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FreedomPop's free wireless plan becomes less free, more bad

FreedomPop's free wireless plan becomes less free, more bad

One of the hidden gems in the MVNO sector was FreedomPop's free plan: for some people, 500 texts, 200 minutes, and 200MB of LTE (plus a pay-as-you-go overage rate of 2.5¢ per MB) goes far in a month. Recently, though, the company made sweeping changes to the so-called "freemium" plan by pushing Wi-Fi calling and messaging to the forefront and making drastic cuts to talk, text, and cellular data allowances. Worse yet is the sense of urgency put into place as those grandfathered into the old free plan have been told they will be kicked off of it after January 31.

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YouTube finds a fun new way to ruin music videos with an infinite pool of cover versions

YouTube finds a fun new way to ruin music videos with an infinite pool of cover versions

Music streaming services are cooking up some kitschy personalized ways to enjoy your favorite pop hits over and over again. Spotify has been infusing AI into some web experiences featuring artists like The Weeknd. Now, YouTube Music is experimenting with doing a bit of the same, this time featuring covers of Billie Eilish's "Bad Guy."

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This speaker privately beams sound to your ears, like you're wearing invisible headphones

This speaker privately beams sound to your ears, like you're wearing invisible headphones

Sound beaming isn't a new concept, but it's an appealing one for people who don't want to put on headphones to hear audio from highly targeted speakers. It's been implemented in extremely limited commercial and industrial scenarios, but has yet to make any meaningful consumer impact. Israeli tech firm Noveto is ready to pounce, though, beginning a tour of demonstrations before sending its SoundBeamer 1.0 to market next year.

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Here's what Ratio needs to become a more perfect minimalist launcher

Here's what Ratio needs to become a more perfect minimalist launcher

You know how you use your smartphone, right? Well if you thought "too much," you're not alone. There are plenty of apps out there that claim to help you curb the urges and one of them is called Ratio — it's a launcher or home screen replacement for Android (it's actually more than that in some cases) that's meant to recompartmentalize how you access and consume the things on your phone. But will it help you cut down on your screen time? Well, it turns out that I'm the completely wrong type of person to tackle that question.

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100

Scoped storage on Android 11 is ruining the Google Photos experience

Scoped storage on Android 11 is ruining the Google Photos experience

If you plan on buying a phone with Android 11 soon, you'll want to get used to your manufacturer's gallery app. And if you're going to be using Google Photos on something that's not a Pixel, be prepared to confirm every single thing you want to delete on the app. The reason why boils down to a new, well-intentioned policy in the operating system that leaves end users with some annoying consequences.

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Unlimited Google Drive storage is getting more expensive with Workspace

Unlimited Google Drive storage is getting more expensive with Workspace

Google Workspace is replacing G Suite, and anyone interested in the new features can sign up or switch over to the service right now (unless they're managing an Education or Non-profit organization). But if you're one of the many people relying on G Suite's $12/month unlimited storage "hack," you might be better off sticking to your current G Suite plan — if you want unlimited storage on the new Workspace tiers, it will cost you at least $20 a month.

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7

Trying out those 12-foot skeletons from Home Depot is what AR was created for

Trying out those 12-foot skeletons from Home Depot is what AR was created for

You thought augmented reality was just a gimmick. You all thought that it was just a weird trick you'll use once and never again. You thought wrong. If you haven't seen it already, Home Depot makes and sells a $299 standing skeleton decoration with "LifeEyes" that stands 12 feet tall. We know a lot of you have an itch to purchase this. You should probably check if and where it will fit around your house before doing so.

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Snag Anker's Soundcore Spirit Pro Bluetooth earbuds for just $22 ($17 off) at Amazon

Snag Anker's Soundcore Spirit Pro Bluetooth earbuds for just $22 ($17 off) at Amazon

Whether you're out trying to shave off that quarantine weight or at home cozying up with a good book, you probably want some headphones to fend off distractions and keep you in the zone — you need to concentrate and you need a solution at a decent price. Anker has an offering for you, with its Soundcore Spirit Pro Bluetooth earbuds at just $22 ($17 off) at Amazon.

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Play Store notifies some users that it 'can't install apps,' even though it can

Play Store notifies some users that it 'can't install apps,' even though it can

A number of people are encountering an error message from the Play Store where the app claims that it cannot install apps because "the settings on this device" don't allow it to. This appears despite previously normal behavior and no changes to settings.

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278

Google ruined the quick settings panel in Android 11

Google ruined the quick settings panel in Android 11

Android 11 has been stable for a bit, and while it brought many improvements to the table, there are also a few regressions. One of these is a small but significant change to the quick settings tiles. Compared to earlier versions of the OS, Android 11 only displays two rows instead of three, even when the new media player isn't in use.

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