WhatsApp is hugely popular in Brazil where mobile subscribers pay high rates for cellular calls and messaging. WhatsApp isn't getting as much use today as a Brazilian judge has ordered the country's five wireless providers to block access to the service. Unlike past blackouts, this one does not include an end date—it's intended to continue until WhatsApp complies with a court order to turn over information. However, it says the requested information doesn't exist. Read More
Samsung Pay has been on an expansion spree over the past couple of months, starting with China, Singapore, Spain, and then Australia. Over the past couple of days, the mobile payment service has announced availability in two more countries: Brazil and Puerto Rico.
In Brazil, Samsung Pay will work on both MST and NFC terminals starting July 19, and with different devices among the company's portfolio: the Galaxy S7, Galaxy S7 edge, Galaxy A5 (2016), Galaxy A7 (2016), Galaxy Note5, Galaxy S6 edge+, Galaxy S6, and Galaxy S6 edge. It's compatible with card issuers from Banco do Brasil, Brasil Pré-Pagos, Caixa, Porto Seguro, and Santander. Read More
Dear international Android Police readers: thank you. Our staff is relatively small, so we can only be on the ground (so to speak) in a handful of countries... most of which are the US. So when a bunch of you from one particular place start telling us that something big is happening, we listen. The latest one is Google Now On Tap, the contextual screen-based search tool, which appears to be rolling out in Brazil right now. If you're in the country (and happen to be running Android M), give it a shot.
Update: Turns out Google Now on Tap is now enabled for the Portuguese locale rather than specific countries. Read More
Yesterday Brazil made headlines by once again blocking the function of mega-popular SMS replacement service WhatsApp for 72 hours. The reasons were... complicated. Apparently. We don't actually know the reason - the purpose of the ruling has been sealed by the court in the state of Sergipe which issued it. But fear not, Brazilian WhatsApp users: you now have access to the service once again, thanks to some quick work on the part of WhatsApp and the ruling of an appeals court. Read More
Oh Brazil, you magnificent country of beautiful landscapes, sexy women, excellent football players, and silly judges and judicial system. For the third time since 2015, a Brazilian state judge has ordered a complete shut down on WhatsApp by forcing operators to block the service nationwide for 72 hours, and thus killing the main means of communication of 91% of the country's mobile users.
The main question is why. Due to legal secrecy in the country, the details aren't released, but it appears that this isn't related to the first two bans in February of 2015 (issued by judge Luiz de Moura Correia from the state of Piauí) and December of 2015 (issued by a São Paulo judge). Read More
Of all the countries that get to enjoy Google Play Music access, only a select few have support for Play Music gifts. That means that there's a limited number of users who can send each other the gift of music, but that number is getting a bit larger now: Brazil, Mexico, and Switzerland have been added to the list of countries with access to Music gifts.
They join Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States in letting users purchase music subscriptions for their friends, family members, or maybe distant acquaintances (we won't judge). Prices are the same for a gifted subscription as a personally purchased one, but at least you can now get others hooked on the service even if they were reticent to try it out in the first place. Read More
There's a version of the latest Moto X that we here in the States can only get in the form of the DROID MAXX 2. The Moto X Play, as it's called, offers a weaker processor but increased battery life compared to the Moto X Pure Edition. Owners in Brazil and India have reached out to us with word that Android 6.0 is now rolling out to their devices. Read More
Telecom operators in Brazil have been working for months to undermine the legality of WhatsApp, and now a judge in Sao Paulo has apparently agreed with the arguments. Starting at 9PM ET this evening, WhatsApp was blocked in Brazil, and will continue to be blocked for 48 hours. Mobile operators have said they will enforce the block (probably while high fiving each other). What will happen in 48 hours is unclear, but you can bet Facebook has multiple planeloads of lawyers on their way to Brazil. WhatsApp founder Jan Koum is certainly not amused. Read More
As part of Google, Motorola garnished a reputation for speedy updates. These days the company has a new owner, and those OTAs don't seem to come out as reliably as they used to. But Motorola hasn't gone back on its promise to bring Marshmallow to something, and now it's beginning its rollout for the 2015 Moto X Style and the 2014 Moto X, according to Senior Director David Schuster. Read More