Mobile Solar Chargers Traveller Solar Charger – Review (@mobilesolarchrg)

I think it is safe to assume that people are relying on their mobile devices more and more nowadays.  Whether they be mobile phones, tablets, even MP3 players, they aren’t much use without any charge left in the battery.  Anything that helps keep your devices juiced and ready to use is always a plus to me, and hopefully the MSC MP-S6000 6000 mAh Solar Travel Charger will be up to the job!  A full list of features and specifications can be found at the end of this review.

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The Traveler itself comes in a packaging that is easy on the eye.  You have see-through plastic that enables you to get a good view of the black and orange coloured device, as well as information such as the high 6,000 mAh capacity, the dual USB output, and the smart LED indicator that tells you how much battery life is left.  It also states that the charger is suitable for use with tablets, smartphones, Mp3/MP4 players, and portable game systems such as the NDS and PSP.  Removing the unit from the packaging, I was greeted with the device itself, user manual, and the charger cable.  The good thing about this charger cable is that it is an elasticated rubber material, and it also comes with all of the adapters you could want or need (aside from the lightning adapter used on the newer Apple devices – you can purchase these separately though).  The front of the charger itself has a large solar panel, four power LED indicators to let you know how much charge is remaining, a power button, and two smaller LED solar indicators that give you a rough idea how much solar charge is remaining.  Lastly, along the bottom of the charger is a MicroUSB port that you can use to charge the unit via a wall socket of PC, etc, and also two USB output ports that you use to hook up the devices that you would like to charge.  The USB port on the left is suitable for the iPad, and the one on the right is suitable for the Samsung Galaxy tablet.  I had no issues with my HTC One or Nexus 7 tablet when using either of the ports.

It’s recommended that you fully charge the Traveler prior to first using it, so that’s what I did.  However, when I got everything unpacked and ready to charge, the LED lights indicated that everything was fully charged and ready to go – bargain!  I used the charger to charge my devices constantly to see how long I could get out of it.  Because of the nice weather we have had over the past week, I have not encountered an empty device at all, and the 75% LED indicator is the one that is illuminated.  This is after using the charger for around 7 days with my phone and tablet while sitting both, inside and outside.  Without the lovely weather, you could get around 3 charges  before needing to recharge the unit – that is pretty good in my opinion.  You could quite easily go off on your travels and use this handy little device to keep your gadgets charged.  Once the charger has a full charge, it apparently holds that charge for months – obviously, something I have been unable to check myself as yet, but I’ll definitely give it a go and see.

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Considering the size of the MSC Traveler, I am impressed with how it has performed so far.  It is around the size of most smartphones nowadays, and if charging via USB cable, it fully charges in around the same time as a smartphone, which is handy.  You can get three, maybe four, full charges from it when not in direct sunlight, again, handy.  For the price you pay (around £35 GBP) I think it is well worth the money.  Not only does it provide on the go charging, it also provides peace of mind as far as not being caught with a flat battery, if and when it is really needed.  As far as I am concerned, this can stay in my personal collection and it will be with me when out and about for hours at a time.

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Technical specification

Solar energy transfer efficiency: 17% Solar panel 5v/90mA
Polymer Lithium-ion Battery
Capacity 6000mAh /22.2 wh
Input : Micro micro usb DC5v/1000mA
Output 2x USB 5V/2100mA
Working Temperature -10C to + 55C
Charging time about 5 hours via USB mains
Charging time from solar about 45 hours
Cycle Life >500 cycles
Weight 178g
Dimensions 130 x 76 x 16mm
Compatible with most popular mobile phones, iPhone, Blackberry™, Nokia™, iPad, Digital Cameras, PSP, ND, PDA, Mp3/Mp 4 player, GPS, Bluetooth etc

Product Features

High Capacity 6000mah Lithium-Polymer battery
Multi-charging capabilities: Mains, car charger, USB or Solar
Compatible with most popular mobile phones, iPhone, Blackberry™, Nokia™, iPad, Digital Cameras, PSP, ND, PDA, Mp3/Mp 4 player, GPS, Bluetooth headsets etc.
Robust and stylish rubberised case design
Single Reversable charge/discharge bungy lead.
10 detachable charging tips for the most popular devices
Simple one button operation
DC Input Port
Dual USB Output Ports
Remaining power leds
Solar charging led
Multiple protection charge/discharge and overcharge/undercharge

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Website: http://www.mobilesolarchargers.co.uk/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/mobilesolarchrg
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MobileSolarChargers

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Sandberg Speak’n Go Earset – Review

The Speak’n Go Earset from Sandberg is  made to not only provide you with the freedom of using your phone whilst keeping your hands free, but also to provide excellent call quality, with the added extra of using it to fill your ears with musical goodness.

The earset arrives in the standard Sandberg packaging – a see through plastic packaging that gives you a nice view of the product itself, with the ‘need to know’ information also included.  The front of the packaging shows that you can use the earset for handsfree conversation, and that the earset contains an inline microphone and answer button.  The back of the packaging provides a short paragraph about the headset – this information is also available in several different languages.

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Taking the earset out of the packaging, to be honest, if you have ever used a pair of earphones with your phone or an MP3 player, then you would already know what this earset is like.  It has the standard earphone feel to it, complete with the inline controls for use, and the 3.5mm connector at the end.  The earbuds themselves are the standard size earbuds, not the in-ear ones that are available nowadays.  Saying this though, the in-ear canal version of this earset is available from Sandberg, and both styles are available in a range of colours.

Comfort wise, this earset is not too bad.  I don’t have overly large ears and they stay in place as you would expect them to.  I am not sure, however, how they would feel to someone with smaller ears, or whether they would fit in place enough to be comfortable – the same with people who have larger ears.

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I used the earset to listen to some music from my phone and while the music quality was ok, it wasn’t the greatest I have heard.  Saying that, this earset is made for managing phone calls while on the go, and in that respect, they performed really well.  I had no complaints regarding the quality of my voice during phone calls, and I have no complaints in regards to the voice on the other end of the call.

Overall, this headset does what it was made for, very well.  Trying to use it for other tasks such as listening to music, etc, I don’t think would provide the satisfaction that you may be used to with other earphones.  For a handsfree headset for use when on the go, the Sandberg Speak’n Go does exactly what it says on the tin (and packaging).

Mini Buddy Heart Portable Speaker – Review (@KitSoundUK)

Today for review, I have quite a cute item.  It’s a Mini Buddy Portable Speaker from the guys over at KitSound.  There are several different characters and designs available, and I have the Heart speaker to review.  Perfect timing with Valentine’s Day just around the corner.

The packaging for the Mini Buddy Heart Speaker is simple and shows you what you want to know.  It is just big enough to fit the speaker in, as well as the included USB charger cable.  The packaging is a clear plastic style that gives you a decent view of the speaker so that you can see the design fully.

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The speaker itself is actually really cute to look at.  It is a nice pink colour with a love heart pattern on the front which is made up of several small heart shapes.  On the side of the speaker there is a female 3.5mm port so that you can connect more than one together if you would like, while on the back is where the sound comes out, so naturally, there are several small holes for the speaker itself.  On the bottom of the buddy there is the power switch and a Micro USB port for the charger cable.  On the top, there is a short keychain that enables you to connect it up to your keys, which when coupled with the build quality of the speaker, you can feel assured that you can just throw it into your bag and not worry about causing any damage, etc.  Lastly, you have the 6 inch 3.5mm jack cable.

To get the speaker up and running, it couldn’t be easier – really.  Simply plug in the 3.5mm jack to the audio device that you want to use it with and you are good to go.  I plugged it into my phone and started up my music streaming app to test things out.  The sound quality was actually pretty good, especially considering the size of it.  The music I was playing came through nice and clear, and I didn’t notice any distortion.  I was able to enjoy my music listening session without feeling disappointed about my choice of speaker and the fact that you can actually hook up more of these little things together can only add to your listening pleasure.  Saying this, I was listening to music that didn’t contain a ridiculous amount of bass.

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Since first hooking up this buddy to charge when I took it out of the packaging, I haven’t had to charge it again, despite using it for a fair few hours.  This is something that has impressed me as I would hate to have to charge it over and over again after short uses.  One thing that is worth a mention – when charging, the LED indicator on the bottom of te buddy stays blue.  I think it may have been handy to have the LED colour change between charging and charged.

Overall, I think this Mini Buddy Hear Portable Speaker is cute, very well made, and very well priced.  You can pick up this speaker for £9.99 GBP from the KitSound website, as well as on Amazon UK.  With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, this would make an ideal gift for your love interest/significant other.

KitSound Manhattan Wireless Headphones – Review (@KitSoundUK)

I think it’s only fair that I start off this review by saying how much I love these Manhattan headphones from KitSound.  Out of all of the ones that I have reviewed, these are my absolute favourite!

First up, the packaging.  As with all of their products, KitSound know how to make their packaging stand out, but not in a bad way.  The front of the box has an image of the headphones, as well as a few tidbits of information regarding play time and call-handling.  The sides of the box gives some information in regards to where the name of the headphones came from, and the back of the box lists the features and specifications for the products, as well as the contents of the box.

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Speaking of the box contents… The headset is well packaged between two cardboard inserts that offer a high level of protection during storage and transit.  Pulling these pieces apart, the headset is there for you to see in all its glory, and it is a very glorious sight!  Also provided is a USB to Micro USB cable, a Micro USB to 3.5mm jack cable, and a user manual.

The headset itself feels great in the hand.  The fully adjustable headband is padded, but not too much, whereas the rotatable earcups have a nice amount of padding.  The earcups are fitted to the headband using a silver metal fastener, which is also used to adjust the size of the headband.  The cables that feed through the headband are a braided material rather than the rubber material that you find on other headphones – a really nice change as there is no chance of stretching and damaging the cable.  The earcups both sport the KitSound brand logo on the outside and the bottom of the left earcup has the Bluetooth On/Off switch, the Micro USB port, Forward/Back button which also couple as the Volume + & – buttons, the Microphone and the LED indicator.

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Setting up these headphones to use with my phone was rather straightforward.  Because they are wireless and include Bluetooth 2.1, they are compatible with most devices out there right now.  I set them up firstly with my HTC One and I had them working within 30 seconds.  It was just as quick setting them up with the iPhone as well.  If I did run into any issues, the user manual provides steps to get things paired. Getting used to the controls on the earcup took a little longer, but once I had got used to which way I had to press the button to change song/volume level, everything as fine.

Comfort wise, I cannot fault these headphones.  They are light enough to sit on my head and over my ears for hours of use with no discomfort from both the headband or the earcups.  The sound quality is pretty amazing, too.  I have used a few high priced pairs of earphones and the Manhattan’s are way up there with those.  There is a decent amount of bass, the music doesn’t sound tinny, and no matter what genre of music I tried them with, the music sounded as it should have.  Call quality is top notch too, both incoming and outgoing sound.

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The battery life on these headphones is impressive – 18 hours of play time, 30 hours of talk time, and up to 300 hours standby time!  Charging the headphones’ Lithium Polymer battery is as easy as hooking up the Micro USB cable to the port on the left earcup and the USB to a power source and you’re away.  The other thing that I love about the Manhattan’s is that if you are caught out with a low battery, you can simply hook up the Micro USB to 3.5mm jack cable and use them as wired headphones!

If you haven’t been able to tell already, I am in love with these headphones.  They have impressed me no-end since I started using them and I look forward to using them on a regular basis.  If you ask me, these are well worth the £34.99 price-tag, and more.  I HIGHLY recommend these to anybody looking for a decent pair of headphones at a decent price and with them being available in a range of colours, there is sure to be something to suit everyone!

Mini Buddy Heart Portable Speaker – Review (@KitSoundUK)

Today for review, I have quite a cute item.  It’s a Mini Buddy Portable Speaker from the guys over at KitSound.  There are several different characters and designs available, and I have the Heart speaker to review.  Perfect timing with Valentine’s Day just around the corner.

The packaging for the Mini Buddy Heart Speaker is simple and shows you what you want to know.  It is just big enough to fit the speaker in, as well as the included USB charger cable.  The packaging is a clear plastic style that gives you a decent view of the speaker so that you can see the design fully.

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The speaker itself is actually really cute to look at.  It is a nice pink colour with a love heart pattern on the front which is made up of several small heart shapes.  On the side of the speaker there is a female 3.5mm port so that you can connect more than one together if you would like, while on the back is where the sound comes out, so naturally, there are several small holes for the speaker itself.  On the bottom of the buddy there is the power switch and a Micro USB port for the charger cable.  On the top, there is a short keychain that enables you to connect it up to your keys, which when coupled with the build quality of the speaker, you can feel assured that you can just throw it into your bag and not worry about causing any damage, etc.  Lastly, you have the 6 inch 3.5mm jack cable.

To get the speaker up and running, it couldn’t be easier – really.  Simply plug in the 3.5mm jack to the audio device that you want to use it with and you are good to go.  I plugged it into my phone and started up my music streaming app to test things out.  The sound quality was actually pretty good, especially considering the size of it.  The music I was playing came through nice and clear, and I didn’t notice any distortion.  I was able to enjoy my music listening session without feeling disappointed about my choice of speaker and the fact that you can actually hook up more of these little things together can only add to your listening pleasure.  Saying this, I was listening to music that didn’t contain a ridiculous amount of bass.

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Since first hooking up this buddy to charge when I took it out of the packaging, I haven’t had to charge it again, despite using it for a fair few hours.  This is something that has impressed me as I would hate to have to charge it over and over again after short uses.  One thing that is worth a mention – when charging, the LED indicator on the bottom of te buddy stays blue.  I think it may have been handy to have the LED colour change between charging and charged.

Overall, I think this Mini Buddy Hear Portable Speaker is cute, very well made, and very well priced.  You can pick up this speaker for £9.99 GBP from the KitSound website, as well as on Amazon UK.  With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, this would make an ideal gift for your love interest/significant other.

Sandberg PowerBar 2200mAh (Pink) with Flashlight – Review

Back up batteries are becoming a must have item nowadays, especially with so many people having and relying on gadgets that are battery powered.  There are plenty of products to choose from and today, I have the Sandberg PowerBar 2200mAh, complete with its own flashlight, for review.

The packaging that the PowerBar arrives in is pretty simplistic.  It shows you the PowerBar itself through the clear packaging at the front and in the bottom corner, there is a short bit of text about the product.  On the reverse of the box, there is a bit more info which is also available in several languages.  The bottom of the box shows you that there is a 5 year guarantee on the product.

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Removing the PowerBar from the box is as simple as open the top of the box and sliding out the plastic sleeve that houses the product.  Also included in the box is a Micro USB cable which is used to charge the device, and a small instruction leaflet.  The PowerBar itself has nicely curved corners and measures in at 9.3 cm in length and 2.10 cm in width, and weighs around 75g – definitely small enough to be carried around with you while out and about.  Along one of the sides, you will find the Sandberg logo, a silver button and 3 LED lights.  The button is for the flashlight – double click to turn it on and double click to turn it off again.  I haven’t had a reason to use this too much yet, but what I have used, it could prove handy.  The LED lights show the battery level and come on when you press the silver button once.

Charging the device prior to its first use was really straightforward,  It was simply a case of connecting the USB cable to the PC and also to the PowerBar.  Once connected up, charging started immediately – no need to install any drivers.  While charging the LED lights flashed, and once fully charged, the flashing stopped.  It was just as simple to use when I wanted to charge my phone also.  I simply hooked up my charger cable to the PowerBar and connected it to my phone and charging began.  It managed to charge my phone around 45% after a 30 minute charge.  It could have charged it more if I wasn’t using my phone at the same time.  I have only had to charge the device once since receiving it last week, so it seems like the battery life will be sufficient for most people.

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Overall, I am very impressed with the PowerBar.  It does what it should, when it should, and is small enough to be portable.  The metallic effect to the pink colouring makes the device stand out even more and doesn’t look out of place.  This can be used with many devices – pretty much any that can be charged via USB cable.  For the price of between £12.00 & £17.00 GBP (varies with colour choice) on Amazon UK, I think that this is a handy accessory to have, even if as a ‘just in case’.

[NEWS] Logitech PowerShell Announced

Logitech has officially announced their iOS 7 gaming controller, the PowerShell.

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The PowerShell peripheral will be compatible with the iPod Touch, iPhone 5S and the iPhone 5. The device comes complete with a 1500mAh battery which enables you to keep your device(s) charged while using it.

The PowerShell sports shoulder trigger buttons, X B Y & A buttons, and a D-Pad. There are no analogue sticks included, unlike the recently announced MOGA Ace Power.

Logitech revealed that due to their research, they have discovered that 87% of iPhone and iPod Touch users play games on their device.  A handful of iOS games have been optimised for use with the PowerShell. These titles include MetalStorm Aces, Galaxy on Fire 2, Nitro, Bastion and Fast & Furious 6.

You can now pre-order the Logitech PowerShell for £89.99. Orders are expected to be shipped out next month.

Trendz Cupcake Earphones – Review (@OnTrendz)

Today I have a pair of Trendz in-ear canal earphones to review.  First off, the packkaging that they arrived in is simplistic but shows you everything that you need to know.  Through the clear window on the front of the box you get a clear look at the earphones themselves.  You can see the cupcake design on the outside of the earphones and can also see that they are in-ear canal earphones, rather than just the regular earbud style.  The rear of the box gives some specifications, as well as the social media and web url for Trendz.

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Removing the earphones is simple – open the box and pull out the transparent plastic sleeve that they are sat on.  I will admit that getting the earphones off of the sleeve was a bit fiddly, but that was mostly because I didn’t want to snap the cupcake part from the earphone itself.  Once removed though, you are left with a generous length of cable with the 3.5mm adapter at the end.  The cable is a nice pink colour, as it the earphone themselves, and it all fits really nicely together.  Style wise, you can mix and match these earphones with other Trendz products, from phone cases to USB drives.

Sound wise, the earphones performed pretty well.  Obviously they are not up there with the earphones that you pay through the nose for, but for the price you shouldn’t be disappointed.  Because these are in-ear canal earphones, they perform better than the standard earbuds as far as reducing outside noise so that you get to hear more of the music and less of everything else.  When it comes to comfort, I didn’t have an issue.  I have used these earphone all weekend and suffered no discomfort.  The earphones stayed in placed once inserted and there was no looseness or anything, even with prolonged use.

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These earphones can be picked up from Amazon UK for around £12.99 GBP and with Christmas just around the corner, these would make an ideal gift.

OSO U-Grip Mount – Review

When it comes to driving around and relying on my phone to provide me with the music I need, a reliable mount is a must-have.  I tend to just start up the music from my phone and leave it sat in the compartment above my glove box – not always a good move.  The OSO U-Grip is something that I was sent out to review and I have to admit, I was looking forward to using it, even though I was worried about my phone taking a plunge.

Packaging wise, the mount arrived in a nice white box that contained several images of the mount, as well as a list of features, such as being able to mount all smartphones with screens up to 5 inches wide.  The mount itself comes in 2 separate pieces – the suction part of the mount and the phone cradle part which are reasonably easy to connect together – I was up and running in no time.  It’s simply a case of clipping the phone cradle to the window mount part using the ball attachment that is tightened using a fastener that is attached.  Also included in the box is a small round piece that you can stick to your dashboard to provide a smooth surface to attach the mount to, if you are intending on using the dash rather than the window.

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When it comes to putting your phone into the mount, it’s pretty simple.  You edge apart the two sides of the phone cradle and slide your phone into place, and do the same again to remove it.  One thing I find really handy with this mount is that I can use my phone with it without having to remove it from its protective case beforehand.  Once my phone was in place, it was easy enough to move loosen the cradle section and maneuver the phone into the position that I wanted it in and then tighten it back up again.  Having the freedom to move things about as required is very welcomed because it enables you to use your phone for music, recording videos, hands-free calls, etc.

Attaching the mount to the car windscreen was an easy task.  All I had to do was remove the film from the suction part of the mount, place it on the window where I wanted to put it, and push the small lever down to create the suction that holds it in place.  Once it is in place on the window, I tried using some force to loosen things – this didn’t work.  Even after driving around a bit, things were still as secure as they were when first attached.  In order to remove the mount again, you release the lever and use the small tab to gently peel the mount off of the window.  It is worth mentioning that once you remove the film from the suction part, there is already a large amount of tackiness there.  This helps to hold the mount in position even more and if it does happen to get covered in dust, for example, you can clean it by using some cellotape.

Overall, I am VERY impressed with this mount.  It not only holds my phone in place securely, it also allows me to get more out of my phone whilst travelling – not that I use it while actually driving.  Considering that you can pick this mount up for around £17.50 GBP on Amazon UK, or £17.99 direct from the OSO Mount website, it’s a small price to pay to keep things secure while driving.

MOFRED iPhone 4/4S Screen Protector – Review (@MofredProducts)

Protecting your expensive possessions from scratches and damage is something that is most likely top of everyone’s list. You need a product that can do the job expected of it without having to pay through the nose for it.

I recently received a pack of 6 x MOFRED iPhone 4/4S screen protectors to review. Packaging wise, things are kept minimal. A simple plastic bag type package with the MOFRED branding and a list of features, including anti-glare, dust repellent, and scratch-proof.  The back of the packaging shows how to attach the protector to your screen, as well as some product information and a list of features.

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When it came to applying the screen protector, it really couldn’t have been simpler. You just remove the film that covers the screen side and apply it to your screen, after cleaning it thoroughly first with the included microfibre cloth, and attach it to the screen. If when you apply it first of all you find there are bubbles, it is easy enough to remove and reapply. Luckily I did not encounter this issue but I am glad that it is easily rectified if and when it does happen.  Once the main part is attached to the screen, simply pull off the front film.  You can use the included piece of MOFRED branded card to press out any small bubbles that may occur.

The screen protectors themselves are nice and smooth and although they are thick enough to protect the iPhone screen, they are not too thick to cause any issues when using the screen. Using the screen with a protector applied, it is still nice and responsive, as you would hope it would be.  As it says on the front of the packaging, the protector that I applied to my phone has not been scratched in any way, and I have not had an issue with unwanted fingerprints.

For the price you pay for these, you are not only provided with the screen protectors, but also piece of mind that your iPhone is protected from any and all unwanted scratches and marks.