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ZenFone 3 review: Zen and the art of great midrange phones

The original ZenFone would be two years old this month, but I doubt many of them are still in use. It was highly anticipated before release, and widely panned shortly thereafter. I have friends who bought the first generation ZenFone, and the issues were obvious right from the start: the battery couldn't last half a day, the UI was clumsy and unresponsive, it got so hot you could barely hold it, and the build quality and design really weren't up to par.

A lot has changed in the last two years. The ZenFone 2 was well-received by our team and continues to be a good buy for the price.

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AT&T Galaxy Tab S2 gets Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow OTA

AT&T is finally catching up on its Marshmallow OTA rollouts to its fleet of Android devices. And today's lucky winner of "Which device will get an OTA?" is the Samsung Galaxy Tab S 2 (T817A).

Mouthful name aside, this may not be the most exciting tablet on the market, but it still deserves to be on the latest and greatest software version possible — even if only for a short time until Nougat is official. And it also deserves to catch up to its Verizon colleague: nobody wants to be left behind more than a month.

Apparently, the software has been rolling out since July 8, but AT&T just decided to update its support page (raise your hand if you see a trend of late updates in everything AT&T does lately).

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[Update: Now $1099.99] [Deal Alert] eBay Has A Sony 65-Inch 4K TV With Android TV For $1200 ($300 Off Street Price), US Only

It's not often that we get to write about standard TVs on Android Police... because there aren't many that run Android. But Sony's high-end models are the exception, and today BuyDig's eBay account is offering one of the latest models at a significant discount. The XBR-65X810C is a 65-inch LED TV with 4K resolution, a 120Hz refresh rate, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, and it runs Android TV out of the box. The eBay price is $1199.99 with free shipping, which is $300 cheaper than most online and brick-and-mortar retailers, and an impressive $900 off the retail price.

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It may soon be possible to run Windows software on Android and Chromebooks

Chromebooks started as just a portal to web apps, but more powerful extensions eventually made them a little more robust. Now, the Play Store is rolling out on Chromebooks to add a ton of new functionality. But... what about Windows apps? A company called CodeWeavers is tantalizingly close to making that happen thanks to the new Android support. So, we're talking about Windows on both Android and Chrome. As you can see from the image above, they are very, very excited about the prospect.

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[5 Minutes at the gym] Google will start telling you how long people usually spend at a location

Google Search, not Google Maps, is adding a new feature when you search for a place. You'll get the usual card with the photo, location, open hours, description, reviews, and more, but there will be a new section there called Plan your trip with the duration people typically spend at this location.

This information won't show up for every single place you might look at. It will most likely be limited to popular touristic and historical locations with lots of foot traffic where Google can aggregate data from different visits and figure out how long people usually stay there.

This, along with the Popular times graph that was added last year to Maps (and Google Places) should help you plan your visits to different destinations more effectively, especially when you're on holiday or traveling.

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[Update: Now available] ZeroLemon's 8500mAh battery case for the Nexus 6P will be available later this month for $60

As a design element, the rear-mounted fingerprint scanner has its fans and its detractors. I'm going to bet that ZeroLemon, suppliers of almost ridiculous battery-boosting cases and replacement shells to the rich and poor, aren't fans. A big honking fingerprint sensor hanging out in the otherwise barren plains of a phone's rear housing means a big hole in any cases made for it, and thus less space to shove every possible spare milliamp into a battery case. So it is with ZeroLemon's latest addition to its power collection, a battery-case combo for the flagship Nexus 6P.

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Hangouts 11 lets you invite more people to groups with a shared link (before WhatsApp, for once)

Hangouts 11 has been around for a couple of days, but with no official changelog yet, we've had to figure out by ourselves that it enabled video messaging and removed merged SMS and chat conversations. There was another undiscovered feature lurking though, but it was just waiting for a server-side switch to start showing up for users.

Hangouts is adding the option to create and share a link to any group conversation. This, if you recall, is a feature that has been rumored to be coming to Whatsapp for a couple of months already and has been almost live since last month.

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Samsung Pay has launched in Brazil and Puerto Rico

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.

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AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, Sprint, and Google offer free calls and texts to France following Nice attack

These posts are never fun to write, and we've been writing a lot of them lately. Odds are you've heard about the attack in Nice, France that took place several hours ago. I won't recount the specifics, but at times like this all the backbiting among the big US wireless companies stops. AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, and T-Mobile have all announced free calls and texts to France so those with loved ones in the region can check in. Google is also waving fees for calls to Nice on its various platforms.

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Moto Z and Z Force hands-on and first impressions

Motorola under the stewardship of Lenovo is doing something very different this year. The Moto X brand may not be gone, but it's certainly not the company's focus right now. Instead, we have the Moto Z and Moto Z Force. They're thin and they have Moto Mods—snap-on modules like projectors and speakers that make the phones much less thin. The Z is coming to Verizon first as a Droid phone (that's what I have to review), but the device I'm looking at now is very similar to what Motorola will release unlocked later this year.

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