Some early users of LG's Watch Urbane outside of the US were a bit perplexed when they tried to use the Android Wear device's Wi-Fi syncing feature. Apparently the current software build only enables Wi-Fi channels one through eleven - not coincidentally, the only ones legally accessible to consumer electronics in the United States. A long support thread on Google's Android Wear forum is full of new owners wondering why they can't connect to their local wireless networks.
The announcements are coming fast and loose out of Mobile World Congress. Huawei has been steadily sharing new phablets, watches, and more. One of the less conventional gadgets to join the company's lineup includes a Wi-Fi hotspot designed for automobiles, dubbed CarFi. It has been designed to share a 4G LTE connection with up to 10 devices simultaneously, and it doesn't look half bad.
CarFi is similar to many other cellular hotspot devices, but it plugs directly into the DC port found in most cars and trucks.
Back in 2014, one of the changes spotted in Google Search was support for settings toggles through voice commands. At the time, the feature wasn't complete — it merely gave you a shortcut to open the corresponding settings panel. That wasn't helpful at all, since you had to use your fingers to make the change, which would have been done much faster through the drop-down quick settings. In Lollipop, starting with 5.0, some of these toggles work as they are supposed to, through voice commands alone and without the need for some third-party hack like Commandr.
The longer Android 5.0 is in the wild, the more we come across annoying little bugs. It sounds like Google might have broken something in the wireless framework in 5.0 because a sizeable number of users are reporting issues with connecting to their corporate networks after the 5.0 update.
If you follow Artem on Google+ or check Reddit, you probably saw him discussing the likelihood that Google has delayed updating Nexus devices to Android 5.0. This was originally slated to begin November 3rd, but now the date we're hearing is November 12th. There's no official word, but it looks like a particularly troublesome WiFi bug in the developer preview might be to blame.
Several months ago, we discussed something called Nearby, a project that - at the time - seemed to be Google's effort to let "people, places, and things" know when a user is, well, nearby. It seems that Google is still hard at work on its effort to connect various devices to each other and their surroundings, but Copresence (an internal name for this functionality) may have a more specific scope in this effort than we first estimated, apparently including iOS devices in the fun.
Staying in a hotel with crappy Wi-Fi is frustrating, but not half so frustrating as finding this out by starting up your phone, connecting, realizing there's no Internet access, then manually disabling Wi-Fi to make sure it goes back to 3G or LTE. In Lollipop, Android 5.0 will do that for you: when the system sees no connection to the Internet (or more probably Google servers) via a Wi-Fi connection on a device with a cellular radio, it will automatically default to mobile data to keep an active connection.
Every now and then an app pops up that looks like it was designed entirely for people like us. And by us, I mean tech reviewers, enthusiasts, and people who just somehow end up with more gadgets to maintain than we know what to do with. In this situation, it can be challenging to keep up with all the electronics and make sure each device is charged enough for use. Potential is a new app (still in beta) that can keep track of everything's battery life from a single location, and with its slick Material-inspired design, it looks good doing it.
Nexus season is in full swing, and as rumors and leaks continue to pile up around Motorola's Nexus 6 (Shamu), we've been wondering when more news might emerge about Volantis (or Flounder, or T1, take your pick) - HTC's 9" Nexus tablet that we first learned of back in spring.
As Blog of Mobile reports, it looks like the Nexus 9 has passed through the FCC for certification, with the relevant documents becoming available just yesterday.
T-Mobile unveiled several Wi-Fi initiatives as part of Un-Carrier 7.0 that it hopes will help fill in the gaps where its network is weak and even extend coverage to places its towers have no chance of reaching. To make things better, one part of its plan doesn't ask T-Mobile customers for money, while the other is free with an asterisk. Both are publicly available starting today.