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Reviews Technology

U8 Bluetooth Smart Watch – A Quick Review

u8I got this smart watch from my lil’ sis for N4,500.00, after driving a hard bargain. I am sure she got it for about $10 on amazon, less tax and shipping costs. With exchange rate at about N300 to US$1, not sure she would be making much profit on it.

This would be my first Smart Watch. The closest I had to this was my Adidas ADP6097 Digital Watch whose strap got cut a few weeks back.

This watch is a steal for the price. It might be a little difficult to wrap around your head the word “Smart Watch” and “$10” being used in a single sentence but, believe me, it is for real. Of course you will not expect to find qualities near that of the Apple range of Smart Watches.

Unboxing this device was in no way eventful. The accessories were very sparse – only a single USB cord (Note: No power adapter) was included in the box and a forgettable “Chinese Type” manual.

You may view the product specification of this device from the link below;

U8 Bluetooth Smart Watch Specification

A quick run down of the Pros and Cons of this watch will give you a better insight to what this watch can or can not do;

PROS

  • Control your Phone camera from your watch (only for android phone)
  • Stream music from your device
  • Fast charging. About 20 minutes, or less.
  • View Contacts. Make and receive phone calls.
  • Receive phone notifications
  • Sync your phonebook and call log
  • Anti lost feature – Alerts you when your phone disconnects from your phone
  • Barometer, Altimeter and Pedometer

CONS

  • Out of the box, the menu of the watch was in Chinese characters. I had to grope in the dark to change it to English.
  • Does not support remote camera functions and notifications on Apple iOS devices
  • Does not have inbuilt SIM slot.
  • The rubber flap that covers the charging port is flimsy

The beauty of a device is in its ability to be hacked for enhanced functionalities. The U8 Smart Watch does not disappoint.

More on this in my next post.

Categories
Reviews Technology

How To Block Ads In Android Without Rooting

One common excuse people give for rooting their android devices is to block annoying ads from popping up on their devices.

This indeed is a compelling reason as mobile ads, at best, can be;

  1. intrusive and distractive
  2. ruinously expensive as it burdens device hardware resources and also drain internet data.

Popular ad blocking apps like adaway and Netspector are only available for rooted devices.

For non-rooted apps, there are a few apps available on Google Play. They work, basically, by creating a mock virtual private network (VPN) for you and you alone and then connects your device to it. What this means is that all traffic you have coming in is through the app, and it protects all your data on its way out.

Notable among these apps is Lostnet NoRoot Firewall. WIth LostNet NoRoot Firewall you will be able

  • to block Internet access for any app. Let LostNet Firewall provide full Internet access to an app or access only in Wi-Fi networks or no access at all.
  • to block access to any country/region for all your apps. Use LostNet Firewall to prevent your apps from connecting to the countries you don’t trust or don’t want to deal with.
  • to block background activities of your apps. Surprisingly a lot of apps generate traffic while they are in background mode. LostNet Firewall may decrease your data consumption by blocking these apps.
  • to capture packets (sniffer!) sent to and from your device with the sniffer tool and to analyze them using CloudShark.org. The sniffer tool of LostNet NoRoot Firewall allows you to learn details about the data your apps are sending. Use the sniffer tool to check whether your personal info is sent out. Also use the sniffer to debug applications.
  • to monitor amount of data consumed by apps. This information is extremely useful if you don’t have unlimited data plan. For example, use LostNet NoRoot Firewall to compare background data consumption by Skype, Viber and Whatsapp to choose which one is better for your data plan.
  • to track the countries your apps are connecting to. This way LostNet Firewall Helps to detect suspicious apps and spyware.
  • to receive instant notifications. Get notified when a blocked app tries to connect to Internet or when some app tries to connect to a blocked country.
  • to block ad networks. As LostNet NoRoot Firewall intercepts traffic from all apps, it is capable of removing traffic to certain ad networks.
  • to create multiple profiles in order to switch between specific rules for different situations. Profiles can be very useful when you want to set different rules while you are in roaming or for example when your children use your Android device.
  • to save your battery life. Most of your apps perform periodic activities which bring your wireless connection on and, thus, drain your battery really fast. LostNet NoRoot Firewall can block these activities.