On Gizmodo: The Best Cheap Laptop Under $250
Buying a cheap laptop can feel like a gamble. You might get lucky and find a machine with a good keyboard that isn’t slower than a tortoise-snail crossbreed… or you might get saddled with a cheap piece of crap that cries when you load a browser or try to open WordPerfect because Word is just too much. Yes, you get what you pay for. That doesn’t mean you have to settle for crap if your budget is small.
There are laptops in the sub-$250 price range that offer good value for your money and do well for users with basic needs. But which ones?
On Gizmodo: Asus ZenBook Pro UX501 Review: Just Ignore The Word “Pro”
You want a laptop that looks nice. Asus understands that. That’s why the company has tried so hard to build a better MacBook. The ZenBook line has given birth to many beautiful, powerful, desirable machines that offer PC people a chance to preen—even when they’re surrounded by MacBooks at their local cafe.
The newest addition to the family, the ZenBook Pro UX501, is a competitor for the 15-inch MacBook Pro in looks and performance. At least, it wants to be.
On xoJane: Tech and Fashion Gadgets Finally Look Less Hideous, and We’re All Grateful
Last year I came back from the annual Consumer Electronics Show super tired of condescending tech “For the Ladies” and tech/fashion accessories that looked like they were better suited to the trash heap than the runway. This year, I came away from Vegas with less despair. I was pleasantly surprised to find that gadgets designed for the fashionista set actually looked like stuff a real person would want to wear. Some are downright gorgeous. Shocking, I know.
On xoJane: Five Things I Learned After Taking (Almost) 365 Feminist Selfies
Last year around this time Selfie was crowned the 2013 word of the year, and the collective groan that went up from the Haters was loud, long, and frankly whiny. No need to rehash that old argument. However, the backlash did inspire me to join the #365feministselfie crowd. Though I rarely took selfies before January 1st of last year, I jumped into the project happily and with high hopes that I might actually be able to keep up.
Spoiler Alert: I did not take a selfie every day, but some days I took several (especially when I was at a convention) and I think I’m pretty close to 365 total. I did manage to take a selfie every day for several months at a stretch. And I learned a few things about myself and about selfies along the way.
On Techlicious: The Best Chromebook
A great Chromebook is inexpensive, lightweight and slim, well-built with a good display and comfortable keyboard, and fast enough to handle multitasking without freezing up or slowing to a crawl. At first glance, several contenders meet at least some of these criteria. Fancier models like the Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 11e Chromebook ($479) and the Google Chromebook Pixel ($1,299) include touchscreens, 360-degree hinges or other extras that may suit some high-end needs, but these features raise the price too high for a more general audience.
In the $200 to $400 range, three models rise to the top: the Dell Chromebook 11, the 13-inch Toshiba Chromebook 2 and the Acer Chromebook 13. Of these, my pick for the best is the Toshiba Chromebook 2, with the Dell in a very close second place.
on xoJane: All I Want For Christmas/Kwanza Is Tech
I’m a tech journalist, so I spend every week of the year covering, reviewing, and writing about tons of awesome gadgets, devices, and accessories. Despite what you might think, I don’t get to keep most of the stuff I review. And even though a new thing is always on the horizon, there are some gadgets I would love to have for my very own. And since it’s holiday time that means it’s wish list time. Here are all the things I want to find under the tree if anyone’s asking.
On Techlicious: Holiday Gift Ideas for Kids
Looking for tech and gadget gifts for kids as young as 2 and as old as 16? Surprise them with these games, toys, and robots.
On ChipChick: Motorola Droid Turbo Review: Verizon Welcomes Back an Old Friend
Verizon Wireless will never let us forget that, way back in the day, the first Droid is the smartphone that really captured the world’s attention and made Android the powerhouse it is today. Since then the carrier and Motorola have tried to keep that level of excitement with each new Droid release, even though the phones aren’t so different from the Moto brand all the other carriers get.templates
The newest entry into this vaunted and celebrated line is the Droid Turbo ($199 for 32GB, $249 for 64GB), a smartphone that isn’t particularly groundbreaking but does offer a nice upgrade from previous generations. The Turbo has four big things going for it: a rugged design, natural intelligence, super long battery life, and a high megapixel camera.
On Techlicious: The Best 8-inch Android Tablet
To find the very best tablets, I looked for four key elements: a bright, vivid, pixel-dense display that looks great at any angle; a lightweight design that’s comfortable to hold in one hand for long stretches; a powerful CPU coupled with a good amount of RAM for smooth, speedy multitasking; and an interface that’s easy to understand and navigate even if you’re not tech-savvy. Price was also a consideration — a great small tablet shouldn’t break the bank.
On Techlicious: Hands On: Samsung Galaxy Note 4 & Note Edge [Video]
Today Samsung unveiled two new Galaxy Note phones, one that’s a by-the-book upgrade to last year’s Note 3, and one that that does something innovative and has the potential to shake up the way you use Android for the better. There’s no official price announcement yet, but both phones will be out in October. Want to check them out sooner than that? Later this week the public in New York City, Chicago, Dallas, LA, and San Francisco will get a chance to at least play with demo models at select carriers. If you don’t live in any of those cities, check out our hands-on below.