Tag Archive | "Best"

Google Pixel 5 initial review: The best premium Pixel

The Google Pixel has been a premium product since its inception in 2016. Google wanted the series to rival the iPhone. That is, to have such a tight integration between software and hardware that the experience wasn’t just usable, it was delightful. Until now, however, the company has demanded a premium price to make this happen, but the fact is, Google just doesn’t yet have the die-hard fan base that Apple does. Because of this, Google has had a hard time moving units over the years.

This year, the Mountain View company is taking a different approach. Google is a software company first, and while it still wants the Pixel 5 to be its flagship smartphone for the year, it’s cut some corners to bring the price down to a more affordable level. While last year’s Pixel 4 started at $ 800, the Pixel 5 costs just $ 700.

Was the move worth it? Find out in our Google Pixel 5 review.

About this Google Pixel 5 review: So far, I’ve used the Google Pixel 5 over a period of four days. The phone was running Android 11 on the October 2020 security patch. Because we don’t believe four days is enough time to conduct a full Google Pixel 5 review, we’re offering you our initial review, with an update in the form of a full Google Pixel 5 review coming a bit later.

Google Pixel 5 Google’s first 5G smartphone
The Google Pixel 5 may not be the high-end Pixel we were expecting, but it’s a pretty compelling mid-range option. Google is going back to basics with the Pixel 5, ditching higher-end features like face recognition and the quirky Motion Sense gestures.

Design and display: Refining the basics

Google Pixel 5 display 1

Credit: David Imel / Android Authority
  • 144.7 x 70.4 x 8.0mm, 151g
  • Rear-mounted fingerprint sensor
  • Chrome power button
  • Aluminum and bio-resin design
  • IP68 water and dust resistance
  • 6-inch AMOLED (2,340 x 1,080)
  • 19.5:9 aspect ratio
  • Minimal bezels
  • Hole-punch selfie cutout
  • 90Hz adaptive refresh rate

When you look at the Google Pixel 5, it is immediately recognizable as a Google phone. It follows the same general design ethos as the Pixel 4a and Pixel 4a 5G and also snags various design elements from last year’s Pixel 4 series. The rounded design and squircle-shaped camera module have become staples for the Pixel series for two years running. The Chrome “G” logo near the bottom of the phone’s back side should help if you were still having trouble determining the phone’s origin.

This year, Google has brought back the rear-mounted fingerprint reader, which is a nice case of foresight on Google’s part considering the ongoing pandemic. The bottom of the phone houses a USB-C port and speakers. The right side sports the volume rocker and a chrome power button. These buttons take a bit of force to press and are fairly clicky, but I noticed they don’t feel quite as clicky as the Pixel 4a’s.

The body of the Google Pixel 5 is made of aluminum, with a special “bio-resin” composite (that’s sciencey jargon for plastic) poured on top. This gives it just a little bit more of a gritty feeling than the Pixel 4a, but the speckled look makes me wish it was even more coarse, like that of the sandstone OnePlus One. While the aluminum and bio-resin combo doesn’t feel quite as premium as the glass Pixel 4, it should certainly be more resistant to breaks and cracks, on the rear at least.

The Pixel 5 also sports IP68 water and dust resistance. This is a spec we expect to see in most flagship devices. It’s a relief to not have to worry about using your phone out in the rain. Combined with the aluminum and plastic design, the Pixel 5 should be quite sturdy overall. I’m a fan.

The display of the Pixel 5 is an FHD+ adaptive AMOLED that can achieve a refresh rate of 90Hz. Adaptive means it can dynamically switch between 60Hz and 90Hz depending on what the phone is doing, and it feels great. I’ve been a bit spoiled by the extremely fast 120Hz and 144Hz displays of other flagship devices, but the 90Hz display on the Pixel 5 didn’t bother me one bit.

Google Pixel 5 notch hole macro 1

Credit: David Imel / Android Authority

The quality of the Pixel 5’s display is nothing short of fantastic. The colors look incredible and everything seems to pop right off the screen. The display of the Pixel 4a was one of the best we’ve tested this year, and there’s no doubt the display of the Pixel 5 touts similar quality. It’s just great.

This year’s Pixels have fantastic displays, and the Pixel 5’s is especially great.

There is a punch-hole in the top left side of the Pixel 5’s display. It houses the front-facing camera. I’m personally a huge fan of punch-hole selfie shooters because they’re about the same size as a notification icon, so they don’t feel like they’re in the way. My roommate hates the design, but this is a highly personal design opinion.

Overall, the Google Pixel 5 doesn’t feel quite as premium as the Pixel 4 before it, but it nails all the design choices that bring a good experience to a phone. While Google undoubtedly went more simplistic this year, I don’t think it needs to be fancy in its designs. Pixels are portals to the quintessential Google experience, and that’s all they really need to be.

Performance and battery: Less is more

Google Pixel 5 in hand 1 1

Credit: David Imel / Android Authority
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 765G
  • X55 5G mobile platform
  • 8GB of RAM
  • 128GB of storage
  • No microSD card expansion
  • 4,080mAh battery
  • 18W wired charging
  • Wireless and reverse wireless charging

Possibly one of the most controversial decisions Google made this year was not using the current flagship processor from Qualcomm, the Snapdragon 865. Instead, it opted for the tuned-down Snapdragon 765G, which keeps several core features like 5G but cuts down on throughput to the camera as well as core processing speeds.

Many people may be upset that you can’t get a Pixel that competes with other flagships on a raw performance basis this year, but I’d wager that Pixels don’t need to be the fastest phones on the market. The whole point of the Pixel experience is a move towards ambient computing. That is, using your phone less and getting the information you need with your voice. Plus, the Pixel UI is so well-tuned to Pixel hardware, you probably won’t notice any slowdowns unless you’re playing the most demanding games the Play Store has to offer.

In everyday use, the Pixel 5 performed adequately. I didn’t notice any performance issues or slowdowns, and the phone jumped between apps with ease. There were no apps kicked from RAM due to the healthy 8GB of memory, while the 90Hz display made everything feel fluid. That being said, I don’t game on my phone very often, and there are sure to be plenty of dedicated gaming Pixel 5 reviews if you look around.

In benchmarks, the Google Pixel 5 performed well enough, but it certainly wasn’t the highest score for a Snapdragon 765G device. The Google Pixel 5 notched a score of 2,633 in Geekbench 4 single-core and 5,994 in multi-core. In comparison, the OnePlus Nord scored 2,853 and 7,896 in Geekbench 4 single- and multi-core tests, respectively.

One spec that the Snapdragon 765G does hold on to compared to the 865 is 5G connectivity. The Pixel 5 uses the slower Qualcomm X52 modem vs the X55 you’ll find in the flagship variant, but if you’re getting mid-band 5G in your area you could still see a nice boost in speeds. I was hanging with a friend on a rooftop recently and noticed I was pulling 150Mbps down on Google Fi 5G. If you’re on Verizon, the Pixel 5 supports mmWave 5G as well, which can pull down even more insane speeds.

5G probably isn’t a game-changer for most people, but it can pull some impressive speeds if you have coverage.

The Pixel 5 sports 128GB of storage, which should be adequate for most people. It is a bit funny that even the $ 350 Pixel 4a sports the same capacity, but that’s more of a positive for the Pixel 4a then a negative for the Pixel 5. Expandable storage would have been a good way to set the Pixel 5 further apart from the Pixel 4a or Pixel 4a 5G, but Google’s aggressive storage offloading via apps like Google Photos should make this a healthy capacity for most.

Another pretty massive change this year is the move to a much bigger battery on the Pixel 5. The phone sports a 4,080mAh cell. While that’s not quite as massive as some competing phones, it’s easily the biggest cell ever in a Pixel phone. For comparison, the Pixel 4 sported a 2,800mAh battery and used a more power-hungry processor in the form of the Qualcomm Snapdragon 855. Considering the Pixel 4’s abysmal battery was the weakest point about the phone, the bigger cell is a welcome change.

In daily use, the battery life on the Pixel 5 was quite good. On an average day, the phone lasted nearly eight hours of screen-on time, equating to taking the device off the charger at 8:30 AM and seeing it die around 11 PM the next day. On a heavier day where I shot plenty of 4K video, used almost exclusively mobile data, and didn’t have service for a good portion of the day, the phone pulled closer to six hours of screen-on time. I took it off the charger at 7:30 AM that day and it had 10% left when I went to bed at 12:30 AM. Not bad.

The Pixel 5 ships with an 18W fast charger. While that’s an acceptable charging speed, it’s starting to feel quite slow compared to its competition. This was fast around the era of the original Pixel, but since then, even mid-ranged devices can hit 30W of charging, with other devices like the Oppo Find X2 Pro or OnePlus 8T hitting 65W from a cable. I feel like I say this every single time I review a Pixel, but I’d really like to see faster wired charging speeds from Google.

Google Pixel 5 on windowsill

Credit: David Imel / Android Authority

That being said, Google has managed to pack wireless and reverse wireless charging into the Pixel 5. Considering this phone’s chassis is mostly made of aluminum, this is one of the first metal phones to rock wireless charging. To do this, Google cut out a hole in the aluminum chassis for the wireless charging coil, then coated the body in the bio-resin plastic we talked about earlier. Smart stuff.

Wireless charging is a spec that isn’t strictly necessary, but I’m extremely happy to see it on Google’s flagship Pixel. It’s one of those extra little bits that make the Pixel 5 worth choosing over the Pixel 4a or Pixel 4a 5G. Considering I have multiple wireless chargers hanging out around my apartment, it’s easy to keep the phone topped up at all times.

Camera: Wider with better video, otherwise more of the same

Google Pixel 5 taking a photo 3

Credit: David Imel / Android Authority
  • Main: 12MP
  • Wide: 16MP
  • Selfie: 8MP

Up until the Pixel 3, Google touted its impressive photo quality from a single camera using computational photography. But by the time the Pixel 4 launched, there was enough pressure from the rest of the industry to add another sensor. Weirdly, the Pixel 4 used a 2x telephoto sensor in addition to its main lens, which was a controversial choice considering it was touting the capabilities of its super-res zoom tech at the same time.

Go in-depth: Behind the scenes: Google’s Pixel cameras aren’t trying to be cameras at all

This year, Google is adapting to the blowback of the Pixel 4. It instead opted to add a wide-angle camera to the Pixel 5. This gives you three effective zoom ranges if you count the 2x super-res zoom from the main sensor. I’m personally happy to have a 0.6x wide-angle camera represented.

The main camera on the Pixel 5 is the same 12MP sensor we’ve seen effectively since the beginning of the Pixel line, and by and large, it looks wildly similar to images from the Google Pixel 4. The biggest difference I’ve noticed between the two phones is a shift towards warmer images, which will likely look a bit more pleasing to many people.

As stated earlier, the wide camera is 0.6x zoom, which gives you a decent amount of range but isn’t quite as wide as some other flagships on the market. The color profile does seem fairly similar to that of the main camera, but there’s a strange shift in view when you switch from standard to wide mode.

While the quality of the Pixel cameras has been considered incredible for many years, the unwillingness to adapt to change is starting to make Google’s cameras look a bit long in the tooth. Pixels have always had a pretty high amount of contrast and sharpness, which looked good when there wasn’t a ton of information from the sensor. However, now that camera sensors on other smartphones are getting larger, Google’s processing feels like a bit more of a crutch.

The comparison I can make here is that of programming for individual use cases versus creating an algorithm that will cover all cases. While the Pixel 5 can make people look quite good when it recognizes faces using semantic segmentation, busier scenes involving people will often process people like the rest of the scene. And while portrait mode can be good at cutting things out with a depth map (though it still struggles with hair), a larger sensor with real depth of field would work perfectly every time.

Look, Pixel 5 images look good in general, but scenes with a lot of detail in them can look busy and overly contrasted. It’s fairly easy to see when a camera has a small sensor. Even with the Pixel’s fantastic processing, you can still tell. While I don’t think most people are going to dislike images from the Pixel 5, it’s a bit frustrating to not see a fundamental size change after so much time. Like I say every year, hopefully, next year.

The sample images in this review have been compressed to optimize load times for the website. If you want to view all the images taken for this review in full resolution, you can do so here.

Almost everyone will like photos from the Pixel 5, but a bigger sensor would have maintained its reputation as the king of smartphone cameras.

That being said, this wouldn’t be a new Google flagship without some fun computational imaging features. And while none of the new features will blow the lid off your head as they have in previous Pixels, they’re still pretty cool.

The first new camera feature is called portrait light. This emulates a floating light source that you can shift around the scene and vary in intensity to add or reduce contrast to a subject’s face or clothes. It works quite well. You can use it on any photo, as long as there is a person detected in the image. You can even use it on old images, or images that haven’t actually been taken with the Pixel. Pretty slick. This feature will be coming to Google Photos down the line, but it’s on Google Pixel 4a 5G and Google Pixel 5 first.

The second feature is actually a nod to video, which is nice to see on a Pixel phone. This feature is called Cinematic Pan and uses slow-motion video and software cropping to produce some incredibly smooth pans. In use, this looks quite good, and it’s nice to see Google caring more about video features. There’s also a new stabilization mode menu, which will let you select between Standard, Locked, Active, and Cinematic Pan depending on what kind of movement you’re doing.

Portrait mode can now work in low light in conjunction with Night Sight. This will allow your subjects to stand out from the background even in low light, something only cameras with bigger sensors can usually do well. This feature is cool, and especially welcome considering the small sensor. Even against the huge Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra sensor, the Pixel 5 can still hold its own.

On the selfie side, we’re seeing what we’ve seen from previous Pixels. This is the same 8MP shooter you’re used to. It takes nice images overall, especially with the help of semantic segmentation. You can use portrait mode and Night Sight in selfie mode too, which offer 1.2x and 1.4x crops respectively. Selfie video has a time-lapse mode, which offers playback in 1x, 5x, 10x, 30x, and 120x speeds. This should be beneficial for people who want to vlog with their phones.

Speaking of video, Google has allowed for some pretty nice features here. Those include 4K 60fps recording, slow motion, a time-lapse mode, and four different stabilization modes. You’ve got Standard mode for light movement, Locked mode for far away still shots as if the phone was on a tripod, Active mode for heavy movement or running, and the Cinematic Pan I mentioned earlier.

Here’s a sample of 4k 30fps video footage in standard stabilization mode. Overall, I think the footage looks quite grainy, with a lot of noise in the shadows. I’m glad Google is adding all these new video features, but it would be a lot better if the sensor was bigger so the phone could capture more light.

Google’s camera app is quite good, though. Most features are very easy to find and the phone doesn’t feel like it’s got too many features you’ll never use. There are primary function tabs on the bottom with some extra features around the shutter, and deeper settings in the pull-down menu. I’m a fan.

The addition of a wide-angle camera was a good move, but I can’t stress how much I would love to see Google use a bigger sensor on the next Pixel. Processing on that small 12MP sensor will still be perfectly fine for most people, but when you compare it to other flagships shipping lately, the quality difference starts to show.

Software: Brilliantly simple

Google Pixel 5 Android norification tray 1

Credit: David Imel / Android Authority
  • Android 11
  • Pixel Launcher

The Google Pixel 5 ships with Android 11, running Pixel UI on top. This is widely considered one of the best skins on Android due to its tight integration with things like the Google Assistant. Google also, you know, makes Android, so you’d hope its take on the operating system would be good.

Android 11 added features that we previously lamented for not being in Pixel devices. It’s refreshing to finally have things like native screen recording. The new conversation notifications, on the other hand, are a handy way of grouping your important notifications from the non-important ones. Having your smart home controls a power button hold away is super convenient too. This is a legitimately great version of Android, and you can read more about its best features here.

Several software features are exclusive to Pixel devices. Call Screening, Now Playing, and Google Recorder are just a few, and it’s undoubtedly true that you’ll get one of the most intelligent Android experiences on a Google Pixel phone. Almost all of Pixel’s unique features are things you’ll actually use and not gimmicks too. That’s not something that can be said of every smartphone.

Another important part of the Pixel software experience is that Google guarantees software updates and support for at least three years. That means the Google Pixel 5 will definitely receive Android 14, and will likely end up with Android 15 as well. Very few Android smartphones guarantee this much software support. This makes the Pixel devices some of your best options if you want to continuously upgrade to the latest version of Android. Moreover, owning a Pixel means you also have access to Android betas, if you’re into that kind of thing.

Google Pixel 5 specs

  Google Pixel 5
Display 6-inch OLED
2,340 x 1,080 resolution
90Hz refresh rate
19.5:9 aspect ratio
>1,000,000:1 contrast ratio
Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 765G
2x Cortex-A76
6x Cortex-A55
Titan M Security Module
GPU Adreno 620
Storage 128GB
No microSD slot
Cameras Rear
Main: 12.2MP, f/1.7 aperture, 1.4µm pixels, optical + electronic image stabilization
Secondary: 16MP, f/2.2 aperture, 1 micron pixel, ultra-wide (107-degree FoV)
4K at 60fps/30fps

8MP sensor, f/2.0 aperture, 1.12µm pixels, fixed focus, 83-degree FoV

Headphone jack No
Battery 4,080mAh
18W charging
12W wireless charging
Reverse wireless charging
IP rating IP68
Sensors Proximity / ambient light sensor
Pixel Imprint fingerprint sensor
Spectral and flicker sensor
Software Android 11
Dimensions and weight 144.7 x 70.4 x 8mm
Colors Just Black, Sorta Sage

Google Pixel 5 review: Value and competition

Google Pixel 5 Google logo macro

Credit: David Imel / Android Authority
  • Google Pixel 5: $ 699

At $ 699, the Pixel 5 easily undercuts a lot of other flagships on the market, but if you’re looking at devices from a raw specs perspective, it could seem a bit lackluster. That being said, Pixel phones offer a lot more value than raw performance from their tight integration with Google apps and services to their fast, guaranteed updates. Pixel devices are also genuinely a pleasure to use, and I think there’s a lot of value in that alone.

Google Pixel 5 Google’s first 5G smartphone
The Google Pixel 5 may not be the high-end Pixel we were expecting, but it’s a pretty compelling mid-range option. Google is going back to basics with the Pixel 5, ditching higher-end features like face recognition and the quirky Motion Sense gestures.

If you’re looking for power, something like the OnePlus 8T comes in at just $ 50 more at $ 749, but sports 65W wired charging, a 120Hz display, and far more cameras… for better or worse. It also flexes a Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 processor. Unfortunately, it drops wireless charging. Check out our full review here for more info.

Another option around this price range is the Samsung Galaxy S20 FE, which also has a Qualcomm Snapdragon 865 processor, multiple cameras, and a 120Hz display. If you’re a fan of Samsung devices, this is one of the most affordable options with this much power. Check out our full review here to learn more.

If you’re a fan of iOS, Apple just announced the iPhone 12 Mini, which also matches the Pixel 5’s price of $ 699. The iPhone 12 Mini has a much faster processor in the form of the new Apple A14 Bionic, but it loses out on refresh rate and the quality of its personal digital assistant. While we haven’t been able to do a full review on this device yet, we’ll share our thoughts soon.

If you’re someone who needs more power for things like gaming or better video, you might want to look at more specialized options like the Asus ROG Phone 3, the Sony Xperia 1 II, or Sony Xperia 5 II. That being said, those phones start closer to $ 1,000 or more, so they’re not really in the same ballpark.

Personally, I think $ 649 would have been a better price for the Pixel 5. The price difference between the Google Pixel 4a and Google Pixel 4a 5G is $ 150. Google slapping an extra $ 200 on the price tag for an aluminum frame, wireless charging, IP68 water and dust resistance, 2GB more RAM, and a 90Hz display seems a bit excessive. Considering the Pixel 4a 5G is effectively a perfectly balanced mix of the Pixel 4a and the Pixel 5, a similar $ 150 price difference would have seemed more appropriate.

Google Pixel 5 review: Should you buy it?

Google Pixel 5 in hand 3

Credit: David Imel / Android Authority

Personally, I’m a huge fan of the Google Pixel 5. It has a genuinely wonderful display, fantastic battery life, and all the small things I love like wireless charging and IP68 water resistance. Additionally, the extremely tight integration with Google’s apps and services, unique features through Google Assistant, and guaranteed updates for three years add a lot more value than a spec sheet can tell.

If you are willing to spend $ 700 and you’re sure you want an Android phone, I can definitely recommend the Google Pixel 5. It may not have the fastest processor, the quickest charging, the highest refresh rate display, or the biggest camera sensors, but the Google Pixel 5 does the basics better than almost any other smartphone on the market. The Google Pixel 5 is genuinely a pleasure to use.

That’s been our initial Google Pixel 5 review. We’ll update it in the following days with more insight and impressions about Google’s new premium phone. Stay tuned!

Android Authority

Posted in Android NewsComments (0)

AWS vs Azure vs Google Cloud – Which certification is best for professionals??

AWS vs Azure vs Google Cloud

AWS (Amazon Web Services), Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud are the three biggest cloud platforms used by businesses around the world. Professionals looking to upgrade their skill set and to increase their appeal to employers should therefore consider certification and training with one of these platforms. The question is: which one?

In this post, we will pit AWS vs Azure vs Google Cloud, to explore which platform makes the most sense for professionals to learn depending on your skills, goals, and experience.

What is a cloud platform?

A cloud platform is a collection of services, applications, and sometimes hardware (i.e. remote servers) that other businesses can use to enhance their own services. These include things such as database management, cloud storage, IoT services, security, and more. This is sometimes referred to as “Infrastructure-as-a-service.”

Cloud platforms essentially provide companies with scalable solutions for storing, retrieving, and manipulating data. In turn, they can grow to meet customer demands. This is a viable option for businesses of all sizes thanks to price plans that charge the client for the infrastructure used. While there initially were some concerns regarding security and privacy, the vast majority of cloud-enabled businesses now rely on such services.

The IaaS market is thought to be worth $ 50.4 billion

The IaaS market is estimated to be worth $ 50.4 billion according to research from Gartner, making it an extremely worthwhile skill for any IT professional.

AWS vs Azure vs Google Cloud Certification

With that in mind, which of these platforms should you invest time and effort into learning? Which will yield the most job opportunities and best pay?

AWS has enjoyed the largest share of the IaaS market since its rollout in 2006. Today AWS maintains roughly a 33% share, with Microsoft Azure at 16%, and Google Cloud at 8%. So, in terms of pure numbers and demand, AWS certification will likely yield the best returns for professionals.

That said, there is no simple “right answer” when it comes to the best cloud platform for any given professional. Each offers a unique range of services, which may be more or less relevant for a specialist skillset. Moreover, if you wish to work for a particular employer, then it may be beneficial to first find out which web services that business relies on.

In terms of the sheer scope of services, AWS comes out on top with over 175 services, including:

  • Developer tools
  • Analytics
  • Storage
  • Database management
  • Compute
  • Networking
  • IoT
  • Security
  • Management
  • Enterprise applications

This makes AWS a strong option for companies that are looking for a “one-stop-shop” solution. AWS tends to be one of the more expensive options, however, with a more complex pricing model.

Microsoft Azure is another popular option with a wide variety of services. The integration of other services that customers may be familiar with – such as Office 365 and Teams – is also enticing for businesses.

Google Cloud has a smaller selection of services but is more focused on machine learning via its powerful Tensor Flow platform. With machine learning being a huge focus of many modern businesses, this is a valuable option for futureproofing your skills and employability. The company has also embraced open-source, and this expertise shows in the use of containers in particular.

See also: How to become a machine learning engineer

While these differences may influence a business’ decision over which platform to choose, they all offer broadly similar services and features.

Which platform should you learn?

So, with that in mind, which cloud platform is the best for IT professionals? Let’s take a look at AWS vs Azure vs Google Cloud certification.

While there may be specific cases where Google Cloud or Microsoft Azure certification makes more sense (such as if you choose to specialize in machine learning), AWS certification remains arguably the most sought-after and in-demand.

Amazon Web Services is the most widely used cloud platform, meaning it will open up a lot of doors professionally.

See also: What is AWS certification?

A good place to start is with the AWS Solutions Architect Associate certification.

Microsoft’s Certified Azure Solutions Architect is a great additional string to your bow. It will appeal to a huge number of businesses that already rely on Microsoft’s services every day. Microsoft’s Certified Azure Solutions Architect is a great certification to aim for, though professionals will first need to complete the AZ-300 and AZ-301 courses.

If you have both these certifications under your belt, then why not complete the set with Google’s Professional Cloud Architect certification? This should also be a top priority for anyone looking to offer machine learning expertise. Again though, professionals should possess a substantial understanding of the cloud, and Google Cloud in particular, before attempting the exam.

The best answer when it comes to AWS vs Azure vs Google Cloud certification, then? Get all three! You could also start with a more general certification, such as CompTIA Cloud+ which will provide a useful foundation.

You’ll be able to demand a larger salary and appeal to a broader range of employers

In general, while certifications alone are not the be-all-and-end-all for professionals working with the cloud, it’s true that you really can’t have too many. As you add these certificates to your resume, you’ll be able to demand a larger salary and appeal to a broader range of employers.

But what do you think? Who comes out on top when comparing AWS vs Azure vs Google Cloud? Which other cloud platform certifications have you found most valuable?

Android Authority

Posted in Android NewsComments (0)

10 best Instagram Story apps for Android

StoryArt best Instagram Story apps for Android
Instagram’s Story feature is one of the most popular on the site. It’s mostly for daily updates and stuff you wouldn’t generally post on your profile. However, many use the platform as a performance art platform and Stories get really fun on occasion. Some people do comedy bits, others make super artsy posts, and it evolved into much more than intended. That means there are actually a bunch of tools for Stories for folks who want to do more with it. Here are the best Instagram Story apps for Android.

These apps might help you make fun Instagram Stories too:

Adobe apps

Price: Free / Varies

Adobe has some of the most popular apps for creative folks and this is no different. Those on mobile have Adobe Premiere Rush, Adobe Lightroom, a social media-centric version of Photoshop, and a few other tools to make some neat stuff for Instagram Stories. Those with desktops can use the more powerful tools (Photoshop, Lightroom, Premiere Pro, After Effects) to do some neat stuff as well. The mobile apps are generally cheaper and many of them are free to use in many cases. The desktop variants can go for as much as $ 53.99 per month if you get the full subscription. In any case, whether it’s photo or video, Adobe probably has an app for it and Adobe apps are among the most powerful in this space. It’s kind of an obvious recommendation.


Price: Free / Varies

InShot is a developer on Google Play and has a few popular Instagram Story apps. The three main apps that you might try is the Story Saver app along with the photo editor and the video editor (separate apps). The first one is rather self explanatory. It lets you download other people’s Stories as well as IGTV content. The other two are also fairly self explanatory. The photo and video editors let you edit your photos and videos to ready them for Instagram. All three apps have the occasional bug, but they are otherwise quite functional.

InShot Story Saver screenshot 2020

Credit: Joe Hindy / Android Authority


Price: Free / $ 3.99 per month / $ 22.99 per year

KineMaster is a mobile video editor and one of the best. The app has a lot of desirable features, including multi-layer video editing, images, stickers, special effects, support for text, support for music, and more. The app even exports in 4K at 30FPS if your device can handle the export process. In general, Instagram Stories don’t really require too much video editing so something like this to throw together a little sketch or shave off some useless video at the beginning or end is perfectly functional.

LightX Photo Editor

Price: Free / $ 2.99 per month / $ 14.99 per year / $ 34.99 once

LightX Photo Editor is an excellent alternative to Adobe Lightroom for mobile photo editing. It has a lot of the basic tools such as contrast, exposure, brightness, hue, saturation etc. It also comes with teeth whitening, background blurring, and a range of filters for a neat look. Finally, the app can do some really fun stuff like remove the background from your image or merge two photos together. This is a great app for people who enjoy using photos on their Instagram Stories.


Price: Free / $ 9.99 per month / $ 39.99 per year

Mojo is one of several somewhat decent Instagram Story apps. It has a variety of animation templates. You simply plug in your own stuff and the app makes a short video montage of the things you put in it. The app contains over 50 templates along with more than 50 text styles. You can edit templates as well for more customization. The price is rather extravagant so we don’t really recommend it unless you really like the app. Also, we hope it finishes porting all of the iOS features sooner rather than later.

Read more:


Price: Free

Snapseed is a photo editor by Google and it’s one of the best. It doesn’t have a ton of super unique features, but it does the basics with rock solid efficiency. The app includes 29 tools and filters, including a fake HDR mode, support for RAW photos, and an auto-adjuster tool to make images pop a bit more. You can do some really good stuff with this and the feature list is impressive considering its very free price tag.

best DSLR apps - Snapseed

Story Editor

Price: Free with in-app purchases

Story Editor by cerdillac is a decent and serviceable Instagram Story editor. The app contains over 200 story templates along with some filters, a collage maker, text support, and even some minor photo editing functions like background blur. The app is otherwise fairly self explanatory. You add various things into it, use the templates and filters to generate a desired effect, and then publish it to Instagram. There are a bunch of free templates in the app, but you can buy more stuff via in-app purchases (generally at $ 1.99 for each package).

Story Editor screenshot

Credit: Joe Hindy / Android Authority

Story Maker

Price: Free

Story Maker by Gonga Dev is a decent free Instagram Story editor. The app has over 300 templates spread out across several categories for easier browsing. In addition, there are over 100 text fonts, support for both photo and video, and support for other apps such as Snapchat, Whatsapp, and others. It works the same as most of the other options in this space so it’s pretty simple for most folks. This one is entirely free with ads and people don’t seem to mind the ads much.

Story Maker screenshot

Credit: Joe Hindy / Android Authority


Price: Free / $ 2.99 per month / $ 9.99 per year / $ 19.99 once / Varies

StoryArt is another big story editor with some decent functionality. This one boasts over 2,000 templates, although many of them are pretty simple. The app also features some basic photo and video editing along with the usual array of photos, stickers, and text support. You can even design some little logos to make your Instagram Stories look good on your profile. The subscription is cheaper than most competitors or you can pay for it a single time. There are also in-app purchase packages in case you only want certain things.

StoryArt screenshot 2020

Credit: Joe Hindy / Android Authority


Price: Free / $ 2.99 per month / $ 8.99 per year / $ 9.99 once

StoryLab is an Instagram Story editor with some fun tricks. It supports over 700 Instagram Story templates and you can lightly customize most of them. It also supports 9:16 along with 1:1 so you can make Stories in a couple of different ways. The app also supports both photo and video along with some effect brushes that let you do some neat stuff like Kirakira and other popular effects. This one is also on the cheaper side in terms of subscriptions and even its single price is less than many competitors.

StoryLab screenshot 2020

Credit: Joe Hindy / Android Authority

Thank you for reading! Try these too:

If we missed any great Instagram Story apps for Android, tell us about them in the comments. You can also click here to check out our latest Android app and game lists!

Android Authority

Posted in Android NewsComments (0)

The best phone charging accessories: A buyer’s guide

Most smartphones will comfortably last an entire day, if not longer, with moderate use. “Moderate” is the keyword. If you do things like gaming, GPS navigation, or using the camera for a long time, you’ll find your phone’s battery draining quite quickly. Luckily, there are a lot of charging accessories you can get to ensure that the panic when faced with a dying phone doesn’t set in. This is our ultimate guide for the best charging accessories you’ll need!

Looking for even more phone accessories? We have a guide for that!

OEM vs third-party charging accessories

OnePlus 7T Pro charging warp charge

Every phone comes with a charger in the box, even though that may change quite soon. Unfortunately, losing or forgetting chargers, tearing cables, or simply having a charger that no longer works are a part and parcel of owning a smartphone.

Third-party accessory makers offer a slew of products that usually bring more to the table, and often at comparatively cheaper prices. On the surface, picking the best phone charging accessories sounds easy. There are thousands of products available and all you need to do is find the right fit. However, having so many options causes the problem.

It’s important to do your homework regardless of what you buy, but that’s even more so with a charger. A bad charger or cable can cause irreparable damage to the phone, and a faulty power bank in your pocket might hurt you as well. There are a lot of excellent choices, but it’s crucial to do the research properly.

Pros and cons of first-party charging accessories

The biggest advantage with a first-party accessory is the fact that these are made with a particular phone or range of phones in mind. In most cases, you will get the best experience with the charger you get in the box. So, while the Samsung wireless charger works with other devices, it is the best option if you want to enjoy the fastest wireless charging speeds with Samsung flagships.

On the other hand, a distinct lack of variety is the major issue with first-party accessories. Only Samsung has really stepped up its game when it comes to charging accessories with excellent wireless chargers and power banks. But even it falls well short when compared to third-party accessory makers.

Pros and cons of third-party charging accessories

Third-party accessories have the leg up in a lot of aspects since they often fill existing gaps in the accessories market. Third-party companies dominate in categories like multi-port chargers, car charging accessories, and charging cables. These options are generally more affordable too.

The generic nature of these products may not always provide the best results when it comes to charging speeds. The much bigger issue though is sorting through the hundreds of options available, with many coming from companies that aren’t well known, or even unheard of. Buying a bad charger, cable, or power bank could have severe consequences, including potentially completely damaging your device. Some accessories may not work with your phone either, so it’s definitely important to do your research first.

Things to look for when buying third-party accessories

Before you buy an accessory from a brand you’re not familiar with, just be sure to check for the following:

  • Look through owner-submitted reviews on sites like Amazon. What are people saying? Do these short reviews look legit? For example, it’s possible they are paid or sponsored submissions if they are super vague and poorly written.
  • Look for oddities like if the product reviews aren’t actually for the product! This surprisingly happens a lot with 3rd party charging accessories from obscure brands. A 5-star review of a foot massager is not what I want to see when trying to buy a portable power bank.
  • Familiarize yourself with the return policy of the product. While a lot of products have return periods, some might only have a replacement window, in which case a refund won’t be possible.
  • We’re here to help! Android Authority has literally hundreds of guides to help you navigate through the convoluted world of phone and other device charging accessories. From multi-port wall chargers to numerous power bank categories, we have it all.

The charging accessories Android Authority recommends

OnePlus 8 Pro on wireless charger from side

Most charging accessories work with a lot of smartphones. However, with different charging speeds, capacities, and features available with different phones, compatibility is something you must look into. For example, while you can charge Pixel 4 with many Qi wireless chargers, you will also get fast charging speeds with the Pixel Stand.

We’ll be looking at the best charging accessories you can get for some of the newest phones available. Something to keep in mind though is that while we mention specific smartphones here, these may be great options for other phones as well. But if you own one of these phones, rest assured the options here will give you the fastest speeds and can be safely used with your device.

Samsung Galaxy Note 20 series

Samsung Galaxy S20 series

Pixel 4 series

Pixel 4a

The best third-party wall chargersbest charging accessories - anker wall charger

Credit: Ankit Banerjee / Android Authority

Any phone maker will tell you that the best way to charge your device is by using the first-party charger. That’s definitely true, especially if you want to take advantage of fast charging features, like OnePlus’ Warp charging or OPPO’s ultra-fast VOOC charging.

As long as you do your research, there are plenty of good third-party alternatives though. These will likely be cheaper, may also offer some form of fast-charging capabilities, and can be more portable. Whether you’re looking for a replacement or an extra for travel or to keep in the office, there are many things to consider.

What should you look for?

  • Is the brand trustworthy? A reputable brand is more likely to last through countless charging cycles. We highly recommend Anker, but there are tons of other great brands. We ensure every option on this list balances price, quality, and reputation.
  • What port does it have? Most new third-party chargers come with USB-C ports, and you will likely get the fastest charging possible with these. However, you’ll have a charging cable already. So if you have a USB-A to USB-C/microUSB cable, you’ll need a charger with a USB-A port.
  • How fast is it going to charge? Fast charging is almost a standard feature at this point, even if with varying degrees of capability. It’ll be unlikely for a third-party charger to offer the same speeds as proprietary charging tech like VOOC charging. You’ll have to know whether your phone supports standards like Qualcomm’s Quick Charge and USB-PD (Power Delivery) and find the right charger to make use of this feature.

Our recommendations

Anker Powerport III Pod

If you’re looking for a wall charger for your phone, tablet, Nintendo Switch, or even the laptop, the Anker Powerport III Pod 65W charger can do it all. It comes with the latest version of Anker’s Power IQ tech that ensures fast charging for most smartphones and tablets, including Samsung’s super-fast charging with its latest flagships. It’s also an impressively compact option when compared to most charging bricks.

Ravpower 30W charger

The Ravpower 30W charger is a less powerful, but much cheaper alternative to the Anker 65W charger. This charger also comes with a USB-C port and supports the USB-PD 3.0 fast-charging standard with a compatible device. Ravpower utilizes GaN technology to make a device that’s really small and portable, and also keeps cool.

The best multi-port wall chargerssatechi

Nowadays, just about everything in your home relies on a charger to keep going. From phones and tablets to earbuds and speakers, you’ve probably got more cords than outlets. One of the best ways to save space is with a multi-port USB wall charger.

What should you look for?

  • How fast is it going to charge? You might get a wall charger with 10 ports, but if it takes all day to charge up your device, that will be a problem. The best options should ideally support the fast charging standards of your phone or other portable devices.
  • Does it have the right ports? Older or budget chargers often have less than great port options. There might just be USB type-A instead of USB-C, or there might not be fast charging as mentioned above. Figure out which ports you have on your devices, and check cable and device compatibility.
  • Is the brand trustworthy? This is a point that bears repeating every time we talk about third-party charging accessories. A reputable brand is more likely to last and not cause any damage to the device.
  • What size do you need? You will also have to consider the size. Do you want something that can easily slip inside your pocket or backpack? Or do you want the most charging power encased in a big brick? Are you looking for something that sits on a desk? How long do the charging and plug cables need to be?

Our recommendations

Anker two-port

Anker Atom 2

Sometimes two ports are all you need, and this Anker option shows just what 60W of output can do. It’s equipped with two USB-C PowerDelivery ports that intelligently allocate power to ensure an even charge. Available in white or black, the Anker Power Port Atom relies on GaN to keep the temperature low and the power high. It’s a great travel companion as the prongs fold flat to fit into a bag.

Satechi four-port

usb wall charger satechi

Jumping up to four ports, the Satechi USB wall charger balances between two USB-C options and two USB-A. The two USB-C ports combine for 108W of total charging while the USB-A options add 12W between them. It’s an easy way to recharge all of your devices at once, but be ready for some varied speeds. A convenient LED light indicates when your devices are charging, and a sleek gray finish lends a touch of luxury to this handy USB wall charger.

Further reading: More multi-port USB wall chargers to consider

The best wireless chargers

OnePlus 8 Pro wireless charger back

There are few things as convenient as dropping your phone on a wireless charging pad or placing it on a stand to top it off. The sheer convenience of being able to pick up a phone, answer a call, and plop it back to charge without fiddling with cables can’t be overstated. Luckily, there are a wide variety of wireless charging accessories you can get for your phone.

What to look for when buying a wireless charger?

As is the case with any accessory, there are many factors to consider when buying a wireless charger.

  • What type of charger do you need? Mainly two types of wireless chargers are available now — pads or stands. A pad might be the better option for a nightstand, while a stand will be great on a work desk. You might also have multiple devices that can be charged wirelessly, be another phone, smartwatches, or wireless earbuds. In this case, a dual charging pad or stand is the best way to go.
  • OEM vs third-party? Once again, an OEM wireless charger will often offer the best experience. You will only get OnePlus’ fantastic Warp Charge 30 speeds with the OnePlus charger, and fast wireless charging for the Pixel 4 with the Pixel Stand.
  • How fast does it charge? A standard Qi charging pad may take a really long time to fully charge a device. To get the fastest charging possible, a first-party charger is definitely the better way to go. Some third-party chargers offer some fast charging capabilities, but that’s mostly for Samsung flagships and iPhones.

Our recommendations

Samsung Wireless Charger DUO Pad

Samsung Duo pad dual wireless charging pad

The Samsung Duo pad is as good as it gets with wireless charging pads. As the name suggests, the pad can charge two devices simultaneously. However, the Samsung wireless charger duo pad takes it a step forward by including fast charging support. This means that you can charge compatible Samsung phones at up to 15W, while charging an additional phone or perhaps your wireless earphones on the second pad.

Anker PowerWave II wireless charger

The Anker PowerWave II wireless charger is similar to other affordable wireless charging pad offerings other than one key difference. The pad sits at an angle and lets you view the phone’s display while charging it. It’ll charge the Pixel 4 and LG flagships at 15W. With Samsung hardware, the pad enables fast wireless charging to the tune of 10W. Meanwhile, it is as good as the best wireless chargers available for the iPhone and can top it off at 7.5W.

Further reading: Other wireless phone chargers worth checking out

The best portable power banks you can get

samsung wireless battery charger

Getting at least a full day of use out of your smartphone should be possible with most devices. However, many processor-intensive tasks can drain the battery really quickly, and you might not be able to get to a charger in time. The best solution to ensure that you don’t have to worry about a dying battery while out and about is to pick up a portable battery charger.

What are the best portable chargers?

When it comes to picking the right battery pack, you want to look at a few things:

  • How fast is it going to charge? You might get a power bank with a 50,000Ah battery, but if it takes all day to charge up your device, that’s going to be a problem. The best portable charger ideally should support the fast charging standards in your phone or other portable devices.
  • What capacity do you need? Some of us get the biggest portable charger we can find and don’t worry if it takes up half a bag. But if you need something smaller, there are a lot of great options. That said, we don’t recommend going under 5,000mAh in most cases and think 10,000mAh is the sweet spot for portability.
  • Does it have the right ports for your needs? Older or budget chargers often have less than great port options. There might just be USB type-A instead of USB-C, or there might not be fast charging as mentioned above. Figure out which ports you have on your devices and whether or not the charger that catches your eye fully supports your device.
  • Is the brand trustworthy? A reputable brand is more likely to last through countless charging cycles. We highly recommend Anker and Ravpower, but there are tons of other great brands.
  • What size do you need? You will also have to consider the size. Do you want something that can easily slip inside a purse or backpack? Or do you want the most charging power encased in a big brick of a portable charger?

Our recommendations

RAVPower 15000mAh PD Power Bank

ravpower 15000mAh PD power bank

The RAVPower 15000mAh PD Power Bank is a great compact option. It’s small enough to fit in most pockets and easy to store in your purse or backpack. Despite its small size, it has a great charging capacity. It has 30W total output and can charge two devices at the same time. Plus, the 18W charging input helps the device recharge up to twice as fast as standard portable chargers.

Samsung 2-in-1 Portable Fast Charge Wireless

Samsung wireless charger

Samsung’s 10,000mAh charger is unique in that it includes a wireless charging pad right on top. It’s capable of fast charging a compatible Samsung phone all the way up to 7.5W in wireless mode and 15W when connected via a USB cable. The phone is Qi-compatible which means that you should have no issue using this with other phones as well.

Other portable power banks worth considering:

The best car charging accessories available

anker car charger

Credit: Ankit Banerjee / Android Authority

If you spend a lot of time on the road, choosing from one of the many car chargers available is something you should consider. These things are affordable and come in handy whenever your smartphone runs out of juice. They plug into the power port, or what used to be known as the cigarette lighter port, and come in all shapes and sizes. Check out the best ones below!

Things to consider when buying a car charger

  • How many ports do you need? You’ll find car chargers with a single port to options that come with four or five as well. More may not always be better in this case though. Apart from size and space considerations, the charging speed for individual devices might reduce when many are plugged in at the same time. Two-port options are usually a good idea.
  • What type of ports does it have? Older or budget car chargers often have less than great port options. There might just be USB type-A instead of USB-C, or there might not be fast charging as mentioned above. These also don’t come with a cable, so you might need to buy one for the car, and remember to carry the cable you get with your phone.
  • Do you need more features? Most cars only come with one power port. If you need that port for a car charger and a Bluetooth FM transmitter, you’re out of luck. The good news is that there are a few options that combine both features. Similarly, you’ll also find phone holders that serve double duty as a Qi wireless charger.

Our recommendations

Anker Power iQ charger

Anker Power iQ car charger

The 36W dual-port Anker USB charger is a great option. This charger provides you with two USB-C slots for charging two devices rapidly at the same time. It is a very small and compact car charger, making it perfect for those that don’t want anything bulky in their car. It is compatible with most devices and has a bunch of safety features on board to keep you and your devices safe.

Aukey USB C car charger

Aukey USB C car charger

If you have a device that allows for Power Delivery charging, then this is the car charger for you. This Aukey car charger comes with two different ports, so you can charge two devices at once. The Power Delivery outlet will allow for ultra-fast charging of devices that support it, optimized to deliver 30W of power.

Further reading: The best car chargers you can get

The best charging cables you can get

Google Pixel 3 XL showing USB C and cable stock photo 3

Credit: Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority

A good charger is only one part of the equation when it comes to ensuring that your device is charging as quickly and efficiently as possible. Playing an equally important role is the charging cable. Charging cables might all have the same ports and look similar. However, there are a lot of charging speeds, standards, and capabilities to be aware of.

Things to know

The unfortunate truth is that USB-C is still a mess in 2020, even though it is the current standard. Not every cable is made equal and some can be downright dangerous for your device. It’s gotten much better than what the situation was three or four years ago, but there are things you should look out for.

  • USB-IF: USB-IF (USB Implementers Forum) announced a Certified USB Charger Compliance and Logo Program back in 2016 to offer USB chargers for compliant USB-C devices. Looking for “certified by USB-IF” or the USB-IF logo is one of the ways to check whether a third-party cable is a good choice.
  • USB 2.0/3.0/3.1/Thunderbolt 3: Currently, we have cables that could be compatible with USB 2.0, USB 3.0, and USB 3.1 (Gen 1 and Gen 2), with the version number defining function and speed. USB 3.2 and USB 4 standards were also introduced recently. The oldest, USB 2.0 offers a theoretical transfer speed of up to 480Mbps. 3.0 and 3.1 Gen 1 ups that to 5Gbps and USB 3.1 Gen 2 doubles that. Finally, Thunderbolt 3 is the fastest by far with an impressive theoretical data transfer speed of 40Gbps.
  • Wattage – This gives you an idea of charging speed. USB Power Delivery augments the basic USB charging speeds for up to 100W of output power. The amount of available power is split into different power ratings, which operate at different voltages.

Other factors to consider

  • Is the cable compatible with your charger? Checking compatibility is very important when buying a USB cable. Your charger might have a USB-A port. In that case, that is the type of cable (USB-A to USB-C or USB-A to lightning) you’ll need.
  • Is the device compatible with the cable and charger? The cable may support faster data transfer and charging speeds, but the device you are using may not. Luckily, backwards compatibility isn’t an issue.
  • Are charging cables expensive? Cables that meet higher standards are understandably more expensive. If you are simply looking to charge a smartphone, a USB-C (USB 2.0) cable may be more than enough.
  • How long should the cable be? Cable length is an important factor as well. You may want a longer cable, but this will impact data transfer speeds. However, you might need a cable that long enough to keep your phone within reach.
  • What material is used? Plastic cables will likely be cheaper, but these are prone to tearing if the cable is mishandled too much. A double-braided nylon cable might survive longer.

Our recommendations

Anker cables

anker powerline 3

The Anker Powerline III Plus is a USB-IF-certified USB-C to USB-C cable that comes in a convenient six-foot length. If you’re talking speed, the PowerLine III Plus supports 60W Power Delivery charging. Even better, the cable is fiber-wrapped from one end to the other and can endure 35,000 bends and tugs.

Another high-speed cable offering from Anker is the Intel-certified Thunderbolt 3 cable. It tops out at speeds of 100W and rapid 40Gbps data transfer. If there’s a drawback it’s that the Thunderbolt 3 is just 1.6-feet long. The Thunderbolt 3 cable is also backward compatible with previous generations of USB-C chargers.


amazonbasics cable

The retail giant has jumped into the fastest charging cable game in a big way with a variety of options under the AmazonBasics umbrella. You can grab the double-braided USB-C to USB-C cable with maximum data transfer of 10Gbps and charging speeds of up to three amps. You shouldn’t have to worry about breaking the cable either — the ends have been tested to bend 95 degrees up to 2,000 times.

Every option so far has featured a USB-C to USB-C connection. AmazonBasics is ready for those who don’t have a USB-C charging brick by offering a USB-A to USB-C double-braided cable. It’s available in one-foot and three-foot lengths and the cable comes in four different colors. AmazonBasics’ USB-A to USB-C charger matches the 10Gbps transfer speed as well as the three amp charging.

Learn more: Even more fast charging cables worth considering

The best portable solar charging accessories

anker solar charger

Credit: Ankit Banerjee / Android Authority

If you’re going on a hike or a long camping trip, you might want to invest in a solar charger. Granted, camping and hiking are ways to connect with nature and take a break from electronics. But it’s definitely nice to have the option if you want to use GPS tracking, and especially if something bad happens. There are a few things to know before buying a portable solar charger though.

The pros and cons of using solar phone chargers

The biggest advantage of using a solar charger is also the most obvious. As long as it’s a bright day outside, you have a power source at the ready. Solar power is also environmental-friendly and an ever-present renewable source of energy. Finally, solar energy is free, and your only investment is the initial cost of the charger itself.

All that sounds fantastic, but there are many reasons via solar phone chargers aren’t mainstream and are mainly niche products intended for the outdoorsman. Its advantage also works as a con in certain situations. A solar charger needs light to work. While the efficiency of solar panels has increased a lot over the last decade or so, you might see a reduced output on cloudy days, and it won’t work at all at night.

Charging your phone with a solar charger is also extremely slow. You certainly won’t get anywhere close to the fast-charging speeds you might be used to. Instead, be prepared to have your phone plugged in for at least five to six hours, if not longer, if you’re hoping to get a full charge. All said and done, a solar phone charger is great for emergency situations, so that you can keep in touch with people to let them know your location.

What to look for when buying a solar charger?

  • What type of charger is it? You can choose between a direct charger or a battery bank solar charger. The former works by charging the phone when it is plugged in, and the latter lets you store the energy in a power bank and charge the phone when you need it.
  • What is the power output? You have to make sure that the charger is powerful enough to charge your smartphone and other devices. A 10W solar charger is an absolute minimum to consider.
  • How big is it? Since the solar charger is primarily meant for the outdoors, portability is a concern. The bigger the panel and the more number of panels, the more charge you’ll get. But it defeats the purpose if the charger is too big or heavy to carry around.
  • Will it charge my phone? Compatibility is something you should check when you buy any charging accessory. You shouldn’t have a problem charging most smartphones and tablets though.
  • Are there any special features to know about? You should look for a solar charger with auto-restart technology. What this does is automatically start the charging process again even if the activity is interrupted by the passage of a cloud or if you’re in the shade.

Our recommendations

GoalZero Nomad 28 Plus

4 goalzerosolar

Goal Zero’s Nomad 28 Plus charger features an auto-restart ability that knows the difference between a fully charged device and one that has disconnected due to environmental reasons. This charger is also smart enough to optimize the charging output to match the device. There’s an LED indicator on the panel that displays the strength of solar conditions. It also comes with a detachable kickstand that you can use as a natural shade for your charging devices. You can also place devices in the vented pocket that regulates temperature so your device doesn’t overheat while charging.

Anker Portable Solar Charger

anker solar charger

This solar charger from Anker is another great option in the middle price range. Anker’s charger boasts a faster charge for two reasons. First, it has advanced fast-charging technology through PowerIQ; charging speed is up to 2.4A per port or 3A overall under direct sunlight. Second, each solar panel is made up of multiple layers to help increase charging speed. In addition to its compact size, Anker’s solar charger has stainless-steel eye-holes on each corner. This makes it super easy to attach it to a backpack or a tent.

Further reading: More solar chargers worth looking at

Tips to maximize battery life

google pixel 4 xl revisited battery

You can get a handful of charging accessories to make sure that you never have to come face to face with a dying phone battery ever again. However, battery capacity will unfortunately decline with age. You’ll already begin to notice a reduction in battery life after using a phone for a year, and it only gets worse after that.

Luckily there are some charging practices you can adopt that will help maximize the life of the battery and the phone. Here’s a quick summary of what you need to know.

What’s the best way to charge your smartphone?

  • Avoid full cycle (zero-100 percent) charging. Instead, top-up your phone more regularly with partial charges. Ending a charge at 80 percent is better for the battery than topping all the way up to 100 percent. Don’t let the battery drain completely either.
  • Overnight charging is generally a bad idea, and certainly not recommended with fast charging technologies. Using a fast charger also degrades the battery quickly.
  • Heat is the battery killer. Don’t cover your phone when charging and keep it out of hot places. If your phone gets uncomfortably warm while playing games or using the camera, stop what you’re doing and let it cool down.
  • Turn your phone off when charging if you can, and try not to use it even if it’s on. You definitely shouldn’t play games or watch videos, to avoid mini charging cycles.

See also: Charging tips to maximize battery life

Frequently asked questions

Q: Can you bring your charging accessories on a plane?

A: Absolutely. Keep in mind, most regions will not allow you to place lithium batteries in your checked luggage (it’s a fire hazard). If you are going to bring a portable power bank with you on a trip, you’re going to want to bring it via your carry on or personal bag.

Q: Is it okay to leave a power bank or other accessories in the car?

A: It’s generally a good idea to carry all your charging accessories with you when you leave a car. You should definitely not leave power banks and anything with batteries in the car, particularly in a place where it gets really hot.

Q: Can I leave my phone charging overnight?

A: It’s not recommended to leave your phone charging overnight, and definitely a bad idea if your phone and charger come with fast charging capabilities.

Q: Should I fully charge and drain my phone?

A: Fully charging and draining your phone will cause battery degradation and will affect longevity. Smaller, but regular, top-ups are the better way to go.

Q: At what percentage should I charge the phone?

A: To maximize the battery’s life, it’s a good idea to charge the phone up to around 80 percent, and put it back on charge when that drops to around 30.

Q: Can you charge one phone with another?

A: You will not be able to charge one phone with another by simply plugging a charging cable into both phones. Some phones, like the latest flagships from Apple, Samsung, Huawei, and OnePlus, come with a power share feature that uses reverse wireless charging. In this case, the phone serves as a Qi charger for another device, like a phone, smartwatch, or wireless earbuds.

Q: Is overcharging bad for the phone?

A: Continuing to charge your phone after it has reached 100 percent is a recipe for voltage and temperature stress and creates heat. High temperatures make the battery lose capacity far more quickly than if it was at normal temperatures.

Q: Is fast charging not good for the battery?

A: Fast charging is a great way to quickly and easily charge your phone, but continuous use will definitely cause more degradation. For example, Oppo’s 125W fast charging will cause much faster degradation that the company’s super-fast 65W charging.

Q: Can I charge my phone without electricity?

A: You will be able to charge your phone without electricity by using a power bank. However, the power bank will need to be plugged in and charged once it drains completely. If you don’t have a source of electricity at all, a solar phone charger might help. However, these are extremely slow and generally recommended for emergency situations.

Q: Is it okay to leave a charger in a wall unit without a phone plugged in?

A: Leaving a charger plugged in even when it isn’t charging a device will draw some power. This is usually negligible and won’t add a noticeable amount to your electricity bill. However, depending on how many chargers you have, how long they are plugged in, and how much electricity costs where you are, things could start to add up.

Q: Is it okay to charge my phone with a laptop charger and vice versa?

A: Many new laptops come with USB-C chargers, and you could potentially charge your phone with it too. A good phone and charger should ensure that the phone draws exactly how much power it needs. Whether you can use your phone charger to charge your laptop depends on the two devices. Some laptops require a 65W charger, which you’ll only get with devices like the Oppo Find X2 Pro.

Android Authority

Posted in Android NewsComments (0)

Here are the best HBO miniseries

hbo logo

Credit: Warner Media

The HBO cable TV network has been the home for a ton of acclaimed original TV series. However, many HBO miniseries have generated lots of critical and award-winning TV to watch as well. They include looking back at some of the biggest historical events of all time to some hard-hitting crime dramas, and even a look ahead at a possible future. Here are our picks for the best HBO limited series you can stream now.

Read: Best HBO Max shows

We suggest accessing these series via HBO Max, the new streaming service that has all of HBO’s content, plus a lot more. You can sign up for the service at the link below. It costs $ 14.99 a month but you might be able to get the service for free.

Best HBO miniseries

1. Band of Brothers

band of brothers

Credit: Warner Bros

This may be the first great HBO miniseries. Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg, who acted and directed Saving Private Ryan, teamed up again to help produce this World War II series for HBO. It’s a richer look at the American foot soldiers of the war, specifically a team of paratroopers who battle it out in Europe just before, during, and after D-Day. Damian Lewis, Ron Livingston, and Donnie Wahlberg are some of the main cast members, and you will also see some appearances by Friends’ David Schwimmer and even Jimmy Fallon.

2. Catherine The Great

catherine the great

Credit: Warner Bros

Helen Mirren plays the powerful Empress of Russia in this HBO miniseries. The four-part limited series shows her leading the country for over 50 years in the mid-to-late 18th century. Mirren gives a great performance as Catherine, as she rises to become one of the most powerful world leaders of all time.

3. Years and Years

years and years

Credit: HBO-BBC

This series, co-produced with the BBC, first takes place in the very recent past, 2019, as it follows an extended British family. It then moves into the near future, as a highly conservative politician, played by Emma Thompson, rises in the ranks to become the UK Prime Minister. The series shows how her actions, along with rises in technology, influence this British family, with lots of unexpected twists and turns.

4. Chernobyl


Credit: Warner Bros

In April 1986, the nuclear power plant in Chernobyl, located in the Soviet Union, exploded. This acclaimed HBO limited series examines the reasons behind the worst nuclear plant disaster in history. It also covers the fallout, both literally and metaphorically. As tens of thousands of people get evacuated from the immediate area, the Soviet Union tries to cover up the event. The series shows that the government’s lies about the disaster might have helped in the fall of the Soviet Union a few years later.

5. The Plot Against America

Screenshot of The Plot Against America best english TV series On Hotstar

This HBO miniseries is based on the novel from Phillip Roth. It takes place in the United States in 1940, but in an alternate timeline. In this universe, the famed aviator Charles Lindbergh waged a campaign to run for President against Franklin Roosevelt, and eventually wins. The show, which centers mainly on a Jewish family in New Jersey, examines how it deals with Lindbergh’s rule as he slowly turns America into a fascist state. The HBO limited series stars Winona Ryder and John Turturro.

6. From The Earth To The Moon

From the Earth to the Moon

After starring in Apollo 13, Tom Hanks extended his time in space with this 1998 HBO miniseries. This 12-episode series chronicles the history of US space exploration, from the founding of NASA, to the first Apollo missions, all the way to the end with the last manned lunar landing with Apollo 17. Hanks directs the first episode of this series, and wrote or co-wrote several others. There are a ton of well-known actors playing roles in this mini-series, including Tony Goldwyn, Bryan Cranston, Cary Elwes Gary Cole, Sally Field, and many more. It’s perhaps the best TV series to depict the real events of the Apollo space program. 

7. John Adams

john adams

Credit: Warner Bros

Paul Giamatti plays John Adams in this excellent mini-series. It goes into detail about the life of one of the most important, but perhaps one of the most little known, Founding Fathers of the United States. After helping to form the country, Adams is elected as its second President. The mini-series depicts Adams’s life from just before the American Revolution to his death in 1826. 

8. The Night Of

the night of

Credit: Warner Bros

This is a dark, grim, and gritty crime drama set in New York City. A Pakistani-American college student, played by Riz Ahmed, is charged with the murder of a young girl. The series takes a brutal look at the criminal justice system, as we see Ahmed’s character trying to prove his innocence. He’s helped with his attorney, played to perfection by John Turturro. 

9. Sharp Objects

sharp objects

Credit: Warner Bros

Based on the novel by Gillian Flynn, this is another HBO miniseries with a crime and murder theme. Amy Adams plays a newspaper reported in St Louis who returns to her rural hometown. Her stated goal is to report on and look into the unsolved murder of a pre-teen girl, and the disappearance of another girl. in the town. However, she also has to deal with some unresolved family issues of her own.

10. Watchmen


This show has been put on our HBO miniseries list as a bit of a cheat, at least in our eyes. Watchmen is being labeled as an HBO limited series by the cable network itself. However, we are still hopeful that a second season of this show might come down the pike at some point. For now, we are putting this sequel to the classic alternate history-superhero graphic novel on this list. Developed as a sequel to the graphic novel, it is an excellent continuation of the story originally told by writer Alan Moore and artist Dave Gibbons. It also serves as a look at how racism has and continues to be a major problem in the United States.


That’s our look at the best HBO miniseries you can watch right now. Again, you can stream and view them right now via an HBO Max subscription. You can sign up for it at the link below:

Android Authority

Posted in Android NewsComments (0)

Best resources to learn Java – free and paid

Online Java courses

Want to make Android apps? Become a professional developer? Finding the best resources to learn Java online is one of the smartest ways to start.

Java is one of the most useful programming languages for any new developer to learn. Not only is it highly in-demand among employers and larger organizations, but it’s also one of just two official programming languages used for Android development.

Unfortunately, Java is also one of the harder programming languages to pick up. Especially if it’s your first one! Java does a few things that makes it one of the tricker langauges; encouraging an unintuitive object-oriented structure, featuring many rigid syntax requirements, and generally being home to numerous quirks.

Also read: The best free and paid Android app development courses

Don’t let that put you off! Learning Java is a masterclass in programming in itself, and many of those issues end up being useful organizational “features” down the line. The best resources to learn Java are designed to walk even the most green-horned learner through these challenges, and to help turn this mammoth task into a fun, easy project.

With that in mind, you’ll find the best resources to learn Java listed below!

The best resources to learn Java online for free

Android Authority

Android Authority is much more than a website about phones! This site covers every aspect of technology, which includes coding tutorials! Here, you’ll find a wide range of excellent Java tutorials to get you started, as well as specific lessons. Stay tuned too, because lots more is on the way. So you’re already on one of the best resources to learn Java… who knew!

Start here:


The clue is very much in the name! LearnJavaOnline.org is the selection of tutorials put together by Oracle: the company that owns Java. That means you can rest assured it will be accurate and up-to-date.

The sequences of courses is also rather comprehensive and well structured. These tutorials cover all of the basics and offer an excellent foundation. That said, the lessons are rather dry and text-heavy, so you may find this a somewhat dense introduction to the language. As the official option, this is definitely one of the best resources to learn Java online for free.

Best resources to learn Java


Never underestimate what you can learn from YouTube. The juggernaut video-upload site has endless tutorials focussing on Java, ranging from general overviews to highly specific tips and tricks. For those looking for a quick introduction, “Learn Java in 14 Minutes” from Alex Lee is an excellent option that touches on the basics.

For something a little more intensive “Java in 9 hours” from freeCodeCamp.org is ever-so-slightly more comprehensive. There’s something for everyone, though of course, the quality varies from one creator to the next!


TutorialsPoint is a site that’s filled with comprehensive tutorials, including an in-depth guide to Java. The course is a little bare-bones in terms of presentation, but once again walks you through all of the basics that you might need to know.


Codecademy has a paid “Pro” membership option, but offers a lot of hands-on tutorials completely free. That includes a four hour Java tutorial that should help you learn the basics.

The best-paid resources to learn Java

Introduction to Android app development

Introduction to Android app development from DGiT Academy is a course led by our very own Gary Sims. As you might have guessed, this course is geared primarily toward Android development. If that’s what you’re learning Java for, then this is a big advantage!

Java resources

But what makes this a great option for anyone, is that the bundle actually includes an in-depth introduction to Java as well. You’ll get two in-depth courses for the price of one, delivered in a way that’s easy and fun to follow along with. Whether you’re learning for fun, or to advance your career, this is definitely one of the best resources to learn Java online.

The Complete Java Bundle

The Complete Java Bundle is a comprehensive, 58-hour, 360-lesson Java course aimed at beginners. This course covers everything from the most basic fundamentals, all the way up to expert tips and techniques. While some of the individual classes are getting a little long-in-the-tooth, the concepts you’ll learn here are timeless and it’s still a fantastic starting point for new learners.

The course represents a truly “complete” education in Java and costs just $ 39 for Android Authority readers. That’s a saving of 96% on the usual $ 989 price tag, so don’t miss this opportunity!

The 2020 Java Bootcamp Bundle

The 2020 Java Bootcamp Bundle is a modern and up-to-date selection of Java courses, covering all the major topics you need to know. You’ll learn basic structure and syntax, Java objects, flow control, arrays, and more. By the end, you’ll have a firm grasp on the language and feel confident to begin working on your projects.

Once again, Android Authority readers can get a huge 96% discount if they act now, netting the entire bundle for just $ 35.99.

All-Level Java Programming Bundle

For just $ 19 (for Android Authority readers), this all-level Java programming bundle represents not only one of the best resources to learn Java, but also one of the most affordable. The bundle is designed to appeal to both beginners and advanced-level programmers and can, therefore, provide a complete education, all in one place.


Skillshare is a fantastic resource for learning anything. This is a platform where teachers can upload their lessons for users to watch. Those teachers create the videos themselves for the community, meaning that there is a mixed bag of quality. But what’s also true, is that there is some very good stuff here. And as you’ll only pay a fixed yearly fee for membership, it’s actually very good value!

Many of these classes even contain extra materials and community discussion to help you take your learning further.


While the web is packed with many of the best resources for learning Java, you shouldn’t forget about the old-fashioned option: books!

Learn Java

Learning Java from books is a brilliant strategy, as it gives you a reference you can refer to while coding and lets your eyes take a break from staring at screens! I learned the basics of Java from the now-outdated Beginning Programming With Java for Dummies but there are many modern equivalents to sink your teeth into. Depending on your preferred learning style, you might just find that a book is the best resource to learn Java for you!

My advice is not to attempt to read an entire book on Java and then expect to “know” Java. Instead, read the first few chapters to try and understand the basics, then start building something simple. You’ll find you need to refer back to the book as you forget syntax and statements, or as you try and do things you haven’t learned yet. This is the best way to learn, as it structures the process and gives you an end goal to strive toward.

You can learn more top tips for learning to code here.

Android Authority

Posted in Android NewsComments (0)

5 best Korean to English dictionaries and phrasebooks for Android!

Simply Learn Korean Korean to English dictionaries and phrasebooks for Android
Korean isn’t the most popular language in the world. However, it’s no less beautiful than Japanese, Chinese, or any other Asian language. People mostly use phrasebooks and dictionaries from the airport bookstore for this kind of stuff. However, there are mobile apps that do the same thing. They also cost less and you have your smartphone on you most of the time anyway. We can help you find some excellent stuff for your next trip to (probably) South Korea. Here are the best Korean to English dictionaries and phrasebooks for Android!

Credit: Joe Hindy/ Android Authority
  1. Dictionary Linguee
  2. Google Play Books
  3. Google Translate
  4. Learn Korean Phrases
  5. Any Korean learning app (link to Simply Learn Korean)

Dictionary Linguee

Price: Free

Dictionary Linguee is a powerful multilingual dictionary. It supports dozens of languages and that includes Korean. The app features cross-language translation, definitions, pronunciations, and more. You also get offline support if you need it. This is especially excellent since Korea, Japan, and China are all next to each other. This app supports all three languages. That makes it a great option for travelers looking for Korean to English dictionaries. It’s also free as far as we can tell with no ads or in-app purchases. The user interface is also fairly clean and easy.

Google Play Books (and similar apps)

Price: Free / Book prices vary

You can still buy old school phrasebooks and dictionaries in ebook format. Google Play Books (and Amazon Kindle, along with similar apps) has a bunch of them. Most of them are fairly competent and cost less than $ 10. They won’t get destroyed if you get them wet like old school phrasebooks. Plus, most ebook apps feature downloads for offline use and syncing between devices. That is especially helpful if you have a family account on Google. You buy the book once and your family can share it on their devices. The Suvrival Korean series by Stephen Revere is a good place to start.

Google Play Books screenshot 2019 Final

Google Translate

Price: Free

Google Translate is probably our first recommendation for this kind of stuff. It translates 103 languages online (via typing) and 59 languages offline. The app also features a camera mode where you can translate anything you can point a camera app. It also comes with a two-way conversation mode, definitions, and a phrasebook built-in. There really isn’t anything wrong with this app and has all of the features that travelers and vacationers need. It’s a top notch app and it’s also free with no in-app purchases or ads. Microsoft Translate is also quite good if you want something a little bit different.

google translate best english to korean dictionaries for android

Learn Korean Phrases

Price: Free / Up to $ 4.99

Learn Korean Phrases is a fairly standard phrasebook for Korean. It features a bunch of useful phrases, spellings, and translations. Additionally, you get a full offline mode, a keyword search, and even customizable font sizes for you older or otherwise visually impaired folks. There are also audio pronunciations as well. This works better as a phrasebook than a dictionary. The ads are also fairly horrible. We recommend springing for the full version with no ads if you like it.

Learn Korean Phrases - best korean to english dictionaries

Any Korean learning app

Price: Free / Varies

Most Korean learning apps have phrasebooks and dictionaries. It’s a bit of a roundabout way of getting them, but they are there. Rosetta Stone, Duolingo, Memrise, Language Drops, and several others have all of this information. They are decidedly more expensive than a simple phrasebook or dictionary. However, they also actually teach you the language instead of just a few phrases. It may not be the best idea for the occasional trip or vacation. However, those with more than a passing interesting can try one of these solutions. We have the full best list linked up under the first paragraph.

Simply Learn Korean - best korean to english dictionaries for android

If we missed any great Korean to English dictionaries or phrasebooks, tell us about them in the comments! You can also click here to check out our latest Android app and game lists!

Android Authority

Posted in Android NewsComments (0)

Best of Android: Mid-2020 Reader’s Choice – cast your vote now!

Best of Android Mid 2020 Readers Choice

Update, July 21: We have our final four! Hit the links below to narrow your final four down to our head-to-head finalists!

When it comes to determining the very best of Android, who better to decide than the most engaged audience in tech – you! We’ve spent weeks testing, re-testing, confirming, blind checking, ranking, and voting on our overall Editor’s Choice winner for Best of Android: Mid-2020, but now it’s your turn. Best of Android: Mid-2020 Reader’s Choice voting starts now!

Related: Considering buying our Editor’s Choice winner?

How it works

If you’re a regular at Android Authority you’ll be pretty familiar with how this all goes down. We keep the Reader’s Choice voting open for a week and will report your winner on the site next weekend.

We start by culling the general finalists’ list down (our finalists were those devices that placed anywhere in the top ten of one of our objective testing categories). This step takes place here, in this very article. We’ll keep voting open for a couple of days, then extract our top four.

Best of Android: Mid-2020 Reader’s Choice voting starts now!

We take the top four and expand our voting to include our social media channels to settle on your ultimate pick for Reader’s Choice. If you’re wondering why we do it this way, it’s because our social platforms don’t allow us to have polls with a dozen options. So we start with YouTube and Twitter, then switch to Instagram and Facebook for the very final vote. We’ll add all the links you need to this post as the week progresses so you never miss a chance to vote for your favorite at each stage.

If you need a recap of the category winners or our Editor’s Choice winner, check out the video below or the site links underneath.

One last reminder that eligibility in Best of Android: Mid-2020 was restricted to devices that hit shelves before June 30, 2020, which is why the Sony Xperia 1 II, Asus ROG Phone 3, OnePlus Nord, and others don’t appear in the list below. You’ll be able to vote for them in our full-year Best of Android awards.

Vote on your final four!

Our readers have voted and successfully whittled our finalists down to your top four. In no particular order, they are:

  • Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra
  • Oppo Find X2 Pro
  • OnePlus 8 Pro
  • Samsung Galaxy S20 Plus

To vote for your favorite, hit our polls on YouTube and Twitter and stay tuned for the final showdown in a couple of days!

Revisit the Best of Android: Mid-2020 awards for each objective category:

Android Authority

Posted in Android NewsComments (0)

Best of Android is back for a 2020 mid-year showdown, and more tech news today

Your tech news digest, by way of the DGiT Daily tech newsletter, for Monday, July 13.

1. The Best of Android: Mid-2020 is here!

My colleagues at Android Authority have been toiling away in the lab and behind the scenes seeking to bring you a guide to the best Android phones of 2020, in a mid-year review.

Previously a once-a-year-winners list, the new mid-year guide looks at all phones released in 2020 thus far, by “removing any uncertainty by subjecting the best smartphones of today to a battery of unique tests that can definitively separate the real deal from the hype machine.”

And there’s more to the story this time around:

  • By now, most people understand that the overall experience they get from their phone is more than megapixel count, battery size, or how fast it charges.
  • In 2020, we all know that phones are better than ever, but the intangibles around value, software stability, after-sales service, mainstream availability, are equally important. If you can’t buy it, it’s not much good sitting on the top step of a podium.
  • And this time around, the data results haven’t been framed by third-party benchmarking tools, which can lead to clever tricks or cheating by maker. Instead, all of the performance and battery data used in Best of Android: Mid-2020 has been sourced from a custom version of Speed Test G, cooked up by Gary Sims himself.

The details cover lots of ground, offering a look at all key aspects of a phone. Here’s how it’ll shake out:

  • Sunday: Best of Android: Mid-2020 — Audio (live now)
  • Monday: Best of Android: Mid-2020 — Display (later today)
  • Tuesday: Best of Android: Mid-2020 — Battery
  • Wednesday: Best of Android: Mid-2020 — Performance
  • Thursday: Best of Android: Mid-2020 — Camera
  • Friday: Best of Android: Mid-2020 — Value
  • Saturday: Best of Android: Mid-2020 overall winner (Editor’s Choice)
  • Sunday: Voting starts for the Best of Android: Mid-2020 Reader’s Choice winner.

  • Sunday’s Audio award went to the LG V60 (above), thanks to its headphone jack and 32-bit Quad DAC which impressively powers just about any headphones you might have, all the way to low impedance headphones.
  • Without getting too far into audiophile territory, with improving support for better codecs, aptX, HD/LDAC support, and even FLAC decoding, surprisingly decent audio quality is becoming more common.
  • The overall takeout: audio quality is better than it ever has been for most smartphones.

Display: As I write, the Display category winner has just been revealed.

  • Display tests for clarity, color accuracy, gamma, and quality revealed that OLED devices still rule the roost, with not a single LCD in the top-ranks.
  • Top three? The OnePlus 8 Pro, 2020 Galaxy S20, S20 Plus, and S20 Ultra flagships, and the Huawei P40 the top three.

2. Somehow, 125W charging is coming this week. The idea is you’ll be able to get to 100% charge in 15 minutes, which is crazy. Very interested in how the battery chemistry can handle the heat generated, and how this affects the overall lifespan (Android Authority). Also, there’s a demonstration of 120W charging from iQoo (beware the audio is super loud).

3. You told us: Even with smart TVs, you’re mostly using streaming dongles (Android Authority).

4. Lenovo Yoga X: an Android tablet that can also be a second screen? (Android Authority).

5. One of the shocks on Friday was that Amazon had banned TikTok from phones accessing Amazon email accounts for security reasons. Within hours, though, Amazon issued a retraction and said the whole thing was in error. I’ve talked to a bunch of people who only saw the original headline and assumed it’s still true. Which it isn’t. For now. (The Verge).

6. Google has announced a $ 10 billion ‘Google for India Digitization Fund’ to help accelerate India’s digital economy (blog.google). On that note: Digital payment transactions in India reached an all-time high in June, as people avoid handling banknotes amid the coronavirus pandemic (Bloomberg).

7. Here’s a website that allows you to experience what it is like to live with dyslexia (geon.github.io)

8. The four biggest announcements from Ubisoft’s not-E3 event: FarCry 6, Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, more (The Verge). Also: Three Ubisoft executives leave amid misconduct allegations (Engadget).

9. Why is this copy of Super Mario Bros. worth a record $ 114,000? (Ars Technica).

10. How to trick your brain to remember almost anything (Wired).

Dgit Daily is powered by our sister site dgit.com

Visit dgit Daily

A tech subscription worth reading.

Sign up for daily digests of the tech content most relevant to you.
By signing up, you agree to our Privacy Policy and European users agree to the data transfer policy.

The DGiT Daily delivers a daily email that keeps you ahead of the curve for all tech news, opinions, and links to what’s going down in the planet’s most important field. You get all the context and insight you need, and all with a touch of fun. Plus! Rotating daily fun for each day of the week, like Wednesday Weirdness. Join in!

Android Authority

Posted in Android NewsComments (0)

Best Samsung Galaxy deals: Save $200 on the entire S20 line

Samsung logo Galaxy S20 3

Credit: Robert Triggs / Android Authority

The Samsung Galaxy S20 is currently the newest member of the Samsung flagship family, and there are already tons of discounts available for it. If you don’t mind going with a slightly older flagship, you can save even more on older models. We’ve gone ahead and rounded up the best Samsung Galaxy deals around, going all the way back to the Galaxy S8.

Whether you’re on the hunt for the most premium devices, the more budget-friendly A and J series, or the still-powerful Galaxy S10 family, you’ve come to the right place. We’ll keep updating the deals as better sales come along or old ones end.

Best Samsung Galaxy deals:

Editor’s note: We’ll be updating this list of the best Samsung Galaxy deals regularly as new one are announced.

1. Samsung Galaxy S20 deals

If you’re looking for the absolute latest and greatest, you’ll probably find yourself drawn to the Galaxy S20 series. Whether you want the incredible 100x zoom of the S20 Ultra or the latest Qualcomm SoC that powers the entire line, look no further.

See also: The Samsung Galaxy S20 buyer’s guide

The Galaxy S20 Ultra is one of the most powerful phones you can get, but its price tag matches the specs. You can also grab the S20 or the S20 Plus, depending on how much screen real estate you want.

Here are the best unlocked Galaxy S20 deals around right now.

Samsung Galaxy S20

$ 799 .99 Save $ 200 .00

Buy it Now

Samsung Galaxy S20 Plus

$ 999 .99 Save $ 200 .00

Buy it Now

Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra

$ 1199 .99 Save $ 200 .00

Buy it Now

If you don’t mind the international version of the Galaxy S20 Plus, then you can save even more from a reputable eBay seller via the link below. The trade-off in getting this version of this phone is that it runs the Exynos 990 processor rather than the Snapdragon 865. It also won’t be compatible with CDMA carriers, and may not be subject to a US warranty.

Samsung Galaxy S20 Plus 8GB Ram, 128GB Storage
This is the international version of the Galaxy S20 Plus with the Exynos 990 processor rather than the Snapdragon 865. It’s factory unlocked for GSM networks, but won’t be compatible with CDMA carriers like Verizon, Sprint, or Boost.

You can also save up to $ 500 on any of the S20 phones with an eligible trade-in.

If you don’t mind committing to a contract, you can also check out these Verizon and Sprint deals:

  • Save up to $ 700 at Verizon with an eligible trade-in.
  • Start a Sprint Flex Lease and get the S20 for $ 15 per month, the S20 Plus for $ 20 per month, or the S20 Ultra for $ 25 per month.

 2. Galaxy Z Flip deals

Remember the good old days of flip phones? Those days are back. Samsung recently introduced the Galaxy Z Flip to compete with the Motorola Razr among others, and now you can save money and experience the hype. If you want to turn heads when you whip out your phone, the Z Flip is the one for you. You just may have to be careful how rough you are with the folding screen.

There aren’t many deals around for the Z Flip at the moment, but you can get the unlocked version from Samsung and save $ 500 with an eligible trade-in.

Samsung Galaxy Z Flip
Relive your flip phone nostalgia in a whole new way with the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip. Experience a folding screen and be the envy of those around you.

Read our review if you want to learn more.

 3. Samsung Galaxy S10 deals

If you want a phone that still packs a punch but may not have the latest specs anymore, the Samsung Galaxy S10 should be right up your alley. It was Samsung’s first line to feature punch-hole cameras across the board and run on the Samsung One UI skin.

You can also take your pick from the budget-friendly Galaxy S10e, the standard Galaxy S10, and the larger Galaxy S10 Plus. Big savings on unlocked versions of these phones have dried up a bit recently, but you can find deals here and there.

For example, the Galaxy S10 is available on Amazon for $ 599.99 ($ 150 off). It’s worth checking the S10 Plus and S10e deals on Amazon regularly too, as prices can drop significantly at any time.

You can also trade your current device back to Samsung and save money. Check out these links:

If you’re devoted to one carrier, you can also grab the following deals from Verizon and Sprint:

Check out our review here if you have more questions.

 4. Samsung Galaxy Note deals

The Samsung Galaxy Note has become synonymous with the term phablet. The massive screen, the integrated S-Pen, and the sharp rectangular shape are all trademark features of the line. Picking up a Galaxy Note is an obvious choice if you want the biggest device on the block or you make notes on your phone constantly.

Samsung’s Galaxy Note 10 is the latest offering in the line, but you can also grab the Note 9 with a couple of refurbished deals too. The unlocked versions are available at the widgets here:

Samsung Galaxy Note 10

Galaxy Note 10 Plus

You can trade your device back to Samsung to save money with these links:

You can also save a nice chunk of change with a Sprint Flex Lease:

 5. Galaxy S9 deals

Samsung Galaxy S9 smartphone in sunrise gold in a person's hand.

If you don’t need the newest devices or you’re on a limited budget, you can still pick up a renewed Samsung Galaxy S9. It still features a Snapdragon 845 chip and runs Android 10, but you only have one rear camera to work with. Just like Samsung’s other offerings, you can choose from the standard size or the Plus depending on what you prefer.

Your only option to grab the Galaxy S9 brand new at this point is Amazon, but there are plenty of choices if you want a renewed unit. Check out both options below.

Samsung Galaxy S9

Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus

You can also read our review as always.

 6. Galaxy S8 deals

You can still grab the Galaxy S8 if you want to, but it might be just for the sake of nostalgia. The Galaxy S8 marked Samsung’s introduction of the Infinity Display and shipped with Android 7.0 Nougat on board. It also features a 3,000mAh battery and 64GB of storage which may still be enough for the Google Pixel 4 but is comparatively small when stacked against newer Galaxy devices.

It’s probably unheard of to find a brand-new Galaxy S8 at this point, but you can grab a renewed one from the widgets below.

Samsung Galaxy S8

Samsung Galaxy S8 Plus
Experience the first phone with an Infinity screen. The display stretches from edge to edge, giving you the most screen in the smallest space. You can also use iris scanning to protect your information for your eyes only.

 7. Samsung Galaxy A and J deals

Samsung Pay Galaxy A70 home page.

Samsung may offer the Galaxy S line as its flagship, but you can also check out the Galaxy A and Galaxy J lines if you’re on a very limited budget. Both lines take a step back in terms of processors, offering Snapdragon 600 series and Samsung’s Exynos chips. The Galaxy A series is more of a midrange line, offering teardrop notches and smaller bezels while the J2 Dash is a bit more basic.

Here are a few of the best deals you can get on these phones:

Now that you’ve hopefully taken your pick of the Samsung Galaxy deals, here are a few more resources that might be helpful:

Android Authority

Posted in Android NewsComments (0)

Related Sites

Powered by WP Robot