Ordered the Samsung Galaxy S5

I’m posting from my phone, so this will be short and to the point. I’m an Apple guy, I love the company, the hardware and the software. I’ll never not own an Apple computer, I absolutely love my MacBook Pro.

I’ve enjoyed the last couple of years with various iPhone’s, but this week I’m upgrading my iPhone 5 to the Galaxy S5. I jumped onto the AT&T Next program and preordered the S5. It should ship Tuesday.

I kind of decided to make the switch on a whim after a coworker posted on Facebook that he had ordered the s5. I started looking at the phone and it just caught my eye and my love for new gadgets took over. I liked the ads, the preview videos of the phone. I liked the way the screen looked and the pictures it takes. I’ve been enjoying my Tab 3 and the way I can use widgets.

So that’s basically it. I’m never going to hate the iPhone. I’m still a fan of the iPhone and believe it’s one of the best phones out there, especially with iOS 7. I just want to try a new gadget.

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Can you watch new episodes of RAW on WWE Network?

Not exactly. Before signing up for WWE Network this weekend I was trying to find the answer to this question and it wasn’t easy. I browsed through a couple pages of Google result pages and didn’t find an answer to the specific question above so I wanted to answer it here for anyone else wondering the same thing.

If you’re looking to watch episodes of RAW anytime after they air your best bet is still a Hulu Plus subscription. This is because the WWE Network delays episodes of RAW and Smackdown for about three months. For example as of today the most current episode of Smackdown you can watch is the January 23, 2014 episode. As for RAW, the most current episode is the January 19, 2014 episode.

You can, however, watch the most current PPV (which until later tonight is February’s Elimination Chamber), as well as any past PPV and of course any live PPV starting with Wrestlemania XXX tonight.

I hope this clears up any confusion anyone might have. Maybe I just missed the information, but I couldn’t find a clear answer through Google myself.

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My new Galaxy Tab 3

Last week I picked up a Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 7.0″. I’ve always been an Apple guy. I have a MacBook Pro, iPhone 5 and for awhile I had an iPad 4. I sold the iPad 4 before the Air came out and planned to upgrade but ended up getting an Xbox One instead. So I went awhile without a tablet and basically picked up the Galaxy Tab 3 on a whim since it was on sale and within my budget.

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So far it hasn’t been too bad and experience, but it hasn’t been amazing either. The Tab 3 isn’t too much cheaper than the first gen iPad Mini, but based on its performance it feels like it shouldn’t be priced over $99. It’s not the worst in the world, but at times it’s pretty bad. There have been times when I hit the home button and have to wait 3 seconds for the home screen to display. I found that for the best performance you have to manually close out of apps, otherwise they continue to run in the background bogging down the system. On Apple devices I’m used to hitting the home button and switching between apps while letting iOS manage everything in the background.

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One thing I do like about the Android operating system is widgets. It’s nice to have updating information on the home screen and various pages. Being able to check baseball scores, news headlines and weather by simply looking at the screen is a very nice feature. (Speaking of baseball scores, why is there no ESPN Score Center app on the Play store? There’s only a Brazilian version. Strange).

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I also really love the Samsung Book Cover case which I got for $35 at Best Buy on clearance (it’s usually $50). It’s a nice quality case that looks great on the device and feels great when using the tablet or carrying it. I definitely recommend this case!

The only other thing I really have to say is the cameras are not that great on the device. It has a 3MP rear camera and 1.3MP front camera and neither take great pictures, though the front camera is functional enough for Skype. I’m not that concerned about the rear camera because I don’t often use a tablet camera to take pictures since I always have my phone with me (the iPhone 5′s rear camera is 8MP for reference).

I bought the 8gb model and a 32gb micro SD card. I didn’t realize you couldn’t install any apps on the SD card, so my 8gb device storage is already almost full. It is nice to be able to use the SD card for movies, books and other media files at least. With the iPad I’d often have to delete games and apps when I was traveling to make room for movies (I had the 32gb version but had a lot of large games).

I love gadgets so it’s been nice exploring and learning about my first Android device. I still prefer iOS and Apple hardware, but the Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 isn’t bad. I look forward to learning more about it and experimenting some more as time passes.

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The WWE Network

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I haven’t watched a whole lot of wrestling lately, but I decided to subscribe to the WWE Network in anticipation of Wrestlemania XXX which takes place tomorrow night. It seems like too good a deal to pass up. For $9.99 a month (with a required 6 month commitment) you get to watch every PPV live on the WWE network via the website, or app on the device of your choice (though it’s not on Xbox One yet).

You also get access to absolutely TONS of on demand content including every past PPV. I was under the impression you could watch RAW and Smackdown after they air, however it turns out there’s a delay of over a month because HULU has the rights to those shows. There’s also some live content and original programming, however I’m not that much of a wrestling fan and probably wont watch very much of that.

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Wrestlemania is going to be the first PPV broadcast live over the WWE network so we’ll see how the network holds up tomorrow night. A friend of mine ordered Wrestlemania last year through the PS3 app and the broadcast stopped working after about 30 minutes and never started working again.

I decided to check out what the WWE Network has to offer mainly because I like the business model. I’m not a cable cutter (I have Dish Network and love it), but it’s interesting to see a content provider deciding to take control of its content and distribute it on its own. I also subscribe to MLB.TV and love being able to access content on my own terms. I’ve read a few articles where Dish and DirectTV have expressed frustration over the WWE’s decision to provide PPV content live to WWE Network subscribers (why would you continue to spend $50 a month on PPV’s when $9.99 gets you the same thing and more?) and apparently Dish even refused to carry the last PPV in protest. I’m glad the WWE is deciding to shake things up, and maybe we’ll see more a la carte content in the future.

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Need for Speed (movie)

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While I was home on leave my little brother had wanted to see the Need for Speed movie, so a couple nights ago we went. I’ve never been that into the Fast and Furious movies after the first one and I could only assume Need for Speed would be one of those ‘car porn’ movies. As it turns out, I quite enjoyed Need for Speed.

The story at first seemed pretty standard, but the characters really drew me in. Tobey (Aaron Paul’s character) and Julia’s adventure was the best part of the movie. I loved the way their character’s interacted, and the music and scenery along the way was just downright beautiful. Sure a lot in the movie was far from believable but the silly, over the top sequences are both thrilling and feel good from beginning to end. I also loved Michael Keaton’s character, Monarch. I’d have to say he delivers the best performances of the movie, though Aaron Paul is right behind.

I rarely find myself wanting to watch a movie for a second time, but I already want to see Need for Speed again. It was great! I’m probably going to end up taking Vanessa to see it for a second time (she loves Aaron Paul as well, especially since he’s from Idaho).

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Twitch broadcasting from an Xbox One

Now that I’m back in Idaho after taking three weeks of leave I have access to broadband internet again. This means I was finally able to use the new Twitch broadcast feature that coincided with the release of Titanfall.

It’s quite easy to use as there are only a handful of settings where you can enable Kinect picture in picture video and adjust microphone volume and stream quality. You simply need to title your broadcast and off you go. You’ll be able to see a preview of the stream in the snap view while your channel chat is displayed underneath. Since you need to have Twitch snapped I recommend you use a large enough TV (or sit closer than usual). I didn’t find it distracting as I played Titanfall.

I’m still not very good at Titanfall, but you can check out what I streamed today below.

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Last night’s The Walking Dead

This season of The Walking Dead has felt somewhat tame so far, but that all changed last night. I feel like this entire season is just one long setup for the arrival in Terminus and we won’t see much more exciting, fast-paced episodes until next year. Last night was refreshing, however, as something significant finally happened. We were finally shocked again. I’m hoping that the next two episodes won’t let up, but I’m not quite sure if they can do anything quite as drastic as what happened last night.

What did you think of last night’s episode? I probably should have more to say but I need another cup of coffee this morning.

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Titanfall so far

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I was lucky enough to be able to get a copy of Titanfall from GameFly at release and so far it’s been quite enjoyable. I played about an hour of the Beta and two classic matches since its release (been busy this week) but it’s been fun. It feels to me like a sort of mix of Call of Duty and Halo which is refreshing. The gameplay is much more fast-paced than Call of Duty and I can’t say there’s much ”camping” to be found in Titanfall. It’s been pretty chaotic and thrilling and there hasn’t been a dull moment yet. Lately in Ghosts matches I can go for what seems like an eternity without seeing an enemy. In Titanfall there’s either a player enemy or an enemy bot at every corner so there’s always something to shoot at.

I haven’t played any of the campaign mode yet (not to be confused with a singleplayer mode) but I look forward to giving it a try this weekend. I’ll be sure to post some more impressions as I spend more time with the game.

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A fun time at Laser Alleys in York, PA

Last night my cousins and I checked out Laser Alleys in York, Pennsylvania and I have to say it was the coolest bowling alley I’ve had a chance to visit. Every bowling alley I’ve ever been to has had the same old school computer terminals at the lanes (you know, with the colored buttons and all and CRT TV’s). Well Laser Alleys has modern touch screen computer terminals which were quite entertaining and easy to use.

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I love gadgets so I was pretty mesmerized by all of the things you were able to do with the computer. It could take your picture and present it next to your name on the scorecard which was entertaining in itself. You could connect to Facebook to have it post updates on your behalf (I believe each bowler could connect if they wanted. I tried it but I think I logged myself out or something). You could send text messages to other lanes (we sent a few messages to lane 7 just for fun. No reply :p). Overall the experience was great, and we had a fun time bowling from 8-10 for $6 and a good time in the arcade before we started bowling.

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New York City trip, March 11, 2014

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On Tuesday Vanessa and I spent a wonderful day in New York City. We drove to Junction Square, New Jersey and took the train to 33rd street. It was a nice, sunny, warm day in the city and we certainly enjoyed it. The only real downside to the trip was driving in New Jersey. I’ve never been more frustrated by other drivers and their complete lack of patience and regard for others. I never want to drive in New Jersey again… Unless I carry a baseball bat to smash people’s windows in with. New Jersey is a disaster. I always hated the state but now I really despise it.

Anywho, New York was fun and I’m glad we got to go.

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