jeudi 22 mars 2018

Instagram will start showing a more chronological feed after backlash

A lot of social networking platforms have moved towards “algorithmically” sorted feeds in recent years. Instead of a simple chronological list, the algorithm will try to figure out what posts you are most likely to engage with. This can be incredibly frustrating when you’re seeing 3-day old posts at the top of your feed. Instagram switched to algorithm sorting in 2016 and people have not been happy about it. The good news is they’re making some changes to improve it.

One of the most frustrating things for users is when the feed automatically refreshes. It will bump you to the top and completely shuffle up the feed again. It’s especially annoying when Instagram seems to mark a post as “read” and it becomes nearly impossible to find it again. Instagram is aware of this problem and they’re attempting to fix it with a “New Posts” button.

The “New Posts” button will allow users to choose when to refresh, rather than it happening automatically. A novel idea. Tapping the button will take users to the top of the feed with new posts. Instagram is also making changes to make more recent posts show up first in the feed. The algorithm will still be doing the sorting, but new posts will be given more priority.

In a perfect world, we’d love to see platforms like Instagram give users the choice. Not a faux choice like Twitter where your feed is still plastered with old “in case you missed it” posts. Just plain ‘ol chronological order. Unless you’re following thousands of people, it’s really not hard to keep up. Look for these Instagram changes to roll out over the coming months.

Source: Instagram

from xda-developers

Future Android version may support turning off the display while screen casting to save battery

The ability to cast a phone’s screen to other devices like the Google Chromecast is an often understated feature. It can allow for a number of different types of content to be projected onto your TV screen. You can stream games, show off photos in your gallery, and a whole lot more. It’s even possible at times to stream normally uncastable content, such as content you may need a VPN to view.

If you use the built-in cast functionality when looking at BBC iPlayer through a VPN, for example, your Chromecast will give an error as it isn’t using the VPN itself. A way around this is to instead cast your device’s own screen. It works, but it’s fairly cumbersome as you need to leave your phone’s screen switched on. It drains the battery and previously the only workaround was through the use of the root-enabled application called SecondScreen. In a series of unmerged commits, it appears this limitation may no longer be present in a future version of Android when casting.

The commits made by a Sony engineer are a work in progress and may not be merged in the future. There’s no real reason to think why it might not be yet, but an incompatibility or other reason could crop up and render the commit unusable. Still, this is great news for anyone who doesn’t want to root their phones to reap the benefits of being able to cast with their screen switched off.

Not only should there be battery benefits, but there are likely heat benefits too as the screen won’t need to be powered. It’s unknown how the logistics of such an addition will work, however, and if the content will continue to play while the display is off and casted. It’s likely that the screen will be switched off but the system is being kept in an awake state as if the screen is on, but we can’t say at this time.

from xda-developers

Google Assistant integrates with Google Pay so you can send money with just your voice

Google has been unifying and rebranding a number their services lately in an attempt to make things easier for the consumer. The two services that Google has recently rebranded include Google Pay and Wear OS. With these new changes, we’re also seeing other parts under the Google umbrella starting to integrate in a more meaningful way. The latest here is the integration of Google Pay into Google Assistant, which now allows you to send money to your friends using only your voice.

The biggest restructuring that Google did recently was with the introduction of Google Pay. Before this, the company had been tinkering with various payment services such as Android Pay, Google Wallet, and Pay with Google. Android Pay had the Android branding attached to it so it opened up some confusion as to where it could be used. Google Wallet was limited as it was only used to send or receive money between people. While the Pay with Google project did look convenient, it was limited to purchasing goods and services from websites that had partnered with the company.

Since then, Google Pay has been launched on Wear OS in Canada, Spain and Australia with the company planning to continue this expansion in the near future. Bringing Google Pay to other services from Google continues with today’s announcement of integration into Google Assistant. Google Assistant is available on both Android and iOS, so as long as you have an account with Google Pay you can issue a single voice command like “Hey Google, send Jane $15 for lunch today” to send some money to a friend.

The integration works with requesting money as well. Google’s example voice command showing “Hey Google, request $20 from Sam for the show tonight” prompts that person to send money to you. We’re told that these voice commands will be brought to the company’s Google Home devices “in the coming months.” As with most of the new features that Google announces to the public though, this sending and receiving money feature in Google Assistant using Google Pay C

Source: The Keyword

from xda-developers

What do developers think of open source, AI, machine learning, and net neutrality?

A few of the big trends in technology these last few years have been AI and machine learning. The software is getting smarter and developers have access to some awesome tools. That doesn’t mean all developers have embraced the trends. Digital Ocean, a U.S.-based cloud infrastructure provider, has released their quarterly report on developer trends. The report covers everything from AI to net neutrality to open source.

AI and machine learning are popular but not widely used. The report found 74% of developers are not using AI or ML tools in their workflow, but 81% want to learn more about them. Google TensorFlow (17%) is the most popular choice among those who are using AI and machine learning. 46% of developers are most excited about advancements in automated machine learning.

Net neutrality has been a big issue in the U.S. this year. 61% of devs worldwide believe the FCC made the wrong decision. The number jumps up to 83% when it’s only U.S. developers. However, over half (54%) of them don’t believe the repeal will affect their work and 37% did not take any action to stop the repeal.

Open source is obviously an important thing here in the Android community, but what do devs as a whole think about it? Developers were asked what they thought was the biggest advantage of open source. 37% felt it increased the sense of community among developers. 30% said it improved code quality. They were then asked about the biggest roadblocks for open source adoption. 50% said vendors prefer to lock users into proprietary systems. 46% cited a lack of professional support.

The full report has a lot of interesting information about developer interests. The survey was made up of nearly 6,000 developers ranging from age 18-65+ (most were in the 25-34 range). 90% of the participants were male and the majority work in the IT and Services field. Check out the full report linked below for more information.

Source: Digital Ocean

from xda-developers

Samsung Galaxy Note 9 will reportedly have In-Display Fingerprint Scanner after all

The idea of Samsung getting a fingerprint scanner embedded in the display of their next smartphone is becoming a running joke. For the last couple of years, there have been rumors circulating about Samsung’s next flagship shipping with an in-display fingerprint scanner. Then, as we got closer to the release of the device the rumor is squashed and Samsung ends up putting it on the back of the device. It was only a month ago when we reported on a story that claimed the company had dropped plans for an in-display fingerprint scanner on the Galaxy Note 9 but a new report from the Korea Herald says otherwise.

The trend of shrinking bezels was fueled when Samsung launched the Galaxy S8 with its new design. To accomplish this task the company had to ditch the hardware navigation buttons it held on to for all these years. This allowed the company to go with a software navbar but it left people wondering how Samsung would handle the fingerprint scanner placement. Putting a fingerprint scanner on the back of the device has been a favorite position for many within the community. However, it was around this time when publications started to report on the idea that the Galaxy S8 would be the first smartphone with an optical fingerprint scanner embedded within the display.

In March of last year, it was revealed that this wouldn’t be the case for the Galaxy S8 because Samsung had ran out of time. Since the reasoning behind this was a time limitation it led many to assume the company would have plenty of time to include it in the Galaxy Note 8. However, once again it was revealed that Samsung’s next flagship smartphone would be missing out on this feature but this time the reasoning was due to technical limitations (such as security). These rumors were squashed yet again with the release of the Galaxy S9 and the possibility of it making its way into the Galaxy Note 9 still isn’t clear.

So, while we saw the report last month which said the Galaxy Note 9 wouldn’t have the feature, a new report from the Korea Herald says the opposite. The new report cites “industry sources” and claims it is finally happening this year with Samsung Display preparing “three or four solutions” for Samsung Electronics. The source continued and said, “a final decision on adoption of the technology will be made by this month.” This source could be legit but Samsung’s track record for this feature shows anything could happen that tilts the decision one way or the other.

Source: Korea Herald

from xda-developers

Samsung Galaxy S9 now able to boot AOSP Android 8.1 Oreo

Ever since Google announced Project Treble, Android enthusiasts have hoped to one day be able to boot AOSP versions of Android on many devices with minimal effort. The idea was only theoretical at first since there hadn’t been any real-world testing done but lately, we’ve seen this come to fruition as developers have been able to accomplish this on multiple devices. Just last week we reported the Galaxy S9 was successfully booting XDA Senior Member phhusson‘s phh-Treble ROM based on Android 8.0. Now the kinks have been worked out that allows it to boot Android 8.1 Oreo.

Getting the AOSP builds of Android running on Project Treble supported devices isn’t as easy as flashing a custom ROM. It’s still infinitely easier than doing it from scratch. The Galaxy S9 and the Galaxy S9+ have only been in the hands of regular customers for a week or so, but we’re already seeing progress made when it comes to custom ROMs. To give a comparison, there is only one AOSP ROM available for the Galaxy S8 (which is based on LineageOS 14.1) and it has been out for close to a year. It really is incredible to see how Project Treble is helping the community development scene.

So, when we told you about AOSP Android 8.0 Oreo being able to boot on the Galaxy S9 we mentioned there was an issue getting 8.1 Oreo working on it. The work from XDA Senior Member iamnotkurtcobain and XDA Recognized Developer minz1 is a milestone many people were hoping for, but what about getting AOSP Android 8.1 Oreo booting on it? Getting AOSP Android 8.1 Oreo booted on the Galaxy S9 means it will be possible to test the LineageOS 15.1 or CarbonROM builds on the device.

Today, we can officially say that XDA Senior Member phhusson was able to fix the issue that testers were running into before. As you can see from the two screenshots above, we are now able to boot AOSP Android 8.1 Oreo on the Exynos Galaxy S9 thanks to Project Treble. Now that this has been achieved, many of us continue to look ahead with the next goal of testing LineageOS 15.1 or CarbonROM on the device.

from xda-developers

Best Buy reportedly drops deal to carry Huawei smartphones in the U.S.

Huawei’s year has not exactly gone as planned. The company was hoping to start the year with a big AT&T launch at CES, but it was canceled the day before the event. Several government agencies then advised against using Huawei phones on U.S. carriers. They did eventually launch the Honor 7X in the U.S., but they were hoping to make a bigger splash. Best Buy is now dealing another blow.

Best Buy has ceased ordering new smartphones from the Chinese company. They will completely stop selling their products over the next few weeks. This is a big setback for the company as Best Buy is the largest electronics retailer in the U.S. Neither Best Buy nor Huawei would give any specific details on the situation. Best Buy does not comment on vendor contracts and Huawei does not discuss partner relationship details.

You wouldn’t know it by looking at the U.S. market, but Huawei is only behind Apple and Samsung as the third-largest smartphone vendor. Their attempts to push into the U.S. have not been going well. If the company is ever going to pass Apple and Samsung, they will need the U.S. market. Unfortunately for fans of the Chinese company, it’s looking like that may be impossible for the time being. With a huge U.S. retailer out of the picture, it’s very difficult for a U.S. consumer to see a Huawei phone physically in a store.

Source: CNET

from xda-developers