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Updated 2017-05-24 23:25
Android Pay expected to come to Canada on May 31
Canadians have been waiting a long time for Android Pay, and it looks like the wait is almost up.Android Pay is set to come to Canada on May 31, according to internal documents received by MobileSyrup. Google made the announcement earlier this month at its annual developer conference, but neglected to spell out a specific date. If the leak is to be believed, Canadians should be able to use their Android phones to pay at contactless-enabled retailers starting early next month.It's not clear which banks and payment processing systems will support Android Pay, but like Apple Pay it will likely be Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Interac, with all five major banks on board from the beginning.Rumor has it that Android Pay took so long to come north of the border because Interac, Canada's de facto debit standard, required significant internal restructuring to support Google's payment system. A similar reason was given for Apple Pay's delay, which was more than a year after it l...
Google Photos for Android now offers easy archiving
Help eliminate the embarrassment of bad angles by archiving what you don't care for others to see.Launching Google Photos can become a practice in vulnerability. The app tends to showcase the last batch of pictures you took, and if any are just plain bad or unflattering, it can leave you feeling exposed.The latest update to Google Photos helps eliminate this kind of embarrassment. Discovered by 9to5Google, now you can archive photos from appearing on the main screen. Simply tap on the ability in the overflow menu, or select the ability from the navigation drawer. Archived photos will remain in your albums and search results, as well as on the Archive page — just as you would archive a batch of notes in Google Keep, for example.Easily archive any or all selfies in Google Photos.Granted, there are even more features coming to Google Photos in the near future — a majority of which were teased at Google I/O — but this will certainly help anyone looking to get ...
Android Pay now lets you pay with a PayPal account
The latest software update adds PayPal integration so that you can tap and swipe with your account as if it were cold, hard cash.A month after it was initially announced, Android Pay finally offers official support for PayPal integration. With the latest app update, you can now file in your PayPal account with the rest of your debit, credit, and loyalty cards to use wherever NFC-enabled wireless payments are accepted.The setup process is easy. When you're adding a new card to your virtual wallet inside the Android Pay app, tap Add other payment methods to select the PayPal option. Once it's logged in there, you'll be able to choose it as your payment method every time you fire up the app. PayPal will require that you input a "top up" amount, however, so be ready to put away about $10. You'll need your in-store PIN to set up the payment method, too.Why would you want to use PayPal to pay for things? Well, let's say you run a business, for instance, and that's where all of your...
Watch: Android execs talk about the future of Android
Android's Dave Burke, Stephanie Saad Cuthbertson, and Sameer Samat sat down for a chat on this week's All About Android.If you watch All About Android on on the TWiT network on Tuesday nights, you may have caught this week's interview with three of Android's top executives. The panel included Dave Burke, Vice President of Engineering for Android; Stephanie Saad Cuthbertson, Group Product Manager for Android; and Sameer Samat, Vice President of Product management for Android and Google Play.The trio gave a recap of Google I/O 2017, as well as a bit more context about some of the new technologies and announcements made during the keynote. For instance, much of the improvements made to Android O this time around are focused on making the platform stable for both developers and users alike. Here's how Cuthbertson explains it: We really focused on three core things. First was the security program we talked about, Play Protect, which is a larger extent exposing many things we were do...
The best tech deals that you don't want to miss out on
Our friends at Thrifter post some great deals every day, and here are the best ones available right now!From mobile phones to general tech, home goods and much more, the team at Thrifter is scouring the web every single day to find the best deals. Whether something hits a new all-time low, gets discounted for just a limited time, or has a new coupon code available for it, you won't want to miss out any of them. If you want to know about the deals as soon as they are happening, you'll want to follow Thrifter on Twitter, and sign up for the newsletter, because missing out on a great deal stinks!So, what are the best deals that you should be looking at right now? Well, let's take a look at them so you can see which ones are best for you!Amazon Echo Dot - $39.99 (Normally $49.99)Amazon's Echo Dot is a must-have for anyone looking to make their home smarter, and right now you can get one for $40 from a variety of retailers (including Amazon) for today only! This is a $10 savings...
Best Screen Protectors for Samsung Gear Fit 2
What's the best screen protector for Gear Fit 2?The Samsung Geart Fit 2 is a smart fitness tracker with a long display that can get scuffed and marked while you work out. If you'd like to keep your wearable's screen blemish-free, pick up one of these screen protectors.RinoGearSpectre ShieldIllumi AquaShieldRinoGearRinoGear's Shield screen protector for the Gear Fit 2 is as clear as they come, highly rated on Amazon, and so inexpensive that you can't afford not to get one — it's about $2 for an eight-pack.This military-grade film is self-healing and flexible TPU, which will keep your Gear Fit 2's screen scratch-free. If the screen protector starts to look a little worn, grab another from the eight-pack and easily install it using a convenient and simple wet-install method.See at AmazonSpectre ShieldSpectre Shield's screen protector allows for full touch sensitivity and won't cloud up your Gear Fit 2's display. Spectre Shield promises that your wearable w...
OnePlus 5 confirmed to have Snapdragon 835 processor, surprising nobody
We'll always take a proper confirmation.The upcoming OnePlus 5 will have a Snapdragon 835 processor, matching the top-end power offered by just about every other flagship launched in 2017. OnePlus CEO Pete Lau made a post on the OnePlus Forums to confirm everyone's suspicions on the processor choice, and go further in depth on performance aspirations for the OnePlus 5.Having a Snapdragon 835 is simply a spec, as we all know, and while it's something we love to point to when choosing a new phone it isn't nearly as important as the actual performance of the device it's in. Lau acknowledges this in his post: But choosing the right components is only the first step. You also have to optimize performance to create the best user experience. When we began developing the OnePlus 5, we envisioned a smartphone with flawlessly smooth performance.He goes on to explain that OnePlus is focusing on multiple performance and experience areas that start with the Snapdragon 835 and go up fro...
How to set up Samsung's Secure Folder on the Galaxy S8
Secure Folder makes it easy to keep your stuff where only you can get to it.Secure Folder is a component of Samsung Knox that gives you a "compartment" to hold apps and files that is separate from the rest of the phone. You don't need to create a new user or go through any hoops to get it up and running, and once you're all set up you can not only keep private files private but you can also use apps with a separate user login, or add apps that you only use through your secured profile.Secure Folder is one of those awesome things Samsung offers on every Galaxy S8 or (Galaxy S7 with Android 7.0) so you don't have to go looking for an app that tries to do the same thing.As mentioned, it's easy to get started.Set up Secure FolderSecure Folder uses your Samsung account, so you'll need to have that setup and running. If you downloaded anything from Samsung Apps you're already set up. If not, the easiest way to do it is to open Samsung Apps and check out some icon themes. You'll...
Video: Google's crazy experiments from I/O 2017
Google I/O is about more than just keynote presentations, big announcements, developer sessions and sunburn. Each year, Google also has a tent full of wacky computational "experiments" based around some of its most important products, platforms and technologies, and I/O 2017 was no exception. This year's "Experiments" tent combined everything from machine vision, with an AI-powered electronica robot, to VR ping-pong and machine learning picture recognition games.As the show was winding down late last week, we stopped by the tent in question to capture these experiments in all their glory. Check out our video feature above to see how both professional and amateur developers are using Google's technology to do fun, crazy and interesting things! Android Central on YouTubeMore on Google I/O 2017 experimentsAll the big announcements from I/O 2017...
Should you buy the all new Amazon Fire 7?
Is Amazon's newest budget tablet worth your $50?The online giant is calling it the "all new Fire 7," which is perhaps more a marketing thing than actual hard truth when it comes to the tablet in question. It is new, and it is improved, but marketing hype is still marketing hype.So, let's actually break down what is new and whether this latest budget tablet is worth your time.See at AmazonWhat's actually new?There are subtle differences in the hardware on the all new Fire 7, but ones that will make for a solid improvement in user experience. The first of these is that it now supports the microSDXC standard which means you can now expand your internal storage by up to 256GB based on currently available cards.The next important improvement is the inclusion of dual-band Wi-Fi, which means you're now able to use the Fire 7 on the 5GHz band. Traditionally these give you better speeds over your local network, and it's a notable upgrade over the single-band available in the old...
Get great deals on Logitech gear today only
Our friends at Thrifter are back again, this time with great deals on Logitech gear that won't last until the end of the day!Amazon's Gold Box Deal of the Day features a selection of Logitech PC gear. Pretty much anything you get from Logitech is going to be pretty high quality and these are all good prices, but there's a couple of items that stand out as a worthy investment here:Logitech MX Anywhere 2 Wireless Mouse – $48 (from $60)This is a match for the lowest price ever on this wireless mouse. The Anywhere mouse uses Logitech's Darkfield laser technology to allow it to track on any surface, even glass. It can connect to whatever device you need it to with the included receiver or through Bluetooth. Plus, this new generation uses a micro-USB cable and built-in battery to keep it charged so you don't waste money on batteries.Logitech Z523 Speaker System with Subwoofer – $50 (from $75)The only audio system in the listing for today, the Z523 is an inexpensive an...
Chromebook Gift Guide: What you should gift for Dads and Grads
Chromebooks make great gifts and we're here to help you decide the best one to buy for the dad or grad in your life.Update May 2017: We updated things to help you pick what's right for Father's Day and graduation gifts.It's that time of year when we set aside a day for our dads and watch the next generation leave school and prepare for their future. That means we're looking for great gifts to celebrate! Good thing there is something that's easy to find, won't hurt your wallet and is something that anyone would love — a new Chromebook!They come in plenty of sizes, styles and capabilities, so you'll be able to pick the perfect model no matter who you're buying for. And what you're giving — the full internet experience with the Chrome browser, thousands of apps and extensions that go with it and a secure system that is quick and almost maintenance free. Of course, you also get Google Play and over 1,000,000 Android applications on select models.Since different people...
Grab three of these USB-C adapters for just $7 right now!
Our friends at Thrifter are back again, this time with a deal to make your transition to USB-C even easier!Aukey is currently offering a three-pack of its Micro-USB to USB-C adapters for just $7 with coupon code AUKUSBC2, a savings of $3. With these adapters, you can turn those old cables you have laying around into something that can charge your new Samsung Galaxy S8, LG G6, Google Pixel or other compatible phone. The adapters are quite small so you could easily fit them in your pocket or maybe even your wallet, and always have one with you so you are never without a cable to charge up with.Odds are this deal won't hang around too long, so be sure to act quickly if you are interested. Don't get stuck with only old cables around and a dead battery! Grab these adapters now and thank yourself later. Be sure to also check out Aukey's Quick Charge 2.0 wall charger for just $6 with coupon code EV96DTG4 for a great way to charge multiple devices quickly from a single outlet!See at Am...
Everything you need to know about WebVR
Your web browser is also a VR platform.Most conversations about VR surround specific headsets, like Oculus Rift or Google Daydream. WebVR, as the name suggests, is bringing immersive experiences to anything with a browser. It's a lot of fun to explore, and something anyone can try out without a lot of set up or additional hardware.Lets get to know WebVR together!Read more at VR Heads!...
Become an IT Security professional for $29
The world of IT Security is ever-changing and fast-paced and with increased worries over black hat hackers, the demand for IT security professionals is increasing as well. Whether it's important credit card information or private data from a company, hacking is a real problem that is best fended off by people who hack themselves. If you're interested in getting into this field, you have probably wondered how do you even begin to understand the certifications required to step into this field?Become an IT Security professional for $29! Learn moreThere are three major certifications that IT Security employers are looking for: CompTIA Security+, Ethical Hacker Certification, and Cisco's CCNA Security. With all of these under your belt, you'd be qualified to break into this exciting field.Allow us to introduce you to the 2017 IT Security & Ethical Hacking Certification Training by the IT experts at LearnSmart.Right now, you can start your certification training in all thre...
Best Android Phones Over $700
Update, May 2017: Article changed to better reflect a listing of phones costing over $700, rather than under $900. Galaxy S8 moves to the top spot, dropping the Pixel XL one position. The LG V20 and Galaxy S7 edge are replaced on the list.Best overallBest runner-upBest tough phoneBest overallSamsung Galaxy S8See at VerizonSee at AT&TSee at T-MobileSee at SprintSee at Best BuyThe Galaxy S8 has futuristic hardware with tiny bezels that give it a big screen in a small body, but inside it still offers everything you want: a high-end processor, lots of storage, an SD card slot, full waterproofing and a top-end camera.Yes the fingerprint sensor is slightly awkward to use, but the GS8's iris scanner is dramatically improved to make up for it. And it only takes one look at the industry-leading display to start to forgive Samsung's decisions on the back.Its software can be a little overwhelming to novices, but you can't argue that Samsung continues to pack in hundre...
Samsung's new Gear 360 available tomorrow for way cheaper than the original
You can pick up a new Gear 360 starting May 25!The biggest hurdle for most people when it comes to getting into 360-degree photography is price. Cheap 360 cameras don't take good photos, and good 360-degree cameras aren't cheap. Samsung is going to put an end to this with its new Gear 360 camera, which will be launching in stores and online just about everywhere for $229.That price undercuts the original Gear 360 pricing by over $100, and makes the next best camera in the lineup considerably more expensive. It's also going to be available in way more places, with Best Buy, Amazon, and all of the major U.S. carriers planning to carry the camera.On top of great pricing and thoroughly expanded availability, Samsung is firing up a special promotion with the new Gear 360 for those who haven't yet picked up the Galaxy S8. If you pick up the phone between May 25 and June 19, you'll be able to score a Gear 360 for $49 through a Samsung Store promotion.This is a huge win for Samsung, ...
OnePlus 5: CEO hints at fingerprint on the front
Not the back. Or the side. Or under the screen.OnePlus has made an artform of the "slow trickle" of info around new, unannounced smartphones. The most recent nugget of info comes from the company's CEO, Pete Lau, who recently appeared to confirm that the OnePlus 5 will feature a front-facing fingerprint scanner, like its predecessors. First reported by GizChina, the remark came in Lau's answer to a fan question on Chinese social media platform Weibo. Fingerprint on the front means the OnePlus 5 will probably be a traditional 16:9 slab.Sure, everyone has their own preference when it comes to fingerprint scanner placement. But if Lau's comments are accurate — and there's no reason to doubt them — we can draw a few conclusions. First off, it's likely that the OnePlus 5 will use a traditional 16:9 aspect ratio, as opposed to the taller form factors championed by Samsung and LG. (An 18:9 display plus front-facing fingerprint would likely lead to an unreasonably tall ...
Tell Alexa how much money you saved buying the Echo Dot for $40 today!
Our friends at Thrifter are back again, this time with a rare price drop on the Echo Dot for one day only!!Amazon's Echo Dot is a must-have for anyone looking to make their home smarter, and right now you can get one for $40 from a variety of retailers (including Amazon) for today only! This is a $10 savings and brings it back down to the lowest price we've seen on a new condition unit. The Echo Dot is a hands-free voice-controlled device that can play music, provide information, read back the news and control select smart home devices in your home or office. Thanks to its far-field microphones, it can actually hear you from across the room and in noisy environments.The Echo Dot is on sale today at:AmazonBest Buy (save an additional $20 when buying 3)StaplesYou can also score its big brother, the Amazon Echo, as a refurbished unit for just $134.99 right now. Amazon has been adding new features to the Echo lineup regularly, so it will continue to improve and get smarter over...
Samsung Galaxy S9 apparently in development, because of course it is
Galaxy S9 and S9+ development reportedly 3-4 months ahead of previous devices.Once again, your shiny new Samsung Galaxy S8 is OLD NEWS. According to reports from the Korean press, development of the Galaxy S9 and S9+ is apparently already well underway, under the codenames "Star" and "Star 2" respectively. That's entirely unsurprinsing in itself — you'd certainly expect next year's phone to be in the works by now, as we approach the midway point of 2017. The main takeaway: GS9 development could be further along than previous phones in previous years.But what's supposedly different this time around, according to The Bell, is that the production schedule for the Galaxy S9 is reportedly some three to four months ahead of previous flagships. According to the outlet's sources, that means the GS9 could enter mass production before the end of 2017, which could point to an earlier launch window in 2018 — which in turn could make a public unveiling at Mobile World Congr...
Icon Pack Studio is a neat icon mask maker with a bad name
Smart Launcher makes one hell of a launcher, and it just stepped up its theming game in a big, big way.Smart Launcher released Icon Pack Studio last week, giving ordinary users with zero experience the ability to create icon masks that will evenly and beautifully apply to all of the apps on their home screen and app drawer. Even better, the way Smart Launcher made this move lets its victory come to other launchers as well, giving users a win and giving Smart Launcher a new way to try and coax users away from their long-time launcher.I just wish they'd given it a name that wasn't a lie.See, icon packs like Whicons, Glim, and S_Eight leave gaps. There are millions of apps in Google Play, to say nothing of third-party app stores, and it's impossible for icon makers to make specialized icons for them all in their packs. That's why we have icon masks, to help smooth over the gaps an icon pack can leave in your app drawer. Some masks are better than others, depending on how well th...
Samsung Galaxy S8 Active leaves behind the physical navigation buttons
An active Galaxy that doesn't really look like it.Leaks don't get much more verifiable than this. The Wireless Power Consortium —the company in charge of the Qi standard — has posted what appears to be the front of the Galaxy S8 Active, a likely-AT&T exclusive that will debut in the next few weeks.Though the phone shares the same basic design as the Galaxy S8, it doesn't have the (fragile) curved glass, and a slightly larger side bezel buttresses the 5.8-inch screen, reinforced at the corners to protect against impact.What's perhaps most interesting about the design is what it lacks, the three physical navigation buttons that have been a mainstay of the Active line for years. Of course, to keep with the new 18.5:9 aspect ratio and general Galaxy S8 design language, the decision is not surprising, but it may come as a disappointment to those holding out hope that Samsung would maintain at least one flagship with physical keys.As with previous Active versions of...
You'll probably want a case for your Galaxy S8 after seeing these photos
Let this forum member's sad story encourage you to buy a case for your Galaxy S8.The Galaxy S8 series, beautiful as it may be, is covered in glass. And while Samsung is using Gorilla Glass 5 on both sides to protect against scratches, with enough surface area, and an impact hard enough to cause damage, the substrate can crack and break. Such is glass.One of our writers, Matt Brown, already went through this with his five day-old S8, but now forum member jfreeusa has some brutal photos of a new Galaxy S8 with an extensive network of cracks after a fall. #mn_oembed_c:before { display: none; } #mn_oembed_c { display: table; width: 100%; max-width: 700px; box-sizing: border-box; cursor: pointer; position: relative; background: #dee9eb; padding: 35px; left: 35px; margin: 0 auto 0 auto; border-radius: 4px; border: 1px solid #dbe1e4; font-family: 'Fira Sans', sans-serif; line-height: 1.5; -webkit-font-smoothing: ant...
Comcast's Xfinity Mobile wireless service is now available in the U.S.
Comcast's wireless service is now available to Xfinity customers.In early April, Comcast quietly launched its own mobile network, aptly dubbed Xfinity Mobile. The service offers an unlimited data plan or you can pay by the gigabyte. It's only available to those with existing Comcast internet service, however.Xfinity Mobile began its nationwide rollout this week, with availability for existing Xfinity internet customers. It's typically $65 a month for unlimited data access, but Comcast is currently offering a promotion at $45 a month. Speeds will be reduced after 20GB, however, which might not make it the best option for large family plans. The alternative is to pay-as-you-go at the $12 per gigabyte rate, but that option becomes quite pricey if you're using more than four gigs a month. The subscription also garners you access to Verizon Wireless's network, as well as access to Comcast's Wi-Fi hotspots in the U.S. and its TV streaming service.All this this not without its caveats...
Top Kodi Tips and Tricks
Get the most out of your Kodi experience on Android!Kodi is king when it comes to media centers.Whether you've just installed Kodi from the Google Play Store on your Android phone or have it set up on an Android TV box such as the NVIDIA Shield, we've got some tips and tricks to help you get the most out of your Kodi experience.It's all about the add-onsKodi is a great option for organizing and accessing all your media: from photos and music, to your favorite movies and videos. However, the really interesting stuff comes when you start diving into the addons.There's a bustling community of developers who have created a whole slew of add-ons for Kodi which allow you to stream content from all sorts of places. You'll find add-ons for popular sites like YouTube, twitch.tv and much more in the repository included within Kodi — but that's just the tip of the iceberg.Independent parties have created their own repositories of Kodi add-ons that you may be interested in. S...
Get £25 off the Amazon Echo right now in the UK!
If you've got a hankering for an Amazon Echo but you were waiting for a deal, now would be the time to bite. For a "limited time" Amazon UK has taken £25 off the price of the big Echo, bringing it down to £124.99.It's valid on both colors and is a decent chunk off the usual £150 asking price. Though predictably Amazon isn't saying how limited the limited time is, so it's probably wise to jump on it sooner rather than later.The bigger Echo has the advantage of being a much better speaker than the Echo Dot and it's actually pretty great for listening to music through as well as engaging in all the connected goodness Alexa brings.See at AmazonAmazon EchoAmazon Echo reviewEcho Dot reviewTop Echo Tips & TricksTap, Echo or Dot: The ultimate Alexa questionAmazon Echo vs. Google HomeGet the latest Alexa newsAmazon*//*-->*//*-->*/...
Protect your Galaxy S7 for $20 with this great case
Looking for a protective Galaxy S7 case that doesn’t add a ton of bulk or make it look ugly? If so, check out Seidio’s Surface case for a slide-in case that offers great protection for just $20 today....
Farming Simulator 18 heading to Android on June 6
As is now customary, the new version of Farming Simulator for mobile drops in alternate years to the desktop and console. Farming Simulator 18 is now official and will arrive on Android alongside iOS, PS Vita and Nintendo 3DS on June 6. Become a modern farmer in Farming Simulator 18! Immerse yourself in a new, engaging Southern US environment, harvesting wheat, canola, corn, sugar beet, potatoes and, for the first time, sunflowers. Take care of your livestock with new animals to breed and transport, as pigs are now joining the indispensable sheep and cows!As ever Farming Simulator comes packed to the rafters with licensing, with a wide range of meticulously recreated machinery making its way into the game from the top names in farming machinery. For the first time, too, legendary brands Fendt and Massey Ferguson are included.Farming Simulator is one of those games that sounds incredibly dull until you actually play it. Then you get completely sucked in. Expect nothing le...
LeEco is set to lay off over 85% of its U.S. workforce [Update]
LeEco is getting ready to lay off a majority of its U.S. workforce following exec reshuffle.Update: LeEco announced that it will lay off 325 employees in the U.S., citing a lack of funding. The company will now focus on delivering content to Chinese-speaking households in the U.S. In a statement, LeEco said: The capital we do have will have to be highly focused resulting in a significant restructuring and streamlining of our business, operations and workforce. This will impact approximately 325 people in the U.S. Our goal is to continue to gain momentum. In the past few months, we have gained a large foothold in Chinese-speaking households in the U.S. by offering tailor-made products and content for this community. We believe this provides us an opportunity to build on our strengths and grow from there.Original story follows:LeEco's debut in the U.S. didn't go according to plan, and it looks like the company is gearing up for a round of massive layoffs. Earlier this wee...
Xiaomi Mi Max 2 may land in India on July 23
Xiaomi's supersized Mi Max 2 could make its debut in India on July 23.The Mi Max turned out to be one of Xiaomi's best phones of 2016, and the company is launching its successor in China tomorrow. According to a tweet sent out by Xiaomi India head Manu Kumar Jain, the Mi Max 2 is coming to India on July 23:23 Jan: 250K+ #RedmiNote4. 23 Mar: 250K+ #Redmi4A. 23 May: 250K+ #Redmi4 🤘Any suggestions on what we should do on 23rd July? 🤔😎@XiaomiIndia— Manu Kumar Jain (@manukumarjain) May 24, 2017Jain doesn't reference the Mi Max 2 by name, but the launch window lines up with what we've seen in the past. The latest rumors suggest the Mi Max 2 will retain a 6.44-inch Full HD display, with the phone powered by a Snapdragon 626 SoC paired with 4GB of RAM, 64GB storage, 12MP camera, 5MP front camera, and a 5000mAh battery. Xiaomi is also rumored to launch a variant powered by the Snapdragon 660.We'll have all the details on the Mi Max 2 tomorrow. As for the ...
Best Phones in India
Update, May 2017: The Galaxy S8+ is now our top pick for the best phone in India. The Pixel is still a great phone, but the S8+ offers much more for its asking price.Best OverallAlso greatBest mid-range optionBest budget phoneBest value for moneyBest entry-level phoneBest overallSamsung Galaxy S8+See at FlipkartThe Galaxy S8+ is Samsung's most ambitious phone yet. Its defining feature — the bezel-less Infinity Display — is nothing short of incredible. The glass panel curves on all sides and merges seamlessly with the metal frame, creating a design aesthetic that's unmatched.The lack of bezels has allowed Samsung to fit a 6.2-inch display in a smaller chassis, making it easier to use. The QHD Super AMOLED panel sets the bar for smartphone displays, offering deep blacks and sharp colors.Samsung hasn't cut corners anywhere else — the 12MP camera is class-leading in its own right, the phone retains its IP68 dust and water resistance, you get 64GB o...
You can now use Google Opinion Rewards to score Play Store credit in India, Singapore, and Turkey
Get Play Store credit by taking part in surveys.Google Opinion Rewards is now live in India, Singapore, and Turkey, allowing customers from these markets to participate in surveys to get Play Store credit.In the U.S., customers get up to $1 in credit for a survey, and in India the payout starts from ₹10. That's what I received for the survey I completed, but the figure should change based on the survey.The launch is a win-win as it gives customers the ability to pay for digital content they normally wouldn't (piracy is rampant in India). The platform is cost-effective for advertisers as well, and gives them valuable feedback from millions of users from various socioeconomic backgrounds.Eager to get started? Download the app from the Play Store, select your Google account, and answer a few basic questions about yourself.Let us know how you're liking Google Opinion Rewards in the comments....
Motorola's first phone with dual rear cameras is the Moto G5S Plus
Motorola is bringing dual rear cameras to the mid-range segment.It looks like dual rear cameras will be the defining trend this year. We've already seen Xiaomi roll out the feature in the Mi 6, and OnePlus is rumored to offer a dual-camera setup in the OnePlus 5. Motorola is jumping on the bandwagon, with the Moto G5S Plus set to become the first phone from the manufacturer to sport two cameras at the back.Leaked renders by Gear India reveal a desing that's identical to what we've seen yesterday with the Moto G5S, albeit with two cameras at the back. We don't know if Motorola will resort to a similar implementation as Huawei — offering a monochrome sensor paired with an RGB lens — or if it'll use the secondary sensor as a telephoto lens like the Mi 6.The Moto G5S Plus is said to offer a 5.5-inch Full HD display, and an all-metallic chassis that will be available in three color options — grey, gold, and silver. It looks like that blue variant is limited to th...
Give your friends a reason to snap with Snapchat's custom stories
Snapchat's new feature isn't a killer one, but it will certainly give its existing users another reason to keep using it.A new Snapchat feature could help you when encouraging your friends to at least install the Snapchat app for the weekend. Snap has introduced custom Stories, which are designed to help friends and family groups collectively snap even the most mundane of events on the fly.Custom Stories are easy to set up and don't require that much planning beforehand. Tap the new Create Story icon in the top-right corner of the main Stories screen. Type in a name for the event, and then invite your friends. You can extend the invitation to anyone you'd like to participate in the as-it-happens festivities, regardless of their location. The new feature isn't geofenced. You can also invite nearby Snapchat users to participate if it's, say, a public event, like a high school prom or college graduation. Snapchat will create a one-block geofence around your current location.Custom...
Amazon Fire Tablet 7 vs. Fire Tablet Kids Edition: Which should I buy?
You want to get your youngsters an Amazon Fire Tablet, but which version is right for you?The Amazon Fire Tablet 7 is a great buy at $50, especially for the kids. It's capable enough to keep them entertained while not costing enough to pull your hair out if it gets accidentally destroyed. You can also get all the (non-Google) major content services on there as well as a dedicated kids mode to keep those little fingers from buying a new laptop on your Amazon account.But, when you go to buy, there's both a "regular" 7-inch and a Kids Edition, which now also has an 8-inch version. Underneath they're both regular Amazon Fire tablets. So what's the difference and which should you buy?Let's break it down.Updated May 23 2017 to reflect the updated versions of the Fire tablet.What's the difference?When you spend $50 on the standard Fire Tablet what you get is the 8GB model with special offers, meaning ads on the lockscreen. And that's it. No case or added extras, just the bas...
Ikea's cheap smart lightbulbs will soon support Google Home and Amazon Alexa
Ikea is a huge name in inexpensive home furnishing, but its influence is extending to the smart home space, too.When Ikea gets into a market, competitors stand up and notice. In the case of smart home tech, the company began offering wireless charging solutions built into desks and lights, it allowed for the average consumer to see the magical technology without going to a carrier store or tech retailer.Ikea's smart lighting solution, Trådfri, similarly undercuts much of the competition, including popular incumbents like Philips and LIFX, without sacrificing quality and options. The Trådfri suite includes regular bulbs, a dimmer, and a smart mirror light — priced for the average home. Ikea is no stranger to undercutting the home furnishing market.And while the nascent solution has always supported Android through an app, a press release issued in Swedish this week says that Trådfri will soon support Google Home, Amazon Alexa, and Apple HomeKit (via ...
Huawei gets serious about laptops with new MateBook devices
MateBook E takes on the Surface, while MateBooks X and D go after Apple's MacBook line.So, Huawei makes laptops now. Sure, it's dabbled in tablets in the past, and even released a single 2-in-1 Windows convertible last year, in the form of the original MateBook. But today Huawei showed just how serious it is about making real, actual computers, with the launch of three new MateBook devices at an event in Berlin, Germany. None of them runs Android, but the new product line demonstrates Huawei's growthFirst up is the MateBook E, a direct successor to the 2016 model MateBook. While the design has been refined, and the internals upgraded, don't expect anything drastically different from that device. Like the original MateBook, the new MateBook E can be used as a standalone tablet, but realistically you're going to want to use that folio case. Don't expect to casually one-hand the E like you would an iPad. Doing so is clumsy, a product of its shape and size as much as its weight...
Google finally matching in-store purchases to online activity, vastly raising value of ads
Keeping track of in-store purchases is the final step of measuring effectiveness of online ads.Google is finally figuring out how to close the most precious link in the loop of online advertising: knowing when someone makes an in-store purchase in response to an online ad. Google has announced that it will begin using data from billions of credit and debit card transactions, matching the data to its anonymized profiles of Google users to whom it serves ads online.By guaranteeing that a specific in-store purchase was made by a specific person to whom an ad was shown, Google could potentially be able to sell that information to advertisers to show the effectiveness of Google ads. That would put Google considerably ahead of other advertising systems, including the often loosely targeted TV advertisements that claim such a large portion of today's advertising spending.According to Google, through a complex set of algorithms it has been able to process through these billions of tran...
Best Third Party Watch Bands for Moto 360 (2015)
Don't like that plain leather band that you got with your Moto 360? Strap on one of these!Updated May 2017: These are still the best third-party bands for the Moto 360.The Moto 360 (2015) comes with a pretty nice leather band on its own, but if you're looking to give it an upgrade — or just a new style — we've rounded up some of the best third-party watch straps for your strapping smartwatch!Important Note: Make sure you know the size of band you will need for your Moto 360! The Moto 360 2nd Gen comes in three different sizes that require three different watch band widths.Men's 42mm case uses a 20 millimeter band.Men's 46mm case uses a 22 millimeter band.Women's 42mm case uses a 16 milimeter band.With that in mind, we have rounded up some of the best third party wristbands for the Moto 360 that we could find. We divided them up into the material they're made of, so you can focus on the type you really want.Leather bandsSport bandsMetal link bandsMODE bands...
You won't empty your wallet for studio-grade headphones with the Status Audio HD One's at $30
Our friends at Thrifter are back again, this time bringing you studio-grade headphones for much less!Wireless headphones have grown in popularity lately, but wired headphones are still invaluable for many since they don't need to be charged, offer a more reliable connection and more. Over-the-ear headphones can range in price from around $10 to over $300, depending what you are looking for. If quality is the main concern for you, but you don't want to go broke buying a new set of headphones, we've got just the deal for you. Status Audio, a company that specializes in high-quality affordable headphones, is currently offering its HD One wired headphones for just $29.92 with coupon code THRFTR32.So, you've never heard of Status Audio? Don't worry, these headphones have a 4.3 out of 5-star rating at Amazon with over 700 reviews, and the company's other headphones, the CB-1, maintain a 4.8 out of 5-star rating with over 250 reviews. With the HD One's you'll get:THE STATUS AUDIO ADVA...
Google's $5000 Jamboard collaborative whiteboard is now available in the U.S.
This is the future of office collaboration — but it'll cost you.Google's enterprise-focused smart whiteboard, called the Jamboard, is now available for those in the U.S. who are ready to increase collaboration and move beyond smelly dry erase markers. The Jamboard at its core is a 55-inch 4K touchscreen panel powered by an NVIDIA Jetson TX1 board, focused on super-fast touch response with low-latency stylus input as well.The Jamboard hooks into G Suite accounts to pull in files and documents from Google Drive, Docs, Sheets and Slides, letting everyone work and draw together at the same time. Everything is saved constantly to the cloud, so you can pull in members to collaborate remotely, or move between Jamboards and computers seamlessly.The Jamboard is a smooth $4999 to buy, but that's really just the starting price. If you want to use it on a rolling stand rather than mounting it on a wall, that'll set you back another $1199 (or $1349 after September 30). There's also ...
Google announces the fourth class of its Launchpad Accelerator program
Startups from a variety of regions will convene later this summer at Google's headquarters in San Francisco.Google's Launchpad Accelerator program is a boon for those smaller startups and development teams in parts of the world where Silicon Valley doesn't have as much reach. The company has announced that it's officially solidified its fourth-round roster to learn and work alongside a bevy of Google mentors in its San Francisco offices later this summer. Beginning July 17, Google will assist the Launchpad Accelerator participants from various parts of the world — including Africa, Asia, Europe, and Latin America — in learning about its products and how to best integrate them into their respective applications.If you're curious about who will be in the trenches, there's a full list of participating startups on display in the official blogpost and you can download some of their apps from the Play Store right now. Some of the Launchpad Accelerator apps include Pigg...
Google Allo is the best way to send love notes without even trying
This one quick trick made possible by Assistant is a great reminder of the inherent power that exists in Google's little messaging app.Admittedly, it was a bummer that Google failed to make any mention in the I/O keynote of what else Allo might have in store for it. There wasn't even a tease for the much anticipated desktop app coming to fruition, nor was there much hope that SMS integration would come and take the chat app out of its rut.Overall, the lack of a unified messaging strategy remains one of the bigger frustrations of being a faithful user of the Google ecosystem. And it's particularly excruciating when you consider how much of Assistant's abilities are going to waste as Allo struggles to proliferate. Google Assistant's abilities are going to waste as Allo struggles to proliferate.Google I/O offered a tiny glimpse at what's coming to Allo's future, though, at least with regards to its announcements for Assistant. With the news that the Machine Learning platform ...
Galaxy S8 iris scanner unsurprisingly bypassed with picture of an eye and a little time
Our expectations of what it takes to get into our phones have been set too high.The Galaxy S8's iris scanning is quicker and more accurate than when it debuted (for a short period) on the Galaxy Note 7, saving us from using the fingerprint sensor every time we want to unlock the phone. But it doesn't guarantee your phone can't be accessed by an unwanted person, as the Chaos Computer Club has easily demonstrated.The CCC shows how it could simply take a photo of a person's eye — with up to a 200 mm lens from 15 feet away, it says — and then print it out on typical paper, cover the paper with a wet contact lens to mimic an eye and instantly gain access to the phone. With a sufficient amount of time and complete access to the phone, you could theoretically unlock any Galaxy S8 with iris scanning enabled.Despite Samsung's claims that iris scanning is nearly on-par with a fingerprint sensor's security and far stronger than face recognition, this shouldn't come as any su...
Netatmo Weather Station is long on looks, longer on data
It was time to update my home weather station from something functional but ugly to something decidedly more modern. Netatmo has fit the bill nicely.I was going to show you my old weather station — a venerable beast from Oregon Scientific, which is quite good at this sort of thing. But alas, as soon as I took it off the wall it disappeared to wherever Phil's Old Stuff disappears. (Basically an older, less sexy version of this.)So. Time for something new. Something connected, and something definitely more modern.A quick search of ye olde internet consistently returned offerings from Netatmo. They haven't changed a lot over the years, which actually is a good thing in this case. So that's the direction my credit card was pointed.Subscribe to Modern Dad on YouTubeThe basics: the standard Netatmo Weather Station comes a relatively small indoor sensor, and an outdoor sensor. They look, well, like silver cans. The indoor one measures temperature and humidity and soun...
HTC U11 hands-on: MrMobile's new squeeze
By now you've seen the HTC U11 hands-on treatment: the smudge-prone but beautiful backplate; the conventional face; the interface that reacts to a squeeze as well as a swipe. But thanks to some canceled flights and some overzealous NYC security guards (long story) I got to spend a little longer with the HTC U11 than I might have, and as a result I was able to produce a slightly more in-depth hands-on than would otherwise be possible. That's thanks to Android Central, whose HTC U11 review unit I took for a spin around Mountain View during Google I/O, so be sure to give Android Central's HTC U11 Preview a look once you're through watching MrMobile's hands-on ... and stay tuned for much more coverage on the smartphone you can squeeze in the weeks ahead! Stay social, my friendsYouTube The WebTwitterFacebookSnapchatInstagram...
How (and when) to clear app cache or data on Android
Apps sometimes can misbehave. If it happens to you, here's something to try.Update May 2017: This post has been updated to be in line with newer versions of Android.Every Android smartphone has an application manager that you can get to through the settings menu. It's usually in the top level somewhere, though it can vary a little by phone. But once you get to it, you're at the heart of the matter. This is where you can see every application that's installed on your phone or tablet. And it's a handy place to clean things up a bit should they go wonky. Here's what's up:Clearing the app cacheAs you use applications, they start storing files for reference later. These files are stored in an app "cache." For instance: When you're using the Android Central app, it'll save images and other pieces of the stories you've read so that they don't have to be downloaded each and every single time the app needs them. This saves you time and data.But maybe you want to clear an app's cac...
Best Android Phones of 2017
Update, May 2017: The Galaxy S8 takes the top of the list, while the rest of the group pushes down one spot. The new Moto G5 Plus has been added as an affordable option.Best overallBest clean experienceBest for lessBest for basicsBest inexpensiveBest overallSamsung Galaxy S8See at VerizonSee at AT&TSee at T-MobileSee at SprintSee at Best BuyThe Galaxy S8 has slick redesigned hardware with tiny bezels that let it have a big screen in a small body, but inside it still offers everything you want: a high-end processor, lots of storage, an SD card slot, full waterproofing and a top-end camera.Yes the fingerprint sensor is slightly awkward to use, but the GS8's iris scanner is dramatically improved to make up for it. And it only takes one look at the industry-leading display to start to forgive Samsung's decisions on the back.Though its software can be a little overwhelming to novices, you can't argue that Samsung continues to pack in hundreds of features to a ...
How to prepare your Galaxy S8 for Google Daydream
The countdown to Daydream with a Galaxy S8 has begun, are you ready?Samsung's Galaxy S8 will soon be the only phone capable of using both forms of high quality mobile VR, so if you've been eager to see if the grass really is greener on the other side you'll soon be able to see for yourself.Just like the Gear VR, you need to do a few things to make sure your phone is good to go for Daydream. Here's what you need to know!Read more at VRHeads.com...
Fixing Play Music: How Google can improve its streaming music service
How can Google Play Music improve? Let us count the ways...I'm not exaggerating when I say this: Google Play Music is the first app I use every morning and it is the last thing I see before I put my phone to sleep at night. And no, that's not just because Google Play Music is my alarm clock. Music is what keeps me sane during chaotic work days, and it's what cheers me up when life inevitably happens. Google Play Music always has been my most-used app, and it's changed a lot in since it launched in 2011.Not all of those changes have been good, and there are more that still need to happen. Here are the biggest things still missing in one of Google Play's most important services.UI OverhaulFour years ago, Google Play Music went from Holo blue/black to a more retina-searing orange/white. Ever since, Play Music has been adding and adding features without any major UI changes, which has lead to the app becoming a bloated mess.The home page was the portion of the app to most...
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