Articles about Android

Microsoft brings Cortana to the Android lock screen

Cortana head

Cortana has been available on Android for a year now (in the US at least), and Microsoft recently made its virtual assistant even more useful by making it accessible on the lock screen.

Today, however, the company takes things a stage further by making it possible to interact with Cortana above the lock.

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Find a perfect parking space in seconds with JustPark

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JustPark is a smart app which helps you find your perfect parking space from more than 200,000 in more than 1,000 cities worldwide.

Give the app a location and it’ll display available spaces on a map, along with its cost (the company says it’s up to 70 percent cheaper than street parking) and the time it’ll take to walk to your destination.

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Google introduces 'Free App of the Week' to Play Store

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The best price tag to find on anything is one that reads "Free", and Google has introduced a new section to the Play Store with this in mind. The new "Free App of the Week" section does very much what you would expect -- slashes the price of a paid-for app to zero. Great news for Android users!

It's an idea that Apple has experienced great success with, and it's a quick and easy way for Google to increase engagement in its app store. The first free app is Cartoon Network's Card Wars --Adventure Time which normally retails for $2.99.

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Samsung is finally ready to remotely kill the Galaxy Note7

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Samsung would almost certainly prefer people to be concentrating on the upcoming Galaxy S8 and virtual assistant Bixby, but the disastrous Galaxy Note7 is still etched in memories. After the phones kept catching fire due to a battery problem, the Korean company started to push out OTA updates to cripple them slightly.

But this and even a ban on taking the handsets on flights, was not enough to discourage everyone from using their Note7. Now, in a bid to complete kill of the troublesome phone, Samsung is pushing out another update that completely disables charging.

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Moto G5 Plus starts at $184.99 on Amazon

Moto G5 Plus Lunar Gray

There is much to like about the new Moto G5 Plus. It's got a nice screen, fast processor, fingerprint sensor, large battery and an interesting design too. It also runs Android Nougat and it comes with Google Assistant out of the box. But all this comes at a price, which may seem a bit too high for some.

The base model, which comes with 32GB of storage and 2GB of RAM, costs $229.99 in US, while the high-end version, which features 64GB and 4GB of RAM, can be had for $299.99. It is not exactly cheap, if you want the latter model, but you can get it at a nice discount on Amazon.

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OnePlus 3T and OnePlus 3 get Google Assistant

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Google Assistant made its debut on the Pixel and Pixel XL last year, and after a period of exclusivity the search giant started to bring the voice assistant to other Android smartphones. The new LG G6 and the Samsung Galaxy S7 line have it, and, now, so do two other popular flagships.

OnePlus has announced on Twitter that the successor to Google Now is finally available on its OnePlus 3T and OnePlus 3. Both smartphones run Android Nougat, which is required for Google Assistant.

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71 percent of Android phones on major US carriers have out of date security patches

Android logo phone

Slow patching of security flaws is leaving many US mobile users at risk of falling victim to data breaches according to the findings of a new report.

The study from mobile defense specialist Skycure analyzed patch updates among the five leading wireless carriers in the US and finds that 71 percent of mobile devices still run on security patches more than two months old.

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New Google report shows Android security is improving

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Today Google published its third annual Android Security Year in Review, the day after the launch of the developer preview of Android O. Looking back at 2016, the report details the steps the company has taken to keep Android users and their data safe. Google cites a crackdown on Potentially Harmful Apps as a particular success, and points to the fact that security updates have been issued to 735 million devices.

But it’s not all good news. Many of the security improvements are to be found in Android 7 Nougat which is only available on a limited number of devices. Additionally, a large number of handsets are not eligible for the monthly security updates the company pushes out.

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Google Maps gets real-time location sharing

Google Maps Samsung Smarthone

When it comes to Google, many people are concerned about privacy, and rightfully so. Look, the company makes money through advertising and data collection. In other words, if you rely on the search giant's services, such as Gmail and Maps, the company probably knows a lot about you -- including the locations that you visit.

While exposing your location is normally something people try to avoid from a security perspective, today, Google is making it easier to do so. No, the search giant isn't doing it without your permission -- it is actually a very cool new feature. The company is enabling Google Maps users to share their real-time location with others. The reason that this is cool (and not scary) is that the user can choose with whom they share the location, and for how long it is shared. Your phone will even keep you notified that you are sharing your location -- just in case your plans change and you forget to shut it off. In other words, it is totally optional.

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What's new in Android O?

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We might not know exactly what Android O is going to be called, or exactly when it will be released, but the arrival of the developer preview means that we now have a hint of what to expect from the next version of Google's mobile operating system.

For now, Android O can only be installed on Nexus and Pixel devices, but further down the line this will change. So what is there to look forward to? Quite a lot as it turns out: battery and data saving, improved notifications, new lockscreen shortcuts, customizable navigation bar, and more!

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Logitech launches MK850 Performance Wireless Keyboard and Mouse Combo for Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS

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If you are like me, running just one operating system isn't enough -- maybe you dual boot or have multiple computers. I, for example, have a Windows 10 desktop, MacBook Pro laptop, and a Linux box. The problem with this setup, you see, is that my desk gets very crowded and messy. Believe it or not, I have just one monitor for all of my computers (I switch between HDMI and DisplayPort), but multiple keyboards, touch pads and mice -- it can be distracting.

Today, Logitech launches a brilliant product that should solve my dilemma. The MK850 Performance Wireless Keyboard and Mouse Combo works with Windows, Mac, Android, Chrome OS and iOS. It should work with desktop Linux distributions too, such as Ubuntu and Fedora. With the click of a button, both the keyboard and mouse can switch between up to three computers or operating systems. This includes mobile devices, such as tablets and smartphones (the mouse will not work with iOS, however). Best of all, both of the input devices are ergonomic and look elegant.

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Android O Developer Preview now available for download

Oreo_Cookie_Android_O

Android famously uses a weird naming convention for its operating system releases. Google moves alphabetically, matching the letter to a dessert food item, such as candy, cookies, and such. The next version will be the letter "O," but we do not yet know which food item name the search giant will choose. Could it go with Oreo Cookie? There is precedent of Google going with a branded food -- Kit Kat.

Today, Google releases Android O Developer Preview. Of course, the pre-release images are not available for third-party mobile devices -- it is a Nexus and Pixel-only affair. There are many new features in Android O, which you can read about here. It's a lot to absorb, but the biggest change seems to be limiting apps in the background, with a focus on improving battery life overall. This is much welcomed, as running out of juice is a major pain point for many mobile users.

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M-Kavach is an Android security app from India

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M-Kavach is a versatile Android security app from the Center for Development of Advanced Computing, a research and development arm of the Indian government.

The app offers several modules and security layers to protect you from a range of threats. M-Kavach can restricts app access to key resources, including Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, camera and mobile data.

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Super Mario Run for Android launches 23 March

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It is quite some time since Super Mario Run arrived for iOS and took the world by storm. Right from the start there were questions about when the Android version would appear, and the delay from Nintendo saw the springing up of a batch of malicious fakers.

Pre-registration for the Super Mario Run for Android opened up in late-December, and now Nintendo has finally revealed the launch date for one of the most eagerly-awaited Android games of all time. The Android version of Super Mario Run will launch on 23 March -- just days away!

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Huawei MateBook Windows 10 PCs and MediaPad Android tablets get price cuts

Huawei Matebook 11

Huawei isn't a very well known brand in the USA, but it should be -- and probably will be. The Chinese company makes very elegant products, such as smartphones, tablets, and PCs. In fact, its MateBook portable was my pick for best Windows 10 device of 2016. Why? It is beautiful, fanless, and affordable. Seriously, it is an amazing machine with a gorgeous screen.

Today, Huawei announces some big price cuts for the MateBook, but the savings don't stop there. In addition to its Windows 10 portable, the company also shares some great deals on its MediaPad Android tablets too. Best of all, the sales can be had at quality retailers, such as the Microsoft Store, Newegg, and Amazon.

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