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Pictured: our latest What Mobile Award

Wednesday 17th December 2014 by William Judd in Mobile Accessories.

Trophy.jpg (500×598)Earlier this year we asked for your help in the What Mobile Awards 2014, as we looked to capture the title of Best Accessory Retailer for the third time running. Last month we were able to report our victory, and today we’re able to conclude the story as we’ve been able to track down the physical award itself to show you!

You can see the award off to the right. It’s really nice to see this in the flesh, as it were, and gives us another opportunity to thank you all for voting for us in the awards. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

We’ll continue to do our best to be deserving of these accolades, continuing our traditional of providing everything first as we continue to expand our range of mobile accessories into new categories and new markets. With your support, we look forward to challenging again for the title of Best Accessory Retailer in 2015!

The Mobile Fun Christmas Gift Guide

Wednesday 17th December 2014 by William Judd in Buyers Guides, Mobile Accessories.

We’ve selected ten of our favourite gadgets, to give you a hand in finding the perfect tech gift this Christmas. Whether you’re looking for a new phone, a smarter home or even an airborne drone, we’ve got something for you.

Best Fitness Tracker: Jawbone Up Move Wireless Activity Tracker

Jawbone Up Move Wireless Activity Tracker - Black    Jawbone Up Move Wireless Activity Tracker - Black

Jawbone make some of our favourite fitness trackers, but their recent Up Move is something special, packing some great features into a tiny discrete package. The Up Move brings the advanced Smart Coach app to a very low price point, giving you practical tips on improving your health and fitness instead of just recording your statistics. The Up Move is a great introduction to fitness tracking.

Best Speaker: Olixar Qi-Tone S1 Alarm Clock Bluetooth Speaker with Qi

Olixar Qi-Tone S1 Alarm Clock Bluetooth Speaker with Qi Charging    Qi-Tone S1 Alarm Clock Bluetooth Speaker with Qi Charging - Black

The Olixar Qi-Tone S1 is a feature-rich Bluetooth alarm clock and Qi wireless charger, designed to be the ultimate bedside companion. You can charge your phone wirelessly or from the rear USB port; you can listen to music or take calls on the powerful dual speakers; and of course you can see the time and set alarms on the easy-to-use and easily-read 3.2-inch LED display.

Best Drone: Parrot MiniDrone Rolling Spider Quadrocopter

Parrot MiniDrone Rolling Spider - Smartphone Controlled Quadrocopter    Parrot AR.Drone 2.0 - Smartphone Controlled HD Quadrocopter

2014 may well be the Year of the Drone, as smartphone-controlled quadrocopters have captured the public imagination and become must-have gadgets. The Parrot MiniDrone is a great first drone for children and adults alike, with an easy control system that’ll keep the drone flying automatically when you release the controls. With attachable wheels, you can even use the MiniDrone safely indoors.

Best Power Bank: Olixar Encharge 2000mAh Portable Power Bank

Olixar enCharge 2000mAh Portable Power Bank - Blue     Olixar enCharge 2000mAh Portable Power Bank - Blue

Running out of power is rubbish – but worse is babying your smartphone, trying desperately to get through the day by turning off all the things that make your smartphone smart! Instead, pick up a portable power bank and use your phone to the full, knowing that you can always recharge when you have a spare moment. You’ll get a full recharge for most phones with 2000mAh on tap, doubling your effective battery life. It’s a big benefit for a very small cost, both in size and price.

Best Smartwatch: LG G Watch R for Android Smartphones – Black

LG G Watch R for Android Smartphones - Black

When it comes to Android smartwatches, the G Watch R is the most stylish. The design mirrors that of traditional chunky men’s watches, with a completely circular display ringed by a minute-marked dial. The watch runs Google’s Android Wear, giving you notifications from your paired phone and a growing number of beautiful watch faces to choose from. Without a doubt, the LG G Watch R is the early adopter’s gadget gift of choice.

Best Smart Home Gadget: Olixar Light Beats Bluetooth Speaker Bulb

Olixar Light Beats Bluetooth Speaker Bulb    ASUS Premium Cover for Nexus 7 2 - White

The combination of Bluetooth speaker and and light bulb is an odd one, but it works surprisingly well. You get a warm 3W LED light and a built-in Bluetooth speaker which lets you discretely play music. The speaker is loud enough to fill a room, but not loud enough to disturb your neighbours. Whether you use it in a lamp on your bedside table in your living room or as a ceiling light in the living room, you’ll be impressed with this easy-to-use and out-of-sight Bluetooth speaker.

Best Sim Free Phone: Motorola Moto G 2nd Gen

The Motorola Moto G was the best budget phone last year, offering solid hardware and a clean design at a very low price. The second-generation model was released this year, offering faster speeds and more features than its predecessor. You’ll get a 5-inch 720p screen, stereo front-facing speakers and a microSD card slot for cheap extra storage. The sim-free phone comes with a very clean version of Android 4.4 too, with an upgrade to the latest version of Android coming soon.

Best Charger: Olixar Travel Adapter with 4 USB Ports

     

The Olixar Travel Adapter is an ideal travel companion, letting you charge your mobile devices in over 150 countries with four interchangeable plugs. Even if you don’t need a travel adapter, this gadget is still worth considering. You get four USB ports, intelligently sharing 4.8A of total power output between phones, tablets and accessories so that you’re always charging at full speed. For a durable all-in-one charging solution, you won’t find anything better than the Olixar Travel Adapter.

Best Clothing: Smart TouchTip Men’s  / Women’s Gloves for Touch Screens

Smart TouchTip Gloves for Capacitive Touch Screens - Large - BlackSmart TouchTip Men's Gloves for Capacitive Touch Screens - Black

These Smart TouchTip gloves are specially designed to work with touchscreens, letting you use your phone or tablet while keeping your hands warm - perfect for winter use. Best of all, you can get two pairs for the price of one right now – just visit the product page for the voucher code that you’ll need to get the offer.

Best Stylus: Olixar HexStyli 6-in-1 Stylus Pen

Olixar HexStyli 6-in-1 Stylus Pen - Silver    Olixar HexStyli 6 in 1 Stylus Pen - Silver

We conclude with our best-selling accessory – the Olixar HexStyli. This 6-in-1 stylus and pen also includes a ruler, a spirit level and two screwdrivers. It’s a highly practical tool that you’ll find yourself reaching for again and again, and it looks good too thanks to the high quality aluminium construction. If you’re looking for the perfect gift for the gadget fan in your life, then the HexStyli is a great shout.

Conclusion

Thanks for checking out our recommendations. If you’re looking for more ideas, why not check out our dedicated Christmas Gifts section?

The first Quick Charge 2.0 car chargers are coming soon!

Tuesday 16th December 2014 by William Judd in Android, Mobile Accessories.

PueGear Extreme Quick Charge 2.0 Car Charger

Qualcomm’s fast charging tech lets big battery phones like the Note 4, Nexus 6 and HTC One M8 reach 100% way faster than you’d expect – sometimes up to 75% faster than a standard charger. On some phones that support the most recent Quick Charge 2.0 specification, you can reach 60% charge in just 30 minutes.

That’s great for charging up your phone using the wall charger you got in the box, but what about in your car? Well, soon you’ll be able to get a Qualcomm Quick Charge 2.0 car charger as well!

Our first Quck Charge 2.0 car chargers

We’ve got two different Quick Charge 2.0 car chargers to show you today: a Dual USB model in white and black, and a smaller PureGear Extreme in black.

Let’s look at the Dual USB option first. This car charger provides two 2.4A ports, providing 4.8A of power in total. That means you’re able to charge both smartphones and tablets at full speed; a rarity for a car charger.

PueGear Extreme Quick Charge 2.0 Car ChargerDual USB Qualcomm Quick Charge 2.0 Car Charger - Black

Your other option is the PureGear Extreme. This offers the same fast Qualcomm Quick Charge 2.0 charging, but with a single USB port instead of two. The PureGear Extreme is smaller – making it more portable – and also more stylish.

PureGear Extreme USB Qualcomm Quick Charge 2.0 Car ChargerPueGear Extreme Quick Charge 2.0 Car Charger

Whichever option you choose, you’ll see the best results with phones or tablets that are using Qualcomm’s recent Snapdragon 800 series chipsets (which includes Snapdragon 800, 801, 805 and 810). Pretty much all flagship Android and Windows Phones use this chipset, so chances are good that your phone will be supported.

To check, you can search on GSMArena.com (type the name of your phone into the box in the upper right) or just Google for “Snapdragon” and the name of your phone. You can also ask us in the comments below or see Qualcomm’s partial list here.

Conclusion

Quick Charge 2.0 is pretty cool, so we’re glad to see Qualcomm bring it to the car with these new car chargers. Soon, worrying about running out of power on a long drive will be a thing of the past.

Thanks for checking out the article! For more information, check out the links above or write to us in the comments below. You can also speak to us on Twitter @mobilefun. Thanks again and have a good week ahead!

Samsung Galaxy A3 and A5 announced; official cases to be available at Mobile Fun

Tuesday 16th December 2014 by William Judd in Android, Mobile Accessories.

Samsung’s latest smartphones are the Galaxy A3 and A5, which bring the enviable style of the Galaxy Alpha to a more reasonable price point. Both phones are incredibly slim – 6.7 and 6.9mm for the A5 and A3, respectively – and include powerful 5-megapixel front-facing cameras, which should make them good selfie phones. The A3 and A5 have already been released in Taiwan and China, and will come to the UK in the coming months – alongside a raft of official cases, which we’ll stock here at Mobile Fun.

SM-A300F_007_Dynamic_Black1.jpg (700×466)

The Samsung Galaxy A3

The two phones are almost identical when it comes to looks, and share a lot of internal hardware as well. That includes a 1.2GHz quad-core processor, 16GB of internal storage plus a microSD card slot, Bluetooth 4, a 13-megapixel rear camera and Android 4.4 KitKat. The big difference is a 5-inch 720p display for the A5, compared to a 4.5-inch display for the A3. The A5 also has a bit more RAM (2GB vs 1GB) and a more capacious battery (2300mAh vs 1900mAh).

SM-A500F-DS_007_Dynamic_Silver.jpg (700×466)

The Samsung Galaxy A5

The Galaxy A3 and A5 will benefit from Samsung’s case-making prowess, as the Korean chaebol will be producing a nice range of covers for both phones. We’ll be stocking these cases – and some third-party alternatives – in the weeks ahead.

The Galaxy A3 will receive the Flip Wallet Cover in charcoal and white, which should be a good option for keeping your screen scratch-free. You’ll also get a convenient place to store your credit cards and ID on the inside of the flip cover. The other official option is the Protective Cover Plus Case, which adds good drop protection with a gloss finish in light grey or brown.

Meanwhile, the Galaxy A3 will receive cases too. The first option is the S View Cover, which you may remember from the Galaxy S4 and S5 (amongst others). This case has a plastic window in the front cover, letting you access the time and notifications, and answer phone calls, without needing to open the cover. This comes in white and charcoal colour options. The other alternative is the Protective Cover Plus once again, which prevents damage from drops and comes in light grey and brown.

We’ll have photos and more information about these Galaxy A3 cases and Galaxy A5 cases in the weeks to come. Thanks for checking out the article and be sure to let us know what you think in the comments below!

Twelve South BookBook cases available soon for iPhone 6 and 6 Plus

Tuesday 16th December 2014 by William Judd in iPhone, Mobile Accessories.

Twelve South BookBook iPhone 6 Wallet Case - Brown    Twelve South BookBook iPhone 6 Wallet Case - Brown

Twelve South have always produced top-notch premium cases for the iPhone and iPad, and now they’ve released their famous BookBook case for the latest breed of Apple mobiles. The BookBook is a leather folio case that disguises your iPhone as a leather-bound tome, providing a uniquely classy look and feel. There’s much more to this case than meets the eye, too – so check out the links below to go straight to the product pages, or read on for more from me!

The BookBook is made from hand-distressed leather, granting it an authentic look, feel and smell. Placed on a desk or sitting on a shelf, you’d be hard-pressed to tell it apart from a classic volume at first or even second glance. It’s only when you open the cover that it becomes obvious that you’ve actually got an iPhone case in your hands.

Twelve South BookBook iPhone 6 Wallet Case - Brown    Twelve South BookBook iPhone 6 Wallet Case - Brown

Inside, you’ll see your iPhone on the right and a mini-wallet section on the left. The wallet includes a space for IDs, plus three more slots for credit cards and tickets. There’s a larger pocket beneath, perfect for keeping paper notes and other important bits of paper.

Twelve South BookBook iPhone 6 Wallet Case - Brown

The cool bit is that your iPhone actually sits in a thin shell case within the folio. That means you can actually detach the thicker folio section, and just use the thin shell case when you want a slimmer yet still protective option. Then when you’d rather have the added screen protection and stylish looks of the full ensemble, it’s easy to re-attach the two pieces to get the original case back. It’s pretty magical initially, and works really well to adapt to different situations.

Twelve South BookBook iPhone 6 Wallet Case - Brown    Twelve South BookBook iPhone 6 Wallet Case - Brown

Another useful feature you’ll find in the BookBook is a built-in media stand. Just pull the cover back, and you’ll be able to use it to prop up your iPhone in landscape mode at a useful angle. This is perfect for watching videos or playing games on your iPhone, and it means that you don’t need a dedicated iPhone 6 desk stand.

Twelve South BookBook iPhone 6 Wallet Case - Brown

So there we have it – all about the functional and beautiful BookBook. The BookBook is coming soon to Mobile Fun for the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus (and already available for the iPad Mini!) You can check availability – and sign up for stock notifications – via the links below.

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