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16
Aug

Microsoft Office Experiencing Activation Issues on Mac and PC


Microsoft Office appears to be experiencing activation issues on both Mac and PC today, according to several user reports on Twitter. MacRumors also received emails from multiple readers affected.

At least some Office 365 subscribers who have attempted to use Word, Outlook, and other apps in the Microsoft Office suite have been prompted to reactivate their license, but the process fails to complete.

Affected users have encountered various errors while Office apps hang on “activating” or “looking for licenses,” which eventually leads to a window that says “no license found,” with seemingly no workaround.

Hi @Microsoft,

Is @Office365 having trouble with it’s activation service right now? Just updated @Office for #macOS and it asked to be activated (again). Tried 3x over the past half-hour or so. pic.twitter.com/9VeLR0bVOC

— Henry Ferlauto (@HTFIII) August 16, 2018

The issue appears to be affecting not only individual users, but businesses and universities and with enterprise licenses.

We’ve reached out to Microsoft for comment and will update this article as soon as we hear anything back.

Tags: Microsoft, Microsoft Office
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16
Aug

MoviePass Now Limiting Subscribers to a Choice of Six Movies Each Day


MoviePass today announced new restrictions for its ever-changing movie service, with the company now limiting its subscribers to a choice of what appears to be six to seven movies per day.

On the MoviePass site, MoviePass lists “This Week’s Movies,” a section described as a “full lineup of movie titles available on MoviePass in the coming days.”

For this Friday, that includes Mile 22, Christopher Robin, The Miseducation of Cameron Post, We The Animals, Skate Kitchen, Juliet Naked, and Summer of 84. Noticeably missing is Crazy Rich Asians, which won’t be available until Sunday, and some of the movies seem to be limited distribution films not available in all areas.

We want to share more details about our service moving forward as part of our commitment to keep you fully informed. Here’s a full lineup of movie titles available on MoviePass in the coming days: https://t.co/BE9St1gDfF pic.twitter.com/OFCR56fcGd

— MoviePass (@MoviePass) August 16, 2018

Several popular movies that have already been released are not included for Friday, such as Mission: Impossible – Fallout, Mamma Mia, and Ant-Man.

MoviePass in early August restructured its subscription model to allow customers to see three movies per month for the $9.95 monthly fee. Prior to that, MoviePass had announced that it would raise its base subscription price to $14.95 per month, and before that, it introduced peak pricing and restricted major film releases, all in an attempt to stop hemorrhaging money.


For now, MoviePass seems to have settled on the $9.95 per month plan for three movies a month, while also restricting the movies available to customers each day.

Tag: MoviePass
Discuss this article in our forums

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16
Aug

What do golden retrievers and Samsung Note 9 owners have in common? Loyalty


Julian Chokkattu/Digital Trends

The Samsung Galaxy Note 9 is here, all $1,000 of it — but why should you buy it over the brilliant Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus? After all, it looks better, costs a little less, and has essentially the same top-end features. In fact, the Note 9 is so similar to the S9 Plus, there is confusion over why it still exists in Samsung’s line up, along with rumors that this model may be the last of its kind.

We sat down with Paul Scott, Samsung’s head of product management in the U.K., to find out what makes the Note 9 special, and whether this is the last time we’ll be talking about a new Note phone.

Loyalty

Samsung loves to chalk up Note consumers as its most devoted fans.

“When we look at our consumers, a typical S consumer is different to a typical Note consumer”

“When we look at our consumers, a typical S consumer is different to a typical Note consumer” Scott said, when asked about the similarity between the two devices today. Citing market research the company carries out, he told us, “Note owners are the most loyal.”

This won’t be the last time Scott refers to Note owners as loyal. Clearly passionate about not only the Note 9 but Samsung itself, Scott thought back to how the Note 9 came about.

“The Note has always been hugely popular — it’s almost a community,” he said. “We really listened to people about the Galaxy Note 8 to see what they wanted in the Note 9. What we heard was performance and battery life. [Note owners] are the most loyal. They want the an all-day battery, performance, the best gaming, the best display, and the best sound.”

Julian Chokkattu/Digital Trends

Surely the Galaxy S9 Plus has all this too? What makes people return to the Note 9?

“The S Pen is the differentiator for us, and it’s a feature Note users absolutely love,” Scott said. “It’s great to see owners come alive when they talk about it, and many first time users are so surprised by what it can do. There is a lot of, ‘I didn’t know it could do this.’”

Is the S Pen enough?

The S Pen does make the Note 9 different to the S9 Plus, but we’re not sure it’s enough of a selling point for anyone not already a loyal Note user. We’ve often struggled to find a reason to use it, and a (small) selection of Note owners we surveyed through an unscientific Twitter poll also found they weren’t using it either. Samsung has made this sixth generation pen better than the last, with a Bluetooth connection so it works as a remote control, but its appeal is still limited.

What makes people return to the Note 9?

Scott goes into more detail about what separates the Note 9 from the S9 Plus, citing the cooling system as one factor.

“We went from using silicon to using carbon fiber, which is 3.5 times better at cooling versus the Note 8, plus 2.5 times the amount of vapor so it cools down even quicker,” he said.

What about the 4,000mAh battery? The smaller 3,500mAh cell in the Galaxy S9 Plus is a weak point, and struggles to last a heavy day. Scott and his team didn’t have statistics for how the two compare, so we’ll wait for our long term test to discover if the extra 500mAh capacity makes that much needed difference.

Milestone

We talked about Samsung’s other two main product announcements, the Galaxy Watch — which Samsung also has high-hopes for — and the Galaxy Tab S4, with Scott commenting on Samsung’s strength as a hardware manufacturer and the advantages this brings in creating new technology. There was a positive, forward-looking tone to his words. Is the new range a first look at a different Samsung?

Drew Angerer/Getty Images

“It’s a look into the future of Galaxy,” Scott said. “Every time we launch a device, we’re always developing, and we’ve had some milestone devices that have put Samsung at the forefront. First the Galaxy S9 and now the Note 9.”

Samsung needs this positivity at the moment, as rumors from inside sources say the Galaxy S9 series may be a milestone for all the wrong reasons. Sales may not reach 30 million this year, making it the worst-selling Galaxy phone made, despite being the most technically competent. Other reports citing anonymous sources say Samsung pushed the Note 9 out earlier than usual, potentially in response to flagging sales numbers.

Note legacy

It’s not a surprise to hear Samsung talk about customer loyalty. But does this mean it will consider leaving devices that aren’t all that different to others behind, perhaps to generate excitement among new fans with a foldable Galaxy X? Is there really a future for the Note series? Scott smiles.

“Oh, absolutely,” he said. “The legacy of the Note will always remain and we’re taking it to the next level with the Note 9. We understand how loyal Note fans are.

Editors’ Recommendations

  • Samsung mocks iPhone X download speed in new ad for Galaxy S9
  • Samsung Galaxy Note 9 hands-on review
  • What’s the point of the Note’s S Pen? Samsung needs to find one or kill it
  • Samsung Galaxy S9 and S9 Plus: Here’s everything you need to know
  • Here’s everything announced at Samsung Galaxy Unpacked



16
Aug

Master your Sony Xperia XZ2 with these handy tips and tricks


Samsung and Apple tend to be the first two brands you think of when it comes to smartphones, but there are plenty of other excellent phones available. For example, Sony just released its latest trio of flagships, the Xperia Xz2, Xperia XZ2 Premium, and Xperia XZ2 Compact. The trio feature gorgeous design along with high-end hardware that can easily compete with any major flagship.

Whether you’re new to Xperia phones or you’re just upgrading, here are a few tips and tricks for the Sony Xperia XZ2 family.

How to use Xperia Assist

Xperia Assist is one of our favorite apps that comes baked in on the Sony Xperia XZ2. Xperia Assist is a hub for all of the utility apps on the phone. You’ll find apps to optimize your phone, extend battery life, and even request support. You can access all of these apps simply by tapping on the lightbulb icon and pressing the tools icon.

Of the apps you’ll find in Xperia Assist, the Xperia Actions app is particularly useful. Xperia Actions allows you to customize phone settings based on certain events or circumstances. You can make adjustments for your morning commute, when traveling abroad, or even while gaming.

To use Xperia Actions, you similarly tap the lightbulb icon followed by the Tools button. Then select Xperia Actions and tap on the menu selection you’d like to customize. Choose the time and/or location where you’d like to use the action and tap the blue menu bar at the bottom of the screen. Select the items you’d like to adjust when the action is enabled and tap the back button to return to the main screen. When finished, toggle on the Action.

How to disable unwanted apps

In addition to the usual array of apps you’ll find on a new smartphone, the Xperia XZ2 packs in a lot of bloatware. While you can’t delete many of these apps, you can disable them. Disabling an app removes unnecessary data from your phone and ensures it will not continue running in the background.

To disable unwanted apps simply long press on the app and select Disable. You’ll see a popup window appear asking you to confirm your option: Tap Confirm. You may be asked if you want to revert to an older version of the app in question; if so, select OK. Once the app is disabled you’ll no longer see it in the App Drawer and you’ll see a disabled indicator in the Settings menu.

How to use 3D Creator

While there are a lot of questionable apps that ship with the Sony Xperia XZ2, the 3D Creator app is one we actually enjoy. With 3D Creator you can easily create 3D scans of people and objects.

If you want to create a 3D scan, simply open the app and tap the 3D icon. Select the type of object you wish to scan and press the Tutorial button. The first time you take an image you’ll need to calibrate the camera, and you can do so by moving the camera around the object and connecting a series of dots. To get the best scan, you’ll want to capture the scan in an evenly lit room: You’ll know you’re in good light when the lightbulb icon has more than two rays.

For facial scans, you’ll want to remove your glasses. The first time you complete a scan you’ll need to calibrate the camera by connecting a series of dots. For other images, you’ll want to avoid taking photos of glossy or transparent objects. Once you’ve completed a scan you may be asked to further sculpt your scan by moving the camera around in a “figure eight” formation.

How to enable or disable App Drawer

Hate having the App Drawer button waste precious space in the app bar? You can easily remove it in just a few steps.

If you want to enable or disable the App Drawer button, long press on the home screen and tap Settings. Adjust the toggle bar next to Enable swipe up to your desired preference.

How to sort apps by name

While there is a lot we like about the Xperia XZ2 trio, we aren’t fans of the bloatware that ships with the phone. To make things worse, apps are arbitrarily organized. Luckily it’s easy to sort apps by other criteria. If you want to organize your apps, simply open the App Drawer and tap the overflow (three dot) icon. Tap the Sort apps option and select the radio button of your choice.

How to customize your home screen

Want to cram a few more apps in on your home screen? Or maybe change the way your phone transitions between screens? You can make changes to the home screen pretty easily on the Xperia XZ2.

To alter your home screen, just long tap on it. A series of options will appear on the bottom of the screen. From here you can add widgets, change your wallpaper, or even update your entire theme. When you’ve finished making changes, simply tap the Apply button.

How to turn on Ambient display

The Xperia XZ2 makes it easy to see when notifications arrive, even if you’re not using your phone. With Ambient display, your screen will illuminate each time you receive a notification.

To turn on Ambient display, go to Settings > Display. Toggle on the option for Ambient display. 

How to use Super Slow Motion

If you want to record Matrix-style slow motion video the Xperia XZ2 has an awesome feature built into its camera. With Super slow motion, you can record short bursts of video at 960 frames per second (fps).

To use Super slow motion, open the camera app and swipe right on the top menu bar until you enable video mode. Next, tap the Super slow motion icon to the right of the shutter button. Tap the shutter button to begin recording, and when you want to capture slow motion, simply tap the shutter button again: The camera will record at 960 fps for a short period of time before returning to its regular frame rate. When you’re finished with recording video, just tap the Stop icon.

Super slow motion works best in bright light. If you’re using the Xperia XZ2 Premium you’ll find an option to turn on the dual lens to record in ultra-low light.

How to record 4K HDR video

Julian Chokkattu/Digital Trends

The Sony Xperia XZ2 allows you to easily record 4K video. To record in 4K simply open the camera app, tap Video > Settings. Select Video resolution and choose the 4K option. If you want more contrast in your video, simply select the HDR option at the top left side of the screen. To begin recording, simply tap the shutter button.

If you own the Sony XZ2 Premium, the secondary lens can be used in conjunction with the main lens to record 4K video in low light. To record in low light you’ll need to make sure HDR is turned off, and that the Low light sensitivity icon — at the top right side of the view finder — is set to auto.

How to disable Sony Dynamic Vibration System

This year Sony added its Sony Dynamic Vibration System to its Xperia XZ2 and XZ2 Premium smartphones. The Sony Dynamic Vibration System uses haptic feedback to accompany video and gaming on the phone. While some may think it improves the overall user experience, others may just find the feature annoying. Luckily it’s easy to turn off.

If you want to turn off (or decrease) Dynamic Vibration on your phone, simply open YouTube or another streaming app and start a video. Tap the volume down rocker button and you’ll see a Dynamic Vibration slider that you can adjust to your preferences.

Editors’ Recommendations

  • Sony Xperia XZ2 review
  • Sony’s Xperia XZ2 Premium has a crazy-high ISO for photos and video
  • Sony Xperia XZ3: Here’s everything we know
  • Sony Xperia XZ2 Compact review
  • The best Sony Xperia XZ2 Premium cases



16
Aug

Asus claims ‘world’s thinnest’ with its new Zephyrus S gaming laptop


The Republic of Gamers arm at Asus is claiming “world’s thinnest” with the introduction of its new Zephyrus S gaming laptop measuring just 0.58 inches at its thinnest point. The company also revealed the Strix SCAR II that crams a 17.3-inch screen into a 15.7-inch chassis.

First, Asus will sell two variants of its new ROG Zephyrus S laptop. The GX531GS model sports Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 1070 Max-Q discrete graphics chip designed for the best performance in thin-and-light notebooks. It also ships with 8GB of system memory (but supports 16GB) and a 230-watt power adapter. The GPU has its own 8GB of GDDR5 dedicated video memory as well.

Meanwhile, the GX531GM ships with a discrete GeForce GTX 1060 graphics chip with 6GB of dedicated GDDR5 video memory. This system also includes 8GB of system memory but supports a larger 24GB capacity, and relies on a 180-watt power adapter.

With both models, you will see Intel’s Core i7-8750H six-core processor powering a 15.6-inch screen crammed into a 14.2-inch chassis. This screen’s maximum resolution is 1,920 x 1,080 but at a hefty 144Hz refresh rate. It also has a three-millisecond response time and support for 100 percent of the sRGB color space.

As for ports, both models include one USB-C port supporting 10Gbps, one USB-C port supporting 5Gbps, one USB-A port supporting 10Gbps, two USB-A 2.0 ports, one HDMI port and a headphone/microphone combo jack. Wireless connectivity consists of Bluetooth 5.0 and Wireless AC.

Other notable features in this new gaming notebook include a 512GB M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD, a second M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD option ranging from 256GB to 1TB, a backlit chiclet keyboard with four RGB zones and support for Aura Sync. This laptop weighs 4.6 pounds and measures 14.17 x 10.55 x 0.58 inches (0.62 at its thickest point).

Unfortunately, the Zephyrus S won’t arrive until September for an unknown price.

If you’re looking for something larger, the ROG Strix SCAR II (GL704) also arrives in September packing a 17.3-inch screen. You will have an option of two “IPS-level” screen variants with a 1,920 x 1,080 resolution: One with a 144Hz refresh rate and another limited to 60Hz.

Backing this laptop are two processor options: Intel’s Core i7-8750H and its Core i5-8300H. Nvidia’s GeForce GTX 1060 (6GB) will be your only discrete graphics option while the laptop will support up to 32GB of system memory at 2,666MHz. Storage will include an M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD from 128GB to 512GB and a second 2.5-inch 1TB hybrid drive or hard drive.

For ports, you will see a larger arsenal. There will be one USB-C at 10Gbps, three USB-A at 5Gbps, one USB-A at 10Gbps, one Mini DisplayPort 1.2 jack, one HDMI 2.0 port, one Ethernet jack, an SD card reader and a headphone/microphone combo jack. Wireless connectivity is handled by Bluetooth 5.0 and Wireless AC.

Finally, the Strix SCAR II weighs 6.39 pounds and measures 15.74 x 10.76 x 0.98 inches (1.03 at its thickest point).

Pricing for this laptop will be made available just before it ships next month as well.



16
Aug

Intel teases new dedicated graphics card slated for 2020 release


Intel is looking to make the dedicated graphics market a three-horse race within the next couple of years. It teased a brand-new graphics card at the Siggraph 2018 show, where it announced plans to “set [its] graphics free.” A silhouette of a full-size graphics card completed the hint at future potential and has PC users cautiously excited about what it all might mean for the industry.

Although the graphics card market in the 1990s was contested by a number of companies offering competing architectures, the only two industry giants who survived those wars were Nvidia and AMD. Since the turn of the century they’ve been the only two graphics card companies that have really mattered in the gaming space, and even then, AMD has often played a distant second-fiddle. Intel has always had its place in graphics with its Intel HD onboard solutions offered in almost all of its CPUs, but 2020 could see it introduce its first dedicated graphics card in decades.

We will set our graphics free. #SIGGRAPH2018 pic.twitter.com/vAoSe4WgZX

— Intel Graphics (@IntelGraphics) August 15, 2018

Intel confirmed it was working on a graphics card earlier this year, highlighting at the time that there was a very good reason it had hired Raj Koduri, ex-head of AMD’s Radeon graphics division, to aid in its development. Koduri is currently the chief architect, senior vice president, and general manager of Intel’s Core and Visual Computing Group.

The announcement and the subsequent tweet embedded above give us precious little additional detail, but do suggest Intel is putting a lot of its manufacturing and marketing muscle behind the project. It makes the claim that the project will “set our graphics free,” which is a relatively hyperbolic comment, but the fact that it follows it up by saying that this is “just the beginning,” suggests that Intel may be making a permanent move into the GPU development and manufacturing market.

Considering companies like Nvidia seem poised to refocus their efforts on A.I., automation, and machine learning, that’s exciting news for gamers who have suffered under pricing and availability issues for the best part of a year and a half.

Although it has technically been 20 years since Intel’s last graphics card, it has worked on dedicated graphics hardware in the intervening years. Project Larabee was an ambitious design which ultimately turned into a multicore co-processor rather than a graphics card, but did offer impressive enough performance to find its way into supercomputers.

Editors’ Recommendations

  • Look out AMD and Nvidia, Intel will make graphics cards in 2020
  • Nvidia vs. AMD
  • Intel finally ships an updated Radeon driver for its all-in-one ‘module’ CPUs
  • Cryptocurrency may be why you still don’t have Nvidia GTX 11 Series graphics
  • AMD vs. Intel



16
Aug

Samsung talks about what it took to make the Note 9 so darn pretty


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It’s finally here. After relentless leaks, rumors, and more, Samsung’s finally unveiled the Galaxy Note 9.

Even though we already knew a lot about the phone prior to its official announcement, there’s still plenty to talk about. What colors does it come in? What are the final specs? Were we impressed during our hands-on preview?

All those questions and more are answered right here, so without further ado, here’s everything you need to know about the Samsung Galaxy Note 9.

The latest Galaxy Note 9 news

August 15, 2018 — Samsung talks about what it took to make the Note 9 so darn pretty 😍

It’s no secret that Samsung makes stunning phones, and with the Galaxy Note 9, the company put all of its design prowess on full display. However, as much fun as it is to look at and hold the Note 9, it’s even more exciting to take a closer look at just what goes into crafting a device of its caliber.

Samsung’s Infinity Display is once again being used on the Note 9, and measuring in at 6.4-inches, is the biggest the company’s created to-date. Samsung also says that the Note 9’s screen is an ever deeper black compared to past handsets, which “allows it to blend in with the bezels when the device is off and enhances the overall aesthetic.”

A process called Die-cutting was used to craft the Note 9’s frame, and as a result of this laborious process, the frame of the Note 9 ” features an interplay of glossy and matte finishes that complements the Galaxy Note9’s premium design cues.”

To read more about the Note 9’s design and the time/attention that went into its S Pen, check out Samsung’s full deep dive below.

Beautiful From Every Angle: The Design of the Galaxy Note 9

All the big details

Check out our hands-on preview

Before you do anything else, be sure to check out our initial hands-on preview of the Galaxy Note 9!

This is Samsung’s biggest and most powerful phone of the year, and during our early look, we got a chance to check out the Note 9’s design, new S Pen features, cameras, and more.

Samsung Galaxy Note 9 hands-on preview: $1000 well spent

Here are the specs

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Like past Notes before it, the Galaxy Note 9 is packed to the gills with all of the latest available tech. That means it has the latest processor, a massive battery, an insane amount of RAM, and much more.

Here are all the specs you can look forward to.

Operating system Android 8.1 OreoSamsung Experience 9.5
Display 6.4-inch Super AMOLED, 2960×1440 (18.5:9)
Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 845
Storage 128/512GB
Expandable MicroSD up to 2TB
RAM 6/8GB
Primary rear camera 12MP Super Speed Dual Pixel, OIS, f/1.5 or f/2.4
Secondary rear camera 12MP, OIS, f/2.4, telephoto lens
Front camera 8MP, f/1.7, auto focus
Connectivity Wi-Fi 802.11ac MIMO, 1.2Gbps (Cat-18) LTE, Bluetooth 5.0 LEANT+, NFC, GPS, Glonass
Audio Stereo speakersDolby Atmos3.5mm headphone
Battery 4000mAhNon-removable
Charging
Water resistance IP68
Security One-touch fingerprint sensorIris scannerSamsung KNOX
Dimensions
Colors Ocean Blue, Lavender Purple (U.S.)Midnight Black, Metallic Copper (intl)

Samsung Galaxy Note 9 specifications

The 4,000 mAh battery is huge

Samsung’s Galaxy Note phones have typically been known for packing huge batteries, but following the disaster that was the Note 7, Samsung decided to play it safe with the Note 8 by including a fairly modest 3,300 mAh battery.

With the Note 9, Samsung’s going all the way with a seriously huge 4,000 mAh pack.

It’s being touted that the Note 9 will offer XX hours of use on a single charge, and while we’ll certainly need to put the phone through its paces to see how accurate that claim is, we’ve got high hopes considering the battery’s size and power efficiency of the Snapdragon 845.

When you do finally drain the Note 9, you’ll be able to top it up via wired and wireless fast charging.

Should you upgrade from the Note 8?

note-9-vs-note-8-hero.jpg?itok=mwSLnJFa

As exciting as the Galaxy Note 9 is shaping up to be, last year’s Note 8 is still one heck of a smartphone.

The Note 9 offers the expected improvements in regards to RAM, camera performance, etc., but really gets a strong edge over its predecessor thanks to its improved S Pen and a massive battery.

Then again, if you already have the Note 8 and don’t feel like throwing down $900 (?) on a new phone, maybe upgrading isn’t the right move for you?

Let Andrew break everything down for you in his comparison of the Note 8 and Note 9

How’s it compare to other phones?

That’s fine and dandy, but how’s the Note 9 hold up against other non-Note devices?

Without a doubt, one of the Note 9’s biggest competitors comes from Samsung itself with the Galaxy S9+. A lot of features are shared between the two phones, including a large Super AMOLED display, Snapdragon 845, Samsung’s custom software, excellent dual cameras, and more.

The Note 9 is obviously the only one of the two that uses the S Pen, but is that reason enough to make the pricey upgrade?

Similarly, there are still plenty of other phones that are scheduled to come out before 2018 is over — most importantly the Google Pixel 3 XL. Rumors and leaks are hinting at a phone with considerably slimmer bezels, an even better camera package, and an all-glass back (not to mention the ginormous notch).

Samsung Galaxy Note 9 vs. Galaxy S9+

Should you buy the Galaxy Note 9 or wait for the Google Pixel 3 XL?

A lot is new with the S Pen

note-9-yellow-s-pen-air-command.jpg?itok

The S Pen is easily the biggest reason so many people flock to the Note series year after year, and this time around, Samsung’s giving the S Pen one of its biggest upgrades in years.

For the first time, Samsung’s adding Bluetooth Low Energy to the S Pen. With this new connectivity, the S Pen picks up a heap of new features that allow you to control the Note 9 from a distance.

Some use cases include being able to use the S Pen and its button as a camera shutter, navigating through presentations, and more. The presence of Bluetooth also means this is the first S Pen to have a battery, and as with all things that have a battery, the S Pen will need to be charged.

Thankfully, seeing as how the S Pen seamlessly charges in the background when stored inside the Note 9, this shouldn’t ever prove to be an issue of any sort.

Get the official wallpapers right here!

New Samsung phones always come with striking wallpapers to help jazz up your home screen, and even if you don’t have the funds/interest to get a Note 9 right now, you can still bring its look to your exisitng handset with its official wallpapers.

We’ve got all 12 listed above for your viewing pleasure, and if you want to throw one (or all) of them on your phone, feel free to download ’em as you see fit.

These are all the colors

Samsung’s typically one of the better OEMs when it comes to offering a good variety of colors, and with the Note 9, that’s no different.

In the United States, buyers will be able to choose from Ocean Blue and Lavender Purple. In other parts of the world, Samsung’s releasing Midnight Black and Metallic Copper.

Here’s where you can buy the Note 9

There are a lot of reasons you may want to pick up the Note 9, and whatever those reasons may be, you’ve got a lot of options for deciding where to get it.

In the United States, pricing starts at $999.99 for the 128GB model and goes up to $1249.99 for the 512GB one.

You’ll be able to get the phone at Best Buy, Amazon, Samsung’s website, all of the major carriers, and more.

Where to buy the Galaxy Note 9: Best deals for your new phone

Samsung Galaxy Note 9

  • Samsung Galaxy Note 9 hands-on preview
  • Galaxy Note 9 vs. Note 8
  • Where to buy the Galaxy Note 9
  • Galaxy Note 9 specifications
  • Is the Note 8 still a good buy?
  • Join our Galaxy Note 9 forums

AT&T
Verizon
T-Mobile
Samsung

Updated August 10, 2018: Added the Note 9’s official wallpapers!

16
Aug

How you can manage a Synology NAS with Android


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Making your smart storage even smarter.

Setting up a Synology Network Attached Storage at home or in the office is a great way of creating a centralized location to store large amounts of data, be it important documents, media, or system backups. Since Android is used by millions worldwide, Synology has some form of support for the mobile OS in both the browser and in the form of an app collection on the Play Store. If you’re considering a Synology NAS, here’s all you need to know.

Related: Choosing the best Synology NAS for you

Manage a Synology NAS on the go

synology-android-connect.jpg?itok=Cl_RcH

The NAS itself can be initially set up and managed through a browser on a PC or on your mobile. All you need is the internal IP address of the server (depending on how tech savvy you are with your router and LAN), external IP of your network or respective assistant apps. There’s software available for major desktop operating systems, as well as a few apps on mobile too (more on the latter below). Once connected to the NAS on mobile, you’re free to manage most functions of the unit.

For instance, I have the Synology DS1618+ configured on the internal IP address of 192.168.0.15, which I can access by entering that into the browser on my OnePlus 5 — so long as it’s connected to the same network. Not only is it possible to quickly check the status of the Synology NAS, installed drives, and services running, you can easily update the DiskStation Manager (DSM) to a more recent version, manage users, and more.

Synology tries to make this process as simple as possible, which resulted in the creation of QuickConnect. This essentially requires you to create an account, which then ties itself to your NAS. Should your external IP address change (your ISP may have a habit of doing this on a regular basis), your NAS will notify Synology to change it on your account. There’s also the added bonus for mobile by allowing you to remain connected if you hop between Wi-Fi and mobile data.

Setting up QuickConnect

synology-quickconnect.jpg?itok=WzUwZH-C

You can configure QuickConnect through the installation wizard when initially setting up your NAS, but if you fail to do so and wish to get started after it’s already up and running, here’s how:

Enable QuickConnect on your NAS from the control panel.
Head to https://account.synology.com/.
Register an account.
Complete necessary profile fields.
Head to Devices.
Choose Add Device.
Enter your NAS serial number. (This can be located in the settings on the NAS or using the desktop assistant suite or mobile app.)
Complete the wizard, creating a QuickConnect ID.

This QuickConnect ID URL (https://quickconnect.to/YourQuickConnectID) can be loaded in your browser (both on mobile and a PC) to quickly access to the NAS.

Using Synology apps

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Synology has a bunch of apps available on the Play Store, some being more useful than others. DS Finder is a great app to start with to get the initial connection established.

  • DS Cam – Check the feeds of connected cameras to your Synology NAS.
  • DS Cloud – Allows you to configure the automated backing up of media from your phone to a connected NAS.
  • DS Drive – For the office when productivity can be enhanced with connected storage.
  • DS File – Check out everything stored on your Synology NAS and move files to and from a mobile device.
  • DS Finder – Locate, connect to and manage your Synology NAS. A good place to start.

Whether or not you’ll find any of these apps useful depends on what you want to do with the NAS as well as how technically minded you are. It’s possible to only use Chrome on your Android device and get the most out of your NAS. Play around to get the setup that best matches your needs.

Even more Synology

  • How to pick the best NAS for Plex
  • How to backup media from your phone to a Synology NAS
  • Best hard drives for your Synology NAS
  • Comparing Synology DS218 NAS models

16
Aug

Google will soon begin mandatory quality reviews for Wear OS apps


Better Wear OS apps are coming soon 🙏

While it may be in something of a slump right now, one strong suit that Wear OS has had for some time is its developer support. There are a ton of apps available for Google’s wearable platform, and starting this year, Google will be implementing measures to ensure that apps created for Wear OS are as high quality as can be.

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Google currently has an optional review process that Wear OS apps can go through, but starting October 1, 2018, all new apps that are created will be required to go through and pass it.

As Google notes in its blog post on the Android Developers Blog:

We hope this lightweight app review process will improve the quality of Wear app experiences across the wide range of devices available to your users. In addition, since screenshots are required for the Wear app review, this will improve the discovery and presentation of your Wear apps in the Google Play Store.

This review process was first introduced alongside the release of Android Wear 2.0 in February 2017, and for existing Wear OS apps, they’ll need to follow it starting March 4, 2019.

While this announcement isn’t particularly exciting on its own, it’s yet another reminder that exciting things on the horizon for Wear OS. Qualcomm will be announcing its first wearable processor in two years on September 10, and later in October, we’re expecting Google to finally announce its first-ever Pixel Watch.

What are you hoping to see from Wear OS this year?

TicWatch Pro review: A best-of-both-worlds hybrid

Google Wear OS

  • The best Wear OS smartwatches
  • Discuss Android Wear in the forums!

16
Aug

This tempered glass screen protector for the Note 9 is worth it


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Under the Dome, is Life.

It is time, the wait is over. The Samsung Galaxy Note 9 has just been unpacked, but if you missed the live stream in New York you don’t need to be left out. The phone officially goes on sale in two weeks, so once you get yours, you need to decide what protection is best for you. Well, Whitestone has the answer, and it is DOME GLASS. Whitestone Dome Glass is a specialized brand for the entire high-end market of cellular bezel-less devices, like the Samsung Galaxy Note 9.

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In today’s world, everyone wants smartphones that are thinner and lighter, but still want to watch videos and play games on the biggest possible screens. Therefore, edge phones and bezel-less phones are leading the way. They make use of limited screen size and maximize it to its fullest extent. The Note 9 is no different. It has increased the screen size to 6.4 inches (up from 6.3″) and slimmed the screen bezel.

With the larger screen and slimmer bezel, it is that much more important to protect every inch. Whitestone provides the first true “full-screen adhesive” tempered glass screen protector for curved bezel-less phones. They do this by using their patented LOCA technology which stands for ‘Liquid Optical Clear Adhesive’. LOCA is a liquid glass which evenly disperses over the entire screen, including repairing existing scratches and scuffs and sets to create a watertight edge to edge protection. Their revolutionary liquid glass adhesive forms around the curved screen to create a single, solid layer of anti-shatter glass. Thus, giving you (and your new Note 9) complete security.

Use Coupon code THRIFT30 for 30% off Note 9 Dome Glass
Use Coupon code THRIFT30 for 30% off Note 9 Dome Case

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Now, Whitestone Dome Glass is not cheap, but nor should it be. It was created for high-end model smartphones. Whitestone is the only tempered glass screen protector recognized by SMAPP (Samsung Mobile Accessory Partnership Program) and as such is the best option for your Note 9. The other plastic or urethane protectors have no true protection, are vulnerable to scratches, and even can reduce transparency. Also, most other well-known brands of tempered glass protectors only cover the flat side of your device and falsely advertises themselves as a full-cover tempered glass. They attempt to trick you by using a black cover adhesive along the side to hide lifts, or they cover the areas between glass and screen with dots which makes the device prone to touchscreen errors. But that’s not the case with Dome Glass. Get your Note 9 the security it deserves. Why invest in the top of the line phone and settle for second-rate protection?

Why invest in the top of the line phone and settle for second-rate protection? Get your Note 9 the security it deserves.

The one major difficulty with this screen protector is because it really works so well, you only get one shot at putting it on, so you need to do it right. It’s not hard, but you can’t rush through it. Quality is reflected through commitment, so make sure you have enough time and patience to get an undeniably perfect result.

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To prevent errors and air bubbles, an install frame and UV curing light are included. If you just want to throw on a screen protector in a minute before you walk out the door, then this is not the one for you. But, if you follow the simple installation steps, you will get the best shielding available. For help with installation, here is a link to some of their reviews and tutorial videos that show you step-by-step how to do a proper installation.

On top of the comprehensive 3D glass curved surface protection and liquid dispersion technology, it also provides protection against Blue Light. As more and more people are so reliant on their cell phone, it has become even more important to identify the harmful side effects. One of the negative effects of smartphones is the emitting of shorter wavelengths called Blue Light. Studies suggest that, over time, exposure to blue light (especially at night), can cause insomnia or even more serious long-term damage to your eyes. Whitestone Dome Glass decreases the strength of blue light by up to 25%, protecting you and your smart device!

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Dome Glass, which is already a top seller on Amazon Worldwide and AT&T and is touted as one of the best-tempered glass protectors by NTT Docomo (the largest cellular provider in Japan) has the maximum strength and scratch resistance rating of 9H (hardness measurement) provides full touch and total edge to edge coverage without any gaps or bubbles and does not fade or fog with extended use.

To top it all off, every Whitestone Dome Glass product comes with a Limited Lifetime Warranty which means that if your Dome Glass is damaged or worn, you could request a replacement through Whitestone’s webpage. Also, for a limited time, our very own Android Central readers can use the code ANDROIDCENTRAL to save 30% off Whitestone Dome Glass for their Samsung Galaxy Note 9. Just click here to order today and for their web page and more information on these screen protectors visit whitestonedome.com. Whitestone Dome Glass protector is #1 in protecting your entire screen and is an essential accessory for any new Note 9 owner. So, with the Samsung Galaxy being unpacked today, it is only right to get it the protection it deserves.

Don’t forget to use coupon code THRIFT30 to save 30% off the Note 9 Dome Glass 2 pack and Note 9 Dome Case on Amazon for a limited time!

Use Coupon code THRIFT30 for 30% off Note 9 Dome Glass
Use Coupon code THRIFT30 for 30% off Note 9 Dome Case

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