Mobile Phones

Why can't I use the FM chip in my phone?

Episoide 1473

Todd from Torrance, CA
Radio

Todd loves his Motorola Moto mobile phone because it has an FM receiver in it. Leo says that it's built into the Qualcomm chip set, but most manufacturers don't enable it, or actually disable it. That's because the phone companies want people to stream music and use data, rather than get it free over the air. Why don't phones have AM chips in them? Leo says that noise would probably prevent that.

Is the iRULU smartphone a good option on a budget?

Episode 1472

Joe from Tampa, FL
iRULU Smartphone

Joe wants to know more about the iRULU smartphone. Leo says it's a cheap, $169 phone and he's wary on cheaper gadgets because he'd get what he pays for and it's usually underpowered, easy to break, and limited in the apps he can use. Chances are, it won't be regularly updated. If he needs a good budget phone, Leo recommends the Motorola Moto G5 Plus.

But it's true that smartphones are too expensive these days.

Why can't I port my phone number to Google Voice?

Episode 1472

Tom from South Carolina
Google Voice

Tom got rid of his landline in favor of a TracFone. Now he wants to use Google Voice and port his number over, but it won't work. Leo says Google voice can't port a landline, and that's what it originally was. It's better to let Google Voice generate a phone number for him and then have Google Voice forward the calls to his TracFone number. It will continue to work, and he'll avoid the hassle.

What phone should I buy my wife?

Sam from Las Cruces, NM

Episode 1470

Sam is trying to decide on a phone for his wife. He was thinking of getting a phone that runs Tango. Leo says that Tango is awful. Took expensive. Lousy battery life. And Google doesn't support it anymore. THey're going with AR Kit. But AR really isn't the reason to buy a mobile device. It's just a gimmick. But having said that, Samsung's S9 does it, and it's a great price with some great features. And it does have AR emoji, though Leo thinks they're a bit weird.

Leo Got the Samsung Galaxy S9 and HP Envy X2

Episode 1471

Samsung Galaxy S9+

This week, Leo got the Samsung Galaxy S9. Not only does it have one of the best cameras ever, DxOMark says the screen is practically perfect in every way. Leo also says he's pleased that the fingerprint reader was finally put in the right place. But what's strange for him is that there's not much difference between the Galaxy S9 and the Note 8. It may have a faster processor and is slightly smaller, but they're practically the same.

Is there a mobile phone with an actual keyboard?

Episode 1469

Gary from Sylmar, CA
BlackBerry KEYone

Gary has kept a really old Android phone because it had a slide down keyboard. He hates virtual keyboards. Is there any physical phone out there with an actual keyboard? Leo says that ironically, BlackBerry is making them with a clean version of Android installed. BlackBerry is the last phone company to make a phone with a physical keyboard, but they're really tiny. One option is to get a better phone and then use a Bluetooth external keyboard when he needs it.

What mobile phone should I get?

Episode 1468

Cheryl from Yorba Linda, CA
Motorola Moto G5 Plus

Cheryl is trying to decide whether to take a free Samsung Galaxy Note 2 or get a newer Moto G5. Leo says that sad thing about older mobile phones is not that they aren't perfectly good. They are. They are just being left behind when it comes to security and other features. Leo recommends getting a Motorola Moto G5 Plus. It'll be faster, but more importantly, more secure. The camera is also better.