Google Now Hands Free Driving
Google Now allows use of voice commands to do just about anything you need to with your phone. Everyone knows dangers that exist from texting and driving, but many people find it hard to set their phone down for that short drive home from work.
Notes & Reminders
Many people are always using their phone to constantly enter something in their to-do list or schedule before they forget. Reduce the dangers of accidents by using Now with Google Now. This is especially useful if you phone has Google Calendar is synced. You can say commands such as:
- “Set an alarm for 5PM”, or if you want on recurring “Set an alarm every Wednesday morning for 7AM.”
- Specific reminders can be sent to you, such as “Remind me to stop at Sue’s 3PM tomorrow” or “Remind me to grab milk at Ralph’s 4PM today.”
- Use your Google Calendar to create an event by saying, “Create a calendar event for a Doctor appointment in NYC, Tuesday at 3PM.”
Saves notes to yourself, “Note to self: Pay light bill Friday.”
First time using the command Google Now needs to be told which to-do or note-taking apps you want used.
Communication on Phone
Instead of using a dial pad, just say, “Call Tom”, Google Now looks the name up in your list of contacts and dials for you.
If sending SMS messages, just say, “Text Tom that I will meet him at 6PM for drinks”, and after receiving a confirmation “yes” for the correct name, Google Now sends it along.
Navigation, Travel, Maps
One of the most common needs when driving around is finding how to get where you are going. Just ask Google Now something like, “Direction to Grand Central Station” and you will see directions on the screen from Google Maps. To have turn-by-turn directions, just hit Start button.
You can receive other information aside from directions:
- Say “How far is NYC, New York from Rochester, New York” to learn how long it takes to drive from NYC to Rochester.
- Ask to see map of location, “Map of NYC, New York.”
- Ask “Where is nearest gas station?” or coffee shop, restaurant or other type of business.
Find out Information
Have you ever been driving along with a friend when the two of you come into a debate? Let Google Now settle your debate! Just say, “OK Google” to your phone, and ask your question when you hear a beep. No need to look at your phone, Google now reads it aloud and gives it visually.
This is just the beginning of what you can do hands free with Google Now!
These Apps Can Help You Achieve Your Goals… And More
We are more than a month into the New Year, have you been sticking to your New Year resolution? If you have been having difficulty staying on board with challenges you set for yourself this year, we know of some great free Android Apps for you to try.
It is up to you to pick your challenge, whether it is quitting smoking, losing weight, having greater productivity, as so forth. Do not choose several new challenges, stick to just one you can concentrate on. Take out your Android and get ready to meet your challenge.
Track Your Goal on Regular Basis
We all have habits, and none of them are created overnight. It takes time to break or start habits . Just keep going, taking one day at a time. Track your progress to see if you are on your way toward your goal or not,
You can track almost everything when you own an Android. If changing only one habit, the free version of TrackThisForMe is perfect for you. Simple to use, track five things at once, choose the date, add a value, and comment if you want. Keep in mind however, track how close you are getting to your goal, not what you did.
If your goal is to hit a certain weight, track current weight and each time you weight yourself. Do not track gym visits, which times you did good on your diet and when you didn’t.
Keep a Happy Streak
A popular way of building new habits is called “Don’t Break the Chain.” This is where you do the same this on a daily basis and mark it on a calendar. The free App Pledge tracks habits, reminding you to do them to help reinforce these new habits in your life. If habits are kept, streaks are kept and high scores helping you to grab your goal. Announce your streak and score to your friends on social media!
Android Apps for Change
If you want to keep it simple, use the previous two mentioned Apps. They concentrate on the habit while keeping the app very simple to use. Or go for the App that is above the rest, HabitBull.
You set a habit, put in a reminder, add a target day. HabitBull will now do all the heavy lifting for you, tracking all your progress to create a calendar to be sure you do not break your streak, taking all this data and changing it into gorgeous graphs, and giving you boosts by motivational phrases. The interface is brilliant, where you will want to come back over and over. There is a Pro version, but what you get in the free version is enough to work.
Which Android Apps would you choose?
Everyday android developers publish a mountain of android apps in the Play Store. Only few are worth keeping for long-term use. Let’s turn our attention to some great apps released 2015. If you did not get a chance anmost of allytime during the year, take the time now to check them out.
There are times people just want to connect with other people that are using same devices and apps, but should they be hunted down on social media or forums? No! All you need to do is use AppChat. It’s simple, it makes a chatroom for all apps on your tablet or phone. You log in, chat with users, you even have the option of sharing files. The best part is that its totally free!
Keyboards for Androids are much improved in last couple years, but they still are not as fast as computer keyboards. First of all, Texpand saves a lot of tedious typing. Create custom shortcuts that you can use anywhere text is input. Make your own shortcut abbreviations by using the app that fills while text you choose when you type. For example, use Texpand to add your full address and have it inserted by using an abbreviation such as “adr”. It supports date, time, and current contents of clipboard. The first 10 phrases are free, after that you need to pay $2.99 for pro version.
Image editor app, Google’s Snapseed, received a complete v2.0 overhaul in 2015. This app includes all basic editing tools, such as rotation, cropping, transformations, color levels, along with a great selection of effects and filters. If your phone takes RAW images, Snapseed handles it with enhanced editing. Most of all, Spapseed makes non-destructive edits. Your original file is not touched and is left for you just in case you decide to go back to it later on. This is a great free app!
Android 5.0 Lollipop added a new camera API. Apps now finally have full access to sensor data. This means that people that have certain devices can take greater photos than apps that only reprocess the JPEG that gets spit out by the system app. Developers released this app in 2015 to be able to full advantage of the API. Manual camera supports ISO, manual zoom, RAW capture, white balance, and much more. The user interface is fast and easy to use. This app is only $2.99!
Stop Wasting System Resources
Android bloatware is what we call the factory installed apps and carrier installed apps loaded in android devices. Remember your excitement when opening up a brand new android smartphone? The whole feeling is great, opening the package, little extras in the box, and peeling off that plastic covering the front. Finally, turn it on and watch it finish its boot animation to fully see your Android. When you take a look inside the app drawer your smile quickly goes away. Your focus turns to all these unwanted pre-loaded apps within your Android.
Removable Bloatware in Android
Some manufactures of Androids claim their bloatware will be removable. This is not speaking entirely truthfully, however. Users can delete some pre-installed apps, not all of them. Users only have the capability to disable some of the apps. We are still stuck with some apps whether we want them or not. The amount of apps which can be disabled or deleted depend on your region and carrier. If you buy an android which is carrier-specific there is going to be more non-deletable, non-removable bloatware.
Why We Deal With Bloatware
Most of us believe tons of pre-loaded bloatware that we do not want or have no need for, should no be on our Android smartphones. We purchase with our own hard earned money and expect a good experience. Android users should have a say what apps are on our phones using up precious system resources and storage space. Manufacturers of these phones need to allow us the ability of deleting any apps we want, not just some of them. As the owners of android phones, we should decide if these are apps we want. We can go to the Google Play Store and download them.
We wouldn’t buy albums with ads or Blu-ray players with commercials. Why do we deal with this on our android smartphones and tablets? They take up plenty of system resources and space, but we still take it. Let us face that bloatware is not going anywhere anytime soon. They could present these factory and carrier apps to us differently instead of forcing them down our throat. I doubt there is one person that uses every single pre-loaded app they are made to have on their phone. They could offer different pre-loaded packages for our phones for use to choose from. We might consider some of them useful, such as “entertainment package”, “gamer’s package”, or “office package”.
How to Get Rid of Bloatware
Manufacturers put bloatware into our Android smartphones. We as consumers will continue to purchase them despite this. Contact an experienced professional to root your android in order to rid your device of bloatware. Benefits include increased performance and battery life, along with many other advantages.
Rooting Android Tablets and Phones – Legal?
Is rooting android legal? Cell phone unlocking is illegal without permission from the carrier. You may wonder if this applies to rooting as well. Many have questions about rooting. Some sources state tablet rooting is illegal. This causes confusion with many people receiving incorrect information on this topic.
Rooting and Jailbreaking are Two Different Things
First, please understand rooting/jailbreaking and unlocking are different things. Jailbreaking means removing software restrictions imposed by Apple iOS. This is illegal because iOS is propriety not opensource like android. The DMCA, which made unlocking smartphones without permission from carriers in US illegal, does not have any relevance to rooting. Carrier unlocking a smartphone allows switching service providers. However, rooting only means there is a modification to permissions of the operating system and has nothing to do with any carrier. Some carriers and manufacturers frown on the practice and make it harder by locking the bootloader of the device.
Android Smartphone Rooting
Rooting android smartphones has not changed and is completely legal, with no prosecution under DMCA. News about tablets is not as bad as reported by news sources. Rooting android tablets is legal. DMCA has not given an exemption for this.
Rooting Android Tablets
Manufactures could file a civil case for rooting a tablet under the DMCA. There are several reasons why this happening has an extremely slim chance:
- Android tablets existed and openly rooted since 2009, when the operating system was created.
- Android always marketed itself as open platform and has encouraged modification and development. If they try to ban rooting, this would be a nightmare with public relations for Android as well as device manufacturers. It could possibly do harm to the brand and market shares in long term. Android would have no motivation to do this.
- To guarantee tablets rooting legality, DMCA wanted to provide tablets exemptions. EFF was unable to provide them with a tablets concise definition, and Library of Congress did not overly broad exemptions passed due to possible unintended consequences.
- Several different Android devices encourage modification by shipping with unlocked bootloaders.
While theoretically issues with tablet rooting can occur, the chances of legal issues are extremely slim. Until a manufacturer tries their luck at suing someone, you should not worry.
These rules apply to people inside the United States. This ruling is in the US, many countries having laws allowing unlocking of smartphones, carrier locks being forbidden, locked bootloaders, and laws allowing rooting and jailbreaking.