Google Nexus 5X & 6P to be Cardboard-ready, Cardboard-packing

Google’s next two Nexus devices have one feature that the benchmarks didn’t leak.

The Nexus 5X and 6P are just a mere 48 hours away from launching. But the bean-spilling isn’t done yet. Both phones feature Qualcomm Snapdragon processors (808 and 810, respectively).

The LG-built Nexus 5X appears to harken back to Google’s days of affordable, unlocked smartphone devices. The Huawei-built Nexus 6P on the other hand, features a high-end CPU – paralleling the Motorola Nexus 6 that it replaces.

But there’s one feature both devices have in common: They will both be the most Cardboard VR-ready phones yet.

Cardboard VR is the practice of using two polarized plastic (or glass) lenses inside a cardboard box. By replicating the same image twice (offset for each eye), the user achieves stereoscopic 3D vision. Cardboard VR certainly does work, but until now has paled in comparison to what expensive, calibrated systems from Oculus and HTC have accomplished. The reason for this is simple – while the components are similar, the pre-packaged result is perfectly calibrated.

Google has stayed out of building its own VR goggles, instead focusing on Cardboard, as well as augmented reality – in the form of Google Glass, a product it is continuing to develop.

The Nexus 5X and 6P will come with NFC tags, and cardboard keyframe mounts in the center (that “second circle” that many have noted on both cases). These are designed to match a cardboard case that is custom-fitted to these two phones.

And that’s what we believe is the logical conclusion to this – Both phones will likely come with their own custom cardboard fitted cases.

What isn’t clear is how far Google can take Cardboard – but it is about to be put to the test. Google is going to use Nexus to experiment with how far Cardboard can be competitive with with Oculus Rift and HTC Vive. The hope is, it will be as good as the more expensive solutions.

As with all past Nexus devices, it is expected the Nexus 5X and 6P will launch with Android 6.0, Marshmallow. Other devices are slated to begin getting updates in the first week of October.

Pro Tip: Like iPhone 6, Moto E 2nd Gen Charges Faster with More Powerful Charger

It’s not a huge secret that Apple bundled a weaker charger than the iPhone 6 & iPhone 6 Plus support. The bigger surprise is that Apple is far from alone.

iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, in case you weren’t aware, can charge faster when supplied with the 2.1A charger that comes with Apple’s iPad. This is completely safe, and won’t wear down your iPhone’s battery. In fact, charging faster can – to some limited degree – enhance the life of your phone’s battery.

Why did Apple do this? They won’t say (many have asked them, we’re not going to waste time doing so). But it likely boils down to cost. A 1A charger is cheaper to make, and charges smartphones at a reasonably-fast rate.

But the big surprise, is that many other phones, like the Motorola E 2nd Generation, can also charge at faster speeds. We’ve seen some SKUs of the Moto E ship with 500 mAh (.5A) chargers. But, testing using our power meter, we tested with the Legion Meter in-house, we’ve seen it request and use 1A when provided.

The bottom line is, if your phone is pretty modern, you may want to invest in a 1 amp or 2 amp charger and see if it speeds up your charging time. It won’t hurt your phone, and worst-case, you’ll get a spare charger out of it. Maintenance Mode & The Power of Anonymous

phonenews-com-iconFor the past 12 years, has been a traditional blog. We’re getting a little more ambitious with our relaunch, read on to see what’s changing.

Anonymous has been a revolution in the world. From pioneering sites like 4Chan to apps like Whisper, anonymous technology and media has changed how people interact.

One big challenge facing bloggers today, is the backlash. You can’t say the truth, because some PR person will beat you over the head for it. Or you don’t want those opinions linked to your LinkedIn profile. Or you are afraid that some future blogging post will affect you for the statements you say on your last blog.

All of this is bad. Let’s face it. Most telecom journalists don’t stay journalists. They move on to other jobs inside the telecom industry. With social media, they’re now afraid of their words being called up and smacked upon them years down the road.

What it hurts is your ability to get the best insights and the most unbiased opinions possible.

Going forward, when we relaunch, will be completely anonymous. We’ll vet the writers and make them sign agreements that they aren’t representing the brands or companies that they’re writing about. Then, we’ll let everyone write. People in the industry that probably want to write articles – but can’t, because of fear of reprisal.

Our goal, combined with a complete restyle – flanked with a convoy of apps, is to make a new force in the mobile media.

We have to admit, we don’t know how this will play out. It could be fun. It could be a huge mess. We’ll see.

For the next 90 days, it’s business as usual. Well, almost. We’re not going to compete with the big box blogs. Instead, we’re going to focus on the two-or-three news items of the day that they all missed out on.