Verizon

Verizon

Google to roll out January’s Android security update next week

Google may be getting ready to release the latest Android security update next week, but slightly later than usual. Support pages on Verizon Wireless for its Google Pixel and Pixel XL smartphones show that the upcoming patch could go live for those devices on Tuesday, January 3.

See also:

What is the problem with IoT security?

November 19, 2016

The support pages show that the build number for the new security patch will be NMF26U. Normally, these kinds of updates begin to roll out on the first Monday of each month, which in January’s case is on January 2. However, due to the officially observed holiday of New Year’s Day, that may explain why the Verizon support pages show the update is being pushed back to Tuesday, January 3.

In any case, this new over-the-air update is likely to be a small one for the Pixel and Pixel XL compared to the updates they received in December, which also included the new Android 7.1.1 Nougat version. The security updates will likely roll out to a larger number of Android smartphones throughout the month of January.

Are you happy with the pace of security update for Android, or should they be launched more often or less often? Let us know what you think in the comments.

BlackBerry’s upcoming ‘Mercury’ phone might be sold by Verizon

BlackBerry’s final smartphone that the company designed in-house may be sold by one of the top wireless carriers in the US. A new rumor claims that the phone, known as BlackBerry Mercury, will be made available when it is released by Verizon.

See also:

BlackBerry DTEK50 review

August 11, 2016

The info comes from noted gadget news leaker Roland Quandt, via his Twitter account. He offers no other info on the phone, such as a release date. Previously, BlackBerry’s CEO John Chen teased that the company would indeed release one last phone created in-house, with its trademark QWERTY hardware keyboard.

Previous rumors about the BlackBerry Mercury claim it will have a 4.5-inch screen, an octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 processor, 3GB of RAM, 32GB of on-board storage, a 3,400mAh battery and a fingerprint scanner. Some reports claim it will have Android 7.0 Nougat installed and ready to go out of the box. None of these reports have been confirmed by BlackBerry.

BlackBerry recently announced that TCL Communication has been awarded the rights to make any future smartphones with the BlackBerry branding, beyond the Mercury QWERTY phone. TCL has already promised it will be making some BlackBerry-related announcements next week at CES 2017 in Las Vegas. It’s possible one of those phones could also have a QWERTY hardware keyboard.

BlackBerry’s upcoming ‘Mercury’ phone might be sold by Verizon

BlackBerry’s final smartphone that the company designed in-house may be sold by one of the top wireless carriers in the US. A new rumor claims that the phone, known as BlackBerry Mercury, will be made available when it is released by Verizon.

See also:

BlackBerry DTEK50 review

August 11, 2016

The info comes from noted gadget news leaker Roland Quandt, via his Twitter account. He offers no other info on the phone, such as a release date. Previously, BlackBerry’s CEO John Chen teased that the company would indeed release one last phone created in-house, with its trademark QWERTY hardware keyboard.

Previous rumors about the BlackBerry Mercury claim it will have a 4.5-inch screen, an octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 625 processor, 3GB of RAM, 32GB of on-board storage, a 3,400mAh battery and a fingerprint scanner. Some reports claim it will have Android 7.0 Nougat installed and ready to go out of the box. None of these reports have been confirmed by BlackBerry.

BlackBerry recently announced that TCL Communication has been awarded the rights to make any future smartphones with the BlackBerry branding, beyond the Mercury QWERTY phone. TCL has already promised it will be making some BlackBerry-related announcements next week at CES 2017 in Las Vegas. It’s possible one of those phones could also have a QWERTY hardware keyboard.

Deal: Get Verizon’s Moto Z Droid for just $5 a month at Best Buy

Looking to upgrade your smartphone, but aren’t keen on spending money on a mid-range phone? Best Buy may have a great deal for you. Right now, Verizon’s Moto Z Droid Edition can be yours for just $4.99 a month for 24 months, which means you’ll pay less than $120 for the total cost of the phone over two years.

See also:

Moto Z and Moto Z Force Cases

September 20, 2016

That’s a huge discount, even considering the fact that Verizon is currently selling the same phone on its site for $10 a month for 24 months, which itself is a big price drop from its normal $26 a month. Of course, you will have to stick with the Moto Z Droid for two years on Verizon’s network, but paying less than $120 for this high-end phone may be worth it to many people. The deal is available online, or at your local Best Buy store.

For those of you who might need reminding about the features of the Moto Z Droid, it has a 5.5-inch AMOLED display with a Quad HD resolution, along with a Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 processor with a clock speed of 2.2GHz. It has 4GB of RAM, 32GB of on-board storage, a 13MP rear camera and a 5MP front-facing camera, along with a 2,600mAh battery and a fingerprint sensor. Moto recently released Android 7.0 Nougat to the Moto Z Droid, meaning you’ll be able to take advantage of multi-window, custom quick settings, Doze on the Go, bundled notifications and much more. One thing worth noting is that the phone does not have the normal 3.5mm headphone jack, which may be a dealbreaker for some people.

The Moto Z Droid also supports the Moto Mods clip-on accessories, which can add things like an extra battery, a better speaker, a projector or a more advanced camera. Motorola has indicated that more Moto Mods are in the works for 2017, including one that will add a Tango-based 3D camera for augmented reality apps.

Get it from Best Buy

Samsung Galaxy S7 / Galaxy S7 Edge: Android update tracker [UPDATE: Vodafone AU testing Nougat]

Updated post (December 16, 2016) – Vodafone Australia has listed Android Nougat for the Samsung Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge in its weekly software wrap-up. The post, published on December 15, lists Android Nougat as “testing in progress” for the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge, though it doesn’t offer an ETA for when it might officially roll out. Other software updates referenced in the wrap-up are listed as either “rolling out now” or “awaiting new software” following issues found during testing.

Welcome to the Samsung Galaxy S7 and Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge Android update tracker page. This page covers all major U.S. carriers with a quick reference table for each and a log with links to further details. It will be regularly updated with the latest Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge update information.

The Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge tend to receive their updates simultaneously – or at least very close together. For this reason, they both appear here on this update page. Also, note that we won’t be covering general security patches in our list.

We recommend you bookmark this page so you can stay up to date with the very latest updates.

Samsung Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge Android Nougat update

Samsung is yet to officially roll out the Galaxy S7 or S7 Edge Android Nougat update but it is currently running beta progams to aid the software’s development. Samsung said these would run until mid-December, with the final Nougat build being deployed sometime later. Samsung has confirmed that the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge will skip Android 7.0 and be upgraded straight to Android 7.1.1.

Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge Update US

Samsung Galaxy S7 / S7 Edge updates - USAndroid 6.0.1Android 7.0Android 7.11
VerizonYesNoPlanned
AT&TYesNoPlanned
T-MobileYesNoPlanned
SprintYesNoPlanned

Samsung Galaxy S7 / Galaxy S7 Edge: Android update tracker [UPDATE: Vodafone AU testing Nougat]

Verizon Galaxy S7 (SM-G930V) and Galaxy S7 Edge (SM-G935V) update:

  • September 1, 2016, improved voice calls, FM Radio, Barcode Beaming functionality and NextRadio app added.
  • May 9, 2016, DT Ignite added. Helps Verizon package and install apps on devices. Can’t be removed without root.

AT&T Galaxy S7 (SM-G930A) and Galaxy S7 Edge (SM-G935A) update:

  • July 27, 2016, Wi-Fi calling arrives.
  • April 21, 2016, DTV Widget added, better Wi-Fi performance when using BTLE, home and volume key responsiveness improved, other performance enhancements arrive.

T-Mobile Galaxy S7 (SM-G930T) and Galaxy S7 Edge (SM-G935T) update:

  • November 5, 2016, enabled 256/64 QAM, domestic data roaming improvements, system crash fix.
  • May 4, 2016, FM Radio, power and volume key fix, system improvements.

Sprint Galaxy S7 (SM-G930P) and Galaxy S7 Edge (SM-G935P) update:

  • May 26, 2016, battery life improvements, Wi-Fi calling added.

International Galaxy S7 (SM-G930F) and Galaxy S7 Edge (SM-G935P) update:

  • December 16, 2016, Vodafone Austrailia lists the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge in its weekly software update wrap-up. States “testing in progress”, but doesn’t provide an ETA.

If you’ve received an update we’ve missed, hit the comments below or Tip Us!

Verizon offers the Google Pixel and others for free with eligible phone trade-in

If you’ve been eyeing Google’s Pixel or Pixel XL but don’t want to spend the money to get one, you’re in luck. Verizon has just announced a new promotion that will let new customers trade in their existing device to net them a new smartphone for free.

See also:

Best Verizon Android phones

3 weeks ago

Starting today, you’ll be able to get an iPhone 7iPhone 7 PlusMoto Z or Moto Z Force, Samsung Galaxy S7Galaxy S7 Edge, or LG V20 for free when you trade in an eligible phone. That’s certainly not a bad deal, as most of the phones listed here cost quite the pretty penny.

Let’s talk about the fine print before you run off to the local Verizon store, though. To get the “free” phone, you’ll first have to buy your new phone and activate it on a Verizon plan, then you’ll receive up to $792 in bill credit that will be applied over a 24-month period. Also, your existing phone must be in “good, working and cosmetic condition” to be eligible for trade in. The list of eligible trade-in phones can be found at this link.

While that may sound like a few too many caveats, this is actually a really good deal if you’re sick of your current phone. If you’re interested, be sure to head to the source link below to get all the details on this limited time promotion.

Verizon will roll out Galaxy Note 7 battery killing update after all

It looks like the few remaining Samsung Galaxy Note 7 owners on Verizon will get that promised battery killing update after all. The carrier has quietly confirmed it will roll out that update on January 5, after previously stating it would not be participating in Samsung’s update program designed to encourage Note 7 owners to turn in the recalled device.

See also:

US Note 7 return rate at 93%

3 days ago

Last week, Verizon stated flat out it would not be releasing the update that Samsung has created for all Note 7 phones in the US that are still in circulation. The update will not allow the phone to charge its battery after it is applied, which will basically make the smartphone useless. At the time, Verizon said its decision not to release the update was due to its view that it will offer “added risk” to its Note 7 owners that don’t have another device to switch to.

Now, the carrier’s support page for the Note 7 has shown a change of heart, stating the update will indeed be pushed out on its network on January 5. Verizon stated it is waiting until that date so that Note 7 owners can “contact family, first responders, and emergency medical professionals during the holiday travel season.”

Samsung said it will release the Note 7 battery killing update on December 19, with T-Mobile following suit on December 27. AT&T will join Verizon and roll out the update on January 5, while Sprint plans to do the same on January 8.

Verizon stops supporting Galaxy Beta Program for the Samsung Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge

Samsung will proceed with its Android 7.0 Nougat beta test for the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge, but apparently it will continue without the many Verizon owners of those phones. The carrier has reportedly sent messages to Galaxy Beta app users, informing them that their phones will “stay on the original software for the remainder of [the] trial.”

See also:

This is Nougat on the Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge

1 week ago

What exactly does that mean for Big Red users currently enrolled in the beta program? Well, if and when Samsung releases another Nougat beta build for those phones, they will not be accessible to Verizon owners. They can choose to stick with the current Nougat beta build that have already installed, or they have the option to roll back to Android 6.0.1 Marshmallow. Verizon owners will have to wait until sometime early next year before the official Nougat update begins rolling out for those phones.

Again, this change affects only Verizon customers with the Galaxy S7 or S7 Edge. People who have those phones on other networks can get the latest Nougat beta if they have an active Samsung account, and if they install the Galaxy Beta Program app from Samsung’s Galaxy Apps store.

If you are a Verizon subscriber, how do you feel about your carrier ending the Nougat beta for the Galaxy S7 ahead of schedule?

Verizon to roll out Google Pixel update today with December’s Android security patch

Google Pixel and Pixel XL owners on Verizon’s network should be receiving an over-the-air update sometime today, coming in at build number NMF26O. Along with the December Android security patch, this new update includes a number of bug fixes like email font improvements, fixes to Visual Voicemail errors and more:

  • Customers couldn’t retrieve their Visual Voicemail messages and were getting an error 9999 in some areas.
  • Voicemail icon notification was not displaying when a new voicemail message was received.
  • Device stopped playing voicemail messages over Bluetooth after the screen timed out.
  • Device occasionally went to blue screen during an inbound call.
  • Email font was too small.
  • Text was garbled on the call screen/dialer and the text was corrupted on the Recent Calls and contact list screens.
See also:

Google Pixel XL review: a Pixel’s perspective

October 27, 2016

Unfortunately, this update does not appear to contain the ‘double-tap to check phone’ and ‘lift to check phone’ gestures that were rolled out for the Google Pixel phones by Canadian carriers a few weeks ago. The changelog also does not show that it contains Android 7.1.1. Nougat, which Vodafone Australia claims would begin rolling out on Tuesday, December 6. However, it’s possible that Verizon’s update does contain 7.1.1 and simply does not mention it on the support page. Hopefully we will get more information soon when it actually begins rolling out.

As with all OTA updates, it may take a few days for this latest build to hit all of Verizon’s Google Pixel phones. For more details on this update, head to the source link below.

GizmoTab is a tablet made with both kids and parents in mind

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Parents who want a tablet for their young kids have a new option in the GizmoTab from Verizon Wireless. The carrier began selling the 8-inch Android tablet today, which includes a “kid-tough” removable bumper that can keep it working despite the large amount of abuse young children can offer.

See also:

Best Android tablets

2 weeks ago

The pre-installed software that comes with the GizmoTab has been created especially for kids age 3-8, with access to 300 education-themed apps that are grouped in seven different islands. Those apps include Play-Doh ABCs, Operation Math Code Squad and Nat Geo Puzzle Explorer. Parents can access a dashboard on the tablet that will keep track of their kid’s use and set limits on how long they can use the device.

When the kids are in bed or at grandma’s, parents can use the GizmoTab like any other Android tablet, with its Qualcomm Snapdragon 617 octa-core processor, 3GB of RAM, and 16GB of onboard storage. It does have Android Marshmallow 6.0.1 pre-installed, along with a 8MP rear camera and a 5MP front-facing camera. It also can connect to Verizon’s LTE network. The carrier is selling the GizmoTab for $249.99 without a contract, $79.99 with a two year contract, or for $10.24 a month for 24 months.

Get it at Verizon