Nokia C3

Nokia-C3 (1)

Introduction
The Nokia C3 is part of Nokia’s new lineup of messaging phones, which includes the E5 and C6. As its name implies (the further along the alphabet and the higher the number, the more advanced the phone), the C3 is a basic and budget phone which will appeal to hardcore texters and social networkers (simply put, most of the younger generation). The main highlights of the phone are its full QWERTY keyboard and Social Network Service (SNS) enhancement, and not forgetting its affordability.

Design

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The C3 is easy on the eyes; its lustrous all-plastic front frame and matte-coated keyboard, complemented by the aluminium rear battery cover, guarantee a “love at first touch” experience. It is the C3’s price tag that makes the build quality all the more impressive. Measuring 115.5 x 58.1 x 13.6 mm, it is compact and highly-pocketable; although at the expense of the screen size, which, at 2.4’’, is rather small. The C3’s smoothened edges make it comfortable to handle, despite its thickness. Its TFT QVGA screen displays 256,000 colours with a resolution of 320 x 240 pixels. Image quality is a pleasant surprise, and can be attributed to the relatively small screen. Viewing angles are impressive too, and so is sunlight legibility. Not too shabby for a phone with its price tag. Also commendable is the 4-row QWERTY keyboard. Nokia got the demarcation, size and convexity of the keys just right – heavy texters will no doubt find the C3 a delight. It’s not a bad thing either that the C3 looks like its business counterparts – the E Series smartphones. It certainly adds a touch of class to this sleek phone. And with 3 vibrant colours to choose from – Hot Pink, Golden White and Slate Grey; users have more reason to fish the C3 out of their pockets every now and then.
Features
The C3’s exterior makes it look more expensive than it actually is, and so does its Symbian Series 40 user interface. You would be forgiven for mistaking it for a Symbian series 60 phone at first glance. Alas, that impression is skin deep as the outdated S40 software is far from groundbreaking. That being said, buyers will be pleased with its simplicity and efficiency. Its functionality is limited, but the upside is that it is not draggy. However, the non-native java applications like Facebook and Email do take some time to load. What users will be missing out on because of the outdated software are applications, support for multi-tasking, as well as a document reader. This helps to keep the user interface free of freeze-ups but may cause business users to look elsewhere.

As mentioned earlier, messaging is the C3’s forte. The QWERTY keyboard is a joy to use, even for first-timers (although it will take a little getting used to for them, naturally). The C3 also makes messaging a breeze with its various sending options – no more wasting time finding the send-to contact. What’s more, messages are stored in conversations with contacts, making them a lot easier to keep track of. The C3’s email support is basic, but gets the job done, with support for SSL, POP3, IMAP4 and SMTP. Another feature of the phone is Instant Messaging (IM). Ovi Chat is one of the C3’s native apps, hence it is quick to load, and users can choose to stay connected even when it’s not visibly running. Ovi Chat has pretty complete functionality and allows users access to Windows Live Messenger, Yahoo Messenger and Google Talk, in addition to Ovi Chat. The Communities application connects users to Facebook and Twitter. When users are logged in to one of the two sites, Communities will display messages received through the site as well as the sender, on the homescreen. The app takes a while to load (it being a J2ME app) if users wish to use it to post replies.

In addition to its messaging prowess, the C3 covers its basics pretty well too. In-call and loudspeaker sound is loud and clear, but the phone vibration could be a little stronger.

The C3’s 2 Megapixel camera is capable of snapping photos with a resolution of 1600 x 1200 pixels. This is where the C3’s compromise for affordability is most evident. Those into photography will be appalled by the very limited settings. Its slow shutter speed and lack of autofocus and flash translate into disappointing images. Photos are severely lacking in detail and show a high level of noise. All in all, it is decidedly subpar even for a 2 Megapixel camera.

Video recording is equally mediocre – the camera shoots at a QVGA resolution of 320 x 240 pixels or QCIF 176 x 144 pixels, and manages 15 – 20 fps. Apart from MMS, users will be hard pressed to find any use for the video recording feature.

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The C3’s music player is basic, and supports WMA, MP3, AAC, AAC+ and eAAC+ formats. There is a 3.5mm audio jack which allows users to use their favourite headsets with the phone. Audio quality is quite good with clear sound produced through the phone speaker as well as through headsets. However, audio volume through the headset is a tad low, even when cranked up to the maximum. The video player is not anything to shout about either. It supports up to QVGA H.263, H.264, AVI, MPEG-4 and WMV files. Playback is often laggy due to the C3’s paltry 64MB RAM.

The C3 offers nothing exciting in terms of connectivity but taking into account its price, it is not half bad. WiFi is not a feature you see in most budget phones (it is often absent in midrange ones too), so the fact that the C3 has it is a major plus point. It supports 2G (GSM/EDGE) but not 3G. EDGE is sufficient for IM, social networking and light web browsing; heavy data transfers will require WiFi connectivity. Local connectivity comes in the form of microUSB v2.0 and Bluetooth with A2DP support for audio streaming to Bluetooth headsets. S  trangely, the phone cannot be charged through USB – an inconvenience indeed. The C3 also supports up to 8GB microSD cards and the good news is they’re hot swappable.

The C3 comes with a Nokia web browser and also the Opera Mini browser. The former cannot be used to browse the web; it is used only for “Web Services”, for instance, when accessing Nokia’s mobile site, MySpace, AccuWeather and so on. For browsing, the Opera Mini browser is the solution, and an excellent one at that. Opera renders the pages on its servers, compresses the images and sends them to the phone in a much smaller size. This considerably lowers the amount of data transferred, therefore cutting down on data charges as well as page loading time.

The BL-5J 1320mAh battery that powers the C3 provides up to 7 hours of talk time and 800 hours of standby time. It is adequate but hardly impressive, considering the lack of advanced features like 3G.
Pros and Cons

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The C3 is a texting powerhouse that isn’t hard on the eyes, and whose stylish design and build quality are accentuated by its very reasonable price. Overall, the C3 does its job well, but there is not much else it has to offer – don’t expect 3G network support, multi-tasking, or a quality camera. The S40 platform it runs also deprives users of many applications, some of which they may deem essential.
Conclusion
For those who love texting, have an active social life and want something stylish that won’t burn a hole in their pockets, the C3 delivers and then some. Its strength lies in its efficiency and user-friendliness; and with WiFi and SNS thrown in, the C3 is a real steal. To some, the C3’s entry level connectivity and multimedia capabilities are a turn-off, but it is precisely this no-frills quality that may ironically endear it to its target audience.

Motorola TITANIUM

Motorola-TITANIUM_2

Motorola TITANIUM is the successor to the Motorola i1 that was introduced last year. The Motorola i1 was a solid device however came with an earlier version of Android coupled with some performance issues like too much lag for instance. So how does the successor, Motorola TITANIUM, fare? Let’s find out.

Design

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For those who are familiar with the Motorola XPRT, the Motorola TITANIUM would have definitely reminded them of it. However, it’s not a carbon copy as it now has three physical buttons instead of the four capacitive buttons found on the Motorola XPRT. The physical buttons doesn’t seem like a good idea as it is thin and hard to press. The keyboard, albeit similar looking, felt softer thus making it harder to get a message typed in one try. Measuring 4.71×2.44×0.53 inches, this phone is pretty much the same size as the Motorola XPRT. It comes with a 3.1 inch capacitive display that has a resolution of 320 x 480. For a device of this magnitude, we definitely expected much more, but it looks like we have to settle with what we have. On the right side of the phone is the dedicated camera button. While on the top is the lock button. These buttons might be hard to find at first, but once you get used to it, they are easy to press. Meanwhile with the PTT button and the volume rocker that are found on the left are not so hard to find as they stand out from the pack. Flip the phone around to find the 5MP camera sitting there waiting to be explored. The Motorola TITANIUM in terms of its design is really comfortable to be held in the hand just like the Motorola i1.
Features
These days, smartphones are capable of powering its own dock and act like a laptop. It didn’t already know what I was talking about, it’s the Motorola ATRIX 4G. However, expect no such capabilities with the Motorola TITANIUM as it has only got 540MHz processor on board. The 512MB memory coupled with the processor is almost surely not going to be enough to run the Android with no hiccups.

The Motorola TITANIUM is running on Android v2.1 Éclair. This in itself is a downer as now we have Android v2.3 Gingerbread which is definitely the best out there. Adding on to that is the performance issues that will arise no thanks to the 540MHz Freescale Zeus processor that we had previously talked about. This is sadly a recurrence of the lag problems its predecessor the Motorola i1 faced, just that it was running on Android version 1.5. The UI that runs on the Android is the Blur-type interface. With this UI we get five home screens compared to the seven most other phones come with these days. Other standard Motorola widgets and the App Drawer are included as well. Other than that, there is a cool app called the My Sign app that allows us to come up with gestures which will then be how you launch other apps. There is also the Quick Office app for Office document viewing and editing. There are also apps like the TeleNav and Facebook apps. The soft keyboard that we had touched about earlier isn’t the best at detecting what we key in, so we had to give the alternative that’s provided, Swipe. This is available in landscape mode thus making us less reliant on the physical keyboard. However, its presence doesn’t seem to be fully utilized by many users as they prefer to stick to the mushy physical keyboard.

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We don’t get why Motorola did this, but they decided to throw in only a 3.1 inch screen with a meager 320 x 480 resolution into the Motorola TITANIUM. For a smartphone like this, the screen is really average to say the least. Although it can be seen in almost all lighting conditions except for direct light scenarios, all in all its quality is obviously not the best out there.

Even though business users are the main target for the Motorola TITANIUM, it has actually got a good mix of multimedia capability thanks to the Android it runs on. It comes with a 5MP camera, which gives pretty good detail on the subjects in the picture. Taking pictures under bright sunlight sadly gives over-exposed pictures. The colors were also a bit washed out but overall it was a good camera, just not great. Customizing options is not what this phone is going to be known for as the camera comes with very little camera options. As for video recording, it’s pretty bad as the maximum recording resolution is just CIF.

The Motorola TITANIUM comes with Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 2.1 +EDR and GPS support. However, when connected to Wi-Fi, no thanks to its slow CPU, it takes a long time to load web pages. This phone is also powered by iDEN. Nevertheless, this isn’t something to cheer about as the data speeds on iDEN network are extremely slow that you would rather not be surfing the internet. The browser does however give support for double tapping and pinching to zoom. Sadly though, these two methods will only expose more problems in the phone. The Wi-Fi had its issues too as it would disconnect from the network with no apparent reason, and when we reconnect, it sometimes almost immediately disconnects.

Previously on the Motorola i1, the 1440mAh battery it came with posed many issues. Now, the Motorola TITANIUM comes with a power packed 1820mAh battery which lasts a lot longer. It gives approximately 7 hours of talk time while being rated for 235 hours in standby. Users on the other end of our call were pleased as they could hear our voices clearly although there was some background noise. They could also be heard loud and clear on our end plus the speakerphone was also loud.

Pros and Cons

Motorola-TITANIUM
The Motorola TITANIUM comes with the Military Spec 810G which is great. In terms of phone performance, the phone does well with good call quality as well as solid battery life.

Nevertheless, on the dark side, the CPU that came with the phone was really insufficient. The mushy keyboard that resulted in a lot of mistakes was a design issue with the phone. Running on Android v2.1 is going to be a major turn off too.
Conclusion
Motorola TITANIUM does a much better job than its predecessor the Motorola i1. Although maybe not the best phone for those who want the latest specs on their phone, it’s definitely worth looking out for if you are out for a business phone.

LG Quantum C900

LG-Quantum-C900

Introduction

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When it comes to Windows Phone 7 devices that also have solid QWERTY keyboards, the LG Quantum is probably the best. At first glance, this barley looks like Smartphone: the screen is quite small, the slide keyboard is easy to use, and you won’t notice the advanced performance until you actually try starting a more complicated task.

Design

The Samsung phone measures 4.7 inches in height, 2.3 inches in width, and 0.4 in depth. At 6.2 ounces, this is a somewhat heavy phone, but it falls into the same category as most smart phones. Despite its size and weight, you will get used to the QWERTY keyboard quite rapidly and writing anything or navigating the menus is a breeze. This is a slide phone, but it still feels sturdy and you will not want to treat it with care. On the front panel, you will only notice three buttons: the Windows one and two touch buttons located on each side of the LG logo. Once you open the slide, you can flip the phone into landscape mode and take advantage of the QWERTY keyboard, including the directional keys. There are only four rows of buttons, so you can be sure that each one of them is big enough for your thumbs and you won’t have any problems hitting the right key. If you prefer touch buttons, you don’t have to open the slide at all and you can use the touch screen for your texting needs. The capacitive touch screen is 3.5 inches in diameter, which is somewhat smaller than most people expect from a phone that can record HD video. A micro USB port is available on the left side and on the right side, you will find the volume rocker and a button for the video and picture camera. On the top of the device, you will notice the 3.5mm headphone jack and the power button. If you turn the phone over, you will see the Windows logo and the 5 MP camera, which is located on the top center side of the phone, along with the LED flash.

Features

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Because most people will use the LG Quantum for browsing and watching movies, the people from LG decided to go with a 16 million colors 3.5-inch screen that offers 480 x 800 resolution. This is not the best screen in the business, but it performs fairly well. The main problem with this screen is the fact that you can’t use the landscape mode whenever you want to. This is a huge disadvantage and getting stuck in portrait mode is a significant limitation. Even so, browsing is not a problem thanks to Internet Explorer. You can load any pages very quickly with the help of a 3G network and the phone will respond smoothly and quickly to zooming and any other action.

There are a few apps that come with the LG Quantum straight out of the package. The most impressive one is Panorama Shot. You can use this phone to take 360-degree panoramic photos and it will create the file rapidly. The end result looks great and you will be able to obtain some great pictures with minimum effort. Another important application is Photo Stylist. You can use it to edit your images and add the effects you want. The program is easy to use and the phone will respond to your commands rapidly thanks to its powerful processor. The Microsoft Office package is also included, so you gain full access to .doc documents or Excel spreadsheets.

The LG Quantum runs on a 1 GHz Snapdragon CPUI and 256 MB of RAM, which is a huge advantage over most smartphones around. Every application will load instantly and you won’t have any problems while editing pictures or browsing the internet. The enhanced performance is a result of the hardware characteristics combined with the powerful operating system.

The worst part about the LG Quantum is the lack of expandable memory, a common problem with Windows Phone 7 smartphones. You will only receive 16 GB of free space and you will have to work your way around it.

The 5-megapixel camera comes with an LED flash, which is a good addition for those who want to take night shots. The 5x zoom is fairly effective, but the quality will obviously drop if you decide to use it. You can also record movies in 720p and there are quite a few features that will make your shots clearer. The LG Quantum performs perfectly when it comes to 720p video playback. Not only will the image be perfectly clear at all times, you will also be happy with the sound quality. Plus, the playback is particularly smooth and there are no noticeable problems in this department. The only real problem with video playback is the limitation imposed by the quality of the screen.

Pros and Cons

LG-Quantum-C900

On the upside, the LG Quantum is a great piece of technology; you can use the QWERTY keyboard with absolutely no problems, which is more than we can say about most smartphones these days, and the video and photo cameras will offer great picture quality. The video playback quality is impressive and browsing the internet will go smoothly in any situation.

On the downside, LG decided to cut down on the functionality and create a somewhat small screen for this phone. Even worse, the fact that the phone doesn’t offer landscape mode in any situation will be a serious problem for those who want to take full advantage of the QWERTY keyboard. The fact that you can’t add a memory card and expand the phone’s memory is also a disadvantage.

Conclusion

In the world of Windows Phone 7 devices, the LG Quantum is close to being the best. It offers a little bit of everything and its performance far exceeds its downsides. Those who are looking for an attractive and efficient Smartphone will be happy with the LG Quantum.

HTC Status

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Facebook is now everywhere, there’s even a dedicated button for Facebook on the HTC Status just so you can tell the world what you are doing by the minute. The HTC Status does have a lot of similarities to the HTC ChaCha, so let’s find out how it’s a different Facebook phone from its sibling.

Design

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Measuring just 4.5 x 2.54 x 0.42, it is a really thin phone and is a delight to be held in your hand. Wait, there’s more good news, tipping the scales at just around 123 grams, you also don’t feel like it’s there in your pocket. The white, silver and blue color scheme was also rather refreshing with all the black phones we already have out there. The 2.6 inch screen might be a reason for some to complain, but its HVGA resolution might help steady the ship. Similar to Google’s Nexus S, the screen is slightly curved towards the user. Right below the display are the four capacitive buttons found on every other smartphone these days. Although a full QWERTY keyboard was a great thing to have, the keys are rather small, so users with slightly larger fingers might have a tough time. On the bottom right we find the dedicated Facebook key while on the left edge of the phone is the volume rocker together with an exposed micro-USB port. On the top of the phone is the power button which is to the right of the 3.5mm standard audio jack. Flip the phone and you will find a 5MP autofocus camera which comes with LED flash. One notable design flaw that may be noticed however is the battery cover. Although HTC says you can pop it open using your two thumbs, that didn’t happen. You need to have thumbs as strong as a superhero to be able to pop it free if you are going to do it the HTC way.
Features  

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Just like the HTC ChaCha, the HTC Status comes with a single core CPU that runs at 800MHz. For the graphics, the Adreno 200 is there to do the job. In terms of memory, there is a 2GB microSD card pre-installed on this phone. However, you have to remove the battery to access the expansion slot, which brings us back to the topic of removing the battery cover.

The HTC Status to everyone’s delight comes with the Android v2.3.3 Gingerbread together with the HTC Sense 2.1 for Messenger which is meant for smartphones with smaller screens. The cool feature of being able to access an app directly from the lock screen is taken from the HTC Sense 3.0. Althought the main screen is rather crowded, it is packed with information. Being a Facebook phone, it comes with a bubble below the clock that shows real time status updates from Facebook and Twitter. One feature missing out is the ever so useful Quick Settings menu which means now you have to go through Android settings for everything. So, what about the dedicated Facebook button? Let’s find out. A single press lets you update your status. A long press on the other hand, lets you check-in to places. Meanwhile, if you feel like sharing an article that you are reading, say this one for instance, just click the Facebook button while reading it and you got it. The same technique applies for sharing photos from the photo gallery. The chat app is great too and the fact that you have a QWERTY keyboard in front of you makes chatting a whole lot easier. The app can be found on your homescreen listing out all contacts that are available.
The 2.6 inch coming with HVGA resolution is definitely a bit small. However, the TFT LCD screen on the HTC Status is quite bright which impressively made it viewable even under sunlight. Although the colors did fade away when it’s viewed from an angle above 20 degrees, it certainly was better than the EVO Shift 4G.

The HTC Status actually comes with a pretty decent 5MP auto focus camera. In well lit conditions, the pictures captured had a lot of detail and the HTC’s tap-to-focus feature helped make them better too. However, it wasn’t all a bed of roses as when pictures were taken in direct sunlight, colors were muted a little. The sensors didn’t do well in low light situations too creating pictures that were overexposed at the lit areas and vice versa at low lit areas. Nevertheless, the LED flash was good at capturing subjects that were some distance away. Moving on to videos, the HTC Status was able to record videos at a resolution of 720 x 480 however the video wasn’t exactly able to produce fluid motion.

Using a Facebook phone like the HTC Status can means you have an obligation to be on Facebook all the time. So, it’s good to know that HTC Status supports GSM, GPRS, EDGE, 3G UMTS, HSDPA and definitely Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n. All this means good news as you can stay connected with all your friends wherever you are. When it comes to web browsing, obviously the small display is going to be in the way but then again the HVGA resolution is there to make things look better. It’s also great that all the pages load quickly and are formatted to fit the page.

The Samsung phone’s performance when it came to call quality was not great but good enough. There was this hiss in the background every time we were on the phone. The HTC Status’ speakerphone was not quite loud enough although when it came to signal reception it didn’t let us down. The 1250mAh battery seemed to be a good bet for this phone. It lasted more than a whole day without needing a recharge for average social networking and phone calls.

Pros and Cons

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Being small and ultra light, the HTC Status was very much to our taste. The Facebook integration was almost flawless and the QWERTY keyboard that goes along with it was worth it.

Screen size was a tat bit small causing text on web pages to sometimes appear too small. The camera was a turn off especially when it came to video recording.
Conclusion
This is another one of HTC’s Facebook phones, and the HTC Status seems to be doing a great job too. If you are hooked to social networking, then this phone is definitely a must have.

Guide of buying the latest Samsung smartphones in Kenya

 

Samsung phones have been in Kenya for the longest time possible. Since the move from analog phones to more sophisticated phones, Samsung has been walking with us all the way. Truth be told, Samsung is a brand, and it is unbeatable. Their phones are quite expensive as compared to other smartphones around. This has not made this smartphone be disapproved by people; it is still the best to some people who will die for a brand of their choice.

This is what has made Samsung smartphones be at the top of their game in Kenya and also in Africa. Cheaper brands have not managed to oust this brand, and thus, it has never stagnated nor disappointed its range of customers.  What we have  in 2016 is not what we had in 2010 we have something that is better which previous mistakes have been brushed out to give something which is close to perfect. At a glance, we will take a look at various Samsung smartphones in Kenya, what they will offer you as the user what they will not give you and so on. The good thing about this brand is that the phone used some few years ago may still be useful to you today. At least they do not hang constantly, and you therefore, don’t have to worry about such a problem.

  •  Samsung Galaxy Mega 5.8

This version comes with a 5.8-inch screen and a body that will put you off your feet.  The Android version is Jellybean 4.2.2 which can give you a great Android experience with your Samsung phone. An internal memory of 8GB is ideal for storing most of your documents if this is not enough for you, there is some good news. It can be upgraded to 64GB via an external memory card. The RAM of 1.5GB gives your phone a fast experience that will help you through as you navigate your apps without giving you the problem of hanging and delaying all your activities. It supports dual SIM cards, therefore, no need of two phones you will enjoy the benefits of two phones in a single device. Now to the camera, it has an 8MP camera that gives quality images for recording memories just as they are. This is the Samsung phone that will give you a great experience at a lower budget than Samsung Galaxy Mega 6.3.

  • Samsung Galaxy Mega 6.3

Samsung Galaxy Mega 6.3

As the name suggests, this phone has a 6.3-inch screen size that has a great display. The screen is scratch resistant, and you can be sure that your screen will remain as good as new so long as you are using it. The Android platform that this phone runs on is 4.2.2, but this should not worry you as this phone will give you an easy time when it comes to browsing, reading e books and such activities that require the internet.  The 1.5 GB RAM is what will give your phone the ultimate speed when you want to switch between apps at a speed that is good enough for you. It comes with an 8MP back and 1.9MP front camera for clear and sharp images. The battery is something that will blow your mind off as it comes with as 3200mAh capacity that may take you for more than a day without shutting down. The only setback for this phone is the fact that it does not have an FM radio. That is too bad for people who love to listen to radio through their smartphones.  I would say that this was a major miscalculation on the Samsung phones side, this is because Kenyans are radio lovers that are unbeatable and they need phones that have this function. What else do you do with a phone that has no internet bundles, or talk time? You can only listen to the radio.

  •  Samsung Galaxy S2

Samsung Galaxy S2

This phone comes with a 4.3-inch screen that is quite good due to its ability to resist scratches keeping your screen as good as new. It has so many astounding features such as making calls by simply moving the device to the ear. This simple gesture will automatically trigger the phone to make a call. Once you put your eyes away from the phone, it will dim its light to help conserve the energy, isn’t this cool? It has a voice authentication capability where you can unlock it by your voice. No snoopers can now get to your phone. You will receive updates on your calls, messages and other notifications once you pick your phone without even having to turn on the display. I think that this is the Samsung smartphone that is without a doubt smart. It runs on the Jellybean Android version and comes with a 1GB RAM that keeps you at the speed that will not disappoint you at any day. This phone is simply amazing with all the things that it can be able to do for you. The user experience of this phone never lets anyone down.

  •  Samsung Galaxy S4

Samsung Galaxy S4

For those who need a lighter phone, this is the way to go. It is thinner and lighter than its predecessor. Its design comes in to give you a look and a feel that is different than other experiences that you have had with other Samsung phones. The Android operating system that this phone runs on is the Jellybean which is quite good.  The 2GB RAM gives you the super speed that you need on your phone to keep you going for a very long time without the phone always hanging. An internal memory of as from16GB is the storage that will keep all your data without you having to delete some document to store new documents. The camera has a 13MP back camera and a 2MP front camera that gives you quality images and videos that will give your memories the dignity that they deserve.  Now let us look at the smart features that Samsung Galaxy will offer you, you can pause a movie by switching your focus away from the screen, with this you are left asking yourself how smart this gadget can be.  Just like Galaxy S3, this one is also able to dim the screen when you shift your focus away from the screen. I think these developments make this phone better and a good one for people who want to be above average when it comes to smartphones experience. This is a good phone for people who need smartphones that come with class.

  •  Samsung Galaxy S4 Active

With every Samsung smartphone brand that is released, we always know that we shall not be disappointed. This is yet another of the ever amazing brands that will not let you down at any day. Let us go through the specs that make this phone stand out among many other phones. Its screen size is 5 inch with a high resolution to give you quality images. The camera has 8MP back camera and 2MP front camera which gives images that are quite clear. The Android version of 4.2.2 is perfect for this phone and keeps it going for better performance. The speed has not also been left out by the makers of this phone as it has a 2GB RAM which gives your Galaxy S4 a great  speed that will enable you switch between apps with ease.  An internal memory of 16GB comes in handy for storing all your data without the need of an external memory card.

This is the Samsung smartphone that is on a higher league than most of its counterparts. It is able to connect to 4G networks, meaning that the internet speed that you will get is going to be faster than what you have ever experienced. It can be put on driving mode whereby all important notifications are read to you in cases where you cannot be able to interact with your phone. Your eyes can now scroll through your phone by only tilting the phone. This gadget gives you an experience that is super, only that radio lovers will have a hard time while using this phone. It does not have an FM radio; this is quite a drawback for people who appreciate the radio being on their gadgets.

  • Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom

Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom

This is what I could call a Galaxy S4 Zoom with a camera or a camera with a phone because it has the potential to do both. It has a 4.3 screen that has a good display. The 16MP camera comes with Xenon flash, a panorama view, can auto focus on images and more functions that the camera has to give you the best images that you can ever have. A 1.9 MP front camera is able to give you video calls that have high-quality images.  It runs on the jelly bean android version and has an internal memory of 8GB to facilitate the storage of your data. The 1.5GB RAM gives your phone speed to facilitate the usage of various apps without having a hard time when it comes to switching between apps.  The best thing about this Samsung smartphone is that it has a secondary microphone that that reduces background noise when you are making your calls.

Owners of Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom enjoy games as a group either via Bluetooth or NFC this means that there is no boredom with this device.  The good thing is that in this they did not omit the FM radio player that suits most Kenyans that love radio.  You can split your screen and multitask with two different apps. I think this is quite cool for a phone that has so much to offer. It is the ideal Samsung smartphone that has received a lot of appreciation from the people, and I think it is entirely fair.

The Game of Mobile phones

Samsung smartphones have always been at the top of their game when it comes to giving the best gadgets in our market. It is a brand that has a lot to offer and has already made a name for itself. It is the king of the smartphones in Kenya. No matter how expensive the Samsung brand is, it receives a good share for itself in the market. No brand has been able to overthrow this brand. This is probably because, even the simplest of Samsung smartphones will offer you a deal that is better than what most phones can offer. This is something that makes most people stick to this brand. You also don’t have to keep on upgrading your phone every time a new brand comes on board. This is because Samsung brands are made with the future in mind; this is what makes a Samsung user use a single phone for at least two years something that people that use these other brands may not be able to do.

HP Veer 4G

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The smallest up to date smart phone HP has recently just opened to the market that is the HP Veer 4G. This phone packs a few punches trough speed and functions plus mobility. A positively mind-blowing miniature size phone but still is able to match up with previous HP Palm Pre 2.

Design

About the size of a credit card, the HP Veer 4G is only 84 x 54.5 x 15.1 mm and it weights at 103g only. The design is quite alike the HP Palm Pre except everything is smaller. The front is a 2.6 inch capacitive touchscreen with 320 X 400 pixels. Display colors are up to 262K only. The phone has round edges and with matt finish of the body it’s getting a firm grip to it and a solid feel. Just below the screen is the gesture area where users can scroll trough menus and this is where notification shows when there is a message received. Above the screen is the headpiece and proximity sensor but sadly there is no secondary camera for this phone. There is the QWERTY keyboard appeared when the phone screen slide upwards but due to small and compact design of the phone, this keyboard is also small. There is only a volume rocker at the left side of the phone and the top of the phone there is a SIM card slot and also the vibrate switch. The right hand side however is only a data/charging port. This port can be also use as the 3.5 mm headset adapter to attach to the port. There are magnets at the port to ensure the port is tightly fastened when charging or attaching the adapter. At the back there is the 5 Mp camera and also the speaker grill. The battery used for this phone is 910 mAh and it is built in.

Features

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The HP Veer 4G is equipped with 800 MHz Scorpion processor, Adreno 205 GPU, Qualcomm MSM 7230 chipset and built in with 8 GB of memory but usable memory is only 6 GB. Amazingly impressive for such a small phone to be able to work at such blazing speed and could be said the speed of this phone is on par with the previous HP Palm Pre 2. Navigations trough the phone is fluid and responses is very good. Furthermore, the phone comes with HP webOS 2.1. Added feature to the upgrade in software is the stack feature. The web pages can be stacked when drag together which is a much more convenient and a new browsing experience for those who are new to HP phones. There is the “Just Type” feature as well for searching anything for example; music, contacts and the phone will even search locally or online.

Connection to the internet is at HSDPA 14.4 Mbps, HSUPA 5.76 Mbps only so it’s not as fast as the 4G network would be. This phone supports Flash 10.1 so you can watch videos online. The screen is 2.6 inch so viewing blog or websites can be quite difficult but thankfully there is still pinch to zoom function available so you would find yourself pinch zooming quite often while browsing with this phone.

The interesting part about this phones messaging is that it does not only store SMS or MMS, it also pull messages from Gmail or Yahoo. Messages appeared like a conversation. People with big fingers would have a hard time typing using the QWERTY keyboard but other than that the keyboard is still able to send out messages quite smoothly.

Camera is 5 Mp with fixed focus but has no secondary camera and also flash so this can be a disappointment. Picture quality is average because some of it would appear to be washed out or the color is not balance at all. Video recording is available also but user would experience a not so clear visual or pixelated video. Overall the camera function of this phone is below average.

Video playback is not a problem at all for this small phone because of the fast processor speed. Users would enjoy smooth video in MP4 format. On the other hand, the music interface is just like any webOS smartphones. This phone plays music but the sound quality is not so good. During maximum volume, the speaker would be blurred and cracking sounds could be heard.

This phone has also some interesting features like Bluetooth V2.1, A-GPS, and document viewer. There is also a dedicated mic with noise cancellation and voices can be heard clearly. Battery life is average. Talk time is up to 6 hours and 300 hours for sta ndby time after a full charge.

Pros and Cons

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HP has released such a compact phone but the speed is can match even to its predecessor the HP Palm Pre 2 plus navigation trough the phone is easy so it’s a good point.

Cramped up keyboard, weak battery life and slow network can be somewhat frustrating for a user who would like to use their phones to browse internet.

Conclusion

If you are an average user and a fan of small compact phones then this is the phone for you.

Google Nexus S

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Introduction

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To the big names in the telecommunications industry, the launch of the Google Nexus S came as a surprise. A year after the Google Nexus One was introduced, Google partnered with Korean electronics manufacturer; Samsung; to develop the Google Nexus S. Previously, the Google Nexus One was made available only through Google supply chains. This limited market placement of the Google Nexus One ultimately contributed to its poor sales. Now, Google has bounced back by producing its second phone, the Nexus S and improving its marketing plan to make it more accessible to consumers.

Design

At first glance, the Google Nexus S bears a striking resemblance to the Samsung Galaxy S. Samsung had revamped the design of its Galaxy S phone; giving it a more hip and trendy look, and this is also evident in the Nexus S. The Nexus S weighs 129g – only slightly heavier than the Galaxy S. It has an ergonomic design, with rounded edges and curves at all the right places, making it very comfortable to handle. The 4-inch AMOLED screen has been upgraded with Contour Display Technology, which makes it look more sleek and polished. The screen is curved to mirror the contours of the viewers’ face. However, this appears to be merely an aesthetic feature which confers little benefit in terms of ease of use. It also has a 0.3 megapixe  l front-facing camera and a 5 megapixel camera at the back with LED flash.

Features

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At the core of the Google Nexus S lies a 1 GHz processor with 512 MB RAM. The Google Nexus S impresses with its hardware – it never lags even when switching between programmes. A GPU chip also allows the user to stream high and standard definition content smoothly. The Nexus S has an internal storage capacity of 16GB, which is sufficient to say the least. However, had the Nexus S been given micro SD card support, it would have allowed users to transfer data without having to connect to the PC. Furthermore, it would have provided users with additional storage space for multimedia content.

Within the Nexus S is the fastest and latest Android Operating System – the Android 2.3 Gingerbread. This gives the Nexus X the edge over other droids like Vibrant from T-Mobile which runs on the 2.2 Froyo. Another notable feature of the Nexus S is its Near Field Communication (NFC) chip. The NFC chip enables the transmission of data over limited distances. Although the NFC chip has not been widely adopted and accepted in countries like the U.K. and the U.S.; it is a big hit in Japan as a means of mobile money transfer.

Another fantastic feature of the Nexus S is its intelligent keyboard. Users will warm up to the keyboard in no time as it remembers more words and recognises frequently used words. This makes text messaging a breeze. The front-facing camera allows for video-calling and self portrait photography. The camera also supports video recording but only at a resolution of 720 x 480 pixels, which is unimpressive for a smartphone.

The AMOLED screen with WVGA resolution displays 16M colors, and is great for watching videos on YouTube. Images are crisp and bright, with just the right dimensions, as opposed to the awkward display on the considerably larger screen sported by HTC Desire HD. However, upon closer inspection, the screen seems to emit an odd greenish hue.

Pros and Cons

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The great thing about the Nexus S compared to other smartphones is its long-lasting 1,500 mAh battery. Based on tests done on the Nexus S, its battery provides up to 2 days of standby time. Therefore, it spares users the hassle of having to carry a charger wherever they go.

However, a major shortcoming of the Nexus S is its sound quality. Although the rear speakers are capable of emitting exceptionally loud sound, in-call sound quality is poor – voices sound unclear and distant. However, sound clarity during calls to and from land lines is much better. In terms of aesthetics, the Nexus S falls short. Compared to the more popular smartphones like the iPhone 4 and HTC Desire, the Nexus S gives off a cheap feel because of its heavy use of light plastic.

Conclusion

The Google Nexus S is one of the top Android phones currently in the market. Its design is chic and presentable; and its super fast and responsive screen sets it apart from the rest. Moreover, when the NFC chip eventually catches on and gains popularity across the globe, the Nexus S may very well be catapulted to the top of the Android food chain. In conclusion, if you were pleased with the Samsung Galaxy S, then the Nexus S is likely to tickle your fancy as well, as both have almost similar hardware and design.