Posts From Kyle Wiggers

Kyle Wiggers
Kyle Wiggers 71 posts

Kyle Wiggers is a writer, Web designer, and podcaster with an acute interest in all things tech. When not reviewing gadgets or apps, he enjoys reading the New Yorker, tinkering with computers, and playing the occasional game of Rock Me Archimedes.

Xiaomi Redmi 5 model with 4GB RAM is now available

Xiaomi announced the Redmi 5, the successor to last year's Redmi 4, in December 2017. It isn't a radical departure from its predecessor, but features a new edge-to-edge design and a number of under-the-hood improvements. Xiaomi initially offered the Redmi 5 in two configurations, one with 2GB of RAM and 16GB of storage and another with...

Android Wear 2.9.0 will add unread notification indicators to watch faces

Android Wear, Google's slowly-but-steadily improving wearables platform, will be receiving an update in the near future with a pretty useful feature. On Thursday, Google announced a new Android Wear SDK version as well as the newest latest version of Android Wear, Android Wear 2.9.0.Android Wear 2.9.0Android Wear 2.9.0 adds an Android Oreo-like notification dot, which...

Google is giving you better control over advertisements it shows you

In recent years, Google has offered viewers an increasing degree of control over the banner ads, pop-ups, and pre-roll videos that appear on the Google Display Network. In 2009, it launched the Ads Settings (formerly Ads Preferences Manager) dashboard and Why these ads?, tiny links next to Google Search ads that explain their relevancy. And in 2012, it debuted...

ICYMI: Google Maps Prompts You to Save Offline Maps Ahead of Upcoming Trips

We live in a connected world, but it's nice to have offline access to the maps you use most often. Whether you're cruising backcountry roads or nearing your monthly data limit, you don't have to think twice about the maps stored on your phone's flash memory -- they aren't going anywhere. Downloading offline maps in Google Maps,...

Wine, the compatibility layer for Windows programs, is now available for Android

Ever wish you could run full-blown Windows applications on your Android device? Now you can...sort of. Wine, a Windows compatibility layer for Unix-like operating systems, has been updated to version 3.0—and can now be installed on Android devices. Wine 3.0 implements a full graphics and audio driver for Android, and can be built as an APK...

Less than 10% of Gmail users have Two-Factor Authentication Enabled

If you don't use Gmail's two-factor authentication, you're not the only one. At the Usenix Enigma 2018 security conference this week, Google software engineer Grzegorz Milka revealed that more than 90 percent of active Gmail users havn't enabled two-factor authentication on their accounts, and that 10 percent of those who have activated it have had trouble figuring out...

Android 8.1 Oreo’s Wi-Fi Menu Shows Speed Labels for Public Networks

When you're surrounded by public Wi-Fi networks, it's nearly impossible to tell which is fastest without connecting to each one, conducting a speed test, and dutifully recording the results. Luckily, Google's introducing a new feature in Android 8.1 Oreo that does all the legwork for you: Speed labels in the Wi-Fi settings menu. In the coming days,...

Hangouts Meet Gains Support for Android Tablets and iPads

Google took the wraps off Hangouts Meet, an enterprise-centric version of its Hangouts chat platform, in March 2017. It's chock full of nifty features like meeting reminders and Google Drive integration, but ever since launch, it's lacked tablet support. The search giant rectified that longstanding shortcoming with a tablet-forward update for the Hangouts Meet app. Starting...

MIUI 9.2 Global Stable ROM Brings Mi Drop, Mi Video, and Other New Apps to Xiaomi Phones

Xiaomi, the China-based company that's among the world's biggest smartphone brands, announced the newest version of its in-house Android skin, MIUI 9, in November 2017. Since then, it's rolled out to folks enrolled in the MIUI Global Beta, but some in the stable channel were kept waiting. That changed this week, though, with the debut of...

Pro-tip: Add Shopping List Items to Google Keep by Threatening Google Assistant

The Google Assistant can preheat your smart oven, highlight your upcoming appointments, and shuffle through your favorite tunes. One of its most convenient features, though, is a shopping list accessible via voice (try saying, "OK Google, add milk to my shopping list"). The Assistant used to save items on that list in Google Keep, Google's...

Wi-Fi Direct Printing Might Come to Android in the Near Future

Until recently, printer support in Android was pretty spotty. Google Cloud Print, a half-solution that routes print jobs through Google's servers, came to Android in 2013; Android KitKat added native printing; and the most recent version of Android, Oreo, folded Internet Printing Protocol (IPP) into Android's default print service. Android still lacks a way to print...

The Google Home has an undocumented local API that you can now access

Google Home, Google's growing lineup of AI-powered speakers, offers a wealth of possibilities for smart home hobbyists. Problem is, it's locked down pretty tightly. When it comes accessing alarms data, settings, Bluetooth modes, and other on-device info, you've got two options: Checking the Google Home companion app on your smartphone and/or tablet, or shouting a...