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David Phelan

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Sony Xperia Z2: 4K vid, great audio, waterproof ... Oh, and you can make a phone call

Review What do you want in a smartphone? A premium build quality? A high-resolution display that looks the business whether you’re watching a movie or reading a book? Maybe it’s a decent camera so you can ditch your compact snapper. As phones become better at doing all these things, manufacturers struggle to make their products …
David Phelan, 23 Apr 2014
Samsung Galaxy S5

Gimme a high S5: Samsung Galaxy S5 puts substance over style

Review Samsung is the world’s dominant mobile phone manufacturer – but does that mean it’s the best? Its latest release is the Galaxy S5, a mainstream phone designed to sell in huge numbers. It’s big, with a 5.1-inch screen, measuring up at 142 x 73 x 8mm, so it won’t suit smaller mitts. Samsung Galaxy S5 Samsung's Galaxy S5: eye- …
David Phelan, 11 Apr 2014
Samsung Google Nexus 10 Android tablet

Samsung Google Nexus 10 tablet review

Why would you buy a tablet other than an iPad? Obviously, some don’t care for Apple’s locked-in system and others like the way users can dig more deeply into the workings of Android. Good enough reasons, sure, but the truth is that until the day dawns when a tablet is of comparable specification, but substantially cheaper than …
David Phelan, 23 Nov 2012
Amazon Kindle Paperwhite

Amazon Kindle Paperwhite review

Kindle came first, of course, but is it the best ebook reader still? After all, there is a wide range of alternatives from multi-talented colour-screen machines like the Google Nexus 7, Kindle’s own Fire and Fire HD models and now the iPad mini. Those are designed to offer greater versatility with apps galore. But they lack the …
David Phelan, 13 Nov 2012
Apple iPhone 5

Apple iPhone 5 review

Review Time was, smartphones did little that was actually smart. They had front-facing cameras and maybe a touchscreen, but operating systems geared more for a stylus than fingers. It wasn’t until the iPhone landed in 2007 that things changed. For the next few years Apple continued to deliver the brainiest of smartphones. No one else …
David Phelan, 21 Sep 2012
Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 Android tablet

Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 Android tablet review

Remember your first touchscreen? If it was a personal organiser or satnav, chances are it used a pressure-sensitive, resistive screen. If it was a Palm, you probably had a stylus to pick out letters onscreen. The arrival of capacitive screens that responded to human touch certainly made an impression and now account for nearly …
David Phelan, 28 Aug 2012
Nike+ Fuelband activity monitor

Nike+ Fuelband activity monitor review

I’m on a roll. Well, a streak, actually. That’s what Nike calls it when you hit your activity target for three days on the trot. The Nike+ FuelBand aims to get you fitter by scrutinising what you do. Nike+ Fuelband activity monitor Motion carried: Nike+ Fuelband activity monitor The theory is that by keeping tabs on how …
David Phelan, 23 Jul 2012
Samsung Galaxy S III Android smartphone

Samsung Galaxy S III

Review Samsung's Galaxy S III is one of the most feature-stuffed smartphones yet. Well, at least there’s room, as it's equipped a 4.8in screen. Samsung's Galaxy Note 5.3in tablet-phone aside, this handset touts the largest display you'll find on a mainstream mobile and it packs a quad-core CPU too. Samsung Galaxy S III Android …
David Phelan, 30 May 2012
Nokia Lumia 900 Windows smartphone

Nokia Lumia 900 WinPho 7 smartphone

Review So you’re trying to revive the fortunes of what was, until a few weeks ago, the biggest mobile phone manufacturer on the planet. You’ve launched a handset or two with a new operating system and they’ve gone down quite well. So what next? How about taking one of those handsets and releasing a near-identical one, different only in …
David Phelan, 16 May 2012
Sony Xperia S Android smartphone

Sony Xperia S NXT series Android smartphone

Review So farewell, then, Sony Ericsson. The Xperia S is the first phone for a decade to be branded with the Sony logo, and very nice it looks, too. As does the phone itself, a large screen with matt-black rubberised casing and a curious transparent strip across the bottom. It feels good in the hand, thanks to the curved back, though …
David Phelan, 07 Mar 2012
Motorola Motoluxe Android smartphone

Motorola Motoluxe Android smartphone

Review Don’t be confused by the name: it may be seem classy and good-looking but this is a mid-range handset, not a deluxe one. It’s also quite distinctive, which is good at a time when Android handsets are numerous and often me-too copies or unimaginative derivatives. Motorola Motoluxe Android smartphone A comfortable compromise: …
David Phelan, 21 Feb 2012
Prada Phone by LG 3.0

Prada Phone by LG 3.0

Review Why is black and white classier than colour? And should we want our phones, with their increasingly glorious screens, to mute their rainbow hues? It’s the arrival of LG’s third collaboration with Prada that’s raised these questions – a handset that favours an interface dressed mostly in black and white. Prada Phone by LG 3.0 …
David Phelan, 14 Feb 2012
Orange Tahiti 7in Android tablet

Orange Tahiti 7in Android tablet

Review IPTV Week logo The iPad is all very well, but with its 9.7in display it can be just too big to cart around. Something lighter and more luggable could be the answer. Since there’s no 7in iPad – and the BlackBerry PlayBook has very few apps – we’re left with Android and even this smaller size is still relatively rare on …
David Phelan, 25 Jan 2012
Philips Cinema 21:9 Gold Ambilight TV

Philips Cinema 21:9 Gold 50in ultra widescreen TV

Review CES 2012 Week You’ve got to hand it to the guys at Philips – they’re plucky. They introduce Ambilight, the strange but effective backlighting effect which plays coloured lights on the wall behind your telly for a more relaxing, more immersive experience. Then they create a TV that’s super-wide, perfect for film aficionados. …
David Phelan, 12 Jan 2012
Kobo Vox e-reader

WHSmith Kobo Vox e-reader

Review So you’ve been tempted by an e-book reader but the brouhaha surrounding the Amazon Kindle Fire launch in the States has confused you. A colour screen must be better, right? But will it ever come to the UK? If you really can’t wait, rival e-book reader manufacturer has stolen a march on Amazon and released a gadget that looks …
David Phelan, 05 Jan 2012
Jawbone Up motion-sensing wristband

Jawbone Up wearable health sensor

Review Jawbone is known for its excellent Bluetooth headsets and a very cool, if pricey, portable speaker called the Jambox. By any standards, its new product is pretty out there. It’s a rubberised wristband with a motion sensor in it. When you connect it to its free companion iOS app, it becomes something to help you become healthier …
David Phelan, 28 Nov 2011
HTC Titan

HTC Titan WinPho 7.5 smartphone

Review The HTC Titan is big, really big and yet the Taiwanese manufacturer has managed to make this sizeable WinPho 7.5 smartphone look manageable. Much of that is down to the thinness of the handset, making it feel less massive than it actually is. HTC Titan The big picture: HTC's Titan It helps that there’s nothing on the front …
David Phelan, 02 Nov 2011
WHSmith Kobo Touch e-book reader

WHSmith Kobo Touch wireless e-book reader

Review The joys of the e-book reader are considerable. You can carry a thousand books in your pocket and download more in a matter of seconds while you’re sitting in the garden – assuming the Wi-Fi stretches or you have a 3G model. If there are words you don’t recognise, you can look them up with one touch too. And in the case of …
David Phelan, 26 Oct 2011
Apple iPhone 4s smartphone

Apple iPhone 4S

Review Apple’s design language is easily recognisable: clear glass or plastic that’s spray-painted from the inside, a frequent use of aluminium, stainless steel and any colour so long as it’s white or black. But the new iPhone takes this familiarity further, by making the iPhone 4S almost identical to last year’s iPhone 4. Apple …
David Phelan, 18 Oct 2011
Nokia X7

Nokia X7 Symbian Anna smartphone

Review When you buy a mobile, you know that you’re likely to be stuck with it for the life of your contract. Good news: you’ll get used to its quirks and differences. Bad news: you can only watch as gorgeous handsets are released for the next year or two. Nokia X7 Smart move? Nokia's X7 But what’s trickier about the new Nokia X7 …
David Phelan, 05 Jul 2011
Jawbone Era

Aliph Jawbone Era motion sensing Bluetooth headset

Review Hands-free connections for mobile phones have come a long way from wired earpiece-and-microphone combos. Mind you, it’s still a comic pleasure to see people using these as they hold the microphone near their mouths just to be sure. The arrival of Bluetooth nixed the cables but created problems of connectivity, complicated set-up …
David Phelan, 07 Jun 2011
LG Optimus 3D

LG Optimus 3D dual core Android smartphone

Review Fancy a Nintendo 3DS so you can play 3D games on the move but don’t have the pocket space for a console and a mobile? LG has come up with an alternative in the (sizeable) shape of its Optimus 3D. Like the Nintendo games machine, this phone offers 3D without those darn glasses you need at the cinema. And it also has twin cameras …
David Phelan, 06 Jun 2011
RIM BlackBerry PlayBook

RIM BlackBerry PlayBook 7in tablet

Review The PlayBook is described by makers RIM as the first professional-grade tablet. RIM, of course, is best known for its e-mail handset, the BlackBerry. A good deal larger and minus the distinctive keyboard, RIM’s Playbook is a handsome machine, well-designed and with great build quality. RIM BlackBerry PlayBook Building …
David Phelan, 16 May 2011
Nokia E7

Nokia E7 Qwerty slider smartphone

Review The Nokia E7 is the company’s latest for phone for business and, in keeping with the styling makeover first seen on the N8, it features a sleek aluminium casing with tapered ends and a big 4in screen. Indeed, it could easily be mistaken for an N8 at first glance. Nokia E7 For business and pleasure: Nokia's E7 It’s only …
David Phelan, 11 Apr 2011
Jawbone Jambox

Jawbone Jambox Bluetooth speaker

Review It’s a chunky little fella, the Jambox, and when you look at it, it’s not instantly clear what it is. Jambox is the creation of Aliph, the makers of the excellent and stylish Jawbone Bluetooth headsets, and the company’s noise-cancelling smarts come into this product, too. In fact, it turns out it’s a great wireless stereo …
David Phelan, 22 Mar 2011