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2
May

WhatsApp beta lets you pin your most important chats to the top of your inbox


Why it matters to you

Your WhatsApp inbox can quickly become overwhelming, with hordes of messages pouring in from your many contacts. Pinned chats could help you keep things organized.

You’re a popular person, so it’s no wonder that your friends are blowing up your WhatsApp. But let’s be honest: You don’t have time for all those messages clogging up your inbox, especially when they detract attention from the folks who actually matter.

Thankfully, there’s now a way to cut through the noise. WhatsApp looks to be testing a new feature that will let you pin your most important conversations at the top of your inbox, so you always know what mom or dad has to say, even if Cousin Bob is trying to get your attention with 10 messages in a row.

As first reported by Android Police, WhatsApp beta 2.17.162 and 163 have added the new feature, which allows you to designate certain WhatsApp contacts as VIP. Simply tap and hold any chat you’d like to access a pin icon in the action bar alongside the delete, mute, and archive options. Once you’ve pinned the conversation, it’ll stay at the top of your WhatsApp list, even if you have more recent chats. Think of it as a pinned tweet — it’ll always be at the top of your feed.

For the time being, it looks as though you can only pin three chats at a time. If you try to add more, you’ll get a toast notification informing you that your action isn’t allowed. But don’t worry — if one of your parents does something to annoy you, you can always unpin them from your favorites, and replace them with your favorite aunt or someone less insufferable.

WhatsApp is also experimenting with a special Change Number feature in the new beta, which ought to make it a lot more straightforward when it comes to changing the mobile number associated with an account. For now, it looks like you’ll have to get WhatsApp beta 2.17.162 or 163 in order to access any of these new features, but it seems safe to assume that the popular messaging app will be rolling out these updates en masse relatively soon, too.




2
May

Microsoft introduces Windows 10 S for education, restricted to Windows Store apps


Why it matters to you

If you’re a student or teacher, then Microsoft has a new version of Windows built just for you.

Microsoft held its education-focused event this morning, where it extolled its solutions aimed at helping students learn, teachers teach, and IT staff focus on letting technology assist both without stifling anyone’s creativity. With an obvious nod to Google’s success in education with its Chromebook platform, Microsoft announced a new lightweight version of Windows 10 dubbed Windows 10 S.

The focus of Windows 10 S, which was originally expected to be called Windows 10 Cloud Edition, is on providing the minimum functionality required to get work done. Microsoft provided a very general overview of the newest version of Windows 10.

First up is limiting apps to those that are downloaded from the Windows Store. Doing so limits a machine to only the most secure apps, and to a limited set. If a user or administrator tries to install an app from outside the Store, then an error message will be displayed.

Not only does this policy limit what apps can be installed on a Windows 10 S machine, but it also significantly reduces first-use loading times down to 10-15 seconds. Microsoft noted that administrators can switch a machine from Windows 10 S to Windows 10 Pro in order to install a non-Store application (though probably only if they’ve purchased a valid license).

Next is the new “Setup my new school PC” app, which walks administrators through the process of setting up a new machine for students. The end result of the process is the creation of a USB flash drive image that can be plugged into a new PC, and that automatically configures the machine from scratch without user intervention.

Microsoft has also introduced Intune for Education, which is its enterprise administration tool optimized for educational institutions. This brings the company’s powerful system management solution to educational IT departments.

Microsoft finished the Windows 10 S session by highlighting how it’s working to make Microsoft solutions affordable for education. The company announced a number of new initiatives to do just that:

  • Microsoft highlighted the low-cost Windows 10 S machines being brought to the market by its OEM partners. Windows 10 education PCs will start at $189, making them an affordable alternative to Google Chromebooks.
  • Each education PC will come with a free subscription to Minecraft: Education Edition.
  • Windows 10 S will be free for all schools on their current genuine Windows Pro PCs.
  • Office 365 for Education with Microsoft Teams will be free for educational customers.
  • Microsoft Intune for Education is available today for educational institutions.

Windows 10 S will be available this summer, in preparation for the next school year. Microsoft did not provide more details on the technical workings of Windows 10 S, but clearly the company is focused on providing a low-cost, easy-to-administer solution for education to ensure that an entire generation of students doesn’t grow up using Google solutions.




2
May

Unity will soon add support for Google’s AR platform, Project Tango


Why it matters to you

Google’s partnership with Unity should help spur development that utilizes Project Tango, which could yield broader benefits for the augmented reality space.

Microsoft and Apple have made no secret of their respective ambitions for augmented reality, with the former working hard on its HoloLens hardware, and the latter making some high-profile hires to flesh out its fledgling AR division. However, Google has its own big plans for the tech as well.

On May 1, Google, which is backing the video game development engine Unity, held its Vision Summit in Los Angeles, California. During the opening keynote, Google’s project manager for developer platforms, Nathan Martz, announced that the Project Tango AR platform will soon receive official, native support in Unity, according to a report from Road to VR.

This collaboration isn’t completely unexpected, as Unity already offers similar support for Google’s virtual reality platform, Daydream. The decision should be beneficial for all concerned, since it will open up new avenues for Unity developers, and potentially facilitate plenty of new projects that take advantage of AR functionality.

In January 2017, Asus unveiled the ZenFone AR, a powerful smartphone that’s outfitted with support for Project Tango. With more hardware that can take advantage of the platform hitting the scene, it makes complete sense for Google to pursue partnerships with the likes of Unity to ensure that new content is being developed at a steady rate.

Laying the groundwork for a new technology like AR is a double-edged sword; it’s important to have a healthy user base, because otherwise developers aren’t going to commit to developing for compatible hardware, but users aren’t going to jump on board without compelling content. This is a problem that the VR industry is currently grappling with, and it could prove to be similarly obstructive for AR.

However, this move should help cultivate the AR ecosystem in a way that benefits developers and users alike. Project Tango support will be introduced to Unity as of version 2017.2 of the software, which is scheduled to debut later this year.




2
May

Unity will soon add support for Google’s AR platform, Project Tango


Why it matters to you

Google’s partnership with Unity should help spur development that utilizes Project Tango, which could yield broader benefits for the augmented reality space.

Microsoft and Apple have made no secret of their respective ambitions for augmented reality, with the former working hard on its HoloLens hardware, and the latter making some high-profile hires to flesh out its fledgling AR division. However, Google has its own big plans for the tech as well.

On May 1, Google, which is backing the video game development engine Unity, held its Vision Summit in Los Angeles, California. During the opening keynote, Google’s project manager for developer platforms, Nathan Martz, announced that the Project Tango AR platform will soon receive official, native support in Unity, according to a report from Road to VR.

This collaboration isn’t completely unexpected, as Unity already offers similar support for Google’s virtual reality platform, Daydream. The decision should be beneficial for all concerned, since it will open up new avenues for Unity developers, and potentially facilitate plenty of new projects that take advantage of AR functionality.

In January 2017, Asus unveiled the ZenFone AR, a powerful smartphone that’s outfitted with support for Project Tango. With more hardware that can take advantage of the platform hitting the scene, it makes complete sense for Google to pursue partnerships with the likes of Unity to ensure that new content is being developed at a steady rate.

Laying the groundwork for a new technology like AR is a double-edged sword; it’s important to have a healthy user base, because otherwise developers aren’t going to commit to developing for compatible hardware, but users aren’t going to jump on board without compelling content. This is a problem that the VR industry is currently grappling with, and it could prove to be similarly obstructive for AR.

However, this move should help cultivate the AR ecosystem in a way that benefits developers and users alike. Project Tango support will be introduced to Unity as of version 2017.2 of the software, which is scheduled to debut later this year.




2
May

ZTE Axon 8: News and Rumors


Why it matters to you

ZTE’s Axon 8 is widely expected to deliver high-end specs for hundreds of dollars less than the iPhone 7 or Galaxy S8,

There’s broad consensus that last year’s Axon 7 is a good, if not great, smartphone. ZTE’s “flagship killer” packs incredible speakers, a fantastic camera, and a long-lasting battery for about half the cost of an iPhone 7. Now, it seems that the sequel — the Axon 8 — might be just around the corner.

It’s early, but we’re beginning to hear rumblings about the ZTE Axon 8’s hardware — and how much it might cost. Here’s everything we know so far.

Design

Much about ZTE’s upcoming Axon 8 remains shrouded in mystery, but we know a little about its specifications. That’s thanks to leaked documents from TENNA, China’s governing electronics agency.

The materials show an Axon 8 that looks quite a bit like the Axon 7 — and virtually unchanged from the front. The stereo speakers are present and accounted for, as are the three touch-sensitive navigation buttons beneath the screen.

Specs and screen

zte axon  ztza

zte axon  nexus cee c

zte axon  nexus cee b

It’s the same story on the inside, if the leaked specifications are anything to go by. The Axon 8 purportedly has a 5.5-inch OLED screen with a WQHD (2,560 x 1,440 pixels) resolution and a 2.15 GHz Snapdragon 820 or 821 processor. Under the hood is 4GB of RAM and up to 256GB of storage (expandable via MicroSD slot), and a 3,230mAh battery.

That’s on par with the Axon 7, which sported a 5.5-inch AMOLED WQHD (2,560 x 1,440 pixels) screen, a quad-core Snapdragon 820 processor, 4GB of RAM, up to 128GB of internal storage (and a MicroSD slot), and a 3,250mAh battery. The Axon 8 appears to be slightly thinner (151.7 x 75 x 7.7mm) and lighter (170 grams) than its predecessor, but not by much — they’re almost identical.

Where the two models appear to diverge are the cameras. Unlike the Axon 7, which had a single 20-megapixel rear camera, the Axon 8 has dual 20-megapixel shooters.

That’s great news for image quality — especially if the Axon 8 adopts ZTE’s Blade V8 Pro’s camera tech. It lets you adjust the bokeh — or focus of foreground subjects — in post, and capture high-quality monochrome images.

Software

If history is any guide, the Axon 8 will likely run ZTE’s MiFlavor software, a proprietary layer on top of Android. It packs features like My Voice, an app that ties custom voice commands to actions like unlocking the phone and adding contacts, and gesture controls that let you switch on the phone by flicking it twice, for example, and mute incoming calls by flipping it over.

Price and release date

It’s too early to tell where, when, and for how much the Axon 8 will eventually retail, but we can speculate.

In the U.S., the ZTE Axon 7 launched on July 27 for $400. Assuming the Axon 8 ships for about the same, it’ll come in hundreds of dollars less than the iPhone 7 and Samsung’s Galaxy S8.

The ZTE Axon 8’s TENNA certification suggests it might be sold in China, and that would be par for the course — the Axon 7 went on sale in China in October 2016.




2
May

Uber’s on-demand food delivery service is now live in India


UberEATS will deliver food from your favorite restaurants.

Uber announced earlier this year that it would bring its food delivery service to India, and the company has rolled out UberEATS in the country. The service is now live in Mumbai, and Uber has partnered with over 200 restaurants in the city, including the likes of The Bombay Canteen, Nom Nom, The Good Wife, Fresh Menu, Le 15, and Coffee by Di Bella.

ubereats-india-launch.jpg?itok=G0NEGfFp

UberEATS will be available round the clock, provided the restaurant is operational. You’ll be able to order food seven days a week, and Uber is aiming to complete deliveries in 35 minutes from the time you place your order. The dedicated UberEATS app lets you find nearby restaurants, track your order, and pay through Paytm. There’s no minimum order value, but you’ll have to shell out a ₹15 fee for deliveries.

UberEATS will be available in five additional cities across India — Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi NCR, Hyderabad and Kolkata — before the end of the year. If you’re in Mumbai and are looking to give the service a try, download the UberEATS app from the Play Store to get started. Alongside the app for Android and iOS, you can order from the UberEATS website. You can use the promo code EATNOW50 to get ₹50 off your first five orders.

2
May

Replace your busted phone with a 64GB Moto G Plus for just $200


Our friends at Thrifter are back again, this time with a great deal on the unlocked Moto G Plus!

Is your current phone aging poorly but you don’t have a ton of cash to drop on a new one? If so, you’ll want to check out B&H’s Deal Zone today for a sweet offer on the 4th-gen Moto G Plus, dropping the price to just $199.99. This is a $100 savings on the unlocked phone and brings it to its lowest price yet. Featuring a 5.5-inch display, the Moto G Plus also offers 64GB of internal storage, 4GB of RAM, a 16MP rear-facing camera and much more. It is also water repellent so it can withstand minor splashes and spills without any issue. The phone is available in both black and white.

moto-g4-plus-left.jpg?itok=zpzVeQfo

This deal is only good for today, May 2, so you won’t want to wait too long to get your order in. Remember, B&H Photo doesn’t charge sales tax at the time of purchase on orders shipping outside of NJ or NY, and you’ll also get free standard shipping.

See at B&H Photo

For more great deals be sure to check out our friends at Thrifter now!

2
May

How to use one-handed mode on the Galaxy S8


galaxy-s8-one-handed-mode.jpg?itok=48rJX

Not everyone has the same sized hands.

Samsung’s move to tall and narrow displays on the Galaxy S8 and S8+ have made them even easier to use, but that doesn’t mean its one-handed mode has gone away. It’s still super easy to shrink down your screen to something you can easily reach with your thumb, and you have two different ways to get it done.

How to enable one-handed mode

One-handed mode on the Galaxy S8 isn’t turned on by default, but it’s easy to turn on and use since there are very few options.

Launch settings from your home screen.
Tap Advanced features.
Tap the switch next to One-handed mode.
Tap an enable option. Pick the one that works best for you, then give it a try — the function works on the home screen and in any app.

  • A swipe in from one of the bottom corners: The screen will shrink to the side you swiped from.
  • Three presses of the home button: The screen will shrink to the side you last used in one-handed mode.

When in one-handed mode, you can press the arrow to switch sides, or tap off the screen to close one-handed mode

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The best part about one-handed mode is it’s always waiting for you to enable, but isn’t in your way until you need it. Keep it turned on, and the next time you need to shrink down the display you can swipe in from the bottom corners or press the home button three times. Easy as that!

Questions?

Let us know in the comments below.

Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8+

  • Galaxy S8 and S8+ review!
  • Galaxy S8 and S8+ specs
  • Everything you need to know about the Galaxy S8’s cameras
  • Get to know Samsung Bixby
  • Join our Galaxy S8 forums

Verizon
AT&T
T-Mobile
Sprint

2
May

Galaxy S8 red tint fix is now rolling out to T-Mobile customers


Galaxy S8’s red tint fix is now rolling out in the U.S.

Samsung is now rolling out the OTA update to fix the Galaxy S8 and S8+ red tint issue for T-Mobile customers. The South Korean manufacturer said last week that it would issue an update to automatically fix color calibration of the Galaxy S8 after a few users reported that their devices had a red tint on their displays.

samsung-galaxy-s8-review-35.jpg?itok=Llo

After rolling out the OTA in South Korea, India and Europe, Samsung is now bringing the update to the U.S., starting with T-Mobile customers. If you’re using the T-Mobile variant of the Galaxy S8 or S8+, head into your phone’s settings to manually initiate the download.

T-Mobile users, are you facing any display issues on your S8/S8+ after installing the update? Let us know in the comments below.

Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8+

  • Galaxy S8 and S8+ review!
  • Galaxy S8 and S8+ specs
  • Everything you need to know about the Galaxy S8’s cameras
  • Get to know Samsung Bixby
  • Join our Galaxy S8 forums

Verizon
AT&T
T-Mobile
Sprint

Thanks for the tip Matthew!

2
May

Daydream Controller vs Gear VR Controller: What’s different, what’s better


gearvr-daydream-controller-vs-hero.jpg?i

Sizing up the competition is mostly pointless, unless you want something the other side has.

The new Gear VR Controller isn’t a unique idea in the world of phone-based VR, but it’s far from a “clone” of anything. Google’s Daydream Controller may have been the first to offer motion controls and a touchpad for VR, but is it the best? Lets take a look and see what Gear VR and Daydream have to learn from one another when it comes to controllers.

The phone-based VR dividing line is basically Samsung and Oculus vs Daydream right now. Samsung’s latest phones don’t run Daydream (even though they totally could) and nothing but Samsung phones work in a Gear VR. Basically, if you’re interested in using a phone you already own to power a VR headset, you don’t really have a choice. You get to use whatever is available on your side of the dividing line.

Read more at VR Heads!

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