The new QWERTY keyboard on the BlackBerry Passport

Not just a keyboard

Yesterday we had a quick look at some of the features that BlackBerry has added to its new flagship, the BlackBerry Passport. Today we’ll be looking at its redesigned QWERTY keyboard arrangement in more detail.

Going by some of the early accounts, the 3-row physical QWERTY keyboard will certainly take some getting used to. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, though, it’s just that many of the BlackBerry faithful will be used to the 4-row QWERTY of old.

BlackBerry passport keyboard

That being said, the Passport does still have 4 rows to its keyboard, it’s just that the top row is on-screen rather than physical. This virtual row is where you can access numbers, symbols and shortcuts when typing. Outside of text input, the row of virtual icons will change depending on the app that you’re using.

Order the Passport from Clove here

A trackpad as well

The most ingenious feature of the Passport’s keyboard is its touch sensitivity, and I wonder if this is a feature that we’ll someday see in laptop keyboards.

The Passport’s touch-sensitive input can be used for both device navigation and gesture control. You can swipe one finger back across the keyboard to delete a word. Or you can configure shortcuts, such as double tapping space to end a sentence and insert a full stop.

The touch sensitivity can also be used in conjunction with predictive text. As you type, predictions are shown on-screen. Flicking upwards on the keyboard below the word you wish to use will select it for you.

The keyboard can also be used to navigate the passport. If you double tap the keyboard ‘close cursor control’ is activated, which enables you to navigate more precisely. This is useful when you want to position the cursor at particular point in a sentence.

Because the keyboard can be used as a trackpad, it accommodates one-handed use. Flip the passport on its side and the screen automatically rotates. You can then swipe your thumb over the keyboard to navigate the screen. This photo from Engadget’s review shows it in action:

BlackBerry passport horizontal

Typing language and predictive suggestions can be configured in the settings menu. If you switch between different languages often, there’s the option to switch the input language option by tapping the language icon in the Passport’s virtual row.

The cut, copy and past tools are easy to access. Simply highlight some text and the edit menu pops up. The Passport also supports dictation, which can be initiated by simply tapping the microphone button in the keyboard’s virtual row.

It’s certainly different to any of the keyboards we’ve seen in the past, and we’re looking forward to seeing just how quickly it works in practice.

Samsung Galaxy Note 4 price confirmed, due week commencing October 13th

Samsung Galaxy Note 4 release date set for mid-october, available to order now.

SM-N910_Frost White_Left-45- degree-Pen_011We have now had official pricing confirmed for the SIM Free Samsung Galaxy Note 4; it is available to order on the Clove website for £479.17 (£575 inc. VAT)

We are expecting the first stock of the Note 4 to arrive the week commencing October 13th.

Click here to visit our Samsung Galaxy Note 4 product page and place an order 

We have the Note 4 available to order in black, white and gold. In case you haven’t seen them already, here’s a quick run through of the Note 4 specs:

  • 5.7″ quad HD Super AMOLED display
  • 32GB internal storage
  • MIcroSD memory card slot
  • 4G
  • MHL 3.0
  • 3GB RAM
  • 8.5mm thin
  • Metal frame
  • Android operating system
  • New and improved S Pen technology
  • 16 megapixel rear camera
  • Refined user interface
  • Choice of colours

Galaxy Note Edge not coming to the UK

We have also heard this morning that the Samsung Galaxy Note Edge will not be coming to the UK at launch. However, we will be doing our best to source non-UK stock for those customers that are interested in ordering one. More information available in this blog post.

Huge price drop on Sony Xperia Z3 Compact – down to £349 inc. VAT

Sony xperia z3 compact price dropWe’ve got great news for prospective Sony Xperia Z3 Compact customers: we’ve just slashed its pre-launch price tag from £432 inc. VAT to £349 inc. VAT.

This price change will be applied to both new and existing orders. If you’ve already placed an order with us for the Z3 Compact we will adjust it to the updated price for you and refund the difference.

Click here to place an order for the Sony Xperia Z3 Compact on the Clove website

Previously the Z3 Compact was priced at £360 (£432 inc. VAT), but it’s now down to just £290.83 (£349 inc. VAT). That’s an incredible saving on what promises to be a great handset.

The first stock of the Z3 Compact is expected to arrive towards the end of this month in Black, White and Red options.

LG G3 Interactive Image

With its arrival set for July 1st, we’ve put together this image to advertise the SIM Free LG G3 alongside the free wireless charger offer that we’re running. There are also links to our 60 second review and our full review in case you missed those earlier in the month.

Droid RAZR HD & RAZR M KitKat 4.4 update expected within a few weeks

RAZR 2012 handsets getting  Android 4.4 KitKat soon

Motorola’s David Schuster has confirmed on Google+ that the 4.4 KitKat update for the Droid RAZR HD and RAZR M should arrive within the next few weeks. Hopefully this means that the update for the UK equivalents — the RAZR HD and the RAZR i, which we ranged here at Clove — won’t be too far behind.

Although Schuster’s update on Google+ only refers to the US handsets, Motorola has already confirmed that the RAZR HD and the RAZR i (the UK variants) will receive the update at some point. This is also stated on the Motorola Support website, which you can visit here. This is the message that is currently displayed for the RAZR i:

razr i kitkat update

We’ll keep an eye out for any further developments with the UK updates and post a follow up here on the Clove Blog once more info is available.

Via Android Central

Sony Xperia Z2 Interactive Image

If you’re thinking of buying a Sony Xperia Z2 you’ll want to check out the interactive image below, which contains links to all of the Xperia Z2 content that we’ve produced. You can view the other interactive images that we’ve produced here

Android 4.4 KitKat rolling out for Sony Xperia Z1 Compact, Xperia Z1 & Xperia Z Ultra

Sony firmware update for Xperia Z1 Compact and other includes 4.4 KitKat

sony-xperia-z1-compact-sny-xz1cA firmware upgrade is rolling out for the Sony Xperia Z1 Compact, the Sony Xperia Z1, and the Sony Xperia Z Ultra which, among other things, includes an update to Android 4.4 KitKat. Older devices have not been forgotten mind you; Sony states that the 4.4 update for Sony Xperia Z, Xperia ZL, Xperia Tablet Z and the Xperia ZR will be coming ‘mid Q2′. The forthcoming Sony Xperia Z2 and Xperia Z2 Tablet will of course launch with 4.4 KitKat.

The update that is now rolling out doesn’t just include an update to Android 4.4, some of Sony’s own developments have been upgraded:

  • That status bar and quick settings have been improved. Sony says that they are now more intuitive, nicer to look at, and will only display the notifications that you truly need.

  • The launch animation and live wallpaper – which are also present on the PlayStation 4 – have been added to the lock and home screens.

  • Sony’s Media apps, WALKMAN, Album and Movies, with Sony Entertainment Network cloud service integration, have been upgraded with a better UI and faster download speeds.

  • New Xperia Themes so that you can customise the look of your device. Check the video below for a demo.

Via Sony Blog

Samsung Galaxy S5 Official Video

Samsung Galaxy S5 main features detailed in official video

Below you can see the Samsung Galaxy S5 official video, which runs through its main selling points:

  • Fingerprint Scanner
  • Heart Rate Sensor
  • Download Booster
  • 16MP Camera with 0.3 second autofocus
  • IP67 protection rating (dust and water resistant)
  • 2.5GHz Quad-Core Processor
  • MicroUSB 3.0 (for extra fast charging and file transfer)
  • 5.1″ Full HD Super AMOLED
  • Ultra Power Saving Mode

We’re expecting to have the UK SIM free version of the Galaxy S5 in stock in April and we will have it available to order on the Clove website shortly. One of the features mentioned in the official video is Ultra Power Saving mode, which we posted about here last week.

Samsung Galaxy S5 Ultra Power Saving Mode

New feature to improve Samsung Galaxy S5 battery life

Samsung Galaxy S5During its announcement of the Samsung Galaxy S5 at Mobile World Congress, Samsung detailed Ultra Power Saving Mode to improve battery life. This looks like a great way to either preserve battery when you know  you won’t get an opportunity to charge for a while, or to squeeze as much life out of the battery once it has almost lost its charge.

There are a couple of ways that Ultra Power Saving Mode will preserve battery on the Galaxy S5. The first is to reduce connectivity functions to a minimum, effectively creating an enhanced version of aeroplane mode. Another mode that it can toggle is Greyscale. This will render this display in black and white only – reducing the number of colours used cuts down power consumption.

The video below from PhoneArena demonstrates Ultra Power Saving Mode in action and gives a quick look at how the screen appears when in Greyscale Mode. Samsung says that turning Ultra Power Saving Mode on when there is only 10% battery left will generate an extra 24 hours battery life (standby time), which is great if you are going to be unable to charge your phone for a while and can cope with the reduced functionality.

Samsung Galaxy S5 Announced

Samsung announces Galaxy S5 at Mobile World Congress

As expected Samsung has announced the Samsung Galaxy S5 at Mobile World Congress, as well as two new additions to the Galaxy Gear range; the Galaxy Gear 2 and the Galaxy Gear Fit.

We now have the Galaxy S5 listed on the Clove website and we’ll let you know as soon as a UK SIM Free price and date is available. In the meantime, you can sign up for our S5 mailing list and we’ll send you details as soon as details arise. You may also like to keep an eye on our Galaxy S5 accessories - we’ve already got a fair few available to order and will be adding more in the coming weeks.

Samsung Galaxy S5 email sign up

Given the success of the Galaxy S4 there was no need for Samsung to radically reform its design, so the S5 is an iterative update. That said it bring some new features; including a fingerprint scanner, heart rate sensor, microUSB 3.0, and a download booster, which links Wi-Fi and 4G together to achieve the best download speeds possible.

Below is a run through of the S5’s other features, as well as a hands-on video from the UNPACKED event. If you would like to see more images, the full specs or to read about the S5 in more detail, you can do so on our Samsung Galaxy S5 website listing.

Samsung Galaxy S5 Main Features

  • Fingerprint Scanner
  • Heart Rate Sensor
  • Download Booster
  • 16MP Camera with 0.3 second autofocus
  • IP67 protection rating (dust and water-resistant)
  • 2.5GHz Quad-Core Processor
  • MicroUSB 3.0 (for extra fast charging and file transfer)
  • 5.1″ Full HD Super AMOLED
  • Android 4.4.2 KitKat