Allo updates are starting to roll out, but as the trend has been going, there's not much to see in the main interface for this update. However, tearing down the APK has turned up signs of good things to come. Support for using Google accounts to find contacts and start conversations is going to be pretty robust as hints suggest we'll be able to sign in multiple accounts. There's also a new camera effect listed, a little activity around the scene generation feature, and a hint that the behavior of bots may by changing. Read More
Anyone who's set up a Samsung phone has probably seen all the popups for Samsung Cloud backups. It's actually a rather robust system backup tool that can save system settings and app data, but Samsung is dropping a big part of that service. Starting next month, third-party apps will no longer be supported on Samsung Cloud. Read More
The FCC is ending its enforcement of net neutrality (unless the Senate can override it), but it's still an important issue. Now that it's no longer illegal, we'll probably see more carriers and ISPs begin to interfere with internet traffic as time goes on. Researchers from Northeastern University and The University of Massachusetts have published 'Wehe,' an app that can verify if your carrier or ISP is throttling or blocking some services. Read More
Back in August, Verizon split its unlimited data plan into three separate plans - Go Unlimited, Beyond Unlimited, and Business Unlimited. All three plans have limitations on video streaming, tethering, and international usage. But starting on January 25, Go Unlimited will include limited service to Mexico and Canada. Read More
Amazon partnered with Huawei a year ago to launch the Mate 9 as the first Alexa-enabled phone, but there have only been a few since then. Simply installing the Alexa app on your other devices didn't get you Alexa voice commands. Well, until now. Amazon says an update is rolling out that adds Alexa to the Alexa app. Seems fitting. Read More
Like many companies, Google uses a variety of operating systems in-house. macOS and Windows are used by a large number of employees, a modified build of Debian Linux is used on its servers (as of 2014, at least), and Chrome OS and Android devices are commonplace. In work environments where Linux is needed, Google uses a customized version of Ubuntu 14.04 called 'Goobuntu,' which has never been released publicly. Read More
T-Mobile has un-carried itself back to the top of J.D. Power's customers care rankings for full-service wireless carriers. The latest survey, which evaluates consumers' satisfaction with their carriers' customer service, shows Verizon and AT&T taking spots two and three respectively, and Sprint...well, someone needs to do something about Sprint. Read More
OnePlus has sent a letter to customers this morning, and confirmed in a post on the company's forums, that it was the target of a credit card hack. The attack was accomplished via a malicious script injected into the OnePlus.net payment page code, and allowed the attackers to see customer's credit card numbers, expiration dates, and security codes - enough information to easily allow those cards to be used for fraudulent purchases. Days ago, some users had begun reporting fraudulent card activity on cards they'd used on the site.
OnePlus says the code was injected into its servers sometime in mid-November - just as the OnePlus 5T was about to launch. Read More
Google Trips is one of the hidden gems of Google's arsenal of apps. What started as a small app that manages your flight and hotel reservations is now nearly a full-blown travel planner with essential tips on how to get around and what you need to know about the city/country you're going to, management for many reservation types, saved places that sync with Google Maps, discounts and offers on various activities, and a complete list of places to visit with ratings and reviews from the Maps community.
It's the latter part that's getting updated now with one small, but handy, addition. Read More
Android 8.0 Oreo introduced one cool feature for app notifications: channels. Since not all notifications are created equal, even if they come from the same app, this would allow you to choose how different types of notifications appear, sound, and vibrate, or not, on your phone. However, that created one big issue: Google didn't have a fallback in place for apps that don't get updated to support the channels, which means that you couldn't assign importance to any notification coming from the app. That, as you can imagine, was very annoying with apps like WhatsApp where you couldn't disable the permanent WhatsApp Web running notification without disabling all of the app's notifications, for example. Read More