Why I’m Selling My Samsung Galaxy S4

I’ve finally decided to sell my Samsung Galaxy S4.  I have had this phone for under 6 months and already I think it is time to go.  This article is a list of the reasons why the Samsung S4 is just not worth it for me and why I think the phone market as a whole is moving in the wrong direction.

First, I purchased my Samsung Galaxy S4 brand new on launch day.  I paid around $650 for the phone at that time.  The Samsung S4 was launched around April this year.  Now, in November I am selling for around $300 just to not have it anymore.

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Brutal Legend PC Game Review

A review of Brutal Legend purchased for Steam on a Windows PC.  Brutal Legends was produced by Double Fine Studios and released by EA.  I just quit playing at the last level of the game because I couldn’t take anymore.  This review covers what I liked and what I didn’t like about the Brutal Legend game.

The story and characters are amazing.  It feels like a movie or Saturday morning cartoon.  The cutscenes drip of quality.  The story and story telling is really fun, and this is coming from someone who has no idea who these rock guys are.  I loved every minute of the story telling parts.  Really fun, with plenty of depth and twists to keep things interesting.

Atmosphere is nailed.  Some of the nicest environments I’ve ever seen in a game.  It feels spooky when it should feel spooky, and cool when it should feel cool.  The graveyard drive is a particular highlight of the game for atmosphere.

Voice acting is something I would like to mention here.  It’s voiced by the world famous Jack Black.  Now, I’m not the biggest fan of the guy, but I like him more for doing this voiceover.  He nails the role of the protagonist like no one else.  His voice, and mannerisms, are perfect for a rock group roadie guy.

The story, cutscenes and atmosphere are grade A+ quality.  This is some of the best a game could possibly hope to reach.  Now, on to the gameplay.

It is generally agreed that the gameplay of most Double Fine Studios games is terrible, especially when considering it’s amazing story telling depth.  And Brutal Legend is no different.  Brutal Legend has three gameplay parts to it.  Third person combat parts, driving elements of the game and the strange RTS thing.  I’ll cover each of these below.

The third person combat parts are surprisingly the most fun sections of this game.  It’s just button mashing, with a bad camera, and it’s fun enough with lots of options to choose.

The driving part should be cool, but isn’t.  You drive a cool car, it has machine guns attached to the front and nitro out of the back.  You can affix various gadgets to the car to make it cooler.  It ticks the boxes of awesome.  But it’s floaty.  And floaty cars NEVER work in a game, and don’t work in Brutal Legend either.  You never feel tight with the car, and this would be ok.  Except…

There are timed driving sections.  Yes, you heard me right, timed driving sections in a floaty car.  Nothing is more frustrating than timed driving sections in a floaty car.  Every restart is not YOUR fault, it’s the games fault, but you get punished for it.  Clipped a rock and flipped your car?  Your fault game, not mine!

Finally, the weird RTS element.  It starts of good, but becomes hectic, fast.  And hectic with a third person view and a bad camera do not make a fun game.  And I was playing on easy because I just wanted to enjoy the storyline.  The end of the games requires around 5 repetitive RTS matches one after another.  And it will annoy you in seconds, to the point where, like me, you will quit playing Brutal Legend out of sheer frustration.  Grinding is never fun.

I think the core part of why Brutal Legend has such bad gameplay is that you get punished for mistakes you could not avoid.  Mistakes that were the games fault.  It wasn’t you who chipped the rock and flipped the car during the timed car mission. It was the floaty game controls.  That and grindy RTS and third person gameplay make the game a chore to play through just to get to the amazing story line continuation cutscenes.

Overall, I would pay $3-4 for Brutal Legend.  Any more than that and you will feel some regret once you quit playing.  Having said that, the Brutal Legend story and atmosphere are exceptional, best of class material.  Real triple A cuban stuff.  But trust me, that grind will wear you down.  It’s hard to give a score to Brutal Legend so I won’t.

You will stop playing Brutal Legend before the end, the question is how long will you last.

How Long to Charge Hudl Tesco Tablet

Charge times for the Tesco Hudl Tablet.  Below are the experimental results of my analysis of the Hudl battery charging times.  These are the results of the first two battery charges on a brand new device.  Older devices might get battery wear and tear over time that makes the battery take longer to charge.

Hudl charging times data set 1.

  • 4% – 9.20am start.
  • 52% at 10.15am.
  • 68% at 10.40am.
  • 74% at 10.50am.
  • 100% 11.40am end.

Hudl battery charging times set 2.

  • 31% at 8.06am start.
  • 62% at 8.45am. – started playing a game app at this point until 9.10am.
  • 75% at 9.12am.
  • 87% at 9.30am.
  • 96% at 9.50am.
  • 100 at 10.05am end.

From this data collection of the Hudl battery charge times I make the following conclusion.  The Hudl battery takes 5 % of charge every 10 minutes.  You can use this to figure out how long it will take to charge your Tesco Hudl tablet.

If you liked this you might like my big Hudl review covering the main points I liked and didn’t like about the Tesco Hudl Android Tablet.

HUDL Review of Reviews – Answering the Haters

At this point you have probably read my main Tesco HUDL review.  Now it’s time to cover some of the criticism you will see from other reviewers who have not really purchased the device for themselves. They’re corporate, get the HUDL for free and never use it day-to-day, because of this they find little problems that don’t really matter.  Below I will cover these little HUDL problems to tell you which you really should be worried about.

Is the HUDL too heavy?  Some reviewers say the Hudl is too heavy for an Android tablet device.  I agree you cannot hold a HUDL for 2 straight hours to watch a movie.  But through this weight it also feels weighty and robust.  I think the Hudl is around 100 grams too heavy but it depends on your expected use.  Good for building upper body strength in a weak child.

If you want the Hudl to place on a table or countertop then the weight is not an issue.  So think carefully about your expected use cases and purchase from that point.

Is the HUDL screen bad quality?  The Hudl has a 1400 x 900 screen at 243ppi.  Because of soft buttons for back, home and recent it is effectively a 720p screen.  I watched a movie at 720p on the Hudl and it looked good.  The screen attracts a lot of fingerprints, just like any modern tablet but is clear and nice.  The huddle has an IPS display.

The 243 Hudl PPI might seem like a low screen resolution compared to a retina display.  My Samsung Galaxy S4 has 441PPI and honestly, I hate it.  Such a high PPI just makes the text tiny so every time I load a webpage on the Samsung S4 I spend 2 seconds zooming in.  High PPI also means it is impossible to accurately hit a link without zooming in first.  The Hudl needs no zooming in.  It’s these tiny things that make a product nice to use.

One reviewer said the Hudl screen is not bright enough?  To change the Hudl screen brightness, swipe down in the top right corner.  You will then see a symbol of the sun, tap this.  There are 4-5 basic brightness settings on the Hudl and the brightest Hudl brightness is bright enough for a sunny day.  If I had not used an Android device before I would not know how to change the brightness too.

Another reviewer said the screen is “spongy and plastic” when tapping.  I disagree with this.  I can’t tell the difference between the Hudl screen cover and the iPad 3 retina gorilla glass I have right here on my desk.  The Hudl attracts less condensation on the screen and may be plastic, but you won’t feel it.

Leave a comment if you have any questions about the Hudl and I will try to answer them.

UPDATE January – I no longer stand by this review.  I believe the Google Nexus is now the best Android tablet to buy.

Leave a comment with random thoughts you have about the Hudl too.  Hit me.

HUDL Tablet Review

Tesco Hudl tablet review.  This review covers what I loved and hated about my new HUDL Android Tablet from Tesco.  I’ll also compare the HUDL to my iPad, iPhone and Samsung Galaxy S4.

How I got My Hudl from Tesco UK

I travel regularly on business into the UK and needed a quick Android tablet in an emergency.  I pulled out the company Credit Card and ran to the nearest supermarket.  Luckily for me, that supermarket was Tesco!  I walked out £119 ($170) lighter and with my new favorite HUDL android tablet.  This thing rocks!

For comparison I will be comparing the hudl to a Samsung Galaxy S4 (unrooted), iPad 3 retina and ipod touch.

HUDL – What I Liked

As you can see already from the above section, I love my new HUDL!  This thing is amazing.  If Apple made an Android tablet but at the same time tried to keep costs down so everyone could purchased, then I believe they would make the HUDL.  Here’s some of the best features:

The price is perfect.  The HUDL is not expensive like the Google Android Nexus 7 ($250).  The price of around $170 is just right.  The Hudl is cheap enough to be a throw away Android device, meaning security can be ignored and you can download all the junkiest anti-privacy apps you can imagine just to test them and not worry about permissions.

The Hudl can play radio in the background.  Yes, all Android devices can do this, but it’s just so easy to play radio on the Hudl!  I started by using the Blink music app that comes prebundled, but Blink music stopped working when I returned to the US.  I downloaded Tunein radio from the Google app store and it’s 100% better than Blink Music.

Long battery life.  The Tesco rep I spoke to when buying claimed the HUDL has 9 hours of battery life.  In charging tests I have done, it does last almost exactly 9 hours of mixed use (internet, movie, apps).  The battery charge is something to leave overnight, like with an ipad.