Dec 27, 2016
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As we move further into the age of wireless audio with the iPhone 7 abandoning the ever-so-present headphone jack, a new category of "truly wireless" earbuds has been popping up. So you may be asking, what does "truly wireless" even mean? Well, as you may have seen, many earbuds that have claimed to be "wireless" actually have a wire in between the buds that generally goes around your neck. So, a few companies, such as Bragi, decided to do away with any and all wires, leaving us with Bragi's first product, the Dash. The Dash started as a Kickstarter project back in February of 2014, with an enormous amount of support, raising just under $3.4 million with the promise of earbuds completely free of wires and with loads of other features. These features included activity tracking, touch controls, on-board storage, water-resistance, and more. The campaign had initially intended to ship out the Dash units in October of 2014, but due to many setbacks, they started shipping out units in early- to mid-2016. With initial reports of problems with the microphone and Bluetooth connectivity, it seemed, at first, like the Dash could be just another Kickstarter flop. Instead, however, the company dedicated a lot of time into creating new updates to the firmware that drastically improved, if not completely solved these issues. The Sound DSC01138An earbud can't be good without sounding good, of course. So, how does the Dash stack up to the competition? After all, the price for these is not cheap, coming in at around $300. Well, they're actually pretty good! I wasn't expecting amazing sound from a device so small, yet packed full of components. What I found was that the Dash produces a good, clear sound, though certainly preferring the mids over the lows and highs. That said, I am quite a bass-lover myself and I'm coming from using a V-Moda Crossfade M-100, so I've been spoiled, and for earbuds, the Dash does a good job producing the bass it does. If I had to compare it to some other earbuds, I'd compare the sound to something like the "wireless" (but not completely wireless) Jaybird Bluebuds, which are quite good themselves. Bluetooth Connectivity Now, a common issue with truly wireless earbuds is their often lacking performance in their ability to hold a strong Bluetooth connection. In the beginning, there were lots of complaints from users experiencing poor connection even if the phone was placed only as far as the user's pockets. Obviously, that's a huge issue, but also one Bragi appears to have fixed through their updates. I can confidently say that I have had virtually no issues whatsoever with the connectivity of these earbuds, other than maybe one or two micro drops in connection. I tested the Dash by walking around a room and was able to go as far as 10 to 15 feet away from the source without experiencing any connectivity issues. Additionally, just the process of using and connecting the earbuds is really simple. All you do is take them out of the case and put them in your ears. The buds sense when they're in and automatically turn on, connect to each other, and connect to your phone or other device. Comfort and Design DSC01125Another historically common problem with this category of audio products is the ridiculous look of the product or their inability to stay in ears due to the sheer weight they carry. Luckily, this is not an issue with the Dash. While you may get some head turns while using this product, people often just don't care, and the Dash really doesn't look bad at all. Additionally, these earbuds were surprisingly comfortable to wear. They come with multiple sleeves to fit your ears (XS, S, M, and L), and once you find the right fit, the earbuds fit snuggly and quite comfortably. I haven't had too many issues with the buds falling out, which has always been a problem for me, whether or not the earbuds I was using were wireless. Yet another check mark for the Dash. Gestures/Controls A neat feature of the Dash is the way you control them. There are multiple ways that you control the Dash, including through the app, touch sensors on the outside of each bud, and head gestures. For instance, if you receive a call while using the earbuds, just nod or shake your head to answer or deny the call. Playing and pausing is easy, with just a tap on the right earbud, or start tracking activities with a tap on the left. One of the issues I noticed is that the touch sensors aren't only sensitive to your fingers, so putting on a winter hat caused the earbuds to do some unwanted actions. After looking around a bit, though, it looks like Bragi addressed this issue by including a touch lock that can be implemented by holding down on both the right and left touch sensors, which worked well and solved my problem. Other Features DSC01143The other features included with the Dash are a microphone, onboard storage, a heart-rate sensor, and a case that charges the buds 5 times on-the-go. To start off, the microphone had quite a few complaints in the early days, with users claiming it was unusable and that the person speaking sounded robotic over the phone. This is yet another area where Bragi has used its firmware updates to address an issue. When I was using the microphone for phone calls, some people said there were no problems at all, while others said it sounded a bit muddled, but they could still hear me and know what I was saying. As for the onboard storage, there's not much to be said about it. Songs can be added through a computer and using it works as described. Next up is the heart-rate sensor, which seemed to be relatively accurate, though I didn't have another device to compare it to at the time. This is a really nice feature for athletes looking to listen to music without an annoying wire and no need for a smartwatch. And lastly, the charging case. The case is built quite well, with an aluminum sleeve and a strong metal or plastic where the earbuds actually rest. The earbuds flash when they've been connected properly, and a magnet holds them in place. My only complaint is that I feel like I will drop the earbuds when trying to get them out of the case because you have to take the sleeve off, hold that, hold the battery part, and then fiddle with getting the buds out. That said, overall, the battery case is a nice feature, as the battery life on the buds isn't spectacular at about 3 hours. Conclusion So, what are my overall thoughts of the Dash? Well, I like them. I don't know if I, personally, would quite want to spend the $300 for them, but I could understand why some would. The features work well and the sound quality is pretty good, considering everything that's built into them. I think Bragi's next product, the Headphone, could also allow a lot more people to purchase their products, with reportedly better sound quality and a much lower price of $149. However, that new product does strip the Dash of many of its capabilities, including the water-resistance, touch controls, onboard storage, and heart rate sensor. So it really comes down to what you want. If you want the smart capabilities, there really is no other product out there that offers all of the Dash's capabilities, but if that does interest you, the Headphone is probably the way to go.

Four of The Best Samsung Galaxy S7 Cases

It’s been a couple of months since the release of the Samsung Galaxy S7 so there are now hundreds of different cases out there but today we are checking out four great cases that should satisfy your phone protection needs. All of these cases will protect your phone from an average drop but differ vastly in grip and overall feel. The great thing about all four of these cases is that they will add little-to-no weight to your S7 while still providing great protection.


Spigen Slim Armor

First off we have the Spigen Slim Armor in Gunmetal which is a go-to case for many smartphone buyers as it offers the best of all worlds. This case is half plastic and half rubber which allows for great drop protection while keeping phone sleek. All of the buttons are covered with rubber which makes them less clicky yet easier to press. This case doesn’t let much heat through so it’s great if you play lots of games and your device tends to get uncomfortable from the heat. The back of the case is plastic which allows the case to easily slide out of a pocker or purse.This one also has a little kickstand which works perfectly if you want to watch a movie on a plane or just prop it up around your home.

The Spigen Slim Armor for the Galaxy S7 is available at Mobilefun for £19.99 ($24.49).


Caseology Parallax Case

Next up we have the Caseology Parallax Series case in black which is my favorite of the bunch because of how solid it feels in the hand. Unlike the plastic back from the Spigen Slim Armor, this one has a rubber back with a nice texture that makes it feel more rugged and secure in the hand. This one has buttons on top of the original buttons which keep that nice clicky feel you get with the S7’s buttons. The lip on the front of the case is enough to protect the phone yet isn’t obstrusive when you slide past the screen onto the case, it’s been designed perfecly for the phone.

The Caseology Parallax Series case for the Galaxy S7 is available at Mobilefun for £19.99 ($24.49).


Olixar Ultra-Thin and FlexiShield

Lastly we have the Olixar Ultra-Thin and the Olixar FlexiShield, both of which are silicone cases. The Ultra-Thin case is very thin while the FlexiShield is a little thicker and feels a bit more plasticky than just gel/silicone. I love keeping my devices minimal so my choice here is the Ultra-Thin. If you tend to like gel cases then you will like both of these. I’ve always prefered plastic/rubber cases like the Caseology or Spigen since I like the more slippery material so it slides in and out of my pocket. The FlexiShield feels more like a case since the buttons are reinforced and there’s more material than the Ultra-Thin. I definitely don’t reccomend the Ultra-Thin if you tend to drop your phone a lot since this one will protect it but your device could still get damaged since it’s very thin.

The Olixar Ultra-Thin retails for £7.99 ($9.99) while the Olixar FlexiShield is £5.99 ($7.49), both are available on Mobilefun.


We do want to thank the folks from http://www.mobilefun.co.uk for providing us with these cases to review. We also want to note that any of these types products purchased through mobilefun will have a 1-year warranty.

2in1cable’s Micro USB/Lightning Charging Cable Review

For a long time, Apple and Android users have fought over which of their phones or operating systems are best, all while never actually accomplishing anything. Luckily, a company called 2in1cable decided to resolve one of the biggest 1st-world problems: your friend always has the wrong charging cable. The interesting part is how they went about solving the issue.

Pic 6

The interesting part is how they went about solving the issue. One may think they just created a splitting cable, where you have one USB end that connects to two different ends (one a micro USB end and the other a Lightning end). But that would look weird and not many people would be fond of it. So, the company came up with the novel solution of just combining the two ends into one single end that can fit into either a micro USB or Lightning port. Simple stylish, and most importantly incredibly useful. Now you can charge your friend’s Galaxy S7 even though you have the 6S.

Pic 2

Another pretty cool thing the team did is create a lot of different styles, from a simple white cable to cowboy blue jean or various colors of leather. If you’d like to pick up one of these neat cables, head on over to their website at http://www.2in1cable.com/. Also, check out the images of some of the cables below: Pic 3

Pic 4

Pic 5

Samsung Galaxy S7 Finger Print Sensor Not Responding?

I have been using the Samsung Galaxy S7 for a few days now and it’s a great phone but one thing has been annoying me. The fingerprint sensor on my unit has something wrong with it and there seems to be no fix. I have tried everything to fix the sensor and nothing works.

I sometimes get a dialogue saying “Make sure that the Home key is clean and dry, then try again”. Other times I get a full on error message telling me to reboot the phone but…guess what? Rebooting the phone does not work. The same dialogue appears in settings and in apps that require the fingerprint sensor. I tried restoring the device to factory settings and setting the phone up as a new device still doesn’t work. So how do we fix the fingerprint sensor on the S7?

From my experience so far… there is no direct fix for this. I’m hoping it’s a software bug that Samsung can address in a future update but for now there is one thing that I noticed. The fingerprint seems to stop working after the phone heats up a lot and the problem is the that the S7 heats up with pretty much any app that you open for more than ten minutes. Just letting the phone cool seems to get it back to working condition, this only works from time to time though. There reason why this is a big deal is because I like to unlock my device with a fingerprint everytime so I have it set to require authentication each time the device is awakened so I don’t have to put any code or drag up to unlock. You can put it so it only asks for authentication whenever it is inactive for a certain amount of time and that’s actually how it comes out of the box. You could also just not use the fingerprint sensor but with Samsung Pay and other apps using the fingerprint sensor there’s no real way to avoid the fingerprint sensor without always knowing that it would be much more convenient to have it on.

I have reached out to other S7 owners and they said they have not had any issues so it could be that my unit is defective and requires a replacement. If you have an S7 and can return it for a replacement then I would advise doing so as Samsung has yet to address this issue. The problem is that if they never address the issue then you’ll be left with a device that you won’t be able to resell for a good enough price in a year or two because the finger print sensor doesn’t work. Before returning it just make sure you try factory resetting your device just to make sure that the fingerprint sensor is as faulty as mine. This post is really to tell you not to waste your time trying a bunch of different methods to fix it since I spent hours trying to fix the sensor and nothing worked.

Top 5 Features of the Samsung Galaxy S7!

The Samsung Galaxy S7 doesn’t officially ship until next week but that didn’t keep T-Mobile from shipping out some pre-orders early to customers. Jacob Zacks already has his unit on hand and has made a quick video talking about the Galaxy S7’s best features and the differences to the Galaxy S6. Check out the video below…

More info on the GS7 Here

Samsung Introduces the Galaxy S7 and S7 edge [Video]

During a press conference at MWC 2016 Samsung introduced the Samsung Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge. Both devices are very similar to the S6 and S6 Edge but have improvements that immediately make the S7’s worth considering as your next phone purchase. The devices have improved ergonomics, expandable storage, and they are now back to being water resistant like the Galaxy S5. Check out this introduction video from Samsung which details all of the info of their two new devices:

 

 

Samsung Mobile is defying barriers once again with premium Galaxy smartphones that redefine the ways we imagine our technology. The Galaxy S7 and S7 edge will make you rethink what a phone can do.

Design
Streamlined curves offer perfect grip and a slimmer feel without compromising a big immersive screen. It’s a powerhouse inside with expandable memory (SD-card slot), a Vulkan API for amazing gaming graphics, and a longer lasting battery. Take it in the rain, the shower, or the pool because it’s water resistant too.

Camera
Featuring a Dual Pixel 12MP phone camera with sub pixel technology found in professional cameras that activates just like your eyes for split-second autofocus. Shoot in the dark and own the night with larger pixels that capture more light for brighter photos.

Samsung Pay
Leave your wallet at home because Samsung Pay is now available virtually anywhere you can swipe or tap your card. It’s easy to use and secured by Knox Security.

Gear 360
Now you can truly break the boundaries of what a phone can do with the Gear 360 and Gear VR. Record your life with the 360 camera, preview it on the S7, and experience your memories like never before with the Gear VR headset.

Source: Samsung

Samsung Galaxy S5 Active Unboxing and Review [Video]

Samsung’s current flagship, the Galaxy S5, is one of the best selling phones in the market at the moment and it is IP67 Certified, this means it can be submerged in up to a meter of liquid for up to half an hour. The phone can take more heat than most of the competition but if you live an even more active lifestyle, you might want to consider the new Samsung Galaxy S5 Active.

s5 active unboxing review

The S5 Active is also IP67 Certified but it has a leg up in the protection department since it is MIL-STD-810G Certified which very few other smartphones have. The MIL-STD-810G Certification means that the device is protected against Low Pressure (Altitude), High Temperature, Low Temperature, Temperature Shock, Contamination by Fluids, Solar Radiation (Sunshine), Rain, Humidity, Fungus, Pyroshock, Sand and Dust, Explosive Atmosphere, Immersion, Acceleration, Vibration, Acoustic Noise, Shock, Salt Fog, Acidic Atmosphere, Gunfire Shock, Icing/Freezing Rain, Ballistic Shock, Vibro-Acoustic/Temperature, Freeze / Thaw, Time Waveform Replication, Rail Impact, Multi-Exciter, and Mechanical Vibrations of Shipboard Equipment.

Samsung Galaxy S5 Active

The phone is physically completely different to the normal Samsung Galaxy S5, it has a rugged yet sturdy feel without sacrificing the top of the line specs. The only feature missing on the S5 Active is the fingerprint sensor which, from personal use, didn’t work so well on the Galaxy S5.

Spec Highlights
  • Android 4.4.2 (KitKat)
  • 2.5 GHz quad-core processor
  • 5.1-inch full 1080p Super Amoled HD display
  • 16-MP Rear Camera
  • Front 2-MP camera
  • 16 GB ROM + 2 GB of RAM
  • Wireless-N Wi-Fi + Bluetooth 4.0 + NFC
  • Up to 29 hours of talk time

Check out the full review/unboxing video…


Samsung Galaxy S5: Review

Get the Samsung Galaxy S5 Active: Amazon

Disclaimer: DarGadgetZ received the unit from AT&T to review. AT&T’s involvement had no impact on the reviewers opinion.

Samsung Galaxy S5 Review [Video]

If you are in the market for a smartphone with a great battery life, the latest specs, and a large screen, the Samsung Galaxy S5 is definitely worth considering but is it worth the upgrade? In this video we also compare the Galaxy S5’s picture taking ability against the iPhone 5S. Check out the video below…

Spec Highlights
  • Android 4.4.2 (KitKat)
  • 2.5 GHz quad-core processor
  • 5.1-inch full 1080p Super Amoled HD display
  • 16-MP Rear Camera
  • Front 2-MP camera
  • 16 GB ROM + 2 GB of RAM
  • Wireless-N Wi-Fi + Bluetooth 4.0 + NFC
  • Up to 29 hours of talk time

Get the Samsung Galaxy S5: Amazon

Disclaimer: DarGadgetZ received the unit from AT&T to review. The device was used extensively for nearly two weeks before producing the review but AT&T’s involvement had no impact on the reviewers opinion.

Samsung Galaxy S5 for AT&T Unboxing & Overview [Video]

In this video we unbox the White Samsung Galaxy S5 for AT&T and do a full overview of the device. I also give my first impressions of the Galaxy S5 after having used it for a few days.

Features

AP
LTE: 2.5GHz Quad core application processor
Display
5.1” FHD Super AMOLED (1920 x 1080), 432 ppi
Dimension
142.0 x 72.5 x 8.1mm, 145g
OS
Android 4.4.2 (Kitkat)
Memory
RAM : 2GB
16/32GB User Memory + microSD slot (up to 128GB)
Connectivity
WiFi : 802.11 a/b/g/n/ac VHT80, MIMO(2×2)
Download Booster (LTE + WiFi simultaneous reception)
NFC, Bluetooth®: 4.0 BLE / ANT+
USB 3.0
IrLED
This device supports a USB 3.0 interface as well as lower versions of USB, including
USB 2.0. A USB 2.0 compatible cable is included in the package. A USB 3.0
compatible cable is not included in the package, and may be purchased separately.
Additional Features
IP67 certificated Dust & Water Resistant, Emergency Mode, Ultra Power Saving Mode, S Health, Quick Connect, Private Mode, Kids Mode
Camera
Main(Rear) : 16MP (1/2.6”, Phase Detection AF)
Sub (Front) : 2.0MP (1920 x 1080, Wide-angle lens )
Camera Features
HDR (Rich tone), Selective Focus, Virtual Tour Shot
Video
UHD@30fps, HDR, video stabilization
Video Codec : H.263, H.264(AVC), MPEG4, VC-1, Sorenson Spark, MP43, WMV7, WMV8, VP8
Video Format : MP4, M4V, 3GP, 3G2, WMV, ASF, AVI, FLV, MKV, WEBM
Audio
Audio Codec : MP3, AMR-NB/WB, AAC/ AAC+/ eAAC+, WMA, Vorbis, FLAC
Audio Format : MP3, M4A, 3GA, AAC, OGG, OGA, WAV, WMA, AMR, AWB, FLAC, MID, MIDI, XMF, MXMF, IMY, RTTTL, RTX, OTA
Sensor
Accelerometer, Gyro, Proximity, Compass, Barometer, Hall, RGB ambient light, Gesture, Fingerprint, Heart Rate Sensor
Battery
2800mAh
Google Mobile Services*
Chrome, Drive, Photos, Gmail, Google, Google+, Google Settings, Hangouts, Maps, Play Books, Play Games, Play Newsstand, Play Movie & TV, Play Music, Play Store, Voice Search, YouTube

Thanks to AT&T for lending us the device.

Samsung Galaxy S5 (AT&T)
Samsung Galaxy S5 (Amazon)

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