Motorola’s latest mod is a high-speed 5G modem!

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It’s great to see Motorola going strong with its modular ecosystem. The Moto Z is truly a landmark moment in Motorola’s history of creating smartphones and should definitely go down in its hall of fame along with the Razr, Aura, and the FlipOut, for just being daring enough to go against the tide and do something refreshingly different, a trait we really miss in today’s bandwagon market.

The 5G Moto Mod comes from a collaborative effort between Verizon, Qualcomm and Motorola. A slim device that snaps to the back of your Moto Z3, the 5G mod is literally a modem that gives your phone low-latency, high-speed internet, taking over the current cellular connectivity of your phone to give it a dramatical boost by helping it tap into the carrier’s 5G network.

Touted as the network of the future, 5G is all set to revolutionize the way we interact with internet-connected devices. Devices using 5G can send over large amounts of data at much faster speeds, allowing for more connected experiences as the number of IoT devices increase in our lives and begin ‘talking to each other’. 5G is also going to boost the adoption of AR and VR in our daily lives, allowing phones to generate and receive large amounts of content and data. While currently still in its developmental stages, the 5G network should be mainstream by the next year, and the Moto 5G Mod wants to be one of the first few products to ride that wave, providing an unparalleled experience to its users.

The Moto Mod is currently only compatible with Verizon’s 5G network, with the ability to support data transfer at speeds as high as 5Gbps (which is five times faster than the fastest LTE connection today). Of course, with high data transfer speeds also comes significant battery drain, which is why the mod also packs a 2,000mAh battery inside it, providing your phone with the additional juice it needs. Given that the 5G network only works with data, the phone will still use its primary cellular connection for calls, relying on 5G just for internet connectivity.

All set to debut in early 2019, the Moto 5G Mod is one more great product in Motorola’s modularity eco-system. From a projector, to a smartspeaker, to even a polaroid printer, Moto Z’s modularity program is one of the most interesting things happening in the smartphone industry today. Keep up the good work, Motorola!

Designer: Verizon, Qualcomm and Motorola

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Motorola’s new phone looks depressingly unoriginal

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Known for pushing out some stellar phones in the past couple of decades, it’s sad to see Motorola descend into a phase where it looks like it’s literally given up. After giving us the Moto Z with some beautiful modules that went on to A. Prove Google wrong (by showing modularity is possible and can do wonders for phones) B. win a couple of Red Dot Design Awards in the process too, Motorola’s latest phone, the P30 is an absolute plummet from grace for Motorola.

Ditching its otherwise chunky design (for better or for worse), the Motorola P30 is sleek, but if it wasn’t for the fact that Motorola’s logo was pasted on the front and back, you’d definitely confuse it for something else, because the Motorola almost looks exactly like an iPhone X with the Huawei P20 Pro’s paint job. There’s nothing, aside from Motorola’s branding, that’s even remotely original about the Motorola P30… even its name seems to be a rip-off of Huawei’s P20.

The front comes with a notch that’s slightly narrower than the iPhone X, and a base that houses the Motorola’s logo, probably to avoid a scathing lawsuit from the guys at Apple. Even the wallpaper on the phone looks exactly like the abstract wash of colors you see on the iPhone X. Flip the phone over and you’ve got a setup that looks virtually identical to the iPhone X (even Google Image Search can’t tell the difference, apparently). There’s a dual-camera setup located on the same upper-left corner (with the flash located at the exact same place too), and the P30 ditches the Apple logo for a Motorola logo that also serves as a fingerprint sensor. The phone also comes in Apple’s Black and White color schemes, with an additional ‘Aurora’ color scheme which literally looks like the Huawei P20 Pro’s ‘Twilight’ paint job got rotated a 180 degrees (here’s a comparison).

The P30 is set for a September 15 launch (a month from now), but will launch in China before even preparing for a worldwide launch… which to me would be a rather bold idea, given that Apple’s legal team will be waiting to pounce.

Designer: Motorola

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The Plux is the wireless charger Apple promised us a year ago

Looking suspiciously like the AirPower charging mat Apple showcased at their keynote last year, the Plux fulfills the promise Apple couldn’t keep. The capsule-shaped Plux mat can, just like the AirPower, charge your iPhone, Apple Watch, and Airpods case simultaneously by just placing them on the charging mat. The mat can be placed horizontally, or even propped up using a stand that comes along with the Plux kit, letting you charge your phone while using it too. Just plug the mat in, and you’ve got yourself a Qi-powered charger that can juice all your Apple products at the same time.

Plux has a clever way of tackling the problems Apple couldn’t overcome. In order to wirelessly charge the Apple Watch, the Plux lets you route Apple’s existing Watch charging puck into the mat’s hollow design, allowing you to use that corner of the mat to charge your watch. The phone charges conventionally, and the Airpods (which don’t charge wirelessly) use a clever trick too, involving a wireless charging receiver and a white silicone case. Overall, you’ve got a mat that is, in theory, capable of charging all three devices together (at high speeds too, given its 10W output), but it resorts to rather nifty hacks to overcome barriers that Apple still hasn’t managed to crack. September may just be a month away, but who knows whether Apple’s AirPower is coming anyway. They wouldn’t present a Logitech-made alternative if they had a trick up their sleeve, right?

Designer: Plux

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The Plux is the wireless charger Apple promised us a year ago

Looking suspiciously like the AirPower charging mat Apple showcased at their keynote last year, the Plux fulfills the promise Apple couldn’t keep. The capsule-shaped Plux mat can, just like the AirPower, charge your iPhone, Apple Watch, and Airpods case simultaneously by just placing them on the charging mat. The mat can be placed horizontally, or even propped up using a stand that comes along with the Plux kit, letting you charge your phone while using it too. Just plug the mat in, and you’ve got yourself a Qi-powered charger that can juice all your Apple products at the same time.

Plux has a clever way of tackling the problems Apple couldn’t overcome. In order to wirelessly charge the Apple Watch, the Plux lets you route Apple’s existing Watch charging puck into the mat’s hollow design, allowing you to use that corner of the mat to charge your watch. The phone charges conventionally, and the Airpods (which don’t charge wirelessly) use a clever trick too, involving a wireless charging receiver and a white silicone case. Overall, you’ve got a mat that is, in theory, capable of charging all three devices together (at high speeds too, given its 10W output), but it resorts to rather nifty hacks to overcome barriers that Apple still hasn’t managed to crack. September may just be a month away, but who knows whether Apple’s AirPower is coming anyway. They wouldn’t present a Logitech-made alternative if they had a trick up their sleeve, right?

Designer: Plux

Click Here to Buy Now

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Hello (Again) Moto

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Can you believe it’s been 15 years since the first RAZR?! Designer Arun Shah describes his inspiration for this modern version as coming from a love of his dad’s original MotoRAZR. Having had a RAZR myself… I’m feeling pretty old right about now! Regardless, the original was a cutting-edge design known for just that… being edgy. This smartphone redesign is no different.

It features modern tech you won’t find anywhere on your old flip phone like dual stereo speakers, a 35.8″ FHD OLED display, and even an in-glass earpiece. Carrying on the edgy legacy of the RAZR family, it sports a single, continuous edge that gives it an instant brand identity. Would you like to see a RAZR comeback? Let us know!

Designer: Arun Shah

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Want to watch movies while you wirelessly charge? Logitech has the answer

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Over the past few months Apple and Logitech have partnered together in quite an official capacity to produce accessories for Apple’s products that help it widen its reach while allowing consumers to stay within the eco-system but not be essentially bound to the Apple brand. Just a few months back, Logitech unveiled the Crayon, a stylus meant for Apple’s educational iPad, offering functionality similar to Apple’s Pencil, but for schools. With the ‘Powered’, Logitech becomes the first company to release a wireless charging pad approved and co-designed by Apple.

While Apple couldn’t deliver on the Airpad, a product it promised close to a year ago, the Powered was designed to provide wireless charging to Apple’s latest range of iPhones. The Powered, designed together by Logitech and Apple, comes with a propped-up-cradle design that lets you dock your iPhone in either landscape or portrait, at an angle that lets you even use the phone while wireless charging. The clever design accommodates for either vertical or horizontal docking, allowing you to either Facetime or watch videos while your phone gets charged. A light on the back of the Powered gives you a clear indication of whether the charger is on and your phone is charging. While the Powered promises to work with all the phones Apple released last fall (and hopefully future ones too), I’m still waiting on the AirPower… and the new Airpods case that will allegedly be able to charge your phone!

Designer: Logitech

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The Hubble Phone is the most outrageous phone you can buy

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There’s a lot to love about the Hubble Phone by Turing Space Industries. It emulates the strangely beautiful clamshell format first seen in Nokia’s N93 phone, allowing you to not only flip but swivel your phone’s screen, as the camera sat on the hinge, turning your phone into a camcorder of sorts… a format that was a novelty and quite a success back in 2006. Not only does the Hubble Phone experiment with that format, it’s also almost 100% screen… ON BOTH SIDES. Running all around the front and the back on both components is a display unit that looks pretty stellar in the renders and the video, although we could do without the notch. (No, really, we could do without it.)

In order to achieve this stunning all-screen arrangement, Turing pushes all the peripherals to the side. Along with the camera (which boasts of 15x zoom), you’ve got a volume dial (yes, a rotating one), a power button, camera shutter button, sim card slot, and a USB Type-C charging port. The phone is said to run two Snapdragon 855 chipsets, be AR and VR compatible, and come with a hefty price tag of $2,750… but honestly, with a phone that’s so mesmerizingly beautiful, I bet people would pay that price.

Designer: Turing Space Industries

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Motorola’s Polaroid mod brings your digital selfies to life

You have to appreciate Motorola for absolutely nailing its mods game. While the Essential Phone and RED’s Hydrogen Phone made lofty promises but never delivered on their modular eco-system, Motorola, despite being an underdog in the smartphone race, has produced some incredible modules that attach to your phone and give them superpowers. After a seriously good camera mod from Hasselblad, speaker mod from JBL, and even its own Alexa smart speaker attachment courtesy a partnership with Amazon, Motorola’s next strike comes in the form of a sprocket that attaches itself to your phone and turns it into a Polaroid!

The Polaroid mod turns memories from digital ones to physical ones, and from a dime a dozen, to memories that are special because unlike the thousands of photos you upload, download, share, repost, throwback with, this mod produces images that are more one-of-a-kind, to begin with. The Polaroid mod, albeit slightly thick (after all, it fits a printer into your phone) gives your Motorola phone a mod that other phones would die to have. Click selfies, edit them, and print them out on Polaroid’s special paper, and you’ve got tangible evidence of a memory that you’re less likely to forget like the photos you’ve got on your cloud drive or in your gallery from years back. Priced at $199, the mod may be on the slightly more expensive side, but it’s worth using your phone as your camera lens, selecting which picture you want to print, and more importantly, being able to use your front-facing camera and your display as a view-finder so you know exactly what you’re clicking!

Designer: Polaroid for Motorola

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Charge, Dance, Repeat

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Now that every smartphone is moving towards wireless power, it only makes sense that the charging pads we use serve more than one purpose! That’s the idea behind Tevol. This charging pad doubles as a Bluetooth speaker so you can enjoy your favorite tunes while you power up.

Only slightly larger than a traditional charging pad, it features a 360-degree speaker system integrated into the plate. Touch-sensitive controls allow you to adjust volume or song selection directly from the device. Using Qi-standard tech, it gives your phone a quick, wireless boost while blasting your playlist.

Designer: Lee Hyeong Seop

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What if you could detach your phone camera and use it somewhere else?

It sounds like a strange premise, but what if you had a camera for your phone that you could carry around with it and detach it whenever you pleased, using it as an external camera? I’m describing a GoPro, to be honest, but imagine an action cam that sat on your phone… and could be removed and simply stuck anywhere, letting you capture footage without surrendering your phone… and with better quality imagery?

At just 6mm thick, the Evo GoCam is a small camera that attaches to the back of your phone, allowing you to simply detach it and use it anywhere you want, to capture stunning images and videos from angles and perspectives that are out of the ordinary. With a sticky micro-suction surface on the back of the Evo, you can stick it to anything, turning it into an action camera, or an impromptu webcam. You may probably wonder why one wouldn’t use their phone to capture the imagery, and there are a number of answers. The Evo is easily mountable, with its adhesive back. It lets you mount a camera lens any and everywhere, giving you unusual angles, from positions your phone probably couldn’t reach. It gives you a unique perspective, while streaming the video content to your phone in real-time, letting your camera be somewhere completely different, while the viewfinder, your phone’s screen, is right in your palm. Fitting within a bespoke case, the Evo Cam can be mounted on phones by multiple makers, including Apple, Google, Motorola, Samsung, and Huawei. The cases designed for the phones come with a slot that the Evo slides into, occupying just a mere 6mm of thickness. And to sweeten the deal, the cases give your phone wireless charging abilities!

The Evo is a step above the selfie stick, the drone camera, and the action camera, because with its potential, it can be as good as all three of them together. With the ability to stick to any surface and capture any POV, the Evo is your own pocketable camera, but it isn’t necessarily bound to your phone. However, it stays attached to the back of your phone, ready to be pulled out and used wherever, truly adding some magic to Marques Brownlee’s favorite phrase… The best camera is the one that’s in your pocket!

Designers: Mario Bertucci & Claudio Christensen Theill

Click Here to Buy Now: $149 $99

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Click Here to Buy Now: $149 $99