Mobile Phones

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

How Can I Avoid Duplicates When I Sync Contacts?

Sunshine Contacts for iOS

Episode 1789

Richard from Del Rey Beach, FL

Richard has several platforms with different OSs, and he's having issues with maintaining contacts. He gets a lot of duplicates. Leo says that synchronization is a hard, universal problem. It guards against deleting anything, just in case. So you end up with duplicates. Leo uses Google Contacts. But even that doesn't solve the duplicates issue. But the sync is quite good. One solution that Leo recommends, that's iPhone only, is Sunshine. It can dedupe, as well as sync.

Why Am I Not Getting Notifications From My Alarm Motion Security App?

Zigbee Monitor Sensor

Episode 1787

Brian from Mission Viejo, CA

Brian has had an issue with an alarm system for two years that drives him nuts. They are supposed to get push notifications in the app, but often they don't. Or one person gets them, and one doesn't. Leo says that iOS can be very aggressive at shutting down background apps. Notifications can also be dialed up and down with sensitivity to not get a notification every 10 seconds when the wind blows. So it could be dialed down too far. If you haven't visited the app in a while, it may just be shut off. Or the company's servers may be down. There's a lot of points of failure there. 

How Can I Get Tornado Warnings on My Phone?

Tornado Spy

Episode 1787

Stacey from Michigan

Stacey got tired of missing tornado warnings. She had a tornado rip through her front yard! So she got an emergency radio that she can tune into the NOAA weather channel. She also uses an app called Tornado Spy, which uses crowdsourcing to advise of tornado activity in your area.  

Stacey also started a podcast on Origami. It's called The Origami Show. And she wants a recommendation on a good mic. Leo says that Stacey's best bet is the Audio Technica AT2020 USB+. It's $150. 

Why Did My Cell Coverage Suddenly Disappear?

t-mobile

Episode 1786

Patty from Temecula, California

Patty is having issues with coverage in her area, and it's all of a sudden. Leo says that her carrier may have turned off a tower to do maintenance. But it may also be that Patty needs to go into the store and get an updated SIM card since they recently merged with Sprint and turned off that tower. So you need a new T-Mobile Sim. Patty should also consider changing carriers. Word is, that Verizon is better in her area. But it's also the most expensive. 

What's a Good Android Phone With a Large Screen?

Motorola G9

Episode 1785

Mark from Grand Rapids, MI

Mark has a Google Pixel XL where there are no more updates, and the battery is dying. Is the Pixel 4a a good economical alternative? What about a larger screen? Leo says the Motorola Moto G9 offers a pure Android experience at an affordable Mid-Range price. It also has a great battery. But it's taller than it is wide. There's also a new Moto G Power that has a 6 1/2 inch screen.  And the Motorola One.

Why Is Downloading an Image via Text So Slow?

Texting

Episode 1785

Jamie from Corona, CA

Jamie has an issue that it takes forever to download an image that someone sends to her via text. Like days. Leo says that points to a problem with her cellphone carrier. The gateway between multiple carriers may be down or in need of repair. For Jamie's Samsung, it's Samsung messages. Try using Google Messages and see if it gets better.  You can change it in your message settings. Since her carrier is Sprint, it could also be that there's an issue since TMobile recently purchased them. So there's a lot of factors that you have to check on.

Why Doesn't My New Samsung Phone Have All My Contacts?

Microsoft Outlook

Episode 1785

Mike from Corona, CA

Ron recently picked up a Samsung S8 mobile phone, but his new Outlook contacts don't come up on his phone. Just his old contacts. It's synced with Outlook at work. Leo says that to make sure everything is all synced up. You may be synced to Samsung contacts, and you need to be sure that it's synced up with Outlook. There is also a setting in Outlook to use autofill with contacts.

Google and Samsung Developing a New Chip for Mobile Phones

Mobile Processor

Episode 1785

Google and Samsung are in the midst of developing a new chip for their mobile phone platforms. Qualcomm has dominated the mobile phone processor category for years, but Apple began to move away in favor of their own iOS-based processors, which became the foundation for the M1 design. Now Google and Samsung are making the same move, taking mobile processor development in house.

What Do I Do With a New iPhone I Don't Need?

iPhone 12

Episode 1784

Diane from Norco, CA

Diane recently discovered that someone used her credit card to buy an iPhone 12, and it was shipped to her, not the person who made the fraudulent charge. She has disputed the charge, but Apple doesn't seem to want the phone back. Being that she's not an Apple person, what does she do with it? Leo says you can use it, but there may be someone in the family if you don't want it. Leo guesses that she can always sell it on eBay. Apple doesn't tie it to you until it's activated. You could try activating it first.