How To Choose the Right Phone For Your Next Upgrade

How To Choose the Right Phone For Your Next Upgrade

With so many different models available on the market, upgrading your phone can seem daunting. Not only can it be difficult to part with your old phone, but it can also be a nightmare trying to find a phone that does everything you want it to for the right price.

It’s safe to say that the smartphone market is extremely saturated, so going phone shopping unprepared can definitely end in disaster. If you’re thinking about upgrading but aren’t sure where to start, this guide should help you to navigate the sea of smartphones and pick out the one that is right for you.

Decide on Your Favourite Operating System

Operating systems are all important when it comes to upgrading your phone. The two most common operating systems are IOS and Android, and the one you have currently may affect the decision you make when you upgrade.

Transferring data like songs, pictures and contacts can be more difficult to do if you are switching between operating systems so, if you are hoping to get your new phone up and running without too much hassle, then you may want to stick with the same operating system that you’re using on your current phone.

iPhone’s run on the IOS operating and upgrading from an old iPhone to a newer model is usually very simple, as most iPhones are synced with a computer that backs up all of your data. Once you log into the new iPhone using your current account details, you should be able to download anything you have saved quickly and easily.

Other popular phones models like Samsung run on Android. Switching between androids is also very simple and a lot of androids have external storage such as micro SD cards that can be transferred from phone to phone.

However, making the switch from Android to IOS or vice-versa can be a little bit more difficult and you may not be able to access everything that you purchased using iTunes, which is something to consider when choosing an upgrade.

Aside from that, it’s also quite difficult to get the hang of a new operating system, which is why most people choose to stick to what they know when it comes to upgrading.  

Think about your budget

When it comes to getting a new phone, how much money you have to spend is one of the biggest determining factors in which phone you choose. Even if you are getting the phone for free on a contract, more expensive smartphones will come with more expensive monthly contracts. If you are looking to save money, then you may want to opt for something a little cheaper.

The good news is, there are perfectly good smartphones available at a range of different price points. Before you start looking, have a good think about how much money you are willing to spend on your phone or your monthly payments and this can help you to narrow down your search. There’s no use looking at the iPhone X if you can’t afford it, so focus your time on researching models that are in your price range.

Decide What Your ‘Must Have’ Features Are

Everybody uses their phones for different purposes and this is one way you can narrow down your search for the perfect smartphone. Have a think about what you use your phone for the most, and think about what features you require.

If you’re a gamer, then focus your search on phones that have the power you need to play your favorite games. If you’re into social media and taking photos, then maybe a phone with a really great camera is what you’re looking for. Take some time to make a list of what your priorities are and then research what are the best models available for your needs.

Do Some Research on Different Models

Once you have decided on what different features you would like and how much you are willing to spend, you can begin to look for phones that meet your requirements. The best way to do this is online. Search your requirements to get ideas for models that might be good for you.

For example, if you’re on a budget, make a search for the best budget smartphones or if you want a great camera, find out which models of phone are best for photographers. Once you’ve got some ideas, you should have a look at the stats and see which phones are offering the best features for the best price.

Another great way of getting an insider look at how the phones run is by searching for reviews of models you are interested in. You can usually find comments from previous customers on shopping websites, telling how good or bad they thought the phone was. You’ll also be able to find review videos of more popular models on YouTube. Watching a few of these can help you to get a look at how they work in action before you think about buying it.

Go Into the Store and Check Them Out

Getting a look at the phones in action is the final step to choosing the perfect one for you. Once you’ve narrowed down your search to a few different contenders, head down to the mall and see what they look like in action. Most phones are available on display in large tech shops, so customers can have a chance to get a feel for the phone before they buy them.

Checking out a few phone shops can also be a good way to find out about deals and prices that are being offered by different retailers. Tech shops often run offers and deals and you may manage to get a bit of money off, or some free gifts if you decide to buy in-store. If you don’t find a good deal, you can always make a decision on which phone you want after viewing it and then buy it online.

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10 Awesome Features You Can Expect from the Samsung Galaxy Note 9

10 Awesome Features You Can Expect from the Samsung Galaxy Note 9

Every year, hundreds of new smartphones are released and it can often be difficult to decipher the differences between the models. This year, one of the most popular phones released was the iPhone X. While the iPhone X’s features are regarded as being state of the art, Apple products are not for everyone, and one of the iPhone X’s major competitors is the Samsung Galaxy Note 9.

Samsung has long been in a head-to-head battle with Apple over its aim of creating the best phone on the market and that’s leaves many wondering, could the Note 9 be the best smartphone available right now? That’s difficult to say, but what we do know is that the Note 9 comes equipped with some pretty awesome features, so let’s take a look at them.

1. Improved Charging Capabilities

The Note 9 is regarded by Samsung as being one of the most powerful models in their range. The phone comes equipped with a powerful ‘all day battery’ that is designed to last longer than the average smartphone on the market. The battery is also designed to charge faster, which means less time waiting around for your device to charge up. This is great for anyone that works long hours with no access to a charger or travels a lot.

2. Ample Storage

With the Galaxy Note 9, you can choose from 128GB or 512GB of storage, which will ensure you never have to delete your favorite snaps or uninstall storage heavy apps. And if that amount of storage isn’t enough, there is also room for external memory cards, which can boost the storage up to its 1TB ready capacity. Compared to other phones available on the market right now, the Note 9 is one of the best options if you require a lot of storage.

3. Up to Date Processor

In contrast to other phones on the market now, this phone’s processor is regarded as being quite cutting edge. The Galaxy Note 9’s processor lets you take advantage of super fast internet speeds and gives you the capability to upload and download big files in an instant. This makes downloading videos, or large files easier and faster.

4. Dual Aperture

Dual Aperture is a camera feature that allows the user to take the perfect shot day or night. It adjusts to lighting in a way which mimics the human eye to ensure the best resolution, whatever the lighting conditions. This is a great feature for party people who love to take pictures on their nights out.

5. Infinity Display

The Note 9 comes equipped with a huge 6.4″ screen that is much bigger than competitors like the iPhone X. This makes the Note 9 perfect for people who like to get their Netflix fix via their phone or read and work on the go. There’ll be no need to zoom in to read the words on a screen this size. You even have options to split the screen and it’s easy to switch between tabs. When coupled with the overall power of the Note 9, users can expect perfect picture clarity, whatever they’re doing.

6. The S Pen

The S pen is a new feature from Samsung which allows the user to control their phone via a Bluetooth pen that is stored inside the phone. Whether you want to take a group photo or give a presentation for work, you can use the S Pen to get the perfect shot. As well as this, the pen also functions as a writing or drawing tool. You can use it to write notes, text, or draw on the infinity display.

7. Samsung Knox Security

Samsung Knox is one of the toughest smartphone security systems out there. It allows users to ensure everything on their phone is completely secure. Want to keep the kids out of a certain folder? or lock up some important work files? Samsung Knox security will allow you to customize which parts of your phone need the most security and adjust the settings to suit your needs.

8. Use The Phone Like A Desktop

If you are a person who has a busy life and needs access to a real desktop, this could be the feature for you. Sometimes, a smartphone just doesn’t meet the capabilities of a real desktop computer, but this one does. The Note 9 can be hooked up to a monitor via a cable and a Bluetooth keyboard and mouse to function as a desktop computer when you need it to. If you need to do some document editing whilst you are away from the office, this could be the perfect solution.

9. Phone Lock Customization

Everyone has their own preferences when it comes to locking their phone. Some people like passcode security, others aren’t comfortable with anything less than face recognition, and those of us that have nothing to hide may even opt for no lock at all (crazy right?). With the Note 9, there is something to suit everyone’s preferences as it comes equipped with a wide variety of different lock features. You can choose between fingerprint technology, face recognition, or you can feel like you’re in a Sci-Fi movie and opt for an iris scanner. The possibilities really are endless.

10. Intelligent Camera

Gone are the days when people had a camera and a phone. Now we expect our smartphones to take pictures as clear as a high-quality camera – and the Note 9 does just that. If you’re selfie obsessed or a photography enthusiast, the Note 9’s camera shouldn’t disappoint. Aside from the Dual Aperture feature mentioned earlier, the camera is also highly intelligent and can detect your surroundings and adjust the settings accordingly. Whatever picture your taking, the Note 9 will help you to ensure that your picture is perfectly balanced and detailed.

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10 Tips on Preserving Your Battery

10 Tips on Preserving Your Battery

Have you ever been lost in a new city and need to book a taxi ride home but you can’t because your phone battery is dead? I know I have. There’s little that’s more frustrating in life than having a dead battery in when you need it the most.

It’s not just us though, a lot of people suffer from this problem but few of us have any idea how to fix it. Today, we’re going to change that by figuring out why a lot of phones have a terrible battery life and how we can stop them from draining so quickly.

There are a lot of reasons that your battery isn’t retaining its charge, and there are some things you can do that may improve the situation, but first let’s take a look at the science behind it all…

How Does A Battery Work?

Batteries work in such a way that they have a certain amount of battery cycles. This means that your battery can be charged and drained a certain amount of times before you begin to see deterioration in the functionality of your phone.

The problem is that smartphone technology is developing so fast that battery developers don’t have time to catch up. Our phones are capable of running all sorts of apps, but these features use a lot of energy, thus causing the battery to use up charge cycles much more quickly.

In addition to this, software updates can cause older phones to struggle under the pressure and cause even quicker battery deterioration. In spite of all this, there are some things you can do to preserve those battery cycles and slow down the deterioration of your battery. Let’s take a look at how.

How To Improve The Battery Life on Android Phones

1. Check Up On Your Power Usage In Settings

Apps can be a major contributing factor when it comes to fast-depleting batteries. It’s often the case that apps are eating up your power even when you are not using them, so go into the settings, check out what’s going on, and remove any apps that are causing a problem.

The OS you are using could also be causing rapid battery loss, so you can try updating the OS to improve the battery life.

2. Get Rid Of Clutter

People tend to have hundreds of apps on their phones, of which they use only a few. Just having a lot of apps can contribute to the speed with which your battery drains, so it may be time for a clear out. Delete anything that you don’t use anymore; delete any games that you don’t play and you should see an improvement in your battery life.

3. Make Use Of Airplane Mode

Although Airplane mode was designed to use when you fly, what the function actually does is stop the phone from attempting to connect to cellular and 3G networks. Both of these functions really drain battery life, especially if you are in a low signal area, as the phone will have to work harder to try to connect to a network. If you’re running really low on charge and you want to preserve the battery for that little bit longer, switch to airplane mode, and you should be able to slow the process down a little bit.

4. Ditch Notifications

Most people have notification set up for pretty much all their apps. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and most other social apps send notifications regularly and this could be causing your phone battery to die faster. Of course, you may want to continue receiving personal message notifications, but if you really want to save battery life, then turn them off on the less important apps.

5. Turn Off Ambient Display

The ambient display allows apps and notifications to cause the screen to light up when they are received. If you receive a lot of notifications, this repeated lighting up of the screen can cause the battery life to drain much faster than when it is turned off. If you have a device that runs on Android 7 and above, you can also specifically select that notifications don’t light up the screen, but messages and other things still do.

6. Make use of Power Saver Mode

Power saver can be your saving grace if you are really trying to save the power on your phone. This function disables power draining features like location services and reduces the quality of animations. For newer model Androids, you also have the option of choosing ‘extreme power saving mode’, which disables data connections when the screen is locked and gives priority to important apps like GPS and messaging.

7. Get a Good Charger

Its no myth that cheap chargers are worse than certified or official chargers. If you want to have the best chance of maintaining your battery life and charging your mobile quickly, purchase a charger from the manufacturer or a certified third party.

8. Don’t Let Your Phone Overheat

All smartphones are susceptible to overheating, and your battery life can be affected by this. If your phone overheats regularly – or even gets too cold, for that matter – you will notice reduced functionality and battery life. Do what you can to keep it at a normal temperature. That might mean removing accessories that stop heat from escaping and keeping it out of direct sunlight.

9. Don’t Let Your Battery Die Too Often

Leaving the battery to completely burn out can be really damaging to the longevity of the battery. The optimal way to charge your phone is to keep the battery charged between 40% and 80% at all times. This will help the battery to run in a more healthy way, and the charge will be likely to last longer.

10. Use the Screen Dimming Function

If you are facing a battery life emergency, then dimming the screen as much as possible can help to preserve the last bit of charge. You can also use dimming functions to improve the batteries overall longevity too. For Android, you can make use of the adaptive brightness settings, which allows the phone to adjust the brightness of the screen automatically based on your surroundings, in order to reduce the amount of power the screen brightness is using up.

That’s all there is to it! That concludes our 10 tips for preserving your Android’s battery life. Hopefully, these will help you to improve your phone’s battery and avoid getting stuck in any more difficult situations without a charged phone in the future.

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10 Tips for Charging Your Phone Correctly

10 Tips for Charging Your Phone Correctly

One of the most frustrating things about current mobile phones is their battery life. As our devices have become more powerful and technologically advanced, battery manufacturers have struggled to keep pace. All those incredible apps and smart features that come with mobiles in 2018 drain your battery much quicker than they used to.

Because of this, it’s sometimes necessary to charge your battery twice, or even three times per day – particularly if you’re someone that uses it a lot – and that’s just not viable. So what’s the solution?

Well, it might seem obvious, but a surprising number of people don’t know how to charge their phone correctly. By ‘correctly’, I mean in a way that maximizes the battery life both in the short-term and in the long-term, and charges it quickly enough that you can go from 0% to 100% in no time at all, allowing you to fit in multiple recharges per day.

With that in mind, we’ve put together this list of 10 tips that will help you to charge your phone faster and more safely. Let’s get into it!

1. Don’t charge it to 100%

You might have thought that the best way to make sure your phone has enough juice to keep it going through the day is to charge it fully, right the way to 100%. Well, you’d be wrong. Why? Two words: battery life.

Most modern smartphones have lithium-ion batteries, and these batteries don’t respond well to being charged to maximum capacity. I won’t bore you with why that is – it’s far too complex and technical to get into here – but you’ll just have to take my word for it. If you charge them to 100%, you’ll cause a tiny bit of damage to the battery which will, over time, reduce its lifespan. If you do this regularly, after a few hundred charges your battery life will be dramatically reduced.

The good news is partial charges cause no harm whatsoever to lithium-ion batteries so aim to do frequent, short charges of between 10%-20% at a time if you can. If that’s not possible, just unplug your charger before it gets to 100%.

The exception to all of this is if your mobile has a nickel-based battery. Nickel batteries actually benefit from the total opposite due to something called the ‘memory effect’. This refers to when a battery ‘forgets’ its full capacity if its never being charged to it. For example, if you only ever charge it up to 80%, it might forget about the other 20% over time. Sounds weird, I know. Fortunately, you probably don’t have to worry about this too much anyway as very few modern phones still have nickel-based batteries.

2. Don’t let it run too low

In the same way that you shouldn’t ever let your phone charge all the way up to 100%, you shouldn’t let it deplete to 0% either. This actually damages the battery a little bit each time, which will cause the battery life to drop over the long-term. Try not to let it drop below 25% if you can help it.

If you want to be really safe about it, aim to keep your battery charged at between 65%-75% at all times as research shows this is the optimal amount to maintain battery life.

3. Don’t leave it at 0% for too long

If you do fail to keep your phone battery from running out, try to get it charged up again as soon as possible. If you leave it at 0% for too long, it can completely die. By that, I mean totally lose its capacity to hold a charge and refuse to turn on again even when plugged in.

Of course, this won’t happen over a few hours or even a few days. We’re talking about a phone that’s left for months with 0% charge. It does happen sometimes, though, when people store old mobiles in drawers. If you do, just remember to charge it back up to around 50% every now and then to prevent the battery from dying.

4. Use a fast charger

All chargers are not made equal. It’s possible to get ‘lightning chargers’ which are able to charge up your phone faster than regular ones – but only if your phone supports fast charging. Many new Android models do, so if you have one of these phones, pair it up with a fast charger and you’ll be able to charge much more quickly.

5. Turn it off whilst charging

It might seem obvious, but it’s worth mentioning as most people still use their phone whilst it’s charging. If you can, go without it for a few minutes and turn it off. It will charge much quicker as there will be fewer things draining the battery whilst it’s charging up.

6. Stop touching it

If you really can’t turn it off – perhaps you’re waiting for an important call – then at least stop touching it. The screen is usually the biggest battery drain at all, so even just touching your phone to check the time uses up some charge. Try to leave it alone and the battery will charge quicker.

7. Use airplane mode

If you can’t turn it off and you can’t stop touching it, then at the very least switch on airplane mode. This will stop things like WiFi, GPS, and 4G from draining your battery so that it can recharge more quickly. You should also close any apps you’re not using.

8. Use a wall socket

If you just rely on the USB lead to charge your phone, it’s not going to charge as quickly. Instead of plugging it into your laptop, plug it into a wall for maximum speed. If you don’t have a plug and have to rely on the USB, at least aim for a USB 3.0 port as this will charge it quicker than a USB 2.0.

9. Keep it cool

Batteries charge slower the hotter they are. Therefore, you can reduce the time it takes to charge up your battery by keeping it cool whilst charging. This means taking off any accessories like mobile phone cases that might be trapping in the heat. It also means charging it in a cool room, out of the way of direct sunlight.

10. Get a portable charger

Ok, so the final tip is a bit of a cheat. It’s not exactly a way to charge your phone more quickly per se, but it is a way that you can avoid letting your battery deplete entirely and charge it up on-the-go. Buy yourself a portable charger and take it with you to work or wherever you’re spending your day. That way, if your battery starts getting low, you can top it up before it gets to 0% even if there isn’t a wall socket nearby.

That’s it for our 10 tips on charging your phone correctly. Have fun and remember – don’t let your battery ruin your day!

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The Best Mobile Phones for Kids

The Best Mobile Phones for Kids

Back when mobile phones were invented, they were mainly used by adults. Often, when kids got into their mid-teens, their parents would gift them a hand-me-down phone to keep them safe when they were out with friends – but not anymore.

Now, the world is changing. Everywhere you look, you will see people staring at screens – and kids are no exception. In the modern day, the digital world is a children’s playground. For most children, smartphones and tablets are the way they learn, play, and interact with their peers. Many parents still do their best to monitor their children’s screen time and even limit it, but it’s becoming more and more important for children to be able to access online entertainment.

So that leaves many parents asking which device is right for their children. After all, it seems counter-intuitive to buy a 6-year-old the latest model of iPhone, only for the screen to be cracked in a day. However, it’s important that the model you choose is capable of running large gaming apps and browsing the internet. In this article, you can find some recommendations for the right smartphone to buy for your kids.

1. LG Q6

The LG Q6 would be the perfect phone for the clumsy YouTube enthusiast. The best feature of this model is it’s 5.5-inch Full HD display. If your kid likes watching YouTube or reading high-quality picture books this would be a great device for them. As well as its great screen, it also has a 3000 mAh battery, which will help you to avoid those stressful moments on long car journeys when the battery dies an hour in!

The LG Q6 operates on Android – a simple operating system that the kids can easily get used to, and one which has access to the thousands of apps available from the Google Play Store. It also has a great processor and a lot of RAM to ensure games run smoothly.

The Q6 is robust in design, making it a good fit for kids who are active (and break things easily). It’s also one of the cheapest on this list, with a sim-free value of around 445 AUD and cheap contracts available.

2. Nokia 5

The Nokia 5 is a budget-friendly option that may be perfect for your child’s first smartphone. It has similar specs and battery life to the LG Q6 with a slightly smaller screen.

The price, however, is its main selling point as it’s available sim-free from around 300 AUD.

Despite the low price tag, the Nokia 5 will still give your little ones access to all of their favorite apps using the Google Play Store, and is great for watching YouTube and gaming. The operating system is easy for kids to access and its sleek black design is something that they won’t be embarrassed to show off in front of friends.

3.iPhone SE

If your kids are demanding an iPhone, then this may be the right model for you.

The iPhone SE was brought out between the iPhone 5 and iPhone 6 and bears a strong resemblance to the iPhone 5s.

If your child is a keen gamer, this iPhone’s A9 chip will keep their favorite games running smoothly and lag-free, and the 4-inch, crystal clear retina display will ensure they keep up with the action.

The iPhone SE is also good for the socialite who loves to take selfies and keep up with friends. The HD camera will leave them looking picture perfect and the facetime capabilities mean they can stay in touch with both you and their pals.

Apple is also a great option for cautious parents as its security features keep your kids just a little safer than an Android phone will, and they can use TouchID security to ensure their friends aren’t breaking into their phones.

For iPhone standards, the SE is relatively affordable, coming in at around 625 AUD.

4. iPhone 6

The iPhone 6 is the slightly more expensive model of iPhone that still makes the list despite its price tag.

The iPhone 6, despite being slightly outdated due to the release of newer models, still holds its own against other phones years after its release.

If your child is concerned about having a new model that they can show off to friends, the iPhone 6 could be a good option. Its sleek and widescreen design is quite similar to the newer models and it also offers a lot of the same features.

It comes equipped with an A8 chip, which makes gaming on the device much smoother than it was on previous models and its 4.7-inch screen with retina display offers seamless clarity for any mobile activity.

As with most iPhones, the camera is much better than most other non-Apple smartphones in the same price range, so, if you have an amateur photographer in your ranks, this could be the right choice for you.

The price is the only downside to this phone, as it’s considerably higher than any others on the list. To buy this device sim-free, you’d be looking at spending around 730 AUD. At that price, this device may be better for older, more responsible children.

5. Samsung J3

One of the cheapest devices, and the only Samsung to make the list, is the Samsung J3. This model, which was brought out in 2017, is one of the most popular Android devices.

The main benefit of this device is the screen size. Its screen measures in at 5 inches, the optimum size for mobile gamers. It’s also equipped with a headphone jack, meaning that the kids can watch meme videos to their heart’s content whilst you enjoy some peace and quiet.

This device also has a great battery life compared to others in this price range, making it great for kids who love watching movies on their phones. 

This phone may be great for younger kids as the price is relatively low, costing only 319 AUD for a sim-free device.

That concludes our list of the best smartphones on the market for kids. Hopefully, this article has made it easier to find models that would be right for your little ones. Happy Shopping!

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