Google Android catch-all

I use Chrome occasionally on my phone, but every time I open it it starts by opening the page that was opened last, is there any way to stop it from doing that? I toured all the settings I could find and couldn't see a relevant option.

Not letting it store any history would achieve that, I guess, but that's more extreme than what I want.

Chrome for Android remembers the tabs that were open unless you explicitly go into the tab switcher and then use the overflow menu to close all of them. Of course, signing out of your Google account in Chrome might make it work the way you want, and there are other browsers out there for Android, like Firefox.

Kurrelgyre wrote:

and there are other browsers out there for Android, like Firefox.

Which I highly recommend using. Firefox is Android's killer app IMO, since it's the only mobile browser with real honest to god extensions support.

Can't decide between a Pixel or a Nexus 6P. I'm in a slightly weirder position financially than I've ever been in with a baby coming in a couple weeks and the wife having been laid off, but my current phone is beginning to act strange. I was planning on upgrading to a Pixel but then the wife got laid off and that threw a bit of a wrench in things, obviously.

Looks like there's a wait to get a Pixel XL which is what I'd prefer to have, but it also comes with a hefty price tag anyway. Ideally I'd like to have the phone ASAP so I can get settled in before the baby comes (Jan. 24th). Having an XL delivered on the 20th would be cutting it close.

The 6P is older, but is still beefy and has a pretty good camera. The larger screen from the standard Pixel is awesome. They're getting close to sold out but can get one for $450 still.

The regular Pixel is smaller than I'd like, but I'd make it work because the sticker shock on the XL is just so damn high.

So I'm stuck thinking I'll go 6P and pay out of pocket the $450 or do the ~$30/month installment plan on the Pixel.

Is the Pixel really worth $200 than the 6P?

garion333 wrote:

Is the Pixel really worth $200 than the 6P?

Can't say 100% as I've never seen the 6P. But I do love my pixel.

Camera is fantastic. Fingerprint scanner is lightning quick and I love having it on the back for quick index finger access. Can use either phone with Fi, so that's a tie.

Daydream VR has been pretty cool so far too, but I got that free with pre-order. Not sure another $80 on top of phone justifies it.

edit: nevermind, I'm trying to figure out what's going on with CyanogenMod. Rumor claimed they shut down instantly when Lineage was announced, but they look partway up at the moment.... but I'm not able to actually download images. So I dunno.

I'm now interested in either a Google Home or an Amazon Echo. I'm leaning towards the Home. The Echo has the API out there for add-in skills, but I just don't think you can beat Google's natural language AI. I also use the Chromecast which will tie into Google. Unfortunately I buy my music from Amazon, but I'm guessing pretty much everything is accessible from YouTube anyway.

Has anyone else done research/tested out both to come to some conclusions?

I kind of hate having my stuff split up between ecosystems that aren't compatible.

Nevin73 wrote:

I'm now interested in either a Google Home or an Amazon Echo. I'm leaning towards the Home. The Echo has the API out there for add-in skills, but I just don't think you can beat Google's natural language AI. I also use the Chromecast which will tie into Google. Unfortunately I buy my music from Amazon, but I'm guessing pretty much everything is accessible from YouTube anyway.

Has anyone else done research/tested out both to come to some conclusions?

I kind of hate having my stuff split up between ecosystems that aren't compatible.

I just got the Google Home. My biggest complaint is that it only works with one account which is silly since most households have more then one person. The IFTTT support opens up some doors.

I buy my music from Amazon too, but thankfully they are DRM free. I run a Plex server but there isn't Plex support on Home yet.

What's your use case for it / what are you looking to do with it?

I have an Echo and the only thing Google-related that I really do with it is that I have it hooked up to my Google Calendar so that I can ask it what I've got on my schedule for the day, and it works fine for that.

Don't have a Chromecast so I couldn't tell you what kind of integration (if any) is on offer there.

Does anyone happen to have a Samsung Gear Fit 2 and could opine on it? I'm looking at it as a replacement for my Pebble.

Double post.

Having a use case for new technology is the exact thing I ask anyone wanting something new, so good point there.

I guess I'm most excited about a verbal AI helper. The phone-based Google Assistant is only usable when my phone is unlocked so an always available AI would be useful, especially since I work from home. Also, since I utilize Google for contacts, calendar, and notes (Keep), the integration with should be more seamless. I don't care about buying stuff through Alexa since I prefer to read reviews and whatnot prior to my buying decisions.

Nevin73 wrote:

Having a use case for new technology is the exact thing I ask anyone wanting something new, so good point there.

I guess I'm most excited about a verbal AI helper. The phone-based Google Assistant is only usable when my phone is unlocked so an always available AI would be useful, especially since I work from home. Also, since I utilize Google for contacts, calendar, and notes (Keep), the integration with should be more seamless. I don't care about buying stuff through Alexa since I prefer to read reviews and whatnot prior to my buying decisions.

I will say that one thing I wish the Echo could do that it doesn't is add reminders to my Google Calendar. It reads events that are already there just fine, but if I try to tell it "remind me to do X at Y o'clock" the way I could to my phone, it will just try to set a timer or alarm for Y o'clock, which is less than helpful.

So it's certainly possible that the Google Home might be better for stuff like that, but not owning one myself, I couldn't say for sure.

Taharka wrote:

Does anyone happen to have a Samsung Gear Fit 2 and could opine on it? I'm looking at it as a replacement for my Pebble.

I don't know anything about the Gear Fit, but I bought a TicWatch 2 for my daughter for Christmas. I am thinking about getting myself one now to replace my Pebble Time. I don't know what you are looking for, but it does all that I need. It's um... a watch, minor health tracking, battery that can last more than a work day, it's not Android wear, not over $200, etc.

Since it is my daughter's, I haven't spent too much time playing with it, but it seems like the only thing that can fill Pebbles shoes.

You're on the right track. I'm looking for a replacement for my pebble that will do notifications for things like incoming calls, emails, texts, or app alerts, with some built in fitness monitors (heart rate, etc.)

Taharka wrote:

You're on the right track. I'm looking for a replacement for my pebble that will do notifications for things like incoming calls, emails, texts, or app alerts, with some built in fitness monitors (heart rate, etc.)

Oh yeah, it gets all those notifications too.

Let us know what you get. When I need to replace my Pebble I am going to need some help.

One thing that is really tempting about Samsung's newest watch, it's tap to pay feature works on all card readers, even ones that don't have NFC. It will send out a magnetic signal that it can read.

IMAGE(http://i3.kym-cdn.com/photos/images/facebook/000/288/653/844.jpg)

Yeah, I have a Samsung phone, and I use Samsung pay all the time. Works a treat and blows people's minds when they go, "we don't have apple pay" and I say, "watch this"

Anyone used a Chromebook? I've never considered one, but now they can access the Play Store. That makes it compete directly with tablets IMO. They are bigger than I like, but the main reason I like the smaller tablets is because they are easier to hold in bed. A laptop is even easier to hold because you don't have to hold it

I've used ones that will probably never support the Play Store. They're fine, but by the time you get a good quality high resolution screen, you're into fully capable PC pricing, and they just can't do all the things I'd need a system to do. I do admit, though, Samsung's newest are often being positioned against the iPad Pro and larger Android tablets instead of traditional PCs, and from that angle they look pretty darn nice.

I have one and prefer it to a tablet for 'wasting time on the internet while watching a baseball/football game' because I can actually type on it. Other than that the only other major use it gets is when I travel since I couldn't care less if it gets stolen.

I've actually been using a small Chromebook for work over the past 18 months. Our company uses G Suite, Slack, and a few other apps, and I can do everything I need for work on a Chromebook.

It only cost $150-$200, so I figured it would tide me over until I decided on a better machine, but I haven't felt pressed to upgrade it yet. It's also robust enough that I can hook it to my TV and stream shows from FX, TBS, and other sites that don't have great apps yet.

Polliwog wrote:

I've actually been using a small Chromebook for work over the past 18 months. Our company uses G Suite, Slack, and a few other apps, and I can do everything I need for work on a Chromebook.

It only cost $150-$200, so I figured it would tide me over until I decided on a better machine, but I haven't felt pressed to upgrade it yet. It's also robust enough that I can hook it to my TV and stream shows from FX, TBS, and other sites that don't have great apps yet.

What make and model do you use? I've already got a big beefy laptop that I use as my main work machine, but it's portable only by courtesy; I'm looking for something that I can easily slip into a messenger bag and take to work lunches and stuff to take notes on. Has to have a keyboard that's at least usable, has to be able to run off battery for a decent running time, and has to run Google Docs / Drive and Slack, and that's about all it has to do, so what you've got sounds perfect.

I had been looking at some of the lower-end Surface Pros on the theory that nobody has ever regretted buying too much computer for themselves, but even so, that might be overkill for my needs.

My work will pay for it whatever I get, so price isn't THAT much of an object, but it's a small business with fewer than 10 employees and every bit of budget that goes into one thing can't go into another, so I don't actually want to make them pay for a new toy. I'm more concerned with getting something that will have legs so that I don't wind up wanting to replace it in a year and spending more money than I saved by buying something cheap.

Taharka wrote:

Does anyone happen to have a Samsung Gear Fit 2 and could opine on it? I'm looking at it as a replacement for my Pebble.

I had one. I liked it. Does some nice stuff. Good interface, battery is 1.5-2 days. I ended up returning it, though, and bought a used S2. They both do about the same fitness wise but the S2 does a bit more. The rotating bezel is a great way to interact with the watch and I wish companies would steal it. Both use the same basic software, though. The Fit is slightly more comfortable and more fitness bandy. They both allow you to decide to put apps on the watch. There isn't a ton of apps out there but there are enough. For me, that's a good thing. I don't want to check stocks on my watch, shop on amazon, or search for homes with Zillow. I want basic stuff. Notificatons, responding to notifications, and voice calls/texts. That and good fitness tracking. I don't know if it's a good replacement for a pebble. I was looking at the Pebble 2 but, thankfully, didn't bite and then they went under.

Nevin73 wrote:

Having a use case for new technology is the exact thing I ask anyone wanting something new, so good point there.

I guess I'm most excited about a verbal AI helper. The phone-based Google Assistant is only usable when my phone is unlocked so an always available AI would be useful, especially since I work from home. Also, since I utilize Google for contacts, calendar, and notes (Keep), the integration with should be more seamless. I don't care about buying stuff through Alexa since I prefer to read reviews and whatnot prior to my buying decisions.

I don't buy anything through the Echo but I love it enough that I bought two dots. The speech recognition is better for me than any other phone out there. I have an android phone and use android auto. The VR is unreliable for me while Alexa can hear and understand me with music playing at high volume. I did some research when Google home came out and the conclusion was that it wasn't quite ready to take on the Echo. Then I bought two dots.

hbi2k wrote:

What make and model do you use? I've already got a big beefy laptop that I use as my main work machine, but it's portable only by courtesy; I'm looking for something that I can easily slip into a messenger bag and take to work lunches and stuff to take notes on. Has to have a keyboard that's at least usable, has to be able to run off battery for a decent running time, and has to run Google Docs / Drive and Slack, and that's about all it has to do, so what you've got sounds perfect.

I had been looking at some of the lower-end Surface Pros on the theory that nobody has ever regretted buying too much computer for themselves, but even so, that might be overkill for my needs.

My work will pay for it whatever I get, so price isn't THAT much of an object, but it's a small business with fewer than 10 employees and every bit of budget that goes into one thing can't go into another, so I don't actually want to make them pay for a new toy. I'm more concerned with getting something that will have legs so that I don't wind up wanting to replace it in a year and spending more money than I saved by buying something cheap.

I picked up an Asus Zenbook Flip from someone on Craigslist for $350 a while back. It was brand new, never even opened, but the price was an anomaly--from a privileged high school girl who got it, plus some flavor of MacBook, for her birthday. She wanted the Mac and never looked twice at the Asus.

I really like it. Slim, Win10, touch screen, can fold into humongous tablet mode (good for comics), powerful enough for light gaming, and battery lasts a good 12 hours even under heavy use. Weighs about 3 lbs, slips into my work bag and I barely know it's there. Still, it's not as powerful as a serious laptop, and I'd hesitate before dropping the normal $800 that a new one goes for.

My employer offered to buy me a new Surface tablet, but they load it with enough bloatware and "security" junk that it's not worth having. The hard drive is 80% full by the time you get it, and whatever they're doing to secure the Chrome browser will cause a high-end desktop to hang for a full minute when you launch a Hangouts video chat. I'd rather use my own device, have it be more functional and less prone to malware.

What's the deal with Google Auto? Aside from linking up with a compatible car display, is it just Google Maps?

Nevin73 wrote:

What's the deal with Google Auto? Aside from linking up with a compatible car display, is it just Google Maps?

If you mean Android Auto, it's a new interface that you can run independent to a compatible display. I've been trying it out, and like it for the most part. Neither of our cars has Android Auto. I assume if you did, it would be nicer with a bigger display. I have it set up in my wife's car to automatically load Android Auto on the phone screen when it connects to the car's bluetooth, so I just plug in for power and set it in the mount.

Compatible apps will run in simplier interfaces, I assume to reduce distractions. It's quick to use the interface to pop from maps to media to a kind of simplified dash board.

Perfect? No, but not too bad. It's nice to be able to use it without having it built into a car now.

I've generally had a good experience with Android Auto. My biggest complaint is that it often doesn't load when it connects to the car and the voice recognition isn't as good as it should be. Dictating texts and responding to texts simply hasn't worked well for me.

Music works well and navigation works well, too. The interface is fairly uncluttered and the icons are generally large so they are easy to hit.

EvilHomer3k wrote:

I've generally had a good experience with Android Auto. My biggest complaint is that it often doesn't load when it connects to the car and the voice recognition isn't as good as it should be. Dictating texts and responding to texts simply hasn't worked well for me.

Music works well and navigation works well, too. The interface is fairly uncluttered and the icons are generally large so they are easy to hit.

Interesting about the text problems you have. I've used "OK Google" "Text _____ mobile" quite a bit even before Android Auto, and it's worked pretty well for me. And my car's pretty noisy. That could be affected by the phone's mic I suppose.

Yesterday I did have a UPS notification text come in that the dictation function tried to read to me. All the URL's and tracking info was kind of funny to hear out loud.

MannishBoy wrote:
EvilHomer3k wrote:

I've generally had a good experience with Android Auto. My biggest complaint is that it often doesn't load when it connects to the car and the voice recognition isn't as good as it should be. Dictating texts and responding to texts simply hasn't worked well for me.

Music works well and navigation works well, too. The interface is fairly uncluttered and the icons are generally large so they are easy to hit.

Interesting about the text problems you have. I've used "OK Google" "Text _____ mobile" quite a bit even before Android Auto, and it's worked pretty well for me. And my car's pretty noisy. That could be affected by the phone's mic I suppose.

Yesterday I did have a UPS notification text come in that the dictation function tried to read to me. All the URL's and tracking info was kind of funny to hear out loud.

My car is also pretty quiet. I had horrible problems with it not hearing me at all but traced that down to the car mount having a piece directly over the mic. I put it in backwards now but still can't get it to work reliably.

We got a Moto X Force on the cheap for my wife, who's 2nd Gen Moto G was getting a bit long in the teeth.

Weirdly enough though, the Moto X Force refuses to automatically install the old Moto's apps and personal settings. It never asked me to choose an old phone to backup from either, like it did when I replaced my Nexus 5 with a OnePlus 3 a few months ago.

Both have backups activated, both are running Android 6.x and the Google apps are all updated. It did import the non-phone related stuff like contacts, gmail, photo's etc. but nothing from the phone itself (old apps and stuff like background).

Anybody have a guess as to what's going on?