Nicolas Magand on the internet

My name is Nicolas Magand and I live in Paris, France. I work as a social media and engagement editor at the Global Editors Network, a non-profit aimed at promoting innovation and sustainability in the news industry. Here I blog mostly about tech and media, but many other topics can face my enthusiasm.

Filtering by Tag: phone

My phone's homescreen, November 2018 edition

Since my homescreen has pretty much stayed the same in the last couple of months – despite a few changes of phones and Android versions 1  – I figured I would share what has been one of the most stable digital setup for me.

Sixteen apps are living on my homescreen: three rows of four, and the bottom four apps. The other apps are on other screens, sometimes grouped in folders, sometimes not. The bottom four obviously stay on every screen.

The bottom four are, from left to right: Signal (which double as my SMS app), WhatsApp (my main messaging app), Tidal, AntennaPod.

The "top twelve" are, in no particular order: Instapaper, Readably (RSS reader that syncs with Feedbin), The Guardian, Mediapart, DuckDuckGo (which doubles as my main browser), Dropbox Paper (as of today, my main writing/notes app), Twitter, Fastmail, VSCO, Lightroom CC (mostly to back up my photos, since I use VSCO to edit them on the phone), the preinstalled photo gallery app, and the phone's default camera app.

I could add Hello Weather to the list, since it has an ongoing notification displaying the weather forecast at all times, and also Fleksy, my favourite keyboard on Android 2 .

Since this setup is never quite finished, or balanced, we will see what it will look like in a few weeks. Here you can see what my homescreen looks like.


  1. In 2018 I used: EMUI (Huawei P9), Oxygen OS (OnePlus 5T), briefly Android One (Xiaomi Mi A1), and currently MIUI (Xiaomi Mi 8) ↩︎

  2. Mostly for the reasons that it has an option for maintaining the key buttons as capital letters, and it allows me to switch the font of the keys from Roboto to Helvetica, as you should. ↩︎︎

OnePlus reveals the OnePlus 6

After weeks and weeks of teases, leaks, rumors, the OnePlus 6 was unveiled earlier today. Marques Brownlee is part of the first batch of YouTubers that were able to do a "hands-on" video of the phone. A few notes on the successor of the OnePlus 5T, which is the phone I use every day:

  • Why does it have a glass back if wireless charging isn't available? Maybe it will come with the 6T? Glass is obviously more fragile than metal, ceramic, or plastic. It is heavier, and also more slippery. The only good reason to have a glass back is wireless charging. It may look more shiny, but most people will then use a case or a skin anyway.
  • Mandatory and welcome camera and chip upgrades, but nothing really new besides this glass back, water resistance, and yeah, the notch. I don't mind notches. What I do mind is having a notch while having a "chin" or bottom bezel: It makes them look a bit asymetrical. Notches obviously became a marketing feature, for the phone to be part of the iPhone X-class of phones in the eye of the potential buyer. So far, I think only Apple, Xiaomi, and Essential Phone really nailed the "bezel-less" design. Vivo's prototype sure looks interesting, but a prototype if far from becoming a device shipping to millions of customers in just a few months. Pretty sure every compagny has a prototype like this by now, they just decide not to show it.
  • Speaking of marketing, I am not a big fan of the marketing campaign for this phone: I really can't figure it out. Not a big fan either of the recent venture of OnePlus into the ugly world of cryptocrurrencies. I am sensible to what brands do outsides of the products I end up buying, because I am now limiting the numbers of brands I buy from, choosing them more carefully.
  • The usual six-month cycle update from OnePlus: improvements here and there, consistant build quality and software polish, fantastic value.

1. Update: Apparently the glass helps with network connectivity, allowing the device to reach faster 4G speeds. ↩︎ 

2. Thankfully there is a software feature to "disable" the notch, which makes the phone look much better IMHO. (Symetry!) ↩︎ 

3. The Mix 2 from Xiaomi I think had the best design of all, along with the Essential Phone. I considered it for a while before getting the 5T. The Mix 2S did not really live up to this particular design: the new camera placement ruined, guess what, the symetry. ↩︎ 

US intelligence mentions risks of buying Chinese phones, provides no evidence

Matthew Miller, writing for ZDNet

The US intelligence chiefs first referenced US government employees and state agencies in the briefing, but then they expanded concerns to private citizens and recommended we not use products from Huawei and ZTE. As a US military veteran and man who bleeds red, white, and blue, I'm willing to give up on such products — provided there is actual evidence of nefarious activity. So far, none has surfaced.

Regardless of what is happening with ZTE, Donald Trump, and the US right now (unsurprisingly it is a big mess), the last sentence of that quote is intriguing to say the least.

Maybe the evidence will come later. Maybe the US intelligence doesn't feel it needs to share this evidence with the public. Maybe they just don't have any. I wonder how it will impact brands like Lenovo (who owns Motorola), and OnePlus.

Check also

Whenever I watch Columbo, as you should, I take some screenshots.

Making lists is something on which I love to waste time; my—ever-changing—favourite songs list was a real challenge.

On the great Letterboxd, I keep a log of the movies I watch, rate them, sometimes review them. 

If you speak French, I highly recommend my friend Nabil's podcast: Art Oriented.

Click here if you want to go back to the contact page — Twitter me here / RSS me there.

Copyright © 2013–2018 Nicolas Magand