While the Note 5 and S6 edge+ are far from the first Samsung phones with reported issues killing background tasks with unusual aggressiveness, they are the first ones with four freaking gigabytes of RAM to do so. We've long assumed that Samsung's background task issues on certain handsets are related to a lack of RAM headroom due to TouchWiz, and yet, the Note 5 and S6 edge+ may exhibit the most aggravating task killing of any Samsung devices we've yet seen. Let's cut to the video for a complete explanation. (I realize it's long, but I'd recommend watching all the way through to see what's going on here.)
The issue was readily reproducible on both our S6 edge+ and Note 5 review units, and we aren't the first people to point this out.
When we reported on leaked images of Lenovo's upcoming Yoga Tablet 3, I said at the time that the big lingering question was what is on the inside. The current generation, the Yoga Tablet 2, is very much a mid-range device in both specs and price. The specs posted on an inadvertently published product page for the Lenovo Yoga Tablet 3 8" version suggest a step down into the budget market.
There are two listings at Rozetka, the Ukrainian retailer who apparently pulled the trigger too soon on marketing the new tablets. They are both 8" versions, one with LTE and one without.
Asus was one of the first Android tablet OEMs to distinguish itself with devices like the original Transformer, and it followed that up with two 7-inch Nexus tablets. While Asus is no longer the Nexus tablet maker of choice at Mountain View, it's still doing some interesting things with Android slates. After a run of heavily budget-oriented tablets, Asus is launching a somewhat more premium offering, the ZenPad S 8.0. As the name implies, this is an 8-inch Android tablet with a very similar vibe to the Zenfone 2. Depending on how you look at it, that can be either good and bad.
Do you want an Amazon Fire Phone? If you do, I'll bet you want it at a discount - even with a free year of Amazon's Prime shipping/video/music service, it's a hard sell at two hundred bucks. It's a good thing, then, that the Fire Phone is so often on sale. The latest discount comes courtesy of an eBay seller, who's getting rid of the phones for as little as $140. That includes free shipping and free access to Prime, bringing the effective price down to $40 for a contract-free phone. Not bad.
When the economical and long-lasting Moto X Play was announced specifically without US availability, it raised a few eyebrows here at Android Police. Some of us speculated that Motorola's tight relationship with Verizon, which goes all the way back to an exclusive on the original QWERTY-packing DROID, might have something to do with it. According to a report from Phandroid, that may indeed be the case. The site is reporting that the American carrier will sell a customized version of the Moto X Play as a sequel to its 2013 flagship, the DROID Maxx.
That makes sense: the Verizon-exclusive (at least in the US) Maxx line has always highlighted huge batteries and long usage times, and the Moto X Play uses a 3630mAh battery, larger than either the flagship Moto X Style or the enormous Motorola-made Nexus 6.
But Motorola isn't the only stylish watch game in town anymore. The Huawei Watch is anticipated to launch at some point this year, and Fossil teased a brand-new Intel-based smartwatch last week (... that also has a flat tire screen).
But the Moto 360 was easily the crowd favorite among the first generation of Wear devices, and it stands to reason that the second iteration will likely keep some of that hype moving forward, deflated circular display or otherwise.
64GB? Kid's stuff. 128GB? Paltry. Real smartphone spec-hounds will settle for nothing less than 256GB of local onboard storage (which, incidentally, is more than many laptops these days). At least they'd settle for nothing less if any of those phones were actually available. There will be one soon, in at least one location: the ASUS Zenfone 2 Deluxe Special Edition. It's coming to Brazil sometime in the future for an unspecified price, though "quite a lot" would be a safe bet. The model was shown off on the official ASUS Brazil blog.
The Zenfone 2 Deluxe Special Edition is identical to the high-end version of the original Zenfone 2, with 4GB of RAM and a faster Atom Z3580 processor, with the obvious exception of the greater storage capacity.
The CyanogenMod ROM development team continues to add to its ever-expanding range of officially-supported devices. Today we get a little-known variant from a huge manufacturer and a huge phone from a little-known manufacturer (outside of China, anyway): the dual-SIM version of HTC's 2014 flagship One M8, and Xiaomi's Mi4, respectively.
As has been its habit over the past couple of years, HTC is slowly uploading its own apps that come preloaded on its devices to the Play Store. This allows the company easier and faster updates and bug fixes to these individual apps, without having to resort to a full software update.
The latest to join the ranks is Motion Launch, which lets you perform a couple of actions before you even turn your display on. These include swiping to unlock or voice dial, double tapping to wake, and launching to some specific apps directly like the home screen, BlinkFeed, or the camera.
HTC Motion Launch appears to be compatible with the One M9 on our huge list of Android Police devices, but do let us know if you can install it on other HTC phones.
Something interesting is happening on the Play Store this evening. Users are reporting mysterious "Play Daily" and "Dogfood Apps" buttons appearing on the store's home and apps pages, respectively.
The Play Daily button - at the time of writing - leads to an error page (the app gets a 500 error trying to reach https://android.clients.google.com/fdfe/daily), while the "Dogfood Apps" button leads somewhat predictably to a special apps collection called "Google Apps for Googlers." Inside the collection is, well, a bunch of Google apps including apps from Google Samples like Pie Noon and VoltAir. Worth noting is that the Play Store is not dispensing actual dogfood apps from this collection, just the normal variants that are always exposed to the public.