Tag Archives: travel

Review: STM Drifter Backpack – Durable Laptop Protection for Travelers

I’m a big fan of STM gear. They make stylish, trendy products which do a great job of protecting our gadgets and electronics. With the Drifter they’ve focused not on the boardroom look, but on crafting a durable and rugged pack for travelers. Let’s take a look at STM’s newest laptop backpack!

Shop STM’s Drifter on Amazon.
More info on STM Products.

FCC Public Advisory: Blocking Personal WiFi Hotspots is Prohibited

marriott hotel logoAn interesting story has been developing in the use of WiFi hotpots in hotels.

The FCC fined Marriott hotels for blocking their customers from using their own WiFi, powered by phones and MiFi’s using 3G/4G data connections. The fine amounted to $600,000, and Marriott petitioned the commission, asserting that blocking customers was a way for them to better protect the security of the networking solutions they were offering.

The FCC responded with a public advisory yesterday reaffirming their previous stance:

Personal Wi-Fi networks, or “hot spots,” are an important way that consumers connect to the Internet. Willful or malicious interference with Wi-Fi hot spots is illegal. Wi-Fi blocking violates Section 333 of the Communications Act, as amended.1 The Enforcement Bureau has seen a disturbing trend in which hotels and other commercial establishments block wireless consumers from using their own personal Wi-Fi hot spots on the commercial establishment’s premises. As a result, the Bureau is protecting consumers by aggressively investigating and acting against such unlawful intentional interference.

Continue reading FCC Public Advisory: Blocking Personal WiFi Hotspots is Prohibited

Review: OtterBox Defender Rugged Case for Nokia Lumia Icon (930)

Taking flagship smartphones out into rugged conditions can be a dicey proposition. The Lumia Icon is built solidly for day to day bumps and bruises, but it’s not really designed to be thrown around in rough situations. Thankfully OtterBox has a solution to improve that…

Shop the Lumia Icon Defender Case on Amazon.
More info on OtterBox products: http://www.otterbox.com/

iPhone 6 Defender Case Review
How the *#&^% Do You Remove an OtterBox Case?!?!?

My Fave Find from CTIA! The Skyroam 3GMate International Hotspot with Virtual Sim

At every show I try to find something cool. Something I wasn’t expecting. Something that nails a niche.

This year Skyroam totally nailed it, and for you folks who travel a lot (and internationally) definitely be on the lookout for this portable WiFi hotspot. The 3GMate uses a virtual sim to enable 3G data in 45 countries, and it’ll only cost you $10 a day!

Shop the 3GMate on Amazon.
More info on Skyroam and the 3GMate.

FFC VLOG: #ListenWithLumia at the Firefly 2014 Music Festival! (Shot on Lumia 1520)

I had an AMAZING weekend thanks to the Lumia and Mix Radio crews flying a bunch of fun folks out to Delaware to hit the Firefly 2014 music festival!

Four days of live music and fun. I had a blast hanging out with amazing people and making some new friends. Here’s my recap of the weekend!

My Week Without a Smartwatch…

qualcomm toq activity tracker update smartwatchI’ve been super critical of the smartwatch. I make no effort to hide the fact that I hope people will move directly to heads up displays soon. I think they’re an evolutionary midpoint, a convenient way to continue the conversation on wearable computing started by Bluetooth headsets. Having worn watches like the Toq, Martian, and Pebble for a couple months now though, my opinion on smartwatches has changed a bit, and lately I’ve been more positive on the experience.

During my recent trip to Vancouver, I opted for a Windows Phone instead of an Android. It provided me a better camera and the ability to store maps for offline use, handy as data was something of a premium on my pre-pay SIM. Unfortunately this meant no smartwatch support. I was surprised by how much I missed wearing one… Continue reading My Week Without a Smartwatch…

For the Traveling Geek trying to pack light… ish…

On our recent vacation to Vancouver, I wanted to pack as minimally as possible. I have a rep in my family for packing an obscene gadget backpack, and using very little of the gear I bring. I wanted to see how minimally I could pack and still participate digitally.

Goodbye backpack.

WP_20140413_20_42_05_ProMy first task was whittling down the bag I travel with. Instead of my normal Canon backpack, or one of my Booq pro bags, I opted for a small travel camera sling. I love all the pockets and dividers you get with a camera bag, even though I wasn’t packing my DSLR.

The nice thing about a sling, it keeps everything cinched down pretty tight, while allowing me to have the use of both of my arms. I’ve started using them over my old messenger bags when I’m on the go.

Only ONE phone?!?!?

WP_20140413_20_45_04_ProEven near home I tend to have two phones on me at any given time, so leaving the country with only one phone already had me feeling a little vulnerable. I opted for the Nokia Lumia Icon for a couple reasons. Even though it’s a Verizon phone, it’s completely unlocked. It also allowed me to leave my point and shoot camera at home, as the only compromise I’d have to make is not having a zoom lens.

After landing I grabbed a Virgin Mobile SIM card with a meager amount of data, but I pretty much relied on WiFi during my visit. Using a Nokia worked well for travel as I was able to download maps directly to my phone and use them offline with HERE Maps to get around town.

Only my Google+ usage suffered because stupid Google still won’t let us Windows Phone users upload pics and videos or use Hangouts. Pretty much every other social network was included in my touristy food pic uploads, even VK. No Google+, but I could upload to VK. How messed up is that… Continue reading For the Traveling Geek trying to pack light… ish…

Field Trip Day coming to Pasadena, California September 15

field trip day flagField Trip is an app which helps users discover fun and interesting things to see in their general vicinity. Chock full of trivia and restaurant reviews, it can be a pretty handy guide aiding, you in your local adventures.

Field Trip Day is coming to Pasadena on September 15th! What is Field Trip Day you might ask? It’s a day where people get together and use Field Trip. Together. Here’s how the Field Trip folks explain it:

Field Trip Day is an afternoon of local discovery, challenges, one-day-only opportunities, and hidden surprises. Armed with the Field Trip app and your wits, an afternoon’s adventure will reveal Pasadena’s secrets – from rocket launches to peanut butter soda, from the man who broke baseball’s color barrier to the man who revolutionized chewing gum, from auditioning for the role of Stanley in “Streetcar Named Desire” to learning the truth about a religious cult… explore Pasadena like never before.

The event is free to participate, but space is limited, so head over to the Field Tripper site to sign up! Who knows… I might even go…