February 2, 2014

Capture The Moment With A Droid Ultra

by

Droid Ultra Photo

VZW Disclosure

When it comes to new phones, a few big names seem to dominate. So when Verizon Wireless sent me the Droid Ultra I wasn’t sure what to expect. Besides being giddy over the fact that I now had a phone that on startup would make that Star Wars-y “Drrrrooooiiiiiddddd” sound, I figured it would be like most other android phones. The thing is that while everyone uses their smart phones differently, there are some things we all rely on.

These days, I think most of us would agree that being locked out of your house naked would be less stressful than going to pull out your phone only to realize you left your phone at home (or anywhere but with you, really). I know I’ve had to tell myself, several times, that I’ll be OK without my phone. But that feeling, you know, the one that induces panic even though you went years without a phone and survived just fine but now you’re not sure you can breathe. I see you’ve experienced it before, too. So you’d think that with at least 2 phone I’d manage to always have one. Anyway, I digress.

Like most android-based smart phones, the Droid Ultra runs on the Jelly Bean or Kit Kat operating system. That means you’ll find the usual suspect of apps and interfaces. The first difference, though, is the feel. I have medium-sized hands and compared to my iPhone, the Droid Ultra fits much more comfortably in my hand. It’s also very light. That’s important because I’ve yet to hear anyone say they want a heavier phone. Also, this is a great feature if you’re thinking of getting this for your tween or teen. With smaller hands, the push for bigger format devices makes it more difficult for them.

Now let’s get to the real reason we need our smart phones. No, not actually talking to someone. I’m talking about pictures and video. Sure, we text and check social media and email. But our phones are how we document life now. And having a phone that makes us a better photographer is always a win.

A 10-megapixel camera isn’t revolutionary, nor is 1080p HD video. But having your full screen as the viewfinder is. And not having to push buttons to activate the camera is too. Can’t tell you how many times I’ve missed “the picture” because I’m turning my phone on and hitting the camera app icon. Now, with just a flip of my wrist (actually two flips!) the camera is activated. These are not wild and crazy two flips and around the world kind of actions, just little flicks that have you ready to take a photo faster than everyone around you.

I think the photo quality is pretty good, especially if your main reason is to share on social media. If you can’t get the photo it really doesn’t matter how great the lens and zoom and all that other stuff is, right. Again, it’s really all about sharing these days. I found it easy to just tap anywhere on the screen to take the photo. Although that makes it difficult to change the focal point or try to improve the lighting. Another great feature was being about to keep my finger on the screen to activate “burst mode” for the camera .

Once you have all your photos, give these apps a try for on-the-go mobile editing:


Snapseed
(Free) – available for both Android and iOS, this is one of my favorite photo editing apps. Easy to use and it makes sharing easy too.

Photo Editor by Aviary (Free) – not the most powerful mobile photo editor, but it produces good quality cleaned up photos and gets rid of the many annoyances you’re looking to fix.

Pixlr Express (Free) – with your basic edits, a few enhancements, as well as auto-correction, you can’t go wrong with this app. The biggest plus, though, is the interface which makes it much easier to see all the options available and what that option looks like.

Disclosure: As stated above, Verizon Wireless provided me with a Droid Ultra. This post reflects my views and opinions and was not reviewed or edited by a third-party. I do, however, have a business relationship with Verizon Wireless and thus I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Sara

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