New Lunar Plans from Koodo, Fido & Virgin Mobile

January 29, 2019  by Chenchen Wang

Koodo, Rogers and Fido are celebrating the lunar year with some limited time plans. Each plan comes with a data bonus of 1 GB and is a whopping $2 off the regular plan price!

These plans will likely last for the next week or two, so dive straight in if you want the extra gig of data. Otherwise keep steady, there'll surely be some upcoming bonus plans in the near future to coincide with spring break.

Tab
Data Calling Monthly Cost
No Tab (Bring Your Own Device) 3 GB
(2 GB + 1 GB bonus)
500 minutes
Canada-wide
$48.00
($2 off)
No Tab (Bring Your Own Device) 3 GB
(2 GB + 1 GB bonus)
Unlimited
Canada-wide
$53.00
($2 off)
No Tab (Bring Your Own Device) 5 GB
(4 GB + 1 GB)
500 minutes
Canada-wide
$58.00
($2 off)
No Tab (Bring Your Own Device) 5 GB
(4 GB + 1 GB)
Unlimited
Canada-wide
$63.00
($2 off)



Rogers and Fido's In-Store Lunar Promotion

January 24, 2019  by Chenchen Wang


This just in! Starting today, Rogers and Fido are offering a limited-time, STORE-ONLY deal on their 2-year Premium, Premium+, and Ultra Tab plans to coincide with the lunar year.

Visit a local Rogers or Fido store to take advantage of these juicy offers, both of which include extra data and 1,000 minutes of international calling to most parts of Asia.




Rogers

Tab
Data Monthly Cost
Ultra 4 GB + 4 GB bonus $100 ($20 off)
Premium+ 4 GB + 4 GB bonus $90 ($20 off)
Premium 4 GB + 4 GB bonus $80 ($80 off)




Fido

Tab
Data Cost
Small 3 GB $48
Bring Your Own Device 5 GB $58


These plans aren't displayed on their websites and are only around for a limited time, so check out your local Rogers or Fido store to get a piece of the action.

It's one of those days. You want glamorous photos for social media, but your older phone camera just won't cut it. Dark shots, blurry facial features and a lack of detail, to name a few bothersome worries. It seems like everyone else has candid photos filled with vibrant colors and lush elements but you!

Luckily, there are tons of apps on both the App Store and the Google Play Store that can help you take better photos. These apps offer more features and use algorithms to enhance your photos, like taking multiple and compositing them into one detailed image to name one popular feature. There are tons of apps to choose from, so let's take a look at a few on the market.

Open Camera




Open Camera is free app for Android that includes different levels of focus, scenes, auto-stability and different controls for ease of usage when taking your favorite photos. It also has a compression algorithm that makes your photos smaller and take much less space on your phone, not to mention, its array of controls that make your Instagram photoshoots glorious and easy. You can toggle the UI to display on the left in case you're a southpaw and would prefer the buttons on the left of your screen. Coupled with this is the fact that it's free, so go ahead and give it a try.


Camera MX




Camera MX has been around for a few years now and is frequently updated with improvements. Its main strength is the inclusion of multiple shooting modes for both photos and for video. You can then convert these into different formats like GIFs, so you can upload your favorite meme directly to your social media accounts or Reddit. There's also an impressive photo editor that lets you make tweaks on the go without the need to open Photoshop or fiddle around with Instagram's confusing filters and contrast settings.


Filmic Pro




Filmic Pro is an in-depth app for iOS and Android that retails at a whopping $18.99! Yet this expensive app isn't without an exciting list of features. For instance, it has different sliders that can tweak exposure, lighting, color balance and even gamma exposure. There's also a waveform monitor that brightens portions of your capture that are darker, and it has a focus peak that removes unwanted lighting and rubble from the focal point of your camera. This app is for the advanced photographer who desires maximum quality and control over their photos and is perhaps a bit out of touch for the average user; still, it's a powerful app nonetheless that merits a try if you have the budget.


VSCO




VSCO is a half camera and half social media platform that allows users to capture photos and edit them with an array of interesting filters, effects and preferences before sharing them with their peers and the rest of the planet. The app itself is free and will allow you to post photos, yet you can also upgrade to VSCO X for $25 a year, which comes loaded with more filters, editing features and early access to new updates before they are released for the free version. Best for those serial photo-takers who constantly document their lives through albums and want a place to record it online.


Hydra




This unique app does something that most other apps doesn't; it takes multiple shots at once and combines the exposures to create one extremely detailed HDR photo. You can toggle the different camera modes, ranging from 20 MP to 32 MP and even 60 MP, but be wary that it composites the different takes, meaning that it's ideal to hold your smartphone as steady as possible, or you'll risk getting blurred images. The result is a high quality image from any camera, comparable to photos taken by the newest generation of smartphone cameras. There's also different lighting modes that you can choose from, in addition to other parameters that you can tweak and edit to get your perfect shot.


Adobe Photoshop Express




Everyone's familiar with Adobe Photoshop—this app is now conveniently available at the palm of your hand. It caters to photo editing instead of a built-in camera function, chalk-full with familiar features, a variety of fun filters, and tools from the desktop version. The app itself is free, but most of the tools and features are locked behind a paywall, so expect to spend a hefty bit of money to unlock them.


Adobe Lightroom CC




On the contrary, there's also Adobe Lightroom CC for mobile, an app tailored towards photographers that includes a built-in camera and quick, on-the-go style tweaking options for your photos. This means tons of filters, editing tools, enhancing and adjustments. It also syncs with the desktop version, so you can quickly transfer photos between the two. The app is better for practical adjustments and edits as opposed to Photoshop Express, which emphasizes serious editing of photos.

When it comes to taking photos, there are tons of other apps available for you to explore. Don't be limited by your hardware!

CompareCellular's Top 5 Phones of 2018

December 18, 2018  by Chenchen Wang

This past year has been exciting for smartphones, as usual. From the newest breed of iPhones to Google's delightful Pixel, there were a lot of shocks and upsets from our technological friends. Now that the season has come to an end, let's take a look at some of the top phones and what they brought to show-and-tell.

Apple iPhone XS & XS Max




Apple's newest addition to their line of trendy phones shook the tables of high schoolers around the world with its hefty and unprecedented price tag of $1379 CAD. Yet the price is arguably warranted, for the XS is easily one of the flashiest phones of all time, garnering a near perfect score across the board of upscale phone reviewers throughout the Internet.

Its features include a blazing A12 Bionic chip that provides a super-speedy experience, not to mention its dual camera and slightly better battery than its predecessor (although that's not saying much... expect to recharge throughout the day if you're a heavy user).

The camera also comes with some built-in software like an improved HDR function that enhances your photos automatically. Face ID is much more responsive and so is the phone's water resistance—its IP68 rating means that it can safely be submerged in up to 6 feet of water for half an hour, so yes, Netflix and shower has become a reality.

Don't believe us? Check out this video on Youtube, where a brave reviewer dips it into 40 feet of muddy lake water! Needless to say, the XS is among the top phones ever made, if not the definitive best of the current era.



Apple iPhone XR




The iPhone XR is a cheaper alternative to the XS, but that doesn't mean it's only the baby brother of the latter. Instead, it rivals the XS in performance and features. How? For starters, it has the same A12 Bionic chip, meaning software performance will be near identical.

Then there's the glass body, along with an aluminum frame and a 6.1" Liquid Retina LED instead of OLED; bear in mind that the iPhone XR has a lower resolution (not that you'd be able to tell, honestly). It also only has a singular rear camera instead of the XS' two, yet this 12 MP camera is identical to one of the cameras in the XS.

The iPhone XR has a slightly longer battery life thanks to the absence of things like 3D touch support, and comes in a plethora of colors ranging from coral to yellow and baby blue. How vibrant!

An IP67 rating means that you can submerge your iPhone XR into 3 feet of water for 30 minutes, so feel free to bring it into your showers in case you forget those lyrics to that one Dua Lipa song. The XR is a great alternative to the XS and on its own, is a fully capable standalone phone that packs quite the competition to the other competitors.



Google Pixel 3 & 3 XL




Google's break-in to the phone industry has been swept beneath the other titans throughout its previous two iterations, yet its latest phone brings a little more to the table.

The Google Pixel 3 retails at $999 CAD for its 5.5" model and comes in a glass body enclosing a metal chasis. It also runs on Android 9.0 Pie, the newest operating system for Android limited to only a handful of devices.

Yet its most impressive feature is what Google dubs the "AI Cam," a camera that automatically enhances your photos with the usage of HDR and other software tricks, taking three photos for every click that you make and processing the best one. This is made possible through its 12 MP rear camera, and dual 8 MP front cameras which ensure that your selfies are delightfully splendid.

Unfortunately, the phone itself seems to suffer from poor battery life, often requiring a charge throughout the day during periods of high usage—so keep that battery pack handy.



Huawei Mate 20 Pro




Huawei's Mate 20 Pro is a substantial upgrade to the P20 and P20 Pro released earlier this year, with a 6.39" OLED screen that boasts some of the highest resolution available on the market. Its 1,400 x 3,120 resolution and 538 ppi inclusion will generate the sharpest frames for your browsing needs.

Like the Google Pixel 3, it runs on Android 9.0 Pie and comes loaded with 128 GB of storage space and a generous 6 GB of RAM.

Its competitive triple-camera system clocks in with three rear sharpshooters starting at a whopping 40 MP, next to a 20 MP and 8 MP mini-camera. On the other side of the yonder is a 24 MP front-facing camera that'll highlight all of your glamorous photoshoots (including those blemishes!).

The Mate 20 Pro's cameras impress further through its vibrant contrast and smart stabilisation, providing you with a range of other modes from Portrait to Monochrome and even Night. At the end of the day, Huawei's in-depth camera still proves to be a force against some of the toughest rivals on the market.



Samsung Galaxy Note 9




It's been a long wait for Samsung's next series of flagship phones, but the Galaxy Note 9 fills that void for those of you who are avid pen-users. This large phone has a 6.4" screen and like the Samsung Galaxy Note 8, comes with a smartpen dubbed the "S Pen," that lets you sketch ideas, take notes, or even use it as a remote control for your apps and games.

Its Bluetooth functionality allows for you to improvise and use it for things like presentations or taking photos—that's right, no more asking strangers to take those family portraits for you at the park.

The camera comes with Samsung's in-house AI software that automatically adjusts your photos and spits them out in HDR with lighting and contrast improvements. The phone also comes in 128 GB or 512 GB, so you'll have tons of storage on the go.

Combined with its large size, this device is perfect for the multi-tasker who desires to get more usage out of their phone than simply calling, texting and browsing the Internet.


This is the end of our top 5 of 2018, but bear in mind that there are plenty of other phones that barely missed the cut. Keep your options open, especially if you're on a budget! Phones from previous generations will often fit your bill in terms of quality and price.

More importantly, stay alert and up-to-date with the latest scoop on technology; there's a ton of new phones to be released in 2019!

CompareCellular's Fantabulous 2018 Holiday Gift Guide

December 5, 2018  by Chenchen Wang



Holidays are coming up, and with the heaps of gifts also comes the infinite stress. What are the latest and greatest "hip" and cool gifts nowadays to get your friends and family? Here are some ideas that can get your brain juices flowing in the midst of the frosty air.


Apple Watch Series 4



The newest generation of Apple Watch brings a lot more to the table than ever. This smartwatch comes with a lighter shell and some tempting features, ranging from enhanced battery life to a crisp screen that shows health benefits, a GPS map, and all of your notifications on the go. Perfect if your loved one frequently ventures to the endless depths of the outdoors, or if they like to stay up-to-date on things with a dazzling robotic ornament.


Get the details of the Apple Watch here.

iPhone XR




The iPhone XR is a cheaper alternative to the XS and XS Max, allowing for a full experience of Apple's fantastic A12 Bionic Chip and a plethora of other functions. It comes in a range of vibrant colors and a smooth, aluminum case as opposed to the XS' steel one, but this doesn't stop the phone from overperforming. It also has the same rear-camera as the XS, yet lacks its dual-camera functionality. Nevertheless, this jolly-colored phone is much trendier for your wallet and still provides the full iOS experience.


Learn more about the iPhone XR's specifications here.

AirPods





If you're a frequent commuter, no doubt you've seen these little earbuds tucked away in the ears of strangers and even elderly grandmas on the subway. Its lightweight and convenient design allows for all of your music, Bluetooth, and calling needs to be met. Yup, their built-in microphone lets you make calls too. Just be sure to slip them into their snoozy box after you're done, or you'll risk losing these tiny guys for the foreseeable future.


The AirPods are the perfect stocking stuffer. Get yours here.

iPad Pro




The iPad continues to refine itself in more ways than one; in this iteration, its sleek and thin design squeezes its slimtastic proportions, this time nearly 25% thinner than its predecessor. Got a long road trip ahead of you? The iPad Pro makes the perfect frisbee to toss with your friends and family, allowing everyone to cash in on the fun—but really, its thinner design allows for better portability, sound, and a convenient experience. Also, the Pro's redesigned 12 MP camera will create all of those picture-perfect moments for the holidays.


Click here to learn more about the new iPad Pro.

Portable Speakers




Mini portable speakers are the perfect way to share your delicious taste in music with the rest of your family. These tiny little things really boom and create a dance floor anywhere, from your living room to the subway during your daily commute. Got something to say? Play it loud and clear for everyone to hear! There are tons of different brands and designs, but keep an eye out on Amazon. These little gadgets frequently go on sale, so expect to spend under $100.


Scope out some of the portable Bluetooth speakers that might tickle your fancy here.

USB to USB-C Adapter




If you're an Apple fan, you probably know that the newest MacBooks only have USB-C slots—tiny little slots that have replaced the old USB, meaning you'll need a "dongle" adapter for your older USB devices. If that isn't the worst of it, Apple's factory dongle will cost you a whopping $25.00 for just one, running a giant hole in your wallet faster than you can blink. Its lackluster, string-blocky design also leaves more to be desired. Luckily, there are some other options thanks to our friends overseas, who prove time and time again that they're somehow impervious to copyright laws. These third party adapters typically run much cheaper on Amazon (not to mention they ship much faster with Amazon Prime) and their tiny size makes for easy storage or for you to carry on the go.


Check out the variety of adapters for yourself here.

USB Adapter Dock



Need something for the home studio? There are also thicker adapters that come with multiple converters, ranging from USB to HDMI and even SD card. Amazon has lots of options at affordable prices. Keep an eye out for their Lightning Sales and holiday bargains, as these products and other electronics are frequently on sale for the low-low.


There's tons of different docks you can buy on Amazon. Click here to find out more.


Burt's Bees Lipbalm




With the advent of winter creeping up your toes, keeping your lips refreshed and moisturized is extra important (you never know who you'll encounter beneath the mistletoe!). Burt's Bees offers some of the highest quality lip balm, albeit frequently at exuberant prices. Luckily, Amazon offers a 4-pack for $12.49, meaning that anyone can enjoy its cool, wax texture on their lips in time for the New Year. We recommend the original flavor, since it contains wax and provides a cool, refreshing hint of peppermint that will leave you feeling fresh throughout the day.


Grab a bundle off of Amazon or check them out at your local convenience store.

Charger Cables




What about some charger cables? You can get never get enough of them. These things always seem to find a way to disappear or break, so buying a pack of them might be a good idea as a stocking stuffer. They come in packs of 4 or more on Amazon, and the best part is that you can get chargers of different lengths! How 'bout a 6 foot long charger for your living room, so you can laze around the couch while charging? Or a tiny 3 footer for your bedside table or the office? The possibilities are endless, and it's always good to have extras whenever you might need them.


Get a pack of charger cables now so you don't forget later.



Kent Comb




Winter got your hair follicles in a knot? Kent Combs are some of the finest combs, sliding comfortably through your hair and offering a gentle styling experience. These combs are surprisingly all crafted by hand and made with polished wood, meaning there aren't any bumps or knicks in the teeth like plastic combs that might tear and damage your hairs. They're also light and easy to clean, but a little on the heftier side when it comes to price. Expect to pay around $20 CAD for one, but trust us... you get what you pay for.


Get that perfect shine in your hairline with these fantastic combs.



The fun never stops when it comes to holiday shopping. There are endless gadgets out there for you to choose from, but be sure to choose wisely—keep those eyes peeled!

Cheap Cellphone Plans of the Month

November 30, 2018  by Chenchen Wang

With Christmas and New Year's around the corner, let's take a quick look at some of the best individual rate plans.


Koodo, Fido and Virgin Mobile have their regular plans with a bit of promotional data. Their 2 GB plans with unlimited Canada-wide calling at $50—bear in mind that these carriers use the same towers as TELUS, Rogers and Bell, meaning you'll get some great service at a much cheaper price. You can also expect good coverage around the country with the same service intact if you plan on going home for the holidays.


British Columbia, Alberta, Ontario and Atlantic Province Plans

Koodo, Fido & Virgin Mobile - BYOD
Unlimited Canada Calling
Cost
2 GB $50
4 GB $55
6 GB $65
8 GB $75


Manitoba & Saskatchewan

Koodo, Fido & Virgin Mobile - BYOD Cost
500 MB with 500 minutes Canada-wide calling $40
5 GB with unlimited Canada-wide calling $48

Quebec

Koodo, Fido & Virgin Mobile - BYOD
Unlimited Canada Calling
Cost
2 GB $35
4 GB $45
8 GB $49
10 GB $56



Chatr and Lucky Mobile offer much cheaper plans with bigger data, but with a catch... only 3G data. 3G data is a slower version of data that is good for browsing the internet, using text-based apps like email or sending messages, but you might run into some issues if you're a frequent music streamer or Youtube user. You also lose the ability to use your data if you leave their "zones," areas that are usually restricted to bigger cities.


Canada-wide

Chatr & Lucky Mobile
Unlimited Canada Calling
Cost
8.5 GB at 3G speeds $50
6.5 GB at 3G speeds $50
4.5 GB at 3G speeds $40
1.5 GB at 3G speeds $30




Freedom Mobile is another alternative with huge buckets of data for cheap, yet also with a catch: it's only available in Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Ottawa and Toronto, and as soon as you leave these cities, you'll lose basically all of your data (you'll retain a tiny bit of data and can still use your calling and texting on most plans). The service also frequently cuts out, so expect to lose service in busy subways or buildings with thick walls. If you aren't much of a traveler, then Freedom Mobile could fit your bill. Otherwise, it's definitely a hit or miss.


Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Toronto and Ottawa

Freedom Mobile (Data + Talk Plans)
Unlimited Canada Calling
Cost
Home 4.5 GB $40
Big Gig 6 GB $60
Big Gig 15 GB $80