Archive for the ‘Review’ Category

tech4xmas 2017 gift ideas review: Seagate Backup Plus Hub desktop HDD

Sunday, November 12th, 2017

tech4xmas 2017 gift list: The Seagate Backup Plus Hub serves as an external storage hub that provides extra USB 3.0 ports for direct data transfer and device charging. An ideal X’mas gift for the geeky uncle to help him manage all the digital assets in his family.

Comes in 4TB (S$259), 6TB (S$399) and 8TB (S$499) capacities.

A post shared by John Tan (@tech4tea) on

Editor’s note:

“I’m buying for my uncle the 8TB version as a X’mas present because he has been complaining lately that he’s running out of storage space for all the videos that he’s been capturing of his grandchildren. I think he’ll be delighted with the additional storage and ease of use.”

The Seagate Backup Plus Hub has been around for a while and it’s been an indispensible part of my desktop setup at home giving me much convenience and peace of mind.

First off, the 4-8TB provides much needed respite for storing and backing up the deluge of photos and videos that we capture with our cameras and smartphones/tablets.

The Seagate Backup Plus Hub comes in 4TB, 6TB & 8TB capacities.

You can access the Backup Plus Hub directly using Windows Explorer or via the bundled easy-to-use Seagate Dashboard software which enables you to configure and manage your backups/restores – whether it’s files from the computer, mobile devices or content on social media.

(more…)

tech4xmas 2017 Giveaway: LifeProof NËXT iPhone 8 phone case

Saturday, November 11th, 2017

This transparent LifeProof NËXT phone case boasts six layers of protection in a sleek package to keep your iPhone 8 or iPhone 7 safe from drops, dirt and snow.

Worth S$99, you may just get one free by participating in the tech4xmas 2017 giveaway over on Instagram here.

Update (13 November, 2017):

A big Thank You to all of you who participated in this first tech4xmas2017 giveaway. The LifeProof NEXT phone case goes to @maplrn. Congratulations!

For the other participants, not to worry – there are more phone cases coming up for grabs. In fact, I have started the next tech4xmas2017 giveaway over at @tech4teaReviews. So hop over and try your luck.

You might just win yourself a LifeProof NEXT phone case for iPhone 8 Plus or iPhone 7 Plus – for yourself or for a friend as a X’mas present! So see you over at @tech4teaReviews!

A post shared by John Tan (@tech4tea) on

To try your luck, do the following:
1. Follow @tech4tea Instagram account.
2. Comment on this Instagram post (ON INSTAGRAM) by typing one of the three things that this NËXT phone case protects your iPhone from.
___
I will pick one commenter (at random) on Monday (13 November) to be the recipient for the giveaway. I will contact you via Instagram Direct Message to arrange collection instructions.

The two-piece outer shell of the LifeProof NËXT phone case wraps securely around the iphone 8 or iPhone 7 and offers maximum durability and drop defence.

A raised bevel bolsters drop and touchscreen protection while the display is left uncovered for direct access to the glass.

A clear outer layer prevents scuffs, scrapes and scratches and an inner lining seals the case and phone from dirt.

An audio-transparent mesh covers the speakers to block dust and debris while audio flows freely.

NËXT protects from drops up to 2 meters, carries an IP-5X rating for blocking dirt and dust and keeps snow out.

(more…)

New arrival: Western Digital launches 3 new storage devices

Tuesday, November 7th, 2017

Western Digital launched in Singapore today the WD My Cloud Home, SanDisk iXpand Base and SanDisk Ultra microSD 400GB. Capacities and prices below.

A post shared by John Tan (@tech4tea) on

Three new storage solutions from Western Digital launched in Singapore.

  • WD My Cloud Home: from S$249 (2-8TB)
  • SanDisk iXpand Base: from S$139 (64-256GB)
  • SanDisk Ultra microSD 400GB: S$459

Detailed price list below.

The three new storage devices are targeted at various facets of backing up and sharing the photos and videos captured by the numerous mobile devices that an individual or a household captures.

Details from the press release and price lists below.

(more…)

tech4xmas 2017 gift ideas review: Google Pixel 2 XL phablet

Thursday, November 2nd, 2017

The new Google Pixel 2 XL phablet in the tech4xmas 2017 gift list not just because it’s the latest, but mostly because it’s up there among the best, and whoever you’re giving this to as a X’mas present is going to be absolutely delighted. Available in Singapore from 15 November, 2017.

A post shared by John Tan (@tech4tea) on

My take:

“The Google Pixel 2 XL has one of the best cameras I’ve tried among the flagship models of other smartphone makers and it does it with a single lens!”

Made by Google, the Pixel 2 XL ships with Google organic apps installed and most significantly, the phone will be the first in the market to receive Android updates from Google.

Having tried out the phablet, it truly has a superb camera.

The rear camera has a 12.2-megapixels sensor with f/1.8 lens while the front camera has 8 megapixels and a f/2.4 lens. Measuring 6.2 x 3 inches, the phablet comes in just black or black & white.

In fact, it has the highest DxOMark of 98 for its camera performance – higher than all other smartphone cameras today – and it does it with a single lens!

Photos turned out crisp and clear even in low light.

A post shared by John Tan (@tech4tea) on

The aluminum unibody of the Google Pixel 2 XL makes it water/dust resistant IP67 standards. That means the Pixel 2 XL – like the Apple iPhone X, iPhone 8 & 8 plus – can withstand immersion in water up to one meter for 30 minutes.

It offers the popular Portrait Mode, boasting background blur if you keep the background relatively far behind the subject you’re shooting.

(more…)

tech4xmas gift ideas for Christmas 2017

Wednesday, November 1st, 2017

It’s November and Christmas is less than two months away, this series of reviews serves up gift ideas for those planning to buy presents for your friends and loved ones – or yourself. Keep a lookout for tech4xmas giveaways to build up the yuletide cheer.

Update (13 November, 2017):

As part of my tech4xmas 2017 Giveaway, I have one LifeProof NËXT iphone cover up for grabs on Instagram until Friday (17 November).

It takes less than a minute, so try your luck and score yourself or your loved one a LifeProof NËXT phone case for a X’mas present.

Update (12 November, 2017):

Looking for a X’mas gift for someone desperate to keep in rein the massive amounts of photos and videos clogging up his/her storage drives?

Check out the review for Seagate Backup Plus Hub desktop HDD.

A post shared by John Tan (@tech4tea) on

The tech4xmas reviews are meant to provide ideas and start you off, so do check out some of them online and in the shops if they are what you think would bring a smile to your loved ones this Christmas.

With Christmas 2017 less than two months away, it’s a good time to begin planning gifts for those that are close to us.

So this series (see list below) features quick and easy-to-read reviews of some of the best tech gadgets/products that I’ve personally tried.

(more…)

New arrival: HP Inc. unveils new PCs/printers for Southeast Asia

Friday, October 27th, 2017

New products include Spectre, EliteBook & ZBook notebooks; desktop workstations; commercial VR solutions including the HP Z VR Backpack; A3 printers; and the fun Sprocket 2-in-1 instant camera/printer.

The latest line-up of PCs and printers were unveiled at the new offices of HP Inc. in Singapore at Depot Close.

Below are some of the latest products HP Inc. showcased in Singapore, with their availability in brackets.

  • HP Elitebook x360 1020 G2: S$2,399 (now)
  • HP Elitebook 1040: S$2,399 (now)
  • HP EliteOne 1000 AiO: S$1,899 (now)
  • HP Spectre 13: S$2,399 (Nov)
  • HP Spectre x360: S$2,399 (Nov)
  • HP ZBook x2: S$2,699 (Nov)
  • HP Sprocket 2-in-1: S$239 (12 Nov)
  • HP Z4 G4 Workstation: S$2,399 (Dec)
  • HP Z6 G4 Workstation: S$2,999 (Nov)
  • HP Z8 G4 Workstation: S$3,499 (Nov)
  • HP Z VR Backpack: S$4,999 (now)

More details from the press release below.

(more…)

New arrival: AirFree Air Purifiers that are filter & maintenance free

Thursday, October 26th, 2017

Hwee Seng Electronics launches in Singapore 6 models of air purifiers from AirFree. The air purifiers reduce ozone concentrations and destroy 99% of airborne allergens by burning microorganisms at the high temperature of a ceramic core.

The Lotus air purifier from AirFree, capable of covering 60 square metres of indoor space.

The purifiers are maintenance free as they do not use filters – as opposed to most HEPA-filter based air purifiers.

The heated air from the hot ceramic core is released back into the room through the top of the air purifier and cool air is sucked in through the air vents at the bottom of the air purifier because of convection currents.

A post shared by John Tan (@tech4tea) on

The BabyAir air purifier from AirFree, able to cover 21 square metres in the baby’s room.

As a result, the AirFree purifiers do not use a motor like in most purifiers that suck air through a HEPA filter.

(more…)

New arrival: Huawei Mate 10 & Huawei Mate 10 Pro smartphones unveiled

Tuesday, October 17th, 2017

The new Huawei Mate 10 Series is based on the Kirin 970 AI mobile chipset; and comprises the 5.9-inch Mate 10 (S$888), 6-inch Mate 10 Pro, & Porsche Design Huawei Mate 10. Full pricing & availability to be announced on 26 October, 2017. Pre-order and registration of interest information below.

Update (26 October, 2017):

Huawei launched its Mate 10 series of Android smartphones in Singapore this evening.

A post shared by John Tan (@tech4tea) on

Huawei Mate 10 Pro (left) is slightly longer while the Mate 10 (right) is broader. The Mate 10 Pro does not have a home button, a headphone jack nor an external memory card slot.

Prices & availability for Singapore were released.

  • Huawei Mate 10: S$888
    • Mocha Brown, Black (28 Oct)
  • Huawei Mate 10 Pro: S$1,098
    • Mocha Brown (11 Nov), Midnight Blue (25 Nov)
  • Porsche Design Huawei Mate 10: S$2,298
    • Diamond Black (24 Nov)
The Kirin 970 in the Mate 10 Series was unveiled during IFA Berlin last month and is Huawei’s first AI (artificial intelligence) mobile chipset.

The Kirin 970 in the Mate 10 Series was unveiled during IFA Berlin last month and is Huawei’s first AI (artificial intelligence) mobile chipset.

The new phones will sport Huawei’s EMUI 8.0 user-interface and new Leica dual camera technology.

(more…)

Orca: Businesses Operating System for F&B and Micro Businesses

Saturday, October 14th, 2017

I visited the exhibition booth of this Singapore company that developed Orca, a Business Operating System (BOS) that helps established F&B outlets run their operations more efficiently, and enables new micro businesses and small outlets to get off the ground running.

Orca Lite is a low-cost Android POS solution designed for single & multiple-outlet operations. It even comes with a complete inventory management system.

While visiting Franchising & Licensing Asia 2017 at Marina Bay Sands, I met up with Dr Koh Wee Lit, the owner of local company Red Hare Studios that developed the Orca BOS.

He is also the Chief Technology Officer of Singapore-based Habitat Blue, which has taken over the sales and development of Orca.

Dr Koh gave me a detailed brief on the challenges that an F&B establishment faces in the day-to-day operations of the business – and how important it was to have an integrated BOS that helps the restaurant manager and staff run operations more smoothly and efficiently.

A post shared by John Tan (@tech4tea) on

Dr Koh Wee Lit, Chief Technology Officer of Habitat Blue at Franchising & Licensing Asia 2017 in Singapore. All its developers are based in Singapore.

Orca offers an iOS-based BOS that includes important business modules that cover order taking/tracking (using iPads), kitchen/assembly displays for multiple stations in the kitchen and tablet-based Point-of-Sale (POS) stations.

(more…)

Wireless virtual reality competition @ Bugis+ & Bugis Junction

Friday, October 13th, 2017

With Halloween drawing near, Bugis Junction & Bugis+ are daring shoppers to face their fears with an immersive virtual reality (VR) gaming experience.

* This story first appeared in The Travel Memoir.

Update (27 October, 2017):

The top 10 players for the Time Zombies Virtual Reality Competition Finals have been selected and they will be battling it out at a final showdown this Sunday, 29t October from 2pm – 6pm at Bugis + Level 2 Atrium.

We were invited to try out the VR games for this competition at Bugis+ & Bugis Junction in Singapore - it was great fun!

We were invited to try out the VR games for this competition at Bugis+ & Bugis Junction in Singapore – it was great fun!

This is the first time a mall in Singapore is hosting a VR experience of this scale.

Three thrilling games are available for shoppers to test their courage: Time Zombies, Walk the Plank and Arizona Sunshine Zombie.

The Time Zombies competition uses the latest Arctic Fox wireless technology, which allows a fully immersive gaming experience without the the burden of cumbersome cables or backpack computers that hinder physical movement.

Using Arctic Fox VR technology, players don only a wireless headset that features a high definition screen and gaming headphones for an immersive surround sound experience.

Using Arctic Fox VR technology, players don only a wireless headset that features a high definition screen and gaming headphones for an immersive surround sound experience.

The VR gaming showcase at Bugis Junction and Bugis+ this Halloween will mark Arctic Fox’s debut in Southeast Asia, to the delight of VR gaming enthusiasts in the region.

More details from the press release below.

(more…)