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Friday, January 15, 2021

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Best Android phones at Republic Wireless (January 2021)

There are plenty of wireless service providers to choose from, at least here in the United States. In fact, it may seem as if there are too many options to consider. But when it comes down to it, many of them rely on the networks offered by Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile.Republic Wireless, a Mobile Virtual Network Operator (MVNO), is one such carrier. Indeed, it has its own rate plans and features, but it licenses coverage from T-Mobile.When it comes to buying a phone for use on Republic Wireless there are a few options to consider. For starters, you can bring your current T-Mobile device to the carrier. Additionally, you can buy an unlocked phone for use on Republic Wireless.Customers can also purchase a phone directly from Republic Wireless. While there’s a fairly robust handset selection to peruse, a few key models rise to the top.What follows are some of the best Android phones available at Republic Wireless today. These aren’t the most powerful, but rather the best for particular needs.Google Pixel 4aAll-around ChampOne of the newest phones at the carrier, this is an excellent option for pretty much any user. It’s powerful enough for a large majority of the population but priced about half of what other brands charge.Powered by the latest in Android, you’ll have a tough time finding a better camera experience. Small in stature, there’s a decent screen, generous battery, and solid array of hardware hiding inside.Shop Google Pixel 4a at Republic WirelessSamsung Galaxy Note 20Big and BeautifulThis powerhouse sits near the top of the food chain and packs all of the cutting-edge features one could want. If you’re on the hunt for latest and greatest at this carrier, you’ve found it.Here, you get a large 6.7-inch display, a ton of storage, and hardware that will last you multiple years. Come for the multi-function capabilities of the S Pen, stay for the incredible camera that captures 8K video.Shop Samsung Galaxy Note 20 at Republic WirelessMotorola Moto G StylusAffordable TaskmasterIf you’re looking for a more budget-friendly approach to a phone with a digital stylus, this Motorola is your ticket. Priced a fraction of the Samsung counterpart, it’s an incredible mid-range phone with a quad-camera experience.Powered by a largely untouched Android 10, it offers up a 6.4-inch screen, a bunch of storage (128GB), and a strong battery. Throw in a headphone jack, USB Type-C charging port, and dual speakers and we’ve got an affordable winner that suits many users.Shop Motorola Moto G Stylus at Republic WirelessMotorola Moto EFirst-time UsersIf you’re starting out with a smartphone for the first time, you have no idea as to what you truly need. Why drop hundreds of dollars on something only to find out it’s more than you want or use?For your money you get a generous 6.2-inch screen, a 13-megapixel dual-camera setup, headphone jack, and decent battery. It runs a very current and largely stock Android software experience and looks really cool in Dark Sea blue.Shop Motorola Moto E at Republic Wireless

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Google

Google officially owns Fitbit

Back in 2019 Google and Fitbit announced plans to have the fitness company join Google’s tech family. The deal was agreed for a $2.1 billion dollar sale of Fitbit and its portfolio. Today, more than a year later, that is finally a reality. Google is now the owner of Fitbit.Both Google Senior Vice President Rick Osterloh and Fitbit co-founder James Park made statements this morning. This gives Google a much-needed boost in wearables. Android Wear has struggled to find a foothold in the market and Fitbit brings a decade of brand recognition as well as 29 million active users.Osterloh has also reiterated in his blog post that Fitbit’s user data and privacy are top priorities. Part of the agreement includes that health data and wellness history can’t be used by Google ads or be held on the same servers as ad data. Fitbit’s history of data must remain completely separate.Each exec voiced a continued commitment to existing APIs and Fitbit’s strong history with 3rd party wellness apps. Park notes that Fitbit will move forward as an independent presence in fitness “putting your health and wellness at the center of everything we do and to offering a no-one-size-fits-all approach with choices that work across both Android and iOS.”This move seems to be good for both parties but will be interesting to see how this plays out in the future. Google has a history of not really being successful in takeovers with the likes of Nest becoming somewhat stagnant. Despite this, Fitbit has already seen Google Assistant added in a recent update and is light years ahead in users and polish when compared to Android Wear.Google needs Fitbit to have the brand to compete with Apple in wearables. Fitbit needed Google’s scale to continue to survive. This deal makes sense on paper and I hope it results in a great marriage for consumers.

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The best Android phones available at Net10 Wireless (January 2021)

When it comes to smart phones and rate plans, most consumers are familiar with the big four brands (AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, and Sprint) in the carrier space. But what about the numerous prepaid and MVNO companies?We’ve covered many of the bigger names, highlighting them with buyer’s guides and invite you to check them out. While they’re a great jumping off point, they don’t dive into the specific of handset selection.Take, for instance, Net10 Wireless. What sort of options does the carrier offer when it comes to buying a new phone?We’ve gathered up a handful of the best phones you can purchase at Net10 Wireless today. Although the selection is limited, there are still interesting and compelling handsets to buy.As always, we suggest buying an unlocked phone or a used tier-one phone for use with Net10. The options are plentiful in both directions and you’ll likely get something more powerful.Samsung Galaxy A21The Galaxy S series gets all of the fanfare, but the Galaxy A line is just as good for a lot of people. Indeed, these lower cost options give consumers the same great Samsung design but with just the right amount of features. We’re talking maybe one-third the price yet still plenty of power.Standout features in the Galaxy A21 include a 6.5-inch HD display, and quad-camera (16MP main lens, 120 degree ultra wide, 2MP depth camera, and 2MP macro) array. An octa-core processor with 3GB RAM/32GB ROM is paired with Android 10, and the 4,000mAh battery should get typical users far beyond a full day.Shop Samsung Galaxy A21 at Net10Motorola E7We absolutely love what Motorola does with its Android phones. They run a bare bones software experience that leaves things the way Google intended, and feature affordably priced alternatives to flagships.Here, you get a big (6.2-inch) screen, a very modern build of Android (10), and respectable smattering of mid-range hardware. Key details include an octa-core processor, 32GB internal storage, and a microSD card slot for external media.Other things we appreciate? A water resistant coating, USB Type-C charging, and a 3.5mm headphone jack.Shop Motorola E7 at Net10 LG ReflectIf you’ve never owned a smartphone, or are giving your child their first handset, you likely don’t want to spend that much money. To that end, you can get a decent phone for cheap.The LG Reflect is a little older than the others here but there’s a reason it’s still offered. Priced fairly and affordably, you get a 6.5-inch display, 13-megapixel camera, and decent hardware. It won’t set the world on fire, but you’ll have a better understanding of needs for the next device.Shop LG Reflect at Net10

Tech and Gadgets

HyperX reveals new PC and gaming peripherals for 2021

HyperX, the hardware division from Kingston that centers on gaming, announced several new products for the virtual event that is CES 2021. Moreover, it is also giving some of its US-only products a global launch.The first big announcement from HyperX is its new Alloy Origins 60 Mechanical Gaming Keyboard. With a footprint of 60% of a traditional keyboard, it helps gamers gain desktop space which can be helpful for mouse movement.The Origins 60 employs HyperX Red switches which have a linear key travel. This means they don’t have the “bump” that other mechanical keyboards do, reducing the tactile feedback that keyboard gamers are familiar with. It also lets players press more rapidly which can be instrumental in the heat of the moment.Business professionals will also appreciate the red switches as they’re more responsive, move more smoothly, and are quieter than standard mechanical keyboards.HyperX’s other big new product is its ChargePlay Duo Controller Charging Station for Xbox. Compatible with Series X/S and Xbox One controllers, it also comes with a pair of 1,400mAh battery packs. The station, which has a weighted base, also has LED indicators to display charging status.In addition to the new products, HyperX has announced expanded availability for the HyperX Pulsefire Haste , Cloud II Wireless, and Cloud Revolver.AvailabilityAlloy Origins 60 gaming keyboard – Available in the U.S. on February 22 for MSRP $99.99 on HyperX Shop.HyperX ChargePlay Duo Controller Charging Station for Xbox – Available in the U.S. on HyperX Shop in February for MSRP $39.99Pulsefire Haste Gaming Mouse – Now available globally for MSRP $49.99Cloud II Wireless Gaming Headset – Now available globally for MSRP $149.99Cloud Revolver Gaming Headset + 7.1 – Now available globally for MSRP $149.99

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When and where to buy the Samsung Galaxy S21 phones

Samsung in early January announced its latest flagship smartphone series with the Galaxy S21, and its two siblings, the S21+, and S21 Ultra. All three phones are offered in a variety of color options with varying amounts of memory and storage combinations.Customers won’t have to look hard to find the Galaxy S21 phones as they’ll be sold through numerous wireless carriers and retailers. And, of course, there’s always the unlocked models you can purchase directly from Samsung, too.Here, we help spell out when and where to buy the Galaxy S21 phones. Just about anywhere you look you’ll find carriers and retailers offering discounts and deals on the Galaxy S21 line.Pre-ordersThe Galaxy S21 phones don’t arrive until January 29, but you can pre-order one at Samsung’s website or through your major wireless carrier.Selling a phone? Do these things firstWhere can I buy an unlocked phone?CarriersWhen it comes to color choices, each of the wireless service providers listed here essentially have the same options. For the Galaxy S21 we have Phantom White, Phantom Pink, Phantom Violet, and Phantom Gray; the Galaxy S21 Plus comes in Phantom Black, Phantom Silver, and Phantom Violet; the Galaxy S21 Ultra is sold in Phantom Silver and Phantom Black.VerizonSamsung Galaxy S21 – As low as $800 ($33.33 per month for 24 months)Samsung Galaxy S21 Plus – As low as $1,000 ($33.33 per month for 30 months)Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra – As low as $1,200 ($39.99 per month for 30 months)AT&TSamsung Galaxy S21 – As low as $800 ($26.67 per month for 30 months)Samsung Galaxy S21 Plus – As low as $1,000 ($33.34 per month for 30 months)Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra – As low as $1,200 ($40.00 per month for 30 months)T-MobileSamsung Galaxy S21 – As low as $800 ($33.34 per month for 24 months)Samsung Galaxy S21 Plus – As low as $1,000 ($41.67 per month for 24 months)Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra – As low as $1,200 ($50.00 per month for 24 months)US CellularSamsung Galaxy S21 – As low as $800 ($26.66 per month for 30 months)Samsung Galaxy S21 Plus – As low as $1,000 ($33.33 per month for 30 months)Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra – As low as $1,200 ($39.99 per month for 30 months)Other CarriersMany other carriers are expected to offer at least one version of the Samsung Galaxy S21 line this year. Key among those who have already announced intentions to carry the device(s) are Visible and Xfinity Mobile.VisibleGalaxy S21: $792 (128GB) or $840 (256GB)Galaxy S21+: $984 (128GB) or $1,032 (256GB)Key RetailersConsumers can also purchase the different versions of the Galaxy S21 family at a variety of retailers. Whether it’s brick-and-mortar or online-only, you might want to check with your favorite stores.Not only might you find a discount or promotion around the phone, but buyers may also have a credit card or account which offers special financing terms.AmazonThere’s no indication yet as to what Amazon will do in terms of selling the Galaxy S21 line, but we suspect more information will be made available soon.Best BuyBest Buy will offer an unlocked version of the Samsung Galaxy S21 models as well as versions for the major carriers.SamsungTo no surprise, the official website for Samsung has options for all of the major carriers as well as unlocked models, too.

HyperX reveals new PC and gaming peripherals for 2021

HyperX, the hardware division from Kingston that centers on gaming, announced several new products for the virtual event that is CES 2021. Moreover, it is also giving some of its US-only products a global launch.The first big announcement from HyperX is its new Alloy Origins 60 Mechanical Gaming Keyboard. With a footprint of 60% of a traditional keyboard, it helps gamers gain desktop space which can be helpful for mouse movement.The Origins 60 employs HyperX Red switches which have a linear key travel. This means they don’t have the “bump” that other mechanical keyboards do, reducing the tactile feedback that keyboard gamers are familiar with. It also lets players press more rapidly which can be instrumental in the heat of the moment.Business professionals will also appreciate the red switches as they’re more responsive, move more smoothly, and are quieter than standard mechanical keyboards.HyperX’s other big new product is its ChargePlay Duo Controller Charging Station for Xbox. Compatible with Series X/S and Xbox One controllers, it also comes with a pair of 1,400mAh battery packs. The station, which has a weighted base, also has LED indicators to display charging status.In addition to the new products, HyperX has announced expanded availability for the HyperX Pulsefire Haste , Cloud II Wireless, and Cloud Revolver.AvailabilityAlloy Origins 60 gaming keyboard – Available in the U.S. on February 22 for MSRP $99.99 on HyperX Shop.HyperX ChargePlay Duo Controller Charging Station for Xbox – Available in the U.S. on HyperX Shop in February for MSRP $39.99Pulsefire Haste Gaming Mouse – Now available globally for MSRP $49.99Cloud II Wireless Gaming Headset – Now available globally for MSRP $149.99Cloud Revolver Gaming Headset + 7.1 – Now available globally for MSRP $149.99

Hatch adds Rest Mini to its portfolio of smart sleep products

Hatch, one of the leading names in smart sleep products, has announced a new device for 2021. Dubbed the Rest Mini, it’s exactly what you might envision — a small unit for helping users fall and stay asleep.Rather than trying to be a jack-of-all-trades sleep device, the Rest Mini has a tighter focus. With eight different sounds, the $40 product is geared toward the little ones but it works for people of all ages.Rest Mini Features8 Soothing Sounds – Heartbeat, Water, White Noise, Dryer, Ocean, Wind, Rain, and Birds.Simple Companion App – Control remotely with iOS and Android devices.Custom Timer – Set sounds to play for any custom duration, for minutes or hours.Easy Touch Controls – Play, stop, skip, or adjust volume with simple touch control on the device.As one might imagine, users can control the sound machine via a mobile app; functions include sounds, timers, volumes, and on/off. Whether you’re looking to just let things run for a few minutes at the start of a nap or all night long, the Hatch Rest Mini is happy to help.Look for the Hatch Rest Mini to go on sale in February. Learn more about Hatch and its other products at the brand’s official website.

Gaming

HyperX reveals new PC and gaming peripherals for 2021

HyperX, the hardware division from Kingston that centers on gaming, announced several new products for the virtual event that is CES 2021. Moreover, it is also giving some of its US-only products a global launch.The first big announcement from HyperX is its new Alloy Origins 60 Mechanical Gaming Keyboard. With a footprint of 60% of a traditional keyboard, it helps gamers gain desktop space which can be helpful for mouse movement.The Origins 60 employs HyperX Red switches which have a linear key travel. This means they don’t have the “bump” that other mechanical keyboards do, reducing the tactile feedback that keyboard gamers are familiar with. It also lets players press more rapidly which can be instrumental in the heat of the moment.Business professionals will also appreciate the red switches as they’re more responsive, move more smoothly, and are quieter than standard mechanical keyboards.HyperX’s other big new product is its ChargePlay Duo Controller Charging Station for Xbox. Compatible with Series X/S and Xbox One controllers, it also comes with a pair of 1,400mAh battery packs. The station, which has a weighted base, also has LED indicators to display charging status.In addition to the new products, HyperX has announced expanded availability for the HyperX Pulsefire Haste , Cloud II Wireless, and Cloud Revolver.AvailabilityAlloy Origins 60 gaming keyboard – Available in the U.S. on February 22 for MSRP $99.99 on HyperX Shop.HyperX ChargePlay Duo Controller Charging Station for Xbox – Available in the U.S. on HyperX Shop in February for MSRP $39.99Pulsefire Haste Gaming Mouse – Now available globally for MSRP $49.99Cloud II Wireless Gaming Headset – Now available globally for MSRP $149.99Cloud Revolver Gaming Headset + 7.1 – Now available globally for MSRP $149.99

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