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December 13, 2017

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Your guide to shopping for men

Whether he has all he needs and more, or he simply struggles to think of anything, buying for men can be an arduous task.

It’s something that becomes more and more apparent at this time of year as people join the rush to find that perfect gift. At TORRO, we think we can help. Our range of stylish tech and lifestyle accessories includes plenty of high-quality choices that would be ideal to put under the tree this Christmas.

Wallets

The ever-popular TORRO Wallet, with its subtle contrasting stitching, is the ideal companion for those seeking style, elegance and practicality.

A wallet is one of the few things that most men will carry with them wherever they go - an accessory that never leaves their side. If you know someone whose wallet is faded, tattered or simply looks like it’s seen better days, might it be time to retire it in favour of a newer model?

With a choice between USA tan leather, black Italian leather and dark brown leather, TORRO has something for all tastes. The multitude of slots (both internal and external) means there’s room for all a man could need to bring along, and every wallet comes presented in a beautiful gift box.

Hat/scarf/gloves

The TORRO hat, scarf and gloves set makes a great gift idea for the man who wants to wrap up in style.

Interestingly, research shows that 46% of men are hoping to unwrap some form of clothing this Christmas compared to just 28% of women. The task of dressing well while keeping warm can be challenging to some, but this needs not be an issue.

Made from 100% premium wool, our hat, scarf and gloves set ticks all boxes. The smart, understated TORRO branding keeps the signature logo visible without being overbearing, while the special conductive material woven into each glove’s fingertip allows use of your phone without risking frostbitten fingers in this winter weather.

Messenger bags

Stylish, strong and versatile. TORRO’s messenger bags are designed for those seeking a premium quality product to protect their laptop or tablet on the move.

We all know how burdensome a daily commute can be when traversing busy towns and cities. For many people, it can be a real task to keep their laptops safe and protected at the same time. The result? You’ll likely have seen plenty of thick, unsightly bags built heavily to shield their contents at all costs.

A TORRO messenger bag, with its suede inner lining and carefully designed padding, will protect devices from knocks and bumps without compromising style. Available in black Napa leather and USA tan leather, these bags are a smart, sophisticated gift to give.

Wanting to browse even more gift ideas? Head to the TORRO website where we’ve put together a list of great products to consider. Happy shopping!

December 05, 2017

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In-store or Online – how is shopping changing?

The Christmas shopping period, unless you favour the last-minute panic approach, is currently firing on all cylinders. Anybody passing a shopping centre or high street even briefly in the last couple of weeks will have witnessed the frenzied atmosphere that comes with increased numbers of people joining the very rush they're trying to beat.

At times like these, you'd be forgiven for doubting the numerous reports warning of the high street's decline. The fact, however, is that online shopping has revolutionised the way people buy and shows no sign of loosening its grip.

The result? Despite how it often appears at this time of year, fewer and fewer people are visiting physical stores. The appeal of shopping from the comfort of your own home has stifled high street footfall.

Clearly, the momentum lies with online channels but is this really the best way? An argument can be made for both sides.

At TORRO Cases, our home in Newcastle upon Tyne, UK benefits from having easy access to one of the country's major shopping streets as well as Europe's largest shopping and leisure centre.

For those living in and around areas well served by such facilities, it can be hard to justify not doing your shopping this way.

Many people believe they can benefit from deals and promotions in-store that they wouldn't find online, and many more find it easier to have staff on hand to help should any questions arise. If you're buying for others and are unfamiliar with these products, this can be a real benefit. If a specific size of product is required, the ability to try things out for size is invaluable.

Of course, the continual rise of online shopping is also happening for good reason.

Again, it's impossible to overstate the appeal people find in being able to shop from the comfort of their own homes and have things delivered to their doorstep. The ease-factor is something that high streets or shopping centres just cannot match.

What's more, an online retailer doesn't have the costs of running a bricks-and-mortar store to cover. This means that, despite certain deals being in-store only, the cost of shopping online is largely cheaper. According to research, 53% of consumers believe they will always get a better deal online and nearly 70% of shoppers admit to doing so without shopping around first.

Price and convenience alone are enough to swing most people in the direction of their computer rather than their nearest shopping centre, but is there any way we can benefit from both?

The prominence of "showrooming" in consumer behaviour certainly suggests so. This describes the act of browsing in-store before turning around and buying online - an easy tactic to justify at this time of year given the hectic nature of Christmas shopping.

Whether buying for themselves or others, people need to be sure they're getting the right products and the right sizes. In this respect, there's no substitute for shopping in-store, but to then save money by buying online gives shoppers the best of both worlds.

The choice between in-store and online and how people shop is one of the things we find the most interesting about the Christmas shopping period.

We're preparing for it by offering some fantastic gift ideas here.

How are you preparing for yours?

November 29, 2017

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How can my smartphone live longer?

The Consumer Electronics Association suggests that the average smartphone life expectancy in 2015 was 4.7 years, while data from Kantar WorldPanel has found that the average US smartphone user is only willing to keep their device for just shy of two years before looking to upgrade.
At TORRO Cases, our business is to help you get the best out of your smartphone. So, hoping to keep a hold of your trusty gadget for much longer than the figures above? Here’s some tips that could see your smartphone going strong and looking like new for many years to come…


Protection from common causes of damage

Smashed and cracked smartphone screens appear to be a common sight if research into this issue is anything to go by.

Engadget, for example, has reported that between 50 and 55 per cent of all smartphone repairs will be a result of the screen being damaged. Furthermore, Motorola has found that 50 per cent of people globally have experienced a cracked smartphone screen at least once in their lives.

TORRO Cases offers trusty tempered glass screen protectors and premium, genuine leather cases that not only save your gadget’s screen from damage when dropped or mishandled, but also reduce the risk of chips appearing around your device or damage to the camera lens.

You shouldn’t worry that a case will reduce how eye-catching your phone is either, as there are designs available now that will help make your smartphone something you’re even prouder to carry. A stylish TORRO case, for instance, is designed with the aesthetics of your device in mind.


Extending battery life

Sometimes it isn’t physical damage that will cause you woes when it comes to your smartphone, as Battery University, a leading resource for information on batteries, has discovered.

According to the institute, manufacturers have stated that a smartphone’s lithium-ion battery is designed to have a lifespan of between 300 and 500 charging cycles. To put this into context, a charging cycle occurs each time you plug in your phone once the battery has dropped below 70 per cent.

There are techniques which heighten the possibility of your smartphone’s battery life being expanded though.

One tip is to try and keep Li-ion batteries at 50 per cent or more for as much time as possible. Refrain from charging them all the way to 100 per cent though, as fully recharging a battery regularly can shorten its lifespan. Instead, aim for a full zero to 100 per cent recharge of the battery around once a month — this will recalibrate the battery in a similar sense as restarting a computer.

It makes sense to get the most of your smartphone’s battery when it’s charged too, to increase the amount of time it takes to reach empty. Dimming the brightness of a smartphone’s screen, reducing how long the screen stays lit after receiving an input, switching off both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, not using the vibrate function and refraining from running apps in the background are all easy ways to boost a device’s battery life.


Avoiding dirt and debris

A study from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine revealed that 92 per cent of smartphones that the institute tested were found to be covered in bacteria — 16 per cent also had E.coli present!

Even though the screen protectors and cases mentioned earlier will help to prevent tiny particles of dust and crumbs from getting into the grooves and joints of your device, sometimes the cases themselves can show signs of daily usage after a while.

While plenty of device care kits are available, TORRO Cases offers a leather care kit that will effectively shield your genuine leather case from all grease, oils, dust and dirt that your phone will be exposed to during its lifetime. Not only will your phone stay as good as new, your TORRO case will also stay at its best for much longer while it protects its precious device.
November 15, 2017

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10 years of the iPhone – revolutionising our world

The release of the iPhone X marks a decade since the first of Apple's ground-breaking mobile devices hit the high street. Plenty catches the eye about the new gadget, not least the fact that its 5.8-inch Super Retina screen stretches right to the corners of the device, while Face ID heightens security and dual 12MP cameras ensure high-quality snaps can be taken wherever you are.

Before we get too far ahead of ourselves with everything that makes the iPhone X truly remarkable, we're aiming to celebrate ten years of the iPhone by taking a look at how Apple's devices forever changed the way we perceive mobile phones.

Constant internet access

In October 2016, research company, Statcounter tracked internet use across 2.5 million websites and found that more websites are now loaded on smartphones and tablets than on desktop computers.

The fact that 51.3% of all pages were loaded on mobile devices not only represented a huge increase from the less than 5% that were loaded as recently as 2010, but also showed that this was the first time that they had surpassed the corresponding figures recorded on desktop and laptop computers.

This research also came soon after Google had announced that searches on mobile had overtaken those carried out on desktop.

Steve Jobs summed it up best when he first unveiled the original iPhone, describing it as a "breakthrough Internet communications device". It helped make the Internet something that we could all access on the go.

Eliminating the need to carry multiple devices

The list of things to pack when heading out somewhere was once quite different to how it is today. If we wanted to capture great photos, we'd need to take a camera with us. An iPod, mp3 player or - if we're really going back in time - a Walkman was needed if we wanted some music. Not sure how to get to a destination? Then we had to make sure we didn't leave home without our trusty sat-nav.

Before we knew it, we were carrying a small collection of gadgets to make the most of our adventures. Not anymore though, as market research firm, KeyPoint Intelligence, found that 85% of digital photos are now taken on a phone - compared to 50% in 2011 - while GPS can be used on our devices to guide us wherever we'd like to go. When it comes to music, our devices hold all you could ever need or let you stream it through apps like Spotify and Apple Music.

The selfie trend

Whilst on the topic of our phones being used to take photos, can you imagine not having a phone with a front-facing camera? These features first began appearing on mobile devices in 2003, with the iPhone 4 being the first of Apple's smartphones to introduce them. Many believed that these cameras would be used primarily for video calls, but it wasn't long before people started to snap self-portraits and the selfie trend quickly took hold.

Selfies have had plenty of benefits across many markets. For example, the popularity of the cosmetics industry (it was the top-performing category in UK health and beauty, with sales up £100m from 2015-2017) is suggested to be the result of YouTube tutorials and the desire to share selfies on social media apps.

Chloe Humphreys-Page, a director at data analytics company IRI, also pointed out: "The impact of the so-called 'selfie generation' where people are spending disproportionately long periods of time studying their faces and making sure they are camera-ready is not just driving sales for certain cosmetics, but also boosting demand for ancillary products, like eyebrow kits, sponges, pencils, and brushes."

Location tracking

We've touched on GPS being a standard feature on mobile devices already, but the likes of Google Maps and Apple Maps offer so much more to iPhone users while they're on the go.

As of 2016, there were reportedly more than five billion searches or requests on Apple Maps each week. Each user gets access to features such as proactive suggestions (where the system predicts places people are most likely to go), up-to-date public transport information, and detailed indoor maps of a wide variety of locations across the globe.

With Google Maps, one of the most intriguing aspects was announced in 2016 when it was revealed that users would have the opportunity to become the system's editors. As a result, they can suggest new places or edit names of places to make them more accurate — improving the overall map network.

An abundance of apps

It wasn't too long ago that we had to make do with what came pre-loaded onto our mobile phones. This, of course, was in the days before the App Store. First appearing on the iPhone 3G in 2008, owners jumped at the chance boost their devices with a choice of around 500 additional apps.

Today, the App Store is home to more than two million apps. People spent around £23 billion within the virtual market in 2016 alone, downloading everything from social media apps and photo editing software to games, health and fitness hubs, and TV and movie streaming services.

The way we pay

Another app deserving of its own section is Apple Pay, as the mobile payments platform has transformed how we pay for goods and services during a typical day.

Launched in October 2014 while people were getting to grips with the iPhone 6, the app works by linking one of Apple's smartphones up to a compatible debit or credit card account and then allowing people to make contactless payments by simply scanning their device across a payment terminal supporting NFC technology.

As of 2016, there were over 12 million monthly users of Apply Pay in more than 15 countries, with transactions increasing by 500% between 2015 and 2016.

Keeping in touch

We've now discussed how the iPhone has changed the way we use the internet, take photos, get travel tips, stay entertained and pay for goods while we're out and about.

However, Apple have also changed the way that we use one of a mobile phone's most basic features - communicating with others.

We can message through the internet wherever we are in the world using WhatsApp, for instance, which removes the charges that used to befall those getting in touch with someone from another country. Video calling is easily accessible to all through FaceTime too, while the iPhone's threaded message interface allowed us to see all messages on just the single screen instead of having to come out of a text and open others just to keep track of a conversation.

The future

Having looked back at the multitude of ways in which the iPhone has revolutionised so many elements of our daily lives, the part we find most exciting is what's to come.

It's hard to predict exactly what mobile phones will offer us in the next 10 years, such is the ever-developing nature of the industry. The one thing we can be sure of is that the influence they have over our daily lives shows no sign of slowing.

November 08, 2017

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The Leather Debate

From the very first mobile phone case we produced, to today where the TORRO brand offers a wide range of tech and clothing accessories, leather has always been a staple of what we do. We take pride in using genuine leather to ensure our customers enjoy a premium quality product every time.

Of course, this may not be the same elsewhere in the market. Genuine leather has seen increasing competition from ‘faux’ synthetic leathers and many consumers struggle to distinguish between the two. So, what’s the difference?

Being a natural product is one of the biggest selling points of genuine leather, meaning each product made with genuine leather is slightly different in appearance and therefore unique to the owner. Over time, a TORRO case will “wear in” and become softer and more attractive. Conversely, a faux leather alternative is likely to deteriorate with age in a way that negatively affects the aesthetic appeal.

Durability is another aspect in which genuine leather excels. We know that your mobile phone is likely the most handled item you own and is subject to plenty of inherent dangers even through the most careful use. Oils, dust, rain, bumps and scrapes are all hard to avoid. A genuine leather TORRO case will do a great job of protecting a phone from the effects of rigorous daily use and cushioning it from any impacts.

The thin, synthetic nature of a faux leather product makes it far more susceptible to cracks and splits, and far less adept at keeping your device well protected. Whilst a faux leather case can undoubtedly be produced at a lower cost, this machine-produced artificiality comes at the expense of quality and durability.

At TORRO Cases, we are committed to using only the finest materials and premium leathers available. Each product we make is individually inspected to ensure the level of quality that has become synonymous with our brand.

We believe that our products do your device justice at a time when so many beautifully designed devices are hidden away in substandard, low quality cases.

With cases for iPhone, iPad, Samsung, HTC, Huawei and Google Pixel, there really is something for everybody. Find yours today.

October 31, 2017

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Wireless World

For decades, users of any form of technology have quietly accepted the need for wires as part and parcel of ownership. Whether it be for talking over the phone, using a computer or listening to music, people have accepted being tethered in a whole host of situations. These cables and cords are unsightly at best and downright impossible to untangle at worst.

In recent years, one of the most significant advancements has been the shift towards wireless technology. People’s desire to be liberated from being tethered and tangled has seen a huge amount of momentum behind these developments and it’s not hard to see why.

The ubiquity of Wi-Fi networks has succeeded the need for dial-up internet connection and this has had benefits for far more than your PC at home. Printers, games consoles, cameras, televisions and audio players have all reaped the benefits of Wi-Fi technology. Countless devices now rely on far fewer wires, while many are now completely wireless.

For most people, mobile phones represent the pinnacle of wireless technology in personal devices. Our phones go with us everywhere, giving us access to limitless information from our own pockets. The plethora of apps and solutions available has led some to claim that it’s even possible to run a business from a mobile phone alone. A bold claim, but one that really puts the spotlight on how far wireless technology has come in this field.

And yet, even with our mobiles phones letting us go anywhere and do anything, the issue of wires is one that refuses to go away. Despite the constant evolution of battery technology, the Achilles heel remains the need to plug in and charge once, sometimes twice a day.

When considering just how far mobile phones have come in the last couple of decades and how fast the market is moving every day, the need for these devices to spend so much time shackled to a wall seems at odds with how sophisticated they are in every other aspect.

It’s a problem that hasn’t gone unnoticed. Wireless charging has come on leaps and bounds in recent years with the aim of ridding our mobile phones of charger cables once and for all. The technology required to do this is by no means new, having been around since the days of Michael Faraday and Nikola Tesla, however early forays into this process for mobile phones only served to highlight the inefficiencies of the technology for everyday use.

Now, this is no longer the case. Wireless charging is widely considered the immediate future of powering your mobile phone, as more and more capable devices are released.

At TORRO Cases, we’re very excited by this. We love mobile technology and it’s our business to ensure you get the best out of owning your device. TORRO’s Wireless Charging Qi Power Bank enables you to take full advantage of this technology by removing the need for wires.

Simply place your device on the front of the unit in charge mode and your device will begin charging. No more wires, and it can be taken anywhere. What’s more, the charger even works while devices are in TORRO leather cases.

Experience the freedom of being truly wireless; take a look at TORRO’s Wireless Charging Qi Power Bank today.

 

September 06, 2017

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Why do I need to know about Tesla?

As a manufacturer of premium consumer items, a startup and being part of a team of entrepreneurs here at torrocases.co.uk, we always sit up and take notice and inspiration from companies that can make a significant dent in the norm.

 Tesla Motors to the passerby is that electric car firm. “Yeah I’ve heard of them” most in the UK will mutter. Unless you're an early adopter who like us has a keen eye on the tech horizon you probably won’t know a great deal more about Tesla or their enigmatic CEO Elon Musk. Tesla have built a car from the ground up with the S model. All electric with a range that makes an electric car a ‘proper car’ capable of hundreds of miles and a 0-60 which matches that of a supercar.

 Owning a Tesla has been described as ‘the car that improves after you’ve bought it’ this is due to the fact that like a smartphone the car will receive software updates that don't just update the instrument display panel but can impact on handling, acceleration and everyday use of the ‘device’ due to the nature of it being a giant lithium powered iPad on wheels! Interestingly the original Tesla roadster which boasted a large iPad style touchscreen control panel was actually released and engineered prior to the iPad even being released.

The reason you need to know about Tesla is that we are nearing the launch of the Tesla 3. The first affordable and practical Tesla aimed at the mass market. Musk introduced ‘free fuel’ in the USA at the Tesla Supercharging stations where Tesla owners can re-charge their vehicles in 20 minutes for 300 plus miles for free. For a fee of around $55 to save time, an F1 style pit stop can take place whereby machines will swap the battery with a fully charged battery to expedite the ‘fuelling’ process. These supercharging stations are now popping up around the UK, one being just 10 miles from the TORRO Cases HQ which is remarkable for us up in the North East of England. The best thing about these stations are that they champion the eco friendly ethos of the company by being solar powered.

Other features include the ability to summons the car with a smartphone, an automatic docking arm to connect the charger point a very space aged piece of technology presumably Space X inspired! If this has wetted your appetite for some additional tech in your life, as a TORRO cases customer we have no doubt this would be of interest to you. The CEO of Tesla, Elon Musk has been described as a cross between the methodical and technically brilliant Microsoft founder Bill Gates and Apple’s Steve Jobs by having the vision for something yet to be invented and knowing what the consumer would want before they even asked for it as well as meticulous attention to the design and user experience. I would also suggest there is a sprinkling of Google in there with a childlike science fiction desire to build into the design everything we dreamed of as children and believed would never happen in our lifetime.

This is underpinned by Musk’s Space X company, developing re-usable space rockets with the ultimate goal of return transport to Mars. Once again, question this as impossible and we would implore you to read further on Space X and begin to wake up to the impossible slowly becoming possible. The latest venture dreamed up by Musk is the Hyperloop as an alternative to high speed rail. The basis of the idea is a solar powered electric pulse powered tube, pushing pods at speeds of up to 800mph that can be driven in L.A and allowing you to drive out at the other end in San Fransisco after 20 minutes. Again green, efficient and innovative transport that people are actually trying to make happen.

Here at TORRO we apply this type of passion to our vision, making products that we want to use ourselves, using only the finest materials and applying cutting edge manufacturing technology to make accessories worthy of being used alongside technology being dreamt up by individuals like Musk. Steve Jobs famously once stated that it was almost like a ‘baton’ being passed from one generation of entrepreneurs to the next. Musk certainly seems to be an appropriate recipient, this article has not even touched upon his involvement in intent mapping directory technology and founding PayPal which articulates this point in itself. As a TORRO Cases customer we would hope that you will share this appreciation for innovation and even though it may be a product such as your iPad case or your money wallet, we want you to know it has been made by passionate entrepreneurs who care greatly about making a product the best it can be.

August 12, 2017

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New iPhone, iPhone 8, iPhone Pro or iPhone X? The final question!

iPhone 8?

Not long to go. The latest iteration of Apple's flagship device is almost upon us and as usual 'leaks' intended or otherwise have shown a glimpse into the new world of iPhone.

 

What to expect

What seems pretty clear is an nice edge to edge display tantamount to that of an iPhone 7 plus sitting in a unibody just a tad larger than the 7. We're expecting a new iPhone 7S and iPhone 7S Plus to accompany the new iPhone. It appears four front cameras for Face ID replacing touch ID and new mood recognition software. We also expect Apple to drop the white front bezel and the tiny proportion of the bezelled screen to be black to immerse itself with the screen. The 'home' button which disappeared in 2016's iPhone 7 will become a force touch graphic rear facing camera will fall in line with that of the iPad Pro.

The back panel will be glass in the below colours

iPhone 8 back glass

SCILAB -Silver grey 68.07 0.01 0.39 dark grey (more like black)12.78 0.21 1.73 Champagne Gold 60.9 61.8 48.91

TORRO Cases are already working hard behind the scenes to make premium leather cases to complement the aesthetics of this edge to edge display ready for Tim waving the new design in a couple of weeks time. The full range will be at torrocases.co.uk 

The big question!

The big question seems to be around name. iPhone 8 is the popular choice at the moment and apple are very quirky when it comes to nomenclature. The second iPhone was the iPhone 3G which some confused as 3rd gen. Apple have or had a tendency to link the naming with a feature, such as 3G being compatible with the 3G network. iPad Air being incredibly thin and light. This has changed slightly under the new regime and evidence of this is with the latest iPad being called, simply iPad.

Could we see the new iPhone being simply iPhone? Some suggest iPhone Pro as it is set to live alongside the 7S and 7S Plus and be an expensive Pro brother. This does fit with iPad and MacBook marketing but it doesn't sit well with us that they would want to charge premium dollar on a 7S Plus and then say it is the consumer version of a Pro iPhone unless they are considering repricing to be more competitive and regain more market share outside of China.

Another idea is iPhone X or iPhone 10 to support the 10th anniversary. I like the idea of X if this is a one off year and next years iPhone is to fall in line and become 8 but it all gets a little murky at this stage.

Coming soon

What we do know is it will be here very soon and TORRO will be covering the device with beautiful, premium leather styles. The iPhone will command a big price tag but the good news is that it is expected to be in full production with no previously reported production delays. Whatever they call it, i'm pretty excited!
August 10, 2017

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August 09, 2017

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iPad Pro (10.5") & Apple Pencil Sleeve now available!

We have launched our full range of iPad Pro (10.5") cases and thats not all we also have matching Apple Pencil sleeves which can be purchased separately.

Hidden magnets placed in the pencil sleeves spine allow smart connectivity to the front cover of our iPad Pro (10.5") cases.

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