Mobile Phones

iPhone, Android, Windows Phone, Blackberry, or feature phones.

Samsung's Folding Phone Screen Failures

Samsung Galaxy Fold

Episode 1585

This week, several reviewers who got the Samsung Galaxy Fold folding phone experienced catastrophic screen failures after just a day or two of use. Leo feels bad for Samsung since many reviewers who were sceptical of the design had begun to praise it. But then four different reviewers experienced screen failures: One from a piece of debris that caught in the hinge broke the screen, two others who inadvertently removed the protective film of the screen itself, and several others just plain died. It's like battery-gate all over again. 

Should I Buy a Used or Refurbished Phone?

Moto G6

Episode 1584

Ernest from Los Angeles, CA

Ernest needs a new phone but can't afford $1,000 to buy a brand new one. Should he buy a refurbished or used one? Leo says he can, but only from the manufacturer or a trusted reseller like Gazelle. But there are plenty of affordable Android phones out there, like the Motorola Moto G6 that are only a few hundred dollars. One Plus is another and the benefit is that they come unlocked. It's about $500 but for the price, the Moto G6 is an excellent choice.

What Happened to my Local TV Channels?

Hauppauge

Episode 1584

Mark from Tustin, California

Mark's channels have disappeared from his Hauppauge tuner. What happened? Leo says that the FCC has made stations shift frequencies, and have advised that users rescan for missing channels. Check out TVAnswers.org for when and how to rescan. There's more information here - https://losangeles.cbslocal.com/video/4040289-cbs2-rescan-day/. But it may also be a Hauppauge issue.

Samsung's Folding Phone Breaks Easily

Samsung Galaxy Fold

Episode 1584

The infamous $2,000 Samsung Galaxy Fold folding phone has been reported by reviewers to break after just a day or two of regular use. Leo says this is the reason why early adopters should avoid bleeding edge technology. Samsung says that two of the reviewers removed a protective film that was required to keep the phone in shape, but other reviewers had debris that got jammed into the hinge causing the screen to crack. That's normal use. While Samsung says that reviewers were mistreating the phone, Leo's advising users not to buy this one.

How Good is the Motorola Moto G7?

G7

Episode 1583

Jose from Modesto, CA

Jose is looking to buy a Moto G7 unlocked and wants to know Rich's opinion on the phone. Rich thinks the Moto G7 is a great phone that works on all major carriers while sporting a decent processor, a big screen, and a fine camera (under bright light) for the price. Rich says a phone does not have to cost $1000 like the iPhone and Samsung S10+, and Jose should have a satisfactory time with the Moto G7 through T-Mobile.

Is Google Fi Good for International Travel?

Fi

Episode 1583

Don from Victor, MT

Don has a Samsung Galaxy S9 and they're going to take a cruise to the Baltic soon. He wants to know if he should sign up with Google Fi before he does. Rich used to buy the SIMs, which is the best way to do it. Don should check out Prepaidwithdata.wikia.com for what is the best in the countries Don is travelling to.  He can also try getting a MiFi Mobile Hotspot. That way he can use it overseas with multiple devices. He can also try using the Passport plan with his carrier. He can also check out Verizon's international options, which offer 2G coverage for free for users. 

Is it Safe to Send Documents Scanned by my Phone?

Google Drive

Episode 1583

Dolores from Lancaster, CA

Dolores wants to know if it's safe to scan images of documents and send them to her attorney. Rich says it depends on the app itself.  Take proper precautions and use a reliable/reputable app. Rich uses Google Drive to scan apps on an Android phone. On the iPhone, scan the document with Apple's NOTES app, or with Scannable.

Once she's scanned them, then she wants to be sure she can send them securely.

Why Does my iPhone Screen Go Dim?

 iPhone 8

Episode 1583

Rose from Los Angeles, CA

Rose is having issues where her iPhone 8 screen just goes dim. Rich says that there is a sensor on her phone that will go dim if it gets obscured. Rose should clean her screen, or check that if her case is interfering with her phone's sensor. It may also be a failing sensor, so bring it to the Apple Store and have them run diagnostics to determine what's going on. 

Are 3rd-Party Phone Carriers a Good Deal?

cricket

Episode 1583

Steve from Calabassas, CA

Steve wants to know a good off-brand cell service that runs on the back of a major carrier (called MVNOs). What is he not getting for the cheaper price? Rich says it depends on what he wants out of the carrier. A lot of times, the virtual operators limit data speed when we access the network. It's like being stuck in the slow lane. But we get what we pay for. So it comes down to what Steve needs from the service. Also, look at the coverage maps to be sure the carrier has the best coverage in the area.