What happened in Android on October 11? The same thing that happens every night, Pinky: It tried to take over the world.
This weekend, I celebrated Canadian Thanksgiving the only way I know how: Taking a bunch of cool gadgets up to a rented cottage north of Toronto. There, I used the Moto Insta-Share Projector to cast Blue Jays baseball (#ourmoment) and the Presidential Debate (#notgoingthere) onto a patch of blank wall from a Moto Z Play, which was connected to a UE MEGABOOM Bluetooth speaker.
It was one of those situations where I, the tech-obsessed writer, got to show rather than tell. It was gratifying to realize that the bundle, pricey as it is, works with little setup and very low mental overhead. Contrasted with the mess of a Note 7 situation, which I had a hard time explaining to my friends, two of whom bought and returned the phone (one for an iPhone 7 Plus, the other a Galaxy S7 edge), it made me realize that we can't take for granted the times when technology truly does improve our lives.
And now, today's news.
The Galaxy Note 7 is dead
After a long and winding road, Samsung has discontinued the Galaxy Note 7. It seemed inevitable, and now Samsung can begin the process or bringing back in all remaining Note 7s in the wild that are still potentially unsafe. More
Google rolls out a Project Fi group plan
Up to six people can be on a single plan, with individual data limits and no contracts or commitments — new and current Fi customers can join groups immediately. The service is still limited to just Pixels and Nexuses, but this is a huge deal for lots of people who have been considering Project Fi but held off to keep their current family plan. More
Android 7.1 is coming — without a big Pixel feature
By now we know that the Pixel phones — big and small — are shipping with Android 7.1 Nougat. Google said that the phones would get features like support for quick actions on the home screen, and circular icons, as well as the Google Assistant and 24/7 support. Today, the company announced the impending release of Android 7.1 Nougat for other devices, such as the Nexus 6P and Pixel C. While those first two aforementioned features are there, Assistant and 24/7 support are nowhere to be found. The preview is coming in late October, and the final release, likely Android 7.1.1, will roll out publicly in early December. More
Oculus does the right thing
The Gear VR no longer works with the Note 7, despite both being made by Samsung. The rub? Oculus, makers of the software that powers the Note 7's VR experience, forced an update that disables compatibility in light of Samsung's Note 7 cancellation. More
Verizon's Note 7 replacement strategy credits you for an upgrade
Verizon is making it easy for its Note 7 customers to get a new phone: Merely head to the site, log in and upgrade to a new device. Any new device. The company will credit you the amount, and then ship a recovery box to send back the defective Note 7. We've been hard on Verizon over the past few days, but this is a good move.
Samsung tries to convince Supreme Court that it shouldn't pay Apple tax
Remember the patent infringement case between Samsung and Apple that began in 2011? Well, it's still going on, and it's escalated all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court. Today, justices heard from both sides after it allowed Samsung to appeal $399 million of the $940 million owed, revised from the original amount of $1.05 billion awarded back in August 2012. Since then, the companies have returned to court several times, and it appears we're nearing an end to the tumult. Samsung's camp is backed by big names like Google and Facebook who, according to Buzzfeed, say Apple's stance on design patents are "out of step with modern technology."
Android Pay coming to Canada at some point
I feel like I've been reporting this for two years now, but it appears that Android Pay could be coming to Canada in the near future. Snippets of code referencing Interac, Canada's monopolistic debit network, were found in the latest version of the app. You want more than that? Hah. Keep waiting. Android Pay is currently available in the U.S., UK, Singapore, and Australia.
Have a great night, and we'll see you tomorrow!