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LG announce L Fino and L Bello mid-range phones

Thursday, August 21st, 2014

This week LG added a couple new mid-range phones to their arsenal, the L Fino and the L Bello. The phones, which are set to be announced formally at IFA 2014 in Berlin, are intended as “first smartphones” for teenagers or those in emerging markets. They include some features which have proved popular on the LG G3, such as rear-mounted buttons and minimal front bezels. Some software elements have also made it over, most notably the “Knock Code” feature that allows you to unlock the phone by tapping your pattern on the screen, forgoing the need to tap the rear-mounted buttons to wake the phone.

In terms of specifications, both phones are pretty reasonable. The Fino is the smaller and less powerful of the two, with a 4.5-inch 480×800 display, 1.2GHz quad-core processor and 4 GB of internal storage. The Bello is marginally better equipped, with a 5-inch 480×854 screen, 1.3GHz quad-core processor and 8 GB of internal storage. Both phones share 1 GB of RAM, 8-megapixel rear-facing cameras, 3G connectivity and Android 4.4.2 on board.

The phones look to be well-supported with accessories as well. QuickCircle cases, like those for the LG G3, will be available. If you’re not familiar with them, these are flip cases with a circular window cut into the front cover. The window allows you to touch and control the screen beneath, as well as let you read status and notifications without needing to open the cover. You can see the time, answer or reject calls, and even run QuickCircle-specific games in the window. We’ll have more details on both LG L Fino and LG L Bello accessories and their availability in the days to come.

What do you think of the LG L Fino and L Bello? Let us know in the comments below. You can also reach us on Twitter @mobilefun. Thanks for checking out the article and have a good weekend!

Official HTC One E8 cases coming soon to Mobile Fun

Thursday, August 21st, 2014

The HTC One E8 is a cut-price plastic version of the highly regarded One M8, offering the same powerful specifications in a less expensive package. The phone is expected to be released in Europe later this year, and we’re already preparing accessories. Today we’re announcing two official cases will be available at Mobile Fun, so let’s take a look.

Official One E8 Dot View Case

Official HTC One E8 Dot View Case - Orange Popsicle    Official HTC One E8 Dot View Case - Grey

The first case is the Dot View Case that captured so much critical and public attention upon the debut of the One M8 earlier this year. The case’s key feature is its front cover, which is ventilated with dozens of tiny dots. The screen can shine through these, showing the time and notifications like incoming calls, alarms and low battery warnings.

Official HTC One M8 Dot View Case - Grey

It’s makes for a beautiful retro-style effect, and it’s practical as well as it removes the need to open your case every time you get a notification. The One E8 Dot View cases will be available in four colours to start for the One E8: orange popsicle, grey, imperial blue and baton rouge.

Official One E8 Flip Cover

Official HTC One E8 Flip Case - White    Official HTC One E8 Flip Case - Grey

If you’re not fussed about getting your notifications on your cover or you’d prefer a more affordable cover, then you can opt for the official flip cover. This is made from a nice synthetic material, with a flip cover that protects the screen from damage. As with the Dot View Case, you’ll find there are four colours available: white, grey, pink and red.

Conclusion

So there you have it. We’ll have many more One E8 cases and One E8 accessories in the future, so stay tuned!

To voice your comments and questions, please leave ‘em below or speak to us on Twitter @mobilefun. Thanks for reading and have a good one!

Repair and recover your water-damaged phone with the Reviveaphone Kit

Thursday, August 21st, 2014

Reviveaphone Water Damage Smartphone Rescue Kit    Reviveaphone Water Damage Smartphone Rescue Kit

There’s nothing worse than realising you’ve dropped your precious smartphone in water – whether that’s in the sink, the pool or even the toilet. Unless you’ve bought a water resistant phone like the Galaxy S5 or Xperia Z2, you’re looking at a costly repair that won’t be covered by your warranty. Of course, it’s also possible to attempt repairs yourself – and we’ve got just the kit for it… Introducing the Reviveaphone Water Damage Smartphone Rescue Kit.

The idea behind the Reviveaphone is that it gives you everything you need to rescue and repair a water-damaged smartphone in the comfort of your phone.

Reviveaphone Water Damage Smartphone Rescue Kit    Reviveaphone Water Damage Smartphone Rescue Kit

It’s very easy to use, too, with five simple steps that should repair your phone in 24 hours. Your phone will be immersed in a solution that washes off corrosive minerals from your phone’s circuitry, then placed in a moisture-absorbing tray to complete the repair. There’s no need to take apart your phone or do anything else challenging – it’s just a case of following the simple steps with the items provided.

Reviveaphone Water Damage Smartphone Rescue Kit

The Reviveaphone kit was on Dragon’s Den and recommended by Kelly Hoppen MBE, so you know it’s a proven solution. Of course, not all smartphones are recoverable, but with an estimated success rate of 90% this inexpensive kit is definitely worth a go.

To order your own Reviveaphone, please visit the product page linked below. You can also see more information on the kit and the specific steps that you’ll be able to perform to recover your phone.

Thanks for checking out the article and be sure to let us know what you think in the comments below!

Sony Xperia Z3, Z3 Compact and Z3 Tablet Compact: cases and rumour roundup

Wednesday, August 20th, 2014

Sony is one of many manufacturers planning to announce phones in early September. Their last flagship phone was the Xperia Z2, so it seems natural to expect an Xperia Z3 at their IFA press event on September 3rd. We’ll also likely see a few variations on that theme, including a smaller phone called the Z3 Compact and a small tablet called the Z3 Tablet Compact. Let’s take a closer look at what’s expected.

Sony Xperia Z3

The Xperia Z3 will be the proper flagship of the group, and looks like it’ll be quite similar to its predecessor, with the same 5.2-inch display and similar dimensions. The internals are also mostly the same, including 3GB RAM and 16GB internal storage plus microSD. What’s changed is a faster Snapdragon 801 processor (to replace the slower and less efficient Snapdragon 800) and Android 4.4.4 on board. The design of the phone has changed too, with leaked pictures showing a simplified body that still adheres to Sony’s distinctive design language.

Official accessories for the Xperia Z3 are already being added to our site. One of these is the Z3 Style Cover Stand Case, which should be available in four colours (silver green, copper, white and black). The case’s big feature is a protective flip cover that can also turn into a folding stand.

Sony Xperia Z3 Compact

The Z3 Compact likewise is a straight upgrade over its predecessor, with a faster and more battery-efficient Snapdragon 801 processor replacing the Snapdragon 800 and 3GB RAM instead of 2GB. The screen gets bigger once again as well, to 4.6 inches across the diagonal, but smaller bezels ensure a minimally larger footprint.

Details on Xperia Z3 Compact cases have also been made available. Once again, we’re looking at a Style Cover Stand Case, which should come in four colours (sunset orange, aqua green, black and white).

Sony Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact

The Z3 Tablet Compact is the least well leaked device, but we do know it exists thanks to a mention in a Sony support document. Specifications aren’t confirmed, but a Snapdragon 801 processor, 3GB RAM and 7 or 8-inch display all would seem logical inclusions. A high-end rear-facing camera should be included as well, but it’s unlikely that we’ll see the full 20.7-megapixel units used on the Z3 and Z3 Compact.

No accessories have yet been leaked or announced for the tablet, but we’ll add them to the site as soon as information about them appears.

Conclusion

So there you have it – three new Sony tablets, all likely to be announced at Sony’s IFA press conference on September 3rd. Let us know what you think of the devices in the comments below, and remember to hold off on any smartphone purchases until after the glut of early September! Thanks for checking out the article and have a good one.

Pro Tip: Don’t buy a phone or smartwatch until September

Wednesday, August 20th, 2014

The beginning of September is looking like a massively busy period, as the IFA trade show kicks off and almost every major mobile company has an event planned. Scores of smartphones and smartwatches will be announced here, and most will start shipping later in the month.

For this reason, right now is the worst possible time to buy a phone or smartwatch–wait until these releases are out of the way, and then reap the benefits of lower prices or newer devices on the market in late September and October.

Don’t believe me? Just have a look at what’s coming in September:

Smartphones*

Samsung are releasing the Galaxy Alpha and the Galaxy Note 4. Motorola are releasing the Moto X+1 and Moto G2. Sony are releasing the Xperia Z3, Z3 Compact and Z3 Tablet Compact. Nokia are releasing the Nokia Lumia 530, 730 and 830. HTC are releasing the One M8 with Windows and the J Butterfly. Chinese companies Meizu and Huawei are releasing the MX4 and Ascend Mate 7, respectively. Sharp is releasing the Aquous Crystal. Most importantly of all, Apple are releasing at least one new iPhone, the iPhone 6.

Smartwatches

September looks equally busy for smartwatches. Motorola are the biggest confirmed players here, with the eagerly anticipated Moto 360 set to launch. ASUS and LG have also teased new smartwatches for IFA, while Sony are rumoured to also be showing a watch at the event. Apple are the wildcard here–it’s not known if they’ll announce the iWatch at their September 9th event, but if they do then it’ll be massive.

Press Events

Here’s a breakdown of all announced or heavily rumoured events:

September 2nd

Meizu (MX4)

September 3rd

Samsung (Galaxy Note 4)
Sony (Xperia Z3, Z3 Compact, Z3 Tablet Compact, SmartWatch 3)
ASUS (smartwatch)

September 4th

Motorola (Moto X+1, G2, 360)
Nokia (Lumia 730, 830)
Huawei (Ascend Mate 7)

September 9th

Apple (iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Air)

Signing off

September is going to be an awesome time for mobile fans, and there’s only one way to ruin it: by purchasing a smartphone or smartwatch just before its successor is announced. Wait if you can, and you’ll find cheaper smartphones or newer models in a matter of weeks. My recommendation? iPhone 6 or Galaxy Note 4. But don’t decide now – there will be a lot of excellent choices in the weeks to come!

*Not all of these phones will see European releases – the One M8 with Windows and Aquous Crystal have been announced for US markets. The J Butterfly and Aquous Crystal are launching in Japan. The MX4 and Ascend Mate 7 will launch in China. Still, it’s possible to import these phones.