Why Vivo V5S is the ultimate selfie phone

Whether we’d like to admit it or not, selfies are now very much a part of our everyday lives. As a model, television host and lifestyle blogger, I use it quite often (especially when I’m having a good hair day) and do my part to share my photo on my social media accounts for the world to see. I usually get a good amount of likes, which to be honest, feels good (it feels nice to be validated that my brows were indeed on fleek that day). And so I’ve made it a point to find the phone that delivers THE BEST selfies.

I’ve tried quite a few brands and well, the search may finally be over for me because I’ve come across the Vivo V5s, the newest member of the ‘perfect selfie’ V5 line. I’ve used the Vivo V5 Plus so you can say I am familiar with its features. And nope, they weren’t kidding about their tagline, this entire line definitely takes the “selfie game” to greater heights.

In a big reveal at SM North Edsa last May 19, Vivo launched the V5s as the newest perfect selfie phone that caters to the arising needs of millennials, working professionals, and people from all walks of life (because YES, there are people like me who take their selfie seriously). With a 20-megapixel front camera with f2.0 aperture, the V5s gives you crystal clear, high-resolution selfies, wherein all the details are astonishingly visible. Its 13-megapixel rear camera with f2.2 aperture and an ultra-high-definition mode also renders stunning ultra HD images of up to 52 megapixels. This phone’s camera is truly remarkable.

True to its promise of producing clear and complete images that tell vivid stories, the V5s also brandishes the newest and exciting group selfie technology, which allows landscape-panning effects in ‘groufies’ or group shots. I love that this new feature allows up-close panoramic landscape panning effects in capturing a group without squeezing in or missing anyone. It also supports both portrait and landscape orientations so that no one is left behind in barkada shots.

The V5s also features a selfie softlight technology that creates lighting effects similar to those in a professional photography studio, with an enhanced night mode for clearer and more fabulous selfies taken at night or even in poor lighting conditions. The V5s also includes a beauty mode 6.0 feature, which works like a skincare tool that automatically detects your gender and applies beauty touches accordingly.

The Vivo V5s is equipped with 5G-ready capacity for a more stable Internet connection—an upgrade from the 4G capacity of previous V5 units and other phones in the same price range. For its storage, the V5s also has a bigger capacity of 4GB RAM, perfect for games and applications, and a 64GB ROM—expandable up to 256 GB—that can store up to 302 films, 20000 songs or 26,000 pictures, and other documents.

Still another new feature of the V5s is the App Clone, which allows users to log on to two different accounts using the same social media app, thus separating one’s professional and personal lives. The said feature currently supports important chat apps like WhatsApp, WeChat, Line, BBM, Zalo, and Viber.

The V5s shares the elegant and sleek design of the V5 series, with slimmer bezels and a large 5.5 inch display in 2.5D corning gorilla glass that gives impressive video-viewing effects. Vivo designers also gave the V5s an amazing new look with finer details, as the U-shaped cover lines make the back cover look even more premium and high-end.

Other notable features include a smart split 2.0 that enables the V5s to keep two tasks on screen at the same time, an eye protection mode that filters out all the blue light and makes the screen light softer, and a 0.2 fingerprint unlocking.

For inquiries about Vivo V5s, visit the Vivo website at vivoglobal.ph, or check out their Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/VivoPhil), Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/vivophil/) and Twitter (https://twitter.com/vivo_phil) accounts.

 

 

Reasons why I love my Vivo V5 Plus

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In this day and age, mobile phone brands have A LOT to live up to. Plenty has happened over the span of 20 or so years, and our phones have evolved from bulky calling devices into super computers we can access with the swipe of our fingertips. It is amazing to think about how much has changed over this short amount of time, and how much more will change in the future. Most of us are on our phones 24/7, and with or without knowing it, are heavily influenced by popular social media platforms. If you have never heard of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Snapchat, well, then I would like to know which rock you’ve been living under all these years. These play such a huge part of our daily lives that sharing (or oversharing) has become a normal thing.

All of us have tried taking selfies one time or another, and some of us are a little more obsessed about it than others. That’s why our smartphones need to have amazing cameras–both for the front and back–because our photos need to be fantastic to be able to post them on social media. I am not ashamed to admit that I am one of these selfie-obsessed people (as you can see on my feed), as the happiest and most memorable photos of my family and friends have been taken with the front camera of my phone. So when I heard that ‘the perfect selfie phone’ was going to be launched, I knew I just had to be there for the grand reveal. I had this insane need to test it out for myself, and find out if this phone lived up to the hype.

Okay, so Vivo V5 Plus claims to be the newest and most advanced selfie phone in the market, which really, sounds like my kind of smartphone. This is actually more than exciting, as this means no more lugging around my bulky camera because I can actually use this phone to take good, clear photos. The launch was held last January 21 at the SM Mall of Asia Atrium, which allowed me to tinker with this phone and yes, take lots of selfies (the only way to make an informed, sound decision). To the next person to check the Photos of the mobile phone I used–sorry, it is pretty much all me in there. I made sure to try out its best features, which include the super cool ‘bokeh’ effect that everyone is going crazy about.

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For all you selfie addicts out there, I’m sure you will be thrilled to know that Vivo V5 Plus has the world’s first-ever dual front-facing cameras. Why dual??? To take better selfies, of course! The primary front camera, a 20-megapixel IMX376, was co-engineered with top electronics company Sony, while the secondary 8-megapixel camera was designed to collect depth-of-field information for improved self-portrait quality. This allows you more cool options for your front facing shots, which is one of the unique selling points of this amazing phone.

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Let’s talk about this ‘bokeh’ effect I mentioned earlier. This is actually a background-blurring photography filter. In order to get this photo effect you would typically need a professional camera with a specific lens. The Vivo V5 Plus allows you to get the same effect using its built-in camera, which is pretty cool considering its size. This is complemented by Vivo’s enhanced face beauty algorithm that allows users to take radiant selfies without editing or correction, and ‘selfie soft light’ which makes selfie-taking possible even in poor lighting conditions. As for its rear camera, Vivo V5 Plus features an impressive 1/2.8-inch 16-megapixel sensor for ultra-clear and high-quality photos.

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Aside from its stunning camera features, the Vivo V5 Plus boasts a superior sound system, using the same Hi-Fi system of Vivo’s recent flagship models. Equipped with 4GB RAM, 64GB ROM, and a Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 processor, the new Vivo model is capable of performing multiple phone tasks in a speedy and efficient manner. For a unique touch, the phone runs on Vivo’s very own Funtouch 3.0 operating system, based on Android 6.0.

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The Vivo V5 Plus also features an updated fingerprint recognition technology, allowing users to unlock the phone in just 0.2 seconds. Its fast-charging feature is also expected to come in handy for most users. Style wise, the Vivo V5 Plus has a 5.5-inch large display, with an ultra-slim bezel technology, and is made of 5th generation Coring Gorilla glass with enhanced resistance. Finally, the V5 Plus has a dome-style, 1.8mm wide u-shaped antenna for better signal reception and at the same time, a more stylish exterior design.

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The bottomline: I am very impressed with the Vivo V5 Plus. The front and back cameras are above average, which will allow you to (over)share your life on all your social media platforms in style. Other things worth mentioning: its slim, sleek design, how easy it is to navigate and switch from different apps, and the affordable price. This phone gets a two thumbs up from this selfie-addict.

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For inquiries about Vivo V5 Plus, visit the Vivo website at vivoglobal.ph or check out their Facebook (facebook.com/VivoPhil), Instagram, and Twitter: @VivoPhil.

Why my family loves staying home

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Home sweet home. Really, nothing can beat relaxing at home, especially when it means I get to spend quality time with my family. It’s funny, back in my twenties I could not stand being at home. I had to go out all the time, meet up with my friends, travel and see the world. I always had so many things to do, so many places to go, and so many people to meet. That was until I finally settled down and had a baby, and now my life is all about staying in. These days I enjoy cooking for my family, watching a nice movie or series on Netflix, and snuggling in bed with my husband Carlos, our one-year old son Trisan and dog Lily. I guess it’s what you call domesticated bliss, and I can’t seem to get enough of it.

I think one of the main reasons why we love staying at home is because we’ve invested and set-up our living space. We’ve spent quite a bit to ensure we are relaxed and comfortable at home, and that includes upgrading to high speed internet and subscribing to the latest platforms for internet television, online shopping, and video streaming. Of course, you know I am talking about Roku Inc. for internet TV, Netflix for all the best movies and television series, Amazon for online shopping and iWantTV to catch my favorite Filipino shows and movies, which are all made possible with the help of PLDT Home.

Yes, every home needs fast internet service, and so far we’ve been so happy with PLDT Home’s service. Which is why I am so excited to announce the birth of the PLDT Smart Home! Now, what does this mean for the brand and for its subscribers? Well, from now on we can enjoy powerful connectivity and an integrated suite of innovative, reliable and family-friendly products and services. All our favorite platforms can now be accessed easily and seamlessly, including all the ones I’ve mentioned above.

So I attended the grand launch of PLDT Smart Home and found out what we can expect from the brand (I even typed it in my phone). With this new partnership we can expect: connectivity, peace of mind, entertainment, as well as convergence and innovation.

1.) Okay, so the connectivity provided by PLDT Smart Home is brought to us by the country’s most powerful broadband, PLDT Home FIBR, which delivers the Philippines’ first and fastest internet of up to 1 GBPS. This allows us to do high-speed browsing, streaming, uploading and downloading, things we do here at home on a regular basis.

2.) Peace of mind is for all of us parents, especially the working ones, who want to feel secure about the safety of their children when they have to be away. They can do this through PLDT Home’s Fam Cam, a home monitoring system; Smart Watch, a multi-functional kid-friendly gadget; and Family Zone, a cyber safety solution. These are, of course, all best used with the PLDT Home Telpad.

3.) Entertainment is from all the diverse and compelling content we get using PLDT Smart Home–from well-loved kid-friendly content like games and e-books (Disney through Telpad) and sports (Fox Sports, NBA Premium HD via Cignal) to gaming (Steam) and video-on-demand (iflix). Subscribers also enjoy the benefits of compact access to information and entertainment through the most powerful PC in a stick—the TVolution Stick. Adding to this entertainment suite are the partnerships with Netflix, iWantTV and Roku.

4.) Finally, PLDT Home has pioneered the convergence of wired and wireless connections through the data sharing feature which allows subscribers to seamlessly share data to pre-connected mobile accounts with leading wireless service provider Smart Communications, thus revolutionizing the way families share and enjoy their high-speed connection.

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If these don’t get you excited, I don’t know what will. I seriously cannot wait to get our home connected to PLDT Smart Home!

 

10 things I love about my Sony Handycam HDR-PJ675

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I have to admit, I’ve always preferred taking photos to shooting videos. Photos are much easier to edit, and you can compose photos faster than taking a video. Plus, photos are easier to control–you point the camera at a subject, make sure it’s focused and click away; while videos are more likely to be shaky, noisy and blurry if you’re not careful. Maybe that’s why I like Instagram more than Snapchat (or Instagram Stories), though I can definitely see that more and more people are shifting to videos now.

I mean, I can see why it is getting popular. Gadgets with video cameras, and video cameras themselves are becoming more affordable. You don’t need to save up for several months to buy one, and most are compatible with your phone, your tablet, laptop and computer. And, it is now easier to edit videos, thanks to the many apps and programs you can easily download (most of them are free, too).

Come to think of it, videos are pretty cool. I mean, if you watch a video of an old beach trip and browse through photos from the same trip, you will feel more nostalgic with the video. The video is more likely to capture the moment so you remember what you were feeling at the time the video was taken. Browsing thru photos can do that, but it wont bring back memories the way videos can.

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I recently discovered a love for taking videos when Sony sent me their new HDR-PJ675. To be honest, I haven’t held a camcorder since my college days (I remember, it was a Sony, too, and I used it for my Introduction to Organizational Video class, and later my thesis). My old camcorder was way bigger than the one I have now, and sooooo much more complicated to use. It used tape (HDV or high definition video on cassette tape) that required me to edit the old fashioned way: using VHS (I have a headache just thinking about it), so yes, it is definitely jurassic compared to the beauty I have now. The design is still very similar to the old one I had though, which is one of the things I like about it. It is like I’m using my old camcorder, but it is so much smarter, faster and simpler.

I am definitely no techie, but I know when I like a gadget (I use it all the time). I’ve had the Sony HDR-PJ675 for several weeks now and I am happy to report that I’ve taken A LOT of videos with it (mostly of Tristan and our trips). I like that it is a completely different gadget from my SLR camera and phone–it is really for taking videos, though I can also take great photos with it. I am still learning how to edit videos, but so far I have great material and its all thanks to this camcorder. I wanted to share the 10 things I love about this camera, which I hope will help you decide whether or not you need one in your life. Here are 10 reasons why you should buy a Sony HDR-PJ675:

1.) The camcorder has a nice compact design, and it is easy to use. Although it is said to be a few ounces heavier than the more basic models of Sony, I didn’t really notice the weight. This is definitely not an issue for me as it felt solid and quite stable, especially with the handstrap. It also has a USB 2.0 cable right in the handstrap which makes it easy to charge when you forget to bring your cable.

2.) It has a great LCD display. The camera has a 3.0-inch Clear Photo Plus LCD display, which makes it a joy to take videos and preview your shots. It is also touch screen, so there are just a few buttons next to the screen (not like my old camcorder which had so many confusing buttons).

3.) An awesome feature: it has a built-in LED projector. On the opposite side of the camera’s screen door is a small LED projector that allows you to watch videos at a reduced resolution of 640 x 360 at 25 lumens. This makes it super easy to view your videos without a television/monitor–all you need is a white wall. I tried it when I was at the beach with my family and they were so amazed with this feature.

4.) Videos are captured at 1080p/60p at 50 Mbps. I asked my husband about this (he is the most techie person I know) and he says it is pretty impressive. The videos are all high definition, and are awesome to watch if you have a nice television. Obviously I don’t know much about these things, but I saw it for myself when we connected it to our TV. The video quality is amazing! My shots are another story though, I still need to practice and have a long way to go before they look professional. Anyway, the videos are just for fun!

5.) It has the ideal format for easy editing. The format of this camcorder uses MP4, which apparently makes video editing super easy. I did my research and read it is the ideal formal to use if you want to see the best video quality possible. I am no director/video editor, but I definitely appreciate this feature.

6.) The camera has a sensor that makes it great for low light conditions. This is tried and tested. I used the camera to take night shots and the videos came out pretty great. The Sony HDR-PJ675 is equipped with a back-illuminated Exmor R CMOS sensor that helps you shoot in low light conditions.

7.) It has a feature that helps make your videos smooth/less shaky. The camera has a Balanced Optical SteadyShot image stabilization feature that makes sure your videos are smooth and steady even when you zoom all the way. You get 30x optical zoom which can optionally extend to 60x Clear Image Zoom, which is pretty good for a small camcorder.

8.) It takes great photos. This is a plus so I don’t need to bring out my SLR/phone when I shoot videos. The photos captured are 9.2-megapixels, and you can take stills while recording video.

9.) It has built-in 32 GB of internal memory. This is a big plus for me. Memory always wins! This is a huge upgrade from my old camcorder that used tape lol! Oh, and it has an SD card slot so you can take videos ALL DAY and you wont run out of memory.

10.) Transferring files/sharing is made easy. This camcorder has wireless capabilities! If you use NFC (Sony uses it in all of its smartphones and tablets), it is easy to connect wirelessly to the camera. All you have to do is download the free PlayMemories Mobile app to connect (it also works for iOS and Android). Also, it enables real-time streaming to the Ustream service–a new feature worth exploring.

 

My MIDEA Dryer

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We finally have a dryer!!! Carlos has been convincing me to get one for years, but I was so set in my ways I didn’t budge an inch. Of course, now that we have one and our lives are 10x more convenient, I can’t remember why the heck I was so stubborn. I was holding on to a way of life I was used to, but it was not at all efficient, and it really made our lives more difficult.

Now I need to explain what our laundry situation was before so you know what I am talking about. We have a washing machine that has a built-in spinner. The story with that is we were supposed to get one that also doubled as a dryer but I found it too expensive so we settled for the one with just the spinner. I obviously didn’t think things through, because hello, we needed a place to hang and dry the newly-washed clothes and our little townhouse didn’t have a big space to hang all our laundry! And so I bought these plastic mobile clothes dryers (the ones that folded) to hang the wet clothes and parked them in the biggest room in our house, which is the family/hobby room. I immediately knew I had made the wrong decision as soon as we set it up–having our wet clothes in the room was such an eyesore! Imagine, a perfectly nice space stacked with wet clothes, towels and bedsheets. It was seriously a waste of space! Plus, it was embarrassing to have our guests see our laundry displayed that way, all because I wanted to make tipid!

And so YAY for us because we now have a dryer and it is the complete opposite of everything I was afraid of. It is super efficient, affordable and OMG, our laundry smells sooooo good! The best part: I do not need to iron!!! I’ve been dying these past couple of years because of ironing–I HATE IRONING, and I had to endure all of that because I wanted to prove that I was right not to buy the dryer. Now I see how stubborn I can be! I am the WORST. Anyway, I totally admit I was wrong and I have no shame in sharing all of this because this dryer has made our lives easier and happier!

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Our wonderful dryer is called the MIDEA Front Load Dryer! Midea, of course, is a well-known brand and is one of the largest producers of major appliances in the world. I have used the dryer for a couple of weeks now, so I can really talk about its functions and features. So far, it has been ALL GOOD. I absolutely love this 6.5-kilogram clothes dryer, not just because it dries our laundry, but because it does it so well. Our laundry comes out super soft and clean, and it smells so good every time. Comparing it to our laundry situation before, this is 1000x better!

Okay, so before our clothes, towels and sheets were ALWAYS hard and wrinkly no matter how much fabric conditioner I used. This was such a mystery to me, because I followed all the laundry tips I found online and even tried advice from family and friends and it would come out the same! That’s why I needed to iron all the time, which was such a pain for me. And don’t get me started about the smell our clothes would get during rainy season. Musty and gross is all I can say. I don’t know how many times we had to repeat washing our clothes because they didn’t dry properly. It was a waste of time and energy, and I had to iron after which was another waste of electricity (see, having no drier was not tipid after all).

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What I love about this dryer is that it comes with a humidity sensor to ensure more accurate drying of clothes, and a temperature sensor to adjust the heat of the dryer drum to prevent clothes from being damaged. That was initially one of my fears, that our clothes would end up looking worn and damaged over time because of the dryer. But this one has a feature that totally protects it from overheating so we are safe in that area. It also has heat intensity and variable drying time selectors to enable users to customize the drying process. And as a safety feature, the heat switches off 15 minutes before the end of the drying process, so that clothes can be handled comfortably during retrieval.

I actually just folded Tristan’s clothes before writing this review and now I super enjoy doing it. Before I had to actually iron baby clothes, which was such a pain because they would always get so hard and wrinkly. And they were so difficult to iron because they are so small, which is why we used to have a mountain of dirty laundry all the time because none of us wanted to fold and iron. But now all our laundry is done, and they are super soft and mind you, LINT-FREE! They come out so soft you don’t need to iron them, and they smell so nice. I get so excited now every time the laundry is done because I love folding while the clothes are still warm.

More reasons to buy a Midea dryer: it comes with a worry-free three-year warranty on parts and labor, and a 10-year warranty on its motor and drum, an assurance that you will be using this dryer for many years to come. And really, no matter what season it is, Midea brings efficiency and convenience to laundry days, truly making it the perfect fit for our needs (I’m talking to you, newly weds and new-parents).

Midea’s front-loading washing machine and dryer are available in six kilogram-load models. For details about Midea’s front-loading washing machine and dryer and other household appliances, visit www.Midea.com.ph or  www.facebook.com/MideaPhilippines.

 

My Globe Platinum experience

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I don’t think I can live without my mobile phone. I mean really, if you think about it, in this day and age it is impossible to do without it. We use it to talk, text, and chat with our family and friends, listen to music, watch movies, play games, and document our every day lives. It has become so important that when we leave it at home, or worse–lose it, our world comes crashing down and we go through our day lost and dazed.

Of course, it wasn’t always like this. There was a time when no one had mobile phones and you really needed to wait for the person you’ll be meeting and actually be mindful of the time and exact place. And when you’ve been waiting for an hour or more, you start imagining scenarios of what could’ve happened, and whether that person got into a serious accident or died (yes this especially comes to mind when you’ve been waiting for more than an hour). I remember my only means of communication back then was through public pay phone, which meant I had to memorize telephone numbers to make a call (or carry around an address book). I had my pay phone prepaid card in my wallet all the time, and that was pretty much my lifeline in case of an emergency. What crazy times! Imagine, going through life without a mobile phone. But those were the days, and for the most part I remember always being annoyed when people were late because you have no clue where they are.

Fast forward to 2015 and this all sounds so jurassic. Our mobile phones are now like powerful mini computers that work triple time to get things done, whether its for work or play. We have so many means of communication to choose from, I usually forget if I’m talking to someone via text, email, What’s App, Viber, Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. I actually wish I had a master app that would combine all of these so I can manage and answer all at once without missing anything.

To keep up means having an intelligent phone and a service provider that could deliver and keep you connected. I mentioned in one of my earlier posts that I have since gotten a Globe Platinum line. Honestly, I never thought it would make a difference–I was so wrong. Being with Globe Platinum makes a world of difference. The service is outstanding, I actually have a Personal Relationship Manager who fixes everything I need via call or text. I even have the option of meeting one-on-one if I wanted (yes, they can go to your house). And any questions at all about my plan, what it includes, and having the option to add more services–it is all considered handled. I’ve never had this kind of experience before, and it feels amazing to be spoiled for a change.

Like when I got my Samsung Galaxy S6: I got this wonderful gadget a day before it was officially launched which made me feel oh so special. And get this, it was delivered to my house! No need to drive to a mall and go to the service center, it was dropped off at my doorstep, which was so convenient. Then, there were all these great perks that came with being a Globe Platinum subscriber, like free movie tickets, a VIP car service (via Volkswagen) to the launch of the Samsung Galaxy S6 event, discount vouchers and so much more. But the best thing about having a Globe Platinum plan is really the unlimited calls and texts to all networks and landlines, consumable roaming, worry-free mobile data, access to premium apps like Spotify Premium, NBA and HOOQ, and a Platinum Pack which includes Unli Facebook and Viber.

Since making the switch to a Platinum line, I can truly say I am treated like royalty. It feels just like making that jump from using a pay phone to a mobile phone–life is so much easier and convenient with Globe Platinum.

 

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