LG G5 Unlocked (USA) with LG CAM Plus for $288 [no contract]

The modular LG G5 was not greeted as a liberator by the smartphone reviewer industrial complex, but of photography interest, this has a dedicated camera controls add-on module, and said module, the LG CAM Plus, is included for FREE with the LG G5 which in itself is on sale for $288 with free expedited shipping in the Titan color scheme, unlocked with US warranty, with no contractual/carrier obligations at B&H Photo. The other colors go for more and do not include the LG CAM Plus module.

Amazon itself also has it for $288 (limit three per customer) but does NOT include the LG CAM Plus for free.

Samsung Chromebook Plus Convertible Touch Laptop drops to $379

Temptation time! The Samsung Chromebook PLUS (PLUS = ARM processor; PRO = Intel) Convertible Touch Laptop, model XE513C24-K01US, is on sale for $379 with free shipping at Amazon by Amazon itself with a limit of up to three per customer.

Of interest if you want a multi-purpose device, as you get a ChromeOS laptop that can officially run Android apps through Google PLAY, a touchscreen display, a built-in and included Samsung stylus (S-Pen), a non-widescreen aspect ratio, a 360-degree rotating screen, and more.

This will not replace a Photoshop machine, but you can use it for all kinds of other tasks. Also handy when on assignment or when working with others, you can put it in Guest mode or they can login with their own Google account and pick up quickly from where they left off.

The PRO (Intel) model remains at $550 and was the one that got delayed because of hardware and software issues.

PS: I don’t know if the included S-Pen is compatible with (or which) other Samsung devices that have their own version of the S-Pen (phones, tablets, laptops, etc).

PS2: one lesser known feature of ChromeOS is that you can login with multiple Google accounts at the same time and switch between them as needed. You don’t have to login and logout all the time. Handy if you use it for both personal and work, or have one account with paid subscriptions (eg YouTube RED or Music All Access or extra Google Drive storage).

Factory Unlocked Samsung Galaxy S8+ for $700 with USA warranty

The official Samsung eBay store (yes, almost everyone is on eBay these days), is offering the factory unlocked new condition Samsung Galaxy S8+ (Plus; the larger model), model SM-G955U, in the Midnight Black color scheme, with 64GB on-board storage, for $700 with free shipping and a Samsung USA warranty. Limit up to five per customer.

You own the phone and you can use it on any carrier, it is one of only a few smartphones that are what I call “uber carrier”, they work with all four major USA carriers (AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, T-Mobile) and their various MVNOs. There are many benefits to getting an unlocked no-contract phone, but historically Samsung has not been giving their previous unlocked flagship phones OS updates as fast as they did the carrier-branded ones. There’s only one unlocked color at the moment.

On the other hand, if you want an “uber carrier” phone without breaking the bank, B&H Photo comes to the rescue! They offer the Motorola Moto G (4th Generation) for $160 in the 2GB RAM / 16 GB storage) option, or for $200 you can get a better value/performance combo with the 4GB / 64 GB storage. RAM being the more important factor as you have a lot more flexibility in terms of multi-tasking and using big apps.

ASUS ZenFone Zoom ZX551ML for $180

For a limited time, B&H Photo is offering the new condition factory-unlocked black color scheme of the ASUS ZenFone Zoom ZX551ML for $180 with free expedited shipping and a free 10050 mAh ASUS portable power bank. This has a 3x optical zoom (4-11mm f/2.7-4.8), GSM compatibility, 32GB on-board storage, 5.5″ 1080p LCD, etc… For more action, check their Featured Sales

Motorola Moto Z for $500 (Unlocked USA warranty)

If you want a factory unlocked smartphone with a USA warranty and GSM compatibility AND like the idea of having optional add-on modules (like the Hasselblad True Zoom camera), the Motorola Moto Z smartphone is on sale for $500 with free shipping at B&H Photo (with free B&H photo/video kit), and by Amazon itself.

On the other hand, if you want to pay a lot less AND want a phone that works with all four major US carriers, B&H Photo is offering the new condition 64GB Moto G4 PLUS with a free B&H photo/video kit for $220 with free shipping. This is available in black or white. The 64GB version also has 4GB of RAM, while the 16GB version has 2GB of RAM, so keep that in mind.

UPDATE: speaking of smartphones, the brand new HTC U11 with its 12mp Ultrapixels and a 90 DXoMark score is now available for pre-order at Amazon by Amazon itself.

Now shipping: Factory Unlocked Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8+ flagships

If you much prefer to get the new Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8+ flagships factory unlocked, with Samsung USA warranty and in new condition, there are now in-stock and shipping in limited quantities at the Samsung USA website. The S8 goes for $725 while the S8+ goes for $825.

It is also available for purchase through Samsung Financing on 24-month installment plans with 0% APR on approved credit.

They are also shipping from B&H Photo. The S8 goes for $800 while the S8+ goes for $900.

NOTE that with previous models (eg Galaxy S7), Samsung did not prioritize updates for the unlocked phones. For example, the S7 only just now is getting Nougat (7.0, not even the latest).

ASUS ZenFone 3X Optical Zoom Smartphone with FREE Garmin Forerunner 25 GPS Running Watch for $200

Smartphones are embracing dual lenses but single-lens optical zoom remains a rarity. If you are interested in single-lens optical zoom smartphones,the ASUS ZenFone Zoom (ZX551ML, 32GB, Android, Unlocked, Black) comes with a 4-11mm f/2.7-4.8 optical zoom lens with Hoya OIS (28-84mm eq) is bundled with a FREE Garmin Forerunner 25 GPS Running Watch (Large, Black/Blue), all together going for $200 with free shipping at B&H Photo. This is a limited time offer (I do not know when it expires).

No coupon, no rebate. The free item will be included automatically while this offer is running. When the offer expires, you will not see the free Garmin mentioned on the page (see screenshot below). This is factory unlocked and works with compatible GSM carriers (check bands and forums and such). This is one of a few Intel Atom powered smartphones.

LG G6 with LG Watch Style for $650 (Unlocked with USA warranty)

If you like to buy unlocked smartphones with USA warranty and also want to dabble into smartwatches, B&H Photo is bundling the new condition LG G6 (USA warranty, unlocked version) with the LG Watch Style for $650. The phone on its own goes for $600. The watch on its own goes for $250. All these are pre-orders.

On the other hand if you are comfortable with carrier phones and want to commit to 24 months of Sprint service, you can get it for $14.75 per month on 24 monthly installments through Sprint, on approved credit. This comes to just over $350 for the phone, but you are committing to 24 months on their Unlimited Freedom plan.

If you defy conventional wisdom and prefer the previous flagship, the LG G5, the one with the modules, including the camera module, you can get it unlocked with a USA warranty for $330 at B&H Photo. Or for $20 less you can get the AT&T models unlocked, but they have an AT&T logo on the back of the phone. IS a $20 discount enough for you to stare at the AT&T logo? (you can always hide it in a non-clear case).

As usual with all these, be sure to double check compatibility with the cellular networks you plan to use them with.

LG G6 (Sprint) for $354 with 24-month installment plan only

If you like what you saw with the LG G6 camera samples and reviews, and you don’t want to wait for the new Galaxy and iPhone and Pixel flagships to come out, and you are okay with switching or continuing with Sprint, they have a new installment-plan promotion that gets you the new LG G6 smartphone for $354 on a 24-month installment plan. Customers with “Good Credit” pay 24 monthly installments of $14.95, while “Building Credit” pay a $200 deposit with 24 monthly installments of $6.42. They both come out to around $354 total by the end of the installment discount promotion. The offer is good on both the Ice and Black color schemes.

The sale is only good on the installment plan. The pay-full-price-now price is $708. Sprint has a new “Unlimited plan” (with 10GB of mobile hotspot per month) for $50 per month, guaranteed until June 2018 (then it goes to $60/month). These prices are with Auto PAY activated. Add an extra $5/month if you don’t want AutoPAY. They also have promotions on adding lines (the second line is +$30/month, more lines for +$20/line; the prices on the additional lines will also increase in July 2018). You also get a FREE Google Home (hardware device, not a house made by Google) from LG by filing the necessary e-paperwork online.

Ships tomorrow: Unlocked Sony Xperia XZs for $699

The new Sony Xperia XZs Android smartphone with its 19mp stacked Exmor RS Motion Eye sensor and 960fps slow motion capture is scheduled to start shipping tomorrow (April 5). It is available for outright purchase, no contract, no preconditions, no installment plans, unlocked with USA warranty for $699 in three color options by Amazon itself. It takes microSD cards (up to 256GB), has 4GB RAM, 64GB on-board, 5.2″ 1080p screen, Snapdragon 820, IP68 waterproofness, dual nano SIM, Android 7.1, etc.

Speaking of unlocked smartphones, Amazon has launched a new featured Unlocked Smartphone sale featuring various models including ASUS Zenphone Zoom, Sony XA, and more.

$150 Gift Card and Gear VR Controller with Samsung Galaxy S8/S8+ pre-orders

Sam’s Club is offering two freebies when you pre-order the Samsung Galaxy S8 or S8+. You have to follow the steps and the deadlines and requirements of each promotion. Freebie #1 is “Gear VR with Controller” to be sent to you later on by mail. You have to submit your information after purchase at the Samsung promotions website, and then they will mail you the Gear VR. Freebie #2 is a $150 Sam’s Club gift card. To redeem this, you must pick-up and activate your phone at a Sam’s Club store between April 21-30 in 2017. Activations are free April 21-23. Check their website for more details.

Cameraphones: Up to three freebies with pre-order of LG G6 on Verizon

The new LG G6 flagship is doing a lot better review-wise than its modular predecessor, the LG G5. If you have read the G6 reviews, checked the camera samples and comparisons, and you don’t want to wait to see what Samsung has to …unpack with their …explosive presentation of the Galaxy S8 next week, there are various LG G6 pre-order promotions at Verizon Wireless.

If you are a brand new customer to Verizon, and willing to trade-in a qualifying phone (they have a list), and port your old number over, and sign-up for eligible plans and promotions, you can get all three freebies. If not, you can get one or two of the freebies. Each freebie has its own preconditions, requirements, and deadlines. The three freebies are: 1) free 43″ LG HDTV offered through Verizon Rebates, 2) free Google Home offered through LG’s launch promotions, 3) $200 Trade-In bill credit distributed over 24 months. Be sure to read through the terms/conditions of each promotion and ask their CSRs questions if you are not certain or familiar with their promo-speak. More details on their promotions page.

ASUS ZenFone Zoom (64GB, Unlocked) for $199

Zoom-zoom for smartphones! The new condition ASUS ZenFone Zoom (3X optical zoom with Hoya’s blessings; Unlocked, No Contract, 64GB on-boar storage, Black, U.S. Warranty) is currently on sale for $199 with free shipping at Amazon by Amazon herself with a limit of up to three units per customer. This is not a lightning deal. This has a 5.5-inch IPS Gorilla Glass 4 touchscreen, 1080p, 4GB RAM, 64GB on-board, etc. Check bands if you plan to use it with a cellular carrier.

Huawei Mate 9 with dual Leica Cameras for $593 (US warranty; No Contract)

For Leica fans, the Huawei Mate 9 Android flagship smartphone is currently on sale, in new condition, with USA warranty, unlocked, without contract or installment plan or any other preconditions, for $593 at Amazon by Amazon itself. Limit up to three per color per customer. Check bands and specs to make sure it works with your carrier(s) of choice.

UPDATE: speaking of flagship smartphones, the + Lenovo-Motorola Moto Z Unlocked goes for $450 (no contract; limit 2) by Amazon itself.

Moto Z Unlocked flagship for $500 (no contact/installments)

On the camera-phone front, the current Motorola flagship, the 64GB Moto Z, unlocked, without contract or installment plan requirements, is on sale for $500 with free shipping, with a limit of two per customer at Amazon by Amazon itself… This is a modular phone with optional add-ons/modules such as the Hasselblad 10X True Zoom… There is no combined purchase discount – if you want both, you may want to wait for future offers. The sale this time is on the phone, not the bundle…

Speaking of unlocked no-contract cameraphones, the dual lens Huawei Honor 6X is now shipping for $250.

In-Stock now: Huawei Mate 9 with Leica Cameras for $600 (no contract; unlocked)

If you are a fan of Leica mobile cameras/lenses and are looking for an unlocked no-contract with USA-warranty Android flagship-level smartphone, the Huawei Mate 9 with dual Leica Cameras is now in-stock and ready to ship for $600 at Amazon by Amazon itself. With Google betraying the Nexus line-up with an iPhone-wannabe Pixel-Schmixel (#BitterNexusFans), it opens the door for Nexus fans to explore other unlocked options from the many other Android manufacturers that even have microSD cards 🙂

Unlocked LG G5 (RS988) with LG Cam Plus (camera module) and VR headset and Extra Battery/Charger for $450

The Holiday Shopping Situation Room update is now completed, and one last offer emerged from the price-checking, B&H Photo added one more freebie to their LG G5 Unlocked smartphone while remaining at $450: an LG Smartphone VR headset which goes for $170 on its own. The other three freebies continue, the LG Cam Plus (camera module) and extra charger and battery. This is model RS988, the unlocked North America variant with GSM and CDMA support. I like this trend of flagships being able to work with GSM and CDMA.

PS: check with your carrier(s) before buying though to be 100% certain it is compatible.

LG G5 + LG Cam Plus (camera module) + Cradle + Extra Battery for $450 (unlocked; no contract)

If you want to be a rebel and avoid the “blockbuster” phones of Apple, Samsung, and Nexus-killing Google, LG is one of the alternatives, especially if you are curious about modular design and LG’s Cam Plus camera module. Because the “LG Cam Plus” (the camera module) is included for FREE for a limited time, along with a charging cradle and an extra battery along with the 32GB LG G5 smartphone (model RS988, GSM + CDMA / 4G LTE Capable, North America variant, no contract, with microSD slot, with USA warranty) for $450 with free shipping at B&H Photo.

NOTE: there are multiple options on the same listing, if you are traversing the other options, make sure you are looking at the “North American Variant” with the four freebies, not the “AT&T Variant” (which goes for $370, but you don’t get any of the four freebies, and you get an AT&T logo on the back; also the AT&T variant does not have CDMA).

Regardless of option, check to make sure it is compatible with your carrier(s) of choice.

(ENDED) ASUS Zenfone Zoom (3x optical; 64GB, Unlocked) for $199 (limit 3)

This sold out… The new condition ASUS ZenFone Zoom, one of the few out there with a 3X optical zoom lens, 64GB on-board storage, unlocked and without contractual obligations, and USA warranty, is on sale for $199 with free shipping at Amazon by Amazon itself with a limit of three units per customer. This is not a lightning deal.

Google Pixel (Verizon Wireless) for 24 monthly $10/mo installments [or Pixel XL for 24 monthly $20/mo]

Since smartphone cameras have improved dramatically over the years, I will now also include them under the “Other Cameras” umbrella blog-category.

Which brings us to a flagship smartphone promotion, Verizon Wireless is offering the new condition 32GB Google Pixel smartphone on a 24-month installment plan for $10 per month for 24 months on an installment plan. The total price you would pay over the 24 months is $240. This is done using 24 monthly bill credits that bring the price down. You are billed $27.08 per month (the phone’s regular price) but you get $17.08 bill credits monthly, making it $10 per month. It’s basically a faux-contract of sorts… Also eligible for the promotion is the 128GB version which comes out to $15 per month for 24 months after the bill credits. You can adjust colors and storage size on that listing…

Meanwhile the larger 32GB Pixel XL is offered for $20 per month for 24 months, in a similarly structured promotion. The 128GB Pixel XL goes for $25 per month.

UPDATE: the same $10 per month for 24 months on an Installment plan is also offered for the Samsung Galaxy S7.

Pre-order new Pixel Phones [updated with more options]

Google generated some waves in multiple dimensions with today’s Google-centric Made-by-Google announcement (raw video stream which I was live-tweeting at high speed). One of those waves was a new flagship “made by HTC for Google” Pixel phone duo. Already this phone got reviewed by DxoMark which gave it the highest camera score ever for a smartphone camera.

The said phones are now available for pre-orders. If you prefer to go through a carrier, it is available through Verizon Wireless only which is running a trade-in credit promotion.

If you prefer an unlocked no-contracts no-obligations phone or to prefer the other carriers, you can purchase it from the Google Store (not to be confused with the Google Play Store) or through Project Fi. Yes, it is Project Fi compatible! They offer financing as well (through Symphony Bank) and for a limited time, you can get a free Daydream View VR headset for FREE ($79 value).

Prices are flagship prices here, the 5-inch model goes for $650 (32GB storage) while the 5.5-inch model goes for $770 (32GB). If you prefer the 128GB model is an extra $100 for each model. If you are used to Nexus pricing, it’s a bit of a sticker shock 🙂

UPDATE: Best Buy is offering pre-orders for the Verizon Wireless versions with a free $100 Best Buy Gift Card and a free Chromecast.

UPDATE #2: if you purchase the Unlocked Pixels, you can activate them with Republic Wireless using their budget-friendly BYOD plans (if you don’t need a lot of cellular data).

ASUS ZenFone Zoom ZX551M (64GB, 3X optical) and Zenwatch 2 and $50 Gift Card and Battery for $364 with coupon

There are hundreds of smartphones but still very few of them have a zoom lens, despite various attempts by manufacturers to differentiate their products. One of the zoom-lens models is the 64GB ASUS ZenFone Zoom ZX551ML (3x optical zoom, Black) and it has a special bundle for it at B&H Photo. Using coupon code ZOOMWACH drops the price of the bundle to $364 with free expedited shipping. The bundle is this:

+ 64GB ASUS ZenFone Zoom ZX551ML (Black; No Contract; Unlocked; Android)
+ ZenWatch 2 Smartwatch (rose gold, unlocked)
+ $50 B&H Photo Gift Card
+ one 10050 mah portable battery (choice of four colors)
+ limited time offer but expiration date unknown

Google Play Family Library feature goes live (eg Photo apps)

If you are using Google Play Android apps, including the gazillion photo apps there, and you have multiple family members and/or your own multiple Google accounts, you may be able to share those apps with other family members and Google accounts with the new Google Play Family Library and not have to purchase them individually for each person/account.

What exactly qualifies is NOT straightforward. It depends on the type of content, when it was purchased, the wishes of the maker, and how it was purchased. You can de-tangle the mess by reading the Support page.

For apps, which includes the camera and photo apps, here’s an annotated screenshot of the relevant terms:

google_play_family

Music is not eligible because Google sells a separate Music Family plan with a reasonable price of $15/month for up to six people (it’s $10/mo for one person). Newsstand (eg magazine subscriptions verified through the publisher or purchased directly) are NOT eligible either. Books depend on the publisher’s wishes. Movie and TV purchases are good but not rentals. Your soul will definitely be shared with Google so it can sell you Adsense ads in the afterlife 😉

Refurbished Samsung Galaxy Camera 2 (GC200; 21x optical; Android) for $295

To the galaxy of eBay Deals we return, where the legendary Legend Micro store (I can’t help all these bad puns) is offering the manufacturer refurbished Samsung Galaxy Camera 2 (GC200) Android camera with 21x optical zoom for $295 with free shipping and a 90 day warranty.

Pre-order LG G5 Unlocked VR Bundle (LG G5, 360 Camera, 360 VR Headset) for $750

And now we have a mini VR camera theme from B&H Photo, starting with the LG G5 VR Bundle offered for $750 with free shipping in either the Silver or Titan color schemes. This gets you the LG G5 smartphone (carrier unlocked, GSM, CDMA depends, no contract) along with the LG 360 CAM Spherical Camera and the LG 360 VR Smartphone Headset. Shipping estimate is early May 2016.

Pre-order new Samsung Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge

Since we are in the pre-order spirit, here’s the new flagship duo of the Samsung line-up, the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge, now with bigger pixels, fewer megapixels, wider aperture, the return of the microSD card, IPX 68 water resistant, and more advanced auto focusing. It is now available for pre-order:

+ T-Mobile offers include 1-year of Netflix

+ Verizon Wireless offers

+ Sprint offers with various transfer offers and “Buy One Get One Half Off”

+ AT&T Offers include a cross-promotion for Direct TV customers for unlimited data

+ Samsung is running a pre-order promotion when you buy from authorized dealers (such as the above) that gets you a VR kit and in-game currency.
+ summary of the terms and conditions

If you prefer unlocked with no contract, there are no prices or pre-order options yet but the new phones have product pages ready at B&H Photo which is always a good sign.

Amazon doesn’t have the phones yet, but there have dozens upon dozens of S7 and S7 Edge phone cases available.

As usual, if you are buying through a carrier with a contract or an installment plan or frequent-upgrade plans, be sure to check the terms and conditions and restrictions and fees and such.

Panasonic CM1 Android RAWsumer drops to $429

The 1-inch Panasonic CM1 Android cameraphone with a 28mm f2.8 Leica-branded lens is now down to $429 with free expedited shipping at B&H Photo. This is not their daily deal, it is a separate sale… You can optionally triple the original warranty via a mail-in rebate from Panasonic (the PDF can be found at the product page over there)…

Refurbished Samsung Galaxy 2 Android Compact-Zoom (21x) for $179

eBay is running a curated refurbished Camera Sale (55 options) and among the offers there is the manufacturer refurbished with a 90 day warranty Samsung Galaxy 2 Android Camera, model EK-GC200ZWAXAR, with a 21x optical zoom, offered for $179 with free shipping, with a limit of five per customer by eBay seller “Northwest Outdoor” (98.8%).

PS: if you want to research it, you may want to google a combination of its name and model number, because Galaxy is mostly associated with their blockbuster smartphones.

In-stock nao: ASUS ZenFone Zoom (3x optical) for $400

Late start today, a double fifteen yard penalty! We start smartphone-zooming, the new ASUS Zenfone with its 3x near-flat optical zoom lens is now in-stock and ready to ship, unlocked without contract requirements, for $400 with free shipping at B&H Photo. This has 4GB RAM, 64GB storage, microSDXC, Atom Z3580, 5.5″ 1080p Gorilla 4 touchscreen, 4-11mm f/2.7-4.8 lens (28-84mm eq), manual control, Android 5.x, etc.

20% back in Plenti Rewards on $25 Google Play GiftCard

If you are part of the Google Play Android ecosystem and you want to stock up on Android camera and photo apps or in-app purchases, and if you are participating in the Plenti Rewards program, good until February 7 (2016) you earn 20% back in Plenti Rewards when you purchase a $25 Google Play Gift Card at Rite Aid brick and mortar stores. The offer is limit two during the week. You can use them on anything at Google Play, not just camera/photo. These rarely get discounted, so it’s a good opportunity… NOTE: you can’t use these to buy hardware or recurring subscriptions.

Google LG Nexus 5X with $20 Gift Card for $300 (16GB) or $350 (32GB)

To the eBay Deals we go, where BuyDig’s eBay store is offering a nice deal for fans of Android purity who want to have the latest version (Android 6.0) with the new permissions system, and compatibility with the Google-Fi hybrid cellular-wifi service that refunds you any unused data. They include a $20 VISA gift card with either the 16GB Nexus 5X ($300; two color options) or the 32GB Nexus 5X ($350; one color option). No contracts!

This is a good way to use and test the latest versions of a variety of camera and photography Android apps but restrict them when they get too grabby with their permissions and data hoarding. Having said that, keep in mind that the new Permissions system is not perfect and it only gives us partial control. There is a very good write-up on it at the Ars Technica review.

Pre-order ASUS ZenFone Zoom (3x optical) for $400

Optical zoom lenses have had a hard time breaking out in non-superzoom camera-phones, but ASUS is trying their hand at it with the new ASUS ZenFone, and this creature, unlocked with 64GB on-board storage and a 3x flat-ish optical zoom lens (4-11mm f/2.7-4.8) is now available for pre-order for $400 at B&H Photo. This is model ZX551ML-23-4G64G-BK, with Android 5.x, a generous 4GB RAM, Intel Atom Ant Z3580 processor, 5.5-inch iPS Gorilla Glass 4 1920 x 1080 screen, microSD slot, and things like that. This looks like an actual phone, unlike the various Samsung superzoom Android phones that look more like travel-zoom digital cameras than phones.

B&H Android Sale: Panasonic CM1 for $450, Nexus 5x with $20 GC for $330, and more

Meanwhile, the theme of the latest B&H Days of Deals group sale is a Smartphone Sale featuring various phones and accessories, including the Panasonic CM1 Android-Camera with 1″ sensor for $450, the Nexus 5X bundled with a $20 B&H Gift Card Card for $330 (16GB) or $380 (32GB), along with models from Samsung (eg 32GB Galaxy S6 for $480), ASUS, LG, Sony, Blu, ZTE, Alcatel and Huawei. The sale also includes accessories such as olloClip add-on lens bundles and cameraphone-holders.

Lightroom now FREE on Google Play (no sign-up, no subscription)

Adobe was rather late to the mobile photography app party, so now they have to be more aggressive to recapture lost ground. Which perhaps explains their latest move, Lightroom is now free for all to use on Google Play. You don’t need an Adobe ID, you don’t need a subscription. Just install it on your device and start using it locally.

I played with it for a few minutes. On an 8-inch Android tablet, the screen feels rather small for the UI, readability is not ideal, and in general it has more of a downsized desktop app feel to it. But it’s free and it works! It will probably feel a lot better on 10+ inch tablets. Perhaps a new excuse for photographers to buy the new Google Pixel C Android 2-in-1 creature? Or that 18-inch Samsung Galaxy Viewstrocity?

If you want to sync with your desktop, then an Adobe ID and subscription is needed. They are not giving everything away 🙂

Free Premium Apps: Photo Lab Pro by VicmanLLC and more

The Amazon Android/FireOS app-store is having a Halloween Free Apps promotion. A total of 29 premium apps are participating, and you can get as many of them as you want for free, including photography-app PhotoLab Pro by Vicman LLC. Other famous apps included are AVG AntiVirus Pro, Splashtop Remote Desktop, and lots of games.

These are Amazon’s regular apps, not the “Underground apps” that are free but your data usage is the price you pay for the free-ness. Offer ends 10/31/15.

New-Other Samsung Galaxy EK-GC120 (Android, 21x superzoom, Verizon, No Contract) for $105

To the eBay Deals we return, where we find the Samsung Galaxy Camera EK-GC120 superzoom (21x, blue color scheme) in New-Other Condition on sale for $105 with free shipping by eBay seller “Guarantee Cellular” (98.4%) with 220+ units sold so far.

This is an Android camera with a SIM slot for cellular coverage. But no contract, you don’t even have to use the cellular part if you don’t want to. The product details there say “GC120 Verizon” which suggests this is the Verizon version. The listed model number is EK-GC120BKAVZW.

The condition is described as “New Other” with this blurb:

“The device is in new condition in original retail box with everything included (not sealed). Clean ESN”