Mobile Phones

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

Why are my photos disappearing from my phone?

Episode 1363

Chip from Los Angeles, CA
Google Photos

Chip's Samsung Galaxy mobile phone had a bunch of pictures on it, but they started disappearing. Leo says that there may be an app that is moving the photos to a folder, and they aren't really missing. Or the images are being uploaded and then deleted to preserve space. For instance, Google Photos does this. In fact, Leo recommends using Google Photos anyway, since Chip will be assured that his photos are being backed up to the cloud.

How can I safely use a hotspot?

Episode 1362

Frederick from Detroit, MI
Tiny Hardware Firewall

Frederick uses an open access port with his iPhone but it always asks him to sign in. Leo says that's called a captive portal, which is done when using a hotspot. He needs to activate the portal. He should point his browser to 1.1.1.1. Or he can choose to "forget" the Wi-Fi access point. That will reset it and then he can sign back in. Leo actually recommends getting a travel router like the Tiny Hardware Firewall to protect him.

Why are my contacts wrong in WhatsApp?

Episode 1361

Marty from Los Angeles, CA
WhatsApp on Android

Marty uses WhatsApp with his family, but when he gets a call from someone, it has been displaying the wrong contact. Leo says that WhatsApp looks to the phone's contacts in order to identify who's in it. Marty's personal number may have gotten added to another contact, and all he needs to do is delete his number from that specific contact and it should be fine. Leo says it's probably just a messed up database.

Should I put Linux on my old laptop?

Episode 1360

Joe from Corona, CA
XUbuntu

Joe has an old Vista computer that he uses mostly for syncing an old Windows Phone PDA. Joe would like to take that laptop and put Linux on it with an SSD. Leo says that Linux is a good idea, but that Vista laptop is probably not fast enough to get any great benefit from an SSD. But he should definitely install Linux on it. Leo likes XUbuntu and LUbuntu, which is designed to run on the older hardware.

Is smartphone tethering secure?

Episode 1360

David from El Segundo, CA
Tiny Hardware Firewall

David tethers his computer through his mobile device, but he's wondering if it's secure. Leo says it's probably more secure because cell phones are encrypted now. Using the Wi-Fi through his phone is a different matter, if he's at a public hotspot. At that point, his traffic is out in the clear and easily grabbed. If he's going to use a hotspot, Leo advises using the Tiny Hardware Firewall and a VPN. The Tiny Hardware Firewall is like a router that then connects to his phone.

How can I do multitrack recording with Android?

Episode 1359

Jill from Northridge, CA
Acapella

Jill wants to find an app where she can record herself playing a few different instruments and then play them all together. Leo says there aren't many apps for audio recording and play back on Android because of a massive latency bug. Leo believes it's in the kernel, and they haven't fixed it yet. She can find out more about it at superpowered.com.

Should I buy the HTC U Ultra Android phone?

Episode 1359

Ryan from Anaheim, CA
HTC U Ultra

Ryan has an Axon 7 Android phone. Leo says it was one of his favorite phones last year with excellent sound quality, great battery life, and half the price of flagship phones. Ryan is ready to upgrade though and he's looking at the HTC U Ultra. Leo hasn't used it yet, and it doesn't come out until mid March. From the looks of it, Leo says it's a sweet phone, but it doesn't have a headphone jack!

How can I restore my WhatsApp chats to the iPhone?

Episode 1359

Gordon from Los Angeles, CA
WhatsApp for iOS

Gordon has made the switch to the iPhone and wants to know how to get his old WhatsApp messages back on his iPhone. Leo says that it was smart that Gordon backed it up to Google Drive, but WhatsApp says it depends on the phone being used. Since you recover chats from iCloud, Leo has a hunch it's not cross platform. Apple is very strict on how users can access data within the iPhone platform, but it's usually app centric.

Since Gordon backed them up, he can at least access them from Google Drive.