MOBILE ARTICLES / ANDROID, IPHONE, IPAD, AND MORE
Controlling your lights, switches, and other smarthome products from your phone is really cool, but it can be inconvenient to open up an app just to turn something on or off. Here’s how to make things a bit quicker and easier and control your Belkin WeMo Switch right from the home screen on your Android device, or from the Notification Center on your iPhone or iPad.
Google introduced full-device encryption back in Android Gingerbread (2.3.x), but it has undergone some dramatic changes since then. On some higher-end handsets running Lollipop (5.x) and higher, it’s enabled out-of-the-box, while on some older or lower-end devices, you have to turn it on yourself.
Your iPhones and iPads automatically back up to Apple’s iCloud. But Apple is awfully stingy with iCloud storage, only offering 5GB for free. If you want to avoid the monthly fee but keep backing up to iCloud instead of to iTunes, we have a few tricks for you.
Android “N“ is the upcoming version of Google’s mobile operating system, but you don’t have to wait until the release date to get your hands on the latest and greatest features. If you have a compatible Nexus device, you can install the developer preview of Android N right now.
It happens to the best of us: you leave the house, drive away, and realize you left the lights on. With Hue, you don’t need to worry about that anymore: you can set your lights to turn off automatically whenever you leave the house (and turn them on automatically when you return home).
Two-factor authentication provides an extra layer of security for your online accounts. Many online services are offering two-factor authentication, including Apple. However, Apple’s two-factor authentication needs some explaining, since it exists in two slightly different forms.
In December 2015, Google added reminders to the Google Calendar app for Android and iOS users. Now Reminders have also been added to Google Calendar for the web–you may have seen them pop up in your calendar recently. But if you’d rather hide them (or switch back to Google Tasks), it’s very easy to do so.
The dictation button on the iOS keyboard is in just about the worst place you can imagine. On the iPhone in particular, it’s hard to hit the spacebar without accidentally starting up dictation. If you don’t use dictation, you can remove the microphone button by disabling dictation entirely.
Cheap Android phones are quickly becoming commonplace—for as low as $99, you can get a reliable, initially-impressive handset that you’re free to take to a bunch of different carriers. While these bargain-bin devices are definitely appealing, you have to ask yourself: is it really worth it?
Changing icons in Nova Launcher is one of the easiest ways to truly make your device yours. Everything from setting up a full icon theme to make things clean and concise, to simply changing that one icon you just don’t like is incredibly easy in Nova. And best of all, this feature is available in both the free and paid versions of the launcher, so everyone can take advantage of it.
Evernote is an awesome tool for collecting all the information you care about in one place. On the desktop, you can “clip” web pages to Evernote using the app’s browser extension, but what if you’re browsing on your phone? It’s actually even simpler.
The Nest Learning Thermostat can save you money on your heating and air conditioning bills, but if you aren’t keeping up with maintaining your heating and cooling system, you’re probably not saving as much money as you could be. Luckily, your Nest Thermostat can help remind you to perform regular maintenance.