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1 month ago

Verizon updates LG G3 and G4 with March security patch

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Verizon is now pushing out a fresh set of updates to the LG G3 and LG G4, bringing along the latest Android Platform Security patch and more.

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1 month ago

Playing your PlayStation 4 games remotely on your Sony phone is really cool

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If you're a gamer, you probably already have a preferred way to enjoy your games. Whether that means that you're fiercely loyal to your platform, or that you've spent the money and gotten yourself a sweet setup. Games, and the way that we access them are changing, and it seems like Sony is trying t be on the forefront of that change. They've already announced PlayStation VR, but now they've also given gamers the ability to play their PlayStation 4 from compatible Sony phones.

PS4 Remote play streams gameplay from your PS4 console direct to your phone or tablet. This app is built so that you can pair a Dualshock 4 controller, and play your PS4 from your phone — so long as you are connected over Wi-Fi. There's no need to learn new controls, since you'll be playing with a normal controller and for the most part this app and its features work beautifully. For anybody who has lost control over the TV (or fallen asleep in the living room while playing on the PS4), this is a pretty awesome deal. So if you've got a Sony Xperia Z5, Xperia Z5 compact, or Xperia Z4 tablet, then you're good to go.

Setting up Remote Play is really easy, and the app will walk you step-by-step through the process. You'll need to pair your Xperia device to a controller, and then connect your device to the PS4 system you plan on using, and make sure that you are connected to the internet via Wi-Fi. The actual setup takes five minutes at most before you have access to your console.

After you've gotten set up and paired, it's time to play some games on your phone. I mean, you can watch Netflix from anywhere, but when was the last time you had the opportunity to sit outside and play video games if you wanted? Playing a game here is almost the exact same experience as you would get from your television. Considering that your TV is typically significantly larger than your phone or tablet, we were pretty pleased with the experience.

PlayStation Remote Play can chew through 15 percent of your battery in just an hour.

You also have the choice to bypass using a controller entirely and just use your phone. The controls will show up on the lower half of your screen, with less than half of the screen being taken up by the game that you are playing. Unless you are using a tablet we really don't recommend this. It didn't work as well as using a controller, but the bigger problem was how small the gameplay area was using this method. Holding your phone vertically will give you bigger controls but a tiny screen to play in, while rotating to landscape gives you controls that are literally superimposed over the game.

Unlike some mobile games you may have played, where the writing is illegible, or it's hard to navigate, you get a gorgeous experience when using a controller. The entire screen of your phone becomes a TV, and the quality is on par as well. Your console is streaming over Wi-Fi to your phone, which means your phone isn't doing the heavy lifting. The Xperia Z5 has some slight problems with heating up when you try playing heavy mobile games, but that doesn't seem to be a problem when using remote play. Keeping an eye on your battery is a good call though, because this app can chew through 15 percent of your battery in an hour.

The biggest problem, I'm sad to say, was lag. Since you are connecting to your PlayStation 4 console over your home Wi-Fi, you may not always get a solid connection. If you're the only person using the internet at home, you should be safe, but you'll start to see issues if there are multiple people all using that same Wi-Fi. While we were only actually disconnected once, the warning popped up pretty regularly when there were multiple devices online. The lag can be especially frustrating for anyone playing a multiplayer game.

We ran into severe pixelation, characters moving counter to our commands, frozen screens, and the pain of catching back up to where the game was when it got over the lag. None of these issues lasted for too long, usually it was a 5-15 second aggravation that quickly fixed itself. However, when you're in the middle of inflicting a massive bloodbath and you suddenly can't move your character at all ... it's a problem. In fact, it's enough of a problem that after a serious lag in Destiny we switched games.

Lag can be an issue, but it's usually brief enough that you can wait it out and keep playing.

While there were connectivity issues on both Destiny and Last of Us, they were less of a serious problem in the latter, a single-player game that doesn't depend on reactions with other players over the internet. When you're playing a single-player game, you can just wait out the lag and then keep playing uninterrupted. While that's obviously not an ideal situation, it still works quite well, and is a serious win for anyone that's had to surrender control of the TV to somebody that doesn't appreciate console gaming as much as you do.

To really get the most of Sony Remote Play though, you'll probably want to order a Game Control Mount. This will let you mount your phone right above your controller and by far gives you best Remote Play experience. It turns remotely playing the PS4 into an experience similar to a handheld game system with the controls and your screen right next to one another. The mount isn't a necessary accessory to enjoy PS4 Remote Play, but it does make things far less awkward.

Overall PS4 Remote Play is a great app for anyone who happens to own both an Xperia phone, and a PS4 console. It would be nice to see more phones with the ability to use this, but it isn't surprising that Sony is keeping it exclusive to their own devices. The app functions well for the most part, but you'll probably want to go ahead and steer away from multiplayer games if you've got roommates using the Wi-Fi. While lag and battery use were somewhat problematic, it didn't end up being a large enough issue to make the experience enjoyable.

Are you going to give PS4 Remote Play a shot? Do you think that Remote Play should be available for more phones and tablets? Let us know what you think about it in the comments!

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1 month ago

Google's latest app aims to help improve Android app accessibility

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Google has introduced a new app designed to help developers make their apps more accessible. Accessibility Scanner can suggest improvements to apps, such as enlarging small touch targets, changing the contrast, and more. While developers can use the app to find areas where their own applications need improvement, Google also encourages other people to use it to provide feedback to developers.

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1 month ago

Marshmallow update imminent for Verizon LG V10

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LG V10 owners on Verizon have a sweet treat to look forward to, as the carrier has indicated Android 6.0 Marshmallow will begin rolling out to the handset on March 24.

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1 month ago

Google reportedly building live streaming app dubbed YouTube Connect

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Google is reportedly working on its own entry into the live streaming app space with a new app for Android and iPhone dubbed YouTube Connect.

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1 month ago

Google Photos will now help you make new albums after a trip

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Google Photos is rolling out an update that is designed to make it easier to put recent images in new albums. Now, when you return from an event or trip, Photos will suggest new albums from photos you took to commemorate those events.

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1 month ago

Grab Enpass password manager for just ₹170 in India

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Enpass is kicking off its Holi promotion by offering the pro version of the password manager — which removes the 20-item limitation — for just ₹170 ($2.5) in India. That's down from the usual ₹600 asking price for the additional features.

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1 month ago

Popular Indian mobile wallet MobiKwik goes hyperlocal with 'Explore Nearby'

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The latest update to Indian digital wallet app MobiKwik brings a new hyperlocal aspect: "Explore Nearby." MobiKwik is one of the leading independent mobile payments networks in India, connecting 30 million users with 50,000 retailers.

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1 month ago

Amazon Prime Video grabs Doctor Who video streaming rights in the U.S.

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Amazon Prime subscribers in the U.S. will gain access to the reboot of the popular sci-fi series Doctor Who starting March 27. Amazon has signed a multi-year deal with the BBC for those rights, with the first eight seasons available to stream via Amazon Prime Video:

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1 month ago

Dimensional Intersection will make its way to Steam, Oculus Rift and PlayStation VR this fall

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Dimensional Intersection, the upcoming title from publisher Nicalis Inc., will be available later this fall on Steam, Oculus Rift and PlayStation VR. The game, which was developed by the Swedish studio DNV will create surreal environments that continuously morph and evolve, and give you a truly unique journey. The team behind this game is also the one responsible for various successful titles already, such as The Binding of Isaac, Cave Story and others.

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1 month ago

Amazon Cloud Drive unlimited storage plans are now available in Canada

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Amazon is offering Canadian residents the chance to purchase an unlimited amount of cloud storage for their files. The company has launched two such storage subscription plans for its Amazon Cloud Drive services to the folks in the Great White North.

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1 month ago

AC editors' apps of the week: Fenix, Cartwheel, Eve: Gunjack and more

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Our weekly app picks

It's Appday Sunday and that means we're back with more of our favorites to share. Every week we bring a handful of great apps to the table and share them with everyone. Sometimes they are new apps, sometimes old standards, but every time they are apps we love to use.

Give these a look and then take a minute to tell us all about the apps you are using and love so we can give them a try. We all find some of our favorites right in the comments on these posts!

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1 month ago

Find your style with Fit Cat, Timr and more great Android Wear watch faces

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There are new Android Wear watch faces being added, or updated in the Google Play Store on a daily basis. Trying to keep up with all of the new additions is, at best, a daunting task. So we've grabbed up 5 awesome watch faces for you to check out. Whether you've been looking for something relatively simple, or you want to be able to see how many steps you've taken each day, there is a face here for you.

Let's see what watch faces are in this week's roundup.

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1 month ago

Twitter CEO says its 140-character limit for posts is 'staying'

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Twitter will be sticking with its infamous 140-character limit on public posts. The company's CEO, Jack Dorsey, when asked in an interview if the limit was staying or if it will change, answered, "It's staying. It's a good constraint for us and it allows for of-the-moment brevity."

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1 month ago

You can now mark your favorite locations with colorful stickers in Google Maps

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Google Maps users have new options for navigating their way to their destinations. Google is adding colorful stickers that can be used to label and save addresses on the Maps app, such as home and work locations.

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