Opinion

Now is not the time to buy a Wear OS watch

If you have been itching to get your hands on a new Wear OS watch, right now is not the right time. Even with the decent deals for the Huawei Watch 2 Classic or the newly announced Skagen Falster 2, I would not recommend buying either of those watches.

Why? Two things. One is the two year old Snapdragon 2100 that these watches are running on. Two, the release of the Snapdragon 3100 in just a couple of weeks away. Any savings you might get now is not worth the battery life and smoother experience a new processor may bring. Even though these theoretical improvements, I’ll bet you there will be additional price drops for existing watches running the 2100.

If you can hold off on getting a smartwatch (and I don’t see why anyone would absolutely need one). Now is the time to stick it out and wait a couple weeks. You never know, maybe you’ll end up with a rumored round Apple Watch instead.

News Rumors

Everything we know about the Pixel 3

image from Rozetked

The Pixel 3 is a highly anticipated phone that is reportedly launching in October. The recent leaks are getting out of hand. Multiple videos and images have surfaced throughout the past couple weeks that have

Pixel 3 XL will feature a large front notch that houses two front facing cameras.

image from Rozetked

Multiple leaks and rendered have shown the large notch that will be on the Pixel 3 XL. This notch is going to house two front facing cameras which rumored to be used for a wide angle selfies and a “super selfie” mode.

Pixel 3 will have wireless charging

A leaked video has also confirmed that the Pixel 3 will have wireless charging. This is quite exciting as the Pixel 3 looks to be the first Pixel/Nexus phone that is going to support this technology, finally catching up to other flagships that have supported it for years.

Pixel 3 will still have a single rear camera

image from Rozetked

Google looks to be continuing the single rear camera trend. This shouldn’t be much of a surprised considering the single camera on the Pixel 2 has been and still is one of the best smartphone cameras on the market. Google is still able to do more with less.

images from xda-developer

CPU, GPU, RAM, and Storage we expect

Much of the other specifications are in line with what we expect. The CPU is the new Snapdragon 845 with the Adreno 630 GPU. The RAM is staying at 4GB and the storage will still be 64GB and 128GB variants. No word on whether they will offer higher storage capacity.

Slightly smaller battery on Pixel 3 XL

The leaked Pixel 3 XL has a battery of 3,430 mAh which is 90 mAh lower than the Pixel 2 XL. With the new processor, I do not think there will be much difference in battery life between the Pixel 3 XL and Pixel 2 XL.

Some New Accessories

image from Rozetked

In the accessories department it looks like the Pixel 3 XL will be getting a new usb-c wired Pixel buds.

Will you be getting one?

The Pixel 3 leaks have left little to the imagination. Given everything we know so far, will you be getting a Pixel 3?

News

Google gets fined €4.34 billion for antitrust practices with Android

image from wikipedia

Google is getting fined 4.34 billion euros for three major antitrust practices on Android. Google now has 90 days to stop these practices or face additional fines. The three antitrust practices that the European Commission are referring to are:

  • Google requiring manufacturers to pre-install Google Search and Chrome as a condition for licensing the Play Store.
  • Large payments made to large manufacturers and mobile network operators on condition that they only pre-install Google Search on their devices.
  • Prevented manufacturers from selling devices with forked versions of Android (e.g. Lineage OS) with pre-install Google apps.

As a consequence of the ruling, Google, at the minimum, would be barred from re-engaging in the above three points. This ruling could fundamentally change the way Google works with manufacturers and the amount of control Google may have on the operating system.

Question is, does Google engaging in these three points stifle competition? I think it does. It is hard to not use Google on an Android phone. On a platform that is designed to be open source, this should not be the case. I think the best solution is to give the consumer choice when they first setup the phone and allow them to import the previous configuration from a previous phone. This way consumers have the option to opting to default to a different browser and different default search while still having the ability to use the Play Store.

What do you think? Please comment below!

Source: EC Press Release

How To

How To: Install Visual Studio Code on Chrome OS

So you have a new Chromebook and want to start coding on it. With Chrome OS new support for Linux apps, it is actually pretty enjoyable developing on Chrome OS.

Switching to the Dev Channel

Depending on when you are reading this article, you may need to change your Chromebook from the stable channel to the dev channel. I would recommend backing up anything you will need since switching back to the stable channel will require you do to a factory reset.

To switch to the dev channel, simply click on the three dots on the top right of the chrome browser -> Help -> About Chrome OS -> Detailed Build Information -> Change Channel -> Select “Developer – unstable”. This will trigger Chrome OS to download the developer build and restart once its done installing.

Once Chrome OS finishes restarting, go into setting and enable Linux (Beta). This should install the Linux container as well as a terminal app that should show up in your launcher once it is done.

Installing Visual Studio Code

The first thing you are going to want to do is download the DEB file for Visual Studio Code.

Next you will want to open the “Files” app and click on the download tab to find the file you just downloaded. Drag and drop the file you just downloaded to the “Linux Files” tab.

You are now ready to install the DEB file to your Linux container. Open up the “terminal” app and run the following command:

sudo dpkg -i NAME_OF_FILE.deb

You will probably get a message about a bunch of missing dependencies. If you do, run the following command:

sudo apt -f install

This will install any dependencies necessary to install vs code. Once the dependencies have been installed, rerun the previous command and vs code should install properly.

Running Visual Studio Code

Now that you have vs code installed, there are two main ways you can launch the app. One way is to go to the launcher and simply click on the visual studio code app icon. Another way is through the terminal itself. You can run:

code

to open up the app directly from the terminal.

There you have it. You now are able to use vs code within the Linux container. By default the Linux container also has git installed and you should be able to generate ssh keys and develop as if you were using Ubuntu.

News

Third Party Apps reading your Gmail? Yup, that is happening

Third Party Apps reading your Gmail? Yup, that is happening

image via wikipedia

A recent Wall Street Journal article has done an in depth report on Third Party applications reading your email contents sometimes without your explicit consent. Many of these companies (e.g. Earny) rely on your email content to create better algorithms, generate information to sells to other party for advertisement and/or marketing. Often times, your personal emails can accidentally end up on servers or read by an actual employee to improve their service. Although this is the reality of making machine learning algorithms better, companies should give users more control over their own data. As a consumer, make sure to take some time to throughly read through any privacy policy and user agreements when signing up for a service. It is often times best to do some research on how a particular company monetizes and then decide whether you are okay with trading your privacy for the free and convenient service.

Source: Wall Street Journal

News

Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL design leaks

image via twitter by OnLeaks

Designs of the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL have leaked out on Twitter by OnLeaks. Looking at these renders, the device looks to be pretty similar to the Pixel 2 line. The only obvious differences between the Pixel 2 vs 3 seem to be the addition of the notch for the XL model, the 16:9 ratio screen for the regular model, and the dual front facing cameras that both model possess. It will be interesting to see what Google plans on doing with the front facing dual camera setup.

Source: OnLeaks

News

RAMpage vulnerability on all Android Devices since 2012

Looks like a potential security vulnerability exploiting a hardware bug that allows Android apps to potentially full access of the device and its data. Although this attack has only been reproduced on a few Android devices and not consistently, researchers suspect the exploit to affect all Android phone since 2012 and potentially also Apple devices, VMs and PCs. There is already a proposed mitigation fix that has been suggested by the researcher that found this bug and Google is currently testing to see the performance impact that it may bring to day to day use. We do also want to stress that the likelihood of a large scale attack using this vulnerability is low. This is not an easy vulnerability to exploit. Regardless, keep an eye out for a fix for CVE-2018-9442.

Source: Bleepingcomputers, Ars Technica