Life with the Sharp/T-Mobile Sidekick LX

June 14, 2009

So the friendly people at T-Mobile recently provided me with a Sharp/T-Mobile Sidekick LX to review. After unboxing it, I played with it for a couple weeks. The result? My first time using a Sidekick. The verdict? A mixed bag.

- Hardware:
The Sidekick LX is a deceptively large device. But it’s relatively light, and it’s well proportioned – its extra size is only noticeable when placed side-by-side with other phones. It looks thin, but it actually matches the T-Mobile G1 in the X dimension.

Build quality is fine – it looks and feels a lot better than other Sidekick devices I’ve sampled, with tasteful chrome accents and a lovely purple-ish color on this “orchid” model. I wouldn’t call this phone attractive, but it’s not offensive either.

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Nokia E75 camera

May 25, 2009

There’s no doubt the Nokia E75 is a great device. But the camera really surprised me…

With 3.2 a megapixel sensor, auto-focus, macro, a single LED flash, and VGA video recording at 30 fps, the E75 camera specs fall somewhere in between the “mehNokia 5800 camera (which features dual LED flash and Zeiss optics) and the mediocre E66/E71 camera (which only features QVGA video recording at 15 fps).

But in reality, the E75 leaves the 5800 in the dust, beats the decent T-Mobile G1 and teases the excellent BlackBerry Storm to the finish line – check out the pictures and judge for yourself!

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HTC Touch Pro/Fuze review

May 10, 2009

Soon after reaching out to the HTC folks at CTIA, I received an HTC Fuze to review. The HTC Fuze is AT&T’s locked and branded version of the HTC Touch Pro. This is my first review unit from HTC, and hopefully the first of many. Within about an hour of getting the phone, I unlocked and unbranded it into an HTC Touch Pro (sans front-facing camera).

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CTIA: Palm Pre walkthrough

April 5, 2009

During CTIA I visited the Sprint VIP lounge and I recorded this exclusive 45-minute video walkthrough of the Palm Pre! I also snapped a bunch of pictures

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Noise – a case study

March 8, 2009

Other pictures taken with the Samsung T929 (Memoir) are available on my Flickr account.

So I decided to do a little experiment: take 3 pictures with 3 devices (one each) at night in the same location around the same time! The goal? Evaluate how megapixels affect low-light performance.

The megapixel myth tells us that more megapixels is not necessarily better. It generally means smaller pixels, which means more heat, which results in more noise, which impacts low-light performance…

Of course there are many variables here: differences in optics, sensor type/size, image-processing/noise-reduction software, and more. Because this is meant to be a real-life test with real-life devices, I can’t control these variables – I can only pick suitable devices.

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Life with the BlackBerry Storm

February 22, 2009

I only have 2 words to describe my 3 weeks with the BlackBerry 9530 (Storm): epic fail! From the day the Storm was announced it was clear to me that some nasty weather was heading this way from Canada. Hold this thought as a segue for moment.

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BlackBerry Storm camera

February 18, 2009

Yes it’s true. As I’ve already mentioned, the BlackBerry 9530 (Storm) camera is nice!

In fact, this is the best 3 megapixel camera I’ve used on a phone recently – It’s that good

The T-Mobile G1 comes close, but the Storm easily beats the Nokia 5800, especially when shooting in low-light.

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Podcast: Talking with Matt #5

February 2, 2009

It’s time for another podcast (26 min) with Matthew Bennett:
- Audio version
- Video version

This week we discussed the BlackBerry 9530 (Storm) and the Nokia 5800 XpressMusic, amongst other things. Enjoy :)

Click here to subscribe to this podcast.

Pictures taken with the Nokia 5800

January 29, 2009

The Nokia 5800 XpressMusic boasts an impressive list of features for a mid-range device. The camera, while falling short of the current state-of-the-art, certainly looks good on paper: 3.2 megapixel sensor, Carl Zeiss lens, auto-focus with macro, dual LED flash, and VGA video recording!

How does it perform in real life?

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Podcast: Talking with Matt #4

January 11, 2009

Here’s my latest audio podcast (37 min) with Matthew Bennett, recorded outside Farley’s! It’s also available as a video podcast on his blog

In this edition, we discussed (amongst other things) the worsening low-light performance of Nokia’s latest crop of devices (N96/N85/N79/5800/E71), vs. Nokia’s former devices (N82/N95) and vs. other camera phones, from the spectacular i-mobile 902 to the pedestrian T-Mobile G1.

Other topics include the impressive Palm Pre, and how Nokia should bite the bullet and support Android on the N97 (in addition to Symbian), or just eat the zombie’s brains buy Palm and support WebOS on the N97 :)

Click here to subscribe to this podcast.


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