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Upgrade or UpCycle?

With phones becoming ludicrously expensive and mobile technology seeming to have plateaued in terms of feature sets, is it really worthwhile upgrading to the latest flagship model?

If we take a look at the car market in the early 90’s, it was all about whom could go the fastest from 0-100. By the 2000’s most sports cars where doing sub 5 sec runs and by the 2010, you could get more than a few hot hatches doing sub 7 second runs.

So as technology starts to become more accessible, the middle and entry level tiers start catching up in performance. You then start questioning the price to performance ratio of say buying a Ford Focus RS (4.7 secs 0 to 100 kmh) for R699 900 against buying a Porsche 718 Cayman for R920 000 to go slower at 5.1 secs, but having a perceived quicker flashier car.

 

The vast majority of us use our phones for the “bare” basics – give me a good camera, whatsapp, a decent battery life and an easy enough user interface and I am happy. The days of having the latest phone and proudly displaying it on the coffee shop table to elicit ohhhh’s and ahhh’s from your friends are long over. Today, most of the phones look pretty much androgynous and few deliver little in the way of a revolutionary experience.

When you start paying upwards of R15 000 for a phone you have to start questioning your behaviour. The latest Samsung Note8 is going to set you back R17 899 and the latest iPhone X costing $999 before taxes and duties you will be looking at around R15- 17K.
What can you get for R15K in todays tech space?

A new cool camera? Nikon Coolpix B700 @ R6499
A smartwatch / fitness tracker? Tom Tom Spark 3 @ R1899
A new LED TV? 50″ Hisense UHD LED TV @ R6999
A new decent smart phone? Huawei P10 Lite @ R4999

Justifying a phone over 15K becomes increasingly difficult! But us humans are a funny old species, and having the latest trinkets and desirables is pretty hard grained into some of us. For those such afflicted, we crave the newest, fastest and flashiest gadgets on the planet, all to ensure that we stay ahead of the pack. For an increasingly online, social media driven world our mobile is our gateway to our interwoven digital and physical existence and if we going to have a gateway, it better be damn magical.

So do you succumb to the iPhone 8, wait out for the iPhone X (its referred to as the “ten”) or keep on trudging along with your 7, or even your faithful old iPhone 6? That my friends is the question indeed.
If you have a 7, I wouldn’t bother with the 8, hell even if you have the 6S theirs not much incentive to go rush out and get the 8. My bet is waiting out for the Ten, at least the tech has been enhanced and the new camera features and animoji only work with the new Ten hardware.

Then of course if you throw the price in the mix, paying an extra R3 – R5K cash (roughly R175 a more per month on contract) for the Ten is hard to justify if you are replacing an iPhone 5 or an old 6. The new “old” 8 becomes an option but even more so would be the iPhone 7 which is certain to drop in price.

Best of all, if you have an old iPhone 5/6/7 which is still in great working order but the battery is getting a little tired, the folks from Apple Doctor can “UpCycle” your old faithful with a new battery and make her as good as new. An “UpCycle” costs as little as R289 fully installed – Upgrade or #UpCycle?

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Nokia 8 Review

Move over #Selfie – it’s time for #Bothie

 

If the cell phone world was modelled on a dining experience, the Nokia 8 would definitely be the dessert at the end – #phoneporn! This is going to be a real treasure for any social media lover. Don’t get me wrong, the Nokia 8 is a powerful smartphone capable of handling the biggest tasks with ease – but, to me, this is a social media must have!

To start, with its polished aluminium unibody, the Nokia 8 has a flawless and soft, silky feel – I felt like I had to have a manicure before I held this little jewel. Its sexy and sassy in design and I loved it!

At 7.3mm it is nice and slim and the rounded corners feel great in the hand. The 5.3-inch screen is encased in aluminium giving the Nokia 8 a solid build and feel. Unfortunately, for those of us with small hands, using it one handed can be a bit tricky. Perhaps Nokia missed a trick by not making this an edge to edge display?

Display-wise the Nokia 8 is bewitching – I could not take my eyes off the screen. The Nokia 8 offers the most clarity and brightness I have yet experienced on a handset. The colour rivals that of Samsung’s AMOLED display and the 2K display brings an almost real world experience to photo’s, streaming and social media.

Continuing our visual journey, it would be unthinkable not to include the camera. Carl Zeiss is back baby! This is by far the best camera I have come across (note: I still need to try my hand at the Sony Xperia XZ Premium camera). At 13MP front and back I wasn’t expecting fire crackers but I got real fireworks!

I can hear critics going: “Yeah-yeah, only 13MP – it’s just another camera!” But wait, let me explain… When I take a face shot, Carl Zeiss does the incredible – I can literally see every pore, every wrinkle and every sweat bead on my face – it is that detailed.

The Nokia 8 includes all the usual camera features you would expect from a flagship device – including; a spirit level, timer, photo grid, and the ever popular Bokeh camera effect. It even has a photo assistant for creating photo animations, movies and collages.

To get to the main event – can we talk about the #Bothie! When sharing photos and video feeds there is always something lost in translation. No more! For the social media kings and queens, you can now use both camera’s simultaneously. That’s right, you can take a picture or video using both the front and rear camera’s at . the . same . time! With live streaming support for both Facebook and YouTube, you can also invite your followers to share your experience with you – live! Incredible!

While I was using the Nokia 8 I got the feeling that the sound was just better. Was it perhaps just my giddiness and perhaps a case of rose-tinted glasses… Hell no! The sound is the bee’s knees. Why? I am sure it has to do with Nokia incorporating OZO Audio technology. This allows for high fidelity 360 degree recording. The audio focus allows you to accentuate certain sounds whilst reducing ambient and background noise. Relive that experience over and over in true sound.

Nokia 8 Dual view

Let’s hover around the hum drum briefly:

The Nokia 8 features the cutting edge Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 mobile platform with 4GB RAM. This is a powerful tool which performs at galloping speeds across multiple processes and still manages to use up to 25% less power. The multi-window (using two apps simultaneously) works seamlessly. The responsiveness of the fingerprint sensor is a real touch-and-go revelation! (It is quicker and less finicky than my primary flagship android phone).

But wait, there is more… The Nokia 8 runs “Pure Android” v7.1.1. This means Nokia has not included any unnecessary “bloatware”. These unnecessary apps can often slow a device down, consume battery power and use up data. With the Nokia 8 you get the true Android experience.

If I’m really going to knit-pick, the lack of wireless charging is a bit of a let-down – the Nokia 8 supports fast charging but one feels wireless charging is going to be the standard going forward. Another slight disappointment is that the Nokia 8 is only IP54 rated – splash proof but don’t get thrown in at the next pool party.

All in all, the Nokia 8 build is incredible. It is an inspired device – social media gold!

You can get the Nokia 8 for R9499 online or from R479pm on a 24 month Vodacom contract. Find out more HERE

Taken with a Nokia 8
Taken with Nokia 8
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LG Q6 Review

Let’s be upfront here – a mid-range phone is never going to be as fast or powerful as their more expensive counterparts. That does not mean they don’t have a trick or two few up their sleeves. The LG Q6 has a few to make this a serious consideration.

Let’s start with design. Featuring a 5.5-inch Full HD display, LG has incorporated its Full Vision technology from the flagship G6 into the Q6. So, what? This type of screen to body ratio is something you would normally only see in the likes of Flagship models like the LG G6 and Samsung S8. This is a big deal! Ideal for streaming video content, gaming and social media. Honestly this is a feature alone puts the LG Q6 miles ahead of its mid-range competition.

On the build side, the LG Q6 frame is made from 7000 series aluminium making it strong and durable – it’s able to take a knock! Unfortunately, the back is made of plastic and seems prone to scratches. I would advise investing in a protective cover.

The LG Q6 camera has some cool features. I found it super easy to use, filters were available even before you took the shot and response time was excellent. Also useful was the, easy to find, timer function.

 

The knock out? The additional camera modes and functions:

Snap Shot
The ability to Snap a shot and preview it immediately.

Grid Shot
Allows you to take four snaps which come together in a collage immediately – very cool for social media users and creatives alike.

Match Shot
My favourite. This allows you to take two different pictures right after each other – one with the rear camera and one with the front “selfie” camera. With all the hype around the Nokia 8’s #Bothie function I am renaming this feature on the LG the “Almostie”- not quite like the Nokia but pretty darn close!

For Uploading
LG Q6 pictures can be directly uploaded to various platforms without having to crop or edit.

The front camera on the LG Q6 comes in at a standard 13MP with the selfie camera coming in a slightly disappointing 5MP but the wide angle option makes it a little more appealing. Add to this the long list of cool camera functions above and you can understand why LG made the compromise!

That is not enough though – LG have really put the Q6 through its paces. It has passed military standard tests for durability including tests through humidity, temperature, mechanical shock, sand and dust. The battery was also put through stringent tests and LG have put a thermal pad cooling system into key components to minimize overheating.

Missing on this device however is a fingerprint scanner – a feature that is so last season anyway. LG have instead opted for the new wonder feature – facial recognition. Jury is still out on mass adoption of this but it is again feature usually reserved for flagship devices.

The LG Q6 offers you a beautiful and durable design full of features, functions and nifty camera modes. In its category, the Q6 will certainly give the competition a run for your money!

Get the awesome LG Q6 for R6099 prepaid or from R379 per month on a Flexi 200 contract with Vodacom . (Both offers INCLUDE, Free Watch, R1000 cash back and R699 Game Collection). LG Q6 #LiveOutOfBounds

LG Q6 Wide selfie camera

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What’s in a name? Breaking into the market

Even after 10 years in the industry I still wonder about how clients make choices on phones. I mean, for instance, what makes one choose a mid-range phone from a “Premier Brand” (read “popular”) phone rather that a similar priced premier rated phone produced by a newcomer? Continue reading What’s in a name? Breaking into the market

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Nokia 3 and 5

Mobile company HMD Global has done the impossible. It has resurrected the much loved and respected Nokia brand from the ashes of the trail left behind by Microsoft Lumia. The arrival of the new devices to our shores is imminent and whilst much fanfare has been made with regards to the Nokia 6 and the iconic 3310 we should not forget that HMD is launching the Nokia 5 and the Nokia 3 as well. What resonates with me is that HMD has not decided to only offer a top flight phone but has made the Nokia accessible across all budgets. Let’s take a look at the younger siblings in this trio. Continue reading Nokia 3 and 5

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MWC 2017

I don’t know if you will agree with me but when I go to the movies I find myself more intrigued by the trailers at first than the actual movie. The anticipation of what’s to come is almost as good as the instant gratification of seeing your movie. The Mobile World Conference is kind of similar. The purpose? To showcase the new releases to come. And boy did this year not disappoint! So giddy with anticipation and excitement I had a look. Continue reading MWC 2017

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Just look at the new Huawei P10 and Huawei P10 Plus…

Just Launching

The Huawei P10 and Huawei P10 Plus are beautifully designed masterpieces on the inside and out. Featuring the industry’s first Hyper Diamond-Cut Finishing for smartphones, a thin metal body and an invisible under-the-glass fingerprint sensor, both Huawei P10 and Huawei P10 Plus are available in new, vibrant colors. Each device also features Huawei’s newest EMUI 5.1, which now offers unique color themes to complement the devices’ design.

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Nexus is dead. Long live Pixel

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]In a world dominated by technology, when it finally comes time to upgrade our cell phone we should breathe a sigh of relief? Not so fast! Plunged into a “war of worlds” amongst brand giants how are we, mere mortals, supposed to decide on which handset will accompany us on the next two – year journey? If you are brand loyal then the decision is normally easy right? Go with the update of our previous model. However, with new competitors popping up every year the decision gets just a little bit more difficult each time. I mean, this is a commitment, a commitment to a device which will essentially become an extension of us.

Faced with a number of choices, Google has now decided it wants a bigger piece of the pie. So already confused/unsure of whether to change or stay with the same, in walks the Google Pixel and his big brother the Google Pixel XL. Who are these new kids? How dare they come in at this crucial moment, I mean we were so close to making a decision! I could bore you with terms like RAM, Processor, MP, Chipset etc, suffice it to say this is a premium device which can compete head on with all of today’s top of the rage across all of the usual specs. Why, I hear you say, should I give the Pixel the time of day? What makes it special? Well here you go.

google pixel - whiteMade by Google the Pixel will be the first Android 7.1 to feature Google Assistant built in. Google Assistant will allow two-way dialogue between you and your Pixel. By pulling all relevant information in terms of what interests you and combining it with Google’s searching and device voice controls, Google is hoping to offer a more AI user experience. For example, you would be able to ask Google Assistant where to go for dinner and not only will it offer up suggestions based on your preferences but it can also access a booking site to make your reservations.

Along with Google Assistant the Pixel will also provide 24/7 support built in, unheard of until now! For me this justifies all the hype. I don’t know about you but when I get a new phone I haven’t the foggiest as to all the apps or how it works. Day or night, help is at hand. And if you are the go to tech person in your family, 24/7 will be invaluable. We are however not sure if this feature will be supported in South Africa.

With Social Media taking over as a major form of communication surely you would want the best camera? Hashtag Smile! With an 89 DxoMark Mobile score, the Pixel is the highest rated smartphone camera ever! What on earth does this mean? In short DxOMark is the trusted industry standard for camera and lens image quality measurements and ratings. A real mouthful but what we trying to say is that this score is significant. This camera is a big deal. The 12.3MP camera delivers impressive image quality with the highest level of detail and very low level of noise (noise is camera lingo meaning any visual distortion, grainy pixelation and/or discoloration of your photos – yup, I had to look that up).

If your mind hasn’t been sufficiently blown yet, the Pixel will offer Smart Storage. Essentially coming in 32GB and 128GB when your memory is full the phone will automatically transfer to the cloud, no more space issues (the only downside is no expandable memory card slot – and cloud storage can be a little tricky in SA)! The phone is splash and dust resistant and comes in a sleek and sexy design, with Pixel imprint. With a long lasting battery, the Pixel really does make a convincing case as to why you should pick it for your team.

As of now, the release date for South Africa has not been confirmed. Size and price have also not yet been confirmed. My advice, if you can hang on to your current device for a little bit longer then do. Why not go off the beaten track, have a little adventure and open your arms up to the Google Pixel and show it some love.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_btn title=”Pre-order your Pixel today” align=”center” link=”url:http%3A%2F%2Fcellucity.co.za%2Fmobile%2Fpreorder-pixel%2F||target:%20_blank|” button_block=”true”][/vc_column][/vc_row]

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Moto Z – Whose he?

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Some of you may (I hope most of you do) remember the founders of the mobile phone, Motorola from back in the mid 90’s. As the first to market in South Africa the MicroTac was the symbol of success. Sporting around a 4 hour battery life, if you owned one, you most likely carried around a few extended batteries in your pocket that you slid onto the phone to keep you going to get through an entire day.
Motorola continued with iconic designs and innovations, with the StarTac and then the RAZR, the last crown jewel, before Nokia, Apple and Samsung came and stole the crown and led to the demise of the mighty Motorola.
So FFW to 2016, the King is dead! Long live the King! The Motorola brand has been acquired by Lenovo and some exciting times lie ahead. So how does Moto re-enter the market and disrupt the current market royalty? You innovate a little harder, look at what’s being done and improve it. Enter Lenovo Moto Z and its Moto Mods!
motoz-magnets
When LG launched the G5 and its “companions”, we got a little excited but the downfall with their companions, was you had to power the phone off to add them and they were a little hefty. Moto Z improves on this with its magnetic snap-on “Moto Mods” which can give your phone a meatier battery, turn it into a boombox for your weekend braai, a super “SLR” camera or transform it into a video projector for an impromptu movie night etc etc..

Having only briefly seen the mods, they aren’t all perfect but are definitely a step in the right direction. The mods are collaborations with leaders in their fields. The additional Incipio battery pack (around R999) was great, as well as the JBL speaker (around R1499) pushed out superb sound (check them out here), the Hasselblad True Zoom camera definitely cool but as with the Projector (which didn’t really measure up, unless the room is very dark) at around R5000 a mod will be a pricey mod.

The beauty of the magnetic snap on mods, is they easy to pop on, don’t require you to switch off the phone and the built in intelligence on the magnetic connector port recognise the mod and adapt accordingly.
There are plenty of future mods in the pipeline and you can even build your own, with the ultimate kicker being the Mods will be future proof for at least 3 generations of phone. Which is great knowing that if you purchase a pricey mod, it will be compatible with the next versions of the Moto lineup.

“On the whole, the Moto Z is a reliable and powerful device that can stand up to most of the top-of-the-line phones – and that’s even if you strip away the compelling modular factor. But you wouldn’t do that, would you, because those modules are half the fun.”

Launching later in October in SA, all we can say is GO GO GADGET ARMS ;)[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_btn title=”Pre-order your Moto Z” color=”mulled-wine” size=”lg” align=”center” css_animation=”bottom-to-top” link=”url:http%3A%2F%2Fcellucity.co.za%2Fmobile%2Fpreorder-motoz%2F|||” button_block=”true”][/vc_column][/vc_row]

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At long last: iPhone 7 pricing on Vodacom

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iPhone 7

iPhone 7

32GB

128GB

256GB

Smart S

R679

R779

R879

Smart M

R779

R879

R979

Smart L

R929

R1029

R1129

Smart XL

R1049

R1159

R1249

Red Adv

R1199

R1299

R1399

Red Premium

R1699

R1799

R1899

Red VIP

FREE

R2099

R2199

All pricing in this table is per month for 24 months. The pricing includes the contract tariff and handset cost.[/vc_wp_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]

iPhone 7 Plus

iPhone 7 Plus

32GB

128GB

256GB

Smart S

R779

R879

R979

Smart M

R879

R979

R1079

Smart L

R1029

R1129

R1229

Smart XL

R1159

R1249

R1349

Red Adv

R1299

R1399

R1499

Red Premium

R1799

R1899

R1999

Red VIP

R2099

R2199

R2299

All pricing in this table is per month for 24 months. The pricing includes the contract tariff and handset cost.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_message message_box_color=”danger” icon_fontawesome=”fa fa-times”]Sorry, our iPhone 7 Pre-orders are now closed :([/vc_message][/vc_column][/vc_row]