Tech Product Evaluator
27 articles published since February 11, 2022
About Jesse Hollington
Jesse is a lifelong technology enthusiast who has been exploring smartphones and mobile tech for more than two decades. He started his career change into tech journalism in 2007 with iLounge where he handled roundups and reviews of smartphones, mobile apps, headphones, speakers, smart home devices, and more. He has since written for iDrop News, Lifewire, and Digital Trends, and authored three editions of iPod & iTunes Portable Genius for Wiley Publishing.
Get serious protection for Google's latest budget smartphone
Google's Pixel 7a is the company's latest midrange A-series phone, boasting specs that put it even closer to the flagship Pixel 7. This makes it a fantastic pick for those who want nearly everything a Pixel phone offers without the higher price tag. In fact, it's among the best budget Android phones you can buy right now, edged out slightly by its predecessor, the Pixel 6a, only due to the much lower price of the older model.
These devices will change how you use Android Auto
If you regularly rely on your smartphone to provide music and navigation in your car, then there’s little doubt that Android Auto is the best way to go about this. Rather than docking your phone somewhere on your dashboard, you can tuck it away safely and rely on a more readable and intuitive interface directly on your car’s infotainment screen.
Does Samsung's latest A-series entry have what it takes to unseat the reigning under-$500 champ?
Samsung's Galaxy A54 is setting the stage for what could be another exciting race among mid-range smartphones. Of course, the recent launch of the Google Pixel 7a may have been a giant leap forward for Google's budget phone lineup, but the Google Pixel 6a is still one of the best budget Android phones because of everything it offers. The Samsung Galaxy A54 has had some pretty cool upgrades over its predecessor —the Galaxy A53 — but will it be enough to beat the Pixel 6a head-to-head? Let's find out.
A beefier Snapdragon chip and Android 13 make this Samsung's 'Goldilocks' tablet
Samsung’s Galaxy Tab S6 Lite raised quite a stir when it arrived on the scene three years ago, offering a solid alternative to the ever-dominant iPad for those who preferred to stay within the Android ecosystem. While it naturally didn’t pack in everything that the more premium Galaxy Tab S6 had to offer, Samsung cut just the right corners to make it an affordable — and popular — choice.
Motorola delivers a Samsung-like smartphone for a third of the price
Motorola recently unveiled this year’s Moto G Stylus 5G, the latest upscale entry in its popular lineup of budget phones. With the 2023 edition of the Stylus 5G, Motorola cut a few corners compared to last year’s model to deliver it at a more wallet-friendly lower price, becoming an even more tempting alternative to other phones in its class.
Get the best protection for your Galaxy A54 right out of the gate
The Samsung Galaxy A54 is a solid and affordable option for folks who don't need all the bells and whistles of Samsung's flagship Galaxy S23 series — or their much higher price tag. The Galaxy A54 has already superseded the Galaxy A53 as one of this year's best budget Android phones, and this year Samsung has added some nice refinements to its design to match the understated camera modules of its more expensive cousins.
Defend your gorgeous Galaxy S23+ screen against scratches and scuffs
As smartphones continue to get more innovative and powerful, they also get more sturdy and resilient. At the forefront of these advancements in durability is the improvement in the strength and toughness of displays. We see this with the Samsung Galaxy S23+, whose screen is fortified with the super-tough Gorilla Glass Victus 2, an improved version of the Gorilla Glass Victus+ from last year's S22+.
Why ask for the time when you could just see it on these smart speakers?
There's a wide variety of great smart speakers to choose from. Sometimes, though, instead of a Hi-Fi system that works with Google Assistant, what you really want is a compact bedside clock that gives you voice access to all your smart home devices without becoming the centerpiece of the room.
Keep your OnePlus 11's display looking great for the long haul
The OnePlus 11 is here, toting flagship-level specs. With a QHD+ display, a Hasselblad-tuned camera system, and the latest powerful Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chip, this device is one of the best Android phones of the year. The only catch? It's not quite as durable as other recent flagships; OnePlus went with Corning’s slightly older Gorilla Glass Victus on the display rather than the second-generation Gorilla Glass Victus 2.
A big-phone brawl pits the previous best of Google against the previous best of Samsung
The Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra was Samsung's flagship phone for 2022, representing the best the company had to offer. In many ways, it marked the unification of the Galaxy S and Galaxy Note lines. Given Samsung's hardware prowess, it's no surprise that it ranked among the best Android phones that year. On the other hand, despite launching a few months earlier in October 2021, Google's Pixel 6 Pro remains a solid contender to the S22 Ultra. Still, like most premium smartphones, each one has its own pros and cons, so it can be tough to decide which one is better for your needs. Let's take a look at how the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra and the Google Pixel 6 Pro compare.
Does Sonos' latest midrange smart speaker justify its higher price tag?
The Sonos Era 300 is a fascinating new flagship entry from the well-known home audio company. It builds on a solid foundation of some of Sonos' best products of the past while not being a direct successor to any of them. Although it fits into the space previously occupied by the Sonos Play:3, it's a new product in its own right, particularly with the introduction of Dolby Atmos support targeted at delivering a spatial audio experience for music listening.
Find the best way to keep your OnePlus 10T screen safe from everyday bumps and scrapes with our roundup of the best screen protectors
The OnePlus 10T is a well-built, aesthetic upper mid-range phone. Its captivating design is no coincidence as it draws inspiration from its high-end sibling, the OnePlus 10 Pro. But what good is a stunning design if it's not durable and lasting? Well, the 10T is fortified with one of the toughest glasses on the market — the Gorilla Glass 5.
The second-generation wireless headphones sound better and run longer
Master & Dynamic has released a rebooted version of its MH40 Wireless headphones for 2023, promising improved sound quality thanks to new custom titanium drivers along with a healthy boost in battery life, new mics, and a few other small but useful improvements like AAC support and removable ear pads.
A bold new color comes to Google's midrange smartphone
Google's anticipated Pixel 7a has officially arrived as a new challenger to shake up the list of this year's best budget Android phones. Google's latest midrange entry delivers the same powerful Tensor G2 chip introduced in its flagship Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro last fall, providing all the performance and computational photography power of those premium phones at a much more wallet-friendly price.
The new kid on the block takes on Samsung's iconic tablets
Google has just released its much-anticipated Pixel Tablet, the first Android-powered tablet to come out of Mountain View since the 2015 Pixel C was discontinued nearly six years ago. Although Google made an interim attempt at a tablet in 2018 with the Chrome OS-powered Pixel Slate, the new 2023 entry marks a triumphant return to Google's Android tablet roots that began with the early Nexus devices and looks easily poised to become one of the best Android tablets of the year.
This affordable dongle will change the way you use Android Auto
There's little doubt that Android Auto is a really convenient way to use your smartphone on the road. Still, unfortunately, that convenience is hampered on many vehicles by the need to constantly plug your phone in every time you get into the car.
Protect your phone and leave your wallet behind with these fun and elegant cases
Samsung's Galaxy S23 delivers amazing performance in a small package. It has the same powerful Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 chip as its larger siblings, giving you top-notch performance without the extra bulk. It's right up there with the best Android phones, and it's an especially great choice for those who like to travel light. So why not go the extra step by putting it into a wallet case? You'll have one less thing to carry with you.
We've rounded up some of the best cases to preserve the classy look of your OnePlus 10T while ensuring it gets the protection it needs
The OnePlus 10T is a fascinating entry in the company's lineup: A second-tier model that actually delivers more raw power than the flagship OnePlus 10 Pro, with a top-notch Snapdragon 8 Gen 1+ CPU, more RAM, and even faster charging. It mostly falls short of its pricier sibling in the camera system, but if you're looking for one of the best OnePlus phones with great value and advanced photography isn't a priority, it's hard to go wrong with the OnePlus 10T.
Protect your versatile smartphone and express yourself with these great cases
Even an affordable phone like the Moto G Stylus 5G (2021) needs protection against the drops, bumps, and scrapes of everyday life. This is especially true when you consider that the bigger they come, the harder they fall, and the Moto G Stylus has an expansive 6.8-inch screen and a larger body to go with it.
Apple's earbuds may be popular, but are the best option for all platforms?
There's little doubt that Apple's AirPods Pro are among the best-known true wireless earbuds on the market today. That's partly due to Apple's marketing muscle, but it's also fair to say they're more than just a passing fad. They're far from the only game in town, though, especially since Apple reserves its earbuds' best features for its own devices.