The HTC U11 is outselling the HTC 10 and M9


While HTC‘s presence in the smartphone market hasn’t technically diminished, it’s not a secret that the company needed its latest flagship device, the U11, to be a successful one. And if recent comments by HTC’s smartphone division head Chia-lin Chang are any indicator, it looks like the U11 has indeed fit the bill for HTC.

Chang has said the U11 is selling so well that it is actually outperforming HTC’s last two flagship smartphones, the HTC 10 and the M9. Chang went on to say that there should be even more demand for the device in July, which means even more sales of the flagship. That’s good news for HTC, who have felt the squeeze over the last several years.

What’s more, Chang made it clear that the U11 outselling the M9 is worth noting all on its own because of the limited carrier availability for the U11, especially in the United States.

Still, HTC isn’t resting on its laurels. The company is looking ahead, especially to 5G network speeds, and it plans on reducing the number of individual phone models it launches on a yearly basis. Chang wants HTC to trim the number down to just three or four devices in a year.

It sounds like the U11 is doing well for HTC, which hopefully means we’ll see even more exciting devices from the company in the future.

Are you planning on picking up a U11?

Twitter rolling out a new look and features for its apps

Twitter June 2017 update2

Twitter has announced that a pretty big overhaul is arriving for its apps which should unify the experience while also bringing in new features to keep people in the loop.

The new look will be rolling out to Twitter on the web, Twitter apps for Android and iOS, TweetDeck, and Twitter Lite over the coming days and weeks. Some features are tied to a specific platform, while the majority of the new features and aesthetics will be available on all the available apps.

One of the biggest changes is a new side panel for iOS users (Android users got it last year). This includes the user’s profile, privacy, and settings. Twitter says this will reduce clutter and reduce the number of tabs that are present on the bottom of the app.

Twitter June 2017 update

Here are the other new changes, as confirmed by Twitter:

  • Links to articles and websites now open in Safari’s viewer in the Twitter app so you can easily access accounts on websites you’re already signed into.*
  • We’ve refined our typography to make it more consistent, and added bolder headlines to make it easier to focus on what’s happening. Also, rounded profile photos make it clearer to see what’s being said and who’s saying it.
  • More intuitive icons make it easier to engage with Tweets – especially if you’re coming to Twitter for the first time. For example, people thought the reply icon, an arrow, meant delete or go back to a previous page. We switched to a speech bubble, a symbol most know and love. We also made the icons lighter for more seamless interaction.
  • Tweets now update instantly with reply, Retweet, and like counts so you can see conversations as they’re happening – live.**

The new Safari feature is only available for Twitter on iOS, and the instantly updating tweets will not be available on Twitter Lite at all.

How often do you check Twitter, and do you use the official app or a third-party alternative?

LG reportedly wants to announce G7 and V30 earlier than previous models


The LG G6 may only be a couple of months old at this point, but that hasn’t stopped the rumor mill from churning out reports about the G6’s follow-up.

The LG G7 will reportedly be announced earlier in the year than the LG G6. Specifically, LG is aiming for a January announcement of the G7, claims Aju Business Daily, via The Investor. To compare, the LG G6 and LG G5 were both announced in late February.

Today’s report also claims that the LG V30 will be announced earlier in the year, with LG targeting an August 2017 reveal. The LG V10 and LG V20 were both announced in September.

Finally, it’s suggested that the LG V30 will be powered by a Snapdragon 836 processor, while the LG G7 will allegedly come equipped with a Snapdragon 845 chipset.

While the LG G6 was announced and launched earlier than the Samsung Galaxy S8, which is one of its biggest rivals, the gap between the two phones wasn’t very large. If LG can introduce the G7 in January, it’d presumably launch the device earlier in the year, too, which could give it more time to have the market to itself. That is, as long as Samsung doesn’t push up its Galaxy S9 announcement timing as well.

Verizon offering limited time open enrollment for Total Mobile Protection plan


The Verizon Total Mobile Protection plan is an insurance plan that will fix your device if it ever breaks, including if you shatter the display. It is $11 per month and many people don’t buy it when purchasing their phone, but Verizon is offering open enrollment from now to July 14.

If you have a compatible device, you can now sign up even if you bought your device a while ago. The phones that are eligible for the cracked screen repair portion of Total Mobile Protection are the iPhone SE, 5c, 5s, 6, 6 Plus, 6s, 6s Plus and 7; Samsung Galaxy S5, S6, S7, S7 EdgeSamsung Galaxy Note 4 and Note 5; and Motorola DROID Turbo and DROID Maxx. There aren’t any modern Android devices, unfortunately.

The plan offers a newly lowered $49 deductible for cracked screens, 115 markets where a tech will come to you to replace a broken screen, and a 24-hour turnaround for a replacement device if one is necessary. It costs $11 per month and allows three claims per 12 months.

If you’re interested and have one of the aforementioned devices, hit the source link!

LG extending the G6′s warranty to 24 months in the U.S.


Today, LG is announcing that it will extend its manufacturer’s warranty for the flagship G6 smartphone in the United States.

The Life’s Good crew is calling it the LG G6 Second Year Promise, and it’s essentially a means to show consumers — both those who already own a G6 and those who might pick one up — that it stands by its products. As reported by The Verge, LG sees people sticking with their phones for longer periods of time, so extending the manufacturer’s warranty makes sense.

With the Second Year Promise, current G6 owners don’t have to pay anything extra to earn the additional 12 months of coverage. They will need to register their device on the LG website within 90 days of today’s announcement to take advantage of it, though. For customers that are still planning on buying a G6, you’ll need to register the device on LG’s website within 90 days of the purchase date.

The first 12 months of the manufacturer’s warranty will still be handled directly by the carrier where you bought your phone, as is the standard operating procedure, but from month 13 to month 24, if you need to make a claim you’ll need to do it directly with LG. The company says that a replacement unit will be delivered within 48 hours of the claim being made. And it’s worth noting that this doesn’t cover accidental damage; it’s strictly just extending the manufacturer’s warranty.

The new program begins today. What do you think of LG’s move?

Amazon introduces Dash Wand with Alexa and makes it basically free

Amazon has released the new Dash Wand with Alexa, upgrading the old Dash Wand by building inAmazon’s assistant. Now you can scan groceries, ask it questions, order missing items on the spot, and control your smart home through this magnetic wand.

The Alexa integration makes the device so much more capable and still in line with its original purpose as a kitchen helper. Check out the video, which showcases what the Dash Wand can do for cooking, throwing a party, and more. It can’t do everything an Echo can (Amazon specifies that it cannot play music), but still has a lot of functionality.

The best part is that the device is pretty much free right now. It costs $20 up front but Prime members get $20 in Amazon credit towards their next purchase when they register it. They also get 90 days of Amazon Fresh for free, which is a $45 value.

At a low (or free) price and a lot of functionality, the Dash Wand looks to be a great product. On top of that, it is not always listening (which many might see as a plus). Will you be picking one up?

T-Mobile will begin testing its 600MHz network this summer

T-Mobile Store

T-Mobile has been working diligently over the years to not only revolutionize its image as the Un-carrier, but also grow and sustain its network infrastructure throughout the United States.

That trend continues today with the announcement that T-Mobile will begin testing its 600MHz network this summer. The FCC has officially granted T-Mobile the new spectrum licenses it won at a recent auction. The first testing will begin this summer, and T-Mobile says that commercial availability will go live sometime before the end of 2017.

To actually use the new spectrum, you’ll need a device that supports it. T-Mobile announced that “new 600MHz smartphones from Samsung and other manufacturers” will arrive later this year, but didn’t say which devices they’ll be or when they will actually be available to buy.

Technically speaking, T-Mobile owns 600MHz spectrum in all 50 states, but it’s not clear where the testing will begin or even where the public rollout will go live later this year. Either way, when it arrives it will offer better coverage for T-Mobile customers, so this is good news for them.

Have you recently switched to T-Mobile?

Amazon offering deals on Anker charging products


If you’re looking for some new charging accessories, Amazon is the place to turn to today.

Amazon is now discounting several Anker charging products as part of its Deal of the Day promotion. Specifically, there are five accessories that are on sale:

Anker is one of the most well-known and popular accessory brands out there, and these are some nice deals on charging accessories for your Android or iOS devices. Because this is a Deal of the Day, though, these prices will only be available on June 15th. If you’re interested in any of the sales, you’ll have to act soon.

Essential Phone will be exclusive to Telus in Canada

The Essential Phone2

When the Essential Phone was announced, it was confirmed the handset would be unlocked and work with all four major wireless carriers in the United States. Since then we’ve learned that in the U.S., Sprint will be the exclusive carrier of choice for the Essential Phone when it goes on sale later this year. And now Telus has made a similar announcement  of its own.

Telus will be the exclusive home and retail partner for the Essential Phone in Canada. So if you want to find an Essential Phone in a store in Canada when the phone launches this summer, a Telus shop will the way to do it.

According to Essential CEO Andy Rubin, his company decided to go with Telus “due to our strong alignment on the importance of continuous innovation and support for consumer choice.”

As for the other details like pricing and launch date, those weren’t confirmed in the announcement. Telus does say the Essential Phone will be available outright or with a subsidy attached to a data plan and that it will be available sometime in the summer.

If you’re up in Canada, is Telus going to be a consideration for you so you can pick up an Essential Phone?

Google may be testing a transparent Google Now panel

Google Now transparent panel

The dedicated Google Now panel lasts saw a major revision way back in 2015, but if a new report is any indicator of what may be coming down the pipe, another big change may be on the way.

As reported by Android Police based on images shared to Reddit, Google may be testing a transparent backdrop for the Google Now (or, as it’s known now, Google Feed) panel. As revealed in the images, the new background makes it possible to see your wallpaper, instead of relying on a pure white backdrop. The content in the feed, though, from articles and what not, remains untouched for the most part.

As for the post on Reddit, the host of the images says they are running an unrooted Google Pixel XL, and that they are running on last month’s security update. The report indicates that this particular transparent background has appeared in the past, briefly, so this could indeed be the next iteration of the Google Now/Feed panel.

What do you think of the transparent approach?