Archive for the Review Category

Sony SRS-BTV5 NFC and Bluetooth Speaker

I’ve been using the Sony SRS-BTV5 NFC and Bluetooth Speaker for almost 2 months and I’m loving it.

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The Sony SRS-BTV5 is a small and lightweight wireless speaker shaped like a ball. The ball shape design allows an even 360 degrees sound distribution. Bluetooth pairing between Sony SRS-BTV5 and your phone is easy if you have a NFC phone. Simply place tap phone on the top of the speaker and you are connected in no time. We’ve seen this kind of NFC assisted Bluetooth pairing before and it is great to see more company using it. I’ve tried the NFC pairing on both Sony and non-Sony Android phones and they all work like magic.

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But don’t worry if you don’t have a NFC phone. You can always use the traditional Bluetooth pairing method. The Sony SRS-BTV5 has a battery life of 5 hours. It uses the same MicroUSB charger that most phones are using. When a call comes in, just press the answering key and the music will fade and you can take the call hands-free.

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Sound quality wise, the Sony SRS-BTV5 is pretty decent if you are not a audiophile. The compact size makes it great for carrying around and sharing music with your friends.

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The Sony SRS-BTV5 NFC and Bluetooth Speaker is available in Singapore at a recommended retail price of S$119. Comes in black, white, blue and pink colours.

Review: iSpectacles – Turn your iPhone or Android phone into Google Glass

Thanks to the folks at April Technology, I got a chance to review the iSpectacles before they officially launch it later this month. The iSpectacles, for the uninitiated, is a 3 part system that turns your iPhone or Android phone into Google Glass.

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Setting up the iSpectacles is straight forward. Just tape your iPhone or Android Phone on the iSpectacles using the black tape provided. You want to be careful while using the black tape. Do not cover the camera hole with the black tape or you won’t be able to see anything. And if you are using an iPhone, you might not want to cover the Apple Logo. You still want others to know that you are using an iPhone. Right? Once your phone is secured, you are ready to go.

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The iSpectacles system comes with a iOS and Android app that you can download for free. Make sure you turn on the app before wearing the iSpectacles. It will take a while to get used to seeing the screen so close to your eyes. Most people claim that they have headache and nausea when they first started using the iSpectacles. This is perfectly normal. Once you get past that stage, the iSpectacles will be like an extension of your eyes. In fact, I don’t feel the iSpectacles on me after wearing for an hour. In fact, I don’t feel a thing at all after wearing for 1 hour. Cool.

Once you get past the initial state of uncomfortness, you’ll love the iSpectacles. The iSpectacles knows everything about you. What you eat and drink, what you like or dislike. It is constantly connected to your Facebook, Twitter and Email. You can program it to automatically reply to all your emails. For example if a Saudi Prince needs your help to transfer large amount of cash to your country, iSpectacles will automatically reply the Prince with your bank account number. But that’s not the most amazing part about iSpectacles. iSpectacles is a heads-up display that provide you more information of your surrounding.

iSpectacles can calculate the amount of calories in your meal and give you the best health recommendation.

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It knows what bus you are taking and your latest IPPT results. So if the bus is too far away, it will tell you not to run since you most likely won’t catch up.

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It knows the location of your friends and if you owe them money, iSpectacles will warn you if they are approaching your direction.

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There are so many things that iSpectacles can do. It even advise you the best place to meet girls and Google best pick up lines from the internet. Cool feature. I’ll try that out soon.

I’ve been using the iSpectacles for a few days and I’m loving it. Besides providing useful information, I also become the centre of attention when I’m using iSpectacles. Few days ago, I saw a girl taking photo of me wearing the iSpectacles on train. When I talk to her, she said that she is submitting my photo to STOMP. COOL! I bet they are going to feature me in the new Tech Whiz section.

The iSpectacles will be available in the market later this month. No pricing available yet. Currently support iOS and Android 4.0 and above. I heard that they will be supporting Tablets in the near future. Looking forward to wearing my iPad 2 on my face.

Review: Ozaki O!music Powow+ Bluetooth speaker for iPad

Do not underestimate the power from this Ozaki O!music Powow+ Bluetooth speaker. When I first tried it, I was blown away by the amazing sound quality. You just won’t believe that this small little bar like speaker can produce such amazing sound quality.

The Ozaki O!music Powow+ speaker is pretty easy to use. Pairing it using Bluetooth with your iPad is simple and straight forward. Although the Ozaki O!music Powow+ is marketed as a Bluetooth speaker for iPad, nothing is stopping you from pairing it with other Bluetooth devices such as your smartphone or any other tablets. In fact I tried using it with my iPhone 4S and it works great too. Or if you don’t have Bluetooth, you can always connect to the speaker using a 3.5mm cable.

The Ozaki O!music Powow+ has a built in battery that can provide up to 8 hours of continues playing. Charging is via a microUSB port.

The interesting thing about the Ozaki O!music Powow+ Bluetooth speaker is that it comes with a iPad casing. On the casing is a strong magnet that holds the Ozaki O!music Powow+ speaker behind securely. This means you can easily bring the Ozaki O!music Powow+ speakers with your iPad anywhere. The speaker also acts as a nice grip when you are playing games on your iPad.

The Ozaki O!music Powow+ Bluetooth speaker is pretty amazing. If you are looking for a Bluetooth speaker for your iPad, this is a good option. If you are looking for a Bluetooth speaker for your Android Tablet or smartphone, this is worth considering too.

Review: Panasonic Mobile Backup Power 2700mAh

When I first saw the Panasonic Mobile Backup Power, the design reminds me of the Sanyo Eneloop Mobile Booster that I had. It feels weird that Panasonic will release something that looks almost the same as another company’s product. Then I discovered something. Panasonic had acquired Sanyo a couple of years ago. So the Panasonic Mobile Backup Power is actually the next version of the Eneloop Mobile Booster.

I got my hands on the Panasonic Mobile Backup Power 2700mAh to try out. As the name suggest, the Mobile Backup Power has 2700mAh. That’s enough for 1 full charge on your mobile phone (and maybe a little bit more to spare). And it is not just for mobile phones. Any device that uses USB for charging can be use on the Panasonic Mobile Backup Power. Things like your Bluetooth headset, MP3 player, MIFI etc etc.

The Panasonic Mobile Backup Power 2700mAh is pretty small and lightweight. 39 x 70 x 22 mm and weighs just 78 grams. It has only 1 USB out port. It’s very easy to use. Just plug in your device using your device’s USB cable, press the power on button and it starts charging. A indicator light tells you approximately how much power is left. Green means 100% to 60%, Orange means 60% to 30% while Red means less than 30%. Oh, and no light mean 0% lah. It is much easier to tell the battery level now compared to the Sanyo Eneloop Mobile Booster.

Recharging the Panasonic Mobile Backup Power is easy. I like the fact that it is using a MicroUSB charging port for recharging. This means that you can use your smartphone charger (unless you are using iPhone) to recharge your Panasonic Mobile Backup Power. It takes around 3 1/2 hours to fully recharge the Panasonic Mobile Backup Power 2700mAh. You can also use USB connected to your computer to charge but that will take 7 hours.

The Panasonic Mobile Backup Power is a great upgrade from the Sanyo Eneloop Mobile Booster. It fixes all the shortcoming of the Sanyo Eneloop Mobile Booster while retaining its strength.


PS: The retail package does not include USB cables. The short USB cable in the picture belongs to me.

If you are like me and carry lots of devices around, 2700mAh will most likely not be enough for you. Well, you’ll be glad to know that there is a 5400mAh version. It has 2 USB output ports, weighs 142 grams and is 62 x 70 x 22mm. This should be enough to charge your mobile phone up to 2 times with some to spare.

The Panasonic Mobile Backup Power 5400mAh is retailing at $89.90 while the Panasonic Mobile Backup Power 2700mAh is retailing at S$49.90.

Review: Epson Megaplex MG-850HD All-in-One Projector

OK, before I start, let me just say that I’ve never reviewed a projector before. And I said yes without thinking much when Epson asked me if I want to review their Megaplex MG-850HD All-in-One Projector. Then it occurred to me. I can’t test a projector in Starbucks where I usually do my product reviews. And I don’t have much space at home to test it. You see, I don’t really have a piece of wall in my room to project the image.

So ya, this is the best I can do. Please excuse the 2 lines from the cupboard doors.

Anyway, back to the Epson Megaplex MG-850HD All-in-One Projector. On first look, the Megaplex MG-850HD looks like any ordinary projector. It is capable of producing HD 720p resolution in 2800 lumens. That’s pretty bright. But what makes it different from most of the projectors out there is the built in Apple dock connector for your iOS devices like iPhone and iPad.

The Epson Megaplex MG-850HD is great for watching movies Just plug your iPad on the Apple dock connector and play your favorite movie or stream videos from YouTube. It has 2 built in 10 watt speakers for better sound quality. Oh, and it charges your iOS devices at the same time.

The Megaplex MG-850HD does not do mirroring of your iOS devices. Instead, there is a menu for you to access your videos, musics, photos and some apps when you plug in your iOS devices. Navigation through the menu is easy and straight forward. There is a remote for those who wants to sit back and relax. I tried playing some YouTube videos and going through my photo album. The image quality is great.

Do note that not all apps are supported by the MG-850HD dock. Only apps like YouTube, Keynote and Photo Library that supports video out can be used on the dock connector. That basically covers most of the things you need. But if you need to project other apps that does not support video out, just get a HDMI adaptor and do mirroring. The Epson Megaplex MG-850HD has HDMI, component, and composite video inputs for other devices. You could even plug in your USB Thumbdrive for a PC less slideshow.

As a whole, the Epson Megaplex MG-850HD All-in-One Projector is a great projector for iPad and iPhone owners. Great for a movie nights. The Epson Megaplex MG-850HD All-in-One Projector is now retailing at S$1299