Louis is having an issue with his cellphone after he dropped it, so he decided to go with a prepaid version. All of his data is in the Verizon cloud and they won't let him retrieve it. Leo says that's because he's no longer a customer. Samsung has a backup system, as does Google. So he should be able to go through them. It's terrible that Verizon won't give him back his personal data. It's likely though that Verizon has dumped his data by now.
Glen is thinking about getting a Google Pixel. How's the signal quality? Leo says that as far as he can tell, it gets great signal reception. But he says that's more due to the carriers, which also add Wi-Fi to calling. So the problems are being solved for coverage. They also use the same radio devices. There's no reason not to get the Pixel, except the price. It's expensive.
Julio has an internet enabled refrigerator and he can't get to Google Calendar online with it. Leo wonders if it's one of the first refrigerators. Leo says that Google changed the way the calendar works and Samsung probably hasn't updated the firmware to accommodate that new standard. Since his fridge is out of warranty, they have little incentive to fix the problem. There's a technote about it at productforums.google.com.
Mike recently "cut the cord" and streams only via Roku. Leo says that what's apparent is that cord cutting doesn't really save money. When you consider Netflix, Hulu, HBO Go, and Amazon Prime subscriptions, he's paying just as much, if not more. That's not the reason to cut the cord. The reason is to send a message that he's not going to take it anymore from the cable companies.
Ellie likes the idea of Google Assistant and wonders if it will be coming to home automation like the Amazon Echo. Leo says that the Amazon Echo is a great device and it keeps getting smarter. As for Google Assistant, Google's goal is to have it everywhere, so it likely will be.
Ellie also wants to know if AT&T buying Time Warner will affect her internet access. Leo says no, Time Warner sold it off to Spectrum. The $80 Billion acquisition of Time Warner is all about content.
Leo got the Google Pixel and inevitably you're going to compare it to the iPhone 7. First off, it's expensive. Leo also says that the iPhone feels better crafted and better built than the Pixel. But Leo has always preferred the Android OS to the iPhone. Leo likes the aliases you can have with Android. Widgets are also great. The artificial intelligence called Google Assistant is remarkable. Light years ahead of Siri, which lately has gotten dumber. Speech recognition is nearly perfect on the Pixel, while Leo says he has a lot of trouble with Siri.
BlackBerry this week announced it would be getting out of the hardware business. When the iPhone came out in 2007, no one knew exactly what that meant. In fact, the CEO of Microsoft at the time, Steve Ballmer, publicly criticized it saying that it's too expensive. The lack of concern was just enough to throw them off their game for a couple of years. By 2009, when it became clear the iPhone was the future of cell phones, Microsoft and BlackBerry finally leapt into action. Unfortunately, it was too late at that point and Apple already owned the space.
Google announced the new Pixel smartphone and for the top of the line model, it's going to set you back nearly a thousand dollars. Leo is amazed by this considering you can get a desktop or even a laptop for half that.