Order the Google Pixel 2: Verizon | Best Buy | Shop: Black Friday 2017

Headlines

5 months ago

Meet Astro, an email client for Android with artificial intelligence baked in

8

If you're into the idea of using Alexa and Slack to answer your email, you might be interested in this little app.

There aren't too many hearty email clients in the Google Play Store, so we're naturally curious when one comes out that's not only a delight to use, but it's got artificial intelligence baked in, too.

I've been using Astro: AI Meets Email for the past week and it's truly a breath of fresh air compared to the dual Gmail-and-Inbox life I've been juggling. Whether you've got a scattered brain or you've mastered the art of maintaining an inbox, Astro is worthy download for anyone who wants a little help on the backend ensuring that the important emails are always seen.

Here's a quick rundown of some of the features that make Astro a worthy download, and we'll walk you through what it's like to manage your inbox through Slack.

There's priority, and then there's "other"

Off the bat, my favorite part of Astro is the concise inbox. Unlike Google's Inbox, which compartmentalizes emails into a number of different categories, Astro whittles them down to two: important and not important. The pressing stuff will be automatically funneled through to the priority inbox, while the extra stuff — like newsletters, daily mantras, and online shopping receipts — will be filed away to "other." Best of all, Astro will work in the backend doing all of the message sorting right off the bat.

A look at Astro's interface, from the hamburger menu (left), to the "priority" and "other" inboxes (middle two photos), to the ability to schedule an email (right).

If you're finding that the Astro is having a bit of trouble properly parsing your contacts, you can add the very important people to the VIP list. This ensures that every email from the addresses you've specified make their way into the priority inbox. Then from the settings, you can control how you're alerted for those especially crucial letters.

It looks like Android

Snooze an email for later if you don't need it.

The Astro app for Android has been designed so that it follows the basic rules of the Android design paradigm. It has a simple color scheme; two floating action buttons, one for composing a message and one to call upon the AstroBot; and a well-organized hamburger menu. What's more: there's a companion desktop app for the Mac that properly integrates with its mobile counterpart.

It also takes advantage of some user-friendly swiping mechanisms in its interface. You can swipe left on an email to immediately archive it, or swipe to the right to snooze it until you get back to your desktop at the office. Astro also lets you enable read receipts, and offers quick toggles for unsubscribing from newsletters and scheduling emails.

It's not a useless bot

The "bot" categorization for Astro's functionality might seem passe with the proliferation of so many digital assistants. But the good news is that the AI-based features in Astro are contained within the app so that you only hear from AstroBot when you're in need. AstroBot will mostly rely on you to prompt it, too, so there's no need for any Microsoft Clippy comparisons here.

AstroBot is especially useful if you're feeling overwhelmed by your inbox.

AstroBot is especially useful for managing bulk tasks, which can become overwhelming if you're terrible at trimming your inbox on the regular. For instance, if AstroBot notices you're receiving newsletters that you don't actually read, it will ask you whether you want help unsubscribing to them all. There are other prompts it will relay overtime, too, like whether you want to add a contact to your VIP list or archive a pile of messages.

It works with Slack and Alexa

One of the best features of Astro was added only a few days ago, and that's integration with Slack and Amazon Alexa. I did not test the Alexa integration, but in the demonstration I saw, you can use it to compose and reply to emails with just your voice.

Slack integration is so robust, I couldn't show you a screenshot without having to blur the whole thing out.

I have been using the Slack abilities and I can say it's now a feature I rely on daily. If you spend most of the work day in Slack, as I do, you might find that email falls by the wayside. Having Astro set up with Slack helps ensure that I'm consistently notified whenever I receive an email from those ten very important contacts. I don't have to leave Slack to reply to them either, as Astrobot works entirely inside the Slack app — on both the desktop and mobile Slack apps. The only downside is that the replies will appear weirdly formatted when they're sent out if you're using emoji in the body text (and yes — I use emoji in my email correspondence).

There's also an included signature to let people know you've replied from Slack, in case there are any follies. I've already had one when I didn't realize that Slack was stuck in the "reply to email" command. Fortunately, there are enough prompts so that you're not constantly, accidentally sending emails.

Try it for yourself

blank

Contextual engines and artificial intelligence and the ability to message bots — these are all the ways of the future, and it seems to be an especially popular tag line to add on to mobile apps. In Astro's case, the AI-infusion seems legitimate enough after a week of use to take the app for a ride as a daily driver. Perhaps this is the kind of assistance we need to keep us from going insane from digital clutter.

Astro is free for now, so you can try it out as an email assistant without too much commitment. It works with email addresses that are served by Gmail, GSuite, and Office 365.

Download Astro (free)

Read more and comment

 
5 months ago

Twitter's new look includes a redesign for its Android app

29

The social network has undergone some major remodeling, including a tweak of its iconography.

After a vigorous beta testing phase and numerous feedback from fervent tweeters, Twitter has finally rolled out a new look and a bevy of new features. If you're on the social network, you'll see these changes reflected in Twitter for Android, TweetDeck, Twitter Lite, and on twitter.com.

The full rundown of features has been elaborated on in an official blog post. The new additions are as follows:

  • Profile, additional accounts, settings, and privacy – all in one place! A new side navigation menu and fewer tabs at the bottom of our app = less clutter and easier browsing. You told us you loved this change on Android last year and we're excited to now bring it to iOS.
  • Links to articles and websites now open in Safari's viewer in the Twitter app so you can easily access accounts on websites you're already signed into. [iOS only]
  • We've refined our typography to make it more consistent, and added bolder headlines to make it easier to focus on what's happening. Also, rounded profile photos make it clearer to see what's being said and who's saying it.
  • More intuitive icons make it easier to engage with Tweets – especially if you're coming to Twitter for the first time. For example, people thought the reply icon, an arrow, meant delete or go back to a previous page. We switched to a speech bubble, a symbol most know and love. We also made the icons lighter for more seamless interaction.
  • Tweets now update instantly with reply, Retweet, and like counts so you can see conversations as they're happening – live.

If you've logged in to Twitter today through the web, you've likely already seen these changes. The icons are lighter, rounder, and decidedly more millennial-esque in their aesthetic. What's particularly interesting to note is that the icons were remade to be "more intuitive" due to the fact that "people thought the reply icon, an arrow, meant delete or go back to a previous page." You'll see a speech bubble where the arrows were instead.

The new layout isn't out on Android yet, though beta users have already had some time with it. There's no mention of an update in the Google Play Store either, but Twitter has noted that it's in the process of rolling out.

So, how do people feel about the new Twitter changes? Naturally, they took to Twitter:

How are you feeling about the Twitter changes? Do you think they were really necessary considering Twitter's host of other problems? And do you think the redesign makes the Android app look like more like iOS?

Read more and comment

 
5 months ago

You can back up and sync everything to your Google account starting June 28

29

You're already backing up apps and documents with Google Drive, so why not backup everything else, too?

Beginning June 28, you'll be able to back up all of your files and folders from a Mac or PC to your Google Drive. It's called, very simply, Backup and Sync, and once installed, it will help you keep things in check even when you're not checking them.

From the official blog post:

On June 28th, 2017, we will launch Backup and Sync from Google, a tool intended to help everyday users back up files and photos from their computers, so they're safe and accessible from anywhere. Backup and Sync is the latest version of Google Drive for Mac/PC, which is now integrated with the Google Photos desktop uploader. As such, it will respect any current Drive for Mac/PC settings in the Admin console.

Since its inception, Google Drive has required that you manually sync any data stored on your main computer, or move files and folders so that they're saved directly to the cloud account. But once the new app goes live, you'll be able to choose which files and folders to stay synced. It'll also be integrated with the current Google Photos Backup tool for Mac and PC.

On the mobile side, this means you'll have access to those files and folders from any tablet or smartphone that has access to Google Drive. It also means you won't have to two different desktop apps installed to keep Photos and Drive synced at the same time.

Google suggests that if you're planning to use the backup feature for your work-related G Suite account, you should use the Drive File System instead because it allows for larger data uploads. Also, not all G Suite users will automatically be upgraded to the ability — managers of the G Suite account will need to turn on the option for employees to utilize the backup feature for them to get access to Backup and Sync.

Read more and comment

 
5 months ago

Nova Launcher gets a Google Now pane by jumping through hoops

75

Google Now Launcher, eat your heart out.

Nova Launcher is one of the best third-party launchers in the Android ecosystem because it will let you do just about everything you ever thought possible with your home screens and app drawer. One of the most sought-after features Nova Launcher has not been able to deliver to users has been the Google Now pane that the eponymous Google Now Launcher spoiled millions with during its tenure on Android. Well, Google Now Launcher is sailing into the sunset, and in its wake, Google has made some changes that have finally, finally allowed Nova Launcher to offer the Google Now pane on the left side of its screen.

... There are just a few hoops we all have to jump through for it.

Read more and comment

 
5 months ago

Google's new Local Guides points system makes leaving reviews worth your time

29

Whether you're a traveler or a homebody, the Google-led app rewards handsomely for leaving recommendations.

Google Local Guides were introduced in 2014 to help foster a giant community of local reviewers who just know where all the best stuff is. When you sign up to be a Local Guide, every contribution helps you rack up points towards unlocking other elements of the service inside Google Maps. Over the next few days, Google will introduce a new points system to Local Guides to help unlock other types of goodies and hopefully encourage the proliferation of more reviews.

Certain kinds of contributions that have a higher impact for Google Maps users—like being the first to add a place to the map or leaving a review—earn you more points. In addition, Local Guides now earn points for rating places and checking facts from other community members. All points earned are shown immediately after each contribution, and are visible in the "contribute" tab.

Google has also added five new levels to Local Guides, in addition to adding badges for those who are heavy contributors.

We've added five new levels to Local Guides, bringing the total number from 5 to 10. For levels 4-10, we've designed unique badges, giving guides at higher levels a new way to be recognized for their contributions, and helping users quickly identify the Local Guides who contribute the most. These badges will appear next to each Local Guides' profile picture in Google Maps.

If you're a Level 2 Local Guide, you can enjoy early access to the new features. In select countries, Level 4-10 Local Guides can redeem a three-month Google Play Music subscription and 75% off digital rentals in the Play Movie store.

Read more and comment

 
5 months ago

'Android Excellence' highlights the Play Store's best apps and games

0

Google's new Android Excellence category tells you what you should download from the Play Store, and what developers should emulate.

Google has launched a new category within its longstanding Editor's Choice section of the Play Store: Android Excellence.

According to the company, "We've seen a significant increase in the level of polish and quality of apps and games on Google Play," and is taking a quarterly approach to recognizing those titles. For users, an app highlighted by an Android Excellence tag offers "incredible user experiences on Android, use[s] many of our best practices, [has] great design, technical performance, localization, and device optimization." In other words, the best of the best.

The section will be refreshed four times per year, says Google, and while it's not clear how Android Excellence will differ from the apps found in the Editor's Choice category, it's good to see Google taking time to highlight the apps and games that will work well on its platform's phones, tablets and, soon, Chromebooks. Perhaps more importantly, though, these apps show developers what to emulate when they create their own apps and games, since Google often stresses the numerous best practices that devs should follow.

Some of the highlighted titles include Citymapper, Memrise, Vivino, Pocket, B&H Photo Video, Hitman GO, After the End: Forsaken Destiny, Reigns, and CATS: Crash Arena Turbo Stars.

Read more and comment

 
5 months ago

Cheap Cloud Storage — which one saves you the most?

Cloud Storage Options

Cloud storage is something ever more useful and ever more popular, but there's also a ton to choose from.

Updated June 2017: Added current plans and pricing for the various online storage providers.

Fortunately, most also have free trials, and any storage provider worth its salt is going to give you a few gigabytes of space for free anyway to try to get you to stick around.

Let's take a look at a few of the major cloud storage providers and see how pricing stacks up. We'll leave it up to you to pick your favorite, but this should give a good idea of what you'll pay, as of today.

Read more and comment

 
5 months ago

6 reasons to use the Samsung browser on your Galaxy S8

49

The Samsung Internet browser is a formidable choice for a mobile browser and it has a number of features that make it worth using over Google Chrome.

The bundled applications aren't usually our favorite part of Samsung's smartphones, but with the Galaxy S8 and S8+, the Samsung Internet browser is worth using.

It's nothing new: the browser has long been optimized specifically for use with Samsung's smartphones, which is partly why it's such a solid choice for a browser, particularly if you're glued to the Samsung ecosystem. And like Google Chrome, the Samsung Internet browser is linked to your Samsung account, which unlocks a host of features you won't find in Android's default browser. Here's a look at some of those features.

No pop-ups

The Samsung browser gives you access to a variety of ad blockers.

Obstructive pop-up advertisements have officially become a nuisance on Chrome for mobile, so it's nice to know that the Samsung Internet browser will let you enable a Pop-up blocker from inside the advanced settings panel.

You can also download an extension to rid of those follies before they even surface. Samsung's browser features a variety of content blockers, including Adblock and Adblock Fast. At the very least, they'll help rid of any rampant advertisements that may take over your mobile browsing experience.

Extensions

Samsung's browser has other extensions, too, including the Amazon Assistant, which offers product matches as you're browsing through the browser for things to purchase. There's also a QR code reader, a video assistant overlay to help with browser playback controls, and a feature called CloseBy, which offers information and recommendations based on nearby Bluetooth beacons.

It's better on DeX

The latest version of Samsung Internet features enhancements specifically for running the app on Samsung DeX. There's also a secure mobile payment feature built into the Samsung browser for DeX. According to its developer documentation:

DeX also enables a new desktop shopping workflow. When presented with the option to pay for something in the browser in desktop mode, you can use biometric authentication to finalize the payment, using the fingerprint or iris scanner capabilities of the phone.

Anecdotally, I can say I was surprised at the relatively smooth experience of using the Samsung Internet browser on DeX versus using Google Chrome. Websites seemed to load faster, while multitasking mechanisms like copy and paste were easier to use with the mouse input.

It has a super Secret mode

Samsung's browser offers a Secret mode that's a bit more discrete than Google's incognito mode. Granted, Google also won't track your whereabouts on the web or log any URLs into the history, but Samsung's browser will let you password protect any webpage data you might want to save after your browsing session. The password is different from your initial login code and it can be as short as four letters.

It offers a reading mode

Reading mode on the Samsung browser.

Like Safari on the desktop and some Chrome extensions, the Samsung browser offers a quick-convert reading mode for turning the cluttered text on webpages into legible, linear paragraphs. It takes a second to show up in the search bar and only works with certain pages, but it pairs exceptionally well with the Galaxy S8's rounded corners.

It works with Google

Just because you're using Samsung's browser doesn't mean you're opting out of what Google has to offer. You can set it as the default search engine, for instance, so that you're always querying Google.

You also don't have to stop using Chrome on the desktop. Download the Samsung Internet extension for Chrome so that your bookmarks stay synced across platforms.

Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8+

Verizon AT&T T-Mobile Sprint Unlocked

img { width: 100%; height: auto; } .devicebox ul { display: table; margin: 0 0 10px; width: 100%; } .devicebox ul li { background: #f7f7f7; margin: 2px 0; padding: 4px 15px; } .devicebox ul li:hover { background: #fff; } .devicebox ul li:before { display: none; } .devicebox p ~ p { line-height: 1.25; } .devicebox p:first-of-type + p { padding: 15px; } .devicebox a.buy-link { border-radius: 5px; display: inline-block; font: 14px/31px "Proxima Nova Extrabld",Helvetica,Arial,sans-serif; text-align: center; } .devicebox a.buy-link, .devicebox a.buy-link:link, .devicebox a.buy-link:active, .devicebox a.buy-link:visited { background: #37B5D7; color: #FFF; } .devicebox a.buy-link:hover { background: #2694B2; text-decoration: none; } .devicebox a.buy-link:before { content: "\e61e"; font: 40px/0 "ac_iconset" !important; margin: 0 3px 0 -8px; vertical-align: middle; } @media all and (min-width: 1025px), all and (max-width: 800px) and (min-width: 660px) { /* div:not(.columns-3) excludes help menu content */ .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox { padding: 20px 0 25px; } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox .video { float: left; margin: 0 30px 0 0; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox h3 + p { bottom: 37px; display: block; overflow: hidden; position: absolute; top: 60px; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p img, .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p > img { position: absolute; top: 50%; transform: translateY(-50%); } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p:nth-child(n+3), .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox ul { box-sizing: border-box; margin-left: calc(100% - 345px); width: 340px; } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p.list-head { margin-top: -5px; } } @media all and (max-width: 1024px) and (min-width: 801px), all and (max-width: 660px) { .devicebox h3 { text-align: center; } .devicebox ul, .devicebox p { display: block; } } @media all and (max-width: 800px) and (min-width: 660px) { .devicebox { padding: 20px 0 25px; } .devicebox .video { float: left; margin: 0 30px 0 0; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .devicebox h3 + p { bottom: 37px; display: block; overflow: hidden; position: absolute; top: 60px; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .devicebox p img, .devicebox p > img { position: absolute; top: 50%; transform: translateY(-50%); } .devicebox p:nth-child(n+3), .devicebox ul { box-sizing: border-box; margin-left: calc(100% - 345px); width: 340px; } .devicebox p.list-head { margin-top: -5px; } } @media all and (min-width: 1025px), all and (max-width: 800px) and (min-width: 661px), all and (max-width: 500px) { /* 2x buy buttons */ .devicebox a.buy-link { width: calc(50% - 2.5px); margin: 0 5px 5px 0; } .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-of-type(even) { margin: 0 0 5px 0; } .devicebox a.buy-link:last-of-type:nth-of-type(odd) { width: 100%; } } @media all and (max-width: 1024px) and (min-width: 801px), all and (max-width: 659px) and (min-width: 501px) { /* 3x buy buttons */ .devicebox a.buy-link { width: calc(100%/3 - 10px/3); margin: 0 5px 5px 0; } .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-of-type(3n):not(:nth-last-of-type(2)) { margin: 0 0 5px 0; } .devicebox a.buy-link:only-child { width: 100%; margin: 0 0 5px 0; } .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(2):nth-of-type(3n+1), .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(2):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.buy-link, .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(4):nth-of-type(3n+1), .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(4):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.buy-link { width: calc(50% - 2.5px); } .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(2):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.buy-link, .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(4):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(odd) { margin: 0 0 5px 0; } } @media all and (max-width: 800px) { .devicebox { margin: 0 0 30px; max-width: none; width: auto; } } @media all and (max-width: 500px) { .devicebox { margin: 0 0 30px; max-width: none; width: auto; } .devicebox a.buy-link:before { display: none; } } .page-admin .devicebox {max-width: 350px;} .page-admin .devicebox .video_iframe {position: relative; height: 0; padding-bottom: 56.9%;} .page-admin .devicebox .video_iframe iframe {width: 100%; height: 100%; position: absolute;} /*-->*/ /*-->*/ /*-->*/

Read more and comment

 
5 months ago

How to enable family sharing on YouTube TV

4

You can share your monthly online cable subscription with up to five other people.

Did you know that a $35-a-month subscription to YouTube TV gets you access for your friends and family, too? Google lets you share your membership with up to five people at no additional cost. You can easily create a family group and manage it as you need, though you can only do so from the web. Here's how.

  1. Go to https://tv.youtube.com/?settings=personal.
  2. Under Account, click Set Up to get to your Family sharing settings.
  3. You'll be taken to the Family sharing page where you can start inviting people to your group.

When your friends or family members open the invitation in their inbox, they'll be asked to sign in with their Google account to complete the setup. Afterward, they'll be able to access YouTube TV through a desktop browser at tv.youtube.com, or through the mobile app on Android or iPhone with their login credentials.

What is YouTube TV, anyway?

Confused as to what YouTube TV is, anyway? Be sure to read up on our primer and then follow up where we compare two streaming apps that bring live television straight to your smartphone.

Read: YouTube TV vs. Sling TV

Read more and comment

 
5 months ago

Android O is version 8.0, but we still don't know its name

61
Android O about screen

This is a full point release in terms of features and importance.

The speculation over what Android O's "tasty treat" nickname will be continues, but we now know that Android O will be marked as version 8.0 of the operating system. With Nougat currently topping out at Android 7.1.2, we have wondered how big of a leap Google would eventually claim Android O is — and apparently it thinks O is worthy of a full point designation.

Just looking at the initial Developer Previews and seeing fresh interface changes, tweaks to the notification system, under-the-hood performance improvements and more, you can see why Google thinks this is more of an 8.0 release rather than a 7.2 or 7.3. And this is, of course, before we see the full release later in the year where Google always holds back a handful of features to debut to consumers — the Developer Previews give you a hint, but not a view of the whole experience.

The version number is one more line item checked off — we're getting close to the final release of Android O.

Android Oreo

img { width: 100%; height: auto; } .devicebox ul { display: table; margin: 0 0 10px; width: 100%; } .devicebox ul li { background: #f7f7f7; margin: 2px 0; padding: 4px 15px; } .devicebox ul li:hover { background: #fff; } .devicebox ul li:before { display: none; } .devicebox p ~ p { line-height: 1.25; } .devicebox p:first-of-type + p { padding: 15px; } .devicebox a.buy-link { border-radius: 5px; display: inline-block; font: 14px/31px "Proxima Nova Extrabld",Helvetica,Arial,sans-serif; text-align: center; } .devicebox a.buy-link, .devicebox a.buy-link:link, .devicebox a.buy-link:active, .devicebox a.buy-link:visited { background: #37B5D7; color: #FFF; } .devicebox a.buy-link:hover { background: #2694B2; text-decoration: none; } .devicebox a.buy-link:before { content: "\e61e"; font: 40px/0 "ac_iconset" !important; margin: 0 3px 0 -8px; vertical-align: middle; } @media all and (min-width: 1025px), all and (max-width: 800px) and (min-width: 660px) { /* div:not(.columns-3) excludes help menu content */ .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox { padding: 20px 0 25px; } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox .video { float: left; margin: 0 30px 0 0; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox h3 + p { bottom: 37px; display: block; overflow: hidden; position: absolute; top: 60px; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p img, .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p > img { position: absolute; top: 50%; transform: translateY(-50%); } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p:nth-child(n+3), .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox ul { box-sizing: border-box; margin-left: calc(100% - 345px); width: 340px; } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p.list-head { margin-top: -5px; } } @media all and (max-width: 1024px) and (min-width: 801px), all and (max-width: 660px) { .devicebox h3 { text-align: center; } .devicebox ul, .devicebox p { display: block; } } @media all and (max-width: 800px) and (min-width: 660px) { .devicebox { padding: 20px 0 25px; } .devicebox .video { float: left; margin: 0 30px 0 0; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .devicebox h3 + p { bottom: 37px; display: block; overflow: hidden; position: absolute; top: 60px; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .devicebox p img, .devicebox p > img { position: absolute; top: 50%; transform: translateY(-50%); } .devicebox p:nth-child(n+3), .devicebox ul { box-sizing: border-box; margin-left: calc(100% - 345px); width: 340px; } .devicebox p.list-head { margin-top: -5px; } } @media all and (min-width: 1025px), all and (max-width: 800px) and (min-width: 661px), all and (max-width: 500px) { /* 2x buy buttons */ .devicebox a.buy-link { width: calc(50% - 2.5px); margin: 0 5px 5px 0; } .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-of-type(even) { margin: 0 0 5px 0; } .devicebox a.buy-link:last-of-type:nth-of-type(odd) { width: 100%; } } @media all and (max-width: 1024px) and (min-width: 801px), all and (max-width: 659px) and (min-width: 501px) { /* 3x buy buttons */ .devicebox a.buy-link { width: calc(100%/3 - 10px/3); margin: 0 5px 5px 0; } .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-of-type(3n):not(:nth-last-of-type(2)) { margin: 0 0 5px 0; } .devicebox a.buy-link:only-child { width: 100%; margin: 0 0 5px 0; } .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(2):nth-of-type(3n+1), .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(2):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.buy-link, .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(4):nth-of-type(3n+1), .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(4):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.buy-link { width: calc(50% - 2.5px); } .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(2):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.buy-link, .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(4):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(odd) { margin: 0 0 5px 0; } } @media all and (max-width: 800px) { .devicebox { margin: 0 0 30px; max-width: none; width: auto; } } @media all and (max-width: 500px) { .devicebox { margin: 0 0 30px; max-width: none; width: auto; } .devicebox a.buy-link:before { display: none; } } .page-admin .devicebox {max-width: 350px;} .page-admin .devicebox .video_iframe {position: relative; height: 0; padding-bottom: 56.9%;} .page-admin .devicebox .video_iframe iframe {width: 100%; height: 100%; position: absolute;} /*-->*/ /*-->*/ /*-->*/

Read more and comment

 
5 months ago

Google releases Android O Developer Preview 3 for Pixels and Nexuses, OTAs starting soon

14

Get on that latest build.

Just a month after releasing the second Android O Developer Preview, we now have the third Dev Preview release — which importantly marks final APIs and an official SDK for developers to build apps for Android O. For the non-developers among us, it also means we get a better look at Android O in a closer-to-complete state in terms of interface and features.

Though we expected the third Dev Preview to land more in the range of mid-June, we're happy to see Google getting this release out early to give developers even more time to make their apps ready for Android O. This also keeps slightly ahead of schedule to perhaps see the fourth and final Dev Preview earlier than mid-July.

We get to play, but the developers can really get to work now.

Now that Android O APIs are final, that means developers targeting that API level can actually publish their apps to Google Play, too. So if you're running a Pixel or Nexus with Android O, you may start to see more apps arrive that properly interface with your phone's new features.

Android O Developer Preview 3 is available to download as a full factory image for the Pixel XL, Pixel, Nexus 6P, Nexus 5X, Pixel C and Nexus Player. Those are also devices that will soon get the update via the Android Beta Program — and that really is the best way to go unless you're really impatient.

More: Should you install the Android O Developer Preview?

But if you do want to flash a device fresh rather than wait for the Beta Program to kick in, be sure to read our guide on how to manually update for all of the details!

Android Oreo

img { width: 100%; height: auto; } .devicebox ul { display: table; margin: 0 0 10px; width: 100%; } .devicebox ul li { background: #f7f7f7; margin: 2px 0; padding: 4px 15px; } .devicebox ul li:hover { background: #fff; } .devicebox ul li:before { display: none; } .devicebox p ~ p { line-height: 1.25; } .devicebox p:first-of-type + p { padding: 15px; } .devicebox a.buy-link { border-radius: 5px; display: inline-block; font: 14px/31px "Proxima Nova Extrabld",Helvetica,Arial,sans-serif; text-align: center; } .devicebox a.buy-link, .devicebox a.buy-link:link, .devicebox a.buy-link:active, .devicebox a.buy-link:visited { background: #37B5D7; color: #FFF; } .devicebox a.buy-link:hover { background: #2694B2; text-decoration: none; } .devicebox a.buy-link:before { content: "\e61e"; font: 40px/0 "ac_iconset" !important; margin: 0 3px 0 -8px; vertical-align: middle; } @media all and (min-width: 1025px), all and (max-width: 800px) and (min-width: 660px) { /* div:not(.columns-3) excludes help menu content */ .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox { padding: 20px 0 25px; } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox .video { float: left; margin: 0 30px 0 0; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox h3 + p { bottom: 37px; display: block; overflow: hidden; position: absolute; top: 60px; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p img, .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p > img { position: absolute; top: 50%; transform: translateY(-50%); } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p:nth-child(n+3), .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox ul { box-sizing: border-box; margin-left: calc(100% - 345px); width: 340px; } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p.list-head { margin-top: -5px; } } @media all and (max-width: 1024px) and (min-width: 801px), all and (max-width: 660px) { .devicebox h3 { text-align: center; } .devicebox ul, .devicebox p { display: block; } } @media all and (max-width: 800px) and (min-width: 660px) { .devicebox { padding: 20px 0 25px; } .devicebox .video { float: left; margin: 0 30px 0 0; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .devicebox h3 + p { bottom: 37px; display: block; overflow: hidden; position: absolute; top: 60px; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .devicebox p img, .devicebox p > img { position: absolute; top: 50%; transform: translateY(-50%); } .devicebox p:nth-child(n+3), .devicebox ul { box-sizing: border-box; margin-left: calc(100% - 345px); width: 340px; } .devicebox p.list-head { margin-top: -5px; } } @media all and (min-width: 1025px), all and (max-width: 800px) and (min-width: 661px), all and (max-width: 500px) { /* 2x buy buttons */ .devicebox a.buy-link { width: calc(50% - 2.5px); margin: 0 5px 5px 0; } .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-of-type(even) { margin: 0 0 5px 0; } .devicebox a.buy-link:last-of-type:nth-of-type(odd) { width: 100%; } } @media all and (max-width: 1024px) and (min-width: 801px), all and (max-width: 659px) and (min-width: 501px) { /* 3x buy buttons */ .devicebox a.buy-link { width: calc(100%/3 - 10px/3); margin: 0 5px 5px 0; } .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-of-type(3n):not(:nth-last-of-type(2)) { margin: 0 0 5px 0; } .devicebox a.buy-link:only-child { width: 100%; margin: 0 0 5px 0; } .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(2):nth-of-type(3n+1), .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(2):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.buy-link, .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(4):nth-of-type(3n+1), .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(4):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.buy-link { width: calc(50% - 2.5px); } .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(2):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.buy-link, .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(4):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(odd) { margin: 0 0 5px 0; } } @media all and (max-width: 800px) { .devicebox { margin: 0 0 30px; max-width: none; width: auto; } } @media all and (max-width: 500px) { .devicebox { margin: 0 0 30px; max-width: none; width: auto; } .devicebox a.buy-link:before { display: none; } } .page-admin .devicebox {max-width: 350px;} .page-admin .devicebox .video_iframe {position: relative; height: 0; padding-bottom: 56.9%;} .page-admin .devicebox .video_iframe iframe {width: 100%; height: 100%; position: absolute;} /*-->*/ /*-->*/ /*-->*/

Read more and comment

 
5 months ago

Facebook Video is now on Android TV

3

Facebook has updated its app for Android TV, but with a twist.

While you won't see a dedicated Android TV version of the app itself, you will find a slick Facebook Video player built for your big screen. Once installed and logged in (you'll need your phone handy for the login part), you can check out suggested videos by topic, live videos, games, and your own videos. You can also search to find something worth watching using your TV remote.

Getting the app is easy. Fire up the Google Play Store on your Android TV and install the Facebook app. You can search for it or find it at the top of the "Top Free Apps" list. Google Play knows you're using an Android TV device so it automatically sends you the Facebook Video app.

If you don't see Facebook for your TV right away, don't worry. Google Play can take a day or two to have an update available for everyone and you might not have it just yet. We also have no word on when (if ever) to expect an optimized Facebook timeline app for Android TV. For now, this will have to do.

Read more and comment

 
5 months ago

Google Chrome's latest update helps soup it up for more robust web apps

6

With every new update, Google appears to be readying Chrome for a future where few "real" apps exist.

If you're an Android user, Google Chrome is probably your mobile browser of choice. And if it is, then this latest update might get you excited about a future where you don't even have to worry about having an entire app installed to get to its best functionality. Many of Chrome 59's new features seem to have been added with the goal of revving up the browser so that it's both able to support and compatible with the purported future onslaught of web-based apps.

Android Police helped break down the various new pieces that make up Chrome 59. The update adds animated PNG support, which is actually a format utilized heavily by Apple's iMessage; an image capture API, which gives websites more access to a device's front- and rear-facing camera abilities, and improved security, like cutting off a known technique used by spammy websites that launch pop-ups on your mobile browser. Just say no to spam, kids.

Developers have access to a few new features within Chrome 59, too. They include the ability to implement the Installed Related Apps API, which refers to a very specific feature that essentially checks to see if you have an actual application installed, as well as a new "headless mode," which hides the navigation bar and forces the webpage on display into fullscreen mode.

Many of Chrome 59's new features clearly point to a future where instant and web-based mobile apps are the norm. Even the most minor feature additions, like the ability for a webpage to go full screen, seem to have been added in an effort to make webpages more dynamic by giving them more control over a device's user interface — after all, full-size mobile apps already function in this manner. It makes sense if you consider Google's investment in Instant Apps and progressive web apps.

If you're curious about the new Chrome features, wait for the update to hit your mobile device this week. The update is coming to the Chrome desktop app, too.

Read more and comment

 
5 months ago

Galaxy S6 and S6 edge users on T-Mobile are finally getting Android 7.0

6

You can hold off on upgrading your aging Samsung device for a little bit longer.

The Galaxy S6 and S6 edge may no longer be the two most popular Samsung smartphones, but if you're still holding on to one of the two and you're on T-Mobile, you're due for an update. Both devices are officially getting Android 7.0 Nougat, which includes interface tweaks, Android's multi-window mode, and Doze capabilities. You're still a few minor iterations behind the very latest version of Android, but at least the 2-year-old device has a few more months of relevance before you retire it.

Those of you holding on to the mega-size Galaxy Tab S2 purchased from T-Mobile will also see the Nougat update hit the tablet device. And note that if you're holding onto a regular, non-contracted Tab S2, there might be an Android 7.0 update waiting for you.

Software updates are always good news, especially if the updates are for the near-latest version of Android on an aging device. For many, the update to Nougat could be enough to help spark a bit of new life in a device that's still chugging along, even after a year and a half of constant usage. There's no word on whether the old Galaxy S6 and S6 edges on T-Mobile will still receive their security updates, but at least this is enough of an update to tide you over until you can commit to another two years of monthly payments for a new device.

Those of you with other U.S. carriers, including Verizon and AT&T, who are still waiting on Nougat may have missed the update when it hit earlier this year.

Samsung Galaxy S6

Amazon

img { width: 100%; height: auto; } .devicebox ul { display: table; margin: 0 0 10px; width: 100%; } .devicebox ul li { background: #f7f7f7; margin: 2px 0; padding: 4px 15px; } .devicebox ul li:hover { background: #fff; } .devicebox ul li:before { display: none; } .devicebox p ~ p { line-height: 1.25; } .devicebox p:first-of-type + p { padding: 15px; } .devicebox a.buy-link { border-radius: 5px; display: inline-block; font: 14px/31px "Proxima Nova Extrabld",Helvetica,Arial,sans-serif; text-align: center; } .devicebox a.buy-link, .devicebox a.buy-link:link, .devicebox a.buy-link:active, .devicebox a.buy-link:visited { background: #37B5D7; color: #FFF; } .devicebox a.buy-link:hover { background: #2694B2; text-decoration: none; } .devicebox a.buy-link:before { content: "\e61e"; font: 40px/0 "ac_iconset" !important; margin: 0 3px 0 -8px; vertical-align: middle; } @media all and (min-width: 1025px), all and (max-width: 800px) and (min-width: 660px) { /* div:not(.columns-3) excludes help menu content */ .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox { padding: 20px 0 25px; } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox .video { float: left; margin: 0 30px 0 0; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox h3 + p { bottom: 37px; display: block; overflow: hidden; position: absolute; top: 60px; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p img, .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p > img { position: absolute; top: 50%; transform: translateY(-50%); } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p:nth-child(n+3), .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox ul { box-sizing: border-box; margin-left: calc(100% - 345px); width: 340px; } .article-body-wrap > div:not(.columns-3) > *:first-child:not(.sticky-wrapper) .devicebox p.list-head { margin-top: -5px; } } @media all and (max-width: 1024px) and (min-width: 801px), all and (max-width: 660px) { .devicebox h3 { text-align: center; } .devicebox ul, .devicebox p { display: block; } } @media all and (max-width: 800px) and (min-width: 660px) { .devicebox { padding: 20px 0 25px; } .devicebox .video { float: left; margin: 0 30px 0 0; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .devicebox h3 + p { bottom: 37px; display: block; overflow: hidden; position: absolute; top: 60px; width: calc(100% - 375px); } .devicebox p img, .devicebox p > img { position: absolute; top: 50%; transform: translateY(-50%); } .devicebox p:nth-child(n+3), .devicebox ul { box-sizing: border-box; margin-left: calc(100% - 345px); width: 340px; } .devicebox p.list-head { margin-top: -5px; } } @media all and (min-width: 1025px), all and (max-width: 800px) and (min-width: 661px), all and (max-width: 500px) { /* 2x buy buttons */ .devicebox a.buy-link { width: calc(50% - 2.5px); margin: 0 5px 5px 0; } .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-of-type(even) { margin: 0 0 5px 0; } .devicebox a.buy-link:last-of-type:nth-of-type(odd) { width: 100%; } } @media all and (max-width: 1024px) and (min-width: 801px), all and (max-width: 659px) and (min-width: 501px) { /* 3x buy buttons */ .devicebox a.buy-link { width: calc(100%/3 - 10px/3); margin: 0 5px 5px 0; } .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-of-type(3n):not(:nth-last-of-type(2)) { margin: 0 0 5px 0; } .devicebox a.buy-link:only-child { width: 100%; margin: 0 0 5px 0; } .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(2):nth-of-type(3n+1), .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(2):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.buy-link, .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(4):nth-of-type(3n+1), .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(4):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.buy-link { width: calc(50% - 2.5px); } .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(2):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.buy-link, .devicebox a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(4):nth-of-type(3n+1) ~ a.buy-link:nth-last-of-type(odd) { margin: 0 0 5px 0; } } @media all and (max-width: 800px) { .devicebox { margin: 0 0 30px; max-width: none; width: auto; } } @media all and (max-width: 500px) { .devicebox { margin: 0 0 30px; max-width: none; width: auto; } .devicebox a.buy-link:before { display: none; } } .page-admin .devicebox {max-width: 350px;} .page-admin .devicebox .video_iframe {position: relative; height: 0; padding-bottom: 56.9%;} .page-admin .devicebox .video_iframe iframe {width: 100%; height: 100%; position: absolute;} /*-->*/ /*-->*/ /*-->*/

Read more and comment

 
5 months ago

Best text messaging apps

146

There are plenty of great text messaging apps to choose from, and these are some of our favorites.

Text messaging is a big part of phone use for many people, and while all phones come with native messaging clients, they… they can suck. Some native text messaging apps don't handle MMS the way we'd like. Some native text messaging apps are laid out poorly. Thankfully we have the option to use one of many, many third-party SMS clients — some of which are minimal messaging apps, and others that offer features above and beyond the rest.

Update June 2017: We've added Pulse and Mood, and we've done some much overdue spring- er… summer cleaning.

Read more and comment

 
Show More Headlines

Pages