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10 months ago

How to use the Sony Xperia Z5 to stream on Twitch

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If you're into both mobile gaming and sharing your play sessions with the world on Twitch then you're in luck.

With the Xperia Z5 Sony has made it possible to stream your favorite mobile games directly to Twitch without the need for any third party applications or hardware. While YouTube Gaming allows streaming through its Android app, for Twitch this isn't yet a thing. Fortunately, the feature is built right into the phone.

Here's what you need to do.

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10 months ago

Inside Marshmallow: The System UI Tuner

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There is a neat hidden menu on your new Android Marshmallow phone or tablet that gives you a bit of control over your status bar and its pull-down menus — the System UI Tuner.

Once enabled, you can change the way your status bar and pull-down settings look and feel, giving your Android a more custom feel that would have previously required some rooting and flashing.

Let's have a look at how to enable it, and what you can do with it.

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10 months ago

Inside Marshmallow: What is Doze, how do I use it and what does it do?

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Android Marshmallow has changes deep in the operating system that can allow your phone (or tablet) to get better battery life. We see this mentioned with every operating system update from every company that makes smart devices, but this time they mean it.

Enter Doze. If the name reminds you of a pleasant nap while nothing pressing is going on, you've figured out what it is. It's a set of changes and rules that will put your phone to sleep when it's idle, which means you're not using as much of that precious juice from your battery. It sounds simple (and it is) but there are a few things to know.

You won't have to do anything to use the new Doze feature. There are no switches or settings you need to toggle, and once you've updated to Marshmallow it just works. That is, when it's supposed to work.

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10 months ago

How to keep Pandora from hijacking Android Auto

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Pandora has become one of my favorite music apps to use with Android Auto. Except for when it decides to hijack things and start playing atop other apps.

Here's how to keep that from happening.

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10 months ago

Inside Marshmallow: USB connection options

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You have an extra step when you want to transfer files to and from a computer using a USB cable in Android Marshmallow.

When you plug your Marshmallow-powered phone into a computer — Windows, Mac or Linux makes no difference — you'll have to tell the operating system what you want to do.

By default, your phone (or tablet) will be in USB charging only mode. This means no data is going back and forth between your phone and your computer's USB port, and only the 5 volt power is active. That's good for charging the battery, but means you can't see the phone in any type of file or folder browsing software, and the Android File Transfer app for Mac computers will pop out an error. Every time.

What you'll need to do is go into your notifications, and tap the USB connection entry. You'll get a dialog that allows you to change things.

  • Charging only is the default, and is used when all you want to do is top off your battery.
  • Transfer files (MTP) lets you copy files back and forth between your phone and computer using the Media Transfer Protocol. This is likely the option you'll want if you need to copy some files.
  • Transfer files (PTP) lets you copy files (usually only photos or video) using the Picture Transfer Protocol. This modes makes your computer think you have a digital camera attached, so programs that were designed to connect to a camera can grab photos and video directly from your phone and import them automatically.
  • MIDI is the option you'll use if you want to connect a MIDI device — something like a MIDI keyboard — to your phone or tablet and use a synthesizer app to create music.

These look like good options all around. The inclusion of MIDI support will make a lot of people happy, and MTP and PTP are options we've been using for a while. The issue is that you can't set any of them as the default, and you need to choose each and every time.

Choosing the correct option is not a difficult step, but in previous versions you could set a connection type as a default. This feels like a step backwards, and any of the reasons we have seen or can think of don't seem very sound. Here's hoping Google gives us a default setting option back in a future update.

Android Marshmallow

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10 months ago

How to get better battery life on the Moto X Pure Edition

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If you want your Moto X Pure Edition to last longer, you're going to have to give a few things up.

The Moto X line of phones has never had stellar battery life, but for most users these phones will last the day with no problem. This is especially true of the Moto X Pure Edition and its 3,000mAh battery. You're trading battery life for features with this phone, and that means it's not hard to stretch your battery beyond your initial experience if you know where to look.

Here's a few quick tips on getting more battery out of the Moto X Pure Edition.

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10 months ago

Keeping your Android, and your data, safe and secure

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Security and privacy are always a hot topic in the mobile space. While there are plenty of high-profile headlines that try to convince us all that the sky is falling, there are also serious and valid concerns. Regrettably, the FUD often takes the stage and the real issues are lost in the maelstrom of bickering and tribalism about which company is the best.

Let's take a moment and talk about what we can do to make our phones — the things that contain most every private detail about our lives — more secure.

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10 months ago

A beginner's guide to the Moto X Pure Edition

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The Moto X line of phones has always been neat, but the new Pure Edition is something everyone can enjoy.

There are so many great Android phones to choose from this year, and for the most part you'll find each great offering appeals to specific kinds of users. For Motorola, it's all about context and helping the user out in every part of you day to day life. The Moto X Pure Edition is the latest and by far the most functional example of this vision, but in order to dig in and truly appreciate what is happening with this phone you're going to need to know a few things.

Here's everything you need for choosing a Moto X Pure Edition, whether you're an Android expert or this is the first time you've considered something with that little M on the back.

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10 months ago

Swapping out straps on the Samsung Gear S2 is quick and easy

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Samsung's new Gear S2 smartwatch is now available, and while it doesn't support a standardized watch band connection it is designed for easy swapping if you do have a properly-designed replacement. Whether you just want to switch between the two sets of bands — large and small — included in the box or have a different style to use, it's a simple process.

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11 months ago

How to use the Galaxy Note 5's 'One-handed operation' modes

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Note 5's one-handed operation mode

Having trouble managing that screen? Shrink it down on-demand when you need it.

The Galaxy Note 5 is slimmer and easier to use with one hand than any previous Note, but 5.7-inches of screen is still a lot to manage. Samsung has two tricks up its sleeve to help you reach everything on your Note 5's screen, and they're even easier to use than previous iterations of the software tweak. They fall under the "One-handed operation" heading, and we're going to show you how to use them.

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11 months ago

How to change the Galaxy Note 5's home screen grid size

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A quick way to customize how many apps are on each of your Note 5's home screens.

If you're happy with the default TouchWiz home screen launcher on offer with the Galaxy Note 5 but want to customize it just a little bit, you may want to change the grid size of the launcher. Here's how you get it done.

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11 months ago

How to get more out of your Galaxy Note 5's battery

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Galaxy Note 5 battery life

There isn't much to worry about, but better battery longevity is always a good thing.

Though the Galaxy Note 5 actually dropped battery capacity when coming from the Note 4, and also lost the ability to remove the battery for a fresh one, there isn't too much to worry about with the battery life on the newest Note. The 3000 mAh cell can easily get you through a day, even if you hit it hard, but no matter what phone you have there's always going to be a desire to get the most out of it.

Your options are relatively limited on the Note 5 for extending battery life while also keeping the experience enjoyable, but we're here to give you a handful of tips to make sure you get the most out of your battery.

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11 months ago

How to add every NFL team schedule to your Google Calendar

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NFL Schedule on Google Calendar

We know the NFL season has already started, but it's not too late to start following along. If you want to casually keep up with the NFL and at least know what teams are playing every week, it's easy to add the schedule of your favorite team to Google Calendar. Or if you're a diehard fan, you can add and follow every single team in the league — we won't judge. It's a simple process either way, and we're going to show you how to do it.

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11 months ago

How to watch NFL football games on your Android phone or tablet

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Watch NFL 2015 on Android

NFL season is upon us, and we want to make sure you're fully set to not miss a second of the action. We're going to run down how you can watch games live from your Android phone or tablet, and keep up to date on the latest developments between games.

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12 months ago

A beginner's guide to the Moto G 2015

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Motorola is back with the best version of the Moto G yet in 2015. Most of the talk about it centers around how great it is for $200, and that's all true. But it's also a great phone all-around, and one many of us will be happy with — at least until the next one comes along.

If you picked up a new Moto G or are looking for more information about it, you've found the right spot. Android Central is filled with happy Moto G users who have figured out most everything about how it works and how to make the best of it.

Let's get you started!

Read: Android Central's Moto G 2015 review

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