Thurrott Daily: March 11

Posted on March 11, 2016 by Paul Thurrott in Android, Cloud, iOS, Microsoft-Band, Mobile, Windows Phones, Xbox with 0 Comments

Thurrott Daily: March 11

A few tidbits from around the web.

3/11/2016 2:49:30 PM

Quick Groove + Sonos tip

It appears that the solution to Groove not working with Sonos is to simply remove the Groove service from Sonos and then re-connect it. So the old “turn it off and then turn it on” rule still applies. Sigh.

Microsoft may compensate customers for Xbox Live outages

Responding to complaints about rampant Xbox Live outages in January and February, Microsoft’s Larry Hyrb this week said that the software giant was at least considering compensating gamers for the outages. “I’ve taken some of the more thoughtful comments and shared them with a few folks on the Xbox team to make them aware of this request,” Hryb said. “That’s about all I’ve got right now- but when I am back in the office I am going to stop by and chat 1:1 with some folks about this as well.”

While this episode highlights the power of social media, I’m a bit more alarmed that the Xbox team—which should be hyper-sensitive to how arrogant it can appear to the outside world—didn’t just figure this one out on their own. I complain a lot about things I pay for not working, and the right response isn’t to hide in a bubble and wait for the danger to pass: It’s to own up to the problem and do right by your users.

That recent Band 2 update also provides True Type font rendering

Rod Trent says that this week’s Band 2 update contains more than that new Auto Pause feature. It also includes True Type font rendering.

The True Type font rendering capability means that the Band 2 now supports over 150 of the most common emoji and delivers expanded Latin character rendering. Now, don’t go crazy and think you can start using your Microsoft Band to flood a friend’s smartphone with emoji. The capability is there, but there’s nothing on the Band itself that takes advantage of sending emoji characters yet – only being able to render and display them onscreen when someone sends them to you.

Of mobile platforms, app usage and battery life

This is an interesting story that basically verifies what I already knew: Modern mobile platforms like Android, iOS and Windows automatically handle app lifetime and there is no reason at all to remove apps manually. You’re just removing items from a list, not saving memory, battery life, or whatever.

But an Apple customer actually asked Apple CEO Tim Cook about this issue. And got a response from senior vice-president Craig Federighi.

Q: Do you quit your iOS multitasking apps frequently

A: No.

Q: … and is this necessary for battery life?

A: No.

As the BBC article notes, what you should be doing is looking at background processes/apps. Not the multitasking list.

Waze gets an improved UI on Android

If you’re using a Windows phone of any kind, be sure to check out Waze, which is owned by Google now and shares a lot of data with Google Maps. Meaning it’s about 100x better than HERE Drive+ when it comes to navigation.

If you’re not using a Windows phone, you might still check out Waze. Especially since it’s getting a UI overhaul. I guess this happened already on iOS, and now it’s happening on Android. (So you can expect a Windows phone refresh in 2021 or whatever.) PC World reports:

Waze 4.0 for Android comes with a fresh new design for easier navigation, reporting, and sharing. This version also “significantly” reduces battery consumption so you’ll have more juice when you get to your destination, the Google-owned, crowd-sourced traffic and navigation app promised.

Plus you can get directions from Morgan Freeman. I mean, come on.

 

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