MOBILE ARTICLES / ANDROID, IPHONE, IPAD, AND MORE
Everyone likes to know who’s calling before they actually pick up the phone, and the easiest way to achieve that is with custom ringtones for specific callers. That way, when your phone starts blasting “Cherry Pie,” you know it’s your wife. Or when it’s “Roll Out (My Business),” you know it’s your boss. Fortunately, this is a simple process in Android. Here’s how to do it.
One big feature of the Nest Thermostat is the ability to automatically adjust the temperature for you by learning your patterns over time. But if you’d rather have total manual control over the Nest, here’s how to add some quick and easy temperature presets to your phone’s home screen.
The iPhone has a hidden “field test” mode that shows all kinds of technical details about signal strength, cell towers, and more. Most of it is not very useful to the average person, but you can make it show you your phone’s actual signal strength instead of just how many bars you’re getting. And that can be useful.
Philips Hue is a really cool Wi-Fi-enabled lighting system that allows you to turn on and off your lights right from your smartphone (or from other smarthome-controlling devices, like the Amazon Echo). It’s one of the first steps in turning your house into a smarthome of the future. Here’s how to set up your Philips Hue lights using the new Philips Hue app.
Plex Media Server is a user-friendly way to store all your movies, shows, and other media in one place–and make it accessible from any device, whether you’re at home or on-the-go. If you’re looking for a no-headache way to watch your movies anywhere, this is it.
When you first set up a new Chromecast, you have the option to give it a name. This is how the Chromecast identifies itself on the network and to casting devices, which is how you know which unit you’re casting to. But if your Chromecast started life as “Living Room Chromecast” and you moved it to another room, it only makes sense to change its name. It’s a quick and easy process—here’s how to do it.
Phones are private, full of personal data and messages. Guided Access allows you to share your iPhone with someone without being able to access that data–allowing them to look at photos, place a phone call, or play a game while your stuff stays hidden.
Belkin has a diverse lineup of WeMo products, but its latest addition is the WeMo Insight Switch. It not only allows you to turn appliances on and off from your smartphone, but it also monitors power usage and provides estimates on how much you’re spending by having that space heater plugged in. Here’s how to make the most of that information.
Google changed the device-to-TV scene with Chromecast, but as with all technology, it can have problems. At some point, you may need to reboot or factory reset your Chromecast. While these options are slightly hidden to prevent an accidental reset, it’s a straightforward and simple process.
Starting with iOS 7, Apple introduced a feature named Activation Lock for iOS devices. When you sign in with an iCloud account and enable the “Find My” feature, the phone becomes tied to your iCloud account. If you’re buying or selling a device, you’ll want to ensure that the Activation Lock is disabled so that it can then be activated by the new user.
Many iPhone and iPad games include banner ads that take up part of your screen. Accidentally tap the ad, and you’ll be ripped from the game and taken to another app, like the App Store or Safari. Enable iOS’ “Guided Access” and you won’t have this problem.
The number of people who use a digital camera for their snapshots is steadily declining, but that doesn’t mean there still isn’t a market. If you have a camera that doesn’t automatically geo-tag your photos, you can do so manually with Apple’s Photos app.
Your iOS device has several numerical identifiers associated with it. Two of the most important are the device’s serial number and International Mobile Station Equipment Identity (IMEI) number. You can use both to identify your phone when you’re scheduling repairs, activating or deactivating devices, or even reporting a device lost or stolen.