Smart. That’s how I’ll describe life in 2021 and beyond. From phones, vehicles, appliances, and even a toothbrush — everything’s getting smarter. But smart devices almost always come at an expensive price tag. There may be affordable options but there’s always a compromise. Sometimes, you’ll just have to say, “you really get what you pay for.”
Say no more, folks. Popular smartphone maker realme expands its portfolio, bringing in smart devices as part of realme TechLife. And we know they make lots of affordable devices that won’t break your bank.
In lieu of this, realme aims to make technology more accessible so we can enjoy living a smart, connected life. One of realme’s key products is its Smart TV lineup — a centerpiece for every connected home.
Wait, what? realme has a Smart TV lineup?
Yes, you read that right. Just a refresher in case you haven’t been making GadgetMatch.com your daily habit, realme launched its Smart TV lineup last 2020. It comes in two sizes: a 32-inch and 43-inch model, with varying differences.
Both models found their way to the Philippine archipelago, and we’ve got our hands on the 42-inch variant. And from here on, I’m going to share my experience with realme’s latest Smart TV.
Setting it up
Let me preface this story by saying that I’m the type of person who would ask for help. It’s simply because I’m too lazy or I don’t want to use my brain cells in trying to figure out how something works.
When I unboxed the package, I took out the 43-inch Smart TV which weighed 6.7kg, enough for most people to carry on their own.
On the inside, you can find two base stands and four screws that you’ll need for installation. There’s also a quick start guide, instruction manual, and a warranty card.
What I really loved right away is the remote control — it’s small and looks neat with its minimalistic approach. But don’t let its size fool you: It’s fast, responsive, and made navigating the TV easy.
Since it was an Android TV, I signed in with my Google account fairly easily. It also instantly connected to the WiFi, and happy to report it maintained a stable connection and didn’t disconnect abruptly unlike some of your ex-lovers.
The installation and setup were relatively easy for someone who doesn’t want to think. It also boosted my self-esteem, seeing how proud my self-proclaimed strong, independent self was, for being able to set everything up on my own.
Connectivity and customization
I mentioned that the Smart TV instantly connected to the WiFi, but in case you need to know, it supports 2.4GHz Wi-Fi, Infrared, and Bluetooth 5.0 for different wireless connections.
You can pair your Bluetooth-powered speakers, game controllers, and microphones. It also comes with three HDMI ports, two USB SPDIF ports, DVB-T2 for your digital TV, and Ethernet ports — for your wired connectivity needs.
Going back to my point about it being an Android TV, it’s because it runs Android TV OS based on Android 9.0 — which makes the interface simple and easy to navigate. It also personalizes and modifies recommended content based on your viewing and search history, and of course, to your liking.
The remote control or even your smartphone can also access the TV’s Google Assistant, which lets you customize your whole experience using your voice.
The Smart TV evoked a premium-looking impression with its thin, inconspicuous bezels and edge-to-edge panel. It also gave an immersive experience even with just a 1920×1080 resolution.
Thanks to its Chroma Boost technology, the overall picture quality looks magnificent. In case you didn’t know about it, realme’s smartphone cameras use the same tech — improved brightness, color, contrast, and clarity — which result in high-quality photos and stunning output.
With this, the Smart TV’s picture tuning looked visually appealing especially with its vibrant colors and ultra-high brightness of up to 400+ nits. I didn’t have trouble watching any shows even when harsh sunlight enters my living room. The picture quality looked even more alive at night or when the room is dark.
Viewing angles weren’t a problem, too. You can see the content clearly, thanks to its visual angle of up to 178 degrees. To provide a pleasant experience to different users, the TV lets you choose from seven display modes: Standard, Vivid, Sport, Movie, Game, Energy-Saving, and User.
One of my favorite features on the realme Smart TV is the built-in Google Chromecast technology. Ever since I discovered this feature from my techie friends, I’ve always loved using it on all applicable devices.
Anyhoo, you won’t bother using your brain cells with Chromecast. You can easily connect your smartphone with the Chromecast button (if it shows up) and link your TV. If both devices can’t see each other, you can proceed to the TV’s Settings option and get the code that you’ll input using your smartphone.
Once you’re done, voila! Enjoy using your smartphone as the host or navigator for all your entertainment needs. When I’m alone at home, I stream Taylor Swift’s concerts on YouTube which were remastered in 4K on the TV. I know it only has a Full HD resolution, but we all can agree that having Taylor Swift’s videos is worth playing on whatever screen.
Plus, the main issue here was the sound experience, which brings me to my next point.
Surround sound or just really loud?
Playing Taylor Swift’s concerts on the realme Smart TV is like being at a live concert. I streamed Swift’s videos while I clean the house or when I wash the dishes, singing and belting my heart out as she tearfully sings “All Too Well”.
And there’s a reason why it felt like I was at a live concert: the realme Smart TV uses 24W Quad Stereo Speakers with Dolby Audio MS12B solution. Sounds martian, right?
Basically, the speakers expand the bass frequency and high-frequency width, resulting in balanced audio even at the highest volume possible. It doesn’t sound cracked and distorted even if it reaches a frequency of 20,000Hz — the highest frequency that any human ear can listen to. For comparison, most TVs can only reach a frequency of 11,000Hz.
But for a sensitive person like me, the loud audio can be discomforting sometimes, especially for days when I just want to relax and watch some feel-good movies. My neighbors also complained since I live in a quiet neighborhood, and they didn’t like hearing what I was playing on my television.
Though the Dolby Audio solution fine-tunes the quality, controls the loudness levels and volume changes in a content’s audio, and creates surround sound to make it palatable to our audible range, it’s still recommended to use a soundbar for an enhanced sound experience. Especially if you want it to be really cinematic.
Is this your GadgetMatch?
The 43-inch realme Smart TV has a lot to offer. It houses a MediaTek processor, sports a Full HD LED Display, equipped with Dolby Audio-tuned 24W speakers, and comes with Android TV out of the box. It presents a picture-perfect quality perfect for a theatrical experience at home, without paying for an exorbitant price.
Simply, this Smart TV made the basics and features of any premium TVs accessible at an affordable price, for any consumer to experience. The 43-inch realme Smart TV retails for PhP 18,990 and will be available on realme’s official channels and authorized stores and retailers.
Shopee Mega 3.3 Shopping Sale
Heads up! The realme Smart TV will be available on Shopee, in time for the 3.3 Mega Shopping Sale happening on March 3, 2021, at 12:00 AM (GMT+8).
Both models will get PhP 3,000 off; the 32-inch model with an SRP of PhP 11,990 will be available for PhP 8,990 while the 43-inch model with an SRP of PhP 18,990 will be available for PhP 15,990.
Make sure to use the voucher code: GADGETZONE8 before you check out. On another note, ten lucky buyers of the realme Smart TV will get a free realme Soundbar. Meanwhile, first-batch buyers of the TV will get free 12 months extended warranty worth PhP 3,990.
Huawei unveils largest Health Lab facility
Customer health monitoring a key focus
Huawei’s Consumer Business Group unveiled through a virtual tour its new Huawei Health Lab facility based in Songshan Lake, Dongguan, China.
The lab is a SG$ 42.5 million research and development investment that supports more than 80 types of simulation tests targeted to improve Huawei’s smart wearable products in years to come.
These tests support and provide data for the R&D department that covers extensive research on human health and fitness, incubation and testing of Huawei’s smart wearable products.
Huawei currently runs multiple Health Labs to study health-related technology, including its lab in Xi’an, China which focuses on innovative applications for health and fitness.
The latest HUAWEI Health Lab in Dongguan, China aims to become a world class health and fitness technology institute dedicated to product R&D, standards R&D, certification, exhibitions, and industry incubation activities.
Customer health monitoring a key focus
Huawei’s smart wearable and health business has brought many innovative, science-based health and fitness products and services to consumers in recent years.
The new state-of-the-art facility includes a SG$ 638,000 plateau blood oxygen simulation laboratory which replicates high-altitude environments up to 6,000 meters above sea level to test how oxygen saturation affects the human body.
The lab contains the facilities necessary for researchers to measure the changes in the human body under different altitudes and climate conditions and obtain more accurate data for analysis.
The lab also has a professional optical motion capture system which records a wide range of subjects including moving bullets with millimetre-level accuracy.
By studying the movement of the human body along with attitude data, Huawei hopes to develop new and innovative features it can add to its smart wearable products.
Exercise lab for accuracy
The exercise physiology research area of the lab also comes equipped with cardiopulmonary function and metabolism meters, heart rate belts, and high-performance treadmills that researchers can use to monitor as VO2 max, calorie consumption, and workout heart rate.
This will be ideal in coming up with features for customers who use Huawei’s wearables primarily for fitness functions.
Thanks in large part to these labs, Huawei’s smart wearable products support more than 100 workout modes which include even rock-climbing, swimming, golf, and more.
Scenario-based health experiences
The new HUAWEI Health Lab also serves as an incubator for scenario-based experiences and service packages that consumers can directly enjoy, including micro-physical examination, home fitness, and digital sports.
In the lab’s micro-physical examination area, users can use Huawei wearable products to measure physical indicators such as blood pressure and SpO2 monitoring.
In the indoor fitness area, users can start tracking their exercise by connecting a Huawei smartwatch, a HUAWEI Vision TV, and other third-party equipment.
Meanwhile, the digital sports area enables users to compete with friends while using rowing machines and spinning bikes.
The HUAWEI Health App now also offers 11 types of training courses including running, cycling, yoga, fitness, skipping, and more.
Huawei Watch GT 3
The new Huawei Watch GT 3 will offer higher accuracy in monitoring their health and fitness performance backed by scientific data.
Customers in Singapore can look forward to experience the smartwatch in December 2021.
In the Philippines, the Huawei Watch GT Series is already available for pre-order now until December 9, 2021.
- HUAWEI WATCH GT 3 46mm – PHP 12,999 with freebies worth PhP 3,998
- HUAWEI WATCH GT 3 42mm – Starts at PhP 8999 online exclusive with freebies worth PhP 2,490 during pre-order phase. The normal price starts at PhP 11,999.
- HUAWEI WATCH GT Runner – PhP 13,999 with freebies worth PhP 4,388
- HUAWEI FreeBuds Lipstick – PhP 9,999 from its original price of PhP 11,999
realme Beard Trimmer: Getting that sexy stubble
For that stylish, cool, and attractive lewk
“Is he attractive? Or he just has sexy stubble?” That’s a question my friends wonder when they meet someone new. And a question I pose for myself as well.
Stubble is sexy. Period. Every time I look at the mirror, I find myself alluring when I have stubble. Though they look cool, and they help separate men from boys, keeping your facial hair at a certain length takes time, skill, and precision.
The art of trimming your facial hair
You can easily trim your facial hair when you have a manual shaver or trimmer. But that might be time-consuming to use and master to achieve the desired result.
Contrarily, going to a grooming salon can help you get that peg you’ve been wanting for your face instantaneously. Albeit, quite expensive. In addition, it’s difficult to maintain when you have a hectic lifestyle. Unless your preferred barbershop does both of your regular haircut and beard styling.
Precisely why the likes of smart, grooming tools rose through the past few years, aiming to help men redefine what’s sexy, groomed, and stylish. But in their own way.
You might think of a few brands to consider, but some could be taken aback by an expensive price tag. Moreover, it’s scary to invest in something expensive especially when it’s your first time. So if it’s indeed your foray to grooming and styling, the realme Beard Trimmer might be worth a try.
Looks sleek for the sleek-looking
Having a beard trimmer opens up possibilities for your personal care. Most accessories come with nifty features to help you achieve your desired result e.g. a sexy stubble. And realme’s very own Beard Trimmer can surely deliver, too.
At a glance, it looks like a hefty device at a size of a regular gigglestick. Thick, sturdy, and a design that piques someone’s curiosity. It comes with a stainless steel blade, whereas its head and motor are fixed and lubricated.
It’s skin-friendly, and it definitely feels premium with that matte finish. It can rival the likes of trimmers from Philips, especially with the materials used. More importantly, it’s ergonomically designed so it can be gripped easily while you groom yourself.
Style on your own
The package comes with a 10mm comb that you can place over the head, so you can trim your hair properly. The realme Beard Trimmer comes with 0.5mm precision and 20 length settings that can be adjusted using the adjustment knob.
To turn it on, you just have to press the power button and a green light will indicate it’s ready. And of course, the motors would be buzzing by then.
I personally prefer using the lowest length setting — 1cm to be exact — since I keep my facial hair short enough to be trimmed easily. But preferably, you’d have to grow the hair for at least 3 cm for a more flexible approach. Nevertheless, having a lot of length settings offer versatility to define your facial hair.
Just remember to shave with light, gentle strokes. And don’t forget to even the hair out and edge it accordingly. More importantly, rinse it properly since the metal head is washable. Just don’t let the liquids run through the charging port.
On another note, what I like about the realme Beard Trimmer is the low-noise operation when trimming my hair. Its minimal noise sounds like the buzz from my stylist’s clipper, coursing through my head in a quiet barbershop. It’s somewhat pleasing to my ear; a new beginning awaits as I shed old parts of myself.
The realme Beard trimmer is equipped with an 800mAh battery capacity. While it seemed pretty small, it can last for an hour and 20 minutes of cordless use on a single charge. If you run out of battery, you’ll have to charge it for at least two hours.
I, however, didn’t get to drain the battery down to zero. But I did use the trimmer four times now, and it’s still up and running. Previously, I charged it after unboxing and it reached full battery capacity after 45 minutes. That’s average, but the battery might be long-lasting considering I haven’t charged it for two weeks now.
But if you can’t wait for two hours to fully charge the device, you can always trim while charging. The Beard Trimmer will still work even if it’s plugged — and you don’t have to worry about it since the heat dissipates easily with its stainless steel and metal properties.
What’s amusing, though, is the Beard Trimmer sporting a Type-C port. I literally sighed “Amen”, seeing a lifestyle product that doesn’t use a micro USB port. Most gadgets I own now use a Type-C cable and I appreciate it when more devices are equipped with this port. It just makes my life easier.
If you travel frequently — either for leisure or business — then you might love the trimmer’s travel lock feature. With just a single long press on the power button, you can lock the trimmer to avoid accidental touch while traveling. Or so it doesn’t buzz while inside your carry-on.
The yellow light will indicate that the trimmer is locked. If you try to open it by pressing the power button softly, the LED indicator will prompt that it’s locked by blinking the yellow light. You can unlock it easily though: Just long-press the power button and voila!
Furthermore, the realme Beard Trimmer is easy to fit in on your carry-ons. Or in your luggage, if you’re going on a trip that doesn’t require an x-ray scanning machine and doesn’t prohibit combustible devices.
Is this your GadgetMatch?
If you’re out in the market for a grooming accessory, and if it’s your first time to shop for a personal care tool — the realme Beard Trimmer is worth considering as your GadgetMatch. It ticks the right boxes that first-time groomers would look for: affordable, sleek and premium-looking, easy-to-use, and offers precise cutting.
Meanwhile, seasoned groomers would probably look elsewhere. Something like Panasonic and/or Philips; household brands that we know all too well.
The art of printing moments that you can hold onto
With the instax Link WIDE, I remember it all too well
Memories are fleeting.
Apart from music, photos, films, and anything visual that has a moment imprinted on it can remind us what we once experienced.
Whether it’s the shriek that your friends made when you cracked a joke, or that lingering stare between two people head-over-heels in love. Or even the mundane hours passing by captured in between. And the little things that brought you joy and made your heart warm like a cup of coffee on a rainy day.
Looking back at moments I once savored twists a knot in my heart. Sometimes, it’s heartbreaking to fondly remember the past. But it’s a great reminder that I can still feel and that I experienced something blissful in my life.
If you’re wondering why instant printers are still out and about in a digital age where all your photos are stored on the cloud or shared in social media, that’s precisely the reason why this novelty is very much alive.
It’s a piece of memory that you can hold on to — transporting you back in time even when your mind can’t remember it all too well. It’s proof that you were there.
To holding something that never changes
Though I look like someone who can move on easily after a day or two, I’m highly sentimental and I have difficulty letting go of the past.
Life used to be unfair to me when I was growing up and after surviving an abusive relationship seven years ago, I lost memories of myself. Photos of friends from when I was studying, digital clutter that showed off my interests, and stuff that made up who I was. I lost them all.
Perhaps it’s the reason why I’ve owned and printed memories — unbeknownst to many — through the devices I’ve owned and reviewed in the past few years. Be it from an ink tank printer, a mini instant printer that uses an instax film, or from an actual instant camera that prints the moment captured right away.
I love holding onto memories because it’s something that never changes, no matter how many years have gone by. So, when Fujifilm unveiled the instax Link WIDE — I was giddy like a little kid on a Christmas morning, ready to open his presents.
The only present that welcomes the past
Living in the present means letting go of the past, and throwing away your worries of the future. But time and time again, it’s nice to remember the moments that shaped who you are today.
The instax Link WIDE helps bridge the present and the past by allowing you to print memories stored in your smartphone. It’s just like the instax mini Link I reviewed two years ago.
I could probably tell you the same things I wrote in my story before, but the experience is still quite different.
This instant printer is boxy and humongous when compared to the mini Link. It’s sturdier, thicker, wider, and heavier. Of course, the size is the prominent change but what I like is being able to print in wider, landscape-oriented films.
Pretty much like the ones from Polaroid, souvenir stamps, and postcards.
Navigating the device is simple and easy if you’re familiar with instant printers. Press the power button on the front — which has instax’s logo printed — to turn it on. On its back, you can find the film door where you can place your landscape-oriented film.
Upon shutting the film door, the printer takes out the excess film. So, be careful about opening the door once more lest you consume one of your films. A grim reminder that sometimes, doors from the past aren’t meant to be opened.
Any way you want it
Like I said before, the instax Link WIDE prints photos stored in your smartphone. To do that, you just need to connect the printer via Bluetooth and by pairing it with a dedicated app.
Through the app, you can determine how many films are still available and the battery capacity of the device. Apart from the status of the instax Link WIDE, the app allows you to play with your prints.
You can use the simple print mode to churn out the photo instantly, or you can use an editable template print that lets you edit the colors and text of various templates. Yes, you can also create your own templates if you want them to be more personal.
Frankly, I’m not fond of these templates since they look tacky and don’t fit my aesthetic. But of course, there are people who’d love to use stickers and other templates especially when they’re in a hurry to print their memories. To each his own.
There’s also a collage print that helps you put together two images in one print. Then, there’s the Sketch, Edit & Print option where you can write or draw something on the image, and customize it to your liking before you print it.
When past meets present meets future
Clicking the settings icon can brings you a plethora of settings that you’d want to maximize. For example, the Print Mode options are handy for toning the prints.
Using instax-Natural mode can give your prints a saturated yet classic look. Meanwhile, instax-Rich mode will print out photos with deep and immersive colors.
There’s so much to unpack here, but thank heavens, it’s not feelings. Nevertheless, I’m glad the dedicated app works seamlessly this time around. Compared to previous apps developed by Fujifilm for their instax cameras and printers, which were buggy and unstable.
In a way, the instax Link WIDE was able to bridge the memories of the past and the stability and connectivity of the future in the present.
A rare experience to remember it all too well
During the course of my experience with the instax Link WIDE, I was preparing for a holiday reunion with my almost-decade-old friends. People who helped me crawl out of that depressive rabbit hole.
Not wanting to let go of the only moment we will be able to come together after being away for two years, I printed my favorite moments with certain people and embedded a QR — which can hold voice clips, hidden messages for friends, and even a location pin to direct people.
I’m not very open with how I feel unless I’ve poured myself twelve shots of tequila. The truth is I’m afraid of the future, seeing the holiday reunion as the only time that my friends and I will be complete again.
Some of us are flying in different countries for work, some are settling down with that dreamy white-picket-fence life, and some are migrating for a better life.
I couldn’t fathom the idea of not being able to hug these people again. And I’m afraid that I won’t even remember these weirdos that helped me get a second leash in life. Times like these make me appreciate the novelty of instant printers and the personalized features they bring through technology.
That even a decade after, when my wrinkles started to show and I’m in my late 30s, I get to remember how life wasn’t unfair at all. That I was surrounded with bliss and love, and that what I was looking for was right in front of me all along.
Is the instax Link WIDE your GadgetMatch?
If you love taking photos and printing pieces of memories to hold on to, then your highly sentimental nature would love the instax Link WIDE. It doesn’t hassle you, unlike instant cameras where you have to frame it properly and take a shot perfectly as to not waste a film.
Aside from being overly sentimental with your memories, the instax Link WIDE also makes for perfect gifts or you can use the prints as souvenirs for your intimate gatherings.
There are unlimited possibilities, you just have to be open to making new memories — and collect them so you can savor them someday.
The instax Link WIDE retails for PhP 8,999 and comes with a free pack of film. There are two colors to choose from: Ash White or Mocha Gray.
The instant printer is available for purchase at Instax flagship stores in Lazada, Shopee, wonderphotoshop.ph, and at Fujifilm authorized dealers nationwide.
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