Posts about gadgets

Gadget Review: INCIPIO Universal 1 Port 750mAh Backup Battery

It's roughly the size of my thumb (a bit thicker, a bit shorter), cable is not included and needed.

I got this at the till while buying socks in San Mateo for 5 dollars.

What is it?
A small prism with a male foldable USB socket on one end, a female USB socket, a battery in the middle, a tiny button and tiny led.
How does it work?
When you are plugging stuff to charge via USB, you plug this in the middle, so computer -> backup battery -> gadget. That charges the gadget and the backup battery. Then you throw it in your pocket/bag when you leave home.
What does it do?
It lets you recharge roughly half a phone's full charge, when you inevitably run out of battery, so unless you forget to charge both things, you'll manage to survive.
What could be better?
It could come with a micro-usb male instead of a USB female, because that means you also have to carry a cable (no big deal)
What does the button do?
It stops/starts the current flow into the gadget.
What does the LED do?
Tells you if current is flowing (green) or if it's charging (red).
Can you charge anything?
Yes, but 750mAh is enough to keep a Nexus 7 working for about 30 seconds ;-) Does a decent job on a Kindle though!
Are you going to lose it?
Oh yes, the thing is tiny.

Not a bad 5 dollar gadget. However, you can find it in Amazon for $30 at some places, and that's robbery.

Gadget Review: Kindle Paperwhite

I have had a Kindle Paperwhite (with ads) for a month. I was a big fan of my previous kindles, specially the 4th-gen non-touch one. I preferred it to the Kindle Touch because it was lighter, the bezel was shallower, and it had dedicated page-flipping buttons.

So, why did I get a Paperwhite instead of the cheaper 4th gen after I sold my Touch? Because of the darkness.

Reading is an enjoyable activity, and I read almost anywhere, in the supermarket queue, while having breakfast, while on the train, and in bed. But in bed, the older Kindles required me to turn on the light, like a caveman.

Of course, I could read in my cellphone (small) or in a tablet (heavier!) or in a book (again, lights, caveman!) So, this was the logical choice.

It still doesn't have the buttons, and it still has a touchscreen which makes little sense in a Kindle (except for the keyboard) and the bezel is intermediate. But the lighting is glorious. Sure, it's uneven at the bottom. So is the lighting in a paper book while in bed (check it out). But it's not all that heavy (even with the fancy cover), and it has a similarly glorious battey life.

The cover is really great. It feels like leather/rubber, it's solid, has a deadgrip on the device, and it turns on/off when you flip it open/closed, so you don't have to hunt for the tiny button at the bottom.

The font selection is a welcome improvement, although none compares well to the default.

Also, WTF happened to the audio? Why is it gone?

So my ideal Kindle that will never exist would be: a 4th gen with frontlight and smart cover. A man can always dream.