MLS App Updated with All-Star Game Details

Fans of Major League Soccer, there is an update of the MLS app waiting for you.  The updated app, version 7.3 for those keeping score at home, brings several new features and updates.  The biggest of those updates is information and details about the upcoming All-Star game in San Jose.  That match happens on July 28th and is against the English Premier League team, Arsenal.  Now the app provides you more details and information about the game including roster information.  When the match is ongoing, you’ll be able to get play-by-play details of the match on your phone just like you do normal MLS matches.

Today’s Deal: HP Chromebook 11 G4 – $175 on Amazon

Today’s Deal over at Amazon is a great one for those of you who are looking for a solid performing 11″ Chromebook.  The HP Chromebook 11 G4 is down to $174.89 at Amazon and that is for the 4GB of RAM model with 16GB of storage.  I reviewed this Chromebook back in February and it remains my day-to-day Chromebook.  I have to say it is one of the best 11″ Chromebooks I have had the privileged to test and review. It’s performance is solid, the keyboard is smooth and responsive, as is the trackpad. I found the display to be very good for an 11″ device while the battery life, for some, will be lacking. All that said though, with a price of $200 for the 4GB, 16GB of storage model on Amazon, it is hard to beat. I have no hesitation in recommending it for the vast majority of readers.

AT&T Rolls July Security Update Out for The Galaxy Note 5

Readers who own the Samsung Galaxy Note 5 on the AT&T network have a nice surprise waiting for them this morning.  The carrier has rolled out the July 1st Android Security Update to the device in what must be record time.  The update, a 22.6MB sized download, will give your Note 5 all of the security fixes and improvements from the first security patch released this month by the Android team.  Remember that there were two patches this month, one dated July 1 and the other July 5.  In the Release Notes, according to the Kernel version, this patch was compiled on July 4 so it will not have any of the fixes or driver updates that were in the 2nd patch.  Those, likely, will be rolled up into an August update for the Galaxy Note 5 on the carrier’s network.

Android Nougat Developer Preview 5 Released – Likely The Final One

The Android development team at Google has rolled out what is likely the last Developer Preview for Android Nougat.  The update takes devices to build NPD90G and it is available for all of the Nexus devices that have been a part of the beta testing process.  Those devices include

  • Nexus 5X
  • Nexus 6
  • Nexus 6P
  • Nexus 9
  • Nexus Player
  • Pixel C
  • General Mobile 4G (Android One)

For those how have devices registered in the Android Beta program, the OTA update should be coming to you over the course of the next few hours.  If you want to manually flash your device to the newest build, the images are available already.

Google Makes Registering to Vote Easier

Here in the United States, we are in the throws of election season.  In November the Presidential election happens along with some House of Representatives seats, Senate seats and countless local elections.  A fundamental right in the United States is the right to vote and regardless of where you stand on a particular candidate or issue, exercising that right is key to making the country work. As my father always told me, “I don’t care who you vote for, but vote.”  But figuring out where and how to register to vote can be tricky.  That’s where Google comes in and helps simplify things.  Now you can simply type in “Register to vote” in Google Search on your phone and all of the details on how to register for your state will be displayed.

SoftBank Acquiring ARM for $31 Billion

Today, the Japanese firm SoftBank have announced that they have come to an agreement to acquire UK-based chip designer ARM Holdings for some $31 billion.  The acquisition will be an all cash transaction in which SoftBank will purchase 1,412 million shares of ARM.  The acquisition is a great one for SoftBank as ARM is unquestionably the dominant player in the mobile device chip market which continues to grow globally and with Internet of Things growth happening at the same time, the company is poised to be in an excellent position over the course of the next several years.

Masayoshi Son, Chairman and CEO of SBG, said: “We have long admired ARM as a world renowned and highly respected technology company that is by some distance the market-leader in its field. ARM will be an excellent strategic fit within the SoftBank group as we invest to capture the very significant opportunities provided by the “Internet of Things”.

Keep in mind that ARM does not itself produce chips.  Rather, they license the Intellectual Property of their designs to others to produce the chips.

Chrome OS Stable Channel Update Arrives for Most Devices

Chrome OS users, there is a new Stable Channel build of the OS available to the majority of devices.  The update is already rolling out to devices so you should see the update soon or you can do a manual check for it.  The updated build is version 51.0.2704.106 (Platform version: 8172.62.0) for those keeping score at home and it is available on a vast majority of devices.  However, if you have a Lenovo ThinkPad 11e Chromebook or a Samsung Chromebook Series 5 device, the update is not available for you.  Having specific devices listed as not receiving the update is nothing new.  Google and the Chrome OS team often call out a specific device or two that won’t see the update immediately.  Often these updates come later to these devices.

Android July Security Update OTAs Now Rolling To Nexus Devices

For those who have Nexus devices, the July Security Update for Android is now rolling out via an OTA update.  The update, 2 of them this month, were released last week on July 6th along with factory images and OTA images that users could flash to their devices manually.  With Google now pushing the updates out to Nexus devices, users will get the update as they usually do each month.  If you recall, this month’s update was split into two parts.  The first update, dated July 1st, was more a general fix for Android while the one dated July 6th was more driver specific updates for specific devices.  Google’s stated intent was to get the first update out so all of their partners could update their devices quickly without having to wade through driver tests for things their their devices just don’t use.

Today’s Deal: Anker PowerCore 10000 – $19 on Amazon Today

Today’s Deal over at Amazon is a great one if you are needing to pick up an external power pack for your devices.  Today you can pick up the Anker PowerCore 10000 for $18.69, a savings of over 63% off the regular $49 price tag.  As the name suggests, this power pack has a 10,000 mAh battery in it so you can easily charge most devices three times before having to recharge it.  It has a single USB-A connector so you can use it with really anything out there:  MicroUSB, USB-C (A to C cable) and an Apple Lightening cable.  It is designed to work with any device and get you powered up and going again.  It also is in a small package.  This pack is slightly larger than a credit card so you won’t have a big, bulky battery to carry around with you.

Angry Birds 2 Turns One – Celebrates with Hats!

A year ago the much anticipated sequel to Angry Birds hit the Google Play Store.  Angry Birds 2 is an updated and dare-I-say smoother game playing experience than the original and it has been a big hit for developer Rovio.  To celebrate the first “DirdDay”, there are all new levels, features and of course, hats.  Birthdays require hats right?  Angry Birds are no different and in this update that is out, you can collect hats to dress up your birds and, in turn, level up your slingshot.

Google Lowers Free Google Drive Storage for Local Guides

For those of you who are Local Guides approaching Level 4, you need to get-to-gettin’.  Google has announced that if you unlock Level 4 by July 21st, you will still get the current 1TB of Google Drive storage for 2 years.  If however, you reach that level after the 21st, you will get 100GB.

We are changing the Drive storage benefit for Level 4 from 1 TB to 100 GB, so that we can continue giving Drive storage to all Level 4 qualified Local Guides. Existing Local Guides who were signed up before July 7, 2016 (12am GMT) can still unlock the original 1 TB offer if they reach Level 4 by July 21, 2016 (12am GMT).

The change is a disappointment for sure but has likely come to bare with all of the new Local Guides that are in play now (to be fair, Google did promote the heck out of it).  Still, the 100GB is in line with other promotions that Google offers.  Chromebook owners get a free 100GB of storage when they register their devices so this change is inline with other promotions. App Update With Better Support for Older Devices

For those of you who have installed the app on your Android devices (and Thank You!), there is a new update out this morning.  The update, version 6.0.1 for those keeping score at home, is mostly aimed at improving performance on older devices.  If you have a device running on KitKat then you should see some stability and speed improvements with this new build.  Given that 33% of all of the installs of the app are on KitKat, that should be a big improvement for a good percentage of you.

Internet Speed Test in Google Search Rolls Out
Bubble Zoom Comes to Comics in Google Play Books
Bank of America App Sees A Material Design Makeover
Microsoft Arrow Launcher Sees Further Enhancements
Life on One Screen – Using Android With One Home Screen
Today’s Deal – Sony Xperia M4 Aqua is $149 on Amazon
AT&T Rolls July Security Update Out for The Galaxy Note 5
Samsung Galaxy S6 Active on AT&T Gets Updated to Marshmallow
Google Clearly Defines Update Support for Nexus Devices
Unicode 9.0 Formally Ratified
Android N Developer Preview 4 – A Progress Report
Android N Developer Preview 4 OTA Now Rolling Out
Today’s Deal: HP Chromebook 11 G4 – $175 on Amazon
Chrome OS Stable Channel Update Arrives for Most Devices
Comment Notifications Come To Google Docs, Sheets and Slides
Google Launches My Activity Site – The Paranoid, Unite!
Signal Spy Update Brings Support for U.S. Cellular
Project Fi App Update Paves The Way for U.S. Cellular Service
U.S. Cellular Now A Part of Project Fi Coverage
T-Mobile Set to Acquire More 700MHz Coverage In The Chicago Area