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FYI: The following is just what I do. It’s not meant to be official advice. Use your own discretion if you’re buying the $299 ASUS ZenFone 2 and/or contacting them with your own questions/concerns
ASUS says not to be concerned if you feel the special charger is too warm. I did a 40-minute test and the hot temperature of the charger made me contact ASUS with a sense of urgency. I told them I wouldn’t charge the ZenFone2 overnight, unattended. They responded saying it’s intentional.
Although the battery charger does get hot (and ASUS is aware of this), if the product senses you’ve got a low battery, while the charger stays in the wall and your battery fills, the charger “knows” to draw less power, just not at first, if your battery’s low. So it’s the speed charging feature responsible for making the charger hot in the beginning.
Then after awhile you can actually touch the charger and it’ll feel normal. Again, the longer it stays in the wall, the more it knows to return to normal.
So, to see if what ASUS was saying was right, I did a 91-minute test and ASUS’s response proved accurate because after that test, I forgot about the test for a good hour after it was over – The good news is, the charger didn’t even feel warm. But do a 40-minute test like I did, on a low battery and you’ll probably notice the charger is hot to the touch.
So for me, all’s good in the hood. I think the phone will be a hit with people who travel. At $299 unlocked, dual SIM card slots, etc, well, where can you get that? For most, the ZenFone 2 will be a solid investment. I haven’t tried the camera or cam yet, but I will.
Important: The speed charger is only given to you for free if you buy the $299 model of the ZenFone 2, not the lower-priced one.
Samsung’s Galaxy Camera EK GC 100
Wasn’t sure what to expect from a “Galaxy” camera, but it really feels natural to an Android user like me. The reason? It runs on Android. Whatever you can download from GooglePlay, you can download onto this camera. For example: Photobucket, WordPress for Android, Gmail, GooglePlus, Easy Voice Recorder, Clipper, even Dropbox, Evernote and the normal mobile Chrome browser or “beta” mobile Chrome browser! Yup, it’s just like an Android phone, but it’s a camera and video cam too.
Don’t get me wrong – Samsung’s concept is wonderful, but a few functions required “getting used to” like pressing a side button to get the camera’s flash to pop up. It makes a slight snap sound when it pops up. To hide it, you need to physically push the flash down into its hideaway slot until you hear a locking click sound. At least you know it’s protected when not in use. The function that takes the most “getting used to” is the zoom feature. To zoom, you either pull or push on the wheel on the top right.
I was told this phone was created specifically with bloggers in mind. Would I agree with that characterization? Sort of. An advanced blogger might find this camera helpful if they’re familiar with saving drafts in advance and then accessing them in “WordPress for Android“. Alternatively, a blogger could use the browser-based text-mode editing UI in WordPress together with the Android Photobucket app to do mobile blogging. Not super easy, so I think a new blogger could easily feel frustrated if they assume this device will make blogging easier.
What I definitely don’t like is the fact that you can’t use 2 modes at the same time. For example, if you want to use “Best Face” together with the rapid fire feature (called “Continuous Shot”), you can’t. Or maybe we can but I just don’t know how. It’s easy to transfer your pics (or recharge the camera) to your computer via a USB, so that’s a positive. Another thing I always find myself doing is resizing on my laptop because the pics taken are just so darn big, even when you set the camera to use the smallest dimensions. Overall verdict: Cool but not necessary for advanced bloggers who intend to do lots of mobile blogging. And a potential source of frustration for new bloggers.