Bluetooth Speaker Packed Full of Features on the Cheap

It’s no bank-breaking accessory for a smartphone or tablet, but one that I at least could not do without.
It’s loud, and sounds great; great-quality while loud, and has a solid-built quality touch to it- And it’s the iHome iBT16 mini Bluetooth speaker.

You can play audio using different connection methods with this speaker- and I’m going to go over them in this overview because everything else that needs to be said about the speaker, is all stated in the first two short sentences the begin this review, which earn it my 5/5 star rating.

iHome Bluetooth Rechargeable Mini Speaker Cube - Purple (iBT16UC)

iHome Bluetooth Rechargeable Mini Speaker Cube – Purple (iBT16UC)

Let’s start off with the coolest method of connecting; using NFC. My Samsung Galaxy Note 3 has NFC capabilities, as do many other phones and tablets. NFC (Near Field Communication) can be used for lots of other things, but in this case it’s basically just a shortcut to connecting to the speaker by pairing your phone to the speaker using Bluetooth. You can use NFC by holding the phone over the speaker for just 3-5 seconds. Then obviously there is just the Bluetooth connection method.

There is an AUX port so you can plug anything into its 3.5mm jack, and it’s bi-directional.
This is understated but importantly awesome!
Examples: Smartphone plugged into AUX port on speaker using a basic male-to-male 3.5mm cable plays whats on the phone; -AUX audio-in. But when I have my phone paired through Bluetooth to this speaker, I can then connect this speaker to my stereo with a 3.5mm to RCA (red & white) audio cable. So now it plays through this speaker but also through my home audio speaker system; -AUX audio-out.

The cable it comes with, 3.5mm and USB jacks on one side, and a micro USB jack on the other, adds another audio playback method. Plug the cable into your computer, laptop, etc, using the 3.5mm (headphone jack) and the USB to a free port, then the micro USB jack into the speaker and it not only charges it but plays audio from your computer through the speaker.

This all might not sound amazing but you’ve got at least 5 ways to connect, utilize, and/or get your music playing through this. NFC, Bluetooth, AUX-in, AUX-out, micro USB (When using the provided headphone jack and USB cable).

Favorite Feature: using the NFC to easily and quickly pair my phone and it’s Bluetooth to the speaker.

Best Utilization: This basically can and will make anything you have (older care stereo, home theater system, any stereo, or anything that can play audio and audio out to a 3.5mm jack) a wireless reviver. I plug this into my ancient, but great, TEAC receiver -and now its a wireless AND Bluetooth capable stereo system, with this as one extra little speaker!

What iHome has to say about their iBT16:

Rock with the Block | Bring the party where ever you go with the iBT16 mini Bluetooth speaker. Stream wireless digital audio via Bluetooth from your iPhone, iPad, Android, Blackberry and other Bluetooth-enabled devices. The iBT16 also has an aux line-in jack, as well as a line-out jack for an expandable audio experience.

Bluetooth

  • Bluetooth wireless audio

    Wirelessly connect your Bluetooth-enabled phone, iPad, PDA or computer

Rechargeable Battery

  • Built-in rechargeable battery

    Long-lasting internal lithium ion battery gives speakers plenty of power up to 8 hrs. (Initial charge 3-5 hrs.)

Sound Beyond Size

  • Single speaker

    Specially designed high-end driver delivers astounding clarity, depth and power in single speaker

  • Supplied cable for charging speakers and connecting to audio source

    2 -in-1 cable has a USB plug for charging speaker and audio plugs for connecting to audio source so you can charge speaker while listening

  • Aux line out jack to connect additional speaker

    Use single speaker for mono sound, or connect multiple speakers for a “wall of sound”

  • NOTE

    *NOTE: Additional cable required if using two speakers.

Additional

  • Durable rubberized cabinet finish
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App and hardware review: ‘Klick’

I love my gadgets, smartphones, tablets, laptops, etc, are great, v but the cheap little things that are unusual are what get me excited. So in comes Klick.

Klick is a 3.5mm ‘dust cap’ plug for your smartphone or tablet’s headphone jack, and works in conjunction with an app for Android.

Now, there are a few others, iKey, KeyCut, Quick Button (more listed below with Amazon links) and the most expensive, Pressy.

Pressy is almost $30 on Amazon and seems to have done clout since need the registration key from the product packaging to activate and even use the app.

Meaning it’s not cross compatible with other plugs even though they’re all basically the same hardware. However, the reviews are still around 2.5 of 5 stars with the same complaint of the item just not working.

Here is what it says about Klick on the app store, after translating it to English:

Quick button forAndroid devices is a smart shortcuts, just plug it into the headphone jack, you can quickly start favorite functions via the default gestures. Powerful, compact. To provide users with fast, free interactive experience. Try their hands smartphone. If you want to use a feature, you need to wake up the phone -> to unlock the phone -> to find the appropriate application -> click to open the Applications -> find the function you need. Complicated the whole process rather than directly, such inefficiencies have been far unable to meet the needs of people use mobile phones speed up. Fast button is also based on this consideration, giving a physical smart phone keys, from optimizing the completion of the fundamental human-computer interaction, and that the proceeds are simple and direct, fast intelligent thought.

The review, well, is short. Klick is great, that’s because my hardware works, but seems many people are receiving non working units, and generic knock offs.

www.helloklick.com/

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Posted from WordPress for Android on my Samsung Galaxy Note 3

Amazon Appstore for Android – 31 Free Apps worth $100+ Right Now!

..Nope; no ‘Free App of The Day’… but how about 31 apps, free (retail $100+), for two days?

If you use an android device, you SHOULD know about the amazon app store. If you don’t know, Amazon Appstore for Android is awesome, but don’t look for it in the play store, its not available from Google’s play store, go to amazon.com/appstore and follow the steps

It’s convenient cuz its tied to your already existing amazon account; but that’s not the point, the best is the featured ‘Free App of the Day’, and randomly; on special occasions, and/or on holidays they do some crazy sh*t.

Today through tomorrow; Saturday, June 28th, they have a selection of Android apps ranging from games, utilities, and more, worth over $100 buckaroos all free; already on my phones and tablet ;] check it out: bit.ly/amazon-apps-100-offer

App developers need to slow down and think thoroughly! (MightyText)

So.. It was getting better, became great, and now it’s getting away from even being good. MightyText is what I’m on about; the ‘SMS Text Messaging ↔PC Texting’ solution that I personally use on my Androids¹ and computers. Reason why is because it’s getting away from it’s roots; an app to send and receive messages, txt & mms, for convenience and so you don’t miss a message, or even phone call (notification) for that matter. In addition to the android app, you use a PC side client; chrome extension, chrome web app, or just www.mightytext.net.

Now, the app’s doing the usual ‘popular app’ metamorphosis; that is- premium/add-ons/upgrades that are numerous, overly-annoying, and/or used to be free within the app originally. The worse mutation that these fast-popularizing apps fall into is actually a fall out; -of their category that is. The line, and ease of a one-sentence app description, is becoming more blurry. The developer dips the app’s toes into other aspects that may seem to follow it’s natural evolution; but shouldn’t. Some of these are okay I guess, add more functionality (duh).

Additions usually mean bloating the app up, debuting features you won’t use, and adding ads. More features are good; no I mean ‘Great’ right? Not always; for instance: MightyText added a web (PC) side phone dialer… Why? Not like it’s a VoIP (Voice over IP [making phone calls over WiFi with no need of mobile service) And I’d have to be near my phone to pick it up anyway after dialing the..- never mind, ..because it’s just really that stupid.

Ads can be annoying, especially if they’re not tailored to your interests. And I understand ads; that’s why I love Google …anything-all Google products; because everything is free (well almost everything) because it’s all driven by Google’s Ad Mob (and information gathering of user’s personal information.. but shh about that). But Ads become a problem in any app when the annoyances are based on.. well, having ads that are numerous and overly ‘all-up-in-your-face’.

As I mentioned above about the worst aspect of the blurring of the line. Everything wants to be everything to everyone every time. But, like MightText, lots, most, started out as a developer’s solution to a particular niche. MightyText is unfortunately following suit; you have a messages category, perfect! Not, 3 different views, that are all heavy, and include contact photos, buttons to invite to use the MightText service, call the contact, refresh the conversation thread, and delete the thread.. -all on every single individual thread (as viewed in the ‘Power View’). You can also view your contacts and their info.

The worst of the worst examples are easily found in the MightyText app. They include these specific in-app functions; first is the ‘Phone’ tab with the dialer I mentioned earlier. From here you can also send files to your phone, here is a key example of bloating up an app and adding SH*T we don’t. We already have apps specifically for that function, and they’re most likely better since, ..they’re original development for that purpose.

But the [smelly] ‘gold star’ goes to the ‘Photo/Videos’ tab. Oh dear lord, oh I mean OMG. Anyway, but really? Really? This actually started out as an addition to view the pics you received in messages, and that made since with the app’s original purpose. But crap, now.. well they tell it easy themselves..

Recent picture messages (MMS) sent to your phone are below. You can also see photos & videos that you take on your phone here, and easily share them or do some cool photo editing…

Stop it, that’s what Google Photo’s, Google’s + (plus) service already does. An it’s already implemented, of course you can opt-out, but it backs up your photos/videos and lets you ‘easily share them or do some cool photo editing’ 😉 already. Not to mention that i know where Google puts them, well not really, but they’re in my Google account cloud, available in Drive, Photos, Plus, and upload to YouTube, etc…

App developers; slow down, think thoroughly, developed accordingly, and behave yourself. As for MightyText, you’ve gone over (not above [and beyond]) that blurry line and incredibly made it easier to put into focus. ..;not a good thing. This Android power user, not referring to your stupid view in your web app, will indeed continue to use the MightText. It’s bloated and not optimized for how fat it really is, but for now, it can still just barley fit in it’s own pants.

-by Kevin Seeger, www.kevinseeger.info

My current Android devices (from Android¹ above)

  1. Samsung Galaxy S III 32GB “Pearl White” on Verizon Wireless (Rooted and currently running the newest Paranoid Android Rom 4.4-RC1-4.4.3 KitKat)
  2. Samsung Galaxy S III 16GB “Pebble Blue” on Verizon Wireless (Stock, and currently running the newest OTA update 4.3 KitKat) [not active-wifi only]
  3. Samsung Google Nexus 10 (Rooted, and currently running the newest Paranoid Android Rom 4.4-RC1-4.4.3 KitKat)
  4. HTC DROID Incredible (Rooted, old; yes i know; but with the right Roms, Kernals, etc.. perfect for multi-device use as a remote, relayer for notifications and others, and even more)
  5. HTC DROID Eris (Rooted, old as SH*T right!? but it’s fun for me with developers’ Roms, Kernals, etc.. to push it as far as it shouldn’t go)

Picking a new Android smartphone; has it become too much work?

HTC Okay, so.., OMG, I’m either getting old or things are as complicated as i thought they were getting; i want another android device to add to my collection, replace and use as my main phone  – voice/text/chat – but of course i want ‘the best’, the best just means of right now but also doesn’t cost $4,000 dollars 🙂 You know what I mean.

 

SAMSUNGMy phone right now is the Verizon galaxy S3, rooted with CyanogenMod 11, and I’ve been loving it, while starting the process of picking a new phone, I kinda decided against the S5, i don’t know why, seems too much like what I’ve got but with a bigger screen? -I know; that is way, over-simplifying it.. but I want different features like the speakers on the One, that’s cool -and anyway, I loved HTC way back from the Eris, to the Incredible.

So how come there are so many different versions of [any phone] the HTC One? …and not differently-named but same-versions for whatever specific carrier,. -Verizon has like 3 or 4 variations of the One if I’m not mistaken, and,… here’s the kicker, why i even bothered to write this, is that,… They are all super-vary-similarly spec’ed out, ugh..

Now.. I don’t even know how to word my question, basically, what’s you’re opinion, recommendation, reviews, or comments, or just a quick ‘anything’ response; help me out.. ;]

Please respond, comment, add opinions below, or on Twitter @KevinSeeger, on Google Plus +KevinSeeger, even on Facebook @KevinSeegerChico

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Facebook Chat Gone! (from mobile) [soon] – Messenger

Want To Facebook Chat On Mobile? Now You’ll Need Facebook Messenger

Facebook is furthering it’s multi-app strategy by requiring all users to install Facebook Messenger in order to chat on mobile.

A Facebook spokesperson confirmed to ReadWrite that users will start seeing notifications today describing the transition. Facebook mobile users will receive several notices before the change is fully implemented on both iOS and Android.

Facebook is eliminating messaging from the main Facebook mobile application because it is slow and doesn’t deliver the best messaging experience, according to the company.

This news was apparently a long time coming, however. Complaints as far back as fall 2013 call out Facebook’s unwanted attempts to force people to use Messenger.

Google (April Fools?) adds to Chrome & Maps apps

In the Android edition of Chrome app you’ll see this in the top of the menu:

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Which will use Google Translate to.. ‘translate’ to:

Before

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After

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And then it gets weirder…

Open the Android Google Maps app and find pokemon? Here…

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