Archive

Samsung and LG Confirm That They Haven’t Slowed Down Phones

Recently, Apple admitted to slowing down older iPhones' processor speeds as the batteries aged, ostensibly to prevent unexpected shutdowns. The fallout wasn't pretty, and Apple's throttling practices raised concerns that Android manufacturers were guilty of doing the same thing. On Thursday, HTC and Motorola said that they haven't slowed down old phones on account of aging batteries. And...

Alcatel 5 Passes Through the FCC, Appears to Have an Aluminum Body

Alcatel (formerly Alcatel OneTouch), which TCL fully acquired in 2015, is perhaps best known for its affordable Idol smartphone series, and all signs point to a big refresh in 2018. One of the upcoming handsets in the lineup -- the Alcatel 5 -- recently underwent FCC certification, and documents made public this week give a glimpse at...

More than 250 Android Games Use Your Mic to Track What You’re Watching

For years, people have accused companies of using their smartphones'  microphones to record conversations. We talked about the unlikelihood of corporate eavesdropping back in June, but paranoid delusions aside, some bad actors are actually listening in. And somewhat unsurprisingly, they're middlemen for marketers. Alphonso, a startup that sells media-viewing data, supplies a plugin that listens for audio signals in shows...

LastPass Authenticator Update Fixes a Serious Security Vulnerability

LastPass is one of the most popular password managers on Android, and for good reason: It's incredibly secure. But the same couldn't be said of LastPass Authenticator, its companion application, which made headlines when a security researcher discovered a serious vulnerability in its code. Luckily, it was patched this week. LastPass Authenticator offers 2FA on LastPass...

ASUS ZenFone 4 is getting Android Oreo via OTA

In early December, we reported that ASUS was planning to bring Android Oreo to its newest mid-range smartphone, the ZenFone 4, before the end of the month. On Friday, the company made good on its promise and announced that it's issued a software update to the ZenFone 4 (ZE554KL). The Android Oreo update (which the carries build number 15.0405.1711.76)...

ZTE’s Blade V9 Marketing Materials Leak, Show 18:9 Display

ZTE first made waves in the smartphone market the Axon 7, an affordable premium phone that went head-to-head with the venerable OnePlus 3. Now, the China-based smartphone maker is gearing up to release a new budget phone, the Blade V9, and its Spanish-language website spilled the beans a little early. The Blade V9 is a budget phone like...

Amazon Blocks YouTube on the Amazon Fire TV Before Google’s Deadline

In recent months, Google and Amazon have had what can only be described as a petty fight. Amazon prevented Google's Chromecast from playing Amazon Prime Video and delisted Chromecast devices from its store. Google, for its part, blocked Amazon's Echo Show speaker from accessing YouTube, and announced it would no longer support the YouTube application on...

Alphabet’s Tacotron 2 Text-to-Speech Engine Sounds Nearly Indistinguishable From a Human

Alphabet's subsidiary, DeepMind, developed WaveNet, a neural network that powers the Google Assistant's speech synthesis, in October. It's capable of better and more realistic audio samples than the search giant's previous text-to-speech system, and what's more, it generates raw audio -- not spliced-together sounds from voice actors. Now, researchers at Alphabet have developed a new...

Multiple Verizon Google Pixel 2 Owners are Reporting their Bootloaders can be Unlocked

The Google Pixel 2/2 XL is my personal favorite smartphone of 2017, despite the fact that the custom development scene is rather sparse. The stock Pixel experience is enough to make many die-hard Android modders decide to forego running a custom ROM or kernel. However, there's still a sizable group of users on our forums...

Pixel 2 XL XDA Display Analysis: A Well-Calibrated Package with Some Critical Mistakes

In recent months, the Pixel 2 XL has been the subject of many controversies, with conflict brewing over the phone's display even before its release. After the dust had settled, it became something of a refrain: The Pixel 2 XL's screen is plagued with issues, including premature burn-in, angular color shift, “muted” colors, “black crush”, and “black...

Smartphone Display Technologies and Terminology Explained: OLED, LCD, Strengths & Weaknesses

In light of recent conversations about smartphone displays, it’s important to take a step back and consider all the terms we keep reading about in context. Phones like the Google Pixel 2 XL have been criticized for their displays, but on the other hand, consumers have generally praised OLED panels. With such a robust ecosystem,...

No, The Pixel Did Not “Outsell” the iPhone X this Holiday Weekend

If you have been following headlines these past few days you likely have seen a slew of articles with titles not just strongly indicating, but explicitly stating that the Pixel 2 "activated more devices" over the Christmas weekend than iPhones. Unfortunately, the truth runs counter to such claims, though the original report still shows promise...