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Reviews Written by
Keith Lawson (England)
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   

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EE Buzzard 2 Car Wi-Fi with 24GB PAYG 4GEE Data
EE Buzzard 2 Car Wi-Fi with 24GB PAYG 4GEE Data
Price: £99.99

3.0 out of 5 stars Some teething problems, 24 Mar. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Followed the instructions but was asked for a number for EE Wifi, to be found on the Sim card. Tried various codes and, in the end, it was the "phone" number (why not say so). So I was connected to the registration and did that. A couple of authorisation failed but eventually the Wi-Fi signal. Tried to use the internet and was referred back to the Top Up option. I understood it came ready with 2GB to use, but it appears that I also have to hand over some hard-earned. I wanted to trial it first, so at the moment nothing is happening while I find out more about the PAYG - e.g. does it rollover or expire monthly? How much would 2GB take me/is this going to be an expensive toy?
I have to complete a review in a deadline for Vine, so posting this now to allow me longer to test. I want to see how the signal works while travelling (the experience of mobile wifi on public transport is not a good example) as would like to use my tablet for in-journey entertainment, e.g. Spotify.


Airmax Anti Snoring Nasal Dilator
Airmax Anti Snoring Nasal Dilator
Price: £9.29

3.0 out of 5 stars Sorry, but not for me, 24 Mar. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I followed directions to break it in - wear it during the day to get used to it, before trying out at bedtime.
Wasn't easy to fit - noses and nostrils are not symmetrical so one side went in the other popped out. When I did succeed, I realised my breathing was easier and more air being inhaled. However, that resulted in dry nasal passages, which was not desirable.
Never quite forgot I had something in my nose and found it slightly uncomfortable.
Tried sleeping with it in but always found it on the pillow when I awoke. I am not a habitual snorer, so the ability to reduce/overcome was never put to the test properly. If I do need something, I may try the nasal strips that go over the nose rather than an insert


Senior Citizens Quad Band,Dual SIM,Large Keypad Mobile Phone - Network Unlocked
Senior Citizens Quad Band,Dual SIM,Large Keypad Mobile Phone - Network Unlocked
Offered by Satellite TV
Price: £39.95

2.0 out of 5 stars Ugh! Why do they make it hard work to understand, 20 Mar. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Length:: 8:27 Mins

If for nothing else, do watch the video for the sound effects - about 4 minutes in. I just filmed myself trying to use the instructions (second attempt), so it is a longish video

Because I really only want to phone and text, the array of phones on the market do not offer value for money. I have tried a couple at around £100 and found that my mansize fingers are too large for touch typing, so I was attracted to the keypad design on the Gusun. However, it has tried my patience with setting up and understanding how to use. It is a familiar problem with mobile phones that, until you purchase, whether on-line or from the High Street, you don't really know what you are getting until you use it. We need professional video demos, if we can't play with it in the shop!

The retailer says "The Menu structure is the same as all the old Nokia phones that were about in the 1980's and 1990's". If you have no experience of mobile phones or are only familiar with Touchscreen, the poorly translated instructions, with an appalling lack of a key diagram, have to be navigated. Below is content from an email to the retailer, who "thanks me for my feedback and will send it on to the manufacturer".

1 Why no diagram with a reference to each key, its name and function?- (page 4) "Left/right soft keys" would be immediately obvious if a diagram, not trial and error by the new user.

2. "Dial Key" pretty obvious that is the Green phone symbol. But first line of explanation "Answer the phone by pressing any dial keys". Come on! Singular then plural. What are the other dial keys? Do you mean "any of the number keys"? If so, say so; remove trial and error.

3 End key. No problem with this - the red key obviously.

4. Navigation keys. Oh, how a diagram of the phone layout would work so much better than leaving the new user to guess. It turns out to be a 4 way rocker switch, with no markings.

5. Alphanumeric keys. Get that. But "When dial a number, enter corresponding number" - gibberish! The rest of the description is not credible either. In good English please.

6 Earphone "The phone is inserted earphone" - I am getting the giggles now. BTW, where is the hole for an earphone jack (DIAGRAM!)?

7 Battery. "Straight stripe is more, the battery is more".

Then follows
2.1 Installing/Removing the battery. Wait a minute! Should there be an explanation here on how to access the insides of the phone, how to remove the cover? I had to retro think the replace cover instructions and carry out the operation in reverse. OH, here is the explanation now, a bit late. But I am able, on reflection, to see that the instructions are not printed in order. The intention was there but no one proof-read the instructions.

2.4 I am assuming that "T Flash" is another name for the memory card. Cannot find a slot for it at the top right of the Sim card, but there is a possible location below the Sim, with a silver guard (that falls out). Not having any success putting my memory card in that though.

Other questions, about use:
Why are my contacts not showing although I have inserted my Sim card?
Where do I get to change ringtones and volume? Had the option when I first switched on, but not able to find again. Nothing under "Settings" seems appropriate and I have been through the menu without success. My original changes have reverted to factory default.

Limited ringtones and very, very jangly. That may help someone with hearing difficulties but awful for those around them. (A sample on the video, just over 4 minutes in).

I wanted to reject and return but apparently that is not an option. The retailer is, I suspect, just an importer and this is just a product they sourced to shift in the UK.


Hausfrau
Hausfrau
by Jill Alexander Essbaum
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £10.49

3.0 out of 5 stars Intended for a female audience and a niche one at that, 19 Mar. 2015
This review is from: Hausfrau (Hardcover)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
The reader is provided with a voyeuristic insight into the life of Anna, an American expat living with her Swiss husband and 3 children in a suburb of Zurich. Anna's story flicks between her 3 roles - domestic Anna, analysed Anna, and lover Anna, told in competent prose (as befits an author who is an acclaimed poet).
Domestic Anna has nothing more to do than raise 3 children and attend language classes to help her assimilate into the Swiss community, although this is very unlikely to happen even if she were fluent, as Swiss culture is a big barrier to a girl raised in the USA.
Analysed Anna makes frequent visits to the Analyst, Doktor Messerli. These sessions are briefly covered and, as Anna does not disclose much to the Doktor, not a lot happens and nothing insightful (or entertaining) happens in these passages.
Lover Anna is a very obliging girl, sans enormous sex drive, who jumps into bed at the first request. She is not profligate with lovers. There was Stephen, who left her, and Archie then Karl.
The story moves along without much happening - walks around, visits the Doktor, meets her lover, attends language classes - and it goes on and on for page after page. The sex is neither pornographic or particularly erotic - it just is, and at infrequent intervals of description.
I don't understand why Amazon has this as "crime, thrillers" unless it feels adultery is a crime. It is almost like reading an articulate (in the sense of good English and grammar) diary of a bored housewife. Not a page turner. There is a denouement but rather unexciting except for a small frisson of how Anna will be treated - can't say more in case you do read the novel. Like a long-haul flight and the landing - "thank goodness, here at last".
As an afterthought - the poet in Jill Esbaum has not been overtaken by the author Jill - it's the love of language rather than the love of a story that dominates her writing. If she can think about a deeper plot and some highs and lows for her next book, she'll get recognition as a author of note.


Nespresso by KRUPS Pixie Clips Capsule Coffee Machine with Aeroccino, Black/Yellow Neon
Nespresso by KRUPS Pixie Clips Capsule Coffee Machine with Aeroccino, Black/Yellow Neon
Price: £179.99

5.0 out of 5 stars So excited. A great machine and great coffee, 1 Mar. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Length:: 2:41 Mins

Excepting filter and percolators this is my third coffee-maker and I love it. I gave a bad review a couple of years back to a rival, because their coffee was not good. This time, I am enthused by the quality and the quantity of choice. The Nespresso experience is a brilliant marketing tool - membership of their coffee club, just like a wine club. Creates that special feeling.
Normally, I am, as is my wife, a one-(good)cup-a-day person, but I am being tempted into 2s and sometimes 3 cups. It's no good making a brilliant machine then providing poor coffee (certainly not the case here), especially when the design rules out shopping around for coffee (I have seen that there are some non-Nestle coffee pods that fit this, but I haven't tried them yet). Pods average 29p each and on-line shopping can add £4.95 in p&p. But I am saving money on not going to cafes :-)

THE MACHINE:
So easy to use. After the initial set up (a couple of flushing runs with water alone) one fills the reservoir by either taking it to a tap, or leaving it attached and filling from a (filter) jug. Cup space, heightwise, allows for small/standard cups but not mugs. Switch on to set off the heater (and there is an auto-cut-off when left idle), pop in a pod, pull down the lever to close the pod drawer, and, with a cup under the nozzle, chose single or double size. This part is quite noisy. A lovely crema on the coffee. Opening the pod drawer allows the used pod to drop into a container. Removing the container and drip tray needs care, as you may splash your worktop. The pods are recyclable but not through your other home waste. There are methods to return them. The "footprint" of the machine is comparable to a toaster's. You can customise the side panels to a colour to fit in with any scheme. Here, I have yellow, but I can purchase others if I want. The original purchase allows you the first decision at no extra cost.

THE MILK MACHINE:
Does a great job of heating and foaming milk. The volume does for two small lattes or one big one. Can be use for hot or cold milk,and is easier, if you want a hot milk for bedtime, than a saucepan or microwave :-)
Only one concern - cleaning. As the container cannot be removed from the electrical connection (like a cordless kettle on a base on the mains, there is that female connector underneath), one has to be very careful to keep the bottom clear of water. I therefore rinse then wash and immediately dry with paper towels and put away from the sink.

LAST WORD: the price -
Just drink one less coffee in a big brand cafe weekly and you'll pay for this machine in a year


Fisher-Price Laugh and Learn Puppy
Fisher-Price Laugh and Learn Puppy
Offered by ACORNSTORE
Price: £15.69

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars All in all, a delightful item., 24 Feb. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Length:: 1:04 Mins

My granddaughter is 9 months old and she took to this straight away. Immediately fascinated by the glowing heart but almost instantly working the buttons in ear, hand and feet after a play demonstration. The video is me with the toy before I presented it to her - her parents prefer she isn't posted on-line. In itself, a bit large for easy clutch for her as a soft toy but that will change as she grows.
The toy is soft and cuddly and only the tummy activator requires some effort - the ear, hand and feet being quite easy to activate. The variety of sounds and music is good. Volume is adjustable.
All in all, a delightful item.


Hotties Soothing Backwrap Microwaveable Heat Wrap For The Relief Of Lower Back Pain - Blue
Hotties Soothing Backwrap Microwaveable Heat Wrap For The Relief Of Lower Back Pain - Blue
Price: £16.00

5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent for back ache, 23 Feb. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
So easy to use. Pop the heatpad in a microwave for the appropriate time (relative to power of machine); slip it into the backwrap and put it on.
Velcro fastening of straps means extremely adjustable (NB I have 36" waist and flattish tum - so limitations on bigger or smaller sizes).
Easing my lumbago nicely and acts as a lumbar support in my office chair when on the computer. Will buy again if it needs replacing in the future.
Love that it is mobile and I don't have to sit next to a power point. Although I wore it when dog walking and, boy, did I sweat :-)


Radiator Cover Radiator Cabinet Traditional Style MDF - Large - 1520mm x 815mm x 190mm
Radiator Cover Radiator Cabinet Traditional Style MDF - Large - 1520mm x 815mm x 190mm
Offered by Esc Europe Ltd
Price: £59.99

3.0 out of 5 stars You get what you pay for, 20 Feb. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
The purpose of covers is to hide the unsightly but functional radiator and make the room more attractive visually. For that reason, I wouldn't choose this one for my home, but it will suffice for people viewing the house for sale. As I am only buying to use for house dressing prior to selling a property, it serves its purpose at this price. Were I needing a cover in a house I was living in, I would spend for something more substantial and attractive.
A little bit flimsy - probably a good idea to use adhesive as well as the bolts. Instructions are not clear - illustrations poor and do not exactly match the pieces. Luckily I already had a cover so I knew what it should look like when assembled. I sprayed the grids, as they would be b*ggers to paint with a brush (would end up with globs of paint in the openings). Took a primer-undercoat and three top coats of white for an even finish - the dark mdf has a tendency to show through easily. The bevelled edges and the recessed grooves tend to expose texture of mdf and are harder to paint for a smooth look finish. Nails for fixing the grids in place had a tendency to bend.
When considering your budget, add in the cost of paint(s).


16 Blocks [DVD] [2006]
16 Blocks [DVD] [2006]
Dvd ~ Bruce Willis
Offered by DVDBayFBA
Price: £2.73

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars best avoided, 15 Feb. 2015
This review is from: 16 Blocks [DVD] [2006] (DVD)
Unbelievable plot. Acting is no great shakes. Very slow. Need subtitles to understand what Mos Def is saying. No big stunts.
Watch The Gauntlet instead and don't waste a couple of hours.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 13, 2015 12:34 PM GMT


Belkin Universal Folio Case for 7 inch Tablet - Black
Belkin Universal Folio Case for 7 inch Tablet - Black
Price: £24.99

2.0 out of 5 stars Do not like with my 7" tablet, 15 Feb. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Feels cumbersome. Does not initiate "sleep" when cover is closed. Cover can flip open if tablet dropped, reducing the protection.
The hinged part of the cover for a forward facing camera is a plus point.

Might be more effective with 8" tablets


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