launch kids into space with Wakajaka

Wakajaka Space

And no, before you think that Wakajaka is some sort of rocket launcher for kids, I’m going to tell you that it is a game that let’s you (or your kids??) build your own unique spaceship from unconventional pieces like house-hold appliances and car tires. Done designing? BOOOOOOOOM. You can now launch your homegrown spaceship.

During your journey you will encounter surprises that only exists in Waka Space; Bump into planets that reveals flowers, fly with the little fairy and pick up the golden coins - but watch out for the grumpy officer Kabanos!

Waka Space is very kid-friendly. Creating and launching spaceships is very easy and intuitive, smoke-free, and ad-free. You can also check out their two other titles, Waka Fireworks and Waka Sleep Aid, available on iOS.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Get these Gameloft games for iOS and Mac for only $0.99

Gameloft Holiday Sale 2012

It’s that time of the year again, when most people do shopping of gifts for Christmas. In the tech world, many people also do shopping. not of gifts but of discounted apps and games. Speaking of discounted games, Gameloft let us know that they are offering the listed games below for iOS and Mac at the sweet price of $0.99. Take a look!

Wild Blood
The Dark Knight Rises
NOVA 3 – Near Orbit Vanguard Alliance
Order and Chaos Online
Iron Man 2
The Settlers

Dungeon Hunter Alliance
Asphalt 6: Adrenaline
NOVA 2 — Near Orbit Vanguard Alliance
Starfront: Collision
Real Golf 2011

iPad mini and iPad 4th generation available tomorrow (update)

iPad mini and iPad 4th generation

Here’s a quick update regarding the local launch of the iPad mini and the 4th-gen iPad. As you may know, Globe started to take reservations for the two devices just three days ago on Monday and, apparently, we were told, it will be available starting tomorrow, December 21. It will be available at Globe Stores and at their website bundled with data plans. For those who want to go unlocked or get the Wi-Fi model, your destination tomorrow would be at your favorite Apple Reseller, or, just do it online.

The iPad mini and the 4th-gen iPad launch came exactly 1 week after Apple released the iPhone 5 on December 14.

UPDATE: As expected, Apple revealed the pricing of the iPad mini and the 4th-gen iPad today and is now available at the Apple Online Store. Check out the pricing below.

iPad mini
16GB – P15,990
32GB – P20,990
64GB – P25,990
Wi-Fi + Cellular
16GB – P21,990
32GB – P26,990
64GB – P31,990

iPad 4th generation

16GB – P23,990
32GB – P28,990
64GB – P33,990
Wi-Fi + Cellular
16GB – P29,990
32GB – P34,990
64GB – P39,990

Monday, December 17, 2012

Globe Telecom begins taking iPad mini and iPad 4th generation reservations

iPad mini and iPad 4th generation Philippines Globe

Globe Telecom has started to accept reservations for Apple’s latest tablet devices, the iPad mini and the iPad 4th generation. This comes just 11 days after they lowered the pricing for the iPad 3rd generation with their postpaid plans.

The iPad mini features a smaller 7.9-inch display than the iPad with a 1024x768 resolution, which is the same as the iPad 2. Powering it is the dual-core A5 processor. It has a FaceTime HD camera on the front, and a 5 Megapixels iSight camera on the back. It can record full HD 1080p videos. For the second time now, Siri makes its way to the iPad — this time in the iPad mini. Lastly, it has LTE. It supports a wide array of LTE frequencies including the ones used by Smart and Globe.

The iPad 4th generation, on the other hand, now includes the faster A6X processor, a FaceTime HD camera, an improved and expanded Wi-Fi and LTE networks support, and the Lightning connector.

Globe has still now revealed the pricing for the iPad mini and iPad 4th generation although that should be out shortly. Check out the reservation page if you’re interested on getting a new iPad this Holiday season.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Twitter launches photo filters to take on Instagram

You might have already heard the news that Instagram has put an end to its support for Twitter cards integration, which allows users of the social networking site to view photos directly on a tweet. Things has gotten a little more nasty today as Twitter, decided to add their own photo filters powered by Aviary on their own mobile apps on iOS and Android to take on Instagram (and Facebook?) directly.


From now on, you will be offered an option to add one of the eight filters on your photo every time that you try to upload one. Filters include Vignette, Black & white, Warm, Cool, Vintage, Cinematic, Happy, and Gritty. Also available is cropping and the auto-enhancement of photos.

Although the selection is not as extensive as that of Instagram’s, this new addition to Twitter’s mobile apps would definitely do. In addition, photos edited using the new editor are fully integrated with Twitter cards on the web, saving many users from an extra click when using Instagram. The updated app is now available on Android and will be shortly released on App Store for iOS.

What do you think of this new feature on Twitter’s mobile apps? Will you use this or you’ll stick to Instagram?


Source: Twitter

Friday, December 7, 2012

These are the Globe iPhone 5 plans (update)

This post has been updated to reflect the final Globe iPhone 5 plans and pricing details.


Globe Telecom has finally revealed their iPhone 5 plans and pricing today. You pay the cashout fee with a credit card for 24 months, so if we’ll take the Plan 1799 as an example, then you're going to pay P1,999 (P1,799 MSF + P200 cashout/month) monthly. You will also get 4 months subscription worth P1,596 for their new phone insurance program called Gadget Care. It allows you to get a new phone in a case of theft and damage at a discounted price. Aside from that, you also get a 1 year subscription of the Globe GCash American Express virtual card, and 50% off on iPhone 5 accessories.

iPhone 5 16GB
Plan 999 – P19,200 cashout
Plan 1799 – P4,800 cashout
Plan 2499 – FREE
Plan 3799 – FREE
Plan 5000 – FREE

iPhone 5 32GB
Plan 999 – P23,976 cashout 
Plan 1799 – P10,800 cashout
Plan 2499 – P4,800 cashout
Plan 3799 – FREE
Plan 5000 – FREE

iPhone 5 64GB
Plan 999 – P30,000 cashout 
Plan 1799 – P15,096 cashout
Plan 2499 – P10,080 cashout
Plan 3799 – P4,800 cashout
Plan 5000 – FREE

No contract pricing (Prepaid)
iPhone 5 16GB – P35,400
iPhone 5 32GB – P40,800
iPhone 5 64GB – P46,300

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Globe to slash P12,000 off iPad 3 pricing

iPad 3 Globe Plans

Just received this info from a source. Globe will soon slash off as much as P12,000 on the pricing of the iPad 3 Wi-Fi + 3G model on it’s Tattoo Plans. This might be in line with the imminent arrival of the 4th generation iPad. If you’re planning to get an iPad with a cellular data connection then this might interest you. Check out the new pricing matrix below.

New Pricing
Plan 999 (unlimited data)

16GB – P14,990
32GB – P17,990
64GB – P21,990
Plan 499 (50 hours)
16GB – P19,990
32GB – P23,990
64GB – P26,990
16GB – P23,990
32GB – P27,990
64GB – P31,990

Old Pricing
Plan 999
16GB – P21,990
32GB – P25,990
64GB – P30,990
Plan 499
16GB – P28,990
32GB – P33,990
64GB – P38,990
16GB – P29,990
32GB – P34,990
64GB – P39,990

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Nokia announces the Lumia 620, an affordable Windows Phone 8 which packs a punch

Nokia just announced a new addition to their Windows Phone 8 portfolio — the Lumia 620.

Nokia Lumia 620 Philippines

The Nokia Lumia 620 is the most affordable Windows Phone 8 device the company has ever released. The Lumia 620, which starts at just $249, packs quite some serious specs for its price range. First and foremost, it has a 1GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4 Plus processor and 512MB of RAM ticking in its innards. On the front, the 3.8-inch LCD screen stares at you with a WVGA (800x480) resolution as well as the VGA front-facing camera. On the other side the 5 Megapixels auto-focus camera with LED flash is located. It also packs an 8GB of storage and a microSD card slot. Powering all of that is the 1,300mAh battery, which is a little bit low.

Overall, Nokia has made the Lumia 620 a very compelling mid-range smartphone considering it’s low price-point. My estimate is that it will sell for about P9,990 in the Philippines. Nokia says it will be out in Asia in early 2013. This is something to watch out for.

Nokia Lumia 620 Specifications and Features
3.8-inch TFT WVGA 800x480 ClearBlack
1300 mAh
Qualcomm Snapdragon(TM) S4 processor with 1 GHz dual-core CPUs
5MP Autofocus, LED flash
Front-facing camera VGA
8GB mass memory (Micro SD support up to 64GB)
7GB free Microsoft SkyDrive storage
Windows Phone 8 OS

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Western Digital launches its own Windows 8 app

Western Digital just released their own app on Windows 8 which makes accessing and sharing files much easier.

Western Digital Windows 8 App

The app, which is now available at the Windows Store, automatically scans contents like photos, music, and videos on WD hard drives connected to your PC and will display previews on a live tile on the Start screen. With the new share feature on the Charms bar on Windows 8, you can also share files easily thru e-mail or your social media accounts.

Western Digital Windows 8 App 2

Moreover, WD has added support for the new File History function of Windows 8 which allows automatic backups of your personal files stored on the Desktop and other Library folders to a supported Western Digital hard drive such as the My Passport® and My Book® Live™ drives. Additionally, WD drives can also take advantage of Windows 8’s Storage Spaces feature. That allows you to make multiple external hard drives appear as a single storage volume which you can use in conjunction with File History to create redundant backups for enhanced security.

The new Western Digital app will be automatically downloaded once you connect supported WD drives to your computer. Alternatively, you can install it from the Windows Store on the link above.

Monday, December 3, 2012

Smart to offer 5 LTE phones, including the Nexus 4 and HTC 8X

Smart LTE Nexus 4 HTC Windows Phone 8X

Now this is pretty interesting. Smart, apparently, will start to offer five LTE devices God-knows-when. One of those devices is the HTC Windows Phone 8X, a Windows Phone 8 smartphone which packs a 4.3-inch HD screen, a 1.5GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4 processor, and 1Gb RAM. It also features Beats™ Audio and 8 Megapixels camera. The HTC 8X currently being sold at retail stores in the Philippines does not have LTE, so it looks like Smart managed to snag this exclusively.

Next up is Google’s latest smartphone, the Nexus 4. Wait a minute, did I just read that? Nexus 4? As in, Google Nexus 4 with LTE? LTE? I thought Nexus 4’s LTE only works in Canada? Stop. I am really confused on this just as you are. The LTE on Nexus 4 was only made to work with Canada’s Bell which runs it’s 4G network on the Band 4 (AWS 2100MHz and 1700MHz). The thing is, Smart’s LTE network operates only on the bands 1 (2100MHz), 3 (1800MHz), and 5 (850MHz). Maybe Google did a magical update in the production line and decided to include all necessary stuffs to make LTE work. If that’s the case though, early Nexus 4 adopters are screwed.

The other 3 remaining is the Huawei Ascend D1 LTE which packs a 4.5-inch screen, Android Ice Cream Sandwich, a humongous 13 Megapixels snapper, 1.5GHz dual-core processor, 8Gb of storage and a gigabyte of RAM. Next up is the Sony Xperia V which is pretty much similar with the Ascend D1 LTE in terms of specs, save for the screen which is a 4.3-inch one. This one is also water-resistant. Lastly, we have the ZTE T82 here. It is also an Android Ice Cream Sandwich device with a 4.3-inch screen, a 1.5GHz processor, 8 Megapixels camera, 4Gb storage and 1Gb of RAM. This seems to be the most affordable among them all.

What’s more interesting is that the recently announced iPhone 5 which will be launched here on December 14 is not included.

We’ll try to get in more info regarding this one from Smart and will update accordingly.

iPhone 5 hitting the Philippines on December 14 (update)

iPhone 5 Philippines December 14

Apple just announced that the highly anticipated iPhone 5 will be finally reaching the Philippine shores on Friday, December 14, along with tens of other countries around the world. The iPhone 5 is the thinnest and lightest iPhone ever, completely redesigned to feature a stunning new 4-inch Retina™ display; an Apple-designed A6 chip for blazing fast performance; and ultrafast LTE wireless.

However, there is not a single mention of LTE on the announcement. We’re expecting both Smart Communications and Globe Telecom’s plan and pricing to be announced shortly.

UPDATE: Globe Telecom has started taking pre-orders for the iPhone 5. Check out their pre-order page.

UPDATE 2: Smart Communications, not wanting to be left behind, followed suit. You can enter your details here if you want to get your iPhone 5 from them.

From which carrier will you get your iPhone 5?

Source: Apple

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Smaller and lighter PlayStation 3 available starting December 6

PlayStation 3 Slim

If you are in the market for your first gaming console, take a look at the latest Sony PlayStation 3. The latest iteration of the Japanese company’s system features a smaller and lighter package. Sony has redesigned the internal architecture which then resulted in a reduction of the weight by more than a half compared to the first generation PS3. The sleek and and curvy body that most have been familiar with is still there.

Storage sizes have been upgraded too. Now you can choose from the 250Gb model or the larger 500Gb one so you can have more of your games, photos, music, and videos.

The Sony PS3 will be priced P14,999 for the 250Gb model and P15,999 for the 500Gb model. You can also opt for the Ultimate Pack which includes two titles: God of War™ III and UNCHARTED 2: Among Thieves™ Game of the Year Edition for P16,390. You can buy one in stores starting December 6.

Friday, November 30, 2012

Kris Aquino stars in a Globe TV ad

Globe Kris Aquino TV Commercial

Famous TV actress Kris Aquino has a new TV commercial wherein she shares that she has been with Globe since 1996 and tells how much of a big deal it was for her to be able to send text messages. She then goes on that ‘Globe has grown with the times’. She then talks on the more modernized network of Globe and stresses that calls not getting cut anymore and that the “I love you mama” of her kids is now always complete. Watch the full TV ad below.

Friday, November 23, 2012

This is the most innovative phone ever made

I mean, seriously!

Cherry Mobile MF1

The Cherry Mobile MF1 is not just a phone, it also doubles triples as a wireless hotspot (or pocket Wi-Fi if you will), and a USB dongle as well. The Filipino company has done a really unique offering here, and I am not joking! Really, this is perfect for their target consumers — the budget conscious. Most of them relies on prepaid data connection for their online needs and this might just be the phone for them. The specs are not too shabby either, it can give full 3G speeds up to 7.2Mbps down and  5.76Mbps down. All of that for just P1,999.

Cherry Mobile MF1 Specifications and Features
Wi-Fi/Wi-Fi Hotspot
USB Tethering/Dongle Mode
HSPA - up to 7.2Mbps down, 5.76Mbps up
FM Radio
Multimedia Player
Bluetooth 2.1
USB with mass storage function
microSD up to 32GB
Available in 4 colors: White, Black, Blue, and Red

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Review: Windows Phone 8X by HTC

The Windows Phone 8X is HTC’s flagship, well, Windows Phone and is one of Microsoft’s signature Windows Phone. I have been using one for two weeks now and I am ready to share my review and opinion.

HTC Windows Phone 8X 5

PART 1: Hardware and Design

“Things on the screen look really sharp…”

The HTC 8X is a thing of beauty. It comes in the professional-looking black and the other very vibrant colors like blue, red, and yellow. When you first pick it up, you will be amazed to feel of how thin it is. Having dimensions of 132.35 x 66.2 x 10.12 mm, the 8X is definitely a medium-sized phone by today’s standards. It doesn’t weigh too much nor too less, while still having a premium feel to it. It is wrapped in a unibody shell with a soft matte touch feel on it that extends outwards on to the side of the front face. That said, the phone does not easily attract fingerprints and smudges. And because of the unibody shell, there’s no user-removable battery and microSD card slot.

HTC Windows Phone 8X 11

The front face of the HTC 8X is dominated by a Gorilla® Glass 2 screen with 1280x720 resolution spread on a 4.3-inch Super LCD 2 panel. The bezel is uniform on the top and bottom. Things on the screen look really sharp, with the screen having 341ppi. Texts look sharp as on most HD screens and colors look vibrant and well saturated on the Super LCD 2 display. However, due to the resolution being a 720p one, some apps are displaying a small empty space at the top though it is not that noticeable and will go away as developers update their apps.

HTC Windows Phone 8X 3 HTC Windows Phone 8X 4

The wide-angle front-facing camera peeks atop the screen just beside the drilled earpiece on the center, which also carries the color of your phone. The three capacitive Windows Phone buttons sits on the bottom in their usual order.

HTC Windows Phone 8X 16 HTC Windows Phone 8X 14

The top part houses the 3.5mm headphone jack, the secondary microphone, and the power/lock button. I sometimes find it hard to press the power button at the top and I often need to stretch out my hand and at the process, I end up accidentally pressing the volume rocker which is located on the right side of the phone.

HTC Windows Phone 8X 17 HTC Windows Phone 8X 18

The SIM card tray is conveniently located just above the volume rocker, and you need an ejection tool which is included in the package to open it. The two-stage camera shutter key sits on the lower-right side of the phone. It is not too stiff which helps prevent hand-shakes when taking photos. The microUSB port and the primary microphone are located on the bottom part of the phone. On the left, there’s nothing. It’s completely bare. HTC should have added a microSD card slot on that side instead.

PART 2: Software

HTC Windows Phone 8X 10

The HTC 8X runs on Microsoft’s latest Windows Phone 8 mobile operating system. I suggest that you should read my review of the OS first by clicking on the link above. Done? Now let me add a few tidbits to that. HTC has added its own software customizations, which is very minimal. On the Start screen you can glance at HTC’s familiar large clock tile, which can display up-to-date weather info. They also bundled additional apps namely Connection Setup, Flashlight, Photo Enhancer, and Converter. Unfortunately, HTC’s app collection pales in comparison with that of Nokia’s. The Attentive Phone features are also present so you can set your phone to lower the ring volume when you pick it up, or set it to ring very loud when in your bag or pocket, and the flip-to-mute setting.

More and more apps are slowly coming on to Windows Phone, with Temple Run, Pandora and more top apps making their way to the store. Sadly, there’s still no mention of Instagram for the platform among others. Other highlights of the Windows Phone 8 include the support for Bluetooth file transfers as well as drag-and-drop from computers, native microSD support, and NFC.

HTC Windows Phone 8X 6

“Don’t listen to something on full volume with your headset on — you might get deaf.”

HTC has also for the first time integrated Beats™ Audio on Windows Phone on the 8X. The volume on the 8X when using a headset gets pretty pretty loud even just on the 15/30 level, let alone when it is set to the highest level. Just so you get a picture, you can actually hear what’s playing through a headset even if you don’t actually wear it. So, don’t listen to something on full volume with your headset on — you might get deaf. The loudspeaker of the 8X shares the same performance too. It produces loud and rich sounds while still not getting distorted because of the integrated amp.

PART 3: Performance

”I haven’t seen any lags at all…”

HTC Windows Phone 8X 11

Windows Phone is known for its not-so-resource-hungry system and that continues on today. The HTC 8X runs everything smoothly with its dual-core Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 processor. Launching apps has noticeably gotten faster, especially with the 3rd party apps. The 2-3 seconds waiting time on Windows Phone 7 has now improved on Windows Phone 8, with most apps with a splash screen getting ready for use in just 1-2 seconds. Lags? I haven’t seen any lags at all in my testing. Tiles fly out when you launch an app, and they fly in again when you go back to the Start screen.


On the browser, webpages load smoothly. Zooming and panning around pages are fast, and thanks to the sizeable amount of RAM the 8X have, the browser has never crashed even for a single time — even with 6 tabs open. My only grunt about IE 10 is it still doesn’t render some HTML5 websites properly (take a look at it on my Windows Phone 8 review).


Overall, though, the HTC 8X is really fast at almost everything it’s thrown up. The 8X can switch between open apps and games without breaking a sweat. For the benchmark junkies out there, I run WP Bench and the 8X scored a little over 235, which is on par with the other dual-core Windows Phones.


The battery life of the 8X is typical of a smartphone. It gives me around 16-18 hours of moderate usage, with the Wi-Fi set to on, casual browsing, and minimal calls. Call performance on the 8X is generally within the acceptable range though I cannot really judge it too much on this department as call quality really depends on the network serving you.

PART 4: Camera

“This is the kind of front-facing camera that should be a standard for all smartphones.”

HTC Windows Phone 8X 2

The HTC 8X sports an 8 Megapixels primary camera with a backside-illuminated (BSI) sensor which helps in low-light conditions and an f2.0 aperture lens. Photos especially in well-lit conditions are good. They can sometimes become a bit noisy though, which is noticeable when you zoom in. Check out the sample photos below, click on each one to view them in full resolution.

WP_20121130_058 WP_20121130_068WP_20121130_073 WP_20121130_077WP_20121130_078 WP_20121130_085WP_20121130_082 WP_20121130_088

Things get more interesting on the other side (pun intended). The front-facing camera is an 88-degree wide-angle one. This is the kind of front-facing camera that should be a standard for all smartphones. It’s just perfect for video-calling. Look at the comparison shot I did below.



See the difference? Not only I did not look too close to the camera, it also captured more area than on the other one. This will be useful for group shots with your friends or maybe a family video-call. You don’t have to compress the unlucky one on the center. :D

The Verdict

“The HTC 8X is beauty and brains.”

The HTC 8X is one heck of a sleek Windows Phone. Its build quality is pretty solid; it’s not too large for someone with small hands or too small for the large-handed. Windows Phone 8 is much better than its predecessor and is bound to get even better in the future. Whilst only having a dual-core processor, the 8X managed to keep everything going on smoothly without any major hiccups and small lags. If you’re an audiophile, the Beats™ Audio in here will definitely delight your ears. Its camera has some room for improvements especially the noisiness of photos in low-light. The wide-angle front-facing camera is a win though, especially for those who are an avid user of video-calling apps. To sum it up, the HTC 8X is beauty and brains.

The good
Good, solid build quality
Sharp and bright display
Fast performance and almost lag-free
Good sound quality, Beats™ Audio
Wide-angle front-facing camera
Camera takes sharp photos when in well-lit conditions 
Body is not too large, not too small

The bad
Power button placement on the top
Windows Phone still lacks some top apps on the store
HTC’s own app collection can be counted with your fingers

Samsung GALAXY Camera goes on sale in the Philippines this November 26

Samsung GALAXY Camera Philippines

Mister Jonjon has exclusively learned that Samsung Philippines is planning to launch the product of their first foray in the camera-phone hybrid market, the Samsung GALAXY Camera, this coming November 26 in the Philippines. It will reportedly sell for P23,990 and will come in both white cobalt black.

The Samsung GALAXY Camera is an Android-powered digital compact camera that boasts of a 16 Megapixels BSI CMOS sensor with a 21x optical zoom. It runs on the Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, has a 4.8-inch HD Super Clear LCD, runs on a 1.4GHz quad-core processor, and includes 3G/4G/Wi-Fi/Bluetooth connectivity. For more, check out our quick hands-on with the device over here.

Nokia Lumia 510 now available at WellComm

Nokia Philippines has announced the availability of the Lumia 510 in the country.

Nokia Lumia 510 Philippines

The Nokia Lumia 510 is the most affordable Windows Phone device to date. It runs on Windows Phone 7.5 and will be upgrade to 7.8 sometime later. It sports a 4-inch LCD display with an 800x480 (WVGA) resolution. The display is not that bad considering the price the phone comes in. Aside from that, it comes with a 5 Megapixels autofocus camera, a 1GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon S1 processor, 4GB of internal memory, 7GB of SkyDrive online storage, and a 1,300mAh battery capacity.

The Lumia 510 is already available at Wellcom/Wellcom 3C Stores, MP3 King Kiosks, MP3 Express Kiosks, Wellcom Digital Express Kiosks, Nokia Store SM Sta. Rosa, Nokia Store Rockwell, Nokia Kiosk Isetann, Nokia Kiosk Riverbanks, Nokia Kiosk Sta. Lucia East Mall, and Nokia Kiosk Ever Gotesco. It has an SRP of P7,290 and comes in black, red, and white.

Nokia Lumia 510 Specifications and Features
4-inch screen with WVGA (800x480) resolution
Snapdragon™ S1 single-core processor
5 Megapixels autofocus camera
4GB internal memory
7GB SkyDrive memory
1300 mAh battery capacity
Windows Phone 7.5 Mango OS

Monday, November 19, 2012

Apple may or may not release the iPad mini in the Philippines on Friday

Apple Black Friday Sale

Apple will be having a so-called ‘one-day shopping event’ this Friday, November 23 — which falls on Black Friday, the start of the Christmas shopping season. The company has already sent out teasers in which an iPad is concealed in a green Smart Cover. There’s not so much to delve into the image but I hope Apple will release the 4th generation iPad on that day because for almost a month already, people have not been able to purchase a current-generation full-sized iPad. They’re still selling the iPad 2, though it’s already more than a year old.

Perhaps they’ll also release the iPad mini? Oh, November 23 is exactly 30 days after the announcement of that — makes sense! Meanwhile, check out the alleged official pricing of the iPad mini here.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Nokia announces January 2013 availability for the Lumia 920 and Lumia 820

Nokia Lumia 920 Philippines

The Head of Corporate Communications at Nokia Philippines Nikka Abes just disclosed that the two Windows Phone 8 devices of the company, the Lumia 920 and Lumia 820, will be making their way in the country by January 2013. The exact ‘pricing will be announced closer to sales start’.

UPDATE: We asked the exec about the delay and it’s cause, she cited that their ‘rollout strategy per country is based on bringing products to market when [they] have the right infrastructure, ecosystem and Nokia Care support to deliver the best local experience possible for consumers’. It probably means that Nokia might be working with Microsoft on getting some Windows Phone features such as the Xbox Music and Xbox Live in the country. Additionally, the support training for the store employees might be just underway or is only about to start. Hold on tight! They’re on it.

Image Credit: The Verge

Friday, November 9, 2012

Smart to carry Nexus 4 and Nexus 7 on it’s lineup

Smart just announced that they will be soon offering Google’s newest smartphone, the Nexus 4, as well as it's 7-inch tablet, the Nexus 7, this holidays.

LG Nexus 4 Philippines

The Nexus 4 is Google’s latest home-made smartphone, which is being made by LG. It runs on the latest Android 4.2 Jelly Bean which has new features like gesture typing a la Swype, and photo spheres, The device is powered by a quad-core Snapdragon S4 Pro processor, backed by 2GB of RAM. It has an 8 Megapixels camera on the back which can shoot 1080p full HD videos.

Smart has not yet announced the plans and pricing for the Nexus 4 and Nexus 7. The Nexus 4 sells for $299 for the 8GB model and $349 for the 16GB model in the US. On the other hand, the Nexus 7 retails for $229 for the 32GB model, but is being sold here in the country for P13,995.