Ah YouTube, how we love you and your never ending and ever expanding heaps of content. The beauty of YouTube is the almost complete freedom it offers creators. Aside from copyright infringement, illegal activities and pornography, you can put just about anything on YouTube. Which of course means you’ll find tons of poorly shot, unedited garbage but sometimes the poorly shot unedited footage goes viral with a candidness that you can’t script. But there’s also tons of YouTube Creators out there making professional level content. The scope and scale has grown tremendously, largely due in part to the revenue sharing of YouTube. YouTube has helped average people become millionaires. And the most amazing part of this is not the largess of Google, but the fact that without the fans, the audience, they wouldn’t make a dime. It’s like a true meritocracy where if your video has merit, it’ll get the views which in turn leads to revenue. And this allows creators to keep on creating and put more time, effort and resources into their content. Because the true point is that they’re part of a community that engages in topics through subscribing, liking/disliking, leaving comments and creating content. It’s a platform of freedom of expression and viewer power. It’s unique and it’s beautiful. And I’ve loved it for a long time, like many of you.

I subscribe to quite a few channels and honestly watch more YouTube than I do regular “TV”. As a viewer, I love that no matter what my interests are, there’s probably somebody out there making videos about it. One of the communities that I most enjoy, due to my huge inner geek, is the tech community. There’s tons of amazing content and some really entertaining creators. And it’s always growing. And now there’s a new channel out there. One that wants to add to the already huge library of quality tech videos. It’s a channel for unboxing videos, mobile tech reviews and rants and raves on the current technological field. It only has one video right now, but it’s got big dreams. And it’s brought to you by yours truly. That’s right, The Dukedom is YouTubing. So come check me out on YouTube and leave me a comment. Let’s build on the already amazing community of YouTube tech videos. Here’s a link to my first video: Blue Snowball Unboxing


Catch me on the interwebs, OnePlus 2

TLD OnePlus 2 review

Last month I was fortunate enough to be featured in Pacific Magazine’s The Body article. This month I was stoked to spend three hours with Heather Lake on Fox 5’s morning show and today, my friends, my geek is stoked to be on Jonathan Morrison’s YouTube video for the OnePlus2. It’s just a snapchat video asking what the feel in hand is like for one-handed operation, but still, I love mobile tech and the popularity of YouTube tech personalities fascinates me.

What is the OnePlus 2? It’s a smartphone. But it’s from a company trying to redefine the paradigm of the smartphone market. And when you look at the global market, there are some interesting differences not many in the United States are aware of. Namely the subsidized carrier programs.

Almost everyone who’s purchased a smartphone in the United States in the last decade know that if they sign a two-year contract with a carrier, they’ll be able to buy the latest and greatest flagship smartphone for around $200. This deal subsidizes the price of the smartphone from the full price of around $600-$750 to the substantially lower $200 price point because you are guaranteeing the carrier two years of monthly payments. This is unique to the United States. Should you want a new iPhone or Galaxy Swhatever while you’re living in the UK, France or Spain you’re paying the full price.

This is why many tech-heads loved the Google Nexus line (prior to the Nexus 6) because you could get near-top-of-the-line hardware, along with an untainted android experience, for around $300 without a contract. And for those that enjoy the latest and greatest but not the associated expense, they could upgrade yearly and even explore other carriers to their heart’s desire.

Unfortunately, the Google Nexus smartphone line really only gained popularity with android enthusiasts and tech-heads. Which is disappointing because it’s a program many would probably have taken advantage of had Google spent some money for marketing. And now that Google has abandoned (at least for now) the idea of offering a high-end device for an affordable price, that allows consumers to sever the two-year contract leash, another company has sought to fill that space.

The OnePlus 2 is a beautifully crafted device with attention paid to the things that matter the most to those of us who love mobile tech.

  • Build quality and design
  • High resolution display
  • Camera quality
  • Battery life
  • Unencumbered UI experience (no bloatware)
  • Affordability

So for those of us in the US, we can be contract free with an amazing device that let’s us choose our carriers at will. Globally, it allows anyone in the market for a smartphone to get a top of the line piece of hardware for budget phone prices.

What’s also interesting about the OnePlus 2 is that anyone can get one. Last year’s OnePlus 1 was available to purchase through special invite only, which was a head-scratcher. But I think the company was trying to create hype and ensure initial sales. When you’re not Samsung or Apple, you simply do not have the money and marketing might to get you noticed in a market that is increasingly offering more competitive products from more and more companies.

The OnePlus 1 was a well-reviewed gorgeous device. It launched with a few bugs, like many new smartphones, but the company was quick to respond and the future looks bright for the second iteration. We’ll see what some of the YouTube tech-heads have to say when they publish their full reviews but the initial impressions are promising and I’m still unbelievably stoked to be in one of my favorite reviewer’s videos!