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Showing posts from 2019

Lightning cables: 2m or go home! (Choetech review)

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My family and I have discovered over the last decade of owning iPhones that the standard 1m cables, such as the ones Apple includes in the phone boxes, just aren't long enough: with the power adapter in a wall plug or a floor 4-way gang, the lead barely reaches onto the sofa or bed and then you've got to constantly worry about the iPhone being charged being knocked off. Or finding it hard to use while being charged.

The answer is, of course, to have a longer cable in the first place. Our home is now outfitted with 2m cables, giving masses of extra flexibility. And, in this case, with the Choetech cable here sent in for review, giving extra ruggedisation as well.


This is really thick, coated in tough TPE (ThermoPlastic Elastomer), and claims to be tangle proof. It's certainly the most substantial Lightning cable I've ever used. It's fully Apple 'Mfi' certified too and I tested it with an 18W mains charger, to charge an iPhone 11 Pro with PD (Power Delivery) …

Case roundup for the Google Pixel 4 XL

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In my reviews of the brand new Pixel 4 XL so far, I've pointed out that the painted finish on metal and glass is worrisome - surely it's going to rub off and look tatty at some point? So here we go with some likely case contenders...

As usual for my case roundups, I'll cover a variety of styles, with most samples supplied by MobileFun, kind people that they are. See their complete range of Pixel 4 XL cases and covers.

But on with the individual cases, each link goes to the relevant product page, of course.

(I'll update this initially-brief round-up as and when more cases arrive for review from MobileFun and from other sources.)

Olixar Soft Silicone, Black, £10
A terrific option at the price, the feel in the hand is super-premium. Soft and smooth, yet not too smooth - there's still grip.


There's minimal corner protection, but you do get enough of a lip all round the front of the Pixel 4 XL so as to protect it when placed face down on a surface, or even from face …

The 'Blue Peter' radiator kludge that saves money!

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Yes, yes, this is all very low tech, but it's something I've done on all our main window radiators and I believe it saves real money. And the kludge itself costs almost nothing, so why not?

The problem is that radiators in our house are positioned underneath windows - which seems utterly crazy to me, but it's true all over the place. Why? Put each room's heat source underneath the biggest heat loss, etc?!

In the winter, with curtains closed, the situation's even worse, with curtains closed, since then they hang down 'outside' the radiator vertically, so heat rises and then ends up 'inside' the curtain and straight out the window, or at least into the window space, and not into the room!!

Bonkers. Anyway, here's my fix. A length of cardboard, with kitchen silver foil glued (and/or taped) on, splined onto the radiator wall supports, and bent at 45 degrees so as to channel rising heat out into the room and beyond the curtains.

A few photos are wort…

Case roundup for the Samsung Galaxy Note 10+

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In my review of the Note 10+, I pointed out that it's virtually impossible to use the phone without a case - it's just too razer-edged and slippery. So here we go with some VERY likely contenders...

As usual for my case roundups, I'll cover a variety of styles, with most samples supplied by MobileFun, kind people that they are. See their complete range of Note 10+ cases and covers.

But on with the individual cases, each link goes to the relevant product page, of course.

(I'll update this round-up as and when more cases arrive for review from other sources.)

Official Samsung LED View Cover Case - Blue, £45 Starting with perhaps the Rolls Royce of Note 10+ cases - the Samsung LED View Cover, so called as, obviously, there's a matrix of tiny LEDs embedded in the rubberised fabric cover. Close the folio flap and the time lights up in dots for five seconds (and then goes out).


Or press the side button push-through and - again - you get the time shown, without a need to o…