Wileyfox Swift_2, 2+ and 2X Part 3

When the Swift_2 range launched late last year, the improvement over the original Swifts was immediately evident from the slim metal casing and the fingerprint reader on the back. The central processor was now bumped up from quad-core to octa-core, making it over half as fast again according to our benchmark tests. Bumped up, too, was the price. These new Swifts started in the mid-£100s, pushing above £200 with the top of the range Swift_2X … Continue reading

Wileyfox Swift_2, 2+ and 2X Part 1

Wileyfox launched this second generation of Swift phones towards the end of last year. You may be wondering why it has taken Tested Technology five months to get round to reviewing them. We haven’t been sitting on our hands. The hands have definitely remained in the ON position. Regular readers will know that we don’t rush to be first with the news, and we take the “Tested” part of our name very seriously indeed. The … Continue reading

Wileyfox Swift 2, 2+ and 2X Part 2

Tested Technology complemented Wileyfox hugely on its initial choice of the Cyanogen operating system. And we don’t take that back, even now that Cyanogen Inc, the operating system provider, has gone to join the Norwegian Blues (the name might have been a clue—it means “Blue Maker”, and also happens to signify a class of poisons). When Wileyfox launched its first phones nearly two years ago, Cyanogen was an improvement on stock Android, and a clear … Continue reading

Huawei Mate 9 Smartphone Part 2

The smartphone market is slowing down. IDC reports that last year growth in worldwide shipments fell from 28pc to 10.4pc, and will remain on a downward path this year. The biggest dent in the market is at the high end. As Tested Technology predicted over a year ago, those bling phones are being overshadowed by the rise of commodity phones, utility items that deliver what users need—and no more—in a plain package at an affordable … Continue reading

Huawei Mate 9 Smartphone Part 1

Six years ago when I picked up the first Samsung Galaxy Note, I knew at once that this was the right form-factor for a phone. And it still fits in your shirt pocket. Since then I’ve dallied with smaller phones, because these still abound. But late last year, the Huawei Mate 9 arrived. And it was like coming home. Huawei Mate 9 THERE ARE TWO VERSIONS of the new Huawei Mate 9. The one I’m … Continue reading

BlitzWolf and the USB Transition

The arrival of the Huawei P9 signalled for me a new USB era. As I reported in my review, the phone uses the upcoming USB C standard. This isn’t just a new physical configuration, allowing the plug to be inserted either way round into the socket. The standard is also able to carry currents as high as 3 amps, nearly twice the 1.8 amps that’s the official maximum for the ten-year-old microUSB standard it replaces. … Continue reading

Huawei P9 Phone, part 3

Printer's Tray

When I started this review I never intended it to run to three parts. But living with the P9 day-to-day has uncovered such a bunch of interesting features I haven’t been able to restrain myself from passing all the news on to you. In part 2 of this review I covered the fascinating rear-facing Leica cameras in some depth, but there remain some other important features of this combo-camera I haven’t covered so far. I … Continue reading

Huawei P9 Phone, Part 2

  Part one of my Huawei P9 review is here, but I’ve postponed my review of the P9’s cameras in order to gain as full an understanding as I can of  the principles behind them. And, of course, to work my way through all their myriad functions. I was intending also to cover here other features I’d omitted from part one. But it turns out there’s so much to be said about the cameras that … Continue reading

Huawei P9 Phone, Part 1

In my review of the Cyanogen-based Wileyfox Storm I welcomed the arrival of the new generation of modestly priced smartphones, functional without being flashy, more “burners” than “bling”. I saw the nearly disposable utility smartphone as a trend worth encouraging. Flagship phones, I argued, have had their day. Hardware is transitory; don’t fall in love with it. Huawei’s latest sleek and slim top-end P9 has gone some way to changing my mind. I’ll try to explain why. … Continue reading

Wileyfox Storm Android Phone

The first 10″ iPad at the beginning of this decade took two hands to hold comfortably, so you’d need a third hand for pointing, tapping and swiping. Three years earlier the iPhone had introduced us to a new sense of touchy-feely intimacy with the device we held, but its 3.5″ display was too small once you’d popped up a virtual keyboard. And then came the 7″ tablet. There was room to work with an onscreen … Continue reading