Accessories

LG G5 Hands-On

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LG puts the fun back in function with the announcement of its latest flagship smartphone at Mobile World Congress, the LG G5. It has everything a 2016 flagship is expected to have: Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processor, 4GB of RAM, Quick Charge 3.0 that promises 83% of battery after 30 minutes of charging, a fingerprint scanner, quad HD display, USB Type C, Android Marshmallow, and great cameras.

The G4 had one of the best smartphone cameras in 2015 so it’s no surprise LG retained most of its features. Simple, Auto, and Manual modes are still there, giving users more flexibility when taking photos.

LG also retained the same 8MP front-facing camera but added “selfie flash” – an extra white space framing the screen that illuminates the face when activated.

But what’s new are the phones two main cameras. Yep, it’s got two.

You can now switch from the main 16MP camera that’s also found on the G4 to a new 8MP shooter with a 135° wide field of view that captures more than what the human eye can see.

On the G5, the app drawer appears to be missing but we found out this can be fixed in the Settings menu under Home Screen.

First introduced by LG in the V10’s secondary screen, the G5’s main display also gets the Always-On feature to show time, date, and notifications. LG claims it only eats 0.8% of battery life per hour or about 5% per day.

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All of this are packed into a completely new design and form factor. Gone is the plastic and leather, slightly curved smartphone with sharp edges. Filling in the LG G4’s leather shoes is an all-aluminum unibody.

You can still hot swap batteries though thanks to a new innovative design.

Its trademark back side volume rocker has been moved to the phone’s sides leaving only the power button and dual cameras at the back.

But what really sets the G5 apart from all the other flagships this year is its modular design. And this is where the real fun and excitement begins. LG calls it an adventurous theme park in your pocket.

Aside from being able to replace your battery in case you run out of juice, it also allows you to attach accessory modules to expand the phone’s capabilities.

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One press on the lock button and the cap along with the 2800 mAh battery comes off revealing the hollow insides of the phone when you pull it out all the way.

Removing the cap and reattaching the battery to the modules is not as intuitive as it looks. We had to be coached before we got it right.

The modules LG introduced at launch were the LG Cam Plus and the LG Hi-Fi Plus.

The LG Cam Plus is a camera grip that turns the phone into a point and shoot camera. It has a toggle button at the bottom that launches the camera, a zoom dial, a dedicated shutter button, and a button for video recording.

It’s also packed with an additional 1200 mAh battery providing the G5 a massive 4,000 mAh battery life.

For audiophiles and improved media consumption, LG also introduced the LG Hi-Fi Plus, a 32-bit digital to analog converter or DAC made by top-tier audio manufacturer Bang & Olufsen.

It offers high-quality audio that would usually only be available through high-end audio devices.

At the bottom are its own headphone jack and USB-C port making it a stand-alone DAC, compatible with other phones.

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LG also introduced a wide-range of companion devices for the G5 which they call Friends.

These ‘Friends’ include the LG 360 VR, a virtual reality headset that’s much smaller and lighter than its rivals. It only weighs 118g – that’s ⅓ as heavy as competing VR goggles.

The LG 360 Cam – as its name implies a 360 degree camera with two 13MP 200-degree wide angle lenses, a 1,200mAh battery and an expandable 4GB internal memory.

And the LG Rolling Bot – a round, remote-controlled toy that has a built-in speaker and an 8MP camera, perfect for home surveillance. It’s packed with a 5000mAh battery and is smart enough to go to the charging dock when it’s about to run out of juice.

Accessories

Unboxing the Apple AirPods Pro

Noise-cancellation in a small package

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Earlier, Apple quietly revealed the AirPods Pro on their website. Completing Apple’s “Pro” lineup for 2019, the AirPods Pro promises an immersive audio experience with Active Noise Cancellation.

Of course, we’ve got our hands on the hottest gadget in the world of tech right now. Let’s unbox the Apple AirPods Pro!

The packaging comes in the usual white box with an illustration of the new AirPods.

Of course, what’s a retail box without a manual?

Here’s the AirPods Pro case…

It’s shorter and wider compared on the original AirPods case

It comes with its own lightning cable…

And two sets of ear tips making sure you have the right fit.

Here’s how the AirPods Pro looks alongside its charging case.

The AirPods Pro looks pretty much like the non-pro version when worn.

Have you been waiting for these noise-cancelling earphones?

SEE MORE: Apple officially announces the AirPods Pro

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Accessories

Apple officially announces the AirPods Pro

It now has Active Noise-Cancellation and extra ear tips

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Image by GadgetMatch

Remember when we bumped into an OEM Case Maker in Hong Kong and confirmed the AirPods Pro will be coming? Well, the long wait is over as Apple quietly revealed the AirPods Pro through their website. The latest AirPods completes Apple’s “Pro” lineup for 2019 — iPhone 11 Pro, iPad Pro, MacBook Pro, Mac Pro, and the Pro Display XDR.

You can find a plethora of wireless earbuds around, from major brands, down to clone makers. In fact, Sony launched the first true noise-cancelling earbuds with the WF-1000XM3. Other major companies (such as Microsoft with the Surface Buds and Google’s New Pixel Buds) followed the wireless buds “trend”– so what’s with the AirPods Pro hype?

What’s new?

Image by GadgetMatch

Other than the new design (that honestly looks like a miniaturized hair blower) and a wider case, it’s packed with serious audio tech. A lot of audiophiles have been loving their AirPods, what more with the AirPods Pro?

If you’re one among those people who use the good ol’ AirPods (including me), you can still hear your surroundings around, even if you max out the volume of your music. With the AirPods Pro, you don’t have to worry as it now has Active Noise Cancellation.

Image by GadgetMatch

It’s possible thanks to the H1 chip and sensors, capable of delivering immersive audio experience in a small bud package. The opposing inward and outward-facing microphones equal the amount of unwanted external sound through Anti-Noise.

Not used to complete music isolation? You can press and hold the Force Sensor on the stem to switch to Transparency Mode — ideal for a more natural environment, especially when you want to hear people around you. The sensor also lets you switch between songs and answer calls in between.

Image by GadgetMatch

Apple promises that you’ll feel your music more than the headphones as they incorporated air vents to alleviate the pressure. The microphone also features an expanded mesh that improves the quality of calls even in windy situations.

With comfort in mind, there are three different earbud tips that cater to various ear sizes. Adaptive EQ also helps in tuning the music to the shape of your ear, for a richer and clearer listening experience. For fitness freaks, it’s now a perfect gym partner as it features IPX4 sweat and water resistance.

The features we love are still here

Image by GadgetMatch

Just like the older AirPods, you can activate “Hey Siri” hands-free with your voice. You can switch between music, answer calls, ask for directions, all without lifting your finger. Audio Sharing is also present, so you can wirelessly share the music or podcast to someone (and dongles should be a thing of the past).

With a single charge, expect up to 4.5 hours of listening and 3.5 hours with talking. A 15-minute charge with the case will get you another hour of listening and talking. You can expect more than 24 hours of usage with a fully-charged wireless charging case. It’s also Qi-compatible, so you can charge it wirelessly wherever you go.

Pricing and availability

It retails for US$ 249 in the United States and SG$ 379 in Singapore. In the Philippines, it sells for PhP 14,990, which is worth PhP 3,000 more than the recent AirPods 2 with wireless charging case.

It’s currently available for pre-order in the United States and 25 other countries (such as Singapore, Japan, and Hong Kong) while in-store availability will roll out later this week. Apple will start shipping out orders on October 30, 2019.

Availability in other regions are yet to be followed.

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Accessories

Best AirPods cases: 3 classic neutrals to go with your wardrobe

Black, tan, or white?

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Much has been said about the AirPods. They’re hideous, overpriced, and of late — an unlikely status symbol. Apple is rumored to be launching a premium, even more expensive variant of the wireless earphones this holiday season.

Are you thinking what I’m thinking? As with every new iPhone launch, the launch of the AirPods Pro signals the perfect time to buy the older model — if its price tag drops. And just like a new iPhone, this also means a good time to dress up and buy protection for the next ubiquitous item in your purse. There are plenty of colorful options out there, but in this list we stick to three classic neutrals so they don’t attract any more unnecessary attention than they already do:

Black polka dots

DOTTY in Black from LAUT, US$24.99

Black doesn’t always have to be plain and boring. Patterns and textures can add that extra playfulness you might need from any accessory — whether that’s a headband, a belt, or a pair of boots. The same goes for this DOTTY AirPods case from LAUT. It helps that polka dots are on trend right now, although it’s one of those prints that never really goes out of style.

Get the DOTTY in Black for US$24.99

Tan leather

Rugged Case in Natural Leather from Nomad, US$29.95

Feel like going for a rugged yet polished look? This genuine Horween leather case from Nomad might be your match. The official color name of what we have is called Natural Leather, and it goes well with pretty much every summer and fall accessory in anyone’s wardrobe.

Get the Rugged Case in Natural Leather for US$ 29.95

White marble

HUEX ELEMENTS in White from LAUT, US$24.99

If you’re anything like me and one of the reasons you like Apple’s AirPods over other wireless earphones is the fact that it comes in white, then LAUT’s marbly white silicone case is perfect for you. It also comes in black, but the white version is understated yet elegant, and doesn’t clash with the rest of your things — it compliments everything else that you own.

Get the HUEX ELEMENTS in White for US$24.99

Do you own a pair of AirPods? What case do you use to protect them? Let us know in the comments below!

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