The ability to unlock a device with your face is nothing new - Android had it back in 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich. But recently, we've seen more complex eye unlocking technology crop up on consumer electronics, such as Windows Hello. The Galaxy Note7 and S8 included something similar, called the Iris Scanner.
Members of the Chaos Computer Club, Europe's largest association of hackers, claim they have broken the security of the S8's Iris scanner.
Can't wait for Android O? Neither can we, but you can at least make use of one feature a little early if you've got a mostly stock Nougat phone. The good people at XDA found that navigation bar customization was present in Nougat, and you can even use it without root. One enterprising developer has already pushed an app called Custom Navigation Bar that can make the necessary modifications.
Opera users who utilized the browser's cloud sync option may have had that synchronized data taken by hackers, according to the company. While the full extent of the breach isn't yet known, Opera fears that passwords saved in the browser's manager may have been exposed.
Have you seen Mr. Robot? The show is only three episodes in, but it's already shaping up to be a surprisingly awesome hacking drama. And I don't mean "hacking" in the CSI/NCIS/Scorpion "120WPM and 60 flashing windows" kind of hacking - the protagonist and his Anonymous-style compatriots use real methods and technology, mostly relying on a combination of known vulnerabilities, social engineering, and brute force attacks to play at being cyber-vigilantes. You should check it out - USA has the first three episodes available for free on its website.
The third episode features a pretty cool segment where (extremely mild spoiler alert) the antagonist gains physical access to an Android phone in order to digitally tap it.
The open-source nature of Android means that you can run the mobile operating system on just about anything if you've got the know-how. Case in point: A YouTube user named Josh Max has managed to get it running on his Texas Instruments TI-Nspire CX. If that name conjures up images of middle school algebra exams, it's because it's a graphing calculator. Check it out in action in the video below:
The Nspire CX is one of the more robust graphing calculators on the market. Its 320x240 3.5" color screen, 100MB of storage, and 64MB of RAM are pretty paltry when compared to even the earliest Android phones (the original HTC G1 had 256MB of storage and 192MB of RAM).
If you have an LG G Watch R, you're probably aware of the Wi-Fi drama following Android Wear 5.1.1's release for the watch. While Google had announced Wi-Fi support for the platform's update in general, it turned out that the G Watch R didn't have the certifications necessary to boast that function, although technically the hardware was very capable of it. LG then let us know that it's working on a patch to enable Wi-Fi (and presumably on getting all the right certifications) but that it wouldn't be released before July.
Not to let some paperwork get in the way of gadgetry, Vojtěch Boček managed to have Wi-Fi working on his LG G Watch R after flashing some files over from the Watch Urbane (which has the same hardware, but currently supports Wi-Fi). The details of the mod are available on XDA, but they aren't for the faint of heart.
Update: The app has been removed from the Play Store. Good job, Google/Sony/users who flagged the app.
Oh dear. The folks at XperiaBlog got a nasty shock when checking the My Apps section of the Play Store on an Xperia Z3: the Backup & Restore app (a default application pre-installed on the phone) seems to have been compromised. A Play Store page has been added for the app, and now shows "Nirav Patel Kanudo" as the publisher. "Managed By : HeArT HaCkEr Group" has been added to the description, along with the mobile banner below.
Backup & Restore is a basic tool that backs up apps, media, SMS, and the like to a MicroSD card (a pretty standard feature on Sony phones).
When Sony announced that the PlayStation 4's Remote Play feature would be available to Android phones and tablets in November, gamers got excited... right up to the point where they found out that the feature would be exclusive to the new Xperia Z3 line. While the Z3, Z3 Compact, and Z3 Tablet Compact look like fine machines, that isn't much consolation if you can't afford them or can't even find them in your country.
XDA-Developers poster XperiaPlaystation has made a work-around for this, at least allegedly. The developer's new port of the PlayStation app should work on any Android 4.0 or higher device with access to a custom recovery.
Google has officially made it possible to run Android apps on Chrome OS devices, though the current implementation of this feature is a little underwhelming. First of all, it's limited to only a handful of apps, and second of all, it requires a Chrome OS laptop or desktop, and can't be run in more widely-used operating systems. Now an ambitious developer has managed to overcome both of those limitations, enabling (in theory) any Android app to run anywhere that Chrome does.
Developer Vladikoff made ArChon, a customized version of the Android Runtime for Chrome, which loads up as a standard manual Chrome extension.
eBay isn't for everyone, but with such a steady stream of good deals on gadgets, there's a reason to have paid the site a visit lately. Welp, apparently the online auction blockmarketplace(eBay reached out to let us know they're not just an auction block, but a marketplace where the overwhelming majority of listings are buy it now or new, in case you were wondering!) has been hacked, and it's time for all users to change their passwords. This should be a preventative measure, as the company hasn't noticed any fraudulent activity on anyone's accounts just yet. Nevertheless, that doesn't mean your credentials aren't now resting on someone's computer waiting to be sold or exploited someday.