Michael Cavacini

An award-winning arts and culture blog.

Archive for the tag “Apple”

Two Weeks With Apple AirPods

image1For the past two weeks, I’ve been using Apple AirPods every day to listen to music, audiobooks, podcasts, you name it. I pop them into my ears when I walk to work, I wear them at my desk and I’ve even used them to listen to interviews I need to transcribe for this site. What do I think of them? Are they worth the $159 Apple is charging for them? Read on and find out.

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Nintendo Releases Super Mario Run For iOS

mobile_supermariorun_illustration_05Today, Nintendo celebrates a huge milestone. For the first time ever, its most iconic video game character, Mario, makes his debut on a device not produced by Nintendo. Super Mario Run, a fully-featured platformer starring everyone’s favorite plummer, is now available in Apple’s App Store for iPhone and iPad.

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A Month With Amazon’s Fire Phone

Amazon-Fire-PhoneFor the past month I’ve been using the Amazon Fire Phone. So, what’s it like? Is it better than my iPhone? And will I keep using it? Check out my video review below to learn more. In addition to my video review, I’m including photos and videos I shot with the phone, tech specs and more. If you want to buy an Amazon Fire Phone, you can do so here.

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Movie Review: Jobs

Jobs Movie PosterWhat It’s About

This movie is about the life and career of Steve Jobs.

What I Like

What impressed me most about this film is Ashton Kutcher; he was excellent in his role and I have newfound respect for his dramatic acting capabilities.

I also enjoyed this movie’s soundtrack – it was awesome. Any time a film features music by REO Speedwagon, Cat Stevens and Toad The Wet Sprocket, it’s going to bring a smile to my face.

What I Don’t Like

I wish the film included the last few years of Jobs’ career. The closest we get to that is a scene where Jobs unveils the iPod to Apple employees for the first time. It’s a cool moment, but what about the launch of the iPhone and the iPad? And what about his health struggles at the end of his life? To me, this was a missed opportunity.

Bottom Line

Despite its minor shortcomings, Jobs is a highly entertaining film that almost anyone will enjoy. If you come into it with an open mind about the subject matter and the lead actor, you’ll feel satisfied by the time the final credits role. I highly recommend it.

Review: Acer Iconia A1-830

Acer Iconia A1-830Below is my video review of the new Acer Iconia A1-830 tablet. Enjoy!

Kindle Fire HDX vs. iPad Air

Kindle Fire HDXAmazon just released a new commercial for the Kindle Fire HDX 8.9″ comparing it to the iPad Air. I think it’s a stroke of genius. Check it out for yourself below:

The Best Tablet Money Can Buy: Amazon Kindle Fire HDX 8.9″

Kindle_Fire_HDX_The_Mayday_ButtonThe Amazon Kindle Fire HDX 8.9″ is not only the best tablet ever produced by Amazon, it’s the best tablet money can buy. Below is my review of the Kindle Fire HDX 8.9″, as well as seven additional videos highlighting the device’s various features. If you’d like to buy the Amazon Kindle Fire HDX 8.9″, you can do so right here: http://tinyurl.com/lpc7znq.

Review

Mayday Button

Video Games 

Fire HDX 8.9″ vs. Fire HD 7″ (2012 Model) Speed Test

Origami Case

Origami Case

High-Resolution Display

Music

Reading

Amazon Unveils New Kindle Fire HDX

Kindle Fire HDXYesterday, Amazon announced its new lineup of Kindle Fire tablets. In addition to upgrading last year’s 7″ Kindle Fire and lowering its introductory price to $139, Amazon unveiled the Kindle Fire HDX, which has a higher pixel density rate than Apple’s iPad – making for an ultra-high definition viewing experience. The 16 GB, Wi-Fi model with special offers costs $229 for the 7″ version, and the most expensive 8.9″ model – with a 64 GB hard drive and an optional 4G connection – will set you back $579.

As you’ll see from the features below, the Kindle Fire HDX is significantly lighter than its predecessor and it has an exciting new feature called the “Mayday” button. This feature provides you with on-screen support, whenever you want, from a Kindle Support representative. And while you can see the rep and he or she can remotely access your device with your permission, the representative can’t see you – so no need to worry if you’re hair is sticking up and you’re still in your bathrobe while you’re being helped.

Kindle Fire HDX Features

  • Exclusive 8.9″ HDX display (2560×1600) with unsurpassed pixel density (339 PPI) and perfect color accuracy (100% sRGB) for vivid, lifelike images that go beyond standard HD
  • Breakthrough ultra-light design—weighing just 13.2oz, it’s 34% lighter than the previous generation
  • Ultra-fast 2.2GHz quad-core processor—3x more powerful than previous generation—with 2GB of RAM and Adreno 330 GPU for fast, fluid gaming and video
  • Introducing the “Mayday” button—revolutionary, on-device tech support, exclusive to Kindle Fire HDX tablets. Connect for free to an Amazon expert 24×7, 365 days a year
  • 8MP rear-facing camera with LED flash for high-resolution photos and 1080p HD video, plus a front-facing 720p HD camera for Skype video calls and more
  • Stay productive on the go with ultra-fast web browsing, built-in OfficeSuite, plus e-mail and calendar support for Gmail, Outlook, and more
  • In addition to Free Two-Day Shipping, Prime members enjoy exclusive digital benefits, including the new ability to download Prime Instant Video titles to new Kindle Fire HDX tablets

Below is a letter from Amazon CEO, Jeff Bezos, that was posted to Amazon’s website the day of the announcement, as well as a video highlighting the “Mayday” feature. And stay tuned for my review of the device in the coming months.

Jeff Bezos - Kindle Fire HDXJeff Bezos’ Letter

Dear Customers,

It’s been just two years since we introduced Kindle Fire, and the team is innovating at unbelievable speed. Today, I’m excited to introduce you to the all-new Kindle Fire family.

These are powerhouse tablets. We added the latest graphics engine, doubled the memory, and tripled the processing power with the most advanced 2.2 GHz quad-core processor. Our HDX displays bring together exceptional pixel density (up to 339 ppi), perfect 100% sRGB color accuracy, improved brightness, and dynamic image contrast. You also get up to 11 hours of battery life—17 hours when you’re reading.

Even the largest new Kindle Fire—the 8.9″—is startlingly light. We re-imagined our design from scratch, with a new magnesium unibody and molded glass-nylon alloy. At just 13.2 ounces, it’s 34% lighter than the previous generation.

Kindle Fire HDX is packed with hundreds of updates, including new email, calendar, and productivity apps, X-Ray for Music, Second Screen, and—in addition to streaming—you can now download Prime Instant Videos and watch them offline.

indle Fire HDX also introduces the revolutionary new “Mayday” button. With a single tap, an Amazon expert will appear on your Fire HDX and can co-pilot you through any feature by drawing on your screen, walking you through how to do something yourself, or doing it for you—whatever works best. Mayday is available 24×7, 365 days a year, and it’s free.

Mayday is one of those things that really has to be seen—
check out our upcoming TV commercials.

In addition to all the above, we’re taking another step forward in our mission to make it possible for anyone to afford a Kindle Fire. The all-new Kindle Fire HD has the same display quality and processing speed of last year’s high-end models and comes in at the breakthrough price point of only $139.

We’ve worked hard to pack this much hardware, innovation, and customer obsession into these devices. We hope you enjoy the new Kindle Fires.

Thank you for being a customer,

Jeff Bezos
Founder & CEO

P.S. Our industrial design team has invented what I think are the most ingenious covers—you can learn more about the new Origami covers here.

The Da Vinci Code – Free Until March 24

Inferno & The Da Vinci CodeThis week marks the 10th anniversary of Dan Brown’s most famous novel, The Da Vinci Code. To celebrate, the book’s publisher is allowing anyone to download the entire e-book for free between March 17-24. This free e-book also contains an excerpt from Brown’s upcoming Robert Langdon novel, Inferno. This is a brilliant way to promote a new book and a golden opportunity to snap up an engaging thriller for free. Take advantage while you can.

Video Review: Amazon Kindle Fire HD

I’ve had the Kindle Fire HD for a little over a week, so I thought I’d create a video review – my first ever – so you can learn more about this device and its capabilities. Below, you’ll also find a video further explaining “Whispersync for Voice,” a new feature I love. Enjoy!

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