A new update for Google Photos is rolling out, and this one is taking aim at making backups possible in regions where data connections are generally slow and expensive. A new Express backup mode is in the works that automatically downscales images and video for more timely and less costly transmission to the cloud. There will also be a new setting that allows users to set daily limits on how much data to spend on performing backups. Read More
AT&T, a company with a reputation for evil such that placing their logo inside a Death Star has always seemed genuinely appropriate, has announced some changes to pricing on its mobile data plans today. While some of those changes are genuinely good if you're a subscriber with a large data bucket or have some pretty particular usage habits, many new customers can expect to pay $5-10 more a month under the new structure, which AT&T of course claims is a totally innocuous attempt to "simplify" things for customers.
Here's the deal - currently, AT&T charges $25 a month (plus $25 per phone if you BYOD or use Next) for 1GB of data, $40 for 3GB, and $70 for 6GB. Read More
The new unlimited upload function in Google Photos is undeniably generous. But the old saying that your mother taught you, "if something seems too good to be true, it probably is," would seem to be in effect. Android Police has received reports from multiple users that photo uploads from the desktop and various mobile apps have hard data restrictions, suddenly cutting out in the middle of the upload process after users pass an unspecified data threshold. Read More
Quick poll, Verizon customers: what's the one thing you want from America's most-hated (but admittedly most reliable) wireless carrier? OK, now those who are clamoring for phones with unlockable bootloaders, sit down - everyone left standing wants unlimited data. But you shouldn't, at least not according to Verizon shill Jack Gold.
OK, so maybe it's not fair to call Mr. Gold (seriously, that's his actual name) a shill. He's an analyst, founder and president of J. Gold Associates, LLC. The fact that he appears to be the only one doing any analysis, and that the website of this "technology industry analyst firm" looks like something from 1998, should probably raise some alarms for anyone looking to get some research done. Read More
Only in the confusing realm of smartphone data plans can 'unlimited' not really mean unlimited. We started to see the big carriers cut back on all-you-can-eat data a few years ago, and T-Mobile was no different. The nation's smallest national carrier relied on vague language and semantics to justify its continued use of the word 'unlimited.' Now it looks like T-Mobile is going to finally offer real unlimited data again.
The new unlimited 4G data plan will be available starting on September 5, and it does away with all the caps and throttling that angered power users. T-Mobile will be charging a downright reasonable rate of $30 per-month for those on the classic plans, and just $20 for anyone on a value plan. Read More
The carriers continue screwing us in lockstep. Sprint is once again making its service less appealing (and more in line with the rest of the quadopoly) by putting a 5GB cap on its Mobile Hotspot plans. As always with capped data, overage fees are now here to keep you up at night. Going over the 5GB cap will tack 5¢ per MB onto your bill, which means the homepage of AP is going to cost you around $0.30. We're like an old timey newspaper.
As for right now, this won't affect regular mobile data (it strictly applies to mobile hotspot), but perhaps they're saving that announcement for later. Read More
Update: According to two separate Verizon memos intercepted by Droid-life, existing Verizon customers can keep their existing data plan pricing when renewing or upgrading. Unfortunately, as with all offers of this type, just how long it will last remains to be seen. But, given that the BIONIC is coming some time soon-ish, it seems very likely that existing Verizon customers will be able to get the device without being forced into tiered data.
This should sate a lot of potentially angry current Verizon customers, but will definitely punish those coming over from AT&T for the iPhone 5 later this year. Read More