Google’s Project Fi Adds Support for Data-Only Devices

22 Dec 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Google to offer cheap internet for travelersA humble fixed price for mobile internet in over 120 countries is Google’s latest ambition that would allow users to save thousands of dollars on mobile phone operators’ packages.

Project Fi, which is Google’s way of jumping in the middle of the great carrier race, has shared today that starting tomorrow, you can order a SIM for your data-only device. Once you’ve ordered and received a data-only SIM, just pop it into a compatible device, follow the instructions, and voila: instant wireless connectivity. Those who would like to join the early access program can request an invitation. “With this update, you can access cellular connection from tablets and other connected devices while on the go.

This will dramatically change the price of wireless for travelers too: a flat rate of $10 per GB is a far cry from costly roaming plans mobile operators offer their clients. Subscribers have been getting LEGO sets as a holiday gift, so it’s nice to see that Google is making the customer service for carriers space better.

The 6P is aluminum all the way through with a very subtle “hump” made of Gorilla Glass 4 that protrudes on the upper backside; this hump houses the camera system, and also acts as a way for its antennas to transmit wireless reception. You still need a modern Nexus phone to sign up for Project Fi in the first place, though, so this doesn’t do anything to expand the pool of users that are able to use Google’s competitively-priced service. And unlike the flat buttons on the 5X, the buttons on the 6P have a satisfying click to them that don’t require much force; I really like how the power button is knurled. Huawei added an oleophobic coating on the screen to keep fingerprints at bay, but the phone still got smudged up with minimal tapping and swiping, anyway.

I wouldn’t get too hung up on these specs, though, as I didn’t notice any significant daily performance differences (web browsing, taking photos, using social media, email) compared to the 5X’s Snapdragon 808 chip and 2GB of RAM. Android 6.0 Marshmallow, as I mentioned in my Nexus 5X review is Google’s mobile operating system, firing on all cylinders and at the top of its game. Most of Marshmallow’s improvements are behind-the-scene fixes and tweaks to make Android more stable and polished, but there are a few new features that lay the groundwork for a more robust mobile experience. Google Now On Tap, a new feature activated by long pressing on the Home button (O), that looks for keywords on an app screen and then serves up links, shortcuts, etc, is convenient when it works. (More about Google Now On Tap here.) And Doze, a system-level battery saving feature, is also a very welcome addition.

LG wasn’t so kind, only bundling in a USB Type-C to USB Type-C cable with the 5X, but Huawei is forgiving and comes with that and a USB Type-C to USB Type-A (full-size USB) cable so you can plug it into your old charging adapters or a computer. Restating what I said in my 5X review, the placement is natural if the phone is facing down, but plain awkward if the phone’s screen is facing up, which is how most people have their phones on a table.

Selfies are sharper from the 8-megapixel front-facing camera versus the 5X’s 5-megapixel camera, but by the time you throw them up on Instagram and Facebook, they’ll get compressed and the difference won’t be noticeable unless you view the, in full resolution (and who does that?). The 6X doesn’t have optical image stabilization like the iPhone 6S Plus (and 6 Plus), which is disappointing especially for taking low-light and action shots, but I wouldn’t say that’s a good enough reason to not buy this phone. Mostly known for its budget-priced phones, Huawei has rapidly risen to the top as a company capable of producing luxurious, premium phones and smartwatches with highly attractive pricing (kind of like Xiaomi).

It’s got the high-end look and feel, a gorgeous high-res screen, a pair of excellent cameras, powerful performance and a fingerprint sensor that blows by the iPhone 6S’s.

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