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3 weeks ago

Managing your shared photo links in Google Photos

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Google Photos shared links

Google Photos doesn't always share a plain image, it sometimes uses a link — and that adds some complication.

We're used to photo editors and services having their own specific ways of sharing items, and with Google Photos there are a few quirks to understand. When sharing basic photos and collages from your phone via the Google Photos app you'll be able to send just the image, but if you're using the Photos website or sharing more complex content like a story or movie, you'll be sharing a goo.gl/photos link.

This will be confusing for folks until Google Photos starts to gain more popularity and regular use, but the great part about sharing a link is that you control its destiny after sending it out into the wild. We're going to show you what exactly a Google Photos link gives those you share it with, and how to effectively manage the links once you send them. Read along.

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3 weeks ago

How to turn off Smart Bulletin on the LG G4

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Smart Bulletin — LG's answer to HTC BlinkFeed — can be wonderful if you use LG's apps. But what if you aren't?

Smart Bulletin puts your appointments, step count, and your TV remote just a simple swipe away, but maybe you use Google Fit instead of LG Health. Maybe you use Spotify, not LG's Music app. Maybe QRemote doesn't work with your Insignia television. Whatever the case may be, Smart Bulletin isn't as smart as you'd like, and you'd like it to stop taking up space on your LG G4's homescreen.

Here's how to make it go away.

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3 weeks ago

How to edit the homescreens on the LG G4

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This homescreen needs some originality.

Our phone likely the device you use the most, and one you keep with you almost all the time. You'll pick a case that meshes with your style; why not make your homescreen match your style and your digital habits, too?

This is the LG G4. There are many like it, but this one is mine. I must master my phone as I master my life... and while your homescreen may not be the most important thing to learn on a new phone, having a homescreen that fits your habits will make using your phone faster and less frustrating. Whether you're the type to put all your app icons on your homescreen or you like to keep things simple and clean, there's a homescreen for everyone, and it probably isn't the one that was pre-configured on your phone. Besides, you're gonna look at this phone at least 30 times a day, you might as well put a wallpaper on it that makes you smile.

Let's personalize!

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3 weeks ago

How to take a screenshot with Cyanogen OS

Taking screenshots is easy with Cyanogen OS.

So you've got your Cyanogen OS device, and now you want to know how to take a screenshot. Maybe it's because you've found something that could in fact alter the space time continuum and you need proof, or you just want to show off your awesome new wallpaper. Either way, you need to know the best way to pull that off, right?

Well, we've got you covered with a few ways to make sure you snag that perfect screenshot.

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3 weeks ago

Where did Auto Awesome go in Google Photos?

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Creations in Google Photos

Creations are a new thing with Google Photos, and it's basically just a re-branding of the old Auto Awesome features you're used to.

Dropping the Auto Awesome name was something that came along with the loss of the Google+ baggage, and the new name is a bit more intuitive and descriptive. Creations are animated pictures, edited still photos, collages, stories and movies that are created based on photos and videos that you upload to Google Photos. They can happen automatically or conjured up manually if you're so inclined — let us show you how they work in the new Google Photos.

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3 weeks ago

How to change the on-screen buttons on the LG G4

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While most phones stick to the standard Back-Home-Recent button arrangement, there are a few that ignore that and do what they want (l'm looking at you, Samsung). And now, you can, too.

The on-screen buttons on the LG G4 are customizable, and while we wish we could make them a little bit smaller, we're quite grateful that you can at least change the order and add an extra button if you so choose. Whether you want to add a dedicated dual-screen button to take full advantage of the G4's 5.5 inches, or if you just want to switch the back and recent buttons to match what you had on your old phone, here's how to do it.

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4 weeks ago

Accessibility features on the LG G4

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Accessibility isn't a feature on the minds of most users, but to those who need them they can make or break the experience for them.

If you want to market your phone to everyone, you need to design it for everyone to use, and that means designing it for those who maybe can't hear the notification tones that most users take for granted. It means designing it for those who need a little more room to grab the phone. While Google has provided some accessibility features for stock Android, manufacturers often go above and beyond this to help disabled users better use their devices. LG is no different, and we praised the accessibility features in the LG G3 last year, so we're happy to say that they haven't messed with it too much this year, but they've made a few more wonderful touches for this year's LG G4.

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4 weeks ago

Understanding 'Assistant' in Google Photos, and what it can do for you

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Understanding Assistant in Google Photos

There's lots to wrap your head around in Google Photos, but the new Assistant feature is here to help.

Whether you want to check up on the status of your photo backups, see the Creations that Google Photos has made for you, or be alerted of space to be freed up on your device, Assistant is the place to go. It's just a tap, swipe or click away from your photo library, and it'll keep you in the loop with what's going on in the Google Photos world.

It's like an all-in-one notification center for everything that's happening with your photos, and it's quite useful. And here's how you use it.

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4 weeks ago

All about Smart Bulletin on the LG G4

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Devoting a page of a user's homescreen to an aggregation of information and widgets is nothing new.

Smart Bulletin on the LG G4 is on the left-most page of your homescreen — or rather, it is the left page of your home screen if you're using the stock launcher. Like HTC Blinkfeed, it's meant to be a one-stop shop for information about your phone, except rather than focusing on your social media and news, Smart Bulletin focuses on data from your phone itself. Think of it as a screen-sized collection of scrolling widgets, sort of like Google Now on the Google Now Launcher, except there's no search and all of the widgets relate to LG's apps rather than Google services.

So, what can this pastel-painted widget wall do? More importantly, should you even bother?

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4 weeks ago

What happens when you delete pictures in Google Photos?

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What happens when you delete pictures in Google Photos?

With potentially unlimited storage at your disposal there are few reasons to delete photos, but if you do there are a few things to know.

Whether you need to clear out duplicates, limit the amount of full-resolution storage you're taking up or just get rid of some old shots you no longer want, you may need to delete photos from your Google Photos albums from time to time. The "access all of your photos everywhere" system is really cool, but it also introduces a few head scratching moments when you go to delete photos from the service.

We're going to help clarify the situation, and once you understand the system you won't be so worried about what's happening to your photos.

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1 month ago

How to block calls on the LG G4

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With all that our smartphones do, it's often easy to overlook some of the actual phone functions of the device.

It's something we hope we'll never need, but you certainly want to have it — and more importantly, know how to use it — should the need ever arise. Maybe you just need to block that one friend who hasn't quite taken the hint that you're not interested in their drunk dials anymore. Maybe someone sent your number to a list of trolls and you're getting crank called at all hours of the night. Whatever your needs, call blocking is here to help, and it hasn't changed much from the LG G3.

Here's where to find it on the LG G4.

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1 month ago

Get your Google Photos library started with the desktop uploader

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Google Photos Apps page

Google Photos is the new hotness in online picture management, and we wouldn't blame you if you wanted to give it a try.

Problem is, unless you've had Google+ automatic photo backup turned on the past couple of years, your photo library is probably looking pretty barren. And even if you have had auto backup on your phone(s), you haven't likely uploaded all of your past photos from before Google+ (or Google itself) existed.

If you're looking to get your Google Photos library started or filled up with a long history of photos, there's no better way than installing Google's desktop uploader app and getting them all up there in one fell swoop. We're going to show you how to do it.

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1 month ago

What to do if you forgot your Samsung Galaxy S6 lock screen password

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Having trouble getting past your Galaxy S6 lock screen? We're here to help.

Uh-oh. You've recently set up a lock screen backup password on your Samsung Galaxy S6, but you've plumb forgot it. Luckily there are two simple ways to reset your passcode and get back into your phone, provided you have some other critical knowledge to prove you deserve back in. Let us show you how to get back into that phone.

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1 month ago

LG G4 one-ups the Galaxy S6 with this important privacy feature

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Removing location information on the LG G4 is easier than ever. Here's how to do it.

We've talked any number of times about location tracking and how it works in Android. A lot of time you'll want to use it. Sometimes you won't. And you've got plenty of options and complete control over your location settings. One important feature for phones to have is the ability to easily remove GPS data from pictures you've taken. We've walked you through how to remove location data from pics on the Galaxy S6, which was fairly easy.

But LG has made that important privacy feature even easier with the LG G4.

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1 month ago

Getting acquainted with the new Google Photos on Android and the web

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Google Photos on Android

Google Photos is finally here, and that means we have a new photography tool to play around with on our phones and computers.

After being tied completely to Google+ (woefully) for some time, Photos has finally been broken out into its own apps for Android, iOS and the web. Google Photos, as it's now known, adopts the same icon as the old app (which was really just a stub to the Google+ back end) as well as many of the same features, but is also developing its own identity since gaining independence from Google+.

That means you technically no longer need a Google+ account to use it, and your photos now get a first-class experience with their own apps and website.

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