Mobile Phones

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

Why does my iPhone volume go down when I get a text?

Episode 1524

Brian from Lancaster, CA

Brian has an iPhone 7 and when he's listening to music by bluetooth, and he gets a text, the volume turns way down and stays there. What can he do to stop that? Rich says to do a restart or refresh. There could be an odd interaction between apps. Another thing to try is go into settings, general, reset. Then select Reset Network settings. That will reset your bluetooth. But you'll have to re-pair them.

Have I lost my contacts?

Samsung Galaxy S9

Episode 1524

Jim from Roseburg, OR

Jim got a Samsung S9, but he erased all his contacts when he got rid of the phone, and they were deleted on his computer. What can he do? He used an old contacts backup from an older phone. Rich says that Jim should check Google Contacts to see if they are on there. Being an Android mobile device, all the contacts should be there. They could also be saved to the Samsung cloud. He should Import his usable contacts there, and then he can make changes there and import them to his new phone once he's got them all worked out.

National Test of IPAWS Emergency System Happens Thursday

FEMA logo

Episode 1524

On Thursday, FEMA will conduct a test of IPAWS: Integrated Public Alert and Warning System. It will send a message to all the phones in the US to test the infrastructure of the warning system. The test will happen around 2:18 PM ET and will last a half hour.

Rich says it's a big deal that the federal government will take command of every cell phone tower in the country in order to reach everyone at once with a test emergency text message. Rich also says that while there is an opt out provision for some emergency alerts, this isn't one of them. You cannot disable it.

Why won't my iPhone charge?

Apple iPhone

Episode 1524

Maryanne from Santa Barbara, CA

Maryanne's iPhone 6 won't recharge and now it's dead. What can she do? Rich says that her iPhone battery could be depleted or faulty. The battery in the iPhone has a limited number of charges, and once it surpasses that, the battery will die. And being an iPhone 6, it could be that the battery needs replacing. But before doing that, she should try using a gentle burst of canned air into the lightning port. If it starts to charge, then she'll know there was just a little dirt or fluff blocking the connection. If it doesn't work, then it's time for a trip to the Apple Store.

Why isn't my iPhone charging with my power brick?

Apple iPhone 8

Episode 1524

Scott from Harlington, TX

Scott got an Anker backup battery and sometimes he gets a warning that the accessory may not be supported, and it stops charging the phone. It even does it with the Apple charging block. Rich says that Apple has a program called Apple MFI (made for iPhone). If his accessory is MFI, then the culprit could be a failing cable. It could also be that his phone's connector could have some lint in it preventing his cable from connecting completely. Rich suggests taking a toothpick and sweeping it out. A gentle burst of canned air is a good idea too, but he should be sure to be gentle.

What does my streaming video look better from my smartphone than my desktop?

Logitech C930

Episode 1522

Dave from Paris, CA

Dave is a YouTuber, and when he streams live, it works better using LTE and his smartphone than his webcam and desktop using Wi-Fi. Leo says that in theory, they should be the same. Leo says that his Logitech C930 webcam could be misconfigured. Or, he could consider better lighting. Better lighting is always an improvement and helps the camera to pick exposure, color saturation, etc. At the end of the day, though, his LG smartphone probably just has a better camera.