BlackBerry Passport Pros & Cons

BlackBerry PassportThe BlackBerry Passport is an interesting new concept device. It is designed to be an effective business tool and get jobs done efficiently in that space, whilst offering a unique and eye catching profile.

Here we take a look at what the Passport does well, along with some areas for improvement. Also check out the end of the post for our 60 second quick review.

Cons

There’s no two ways around it, the Passport is a big phone. Large screens and two-handed use are the norm for the top-end devices these days, however the Passport really does take some getting used to as the profile makes it much wider than anyone would really be used to, plus at almost 200 grams it is also quite weighty.

The overall effect is similar to the kinds of portable computer or PDAs of years gone by, albeit much slimmer. This will be a sticking point for some; if you have small hands then you might struggle. To double check go and find your actual passport. The dimensions should be almost identical, so if you can imagine it being heavier, this is the kind of size you would be dealing with on a daily basis.

The BlackBerry 10 OS is very functional, far more so than it was a year or so ago, although it still seems to lack a certain fluidity in use. It is quite reliant on you using particular gestures to speed up navigation, however there still seem to be some counter-intuitive design decisions. The page for open applications / multitasking for instance seems clunky if you regularly use the running apps button on Android.

BlackBerry_Passport_Hands_On (4)

The app ecosystem remains limited for some. Most of the communication basics and popularised apps are covered, although support and update rates are low. The introduction of Android apps is welcome but as they are not native introduces a mild performance hit. If you are coming to BlackBerry from another system, this remains something to thoroughly research as you may find something you find very useful to be unavailable.

The keyboard is useful however it lacks a physical numerical row (which is displayed on the touchscreen). This was clearly a decision made in the design stages. You get used to it after a while but it never stops being a little bit jarring when you have to use numbers or symbols and get thrown from keys to touch. Additionally,  2 stage key functions.

The screen is of excellent quality however the unique 1:1 ratio is not really attuned for video playback or gaming. Unless apps are coded to support the ratio (most won’t be), you’ll find the dual bane of media lovers: black bars or stretched content.

Pros

On paper the Passport has a really great list of specifications. The Snapdragon 800 processor is close to top of the range, 3 GB of RAM allow for intensive multitasking, there is global 4G LTE support and the screen is capable of full HD, albeit in an interesting ratio. BlackBerry have come under fire before for not providing devices with cutting-edge hardware, this cannot be said of the Passport.

Connectivity is well catered for across the BlackBerry range and the Passport doesn’t shy away from this tradition. 4G LTE is available on global networks, and high speed WiFi connections are also supported. Miracast and HDMI out via Slimport are nice to see, many Android phones miss out on these and one wonders if Apple will ever catch this train or continue with their own branded wireless ecosystem. As a quality extra for the more techy out there, there are even network diagnostic tools in the connectivity settings.

Sound quality is well above passable. There are front-mounted stereo speakers for a more immersive sound than rear-mounted units, plus the volume can go well above what many would need without distortion. From our testing we have also had some excellent audio recording results.

BlackBerry_Passport_Hands_On (4)

Camera quality is a contentious issue on many phones. Megapixels don’t mean everything and with high pixel & sensor size, good processing and a quality photographer, you can get a lot more out of 8 megapixels than 20. With a 13 MP sensor and f/2.0 lens, the Passport is capable of some quality results. BlackBerry have also spent a lot of time developing the camera application on their whole range. There’s a huge number of features and post-processing techniques to rival the best of mobile photography from other manufacturers.

The large keyboard is very intuitive to use. It’s designed for two-handed use and when you get to grips with it makes for some very nippy typing. The innovative integrated touch panel is also excellently implemented. Once you learn its sensitivity, you can zip your cursor around documents or lengthy emails with ease, perfect for some quick editing. Using it to select menu options as also simple – BlackBerry certainly understand user input as well as any.

Getting past the odd screen ratio might be a learning curve, however you can’t deny the actual screen quality. Everything is sharp, vivid and bright from videos and games to simple articles and shopping sites.

The battery life of the Passport is one of its standout features. The 3,450 mAh cell is huge and with some impressive power management going on behind the scenes, even somewhat heavy users can eke out 2 full days.

Order a BlackBerry Passport from Clove Technology

Save £55 on BlackBerry Passport – Now £399

BlackBerry_Passport_Hands_On (2)Save £55 on the flagship BlackBerry Passport

For a limited time, you can now save £55 off the cost of a SIM free BlackBerry Passport in either Black or White colour.

Previously £455 including VAT you can now purchase the Passport for £399 inclusive of VAT.

A more unique product, but one that could really enhance the productivity of your daily life key features of the device include:

  • BlackBerry 10.3 OS
  • 2.2 GHz Quad-core processor
  • 4.5” extra wide LCD display
  • 3 row QWERTY keyboard
  • Use the keyboard as a touchpad
  • BlackBerry Assistant
  • 32GB internal storage
  • 4G LTE connectivity
  • 13MP camera with OIS

Order the BlackBerry Passport for £332.50+VAT (£399 inc VAT)

In addition to the hardware features, there are a couple of value added software tweaks which make the Passport a more desirable smartphone than you may first think.

The addition of the Amazon Appstore and the ability to side load Android apps, means app availability is less of an issue than it once was.

BlackBerry Blend also allows for remote access to the handset, even if its many miles away along with the ability to easily connect to a desktop computer for more of a traditional computer set-up, the difference here is that the Passport is doing all the work.

We have written a full review on the BlackBerry Passport here, if you would like to read it, or watch the following video which summarises it in around 60 seconds.

Of if you would simply like to take advantage of this superb offer, head over to the Clove website to purchase your SIM free Passport now.

Order the BlackBerry Passport for £332.50+VAT (£399 inc VAT)

Honor 6 Unboxing

huawei-honor-6-frontWe’ve had an influx of new handsets over the past couple of months and the Honor 6 is the newest of the new. This introduction to the Honor brand comes with backing from Huawei who are massive players in the world of mobile hardware and mobile communication infrastructure.

The Honor 6 does come packing some very impressive specifications, one of which is the screen and from the above picture you get an idea of what to expect. The 5 inch screen has a resolution of 1080 x 1920 (445 ppi) and this will see pictures and other media really stand out. Put this up against the iPhone 6 Plus, Z3 and the Galaxy S5 and the results will be similar.

You’ll find a Sony 13 MP camera with the Honor 6 so stand by for some very good looking pictures. A huge front facing 5 megapixel camera takes care of video calls and selfies.

Power comes from the 1.7 GHz & 1.3 GHz (2x quad core) processor and keeping everything running smoothly is 3GB of RAM.

As Jon says in the video, the Honor 6 is aiming at those who want the high specs but without the high price tag. At just under £250 you get a lot of phone for your money.

Take a look at the unboxing video above and let us know your thoughts.

Buy the Honor 6 from Clove Technology for £249.99

January 2015 Freebies

Get something for free – Anyone stands a chance of winning.

If you are a regular visitor to the Clove Blog, you will know that every so often we have a clear out. Its one of those jobs we don’t like doing, but it has to be done.

We have done just this and uncovered some items we are no longer sell online and have no homes for. Here is where you come in.

The following is a list of all the items we have to give away for FREE. You get to choose what you want off the list.  If you are picked at random from the entries, you get sent it. Simple.

We are aware some of the stuff listed is for older phones but hey, something for nothing right!

To enter simply CLICK HERE, make your choices, supply the required information and that is it.

ENTER THE FREEBIES GIVEAWAY

The prizes:

  • 4 x 10 Pack of Apple iPhone 5 Screen Protectors
  • 2 x Sony Xperia Z Roxfit Book Case – Black
  • 3 x Otterbox Commuter Case for BlackBerry Bold 9900 and 9930
  • 1 x Salmon uLinkBot+ Bluetooth Speakerphone & Boombox
  • 1 x Otterbox Commuter Series Wallet in Glacier for Samsung Galaxy S4
  • 1 x Motorola MC55 Sync Cable Part 25-108022-02R
  • 1 x Tech21 Impact Snap Case with Cover – Nokia Lumia 925
  • 1 x BlackBerry Z30 Leather Swivel Holster
  • 1 x Sony Xpeira SP Roxfit Book Case Black
  • 1 x Crocfol Screen protector Coupon (For devices with up to 5” screens)
  • 3 x Sony Xperia T Roxfit Hard Shell
  • 1 x Sony Xperia S Screen Protector
  • 1 x Nokia Lumia 1520 Protective Cover CP-623 – Black
  • 1 x CAT Active Utility Case for iPhone 5
  • 1 x CAT Active Urban Rugged Tablet Case for iPad Mini
  • 1 x CAT Active Urban Rugged Tablet Case for iPad Air
  • 1 x Proporta Leather Flip Case – Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini
  • 2 x Case-Mate Signature Flip Case – Sony Xperia Z
  • 1 x Samsung Galaxy S3 Mini Flip Cover in Blue
  • 1 x 10 Pack of Screen Protectors – BlackBerry Bold 9900
  • 1 x Case-Mate Screen Protection Kit – Sony Xperia Z1
  • 1 x Samsung Galaxy S4 S View Cover – Blue/Black
  • 1 x 3 Pack Silicone Skins – Samsung Galaxy S2
  • 1 x HTC  TC P350 International Charge Pack
  • 1 x Clingo Universal Podium
  • 1 x iBolt In Vehicle Charging Dock – HTC One X
  • 3 x Charging Dock with Battery Slot – Samsung Galaxy S3
  • 4 x Fix2Car Active Holder 62265 with 12/24V Curly Wire – Nokia Lumia 920
  • 1 x Fix2Car Active Holder with Suction Cup 62267 – Nokia Lumia 920
  • 1 x 3 Packs of HTC ChaCha Screen Protector SP 560
  • 1 x Saloum uWave Go Induction Speaker

ENTER THE FREEBIES GIVEAWAY

 

Here are the rules:

  • This give-away runs from Friday 23rd January 2015 until 11.59PM on January 26th January.
  • The give-away is open to anybody from around the world.
  • Winners will be picked at random.
  • You do have the chance of winning more than one prize.
  • Failure to complete the questions completely will invalidate your entry.
  • All items will be shipped by post or airmail post.
  • No claims for lost or not received items will be accepted.
  • There is no value to these items and they can not be exchanged for alternatives or cash.
  • By supplying an email address you agree to be added to the Clove email newsletter database.
  • We will not notify those who have won a prize or not, lucky winners will get a package turn up at their door.
  • Where there is more than 1 x free prize, this indicates we have multiples to give away.  I.E 3 x Otterbox Commuter Case for BlackBerry Bold 9900 and 9930 means 3 people have the chance of winning 1 each.
  • Clove’s decision is final.

ENTER THE FREEBIES GIVEAWAY

GOOD LUCK

Olixar Samsung Galaxy Note Edge Wallet Case now available

Olixar-Note-Edge-Wallet-Case-Black-ClosedThe Samsung Galaxy Note Edge has caused quite a stir in the smartphone world. It is still a Note first and foremost but what sets it apart from a standard Galaxy Note or any other handset is that edge.

The Note Edge display is able to adjust to apps and the rotation of your device. It even takes the camera settings off the main screen and plonks them on the edge, giving you more of your screen to see what you’re about to snap.

It will also be interesting to see what app developers come up with; a news ticker maybe, you could even see your stocks and shares plummet or rise right before your eyes.

The Olixar Wallet Case gives your Note Edge protection against bumps and scrapes, plus it also has slots for bank cards and acts as a stand so you can watch a film, play games or if you have to, get some work done.

We’ve got the Olixar Note Edge Wallet Case available in Black, White or Brown and you can find them by hitting the blue button below.

Buy the Olixar Samsung Galaxy Note Edge Wallet Case

KAZAM Tornado 348 now available in Black and White

kazam-tornado-348-hero-3We’re pleased to now be offering the Kazam Tornado 348 in both Black and White. Both are selling for £249 plus postage.

What sets Kazam aside from others in he mobile world is a FREE screen replacement should you accidentally crack or damage it within the first year and if you get stuck you also get remote assistance to get you going again. A good way to get to the bottom of any issues before the handset needs to be sent off.

You’ll also find the Kazam Tornado 348 holds a Guinness World Record for the slimmest smartphone at only  5.1mm thick.Running Android 4.4 (KitKat) you get access to Google Play where you will find apps, games, music and more to keep you entertained.

Specifications include a 1.7 GHz Octa Core processor, 8 megapixel camera with Auto Focus and LED Flash and a 2,050 mAh battery keeping everything ticking over.

You’ll find both the Black and White versions of the Kazam Tornado 348 by clicking the blue button below. The full review was put up a few weeks back.

Buy the Kazam Tonado 348 from Clove Technology 

 

Honor 3C Unboxing

honor-3c-white-front-croppedThe Honor 3C comes in at great value for money when you look at the specifications. You would be right in expecting a great deal more than the £109.99 asking price considering the technology included, not far off double would be a fair bet.

The Honor 3C comes with  Android 4.2 Jelly Bean installed, but with the Honor Emotion UI overlay that makes the icons bolder and colourful. You can even change the theme to give the Honor 3C your own look and feel. With access to Google Play you get more apps than you can wave a stick at.

Powering the device is a 1.3 GHz quad -core processor with 2 GB RAM to give you a seamless experience when moving around the Honor 3C. Keeping all that going is a juicy 2,300 mAh battery that also has patented SmartPower2.0 technology, this is a power saving feature that helps push your battery for longer.

Be snap-happy with the rear 8 megapixel main camera, also to the front we have a huge 5MP lens for a selfie or video calls on the 5 inch HD screen.

In the unboxing video Jon gives you his take on the Honor 3C and I reckon we’ll be seeing a great deal more from them and making a name for themselves. If you’re intrigued and would like to get your hands on one then hit the blue button below, you can have one in White or Black.

 Buy the Honor 3C from Clove Technology

Say hello to the Doro Liberto 820 Mini

Doro-820-mini-frontThe Doro Liberto 820 has been a huge success and the next edition to our Doro range is the Doro 820 Liberto Mini.

It comes with all the features Doro users have become used to over the years but just as with the Doro 820, you also get access to apps from Google Play, so you can download various apps from news, weather and sport, plus games.

With Doro phones users get the assistance button; this is used to summon help from friends or family quickly in an emergency. The well known ICE (In Case of Emergency) feature and hearing aid compatibility are included too along with lots more.

With the bundled charging cradle your Doro 820 can also give you a slideshow of your stored pictures taken with the 5 megapixel camera.

Due to arrive towards the end of February and priced at £130, we’re currently taking pre-orders for the Doro Liberto 820 Mini.  You can place yours today or simply register your interest by hitting the blue button below.

Pre-order the Doro Liberto 820 Mini from Clove Technology

Dress up your Lumia with the Lumia Denim update

Lumia-Denim_feat (1)The Lumia Denim update is rolling out and if you have a Windows phone running Windows Phone 8.1 it should be with you now or over the coming weeks at least.

There are a host of features headed your way and when they do you won’t need to worry about any wires, it will all be done via the airwaves. Below is an overview as to what you can expect.

  • “Hey Cortana” Voice Activation (enabled by SensorCore): Simply say “Hey Cortana” while the Lumia phone is in an idle state and Cortana will be activated. No need to press the microphone button. This feature will be available for Lumia 930, Lumia Icon and Lumia 1520.
  • Live Folders: On your Start screen, organize your most-needed apps into folders (such as “News” and “Games”) so you can access them with one tap.
  • Glance screen: The newly updated Glance Screen will also be able to show fitness and other health-related activity from MSN’s Health and Fitness app.
  • Improved IE: Connect and browse even faster with improved downloading speeds on mobile websites.
  • Consumer VPN: This feature provides enhanced safety and security for your smartphone when connected to public, unprotected Wi-Fi networks.
  • 4K video: For owners of the Lumia 930 you can now take video in amazing 4K
  • Lumia Camera: Owners of the Lumia Icon, Lumia 1520, Lumia 930 and Lumia 830 will also get an updated Lumia Camera, delivering images of the highest quality at the fastest speed with only milliseconds between shots. Lumia Camera also comes with great innovations such as Moment Capture and Rich Capture.

Buy a Microsoft Lumia 

The update has started to roll out and should be hitting compatible devices now. To see if the update is available for you go to Settings>phone update>check for updates. From there follow the instructions and once installed take a look around and see what you think.

Whilst you’re waiting here’s a video to give you a walk through of all the new features. If you are after a Microsoft Lumia device we sell a wide range to suit all budgets. Hit the blue button to take a look at what we have available. Buy a 930, 830 or a 735 and you’ll also get a free Fitbit Flex.

BlackBerry Z3 unboxing

Z3_Black_RightAngleAlongside the Classic and Passport towards the end of 2014, the new all-touch BlackBerry Z3 landed in the UK recently.

Whilst it launched in a few other territories earlier and so isn’t completely brand new, Jon still gave it the usual Clove unboxing treatment when our first stock arrived.

The Z3 is a mid range offering from BlackBerry, with a 1.2 GHz dual core processor, 1.5 GB RAM and a 5 inch 540 x 960 qHD screen. The phone runs BlackBerry 10.2 out of the box with an update to 10.3 and associated features such as BlackBerry Blend due to roll out soon.

Full support for Android apps is also available, whether side-loaded or downloaded from the Amazon Appstore.

Priced at just £154.99 (£129.16 ex-VAT), the Z3 is an affordable and smart way to test out or get back into the BlackBerry ecosystem.