Articles about Android

Google wants to shame Apple into adopting RCS in its Messages app

RCS is a cross-platform messaging protocol designed as a successor to the outdated SMS and MMS standards, and Google today launches a new website to try and shame Apple into adopting it.

If you have an iPhone and message Android-owning friends regularly using the Apple’s Messages app, then you’ll know that the message bubbles show up in different colors -- blue for fellow iPhone owners, and green for those on Android. However, you might also have encountered problems like low res photos and videos, missing read receipts and typing indicators, and broken group chats when engaging in cross-platform messaging. This, Google says bluntly, is down to Apple.

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How to get Google Pixel 6a for free

Google's Pixel phones are a dream come true for vanilla-Android fans -- on paper, at least. Sadly, the search giant has failed mightily when it comes to its phones, as the devices are often riddled with bugs. The Pixel line of phones just can't stand up to the high-quality hardware and software Apple provides with the iPhone.

If you still want a Pixel phone, however, but are concerned about it being buggy, then it would be foolish to buy one -- especially at full price. What if the device was free, though? Well, if it costs nothing, then maybe it is worth taking the gamble and dealing with potential bugs. Well, folks, I am happy to report that you can get Google's newest phone, the Pixel 6a, for free when signing up with either Xfinity Mobile or Comcast Business Mobile.

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Google Play gets redesigned logo to commemorate its 10th birthday

Do you want to feel old? Google Play launched in 2012! In other words, Google's digital store has now existed for a decade. Google Play has become a centralized digital store for both software and media, including mobile apps, games, books, television shows, and movies.

Is Google Play a good store, though? That is debatable. While it is has plenty of quality offerings, it is polluted with low-quality apps and games too. Even worse, some of the software downloads are designed by nefarious developers looking to trick and defraud unsuspecting users. Yes, Google Play actually contains some malware. Sadly, Google's digital store just isn't as safe as Apple's superior App Store.

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Microsoft makes massive improvements to Windows Subsystem for Android in Windows 11

Windows 11 laptop

Microsoft has fully embraced Linux with the release of Windows Subsystem for Linux, opening up exciting possibilities for fans of Linux-based distros. The company has also shown support for Android, with the Windows Subsystem for Android making it possible to run mobile apps and games in Windows 11.

Now the company has made a significant update to Windows Subsystem for Android, making huge improvements to its networking capabilities.

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Google revamps its Password Manager for better protection and ease of use

Google logo on office

Passwords. Despite numerous predictions of their demise we still can't live without them. Using strong passwords though, especially if you have several devices, means using a password manager to help you keep track.

Google Password Manager has been around in Chrome since 2008, but it's always offered a somewhat different experience on desktop and mobile devices. Until now that is.

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Microsoft Defender for individuals now available for Windows, macOS, iOS and Android

Microsoft has been working on a new security tool for a while now to help protect you and your family’s data and devices against online threats, such as malware and phishing attacks.

Three months ago it made a preview build of Microsoft Defender available for Windows Insiders to try out, and today it announces the tool's official availability for Microsoft 365 Personal and Family subscribers.

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Microsoft researchers discover serious security vulnerabilities in big-name Android apps

Microsoft building in California

The Microsoft 365 Defender Research Team has shared details of several high-severity vulnerabilities found in a mobile framework used in popular apps associated with a number of big names.

The framework is owned by mce Systems, and is used in apps from numerous mobile providers. The apps -- from the likes of AT&T, Rogers Communications and Bell Canada -- are often pre-installed on Android handsets, but they have also been downloaded millions of times. If exploited, the vulnerabilities allow for local or remote attacks, including command injection and privilege escalation attacks.

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Google is bringing secure virtual credit cards to Chrome

Virtual credit card

Making payments online is fraught with potential dangers, and there is risk involved with making purchases with your credit card. To help offer a level of protection, many companies -- including the likes of Revolut -- enable their customers to create virtual, disposable credit cards.

Inspired by this, Google is building the same functionality into Chrome. The company announced the upcoming payment security feature at Google I/O, saying that there will be support for autofilling details to help speed up transactions.

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The Google Pixel 6a is affordable and looks great, but you can't buy the damn thing!

The Google Pixel 6a was announced today, and there is both good and bad news regarding it. The good news is, the Android smartphone doesn't cost an arm, nor does it cost a leg. Yes, as is typical with Google's "a" smartphones, the 6a is inexpensive. This is very much appreciated at a time when inflation is causing everything to be so expensive. The bad news we can touch on in a bit...

Despite being fairly affordable at just $450, the Pixel 6a is powered by the famed Google Tensor processor that is also found in both the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro. The Pixel 6a has some other nice specifications too. For instance, you get 6GB RAM and 128GB storage, and that's it -- there's only one configuration to be had. I rather like that strategy, as it makes things less confusing for consumers.

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Teracube Thrive is a sustainable Android 12 smartphone that can monitor your children

Like it or not, children of all ages have smartphones these days. Long gone are the days where kids could just be outdoors without technology. While parents surely wish their little ones would just play hide-and-seek or baseball like in the good ol' days, instead, kids seem to just want to be on YouTube and TikTok. It is what it is, folks.

Thankfully, parents can still be in control of their child's online activity. There are apps and services which allow you to monitor and limit what your kids do while using a smartphone. Today, Teracube announces a new child-focused smartphone designed specifically for this purpose. Called "Thrive," it runs a specialized version of Android 12 designed to empower parents. And yes, like Teracube's other devices, Thrive is built with sustainability in mind.

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Google, Apple and Microsoft announce plans for a passwordless future

Google Chrome icon on mobile

As we mark World Password Day, three of the major technology players are announcing a significant step on the road to a passwordless future.

Over the next year Google plans to implement passwordless support in Android and Chrome. Apple and Microsoft have also announced that they will offer support in iOS, MacOS, Safari, Windows and Edge.

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Many of your 'secure' passwords will have been leaked or compromised -- here's how to easily check and change them

I reuse passwords regularly. But, here’s the thing -- I only do so on websites where that doesn’t matter. Sites that I don’t need to revisit regularly, or at all, and which don’t hold any personal information on me. Those passwords tend to be short and easy to guess, and get leaked in breaches all the time. It’s no big deal.

What is a big deal, however, is when one of my carefully curated, long, complicated and never reused passwords gets leaked. And that can, and does, happen. There are a number of ways to find out if your passwords have been compromised, including using HaveIBeenPwned. But for this article I’m going to show you the best and easiest ways to find out what passwords have been leaked. I will warn you now, you may be in for a very nasty surprise.

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New Google app makes it (marginally) easier to switch from iOS to Android

Google Play Games

While most iOS users will remain iOS users for life, and the same can be said of those who choose Android, there are some people who switch allegiances. There are also some who like the idea of switching platforms, but are put off by the potential complexity.

To help anyone looking to make the jump from an iPhone to an Android handset, Google has quietly launched an app called, appropriately enough, Switch To Android. But while the app sounds great in theory, it is found sadly wanting.

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Microsoft's Your Phone app gets a name change and a makeover

Microsoft first launched Your Phone three years ago, allowing Android users to access their text messages and photos on a computer, as well as run Android apps and make and receive calls in Windows.

Today, the software giant announces the app has a new name, and a new interface with an updated design for Windows 11.

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Android Messages and Dialer apps sent data to Google without consent

Google building logo

In a paper published by Douglas J Leith of Trinity College Dublin, it is claimed that the Messages and Dialer apps found in Android have been sending data back to Google. The paper, entitled "What Data Do The Google Dialer and Messages Apps On Android Send to Google?" says that data is sent without user knowledge or consent.

In what could be a breach of GDPR legislation, it is claimed that there is also no way to opt out of the data sharing. Among the data said to be shared with Google are phone numbers, call duration, hashes of messages and more.

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