Mobile Phones

iPhone, Android, Windows Phone, Blackberry, or feature phones.

How can I lock down my daughter's iPhone?

Episode 1482

Scott from Maine
OurPact block internet and apps

Scott got his daughter an iPhone 7 and he wants to know the best way to lock it down to protect her online activity. Leo says that there are parental controls built into the iPhone, but there are apps that really take it to a new level. He can block apps and features as well. He can even white list numbers that would allow calls while disallowing others. He should also look at what restrictions the carrier offers. There are kid friendly browsers. iBlacklist will filter calls and SMS.

Are all USB cables safe to use?

Episode 1482

Alan from West LA, CA
Anker USB Type-C Cable

Alan wants to know if all USB-C cables are created equal. Leo says they aren't. In fact, some cheaper models may end up bricking his phone! So he'll have to be careful. Type C cables are better built, and they also transfer data. In the end, he'll get what he pays for. Leo recommends braided cables. They last a lot longer and are about $10. Leo likes Anker. Alan should follow Benson Leung. He is really into testing cables.

How can I use my phone if I'm losing my hearing?

Episode 1482

Jan from Bakersfield, CA
Earbuds

Jan is starting to lose her hearing, and wants to know what she can do to still hear people when she's talking on the phone. Leo says he has smart hearing aids that connect to his phone via Bluetooth and he can hear his phone great. If she can't afford those, then she can get headphones or earbuds that will use the phone's headphone jack. Jan has been using Google Fi, so in getting a new phone, she'll need to either get a Motorola Moto phone or a Google Pixel. Those are the only two phones that will work on Google Fi.

How can I get access to my Apple ID?

Episode 1482

Jack from Maine
Apple ID

Jack is in the banking industry and he recently left his job. But when he did, he lost his Apple ID and they remote wiped his phone. Will he have trouble switching it over to a new Apple ID and will he lose all the apps, music, etc. that he bought? Leo says that Jack should be able to go to the Apple ID and change the email associated with it. They'll look for confirmation on the old email, though. He'll need to also log into the old Apple ID account and turn off Find My iPhone and back up to iCloud.

Why can't I get Samsung to replace my expanding battery?

Episode 1481

Ryan from Anaheim, CA
Samsung Galaxy S7

Ryan has been having trouble with his Samsung Galaxy phone. He keeps sending it in because of an expanding lithium ion battery and they keep returning it unfixed. Leo says that Samsung knows painfully well the dangers of expanding batteries. Since Ryan wasn't the original owner, Samsung exploited that loop hole because that indicated there was no warranty to extend. But he told Samsung he spoke to Leo and they offered a replacement, which is a good thing.

Do I need Samsung software to transfer my data from my phone?

Episode 1479

Tom from Riverside CA
samsung.com

Tom's Samsung Galaxy S4 is having issues connecting to his computer without KIES. Leo says he won't really need it, since he can go into the settings and select MTP or PTP mode. The former is for mass media and the latter is Photo transfer protocol. Also, he should check the autorun settings. The chatroom also suggests replacing his USB cable.

How can I translate a foreign language in real time?

Episode 1479

Marta from California
translate.google.com

Marta's father in law speaks Swedish and wants to know how she can translate it. Leo says that some smartphone apps can translate in real time. Google Translate and Microsoft Translator could work. But one will need an internet connection to perform those translations. The chatroom says that ILI Offline Translator works for $190. Unfortunately, it's only in Japan and China.

The chatroom says that if you look in the settings of Google Translate, you can download offsite translation files, so that should make it faster.

Would keeping my phone in Airplane Mode expose me to less radiation?

Episode 1478

Veronica from Aptos, CA
Person with cell phone

Veronica wants to know if keeping her phone in Airplane Mode will expose her to less radiation. Leo says yes, it would. Can she also use Wi-Fi calling? Leo says it's better, but there's no evidence that it will or won't be harmful. The radiation would come from the cell phone radio, not the Wi-Fi. Using headphones instead of putting her phone up to her ear is also better.