Samsung has had to defend the Galaxy S4’s plastic form factor quite a bit since the device was announced back in March, and one of the ways it has done that is by touting the handsets durability. Plastic, Samsung claims, makes the device much more robust than competing smartphones because it bends and absorbs impact.
But as we suspected all along, aluminum is stronger. In a smartphone torture test performed by warranty provider SquareTrade, the Galaxy S4 fails to beat the iPhone 5 in drop tests, and even proved to be more fragile than its predecessor, the Galaxy S III.
As you may have noticed already, the embargo on the new Samsung Galaxy S4 was lifted today, and reviewers from all corners of the web are weighing in on the latest Android flagship. Given that the handset succeeds one of the most successful Android phones of all time, many of you are likely to be itching to find out what it’s like.
We’ve put together a review roundup to give you a snapshot of what those early reviews are saying about the Galaxy S4, and to help you decide whether the handset will be worth your hard-earned cash when it goes on sale in the coming weeks.
Remember that fifth-generation iPad mould that we reported on earlier this week? Well, its source has now obtained what is believed to be the casing for Apple’s rumored low-cost iPhone.
It’s made of polycarbonate plastic just like the iPhone 3G and the iPhone 3GS, and it will reportedly pack a 3.5-inch display like previous iPhones — yet it’s both taller and wider than the iPhone 4S. It may also get its grand unveiling this October.
Samsung has already explained its love for plastic, and why it chose to stick with it for the flagship Galaxy S4. But after receiving a lot of criticism for that decision, the company’s head of design, Dennis Miloseski, was forced to defend the Galaxy S4’s plastic build once again at Engadget’s Expand conference in San Francisco this weekend.
The season is fast approaching for tradeshows, and with it the need for desperate booth-builders to find newer and more gimmicky ways to hawk their wares. I predict that the iPad mini will be the hot ticket this year (or rather, early next year), and New PC Gadgets seems to agree, for it has just launched an acrylic security stand for the little tablet.
The Speck MagFolio Lounge is a slim-fitting iPad case that’s designed for use outside of the office. Its “lap-perfect” design promises to nestle perfectly on your thighs while you reply to your emails or catch up with your favorite shows from the comfort of your living room chair.
Like the rest of Speck’s new iPad cases, the MagFolio Lounge features sleep/wake magnets inside its front cover, and a handy magnetic tab that keeps the case closed when your iPad’s not in use.
This case combines a hard plastic cradle with a soft, “vegan leather” cover to provide you with strong impact protection and a folding stand that boasts two viewing angles. It also offers access to all of your iPad’s ports, buttons, and switches.
The MagFolio Lounge sounds like the perfect case for a couch potato, but is it worth its $50 price tag?
Let me tell you a story. Many years ago, I was a cocktail bartender in a busy London bar. I had just gotten a brand new dumb-phone (a Siemens if I remember correctly), a little silver candy-bar of crap, but it was my candy-bar of crap, and I’d owned it only a few hours.
On shift, I switched the phone to silent and put it in a rocks glass on the backbar, behind my station. The bottom shelf of the backbar had a small lip at the front. Partway through the busy shift I needed some Kahlua (for a Vodka Espresso, not a White Russian). I grabbed the bottle and the base caught the shelf-edge and sheared clean off. The Kahlua – of course – was dumped into the glass with my brand new phone.
I was lucky: this was before the days of moisture sensors and a quick wash later and I got a new handset from the store. Today, you might not fare so well.
Which is why I have mixed (no pun intended) opinions of the Cube.
You know your product is successful when somebody starts selling accessories for it. But what about when people start selling accessories for accessories, which work together with the original product? This happens: the New iPad Credit Card Dock, a perspex frame which holds both and iPad and a Square credit card reader.
The Notebook Case from CPeel is a plastic keyboard case for the iPad that’s designed to transform your tablet into a mini MacBook for €85 (approx. $111). It adds a full QWERTY keyboard that includes 13 function keys and connects to your iPad via Bluetooth.
But it’s not only its looks that make this case desirable. It also features an integrated 4,000 mAh Lithium-ion battery and a built-in USB port, which allow you to charge almost any device via a USB cable while you’re on the go.
Having been forgotten at Apple’s ‘Let’s talk iPhone’ event back in October, the completely redesigned iPhone 5 is now on track for a Fall 2012 launch, according to a “close source” who is familiar with Apple’s plans. And like the iPad, the sixth-generation device will reportedly sport an aluminum rear casing, with a rubberized bezel much like Apple’s iPhone 4 bumper cases.