After having a Nexus 6P, I think I'd find it pretty difficult to go back to not having a fingerprint sensor. It's just such a convenient way to quickly and easily unlock my phone. The Sony Xperia XZ and X Compact (this year's model) both have fingerprint sensors, but weirdly on the US editions (and possibly others from around the world), they are disabled via software. Xperiablog has found that by flashing the UK firmware, the sensor can be enabled.
Left: US firmware - 1304-9206. Right: UK firmware - 1305-2216.
A thread on XDA details the process - in essence, download and install Xperiafirm, Xperia Companion (from Sony), and Flashtool. Read More
Like the Nexus 6, the Nexus 9 LTE didn't receive Nougat when most other Google devices did; however, since the Nexus 9 LTE sold significantly fewer units than the Nexus 6, there wasn't much outcry. Not too long after that, Google told us that updates for both devices would be arriving "in the coming weeks." Two days ago, the Nexus 6 finally got the update to Android 7.0 Nougat, and now, the LTE-equipped Nexus 9 is also receiving it. Read More
Motorola granted Verizon the exclusive on the Moto Z family of devices over the summer, but now you can finally pick up a Moto Z that's fully unlocked and compatible with GSM networks. Not that I necessarily think you should—the unlocked Moto Z is priced at $700, and that's without any Moto Mods. You can do it, though. Read More
Google has been tinkering with Project Tango for a few years, but all we've seen from that is some expensive development hardware. At Lenovo's summer event, it announced the Phab2 Pro, which would be the first consumer Tango device. It was supposed to come out in September, but that didn't happen. Now, it will reportedly arrive next month. Read More
Until now, the material design guidelines, which guides developers and designers for Android, Chrome OS, and the web on how to make an app that aligns with the respective platform, have only been available in English. Right before SPAN 2016, a design conference tomorrow in Tokyo, the material design guidelines have appeared in Japanese, direct from Google.
This version of the guidelines is a little different from the English copy. Instead of being available on the web and written in good ol' HTML and CSS, the Japanese translations are available as a series of PDF documents that are downloaded and available locally on your computer. Read More
The first replacement Samsung Galaxy Note7 devices with non-exploding batteries started reaching retailers a few weeks ago. Owners have been repeatedly urged to turn in their defective phones, lest they burst into flames. Southwest Airlines passenger Brian Green had one of those replacement Note7s, but that didn't stop it from catching fire this morning as he waited for his flight from Louisville to Baltimore to leave the gate. Read More
Whenever a paid app or game goes free on the Play Store, it's for one of three reasons: a) the developer is being super generous, b) the developer has abandoned it, or c) the developer decided to use another monetization model. It is almost never the first case, though. The second one is just friendly behavior that we like seeing, despite it giving us grief over the death of another app/game. But it's incredibly annoying when it's the third scenario.
Carmageddon, unfortunately, seems to fall in that category. The game, which normally cost $1.99 for the ad-free version (another Carma (free) version used to pop up every now and then) is now free. Read More
Lately I've been looking at security cameras for homes and small businesses. Among the different options, Blink makes a very compelling proposal. Forget about wires and always-on connectivity, forget about monthly plans and limited server storage, the system works wire-free, hassle-free, and well, completely free after the hardware purchase. You just need to put in 2 AA batteries and they'll last up to 2 years, getting triggered only when motion is detected and uploading 5-10sec clips to the cloud.
The one problem with Blink though? Until today, it didn't integrate with any other smart home product. That summarizes most of the complaints on its online reviews: users say that you have to manually arm/disarm each camera separately in the app. Read More
As expected, both the 5-inch Pixel and the 5.5-inch Pixel XL are compatible out of the box with Project Fi, Google's MVNO (it would be news if they weren't). Google also announced just over a dozen of other international partners around the world. Read More