Features

Fantastic Pokémon and Where to Find Them

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Wouldn’t it be great if you lived by a PokéStop or two? You could just sit on your couch, set a lure and have pokémon come to you? Don’t even think about it! Not only is that a lazy-ass idea, it’s not feasible. If you’re really serious about catching them all, you’ll need to put in the time, just like in the game or TV show, moving from place to place in search of them all.

Apart from Rattatas and Pidgeys that are literally everywhere, different types of pokémon spawn in different parts of the city. In Metro Manila, there are a few pokémon hotspots that are worth your while, we spent a week tracking them down and here are some of them. Goodluck!

best pokemon go locations in manila - bgc

Bonifacio Global City (Taguig)

Put on some running shoes and plan to spend an afternoon in Bonifacio Global City — home to some of the most diverse species of pokémon in the metropolis. If you only have time to see one place, BGC is the place to be. I find the best pokémon spawn along the edges of the Manila Golf and Country Club near three rotondas: Burgos Circle, De Jesus Oval by Kasalikasan garden, and Balanghai at the foot of Pacific Plaza. I’ve caught a few Vulpix out by Kasalikasan.

Pokémon also span close to the Mind Museum, diagonally across Bonifacio High Street, and along 32nd Street from S&R to St. Luke’s Medical Center. Popular pokémon in this area include Bellsprout, Bulbasaur, Exeggcute, Horsea, Nidoran, Paras, Pinsir, and Squirtle. I’ve also caught a Magmar, a Porygon, and a Scyther here — but maybe that was just pure luck.

best pokemon go locations in manila - sm mall of asia

SM Mall of Asia (Pasay)

If you’re hunting for electric-type pokémon, SM Mall of Asia is the best place to be. The massive shopping complex is teeming with Voltorbs and Magnemites. Because of its proximity to the sea expect to find a lot of Cloysters, Magikarps, and Poliwags, too. Occasionally, a few Pikachus will also show up. Many congregate on the corners of Seaside boulevard with Conrad Hotel on one end and Ocean Events Place on the other. Pokémon will pop up all around the MOA complex as well.

best pokemon go locations in manila - pearl drive

Pearl Drive (Ortigas)

The entire stretch of Pearl Drive in Ortigas near University of Asia and the Pacific is a treasure trove for water Pokémon. Walk back and forth between Lourdes Street and Exchange Road to farm for Magikarp – there’s no better place in the city to do so.

Pearl Drive is also a great place to find a Psyduck (or if you’re lucky, a Golduck — we’ve caught a few here, too), a Slowpoke, or a Staryu. Several times a day, the occasional Dratini will also spawn here — once I caught three in a span of 10 minutes. Dratinis will also spawn in front of the Philippine Stock Exchange Complex, and further down the road inside the parking lot of the Lopez Museum. Very rarely a Dragonair will also spawn in this area.

While you’re in Ortigas, cross over to Greenfield District in Mandaluyong across the road from Shangri-La Mall. The park is one of the few places in the Metro where Seel spawns regularly and to a certain extent Meowth. Come on a Friday or Saturday evening for the night market and the best-tasting Vietnamese Phở in town.

best pokemon go locations in manila - greenbelt

Greenbelt (Makati)

Not only is Greenbelt a PokéStop hotspot (most if not all always have lures, too) — it’s the best place to hunt for Growlithes. Almost always a Growlithe will spawn under the PokeGym in the middle of the park near the chapel. I recommend walking the stretch along the row of Greenbelt 5 restaurants from Museum Cafe all the way to National Bookstore at Greenbelt 1 — after an afternoon of hunting you should have enough candy for an Arcanine. Eevees, Magikarps, Poliwags, Staryus, and Tangelas are known to spawn here also.

While in Makati, another area worth checking out is the Ayala Triangle for all its PokéStops. Then head over to Salcedo Park, one of the best places to farm Eevies for those all-important Eeveelutions.

best pokemon go locations in manila - eastwood

Eastwood City (Quezon City)

We’re kinda bummed that there aren’t that many hotspots up north. If you live in the City of Stars, your best bet is the Eastwood Mall complex. The place has a good variety of pokémon not as much as BGC but good enough. You’ll find a lot of Exeggutors, Krabbys, Magikarps, Staryus, and Tentacools mixed in with a few random others. They spawn mostly along Orchard Road loop and the Walk of Fame. Haven’t seen him out in the wild, but my sister says she’s caught a Blastoise there as well.

best pokemon go locations in manila - ocean park

Manila Ocean Park (Manila)

You’d think that Luneta Park would be a hotbed for exciting pokémon , but it appears Manila Ocean Park is where it’s at. Apart from being home to a wide array of marine animals, the marine park seems to have also adopted a variety of water and electric pokémon . Unless you have a trip planned, we don’t necessarily recommend this place as the pokémon you can find here are found elsewhere, but we’re putting it in because it is a known hotspot. The place is teeming with Magikarps, Goldeens, Psyducks, and a healthy supply of Magnemites.

While you’re in the area try your luck by the Rizal Shrine and also around Fort Santiago. I’ve seen a few rare Pokémon spawn here from time to time.


We have anecdotal evidence of rares like Dragonites spawning in the wild but we haven’t seen one ourselves. We’ve seen a Charizard, a Lickitung, a Magmar, an Onix, a Porygon, and a Scyther randomly in the wild. But we have yet to find a place where they spawn regularly. Evolved versions of common pokémon (Wartortle, Arbok, Butterfree, Wigglytuff) also spawn randomly.

If you know of any good Pokémon Go hunting grounds in Metro Manila leave a message in the comments section below.

Hands-On

Honor 10 Unboxing and Hands-on

Huawei P20 with a cheaper price tag

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Huawei’s sub-brand is making a name for itself with the launch of its flagship phone to the world, the Honor 10.

The phone sports the same features as the pricier Huawei P20: Kirin 970 with neural processing chip enabled, the latest EMUI 8.1 software based on Android 8.1 Oreo, a fingerprint sensor in front, and dual cameras. Two of the biggest differences are the lack of Leica branding and inclusion of a headphone jack — all in a cheaper price tag.

Is this your GadgetMatch?

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Features

Vivo unwraps X21 World Cup Edition

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It’s less than a month until the 2018 World Cup in Russia and FIFA’s official smartphone sponsor is pulling out all the stops before kickoff. After announcing the much-awaited launch of the retail model of the Vivo APEX concept phone, Vivo is treating fans to what the company dubs the Extraordinaire Edition of the X21. And as expected, it has World Cup extravaganza written all over it.

Based on the box alone you can already tell that this edition of the X21 is not just any other smartphone from Vivo. Unlike the less appealing white boxes we’ve encountered recently, this one is adorned with the 2018 World Cup pattern and an embossed silhouette of the X21 with the World Cup and Vivo logos front and center. There’s also a hint of the in-display fingerprint sensor, a feature pioneered by Vivo that hasn’t rolled out to any other smartphone but the X21.

The special edition X21 comes in two variants — painted with Russia’s colors, either blue or red. The World Cup pattern is a little bit more pronounced in these glass backs and it’s making me sing “Waka Waka” in my head. Wrong song, I know. 😂

Does it not make you go zamina mina éh éh? As far as specs go, it’s the same X21 that launched earlier this year: 6.28-inch AMOLED display, Snapdragon 660, 3,200 mAh battery, 6GB of memory, and 128GB of internal storage, a pair of 12MP and 5MP main shooters, and a 12MP camera up front for selfies.

Flipping the phone around, you get a Russia 2018 wallpaper and a custom Dusha typeface throughout the entire interface. Notice that the phone has a smaller chin bezel thanks to the futuristic under-display fingerprint sensor.

What’s a special edition smartphone without a custom icon pack? I love how the settings icon in this theme looks like a football! It’s subtle design choices like this that makes special edition phones more premium; it’s well thought out and is not just a gimmick.

Speaking of design choices, boy am I ready to see these squads on the pitch! Vivo is also offering custom shells and I’m definitely copping that Argentina case (the blue one) to match my kit. The designs are based on popular teams’ colors, clockwise from bottom left: Brazil, Argentina, Portugal, and what looks like Egypt but is supposed to be Germany — we’ll save the discussion for why it should have had a gold trim instead of white for another time.

The most important question that needs an answer is, did Vivo just predict the Top 4? We’ll find out soon enough. There are also custom themes based on the four teams so it matches your case and your team spirit. They will be available for download on the Vivo theme store.

The best part: Unlike Samsung’s Olympic edition phones, both variants of the X21 will not be exclusive to athletes and officials only. The X21 Extraordinaire Edition will retail for CNY 3,698 (US$ 579), and the blue variant will be on sale starting May 26, and red on June 1.

SEE ALSO: Vivo to launch all-display phone on June 12

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Hands-On

Samsung Galaxy A6 Hands-on: Repackaging the older series

A combination of the Galaxy J7 Pro and Galaxy A8

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The latest midrange phones of Samsung are finally hitting the stores, but they got us a little confused. Since the introduction of the Galaxy A series, it has always been the family of upper-midrange Samsung phones with a premium design. In 2018 though, Samsung is blending the Galaxy A and Galaxy J’s designs; the result is the new Galaxy A6 phones. There’s a regular and a better plus variant, but let’s check out the former first.

This is the Galaxy A6: A phone with a 5.6-inch Super AMOLED display and an 18.5:9 aspect ratio or Infinity Display, as Samsung calls it. The resolution of the display is underwhelming at just 1480 x 720 pixels or 294ppi, but it’s still pretty sharp. The Infinity Display of the Galaxy A6 doesn’t curve to the sides unlike with the Galaxy S9 flagship, yet the bezels are minimal.

The vibrant Super AMOLED display is a common Samsung trait

We have the usual sight in the front including the 16-megapixel f/1.9 selfie camera paired with its own LED flash, earpiece, and sensors. There’s no branding on the face of the phone so when the display is turned off, it looks sleek and clean on the table.

Too bad it doesn’t have the Always On Display feature, even though it has an AMOLED screen.

It’s an Infinity Display but not edge-to-edge

Having the loudspeaker at the side has now been a staple among Samsung midrange phones. It’s a much better placement than on the bottom since you don’t cover or muffle it when viewing in landscape orientation. This is ideal for watching videos or playing mobile games.

Both the loudspeaker and power button are on the right side of the phone

The volume buttons are on the right

Those who dislike making a choice between a microSD card or secondary SIM card will be glad to see the triple card slots of the Galaxy A6. There are two card trays inside the phone: one for the main nano-SIM card and another for the second nano-SIM and the microSD card.

You have to take out two trays to get all your cards inside

The body of the phone is mainly made up of aluminum with U-shaped antennas similar to the Galaxy J7 Pro’s frame. To be honest, the Galaxy A6 can easily be mistaken for the Galaxy J7 Pro if not for the rear camera. Speaking of, the Galaxy A6 has a 16-megapixel f/1.7 rear sensor inside an area shared with the fingerprint sensor. Thankfully, it’s identical to the Galaxy A8’s and Galaxy S9’s placement.

There should be fewer smudges on the camera lens

Going further into the internals of the Galaxy A6, it’s powered by an Exynos 7870 processor — the same silicon the popular Galaxy J7 Prime had back in 2016. The processor is getting old, so we’re hoping Samsung will use a newer one in their next release.

Good thing the bigger Galaxy A6+ has the latest Snapdragon 450, or else it’ll be just an under-powered midrange phone.

The variant we have here has 3GB of memory and 32GB of storage, but there’s also a 4GB/64GB combo available in select markets.

The Samsung Galaxy A6 with the 3GB/32GB configuration retails for PhP 16,490 in the Philippines while in India, it goes from INR 21,990 up to INR 22,990 depending on the variant.

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