If you're a Telegram user (hi), then you'll understand how cool this latest news is. The privacy-focused messaging service is finally getting custom theme support on Android, which is just fantastic. You have three basic ones to start, and one of those is dark theme.
Smartphones have never produced particularly good sound through their speakers. Sure, phones like the older HTC Ones, the Nexus 6 and 6P, and the Axon 7 have dual front-facing ones, but none of those are any match for a true, dedicated speaker. Even the JBL Moto Mod for the Moto Z line isn't all that great for its price and size. Now, though, you can get a highly-rated and highly portable Bluetooth speaker in the form of the UE ROLL 2 for just $49.99 on Amazon.
The Moto Z Play was released by Motorola last year, as a slightly less-expensive alternative to the Moto Z. A combination of a less powerful CPU, a lower-resolution screen, and a massive 3,500mAh battery has earned it a reputation for being an endurance champ. Now Motorola has released the kernel source code for the recent Nougat update.
If you need a cheap backup or replacement phone (the former is always my go-to excuse to justify buying phones), then Amazon has you covered in one of its offerings in the Gold Box Deals for today. The 16GB/2GB BLU Life One X2 is currently going for $119.99, which is a respectable savings of $30.
Unlimited smartphone data is back! Roll out the barrels, re-download Netflix, and disable all those "Wi-Fi only" settings options, happy days are here again. But don't throw away your data meter just yet: the new batch of unlimited data plans from American carriers isn't what it used to be. A lack of limits now comes with an asterisk, like your favorite sports star "enhancing" his performance. So the question is no longer, "which mobile unlimited plan is the best?" Instead, it's "which carrier is going to put the least amount of petty restrictions on my so-called unlimited data?"
On this quiet holiday Monday (in America), there's something notable happening on AT&T's network. The long-awaited Nougat update for Ma Bell's LG G5 has started rolling out. Check for the update on your device and you may well find success.
In what appears to be a server-side update to the service, WhatsApp has announced a new "statuses" feature today that really isn't about chat status so much as it is a rip-off of Snapchat's Stories (which was earlier ripped off by Instagram last year). If you know what Snapchat Stories is, you know what today's WhatsApp update is: it really is that similar. Take a look at the video and screenshots below.
WhatsApp statuses expire after 24 hours, you can place pictures, videos, or GIFs in them, and they can then be personalized with emoji, text, and drawings. It even has a Snapchat-like "seen by" counter.
SSH clients are commonly used for connecting to remote Linux/Mac computers, and there are a few good choices for Android. While JuiceSSH is more feature-packed, ConnectBot has always been fast and functional enough for my needs. ConnectBot has just been updated for the first time since 2015, and it brings some much-needed changes.
Verizon has been making a lot of headlines with new wireless plans as of late, but they've all been in the realm of post-paid customers, those data-hungry hoity-toity bourgeoisie one percenters of the wireless world. The company hasn't forgotten the little guy, in so much as that little guy can afford a Verizon-compatible phone and some of the most expensive dollar-per-gig rates in the industry. Today they've announced a new 2GB prepaid option for $40, which is now the cheapest prepaid plan on the network.
One tradition with Sony smartphones is that they are nearly always overpriced at launch. Sony's latest flagship, the 2016 Xperia XZ, was no exception - it started at a whopping $699. Although the official MSRP has been marked down to $649 since then, you can now get it from Amazon for just $449.99.