This weekend, Amazon’s App Store is offering up a few gratis kid friendly titles. Included in the sale is Yo Gabba Gabba, Fionna Fights – Adventure, Kids Measurements, Kids Reading Camp, Mathemagica, Rewards Chart, Owl and Pals Preschool, Gro Flowers and Words and Riddles.
Also included in the sale are a few big kid titles as well. Fast Food Nutrition, Grocery Shopping List, House Cleaning List, Motivated Moms – 2, Healthy Habit Tracker are also free this weekend. Click the link below to get the full list and start downloading them today!
When you are in the market for a contract free phone, manufacturers like Blu, Motorola and Nokia have been coming up huge lately. A name that has snuck by the competition is Huawei. Their relatively new Ascend Mate 2 4G LTE device is a stunning accomplishment in the sub $300 smartphone market. Priced as an unlocked, contract free handset option, paring the Ascend Mate 2 4G LTE with a plan from www.4gfastdata.com can be a match made in heaven. Put it this way, the cost of the device and 24 months of unlimited service on Red Pocket Mobile from www.4gfastdata.com would be $1259.75. This compares to the same deal with a Galaxy Note 3 from T-Mobile that will set you back over $2300!
The Ascend Mate 2 4G LTE is a beast of a phone. Its chassis protects a monstrously huge 6.1” display, a 13MP rear camera, a 5MP front camera and LTE radios for both AT&T and T-Mobile. The light plastic backing is comfortable and light, but doesn’t feel cheap. The device also features a few unique software settings that we will get into a bit more later. First, let’s shoot through the amazing hardware that makes up the Ascend Mate 2 4G LTE.
The display on the Ascend Mate 2 4G LTE is brilliant and clear. The HD display has a 720×1280 pixel setup that equals out to about 241ppi. Not the sharpest on the planet, but for browsing the web, watching movies and doing some heavy document editing, it works absolutely beautifully. The surface of the display is protected by Corning Gorilla Glass III. It is not the clearest display I’ve ever laid my eyes on, but as far as screens go, it’s a superb display.
The Ascend Mate 2 4G LTE runs Android 4.3 (Jelly Bean) out of the box. It features a solid Quad-Core Snapdragon 400 processor running at 1.6GHz. The Adreno 305 GPU had no problem rendering 3D games or just about anything else that was thrown at it. The device runs those games and Apps through 2GB of RAM and the 16GB of included internal storage (about 12MB usable). There is an SD card slot for expansion up to 32GB – confirmed.
The dual camera setup on the Ascend Mate 2 4G LTE is one of beauty. The 5MP front camera features a “groufie” mode that allows you to take a ‘panoramic’ front camera shot to get you and all your friends in one image. It works very well and gets pretty large groups into the image area. The rear 13MP shooter was accurate and did a great job with daylight stills. Action shots represented more of a challenge as most of them featured a pretty heavy blur. I don’t think I would take the Ascend Mate 2 4G LTE to capture my kid’s football games, but it sure does a great job on sunsets and dinner plates.
The Ascend Mate 2 4G LTE has one of the best battery life’s of any smartphone I have ever had the pleasure of testing. The 3900mAh battery powers through a full day of use, then allows me to charge the wife’s Nokia Lumia 920, and still have enough to get through most of the next day. In short, there is nothing else like it on the planet. If you are a heavy user, the battery life alone on this beast should be enough to make you swoon.
From here we start to delve into the world of Huawei’s special software. The Ascend Mate 2 4G LTE features two operational modes, normal and Simple Mode. Simple Mode does exactly what it says. It takes the complex Android layout and turns it in to giant buttons, similar to Windows Phone Tiles. It makes finding what you need quick and easy. This is an ideal solution to the smartphone users that just isn’t sure they need a smartphone yet.
A few other software features are the aforementioned “groufie” mode for the front camera, gloves mode – which takes the sensitivity of the screen up a notch so you can use with gloves on, WOW – Windows on Windows mode that allows you to take notes or perform some other tasks while watching a video or browsing the internet, and singled handed mode for using the gigantic display with just one hand.
Overall, Huawei hit one out of the park with the Ascend Mate 2 4G LTE. The device performs like a phone costing $850 and doesn’t come with any strings attached to it’s $299 price tag. Again, LTE radios for both AT&T and T-Mobile are on board in the Ascend Mate 2 4G LTE so carrier choice is not a problem for this device. Any GSM carrier or an MVNO of them will work beautifully with the Ascend Mate 2 4G LTE. In fact, we highly recommend visiting www.4gfastdata.com and seeing what plan is right for you, right after you order your own Ascend Mate 2 4G LTE.
More information: Ascend Mate 2 4G LTE
Way back in August, during Engadget Live! Seattle, we had a chance to visit with the ultra-light, ultra-thin Boogie Board Sync from Kent Displays. It was one of those devices where you read about it, take a look at the website and then finally make the decision that $100 is just too much for a tablet that doesn’t do anything but let you write on it. Well, it’s time to rethink that because after about a month of replacing paper around here, the Boogie Board Sync is now on our must buy list.
Starting with the basics, the Boogie Board Sync is pretty close to the size of a sheet of paper. It uses a powerless E-Ink display and saves your notes in an easy to read PDF format. The included stylus is comfortable to hold and reacts beautifully with the screen. The average note page we saved synced via bluetooth in seconds to our mobile devices and uploaded to our computer using the included sync software just as easily. As we wrote story plans, it was simple to rename the files on our phones, tablets and PCs to sort them for later. It literally replaced a case of legal pads in just one month.
The Boogie Board Sync really only features three buttons on its frame. The first is the chrome power button on the edge of the device. The next two buttons are the ‘save’ button and the ‘erase’ button. These are the reasons a battery is even needed for the Boogie Board Sync, otherwise the display draws no power. The other nice part about the Boogie Board Sync is that if you accidentally tap the erase button, you won’t actually lose that work. It’s saved in an archive folder in the device that you can access via the computer software.
The included USB cable allows for the Boogie Board Sync to be connected directly to a computer. This connection is used for accessing the Sync software from the PC for either uploading documents or for using the tablet in direct mode.
The software is what sets the Boogie Board Sync apart from other digital pens and note taking systems. With a quick click, the entire note pad is uploaded to Everenote. Another click and live notes are being taken on the PC screen. The Boogie Board Sync software is simply flawless. Kent Displays also recently released an SDK for the Sync, which should only make for more awesome Apps that the Sync should be able to take advantage of.
This was a photo of the screen as a note was jotted on the board in direct to screen mode in the Sync software. The digitizer captured all the text without any issue.
The onboard filing system leaves a bit to be desired, but with a bit of homework and frequent uploads, the shortcomings of the software are quickly made up for. The ability to rename notes on the PC really makes organizing them for long term storage very nice.
Overall, in the month spent with the Boogie Board Sync, the benefits to this amazing little guy far outweighed the $100 price tag. The fact that no paper was used and more notes were actually taken is a testament to how well the Sync performs. The fact that the office is loaded with regular tablets that could have been used for note taking, yet the Sync was the first choice every time is yet another reason to grab one. Ultimately though, it came down to one little thing – no tablet batteries were drained in the making of these notes. The Sync lasts for days, weeks, it would be fun to say months, but until ours arrives from Amazon, we just can’t say how long that little battery lasts.
Until then though, it’s back to legal pads and annoyances like putting that note somewhere you can’t find it, or worse yet, losing the entire legal pad with the story planning for the next month on it. Do yourselves a favor and do what we are doing. Order a Boogie Board Sync today and start enjoying the freedom that it brings.
Purchase: Boogie Board Sync
When you jump on to Sprint’s website, you are greeted with that brand new shiny iPhone 6 just waiting for you to click the buy now button. Then you see the brilliant iPhone for Life ad right below it and its $50 a month for unlimited everything price tag. You click the buy it now button, get all signed up and wait for your phone to arrive.
After about a week of playing with that new iPhone you get the first wind of your bill showing up. Welcome to sticker shock. Your prorated month of service will run you about $40 before taxes. The full second month, yes, you pay for that upfront too, is another $50. You then see two charges for your device on there at $20 each. Take that $130 in billings and add about 20% more in taxes and you have a whopper of a payment of $155-160 due for that first bill.
To think that people thought that Sprint was doing them a favor with this one is just plain nuts. The text below is from the promotional materials for the offer. As you can see, it’s not all that great.
Introducing the iPhone for Life Plan. Lease an iPhone 6 with no money due at signing and only $20/mo (for well-qualified lessee). Plus, get a new device every 2 years. Unlimit your iPhone 6 with the Sprint Simply Unlimited Plan: Unlimited data, talk and text on the Sprint network for only $50/mo/line. It’s the best value in wireless.
First off, you won’t own your iPhone when you are done with your 2 year agreement. You keep paying that $20 a month for as long as you are on the Sprint Simply Unlimited Plan. If you choose to upgrade your device, they will keep you on the plan and keep your billing the same. In other words, this is a never ending cellular contract.
Second, you must keep an iPhone active on this account. So, if you lose your phone, you have to buy a new one outright to keep this plan going. You can’t use an old 4s or 5c and keep this rate. If you change your device, you will incur a minimum $10 a month penalty, that could end up costing you more than $35 a month extra.
Finally, you add in the taxes and fees to this deal and see how high it puts that monthly bill. Your “$50” unlimited plan ends up costing you almost $90 a month in some areas after you add in the phone lease cost and the taxes and fees.
Even with the best advertising in the world, this plan falls epically short of the offerings from MVNO’s like Boost Mobile, Virgin Mobile and Red Pocket Mobile. In fact, for $650 outright you can buy that new iPhone 6, activate it on a Red Pocket plan from www.4gfastdata.com and pay as little as $29.99 a month for talk, text and 500MB of 3G data or $59.99 for unlimited talk, text and data. The two year cost difference can be as much as $800.
Free Apps are al ways a great thing, and when the Amazon App Store steps up and does their “super deals” of giving away $100’s in Apps in one day, you need to get in there and download them. Today’s giveaway includes some pretty hefty titles like: AutoDesk Sketchbook Pro, Riptide GP2, OfficeSuite Pro and quite a few other utilities and games. Hit the link below and snag your freebies right now.
Source: Amazon App Store
In what should be considered one of the better deal in wireless right now, Boost Mobile is now offering the HTC Desire 510 for only $99 without a long term agreement. The Android 4.4 handset features a 4.7” display, 5MP camera, ELTE on the Sprint network and a 1.2 GHz quad-core Snapdragon processor.
With the new $35, $45 and $55 offerings from Boost, this is now one of the better deals in wireless. Remember, the $35 plan now includes double the data to 1GB of high speed, and the $45 and $55 plans also double the high speed data allotments to 5GB and 10GB respectively.
Source: Boost Mobile
While T-Mobile’s monthly plans are by far the best deal for most users, phone financing is still a bit of a mystery for most consumers. The hot deal of the moment is the $100 for 10GB of data and 4 lines of unlimited talk and text. What isn’t mentioned in all those ads for paying off those termination fees and such is how much you actually have to put out each month.
First off, you have those four lines at $100. Adding the federal, local and whatever other fees you are subject to, which could total up to be as much as $25 more. You then add in the price of your new iPhone 6’s at $27.08 a month. and your bill begins to grow.
The final total bill that you will receive on that new plan with four lines for $100 is a whopping $233.32 a month. If you add the insurance and early upgrade option of Jump!, your bill heads towards the $300 mark very quickly. In the Seattle area, the bill would total $281.75. This puts the two year cost over $6750. This puts T-Mobile within striking distance of the monthly rates of Verizon Wireless ($300) and AT&T ($310) for the same time frame and data limit.
You also have to remember that T-Mobile may not have wireless contracts, but if you agree to finance your iPhone through their monthly payment plan and you leave, the entire balance on the device becomes due. This would make a payment of $2491.36 due after 30 days of use on T-Mobile. Verizon and AT&T would both only charge $1400 to leave your contract after 30 days.
Detailed information on the pricing is located below:
- 16GB iPhone 6: $0 down and 24 equal monthly payments of $27.08
- 64GB iPhone 6: $99.99 down with 24 monthly payments of $27.08
- 128GB iPhone 6: $199.99 down with 24 monthly payments of $27.08
- 16GB iPhone 6 Plus: $0 down with 24 equal monthly payments of $31.24
- 64GB iPhone 6 Plus: $99.99 down with 24 monthly payments of $31.25
- 128GB iPhone 6 Plus: $199.99 down with 24 monthly payments of $31.25
- These numbers translate to a full price of:
- 16GB iPhone 6 – $649.92
- 64GB iPhone 6 – $749.91
- 128GB iPhone 6 – $849.91
- 16GB iPhone 6 plus – $749.76
- 64GB iPhone 6 plus – $849.75
- 128GB iPhone 6 plus – $949.75
- Source: T-Mobile