In a great example of the fact that not every USB charging station is as innocent as it looks, security researchers have identified a new, easy way for attackers to digitally eavesdrop on your smart phone when you think you’re charging it — and watch everything that appears on your screen while you’re doing it. [More]
You might be familiar with the Samsung S7 Active smartphone, which both the manufacturer and its exclusive retailer, AT&T, advertise as being waterproof. Our phone-dunking colleagues down the hall at Consumer Reports tested that claim and found the S7 Active lacking, with two test phones failing after a simulated 5-foot dunk in a water tank. Yet it turns out AT&T employees aren’t aware of this issue, and owners of the phone won’t get a lifetime warranty for liquid damage. [More]
While it might seem obvious that you shouldn’t have your phone in front of your face for any reason while you’re operating heavy machinery, AAA would still like to remind all those Pokémon Go players out there to keep their eyes on the road and not on the app. [More]
When a product says it’s water resistant, you probably aren’t going to test that claim out yourself (at least not intentionally). That’s why we’ve got the fine folks at Consumer Reports, who recently subjected the Samsung Galaxy S7 Active to a “dunk test” to see if the phone would live up to its watertight claims. [More]
There are a number of well-known apps that allow you remotely track your phone if it’s lost, or that track the movement of another device but do so with that user’s knowledge. What about those apps that let you track another phone — and maybe intercept calls and texts — without the other person having any idea? [More]
One of the most annoying things about breaking your phone is having to go somewhere and wait in line to get it fixed. There’s another, unexpected option now for iPhone users who have shattered their device’s screens or need help with a dead battery: satellite provider Dish has launched a new repair service that sends a technician to wherever the customer is. [More]
For those times when your Android smartphone isn’t clutched safely in your hand or resting at an accessible distance nearby, you may experience moments when you’re unaware if you’ve just received a text or missed a phone call. Microsoft says it’s going to ameliorate any uneasiness you may feel by funneling Android phone notifications over to PCs running on Windows 10. [More]
Do you have a smartphone? Do you like your smartphone and want to keep it going as long as possible? Now that U.S. carriers have quit giving us new free phones every 18 months to two years, smartphone users here have come to realize that the devices do not, in fact, cost $0-$200, and maybe we should keep using them for longer. Some recent sales data shows that smartphone sales are down here, and it’s not hard to figure out why. [More]
In a sign that Walmart might be giving up on CurrentC — a mobile payment system that a consortium led by the retailer dreamed up a few years ago that has yet to become a reality — the chain has announced that shoppers in its stores will soon be able to pay for their stuff with the Walmart smartphone app.
The wallet-sized – or larger – smartphone constantly tethered to your hand may often be seen as your connection to the outside world. Each time you surf the web, connect with friends, make purchases and check your bank account, it’s collecting mountains of data about you. And that data could soon be analyzed to determine if you’re creditworthy. [More]
To protect Galaxy Note 5 owners from themselves, Samsung wants to make sure they’re fully warned before they accidentally break their devices: the company is adding stickers to the product’s packaging alerting users that there’s a right way and a wrong way to stow styluses, and doing it incorrectly could do permanent damage to their phones.
Are the days of fighting over the best video game controller over? Perhaps, says a new report: though consoles and computers used to be the most popular for gaming, smartphones and tablets now rule the roost among the younger set.
Maybe the mobile phone industry is finally coming to understand what consumers want. What many of us want is to have the newest and shiniest flagship smartphone, and then cast that phone aside when another phone that is shinier comes along a year later. Forget two-year contracts: why don’t we just rent the darn things? Carriers like Sprint are doing this, and Apple itself has joined the rental party. Why not Samsung’s Android handsets, too? [More]
If you’re an iPhone user who’s been flirting with the idea of switching to an Android phone, it’s understandable that you might be resistant to change — it can take some getting used to when you switch from one operating system to another, in either direction. Samsung wants to take that uncertainty away for iPhone users with a new promo that allows those folks to test drive one of a few Galaxy smartphones for a month.
Why is the wireless industry so antsy? Not so long ago, it was all about giving customers a vast array of options so they could very precisely buy just the amount of data they want. Now, following Verizon’s recent simplification of its plans, AT&T is culling a number of its data tiers, which could result in savings — if you make sure to do some math before switching. [More]
Target wants to track your every move while shopping at its stores. Or at least that seems to be the gist behind the retailers’ new test of transmitters – known as beacons – that link to shoppers’ smartphones through the company’s app, sending coupons, deals, product recommendations and recipes based on their location inside the big box store. [More]