Monday, January 16, 2017

My thoughts on the ZTE Axon 7

I had pre-ordered the ZTE Axon 7 last year and I've been using it for the last few months along with my Blackberry Priv, OnePlus One, and Blackberry Passport. I thought that I would mention what I like about the ZTE Axon 7 and what I disliked about it.

I was looking for an Android phone which I could use instead of my OnePlus One which is starting to show its age and I was considering the OnePlus Three and the ZTE Axon 7. At the time, a lot of reviews that I was seeing/reading online were comparing the OnePlus Three and the ZTE Axon 7. The main reason I went for the Axon 7 was due to the support for a microSD card (which the OnePlus Three doesn't have). I wanted a device that supported microSD cards since I often store videos on my phone so that I have easy access to them without having to redownload them or delete the videos already on my device to put room for the newer videos. The ZTE Axon 7 does this.

While the OnePlus Three supports 2 SIM cards just like the ZTE Axon 7, the ZTE Axon 7 will only support 2 SIM cards or a microSD card and a SIM card. For the Axon 7, you will need to decide whether you want the dual SIM support or the microSD support at any particular time.

The sound is amazing on the ZTE Axon 7. I'm not an audiophile but in my opinion, it has the best sound support (both using headphones as well as using the phone's external speakers) out of the phones that I've tested/used.

One menu option that I like on the Axon 7 which I've rarely seen on mainstream Android phones except those phones which were rooted is the ability to power off the phone automatically at a certain time.

The ZTE Axon 7 is the first phone that I purchased which uses the USB type C connector. Within the box, there is an adapter which you can plug into the phone if you only have a standard micro-USB charger with you at the time. Included with the Axon 7 which I found unusual is a screen protector as well as a plastic case.

The things that I am not crazy about with the Axon 7 is that even though according to a lot of reviews that I've read/watched, it doesn't have a lot of bloatware and is somewhat similar to stock Android, personally, I don't think it is as "stock" as my Blackberry Priv or my OnePlus One. Comparing it to a Samsung phone which Samsung customizes dramatically, a lot of people will probably find it to be similar to stock Android. Whereas I agree that the Axon 7 is more "stock" than a Samsung phone, personally I was annoyed by some of the options missing which I have on my Blackberry Priv and my OnePlus One. One of the things that I found missing from the Axon 7 is the multi-user support that is available in my LG Nexus-4, OnePlus One, and Blackberry Priv. A lot of people probably don't use the multi-user support but because I sometimes lend my phones, I like the ability to easily switch between users so that they don't install applications under my profile. Another option that is available on these phones which is missing from the Axon 7 is the lock screen message where I often put my name and contact information in case someone finds my phone and wants to contact me.

One other thing that I noticed is that because the keys (back, home, & recent) are non-illuminated capacitive keys, certain Android apps that offer a menu option next to these keys when they are screen keys is no longer available.

If you have any comments/questions regarding this blog entry, please don't hesitate to leave a comment in the comments section below. Please note that the comments are moderated and any comment containing a URL link (whether embedded or not) will automatically be flagged as spam and will not be posted.

Monday, January 9, 2017

Netflix Region Restrictions

I posted a few blogs regarding such services as Blockless and Unblock-Us which will allow users to pay a monthly fee and then use their DNS service which would trick Netflix into thinking that the subscriber was in a different country. Last year in the early part of the year, Netflix took aggressive action to stop these services and VPN services from working on their services. Unblock-Us will still work with some television broadcaster's websites (ABC, NBC, CBS, etc.) and allow subscribers to watch videos/episodes from their websites but since I'm subscribed to a separate VPN service, I opted not to continue my subscription to Unblock-Us.

I was subscribed to Unblock-Us DNS service as well as a VPN service and both services stopped working with Netflix. I opted to keep my VPN service since there are other uses for the VPN service that I subscribe to beyond using it with Netflix and it has all the features of Unblock-Us DNS Service and offers me the additional benefit of encryption when I'm using public hotspots.

I generally always connect to my VPN service whenever I use my Android tablet, my laptop, and my Android smartphones and even when I select my home country for my IP address, Netflix will load and show the show catalogue for that country but when selecting the show/movie/video to watch even if that show/movie/video is available in my home country, a message will appear stating that I'm using an unblocking service or proxy and Netflix will not work. For more information, it refers me to

With the amount of videos/shows that are currently in my personal Netflix listing, currently I haven't investigated some options of bypassing the home country restriction. These services might work for the short term and because of the amount of videos/movies/shows that I've added to my personal Netflix list, I just don't feel that it is worthwhile at this point for me to pay the extra fees to gain additional offerings. I also access to CraveTV and TMN application which gives me more than enough things to watch without paying an additional monthly fee to get the offerings from a different country.

If you have any comments/questions regarding this blog entry, please don't hesitate to leave a comment in the comments section below. Please note that the comments are moderated and any comment containing a URL link (whether embedded or not) will automatically be flagged as spam and will not be posted.

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Happy New Year

Happy New Year!

I haven't written a blog entry in over a year (last blog entry was in December 2015 for my Moto-360 watch). I still wear/use my Moto-360 watch. I had the back plate repaired prior to the 1 year warranty expiring with what I consider to be a manufacturer's defect in the design of the Moto-360 watch. I'll probably write a blog entry of this in 2017 in greater detail.

During my absence from posting/updating my blog, I tested/purchased a ZTE Axon-7, continued to test/use my Blackberry Passport, Blackberry Q10, and Blackberry Priv. I've also tested a NetGear AC763S Wireless Mobile Hotspot which I'm hoping to be able to write about in 2017 provided that I have the time. I also purchased a few other electronic items and/or gadgets during that time as well as purchased some applications that I would also like to write about on my blog in 2017.

With some of the things that I purchased or talked about in early blog entries/reviews, I'm also hoping to be able to create a new blog entry with my updated thoughts or changes to these products in 2017.

Hopefully I'll be able to maintain the pace of one blog entry/review per week in 2017.

I wish everyone a Happy New Year!