When they were unveiled, pop-up cameras seemed like the coolest thing to me. There’s just something about moving parts in tech that amps up the cool factor. Add the fact that there was no notch (the unsightly things!) and the OPPO Find X was a clear design winner. But, what happens when you actually use a phone that’s this — err — fashion-forward in terms of phone design? Is using a handset with a camera that mechanically slides out even practical. I set out to find answers.
What’s the big deal?
Dear reader, if you don’t follow tech news, let me give you the lowdown. The Find X is OPPO’s newest and most premium flagship in recent years. Launched in Paris earlier this year, it features a high screen-to-body ratio and mechanical sliding cameras.
Why is that so cool? In this notch-filled world (which is a pretty ugly world, TBH), it’s only a few phones which have managed a workaround: The Vivo NEX and now, the OPPO Find X.
Stylish all-screen beaut
How does an all-screen phone look? Well, it looks really good.
The thing with these great big screens is you don’t think you need them until you spend time with them. As I moved back to the smaller Google Pixel 2 I’ve been rocking, I can’t help but miss the Find X’s big and beautiful 6.42-inch display. Everything looked good in it: IG stories, photos, and even Netflix-YouTube viewing was amazing.
And, it’s not just the screen that looks good — the sleek and stylish phone itself has a great premium feel and beautiful reflective back. That glass back, however, seems to scratch almost a little too easily.
Admittedly, I’m still iffy about glass smartphone backs in general as the possibility of breakage is greater. This brings me to another qualm: It’s going to be such a pain to get cases for this uniquely shaped phone. And sure, it comes packaged with a clear jelly case but a girl needs options for her phones, okay!
Despite all that, the Find X looks and feels great in your hands. It’s one of those devices that just has a great feel to it. It’s as if they were made for my teeny hands.
The phone runs on OPPO’s ColorOS which will look familiar to iOS users. Be warned though that it’s still not exactly the same — think of it as an iOS-Android hybrid. Of course, to new OPPO users (i.e. a lot of people from outside Asia), this OS might take a little bit of getting used to. Gesture navigation is also available, but you still have the option to use traditional navigation buttons.
How does it feel to have a pop-up camera?
Admittedly, it’s pretty cool. Anyone who’s ever noticed the cameras pop out has reacted with amazement. I’ve honestly turned into a little show-off and I’m guilty of using this phone as a conversation starter. All this, of course, after I got over the anxiety of thinking I’d probably break the moving part. (I didn’t!)
The cameras pop out automatically when you tap the camera icon and retract just as quickly when you exit the app. It’s one solid motion that you can sort of forget about when you get used to being on this phone. Be warned, though, that any pressure on the pop-out will also cause it to retract. Yes, it will close even during a Facebook Live stream.
Aside from my finger getting caught and pinched by the pop up mechanism a few times (ill-placed finger placement, don’t ask), my only other main concern with this unique form factor was that the pop-out cameras were a dirt magnet. Dust and other gunk (probably from my bags or pocket) seemed to find their way into the phone crevice which isn’t ideal, as cameras are best used clean (duh).
What impressed me most, though, was a feature I’d never really appreciated on any phone. The Find X has a face unlock option (something that the other pop-up phone, the Vivo Nex, doesn’t have) and it’s pretty good. Because of its form factor, OPPO opted to scrap the fingerprint scanner which would’ve been problematic, except it isn’t. This is all owing to the fact that its face unlock is that accurate. You can either opt for the swipe-to-unlock on the lock screen or press the power button which will trigger the camera to pop out, and voila, unlocked!
Of course, the selfies!
If you’ve read my previous reviews, you’d know that I’ve always loved the OPPO beauty mode. In fact, their AI beauty mode was a favorite.
Now, before you lecture me about the wonders of “natural beauty” and preference for non-use of filters, know that most selfies online today featuring that #JustWokeUp look you love so much either feature makeup made to look natural, some kind of airbrushing, or excellent lighting (which can do wonders). So no, a little beauty mode never hurt anyone, so long as it’s not overdone.
But, that was precisely my problem with the Find X’s beauty mode. Unlike AI beauty modes on previous devices like the R11s or the F5 which gave my face slight airbrushing and the freshness of a new born baby, the Find X AI beauty mode seemed to turn me into a completely different big-eyed, thin-chinned, plastic person.
And sure, added to the mix was a new custom beauty mode function which allows you to scan your face and tweak beauty mode capabilities to your liking, but even this greeted me with too fake a version of myself. I didn’t dare post my selfies.
I daresay this might be the first time I preferred no beauty modes on selfies with an OPPO phone, which is fine as it still takes good selfies — it’s just that I now have to make sure I actually look presentable IRL before taking the photo, something I haven’t needed to do for a while as OPPO’s previous beauty filters have spoiled me.
That being said, the 25-megapixel selfie camera, although not on beauty mode, performs well. Still, my favorite is the palm gesture shutter which allows for beautiful Instagrammable photos taken by yours truly. Exhibit A:
Of course, there are more sample takes, but they’re already all on my IG. 😉
Shooting with the rear camera
I mostly use this non-selfie camera to shoot IG stories and random beautiful sights. Here’s a little peek at the week I had the Find X with me.
This phone was able to capture some pretty scenery, though its HDR capabilities left much to be desired — a couple of times, photos came out hazy when it was too bright out.
The 16- and 20-megapixel shooters are equipped with AI, which recognizes scenes and tends to saturate certain scenarios like food or landscape and I must admit, it has gotten faster and more accurate since I first tried AI on their cameras on the R15. The phone still rocks an iPhone-like portrait mode feature, which isn’t my favorite function but hey, it’s there for when you want to take studio-like photos on your phone on the fly (which is never for me)!
Despite all this, I was able to snap beautiful photos which is what’s important.
Other important stuff that matter
Like mentioned earlier, this is OPPO’s first premium flagship in years. It boasts being powered by a Snapdragon 845, which just means it’s running on one of the best processors out there. This means mobile gaming is a go and your various social media apps will run simultaneously without a hitch. The phone rocks 8GB of memory and 128GB or 256GB of storage.
The Find X now has a USB-C port (finally, OPPO!) and 3730mAh battery capacity. This lasts me almost a day’s use which isn’t bad. OPPO’s signature VOOC charging is also built in which allows for zero to 17 percent charge in just ten minutes. You can get a full charge in just under two hours.
Is the OPPO Find X your GadgetMatch?
Design-wise, this phone may just be the best and coolest. At least for now, there is no other phone in the market that will compare to how well this thing is designed. The wide screen and the premium feel is something I actually miss since letting it go.
But, what I miss more is my natural-looking AI beauty mode. As impressed I am with the phone’s form factor, I’m a little disappointed with the beauty capabilities. For a brand that’s consistently marketed themselves as the go-to for “selfies experts,” it sort of hurts for selfie lovers, such as myself, that OPPO’s first flagship in years would miss in this aspect. OPPO, I just want my beauty mode back. 😢
In addition, the stylish Find X does not come cheap, priced at EUR 999 in Europe and PhP 50,000 in the Philippines.
Is it worth it? For the selfie lovers, you might want to hold off. If you’re the type who values overall design and getting it first, this might just be the phone for you. All things considered, it’s one beautiful device — one that is paving way for a better design language in all smartphones. And maybe, just maybe, that’s worth losing my beauty mode to.
Now Playing: Pride Edition
Celebrate the LGBTQ+ community!
Happy Pride! To celebrate our LGBTQ+ community all over the world, we asked them and their allies about movies, shows, music, and podcasts you can watch and listen to, along with books you should read.
This list is also a good start to understanding the lives and struggles of our beloved LGBTQ+ community. You may refer to this article — Pride month or not! Here’s what’s Now Playing at Her GadgetMatch!
Videos to watch
MJ: Google concluded the Pride Month with a live stream entitled Pride Conversations, comprised of powerful members of the Filipino LGBTQ+ community sharing their remarkable and inspiring stories — from tales of coming out to their journey in owning their sexuality.
Movies to see
MJ: A modern classic in today’s generation, Love, Simon is about yearning, secrets, and struggle of everyone in the LGBTQ+ community — coming to terms with your identity and getting out of the closet.
Prayers for Bobby
MJ: A heart-wrenching, tearjerker film that every parent must watch, especially when their religion and faith get in the way of truly loving their child.
The Half of It
MJ: Lighthearted yet revolutionary, The Half of It explores an introvert’s young love, sexuality, and loving in secret expressed through a love letter.
Holding the Man
MJ: Raw, honest, and genuine. It’s difficult not to weep after watching a touching piece tackling a love affair weathering the struggles of coming out in the 70s and 80s — remembering the horrors the stigma surrounding AIDS caused.
MJ: Jokingly known as the German version of Brokeback Mountain, Free Fall is a complex, hot, and passionate story about a married man’s internal struggles of falling in love with a colleague.
Blue Is The Warmest Colour
MJ: Blue Is The Warmest Colour is a moving film portraying a French teen’s beatific, intimate attachment to another woman.
Vincenz: Intersex is one of the minorities in the LGBTQIA+ community. This is a locally-produced indie film that shows how one explores and discovers him/herself. Just like the process of metamorphosis, s/he finally accepts and reveals who s/he really is to the eyes of many.
Vincenz: A depiction of complicated homosexual relationships: from hook-ups, break-ups, losing people you value the most, and even getting back together. A slice of life that shows laughs, joys, and tears of gay people throughout their relationship with their friends, family members, and partners altogether.
Shows to binge-watch
Chay: The Fab 5 spreads love in Pennsylvania back in the US in the latest season of our favorite feel-good makeover series. Whenever I’m feeling distress or despair — especially during these difficult times — Queer Eye is the series that never fails to restore my faith in humanity.
Chay: House Evangelista is back for another season of ball culture, voguing, building new relationships and rekindling old ones, and confronting crises LGBTQ+ people of color faced in the ’80s. Prepare not just your favorite bag of chips but your box of Kleenex as well!
Chay: If you enjoyed Love, Simon and find yourself wanting for more a spinoff series premiered on Hulu this month. Love, Victor tells the story of a new student at Creekwood High School — the ups and downs at home, making new friends, and exploring his sexual orientation.
MJ: Being in your late twenties and early thirties can be mind-boggling. Such is the case in Looking, where three best friends in San Francisco tell their explorations in love and in life while each taking separate paths.
One Day at a Time
MJ: A refresh of a hit sitcom in the ’70s, One Day at a Time is a modern comedy that has an upbeat take on tales of coming out yet still portrays the struggles of coming to terms with your sexuality within a family.
TharnType The Series
Vincenz: Not your typical sugarcoated Thai BL series as it eradicates homophobia as well as how they openly portray the sexual desires of two men. Expect a rollercoaster of emotions when you watch this series.
Vincenz: One of the first Filipino BL series that is timely and relevant — especially during this pandemic. Can you believe two gamers ended up falling for each other even with just a series of game battles, chats, and video calls? In my own thoughts: “Sana all hindi pang-quarantine lang“.
Vincenz: What would you do if you were paired up with someone you truly dislike? Hello Stranger exhibits unexpected love at an unexpected time, reminding us that love simply happens for everyone, regardless of your orientation.
Albums/Songs/Podcasts to listen to
Music Universal: PRIDE
Chay: Pop icon and ally Carly Rae Jepsen and artist and activist Mark Kanemura put together a Pride-themed playlist featuring music from different artists and eras that celebrate the LGBTQ+ community and our right to express our true selves. This 90-minute playlist is perfect when you’re working out, experimenting in the kitchen, or walking to your neighborhood cafe for your iced latte fix!
MJ: Lady Gaga’s return with “Chromatica” has sent the LGBTQ+ community reeling over the nostalgia evoked by this eccentric album — bringing back the days of dancing to Gaga’s fabulous and bizarre pop music we loved.
Help by 10cm
Vincenz: Although the music video only showed minor scenes of how people consider same-sex relationships in public a taboo, the song’s message should dig deeper into our minds and hearts that we should ask for somebody’s help when all of these deep-seated issues come in mind.
Oh my God by (G)I-DLE
Vincenz: Originally a Now Playing: Volume 3 entry, he message of the song this time is clearer because it’s in English — and we can’t deny it’s all about two women having love and affection for one another.
Books to read
What If It’s Us?
MJ: Becky Albertalli and Adam Silvera’s novel about two men stumbling upon each other in New York City is a refreshing take on common, gay love stories. It tackled love, signs, and universe — reminding us that we meet people in our lives for a reason.
Call Me by Your Name
MJ: A powerful, coming-of-age, and tale of coming out stirring a pot of raw emotions. Call Me by Your Name explores sexual awakening, yearning, and obsession over the course of summer in Italy, in the year 1983.
Now Playing is the GadgetMatch team’s favorite games, movies, TV shows, and more each month. If you’re curious to know what we’re into at the moment, this is what you should check out. So grab your popcorn, get some drinks, and enjoy what’s now playing!
5 life tips to remember for budding women entrepreneurs
Show the universe you’re ready to be an entrepreneur
Being an entrepreneur isn’t purely paradise.
Sure, it’s empowering to make your own money, work on your own schedule, and tell the world about your new venture. We get how dazzling and proud you can be when you are your own boss.
But the glossy stories of successful women entrepreneurs are just the tip of the iceberg. What many people don’t know is that behind the triumphant posts on social media, entrepreneurship entails countless days of hard work, struggle, and sleepless nights.
If you’re on the quest of starting your own business, let us remind you that a smooth sea has never made a skilled sailor. Although there might be a stormy sea ahead, you will get through it as long as you equip yourself with the right skills and investments.
If you’re ready to hop on your entrepreneurial journey, here are things you need to keep in mind.
Dress up like a boss
The first thing you need to do is show the universe you’re ready to be an entrepreneur. Get in the habit of looking put together, and dress like you’re already a boss!
Start wearing versatile outfits that work well in between your meetings with suppliers, clients, and partners. You can dress in similar tonal colors and match it with appropriate metals to look sophisticated.
Your phone also says so much about you, so it’s ideal to pick a color that represents confidence, simplicity, and elegance. It’s not just a gadget anymore, it’s a fashion accessory — one that can make or break your outfit.
If you’re having trouble deciding a color, white always works best. It’s chic, bold, and flexible; you can pair it with silver or any color you’d like and you’ll still look fabulous.
Learn how to get organized
From your day-to-day essentials to your smartphone’s apps, being organized is a surefire way to achieve success in business and in life. You won’t waste time searching your stuff when everything is in order. You can finish your tasks, and stay on top of your to-do lists.
Moreover, having an organized life can help you be sharp-witted and pragmatic. You’re less likely to be scatterbrained, allowing you to focus on your business’ survival.
Invest in an affordable yet powerful smartphone
No, you don’t need an iPhone or a premium Android smartphone to run a business. All you need is a phone smart enough to do the job for you, without making your wallet cry.
If you’re serious about being an entrepreneur, you need to stop getting carried away with the latest handsets. Owning the latest gadget won’t help you bring more money. To some, it might even be a liability since most people opt to pay in installments.
Frankly, smartphones depreciate easily over time. The smart decision is to get the best midrange phone you can buy — one that’ll bring value for your money.
One fine example is the Redmi Note 9 Pro, which retails for PhP 12,990. For the price it commands, it seriously packs a punch: It has a practical design that doesn’t look cheap, a side-mounted fingerprint scanner for quick access to your phone, and an excellent screen with perfect viewing angles.
Moreover, it’s powered by Snapdragon 720G, a 6GB RAM, 128GB internal storage, and a massive 5,020mAh battery. This ensures effortless multitasking and a hiccup-free usage for the whole day. It also has a quad-camera setup capable of taking decent photos for your business’ social media accounts.
Going digital isn’t the end-all-be-all
Most entrepreneurs capitalize on the internet and social media to run their business. While it’s true we’re all going digital, it doesn’t mean you need to do everything on your phone.
Start using notebooks and leather organizers in planning around your business. Writing helps with memory retention! Sometimes, you have to jot your notes down, plan your schedule old-school style, or write your ideas and strategies to expand your empire.
Make sure you have time for yourself
Running your business 24/7 isn’t enough for entrepreneurs. Sometimes, you’ll wish there are more hours in a day, so you can grow your business and tend to your personal errands. However, putting in more hours doesn’t translate to being successful.
Eventually, you’ll burn out and you’ll deplete the energy required to run your business. Sometimes, you need to take a step back and make time for yourself. Do the things you love, even if it means you need to binge-watch multiple episodes of your favorite K-Drama.
As long as you recuperate, you will have the energy to power through whatever obstacle you’re facing. When you take care of yourself, you take care of the future — both for your business and yourself.
Top apps to achieve work-life balance using the MatePad Pro
Get your life back on track!
At a time where working remotely is becoming the new norm, one might find it difficult to maintain a work-life balance.
The thin line separating work and leisure blurs when you’re working from home. There’s a constant need to stay updated and connected, yet our mind and body require us to step away from our work machines so we don’t burnout.
Thankfully, some gizmos are here to help us achieve work-life balance. For instance, the Huawei MatePad Pro is a powerful device that can help you organize your life and enjoy it to the fullest. To help you get on track, here are some tips on how you can utilize this premiere tablet using several apps.
Binge-watch your favorite shows
When you find yourself burning out, it’s time to step back and allow yourself to relax. You can watch some of your favorite films and TV shows through iFlix and Viu, which are accessible via AppGallery, or through Netflix via APKPure.
Stream your favorite YouTubers
Sometimes, the easiest way to unwind is to watch your favorite YouTubers. You can access YouTube using the Huawei Browser, just like you would on a Desktop. Although, you can add a shortcut to your MatePad Pro’s home screen for easier access — making it seem like you still have a YouTube app.
Play some games to unwind
There are games you can play, too. The crowd-favorite Asphalt 9, the social media craze Adorable Home, Ball Hop, Naruto: Slugfest, and many more are available through the AppGallery.
Read books while listening to music
When the day ends, it’s highly relaxing to read ebooks you can buy online. You can dive into the story when you use reading apps like ReadEra while you play your favorite tunes on Spotify, accessible via APK.
Sort your finances
At least once a week, make it a habit to sort your finances. Most banks have their apps available already on the AppGallery, such as Security Bank, CIMB Bank, RCBC, BDO Bank, Metrobank, UnionBank, and EastWest.
For quick online purchases and other transactions, GCash and PayMaya are also available.
Stay connected with the world
Most of the popular instant messaging apps are available through the AppGallery. For instance, you can use Viber and LINE — which pride themselves with end-to-end encryption. There’s also WeChat and Snapchat, which are popular in some parts of the world.
As usual, Facebook is still a staple to connect with other people. You can get it through their official website. Messenger and Instagram are also available via APKPure.
Get entertained by creators
If you want to be entertained by creators and ordinary people like you, you can download Kumu, TikTok, and WeSing via AppGallery.
Hone your creativity
For those who want to hone their creativity, the AppGallery has multiple apps for creatives such as Concepts, Canva, APRIL, and Desygner.
If you’re getting into digital arts, you can practice your skills using Adobe Sketch, AutoDesk SketchBook, Adobe Draw, MediBang Paint, and ArtFlow. These apps can be downloaded via APK!
Do work wherever you want
If you need a breather but you have a deadline to finish, you can take your work off your desk and bring it through the MatePad Pro. The AppGallery has multiple productivity apps that let you get your work done, such as Office, WPS Office, OfficeSuite, and Docx Reader.
Never miss an email again
When there’s a work emergency, you can hop on easily without going back to your work machine. Through Huawei’s Email app, you can access Gmail, Yahoo, or even your Outlook email accounts.
If you need to use Google’s services, you can access it via Huawei Browser. Use Google Search and Google Drive effortlessly. Treat the tablet as if it was a Desktop!
Plan leisurely activities
There are a lot more you can do using the MatePad Pro! You can plan your future travels using Agoda, Booking.com, Trivago, and Traveloka. If you love indulging yourself and your loved ones with good food, make sure to download Eatigo and Booky. On the other hand, shopaholics can enjoy Shopee and Lazada.
These apps are all available via AppGallery, so make the most out of life and reap your rewards for working hard.
Apps you don’t want aren’t here?
Some apps are still finding their way to the AppGallery. You can search them on the app and add it to your wishlist, and Huawei will surely do their best to make it happen.
Visit here to find more about the Huawei MatePad Pro.
This feature was produced in collaboration between Her GadgetMatch and Huawei Philippines.
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