Tag Archive: Explained


Your “waterproof” phone … isn’t (IP ratings explained)

You only need to drop your phone off a boat, or into a puddle, or (yes) into a toilet one time to start yearning for a world in which all smartphones are waterproof. The good news: these days, many of them are at least water-resistant, because they’re tested according to a body of standards called the International Protection codes (think: IP68, IP57). The bad news: they’re probably not as resistant as you think.

Today on the MrMobile  [Read More…]

Video: Android P gestures explained

The little bundle of pixels found at the bottom of a phone running Android P represents the future of navigation on Android handsets. Android’s software keys have been basically unchanged for more than seven years at this point, dating all the way back to the 3.0 Honeycomb release for tablets (or 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich on phones). But Google knows that in order to win over iPhone converts in the future, it’ll have to deal with years  [Read More…]

Samsung Galaxy S9 battery problems, explained: Exynos vs. Snapdragon

U.S. users get the better experience for a change.

New phones should have better battery life than their predecessors. That’s a given, and part of the unspoken rule of technological progress. And yet in recent years that hasn’t been a given. Along the way, we’ve seen blips — Snapdragon 810, anyone? — on the way to greater efficiency.

This year, the culprit is Samsung’s Exynos 9810, the ultra-fast chip that ships with all Galaxy S9 and S9+  [Read More…]

Video: Samsung Galaxy S9+ cameras explained

Let’s talk about the Samsung Galaxy S9’s cameras. If you’re a fan, they’re what truly sets these phones apart from the competition. If you’re a cynic, they’re the only real upgrade in a relatively boring upgrade cycle. Either way, they’re easily the most interesting thing about Samsung’s latest flagship, and more than two weeks with the S9+ has given us a chance to get to know this area of the phone pretty well.

We’ve covered everything that’s  [Read More…]

The Pixel Visual Core, explained

The Pixel Visual Core is a special piece of silicon that’s unique to Google’s Pixel 2 phones. In short, it’s a custom chip designed to help with the Pixel’s HDR+ image processing — that’s the computational secret sauce that makes the Pixel 2 camera so great.

But it’s also a little misunderstood — the visual core isn’t necessarily used in every photo your Pixel takes, even since Google enabled it by default in the February update for  [Read More…]

Galaxy Note 8 region locking, explained

Picking up an unlocked Note 8 in Europe today? Here’s what that ominous ‘European SIM card only’ sticker means.

If you’re picking up a shiny new, unlocked Samsung Galaxy Note 8 in Europe today, you’ll notice a sticker sealing the box. We’ve been here before with countless other Samsung flagships, and once again, the Note 8, as sold unlocked in Europe, is region-locked out of the box.

But it’s only a temporary situation — and it’s not  [Read More…]

Wireless Fast Charging explained

Qi Fast Charge brings faster and more efficient charging without any change in how we use it.

The Qi charging standard has come a long way since it was first specified. What started as a very slow and very wasteful technology to recharge low-power devices (like the battery in your phone) has expanded to include things that need more power like a laptop and the Wireless Power Consortium has even demonstrated the tech powering kitchen appliances  [Read More…]

Dash Charge for OnePlus 3 explained

Dash Charge is awesome.

OnePlus rolled out its Dash Charge fast charging option in the OnePlus 3, which allows the phone to go from 0 to a 60% charge in just 30 minutes. Dash Charge is licensed from OPPO, the parent company of OnePlus, and is different from the majority of quick charging options available today, most of which leverage Qualcomm’s Quick Charge technology.

Here’s what you need to know about Dash Charge.

A primer  [Read More…]

The HTC 10 explained by HTC’s VP of Design

We sat down with the manufacturer’s VP of design to talk about what makes this phone so good.

“The HTC 10 is very recognizable as an HTC phone,” says HTC VP of Design Claude Zellweger, “but it’s also very distinguishable as a new direction for our design language.”

We talked with the design lead about the company’s latest flagship phone — the new HTC 10 — on the evening following the launch, and he wasn’t shy about mentioning  [Read More…]

Cyanogen’s MOD integrations explained and the global expansion of IDEAA events

In case you missed it, we recently sat down with Big Android BBQ creator and IDEAA President Aaron Kasten to talk about all of the developer/enthusiast hybrid events happening around the world this year. We talked a little about March of the Droids in Edinburgh, the Big Android Meat and Greet/Code Kitchen in Virginia, and a way to win some Udacity scholorships by participating.

We were also joined by Cyanogen’s Ed Mancebo, who answered some questions  [Read More…]