Hands On & First Impressions With The Essential Phone

-I’m excited that there is a new company emerging into the mobile phone market. Ladies and Gents may I introduce to you the one and only Essential. Possessing a somewhat Avant garde design, and premium materials, for a first phone, they nailed it. Being a truly Bezel less phone, it’s quite the sight to behold. There have been other similar phones, the Sharp made Aquos Crystal, and a few Asian companies, however this brings ceramics and titanium to the party. Along with high end specs to boot, Essential gives us a premium feeling in this quite capable device. 


 -This Newbie has no logo on it’s casing, no branding, no corporate tattoo of authenticity, no trademarks no FCC emblems. To some people this doesn’t matter. I however find it refreshingly simple. Minimalism is the new black ey? There is that somewhat unsightly however satisfying blemish up top. I’m referring to the front facing camera cut out, as pictured below.

-To add to the minimal essential feel and motif of the phone, Essential gives us only Android Google apps, that’s it. No carrier bloatware, no manufacturer apps, it’s basically just a straight up Google phone. This will do two things. One, it will help in getting prompt software updates and two, it will help in making it a snappy responsive glitch free device in theory of course. 

-As to my first impressions, it’s a sexy device if I might say so with a fresh design. Powerful innards give it capability and speed whilst the atheistics and building materials make it feel well designed and sturdy in the hands. This, for a new company and a first go at design, is quite impressive. 

-Hopefully enough people will buy this phone and give the company a chance to give a second generation next year. I’m excited to see how this phone ages. At launch this phone has a trick up it’s sleeve. A 360 camera attachment is available for purchase. This seems to be the trend right now in the world of accessories.  There are iPhone 7 cases with a built in 360° cameras, the Galaxy Note 8 and it’s 360° camera, the Moto Z2 force and it’s 360° camera mod attachment. Further testing is needed in order to compare these cameras. 

-Some of the specs for you fellow spec hounds out there include but aren’t limited to, the Snapdragon 835 chipset, Dual 13 megapixel cameras one of which is a true monochrome sensor. The display is a Quad HD ips LCD edge to edge panel. The onboard storage is 128gb with no expendable storage, but with 128 gigs who needs a micro SD card? This puppy packs 4gb of RAM and the battery is of the 3040 mAh kind. 

-To sum up, this is a uniquely designed first go around for this newbie OEM. I’m impressed, I think the camera attachment is kind of gimmicky however, the dual rear facing main cameras are promising. The stock Android aspect is inviting and the lack of branding is refreshing. Being a phabletguru I wish the display was bigger, but the near bezel less display adds to the immersive experience. Did I mention the back is a scratch resistant shiny beautiful ceramic? Or the metal frame is titanium? Premium materials add to the whole ambience of what will be known as the Essential phone. 

-This has been another phabletguru first impressions, until our next meeting of the minds I shall leave you with, be excellent to each other.-


A PhabletGuru First Impressions : Galaxy Note 8 Baby Yeah!

-Samsung, otherwise known as the iPhone of Android, has struck a blow at Apple once again. At this point it’s just ridiculous how much more advanced Galaxy phones are than iPhones. This isn’t a comparison review however, this is a first impressions. I will start by saying it’s a powerful huge device, and for the most part has left a good impression on this Guru.

-Some argue, understandably so, that the Note 8 is an S8 with a waterproof stylus. This is misleading kind of. Yes the design is nearly identical save for the squared corners and slightly taller display. The curved edges aren’t as pronounced, however this isn’t noticeable. The dual camera on the back is noticeable though only to phone nerds such as myself. To the layman it probably does look like a Galaxy S8. More on Samsung’s entry into dual camera setup with the actual review.

-The Samsung Galaxy Note 8 wouldn’t be a note without the Spen (built in pressure sensitive stylus). Samsung has now made the pen IP 68 water and dust resistant alongside the phone. More on that with the full review. The new live message feature is exciting. Again, more on Spen features with the actual review. 

-The fact that Samsung gave the Note 8 6gigs of ram is amazing. Use the Samsung Dex and you’ve got yourself near to PC level experience. This means Samsung is leading the way towards something like a gaming phone of sorts. I’m thinking PlayStation 3 emulators actually working. The possibilities are literally endless. I’m anxious to see how it stacks up. With the Snapdragon 835 chipset and the aforementioned 6gb’s of ram we should have a beast of a phone.

-Speaking of beast of a phone, the new Galaxy Note 8 is huge coming in at 6.3″. With a body ratio of 2 to 1, what you have is an extremely tall device.  It’s very slippery and hard to manage, good luck one hand’ing’ the notification pulldown. Though compared to the Galaxy S8 plus….. It’s only a .1% difference. The curved display makes it ackward to handle. Personally I wish the display wasn’t curved but the infinity screen is a sight to behold. 

-The UI was smooth during my brief time with the phone a few days back. Being within the industry has its perks. Getting to play with a phone before announcement is always awesome. TouchWiz is still TouchWiz, with features galore. I really liked the preset dual app customizations. And the Spen is still a novel little thing that completely adds to the whole Note experience which always delivers. 
-All in all Samsung Fanboys, and Note lovers will get this phone and for good reason, it will be the most feature packed decked out hardware cutting edge design powerhouse of a phone on the market when it launches. This phabletguru will definitely be obtaining this phone. 
-This has been a brief first impressions bright to you in the still of the night where I will hold you so tight.-

Say Hello To Moto…”Hello Moto” Z2 Force Review. 

-For the love of uniqueness and innovation I take great honor in stating that I love Motorola devices. I owned the Razr way back in the days as well as the Nexus 6 and both Droid Turbos. Moto currently makes some of the best midrange and budget smart-phones on the market with the Moto G, E, and the Moto X line. The Moto X line has been favored and praised amongst professional Tech reviewers. I personally sold a ton of the unlocked Moto X Pure editions whilst I was a mobile expert at Best Buy. 

-The Moto Z2 Force is no exception in this long list of heavy hitters. This is a sleek beautiful device. Here at PhabletGuru We have been quite impressed with this device. A device that has some rather interesting functions and features, some good some not so good. Ceasing any and all delays let’s jump right into it. 

-I’m going to begin a little differently this go around. Let’s begin with some concerns, or the negative qualities and or problems I’ve had with this phone. First off, I’m not sure if it’s my particular unit or not, but there have been some glitches or bugs or what have you. 

-Examples of these glitches include taking pictures that then seem to save nowhere or don’t exist. I literally took about five pictures sequentially, of my sister and brother-in-law, within a span of about one minute. To my surprise when I went into my photos to view and share said pictures they did not save. I distinctly heard and saw the photos being taken. The built in shutter noise was heard yet the pictures went into some abyss. This was, thus far, an isolated event however, and has not happened again. 

-There is no headphone jack! Why are OEM’S taking this from us. This is fringe but I enjoy the better audio quality of analog. They are nice enough to include an adapter but this saddens me. It’s not a deal breaker but there is plenty of room to include the headphone jack. I find it trendy and unnecessary. 

-There has also been a few stutters or hiccups in the day to day happenings within the software. For instance not recognizing screen swipes a few times. The “Google” app of all apps has force closed a couple of times. Although I completely love the Moto suite of software tweaks like Moto actions, voice, and display, the double twist gesture to launch the camera would not recognize the second gesture to switch to the front facing camera. It required me to restart the phone to fix the problem. However, this was also an isolated event that has not happened again. 

-Speaking of Moto software I am very disappointed that they decided to do away with the custom A.I. launch phrase. Since it is an Android phone “ok Google” still works but, call me nerdy I enjoyed the ability to launch Moto’s assistant (which was linked to Google Now) with a custom phrase on Moto’s of past. 

-I keep hearing talk about how it’s pretty stock Android. Experiencing it since launch day I can say there is enough Moto software to consider it skinned in my opinion. The dock or navigation tray is utterly and monstrously huge. The app drawer scrolls vertically, and the very useful suite of Moto tweaks add to the stuttering of the U.I. We will go into later. 

-The battery life is an issue, one I believe was purposefully designed to require a battery pack mod. This modern high end phone only incorporated a measly little 2730 mAh battery. I’ve had to charge my phone every day partway through my day. You’d be lucky to get 3 hours of screen on time. I’ve resorted to half brightness on my screen and using the Greenify app to help prolong the battery. This seems to get me almost through the day. 

-Lastly the screen scratches easier than other flagship devices. I’ve put Moto’s shattershield technology to the test but before I did I noticed some scratches on my screen. My assumption is that it came from being in my pocket and rubbing against other phones, or my lighter. 

-Mentioning screens let’s move on to what I love about this unique phone. Ladies and Gents I present to you a third generation shatter “PROOF” 2K ultra high-def P-OLED panel. The first shatterproof phone Motorola debuted was the Motorola Droid Turbo 2, a Verizon exclusive. Then not long after the Turbo 2, Motorola unveiled the “Z” line of phones with the Motorola Moto z Droid and Motorola Moto Z Droid Force edition, a bit long winded yes. These were also Verizon exclusives. The latter having a second generation shatterproof display. 

-This screen has a 5 layer screen technology invented by Motorola and it is legit shatterproof. I have thoroughly tested that claim. A claim this screen lives up to. The display has absolutely no glass in it. It has five layers of various materials one of which is a plastic screen protector pre-installed on top. If your phone gets scratches and it will, you can peel off the top layer and get a replacement from Motorola. I’ve purposefully dropped this phone several times from around 7’6″ straight on concrete. Nothing but scratches, any other phone would be shattered. 

-As with previous Moto Z  phones it’s all about the mods baby yeah. Lenovo was forward thinking enough as per their promise to make the phones backwards compatible with the Moto mods of last year. I’m going to use a word momentarily that I frequently use. A word harnessed by one of my idols, Terence McKenna. The Moto mods are nothing but pure novelty (in a good way). 

-With last year’s mods including the projector, the various battery packs, the JBL speaker and true zoom camera mod, and this year’s new comers the 360 camera and gaming controller, Lenovo has brought something different to mobility that is truly unique. Talk about thinking outside of the box. 

-I’m sure most of you have either seen the commercials or heard of these Moto mods. If not you are in for a “wow” moment. On the back of this extremely thin phone there are some metal connectors flush with the magnetic back. They are POGO connectors that allow the mods to communicate with the phone.

-As mentioned above you have a projector mod that allows you to project your screen up to 70 inches. YouTube, Netflix, and videos shot with the phone can be shared and enjoyed on a massive display of your choosing. Whether that be a wall, ceiling, or an actual projector screen you are sure to be amazed with this expensive mod. 

-Next we have the JBL speaker with built in kickstand. For its size it produces clean, great sounding loud tones. I was actually surprised at how loud it was. I would like to take this opportunity to say how amazingly designed these mods are. They literally just snap on the magnetic back in the blink of an eye. There is no need to remove anything or turn anything on or off. 

-There also exists an optical zoom camera mod available for purchase. The actual resolution isn’t much better if at all from the actual phones camera. However it can optically zoom up to ten times. This mod developed by Hassleblad also has a Xenon flash. 

-There were also various brands of battery mod packs last year. These do exactly what one might think they do, charge your phone battery. They work similar to the way the Mophie cases for iPhone and Galaxy work. Snap them on and poof battery is charging. This is of particular use for you weekend warriors. You know who you are. 

-As stated, in addition to last year’s mods we have two new mods to ogle over. A 360 degree camera & the Moto gamepad mod. Both are superb ideas. These are executed very nicely, unlike some other failed attempts at modularity. Excuse me while I look awkwardly in LG’s direction. 

Photo courtesy of Android Central

-Film 360 video to use with VR. Or for other content creation. With the power of Android and emulators, imagine playing Mario 64 or Mario Kart 64 on your phone using an actual tactile controller attached to either side of your phone. You get the idea from the pictures. I think I’m most excited for the Moto Gamepad mod. 

-When mods aren’t in use you can snap on what Motorola calls “style shells” (sold separately of coarse). These are not only stylish but serve a couple different practical uses as well. They allow the camera hump to disappear and cover up the POGO connectors. 

-You can choose from real leather backs, ballistic nylon, bamboo and other wood grain backs, various synthetics in different colors and patterns. Unfortunately it did not come with a style shell in the box like it did with last year’s Z phones. 

-The camera is….well….interesting to say the least. If you are looking for the best all around shooter on a phone you’ve come to the wrong place. It’s not bad it’s definitely a contender with a couple cool features. It has a 12MP dual lense setup. The secondary camera does two things. First it is a true black and white camera. A native black and white lense gives a more professional look than a simple filter does. Secondly, it allows the two cameras to work in conjunction with eachother to give depth while in depth mode. This is akin to the iPhone portrait mode however the Moto does it better in my opinion. See for yourself…

No editing done, point and click

-For my faithful Guru’ites’ all 4 of you, I will give a quick rundown of specs.  

  1. 5.5″ quadHD (2k) P-OLED shatterproof display
  2. Dual rear facing 12MP cameras 
  3. 64GB on board storage with SD card slot 
  4. 4GB Ram
  5. 2730 mAh non removable battery 
  6. Android 7.1.1 Nougat 
  7. Snapdragon 835 Octa-core processor
  8. Adreno 540 GPU

-It has all the things needed for a competitive device in the current market. Oh and it feels nice and light almost too light. Very smooth feeling it is. Apologies sometimes my inner Yoda comes out. It is very skinny as well. 

-I really love the Moto Actions, Moto Voice and Moto Display software suite. Perform a double karate chop action to turn on and off the flashlight. Double twist to launch the camera and again to switch to the front facing camera. These have become staples of Motorola phones for the past few years. I’ve come to love them however the voice aspect has been somewhat downgraded. 

-You might now be wondering if you should buy this device? My response would be open ended. I would ask do you like Motorola or really like the shatterproof aspect of the device. Maybe you are tired of the same ol same ol from the other guys. If so then yes buy this device. Personally I can look past all the faults mentioned herein because it really has so much going for it. 

-If however you are immersed in the Apple ecosystem and are what is known as a fanboy then no… do not buy this unique novel phone. If your looking for the best well rounded cutting edge high end flagship top of the line display quality phone, then you’ll want a Galaxy device. 

Thanks for reading drop a line or two if you have any questions or shared ideas wishing to impart. 

-If you are reading this sentence congratulations you get 5 stars you are top of the class and will be commended.- 🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟 

Blackberry Keyone Review: Retro is “in”

-The mobile market in all actuality is comprised of two giants, two companies that tower over all others. You know of who I am referring to. Samsung and Apple dominate the American market. Once giants in thier time, BlackBerry has become synonomys with “retro” due in part to the physical QWERTY keyboard adorning their well built hardware. Hardware that never seems to die. Luckily for them retro seems to be in, I came to win battle me that’s a sin. <—– music reference. 

-Moving right along, I would like to start by getting this out first… do not get this phone if you love watching YouTube or Netflix on your phone. This is not a media consumption device really. More on why you should get this phone a little later.

Disclaimer, this entire review was typed on the BlackBerry Keyone & no keyboards were hurt in the making of this blog. 

-I want to kick this thing off by saying I love this phone and it’s novel little keyboard. If you consider yourself a phone nerd or geek or even connoisseur, as the case may be, then I can honestly recommend you buy this phone. Even with its annoyances and compromises it is a PhabletGuru “two thumbs up”. 

Retail packaging shown above and all other pictures taken with the LG V20

-There is an ironic aspect of my like for this phone because it’s not a phablet. Quite the opposite in fact the screen is rather small by today’s standards. This is why I say the Keyone is not for YouTube or Netflix. This latest BlackBerry phone has a 4.5 inch full 1080p HD display. 2011 called and wants its screen size back. BlackBerry opted to cut cost by going HD instead of quad HD (2k). This however translates into higher battery efficiency and lifespan. 

-Speaking of battery life this thing is a straight up champ. In real life situations it lasted me a couple of days with moderate use. This phone is definitely for weekend warriors. It has a 3505 mAH battery. 

-The life of the battery is amazing. This is due, not only to the screen resolution, but to the midrange processor as well. It has the Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 octacore processor clocked at 2 GHz within the Keyone which keeps going and going and going. The speaker is quite loud and sounds clear. 

-There are a few things you won’t be getting this phone for. You will not get this phone for the screen size or quality however it is sufficient. You won’t get this phone for the camera although it will get the job done, it’s an average camera. Nor will you buy this phone for multimedia consumption, including gaming. Because of this I will not go into details in these categories. 

-If you’re getting this phone more than likely it’s because of one of two things perhaps even both. You either like the asthetics of the BlackBerry or you really want that keyboard. Either way it will be satisfying. 

-What can I say other than “dat keyboard tho?” Not only is it beautifully crafted and designed but it has innovation oozing from its crevices. Yes you can mash away at the tactile clicky keys…. a bit archaic considering what it can do, you can actually swype text as well! Yes you read that right you can swype on the physical keyboard. If you aren’t familiar with what swype texting is, basically you can guide your finger over the keypad from one letter to the next spelling out words without lifting between letters. 

-In addition to being able to swype text, you can transition up or down, left or right, as the case may be. In essence the entirety of the keyboard is a trackpad. Scroll up and down websites or over to the next photo in your Google photos without having to swype on your screen and leave unsightly blemishes and smudges. Ladies and gentlemen I give you novelty. 

-Experiencing this first hand is amazing. The novelty wears off however and what you’re left with is a very useful function. Might I say this as well, the back feels utterly astounding. This phone feels simply amazing in the hand. It even has multi colored notification lights blinking away. Little things like that, little details add to the retro experience garnered from the Keyone. 

-Conveniently there is a programmable convenience button located on the right underneath the volume rocker. I decided that it should open Google Assistant. It is very easy to accidentally press the button unfortunately. I found myself pressing it several times a day. 

-No phone is perfect however, there’s no wireless charging, it isn’t waterproof, it has a midrange processor and average camera. It does have USB type C though so that’s a plus. It’s industrial design will either invite you in or appall you. I tend to lean towards the former. 

-There is an occasional glitch or hiccup if you will in the software processing the various swipes you perform on the keyboard. What can I say It’s just something about the way it looks and feels and it’s nostalgic aura that makes the experience enjoyable. 

-Here’s the context in which I am currently using it, I am using it as a work phone. I added a line to my account and bought the phone. This will be for groupme used for work, checking my schedule, checking my metrics and hopefully my work email as well as Customer communications and advertising. For this it seems to be the perfect phone.  

-I waive my BlackBerry flag high and proud. It’s holy banner draped along my halls. Joking aside I haven’t even mentioned security or the fact that it’s running Android. Yes Android has met BlackBerry and yes the creation is glorious. 

-In conclusion this phone, the phone I’m typing this on, makes a perfect work phone or busssiness phone.  I remember government officials carying Blackberry’s due to the advanced mobile security it offered. Anyways I digres  If you’re feeling nostalgic and want that retro look then this is the phone for you. If you want to try something other than iPhone or Galaxy, and aren’t around water or need to watch Netflix for extended periods of time, then I can recommend this. 

-If you want something with FaceTime or Bixby I recommend looking elsewhere. 

-Until next time this has been an official PhabletGuru Review all others are only imitations and will be prosecuted under the full tenants of the law.-

Best In Category Samsung Gear S3 Frontier Review

-In one statement… I can say that the Samsung Gear S3 is THE smart watch to own in late 2017. Before I get into my thoughts i.e. the review, I would like to say, I know it’s been a couple months since I posted here on Phabletguru. I’ve had what is known as “writers block” with a touch of “lack of motivation”. I’m going to try and work past this by doing what I should’ve done the whole time, just write. Moving along, shall we review? Yes I think we shall’t’.

-The Samsung Gear S3 Frontier and Classic models are the latest in the Samsung Gear lineup. With Traditional looking aesthetics, and superior functionality and tech, the S3 blows the competition out of the water. It’s round (like a watch should be in my opinion) & versatile. I’m not dogging on square watches. Being an original Pebble and Pebble Time fan I see the appeal, to a degree anyways. It’s just not my preference in regards to wrist watches.

-Pressing onwards… Having wore the S3 Frontier for around 3 months I can say two things, one, I am still amazed at it’s feature set, and two, I do not harness all those features as much as I’d originally thought I would. 

-The Samsung S3 Frontier (the model I own) is a marvelous piece of mobile tech this side of the Galaxy series phones. For you spec guys, we know who you are, here are some tasty specifications for your drooling needs. It has a 360×360 1.3 inch super AMOLED capacitive display with rotating bezel. Packing a 1 GHz dual core Exynos processor, 768 MB of RAM, 4gb on board storage, NFC, GPS, a heart 💓 rate monitor, step counter, barometer, accelerometer and gyro. You’re sure to be well equipped in our high tech modern jungle.

-Battery life is decent, lasting 3 to 4 days. However, This is with minimal use. If you plan on harnessing all those aforementioned features be prepared for a two day maximum lifespan. This was a slight let down but acceptable.

I really dig the fact that you can store music and photos on the watch itself. Which completely eliminates the need for a phone when listening to music. Just pair your S3 to some Bluetooth headphones and proceed to jam out. As for the photos they come in handy for various watchmaker apps.

-As with most tech, it has its shortcomings and unwanted nuances as the case may be. There has been an issue with voice to text not working, and heart rate monitor malfunctions. But the sheer awesomeness of this doohickey as the old timers say, more than makes up for it. Glitches aside the full circle display without the “flat tire” problem of the Moto 360 is welcomed.

– I do wish Samsung went with Android Wear software instead of it’s proprietary Tizen software. That being said Samsung pay is more accepted than Android pay so all is not lost. To think we have smart watches that can transmit false magnetic codes wirelessly to a debit card reader in order to make a purchase. That’s some straight up Dick Tracy stuff right there.

-Ip68 certified water and dust resistance is a nice addition. You can customize what your various screens are and in what order you want them. Different apps have different widgets. You can text your loved ones directly from the watch with voice to text (sometimes), with a handwriting converter, or with “T9 word” which is a personal vintaged favorite. I enjoy the fact it has emojis built in, and a decent speaker that’s loud enough for voice calls.

-There are all sorts of apps and watchfaces available for download from the Samsung app store. Many of which cost money 💰, another downside of not being an Android Wear product. That’s not to say there are no free apps or watchfaces, just not as abundant as something from Android would have been.

-Working in the mobile industry as I am lucky enough to do, I see the popularity of various brands, Apple being at the top of the list. Thus I find it amazing that this Samsung product works with iPhone! This in of itself is very important because iPhone users now have a more advanced option other than the Apple watch.

-In conclusion I highly recommend this high end feature dense wearable to any health conscience, tech loving, busy, productive, watch wearing, person. Or anyone searching for novelty, you know who you are. The minor annoyances don’t hold a flame to this beast of a device that is the Samsung Gear S3 classic or frontier.

-Until we meet again remember to pay homage to the old God’s and the new.

LG G6 Review, Finally A Contender… Sort of.

-This review is brought to you by your friendly neighborhood Spider-Man- 

-LG or “Life’s Good” has made a beautifully designed well crafted phone in the G6. It’s best feature being the screen. Is that enough to sway you from Samsung or Apple? Does LG deserve your money? Find out in today’s review of the LG G6. 

-Having thoroughly and sufficiently played around with my review unit I can say that I am impressed with the G6 compared to it’s predecessors. Pinning it against the Galaxy lineup or the iPhone sheds a different light however. This elegant phone has that good feel in hand thing going on, beating Samsung to the punch with it’s 18 by 9 aspect ratio. Basically the display is twice as tall as it is wide. 

-Besides the design LG brought a couple of new things to the table. First and foremost LG has now joined the ranks of it’s 2 main competitors, Samsung and Apple, with ip68 water and dust resistance. This is a welcome addition to the G series feature set. This brings a sense of security when it comes to water damage in my opinion, it was a great move. 

-Secondly LG was gracious enough to give us wireless charging… (where you at iPhone)? This came at a cost however, gone is the Quad DAC from previous LG phones. Audiophiles will be disappointed. Alas, sacrifices must be made. Keep in mind all this is for the US versions of the phone.

-To me even though the G6 feels great in the hand, it feels antiquated and passe’… Next to the sleek and modern futuresque Galaxy S8. What once looked like uber tiny bessels now looks like old news and monstrous. Thanks to the curved design of the new Galaxy lineup. But this is true of all other OEM’S. 

Next to the iPhone the LG G6 looks sexy and modern. Thanks in part to the hideously huge bessels on the iPhone. Not to mention that the G6 design looks almost like LG maybe got an early leak from a Samsung insider. And rushed it’s own design borrowing heavily from the all glass front and back, and metal trim design of earlier Galaxy phones. 

-I’ve never really been a fan of LG’s software. There’s a couple cool features but overall it’s sophmoric with very cartoony overtones. This of course is rocking Android Nougat, with LG’s custom skin UI on top. I highly recommend downloading a launcher if this is your next phone. 

-LG did away with the removable back of the V20 and half baked pseudo mods and replaceable battery of the G5. And gave us a unibody glass and metal design. Had this been 2 years ago I might’ve been impressed. As far as software goes as stated above I’m not a fan. However that being said, it’s better and slightly toned down than in iterations past. 

-A feature that made it over, slightly improved, is the dual camera. With both the G5 and The V20 the secondary camera sported an ultra wide angle lens at a measly 8 megapixels. Whilst the primary camera with a traditional field of view sported 16 megapixels. With the G6 however, both lenses have 13 megapixel sensors. Here’s a shot taken with the G6. 

-As you can see it takes great photos. Great depth of field, and contrast. The colors are rich but not overly saturated. I’ve been impressed with the camera. Lg, in my opinion, is one of the most underated OEM’S when it comes to camera quality. The fact that they offer full manual controls i.e. able to change white balance, ISO, and manual focus etc.. Makes setting up your shot a fun personal experience that allows amateurs to feel like professionals.

-Internally the LG G6 is no slouch. I do have one complaint, why give us last years processor? Sure the Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 is sufficient, but the newest phone should equal the latest processor. The Galaxy S8 and S8 + will give us the Snapdragon 835. Why LG chose this is uncertain. 

-Offering 4gb of RAM was a nice touch. The 3300 mAh battery should be sufficient to last all day, at least that’s what you would think. I have found it extremely hard to last all day. Scurrying for an outlet to charge my review unit after moderate to heavy use. But it’s par for the course comparatively.

-The display is gorgeous, with Dolby HDR Vision on board. Amazing colors and brightness. But next to the Galaxy S8 again we see a display that is lacking. This is true for all other OEM’S as well. It’s hard to beat Samsung in this category. But in of itself this display is gorgeous. 

-If you’re an LG Fan (all 4 of you) buy this phone. Otherwise you will probably want to look elsewhere. It is a bit underwhelming, and the build quality, though the best lg has ever produced (aside from the Nexus 5) seems copy catt’ing if you will. 

-The unique 18 by 9 aspect ratio in my opinion isn’t enough to recommend this phone. I would recommend this phone for the camera, and also because it’s an underdog phone. It’s definitely sexier than the current gen iPhones. If you don’t want Samsung or Apple phones then go for this one. Especially if you have Sprint it’s half off and it just came out 2 days ago! 

-Most of you will probably not buy this phone. If you do, more than likely you will enjoy it. With the Galaxy phones on the verge of launching if you can, I say wait a couple weeks for those. If you can’t wait, then the LG G6 is a solid Contender against Galaxy and iPhone, sort of.

-This has been another Phabletguru Review, remember you can’t spell review without Phabletguru!-

Samsung Gear Icon X Review: Unique Wireless Earbuds At A Cost…

-With all the hype surrounding Apple’s AirPods, I thought I’d give a review of a product that did it first, and with more tech involved better. Samsung, with it’s unique wireless earbuds the Gear Icon X gave us freedom, style, and novelty. 3 amazing characteristics bundled into this will designed product.

-I’m not much of an earbuds kind of guy. I prefer over the ear cushioned headphones, that being said my wife is however, she prefers buds. Most of this is coming from her, although I have tried them, my perception is already skewed due to preferences. One thing I can say is that Samsung is quite the innovator and these buds are forward thinking. 

-The coolest most innovative thing about this product is that these are Earbuds that can store 4gb of music directly on the buds themselves without needing a phone to pair with. Yeah…. Let that sink in…k, let’s continue.

-Here’s the Geek 10 for you fellow geeky peeps….

  • Dimension. Earbud: 18.9 x 26.4 x 26.0 mm. Case: 35.3 x 30.3 x 92 mm.
  • Sensor. HR, Accelerometer, Capacitive Touch. Gesture control
  • Storage. 4GB. …
  • Connectivity. BT 4.1 (BLE)
  • Battery. Earbuds: 47mAh. …
  • Water Resistant. Splash Resistant (P2i Nano Coating)
  • Audio Spec. Frequency Range: 20~20 kHz. …
  • Microphone. 2 per earbud.
  • Completely independent and wireless buds without awkward shaft hanging out of your ears
  • Wireless charging case included

-I’d like to start off by saying that these have a futuristic feel to them, even still. The left and right buds operating independently yet together to bring you freedom, untethered, and innovative. There are no unsightly bars coming down out of your ear (cough cough), nor wires connecting them to each other, no wires of any kind. 

– The sound quality…. Is…. Well… Barely passable. They are sufficient and have good levels in the mids and highs the decibel levels and the bass, however… I find myself wanting in these areas. But I’m a bit of an audiophile so don’t let me dissuade you from buying some I’m sure you will quite enjoy them. Especially for my next topic, the interface. 

-Within that gold lining or trim, lies the user interface via the touchpad. Tap once to pause/resume. Tap twice to skip music tracks, or three times to play the previous song. The sensitivity is a fluctuating thing apparently, it’s somewhat annoying to accidentally pause when you were trying to go back a song. However it seems to adequately work 70% of the time. It takes a while to get use to the UI but once you do it’s pretty smooth sailing. 

-The onboard 4gb of storage does wonders for the fastly diminishing battery life. A battery life that seems vulnerable to constant Bluetooth streaming. The fact that you can store around 700-1,000 songs directly on the buds is reason enough to buy these at half the cost of the AirPods. Way to think differently and practically Samsung. This is an extremely useful feature for you exercise types. No need to lug around a phone on your morning jog or bike ride.

-The wireless charging container that these buds sit nestled in all snug like, is a nice touch. There’s something satisfying about placing them in there and seeing the indicator lights come on. You can charge the case separately and then it will charge the earbuds when on the go. 

-The fitness aspect of these novel buds, is superb. The square area of the buds is the optical hear rate sensor. The Samsung Gear App and S health apps work as you’d expect. With calories burned, steps made, and more, you’ll get you all the info needed. 

The music settings and app settings allow for things like choosing which ear will be the call answering ear, or controlling the ambient noise. Which is a handy and very useful feature by the way. Basically it allows you to somewhat hear the world around you. 

-The Gear Icon X PC software has some extra features, use it to put music on the Icon X buds. To replace lost buds and delegate left and right etc… This has been very useful, as mentioned above battery life suffers when used as Bluetooth streaming buds. In contrast the battery life is exponentially better when playing native songs.

-My wife enjoys them, and has only a couple of dissatisfactions. Namely the battery life and maximum loudness, or depth of sound. Those things however are not warrant enough for her not to love them. Because she does. As for me… Again I’m not your earbuds kind of guy. But I can say I love the concept and execution of the Samsung Gear Icon X wireless earbuds. There’s a lot going on with them. I can say you will most likely enjoy them if bought. 

-Remember kids….. Don’t try this at home-