April fools day 2017 – All the tech spoofs – Continuously updated

 

Google Gnome

 

The Google Gnome page on the Google Store

Google’s Bubble Wrap Keyboard

 

Google Wind

Netflix Live

 

T-Mobile ONEsie

Tmobile is actually selling it

Hulu Hu

OnePlus Dash drink

Lyft Mono

Lyft Mono

Google Haptic Helpers

Amazon Petlexa

Contour by SlickWraps

Nvidia GTX G-Assist

 

Carved screen protector

 

If you see any more let me know so I can add them to the list

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Do you need that app

If you have a newer Android phone, you may find that an app you used before is now baked right into Androids OS so you don’t need it anymore.  Here is a list of some common apps that you should delete right now!

  1. Flashlight app – These apps are very common and many of them have very invasive permissions to your phone.  In addition to this, almost every phone purchased in the last two years already has a flashlight available as a standard feature.
  2. File Browser –  In the past this was a needed feature, but has now become integrated into most new phones.
  3. Anti-Virus – Unless you are downloading apps and side loading (If you do not know what side loading is then odds are you are not doing it) then you do not need an antivirus.  Google makes it a top priority to keep malicious apps out of the play store.
  4. Cleaner Apps – These apps are very common but provide very little benefit.  They often come with annoying ads in the lock screen and constant reminders to scan your device.  If you feel that you need such an app the only one I have found that is not invasive and annoying is ccleaner.
  5. Any other app you have not used in the last few months.  If you are not using it and you have no intention to use it, remove it! Your phone will thank you.

Apps can make your phone great! They can add functionality and fun. However, when an app becomes redundant or invasive, it needs to be removed.  Every app uses system resources. You may just find that the 5 minuets you will spend removing bad or unused apps will make your phone run longer and faster.  As always please feel free to respectfully disagree or add anything that I may have missed in the comments or via the contact page.

Chevy offering unlimited Data for only $20

If you spend a lot of time in your car, this might be the feature for you! Starting tomorrow, (3/3/2017) you will be able to get the new, unlimited, data mobile WiFi OnStar service for compatible Chevys.  The internet will be provided by At&t and will allow any person in the car to connect to WiFi.  If you road trip a lot as a family or have a mobile office this might be a feature you will want to add to your new Chevy vehicle.

 

After using more than 4 million gigabytes of data in 2016, Chevrolet owners in the U.S. with an in-vehicle OnStar 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot[1] will now have access to an unlimited prepaid data plan for only $20 per month[2]. It will be available starting March 3, and Chevrolet will offer this groundbreaking plan enabled by AT&T across its entire retail lineup.

Chevrolet data usage has increased exponentially as owners have come to appreciate the ability to stream video on a tablet, send email on a laptop or play online using a gaming console in their vehicles[3], and now customers can utilize the full potential of their OnStar 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot without worrying about running out of data.

“We have contractors bidding jobs in their Silverados, families streaming movies in their Suburbans and Malibus and everyone tapping into the cloud for music,” said Alan Batey, president of GM North America and global head of Chevrolet. “With the most affordable unlimited 4G LTE data plan in the auto industry, the widest availability of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and new connected services like OnStar AtYourService, our momentum can only grow.”

Last year alone, Chevrolet customers used nearly 200 percent more OnStar 4G LTE data in their vehicles compared to 2015. In the second half of 2016, Chevy owners used almost as much data as they had the previous 24 months since OnStar 4G LTE launched.

To put this data usage in perspective, Chevrolet owners and their passengers streamed the equivalent of more than 17.5 million hours of video in 2016.

“We’re pleased to deliver this special unlimited data plan to Chevy owners,” said Chris Penrose, president, IoT Solutions, AT&T. “Accessing the internet through AT&T’s 4G LTE Wi-Fi, passengers now can access all of their content and enjoy endless entertainment on the go.”

As the first automaker to offer 4G LTE connectivity across its entire retail portfolio, Chevrolet has sold more than 3.1 million OnStar 4G LTE-connected vehicles since June 2014 and has more vehicles on the road equipped with 4G LTE than any other automaker.

Today, along with the 4G LTE connection enabled by AT&T, the OnStar Basic Plan comes standard on all new Chevrolet retail models. The Basic Plan includes select remote vehicle services and the OnStar AtYourService marketplace via the myChevrolet mobile app[4] among other features.

For more information on plans and pricing, please visit OnStar.com.

source – chevy

Don’t pay for home phone service…

I’ve been using Google Voice for my home and business phone service since 2011. With this app, you can use a cell phone that is designated exclusively for this purpose, or add a google voice number as a second line to an existing, in service cell phone, like me wife does on her Nexus 6p for her business. I have found that outside of the tech world not many people know about this option, but everyone I tell about it wants to give it a try. If you’re needing a phone line to be used exclusively in a place where you have WiFi, give it a try.

Let google be your free home phone service! I will be using a Nexus 5 for my home phone.

screenshot-2017-02-21-at-10-24-37-am

  1. go to voice.google.com, sign in to your gmail account and select a phone number.  I created a new email account for the family, so that my personal email account was not available for anyone to use.screenshot-2017-02-21-at-10-24-53-am
  2. Use an Android phone you have lying around or if you don’t have a new enough one available, an inexpensive one will do.
  3. Start fresh – wipe and reinstall the operating system.wp-1487701140346.png
  4. Log in to your gmail account.wp-1487701145053.png
  5. Download the google voice app from the app store.  Make sure it is the official Google app and not one of the many third party ones.wp-1487701135257.png
  6. Make sure all apps are up to date via the play storewp-1487701116955.png
  7. Open the app and sign in.
  8. Enter the cell phone number linked to the account.wp-1487701113197.png
  9. Set google voice to use for all calls.wp-1487701108219.png
  10. Get the hangouts dialer – This is necessary to make calls via google voice.wp-1487701130115.png
  11. Open hangouts and make your first call or text.wp-1487701210597.jpg
  12. For now, hangouts is the best way to interface with google voice but google has been updating the google voice app and may at some point replace hangouts for calls.
  13. Get a durable case – because kids drop stuff.

4 New-old Capcom games for Android & iOS

Can’t wait to see if they are well done remakes or terrible ports like the Mega Man remakes.

Capcom to Release Four Arcade Classics to iOS and Android Platforms

LOS ANGELES, CA–(Marketwired – March 02, 2017) – Capcom, a leading worldwide developer and publisher of video games today announced that it will be bringing four Capcom arcade favorites to iOS and Android devices. The titles include 1942 Mobile, Ghosts’N Goblins™ Mobile, Ghouls’N Ghosts™ Mobile and Wolf of the Battlefield: Commando Mobile

Each of these games maintains fidelity to the originals, while offering players the option to play in modes that take full advantage of touch screen devices. In addition to Classic and Casual modes of play several of the games offer control options such as auto-fire and different button arrangements. Each game will also feature leaderboards so players can see how their skills compare against players from around the globe. All four games are expected to be available within the next few months.

Game Details:

  • 1942 Mobile This vertically scrolling shoot ’em up tasks players with battling through the entire enemy fleet. Shoot down enemy planes, avoid enemy fire and perform rolls and loops to avoid certain death in this epic retro nail-biter.
  • Ghosts’N Goblins™ Mobile Return to the days of yesteryear in this famously difficult action-platformer. As Sir Arthur, you must battle against demons and undead in order to rescue the princess Prin-Prin.
  • Ghouls’N Ghosts™ Mobile Better, bigger and more beloved, this legendary side scrolling platformer pick up where Ghost ‘n Goblins ends.
  • Wolf of the Battlefield: Commando Mobile Armed with a sub-machine gun and a limited supply hand grenades, players battle through legions of enemy troops in this classic vertical scrolling shooter.

source – Capcom

LG G6 vs Google Pixel

Spec-wise the LG G6 and Google Pixel are very similar phones. I assume that they will benchmark similarly too, with a slight advantage going to the G6 due to an increase in processor speed.  For me the biggest feature of this new phone is the screen to body ratio.

The LG G6 packs a 5.7 inch display into a body that is smaller than the Google Pixel.  In my opinion this should be what other cell phone manufacturers strive for. Everyone wants a larger screen but not a larger phone.  Congrats to LG for maximizing the screen while minimizing the body of the phone.

lg-g6-vs-google-pixel-xl-comparison-18

LG G6 Google Pixel XL
Display size, resolution 5.7-inch, 2,880 x 1,440 pixels 5.5-inch; 2,560 x 1,440 pixels
Pixel density 565ppi 534 ppi
Dimensions 5.86 x 2.83 x 0.31 in. 6.1 x 3 x 0.34 (at its thickest)
Operating System version Android 7.0 Nougat Android 7.1 Nougat
Camera 13-megapixel, 12.3-megapixel
Front-facing camera 5-megapixel 8-megapixel
Video capture 4K 4K
Processor 2.35GHz Snapdragon 821 with Adreno 530 GPU 2.15GHz + 1.6GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 821
Storage 32GB 32GB, 128GB
RAM 4GB 4GB
Expandable storage Up to 2TB None
Battery 3,300mAh 3,450mAh
Fingerprint sensor Back cover Back cover
Connector USB-C USB-C
Special features 18:9 screen ratio, wireless charging (US), IP68 Google Assistant; unlimited cloud storage; Daydream VR-ready
Price off-contract (USD) N/A $769 (32GB); $869 (128GB)
Price (GBP) N/A £719 (32GB); £819 (128GB)
Price (AUD) N/A AU$1,269 (32GB); AU$1,419 (128GB)

Don’t Lose Your Photos

Google offers an array of features that I have found most people aren’t using.  For the most part, people who I come in to contact with are not aware that these services are available and just use the ones that the carriers tell them to use.  The freedom to access your data and take your data with you is one of the most important features to me.  When you use a service like the Carrier’s cloud (ie Verizon and At&t) they do not make it easy for you to take that data with you if you switch to another carrier.  Google photos on the other hand is a free, unlimited, hi-res photo and video back up service that makes it easy to keep and share your media.

Just open the Google Photos app and log in to your account, your photos will begin to back up automatically.

Moto G5 and G5 Plus announced

MOTO G5 

motog5-768x440

 

  • 5 inch 1080p Display
  • 13MP back, 5MP front cameras
  • Snapdragon 430 processor
  • 2 GB GB of RAM
  • 32 Storage
  • 2800mAh Battery
  • Fingerprint Scanner
  • $210
  • Available in March

 

MOTO G5 PLUS

motog5plus-768x457

  • 5.2 inch 1080p Display
  • 12MP camera
  • Snapdragon 625 processor
  • 2/3/4 GB of RAM
  • 16/32/64 GB storage
  • 3000 mAh battery
  • Fingerprint reader
  • Starts at $229 up to $299
  • Available in March

 

Don’t get fooled by your carrier

Having control over your data seems like it should be simple process, but because of the amount of options available it can be tricky to know which service to use. Android is a great operating system, but sometimes knowing how to properly configure its services in order to maximize the benefit to you can be overwhelming. My hope is to address some of these problems in an effort to make your smart devices serve you better.

The first problem lies with the carriers. Any carrier’s main goal is for you to stay with them so they make if difficult for you to leave. By default, your data will be set to back up to their servers. You may think, “That’s great! Verizon is backing up my data for me. Thanks Verizon!”  There are two problems with having the carrier do this for you.  First of all, your storage is limited and they will often charge you for backups over a certain amount. In contrast, Google will back up almost everything on your phone through their services for free, with very few exceptions. Another issue with running your backups through the carriers is that it’s more difficult to access your data, especially if you want to switch phone companies. Just try it. Tell AT&T you are switching to Tmobile and see how happy they are to transfer your data to the other carrier. With google, it’s simple since everything is attached to your gmail account. Just sign in to your account on your new phone and all of your pictures, contacts, settings, and much more will automatically transfer to your new device.

The second problem is with the manufacturers.  They, like the carriers, want you to stay with them and continue purchasing their devices. Because of this, most of them will provide themselves as a primary or secondary option to store your data. As I stated before, don’t fall into this trap. You may like LG now, but your next phone could be a Samsung. If that’s the case, good luck contacting them to transfer your data!

The final problem also has to do with the manufacturers. Continuity between devices can be difficult when dealing with each manufacturer’s unique user interface.  It is likely that you and your family have multiple devices. If each device has a different manufacturer then you will find that even though they all run Android, they can look very different.  In this case, you can solve the problem by using one of Androids many custom launchers.  Doing this will allow you to have more control over the way that your phone looks. You can set everyone in the house to have a similar look and feel to each other or change and customize your user experience to something more uniquely suited to you.

Android is the most widely used operating system in part because it allows huge freedom of choice in all aspects of its design. However, this great strength can also present a problem.  Keeping control of your data is one of the best ways to keep yourself free and not let a company lock you into staying with them.  If you are not able to access and move your data easily, you will feel stuck and be unlikely to change (even if you want to).  Don’t get tricked. Take control of your device! Know how to easily access your data, and make it look and feel the way you want.

Services referred to in the article

Photo backup – Google Photos

Contacts – Gmail

Files – Google Drive 

These apps are already on most Android devices they just need to be updated and activated/opened

Android Launchers – phandroid.com has a good article about diffrent launchers