smartphones

Would keeping my phone in Airplane Mode expose me to less radiation?

Episode 1478

Veronica from Aptos, CA
Person with cell phone

Veronica wants to know if keeping her phone in Airplane Mode will expose her to less radiation. Leo says yes, it would. Can she also use Wi-Fi calling? Leo says it's better, but there's no evidence that it will or won't be harmful. The radiation would come from the cell phone radio, not the Wi-Fi. Using headphones instead of putting her phone up to her ear is also better.

Can I make my landline mobile?

Episode 1476

Todd from Palmdale, CA
Phone conversation

Todd says he had a friend that was able to make her landline phone mobile. Leo says it's possible to do it the other direction. If he had a cell phone, there are a number of devices to turn it into a home phone. He could dock the cell phone into a docking station, and it would look like he'd have a regular landline phone, but it would be tied to his cell phone. There may have been a device that Todd's friend had that made her landline phone into a form of walkie-talkie, but the transmitter she would have needed for that would need to be really significant.

What should I buy for my first smartphone?

Episode 1474

Richard from Tampa, FL
Apple iPhone SE

Richard is looking to get his first smartphone. Leo says the most important question to ask when getting a first smartphone is what phones his friends and family use. He should find out what carriers they have and how happy they are with them. Apple's iPhone makes an ideal first phone because it's so easy to use, but his friends and family will be his first line of support when he's learning to use it. The iPhone is a bit pricey and there are some good budget Android options out there.

Should I get the ASUS ZenPhone AR or the Samsung S9?

Episode 1471

Sam from Las Cruces, NM
Samsung Galaxy S9

Sam was looking at the ASUS ZenPhone AR because of Tango and Daydream from Google, but Leo says it's terrible, and he should not get it. Tango is Google's imaging capability that they have since stopped supporting. It's kind of like Apple's face recognition technology, but it pointed outward instead of inward and it had 3D mapping. It turned out that no one wanted to make a phone with the Tango hardware because it was too expensive, added too much complexity, and required too much battery.

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.

How can I move data off my phone?

Episode 1463

Harold from Riverside, CA
USB

Harold wants to know if he can get the data from his Android smartphone. Leo says that if his phone port supports USB OTG (on the go) then he'll have the ability to connect a flash drive to it and move his data over with an app. He should check his USB settings and see if he can use PTP (photo transfer protocol) or MTP (media transfer protocol). He can look under 'connected devices' in Android settings. Then he can copy stuff over. On the Mac, he should use the File Transfer Protocol. Windows should just read it as a drive.

Samsung's Future Galaxy Note Could Have Foldable Screen

Episode 1462

Samsung Galaxy Note8

Samsung has been quite vocal about its plans to build a smartphone with a foldable screen in it, and we could see that next year with the Galaxy Note. On the front it will look like a regular smartphone, but then you'll be able to open it up to a 6 or 7" tablet. That will likely cost a lot more, and Samsung has already said it will be raising the price of the next Galaxy S phone, starting at around $850.

Read more at techradar.com.

Samsung Galaxy S9 to Be Announced Later This Month

Episode 1459

Samsung Galaxy S8

Samsung will be announcing the Galaxy S9 smartphone later this month at Mobile World Congress. We expect the phone to be more expensive this time around, at $850, and it will look a lot like the Galaxy S8. It will have dual cameras, but for the most part, it likely won't be anything major that would prompt an upgrade unless you're already in the market for a new phone anyway.

Is the GPS on my Android phone broken?

Episode 1459

Steve from Missouri
LG Stylo 2

Steve has an LG Stylo 2 and he's starting to lose his GPS lock. His Bluetooth also comes and goes. Leo says the Stylo has a weak antenna. That could mean a failing antenna or faulty GPS chip. This could be caused by heat too. That's the likely culprit because when the phone overheats, it's going to protect everything by shutting it off. Leo also thinks that the phone has just worn out and it's time to get a new one.