Mobile Phones

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

Google to Release Android O

Episode 1414

Google is announcing Android O Monday, and we'll find out what the "O" stands for. Usually it's dessert names, and it's hard to imagine it would be anything other than Oreo. That is a brand name, however, so Google would have to get permission to use it.

Android O will bring some new features, and many users will not get it. One of the biggest problems with Android right now is that companies who make Android phones and carriers that sell them are slow to update, if ever. The only people who will get it right away are Google Pixel owners, or those who have Nexus phones.

Will there be an easter egg for the eclipse on the iPhone?

Episode 1415

Bob from Fairfield, CA
Apple iPhone 7

Bob wonders if the iPhone will have an eclipse easter egg. He had an Apple Newton during the last eclipse and the Newton had a little animation for it. Leo remembers that in the Newton, but he's guessing that Apple hasn't done that in the iPhone. It would be fun if it did. There are some easter eggs in iOS, though, which can be found here.

Can I get my photos back from a restored iPhone?

Episode 1415

Joe from Garden Grove, CA
Apple iPhones

Joe hasn't backed up his iPhone in years because his iCloud is full and he doesn't want to pay for more storage. He finally got around to plugging his phone in using iTunes and he thought he had chosen to back up the iPhone, but instead, he restored his iPhone backup and lost everything. Can he reverse the damage? Leo says probably not. This isn't Joe's fault — it's Apple's because iTunes is awful and it shouldn't offer to restore a phone before backing it up. That's bad behavior. There is a ray of hope that iTunes backed it up. Leo suggests trying to restore the phone again.

How can I fix my Android phone?

Episode 1414

Jerry from Santa Clarita, CA
Samsung Note 4

Jerry wants to get his Samsung Note 4 mobile device repaired. It keeps booting. Leo says that mobile devices are now generally considered disposable. Leo says to try refreshing the phone. To do this, he should go to Settings > Backup and Reset > Restore to Factory Defaults. If that doesn't work, then he could try calling Samsung and ask if they would repair it. They'll really want him to buy a new phone, though.

Should I switch from Android to iPhone?

Episode 1414

Donna from West Lake Village, CA
Apple iPhone 7

Donna is looking to get a new mobile phone and she likes the Samsung Galaxy S8. But everyone else in her family wants her to get an iPhone instead. What should she do? Leo says that the advantage of getting an iPhone is that everyone can text her, and if she gets group messages, mixing Android and iOS can be problematic. Quality wise, they are the same. So if she goes with iPhone, she'll like it just fine.

What password vault should I use?

Episode 1414

Jason from Cooper, TX
LastPass

Jason wants to know if using a password manager on a mobile phone is a good idea. Leo says absolutely. It will keep track of all his passwords so all he needs to do is remember one. Leo likes Last Pass, but many iPhone users prefer 1Password. Both are equally good. There's also DashLane. Any of those three will do the job. He should just make sure he creates a difficult password to crack, but one that he can remember.

How can I get a replacement phone after T-Mobile killed my service?

Episode 1414

Alan from Simi Valley, CA
Cell Tower

Alan has had a bad experience with several cell providers and he doesn't know who to trust. T-Mobile shut down GSM, so he couldn't use his phone. He went to AT&T, and they gave him a data only contract, leaving him without the ability to call or get text messages. He also can't afford to buy a smartphone.

Can I use WhatsApp without a phone?

Episode 1413

Jane from Oregon
WhatsApp

Jane wants to know if it's WhatApp or WhatsApp. Leo says there's an "S," so it's WhatsApp. A clever way of saying "what's up?"

Jane is thinking of getting her first smart phone so she can use WhatsApp to make phone calls. Leo says that WhatsApp identifies users by their phone numbers, not their names. So when people ask to use WhatsApp to make a call, that means they want not only their phone number, but also their contact list. Facebook is doing that to cross reference contacts with Facebook contacts, but you can opt out of it when you sign up.