All Articles Tagged "Samsung"

She Tried It! The Samsung Galaxy S6

July 7th, 2015 - By Brande Victorian
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download2It’s not often we get the chance to review gadgets on MadameNoire so when Samsung gave me a Galaxy S6 to try out during the Essence Festival in New Orleans this past weekend, I was beyond thrilled. I’ve been an android user since before Apple vs. Android was a thing, but my enthusiasm for phone upgrades began to dwindle significantly as “new” iterations of mobile phones started to mean nothing more than a bigger screen or a different color case or an allegedly faster processing system. Hence, I planned to walk around with my cracked HTC M8 Harman Kardon until the wheels fell off — or the screen bled so bad I could barely read text messages, which is where things currently stand.

But along came the Galaxy S6, a major step up from my last Galaxy phone, the S4, which I used up until May 2014. If I tell you nothing else about this phone, you must know that the camera is exceptional. And don’t act like you don’t care. In this world of snapchatting, Periscoping, and Instagramming, a high-quality mobile camera is invaluable, and on this point the S6 definitely delivers. The phone offers a 5 megapixel front camera and 16 megapixels for the back camera, which is the reason more than one iPhone user told me they were seriously thinking about switching over to the S6 after they saw my pics this weekend. FYI, there’s also this beauty effect option on the camera phone that makes taking narcissistic selfies so much more enjoyable. One thing you should know is if you do decide to switch over to this device from an Apple or any other phone, Smart Switch will make the transition so much easier. All you have to do is download the app, select which info you want to move from the old phone to the new one, and then connect the devices via a USB cable, manual pairing, or wi-fi, and you’re good to go. More details on that here.

samsungAs someone who’s a sucker for big phone screens, (I wanted to buy the Galaxy note until the saleswoman asked me if I was an illustrator and told me since I’m not, there’s no reason I need a phone that big) I truly appreciate the large display of the phone coupled with its light weight. The organizational options are also pretty cool too, as I can find apps on my homescreen based on provider (Google, Samsung, Microsoft, etc.) or purpose, like social. There’s also a dual screen option that makes multi-tasking so much easier, and even images are meticulously categorized by where they were taken (camera, Twitter, screenshot, download) that it makes it almost impossible not to find an image when you’re looking forward in the midst of telling one of those great, “let me show you this picture…” stories.

The one drawback I noticed is the battery tends to drain rather quickly, but Samsung seems to be aware, as there are a few built-in features to help combat a I’m-stuck-on-the-side-of-the-road-with-a-dead-phone situation. The first is the Ultra Power Saving Mode which, at 10% charge, still gives you 24 more hours of texting and talking. The second is the fast charging mode which will allow you to boost your charge up to 50% in just about 30 minutes. And the third option is to charge wirelessly, via a charging pad that’s compatible with all Qi-certified devices which gives you a little more bang for your buck.

The bottom line? If you’re do for an upgrade on your current Android device or the only thing stopping you from leaving Apple is not wanting to have a green bubble on iMessage, make the switch to the Galaxy S6, which offers even cooler features in the Edge version. Trust me, at the very least your photos will thank you for it.

The Lowdown On Samsung’s Two New Phones, Galaxy Note Edge & Galaxy Note 4

September 5th, 2014 - By Janel Martinez
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The iPhone 6 is not the only new smartphone debuting this month. Samsung unveiled a suite of products during simultaneous events in Berlin, Beijing and New York on Wednesday. Of the cool gadgets the tech giant presented, there were two new Galaxy Notes: the Galaxy Note Edge and the Galaxy Note 4.

Samsung is hoping the Galaxy Note 4 will build on the success of its Galaxy Note 3, which launched last fall and hit 10 million units sold in two months of its launch. The Note Edge’s unique curved Edge screen provides easy access to frequently used apps, alerts and device functionality (even when the cover is closed) all with the swipe of a thumb. And if you’re watching videos, your notifications will appear right on the screen—no more disturbances.

“The Galaxy Note series signaled extraordinary innovation within the technology industry. Its larger screen size and iconic S Pen technology launched a new standard in smartphone culture,” said JK Shin, CEO and Head of IT & Mobile Communication at Samsung Electronics. “With the introduction of the Galaxy Note series, we brought the age-old culture of the pen and notepad into the digital world. The new Galaxy Note 4 introduces the most refined Note experience to-date by combining all the latest technology that users expect from the Galaxy series.”

Here, MadameNoire will walk you through the features of the oversized, Android-powered Galaxy Note models.

Note 4

Size/Display: Approximately 5.7 inch Quad HD, 518 ppi (2,560-by-1, 440) Super AMOLED display. It’s the same as the Note 3, and reproduces clearer, more vivid images with deep contrast better viewing angles and response times as fast as a millionth of a second.

Audio: Comes equipped with multiple microphones and an improved speakerphone for better noise cancellation when speaking in noisy environments. Its built-in Voice Recorder offers eight different directional voice tagging and a selective playback capability that allows users to isolate and listen to specific voices in a group conversation.

Camera: 16-megapixel rear-facing camera featuring a Smart Optical Image Stabilizer that counter-balances camera shake and automatically extends exposure time in dark settings. Also, a 3.7 megapixel front-facing camera with f1.9 offers a default 90 degree shooting angle and up to 120 degree wide angle. Think: Perfect for usies with friends!

Memory: 32 GB Internal memory + micro SD slot (up to 64GB); 3GB RAM

Processor: 2.7GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 805 processor

Color: Available in October, Charcoal Black, Frost White, Bronze Gold and Blossom Pink.

Battery: According to Samsung, the Note 4 will charge up to 50% in 30 minutes.

Operating system (OS): Android 4.4 (KitKat)

S-Pen: More responsive and versatile (reports PC Mag)

The Note Edge is very similar to the Note 4, but has a new form factor.

Note Edge

Size/Display: 5.6 inch Quad HD (141.9mm), 2,560-by-1, 440 + 160 Super AMOLED display. The 160 rows of extra pixels are used for the side display. It’s all about the edge screen, which allows users to display information and notifications along the strip along the edge of its thin screen. It’s 3.8mm wider and 2.2mm shorter than the Note 4.

Camera: Rear Facing: 16-mega pixel Auto Focus camera with Smart OIS.  Front Facing: 3.7 Mega pixel camera with f1.9

Memory: 32/ 64 GB Internal memory + microSD slot (up to 64GB); 3GB RAM

Processor: 2.7GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 805 processor

Color: Available later this year, Charcoal Black and Frost White.

Battery: Comes with a smaller 3,000mAh battery.

Operating system (OS): Android 4.4 (KitKat)

The Galaxy 4 will be out next month. However, the Galaxy Note Edge has no release date as of yet.

Which phone would you purchase: the new school Galaxy Edge, or upgraded Note 3, better known as the Note 4? Let us know in the comments section below. 

A New iPhone Is Coming? Apple Confirms September 9 Event

August 28th, 2014 - By Tonya Garcia
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via Apple

via Apple

We now have official confirmation that Apple will be hosting an event on September 9. It’s expected that we’ll finally get a look at the newest iPhone and the first in Apple’s line of wearable devices, likely an iWatch.

Earlier this month, it was rumored that this would be the day in which the big announcement would be made. Everyone anticipates an iPhone with a larger screen, with the device going from 4.7 inches to 5.5 inches. It’s unclear whether other wearable device will be a smartwatch or some sort of band like the Samsung Gear S. That device allows you to make phone calls, keep track of your fitness regimen and other functions. There’s still the question, of course, of how fast this will pick up steam with the purchasing public.

The new iPhone design has reportedly leaked a few times, but of course we can’t be sure until we see it on the 9th. Business Insider has what some suspect will be the plan. It looks a lot like what’s already on the market, but maybe a little bigger.

What would you like to see in the new iPhone?


As Its Smartphone Sales Stall, Can Samsung Take Advantage Of The Consumer Tablet Trend?

July 11th, 2014 - By Ann Brown
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Things aren’t looking too good over at Samsung. The tech giant recently announced its earnings and they were worse than many expected.

The Korean company’s operating income was $7.1 billion, a 24 percent drop on a year-over-year basis. And sales were down 10 percent. It has been a challenging year for the company as it struggles to take market share from Apple. It also have major competition from Chinese phone manufacturers and knock offs that sell much cheaper than Samsung’s typical $500 price tag but otherwise offer similar services, reports Business Insider.

One option for Samsung is to concentrate on its tablets. Tablets are hot products right now. In fact, they are expected to outsell PCs in 2015. Just in time, Samsung’s Galaxy Tab S will hit the market July 12 and has already gotten great reviews.

According to technology research firm Gartner, worldwide tablet shipments (or units sold from manufacturers to retailers) will jump from 256 million in 2014 to nearly 321 million in 2015. Desktops and laptops will decrease from 276 million this year to under 262 million in next year. This development was actually predicted in 2010 by none other than late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs who called the shift to tablets the “post-PC” era and compared desktops and laptops to trucks.

“We were an agrarian nation, all cars were trucks because that’s what you needed on the farm. But as vehicles started to be used in the urban centers and America started to move into those urban and then suburban centers, cars got more popular,” he said at the time. “PCs are going to be like trucks. They’re still going to be around. They’re still going to have a lot of value, but they’re going to be used by one out of X people.”

Emerging markets and consumer taste for lower-price devices are also pushing tablet growth, Ranjit Atwal, research director at Gartner, told The Los Angeles Times. He says there will be an increase in tablets being sold for less than $100.

Atwal also predicts the move will be toward tablets with screens larger than four or five inches and the market for small-sized tablets will drop with the increased sales of smartphones.

“Now that you’re phone is getting bigger, you’re kind of replacing the activities of a 7-inch tablet,” Atwal told The Times by phone. “So now you might have a 6-inch screen phone and a 10-inch screen tablet. It’s an interesting mix and match of screen sizes.”

Match Made in Heaven? Barnes & Noble & Samsung Collide To Give You The Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 Nook

June 7th, 2014 - By Kimberly Gedeon
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samsung nookTwo tablet titans tie the knot! A beautiful marriage between Barnes & Noble’s Nook Media and Samsung spawns the birth of the Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 Nook, a 7-inch tablet built to rival the unconquerable iPad, GalleyCat reports.

After Barnes & Noble had an embarrassing holiday season with a 60 percent drop in Nook sales, the bookseller enlisted the help of Samsung. After all, when comparing launch weekend sales, Samsung Galaxy S5 actually managed to outsell the iPhone 5S. So who better than Samsung to help Nook Media get back on its feet?

The new device will combine the hardware of Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 4 7.0 and Nook’s software, which includes access to B&N’s collection of more than three million books, newspapers, and magazines. “Leaving the hardware design to Samsung allows Barnes & Noble to focus on its own software and Nook content sales,” CNET explains.

“Standing behind these great new devices will be the power of our 40,000 Barnes & Noble booksellers combined with our deep bookselling and retail expertise to provide sales support and personalized in-store customer service for our lineup of new Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 Nook products,” says Mike Huesby, Barnes & Noble CEO, according to Mashable.

Huesby, in a press release distributed on Thursday, noted that Barnes & Noble will continue to sell the Nook Glowlight e-readers and offer customer support to older devices.

Taking a look at the specs, the Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 Nook  isn’t much to boast about. However the e-reading crowd isn’t necessarily too gung-ho on top-shelf hardware anyway:

-3-megapixel rear camera

-1280×800 resolution display

-1.3-megapixel front-facing camera

-Android 4.4 KitKat with Nook software

-8GB or 16GB storage’

-1.2GHz quad-core CPU

-1.5GB RAM

As for the pricing, that remains a mystery for now, but tech pundits expect the hybrid e-reader to sell between $150 and $200.

“Barnes & Noble hopes the move will help revive sales of its flailing e-reader, while Samsung hopes adding another feature to its multi-use tablets will give it an edge over the iPad,” CSMonitor said.

In a highly saturated tablet market, does the Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 Nook really stand a chance? The co-branded device is slated to hit bookshelves in August.

We Ain’t Mad At Her! Rihanna Getting Paid $100K To Attend Fashion Shows

May 22nd, 2014 - By Ann Brown
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Rihanna snags leading role in new DreamWorks film, "Home".

Source: WENN

Where can I sign up? A cool $100,000 just for sitting?! That’s what designers pay Rihanna (and other celebs) during Fashion Week each and every time she sits in their front row. That’s more than the annual salary of most folks.

Think about how many times you have seen Rihanna photographed at fashion shows and you will get an idea of just how much brands are paying stars for their indirect endorsement. Brands are willing to pay a ton just to have celebs associated with their brand. “And in a society where photos rule the social media scene and you can follow your favorite stars’ every move from your smartphone, it makes sense for labels to want them in their front row,” reports The Huffington Post.

Celebrities also cash in when they attend events and parties. Club owners will pay a star to hang out just so they can say celebrities come there. Then there are endorsement deals. Jay Z had the most expensive endorsement deal when Samsung reportedly paid the rap mogul $20 million to promote the Samsung Galaxy. Catherine Zeta-Jones comes in No. 2 for the $20 million she was paid for her first deal with T-Mobile back in 2005. At No. 3 is Usain Bolt who, after winning the 200-meter title in the 2002 World Junior Championships in Jamaica, inked a sponsorship deal with Puma that earned him $8.6 million annually. Mrs. Carter comes in No. 10. Beyoncé re-signed with Pepsi for a whopping $50 million early last year.

Of course we’re not surprised that celebs would be paid a healthy sum for their time, but it always begs the question of what kind of impact this really has. Who’s moved by the fact that Rihanna is in the front row at a designer’s fashion show?

Living In The Last Days: Red Sox Player David Ortiz Snaps What Might Be The Last Presidential Selfie

April 7th, 2014 - By Lauren R.D. Fox
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Who knew selfies could get you into trouble with the government?!

During a visit to the White House, Red Sox player, David Ortiz, aka Big Papi, took a selfie with President Obama. What President Obama didn’t know is that Ortiz is a “social media insider” for Samsung. Reportedly, Ortiz was coached about the selfie prior to the visit. So when the snapshot went up, Samsung used it as a promotional tool on Twitter, noting that it was taken with a Galaxy Note 3.

White House senior adviser Dan Pfeiffer says President Obama’s lawyers got in touch with Samsung after receiving news Ortiz took the picture for their company. “As a rule the White House objects to attempts to use the president’s likeness for commercial purposes. We object in this case,” WH Press Secretary Jay Carney said in a press conference last week. Now the Big Papi selfie could be the last ever with President Obama.

Pfeiffer reports via The Business Insider:

“He obviously didn’t know anything about Samsung’s connection to this and, perhaps, maybe, this will be the end of all selfies. Whenever someone tries to use the president’s likeness to promote a product, that’s a problem with the White House counsel.”

Carney has gone on to say that there’s “no discussion of a ban,” but Samsung has been contacted about the stunt. We haven’t seen any further comment about the selfie from Samsung on Twitter. But Farhad Manjoo, a NY Times tech columnist says whoever came up with the idea “deserves a raise” because it’s been “brilliantly successful.” The incident has been widely reported.

Do you think the White House is overreacting?

Actor Idris Elba And Samsung Team Up For Online Talent-Hunting Initiative ‘Launching People’

March 31st, 2014 - By Ann Brown
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Featureflash /

Featureflash /

Although an impromptu rapping performance got panned recently Idris Elba remains Hollywood hot. Now the Thor: The Dark World actor is looking to give back. Elba has partnered with Samsung as a mentor for the company’s online talent competition, “Launching People.”

Competitors had until March 6 to apply for the competition via Facebook by submitting a two-minute short that highlighted their particular project, reports EURWeb. More than 600 people have downloaded the app. The popular category was music.

Elba will join other mentors (singer-songwriter Paloma Faith, photographer Rankin, and chef Gizzi Erskine) in helping the contestants win. Each mentor will select the finalist to be featured in a television series airing on UK TV in spring 2014.

The general public can go to Facebook to vote for the “People’s Choice” winner per category.

Winners will receive personal tuition and Samsung products that will support them in pursuing the projects they highlighted in their entry film. We all win the opportunity to watch/listen to Idris Elba talk about the campaign. Video below.

A Mogul’s Hustle: The Many Collaborations Of Jay Z

March 28th, 2014 - By Tanvier Peart
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“A Genius Leaves The Hood: The Unauthorized Story of Jay Z” available for purchase on iTunes, Google Play and VHX now!

He’s a rapper, producer, businessman (or a business man), husband and father. In the hip hop game for a few decades now Jay Z has influenced our definition of both a hustler and entrepreneur throwing his hat into a variety of ventures that turned to gold.

The new Moguldom Studios documentary, A Genius Leaves the Hood: The Unauthorized Story of Jay Z  highlights the 44-year-old’s rise to success and evolution as a mogul. Here’s a look at some of Jay Z’s many business collaborations through the years.

It’s Time For An Upgrade! Introducing The New Samsung Galaxy S5

February 25th, 2014 - By Kimberly Gedeon
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Sorry, but your Galaxy S4 is already old news! Samsung unveiled the fifth generation of their Galaxy S series on Monday and tech geeks are already calling it the “best phone money can buy”!

The Samsung Galaxy S5 takes security on a whole new level. There is a fingerprint scanner embedded on its home screen button. Not only can you unlock and lock your phone with a simple touch, but you can authorize mobile purchases through e-commerce services like Paypal. The fingerprint scanner was introduced by Apple on the iPhone 5 — but Galaxy is S5 is doing it a tinge better.

“[This feature] can also be used to unlock pictures you want to keep private, or to take the place of other Web passwords. It works with up to eight fingers,” USA Today reports.

From now on, you never have to worry about spilling liquids on the Samsung Galaxy S5 either — it’s water resistant! It does have the same 5.1 inch full HD 1080p display as its predecessor, but Samsung touts that the screen is much brighter and still performs well in direct sunlight. All this, however, comes at the expense of your battery, according to CNN Money.

Luckily, the Samsung Galaxy S5 has a power saving mode. With this feature, even if your smartphone is running on 10 percent battery, you’ll get an additional 24 hours on standby.

The download speeds are out-of-this-world. Large files can be available to you in just seconds. A one gigabyte file, for example, can be downloaded in just 30 seconds. This is perfect for those who want to watch films on-the-go.

If you want to know if the S5 is selfie-approved, Samsung added a cool new “blur” mode. The subject of the photo remains in focus while the background, as you might have guessed, blurs. The rear camera is 16 megapixels while its front is two megapixels. The new Galaxy also boasts that it has the fastest auto-focusing technology on the market.

The Galaxy S5, which runs on the “KitKat” version of Android, is also perfect for fitness buffs. It includes a health-oriented software that includes “a pedometer, diet and exercise records, and a new, built-in heart rate monitor,” according to IBTimes.

You’ll be able to purchase your S5 on April 11 under AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile and Verizon Wireless. You can choose from four colors Charcoal Black, Shimmery White, Electric Blue, and Copper Gold.