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Gear and gadgets from smartphones to backpacks
  • I'm back from CES and while the show is over, now it's time to digest a week's worth of technology overload. Along with that decompression ironically is a whole slew of new questions. This time from guys that I hang out in real life. The big question that they are asking - and frankly I'm asking myself is, which phone will I continue using after my ambassador agreement for Huawei is up.

  • At a certain point, technology becomes "good enough" and you stop needing more megapixels, more memory, and faster chips. While I'm sure we'll find some reason to start pushing again, but I feel that technology has gotten to the point where it's stopped being the realm of the geek... and entered a phase where it's truly personal. In a weird way though, it seems that the foreign companies are leading this - especially in the mobile arena. Companies such as Huawei launched some great new products such as women's versions of their smart watch - and also brought the gold version of the Nexus 6P to the US as well.

  • Yesterday at CES I got an interesting opportunity. As part of my ambassadorial duties with Huawei I was invited to visit their booth and demo the new Mate 8, talk with customers, and really get a pretty great experience with the phone that went well beyond just a review kit. This allowed me to better understand the hardware and software - but also the questions that many of you are probably also wanting to ask.

  • At CES this morning, Huawei announced some more great mobile devices, adding on to their existing lineup that includes the Nexus 6P that I'm using this week to cover CES 2016. These new products that were announced include: The Huawei Mate 8, which will be launched globally with the Kirin 950 chipset, a gold version of the Nexus 6P, a collaboration with Swarovski's gemstone business to release two new versions of the Huawei Watch, and finally a partnership with Harman/Kardon who will provide it's cutting-edge Clari-Fi technology to the new M2 10 inch tablet.

  • This isn't the fanciest or most awesome device I've ever played with, but what impressed me about the ZTE Mobley is that it is an alternative spin on something that makes life just that much better. As more and more devices are requiring internet access we're all searching for WiFi hotspots to serve them. Now you can turn your car into one powered by the AT&T network.

  • This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Huawei for IZEA. All opinions are 100% mine.

    I'm somewhat of a phone geek and that's why I LOVE to get my hands on the latest and greatest devices. In the past, it was easy when someone asked me, "What's your favorite phone?" Today though, the reality is there are a ton of great devices out there from a variety of manufacturers. Over the past few weeks though, I've had a chance to explore life with the Nexus 6P, and I really love it. 

  • This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Escort Radar + Laser Detectors for IZEA. All opinions are 100% mine.

    Honestly this was a lot of fun and I was afraid for a few moments that I was going to end up paying the San Diego police department for the pleasure of reviewing the product instead of making some money myself. However, I'm happy to share that this is an awesome device that while you should never speed - is a good thing to have in your car to help make you more aware of what's going on around you.

  • What do you get that guy who has everything? He already has the latest gadgets, the best clothes, and a collection of Scotch whisky's that rivals the bar down the street. The simple answer is what every guy has thought about at one point or another - prestige in the form of a real legal title. "Doctors" are a dime a dozen these days, but how many Lords, Lairds, and Ladies do you know? Now you can give someone that honor easily and it's totally affordable.

  • Just like the Esquire Mini I wrote about earlier, sometimes it's nice to find devices that cross over between work and play. That's exactly what the Spro 2 does and it's fantastic. Last week, I was able to take it with me on a client meeting and project a report on their wall... and then take it back to the hotel room and watch a movie. So don't worry about who you are going to buy it for... use some of those points you've racked up recently and just buy it for yourself :)

  • There's a lot of great Bluetooth speakers on the market right now at a variety of different price points but it's not often that I find one that I actually want to keep and use. That's how I felt about the Esquire Mini when I received it in a gift bag a few months ago and so I am thrilled to be able to share it with you today. It's pretty darn near the perfect speaker in a lot of ways - looks great, sounds great, compact enough to travel easily, and serves as more than just something to listen to music with.

  • VR is going to be the big gift this year and you are going to see a lot of options ranging from Google's "card board" to units costing hundreds of dollars, but right there in the middle is Merge. At only $99 it's a great option to kick off the VR revolution in your home. 

  • This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of 3M for IZEA. All opinions are 100% mine.

    I travel a lot and it seems like this fall I've been on the road almost every week for one thing or another. Heck, I was in the Caribbean last month but unfortunately I still had to work. That means bringing with me a bunch of gear including my laptop so I thought I might share some tips with you about how I manage to travel safe - while still working.

  • This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Escort Radar + Laser Detectors for IZEA. All opinions are 100% mine.

    At some point in your driving career you will exceed the speed limit and most of us will get a ticket at least once in our lives. That doesn't make you a bad person, but there are ways you can help prevent that. One is to be more diligent about your speed and the posted limits. The other way is to employ a device such as a radar detector that helps to alert you when you might be in trouble.

  • This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Chase Freedom for IZEA. All opinions are 100% mine.

    Did you start your holiday shopping yet or are you like the millions of other guys out there that procrastinate till the last moment?

  • We're finally in December and it's time to plan our shopping lists. The folks at Samsung have some great ideas for the good men on our shopping lists! From tablets to watches to VR headsets and ridiculously high resolution TV screens, this has been an amazing year for technology. It's hard for me to pick the one item that I love the most but since I've had a chance to go hands on with the Galaxy Tab S2, lets start there!

  • One of the things that can be frustrating for anyone who loves to travel is that you simply can't take everything with you. That's true for your closet, but it's also true for your data. While cloud services such as DropBox and Google Drive do a great job for files, I personally like to have my own cloud and that's where NETGEAR's ReadyCLOUD comes into play. It essentially offers all the things that my complicated intranet server offered - but with an easy to use interface and minimal configuration complexity.

  • This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Huawei for IZEA. All opinions are 100% mine.

    Competition is an amazing thing - it forces the players to innovate, improve, and generally get better. While there are winners and losers, competition generally results in a better product for consumers like you and me. Almost 10 years ago a minor player in the personal computer market decided to extend their portable music device and turn it into a cell phone. Suddenly the landscape began to change at lightening speed and we're all better off for it. As things have started to plateau, though, there's a new competitor about to enter the U.S. market - Huawei.

  • While the design world is obsessed with digital screens today, there was once a time when knobs and dials were chic. Whether we look at those products as being fashionably retro or legitimately practical it almost doesn't matter. There's a simple elegance of physical hardware that feels great to the touch and when the quality, style, and sound produced by the device is spectacular. That's pretty much my review for the Tivoli Audio Model One BT and you could just stop here and visit their website to buy one, or you can continue reading to see how much I love this radio.

  • I love exploring new apps for my phone, but one of the challenges is finding the right apps from the right developer. Frankly the permissions that some ask for is a bit scary when you don't know if the developer is a hacker sitting in a dark corner of the world waiting to steal your stuff or a reputable developer with thousands of employees worldwide. Of course, you'd recognize a name like Yahoo, Apple, or Google - but what about Baidu. No? Me neither, but they make some great apps to make your smart phone even smarter.

  • Hey, it's the holidays and that means you're probably going to be doing some drinking. No judgement here but that's just a fact for most of us. The question is - will you be able to hold it? Or are you going to be that guy that's all sloppy and drips his beer on the floor because you don't have a pint glass with a cover on it or a flask with a top? Stanley has some great new products this holiday that would make any guy proud to find them under the tree, but they work great as groomsman and host gifts too.

     

    First up, we have The Classic Wide Mouth Flask. While I've had my share of flasks over the years, usually they are pretty boring and rather flimsy because they are essentially designed to be disposable in case they get caught. On the other hand, a flask really does serve a purpose if you are camping - or even just going out to the beach with the guys. 

    Classic Wide Mouth Flask retails for $25.00

    stanley adventure happy hour shaker 20oz stainless.pt04

    Next up we have the Nesting Steel Happy Hour System. Even in the woods it's important to be able to whip up a margarita and now you can. Though frankly I think this one is a great addition to your private bar out in the garage and I really like the fact that while most cocktail kits just come with a shaker that this one includes a juicer too.

    Nesting Happy Hour System retails for $35.00

    growler

    Stanley is an expert in the field of vacuum steel containers having been manufacturing them since 1913 so it's good to see that the technology is be applied to more than just soup and coffee...

    In San Diego we have no shortage of breweries but sometimes you want to be able to take your favorite brew home to enjoy and that's where this Vacuum Steel Growler comes in handy. As any beer connoisseur will tell you - light is the enemy of beer. So it's interesting to me that many growlers are still essentially just glass jugs. Don't worry though - you'll look like a pro when you go in for your fill-up knowing that your beer is going to be kept cold and protected from the light until it's time to pour.

    Vacuum Steel Growler retails for $50.00.

    classic vacuum pint 16oz hammertone crimson exploded

    Speaking of pouring your beer... the fourth and final part of this great collection is a Vacuum Steel Pint. While it looks like a coffee mug, the same principals that keep coffee hot are going to work here to keep your beer cold. 

    Plus, this means you can take it places where glass containers are prohibited and we think that's a huge win!

    Classic Vacuum Steel Pint Glass retails for $23.00.

     

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