Posts Tagged: them

Common Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3 problems and how to fix them

Having some teething problems with your brand new Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 3? Here’s our helpful rundown of common Galaxy Z Fold 3 problems and how to fix them.
Android | Digital Trends

Common Android 12 problems and how to fix them

Android 12 introduces a wide range of useful new features, tweaks, and enhancements, although it isn’t short of a few teething problems. Here’s how to fix them.
Android | Digital Trends

Google says they’re finally optimizing Android tablet apps. Do you believe them?

At Google I/O this year, Google said they were working with developers and manufacturers to finally give Android apps the tablet-optimized versions they deserve. No more upscaled, wonky UI that leaves a ton of wasted space, blown up phone apps, or things that are just straight up broken and unpleasant to use on an Android […]

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OnePlus 10 Pro’s 10-bit photos are great, but you can’t see them

The OnePlus 10 Pro has a 10-bit color mode on its cameras, and it’s an unusual feature that can take great photos. Except we can’t show them to you.
Mobile | Digital Trends

Common Samsung Galaxy S21, S21+, and S21 Ultra problems and how to solve them

Has your Samsung Galaxy S20, S20+, or S20 Ultra got issues? We present some of the most common problems and provide you with solutions and tips.
Android | Digital Trends

The most common Google Wear OS problems and how to fix them

Got a Wear OS smartwatch? We’ve rounded up some of the more common Google Wear OS problems, along with some workarounds and solutions for solving them.
Wearables | Digital Trends

The most common iPhone X problems, and how to fix them

Every smartphone has issues, even Apple’s iPhone X. From throttling to charging, here’s a list of the most commonly reported problems and how to fix them.
Mobile | Digital Trends

The most common Apple Watch problems and how to fix them

Struggling with some Apple Watch issues? We’ve compiled a list of some of the most common problems and how to deal with them.
Wearables | Digital Trends

Grell Audio’s TWS/1 earbuds sound as good as you want them to

A new entrant to the true wireless headphone space you say? Sure, that might be a fairly common occurrence these days, but this one – Grell Audio – comes with some pretty strong heritage. Its founder, Axel Grell, is well known in the headphone industry for his extensive work at Sennheiser on some of the company’s most prestigious products. The TWS/1 is his first solo product under the Grell brand. Accordingly, we’re interested to see what the $ 200 wireless buds can do.

The TWS/1 has a modern look. The mostly circular design is only interrupted by a small, AirPod-like protuberance on each bud. Originally the plan was to have the outer casing entirely metal but physics and radio waves meant that some concessions (plastic parts) were needed. Overall, they maintain a premium feel that stands above that often found at this pricepoint. They visually remind me slightly of the Jabra Elite 75t, but a little lower profile.

In terms of fit, that slightly more streamlined design means you don’t feel like something is balancing in your ear which can sometimes happen with more rotund models. As per usual they come with a charging case that promises four full charges of the TWS/1. The buds themselves offer around 6 hours per charge which holds true in my experience with ANC activated. Curiously, the buds are placed in the case with the right one to the left and vice versa. I’m not sure why this would be, but it does take some remembering (you’ll soon be reminded as the buds don’t fit the other way around).

In a world of me-too products, it’s hard to stand out. The easiest differentiator is price, then sound quality and or additional/premium features. It seems Grell Audio has tried to tackle all three of these, and with general success, I would say.

The price point puts the TWS/1 in an unusual category. Many premium brands are landing in the $ 250+ zone while more affordable options, like Google’s second-gen Pixel Buds or the aforementioned Jabra’s live in the $ 150 area. Budget options, south of $ 100, are also increasingly more common. This, then, pitches the TWS/1 at the overlap between high-mid and low-premium. I would wager this is entirely intentional as feature set and build quality skew higher end, but the barebones packaging and more accessible price indicate a more mainstream audience.

Grell Audio TWS/1.
James Trew / Engadget

As for sound quality, this is where things are a little more clear. In my testing, I was generally pleased with the default sound. It was perhaps a little on the thinner side for my personal preference with a slight weight on the lower end for a typically commercial sound. But Grell has partnered with SoundID – a third-party app that tunes select brands of headphones to your personal preference/hearing.

We’ve seen things like this before, most notably with Nura which takes this to a whole new level. SoundID is a little more understated in its approach. It still uses some form of hearing test, but rather than asking if you can hear certain tones, it simply plays you some music and asks “which do you prefer, A or B.” Once I completed this short test, the difference was night and day. With my own personal profile activated (it uploads to the headphones so it applies no matter what you are listening on), my usual mix of mid ‘10s indie and rave nonsense came alive.

I have a slight preference for dynamic range and beefier low and mid-high frequencies. At least, I presume I do because that was the biggest change in sound after completing the test and I instantly found them much more enjoyable. In the SoundID app, you can toggle between the default sound and your own profile and it really does make a huge difference. You don’t need the app to get good sound, but I’m going to guess that you’ll be happier with what it gives you.

Coincidentally, SoundID is also where you’ll get software updates for the TWS/1. I had one during my testing and it improved a few things including the slightly unresponsive touch controls. They’re still not reading my taps 1:1 but its about on par with most other touch-control buds I have used. Before the update, it was much more frustrating (or, maybe I just learned the technique?).

Those controls aren’t user-configurable, so you’re stuck with what Grell gives you. But, fortunately, that’s pretty much everything you’d want and without too many complicated tap or gesture combinations. Swiping forward or back on the left ear skips tracks, up or down on the right for volume, and so on. It was the single taps that I was having issues with which control play/pause on the right and transparency mode on the left – both of which are more annoying if not activated immediately.

This brings us on to smart(er) features. As mentioned, the TWS/1 has Active Noise Cancellation and Transparency mode – both of which are becoming increasingly standard. But there’s also a Noise Annoyance Reduction (NAR) mode. Grell explained to me during their initial announcement briefing that ANC is great for lower-frequency sustained noises, but doesn’t work as well for higher-frequency annoyances (think, crying baby on a plane). NAR is Grell’s own attempt at offering some reduction of these types of sound.

Grell Audio TWS/1.
James Trew / Engadget

In practice, I found it hard to pinpoint the difference that NAR makes. With ANC, it’s easy to hear the low rumble of the road outside my apartment decrease in volume. It’s maybe not the most powerful ANC I have heard but it does the job. With NAR, whatever the ear equivalent of squinting is, proved to be a little more indeterminate. It does seem to slightly improve the listening experience in combination with ANC, but it’s also hard to tell how much of that was me willing it to do so. It’s an interesting concept though and one that I hope Grell can continue to improve over time.

Other small perks include a “mono” mode (listening with just one bud). This isn’t as common as it should be in my opinion and it adds more flexibility for those that want to maintain some spatial awareness without having to wear both buds. It’s also, obviously, how some people prefer to handle their calls, too (reliving the Bluetooth headset days).

Another small added bonus is wireless charging “compatibility.” It’s not something I was able to test, but the more things that support it the better? Or, at the very least, it’s a nice perk for those already invested in the wireless charging world.

All in, Grell has given price, features and sound quality enough consideration that the result is a promising first product from an emerging brand. The price point, in particular, strikes a good balance between signaling premium ambitions without putting it too far out of reach for mainstream casuals. I’d love to see some further advances on the NAR technology and the controls could still be more responsive, but if you’re looking for a fresh set of true wireless headphones that are customizable to your taste, these are a great place to start.

Engadget is a web magazine with obsessive daily coverage of everything new in gadgets and consumer electronics

The most common Apple Watch problems and how to fix them

Struggling with some Apple Watch issues? We’ve compiled a list of some of the most common problems and how to deal with them.
Wearables | Digital Trends

The most common AirPods problems and how to fix them

From static noise to dropped calls, there are lots of AirPods quirks with not-always-obvious solutions. We have plenty of tips to help improve your experience.
Mobile | Digital Trends

Common Google Pixel 6 and 6 Pro problems and how to fix them

Technical bugs and glitches getting in the way of you enjoying your new phone? Here’s a roundup of common Google Pixel 6 and 6 Pro problems and how to fix them.
Android | Digital Trends

Report claims not many people are buying $1000 smartphones; are you one of them?

Smartphone prices have ballooned in the last few years, with $ 1000 being the “standard” price for a flagship phone, and many devices going well over that. 5G and folding phones inflate that cost even more, making phones much more expensive than they’ve ever been. But according to an NPD report, not many consumers are buying […]

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Instagram tests Group Stories after Facebook ditched them

Facebook might not be giving up on Group Stories just because it's cutting them from its main app. App sleuther Jane Manchun Wong has found test code for a Group Story feature in Instagram. There's no mystery to how it works — you'd just choose to…
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MIT scientists ‘work out’ synthetic hydrogels to make them stronger

Your muscles are soft, pliable, and can resist fatigue after thousands of repetitive movements. Researchers at MIT have found a way to make synthetic hydrogels act like muscles by putting them through a vigorous workout. After being mechanically trai…
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Liam Neeson has a special set of skills and voicing your commute is one of them

Living in Los Angeles is basically living with an endless traffic headache. Whether trying to get somewhere on a congested highway or through Coldwater Canyon, you’ll never outthink the unpredictable gridlock machine. That’s where a lifesaving service like Waze comes in, providing real time traffic information and alternate routes to quickly navigate your way through […]

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5 annoying LG G6 problems, and what to do about them

If you’re not having a great time with your new G6, then you need to do something about it. We’ve collected some common LG G6 problems here along with possible fixes or workarounds.

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Tiny liquid battery cools chips while powering them

Scientists from IBM and ETH Zurich university have built a tiny "flow" battery that has the dual benefit of supplying power to chips and cooling them at the same time. Even taking pumping into account, it produces enough energy to power a chip while…
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6 Huawei P9 problems and the solutions to deal with them

The Huawei P9 is a quality phone, but some owners have faced a multitude of issues since the smartphone’s launch. Luckily, we’ve prowled the internet to find the most common problems users are facing, along with a few workarounds.

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Which gadgets to buy refurbished, how to buy them, and where

Electronics can be expensive — after all, cutting-edge specs come at a price. Here, we take a look at what refurbished means, what devices you should buy refurbished, and which outlets offer the deepest discounts.

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Future Apple AirPods could use magnetic ear hooks to keep them off the ground

One of the biggest issues with the Apple AirPods is that they can fall out of your ear and you could lose them. An Apple patent, however, suggests that could change in a future version thanks to magnetic ear hooks.

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Wearables–Digital Trends

Problems with your OnePlus 3 or 3T? Here’s how to fix them

The OnePlus 3 and 3T offer a good deal of functionality for the money, but people are already running into a variety of issues with their new devices. Here are 21 of the most common problems people have reported, and a few potential remedies.

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You could soon pair touchscreen devices just by pressing them together

Researchers from Carnegie Mellon University have developed a smart new system called CapCam, which lets users pair mobile devices with other touchscreens simply by pressing them together.

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Common ZTE Axon 7 problems and how to fix them

The ZTE Axon 7 is a great device, but it’s not without its problems. Kuckily, we’ve compiled a list of some of the more common problems that can occur, as well as a few solutions for dealing with them.

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Got 200 friends? Video chat with them all at the same time using Line

Messaging app Line has launched a group video chat feature, where you and up to 200 of your friends can all chat together. Obviously, there won’t be 200 tiny windows on the screen though, and the view is restricted to four. And yes, there are face filters.

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Mobile–Digital Trends

Common Google Pixel problems and the solutions to deal with them

Google’s latest smartphone — the Pixel — may be running new hardware, but it still has its fair share of problems. Thankfully, we’ve rounded up some of the more common issues, along with a few solutions for addressing them.

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Startup gives the Apple Watch two cameras by hiding them inside the band

Apple may not have had room to fit a camera inside its smartwatch, but why not put it inside the band? The CMRA band packs in a front- and rear-facing camera along with 8GB of storage inside of a connected wristband.

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Wearables–Digital Trends

Your face is familiar — to the FBI. Its facial recognition database holds 117 million of them

In the years since it established a new identification system, a new report from published by Georgetown Law shows the FBI has apparently compiled a facial recognition database of roughly 117 million American adults.

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RIP Chrome apps: Google is killing them off for Windows and Mac

Looks like Chrome apps weren’t as popular as Google may have liked them to be, which is why the company will be phasing them out over the next few years. By early 2018, Chrome apps won’t be available on Windows or Mac.

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Sweaty pits? Keep them dry and cool with these wearable pit-fans

Do you get sweaty armpits easily? Maybe you need to cool things down with these wearable fans that blast beautiful fresh air into your pits, keeping them as cool as possible at all points during the day.

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Wearables–Digital Trends

Waze will put drivers at ease by letting them avoid difficult intersections

Waze unveiled its “difficult intersections” feature, which will let drivers avoid annoying, and potentially dangerous, intersections. The new feature will roll out as an update sometime soon for drivers in Los Angeles.

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13 major Kindle Fire problems, and how to fix them

Is your Amazon tablet giving you grief? Is it refusing to behave the way you expect? Take a deep breath — everything will be fine. Here are some widely-reported Kindle Fire HDX problems and a few possible solutions to go with them.

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6 jaw-dropping gadgets we loved at CES Asia (and your chances of buying them)

With hundreds of companies exhibiting thousands of products to hundreds of thousands of attendees, there’s a lot to see at Shanghai’s CES Asia. Here’s the real gems of the show — technology we’re dying to get our hands on, or in some cases, praying it makes it into a purchasable form.

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10 annoying LG G5 problems, and how to fix them

The LG G5 is an admirable smartphone, but it’s not without its flaws. Thankfully, we’ve discovered some of the most common LG G5 problems, along with potential workarounds and fixes.

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5 pesky LG V10 problems, and what to do about them

Is your new phone misbehaving? We’ve rounded up the most common issues reportedly plaguing the LG V10 , along with a few suggestions for working around or fixing them entirely. We cover everything from battery troubles to Wi-Fi issues.

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5 annoying Nexus 6P problems, and how to fix them

The Nexus 6P is by far the best Google Nexus phone we have ever used, but unfortunately it has a few issues. We have compiled the top problems that Nexus 6P owners are facing and how to workaround or fix them.

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It’s not too late! These last-minute gifts will still thrill them

Gift giving can be a delicate process, especially when you’ve left it up to the last minute. Check out our picks for the best last-minute gifts, whether your recipient is an audio aficionado or a soon-to-be world traveler.

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This giant quadcopter drone launches fixed-wing UAVs, then retrieves them with a skyhook

Boeing subsidiary Insitu recently unveiled its Flying Launch and Recovery System which allows a quadcopter drone to successfully launch and retrieve fixed-wing UAVs by utilizing a pulley system.

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Study: People want Apple Watches, aren’t sure why, refuse to pay for them

In a Juniper Research survey of over 2,000 smartphone owners in the U.S. and the UK, only one in five respondents said they were willing to spend more than $ 175 on any kind of wearable.

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Wearables»Digital Trends

6 Moto X Style Pure Edition problems, and how to fix them

Smartphone bugs, glitches, and issues can be frustrating, but there’s usually an answer. These are the most commonly reported Moto X Style Pure Edition problems, with advice on workarounds or fixes.

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7 troublesome Galaxy Note 5 problems and how to fix them

There’s plenty to recommend Samsung’s latest release in the Note series, but some owners have run into issues. Here are the Samsung Galaxy Note 5 problems being commonly reported online, with advice on how to fix them.

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