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Smartphone Review: Using the HTC Desire S for travel

Smartphone Review: Using the HTC Desire S for travel



I am always a little bit behind the 8-ball when it comes to new technology. I have never understood why people want to own the latest and greatest phone that does things beyond my imgination. All I have ever needed was something to keep me in touch with my friends and family.

Don’t get me wrong I have always drooled over peoples new iPods, speedy laptops and recently, Smartphones, but have never felt the need for something better. Even right now I am typing this out on my parent’s hand-me-down laptop which hums away so noisily I get told to leave libraries.

However, since moving to the UK and finding that their smartphones and mobile plans are so cheap I couldn’t resist. It took me a solid 2 weeks of research to decide that I didn’t want to be a Apple Autobot so settled on the HTC Desire S. To be brutally honest I don’t know how I have survived without it! Now this review is not going to delve into the nitty gritty, its purely me ranting about how much I love this phone.

So far it has been around Scotland, back home to New Zealand, suffered through my pains in Marrakech and taken stunning photos of the Eiffel Tower. It even survived our trip to Oktoberfest where I managed to drop my phone, no kidding, in a full stein of Bavaria’s best beer and it is still going strong after I soaked it for 3 days in a bowl of rice. Sure there are still beer streaks on the screen but they are hardly noticeable…

With Android’s operating system (or OS for the nerds) being controlled by the mega-giant Google it comes with all sorts of handy Apps that are perfect for travel which you can download for free if you are a stingy bugger like me. I must admit I have not forked out my hard earned pennies yet for paid Apps so not sure what I am missing out on there. If anyone does have any recommendations for must buy Apps then let me know?

The 3.7 inch touch screen is perfect for reading other travellers blogs and reviews while on the move and it is lightening fast with a 1GHz processor (don’t worry I am not getting all nerdy just throwing in some nice sounding facts and figures). It also has 1GB of built in memory with a memory card slot which currently holds another 8GB for me. Enough to easily store whole cities with the Google Maps App right down to street level so that the built in GPS quickly tells me where I am when wandering the back alleys of Paris looking for that tasty patisserie I read about.

I just wish I had the maps function with GPS when we were driving across Canada and USA then we might not have played the silent game as many times as we did when using the good old paper map system.

The camera on the front gives grainy footage but it still seems to be clear enough so that every time I Skype Mum and Dad on the other side of the world they can tell me how pale I am looking and that I need to eat more. While the camera on the back takes better pictures than my 2 year old digital compact camera.

While the battery life is not as great as I had hoped it still will last a full day with calling, web surfing, tweeting and emailing galore. And it plugs straight into any USB or the wall to charge back up while we are chilling out at airports or having a lie-down in our hotel room.

The only downside that I have found so far is that when you are out in the sunlight it is often quite hard to see the screen but with a quick setting adjustment for screen brightness and my big head to block the light this doesn’t bother me too much.

I think the thing I love the most is that for our trips now I don’t have to lug around a laptop, mobile and my iPod when I can just slip my phone into my back pocket and have it all. Brilliant.

So if you are slow to the market like I was then seriously don’t look past this as a great phone (although in my typical techno fashion I have only just got around to reviewing it about 6 months too late and there are so many other flashy phones above this one now).


Cole is one half of New Zealand's leading adventure travel blogging couple who have been wearing out their jandals around the world since 2009. He loves any adventure activities and anything to do with the water whether it is Surfing, Diving, Swimming, Snorkeling or just lounging nearby on the beach. You can follow Cole on Google+. Or consider following us via RSS Feed, Twitter, Facebook and subscribe to our Newsletter.

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5 Ways To Improve Your Sight



Our eyesight is perhaps one of our most useful and most essential senses (this, of course, may be moot). For many, the idea of losing their vision can be a scary thing. Loss of vision begins for many in their late 40s when it starts to become prominent. However, there are many ways in which you can improve your sight and keep from losing it in the extended scheme of things.

So here in this list, we have taken the liberty to compile a list of 5 ways in which you can improve your sight.

5 Ways To Improve Your Sight

# 1 – Prescription Glasses

In today’s internet driven world it is now easier than ever to get whatever you want online. You can buy glasses online or prescription sunglasses very easy and have it delivered to your home. No fuss and no hassle.

# 2 – Eat Carrots

Carrots are especially beneficial for our eye health, and it would prove invaluable for you to eat or drink as much carrot juice as you can. It may initially have a bitter taste but the more you drink it you will get used to it.

# 3-  Bilberry Supplements

Bilberry is a supplement that is not that common with those who aren’t into the health niche, but bilberry is an excellent supplement for those who are looking to improve their eyesight.

# 4 – Watch Things From Far Away

This may seem like a strange method, but when you look at items off at a distance, you are strengthening your eyes. Your eyes are muscles, and they need exercise just as much as your body does.

So when you are looking at items or object off at a distance you are doing your eyes a significant workout that they desperately need.

# 5 Finger Eye Push Ups

To continue on with our last entry – a great way to get your eyes to see better and to improve them is by doing finger eye push-ups. Now, this doesn’t mean placing your finger in your eye but your eye’s vision.

By placing your finger in front of your eye and then away and back again you will strengthen the eye. This is because the eye is working to see an object in two different ranges.

Strength Your Eyes

Improving your eyes without surgery and an operation is possible. And if you consider these methods, you will “see” where we are coming from.

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Video Slot Games Are All The Rage



Online casino games have seen a meteoric rise in popularity over the years. Let’s be honest -gambling is the average man’s pastime event. Very easy, simple and if you’re lucky you can win out big on a few small dollars or coins.

For this reason slot games have become some of the most highly played and enduring online casino games for newbies as well as veterans.

So it is no wonder that video slot games like Bullion Bars slot online are some of the most popular online casino games. Not only do they provide a great deal of entrainment but the payouts are quite high for those who manage to get the jackpot prize money.

However what remains a hallmark feature of online casino games and slot games comes in the form of how easy they are to win.

That’s right!

Playing online casino games are much easier to win then had you visited a real-life casino. This is not to undermine real-life casinos – as they do offer their fun and entertainment.

But online casino games are geared to the player. The online casino must payout players, all players, for a majority of the time, and when we say a majority of the time we mean almost all of the time.

Many online slot casino games and other casino games require that the online casino have a payout rate as low as 95%.

As low as 95%!!!!

So the chances of winning are highly in favor of the players. Failure to pay out players and having the casino simply take in more income then should be taking in will have the online casino shut down.

For those interested in playing online video slot games then now is the best time to play in this very lucrative and highly entertaining entertainment medium.

Online slot games come in a variety of themes and can offer any player, old or new, an experience that will keep them coming back time and time again.

The experience that online slot games offer players are top-notch, and the notion that many layers can play these games anywhere, at home on their desktop or the bus on their mobile home is what makes these games so alluring.

With very little to pay to play these games and a massive amount that can be paid out on a small amount as well as for being entertained the online casino slot gems don’t look like they will slow down anytime soon.

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Three Reasons Pregnant Women Should Test Their Tap Water



Drinking plenty of fresh, clean water is an important part of a healthy lifestyle.  It’s even more important to make sure your water is free of contaminants when you are pregnant.  Drinking enough water during pregnancy maintains amniotic fluid levels and helps carry nutrients to the baby.  However, if you are drinking contaminated water, the more you drink, the more the fetus is exposed to the harmful effects of those contaminants.

Water quality has been headline news lately after it was discovered that the public drinking water contained lead in Flint, Michigan.  If you’re pregnant or know someone who is, you may be wondering if it is safe to drink tap water while pregnant.  Here are three contaminants you should test for if you’re pregnant and drinking tap water.

  1. Lead

Lead poisoning is a serious concern during pregnancy.  Lead can be found in old water taps and outdated plumbing.  As water travels through and sits in these pipes, it can absorb lead.  If a pregnant woman drinks this water, her body then absorbs the lead which can be passed to the fetus.

While lead may not cause serious harm to a pregnant woman, the fetus can suffer lasting damage from even low levels of lead exposure. As the fetus grows, lead causes blood cells to become deformed, preventing them from functioning properly. Lead also damages the peripheral and central nervous systems causing learning disabilities as the child develops. Children affected by lead also tend to be shorter than other children and may have trouble with their hearing.

  1. Bacteria

Water naturally contains bacteria, but in excess amounts it can be harmful, especially to pregnant women.  E. coli is a type of bacteria that is occasionally found in the water.  This is the same bacteria that is known to cause food poisoning, and it has the same effects when it is in your water. It can cause stomach cramps, vomiting, diarrhea, and fever, all of which can put a developing fetus at risk.  Bacterial contamination can also be an indication of other contaminants such as protozoa and viruses which are linked to dysentery and hepatitis.

  1. Pesticides, Heavy Metals, and Chemicals

Lead poisoning and bacterial contamination are the most dangerous water contaminants for a pregnant woman and her baby, but there are other pollutants that are also concerning.  Both municipal water and well water can test positive for pesticides, heavy metals, and other chemicals.  While in low amounts, they may not be especially harmful to the pregnant mother, any exposure can pose a risk to the developing fetus.

Make Sure Your Tap Water is Safe

If you’re pregnant, the best way to make sure your drinking water is safe, is to test it.  Whether you are drinking tap water, city water, well water, bottled water, or even filtered water, all are at risk for common contaminants that can harm a fetus.  You can send water samples to a lab for complete analysis, but this can be costly, and it often takes weeks to get results. A faster and easier solution is a home testing kit.  Most kits will give you results in a matter of minutes.   If you’re pregnant, don’t take chances with the water you’re drinking, test your water today.

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Meet Cole and Adela

Cole and AdelaWe have been wearing out our jandals (Kiwi for flip-flops) on our travel adventures around the world since 2009. We think our blog is thought provoking and a little witty. But we have been proven wrong before. Find out more about us here...

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