Huawei Nexus 6 To Come With 128GB Of Storage

Nexus 6

Earlier today we heard that Google had sent out press invites to an event on the 29th of September, we are expecting to see the new Huawei Nexus 6 at the event, along with the LG Nexus 5 and a new Google Chromecast.

Now we have some more details on the Huawei Nexus 6, it will apparently be the first Nexus smartphone to be offered with a 128GB storage option.

There will apparently be three storage choices on the new Nexus 6, 32GB, 64G  and the top model will come with 128GB.

We previously heard that the new Nexus 6 will come with a 5.7 inch display that will have a Quad HD resolution of 2560 x 1440 pixels, the handset will be powered by an octa core Qualcomm Snapdragon 810 processor and it will also feature 3GB of RAM.

Other rumored specifications on the device include an 8 megapixel front facing camera for Selfies and a 12 megapixel rear camera, it will come with the latest version of Google’s mobile OS, Android 6.0 Marshmallow.

Google are expected to start selling their new Nexus 6 and Nexus 5 smartphones in October as yet an exact release date for the handsets has not been revealed, as soon as we get some more information, we will let you guys know.

Google’s Android Pay Lands On Google Play

Android Pay

Google’s new Android Pay mobile payment service recently launched in the US and now the company has made its app available on the Google Play store.

Android Pay was released to the Google Play store at the end of last week, the app will work with compatible devices that are running Android 4.4 and above.

When Google launched their new mboile payment service the company announced that they has signed up major payment providers which include American Express, Via, MasterCard and Discover.

The service is also supported by a range of the major banks in the US, which includes American Express, Bank of America, Discover, Navy Federal Credit Union, PNC, Regions Bank, USAA, and U.S. Bank, this will be expanded to more banks in the future.

You can find out more details about the new Android Pay app for your Android device over at the Google Play Store at the link below.

Google’s Android Is Now Under US FTC’s Antitrust Scanner

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission has opened a preliminary investigation into whether Google Inc uses its Android operating system to dominate competitors as more consumers go mobile, two sources familiar with the matter said on Friday.

The Android mobile platform is a key element in Google’s strategy to maintain revenue from online advertising as people switch from Web browser searches to smartphone apps. The FTC had previouslyinvestigated Google for allegedly breaking antitrust law in a separate case but that probe ended in a settlement.

Reuters reported in April that some technology companies had complained to the U.S. Department of Justice about Google’s anti-competitive practices and urged the regulator to investigate allegations that Google unfairly uses its Android system to hurt rivals.

The FTC and the Justice Department conferred, and decided that the FTC would take the case, one source said. The probe is in its very early stages, according to sources.

Both Google and the FTC declined comment. In a blog post in April, a top Google executive defended the way the company handles Android, saying other firms could use Android without Google but that working with Google benefits consumers by giving them a better experience with their phone.

The FTC probe focuses on Google’s requirements that its search, maps and other products be given a prominent place on handsets. The demands make it impractical for handset makers to put Google rivals on their smartphone’s home screen.

Android is the top smartphone platform with 51.6 percent U.S. market share, according to an August report from analytics from comScore. Apple is in second place with 44.1 percent.

Fairsearch, a technology trade group, said it welcomed the FTC probe, adding that Google “has used a range of anticompetitive tactics.”

“The stakes are extremely high, because Google’s behaviour impacts the entire mobile ecosystem, including map and location services, and app developers,” the group said in a statement.

App makers offering alternatives to Google’s popular products, such as HERE for maps or Microsoft for search, would benefit if the Mountain View tech giant’s hold on Android is weakened, though a slow legal process means they likely will not see relief anytime soon, said analyst Bob O’Donnell of TECHnalysis Research.

“If they said, as of tomorrow, ‘Google, you cannot bundle all these services,’ it would be a huge deal,” he said. “But that’s not what going to happen – it’s going to drag on.”

Google shares closed down 2.3 percent at $640.15 on Friday.

The investigation was first reported by Bloomberg.

Google previously tangled with the FTC over Web search allegations and reached a settlement in 2013 that required the company to stop “scraping” reviews and other data from rival websites for its own products. The FTC also required Google to allow advertisers to export data to evaluate advertising campaigns independently.

After that settlement, the FTC was embarrassed by the inadvertent release of documents that showed key staff members argued that Google broke antitrust law. Google dropped some of the worst practices and commissioners opted to settle.

The European Union has accused Google of distorting Web search results to favour its own shopping service as well, and is now probing the Android mobile operating system.

To go after Google, the FTC would have to show that it has a big enough share of the market to be dominant and that they prevent rivals from being able to compete for consumers’ attention, said Andre Barlow of the law firm Doyle, Barlow and Mazard PLLC.

“Right now you’re clearly in the early stages and you don’t know if any of this is true,” said Barlow. “But it’s never a good thing, right?”

Apple to Issue Revamped Privacy Policy Website

Fire up the new Apple News service for the first time on your iPhone, and it’ll ask for your favourite topics and news outlets. Use it over time, and you’ll find that it is behaving like your personal news recommendation engine.

Read a lot about gardening, and you’ll see more stories about hardy perennials. Click on every story about the Red Sox? Get ready for more bullpen analysis. But eventually you may start to wonder – just how much does this app know about me?

You may think you know the answer, given that we live in a world where our every click and scroll is obsessively tracked by tech companies eager to sell us personalised ads. Apple, too, has been using its targeted advertising service in apps sold on the iTunes store since at least 2010, though that business is a small one, the company says.

In a revamped privacy policy website, a copy of which was reviewed by The Washington Post, Apple on Tuesday attempted to lay out how its philosophy on data collection splits from its tech industry rivals.

(Also see:  In a Likely First, Apple Issuing Automatic Refund to All Users of ‘Peace’ App)

In essence, the company said is telling customers it is not interested in their personal data, even as it must use more of that data to deliver personalized products.

“We knew coming in that building a personalized news product could be very sensitive – and the first thing we thought about was we really don’t want to associate news with your personal Apple account,” says Jane Horvath, Apple’s senior director of global privacy.

Apple News, which can deliver a stream of headlines right onto one of the home screens of the iPhone, launched this month into a crowded space. Tech giants such as Google, Facebook and Twitter have long been using algorithms to serve piping hot headlines from the Web to consumers while tying their reading habits into the vast trove of data the companies keep on every user.

Apple’s offering is different in that its stories are also curated by a small team of journalists working at the company’s headquarters in Cupertino. And the company hopes a selling point will be its pledges that it will protect people’s privacy.

“We don’t build a profile based on your email content or web browsing habits to sell to advertisers,” chief executive Tim Cook wrote in a letter introducing its privacy website. “We don’t ‘monetize’ the information you store on your iPhone or in iCloud.”

The news service app, for instance, collects data on what each user is reading so it can offer personalized headlines and ads. But the service does not tie reading habits to an Apple account and uses a unique identifier – this functions only within the News app – to provide information to advertisers. When readers clear their history in the app, the information is deleted, Apple said.

Apple details how the system works in a revamped section of the company’s website dedicated to privacy and set to publish on Tuesday.

The site reads like an educational campaign for Apple’s privacy philosophy. Others such as Facebook have also tried to write data use policies in everyday language, but Apple’s attempt is notable for being clear while not shying away from the technical details. To keep from overwhelming users, it is broken down into several sections – some old, some new.

Apple, which makes most of its money from selling gadgets rather than services, has been betting hard on privacy in recent years, pitting itself against a tech industry that largely relies on monetizing personal information. Cook struck a similar tone in June when accepting an award from the Electronic Privacy Information Center via livestream.

“I’m speaking to you from Silicon Valley, where some of the most prominent and successful companies have built their businesses by lulling their customers into complacency about their personal information,” he said. “They’re gobbling up everything they can learn about you and trying to monetize it. We think that’s wrong.”

The privacy pitch has also put the company at odds with police and Obama administration officials, who have publicly complained about Apple’s move to make it impossible for the company to turn over data from most iPhones or iPads – even when the authorities have a search warrant.

But as Apple has dug in on privacy, the company has grappled with how to deliver the convenient experiences customers have come to expect from devices and Web services. And it’s not even clear how much consumers understand – or care – that their personal data is part of the fundamental economic trade-off that powers many of the “free” services available online such as e-mail and social networks, privacy experts said.

Almost everything done online can be tracked. That’s the reason the shoes you were looking at buying online suddenly seem to start popping up in ads on nearly every site you visit.

Smartphones raised the stakes in the online advertising industry because they allow companies to collect an even more information about what people are doing, such as where they are or who they call the most.

Now tech companies are asking for consumers to trust them with more and more sensitive connections, including digital payments, health information, driving data from cars and information from connected devices in your home that could be hanging on your every word.

Apple, already a dominant player in the mobile device marketplace, is now pushing into products and services that require more data. With HomeKit and CarPlay, Apple is trying to enter the market for home- and car-connected devices. Apple Music, Apple Maps and its digital assistant, Siri, are other products that rely on consumer behavior to improve.

These services may be a reason Apple is investing so much time in explaining to consumers why they should care about privacy.

“It’s important for Apple because it’s a business differentiator,” said Rich Mogull, chief executive of Securosis and an analyst who has covered Apple for nearly a decade.

“When consumers are educated they do care about privacy,” he added.

Google Buys Jibe Mobile to Bring SMS-Replacement RCS Tech to Android

Google on Wednesday announced that it is acquiring Jibe Mobile, a team that would help it deploy RCS (Rich Communication Services) for Android.

In a post detailing its commitment to the new RCS standard of messaging, Google’s Mike Dodd, Android RCS Software Engineer and Minister of Messaging, said, “As part of this commitment, we’re also very excited to announce that the Jibe Mobile team is joining Google to help us bring RCS to a global audience. Jibe is a leading provider of RCS services and they’ll continue helping carriers easily deploy RCS to their users. We can’t wait to work with them and build on the great work that they’ve already done.”

For those unaware, RCS is a new standard for carrier-based messaging that would feature group chats, high-res photo sharing ability, and more. As per Google, mobile messaging is falling behind modern messaging apps such as WhatsApp, Hike, WeChat, Viber, and Telegram. However, RCS is aimed to improve that. Google has already joined hands with mobile operators and device makers to deploy the service. “We’re already working closely with many of our partners on implementing RCS, and look forward to growing the RCS ecosystem together.” The firm however has not given a time-frame yet as to when it actually plans to bring the SMS-replacement service to Android.

Amir Sarhangi, CEO, Jibe Mobile too confirmed the acquisition by stating it on the company web page. “For Jibe – a company we founded in 2006 – that lesson came true today with the announcement that we’ve been acquired by Google. The big opportunity we saw at the start: to change the way people communicate using their mobile phones.”

As mentioned above, the carrier-based SMS service has seen a downfall ever since other Internet-based messenger services showed up. However, the service is still being used for receiving traffic alerts, activating or deactivating mobile Internet, train timing alerts, and more.

Six Android 6.0 Marshmallow Features You Should Be Looking Forward To

The newest version of Android, version 6.0 named Marshmallow, has been available for developers to preview for some time now, with a public release pegged for November 2015. There are a lot of improvements that Google is promising with Android Marshmallow, which give you more control over the phone and improve performance, while also providing new ways to interact with your device.

(Also see: Why I Am Not Excited About Google’s Android M Update)

Here are the 6 features from Android 6.0 Marshmallow that we are most excited about.

1) App permissions
Application permissions have been completely overhauled in Android Marshmallow. Now you will be able to grant apps individual permissions to device functions, instead of the previous model of all or nothing.

What this means is, if an app is trying to access your phones camera or microphone, the system would prompt you saying this app is trying to access camera/ microphone on your device and it will ask, “Would you like to allow this?” It’s a big change from the current system where you have to either give an app access to all the services it wants; or not install the app.

Here’s another example: If you want to send a voice recording on WhatsApp, the system would give you a prompt telling you that WhatsApp is trying to access the microphone on your phone. This means you don’t have to agree to permissions from an app which doesn’t make sense to you, such as if you don’t want a specific camera app to access your contact list.

whatsapp_app_permission.jpg

Now you can also go into app settings and individually turn on or off app specific permissions at any time. This gives users complete control over an app, and resolves any privacy concerns they might have.

2) Now on Tap

This is one of the most impressive new features to be introduced with Android Marshmallow. Now on Tap takes the concept of the smart assistant Google Now, and spreads it across the entire OS so you can take advantage of it on any screen, regardless of what you are doing. All you need to do, is simply press and hold the home button, and Now on Tap will analyse the information you are looking at, to give you related cards.

For example, you get an SMS from a friend asking if you would like to go to watch the James Bond Spectre movie over the weekend; long press the home button and Google’s Now on Tap will automatically recognise the context of the text based on words like ‘movie’ and ‘James Bond Spectre’ and show you useful results, such as screening timings in nearby cinema halls, or ratings from IMDB.

3) Fingerprint support
While we’ve seen Android phones with fingerprint scanners, the implementation was done by vendors themselves. Android Marshmallow will support fingerprint scanners on phones natively now. The new feature will allow the scanners to be used to not only unlock your device, but also use it authorise payments using Android Pay in the offline world or within Play Store apps.

This is important because it will help standardise the implementation of fingerprint scanners in different Android devices, so app developers can take advantage of this new hardware as well. This will also encourage more phone makers to include fingerprint scanners in their devices.

(Also see: Android 6.0 Marshmallow Won’t Come With Dark Theme)

4) App links
App links, also known as Intents, is a feature where if you click on a link in your email or a text message, it asks you what app you would like to open it with. The same thing happens when you click on – for example – a video file or a Facebook link; you are shown all the app that can open the link and asked to choose the one you want to use.

This feature always allowed Android users to set their own default apps, but it was also annoying at times with frequent dialogue boxes asking which app you want to use. App links are now being updated in Marshmallow to show greater awareness of what you’re clicking on, instead of routinely stopping you to pop up dialogue boxes.

So, in Marshmallow, if you get an email with twitter link, it will launch the Twitter app instead of asking you to choose between that and the Chrome browser.

app_links_android_m.jpg

5) Doze
One of the most common complaints faced by Android users has been unpredictable standby times on their phones. This happens because of apps running in the background, which can affect the standby time and performance.

Google is now looking to improve this with the feature called Doze. This is a new technology that learns over time and detects when your device is motionless and not being used, so it can be sent into a deep sleep mode. Once your phone is set to Doze, it checks for updates from apps less frequently, while still staying responsive for calls, messages, and other similar things. Google claims that internal tests have showed double the battery life on standby mode, when compared to Android 5.0.

6) Automatic backup and restore
A seamless back up feature is something which has been missing from Android for years, and it looks like Google has finally taken notice. With Android 6.0, you can set up automatic backups, which will back up apps and app settings of up to your Google Drive storage. There will be a limit of 25MB per app, and the backups will not count against your Google Drive storage limits, and are encrypted by default.

These backups happen no more than once a day and run only when the device is idle and is connected to a working Wi-Fi connection to avoid unwanted data charges and battery drain on your device.

This way you can change phones or just reset your phone and when you re-install your apps the previous data will be restored conveniently. This feature works even with apps which have been side-loaded or purchased through other app stores.

These six features are some of the highlights, in our view. Overall, Google is bringing some much needed polish and great new features to the OS in Android 6.0 Marshmallow, and we can’t wait to try it on the final release.