After nearly a year of rumors, teardowns, a vague announcement, and a false start, Google Play's Family Library is finally going live today. It will begin rolling out over the next few days to users in Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Other countries will surely join the list in time, but those will be the first. Family Library will allow up to six family members to share purchased content with each other without paying for additional copies.
Last year, Alcatel made its first real foray into the US unlocked smartphone market with the Idol 3. That phone cost $249, but at the time, offered quite a bit for the money. A large 5.5" 1080p display (with a fairly good LCD panel), dual front-facing speakers, no real bloatware to speak of, LTE, solid cameras (13MP/8MP), and a microSD card slot. High on features, low on price may as well have been the tagline for the Idol 3, and while it was at times excruciatingly slow owing to its Snapdragon 615 chipset, I found it an overall good value proposition.
Ever since its start as a Kickstarter campaign, the Nextbit Robin has been available in two color schemes: Mint and Midnight. Now a third color is joining the ranks, and it's just as interesting and even a little bolder and brighter than the Mint variant: Ember.
The colorway mixes black sides and back with bright red (a little magenta'ish if you ask me) end caps, power button, and volume button. It's striking to say the least, especially with the buttons on the sides popping right off the black plastic. Here are a couple more pictures from different angles.
The Ember variant is produced in limited quantity and will sell for the same $299 as the other colors.
The BLU R1 HD is a cheap Android phone, made even cheaper by its release as an Amazon Prime Exclusive device. You pay $50 (or $60 for the 16GB/2GB RAM version) for the phone instead of its original $100 price tag, but you get Amazon's apps pre-installed and its ads on the lockscreen. It's not that bad really: David has been trying to live with it for a month and hasn't faced many issues beside the "slowening", ie. the fact that the phone gets slower the more you use it.
If you've had an eye on this device either as your main phone or maybe as a Pokémon GO phone (hey, we understand), but you just can't bring yourself to accept Amazon's bloat, there's good news for you.
Open your eyes wide because a miracle is about to happen. You know how YouTube has long had some comment tools on its website to change the sorting order and like/dislike comments? Well, the Android app doesn't have any of that. What you get is just a regular list of comments with the option to add your opinion to the mix and... nothing else really.
However, that might be about to change. Some users are seeing a new comment interface on the YouTube Android app with the cool features from the website. There's a like and dislike button below each comment, an indicator of how many replies it got, and an option to expand to view said replies in a separate page.
We may all lament the state of app discoverability in the Play Store at times (it still sucks you can't do advanced searching), but at least Google is trying to improve the experience. Today it's added eight new categories and renamed two others, meaning apps will be better sorted into the relevant category, which will hopefully result in users being able to find what they're looking for quicker and easier.
The OnePlus 3 is a solid device, but it's not exactly bug free. Since release, owners have reported a number of vexing issues to OP in the hope of getting them fixed. Today, there's an OTA (OxygenOS 3.2.2) rolling out that addresses several of those bugs. You probably won't get it right away, but it's coming.
Apparently, Artem has an LG G Pad 8.3 Google Play Edition, or as we lovingly call it LGGPGPE, sitting somewhere on a desk or a drawer. I'm not sure what he uses it for, but I know that he keeps receiving updates for the monthly security patches on it.
So how old is the LGGPGPE? It was released in December of 2013, so it's technically not 3 years old just yet. But it had a short-lived stay on the Play Store: it was removed in June of 2014, which means that it's been out of the Store for more than 2 years now.
BlackBerry is sticking with this Android thing despite sales for its first phone not being particularly stellar. Now, there's a second BlackBerry Android phone, the DTEK50. Unlike the PRIV, this one is mid-range and costs just $299. Also unlike the PRIV, it doesn't look like BlackBerry designed or built this one. The DTEK50 is a rebranded Alcatel Idol 4.
Do you want a Moto X Pure Edition? Were you waiting for a great deal to grab it? Now is the time and you better act fast. B&H is discounting the 32GB Moto X Pure by $150 from $399.99 to $249.99 and adding a couple of freebies to boot. You get a Bluetooth selfie stick, which you can always give to someone as a gift if you don't need it, and a 32GB MicroSD card, which is a nice addition on top of the 32GB of internal memory. The X Pure supports adoptable storage, so this doubles your phone's capacity.