Samsung has announced the first (consumer ready) Ultra HD Blu-ray player, alongside word that movie studio Fox is already getting its releases ready for the new format. That means 4K movies, yes, but also compatibility for HDR video. Here’s a closer look at the curved player — perfect for that new curved UHDTV, right?
Check out all the news from Berlin at our IFA 2015 hub.
Tags: 4k, hands-on, hdr, hdrvideo, ifa, ifa2015, samsung, uhd, uhdbluray, UltraHighDefinition, video
You’d think that self-driving cars would be most vulnerable to remote hacks, but the biggest danger may come from someone nearby with a handful of cheap electronics. Security researcher Jonathan Petit has determined that you can fool LIDAR (the laser ranging common on autonomous vehicles) by sending “echoes” of fake cars and other objects through laser pulses. All you need is a low-power laser, a basic computing device (an Arduino kit or Raspberry Pi is enough) and the right timing — you don’t even need good aim. Petit managed to spoof objects from as far as 330 feet away in his proof-of-concept attack, and he notes that it’s possible to present multiple copies of these imaginary objects or make them move. In other words, it’d only take one prankster to make a self-driving car swerve or stop to avoid a non-existent threat.
There’s no guarantee that this will be a major issue if and when self-driving cars become commonplace. Petit’s technique only works so long as LIDAR units’ pulses aren’t encrypted or otherwise obscured. While that’s true of many commercial systems at the moment, it’s possible that production-ready vehicles will lock things down. Still, this is a not-so-friendly reminder that car makers have a lot of work ahead of them if they’re going to secure their robotic rides.
[Image credit: AP Photo/Tony Avelar]
Tags: autonomous, car, laser, lidar, security, self-driving, self-drivingcar, transportation, vehicle
IFA 2015 is just now wrapping up, and we’ve been working extremely hard to bring you the best Android coverage from the trade show. Tons of technology manufacturers have unveiled their new devices for the year, and we got the chance to go hands-on with many of the new offerings.
Sony took the wraps off the highly-anticipated Z5, Z5 Compact and Z5 Premium, and we also got the chance to check out the newest smartwatches from Motorola, Samsung and Alcatel OneTouch. We even managed to bring you full reviews of the Samsung Galaxy Note 5 and Galaxy S6 Edge+.
Without any further ado, here are the videos you don’t want to miss this week.
Hands-on and first impressions
Sony Xperia Z5 first look
Sony has just unveiled its newest flagship smartphone, the Xperia Z5. Does this new model come with any notable upgrades compared to its predecessor? Josh goes hands-on with the new Z5.
- Sony Xperia Z5 hands-on and first look
- Sony Xperia Z5 officially announced – everything you need to know
- A quick look at the new Sony Xperia Z5 camera
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium first look
Sony surprised us all with the launch of the Xperia Z5 Premium – the world’s first smartphone with a 4K display. But is that what consumers need? Lanh finds out in his first look at the Z5 Premium.
- Sony Xperia Z5 Premium hands-on and first look
- Sony Xperia Z5 Premium officially announced – everything you need to know
- Here’s what the Sony Xperia Z5 Premium camera can do
Sony Xperia Z5 Compact first look
Alongside the Z5 proper and Z5 Premium, Sony took the wraps off its latest small offering, the Xperia Z5 Compact. Is this new device worth your hard-earned cash? Josh goes hands-on with the Z5 Compact.
- Sony Xperia Z5 Compact hands-on and first look
- Sony Xperia Z5 Compact officially announced – everything you need to know
- Sony Xperia Z5 Compact Premium is reportedly a Japan-only variant with 1080p display
Motorola Moto 360 (2nd Gen.) first look
It’s finally here, folks. Motorola has taken the wraps off its newest Android Wear-powered device, the Moto 360 (2nd Gen.). Let’s take a quick look at what the Lenovo-owned company changed this time around.
Samsung Gear S2 and Gear S2 Classic hands-on
We have finally gotten to go hands-on with the latest wearable from Samsung, the Gear S2. Let’s see what this new Tizen-powered wearable has to offer!
ZTE Axon Elite first look
The ZTE Axon Elite is the international version of the original ZTE Axon, but what’s the difference? Josh goes hands-on and takes a first look at the new Axon Elite.
LG Watch Urbane Luxe first look
LG created one of the best Android Wear devices of the year with its Watch Urbane, and now there’s a newer, pricier option in town. The LG Watch Urbane Luxe sports a coat of 23k gold… yes, really. Check out the video above for more info.
Lenovo YOGA Tablet 3 Pro first look
Lenovo has just announced its latest addition to the YOGA line, the YOGA Tablet 3 Pro. Check out Josh’s first look at the new tablet in the video above.
For the sake of saving space, we’ll link you to some of the other great hands-on and first impressions videos you may have missed this week:
- LG G Pad 2 10.1 first look – Video, written companion
- Alcatel OneTouch Go Play first look – Video, written companion
- Alcatel OneTouch Go Watch first look – Video, written companion
- Lenovo VIBE S1 first look – Video, written companion
- Lenovo Vibe P1 first look – Video, written companion
- Lenovo PHAB Plus first look – Video, written companion
- Marshall London Smartphone hands-on: a smartphone for music fans – Video, written companion
Samsung Galaxy Note 5 review
The Note 5 is one of the best smartphones currently available on the market, but it also comes with a few major caveats for some users. Check out Josh’s full review to learn more.
Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge+ review
Samsung’s Galaxy S6 Edge is one of the better looking smartphones out there, but does the company’s Plus iteration bring anything new to the table? Let’s find out.
Epson Moverio BT200 Smart Glasses review
In the technology world, virtual reality and augmented reality platforms are just now making their way into consumer products. You may not be entirely familiar with this product, but perhaps you should. Gary reviews the Epson Moverio BT200 Smart Glasses.
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium vs Samsung Galaxy Note 5 quick look
Two of the hottest smartphones go head to head. Check out Lanh’s quick comparison of the Xperia Z5 Premium vs the Galaxy Note 5.
Sony Xperia Z5 Premium vs LG G4 quick look
LG hit the ball out of the park with the G4 this year, but how does it fare against the best from Sony? Take a look at Lanh’s quick comparison of the LG G4 vs Xperia Z5 Premium.
Huawei Honor 7 vs Ascend Mate 7
Wondering how two of Huawei’s top-tier smartphones fare against one another? Nirave takes a close look a the Huawei Honor 7 vs the Ascend Mate 7.
Android Apps Weekly
Paid YouTube, Pokemon Shuffle, Malware dev is headed to prison – you don’t want to miss Joe’s newest episode of Android Apps Weekly!
The best new apps and games
10 best new Android apps and games from August 2015
August has come and gone and with it marks the beginning of the end of the season. It also left us with a bunch of awesome new Android apps and games! Let’s take a quick look at the best ones released this past month.
We know there’s a lot to take in here, but tell us – what’s your favorite Android-powered device that was announced this week?
All eyes are on the upcoming Nexus device(s) as the end of the year approaches. What surprises may Google have for us? Well, as it goes with all Nexus releases, there’s not much of a surprise, as these handsets are the main topic of conversation around the rumor mill. This year we are expecting two devices, one from Huawei and one from LG.
We have a good deal of information on both smartphones, which you can read in our rumor roundup. If what you are looking for is a good image, though, today we are taking a look at the best one we have seen so far. The photo comes from Android Pit, a Germany-based website that seems to have some helpful sources in hand.
Though the image may look like a render, it is not. The photo was straightened and the background was cleaned out, in order to protect the source. The guys over at Android Police have also confirmed this is a legitimate image, based on their own findings. The only main difference is that the version AP has seen has the LG logo below the Nexus wording. But this could simply be due to regional differences.
There’s nothing new to see, really, but the image does corroborate previous rumors. We can see that nifty fingerprint reader, a laser auto-focus module, a dual-LED flash and an unspecified camera. Otherwise, the phone looks exactly as we would expect it to, with the large Nexus branding in the middle.
Just in case you have been out of the loop on Nexus news, this specific device is said to feature a 5.2-inch 1080p display, a Qualcomm Snapdragon 808 processor, 3 GB of RAM, a 2700 mAh battery and even a USB Type-C connector.
It is also rumored that this device will be released under the LG Nexus 5X moniker, but that is yet to be seen. Furthermore, the new Nexus will probably be revealed this September 29th and is said to cost under $400. Once again, you an learn more by reading our 2015 Nexus rumor roundup.
Enjoy the image! And don’t forget to hit the comments and tell us what you think of the new Nexus 5. Are you thinking of buying one?
The entry-level market is crowded but overlooked as many brands and consumers care about high-end hardware. Alcatel OneTouch, though, took time at IFA 2015 to announce an entry-level phone.
The Pixi First has a small, 4-inch display with WVGA (800×480) resolution and quad-core processor with 512MB of RAM designed by Spreadtrum. Alcatel OneTouch has been using Android 5.0 Lollipop with most of its devices released in 2015, but the Pixi First will ship with Android 4.4 KitKat. Since an entry-level device is difficult to differentiate, Alcatel OneTouch is offering this phone in Soft Slate, Metal Silver, Metal Gold, and Rose Gold color options.
The Pixi First is joined by the Pixi 3 (10) as Alcatel OneTouch’s most affordable devices to be launched this year.
ALCATEL ONETOUCH’s PIXI First: A First Class Smartphone at an Entry Level Price
- One of the slimmest 4-inch smartphone on the market
- Fast 3G+ connectivity and quad-core processor
- 5 Mpxl rear and 2 Mpxl front camera for great shots and selfies
- Premium colors with metallic finishing – Soft Slate, Metal Silver, Metal Gold and Rose Gold
- Long-lasting battery offering 300 hours standby time and 7 hours talk time
IFA, Berlin, September 5th, 2015 – ALCATEL ONETOUCH, one of the world’s fastest-growing smartphone brands, announces its new PIXI FIRST smartphone, a member of the brand’s affordable PIXI family. Offering 3G+ connectivity and a powerful quad-core processor, the PIXI FIRST is a class of it’s own when it comes to offering the most sought-after features at an accessible price.
“PIXI FIRST demonstrates ALCATEL ONETOUCH’s dedication to offering premium smartphones that are accessible to everyone,” said Dan Dery, Chief Marketing Officer, ALCATEL ONETOUCH. “You won’t see such attention to detail and high-end features in other smartphones in this category.”
High-Quality Photos, Videos and Selfies
Great photos and videos are no longer out of reach for smartphone users on a budget. PIXI FIRST’s 5 Mpxl rear camera with flash and 2 Mpxl front camera allow you to take great shots and selfies.
Careful Attention to Design Details
The ALCATEL ONETOUCH design team did not hold back when it came to the details of the PIXI FIRST. The 4-inch display is nicely packed in the 9.7mm slim body which is amongst the slimmest 4-inch handsets on the market. The elegant covers with metallic finishing are available in four colors: Soft Slate, Metal Silver, Metal Gold and Rose Gold.
Great Looks Backed by Quality Technology
The beautiful exterior is backed by hardware for a first class performance. PIXI FIRST boasts a 1.2 Ghz quad-core processor for speedy games and apps, as well as 3G+ connectivity for fast streaming and browsing. Last but not least, the long lasting battery keeps your smartphone running with 300 hours standby time and 7 hours talk time.
Come comment on this article: Alcatel OneTouch heads for the entry-level market with the Pixi First
The Play Store has hundreds of thousands of free and useful applications, however, the more quality apps out there usually cost you a bit of money. That’s certainly not a bad thing, but it can be frustrating if you don’t know how to setup payment methods in the Play Store.
Stick with us, and we’ll take you step-by-step on adding your first credit card to the Play Store. We’ll even show you how to setup parental controls so children you hand your phone too can’t just buy hundreds of dollars worth of in-app purchases!
Setting up a credit card
It’s relatively easy to setup a payment method in the Play Store. Just follow the steps listed below:
- Open the Play Store app
- Hit the menu button at the top right corner
- Select “My Account”
You will now see three options for adding a payment method. If you want, you can either add a credit or debit card, PayPal account, or even redeem credit you’ve purchased in-store.
To add a credit card, tap “Add credit or debit card” and then follow the instructions to add all of your card information.
And that’s it! You now should be able to buy anything on the Play Store with that card on file.
Adding a PayPal account
Adding a PayPal account can be a bit more complex. To get started, we’ll follow some of the same steps listed above:
- Open the Play Store app
- Hit the menu button at the top right corner
- Select “My Account”
Instead of tapping “Add a credit or debit card” you’ll need to select “Add PayPal” this time. Next, once the prompt appears, type in the email address you use to log into PayPal along with the password right below that. Once that information is filled out, select “Log In.”
You’re all set! You are now able to purchase things using the funds you have in your PayPal account.
Redeeming Google Play Store credit is just as easy, if not simpler, than adding a credit card or PayPal account to your payment methods. Again, the steps start out similarly as the last two options:
- Open the Play Store app
- Hit the menu button at the top right corner
- Select “My Account”
This time you’ll want to select “Redeem.” Simply type in the code on the back of your prepaid Google Play Store credit you got from the store and hit “redeem.”
It’s that easy!
Setting up parental controls
If you ever hand your phone or tablet to a child to calm them down or keep them quiet, you’ll want to make sure you have parental controls setup in the Play Store.
By not doing this, you put yourself at risk to losing a bit of money. I’m speaking from experience here–I let a child use my smartphone, and that child ended up buying $99 worth of gems in Clash of Clans.
- Open the Play Store app
- Hit the menu button at the top right corner
- Tap “Settings”
- Select “Require authentication for purchases”
From there, you can select how many times the Play Store should inquire about authentication, whether that be for every purchase, every 30 minutes, or never. I chose the for every purchase option, just to be on the safe side.
This will require the user to enter the main account owner’s Google password every time someone wants to purchase something, potentially saving you hundreds of dollars from the antics of children.
As you can see, it’s fairly easy to setup new payment methods in the Google Play Store, but in doing that, it’s important to make sure you have security measures put in place.
Come comment on this article: How to setup payment methods in the Play Store
If you click on the learn more link inside of google wallet, you’ll be taken to an FAQ page explaining the transition. Google Wallet will be splitting into two separate apps. Those that already have Google Wallet will be automatically updated to Android Pay and Google wallet will show up as a separate app in play store. All of your loyalty and gift cards that you have stored in your device will automatically be transferred into Android Pay. You can also download them as PDFs using the web interface.
Android Pay will allow you to use your phone’s NFC chip to pay for goods and services in stores. Certain merchants will also automatically apply any rewards/loyalty points to your store’s loyalty card. Android pay will keep your debit/credit card information safe by using a virtual account number in lieu of your actual card number.
You’ll also be able to use Android Pay to keep track of purchases. As soon as you purchase something, you’ll be able to see exactly the when, where, and how much of every transaction. That should make it easier to spot any fraudulent purchases.
Lastly, if you lose your phone, you don’t need to go and cancel all your cards. All you need to do is use Google’s Android Device Manager to instantly lock your device, locate it, or even wipe it clean.
The new Google Wallet will effectively be relegated to a money transfer app, it will also be able to continue to use your Google Wallet card with the Google Wallet app.
This seems to confirm the Verizon wireless leak showing a September 16th launch date for Android Pay.
What do you think? Are you going to use Android Pay? Let us know in the comments.
Lenovo decided to take as much advantage as possible of the spotlight that is available to the Chinese OEM during IFA 2015 in Berlin. Apart from refreshing their unique tablet line, Lenovo also introduced a slew of affordable smartphones, that cover the size spectrum and offer different specifications and features. We were able to go hands-on with two of these smartphones, and so here is our first look at the Lenovo Vibe P1 and Vibe S1!
Lenovo Vibe P1
If battery life is one of your biggest concerns when it comes to your smartphone needs, Lenovo is attempting to offer a solution with the Vibe P1, which packs a massive 5,000 mAh battery. When it comes to the design, the Vibe P1 features a metal unibody design, which is eerily reminiscent of previous generation HTC One flagships, but that isn’t a bad thing, because the Vibe P1 is a great looking device with a solid build quality. It is also relatively compact in size, and comfortable to use in the hand, due to the curved back.
Up front is a 5.5-inch IPS LCD display with a Full HD resolution, resulting in a pixel density of 401 ppi. In the time we got to spend with the device, the display looks to be pretty good, with great colors, sharpness, and brightness. The 5.5-inch size is largely becoming the standard as far as the screen size is concerned, and most people should now quite comfortable with this display.
Under the hood, the Lenovo Vibe P1 comes with an octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 615 processor, clocked at 1.5 GHz, and backed by the Adreno 405 GPU and 2 GB of RAM. This is the processing package that is seen with quite a lot of great mid-range smartphones out there, such as the Alcatel OneTouch Idol 3, and if the performance with those devices is any indication, things should be smooth and snappy with the Vibe P1 as well.
Other specifications include 32 GB of built-in storage, with expandable storage via microSD card available up to 128 GB, and while the device comes with dual-SIM capabilities, keep in mind that the second SIM slot also serves as a microSD card slot, so users will have to choose between the dual SIM feature or expandable storage. The device also comes with a standard suite of connectivity options, including NFC, and 4G LTE support, with market-dependent compatibility.
Taking a look around the device, the headphone jack is placed up top, the microUSB port and speaker grill can be found at the bottom, and the power button and volume rocker are on the right side. One notable addition with this mid-ranger is the presence of a fingerprint sensor up front, below the display. It is a press and hold implementation, which is similar to most scanners out there, and the setup process is identical as well. It seems to be just as fast and reliable as the fingerprint sensors on more high-end devices, and it is great to see Lenovo bringing a feature that is normally seen with flagships, down to a more affordable smartphone.
The Lenovo Vibe P1 has a lot going for it, but the big selling point of this smartphone is its massive 5,000 mAh battery. This result in the phone being quite thick, but the extra bulk is definitely worth it for the promise of excellent battery life. There is also a switch on the left side of the phone which is actually a battery life switch that allows users to easily activate a battery saving mode, that Lenovo claims will help double the battery life. This is certainly something we’ve never seen before, but hopefully, the device offers enough battery life that this switch isn’t something you will have to rely on all that often.
On the software side of things, the device is running Android 5.1.1 Lollipop, with Lenovo’s custom UI on top. The user interface is a little more customized when compared to some of the other smartphones Lenovo has on offer, with it also being a more colorful UI in general, along with packing a few more extra features.
Lenovo also has a sibling phone on offer, called the Vibe P1m, which features a different, plastic build quality, a slightly lower battery capacity, and lower specifications, but comes with splash protection. The Vibe P1 and Vibe P1m will be available with a price tag of $280 and $160 respectively. This is a fantastic price point for devices that should be absolute beasts in the battery department, and in the case of the Vibe P1, the solid build quality and premium design is also an added bonus.
Lenovo Vibe S1
Lenovo also introduced the Vibe S1, that brings with it a pretty slim design, but packs quite a lot of power. There are a number of features that the device has to offer, but everything starts with the design. The first thing you will notice as soon as you get the Vibe S1 in your hand is how nimble this smartphone is. It is a very thin device, and also very light weight, and the very comfortable and easy handling experience is something that really stays with you. The glossy finish on the back does create for a somewhat slippery experience, but its relatively compact size means that this isn’t a difficult phone to hold on to.
The Lenovo Vibe S1 comes with a 5-inch IPS LCD display with a Full HD resolution, resulting in a pixel density of 441 ppi. Under the hood, the device is powered by an octa-core MediaTek MT6752 processor, clocked at 1.7 GHz, and backed by 3 GB of RAM. 32 GB of internal storage can be further expanded via microSD card, up to 128 GB. The device comes with a 2,500 mAh battery, which may not be as impressive as the battery of the Vibe P1, but should allow for decently impressive battery life as well, helped along by some power saving features that are included.
Other than the great handling experience, another interesting aspect of the Vibe S1 is when it comes to the rear and front-facing cameras, that have been given a couple of enhancements, but surprisingly, the main addition has been done to the front-facing unit. The rear camera is a 13 MP unit, with a dual tone LED flash, but the big story here is the dual-front facing camera setup that this device features. An 8 MP unit is backed by a 2 MP secondary camera that essentially allows for depth information to be recorded, that should allow for your selfies to come with a nice depth of field effect in the background.
The camera app is filled with features as well, and it does also include a lot of different options that can be used to take your self portraits, that take advantage of this camera setup. One of the main features in this regard is called Auto Selfie, using which the camera takes a selfie as soon as it detects a face to be in close range of the front-facing camera, when the camera app is open. This actually worked a little too well in our testing, and can get in the way of what you may be trying to do.
The software experience remains what you’d expect from Lenovo smartphones, with a user interface that is bright and colorful, and packed with features, that are quite functional, but resulting in things being a little bloated. The experience should be smooth and snappy overall however, but more thorough testing will be required.
The Vibe S1 will likely not see an official launch in the US, since Lenovo tends to focus on European and Asian markets with their releases, but for those who are in those particular markets, you may find the Vibe S1 to be a standard, but very reliable and attractive phone, that is able to get the job done, in a pretty stylish way.
While most of us have yet to morph into a gadget-laden “gargoyle” (like the one in Snow Crash) the wearable market has still lavished an endless assortment of devices to scatter about our person. The majority of offerings fall into the fitness tracker and smartwatch categories, all with a relatively predictable set of features. There’s an oft-missed underbelly to the wearable category, however, one that’s rife with devices bearing more unique qualities. Some are valiant and useful products, while others treasure entertainment value and extreme fashion above all else. We’ve collected a few samples of the weird and wild side to the wearable world that may finally help you pull your new look together.
Tags: belty, disco dog, necomimi, onyx, tago arc, tesla watch, tomatan, ungaro omate, wearables, wristboom
Alcatel OneTouch has remained silently active at IFA 2015, announcing entry-level and stylish phones as well as durable hardware. Another new addition to the company’s lineup this year will be the Pixi 3 (10). This 10-inch tablet is another entry-level option from Alcatel OneTouch to attract a more general type of consumer. Perhaps most importantly, the Pixi 3 (10) looks like a well-made tablet and runs Android 5.0 Lollipop. So families will be able to take advantage of multi-user support and have a profile dedicated to each person.
- 10-inch (1280×800) display
- MediaTek MT8127 dual-core processor
- 1GB of RAM
- 5MP / 2MP cameras
- 4060mAh battery
- 16GB of internal storage with microSD card slot
- Android 5.0 Lollipop
Like all of Alcatel OneTouch’s products announced at IFA 2015, the Pixi 3 (10) does not have a release date or price just yet.
A Complete Range of Your Choice
PIXI 3 (10) – The new 10-inch tablet in PIXI 3 Family
- 10-inch large display in a compact design
- 2 different connection options: 3G or Wi-Fi
- Great personalization with colorful cases and flip covers
IFA, Berlin, September 5th 2015 – ALCATEL ONETOUCH, one of the world’s fastest-growing smartphone brands reinvents the PIXI 3 family with a new 10-inch tablet. Pick a PIXI 3 tablet with the right display size (7, 8 or 10-inch), and the connectivity (4G LTE, 3G or Wi-Fi) you prefer. It’s all your choice!
2 “Our PIXI line is all about making your own choice at an affordable price,” notes ALCATEL ONETOUCH’s General Manager of Smart Connectivity, Vittorio Di Mauro. “The new PIXI 3 10-inch tablet does just that, offering a complete range of choices on display size and connectivity.”
Packed With useful Features and Highly Portable
Compact and highly portable, the PIXI 3 (10) is available with either 3G or Wi-Fi connectivity. The PIXI 3 (10) is perfect for work and entertainment. Check emails, voice call, share images with friends or watch a movie with your family — Do Anything on Your Tab!
It runs on the latest Android 5.0 Lollipop and allows multiple accounts for multiple users, to securely share the device with the whole family.
Voice-call-enabled, so users can pick up their calls on their PIXI 3 (10) tablet, with no need of another device. Users can also connect the tablet to peripheral devices like USB keys, external hard disks, digital cameras, printers and more.
Colorful and Customizable
Like other devices in the PIXI family, the PIXI 3 (10) is customizable. Users can add their own colorful touch to their tablets with colorful flip covers and cases.
Users can also access ALCATEL ONETOUCH accessories webstore through dedicated app with just one click.
With their host of features, accessories and performance capabilities, the PIXI 3 tablets are further examples of ALCATEL ONETOUCH’s dedication to offering a complete range of choices at an affordable price.
Come comment on this article: Alcatel OneTouch reveals new Pixi 3 (10) tablet at IFA 2015