Thursday, October 16, 2014

Google officially announces the Android 5.0 Lollipop powered Nexus 6 and Nexus 9, coming soon to Canada

With a very low key announcement, Google in partnership with HTC and Motorola have officially unveiled the Nexus 6 and Nexus 9. We have the following information from our friends at TELUS, HTC and Motorola about the Canadian availability.

The Nexus 6 will be made by Motorola and is heavily inspired by the 2014 Moto X but with aspirations of phablet domination. While the Nexus 9 on the other hand is HTC's grand re-entrance into the incredibly cutthroat tablet market. With an 8.9 inch display, the Nexus 9 fall between the iPad Mini and iPad Air in terms of size.

Price for the Nexus 6 are the big shocker today as the usually ultra affordable flagship Nexus Handset is a surprising $749 for the 32GB version (expected to be $799 for the 64GB version). Price for the Nexus 9 in Canada isn't clear but we expect it to be in the $399 range to be competitive with both the iPads.

Carrier availability for the Nexus 6 is expected to be widespread but for now all we have is information from our friends at TELUS that it wil be coming "later this year". As for the Nexus 9, TELUS also tell us that it (the LTE version) will be available "later this year" and HTC adds that it will also be coming to Canadians via Futureshop/Best Buy as well as the LTE version via Rogers.

For specs, the Nexus 6 is sporting a 5.96-inch 2560x1440 QHD AMOLED display, 2.7GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 805 Processor, Adreno 420 GPU, 3GB of RAM, 32/64GB of internal storage, 13MP f2.0 Rear Facing Camera and 3220mAh battery

While the Nexus 9 is sporting a 8.9" 2048x1536 QXGA IPS LCD, 2.3GHz 64-bit Tegra K1 Processor, 192-core Kepler GPU, 2GB of RAM, 16/32GB of internal storage, 8MP f2.0 Rear Facing Camera and 6700mAh battery

Google also announced that the Nexus 7 (2012 and 2013), Nexus 4, Nexus 5 and Nexus 10 will all get upgrades to Android 5.0 Lollipop.

More info on Both devices and Android 5.0 Lollipop in the near future.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Samsung Galaxy Note 4 coming to several Canadian October 24th

We gotten word from our friends at Samsung that the much anticipated Galaxy Note 4 will be available in Canada starting October 24th

Samsung has stated that the available colours will be Charcoal Black and Frost White. Spec include a 5.7 inch Quad HD 2560x1440p display, 2.7GHz Snapdragon 805 processor, 3GB of RAM, 32GB of internal storage which can be supplimented by 128GB via microSD card, 16MP Camera with Optical Image Stabilization.

Carriers include Rogers, Bell, TELUS, Koodo, WIND Mobile, Videotron and SaskTel with more to be added later.

Check out the full press release after the break.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Sony's new Xperia Z3 series has something to offer for everyone

Following the well received Xperia Z2 its only natural that Sony follow up its flagship with the Sony Xperia Z3. While this is a iteration of the Sony flagship series, the specs are pretty familiar to anyone with a Z2, the biggest changes lie in the camera and overall hardware design of the Z3.

The Z3 sports specs pretty much expected from most 2014 flagships but surprisingly isn't a drastic upgrade over the the Z2. Specs include a 5.2-inch 1080p display at 424ppi, a 2.5GHz Snapdragon 801, Adreno 330 graphics, 3GB of RAM, 16 GB of onboard storage with support for up to 128 GB of external storage via MicroSD, a 20.7MP camera with 25mm wide-angle Sony G Lens and of course IP 67 water and dust resistance.

While the Z2 didn't get a Compact version like its predecessor the Z1, Sony looks like its going to give the "Compact" segment yet another shot with the Z3 Compact. We are glad to see that the same strategy Sony used on the original Z1 Compact is still here, with almost identical specs to the Z3 but in smaller form factor.

Specs include a 4.6-inch 720p display, a 2.5GHz Snapdragon 801, Adreno 330 graphics, 3GB of RAM, 16 GB of onboard storage with support for up to 128 GB of external storage via MicroSD, a 20.7MP camera with 25mm wide-angle Sony G Lens and of course IP 67 water and dust resistance.

Lastly Sony threw a bit a curveball by announcing the Z3 Tablet Compact. While a bit oddly named, it does fall under the category of the "smaller" tablet segment of the market. As expected it sports an impressively thin body and follows the design of the other Z3 products.

Spec include a 8-inch 1080p display, a 2.5GHz Snapdragon 801, Adreno 330 graphics, 3GB of RAM, 16 GB of onboard storage with support for up to 128 GB of external storage via MicroSD, 8.1MP camera in the back and IP 67 water and dust resistance.

One killer feature that all three tout is the ability to remote play from a PS4 and interface with a PS4 Dual Shock controller for a gaming experience not unlike that of something like an nvidia shield. If done right by Sony, this can be a HUGE win for the Xperia line of phones given the tons of momentum behind the PS4.

Canadian availability is stated to be "later this year" but no word on pricing of carrier availability. We wouldn't be surprised if one or several products of this line only come to Canada directly through Sony stores.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Motorola unveils the Moto X (2014), Moto G (2014) and announces availability of the Moto 360

With the Moto X, Motorola turned over a new leaf in its storied history by renewing its commitment to Android by making one of the best phones of 2013 and showed that software differentiation can go much deeper than just slapping on a "OEM skin" over Android and loading the phone with a million features.

This week Motorola unveiled the new Moto X for 2014 which builds on the movement they started with the original. With specs that include a 5.2-inch Full HD 1080p Super AMOLED display, a 2.5Ghz quad-core Snapdragon 801 processor, 2GB of RAM, 16GB of internal storage, a 13MP camera wth dual LED Ring flash and 4K video capture, a 2300mAh battery, front facing stereo speakers and Android 4.4.4 KitKat, the Moto X is certainly well equipped to go toe to toe with any of 2014's current crop of flagships.

One thing that has us worried would be the 2300mAh battery which seems at first glance a tad low compared to the 3000+ we've seen from many of the other flagship devices.

We look forward to get our hands on the device. The Moto X will be coming to Canada in black and bamboo to TELUS this fall. No word on availability with other carriers.
With the New Moto G, Motorola continues its warpath on conquering the emerging markets where the original Moto G was incredibly popular. With a no frills, no compromise Android experience but on a shoestring budget, the Moto G brought Android to millions of people who might otherwise have not had the means to. All this with little to no sacrifices.

Current Moto G owners will be familiar with the specs of the new Moto G as they are just about identical save for some tweaks Motorola saw fit according to their research. They include a 1.2 GHz Quad Core Snapdragon 400 Processor, 1GB of RAM, 8GB of Internal Storage, Adreno 305 Graphic processor, 8 MP camera with LED flash and 720p video recording capabilities and front facing stereo speakers. The screen gets a bump to 5-inches at 720p. The inclusion of expandable storage with a mcroSD card slot was a feature desired by many in the markets where the Moto G was successful.

We do wish the 2GB of RAM was increased as many people with the Moto G have noted memory related issues with app staying active in the background with the relatively low amount of RAM.

The Moto G will be coming to Canada in October at retail in partnership with Ingram Micro Canada.
The Moto 360 has undoubtedly been the most anticipated Android Wear devices since Google announced the smartwatch centric OS. We now know that the 360 will be coming to Canada through TELUS, Futureshop, Best Buy this fall for $279. 

Specs include  a 1.5-inch backlit LCD touch screen, with a 320×290 resolution, 205ppi, and Corning’s Gorilla Glass 3, 512MB of RAM, Wireless N connectivity, and a Texas Instruments processor.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Moto 360 to cost $250 according to Best Buy

The Moto 360 is arguably one of the most anticipated wearables since the introduction of smartwatches. Now we have a better idea of the price and specs of the 360 thanks to a slip up at Best Buy. According to the Best Buy pages that has obviously been modified, the Moto 360 will retail for $250 and will sport a 1.5-inch backlit LCD touch screen, with a 320×290 resolution, 205ppi, and Corning’s Gorilla Glass 3, 12MB of RAM, Wireless N connectivity, and a Texas Instruments processor.

The last spec is particularly interesting considering TI has, as far as we know, stopped all SoC production.

Nevertheless, we are excited to get our hand on the watch to put it through its paces.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Samsung to unveil next generation Galaxy Note on September 3rd

Looks like Samsung is gearing up for its next phablet release. Showing off the well known Air Command popup, we believe its safe to assume that Samsung will be unveiling the next Galaxy Note.

Its expected that the Note 4 will push the envelope like previous iterations have done. We wouldn't be surprised to see Samsung's Octa Core Exynos or a Snapdragon 805 or both via different variants. We suspect 3GB of RAM, 1440p display and 5.7+inch display will be included in the specs.

Overall we look forward to see the next Galaxy Note.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Motorola Moto E now available in Canada

After a few month since its official unveiling, our friends at Motorola have let us know that the Motorola Moto E is now available to Canadians. Motorola has partnered with Staples to make it available unlocked for $179.

Specs include a Qualcomm Snapdragon 200, 1GB RAM, 4GB internal storage, microSD slot up to 32GB, 4.3in 540 x 960 qHD.

As we've already mentioned in the past, the Moto E is priced a bit strangely considering the fact that the Moto G is available, depending on the carrier, in Canada for as little as $150 without a contract. This is offset by the fact that the Moto E is unlocked out of the box but it isn't a great plus considering the spec gap between the Moto G and Moto E.

Nevertheless, it's great to see the option available for those who are looking for a more affordable handset for traveling or to take to the carrier of their choice and have the flexibility of choosing the low priced plans.