The Samsung Galaxy Buds+ were launched alongside the Galaxy S20 series smartphones earlier this year. Just recently, they’ve added a unique metallic purple colourway dubbed the Galaxy Buds+ BTS edition up for preorders along with this rather interesting addition to the line-up to protect your investment – a series of 18 Galaxy Buds+ cases that are insidiously cute and stylish to boot!
The line-up consists of 18 cases that are form-fitted to the Samsung Galaxy Buds+ charging case that protect them from nicks, dents and scratches. Each of the cases have a different design from across a host of popular franchises including Marvel’s Avengers such as Captain America and even Deadpool and Ironman too. There are also cases with Minions on it, Line’s popular mascots and more.
Each case retails for RM99 and only but if you buy the Galaxy Buds+ which retails for RM599, you’re entitled to buy any of these cases with an RM49 discount at their online Samsung e-store, Samsung Experience stores or other Samsung Partner Programme Platinum stores.
However, if you buy it from the online Samsung store, you’ll get the Evil Queen variant from Disney for free. You can check out the collection below and saunter on over to their eStore here.The offer is valid until August 2nd 2020 so there’s a bit of time for you to think it over.
Next to a smartphone, a power bank is usually something you never leave home without these days seeing how the average phone these days tends to guzzle juice like lobsters at a freeflow seafood buffet. They also tend to cost a pretty penny but UGreen’s PB133 power bank looks set on offering significant charging capacity without costing an arm and a leg. Depending on where you buy it and if it’s on special, the UGreen PB133 tends to retail for under RM50 though we got ours for about RM36 not including shipping via UGreen’s official online Malaysia store on Shopee. They also have a special discount code available that offers a 10% discount which knocks the price down even more. Just apply the code UGRE0617A when you’re purchasing it on their official Shopee store.
While the brand doesn’t have a physical presence in Malaysia, they’ve made a name for themselves as purveyors of affordable accessories including docks, cables and the like.
The PB133 power bank comes in a basic white box and has the usual quick start guide and a short USB Type-A to micro-USB cable that allows you to charge the power bank itself. Bar the cable, the only thing in the box is the power bank itself. In terms of build and design, the PB133 has the dimensions of a hefty cigarette pack with rounded corners and edges to make it easier to grip. The sides have a slightly knurled texture as well to prevent it from slipping in your hands with one end having a series of LED lights to indicate remaining power while a side-mounted power button rides shotgun. At 4 dots, it’s at 75-100% capacity which decreases in 25% increments as you drain juice from the battery with 2 LEDs indicating the 25-50% mark and so on until you drain it dry.
To charge the 10,000mAh battery you have the option to do so via a microUSB port or a USB Type C port. Output is via two USB Type-A ports with one having 5V/2.1A output while the other is 5V/1.0A for smaller devices. These two ports are able to charge most devices in current service today but understandably don’t have support for any proprietary fast charging tech like Huawei’s SuperCharge tech, Oppo’s FlashCharge or other more mainstream fast charging technologies.
Build quality is reassuringly sturdy and while it’s obviously made of plastic, it doesn’t creak or bend when held. This is reflected in the ports itself that remain firm without any wiggling even with repeated use. Perhaps the one quibble with the design is that it’s a tad on the bulky side which means you can’t hold it with your phone in one hand at the same time; something that may be necessary if you are reliant on the provided cable. A longer cable would have been nice but at what you’re paying for, it’s not an issue.
UGreen PB133 Power Bank Performance
On paper, the UGreen PB133 power bank has a 10,000mAh battery with two USB outputs with one port offering 5V/2.1A and another offering 5V/1A output. Both ports can be used simultaneously so you can charge two items at the same time, assuming you have two charging cables to spare.
We tested it with a Galaxy Note10 that was drained dry. On paper, the Note10 has 25W fast charging.baked in. When plugged up to the PB133, it commenced charging immediately but did not exhibit any fast charging capabilities. For the Galaxy Note10, it got about 10% in 15 minutes or so in an air conditioned room. This remained relatively consistent throughout the charging process and it topped off at 100% in about 2 hours and 10 minutes or so. This was repeated several times and exhibited similar results, give or take a few minutes with each iteration.
On paper, the UGreen PB133 is capable of charging the Note10’s 3,500mAh battery at least twice with a third nearly full 70% charge thereabouts and it managed to achieve this handily. Our power bank is new so it’s capable of achieving this in the first few dozen or so charging cycles but as with any other power bank, this capacity will reduce over time to about two full charges or so which is still plenty.
One particular bonus with the PB133 is that it supports pass-through charging, allowing you to charge the power bank itself while continuing to charge your other devices at the same time. The only quibble here is that the ports are spaced quite close to each other due to the nature of the design which makes it a really tight fit. Charging it on a normal 5V/2A charger that you see bundled in most modern smartphones took awhile and the PB133 only managed to get a full charge in about 5 or so hours.
As it stands, the UGreen PB133 lacks modern niceties that flagship phone users would find necessary like wireless charging, fast charging tech and the like but it has it where it counts with a compact form factor, sturdy build quality and a very modest price. This is something worth picking up as a back-up to keep anywhere you need a top-up for your phone.
Specifications Price RM35.99 Input 5V/2.1A Total output 5V/2.1A Battery capacity 10,000mAh 37Wh Charging time 5 hours (via 5V/2.1A adaptor) Size/Weight 92 x 65 x 23mm / 130g Review unit courtesy of UGreen. Available for purchase online at Shopee. Apply the code UGRE0617Afor a special 10% discount!
What we likedAffordably priced, sturdy design, multiple ports for charging What we didn’t Doesn’t cater to fast charging phones, only has a short bundled micro-USB cable What we sayThe UGreen PB133 is an affordably priced power bank with good build quality and a generous number of ports that lacks fast charging support for high-end phones but is otherwise a highly portable back-up measure.
The MOFT 2-in-1 laptop stand & mouse pad is an interesting hybrid accessory that combines functions of MOFT’s famous laptop stands with that of a mouse pad which certainly makes for an interesting proposition. The design itself is exceptionally compact with the dimensions of a sheet of A4 paper. One side has a slightly granulated texture that works as a mousepad when placed flat while the other is grippy and textured for use as a stand.
Unfortunately, due to the laws of physics, you can either opt for it to be either work a laptop stand or a mouse pad so you’ll have to pick your battles when using it. Fortunately, it’s light and compact enough that you can conceivably buy and pack two of them for use when you’re on the go.
Unlike MOFT’s other offerings, the nature of the MOFT 2-in-1 laptop stand & mouse pad means that it doesn’t permanently (sort of ) stick on to the underside of a laptop; there’s no adhesive surface as both sides are used as either a mouse pad or a stand.
There are advantages to this setup – you can simply unfold it, prop up your work rig and then unfold it back when the job is done. Better yet, you don’t necessarily have to buy multiple stands if you have multiple laptops.
MOFT 2-in-1 laptop stand & mouse pad usage
When you flip it on the grippy side up, you can extend and latch on a top that raises the angle of a laptop or tablet to a comfortable 25-degrees for easier typing and heat ventilation.
The grippy texture also ensures that the laptop doesn’t slide off into oblivion. Belying its slim and flat design, the MOFT 2-in-1 laptop stand & mouse pad proves surprisingly sturdy. The top section secures itself via magnets and it’s able to take the full weight of a 2.7kg gaming laptop though it needs some balancing as the stand section isn’t sufficiently wide enough for it to do so. In practice, it works best with ultraportables and smaller notebooks..
In a genius of design, the stand can also double as a phone stand by letting you prop it up at a steeper 45-degree angle for watching movies and the like. If your tablet is sufficiently compact, you can also adopt this angle without undue effort.
The mouse pad underside is comfortable enough for extended use but the cutout sections which fold up into a scaffold for the stand occasionally jut out from the otherwise flat mousing surface. This doesn’t affect its functionality but it will likely drive perfectionists nuts.
MOFT 2-in-1 laptop stand & mouse pad verdict
The MOFT 2-in-1 laptop stand & mouse pad does what it says on the tin with some modest compromises. It’s a serviceable mousepad and works equally well as a very sturdy laptop stand though it cannot do both at the same time, which means you’ll have to either buy two or prioritise one function over another. Still, it’s light and flat enough that you can easily put it in your daily carry next to your laptop as a backup measure.
What we liked Very sturdy laptop support, compact dimensions What we didn’t Only comes in one colour, can only function as a mouse pad or a stand and not both We say The MOFT 2-in-1 laptop stand & mouse pad is a sturdy and compact laptop stand that can take some of the heaviest rigs around and also acts as a fairly serviceable mouse pad but can’t do both at the same time. It’s a decent choice for those who work with multiple laptops as you can simply move it around as needed versus MOFT’s other offerings.
A standing desk, much less a portable one is usually a chunky affair that’s usually not man-portable but MOFT’s latest creation, the MOFT Z unfolds origami-style all the way to get you a portable standing desk wherever you go as it folds flat down to the size of a late-80’s pulp magazine.
Based on the official specifications, the MOFT Z can elevate up to a height of 10 inches and adjust the angle to either a 25-degree slant for easier typing or a 45-degree angle to turn it into a workstation in tandem with an external monitor. A tiny lip on the edge of the MOFT Z ensures that your notebook remains secure instead of sliding off into oblivion. The mechanism is also surprisingly robust and able to hold up to 10 or so kilos which exceeds all but the heaviest laptops. No surprising seeing as it’s constructed of fiberglass with magnets at strategic points to keep it deployed so it’s a bit on the heavy side at 850g.
As much as we love appreciate the ergonomic benefits of a standing desk, quite a few existing solutions prove to be unwieldy at best and ponderously chunky at worst, relegating you to fixed locations to work but innovative portable stand creator MOFT has come up with something that may just flip the whole idea of a standing desk upside down as it’s not only light but extremely portable to boot. Enter the MOFT-Z .
The MOFT-Z Invisible Sit-stand desk, to use its full name is a highly portable standing desk. that features an origami-style design. The genius at hand here is that it can fold completely fat to something that’s barely thicker than a thin gossip magazine.
When needed, you can twist and unfold it, turning into a stand capable of propping your notebook up on a desk to about eye level to make it easier to work standing up. If you’re working offsite and sitting in a waiting lounge, bus or whatnot, you can deploy it to serve as lap stand to make your laptop comfier to use.
The MOFT-Z is fortunately durable and it’s capable of supporting even the heaviest notebooks in the market without caving in which makes it a very tempting proposition for road warriors on the go and mobile workers.
If this floats your boat, the MOFT-Z Invisible Sit-stand desk will be hitting Kickstarter in early 2020 for an early bird price of USD49 which translates to about RM200. To make a stand, metaphorically speaking, you can swing by their Kickstarter page here.
For most of us lads, Dyson is best known for making some darned good vacuum cleaners that are some of the most powerful and lightest bits of kit to bust dust around the home as well as some seriously cool (literally) bladeless fans that also clean the air of muck. Now, it seems they’ve added hair styling accessories to their portfolio as they’ve recently released their Dyson Airwrap styler, a lightsaber shaped device done up in silver with pink trim that can, we are reliably told, give you natural waves, ultra smooth blow-dry finishes and curls that go on forever in the comfort of your own home.
While the Dyson Airwrap isn’t exactly handy for the average lad who barely has enough hair on their bonce to even style, it has, as you’d likely surmise vastly more utility for the fairer sex. Unlike conventional styling tools, the Airwrap takes advantage of Dyson’s knowhow in engineering as it’s built around a Dyson V9 digital motor that, minus all the complicated physics, takes advantage of what they call the Coanda effect to help you style your hair with both air and heat to create curves, waves or smoothen it out as you so desire without incurring heat damage to your lovely locks. That’s not all though as it has a set of styling brushes that also help to align your hair when styling to give it that stylish stylist-inspired blow dry finish and it’s also able to style wet hair too.
The Dyson Airwrap styler ships in three different bundles, each of which comes with different attachments to achieve specific looks though the basic Airwrap attachment is identical in each case with the last and largest bundle packing everything but the kitchen sink to allow you to masterfully master your locks. The Dyson Airwrap Volume+Shape has attachments designed to add body and volume to limp and flat hair for RM1,999. The Dyson Airwrap Smooth + Control variant gives you the ability to tame frizzy hair and smoothen it out for RM1,999 as well. The Dyson Airwrap Complete gives you everything you need to control multiple hairtypes for RM2,199. If this floats your boat, or your locks, so to speak, you can check it out and acquire it at the Dyson online store at www.dyson.my
If you’re one of the elusively lucky few who are sufficiently well heeled to own two PCs or a PC and a Mac and are enduring the first world problem of having to constantly switch between two mouse devices, well, today is your lucky day. Logitech’s just released a new series of mice that incorporates what they dub as Logitech Flow tech allows you to control up to three PCs or Macs with just one mouse and the ability to switch between any one at will. Better yet, you’re even able to copy and paste images, text and the like between any of them as you so desire.
The new MX series mice consist of the Logitech MX Master 2S and the Logitech MX Anywhere 2S, both of which are wireless, have 4,000 DPI tracking, are ergonomically crafted for long hours of clicky goodness and work on almost all surfaces including glass. Both mice offer a crisp 1,000dpi, are wireless and have a built-in rechargeable battery with a full juicing offering about 70 days of use. Where they differ is that the MX Master 2S is a bit larger with a heavier duty frame and an integrated thumb rest for more comfortable use over long durations while the MX Anywhere 2S is more portable with a more streamlined shape for easier portability. The MX master 2S ships for RM449 while the MX Anywhere 2S ships for RM339.
While it’s not part of the MX series line-up, Logitech’s M585 Multi-Device mouse also has their Logitech Flow tech at a more affordable price tag. The M585 has a sharp 1,000dpi, lets you swap between two PCs or Macs at will wirelessly via Logitech Flow and has a two-year battery life off the single AA battery. It comes in the only colour you will ever need – black and can be had for RM139 inclusive of GST. The M585 will hit Lazada in mid-June. For more details swing by www.logitech.com/en-my
The ultimate dream of smartphone convergence is that a phone is finally able to act as a desktop, given the right gear of course. The idea however isn’t new. Various vendors have put their take on it in recent years like HP’s Elite X3 phone released last year, Microsoft’s Continuum and Jide’s Remix OS though they all had their shortcomings. This time around, Samsung’s thrown their hat into the ring as they’re launching the rather intriguing Samsung DeX dock at the same time that they announced the new Galaxy S8 and S8+ have at their Unpacked event in New York.
The DeX dock resembles something of a half sized matte black bowl with a back that’s large enough to place either of Samsung’s new phones in at an angle. Once you’ve docked your S8 or S8+ to the Dex, it then swaps the phone’s usual mobile display into a desktop environment that lets you accomplish all the usual Windows things that we’ve come to know as muscle memory. You can drag and drop files, right click stuff and resize windows with sliders but it’s all done as a reskin of the S8’s Android Nougat OS. Alas, it only works with Samsung’s new Galaxy S8 and S8+.
Instead of a half-baked implementation, Samsung has worked with Microsoft and Adobe for seamless compatibility with Office and Adobe mobile apps like Lightroom mobile, their Acrobat reader and more by implementing a desktop-like UI and functionality when docked with DeX. The dock also allows remote access to the usual ensemble of security solutions like Citrix, VMware and Amazon Web services. You’ll still need to hook it up to a monitor with a HDMI port along with a Bluetooth enabled mouse or keyboard to get the whole affair up and running of course. Connectivity options include a pair of USB 2.0 ports, a USB Type C port to power it, a cooling fan to keep the phone cool and an Ethernet port along with Adaptive Fast Charging support to juice your phone when connected. There’s no word on price or local availability as yet though it can possibly ship as part of a package with the S8 or S8+ depending on region. For more details keep an eye on Samsung’s official site here.
It’s likely a clerical error more than a crazed horde of buyers wiping out everything in sight ahead of the Galaxy Note 7 launch that will be happening this 2 August but casings manufacturer Ringke has showcased on their website their latest line-up of protective casings for the Galaxy Note 7 at significant discounts ahead of the Unpacked launch.
The site shows nine products available for sale ranging from US$25 to US$30 along with discounts aplenty though the prices are presumably placeholders since the Note 7 itself hasn’t been launched yet. The casings range from slip-on cases, some translucent, some made of TPU while others are flip cases made of leather along with one model that is half wallet and half phone casing.
Short of leaks, this is currently one of the closest views we have of the Galaxy Note 7. The base of the phone integrates a 3.5mm audio jack, a USB Type-C port and a speaker grill. Final confirmation of the specs of the Note 7 and its design isn’t far off as all will be revealed at Samsung Unpacked when it happens on August 2nd.
If you’ve yearned for a physical keyboard on your smartphone akin to those that Blackberry made in the day but are lamenting the fact that practically every phone in the market relies solely on a touchscreen, well, you’re in luck this time around as Samsung has an officially issued keyboard cover specifically designed for the Galaxy S7 Edge. Similar models exist for their highest end flagships – the Galaxy Note 5, the S7, the S6, the S6 Edge and the S6 Edge+ though they’re not interchangeable as the size of each phone is sufficiently different to preclude swapping.
The keyboard cover for the S7 Edge consists of a textured flexible polycarbonate casing that snaps onto the phone with reinforced bumpers for each corner along with a detachable QWERTY keyboard.
The front, top and bottom of the S7 Edge are unprotected though the corners and the back are sufficiently reinforced to survive a ding or two. A face-down impact may damage the phone unless the snap-on keyboard has already been applied to the front of the phone to mitigate the impact . The polycarbonate used here is flexible and while it looks like it has a grippy surface, it’s fairly slippery so a firm grip is needed.
Performance & Conclusion
The main draw to the phone, the keyboard cover, is a surprisingly well thought out example of engineering. It’s unpowered, so you needn’t drain precious juice to keep it running and snaps on to the back of the phone when not in use. The buttons are flat with a smidgen of key travel to provide tactility with the keyboard offering a full QWERTY line up along with physical keys for the home, back and menu button on the S7 Edge.
It even has a numeric keypad overlaid on part of the keyboard. Seeing the compact nature of the keyboard, almost all of the keys perform double duty with the aforementioned numbers as well as emoji and punctuation accessed by holding down the Alt key. The nature of the design means that the keyboard isn’t designed for one-handed use; you’ll need both paws to hammer text out. Once attached, the keyboard takes up a good two or three inches of the bottom of the screen though the display crops itself accordingly. Taking the keyboard off makes the touchscreen revert back to its original format.
Typing texts out takes a bit of a learning curve to get used to the key positioning but it required little more than a few tries to get used to the layout. The S7’s camera shortcut key still works by pressing the physical home button on the keyboard though you’ll get best results with the keyboard detached. If you’re using the camera when the keyboard is attached, it will end up inadverdently cropping the photo from whatever your original aspect ratio was to a squarish looking 1:1 ratio.
For roving wordsmiths and those dealing with large amounts of the written word, this is an indispensable accessory that expands your productivity significantly.
It’s also incompatible with the S7 Edge’s dual window mode so you can’t open up a web browser and type notes in at the same time though, there isn’t much space to do open up two windows simultaneously anyway. That aside, it works just fine with one app at a time and while you can’t navigate solely with it on a web browser, it does a superb bang-up job when you have to crunch through a 500 word article on your phone. When tested with Google Docs, the built-in Memo app and WPS Office, it parsed everything correctly with minimal typos and sufficient responsiveness.
If you’re focused on an accessory that expands the functionality of your S7 Edge in regards to writing large amounts of text in a more efficient manner, this is it. For roving wordsmiths and those dealing with large amounts of the written word, this is an indispensable accessory that expands your productivity significantly. Those who are just texting or casually web browsing will likely not gain as much utility from it.
PriceGalaxy S7 Edge Keyboard cover RM245, Galaxy Note 5 Keyboard cover RM279, Galaxy S7 Keyboard cover RM215, Galaxy S6/S6 Edge and S6 Edge+ Keyboard cover RM279 We We LikedResponsive and well built keyboard, doesn’t drain the battery, works with wireless charging What We Didn’tKeyboard is not backlit, casing could offer more protection, incompatible with multi window mode on the S7 Edge What We Say If you need to type out long e-mails, texts and otherwise rely on your Galaxy S7 Edge as a heavy duty paper crunching device, you’ll find this a highly appealing option that’s worth a look.
*Review unit courtesy of Samsung Malaysia