Monday, April 25, 2016

Quick Look: Google’s Live Cases for the Nexus 6P

Last week, Google announced new customizable cases for the Nexus 6P, Nexus 5X, and Nexus 6 called Live Cases. At $35, these cases are by no means inexpensive, so we decided to pick one up to see if there is any chance you should even consider purchasing one. 

Live Cases come in two styles that include either maps of any location in the world or imagery chosen by the you, the customer. Depending on the case, you could further customize the look of the map or image with a handful of designs, shapes, and colors. Each case also includes an NFC button on the back, along with an accompanying app to program that button as a shortcut for doing things like launching the camera or turning WiFi on and off. Each case’s app comes with a live wallpaper of constantly changing maps depending on your location, or a slideshow, as well.

We went with the Maps version because it seemed like not only a really cool concept, but a case we wouldn’t get sick of in a couple of weeks, either. In case you were wondering, this particular case is a map of Whitefish, MT, my home town.

google live case nexus 6p

google live case nexus 6p google live case nexus 6p

google live case nexus 6p

Should you buy a Live Case? Ummm, sure, if you like cool looking cases with custom imagery or maps and don’t have a budget. The cases are a semi-hard plastic that certainly fit well on the phones they are supported by, They aren’t exactly the most premium cases I’ve ever touched, but they do fit well and the imagery came through nicely. In fact, I really like the look of the case and the fact that it’s a one-of-a-kind item that has a bit of special meaning behind it.

I’m just not sure it was worth $35, though. Again, the case fits nicely on my Nexus 6P and doesn’t even add that much thickness to an already large phone, but at $35, you could pick up a number of cases from Amazon and still walk away with enough money for a case of beer. Those cases won’t have custom imagery, of course.

I should point out that the NFC button is either broken on mine or is hell to get to work. It doesn’t have any sort of clicking sensation at all and takes far too hard of a press to activate whatever it has been programmed to do. Once the phone has been unlocked and you give it a good squeeze, it will launch the camera or turn the flashlight on, but man, the amount of pressure needed here isn’t worth the hassle.

So again, should you buy the Live Cases from Google? Probably not, unless you really, really, really need a custom case and have a bunch of money sitting around to blow.

google live case nexus 6p

google live case nexus 6p google live case nexus 6p

google live case nexus 6p

Quick Look: Google’s Live Cases for the Nexus 6P is a post from: Droid Life

from Droid Life http://ift.tt/1WQBVK2

Lifeline Series of Games on Sale for $0.10 a Pop

The Lifeline series, published onto Google Play by 3 Minute Games, is available on sale for only $0.10 a pop, bringing the price for the entire 3-game series to just $0.30. Lifeline games are branching story games, where choices you make affect the outcome of characters.

Played in real time, you utilize incoming notifications to help make decisions on what your character will do next. If you are too busy to play, just follow the notifications when time suits you. Beware, though, as each choice can mean life or death. Once complete, players can go back in time, seeing how a different choice could bring about a different outcome. 

Each game is rated very well on Google Play, and according to the reviews, the stories are pretty remarkable.

Follow the links below to take advantage of this pricing.

Play Links: Lifeline | Lifeline 2 | Lifeline: Silent Night

Lifeline Series of Games on Sale for $0.10 a Pop is a post from: Droid Life

from Droid Life http://ift.tt/1VOPJ8X

MetroPCS Launches Updated Pricing For Family Plans, Limited Time Only

For a limited time, those who are looking to get multiple lines on the same plan can do so through MetroPCS, as the company announced updated pricing for its family lineup. Starting today, you can get 2 lines with unlimited talk, text, data, and 6GB of 4G LTE high-speed data for just $60.

Any line after the first two is an additional $30 a month, up to five lines on the same plan as long as you port at least one number from another carrier. If you don’t port a line, you will only receive 3GB of high-speed data. As always, “what you see is what you pay” on MetroPCS. All pricing includes regulatory fees and taxes.

MetroPCS runs on T-Mobile’s network, so if you were trying to figure out if MetroPCS has you covered, check T-Mobile’s coverage maps.

This offer is open to new and existing customers starting today.

Via: T-Mobile

MetroPCS Launches Updated Pricing For Family Plans, Limited Time Only is a post from: Droid Life

from Droid Life http://ift.tt/1Num7u8

Poll: Using Official Twitter App or Something Else?

Now that Fenix, one of the better 3rd party Twitter apps, is more than likely dead after reaching Twitter’s 100K token limit, today seems like the perfect day to ask you all how you go about consuming the Tweets. Have you given up buying Twitter apps that will one day be left for dead and instead gone with the official Twitter app? Or, are you still doing your part in supporting awesome 3rd party developers who continue to make better apps than Twitter can?

In the poll below, let us know which way your Twitter life has taken you. As a follow-up, head into the comments to let us know why you gave up and stuck with the official Twitter app or which 3rd party apps you are all using.


Note: There is a poll embedded within this post, please visit the site to participate in this post's poll.

Poll: Using Official Twitter App or Something Else? is a post from: Droid Life

from Droid Life http://ift.tt/1rdrAMa

DEAL: Moto 360 Sport is Just $199 Right Now ($100 Off)

On the hunt for an Android Wear device with GPS that would be great as a smartwatch and fitness pal? The GPS-enabled Moto 360 Sport is a solid option, but even more so today because of deals across the internet for the white or “flame” models.

As of right now, you can grab the white or flame versions for $100 off, which means either watch is just $199. Amazon and Best Buy both have the $100 off deal, but if you want an even better deal, B&H Photo is doing the $100 off while tossing in a $50 B&H Photo gift card. 

Tim reviewed the Moto 360 Sport a couple of months ago and had mostly good things to say about it. He liked the design, loved the AnyLight display, and thought battery life was fine. He even recommended the white and flame over the black model that he reviewed. So, here you go.

Deal Links

DEAL: Moto 360 Sport is Just $199 Right Now ($100 Off) is a post from: Droid Life

from Droid Life http://ift.tt/1T9KNEU

Gmail App Receives Complete Exchange Support

For all users of Gmail, Microsoft’s Exchange is now supported for dual delivery mail flow, meaning you will see both your Gmail and Exchange emails all in the same inbox. This makes the entire emailing process much more simplified for users of both services.

Whether you are using a Google Apps or Exchange account, the Gmail app can handle both services, so from now on, Gmail will be your go-to email app. Don’t use any “Email” app that might be installed on your device. If you are already using one, you can easily sync your Exchange account through Gmail with a few simple steps.

Google is rolling the update out to Google Play now. Be on the lookout.

Play Link

Via: Google

Gmail App Receives Complete Exchange Support is a post from: Droid Life

from Droid Life http://ift.tt/1TtfxmY

5 Reasons the HTC 10 is Worth Buying

Not interested in reading through every single word from our detailed HTC 10 review and would instead just like us to tell you five quick reasons why this latest flagship from a VR company is worth your money? OK, cool, we can do that. Actually, it should be really easy to do since this is a really, really solid phone from HTC.

Things like the design, clean software approach, potential for quickly released future updates, a solid camera, and an impressive audio experience all come to mind as reasons this phone is worth your money.

Here we go! These are the 5 reasons the HTC 10 is worth buying. 

htc 10 5 reasons-2

1. This is an Android skin to like.

In my HTC 10 review, which you may or may not have read, I talked about HTC being a new hero for those who like stock-ish Android, but may not want to buy a Nexus. I said that because HTC has cleaned up their Sense skin so much that it stays out of your way until you need it. Sure, the app drawer, home screen setup, and lock screen are certainly HTC, but the notification shade and settings menus are quite stock-like. And let’s not forget that HTC has actually built-in useful software features to expand the leaner experience, like Motion Launch Gestures, power saving modes, an audio tuner and display profiles.

Not only has HTC cut most of the fat from Sense, they also took out duplicate apps and are giving you many of Google’s as defaults (Gmail, Photos, etc.). If you buy the unlocked HTC 10, the first time you open the app drawer, try not to be shocked at the lack of apps in there. HTC didn’t mess around by getting rid of the fluff and leaving you with just the right stuff.

2. Audio nerds, brace yourselves.

I’m no audio guru, but there is some magic at play with the HTC 10 and a good pair of headphones connected to it. We’re talking crystal clear audio, balanced mids, deep lows, and highs that are just supremely high. I’m just kidding, I have no idea what any of that means because again, I’m not an audio nerd. If you are, though, this is a phone built for you.

HTC received a Hi-Res audio certification for it from Japan Audio Society, is amplifying the tunes that come through the headphone jack through a 24-bit DAC, and even continued the dual-speaker theme of HTC’s previous flagships by including both a tweeter and a woofer. This is a serious audio machine that also happens to be a smartphone.

htc 10 5 reasons-3

3. The camera is pretty good!

Starting with the HTC One M7 and onward, HTC’s cameras haven’t exactly been OK. HTC went the gimmick route instead of trying to put the best possible camera available at the time into their flagship phones. With the HTC 10, they are changing that and have included a 12MP shooter with OIS that is very capable.

You can see a whole bunch of pictures that I took with the HTC 10 here, but my general takeaway from this shooter is that it’ll be just fine in most situations. It’s not the fastest on the planet (that’s the Galaxy S7), has some quirks (like its autofocus system and launch shortcut), and produced some somewhat dull shots at times. Yet still, this is a camera that is miles ahead of anything HTC tried before it and can at least sit at the table with the other big dogs on the block. It also should get better and better over time.

4. All-metal prettiness.

I don’t know that I’m the biggest fan of all-metal phones like the HTC 10, but there is no denying the craftsmanship here. This phone is about as well-built as it gets. There aren’t creaks or squishy, moving parts anywhere. The glass and metal blend together perfectly. The buttons are very clicky. And even the love-it-or-hate-it mega chamfer around the backside has an appeal while helping with phone grip.

For fans of metal phones, I don’t know that you will find a better option. There is a good amount of weight here, it isn’t slippery like all-metal phones of the past, and you’ll probably feel good about the purchase when holding it, because it does indeed feel like a premium smartphone.

htc 10 5 reasons

5. Because you like timely software updates.

We don’t normally tell people to buy phones on “It’ll probably happen!” With HTC, we feel pretty good about their recent track record in pushing out timely software updates. In other words, we don’t have some sort of confirmation that HTC will be good at pushing updates to the 10, but what we do know is that they were to the One A9 and One M9, plus they are still doing pretty good with the One M8. They seem to be set on giving you updates in a hurry because they know you want them. Companies like Samsung don’t care. Motorola may not care anymore either. HTC, though, they do and that’s awesome. You deserve timely updates when you spend hundreds of dollars on a phone. You aren’t just buying hardware – you are buying a software support system as well.

Don’t be shocked if you get the update to Android N on your HTC 10 shortly after Google pushes the update to its Nexus devices. In fact, I’d almost bet that it will be the first non-Nexus to get Android N. Anyone want to bet against that?

Considering another phone? Feel free to take a look back at 5 reasons to buy other phones, like the Galaxy S7, Nexus 6P, or LG V10 in previous installments of this ongoing series.

5 Reasons the HTC 10 is Worth Buying is a post from: Droid Life

from Droid Life http://ift.tt/1VOuNio

Droid Life Q&A Sessions: Volume 39

We are back again for another round of the DL Q&A Sessions, this time for Volume 39. The Q&A Sessions is your chance to ask the DL staff whatever you would like, whether it is Android-related or any other topic. To get your brain juices flowing, we could discuss our latest round of device reviews, what has us excited for Google I/O next month, or even talk about sports. We love sports. It’s entirely up to you.

These posts are also a very good time to chat with us in the comments, as we read every single comment that comes in. If you have post suggestions or maybe want to rage at us for how much we are paid by every company to post positive things (sarcasm), now would be the time. 

This Friday, we will go through your questions and do our best to answer as many as we can.

To see all of our previous Q&A’s, check them out here.

Droid Life Q&A Sessions: Volume 39 is a post from: Droid Life

from Droid Life http://ift.tt/24fNw7t

This (Free) Icon Pack is Hot: Saturate

Funny you mention it, Felix, because I just so happened to spend some time this weekend looking for a new icon pack to give me a fresh home setup. So, yeah, we have a new icon pack that is indeed hot and worth a look, if anything because it’s free. Mmmm free.

Today’s icon pack is called Saturate. I don’t know why, since the listing says that there are “strong splashes of color” in some places, yet then “desaturated” in others, but we’ll go with it, because it’s nice.

The pack features almost 1,500 icons with 150+ matching wallpapers, icons to support Marshmallow’s settings shortcuts, dynamic calendars, a matching clock widget, all sorts of icon alternatives, and built-in launcher support for your favorites. Did I mention you get all of that for free? Yep. Sure, there are ads, but we’re talking about all of those goodies for free. 

The overall design of the pack is obviously a take on Google’s stock Material Design icons for Android, only with a yellowish, orangish, warm tint to it all. There are plenty of greys as well, along with other colors, but the warmth is really what stands out to my eye.

Give it a shot and let us know what you think!

Play Link

Screen Shot 2016-04-25 at 9.40.13 AM Screen Shot 2016-04-25 at 9.40.23 AM Screen Shot 2016-04-25 at 9.40.40 AM Screen Shot 2016-04-25 at 9.41.09 AM

This (Free) Icon Pack is Hot: Saturate is a post from: Droid Life

from Droid Life http://ift.tt/1qMxXp4

Tip: Not Seeing Podcasts in Google Play Music App? Hit the Refresh Button.

If you have yet to see the Podcasts section show up in your Google Play Music app, a simple tap on the “Refresh” button in settings should force it to arrive. Seriously, just pop into your app, slide out the side navigation menu, tap on Settings and then “Refresh” and you should then see the option for Podcasts just under Music Library. 

This same trick worked for the family plan when it arrived as well.

If that trick doesn’t work, then maybe you need to update your Google Play Music app first. You can grab the newest version here (v6.7.2712Z.2783167).

Also, have you subscribed to the Droid Life Show through Google Play Music, yet? You can right here.

Tip: Not Seeing Podcasts in Google Play Music App? Hit the Refresh Button. is a post from: Droid Life

from Droid Life http://ift.tt/1qMfkBH

Chase Mobile App Updated With Fingerprint Support

The Chase Mobile banking application received an update this week, bringing support for many to use their smartphone’s built-in fingerprint reader to log into the app, instead of using a name and password. While this news will be glorious for quite a few, Chase details on the app listing that not all fingerprint readers are support, and users will need to be on Android 6.0+ to take advantage of the feature. 

According to the changelog, logging in with your fingerprint is pretty much all you can do, and other features may require you to use a password for further account protection.

Go grab that update.

What’s New

  • Use fingerprint sign in to log in. Your device must use Android OS v6.0 (Marshmallow) or higher. Certain features will still require that you enter your password.
  • Please note that due to different implementations of Android fingerprint by device manufacturers, this feature will not be available for all devices.

Play Link

Cheers fritz and Jeremy!

Chase Mobile App Updated With Fingerprint Support is a post from: Droid Life

from Droid Life http://ift.tt/23132lk

Fenix Reaches Twitter’s Ridiculous Token Limit, Disappears From Google Play

Fenix, one of the best 3rd party Twitter apps on Android, appears to have hit Twitter’s ridiculous token limit and is now gone from Google Play. Over the weekend, a user tweeted at the official Fenix account while looking for help after seeing a message that made reference to Fenix being unable to authenticate more users. Fenix’s owner replied with the bad news on the limit, along with a refund offer. 

What is the Twitter token limit? Years ago, Twitter decided that 3rd party developers, the same developers who make better apps for their own service than they can, developers who are more than likely helping to expand the platform to new users, were bad for Twitter. So they put a 100K token limit on them. A token is essentially a single user, so that means these 3rd party Twitter apps are limited to around that number of users. Once they hit that limit, they can no longer take on new users, which probably means that the app is dead or will be dead very shortly. It’s got to be pretty tough for a developer to continue to support an app that no longer makes it money. Falcon Pro was one of the first to hit the limit in 2013. Make sense?

So Fenix has apparently hit the 100k limit, which sucks for everyone, because the app is one of the best. With that said, we knew this day would come. Investing in a Twitter app is a pretty bad idea for most people, because if the app is good enough to get your dollar, it’s probably, eventually, going to be good enough for another 100K dollars and users and will see its fate.

Almost a year ago, a report surfaced suggesting that Twitter may re-think the token limit, but nothing has happened or changed on that front. Remember, this is a mega-company that still doesn’t really know what it’s doing, even after all these years of tweaking, supposed fine-tuning, and feature introduction. It’s struggling to make money and grow its user base, investors seem to hate it, and new people won’t come to it because it’s confusing to use and there are other options for sharing your life and witty comments with that all of your friends probably use.

The developer of Fenix didn’t say that he was pulling the app from Google Play, but that seems to be the case. The app should be listed here and isn’t (at least on my end). The developer’s page doesn’t list it either.

If you previously bought Fenix, you should still own a token and should be able to use it going forward.

Is it too early for a “RIP, Fenix?”

Fenix Reaches Twitter’s Ridiculous Token Limit, Disappears From Google Play is a post from: Droid Life

from Droid Life http://ift.tt/1ruroIL

Google Play Store and Android Apps are Probably Coming Soon to Chromebooks

“Choose from over a million apps and games on Google Play to install and use on your Chromebook,” says a screenshot shared to reddit over the weekend. Think about that for a second. All of the Android apps you have been running on your phones and tablets for years, now running on Google’s other desktop-like operating system that has always been a tough sell to many of us because of its lack of functionality. Would you be interested in a Chromebook if it ran all of your favorite apps? 

Google hasn’t announced this functionality, but it does make a lot of sense. In recent months (years?), rumors of Chrome OS and Android merging have been everywhere, even if they are so different in terms of focus that I don’t know how much sense a merge like that really makes. But this move, Android apps running on Chrome OS the way it is, makes a hell of a lot of sense, at least to me.

Instead of merging Chrome OS and Android and just having a single platform, you could keep the dead-simple browser-focused experience of Chrome OS that makes it good, but then allow users to introduce additional functionality through a real app ecosystem, not just an extension catalog. Your favorite photo editors from Android could come over (like LightRoom!). So could your favorite Twitter apps and package trackers and controllers for your LED lights and reddit apps, of course.

The image at the top of this list post is showing up on a handful of devices, but users are claiming that nothing is live yet or there isn’t a way to access Google Play just yet. There are source code mentions for it too. It’s clearly, a thing. Oh, and Google I/O arrives in less than a month, so we could/should/likely will know something very, very soon.

What do you think? Would you be interested in a Chromebook if it ran Android apps?

Via:  reddit

Google Play Store and Android Apps are Probably Coming Soon to Chromebooks is a post from: Droid Life

from Droid Life http://ift.tt/1rcz6Hg

Related Articles

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...