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1 year ago

The ultimate guide to Google Maps on Android

Google Maps on Android

Google Maps is an amazingly powerful tool that can help you get anywhere, and see anything.

Google Maps

Whether you want to drive to a new place in the shortest amount of time, navigate a public transit system that you're still learning or get recommendations for things around you, Google Maps is an all-encompassing app that can do it. It offers real time traffic data, transit directions, a massive directory of places and an impressively large set of satellite imagery all at your fingertips.

An app as huge as this deserves plenty of your time to learn how to use it just right, so we've pulled together all of our information, help and tips on the subject into one place — the ultimate guide to Google Maps.

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1 year ago

How to handle wireless charging in big phones

Note 4 Qi

Making everything bigger introduces new problems, but the solutions are often fairly simple.

We might as well call facts facts; big smartphones aren't going anywhere anytime soon. If anything, our mobile devices are going to continue to push the envelope. For the most part, the people who enjoy these devices can all agree it's a good thing. There are a couple of situations, however, where having a big phone can present unique challenges. A perfect example is wireless charging, which seems like it would be easier with a larger phone but more often than not means you have to be unreasonably specific about how your phone sits on whatever platter you've purchased.

In a perfect world these devices would all have guiding magnets to make things easier — RIP Nexus 5 — but since that doesn't happen we've got some quick tips on making wireless charging a little easier.

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1 year ago

How to move your Flickr pictures to Google Photos

Google Photos and Flickr tabs in Chrome

Google Photos is a great new system, but you need to get your existing photos up there somehow.

If Flickr has been your photo system of choice — and we wouldn't blame you with 1TB of free storage — up to this point, then you'll have to download all of your photos from there in order to get your Google Photos library started. Unlike Dropbox there's no way to automatically download your Flickr photos to your computer, so this will take a few extra steps and manual downloads.

But if you're committed to moving things over to Google Photos, it'll be worth it. We'll show you how to get your Flickr library downloaded and moved over to something new.

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1 year ago

Using Dual Window on the LG G4


While phones have gotten bigger and bigger, we've still (mostly) only been using one app at a time on these growing screens. On the LG G4, you can take full advantage of its 5.5 inches.

Sometimes you want to take notes while you watch a video, but you only have one device with you. Sometimes, you need to reference the numbers from your spreadsheet while you draft and email. Or maybe you just wanna watch the Android Central Podcast while you sort out your email in a vain attempt at achieving Inbox Zero.

Whatever you needs may be, Dual Window on the LG G4 is here to help, and while there may not be a lot of apps supported right now, the ones that are will help you get things done.

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1 year ago

How to use Content Lock on the LG G4


With your phone staying unlocked in more places and around more of our gadgets, sometimes a simple PIN isn't quite enough.

There are pictures you don't want your kids to get into, and there are some documents that you don't want anyone to get into. While locking and encrypting your phone are steps in the right direction, if your phone tends to be out and unlocked around the people in your life — kids, spouses, coworkers and friends — then you may want something a little different for hiding your stuff.

To this end, LG provides Content Lock on many of its phones, including the LG G4. Content lock can hide specific types of content behind yet another passcode so that maybe, just maybe, the items you want to keep private will actually be private.

Let's get stealthy.

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1 year ago

How to move your Dropbox pictures over to Google Photos

Dropbox and Google Photos

One of the biggest hurdles in moving to Google Photos is getting your old library uploaded from where it is now.

With the ubiquity of Dropbox throughout multiple platforms and its great automatic uploading from your phone and desktop, there's a decent chance you've used it to back up your photos. Whether you have a Dropbox folder structure with a defined hierarchy of categorization or several folders spread all about from various times, it's still going to be a hassle to drag-and-drop individual folders out of Dropbox and over to Google Photos.

Thankfully with just a few steps and a couple of desktop applications you can let your computer do the work for you, pulling images from Dropbox and then swiftly moving them up to Google Photos. We're going to show you how.

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1 year ago

Using Periscope's notification settings


Control over your notifications is a breeze with Periscope.

As phones and technology progress, so does the way we interact with them. One thing never changes though, and its the fact that we all like to have control over when our phones decide to tell us about things. Some of us like a notification for every interaction across social networks, and then there are those who only want to hear their phones go off for something of monumental importance.

It's definitely a pleasant surprise to see an app that takes its audience into consideration with where, and how their notification settings work. Getting there, and changing things within Periscope is about as simple and straightforward as it gets.

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1 year ago

How to use Google Cardboard

Google Cardboard

Google's simple VR platform can be used anywhere and everywhere, but there are a few things you should do for an optimal experience.

One of the great things about Google Cardboard is how portable it is. While not every version of Cardboard is fully collapsible, even when fully set up these accessories don't take up a lot of space, and for the most part you can just pop your smartphone in and get up and running. It's the perfect platform for quick VR experiences, and is simple enough that you can pass things around to the group and not have to worry about a learning curve for use — which makes comparing it to full immersion platforms like the HTC Vive-powered Steam VR platform easy.

Here's a quick intro to using Cardboard, as well as a few tips for getting the most out of the platform.

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1 year ago

Use the Google Drive desktop app to save local copies of your Google Photos library

Google Photos

Google Photos is primarily an online experience, but you can take things offline for your own backup with Google Drive.

One of the best features of Google Photos is that you can access your pictures from any device that has a web browser or a Google Photos app, but the fact that it's kind of a black box and you don't know where exactly your photos are can be a little bothersome. Sure you can download copies of any photo you want from your library, but having an automatic local copy of photos as they are uploaded is even better.

With the Google Drive desktop app and a few tweaks you can have just that — we'll show you how to set it up and a few of the limitations of the system.

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1 year ago

How to turn off the weather animation on the LG G4 lock screen


If you work in an office without windows, seeing if it's raining on your lock screen seems like a great idea. But sometimes, it just isn't.

Maybe the rain animation on your phone just reminds you that you can't go for that jog or force the kids to go outside to play and give you five minutes of peace. Maybe you think it's a waste of memory and processor power. Maybe it just looks weird with your wallpaper. Whatever the case may be, you don't need an animation on your LG G4's lock screen pretending your phone's in a shower.

Here's how to get rid of it.

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1 year ago

Using EasyHome on the LG G4


Whether you're new to smartphones or just new to this one, EasyHome is there to help you use your phone.

Your home screen — the place you first see when you unlock your phone or hit the home button — is run by a type of app called a launcher. There are many launchers for users at every skill level, and while the Home launcher that LG ships with the G4 is fairly standard, they've gone a step simpler with EasyHome. This launcher is stripped down and super-sized so that icons are easier to read and touch. Maybe you're new to Android and aren't used to your home screen and your app drawer being separate things. Maybe you're looking for a setup that's a bit easier on the eyes and a bit bigger for your thumbs. Maybe you just bought this phone for a relative and you need a home screen that won't confuse them.

EasyHome is here for you.

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1 year ago

How to tether on the LG G4


While we have Wi-Fi in a great and growing number of places, we sadly do not have it everywhere yet.

While Project Loon and other such projects are trying to bring Wi-Fi to more and more of the world, until it happens, tethering is here to get us by. You can tether through Bluetooth and sometimes through USB, but tethering through a Wi-Fi hotspot can support multiple devices at a time and faster speeds than Bluetooth. And while hotspotting can be a bit of a battery hog, the LG G4's 3000mAh battery can take it better than most.

Ready to get connected?

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1 year ago

Managing your shared photo links in Google Photos

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 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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1 year ago

How to turn off Smart Bulletin on the LG G4


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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1 year ago

How to edit the homescreens on the LG G4

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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