Mobile Phones

Should I wait for the Galaxy S6 or buy the Note IV?

Mike from Paris, CA

Episode 1166

Mike is looking to replace his tablet and smartphone with a larger screen phone. But should he get the Samsung Galaxy S6 or the Note IV? Leo says that the Note IV is larger, has removable batteries, and has a stylus, while the S6 doesn't have those. And the Note IV is available now. So get that. When will the next Note come out? Leo says he doesn't know. It's in a staggering release schedule, but you can assume they're basically one year apart. But the GS6 is very elegant, more metal, has a better camera. And the Edge is interesting because the screen curves along the side.

Should I root my new Note IV?

Carlos from Hemmit, CA

Episode 1166

Carlos upgraded his S5 from Sprint to the Samsung Galaxy Note IV with Verizon. But it comes with a lot of stuff he doesn't like. Leo says that Carlos can root it, but that requires to unlock the boot loader and that involves a risk of bricking the phone. And carriers don't like it because it's an end around for how they want you to use the phone, like for tethering at no costs. That's why Verizon locks theirs. But if you want to learn how to root the phone, then head on over to XDA-Developers Forums.

How can I use my phone in Europe?

Andre from Burbank, CA

Episode 1161

Andre is taking his wife on a trip overseas and he wants to use his phone to post to Instagram and other social networks. Leo says that data oversees is a huge and expensive topic because people are wired everywhere, even when they travel. But he won't want to roam in another country because data roaming in obscenely expensive. The first thing he'll want to do it disable data roaming. He'd be surprised how many people come home to a data bill in the thousands and they hardly even used data.

How can I upgrade my Verizon iPhone and keep my data plan?

Episode 1160

Jeff from Atlanta, GA
Apple iPhone 6

Jeff has unlimited data on Verizon and he wants to upgrade his phone, but they won't let him keep his data plan if he does. Leo says that is how they get people. He can pay the full amount for the phone, but if he tries to subsidize it, he'll be taken off of his unlimited data plan. He should check how much data he actually uses. He may not need to keep that unlimited data plan. The advantage of buying his own phone is that he can have an unlocked model.

Matt says that he had his unlimited data plan saved by a guy at the Verizon store by adding a line for $10 a month.

Why is my Samsung Galaxy S3 battery life so short?

Episode 1160

Roger from San Pedro, CA
Samsung Galaxy S 3

Roger says his Samsung Galaxy S3 is having battery life issues. Leo says that every battery has a limited battery life of about 500 charging cycles, so he should just replace the battery and he should be good to go. If that's not working, then the charging system may be messed up, and a simple system reset should make the phone like it was when it came from the factory. Google will have already backed all of his data backed up.

What phone should I buy for a trip to China?

Episode 1159

David from Las Vegas, NV
Xiaomi Mi 4

David is going to China for a honeymoon and he needs a phone that he can use. Leo says he'll want an unlocked phone that works best with the radio bands that China uses. Xiaomi is the best and make some great phones like the Mi 4. It has the best battery life of any phone in the world. Xiaomi has its own version of Android that runs well also. It uses SnapDragon 810 processors, and they're pretty fast. Huawei also makes phones that would work in China. There's several brands that are affordable. The key, though, is to get the proper radio bands.

How can I play a music service from my phone to my stereo via USB?

Vlad from Walnut Creek, CA

Episode 1158

Vlad wants to be able to play streaming music from his phone to his car stereo. Leo says that if he has a stereo that has Bluetooth support, then he can do it via A2DP. But if he doesn't have Bluetooth support, he can get audio through the lightning connector. If his stereo has USB, Leo isn't convinced that he could route it through Android's microUSB port. It's more likely better to use a cassette adapter that he can plug into his mobile phone's headphone jack.