Articles about Android

EPIC FAIL: Google pauses the Pixel 6 December 2021 Android update

If you want a pure Android experience with the most timely operating system updates, you should buy a Pixel smartphone from Google, right? Yes, that is largely true. On paper, at least, the Pixel line of devices are what hardcore Android users should opt for. In actual use, however, Pixel phones are often riddled with issues that lead to disappointment. They are arguably not worth the headaches.

The Pixel 6 and 6 Pro in particular have been disastrous. They have notoriously slow and insecure fingerprint readers. Shockingly, some users have reported "phantom" dials, where the friggin' phone calls contacts at random! Even the display is problematic, with many owners experiencing flickering and artifacts. And now, Google has been forced to pause the December 2021 Update due to serious bugs. Sigh.

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Dremel 8260 rotary tool connects to iPhone and Android via Bluetooth

A Dremel rotary tool is something you don't know you need until you do. These electric tools allow you to do things like cut, drill, sand, and grind, making them great for makers and DIYers. I recently was working on an older laptop with stripped torx screws and wished I had a Dremel to cut into them. I didn't have one and could not properly gain access to the innards. And so, I instead rage-broke the laptop, tearing the bottom off as if I was The Hulk, but I digress...

If you are a tech person that has been on the fence about buying one of these Dremel rotary tools, now may be the time to finally pull the trigger. You see, the company's newest product, called "Dremel 8260," can connect to your phone or tablet via Bluetooth. And yes, it is compatible with both Google's Android and Apple's iOS/iPadOS.

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Update Microsoft Teams to fix 911 call-block problem

Microsoft Teams

A few days ago we reported about a rather worrying issue that meant some Android users were unable to place emergency 911 calls.

The problem was blamed on an "unintended interaction between the Microsoft Teams app and the underlying Android operating system". Microsoft was quick to suggest that the root cause of the issue is more Google's fault than its own but, nonetheless, the company is in the process of rolling out an update to Teams that addresses the problem.

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Interaction between Android and Microsoft Teams is preventing some users calling 911 [Updated with Microsoft response]

911 call

Google has confirmed a bug that is stopping some people making 911 calls from their Android phones. The company says that emergency calls are not possible only in very specific scenarios.

The bug is, however, rather worrying, and Google has blamed it on an "unintended interaction between the Microsoft Teams app and the underlying Android operating system". A fix is in the works and will be available early next year.; in the meantime, though, Google has some important advice to share. Microsoft has also contacted us to issue a statement.

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OWC launches Mercury Elite Pro mini USB-C storage drive for Mac, Windows, and Linux

Solid state drives make wonderful internal boot drives for computers, but they are also great options for external storage too. Not only are they often smaller than mechanical hard disk drives, but they also use less power and are much quicker. With that said, sometimes hard disk drives can be a good option for external storage -- depending on your needs and budget, of course.

Today, OWC launches its latest portable storage drive. Called "Mercury Elite Pro mini," this elegant storage solution has a USB-C port and ships with both a USB-C cable and USB-A adapter. In other words, it can be used with any modern computer -- whether it has a USB Type-C port or not. In fact, the company says the drive is compatible with Mac, Windows, and Linux-based operating systems, including Android and Chrome OS.

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Google running ahead of schedule shipping Pixel 6 Pro

I am not a big phone person. I don’t mean that I rarely use one, in fact, quite the opposite. It’s on me all the time and I continually check news, sports and messages, to name just a few. No, what I mean is that I don’t always have the latest model as some people seem to obsess about. I’ve always had Android phones, in fact, always the "official" model from Google, beginning back when it was still called the Nexus. 

I got the Pixel 1 XL, skipped the 2 because I saw no reason to spend the money, upgraded to the Pixel 3 XL, again elected to skip a generation when the 4 came out, expecting to break out the wallet for a 5 XL. Then Covid-19 made an appearance, keeping Google from releasing the XL version of the 5. Rather than break down, I held out for the larger model. 

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Android apps are available to test on Windows 11 now! Here's how to get started

When Microsoft announced Windows 11 four months ago, one of the killer new features was the operating system’s ability to run Android apps. People were understandably upset when the OS arrived without this functionality, although we were promised it would surface soon.

Today the software giant is giving Windows Insiders in the Beta Channel the chance to try out the new feature, although there is a catch.

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Logitech MX Keys Mini is a compact wireless keyboard for Windows, Mac, and Linux

Number pads are pointless. Don't get me wrong, I am sure some older folks use them out of habit, but I -- and many other consumers -- never do. Quite frankly, since you can buy a dedicated number keypad if you truly need it, why burden everyone with them just to please a small group of people? As a result, many keyboards are longer than they need to be. While that doesn't sound so bad, it is an annoyance since it takes up valuable desk space -- especially with more and more people working from home these days.

Today, Logitech unveils a slim wireless keyboard without a number pad. Called "MX Keys Mini," it is notable for more than just being compact. The backlit keyboard can fast-charge using USB-C, and Logitech promises up to 5-months of battery life with backlighting off. With the lights on, you can expect up to 10 days of usage.

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Xiaomi Smart Glasses run Android and are very stylish

Smart glasses have existed for a while now, with the most notable being the failed Google Glass. Most recently, Facebook launched its own offering through a partnership with Ray Ban. While Google's product was ugly, the Facebook glasses actually look quite cool -- to the average person, they appear to be regular glasses. Unfortunately, no matter how stylish, many consumers will shun the product due the associaton with Facebook. After all, that social network has a bad reputation regarding privacy.

Today, Xiaomi throws its hat into the ring with the unimaginatiely named "Smart Glasses." These glasses utilize cutting-edge MicroLED optical waveguide technology and weight just 51g. They run the Android operating system, are powered by a quad-core ARM processor, and offer both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectvity. Smart Glasses feature a 5MP camera for taking photos and recording videos, but also, translating text as you view it!

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Microsoft Start is a personalized news feed for Windows 11, Android, iOS and the web

We live in a world where there’s so much information that keeping on top of it all can be nearly impossible. According to research commissioned by Microsoft, people "spend seven hours a day online, use six different feeds on a regular basis and check their feeds five times a day".

To help combat this, the software giant is introducing a personalized news feed called Microsoft Start, with news from premium publishers that’s tailored to your interests.

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Canonical launches new cloud service to aid Android app development

developer

Creating the code for an Android app is only part of the job, you also need to consider mobile app management and mobile device virtualization as well as testing.

To help with this process Canonical is launching its Anbox Cloud Appliance on the AWS Marketplace from today. A small-scale version of Canonical's Anbox Cloud, developers can use it for rapid prototyping of Android-in-the-Cloud solutions.

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Microsoft to reveal new Surface devices on September 22

With Windows 11 set to begin rolling out at the Start of October, it was inevitable that Microsoft would take the opportunity to showcase some new hardware for it.

The software giant today announces a new event for the end of this month in which it is expected to take the wraps off a new collection of Surface devices, as well as show off its new operating system in some depth.

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Looking forward to running Android apps in Windows 11? The feature won't arrive until next year

In a recent survey, there were two big new features in Windows 11 that had people excited. 35 percent said the centered Start menu was their favorite new feature, while 26 percent said it was native Android support they were most looking forward to.

Well, if you’re one of those people keen to run Android apps on your Windows 11 PC, there’s some bad news. The feature isn’t ready, and it won’t even start being tested by Insiders for months yet.

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Google Nest Hub comes to LEGOLAND Hotels

About a year ago, we told you that Google was partnering with some hotels to have Nest Hub smart devices installed in guest rooms. Understandably, some people were concerned about having a microphone and camera in their hotel rooms.

However, those worries were unfounded. You see, Nest Hub doesn't even have a camera! Plus, Google is extremely focused on privacy, and the microphone can be totally disabled with a hardware switch. Ultimately, this hospitality partnership was simply a big win for hotel guests as they get to experience the convenience of Google Assistant when away from home.

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This is Google Pixel 5a with 5G

If you are a hardcore Android user, you should buy a Pixel. Google’s smartphones may not have the best specifications, but they do offer the purest Android experience. They are the only way to truly experience Android as Google intends it -- including timely OS updates. They are free of bloat, unlocked, and often very affordable. Best of all, they offer a remarkable photography experience.

Today, Google officially announces the oft-rumored Pixel 5a with 5G. It isn’t a flagship device, but with a reasonable $449 asking price, the Android 11 smartphone looks to be a great value. The 6.34-inch OLED screen features a respectable 2400x1080 resolution, while the 12.2 MP dual-pixel and 16 MP ultrawide rear cameras should take exceptional photos. While it does get water resistance, the Pixel 5a with 5G lacks wireless charging -- you must use USB-C to charge the 4680 mAh battery.

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