Matt Safford

Matt Safford

Matt Safford began accumulating electronics experience as a child with his Mattel Aquarius and Tandy TRS-80 (Model 4) computers. He built his first PC in 1996, and has spent the last several years covering consumer technology and geek culture for Computer Shopper, PC Magazine, Wired, and Popular Science. His other interests include politics, human evolution, comedy podcasts, and abrasive electronic music. Matt's Android device reports that he has trekked more than 5,000 miles through the streets in and around New York City. He hasn't yet grown sick of the urban scenery, but he would like to log a few hundred more miles in the Scottish Highlands. You can follow him on Twitter @mattsafford.

Hands On: Asus ZenFone 5

We check out the Asus ZenFone 5, the middle brother of Asus’s new lineup. Though it cost only $150 without a contract, this Android phone feels much more expensive.

  • Pros: $150 off contract , Nice looking UI for an Android phone…
  • Cons: $180 Moto G may still have an edge , Older Intel processor…

BlackBerry Z30 review

The Blackberry Z30 is a solid improvement on the Z10. Hardware, software, and battery life are markedly better. But specs are still mostly mid-range, while the price is in line…

  • Pros: Solid build quality , Long battery life , Nice AMOLED screen…
  • Cons: High-end price, mid-range specs , App selection lags behind…

Lenovo ThinkPad X240 Review

Lenovo’s X240 doesn’t stray too far from the formula of its excellent predecessor, but tweaks to the touchpad and wrist rest make what was already one of the most comfortable…

  • Pros: Sturdy shell , Excellent keyboard , Bright IPS display…
  • Cons: Low-res display comes standard , Keys are a bit slippery…

The 4 hottest Android phablets square off in our side-by-side spec comparison

We compare the four biggest phablets - large-screened phones - available in the US right now. The Galaxy Mega, Galaxy Note 3, HTC One Max, and Sony Xperia Z Ultra duke it out in this in-depth comparison and spec chart.

Mobile

Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini review

We review Samsung’s mid-range Galaxy S4 Mini. Its AMOLED screen is nice, but if you aren’t married to a carrier subsidy, there are cheaper, better options available.

  • Pros: Free on contract with Sprint , Nice-looking AMOLED screen…
  • Cons: Lower-res screen than competition , Some performance…

HTC One Max review

We review HTC’s upsized One Max. Its specs feel a bid dated, and its fingerprint scanner is finicky. But a nice screen and good battery life mostly outweigh those other issues.

  • Pros: Nice-looking screen , Good battery life , Great low-light…
  • Cons: Fingerprint reader doesn’t work, isn’t useful , Specs…

Toshiba Tecra Z40 review

We review Toshiba’s light, long-lasting Tecra Z40-A business laptop. We like its magnesium shell, but alternatives deliver better input. And this top-end model doesn’t offer…

  • Pros: Surprisingly light, thanks to magnesium shell , Great…
  • Cons: No solid-state storage at this price , Competing machines…

Sony Xperia Z Ultra review

We review Sony’s massive Z Ultra. Its 6.4-inch screen looks gorgeous, so long as you’re not in the sun. Performance and build quality are great. Battery life and the camera…

  • Pros: Huge 6.4-inch screen great for games and movies , Top-notch…
  • Cons: Disappointing camera with no flash , Glass over the screen…

Lenovo Yoga 2 Pro review

We review Lenovo’s IdeaPad Yoga 2 Pro. Its 13-inch screen packs more pixels than Apple’s 15-inch MacBook Pro. But battery life takes a big hit.

  • Pros: Stunning super-high-resolution screen , Thinner and lighter…
  • Cons: High pixel count leads to sub-par battery life that’s…

Sony SmartWatch 2 review

We review Sony’s long-lasting Smartwatch 2, which costs $100 less, and has better apps and battery life than Samsung’s Galaxy Gear, making it a better buy despite the lack of a…

  • Pros: Works with any Android 4.0+ phone , Battery lasts 3 days , A…
  • Cons: Power button stiff and uncomfortable , No mic for voice…

Dell Inspiron 14 7000 Series review

Dell's Inspiron 14 7000 Series is a slim laptop with a nice 1080p touchscreen and decent battery life. Not bad for $850, but the lack of an SSD hurts.

  • Pros: Nice 1080p screen , Thin, premium aluminum frame , Roomy…
  • Cons: No solid-state storage , Bottom edges are sharp , So-so…

Toshiba Satellite Click review

Toshiba Satellite Click is an AMD-powered detachable notebook and at $599, sports a wallet-friendly price tag. Though its display is pretty nice for the price, and its aluminum…

  • Pros: Premium-looking design , Runs cool and dead silent , Loud…
  • Cons: Second battery didn’t work in two different review units…

Samsung Series 7 S24C770T review

We review Samsung’s expensive-but-stylish Series 7 touchscreen monitor. Is adding 10-point touch to your desktop worth $600?

  • Pros: Generally good performance for a mainstream monitor…
  • Cons: Expensive , Screen doesn’t get as bright as we’d like…

Amazon Kindle Fire HDX review

We review Amazon’s Kindle Fire HDX. Snappy performance and a newbie-friendly Mayday feature make it a nice first tablet, but its exterior design leaves a lot to be desired. And…

  • Pros: Mayday video tech support works , Great screen , Snappy…
  • Cons: Isn’t as comfortable to hold as the Nexus 7 , Funky button…

Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 (2014 Edition) review

We review Samsung’s Galaxy Note 101.1 2014 Edition and find it much improved inside and out. But its appeal is lessened by its high price and stuttering performance.

  • Pros: Standout multi-tasking features , Ultra-high-resolution…
  • Cons: More expensive than the current-generation iPad , Some…