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1
Apr
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Divoom Voombox; A Water Resistant BT Speaker for the Rough and Tough


Spring is on the way, well, it should be. With warmer weather comes the dusting off of the outdoor gear, prepping for hikes, pulling out the tents, airing up the tires on the trailer, basically preparing to come out of our locked in hibernation. What are the great outdoors without some tunes? Sure, the peace and quiet of nature is pretty wonderful, but sometimes you just need some music to relax with after a long day on the trail. Divoom has a portable Bluetooth speaker that will easily help make your outdoor adventures a party. Meet the Divoom Voombox.

Divoom Voombox - Outdoor Bluetooth Speaker ReviewWhat’s in the box

  • Divoom Voombox – Outdoor Bluetooth Speaker
  • USB Charging Cable
  • Audio Cable
  • Wrist strap
  • User manual

The Voombox measures in at 7.28 x 2.36 x 3.07 inches ( 185 x 60 x 78 mm ) and weighs in at 1.54 pounds ( 700 grams ). In the speaker department it offers up 5 drivers housed inside, a tweeter, 2 mid/woofers and 2 passives totaling 15 watts of output power with a frequency range of 100 – 20000Hz. The Voombox also has a substantial built-in battery, 3200 mAh, that offers up to 12 hours playback. It doesn’t double as an external battery pack though, the battery is solely for the speaker system to use. You have the option of connecting your audio source via an AUX port or through Bluetooth. The Voombox is Bluetooth 4.0 compatible with A2DP Stereo profile support.

The Voombox’s outer shell is a stiff rubber material that offers up a little grip along with disbursing the sound and vibrations evenly when placed on a flat surface.

On the right hand side you find a ‘VOOMBOX’ rubber port cover. Underneath it is where you find the Micro USB charge port and AUX cable port to direct connect an outside audio source to the speaker.

Divoom Voombox - Outdoor Bluetooth Speaker Review Divoom Voombox - Outdoor Bluetooth Speaker ReviewOn the left hand side you find the wrist strap cut out.

On the top you are given 4 buttons for remote operation. You have your power button, volume up and down and a play/pause /pairing button.

Divoom Voombox - Outdoor Bluetooth Speaker ReviewThe Voombox also has a mic built-in to allow you to use it as speakerphone if you do so desire.

How does the Voombox perform

Audio performance is always a tough one to adequately explain. The dual 7.5 watt speakers have plenty of umph in them. Depending on your music style, device and any outside EQ settings can quickly change the overall sound. Straight stock off of Google Music without any audio adjustments provides a loud output at full volumes. The bass is present, but not overpowering. It is a bit more driven in the mids, highs and vocals area.

The 3200 mAh battery is rated for 12 hours of music play back and 15 hours of talk time. We have been using the Voombox on a shelf in the shower for he last 2.5 weeks with it getting daily use ranging from 20 minutes to 40 minutes and still have not had to charge it up since the initial full charge. I am sure it is getting close to finally powering off.

All the buttons on the top work as they should. Long pressing on the volume up changes the track forward while long pressing on the volume down goes back a track. The play button is also the pause button. It is also important to note that the volume controls on the Voombox are independent from  your phone or tablet.

What I like about the Divoom Voombox – Outdoor

Divoom Voombox - Outdoor Bluetooth Speaker ReviewThe look of the speaker is pretty cool. The front and rear grills are mixed with the screwed on cover and grooved rubber shell give it a tough look.  It has enough weight to it to feel solid and not like you might break it if dropped. It is clear that it was designed to head out on long trail rides and camping trips. The sound is loud and powerful, it easily fills an open space with music that is clear. I like the fact that the speakers volume is independent from my phone. I can leave my Bluetooth volume all the way up and adjust the speaker without having to turn the Bluetooth volume back up on my device later for use on a different device. While their website and the packaging fails to offer a water resistant rating, but like I said, it has been sitting on the shelf in the shower for weeks and has been splashed numerous times without issues. I would assume it isn’t one that should be fully submerged.

What I don’t like about the Divoom Voombox-Outdoor

There isn’t much not to like. I would have expected a bit more punch from the bass drivers than it has. It isn’t that they distort under normal usage, it is more so that the bass is an underlying sound, but you can feel it if you hold the speaker.

Overall final thoughts

The speaker has a lot of good things going for it. It does have plenty of sound to carry it across fairly large spaces. The water resistant side, the rugged built quality of the Voombox and the price point all line up very well. With multiple color options to help fit your gear and your own unique style, the $99.99 is pretty fair, and almost a bargain for what it is. You can grab any of the colors, red, blue, black or green via Amazon through the link below.

Divoom Voombox - Outdoor Bluetooth Speaker Review
Divoom Voombox - Outdoor Bluetooth Speaker Review
Divoom Voombox - Outdoor Bluetooth Speaker Review
Divoom Voombox - Outdoor Bluetooth Speaker Review
Divoom Voombox - Outdoor Bluetooth Speaker Review
Divoom Voombox - Outdoor Bluetooth Speaker Review
Divoom Voombox - Outdoor Bluetooth Speaker Review
Divoom Voombox - Outdoor Bluetooth Speaker Review
Divoom Voombox - Outdoor Bluetooth Speaker Review

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1
Apr
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Google Play Lists Nexus 10 as ‘Coming Soon’


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The Nexus 10 has been a bit of a question mark as of late, and we all are wondering when the new version will be upon us. Right around the time the Nexus 5 was released, the Nexus 10 was listed as “out of stock”, and then we waited for an announcement of the next generation Nexus 10, as well as who is making it. There have been many rumors since that time, but now we get the words “coming soon” showing up in the Nexus 10 listing on Google Play.

This is nothing to get too excited about, given that Google doesn’t like to talk about their products until they are about to release, and it could very well change. We still have no word on what OEM will produce the new tablet, so your guess is as good as ours on that. Let us know who you think will make the new Nexus 10.

Source: Google Play

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1
Apr
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Stock Android Camera app Could Soon Find its Way to the Play Store


Sources are claiming that Google is in the process of bringing the stock Android camera app, the one found on Nexus devices, to the Play Store. Adding it to the list of standalone apps that Google has already pulled out like Gmail. The Engadget source claims that testing is already underway and that it will eventually make its way out of the Android OS stock software found on Nexus devices and become available for any device running Android 4.4+.

Google N5 Camera to Play StoreThe move isn’t terribly surprising really. Over the last year or so we have seen more and more manufacturers take their apps out of devices and make them available as standalone apps. Samsung, Sony, Motorola and others are in that list. The Play Store offers up the control to ensure the app can only be installed to a supporting device and it also allows them to update  the app independently versus having to release an entire OS update. With carriers needing to test out full on OS updates, Play Store app versions speed up the process at which they can release fixes, patches and new features to one aspect of a device.

Along with the news that the app will become stand alone soon, there is also talks of new modes  like one that will help mimic a shallow depth of field to create blurry backgrounds without the need to do so through alternative apps like snapseed. The Xperia Z2 and HTC One (M8) have this ability already.

If that isn’t cool enough, they are reportedly going to be opening up the camera software to third-party developers. I imagine this would be for add-on apps that can be downloaded to create different effects and such.

I for one am pretty excited to see what Google has done to make the stock camera app even better. With third-party developer access, we should see a flood of great add-ons that can help unleash the create beast hidden inside.

Source: Engadget

Via Android Authority

Img: Gizmag

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1
Apr
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HTC One M8 Mini set for May debut, report says


HTC One M8 Gray Gold

The HTC One M8 Mini is slated for a May debut, or so says an anonymous UK retailer. Alleged to feature a 4.5-inch display, the details may also include a rear UltraPixel camera. Why no Duo-Camera setup? Price, of course. With that said, the screen could be 720p instead of 1080p, too.

We might assume the device runs the same Android 4.4 KitKat and HTC Sense 6 UI found in the upcoming flagship. Given the launch is rumored for May we could soon be sharing a press release from HTC.

3G.co.uk via Digital Trends

The post HTC One M8 Mini set for May debut, report says appeared first on AndroidGuys.

1
Apr
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Boost Mobile now offering International Minute Packs


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Boost Mobile customers who wish to make international calls might be interested in checking out the carrier’s new International Minute Packs. Priced anywhere between $10 and $20 the bundles include up to 1,000 minutes of calls to various countries. There are 22 of these “grab ‘n go” bundles with most of them offering around 80-150 minutes of calls. The rub is that you’ve got one month to use them; they do not roll over. If you make international calls on a more consistent basis then you’ll want to read up on the International Connect or International Connect Plus plans.

boost-international

Boost Mobile

 

The post Boost Mobile now offering International Minute Packs appeared first on AndroidGuys.

1
Apr
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April Fools 2014 Roundup


april-fools-day-wallpapers-2014

As another April fools day comes to an end, we take a look at the best pranks pulled around the web today for 2014.

HTC and Samsung introduce new wearable gloves

Screen Shot 2014-04-01 at 20.49.38

Both companies took today as the perfect opportunity to introduce their new products, and intentionally or not actually pulled the same joke as each other. Showing off their new Samsung Fingers product, you’re able to make a call with a thumb and a little finger gesture – you know, the type you do when you ask someone to call you? Also placing your hand flat in front of your face in a “Talk to the hand” gesture lets someone leave you a message.

HTC’s offering is meant to go hand-in-hand (no pun intended) with the new HTC One M8 and lets you ‘like’ things in the real world on Facebook. The HTC Gluuv allows you to thumbs up certain things in the real world that will then upload to Facebook.

Opera intros ‘Cats by Opera’ project 

Screen Shot 2014-04-01 at 20.49.00

Deciding that cats should have as equal access to the internet as what humans enjoying Opera introduced the first web browser tail-or made for cats.

When we go to work, my cat were just left at home with iPads sitting on the coffee table. It just made sense to give them something better to do other than snooze or cough-up hairballs. Now they can interact with the web, which is 92.3% cats anyways.

The little said about this the better.

Introducing #SelfieBot by Sphero

selfiebot

The worst thing about taking a selfie is the fact it requires one hand to hold the camera, so Sphero took the opportunity of April Fools 2014 to announce the SelfieBot to get the perfect selfie. The autonomous flying robot that shoots selfies – yes you did read that correctly – leaves your handsfree to capture that perfect social network shot from every possible angle in high definition.

SwiftKey Flow Hard

Using the same easy-to-use gesture based flow gesture input as we’re all used to with SwiftKey, the company have released their new technology called Flow Hard which brings the same gesture input to the physical keyboard. Now, you can simple slide your finger from key to key to type out words on a full physical laptop or computer keyboard.

Flow Hard is built upon the same AI prediction engine that powers our global best-selling SwiftKey Keyboard app. We’ve spent years looking at how to apply the same powerful technology to the ergonomic challenges of a full-size hard keyboard. Finally, we think we’ve nailed it.

Of course, none of these are real, no matter how awesome or ridiculous some of them may be, but let us know if you got caught out with any April Fools today, or the best stories you’ve seen today.

The post April Fools 2014 Roundup appeared first on AndroidGuys.

1
Apr
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DARPA’s new division takes biotechnology to the battlefield


US soldiers in MEDEVAC training

DARPA knows that soldiers need more than the latest gadgets to fight effectively — they need to stay healthy, too. Accordingly, it just launched a Biological Technologies Office (BTO) to study how organics can help national defense. The division is working on projects that will keep troops in top shape, monitor large-scale biological patterns (such as viruses) and understand how natural processes can be put to work in both materials and machines. The agency doesn’t yet know when the BTO will bear fruit, but it plans to minimize ethical concerns by speaking to academic experts on a regular basis.

[Image credit: Spc. Coltin Heller / DVIDS, Flickr]

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Source: DARPA (1), (2)

1
Apr
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Casio G-Shock Connected BT Watch review


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Casio’s G-Shock Brand dove into the world of smartphone connected watches in late 2013. This is not your average smartwatch; this is a very durable Casio G-Shock with light and basic smartphone connected features. Details include alerting you by vibration and/or sound when you’re receiving a phone call, text message, email, etc. The watch comes with a companion application which can be found on the Google Play Store.

 

bluetooth_Banner

 

Time and Durability

Keeping track of time is the most important function of any watch. Thanks to Casio’s MobileLink, the time will auto-synchronize with your smartphone.

Like other Casio G-Shock products, durability is a huge advantage. The water resistant watch can handle the wear and tear of an active life. Featuring an LED Backlight, you can use the timer, stopwatch, world time, and alarm to help you throughout your day.

Smartphone Connectivity and Alerts

This watch can provide various alerts such as notifications to SMS messages, emails, phone calls and more from your cell to your watch. Many iPhones and Android devices are able to connect with this watch. Bluetooth 4.0 Low Energy ensures the best battery life with the connection from your cell to your watch. According to Casio, the built in (replaceable) battery can last up to 2 years on average.

One feature I found particularly useful was the ability to change tracks on your music player when connected to your smartphone. When you receive a call, your watch will vibrate and display basic caller identification. As I indicated earlier, this one is mostly about alerts and enhancement of the smartphone experience. Unfortunately, even with the latest application updates, connection issues.

Overview

While I wouldn’t go as far as calling this an outright “smartwatch” this product can help keep you alerted and better connected. It will add convenience to your life and extend your smartphone’s capabilities but never get in your way.

A model from the Casio G-Shock Bluetooth 4.0 series may be a good purchase if you are looking for a durable watch with water resistant properties and a bonus notification system. Check out the GBX6900B-1 available now on Amazon.

The post Casio G-Shock Connected BT Watch review appeared first on AndroidGuys.

1
Apr
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Huawei readies Ascend Mate 2 for U.S. launch


ascend_mate_2

Huawei has opened up a new website for the Ascend Mate 2 ahead of an eventual U.S. debut. From the looks of things, the Ascend Mate 2 will be sold directly to U.S. consumers; pricing and availability are unknown.

Initially unveiled as CES a few months back, the Huawei smartphone features 6.1-inch 720p display, quad-core 1.6GHz processor, 2GB RAM. 16GB internal storage, and a 4050mAh battery. The rear camera offers 13-megapixels while the front-facing shooter packs 5-megapixels. Powered by Android 4.4 KitKat, the Ascend Mate 2 includes Huawei’s latest Emotion UI.

GetHuawei

The post Huawei readies Ascend Mate 2 for U.S. launch appeared first on AndroidGuys.

1
Apr
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Amazon Prime signs ’24’ away from Netflix just before the new season airs on Fox


24:  LIVE ANOTHER DAY:  Kiefer Sutherland as Jack Bauer.  24:  LIVE ANOTHER DAY is set to premiere Monday, May 5 (9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX.  ©2014 Fox Broadcasting Co.  Cr:  Daniel Smith/FOX

After four years away CTU agent Jack Bauer is coming back to TV on May 5th in 24: Live Another Day, and he’s already being used as a pawn in a new battle: Amazon vs. Netflix. Until today, US fans of the show could catch up with all 192 episodes (plus 24: Redemption) on Netflix’s streaming service, but now Amazon Prime is the exclusive subscription streaming home of 24. Amazon’s deal with 20th Century Fox is timed to take advantage of the show’s upcoming return, similar to exclusive agreements it’s made for other shows like Orphan Black, Suits, Falling Skies, Downton Abbey, Justified, Workaholics, Veronica Mars,Under the Dome, and Extant.

Amazon’s “pilot season” to crowdsource opinions on potential shows hasn’t produced hits on par with Netflix Originals like House of Cards or Orange is the New Black, but we suppose this is another way of filling the library. For Netflix’s part, it sent out a PR blast yesterday focusing on what it’s adding to streaming this month, including an exclusive deal for the complete series of House M.D. plus Rocky I – V, Coneheads, Amistad and Braveheart. Of course, today only (check your calendar), there is also a very special Netflix Original for you to check out.

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Source: Amazon

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