How To Use WhatsApp From The Desktop

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In May 2013, Viber released desktop clients for both Windows and Mac along side a feature called ViberOut which allows users to hand off a call from their mobile devices to their desktops. A good year later, WhatsApp has rolled out something to that same effect. WhatApp conversations can now be held from your desktop. Their solution isn't as flexible as what Viber had to offer. To begin with, there is no desktop app; the conversations are to be held over a web interface (linked at the end) and for now, only the Chrome browser is supported. Like with Viber, your connection is still tied to your phone and the phone number registered with the app. You will have to upgrade your current WhatsApp app and unfortunately, iOS will not get this new feature (yet?). The present offering is available for Android, Windows Phone, Blackberry, and Nokia S60. Read More

Enable And Disable ‘Seen’ Report In Google Hangouts

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I'm not entirely sure when this happened but jumping on to the bandwagon that prevents us from ignoring the people who IM us, Google has added the dreaded 'Seen' status report to Google Hangouts. When you read a message from a contact, they will know you've read it. The Chrome app, extension, Gmail Hangouts interface, and the Android app have been effected received the update. To be fair, you get proper warning of the new feature being enabled and unlike Whatsapp, Google Hangouts lets you disable it. Here's how to do that in your browser, and on your Android device. Read More

58 Top Tips & Tutorials Of The Year 2014

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This past Monday we gave you a list of the best Windows apps reviewed in 2014. To start the weekend off, and maybe give you something you might want to try over the weekend, here are the best tips and tutorials covered in 2014. Ranging from simple little tricks for your smartphone, to far more complicated tutorials or running Windows on a Mac, this list features how-tos for the Android, iOS, Windows, and the OS X platform. Read More

How To Use Your Android Phone More Comfortably If You’re Left-Handed

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Being left-handed is a stigma in some societies. Often social construct, religious beliefs, or even out-dated scientific research will tell you that it's not good to be left-handed. Everyday items of use like ringed notebooks and scissors are built to be used by the 90% of the population who are right-handed. You would think that as more and more advances were made in technology, things would get easier for those with different needs but even smartphones are meant to be used by the vast majority of right-handed people with little regard to those who are left-handed and would enjoy texting with one hand just like the rest of us. For Android users, there is actually hope because a built-in developer function allows users to enable a Right-to-left mode which will flip everything such as which side of the screen switches and buttons appear, as well as which way your home screen pages and notifications are swiped. Read More

Use Exposure And Color Point Control To Create Unique Filters [Android]

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Filter apps for photos are common. Some might offer a few unique filters but it's safe to say that the market is well saturated. The only point where most apps can compete on is the quality and intensity of the filters that are applied and what kind of customization is available. Instagram competes well enough there. A few updates ago, the app added the ability to control how intensely a filter was applied. Shift is another addition to this niche and it takes a pretty unique approach to filters; it lets you pick colors and exposure levels and then choose between random filters to apply to a photo. The color you choose is highlighted or muted in the filter and you can manage the level of exposure to create something unique. Different points on the image itself are chosen as reference when the color selection is made so that you always come up with a unique filter. Filters you like can be saved as presets and applied to any other image. Read More

Are Heart Rate Monitoring Apps Really Accurate? We Put Them To The Test

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Health has become the focus of many new gadgets with personal fitness bands growing increasingly popular. Health apps have become a stock feature in both Android and iOS and long before that happened, developers had been working to put the these devices to better use. There have long existed apps that claim to measure your heart rate using nothing more than the front and/or rear camera on your phone. People obviously have their doubts about apps like this because measuring medical information can't be that simple. I've personally tried to 'fool' these apps and those that claim to measure heartbeat by scanning one's face are quite easy to fool with nothing more than a picture placed in front of it. We did however decide to give these apps a chance; see if they really can measure a person's heart rate and how accurate the reading is. Read More

Tunity Is A Shazam-Like App That Sends TV Channel Audio To Your Device

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Shazam is a very popular service that helps identify songs. All you need to do is let the service listen to a small snippet of what's playing on the radio or on TV, or maybe blaring out from someone's headphones, and it can correctly identify the song. Tunity is an app for iOS and Android that does something much like that but for TV channel audio. Think of any scenario where you're sitting staring at a muted TV. The news might be on, a re-run of your favorite movie or series, or maybe just a really interesting documentary. Unfortunately, given the place you are, the audio is muted. That's where Tunity comes in; it lets you scan the TV screen, and streams the audio from that channel directly to your Android device or iPhone. Read More

Modify The Google Now Gesture To Launch Apps Or Perform Other Actions

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Mobile operating systems will often reserve a certain functionality for a stock feature. An example of this is how iOS allows only the camera to be accessible from the lock screen, and how Android Lollipop similarly  only allows access to the camera and dialer app. With the camera, no one grudges the OS owning how it is accessed. Both operating systems go much further reserving swipe up and swipe down functions on all screens but with Android you can change it very easily. Now Gesture Tweaks is an Android app that lets you change the default swipe up function reserved by the default Google Now launcher. The app has a free version and a premium version. The free version is limited to only letting you select which app is launched, open all apps, or open the notification center when you swipe up from the bottom of the screen. The premium version lets you do much more. The app doesn't require a rooted device but if your device is rooted, you will get extra functions that you can assign to the swipe up gesture. Read More

How To Rearrange The Order Filters Appear In Instagram

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Instagram has just received a fresh update and it's a big one. The update has introduced five new filters and a filter management feature. No doubt the new filters are exciting news and you'll want to try them on your next coffee or dessert but the filter management feature is deserving of equal attention. It lets you do two things; hide filters that you don't like or don't use at all, in my case that would be the Inkwell filter. It also lets you rearrange the order the filters appear in when you scroll through them in the app's interface. You can bring your favorite or most frequently used filters to the start of the line-up and move less frequently used ones to the end. Here's how. Read More

Set The Default Launcher, SMS App, And Browser In Android Lollipop

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Android Lollipop brought some big new features to the Android platform and we've covered the exceptionally noteworthy ones such as pinning screens and user/guest accounts. But this latest version of Android isn't all about big features, there are smaller more obscure ones that deserve just as much attention. Android Lollipop has made it ridiculously to set default apps. You can choose the default launcher, set the default SMS app, and even set or reset the default browser on your Android device. The options aren't exactly well placed and easy to find but they're all there in the Settings app and are simple to use. Read More

Bring Back The Old Tab Switcher In Chrome For Android

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Chrome's Material design version does something a little unorthodox with the tab switcher; it combines the tab switcher with the app switcher. To switch to a different tab, you have to tap the app switcher button and it brings up, in addition to the other apps that you have open, all open Chrome tabs. You cycle through them much like you would cycle through your open apps and tap the tab you want to switch to. There isn't anything wrong with this approach if you can get into the habit of using it but I kept looking for the old tab switcher. Fortunately, there is a super simple way built into Chrome to get the old tab switcher back. Read More

Send A Message To Let Someone Know Why You’re Calling

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The Do Not Disturb mode, or Interruptions if you're using Android, is a feature that prevents notifications from disturbing you on your device. You can ensure that only calls from important people come through or only your most essential apps can send you alerts while your phone is resting on your night stand, or on your desk at work. I've personally found Do Not Disturb or Interruptions to work great but to only be suitable for use at night. I don't really favour it at work for one simple reason; working hours is when a lot of important activity happens and blocking calls isn't the best way to avoid interruptions. I just keep my phone on silent and prefer people text me before calling. Lots of people don't have time for their devices when they're working so taking calls isn't easy. Calltag is a great way around this; it's an app available for both Android and iOS that lets you quickly compose a message with your name and where you're calling from, and add tags that describe what your conversation is about. The message is sent to whoever you intend to call to give them a heads-up on why you're calling. Once the message is sent, the app initiates a count down before the call is made. Your recipient will know why you're calling and they can choose to take the call, or ignore it. Read More

New Features In Firefox 34 For Desktop And Android

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Firefox 34 is now available. If the update hasn't already downloaded, go ahead and check for it now. Firefox 34 is leaning more on the end-user side in terms of new features. The Android version isn't big on either developer or end-user features with Chromecast mirroring being the only significant one. The most interesting feature in Fiefox 34 is easily Firefox Hello, a new way to exchange private messages, both audio and video though the feature is still in its Beta phase. Other significant features are the new theme switcher and a way to fix the 'Fire. fox is already running' problem that users encounter at times. Read More

Material Design Color Palettes Suggests Colors For Your App [Android]

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Material Design has been a highlight of Android Lollipop and rightly so. It's Android maturing in terms of design. The design itself is pretty good, enough to encourage developers to adopt it more and more. Maybe one day we will wait for apps to upgrade to the new design like we  do today with iOS apps. For anyone looking for inspiration on how to do Material Design well, there is the myriad of stock apps by Google to act as an example. Implementation-wise we have quite a few examples but if you're a designer struggling with the right colors for material design, give Material Design Color Palettes a try. It's a very simple free Android app that lists shades for nineteen different colors that are a good fit for Material design. The colors range from bright reds and pinks to mute browns and greys. Read More

3 Android Features That Will (Probably) Never Make It To iOS

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We often compare Android with iOS and each time Google and/or Apple announce a new version of their OS, fans of both take to the internet to debate who did it first, or who did it better. A lot of times, the two operating systems do indeed borrow or adapt popular features from the other but a lot of features, a lot of popular ones, often do not make the transition. That's where you see a lot of variance between the two in terms of features. Both Google and Apple follow a certain philosophy when adding features to their respective mobile operating systems and there are just somethings neither will adopt (voluntarily or otherwise) from the other, Here are three very awesome Android features that are highly unlikely to make it to iOS. Read More

Gmail’s Inbox Doesn’t Organize Email, It Reminds You To Answer It

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A lot of you may have heard about Inbox, Gmail's new email app for iOS and Android. You might be wondering just why Gmail decided to launch a new email app for both these platforms when it already has a pretty great email app for both platforms already out in the field for several years now. I took a look at the new app and also at the need for it to exist, which I found to be genuine. Inbox supports multiple accounts and is built on Material design which works pretty nicely on iOS. One misconception we should probably clear up about Inbox is that it isn't just an email client, it's also a reminder app. The reminder feature is actually a pretty great feature which we'll go in to more detail. Also, access to the app is still invite only. Read More

TakeOff – Schedule Instagram Posts At Regular Intervals For The Day

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There aren't a lot of apps out there that can legitimately claim to improve your Instagram experience. Plenty of web apps have surfaced attempting to do just that and it's hard to mention one that came any close. So far only apps that allow us to download all out photos from Instagram are the winners in this category.  TakeOff is a free app available for both Android and iOS that lets you schedule up to ten posts a day on Instagram. The app asks how many photos a day you want to post ( from 1 -10). You select the photo, add a caption, and the app will decide what is the best time to post them. You cannot give the app a custom date for scheduling a post. The app is super simple and can legitimately claim to be a great companion app for the avid Instagram user. Read More

How To Pin And Unpin Screens In Android Lollipop

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Android Lollipop has been rolling out to users for a good few days now and if your device still hasn't received the update, we know exactly how you feel. Keep checking and reading up on the great new features in Lollipop until you get the update. Pinning screens is a new and very down played feature in Lollipop and there hasn't been much talk about it but it's really useful especially if you've got an Android tablet instead of a phone. Pinning screens allows you to 'pin' an app to the screen and no accidental swipes or taps on a button will allow you to exist the app unless you unpin it first. If you've enabled any sort of PIN or passcode on your device, you can set it so that the passcode is required to unpin the app. Read More

Here’s How You Can Play The Hidden Game In Android Lollipop

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Google loves Easter eggs and Apple is possibly the only company that does them as well or nearly as well as the search giant. One such Easter egg comes in Android Lollipop, the newest stable version of the Android OS currently rolling out (painfully slowly) to nexus users. It's a nod to the very popular game flappy bird. Adapted with Lollipop inspired backgrounds and the Android bot replacing the bird, the hidden game can be played without having to download anything extra if you know where to find it. Read More

Add, Manage, & Switch User Accounts On Android Lollipop

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One of the most awesome features to come out of the latest Android version is user accounts. Our smartphones and tablets are so ridiculously powerful these days that it's no wonder a feature like this was introduced, after all, we have multiple accounts on our laptops. Android Lollipop doesn't just let you add other users, it also comes with a pre-added Guest account that is already set up for you so you can switch to it and hand over your device immediately, when needed. Here's a quick look at how you add and switch between user accounts, and set them up. Read More