Not regulators, but jostling for control behind the failed Sprint merger with T-Mobile

Sprint’s merger with T-Mobile didn’t go through not because the carriers were afraid that the deal will face too much anti-monopoly backlash from the regulators, and they’ll have to make too many concessions, as was the official explanation, but rather because the carriers’ parents couldn’t agree about the custody rights. 

T-Mobile’s Deutsche Telekom owner, it turned out, planned to keep the controlling stake in the resulting mobile industry behemoth, which didn’t sit well with Softbank’s Masayoshi Son, who happens to be the current chairman of Sprint Corporation, too. …


iPhone volume buttons no longer control your ring volume? Here's how to fix that!

Anyone owning an iPhone out there, either old user or newcomer, who has iOS 11 on their device has probably noticed something weird since updating — the phone’s volume buttons don’t control its ring volume.

Wha-a-at?

Yeah, for some reason, Apple thought that it’s better to have the volume buttons only control media volume, not ringtone or alarms. But fear not, that’s easily remedied with the touch of a setting. In fact, it’s a toggle that has been there for quite a while, it’s just now that Apple decided to reverse its default position. Here’s where to find …

Fossil launches its first sporty smartwatch, the Q Control

Fossil is absolutely relentless this year. After announcing no less than 300 smartwatches earlier this year, the company launched yet another wearable device, the Q Control. Unlike any of Fossil’s other smartwatches, this one is aimed at a certain category of buyers.

Fossil Q Control is the company’s first sporty smartwatch. As expected, it runs Android Wear 2.0 and fully supports iPhones and Android handsets running OS 4.3 or later. Fossil also confirmed the smartwatch features connected GPS and compatibility with Strava, as well as Google Fit.

Hardware-wise, …

YouTube TV gains voice control on Google Home and Google Home Mini

Google has just announced it has improved its YouTube TV service with voice control support on Google Home and Google Home Mini. The search giant also confirmed Google Home Max will receive the same feature soon.

Obviously, you can only use it in those U.S. cities where Google’s YouTube TV service is available, and you’ll also require a subscription. If you don’t have a YouTube TV subscription yet, you can get one now ($35 per month) and receive a Chromecast for free (limited-time offer).

In order to cast YouTube TV on your TV, you must set up your Google …

Google Assistant can now control Chromecasts from your Android or iOS handset

The Google Chromecast allows you to stream content through your television set by plugging it into your set’s HDMI port. Simple as that. But only a Google Home smart speaker would allow you to bark a command to Google Assistant demanding that Chromecast stream a particular bit of content. Not even your expensive edge-to-edge models like the Samsung Galaxy S8 or the Essential Phone could do that.

Well folks, those days are over. Late last night, Google confirmed that you can now control Chromecasts with Google Assistant on your Android or iOS flavored handset. For example, you can specify …

Best remote control apps for Android (2017)

A few years ago, it seemed as though smartphones with IR blasters were the way to go. In an ever increasingly smarter and interconnected world, it would only make sense for us to be able to control pretty much everything from the pocket computers that we carry on us everywhere. Alas, most smartphone manufacturers would beg to differ (*cough* Samsung *cough*), and thus we see less and less devices out there, properly equipped with the hardware needed to control the devices in your house. …

The iOS 11 Control Center disconnects Wi-Fi or Bluetooth, but doesn't turn them off

Apple has approached the connectivity toggles in its shiny new Control Center overlay in iOS 11 a tad differently this time, it turns out. Security researchers are warning that instead of turning the Wi-fi or Bluetooth radios off completely when you tap on the respective switch in Control Center, it simply disconnects whatever gear is hooked up to use the respective wireless standard. 

The radios themselves, however, will keep humming in the background in a low-power state. As per Apple, this is done to ensure that some features can be accessed immediately:
In …

Update to Windows Maps allows users to change vocal volume control

This past June, Microsoft disseminated an update to Windows Map. Released for the fast ring, a more stable version is now ready to take over the voice control for the app. Users will get to use new features and  change the intensity of vocals used with the app. Thanks to the update, those using Windows Maps  can now choose between a softer, normal or louder sounding voice when using the turn-by-turn directions. In addition, with the update, users can access their Bluetooth settings directly from  the app’s settings menu.

A toggle switch will allow you to enable or disable …

Results: do you like the new Control Center in iOS 11?

The Control Center of iOS is a little overlay, which an iPhone user will probably open about a dozen times per day, as it contains nifty buttons for the Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, quick shortcuts to Calculator and Flashlight, and sliders for display brightness and sound volume. It has been around for about 4 years, first introduced with iOS 7, and hasn’t changed much over time. The exception here is last year’s iOS 10, which made Control Center into a 2-page deal, separating system controls and shortcuts from the media player toggles.

In iOS 11, the overlay is getting a full — and we’d say much-needed …