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Graduation Gift Ideas – Tech Gifts for Grads

It’s about that time, that time of year to celebrate surviving the school year. Whether you’re preparing your graduates for college or celebrating their first or last year of school, you’ll want to celebrate their milestone with a great gift. In this tech savvy world, what better gift to give than one of the must-have tech gifts for grads that are both fun and practical, from some of today’s renown tech brands like Samsung, Western Digital, and Monster Products.

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With innovative brands like these, known for their continuous amazing product offerings, you know getting the right tech gifts for grads of high school and college age will be a breeze. Let’s get to know these products a little better.

WESTERN DIGITAL MY CLOUD

WD My Cloud

With up to 16TB of storage, give your favorite graduate their own personal cloud to centralize all their photos, videos and music in one safe place without having to share space with millions of other cloud users. With the WD My Cloud, they can save, sync and share all their favorite things, and the My Cloud’s automatic photo backup helps free up space on their smartphone and tablet.

SAMSUNG MOBILE

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Our mobile devices have become extensions of our being and with an amazing mobile device like to the Samsung S7 and Samsung S7 Edge mobile phones, your grad’s life easier will be easier. Not only are they safe from accidental spills and submergence in water, the S7 edge boasts a curved screen that more room for shortcuts to access their calendar events, contacts, and their top social media channels, faster and easier than ever before. Both smartphones take great low light pictures and are also dust resistant. Whichever one you give, both phones make excellent tech gifts for grads (we’re dying for the S7 edge ourselves).

Make your grad’s television or VR gaming experience even more immersive with the gift of virtual reality (VR) with the Gear VR, $99.00. Open their eyes to new worlds, amazing virtual journeys, and experiences with captivating 2D/3D, and 360-degree content that ups their Netflix, Hulu, and Twitch experiences to new heights.  Explore tourist attractions virtually with a 360-panoramic view with any o the following Samsung mobile phones: Galaxy S6, Galaxy S6 edge, Galaxy S6 edge+, Galaxy Note5, Galaxy S7, or Galaxy S7 edge.

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More and more people are stepping away from smartwatches that look like smartwatches and more like classic timepieces. Samsung has introduced two new editions of their Gear S2 Classic , $449.99, that will give grads options to express and match their unique style all while still staying connected. They will still receive texts, calls, emails and more  without losing the classic style of a timepiece. Give the gift of the Gear S2 Classic in stylish Rose Gold and sleek Platinum.

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Give your grad the gift of music with no strings attached with the crystal-clear sound, stylish and comfortable Samsung Level On Wireless Pro Headphones, $299.99! The stylish and ergonomic headphones feature Active Noise Cancellation for crystal clear audio and smart-touch button free controls, Samsung’s state-of-the-art UHQ audio support technology, top-quality sound, as well as a broad range of convenient features that make it perfect for listening on the go.

If they’re not a fan of over-the-ear headphones, we do more music-inclined tech gifts for grads. They’ll love the sound quality and stylish, foldable design of the Samsung Level U Pro Earbuds, $99.99. These super stylish earbuds feature ergonomic ear gels that provide noise-isolation and are splash and sweat resistant, making them ideal for the active listener who loves adding music to their workout. Hope they’re ready for high-quality, clear sound, the ability to control calls and music intuitively by way of smart magnets in the earbuds.

MONSTER MOBILE PRODUCTS

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Selfie sticks are so passe, let your grad go hands-free for the perfect selfies, pictures, calls, video chats, time-lapse videos, GPS navigation and more with the Monster Mobile Selfie Case for iPhone, $29.95 . With this clever tech accessory, your grad can mount their smartphone to glass, mirror, acrylic, marble and other smooth, flat and glossy vertical surfaces thanks to its special gel material that functions like millions of tiny suction cups. Not only does it provide hands-free selfies, it’s high quality, flexible case body is shock absorbent and impact resistant and provides improved grip.

Having good battery life for your smartphone is an essential need in today’s modern world. Keep your grad’s smartphone perpetually charged with the Monster Mobile PowerCard Turbo Portable Battery, $49.95. This super thin, powerful charger fits into your wallet, is easy to transport, provides five plus hours of portable energy, is perfect for quick charging emergencies, charges three times faster than standard USB chargers, and fits all smartphones and USB devices. Its auto-sensing technology detects exactly what speed your Smartphone or USB device requires and provides the speed and power in a flash.

What do you think of these tech gifts for grads? Could your grad use one or more of these incredible devices?

 

Retro Cool | Meet THE BRICK Phone from Binatone

If you haven’t noticed, there’s been quite the resurgence of 80’s and 90’s inspired style hitting the market, not just in fashion and beauty, but in technology as well. One of our favorites of these retro tech products is the  BRICK Phone from Binatone. Although it features the cool nostalgic look of the 90’s, the BRICK is a very modern phone. It can be used either as a bluetooth handset for your smartphone or as a powerful mobile phone when you insert your own SIM card, making the BRICK a 2-in-1 device that makes an amazing emergency phone.

Here’s what we love about this retro phone: unlike today’s smartphones, the BRICK offers 14 hours of talk time and one month standby time (over 700 hours without the need for charging); it is Bluetooth compatible with iOS and Android phones, works with any 2G SIM card, boasts a large speaker and a micro SD slot that allows you to load and play your favorite music from your smartphone, gives you the capability to access your smartphone contacts, includes an FM radio, an LED flashlight, and some very cool retro games, including SNAKE

We recently read about a teen who feel asleep with her phone under her pillow, which of course proceeded to catch on fire. Because the BRICK has a bluetooth range of 33 ft, it can remain near you without overheating, while your smartphone is at a safe distance away from flammable fabric. The 2-in 1 original BRICK mobile with 1 month standby retails for $69.99 and can be purchased online at shop.meetthebrick.com.

Samsung Mobile US Welcomes New Wearable Tech Devices: Gear Fit, Gear 2, & Gear 2 Neo

With the introduction of the Galaxy S 5 and the continued evolution of #TheNextBigThing, Samsung has also refined its wearables line with three new Gear options that will change the way you communicate and connect. Building on the amazing response to the Galaxy Gear, Samsung Mobile’s first wearable tech device, the newest wearables, the Gear Fit, Gear 2, and Gear 2 Neo, bring new and refined features based on public feedback of their first foray into wearable tech. The new Samsung Gears make keeping in touch more personalized than before. The second generation of these wearable tech devices not only offers more refined looks but a customizable experience as well.

GEAR FIT

Gear-Fit

 

The Samsung Gear Fit was designed with your health and wellness in mind. Featuring a 1.84 inch curved Super AMOLED display, an interchangeable band, an athletic design, made to comfortably fit your wrists, and maintain functionality whether active or asleep, the Gear Fit allows you to stay connected while maintaining your active lifestyle. It tracks your steps and monitors your heart rate on the go, but it’s so much more than an everyday fitness band. Stay up to date with instant notifications from Galaxy smartphones such as incoming calls, emails, text messages, 3rd party apps, etc, while you’re on the go. If you’re like us, you enjoy utilizing the built-in S Health app to measure how many steps you take daily, how many calories burned, etc. With the Gear Fit, you can enjoy an extended S Health experience as it can serve as a personal trainer, function as a pedometer, HRM and calories burned tracker. The Galaxy Gear Fit comes with a Black band with additional Wild Orange and Mocha Gray band color options.

GEAR 2 & GEAR 2 NEO

 

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The design of the Gear devices has been updated to show a more polish and streamlined appearance. Both the Samsung Gear 2 and Samsung Gear 2 Neo boast interchangeable straps and are compatible with standard 22mm pin watch bands to personalize your look. The Gear 2 is the premium wearable with a 2 megapixel camera (moved from the strap to the face for a more sleek design), thereby complementing its brushed metal finish. The Gear 2 Neo on the other hand, has a polycarbonate finish. The home key on the Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo is positioned on the front of the face for convenient access.

Both Gear devices have 1.63 inch Super AMOLED displays and allow you to access and customize your wearable experience. Receive and respond to a calls, texts, emails, and app notifications quickly, right from your wrist. New shortcuts and additional app support make the device experience easier to navigate and take action. Though your music may not be at your fingertips, they will be at your wrist with the music app on Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo. Transfer, store and shuffle through your favorite songs, even when away from your phone, plus you can pair the Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo with Bluetooth headphones to enjoy your playlist while on the go.

The Gear 2 comes in the following color combinations: Titan Silver face with Black strap, Titan Silver face with a Wild Orange strap, and a Gold Brown face with Brown strap. The Gear 2 Neo comes in Black, Wild Orange, and Mocha Gray.

The Gear 2, Gear 2 Neo and Gear Fit will be available in the U.S. this month across various channels. Gear 2, Gear Neo 2 and Gear Fit will be available through carrier and retail channels, including the Samsung Experience Shops in Best Buy.

Samsung Mobile US Launches Next Generation Galaxy S 5

Ladies and gentlemen, the next big thing truly is coming soon. Next month, the long-awaited Samsung Galaxy S5 finally arrives and we are very excited because we’ve been fans of Samsung’s Galaxy range for quite a while. We know why we’re excited, so we’re here to tell you why you should be. The Samsung Galaxy S5 continues with its introduction of new experiences, industry leading technology and meaningful innovations that you never knew you needed.
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The Galaxy S 5 boasts unrivaled experiences, new features designed with you in mind and experiences to improve your everyday life. Imagine paying for things with your fingerprint, expanding your microSD memory card slot to a massive 128GB, enjoying elements only seen on DSLR cameras, such as taking video that adapts to your surrounding light, etc. These are just a few of the amazing things available on the Samsung Galaxy S 5.

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The Galaxy S 5 features a brilliant 5.1-inch display powered by technology that enables you to enjoy amazing new camera experiences, lightning fast data connections, and health and wellness monitoring. With an adaptive Full HD Super AMOLED® display, colors are richer, blacks are darker and you get a faster response time for clearer, high-speed content. The S 5 also boasts wide viewing angles and crisp HD video on it’s bright bold display that adapts to bright outdoor sunlight or indoor ambient lighting – anytime, anywhere!

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The new camera features and simplified controls, paired with the 16 megapixel rear facing camera elevate the photo-taking experience, which means sharper photos and a 2-megapixel front-facing camera for less grainy selfies. With the Galaxy S 5’s HDR (aka dynamic range of luminosity), you can see what your photos will look like before you even take them, while the amazing 4K allows you to take video in four times the HD resolution.
  • Phase Detection Autofocus: Advanced auto focus speeds for capturing a shot quickly – first smartphone with phase detection autofocus, a feature usually found in DSLR cameras
  • Real-Time HDR: High Dynamic Range (HDR) preview mode makes it easier to choose when to use HDR – like trying to photograph a beautiful sunset. It also enables users to capture HDR photos or videos with no shutter lag or post-processing.
  • Selective Focus Mode: Blur images near or far for a creative, one-of-a-kind shot
  • Shot and More Mode: The camera chooses and recommends Drama Shot, Best Photo, Best Face or Eraser shot after the picture is taken to create the best photo
  • Studio: Add effects to photos and edit movies with a complete suite of editing tools within the Gallery

The features we’re really looking forward to is the Ultra Power Saving Mode, Water Safety, and the Built-in Fingerprint Sensor. Is your battery running low? In Ultra Power, the Galaxy S 5 will reduce itself to a battery power, monochrome-colored saving mode, giving you more power and longer battery life. Just as with the Samsung Galaxy S 4 Active, if you drop the S 5 in water, it will still function (no need to rush to find some rice like with other phones). the built-in fingerprint sensor unlocks and locks the Galaxy S 5 and provides secure password protection to use PayPal for secure payments. The Galaxy S 5 also supports the latest mobile wallets, including Isis (a consortium among various carrier partners) and Google Wallet™.

The Galaxy S 5 is packed with leading technology enhancements, including Quick Connect, which locates the nearest devices to share content, files, or your screen through Bluetooth®, Wi-Fi® or Wi-Fi Direct™. Features Download Booster, an innovative Wi-Fi technology for boosting data speed by bonding Wi-Fi and LTE simultaneously for the fastest browsing, streaming, downloads, and better coverage than ever before whether you’re at home or on the go.

With S Health™ consumers can access health info, track and map workouts and make and track healthier eating choices right on the Galaxy S 5.It also boasts the world’s first built-in heart rate monitor (HRM) which provides real-time data before and after your workout when you place a finger on a sensor by the rear-facing camera. Key platform components of S Health include:

Nutrition: Meal tracking and planning with nutritional information
Fitness: HRM, exercise log, mapped runs and location tracking

The Galaxy S 5 will be available in Electric Blue, Copper Gold, Charcoal Black and Shimmery White. Accessories will include a Wallet Case, S View Flip Cover, and Wireless Charging Covers and Wireless Charging S View Flip Covers in an array of colors. It will be available to U.S. next month across various channels including AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon Wireless, MetroPCS and U.S. Cellular. Samsung Experience Shops in Best Buy, as well as Amazon, Costco, RadioShack, Sam’s Club, Target, and Walmart, will also carry the Galaxy S 5.

Tech Style | Customize Your AT&T Moto X by Moto Maker

When it comes to style, individuality is key. No one wants to walk down the street or be out and see several people with what they have. This is not just true for fashion but for everything personal. AT&T and Motorola presents the Moto X by Moto Maker which allows you to express your individual style with the option of customizing your cellphone. With on-trend style elements (bold color, texture, etc) have become more than just a phone – they are now an extension of our style. While it’s cool to have the latest technology, we still want to make it highlight our personality plus the Moto X is also the first smartphone to be designed and assembled in the US.

With the Moto X, you can choose the back color, front color, accent color and case. With over 2,000 possibilities to choose from, you can design a phone that’s uniquely yours. You can also choose your phone’s memory size (16GB for $199.99 or 32GB for $249.99, add a name or greeting that’ll pop up every time you turn on your phone, select your wallpaper and pre-sync it with your Google account (Moto X owners get an extra 50GB of Google Drive storage on top of the standard 15GB free for two years to safely keep and share photos, documents and other files).

Moto X responds to your voice, no touching necessary, it perfectly fits your hand, twist your wrist twice, it becomes your camera. it discreetly lets you know your notifications without draining your battery. Moto X runs on Android, which lets you take Google with you wherever you go. You’ll have access to more than 975,000 apps and games on Google Play. Full specs include:

  • Android 4.2.2, Jelly Bean Interface
  • Width 65.3mm; Height 129.4mm with a weight of 130G
  • 4.7″ AMOLED (RGB) / HD 720p display
  • 4.0 LE + EDR Bluetooth Technology
  • Rear-Facing Camera w/ 10MP CLEAR PIXEL (RGBC) – Quick Capture – LED flash – 1080p HD video (30 fps) – 4X digital zoom – Slow motion video – Burst mode – Auto HDR – Panorama – Tap to focus
  • Front Facing Camera w/ 2MP 1080p HD video
  • 2 GB RAM, 16 GB standard with 32 GB version available online
  • Motorola X8 Mobile Computing System which includes a software optimized Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro (1.7GHz Dual-Core Krait CPU, quad-core Adreno 320 GPU), a natural language processor and a contextual computing processor
I love the concept of customizing your phone and of course the patriotic aspect of it being assembled in the US. I look forward to Motorola expanding on it with prints or patterns, and of course uploading your own image or design. What do you think of the Moto X?

Mobile Technology Highlight | Samsung GALAXY Note II

I never thought I’d love a phone more than I loved my Samsung GALAXY S 3, but that was before I got the Samsung GALAXY Note II. To merely call the GALAXY Note II a phone is a mistake, it is a life organizer. This powerful mobile device is perfect for that on-the-go viewing experience; it makes multitasking easy there making life easier plus it’s a striking device, it’s no surprise, I get asked about it almost every time I’m working on it.
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The Samsung GALAXY Note II boasts a 5.5” HD Super AMOLED screen which offers better clarity and a 16:9 screen ratio (that’s cinema quality) – making all viewing experiences perfectly crisp. The innovative design of the GALAXY Note II includes a bigger screen while maintaining a slim body to fit right in your hand. The S Pen and S Note provide a number of  features like Color Picker, newly added in the S Pen settings, it captures a color from any image to use for drawing. Other great artistic features include diverse sketch effects such as Auto Outline, which turns any photo into sketched outlines. What other features makes this device so amazing for your daily life?

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It’s Multi Window allows for multiple tasks on the same screen at the same time with no screen transitions; Air View (previewed below) saves you time, energy, and makes it easier to manage your life’s contents allowing convenient and quick browsing through your pictures, preview your emails and calendar details; and Quick Command allows you to send an email, call or send a text message to friends, share a meeting location, etc. All you have to do is just write the command on the pad.

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Want to get that perfect photo? Create it by capturing the best pose of each person with Best Face (shown above) on the Note II’s 8 Megapixel Auto Focus Camera with LED Flash, then enhance those memories with handwritten notes on the back of your photos with Photo Note; someone on a call giving you information you need? Write down directions, phone numbers, and other information while on a call with Popup Note, it will intuitively open when you pull out the S Pen; For those of you who are not so tech-savvy, the GALAXY Note II features an easy mode which helps you easily access key functions such as favorite contacts, apps, dialer, etc on the home-screen.

What I highlighted above are just a few of the dynamic attributes of this amazing cell phone/tablet hybrid. Want to know more, get to know the Samsung GALAXY Note II by visiting Samsung/GalaxyNote2.

Samsung Experience Shop Featuring Bruno Mars

For those of you that are fans of the Samsung Galaxy S3 and all its revolutionary features, you’ll love the Galaxy S 4, which not only features the S3’s most loved features but some very interesting additions. To celebrate the launch of this newest addition, as well as the launch of the Galaxy Note 8.0, to their mobile family, Samsung, along with Best Buy, held an amazing event filled with the opportunity for guests to not only learn about these two new mobile device launches but to win them as well. Welcome to the Samsung Experience Shop Featuring Bruno Mars.

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The events was set up in different stations where you can learn and try out the various features on the Samsung Galaxy S 4 and Galaxy Note 8.0. Guests won tokens from each station visited which they redeemed for prizes. The grand prize winner (50 tokens) won five Samsung products including a Flatscreen TV, Galaxy Note 8.0, Smart Camera (which I’m dying for), Galaxy S 4, etc. (I got a photo of the winner below after he was jumping up and down)

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The second prize winner won four products and so on. The evening also included a rousing performance by singer, Bruno Mars who stayed on stage for an hour captivating the crowd

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Check out a video snippet from one of his performances at the event

Check out some more images from the amazing, one-of-a-kind event below. Along with all the night’s activities, guests were able to see their tweets from the events as it happened on Samsung’s colossal live twitter board

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UNPACKED – The Samsung Galaxy S4 is Coming

Get ready fans of the Samsung Galaxy S3 because the new next big thing is coming. Samsung has taken their iconic Galaxy S-Series smartphones and made it better. The latest smartphone, the Samsung Galaxy S4 (launching late April 2013 in Black Mist and White Frost), has a 5-inch, 1080p display, touch-free capabilities, an amazing 13-megapixel camera (the Galaxy S3 has an 8-megapixel camera) with enhanced media and sharing capabilities, and fitness-tracking features.

The S4 is slimmer, lighter and more solid than the S3 boasting an incredible full-HD Super AMOLED screen, a slim bezel encased in a special polycarbonate body making it the lightest Galaxy smartphone. Want to know more, start by checking out some video of JK Shin, Head of Samsung Mobile Communications, introducing the Samsung Galaxy S4, dubbed the Life Companion – slated to make your life simpler, richer and more fun.

While it boasts many of the features already available on the S3, the Galaxy S4 will wow you with some of it’s astounding features (only a few are listed below):

  • Dual Camera/Dual Video Call – take photos simultaneously with the front and rear cameras allowing you to add yourself in the photo you just took. With Dual Video Call or Dual Video, friends and family can experience everything with you, no matter how far they may be.
  • S Voice Drive – developed for safety while driving – make calls, answer calls, organize messages, and ask for directions with both hands safely on your steering wheel.
  • Group Play – Get your friends together to create a powerful sound system that enhances the sound quality of your music.
  • Pictures with Sound – Don’t just look at your photos, with the Samsung Galaxy S4, you can record and share a message about that amazing moment. Every picture you take on the Samsung Galaxy S4 come with sound to remember what was said, played, and heard.
  • Drama Shot – take a series of pictures of any moving subject and puts them together to create one amazing action shot
  • Air View/Air Gesture/Air Call-Accept – did just got a mani or are you hands dirty? motion your hand at the Samsung Galaxy S4 to accept calls, change music, or browse the web and your photos with Air Gesture. Enlarge content and photos, preview emails, and speed dial all with your finger barely hovering over the screen even when wearing gloves (not just texting gloves)
  • Smart Scroll/Pause – if you loved the the Galaxy S3’s Smart Stay, the Samsung Galaxy S4 Smart Pause/Smart Scroll will blow you away. Automatically scroll up or down emails and websites when you tilt the phone from one side to another plus when you look away, the S4 pauses whatever you’re watching and resumes play where you left off when you look back at the screen again.
  • S Health – get motivated for a healthier you with S Health. Track your workouts, daily intake, and weight levels, determine your comfort level based on temperature and humidity and monitor your progress with both Health Board and various charts.
  • Story Album – organize your photos and create albums based on specific events. Apply themes and various layouts then share with your friends via social media or in print.
  • S Translator – travelling to a foreign country? Easily communicate with locals by saying or texting what you need translated into the Samsung Galaxy S4 and it’ll read or text back the translation. Say goodbye to language barriers.
Check out another video of the amazing features available on the new Samsung Galaxy S4