Monthly Archives: June 2019

7 LED Solar Landscape Lamp

This little item turned up for me this afternoon7 LED Solar Lamp after languishing in the post for longer than I care to mention.

I don’t blame the Chinese supplier Banggood for this as Spain is a long way from China and they would not be aware that last-mile delivery company Seur are worse than useless – they know now.

The unit arrived with trivial (easily fixed) damage despite adequate packaging – again I suspect the company doing the local part of the delivery and I’ve warned Banggood and others in the delivery chain about them so the chances of you getting my experience are very slim.

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Cubot X19 Budget Phone

The Cubot X19 smartphone arrived back in May, well packaged, complete with USB charger and lead (the ad describes charging as Type-C fast charge) and the first thing that came to my wife's attention was the COLOUR – she LOVES it. At sub-£100 sterling with free shipping to the UK and other destinations, while taking the low cost into account, this is looking like good value after being in constant use for several weeks in Europe. This is not the first Cubot we’ve had but is definitely the best looking so far. The last one was also a budget Cubot and was flawless.

The Cubot X19

If you’re used to unreasonably tarted up studio photos, these un-retouched photos should be refreshingly real. The photo above is the X19 sitting on my desk, taken with my Pocophone and NO adjustments made. As an aside, a conversation is starting in here about roaming overseas, nothing to do with Cubot but may interest some of you.


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Owon B35T+ Meter Revisit

Regular readers will know that back in December 2017 I had a very full postbag one day and lumped several items together including the Owon Bluetooth multi-meter. Well, I’d planned to give some of the items more coverage but again, regular readers will also know that shortly thereafter I had a stroke which put me out of action for nearly three months. Shortly thereafter, a long-delayed carpal tunnel operation once again reduced my writing ability and it is only really in 2019 that I started to catch up with my writing plans.

Recently I pulled out the Owon meter and the reason I fell for this device is all coming back to me. Reader Brian Gentles has supplied a handy link to date on the Owon site - here it is...


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K2 OLED HD Colour Display Bluetooth Smartwatch

K2 SmartwatchThis item turned up for me on my return from the USA late 2018: The K2 OLED Bluetooth Smartwatch. This is an updated version (June 2019) of the original December 2018 blog entry as I just successfully updated the app and watch firmware.

The watch has magnetic charging and an App for iPhone and Android – I used the Android version called “iband”. The app is referred to in the 12-sided booklet that comes with this inexpensive watch and it all works well. I had no difficulties at all pairing the watch to my Pocophone F1 smartphone, a process which thanks to the use of a QR-code took moments only. Unlike some other smart-watches out there which die after a day or two even if not used, the stand-by time of this watch is very long.

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Brave Browser and Annex WIFI RDS

Brave BrowserWell, not THAT new, “Brave” has been around for long enough to reach the release version (which apparently came out in April 2019) and it appears to work well. It isn’t so much about a stunningly different browser as the fact that we’ve had the same choices now for a long time. I’ve briefly tested “Brave” on my 64-bit Windows PC and Android 9 mobile phone, with a little theming it makes for a slightly interesting new experience.

FasterKey claims are that “Brave” is faster than Chrome (up to 2x on PC, 8x on mobile) and blocks ads by default. Time will tell how well that works – it FEELS faster. The browser is freely available and open source, based on the Chromium web browser and announced by the co-founder of the Mozilla project.  Right now I’m playing it by ear to see if this is truly better than Chrome.

Annex WIFI RDSThe second thing to come to my attention recently is “Annex WIFI RDS” for ESP8266 – no comments at this time other than bringing it to your attention for those interested in ESP8266 development.


The Umidigi F1 Smartphone

Updated June 14, 2019:

So many phones out there, so much choice, so much rubbish. When it came to updating my own phone last year, I took advice from my friend Antonio (Mr Shark) and went for the Xiaomi Pocophone F1 and as it turns out, it was good advice as the Pocophone is an absolute winner. More of that elsewhere.

Umidigi F1

Now it is my wife’s turn and recently we took delivery of the Umidigi F1 phone from Banggood.Photo taken with Umidigi F1

The phone arrived here safely in deepest rural Spain, tracked and on time along with a separately shipped glass screen protector. 16/4/2019 - Above image taken this morning with the F1 back camera – no adjustments or enhancements.

My experience from opening the Umidigi package through to actual phone use is that of a high-end model phone – from the boxing and thank-you card from Umidigi themselves through the packaging effort by Banggood and to the phone and accessories, everything looks top notch.

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