Tag Archive | Android

I Now Have ‘Android 11’ On My Google ‘Pixel 4’ & Have Lost Power-Button Screenshot Feature!

by Anura Guruge



So, Android 10 in March, Android 11 in September. 6-months apart.

The update was NO problem, BUT I immediately discovered that holding the Power-Button to capture a screenshot had gone away! Damn. I loved that & used it often.

There are other ways to get a screenshot BUT they are not as handy.

Why can’t developers leave stuff alone?

I am sure they are going to have to put this back. SMILE.


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by Anura Guruge

My ‘Google Pixel 4’ Now Has The ‘Android 10’, March 5, 2020 Update — Two-Days Early.

by Anura Guruge



Kind of cool to have a ‘March 5’ update already installed on March 3rd.

But, I do have a Google Pixel 4 and I am led to believe that Pixel 4 owners get first dibs — as it SHOULD be. SMILE.

I had read about the March ‘feature drop’ for Pixel 4s as of the weekend. I didn’t need any of the new features, BUT I like having the latest update, if nothing else for all the bug fixes and behind the scene refinements.

I checked for the update yesterday; Monday, March 2nd. Nada.

Checked this afternoon around 4pm. Bingo.

Haven’t used the phone (really) since the update. So, I can’t tell if everything is still copacetic. I assume and hope so.


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by Anura Guruge

My New ‘Google Pixel 4’ Now Has The Jan. 1, 2020 Update To Android 10.

by Anura Guruge


Click to ENLARGE.


I had read, online, that the January 2020 update to Android 10 had just started, today, to be rolled out to Pixel 4s. Last month had to wait until nearly the 3rd week to get the December update. So, I was curious whether I could get the latest update right away.

I had to manually check for an update. At that juncture it went ahead and started the download. Only a 12MB download but with all the housekeeping it does it took about 20-minutes to download, optimize and install. Haven’t used the phone since. It rebooted OK. Looks OK, so far.

I will keep you posted with anything untoward crops up.


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by Anura Guruge

I Switched To A Google ‘Pixel 4’ From A ‘Pixel 2’, Continuing To Use ‘Google Fi’ As My Carrier — And It Was Painless.

by Anura Guruge


 


First 2 Pictures With The Google Pixel 4.


Click to ENLARGE.

Confirmation on ‘Google Fi’.


The offer from the ‘Google Store’ I couldn’t turn down.

Click to ENLARGE. Oh, and I got 0% APR for 2-years. SMILE.


First Pictures of the Day with Google Pixel 4.


This, believe it or NOT, is but the 2nd (as in ‘second’) smartphone I have ever had! The Google Pixel 2, that I treated myself to at Christmas 2017, was my first. So, this was my first time transitioning from one smartphone to another. The only part that I was leery about was how things would work out with ‘Google Fi‘. Of late, I have had some issues with ‘Google Fi’ transactions and support and as such had fears that transferring my number from the Pixel 2 to the Pixel 4 might be problematic and that ‘Fi’ would force me to get a new number. Not so. That went very smoothly. I was glad.

Superficially, other than the unmistakable camera ‘cluster’, the Pixel 4 looks very much like the Pixel 2. But, that is deceiving. Quite different animals, both in terms of hardware and software — though I had Android 10 on my Pixel 2. The latest Android on the Pixel 4 doesn’t have the ever-so familiar ‘<< (back) & ο (home)‘ buttons on the bottom. You swipe-up for home. That works and I got used to that easy enough. I, maybe, even like that. ‘Back’ is more problematic. You have to SWIPE ACROSS the screen and, in my experience, it is hit-or-miss. I need to look into that further.

The camera works. That is ALL I can say for now. Pictures are ‘OK’. Haven’t seen anything spectacular as yet. But, at the same time, I have also only taken less than 30 pictures.

Pairing with my Garmin Fenix 6 Pro Titanium has been a HUGE problem. Very disconcerting. Yikes. Hope I can sort that out.

Face detection is cute, but also hit-and-miss. I re-registered my face. Might have to do it again.

So, therein lies the first 1/2 day so to speak.


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by Anura Guruge

I Ordered A Google ‘Pixel 4’ On Thanksgiving Day & Got $300 Off From The Google Store, With 0% APR.

by Anura Guruge


Click to ENLARGE.


Oh, and I got 0% APR financing for 2-years!

How could I refuse? SMILE.

** ** ** ** ** 

The Google Store & I go back a long time — back to 2012 when I was one of the first to place a pre-order for the Nexus 7 pad. During the course of the last 7-years we have done much business.

I don’t care what folks say about the new Google Pixel 4. There is no other phone I would buy or own! Yes, I am a BIG fan of Google and Pixel phones. I had reasonably good luck with my Pixel 2 which I treated myself to for Christmas 2017. It was the first smartphone I owned. I used it mainly for the camera and by-and-large I have been reasonably happy with the camera. The Pixel 4 has an even better camera.

I buy Pixel for 2 main reasons: software and hardware! With Pixel, you, by definition, get the latest and greatest version of Android as soon it is released. Lot to be said for that. You also get the monthly security updates. So, there is that: Android software. Then there is also the Pixel camera software with all of its near-magical AI — and can I remind you of the fun I have had with the ‘Night Sight‘. The Pixel 4 camera software is supposedly even better.

Whereas folks are complaining about battery life on the Pixel 4, my experience has been that Google insisted on top-notch h/w components of its camera. You could tell. As some of you know I go through a lot of smartphones. Smartphones tax blacktooth, Wi-Fi and GPS hardware on the phone. The Pixel 2 always performed well.

So, that is why I am getting a Pixel 4.

Google tempted me mightily to get a Pixel 3 or 3a — earlier this year. But, I resisted. I knew I could wait until the new Pixel 4 with its new camera ‘bundle’. I hope I am amply rewarded.

Well, you will, of course, be able to see. SMILE.

P.S., I have been on Google Fi since Day #1 of the Pixel 2. Over the last month we went to the Google Fi GROUP PLAN, with 3 of us, now that they support Samsung phones. Yes, I will continue with Fi. Seems to work OK.


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by Anura Guruge

Fitbit Community Having A Rough Time, Right Now, With APP & New ‘Versa 2’.

by Anura Guruge


Click to ENLARGE and get a feel here. From ‘Fitbit Community’ @ community.fitbit.com.


Not a bunch of happy campers.

Appears that the latest version of the APP, on both Android and Apple, had major issues.

The new ‘Versa 2‘ also appears to have had issues.

Folks are not amused.

With luck I might get a ‘Versa 2’ to evaluate at the end of this week. I will be able to get a better feel then.


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by Anura Guruge

My ‘Google Pixel 2’ Is Now Running Android 10 (Replete With ‘Dark Themes’ & Gestures).

by Anura Guruge


Click to ENLARGE.


Click to ENLARGE. ‘Android 10’ is towards the middle.


I had read, online, that it was going to be available on Google Pixel phones as of September 3, 2019. I, however, did NOT get it automatically. I had to ‘Check for Update’ — today, September 4, 2019. Then it was there. No problems downloading — other than it not letting me do it when my battery was low. That was fine. I turned on dark themes. Cute.


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by Anura Guruge

BLU VIVO XI+ Impressive, Near Flawless Android 8.1+ Smartphone At A Budget Price.

by Anura Guruge


Click to access Amazon product page for this smartphone.


I got this BLU VIVO XI+ 6.2″ phone for Teischan (12) at Christmas to replace her aging ASUS phone. So far it has exceed all expectations. She, an Android veteran and highly demanding, can’t find any faults with it. And this from someone, who just 2-months ago, returned a 10″ Android Tablet after 40-minutes saying it wasn’t good enough!

I too have been impressed. It seems as good as my Google Pixel 2 — but it is at least $200 cheaper. In a way, however, I am not surprised. I nearly bought a BLU, over a Pixel 2, at Christmas 2017. I was blown away by the specs. In the end I only ended up getting the Pixel 2 because Google gave me (an old and trusted customer) an offer I could not refuse.

Connecting to ‘Consumer Cellular‘ using her old SIM card from the ASUS was beyond a breeze. We just had to insert the SIM. That was all! No settings, no calls. BANG. It wsa ready to go. Caught us both by surprise.

Transferring settings and APPs from her old phone to the BLU was easy, quick and straightforward. After the phone was charged all of the set-up took less than 15-minutes — and some of that was fiddling around trying to extract SIM cards. She, impatient at best, was happy. And I was happy, that she was happy.

Its performance and video display meets (and I think exceeded) her demand and there has been not a single complaint about this $320 phone. I am so relieved. I didn’t want to spend $500 on a phone and she did not want a refurbished one. So, from what I can see I managed to get her a Google Pixel 2 ilk phone at a budget price.

I think she has the option to download Android 9 but I haven’t pushed her towards doing so. She is happy with Android 8.1 and I don’t really see if 9 will give her much for now.

Bottom line. We are both very impressed and happy with this phone. Recommend it HIGHLY.


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by Anura Guruge

Teischan (12) Makes Her Own Mandala Art For Her Blu Vivo XI+ Telephone Case.

by Anura Guruge


Click to ENLARGE.


Click to access details of this AFFORDABLE, but impressively spec’ed Android phone.


Teischan got a new phone for Christmas — viz. an Android 8.1, 6.2″ Blu VIVO XI+ with 128GB of storage and a 16MP camera. I have been following Blu for over a year and this phone has lived up to what I thought they would deliver.

Anywho, given her propensity to for dropping phones I got her a good, rubberized bumper case for it. To be on the safe side I got her a clear case — assuming she would pick one she liked further on. It appears not. She likes the notion of a clear case BECAUSE she can customize it with her own art. This was the first creation. More, sure, to come. Stay tuned.


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by Anura Guruge


Setting Up A ‘Polar Vantage V’ On A Windows 7 PC With ‘Polar FlowSync’ App.

by Anura Guruge


Click to ENLARGE.


Polar gives you THREE options for setting up a new Vantage 5 Sports Watch:

  1. On a phone (iPhone or Android) with the ‘Polar Flow‘ App.
    ….
  2. On a computer (Windows or Mac) with the ‘Polar FlowSync‘ App.
    ….
  3. On the watch itself.
    ….

I had both Apps. loaded — on my Google Pixel 2 and my main Windows 7 Professional PC.

I opted to do the initial setup, USB-connected, on my PC because as Polar points out you can be charging the watch at the same time — and because I knew that the inevitable firmware upload that would be required would be quicker via USB. I was right.

When I had installed Polar FlowSync on Windows it claimed that it had downloaded and pre-installed the necessary USB driver. Nonetheless, when I plugged in the Vantage V Windows went through the process of looking for the requisite USB software online and installing it. Didn’t take too long and it installed, without issue, right-off-the-bat. That was good and reassuring. That said, the Vantage V does NOT show-up on my Windows USB-list. That means you can’t eject it. You just unplug it.

FlowSync had also installed without issue. I had invoked it before I plugged in the Vantage V. As soon as the USB software was activated it started to synch. It was pretty fast. Then, of course, as I had anticipated, it wanted to do a firmware update. Downloading that was pretty fast too. But, it failed to install the first time around. Suggested that I retry. I did. Installed fine the second time.

The watch was about 76% charged when I got it. To top it up to 100% took about 45 minutes.

But, overall, including that firmware install failure, it was fairly painless and fairly quick.

So, that was it. I now have the Vantage V on my wrist in place of my Garmin Fenix 5 Plus which is being temporary RESTED.


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by Anura Guruge

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