Thanks to semi-standardized hardware and "pure" builds of Android, Google has maintained an impressive track record when it comes to speedily updating the Android One phones that it's designed with various partners in emerging markets. One of our readers was kind enough to track down a handful of links for over-the-air updates to Android 6.0 for these phones, in case users are tired of waiting and want to update their phones manually. To flash these OTA files in recovery, you need to be on the latest Lollipop build (LMY48M) with unmodified software. Read More
Have an unlimited data plan on Verizon? Well, it's about to get more expensive. While the company hasn't actually offered unlimited smartphone data to new customers since around 2011, many subscribers are still "grandfathered" into old unlimited data plans. Verizon has already tried to push such subscribers to the new tiered plans, and being grandfathered now generally necessitates buying your phones off-contract if you want to stay on the gigabyte gravy train. Read More
If you own a smartphone and live outside the US, chances are you're one of almost a billion monthly WhatsApp users. WhatsApp may not be the most feature-rich messaging platform, but what it lacks in functionality, it makes up for in rock-solid reliability (hi, Hangouts) and virtually unparalleled market penetration (hi, Telegram). That's why WhatsApp is the de facto messaging app for so many people around the world, even if it still requires things like chat backups — something more characteristic of MSN Messenger than a modern messaging service. Fortunately, starting today (and after many months of adding and removing the feature), WhatsApp will offer to automatically back up and upload your chat history to Google Drive. Read More
Here's a little secret about people who run YouTube channels: a lot of them are obsessed with analytics. There's just something about having numbers that compels them to track, analyze, and obsess over every detail. This is the one thing they definitely have in common with website operators and certain types of sports fans. If you happen to be among this crowd, you're probably going to love the latest update to YouTube Creator Studio. It is now absolutely packed with new analytics about your channels, individual videos, audience, earnings, and more. Along the way, it also saw a little bit of restyling to clean up the interface and make it just a little more consistent and easier to read. Read More
There are only a few apps on the Play Store with more than a billion downloads, and you've probably heard of all of them. Most are Google apps like Gmail and Maps, but Facebook has a few on the list as well. Now, Play Movies & TV has hit this milestone just a few weeks after Newsstand did so. Read More
Cyanogen Inc. blew up its partnership with OnePlus last year in order to pursue an exclusive partnership with Micromax under its YU brand in India. YU has released a few devices running Cyanogen OS since then, but the internet had a touch of schadenfreude a few days ago when YU dropped Cyanogen from its Yuphoria phone. However, Cyanogen says everything is still cool. Read More
To cord cutters, a trip to pluto.tv might feel a bit like going back in time. You have a list of channels and a TV guide. You don't pick what plays—you watch whatever is on. Read More
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cool addition to the latest version of Chrome Dev for Android cool feature of Chrome that can be enabled via a special flag (which Google started turning on for some recently): when you tap on a text field that the browser has saved before in auto-fill, the entry or entries will appear in Android's keyboard auto-complete field instead of the browser itself.
Hey, you. Yeah you, the gamer who constantly complains that there's nothing new or interesting to check out. First of all, you're wrong, and second of all, here's why: TellTale's adventure games. These folks constantly come up with new and interesting stories to tell (albeit in other people's universes) and wrap them up in a slick, mobile-friendly package with talented writing, great voice acting, and an episodic structure. Why haven't you checked them out yet?
It might be because all those adventure game episodes cost $5 a pop on Android. And I suppose that's fair - since each one will last you about 90 minutes (assuming you only play through it once), it's expensive by mobile standards. Read More
It looks like budget-focused Sprint subsidiary Virgin Mobile USA is taking a page out of T-Mobile's book. Starting on Friday, the carrier will allow users to access certain streaming music services without taking the requisite hit to their data caps. The selection is a bit paltry at the moment (and notably lacking in both Google Play Music and Apple's Music service), but fans of Pandora Radio, Slacker, and iHeart Radio should be glad to hear that they can listen to practically unlimited amounts of music while they're out and about without incurring an extra charge.
Virgin Mobile is also reshuffling its phone plans. Read More