Articles about Android

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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Save space on your Android phone by compressing apps rather than uninstalling

Google Play Games

However much storage you have on your phone, the sheer size of apps and games now available, coupled with the number of photos the average person takes, means that it is surprising just how quickly you can start to run out of space.

Traditionally, the solution to this problem has been to trawl through the photo gallery, deleting any snaps that are not really needed, as well as deciding which apps you can live without. But now Google has come up with another option that developers can implement: app compression or archiving.

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New Microsoft Defender preview now available for Windows, Android and iOS

Microsoft has been working on a new security tool for a while now and today announces a preview build for Windows Insiders to try out, although there are some restrictions to be aware of.

The Microsoft Defender app, which is available for Windows, Android, and iOS, helps protect you and your family’s data and devices against online threats, such as malware and phishing attacks.

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New Kodi 19.4 for Android isn't available on Google Play -- here's how to get it

The Kodi Foundation has just released Kodi "Matrix" 19.4 and you can read all about what’s new in this point release in our story here. While this is great news for Kodi users, if you run the popular home theater software on Android there’s some not great news -- you won’t be able to download this update from Google Play.

The problem lies with a change to Google’s requirements, which Kodi doesn’t meet.

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When is the best time to buy a new smartphone?

The trouble with buying any technology is that whatever you lay down your hard-earned cash for today you can guarantee that something faster, cheaper and with more features is going to be along soon.

But the longer you wait the more you risk being left behind. UK-based reseller Buymobiles is looking to help break this vicious circle by doing some research into when is the best time to take the plunge and get a new handset.

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Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 is an Android tablet no one will want as it's not an Apple iPad

When someone says they want a tablet, what they are really saying is they want an Apple iPad. They don't want something running Android or Windows. The only people that use Android tablets in 2022 are those that can't afford one of Apple's offerings or consumers that irrationally hate Apple products and refuse to use them.

If you are someone that (for whatever reason) wants an Android tablet rather than a glorious iPad (they really are great), I have some good news. Today, Samsung announces that it hasn't given up on the Android tablet market -- yet. You see, the company has unveiled the all-new Galaxy Tab S8 series, for which there are three variants -- the regular Galaxy Tab S8 (11-inch), the S8+ (12.4-inch), and the S8 Ultra (14.6-inch). They have resolutions of 2560 x 1600, 2800 x 1752, and 2960 x 1848 respectively.

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Samsung unveils the more durable Galaxy S22 and S22+ with new cameras and AI tricks

Today is a huge day for fans of Samsung’s flagship Android smartphones. At its eagerly awaited Samsung Unpacked event, the South Korean tech giant took the wraps off the Galaxy S22 and S22+.

The two new phones have a "sustainably conscious design" and come with dynamic cameras with advanced intelligent image processing. They promise better night photography thanks to a 23 percent larger sensor and make use of Adaptive Pixel technology to improve high resolution photos.

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Three in four mobile apps contain at least one vulnerability

app frustration

As the internet is increasingly accessed from mobile devices, mobile apps need to be considered as part of a company's security strategy.

A new report from BitSight finds that three out of four mobile applications evaluated contained at least one moderate vulnerability. It also finds material and severe vulnerabilities in some popular apps.

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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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