Mobile Phones

Google announces Pixel 3 XL, Slate and other products

Episode 1531

Google announced the Google Pixel 3 XL this week, and Leo says it feels great in the hand. It has also added wireless charging, which Leo says is the holy grail of mobile phones, and the three major manufactures now support it. Google also announced the Pixel Slate, a new tablet with Chrome OS. It can also run Android and Linux apps. There was also the Google Home Hub tablet. Surprisingly tiny, it has a screen and is designed to be your home's hub.

Is there an app that will tell me what key a song is in?

Piano keys

Episode 1530

Henry from Prescott, AZ

Henry wants to know what's a good iPhone app to identify the key of a song being played. Leo says that is a great idea. Google has song recognition capability. There's an app called Shazam, but that can't identify the key of a song. The chatroom says the app is called Keyfinder. It's manual though, not automated.

KeyDetect is another app.

Should I replace my iPhone battery?

Apple iPhone SE

Episode 1530

Max from West LA, CA

Larry wants to know if he should spend the $29 to replace his iPhone SE battery considering the battery is over 80% capacity. Leo says that the charging capacity will continue to drop as he continues to recharge the battery since there's only a limited number of recharges he can have. But having said that, with over 80% capacity, he's probably alright. Realistically, replacing the battery will probably only add six months to that phone's life. But the battery replacement on the iPhone SE is $79, not $29.

How can I recover my phone's password?

Alcatel Android phone

Episode 1530

Robert from San Antonio, CA

Robert has a low budget Alcatel smartphone, but he forgot the password to access it. How can he recover it? Leo says on those older Android phones, the easiest thing is to erase it and start over. Most Android phones have a way to get into recovery mode. But if he can't, then he'll have to do a hard reset by pressing the power button and the volume up button at the same time, and hold it there. That should put it in recovery mode. It's a text based menu that he can navigate with the volume buttons until he reaches "reset." Then he can press the home button and that should reset the phone.

Why can't my devices see hotspot mode in my Galaxy Note 8?

Samsung Galaxy Note 8

Episode 1528

Eric from Kerrville, TX

Eric uses the Hotspot mode on his Note 8, but not every device can see the Wi-Fi connection. Leo says that there are two frequencies, 2.4GHz and 5GHz. The phone does both. So he should check on that. He should also check on the encryption he's using. His devices should at least see it, though. It sounds like SSID hiding may be turned on in the phone's hotspot settings. If it is, then he should uncheck it. He may want to take it into his carrier store.

What's replacing the iPhone SE?

Apple iPhone SE

Episode 1527

Bernie from West Los Angeles, CA

Bernie's current mobile phone is the iPhone SE 128GB, and it has 89% battery life. Leo says that's pretty good and he probably can get another few years with it. Should he buy more than one and keep them in the drawer until the current one dies? Leo says not really. Apple will replace the battery for $99 if he really wants it. The iPhone SE has been discontinued, but the iPhone XR is similar but upgraded, and currently, the iPhone 7 is taking the SE's place.

Is a GoPro a good camera for a long trip?

GoPro HERO7 Black

Episode 1527

Thomas from Costa Mesa, CA

Thomas is going on a long trip and wants to document it. Should he get a GoPro? Leo says that he can, but the iPhone is really fantastic for shooting now. How does he backup all that video data? Leo says the best option is iCloud, when he's on the road. 200GB only costs about a buck a month. The advantage is that he doesn't have to think about it, it's automatic. And he can set it to backup only when he has Wi-Fi. Leo took the best pictures on his last trip with his smartphone.

How can I keep Face ID from opening my phone for my daughter?

Apple iPhone XS

Episode 1527

Nick from Redlands, CA

Mick bought the iPhone XS and wanted to migrate all his text messages to the new phone. Leo says in the iPhone message settings, there is a backup to iCloud feature. But it has to be on beforehand in order to save all messages in the cloud. Otherwise, they are stored locally.

Mick's wife is also having trouble with Face ID, which will unlock for her daughter. Leo says they can train it better using the "setup with alternate appearance" option.