Before You Buy 116 (Transcript)


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Before You Buy 116

Show Tease: Today on Before You Buy, an Android phone, a Windows phone, Docks for phones, and a new host! What could go wrong? Coming up next! Netcasts you love, from people you trust. This is TWiT. Bandwidth for Before You Buy is brought to you by CacheFly, at cachefly.com

Shannon Morse: Hello everyone! Welcome to Before You Buy, this is TWiT networks product review show, where we get everybody on the team to review all sorts of cool gadgets and tech funness. My name is Shannon Morse, and I am your host! I just started as the new host of Before You Buy, I’m taking over for Leo, I’m taking the reins, as you will, and I’m hoping that you will enjoy it as much as I do. So first up, we have my review, this interesting little device right here. It’s called the Galileo by Motrr. It looks kind of like a, what is this a coffee cup holder, maybe? Well it turns out it’s for your iPhone. It’s just for I devices. This basically lets you take automated photography, and videography. Everything from panoramic photos or videos to spherical pictures, and what not. You can even take time lapse video and you can also do things like motion. So you can track motion whenever people are moving around in front of you. So a little bit of information about this device. It costs 150 dollars, so it’s a little expensive for just a video device. You definitely have to be a videophile, if you will. Basically, how it works, you get the device itself, and it’s very rubberized on the bottom. It has this moving bottom part so it can move around. And it also has this top part, which can turn to be both, panoramic and vertical, there you go, so. We have three pieces on here that can move. Once I tilt it up, like this, I can set my iPhone in there. Or whatever the device might be. I can also use my iPod on here as well, or an older iPhone as well. They have docks for each of those, and it’s a very sturdy dock so your phone is not going to fall out of it as it moves, since it is automated. And the kind of weird thing about this is it doesn’t come with any particular app for itself. It does have this motor app up here at the top. That is just for you to download specific other applications that work with the Galileo. These Specific applications, while most of them are free, there are a few, like this last one up here called videography, which costs everything from $1.99, all the way up to $3.99. So it is a little expensive. So if I press the first one up here, right there. This is going to let me take a whole spherical picture. So I can press the little button down here, the plus button. And it’s a little hard to do when I’m sideways, there we go. And I hit the motor signal. And it’s going to ask me to connect my Galileo. So I go ahead and twist this so it turns on Bluetooth. There we go, and it says, ‘do you want to connect?’ Hit connect. And it’ll go ahead and connect. It’ll ask you if you want to do firmware update, I’m going to skip that for now, for testing purposes, and I hit start. So this is going to take a big spherical photo that I can share online, and I can check out whenever people are hanging out with me. It also makes kind of weird noises when it’s working. But look! It works! And you might be wondering why would I use this? Well one of the things you can do other than just taking cool videos and photography, is you can use it for a security camera. But if you’re going to use it for a security camera, wouldn’t you want your iPhone to be running all day, instead of running out of video? The battery is going to die eventually, the battery will also die on this. The battery only lasts a few hours. So that’s not necessarily something I would want to pay for the app. I wouldn’t want to pay 2 bucks for something that isn’t going to last all day. That’s kind of pointless for me. As it runs its course, it’ll only let you do about 5 or 6 spherical graphs like this. Before it actually runs out of battery, and once it’s done. Okay, it’s done. You can check the battery on the bottom. This little battery simple right here, will turn green whenever it is completely charged up. It’ll also turn red if it’s dying. The best way to take off your phone is to turn it down, and pull your phone out like that. Ta Da! All better, and then you can check your battery. So if I twist this, it looks like my battery is almost dead already. Or maybe it just died. So it’s an interesting device. Its definitely just make for photography nerds. People that really like to make a lot of video. This was a spherical image that I took when I was hanging out at one of my friends’ houses over the weekend. So you can see there are some clips where it tried to take a complete photo, but it kind of messed up there a little bit. But for the most part it’s very clear. I also shared a time lapse video, it’s only 6 seconds long if Bryan wants to pull that up. And this is just a quick video to let you know what it looks like. Pretty quick, very easy to use. It automatically turns off your screen to save battery whenever you’re taking a time lapse footage. And it looks really cool, especially if you want to take it somewhere to play with. It also has a tripod mounting tool as well. So you can take it out with you to a really scenic view and run a time lapse of the sunset if you want. How romantic. So fun! So my pros and cons of this device. It’s very interesting, it creates beautiful spherical photography, that’s really cool. And it’s fun to watch it work, it makes really funny noises. And it’s super simple to set up. But on the con side, it does smell kind of funny when you take it out. I hope that smell will come away, but yeah, it still stinks. The battery dies pretty quick. Some apps are paid purchases, which when you’re spending 150 dollars on a device, I don’t want to spend more money than I have to. And of course, there’s no charge input for the IPhone. I think it would be great to just add a lightening connector on the bottom of this that I could plug a charging port into. I think that would make it so, so much better. And then I could use it for security at home, or just watching my cats, because that’s fun. So buy, try, or don’t buy for the Galileo by Motrr. I’m going to have to say Try, it’s cool for videographers, vidophiles, and everything, but I don’t think I would spend the money personally, because I probably wouldn’t use it that often. Now we have some fun times coming up very quickly, over at the TD desk. So let’s go ahead and walk on over there. Hi Brian!

Bryan Burnett: Oh hey Shannon!

Shannon: How’s it going?

Bryan: It’s going good. Just switching the show.

Shannon: And you’re doing a great job at it.

Bryan: Oh thank you.

Shannon: So, you have something pretty cool to show me right?

Bryan: I do!

Shannon: This is the new Nokia Lumia Icon?

Bryan: Yeah, so this is one of the newest Windows phones that came out on Verizon recently.

Shannon: Yes! The screen looks nice!

Bryan: Yeah, I’ll try to show everyone that! It’s a little weird doing this, and switching the show, but I think we can make it work! But anywhere I went ahead and I actually did some b roll of this.

Shannon: Perfect!

Bryan: When you first look at the phone, it doesn’t really stand out that well, or anything like that! But it also reminded me of something… If you’ve seen the 2001 space odyssey. Have you seen that before?

Shannon: Oh I might have.

Bryan: Yeah, it kind of looks like the monolith from that.

Shannon: That’s awesome.

Bryan: I’ll be honest, I’m an Android guy, and my dedicated phone that I use is a Moto X, but I really tried to dedicate myself to using this phone for a whole week. I took it on vacation with me, and really liked it a lot. The first two highlights for this phone is the screen, and the camera.

Shannon: Of course! Now Nokia has done a really good job with their cameras coming up so far in the Lumia line. How does this one compare to past ones?

Bryan: Well all the cameras on the Lumia’s are pretty sharp, and pretty good. But this one is a little bit different, because this is a 20 megapixel camera, so really I, when I was using this a just a camera, I would take pictures and you can just crop and zoom later on. You don’t have to worry about it. I really like, the screen was really nice. You can see from the footage here that the tiles look really sharp, the colors are really vibrant, it’s a 5 inch 1080P O LED screen.

Shannon: Yes! Those are the best!

Bryan: Yeah, so the blacks area really dark. And even that photo there, on the home screen, I took with the phone, and it’s got a really nice focus effect that it does. It also has a quad core processor that is super snappy. I’ve never had a problem with windows phones feeling slow or sluggish or anything, but everything I loaded up worked fine. And even the speech stuff that it does, it didn’t work quite as well. Like it does with the Google stuff with my Moto X. But it got the job done.  And, you know, I really like the hardware on this phone. But as a dedicated Android user, some of the apps were lacking. And that’s really one of my only complaints.

Shannon: Yes, windows has had that problem so far.

Bryan: And Alex made it apparent to me that 8.1 is going to be releasing fairly so… and so some of the little niggles that I have with the OS, like the notification try at the top, or the active display. Alex’s phone, I forget what he uses, but you tap on the screen and it comes up. But not so much on this phone.

Shannon: Does it have any additional space, expandable memory, or anything like that?

Bryan: It doesn’t. So a lot of the premium windows phones, it is encases. I guess is what you would say. There is no expandable memory on it, but it does come with 32 gigs, so that’s pretty good. And it’s not a removable battery, but the battery is over 2000 milliamps, and I didn’t have any problems getting a full day of use out of it, taking pictures and all sorts of stuff. And I also went out and, like back to the camera again…

Shannon: That looks pretty good.

Bryan: It does 1080P

Shannon: And this is a video you recorded on the Icon?

Bryan: Yeah. It does a really good job with the video. It has optical stabilization too, so one of the features on this phone is it has 4 microphones too. So the audio it picked up is pretty good. So this is a prank I pulled on one of our editors, Victor, for April fool’s. I put a new cage extension on his browser.

Victor: Is that all Nicholas cage on there?

Shannon: That sounds pretty clear and crisp.

Bryan: Yeah, it came out not too bad. Because usually I believe the microphone is on the front of the phone, so…

Shannon: And this is what you do at work, that and play in snow.

Bryan: Yeah. The camera on this was really nice. I took it out on vacation with me and I’m walking around…

Shannon: It looks like the colors are pretty accurate.

Bryan: Yeah, black and white right here. But even the stabilization was pretty good, because as I was walking around it did a good job of, you know, getting rid of some of the shakiness and stuff.

Shannon: Don’t get any snow on it! So is this only available on Verizon?

Bryan: Yes, only on Verizon.

Shannon: Okay, how much does it cost right now?

Bryan: So for a two year contract its 200 dollars, and if you want to buy it off contract, it’s 550 dollars.

Shannon: Wow. Not too bad. A little cheaper than another phone we’re going to show it just a few moments.

Bryan: Right, right.

Shannon: Not bad. What are your buys, try’s, and don’t buys for this? You’re pros and cons.

Bryan: Yeah, my pros and cons. So for buy, try, and don’t buy. Would this phone take me away from my Moto X? No! Oh, there’s another picture sorry, that’s with the flash on. It wouldn’t draw me away from my Moto X, but if you were interested in using a Windows phone, and you wanted something with a really good camera, and a screen that is awesome. Those are the two biggest pros of this, and the performance is great. Super snappy. The cons, it’s not the hardware’s fault, but some of the apps were a little limited. Some of the third party stuff is kind of a pain. It feels like a work around for some of the other stuff it should be able to do. The focus can be a little slow in certain situations, but not too bad. And it’s not the slimmest phone. It’s a little thick, and a 5 inch screen, so you’re not going to forget about it in your pocket. But buy, try, don’t buy? If you’re looking for a solid. This is definitely the best Windows phone On Verizon, and it has wireless charging which is super nice. It checks all the little boxes, I think, but if you’re a dedicated Android, or IOS, this phone is probably not going to make you…

Shannon: Oh, very cute!

Bryan: I forgot that was in there. Okay, that’s an example of the front facing camera. It’s a little blurry. This front facing will do 720 for video calls and stuff like that. But you’re going to be focuses with the rear facing camera mostly.

Shannon: Cool. Well thank you Bryan.

Bryan: Yeah!

Shannon: That was very interesting icon review. I really appreciate it. And it’s nice to visit you over here at the TD desk, for once in our lives.

Bryan: Yeah, it’s a little difficult switching and doing this, but it was fun.

Shannon: Well you’re pretty good at it, multitasking. Almost as good as a woman.

Bryan: Yeah, well I can try!

Shannon: You’re woman must be teaching you good things.

Bryan: She is.

Shannon: So coming up next we have an interview from one of my most favorite people in the world. Ms. Liz. It’s the Mophie space pack, let’s check it out.

Liz Romero: Hi, I’m Liz from TWiT and I am going to be reviewing for you, the Mophie space pack. This thing is a life saver, for someone like me who takes way to many pictures. I’m sorry friends and family, I am that person, I admit to it, I will go to therapy. So the reason why I love this product is this actually gives me twice my storage. Mophie pack also gives me twice the battery, brilliant for someone like me when I go on vacation, I’m taking a million photos, embarrassing a million people, and remembering those moments I shouldn’t probably want to remember. The Mophie Space Pack has two different storage amounts. It has the 16 gigabyte and the 32 gigabyte. Starting at $150, and then $180. The Mophie space pack actually gives you 1700 extra milliamp hours. So along with the case comes a free app that you can actually get from the app store. This is, right now, only for the iPhone. The app is free, and it actually has a really great and clean design. Very easy to use. What you can do is, this guy, actually acts as kind of a thing you just plug in a computer like a USB. What I did is with my over 10000 files of videos and photos, I actually just transferred that right over, by plugging this in the computer, plugging this in. It took an hour, took an hour for all that data. But it’s on here now, and not on my iPhone anymore. So on the app, you can actually store photos, videos, music, documents, other files, and you can look at all files. It actually will also give you a section of your most recent files. So if you just uploaded a song that you love, and you want to immediately listen to it, you can actually get to that. No, sorry, I’m going to actually do something. I don’t listen to that song. No, I don’t. I’m more… So this is actually paying through the Mophie Space Pack. The nice thing about the Mophie Space Pack is it’s actually projecting the music this way, so it actually will make it louder by doing the echoes. This thing you can actually hold up to 16000 photos, and as you can see, I’m pretty much almost going to get there. But at the same time I have all this extra storage. If you go to the home key you can see I’m only using 10 gigabytes. I have 21 more. Amazing. I’m going to use that in two seconds. The Mophie Space Pack also gives you the option to be able to take camera and photos just directly in the app. So you don’t have to worry about auto sync that possibly didn’t happen when it should have. So photo, video. Pretty simple. No fancy panoramas or filters, but it does do the basics that you would need. A tip that I found for using the Mophie Space Pack is that if you have a lot of content like me, you don’t want to transfer it through the app. You want to make sure you actually plug in the computer and transfer it via USB. At first I actually did try to do camera sync, and try to upload it that way. And that took over a day. A big negative about this, once the battery on the Mophie is dead, this thing is worthless. It’s just a 180 dollar piece of plastic that’s attached to your iPhone. So if you have all your photos on there. If you have some music that you love, or some movies that you really want to rock out to, you’re out of luck buddy! Can’t access it to this thing when it’s dead. For my pros for the Mophie Space Pack, it is able to give you double your storage. You’re able to get up to 32 gigabytes of extra storage, and 1700 extra milliamp hours. Also you’re able to store a lot of different files, in a lot of different formats on this guy. You’re able to do excel, pdfs, you are able to do MP3s. You’re able to do music directly from the iTunes stores. Huge plus. Also, the app is beautiful. Very easy, you are able to take photos and video directly through the app so it automatically is backed up there. Also, auto sync, can’t emphasize enough how great a feature that is. For my cons, the biggest one I have a gripe about, you can’t actually store any iTunes videos on here. What’s the point? A big con is the price. It is $180 if you want a 32 gigabyte. But if you don’t need that you can do $150 for 16. Another con is that when you copy over all your photos, and you’re a neat freak like me, they don’t actually go over in order. I have ones from 2001 that are showing as today. This happen in 2012, 2013, this all happened today. I didn’t even realize it. I’m going to be giving the Mophie Space Pack a buy. If you are a compulsive, and can’t help yourself and have to take pictures of every single moment, especially on vacations where you can’t plug this in. This is a savior. At 180 bucks, if you’ve got the green for it, do it. I’m Liz Romero, I’m out.

Shannon: Alright, so this is the Mophie Space Pack, correct, Ms. Liz? So you like it?

Liz: I’m in love with it.

Shannon: Do you have enough space?

Liz: I have plenty of space now.

Shannon: Knowing how many pictures you take.

Liz: Yes, it actually saves all my pictures and I don’t have to delete apps, or movies, or anything. I’m in love.

Shannon: Yay! Well until the IPhone 6 comes out, which apparently is much thinner, and it probably won’t fit in that anymore.

Liz: I know what my mom is getting for Christmas then.

Shannon: Alright, thank you so much then! Now we’re going to move over here to Mr. Chad. Hello.

Chad: Hi! How’re you doing?

Shannon: I’m doing good. How are you?

Chad: Doing great.

Shannon: So you have an IPad stand. It looked really weird when you took it out of the box.

Chad: It was a very almost industrialized set.

Shannon: It was huge.

Chad: Yeah, it was, this is not the iPad stand for the week!

Shannon: But it’s for your desk right?

Chad: Right.

Shannon: Okay, so this is the FLOTE…

Chad: It’s a FLOTE. Your desk model IPad stand.

Shannon: Desk model. Alright, let’s check it out.

Chad: Hello! My name is Chad, I’m with TWiT, and Before You Buy, and today I’m reviewing the FLOTE tablet stand. This is a universal tablet stand, by FLOTEyourtablet.com. This is spelled FLOTE, instead of the normal way that you’d spell float. So if you’re looking for it its FLOTE. This is the desktop version. They have a floor stand version as well. And this was a kick starter darling. So this is where this product came from. IT’s $219.99 for the desktop version. It’s made out of stainless steel and aluminum. Some of the nice features is you can adjust it up and down. You do have a length adjustment in the arm. Now the actual base, and the stand of it do not extend, but the arm, the boom arm does. You have a really nice way to articulate your iPad with a ball magnet joint. So that the tablet can’t extend in every direction. It can move right up against the arm, it can tilt in basically every single direction you can imagine. This magnet is very sturdy. It’s incredibly hard to remove from the boom. There are sliding feet on the bottom of the stand. This is useful if you’re sliding it on the floor, or on the table. It’s the same kind of feet you would add to the bottom of your couch. It does have a very small footprint. The base is small. Which it does mean that it is very heavy. Coming in at around, a guestimate 10 to 15 pounds. It is really nice that you can fit absolutely any tablet. This is a universal holder. On the IPad mini, here, you do have to make sure that you keep the sleep and awake button a little bit off to the side, otherwise it will clamp down onto it. The FLOTE came out of a passion for making sure that you’re using your tablet organically. So having your tablet sort of above where you normally bend over to look at your tablet. Having it up and available right at your eye line. And I’d say it does that very well. It’s very sturdy, very elegant, and it’s very nicely constructed. So let’s get into the pros and cons of the FLOTE. On the pros, it’s a very elegant design with an industrial design that does fit an IPad, which is probably the most popular tablet. It’s a universal tablet holder so you don’t have to use an IPad with it, and you can also use a case. With this ball magnet design here, I absolutely love that there’s no tools required to construct it and it swivels in any direction. On the cons, this is a pretty heavy, heavy stand, but you do get the pros of a small footprint. It also is a little bit expensive. It does cost about half as much as an IPad coming in at 219 dollars for the FLOTE desktop version tablet stand. There’s also the floor version, and that comes in at 299 dollars. So buy, try, don’t buy, for the FLOTE universal tablet stand, the desktop version. I’m going to give this a buy. I really enjoyed it, it’s probably one of the best tablet stands I’ve seen, and especially good looking and so well constructed. I’m very glad that I got to use the FLOTE. So check it out at floteyourtablet.com. That’s FLOTEyourtablet.com. Thanks so much for watching, see you next time!

Shannon: Awesome. Thanks so much, Chad, for that review, and he gave it a buy! Next up, I’ve been looking forward to this one. It’s called the HTC One M8, and this is from Leo. Hi Leo!

Leo Laporte: Hi Shannon! Thank you so much, congratulations!

Shannon: Thank you so much!

Leo: Thank you! For taking this over!

Shannon: Taking the reins!

Leo: But what’s good about that, is now I can focus on my reviews, and I’m really thrilled to be reviewing this. And I should say right up front, that I bought the HTC one right up front, when it came out last year. And I’ve bought this, I’m using the HTC One two, on Verizon, so these are actually my personal phones. I really love the HTC One, sequels when you’re talking movies usually suck, right? Jaws II, Matrix II, rocky 7…

Shannon: Oh that one was okay! It wasn’t too bad.

Leo: Matrix III was really bad!

Shannon: Yeah, that was terrible.

Leo: But that’s because you’re taking a great story and you’re kind of elaborating, trying to make more money off it. When it comes to technology, usually we get better with age.

Shannon: Yes, they learn from their faults.

Leo: Sanding down the rough edges, and keeping the stuff that worked. That’s exactly what HTC has done. The new HTC, we’ll call it the M8, is a sequel that fixes a lot of things I didn’t like about this original HTC one, without eliminating the stuff I liked the most about it. First of all, you’ve got to take a look at it, it is the M8, and it’s a gorgeous phone. That’s the first thing you’ll see. Unibody, aluminum case, 5 inch 1080P display. It’s got the QUALCOMM 801 processor, which is brand new. It was just announced and I’ll tell you a little bit about that. It’s a dual core processor. 2 gigs of ram and you can get 16 or 32 gigabytes of storage. One thing the one has added, which is really great, is this little hole right here. You can add an SD card to up to 128 gigs more storage. So if you’re a digital hoarder, you’ll like this.

Shannon: Nice! I love external.

Leo: Part of the problem with the sleek form factor like this, is the battery is not removable. It never will be in a phone that looks this good. But they have increased the capacity though, about 13%. 2600 milliamp hours. And despite the fact that this is a big 5 inch screen. The old one was 4.7, and it’s a much faster processor, you do, in fact, get better performance, and much better battery life. I was able to get through the day. In fact, I can show you what I’ve got through today. Because I have a little battery monitor running on here. I’m at 34%, after 9 hours.

Shannon: Wow.

Leo: So that means I have another say 3 hours left. That’s about right, about 12 hours of battery life.

Shannon: That’s not bad.

Leo: and that’s pretty heavy usage…

Shannon: Right.

Leo: … because one things you’re going to do with this phone, is use it a lot. They also have a super low power mode, that will let you limp into the finish. If you get down to 5%, it’ll actually go many, many more hours, by turning off a lot of features. One thing people are not going to be happy about, they’ve get the ultra-pixel camera. Its only 4 megapixels. That was something people didn’t like about the original one. I’ve got to say they have done a lot to make this better. They’ve improved the actual software capture. It’s the same hardware, but they’ve improved the software capture. They’ve added some settings for instance. All of your settings can be manual now, exposure, and white balance.

Shannon: Even focus, right?

Leo: You can set ISO to a maximum that will help with the graininess in the low light shots. This is a 28 millimeter F effective F2.0 camera. That means very good low light performance. These are 2 micron pixels, very good low light performance. And when you set the ISO to 400 or 800 max, you won’t get the graininess in exposure, as we did on last year’s One. They did take out the optical image stabilization, and you will miss it, especially if you shoot a lot of video. Bu tin it’s place, you’ll see there’s a second sensor up here. HTC says we couldn’t do both. Oddly enough this is the original front sensor from the original HTC One. And you can’t see what’s in this sensor, they’re using it for depth information. And that gives you selective focus. Remember the Lightro camera?

Shannon: Yes, I very much remember that.

Leo: We have a few pictures. I took a picture of Jolie O’Dell when she was here at TWiT Sunday. So that’s the picture I took. And by the way look how clear it is, colors are good, clarity is good. Of course there’s lots of light in the studio. First thing I did was I changed the background. Watch the background carefully, defocused it!

Shannon: Wow! It did a good job too! IT didn’t mess up here at all.

Leo: It does a pretty good job! The 35 millimeter effect of having a shallow depth of focus. There’s some other things you can do because you know where the background and the foreground is. Show us the next one here, you can play with the background. This is kind of a motion blur. You can also do some crazy plug ins, I gave her an afro, and a cowboy hat.

Shannon: Because why not?

Leo: Okay, this is a little Samsungy, and I think a lot of these things you’re not going to use. Keep going Bryan, if you would, through all of them. This is kind of a cool effect. It makes a movie out of them but on the screen it’s actually an image, you can have leaves, you can have dandelions. I think the quality and the clarity is great.  The Hassel Hoff is from Google! That’s not my fault, keep going!

Shannon: Oh that’s great!

Leo: Let’s go back. Get Ozzie! There’s another Hassel Hoff. Actually go back to Jason. Because you’ll see the selective focus again. Again, ignore Hassel Hoff, Google plus did that to me. But that’s an original image. And I think it’s a nice image, it’s not always perfect, but it’s done in camera. There’s Chad, and that’s a decolorized background. Keep going. There’s a zoom, there’s a black and white kind of sketch background. This is all done automatically, very quickly too with the new processor, with the click of a mouse. That’s the original image. I think this is a great camera that’s giving me fabulous images, even of Grog. You see there’s even a macro focus that’s quite good. I’ve been very happy, I don’t rate camera phone images in terms of… Oh wait a minute, now stand back, here’s another feature. You can play with the skin tone, the eyes, and the chin size. This is built into the camera, there’s a little slider! Alex Lindsay showed me this! It’s his fault!

Shannon: That is so creepy!

Leo: It’s probably not something you’re going to do a whole lot. The camera really is nice, and the camera application has been much improved. So I have to give this an A plus on the camera. It is a really beautiful phone. Gorilla glass on the front. 90% metal. That means it’s going to be bigger and heavier. Noticeably so. And I’ll show you the old HTC One, it’s noticeably bigger, but it’s also I think, noticeably, more beautiful. And I Love the old HTC One. The M80C is even more beautiful. The heaviness, the solid, it feels like solid, so it feels like a quality product. I think it’ll catch the eye. This is the gray steel, they have gold and silver as well depending on your carrier. Verizon sold me this 32 gig gray steel version. They kept one of the best features of the original HTC one. The boom sound, they call boom sound. Dual speakers in the front, left and right. Really gives you good sound. Let me play a little music for you, so you can hear what it sounds like. A little rap music, coming out of the boom sound speakers. I have it on do not disturb. That’s another nice feature.  I’ll hold it up to my Mic.

Shannon: That sounds pretty good.

Leo: From there. You get a better sense of it, because you’re in the room with us. It’s not look, you’re not going to rock the house with it, but for a smart phone, it’s probably the best sound I’ve ever heard, and for books on tape, you know I listen to a lot of audio books, It’s really fantastic for that. It’s really something I loved it from the first one, and they kept it. Nice job. And that’s something that really adds to the height of this, one thing people are not going to like, before you buy, this you should absolutely hold it in your hands. Its’ heavier and taller than a lot of phones, and that may bug a lot of people. And you probably can tell they have sense on, and I’m not a big fan of manufacture UI updates.

Shannon: Same here. I like Vanilla Android.

Leo: I like Vanilla Android, but this is pretty good. It doesn’t really get in the way, they got rid of my number one complaint about the old one. Remember it had compassitive buttons at the bottom? The HTC didn’t do anything. It was annoying. Now you can see we’re back to the traditional Android buttons. The back button, the home button, the recent apps button. These all operate exactly as Google wants them to in standard Android. It does come with Kit Kat 442. Not the latest but pretty recent. That’s another problem with carrier updates, is it slows down updates, or rather manufacture UI, and it slows down updates from your carrier. Nevertheless, with 442 you’re not going to feel too left behind. There are some nice things that I like, they have a gesture base system. So when you’re holding the phone in upright position, you double tap it, it wakes up the phone. This is another good one, if you use the camera a lot, you put it in landscape mode and press the volume button once, the camera turns on, and you press it again, and you can actually take a picture right way. Oh, I’m sorry, I was pressing the wrong volume button. You have to press the down button. Without unlocking the phone you can take a picture right away. Be careful though, this takes 12 frames a second if you keep holding it down its quite amazing. The speed of the processor is really fabulous. When it saves those 12 frames, you can actually… a button comes up and says, ‘best photo’, and you can actually choose the best photo among them. Blink feed is back. Let’s take the best shot out of all those. Only your best shot will be saved. Throw away the rest. Yes thank you, please do that. Those were 12 horrible shots. Back to the home, and see I love that, that home button is there. That’s very much like a Nexus 5 would operate. One thing that is a little bit different. When you swipe left you’ve got this new, actually not new, it as in the old one, but it’s improved blink feed feature. This is kind of the equivalent of the flip book, its updating now. You choose the content, control it, it has flip feed and more. I always use nova launcher, and more, I use a third party launcher which hides a lot of this, actually sim 6 isn’t bad. I’m going to give them a plus on that, even though it’s not Android, it’s got some nice features, for instance. Now you can control what quick settings you have. You have an edit button here. These settings are quite easy to use, and quite fast. I think it’s pretty nice. So pros and cons. There’s some significant pros. I think it is, you might say, arguably, but I think it is the most beautiful phone on the market today, the all metal design really shouts quality. I love the screen, its 1080P, is gorgeous, it’s accurate, they’ve done a nice job with that. And I love the camera, they’ve made this 4 megapixel camera, a winner in my option. The duo sensor, the software, add both fun things, and I think some seriously useful features. The cons, they lose the optical image stabilization with this duo sensor. The hand feel may not be quite right for you. Yes, it is a big and heavy phone. And if you’re looking at other 5 inchers, it’s about $300 more than a comparable Nexus 5. That’s a big price to pay.

Shannon: It’s expensive.

Leo:  It’s expensive. It’s like all the others, like the IPhone, and the Galaxy S5. It’s that $600, 700 dollar phone. However, overall, when I compare the HTC one, to not only its predecessor last year, but to every other phone on the market, I have to say this is one of this year’s absolute best phones. Maybe we’ll say it’s the best phone of the year. At least it is so far. It’s a definite buy. HTC One, it’s called the M8, the new HTC one, and I love it!

Shannon: HTC One Mate.

Leo: Mate? I don’t know why they didn’t call it the Mate. That’s a good idea!

Shannon: That would be great!

Leo: It’s a great phone!

Shannon: Thank you Leo.

Leo: This is going to be a tough one to… I bought it and you know, I’m a Moto X fan, I might have found the phone to replace the Moto.

Shannon: really? I’m still stuck on my Nexus 5 myself. But I love that phone.


Leo: Well and that’s what I compare it most directly to, because of the size of the screen. And I think you should look at it.

Shannon: Yeah? Alright, maybe I’ll have to change it! We’ll see! Well thank you so much Leo for your review, I loved it. Also, thank you to all of our other reviewers, Bryan, Chad, Liz, and myself. If you ever want to send your comments, you can email us at BYB@Twit.tv. And definitely check out our home page twit.tv/byb. And also we’re on YouTube for all the full reviews, that’s youtube.com/beforeyoubuy. We’ll see you next week. Bye!