No matter how much we use our Android devices, there are tips and tricks that we don't discover until someone shares them with us and we hit ourselves on the head and say, "Why didn't I think of that?" One example is how to enable traffic view in Google Maps in countries and areas where the app says it isn't available.
Live traffic is officially enabled in about 50 countries in the world, and the rest of us often have to just start driving and then discover that the route we picked was jam packed with bumper-to-bumper traffic. Some countries have a local solution in terms of a standalone app or traffic provider, but that isn't as universal and integrated of a solution as Google Maps. Read More
Google Street View hit 2.0 back in September, and everyone who captures, uploads, and manages photo spheres cheered in unison. Performing any of these actions became easier after the app separated from Google Maps, but there is always room for improvement. Today, Google released a new version that adds a few features that will make life a little easier for doing certain things.
• Import photo spheres from your device
• Expanded support for linked spherical cameras
• Bulk actions
Importing photo spheres has been on my wish list since the app was first launched. In the past, I have taken photo spheres using the Google Camera, which were stuck outside of Street View. Read More
Yesterday brought the beginning of the rollout of a new and fresh Google+ website on both desktops and mobile browsers. The focus in Google's announcement was on the redesign, the bold colors, and the improved access to Collections and Communities, but there's a better story hiding there for everyone, especially me. (Excuse my selfishness.)
The previous Google+ page was a complete nightmare to load. I am bound by a stupid slow 512Kbps connection, and if you had ever tried to check Google+ on any connection slower than a few Mbps, you'd have a different outlook on life. While waiting for the home feed to load over the previous years, I've questioned the meaning of life, my annoying luck of being born in a country with such slow ADSL speeds, I've thanked my lucky stars for having access to an Internet connection to begin with, I've wanted to smash my computers and routers, I've laughed and teared up and played a bit of basketball and ate falafel and dispensed a few prescriptions to my patients, I've done some introspective thinking, watched half an episode of Brooklyn Nine Nine, and more... Read More
As announced yesterday, Google Photos is now ready to offer you an option to downgrade your photos and reclaim some storage space in your account. The option has gone live on https://photos.google.com/settings and will let you convert all photos you had uploaded in Original quality to High Quality (maximum 16MP). Given that the latter don't count toward your Google storage and the former do, this will allow you to save whatever space you had lost on photos while still keeping them stored in your account. Better yet, in our previous review of Google Photos, Alex had concluded that there is no detectable quality loss when switching to High Quality uploads, so you're not likely going to lose anything by activating the conversion. Read More
This isn't the first time we've reported about Google's deplorable policies for removing apps from the Play Store. One day you're the developer of an extremely popular app, distributing it to thousands of users, the next it's poof gone with no warning, no explanation, and no way to easily communicate with the team to understand what has gone wrong.
The latest victim is the famous and ridiculously powerful Tasker app. Tasker has been available on Android since time immemorial and has made many a user extremely happy with its extensive featureset. Want to turn on the popcorn machine when you yell "movie time!" at your phone? Read More
Yesterday, the Nexus 6P appeared on T-Mobile's website as part of a list of devices certified for band 12 LTE on the operator's network. While we did not have direct confirmation from T-Mobile at the time, we went ahead and let you all know because, hey, it probably meant something. We reached out to T-Mobile on Twitter (along with readers) and have since had it clarified to us that this page does not reflect the current status of the 6P's band 12 certification.
T-Mobile social evangelist Des clarified on Twitter that the certification process was ongoing and that T-Mobile would have more to share about the band 12 status for the 6P "soon."
Google consists of at least one, maybe two, trillion departments, and they each adopt new visual styles at their own pace. Even then, interfaces can vary from one device to another. Google+ looks one way in the Android app and another way entirely when you sign on from a PC. Now this particular Google department is pushing out a more unified look across devices, starting with the web. Read More
Living in Lebanon, I'm used to seeing limited app compatibility on the Play Store. Some apps are just not available in my country for a logical reason, others aren't because who-knows-why, and a few are limited to carriers or specific devices. I am, however, definitely not used to seeing "You don't have any devices" on every single app that I visit on the Play Store, which is what happened to me yesterday. I chalked it off as the Play Store being the Play Store, which is to say sometimes weird and slow to realize that I have at least 7 different Android devices that the app can be installed on, and moved on. Read More
Do you ever feel left out because of all the US-only news we post? If you live in Australia, then you're in luck, because this one is just for you! Now those Americans can finally experience what you have to go through on a daily basis, right? Actually, probably not, since this is likely not the kind of thing over which you want exclusivity.
Many Australian Nexus 6P owners have been experiencing connectivity issues on Telstra, one of the country's three main mobile carriers. The issues seem to arise whenever the device disconnects from a WiFi network and switches to a 4G connection. Read More
Though no reasonable person would have suspected that Android Pay would get early support from every vendor, bank, and finance company, Chase has loomed large as among the most conspicuous absences. It doesn't help that the banking giant announced Chase Pay last month, which is like Android Pay except worse in almost every way.
After a post on Reddit claimed to have been told by a Chase rep that they were adding support for Android Pay in 2015, Chase customers began to look forward to being first-class Android Pay citizens. It is worth noting, though, that in other public venues and in private communications with users, Chase was very vague about timelines. Read More