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How LG and Sony Mobiles Failed Us

I had read reports about people having issues with LG and Sony mobile phones, but I wasn't prepared for the extent of issues that would appear when I decided to try out Sony (Xperia Z3 Dual and Z3 Compact) and LG (G4 Dual SIM, V10 Dual SIM) mobile devices.

LG G4 Dual SIM - UAE Model
This story is widely known, my wife's LG G4 went in to a boot loop, one month before the warranty was about to end. LG authorized service center in Sharjah swapped the motherboard in less than ten minutes and we were on our way. However my friend who also went through the same issues, says that his LG G4 has started having issues of slow downs again. Time will tell if these phones last.

LG V10 Dual SIM - Singapore Model - Battery Issues
From the start LG V10 Dual SIM - Singapore Edition, had terrible battery life, I would hold Qualcomm Snapdragon accountable for that poor SoC implementation and I would hold LG accountable for not compensating for its poor battery life with a bigger battery.

LG V10 Dua…

Android phones with respectable audio quality

These are the most powerful Android smartphones that offer decent earpiece and loudspeaker quality. All of them have have dual front facing speakers and have reviewed to have better internal amps.

1. HTC Desire Eye
2. HTC One (M8)
3. Sony Xperia Z3
4. Sony Xperia Z3 Compact
5. OnePlus One

Another bonus, all of them also have highly rated battery life with micro SD slots. The battery life improvement is mainly because they stuck to 1080p or 720p displays which is just fine for screen sizes up to 5.5 inches.

Sadly none of them have a user removable battery, if that was the case, they would be near perfect.

Android phones for travellers

If you're a traveller, or just someone who spends time away from charging stations, because of work conditions. Choices for Android phones are very limited.

Why? If you can't swap out your phone's battery in the field, on-the-go? Then what else can you do, Unless you carry two phones, which doesn't make any sense.

Manufacturers are moving away from user replaceable batteries and micro SD slot. Which is a very stupid move.

Currently the best choices for Android phones with a removable battery and micro SD card slots are:

1. Samsung Galaxy Note 4
2. Samsung Galaxy S5
3. LG G3

I know there are other less popular models, however don't expect much in terms of software updates for those other models. Also, third party ROM support is always better with popular flagships. This way your device can stay updated for years longer.

Fortunately these phones have micro SD slots as well.

Late Rant: Things that are wrong with the Samsung Galaxy S4

Samsung's Galaxy S5 is out and making noise. Here's my late critique about the S4.

1. Poor loud speaker. - No solution, may be use a bluetooth speaker?
2. No stereo speakers. - No solution.
3. Ear piece sounds muffled, Sony Xperias have better ear pieces. - No solution, Maybe use a headset?
4. Too slippery - Can be solved by a case.
5. No dedicated camera shutter button. - No solution

Disclaimer: We have several Samsung Galaxy class phones, S2 and onwards in our household. Sad but true.

WhatsApp Android free alternatives

WhatsApp is a very reliable push messaging app, which is not free. What differentiates WhatsApp from legacy instant messaging (like MSN/WLM, Yahoo! or Gtalk) is its 'always on' push connectivity feature.

Since WhatsApp is a paid app, some people can't or don't want to pay for it. Fear not! Here are some free alternatives for Android users.

1. Beep (part of IM+) by SHAPE Services.
2. eBuddy XMS by eBuddy.
3. ChatOn by Samsung.

There are a  few more options out there, but I mentioned these because I've personally used them. I can strongly recommend IM+ and buying IM+ Pro. Since it offers the most value and turns on push for legacy IM services as well.

The tricky part will be convincing your friends to use any of the free alternatives.

Useful & Cool Android Apps

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So I treated myself to a Samsung Captivate Glide, despite going through the hassle of getting an unlock code to free it from AT&T, it's a fantastic mobile device with a physical hardware QWERTY keyboard.

It's easy to get carried away and load your Android phone with all sorts of junk, so here are some apps that you might useful.

You can check out my AppAware profile to see what all I have installed and like.

Productivity
Springpad
Evernote
Google Docs
WordWeb
Dropbox


Heath & wellness
Sleep Bot Tracker Log
Sleepmeter
Endomondo Sports Tracker


Tools
Traffic Monitor
Traffic Statics
AndroZip File Manager
AirDroid


Instant Messaging
IM+
eBuddy
Skype
WhatsApp


Mail
Gmail
Yahoo! Mail
Hotmail


Social
LinkedIn
Twitter
Google+
Facebook for Android
Facebook Messenger


Audio
Winamp
PowerAmp


Internet radio
TWiT Play
PRI
BBC Radio
Sticher
TuneIn Radio
Jazz Radio
Jazz Internet Radio
Digitally Imported Radio
FIT Radio
Mobile Radio LIVE
Old Time Radio Player
SKY.FM
Country Music RADIO


Camera
Pixlr-o-matic
Pudding Camera
Retro Camera
PicsArt…

VLC media player for Nokia Symbian S60

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VLC code porting has begun! Symbian developers please contribute, Symbian OS users Please spread word of this project!

Project : VLC Port For Symbian OS
http://web.mahaserver.com/mahashare.php?id=311

VLC media player for Symbian - Early Alpha files
http://www.4shared.com/dir/17210271/c211d405/sharing.html

Discussion theard at VLC forums
VLC Media Player support for Symbian OS
http://forum.videolan.org/viewtopic.php?t=23646&highlight=nokia

Discussion theard at Symbian-Freak.com
http://www.symbian-freak.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=26819&postdays=0&postorder=asc&start=0

Edit Saturday, 9th April 2011: Project appears to be abandoned. Maybe Nokia can allocate some resources and get this done? Don't think that'll happen, considering their new allegiance to Windows Phone 7.