Welcome back to this week’s pick of the best mobile news stories, and what a week it’s been! With Google rolling out a spam-busting update for their Phone app, Android announcing a new feature that could help save lives and Samsung’s latest step in creating foldable phones, there’s plenty to talk about. We’ve also got updates on a new, sleeker Google Maps design plus the scoop on the new Blackberry DTEK50, so let’s get started.
Stand up to spam with Google’s Phone app update
There’s nothing more annoying than being plagued by spam callers, something which seems to be a curse of the 21st century as we are constantly glued to our mobile phones, but Google is fighting back with an updated version of its Phone app. Available on Nexus and Android One devices, the app update not only allows you to have caller ID alert you when a call from an unknown number is suspected spam, it also gives you the option to block the number so you can be spam-free, or whitelist it if it’s not actually a nuisance call – handy, right?
Android can help to save your life
Mobile phones are about to make it easier than ever for police, ambulance and fire services to find you in an emergency. If you call the emergency services from your mobile, they will be able to pinpoint your exact location thanks to a new feature called Emergency Location Service, available on devices using Android 2.3 software or above. Whether you’re in the middle of the wilderness or inside a building with a complicated layout, the feature will use a combination of Wi-Fi, GPS and other technology to find your exact location and send the information directly to the emergency services, eliminating any chance of human error. So, it’s Android to the rescue!
Samsung create a more flexible future
As we mentioned in last week’s mobile news, Samsung’s Galaxy Note 7 is set to be released next week and will feature a fancy, new curved screen but Samsung seem to be keen to take the next step: foldable screens. The company have released a new pair of patents that detail plans for creating a foldable design that will not damage any of the phone’s crucial components, featuring what they call ‘an artificial muscle’. This ‘muscle’ moves as the screen bends and keeps everything nice and safe – very clever! It’s clear that this is just the beginning of Samsung’s innovative ideas and we don’t know about you, but we’re confident that mobile phones will only become more flexible as time goes on.
Google Maps gets a make-over
Google Maps is probably one of the most useful tools on any mobile phone, constantly saving us from getting lost and helping us to find the best route to our favourite locations (i.e. places to eat) and it’s about to get a whole lot better looking. Thanks to an update, the latest version of Google Maps for iOS, desktop and Android devices features improvements such as a scaled back interface that’s easier to read, plus colour coding so that you can easily pick out important locations like hospitals, schools and local hot spots. Better looking and functional, what could be better?
The update also includes a handy multiple destination routes feature but that’s not all; you’ll also be able to save on data usage with the new version of Google Maps thanks to a (still unconfirmed) tweak that will make tools, such as the directions feature, available offline. So, you’ll have more data to do important, adult things… like playing Pokémon Go.
BlackBerry DTEK50 release date
The shiny new DTEK50 from BlackBerry is going to be the first of three new phones that they plan to release this year, and we’re pretty excited about it. The guys at BlackBerry unveiled the DTEK50 this week – their first completely touchscreen phone, powered by Android – and it’s looking good. With a 5.2 inch full HD 1080 x 1920 resolution display, 8 megapixel camera (ideal for selfies) and 16GB of storage, this smartphone features Android 6.0 Marshmallow and is purpose built to keep all of your information secure – even monitoring your security settings and suggesting how it could be improved – effectively putting the ‘smart’ in smartphone. The DTEK50 is due to be released on 8 August and we’re sure that the hype will keep on growing!
There you have it, our top picks of this week’s mobile news! Be sure to check back next Friday for more updates from the Tesco Mobile team.