Android Police

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AT&T's ZTE ZMAX 2 gets its Marshmallow over-the-air update

We're in that awkward phase of the Android upgrade cycle, when customers want nothing more than the latest release of the OS on their phones... but manufacturers and carriers are still slowly, slowly making their way through the backlog of updates from over a year ago. So it is with the ZMAX 2, a big-screen budget ZTE phone offered on AT&T starting in September of 2015. Today AT&T is sending out the Marshmallow update that probably should have come at least a year ago. Hey, don't knock it - a lot of budget phones don't ever get upgraded at all.

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Relive the nostalgic dread of the Cold War with board game Twilight Struggle, now in the Play Store

International spying! Demagogic leaders! Jingoistic nationalism! Everything old is new again as the United States and Russia seem to be squaring up for another decades-long pissing contest. So while you wait for the next big hack or diplomatic faux pas, why not relive those happy memories of the original Cold War? Twilight Struggle, a two-player strategy title based on the 20th century's biggest game of chicken, has landed in the Play Store. It's five dollars, only a third of the price of the PC version.

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Instagram adds stickers and hands-free video in latest update

Instagram, much like Facebook's other applications, has been rapidly gaining features over the past few months. Live video, comment controls, and the ability to bookmark posts are all recent additions. In today's Instagram update, you can now add stickers to your Stories and shoot hands-free video.

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Google, please kill the horrible ongoing casting notification for all devices on the network

If there's one Google complaint we've received regularly recently, it's in regard to the new casting control notification which started appearing on devices as part of a Play Services update in early November. Namely, the problem is that the notification goes to every Android device on your network. It's a well-intentioned feature, but one which results in a horrible user experience for a number of reasons. Specifically:

  1. People are naturally inclined to dismiss notifications they don't recognize or want (something I'm sure Google agrees with!)
  2. People tend to accidentally hit buttons
  3. People are jerks

Number one: Listen, just because you gave Uncle Steve the Wi-Fi password so he doesn't use up all of his gee-bees during his holiday visit this year doesn't mean you were also interested in giving him authority over your casting controls that he does not understand.

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[Deal Alert] Pick up a 2-port Aukey car charger with QC 3.0 for just 8 bucks after coupon on Amazon ($5 off)

As a community of tech addicts, we tend to be a bit more demanding of our phone's battery life than the average user. Because of this, we need to take advantage of every opportunity available to recharge our gear. A perfect time to top off the tank of the ol' smartphone is during the daily commute. If you are fortunate enough to have a short one (you lucky devil) then you need a car charger that can provide the much-needed juice in a hurry. 

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[Deal Alert] Netgear's Arlo Pro security camera is $50 off ($199.99) via Amazon

Everyone is making home security cameras these days, and Netgear's Arlo cameras have been quite popular. The new Arlo Pro adds a few features that were lacking in older versions, and it's on sale today. You can get the single-camera bundle for a mere $199.99. That's $50 off the regular price.

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Elephone S7 review: [Mediocre] Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery

Design is extremely important in regard to pretty much everything. From fashion to cars, computer hardware to software, you can never escape good or bad design. Sometimes, the sheer popularity of a product will cause others to copy what they perceive to be worth imitating, despite the inevitable sneers from consumers and competitors alike. Such is the case with the Elephone S7, a pretty unashamed clone of the well-known Galaxy S7 Edge. But what if the copycat is actually halfway decent?

The Ele S7 holds up as a capable device. The hardware is pretty good and it runs an almost stock version of Android, which is a nice change of pace from what we usually see with Chinese phones.

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[Deal Alert] Get an AT&T unlocked LG V10 for $259 ($470 off) at DailySteals

The LG V10 is a bit over a year old now, but it's still a more than capable phone that probably never got the attention it deserved. More important, you'll have a hard time finding many better phones for $259, its current sale price at DailySteals.

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T-Mobile's next 'Un-carrier' announcement will come on January 5th at CES

In John Legere's continuing effort to will himself into the role of mobile rock'n'roll Jesus, the T-Mobile CEO has released a teaser trailer for the carrier's next Un-Carrier event. Exactly what will happen at the event isn't being disclosed - in fact, the whole point of the video is "wouldn't you like to know?" We did find out that the announcement will come on January 5th in Las Vegas, not-so-coincidentally at the same time and place that next year's CES will be going down.

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Some Nexus 6Ps have developed a battery early shutoff problem, and it's becoming a safety issue

A number of Nexus 6P owners have reported an alarming battery problem with their phones as of Android 7.0 being released for the handset, which causes the phone to power down when the battery gauge still shows anywhere from 10 to 60% battery remaining. How widespread the issue is at this point isn't clear, but the main thread on the Google issue tracker has 229 stars. There are also a significant number of threads describing the problem on Google's Product Forums (see: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6).

Owners have linked it to Android 7.0, but even those who have attempted flashing back to Marshmallow report the problem still occurs, though generally at lower indicated remaining battery percentages than on Nougat.

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