A week in reviews: 21 - 25 July

After Apple unveiled Yosemite - the latest iteration of its OSX operating system - we've been rather excited about exploring it. And now the time has come: check out seven tips to get you started with Apple's latest.

If operating system geekery isn't for you then we've also been carving our way through a variety of products across the board, from the £150 Samsung Gear Fit smartwatch-meets-smartband, to the £90 Motorola Moto E smartphone. Bumping up the price range a little we've also handled the Samsung Galaxy Tab S - which might be the best Android tablet ever - and the John Lewis webOS TV also gets the review treatment.

But if you've got serious money to spend then how about a first drive of a futuristic blast from the past? Yep, the Porsche 911 Targa returns in its 2014 format - and it's oh so hot. If you've got a spare £87k.

Motorola Moto E review

Quick review: Motorola knows how to do budget smartphones. The Moto E is a brilliant solution that, for its £90 price tag, seems far superior. Its main issue is lack of 4G and, frankly, Motorola's existing strength with the slightly pricier Moto G model. It's a great phone available at a great price.

Pros: Great design, affordable price, good display, excellent battery life, microSD support, raw Android 4.4 operating system, great sound

Cons: No front-facing camera, terrible rear camera, slow performance/loading at times, limited internal storage, no 4G connectivity

Price: £90

Full article: Moto E review

 

Samsung Gear Fit review

Quick review: The Gear Fit is essentially an activity tracker that comes with a few of its smartwatches cousins' functions. As its name suggests, it's a device focused on fitness, but here it's Samsung's way of the highway: it's only compatible with some Samsung devices, utilising Samsung's S Health rather than any other system you may already use. That will attract some and alienate plenty of others.

Pros: Great design, beautiful display in right conditions, simple and fluid interface, built-in heart-rate monitor, interchangeable straps, good price, some smartwatch functions

Cons: Some Samsung device compatibility only, no auto brightness, battery life not amazing, fitness features limited, lack of apps, restricted to S Health (Samsung' s app) only, accuracy questionable at times, no altimeter

Price: £149

Full article: Samsung Gear Fit review

 

John Lewis 55JL9000 review

Quick review: We've already seen the LG webOS platform take smart TVs to the next level and now the John Lewis brand name piggybacks onto this concept: the JL9000 delivers a quality experience by unravelling the often maze-like accessibility of content thanks to webOS. It looks great and offers more than its nearest LG model - there's an integrated sounbar and pop-up camera - but it also costs more. John Lewis is already an established UK name and, based on this performance, we see no reason to not to support the brand badge being on your TV. 

Pros: Great design, webOS is easy to use, integrated soundbar adds extra

Cons: Sky and Virgin integration not fully featured, app store is a waste of time

Price: £1299

Full article: John Lewis JL9000 TV review

 

Samsung Galaxy Tab S 10.5 review

Quick review: We already like what Samsung has done with the Galaxy Tab Pro series, but the Tab S takes things even further. It's slimmer, brings that AMOLED display and, in the case of the 10.5-inch, a small increase in display size. We think it has more consumer appeal than the Tab Pro and is one of the hottest Android tablets around.

Pros: Great design, plenty of power, useful software additions, vibrant display

Cons: Some content can look a little over saturated, sound quality not the best

Price: £399

Full article: Samsung Galaxy Tab S 10.5 review



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