We tend to take the internet for granted around these parts of the planet, but access to the world wide web happens to be a bit of a privilege. According to Internet Live Stats, only about 40% of the world  has an internet connection. Considering that Google’s business revolves mostly around searching and browsing, we know they want as much people to be connected as possible. This is why they have undertaken ventures such as Project Loon, which aims to bring internet to under-developed areas through floating balloons that would communicate to the ground. But the Search Giant is not stopping its quest for a more connected world. A new report from The Guardian swears Google has been working on a new movement that goes by the name Project SkyBender. The idea is similar to Project Loon, with the only main differences being that this time they are using “self-flying” solar drones and millimetre wave technology. BusinessInsider I am no expert, so those sound like nothing but fancy words right now, but we can tell you what this translates to for the user. It is said this is the technology that will power 5G networks, and it has the capability to transfer gigabits of data (yes, plural) per second, beating current 4G speeds by about 40 times. Related Content: Project Wing: Google’s drones could one day drop your groceries from the sky Is Google preparing to test Project Loon in the US? Google reveals “Project Loon”, set to bring balloon-powered Internet to the world According to the report, Google has rented Virgin Galactic’s 15,000 square feet hangar space for $1,000 a day. Located in New Mexico, near a town named Truth or Consequences (what a name for a place), this Google is holding all its tests. Sadly, Google had promise not to take […]

BLU, the Florida-based device manufacturer, boasts a robust smartphone portfolio with a common aspect all these phones share being their budget-friendly nature. Continuing to add to their lineup, BLU unveiled two more affordable smartphones last month at CES 2016, with the cheaper of the already low-cost phones being the BLU Vivo XL. Of course, very affordable devices has been the point of focus for a lot of Android OEMs over the past year, so does BLU manage to stand out with their latest offering? We find out, in this comprehensive BLU Vivo XL review! Buy now from Best Buy Design The Vivo XL is certainly one of BLU’s flashier options to date, with a patterned finish on the removable back cover, with gold being the color version of this particular review unit. Whether you like the look depends entirely on your personal opinion, and there is another touch more subtle color option available as well, but it has to be said that the glossy plastic backing and matte finish edges allow for an excellent feel in the hand. However, the plastic rear cover does seem to be prone to scratches, so you may have to depend on a protective case to keep the device in a pristine condition. Luckily, the Vivo XL does come with a case in the box. Taking a look around the device, the power button and volume rocker are on the right side, and all the buttons offer a reasonable amount of tactile feedback. Capacitive navigation keys are found below the display up front, but in a rather strange move BLU switched the positions of the back and the Recent Apps keys. This might take some getting used to depending on what device you’re coming from. There is also a multi-colored LED at the top left […]

A high-quality render of Sony’s unannounced Xperia C6 smartphone has been released by a reliable tech leaker on Twitter. The Xperia C6, if the newly released render is to be believed, looks a lot like Xperia C5 Ultra, which was introduced back in mid-2015. Just like the C5 Ultra, the new Xperia C6 is expected to have a near bezel-less display, which would definitely help this device stand out from amongst the crowd. See also: Bezel-less Sony Xperia C6 leaked ahead of MWC 201623 The new Sony Xperia C6 render was released by @OnLeaks, who says that the image was constructed based on the phone’s factory schematics. Not much else is known about the Xperia C6, but rumour has it that Sony’s upcoming device will run an octa-core MediaTek Helio P10 chipset under its hood, clocked at a cool 2.0GHz. There’s another rumour which says that the Xperia C6 will have a 1080p resolution display, while the display size may be anywhere between 5- and 6-inches. While we can’t say for sure, Sony might introduce the new Xperia C6 at MWC 2016, which kicks off on February 22nd in Barcelona. Several other players are also expected to make major announcements on the first day, like Samsung, who’s expected to announce the Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge after Sony’s press conference. Alleged press renders of Samsung’s unannounced flagship devices were leaked not too long ago as well, so be sure to check those out before MWC kicks off. Stay tuned for the full coverage on all things relating to Android at MWC 2016! Read next: Sony sends out its MWC 2016 invites9

While it hasn’t been all too busy in the Android world as of late, our video team has still been working hard to bring you some great Android-related coverage. This week Krystal brought you her full review of the honor 5X, Huawei’s new budget smartphone that’s just made its way to the United States. Josh has some thoughts about switching to an iPhone for about a month, and Nirave gives us a detailed walkthrough of Android 6.0 Marshmallow (beta) on the Samsung Galaxy S6. Joe has also brought us two great new videos regarding the best new Android apps and games of January 2016. There’s certainly a lot to cover here, so without any further delay, here are the videos you don’t want to miss this week. honor 5X review The honor 5X is just now making its way to the United States, and it’s one heck of a value. At only $200, this might actually be one of the best cheap Android phones available on the market. Is there anything you should know before you run out any buy one for yourself? Don’t miss Krystal’s full review of the honor 5X. honor 5X review Why I switched to iPhone (…and back again) Josh recently took a little vacation, where he actually switched to the iPhone 6s for a full month. Now that he’s back on Android, he’s willing to share his thoughts. Why I switched to iPhone (…and back again) This is Marshmallow (beta) on the Galaxy S6 While there’s still no official build of Android 6.0 Marshmallow for the Galaxy S6, Samsung has released a beta to the public. Wondering what changes it will bring to the handset? Nirave goes hands-on with Marshmallow (beta) on the S6. Marshmallow on the Galaxy S6 is a welcome improvement Apps, apps, and […]

The hype train for the Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge arguably began the minute the Galaxy S6 and Galaxy S6 Edge launched last March. Unlike most phones however, this was as much a part of “the next big thing” as it was a reaction to some of the polarizing decisions Samsung made in its pair of flagship smartphone products: Gone was the user-replaceable battery, and gone was the support for microSD, two tenants that the Korean OEM had been a champion for over the years and whose previous design language arguably substantiated the removable plastic rear panel. With respect to this year’s offerings, the leaks began last month, and have suggested numerous bits of information, some of which seems to be conflicting. It is basically “known” there will be a Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge, with less certainty about a Galaxy S7+ and Galaxy S7 Edge+. The picture is further complicated by claims the S7 Edge+ has been canceled, that the S7 Edge will be larger than the S7, that the S7+ will release simultaneously, and so on and so forth. Thanks to a new pair of leaks by Evan Blass (@evleaks) possible first press renders of the new devices have surfaced. Look, but not without some degree of skepticism for there is at least one questionable detail to be gleaned: https://t.co/JT6X0g8sBu pic.twitter.com/J78eezrU5o — Evan Blass (@evleaks) January 29, 2016 As the pictures contain a number of different, important issues, some analysis is necessary. To begin with the first picture: This picture presents the most plausible possibility of being a Photoshop creation: note the presence of the fingerprint-sensing Home button, especially on the Galaxy S7 (left). The shape clearly looks deformed along the bottom portion. In addition, the Home button on the Galaxy S7 Edge (right) looks to be […]

App developers are pushing the envelope on a daily basis trying to improve and enhance our smartphone and tablet experiences. In fact, so many Android apps come out every day that it’s difficult to keep track of them all. It’s difficult to usurp the best of the best but if you’re getting bored with what you’ve got and want to try something new, check out the best new Android apps from the last month! Best New Android games from the last month! Best Android apps of 2016 Apps [Price: Free] Apps is a unique wrapper application that shows you hidden top charts in the Google Play Store. How it works is that it’s essentially a web link that’s been turned into an application. The web link opens the actual Google Play Store to the top apps charts. The difference is that it’ll show you a secret set of top charts that lists only applications without any games in there to gum up the works. This is great to check out the hottest apps in the Play Store without having to wade through tons of games first and it’s entirely free. Get it now on Google Play! Automate [Price: Free with in-app purchases] Automate is a driving companion application that aims to bring you functionality from your phone without distracting you from driving. It contains a ton of shortcuts to things like music, navigation, your phone dialer, messaging, weather updates, and more. You can also fork out for the premium version and get hands-free gestures, customized wallpapers, and traffic camera alerts. It’s a solid car companion app and one that could help you stay safe. Get it now on Google Play! Chrooma Keyboard [Price: $1.49] Chrooma Keyboard is a new keyboard that puts customization above all else. The developers boast the […]

Although MediaTek is downplaying the effects, it seems a software bug has created a vulnerability on Android devices running Android 4.4 KitKat. Exploits taking advantage of the vulnerability could gain root access to the device, brick the phone, or spy on communications. MediaTek has confirmed that the bug exists and they say their security team is working to come up with solutions. The bug was pointed out by security researcher Justin Case, who tweeted about the vulnerability’s existence earlier this month. Today MediaTek acknowledged that the potential for malicious exploits was real. The Taiwan-based chipmaker says that the vulnerability is the result of smartphone manufacturers failing to follow their instruction to disable the debug feature before shipping the smartphones. The company did not release the names of the manufacturers responsible, and as a result, we don’t know for sure which device models this bug affects. See also: Google’s Vulnerability Reward Program paid Android researchers over $200,000 last year Case summed up the bug and the way it could be exploited by saying, “[MediaTek has] ‘nerved’ the property space, they made it so these properties can be changed, and changed by anyone/app. A malicious app could set the ‘ro.secure’ property to 0, ro.debuggable one to 1, ro.adb.secure prop to 0 (this would mean ADB didn’t need authentication) and then enable the ADB over Wi-Fi property, and get a local root shell.” Although a large number of devices currently on the market run Android 4.4 using these chips, the chipmaker is downplaying the impact. They have declined to estimate how many devices are affected, but they’ve said that they are taking steps to make sure all manufacturers are aware of this issue. What does this mean for you? Are any of your devices potentially affected by this security vulnerability? What do you think […]

  Bandai Namco has now launched Digimon Heroes, a free-to-play card game on Android. Any Digi-addicts out there will now be able to get their fix anytime and anywhere the craving starts, because the adventures on File Island will be right in your pocket.   The game functions as a fairly straightforward card collecting battler, with players picking up new Digimon and upgrades as they play. There are more than 1,000 distinct Digimon available for play, and these can be digifused, digivolved, and upgraded to build an unbeatable team. See also: 10 best action games for Android!18 What makes Digimon Heroes unique is the interesting match-three battle system that lets you combine like cards into more devastating attacks. As you fight your way across File Island, facing stronger and stronger opponents, you’ll happen across special events and unusual challenges. Your team will have to be tough, and you’ll have to master the system if you want to make it through to the end. Alternatively, if you find yourself in an impossible situation, you can always buy your way to victory with the collection of in-app purchases available in the game’s shop. These optional purchases range from $0.99 to $9.99. A feature exists to turn off in-app purchases completely if they prove too tempting. What are your thoughts regarding Digimon Heroes? Give it a whirl after downloading it in the Play Store and let us know what you think of it in the comments below! Next: 10 best offline Android games Get it in the Play Store!

Reddit announced that they are finally focusing on mobile, releasing a beta app on Android today and following up with an iOS app in the very near future. No sign of Windows Mobile 10 though. Read more…

Microsoft has made Office Insider preview build 16.0.6528.1008 for Android available with a range of new features including document version history, co-authoring and auto-save. Read more…

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