About the Author

Jeff Benjamin

@JeffBenjam

Jeff produces videos, walkthroughs, how-tos, written tutorials and reviews. He takes pride in being able to explain things in a simple, clear and concise manner.

Jeff Benjamin's Favorite Gear

September 5, 2017

The Galaxy S8 Active counts as the fifth-generation entry into Samsung’s Galaxy Active series of smartphones. Like prior entries into the series, the Galaxy S8 Active is an AT&T exclusive that features a more rugged design that can better stand up to wear and tear. This, of course, comes at the expense of the sleek curved screen design present on the regular Galaxy S8. Have a look at our hands-on video for a brief look into what makes the Galaxy S8 Active stand out from the rest of the pack. expand full story

December 14, 2016

Evernote’s privacy policy lets its employees access your notes, with no opt out option – but it’s a bit more complicated than that

If you’re not interested in potentially sharing the content of your notes with Evernote employees, then your only option will be to leave the service, because you can’t opt out. While it appears that this policy has already been in motion for some time now, an upcoming January update to the privacy policy has placed a large spotlight on the issue.

September 6, 2016

Unlocked $99 Moto G4 Play goes up for pre-order as an Amazon Prime exclusive

Citing the success of recent budget smartphone offerings like the BLU R1 HD and the Moto G4, Amazon is offering yet another Prime exclusive budget smartphone that’s bound to prove popular among cost-conscious shoppers. The Moto G4 Play is an unlocked phone from a well-known brand with a 5″ 720p display, 4G LTE, 1.2 GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 410, 8-megapixel camera, and 16 GB of onboard storage that’s expandable to 128 GB via microSD.

All of that for only $99, if you’re a Prime subscriber and can live with personalized offers and ads on the lockscreen. Amazon Prime subscribers can now pre-order the Moto G4 Play, which will be released later this month on September 15.

July 21, 2016

If you’re looking to add a boatload of storage space to your Galaxy S7 or other microSD-capable Android phone, then Lexar’s massive 200GB 633x microSDXC card might fit the bill. expand full story

Deal: Get Pixelbook at 25% off: $750!

July 19, 2016

As someone who uses multiple Gmail accounts, I often find myself switching to the account I actually want to use after loading the Gmail home page. By default, Gmail will load the first account that you initially log in to. If you wish to view another Gmail account, you’ll need to utilize the account switcher option in the upper right-hand corner of the page.

Wouldn’t it be nice if you could set up a bookmark to go directly to a desired account instead of having to rely on the account switcher? In this brief tutorial, we’ll show you how to do just that. expand full story

July 13, 2016

I’ve long been a big fan of the Moto G since the original version, and I’ve used an iteration or two since its initial debut. The latest smartphones to bear the G-series moniker are the Moto G4 and the Moto G4 Plus, and upon first glance, you might have trouble discerning which is which.

That’s because both smartphones look strikingly similar. In fact, the Moto G4 Plus is essentially a Moto G4 with a few notable enhancements. As such, I’ll make references to both devices throughout this post.

Starting at just $199.99 (or as low as $149.99 via Amazon Prime special offers), the Moto G4 family of smartphones are unlocked out of the box, and work with LTE on all US-carriers. Is the Lenovo-owned Motorola still on top of its game when it comes to offering great value to budget-minded customers?  expand full story

July 3, 2016

According to a report by TrendForce analyst Avril Wu, the total production volume of HTC’s flagship HTC 10 will hover around 1 million units, with an overall yearly production volume of just 13 million units. That figure is significantly less than last year’s yearly production mark of 18 million units, even with the assistance of an upcoming Google Nexus branded HTC smartphone for the second half of 2016.

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June 28, 2016

The folks at Lexar sent over a 128GB 1800x-series microSDXC card for me to test out with an Android smartphone that’s capable of shooting 4K video. Lexar notes in its press materials that its professional 1800x line can max out at 270MB/s write speed, which is certainly more than enough for 4K video. Although the statistics are true, there are some things to consider, especially when taking into account the price ($200) of such a card. expand full story

June 9, 2016

According to a report from MacDailyNews, Apple will announce that iMessage is coming to Android at Monday’s upcoming WWDC 2016 keynote.

Such an announcement, which MacDailyNews claims to have obtained from “a source familiar with the company’s thinking,” would go a long way towards making it simpler for users to shift between the two competing platforms. But what would be Apple’s motivation for making such a change? expand full story

June 6, 2016

Over the last fews days, I’ve had the chance to use the Samsung Galaxy S7 active as my daily driver. Like the previous entry into the “active” line, it’s the rugged version of Samsung’s current flagship, the Galaxy S7, and is an AT&T exclusive.

With this in mind, sleek design and visual appeal take a back seat to durability, battery life and tactile response. If you’re a Samsung fan who’s constantly subjected to harsh, rugged environments and terrain, then the Galaxy S7 active is the version of company’s flagship efforts that you’d be wise to consider.

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May 31, 2016

Last week, Spigen sent over a few cases for the recently released HTC 10. That was great news for me, as I’ve been extremely hesitant to use the device as my daily driver without some sort of protection.

If the HTC 10 wasn’t so pretty and well designed it wouldn’t matter, but it’s a beautiful smartphone that I wish to keep in tip-top shape. As such, I was more than happy to take Spigen’s offerings for a test drive. Take a look at our hands-on video to see the cases in action. expand full story

May 1, 2016

I’ve long be intrigued about the potential of virtual reality, and as such, I’ve been dying to try the Oculus Rift or the HTC Vive. Sadly, I’ve yet to have the opportunity to try either.

I humbly settled on Google Cardboard, which is a nice novelty, but a less than ideal experience. For all that Google Cardboard lacked, it made it clear that VR is more than just a passing fad, and that it features some serious potential.

Google Cardboard, for all of its merits, doesn’t do the idea of VR justice. Fortunately, you don’t have to spend ~$1500 to enjoy a proper VR experience. Samsung’s Gear VR, an idea brought to reality via a partnership with VR pioneer Oculus, is a legitimate VR experience that makes me downright excited about the future of this technology.

Gear VR is far from perfect, but it’s a huge upgrade over Google Cardboard, and cheap enough to where the masses can both experience and validate it. expand full story

April 19, 2016

Samsung today announced it’s adding a new color to the Galaxy S7 and the S7 edge lineup – Pink Gold. The new color is now available in Korea, but will be making its way to other territories in the future. expand full story

April 16, 2016

After making a huge splash at this year’s Mobile World Congress expo in Barcelona, the LG G5 is now available for purchase. Thanks to the handset’s modular design, which nabbed it an award for 2016’s best innovation of MWC, it stands out from the rest of this year’s flagship releases. Is the modular design enough to make the LG G5 a better buy than competing 2016 flagship offerings? expand full story

April 14, 2016

As an “Apple guy” the HTC 10 has been the one smartphone that I’ve immediately identified with in the Android ecosystem. That’s not to say that there haven’t been other Android devices that I’ve enjoyed or wanted to use, but I’ve always connected with HTC.

That probably has something to do with the fact that the HTC Wizard was the first “smart” phone I’ve ever owned. That phone ran the now defunct Windows Mobile and featured a resistive touch screen. Needless to say, I’ve long been a fan of the Taiwanese company, and its passion and desire to put out well-designed products continues to resonate with me in 2016.

So it’s with great empathy and concern that HTC has been struggling as of late. To be honest, the HTC 10 feels like the company’s make or break — the major fork in the road, if you will.

It’s very possible that the HTC 10 will be the release that paves a path to one of two destinations. Fortunately, I can report that this is a phone that’s good enough to pave that path in the right direction. It’s a phone that lives up to its billing, and in many ways exceeds expectations. It’s definitely not perfect, but it’s the best-looking and most complete HTC offering that we’ve seen thus far. expand full story

April 12, 2016

The HTC 10 ships with native AirPlay audio streaming support, a first for an Android device

By means of third-party utilities, Android has featured the ability to stream to AirPlay devices like the Apple TV for some time now, but no Android device has ever shipped with native AirPlay support in tow. That all changes with the launch of the HTC 10, the first device to ship with officially licensed support for Apple’s popular AirPlay protocol.

We’ve had the HTC 10 all weekend, and wanted to share with you our first hands-on look. Of all of the flagship devices that we’ve seen in 2016, the HTC 10 is easily the prettiest.

The chamfered edges on the front of the HTC 10 lend a design reminiscent of jewelry, and the extra wide light-reflecting chamfer on the rear of the phone adds even more flair to the first impression. Have a look at our hands-on preview for a first-hand glimpse at HTC’s 2016 flagship. expand full story

April 5, 2016

The LG G5 just launched and has already been hit with despite its fair share of controversy. Is the controversy warranted? I’ll have more on that in the full review. In the meantime, we’ve unboxed the retail version of the G5 on video. The flagship smartphone, which boasts a new modular “friends” feature, is the follow up to LG’s generally well received LG G4.

This time around, LG has hit us with several new features, headlined by a detachable bottom lip that lets you add peripherals like a camera grip, additional batteries, and more. The modular design is unique, and serves as the major differentiator between the G5 and the competition. Have a look at our unboxing for a quick first glance at the retail G5. expand full story

February 26, 2016

Gmail Default mail app

I’ve never been a big proponent of the stock Mail application in OS X, so I generally find myself relying on Gmail inside a browser for all of my email needs. In fact, I don’t have any accounts configured inside of the Mail app at all. With this in mind, I get frustrated when I accidentally click a mailto link while I’m using Chrome. Doing so forces the Mail app to open, which wastes time.

Wouldn’t it be better if you could configure Gmail to be the default mail client inside of Chrome or another browser? In this video tutorial, I’ll show you how easy it is to configure Chrome, Safari, and even Firefox to use Gmail as default. expand full story

February 23, 2016

Google updates iOS YouTube app with native resolution support for iPad Pro

Today Google pushed an update to its iOS YouTube app, which adds support for the iPad Pro. As you might imagine, the additional resolution makes the app look much more suitable for the iPad Pro’s extra large screen. Sadly, outside of a few additional bug fixes, no other notable features made the cut for today’s update. In other words, support for key items like Split View, which allows for true side-by-side multitasking, and Picture and Picture mode have still yet to be added.

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