Exploring IconSiam

On a recent trip to Bangkok, my family and I decided to visit a new, highly-raved mall – IconSiam. IconSiam had its grand opening in November 2018 and has since attracted a vast number of tourists and locals alike. Being the largest mall in Bangkok, it boasts more than just shops but has many attractions within the mall itself.

The ground level hosts a cultural experience where I couldn’t help but be amazed at. One of the most known attractions in Bangkok is the floating market and this level had a floating market re-created to allow tourists to experience it.  The level was sectioned into various parts of Thailand, where each section showcased the unique crafts and food of the area.

To allow yourself to truly be able to ‘taste’ Thailand, common tables and chairs were also available where we were able to buy food from the different areas and have a feast. For such a grand mall like IconSiam, I was surprised that prices were kept pretty affordable (case in point – skewers were sold at 120 baht for 10).

Walking through the various stalls, we found ourselves near a staircase and it was only then where we realized that there was a mezzanine to the ground level. From the mezzanine, we were able to look across the entire area, and it truly felt like a cultural night market – a very cozy and pleasing one to be in.

Once we were done exploring the cultural area, we explored the rest of the building where we saw many flagship stores (including the first Apple store in Thailand) and a Porshe car showroom. Many famous restaurant chains (including Laem Chaeron and MK Live) are situated at the top floors of the mall. A waterfall, smaller but similar to the waterfall at Singapore Changi Airport’s Jewel, can also be found there.

For those looking for a new place to explore in Bangkok, this is definitely the ‘in’ thing for this season! The whole area is picturesque and definitely insta-worthy.

More information on how to get there can be found here.

MOFT – the trusty laptop stand

I received the MOFT laptop stand as a gift a couple of months back and have been using it since. What seemed to be a thin, spongy-like rectangle has proven to be a very useful one – and I’ve got to say, I am truly amazed by it.

moft

So what is a MOFT laptop stand? It essentially seems to be an origami-like structure that remains flat when not in use, well-stuck on the back of the laptop. I use a Macbook Pro 13 inch, and it rests nicely just below the hinge. This product is recommended for users of tablets/ laptops between 11.6” and 15.6” and can hold a machine of up to 8kg.

When utilised, this flat piece folds into a stand, resting comfortably on the table/surface. With two angles available, the lower angle provides just a slight tilt when utilising the keyboard while the higher angle provides a more distinct height. Do note, with the tilt comes a higher screen – a feature I appreciate a lot. The higher angle provides a raised screen for me, and allows me to rest my arms comfortably on my desk with a screen that is not too low, ensuring that I am not constantly straining my neck by looking down on to my computer screen.

Also, while this seems to be a really thin stand, it holds the weight of my laptop and even when I rest my wrists on my keyboard while typing, it has always remained firm.

So the verdict – would I recommend this to my friends and co-workers? Yes, I definitely will! It’s sleek, sits nicely on the back of my laptop, and has proven to be very trusty. The MOFT laptop stand comes in four colors, so I’m sure you’ll find one that you’ll like.

If you’d like to purchase one, you may do so here.

*this is not an affiliate link

Rewarding switch from iPhone 7 Plus to OnePlus 6T

sideviewHaving just moved from an iPhone 7 Plus to the OnePlus 6T, I have to say that the migration process was a difficult one because of the different operating systems. I attempted various methods – back-ups, free transfer software and even chat exports – but not all my data managed to be transferred over.

Aside from this porting hiccup, the shift to OnePlus 6T has been a rewarding one. The Shenzhen-made device is a gem and comes with features that I really like.

  1. Super fast: Without a bloated OS, the OnePlus 6T provides a quick boost when the phone needs a restart. I’m not a gamer but a fast phone always has its perks – downloading, uploading with media running concurrently in the background do not slow down the phone, nor does it heat up. These features were often caused my iPhone 7 Plus to lag.
  2. Sensitive sensors: As one who has played around with the OnePlus 6 as well, I have to say that while I miss the fingerprint at the back of the phone, the on-screen fingerprint sensor is pretty neat. This feature, coupled with the facial recognition feature, serves as an alternative when attempting to unlock the phone. Of course, remember to have a dry screen and finger when using the fingerprint feature as the sensor is a tad insensitive when in contact with water.
  3. Flexible modes: The reading mode provides an intuitive way of reading with colour and brightness adjustments. Making the screen black/white is much easier on the eyes when read content (especially content without pictures). Brightness will also be set to auto when this mode is activated making it gentler on the eyes in whatever environment you’re in.The gaming mode, when activated, can provide several features that may disrupt an ongoing game. Notifications, answering calls via speaker and the disabling of automatic brightness also can be set accordingly and these features can enhance your gaming experience further.
  4. Long battery life: The battery life of the phone is neat with a full charge (on high usage) lasting more than 24 hours (media playing and social media tracking) and is definitely one of the perks of this phone. The fast charger also charges the phone in about an hour from 0 to 100 percent.
    Backview.jpg
  5. Intuitive camera features: The rear camera serves as a useful camera, with features like the pro mode (provides guides on angling photos) and the night mode. The pro mode provides an opportunity for users to manually adjust the ISO, white balance and shutter speeds, which is useful for those who have an eye for photography. However, for an individual like me, the auto modes are sufficient and the pro mode is used mainly for photo angling guides.
    day photoThe night mode is something that has improved from the OnePlus 6 to OnePlus 6T but as an individual without steady hands on the camera, a slight movement causes an awfully blur image. A tip I’ve learnt is that there is a g-camera app somewhere out there which I may install someday – perhaps it will be a feature that raises the quality of my night photos!Night Photo.jpgAll in all, I’m glad to be back to the Android family and the OnePlus 6T has definitely boosted my Android experience.

 

Fitbit Blaze: Longer, nicer, better

Fitbit Blaze.jpgWith so many offerings in the market, have you ever wondered which smart fitness watch to purchase, or what features to look out in your search for a smart fitness watch?

A recent purchase of mine — the Fitbit Blaze — was the answer to my questions. But how did I end up purchasing it?

Here are some of the features that enticed me:

  1. Long battery life. Having owned a Garmin Vivosmart 2 and a Samsung Gear Fit 2, the Blaze offered a similar lifespan to the Garmin Vivosmart — a single charge could last for three to four days, and with active heart rate and sleep monitoring to boot. Really impressive! The Samsung Gear Fit 2 had a significantly shorter battery life which was a great hassle.
  2. A watch face. Many smaller bands do not have a watch face but I prefer having a watch face to my smart fitness watch as it can easily double up as a watch instead of just a band. The Fitbit app does not boast many watch faces but the few they have are sufficient for me. A change every month or two helps change up the watch’s look-and-feel.
  3. Notifications. – Paired with my iPhone 7 Plus, I receive notifications easily from the watch that allows me to glance at a preview instead of looking at my phone. Something I like about the watch is that it provides pretty subtle vibrations which are not repeated constantly if it comes from the same source (for example, WhatsApp messages from one chat does not keep appearing as multiple notifications on the phone).
  4. Heart rate monitoring. Fitbit is known for having good heart rate monitoring and while the light beams from the back of the tracker may be a bit bright at night (if watch is not worn properly), it provides constant heart rate monitoring once every five minutes. The app on the phone also shows the trend of my heart rate in a neat graph.
  5. Sleep tracking. The sleep tracking on both the Garmin Vivosmart 2 and Samsung Gear Fit 2 were not as accurate as I’d like (compared to the data captured on my iPhone) but the Fitbit Blaze provides good insights on my sleeping trend which helps me to keep track of my sleeping patterns. The occasional extra insights it provides is also a plus.
  6. Ability to pair with both iOS and Android devices. I had poor pairing experiences with my previous two devices as the Bluetooth pairing drained a lot of battery and pairing was not as constant as compared to the Fitbit blaze. In addition, the Samsung Gear Fit 2 did not pair well with the iPhone and constantly dropped connection. The Fitbit Blaze, however, has not failed me in my two months of usage and has constantly been paired with my phone. While the Fitbit Blaze is being charged, it still continues to be paired with my phone and my phone receives a notification whenever the Blaze is fully charged, allowing me to disconnect the charging and to continue using it.
  7. Exercise tracking. If there’s an area of improvement for the Blaze, it’s exercise tracking. This feature does not seem as seamless as it is supposed to be on my device. However, the workaround of manually tapping the watch and logging the exercise is not of much a hassle as it may sound. I appreciate the insights it provides while exercising.

All in all, I do enjoy the experience of using the Fitbit Blaze and I would definitely recommend it to others looking for a mid-range smart fitness tracker.

You can get the Fitbit Blaze at http://amzn.to/2GJRwXA.