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Best Antivirus and Mobile Security Apps in 2019

As an increasingly large number of users are starting to embrace mobile as their primary platform for almost all day-to-day computing tasks, many new security threats emerge. According to research by Pulse Secure, a provider of access control and mobile device security, as much as 97 percent of all mobile malware targets the Android operating system. The reason is quite simple: the open nature of Android makes it very easy for technology enthusiasts to customize their device to their liking and explore its inner workings, but it also gives malicious hackers many ways how to exploit the system and users.

Another security company, G DATA, chronicled 440,267 new malware files in just the first quarter of 2015. That’s almost 4,900 new Android malware files being released every day. These alarming numbers should encourage users to think twice about their security habits and consider installing a mobile security software. Such software can not only help you defend from all kinds of malware, but it can also discover weaknesses in your smartphone configuration and recommend solutions.

We have selected what we consider to be 4 best antivirus and mobile security apps for Android devices available on Play Store. No matter which app you install, you will greatly improve your overall security and make it much harder for hackers and malware to get hold of your personal information or cause damage.

360 Mobile Security

360 Security

With over 200 million downloads and almost 10 million 5-star ratings, 360 Security is a very impressive mobile security package that goes way beyond viruses. The app is designed from the ground up to help your smartphone perform better and be safe from all existing and future malware.

That’s why it integrates a powerful Junk File Cleaner that can delete file duplicates, old and unused system data, and application cache. It takes just a short while to run it but the improvement can be felt instantly. Your smartphone will likely boot faster and feel more responsive because your smartphone doesn’t need to process so many files.

The intelligent Power Saver effectively solves the biggest problem of all smartphone users: short battery life. You can configure it to switch off useless services and features, such a Bluetooth or Wi-Fi, depending on where you are, what time of the day it is, and what are you doing with your phone.

The last smartphone optimization feature is the built-in Memory Boost. Even though this feature was much more useful in the older days when the Android operating system did a relatively poor job when it comes to RAM management, it still has its place even today. By placing a quick shortcut on your homescreen, you can close all running applications with just a single click, instead of shutting them down one by one. That’s something that all gamers will certainly appreciate.

With all the extra features behind us, we can finally get to the core of 360 Mobile Security. The real-time anti-malware scanner scans all APK files and monitors active processes to ensure that no malicious application can execute its code. 360 Mobile Security also give you the ability to lock certain application, so that nobody can access your private files in case your device falls into the wrong hands. However, if you do lose your device, you have a good chance of getting it back, thanks to the Find My Phone feature. It uses your smartphone’s GPS to pinpoint where exactly your device is. A nice extra feature is the Call and SMS Filter, which is built directly into the app itself.

As you can see, there’s a very good reason why the 360 Mobile Security is regarded as the best Android security software currently available. Probably the only downside that comes to mind is the fact that it can feel a bit too bloated. If you, indeed, feel that way, continue reading to find out what other apps have to offer.

ESET Mobile Security & Antivirus

eset mobile security

Headquartered in Bratislava, Slovakia, ESET operates from 1992, when it was founded Miroslav Trnka, Peter Paško, and Rudolf Hrubý. They have since then established offices all around the world and became the security software solution of choice for millions of home users and countless business. They are known for their professional approach and a proven track record of reliability and trustworthiness.

These values extend also to their mobile security application, which is rated at 4.6 stars by a total of more than 350,000 users. What’s behind this success? A comprehensive set of features and excellent performance offered even by the Free version. ESET Mobile Security & Antivirus is one of a few security solutions for Android with 100% detection rate, according to testing performed by AV-Test in 2015. Not only does the app automatically scan for malware and malicious activity, it can also perform on-demand scanning and secure the device in case of a theft by SMS commands – all from a table-friendly interface that takes only a very little time getting used to.

Customers who purchase the Premium version get to enjoy the Proactive Anti-Theft functionality, which notifies users of suspicious activity a long time before any actual damage can occur. This is especially useful in conjunction with ESET’s phishing protection. You won’t have to worry about having your private information stolen while online shopping or checking your bank account. The same pro-active approach extends also to application scanning and deep Application Audio. Knowledgeable users can use it determine which applications have a bit more access than they would need and decide whether it wouldn’t be best to completely uninstall them and replace them with some security-conscious alternative.

Extra features of ESET Mobile Security & Antivirus include SMS and Call Blocking and low battery alerts. The latter feature solves the unfortunate situation when your battery runs on and you don’t know where your phone is. Normally, you would just have someone call your number and locate the device by sound, but that’s not an option with a dead battery. The Low Battery feature sends the current location of the device to my.eset.com when it hits critical battery level.

ESET also offers Cybersecurity Training online classes, which teach essential tips for making any mobile online experience safe. This goes to show that the company is really committed to helping people protect their private information and not just make a profit.

Malwarebytes Anti-Malware

Malwarebytes Anti-Malware

Malwarebytes Anti-Malware captured the attention of countless users who fell in love with the simple-to-use and performance-efficient desktop version. The mobile alternative sticks with the proven formula and gives all smartphone and tablet users a great way how to secure their devices without having to spend a long time learning how the app functions and what it can do.

Where other anti-malware solutions take a more holistic approach to security and try to provide users with as much functionality as they can, Malwarebytes Anti-Malware Mobile keeps things simple and focuses only on security. The core of the application is an effective anti-malware scanner that scans apps for malicious code or Potentially Unwanted Programs (PUPs). It knows about everything that’s going on in your phone and can warn you in a timely manner in case you receive a message that contains malicious code. Your personal information is protected with the help of a capable malware and unauthorized surveillance guard features, which provides identity and personal data protection on-the-go.

Powerusers will surely appreciate the ability to perform a deep security audit of all installed applications in order to find out what permission each application has. This is something that would normally require a third-party application, so it’s great to have it integrated directly into the mobile security application. Users with less experience will benefit from Malwarebytes’s ability to automatically recognize security vulnerabilities and recommend how to close them to prevent anyone from exploiting them.

Of course, the worst case scenario may, indeed, become a reality, and it’s important to be prepared how to act. Malwarebytes Anti-Malware Mobile features a remote lock functionality and the ability to locate the device on a map. This way, you always have a few tricks up your sleeve and are not left dead in the water. Overall, this application is great for those who would prefer a simpler, lighter security solution that does one thing and does it very well.

Verdict

Mobile security requires a certain effort from users themselves. Just installing an application and letting it run in the background isn’t enough. You also need to develop sound safety habits and stick with them no matter what. That being said, a good mobile security software is an excellent starting point and a way how to make it much more difficult for hackers to cause you any harm.

How to use Android Device Manager for tracking your kids

Field Trip

Privacy and security have grown to become very big concerns in today’s highly-connected world. With a considerable part of the world’s population owning a mobile device, it’s likely that these devices are also being used to keep track of our whereabouts, too. There has been quite some buzz about government agencies spying on calls and messages. Even private companies are keeping tabs on our locations, preferences and context for purposes of advertising.

Not everyone is highly concerned about tracking, however. Some would argue that if you don’t have anything to hide, anyway, then you should not worry. For some, it’s a matter of knowing what kind of information to share on insecure networks. For more secure communications, there are enterprise-grade platforms like Samsung KNOX or Silent Circle.

Still, tracking does have its uses. Your smartphone utilizes a mix of GPS sensors and multiple tracking platforms (like WiFi and cellular triangulation) for practical purposes like navigating with the map application and finding nearby establishments. With both Android Device Manager and Apple’s “Find My iPhone” you can find, ring and remotely wipe a mobile device from the web or another registered device. Some third-party apps like Prey also give you more functionality for a marginal cost.

ADM tracking

These could come in handy when keeping tabs on your loved ones, too. I know there are privacy concerns, but sometimes the peace of mind and security that comes with knowing your loved ones are safe (or safely on the way) can be priceless. With Android, this can easily be done through Android Device Manager. The app is accessible both from the web interface or through a standalone Android app. While it is intended to be used for tracking your own device if it gets lost, this app can also be useful for keeping tabs on loved ones.

Register shared Google accounts

It’s simple: register a shared Google account on each of the devices you want to track, and Android does the rest. You can login from the web using this shared account, and you can then choose from among the different registered devices. If you’re logging in from an Android smartphone or tablet, simply use the account picker to select the account you have associated with these other devices.

Of course, this assumes that the devices you intend to track have an active data connection and have location services activated. And using such a system should also mean that you have the permission of the person involved — your spouse, significant other or child, perhaps.

I have found this system useful for keeping tabs on my grade-school aged kids when they’re going on field trips or sleepovers. They may not always be available to answer calls or texts, but I could at least use Android Device Manager to track their location, especially when wandering off to unknown or unwanted places would be cause for concern. For spouses or significant others, however, this might be a bit more intrusive, and it may actually be useful if you suspect infidelity — legal considerations aside! (This topic is worth yet another post, altogether.)

This is, of course, a rudimentary way of keeping track of kids, but it does work, even if within its limitations. If you want more functionality, a startup called HereO is raising $100,000 on IndieGoGo to produce GPS- and SIM-enabled smartwatches that can keep tabs on your kids. The device comes with panic alerts, places notification, tamper alert and other features. This is certainly one device I’d be interested in having out in the market.

For now, ADM does the job for me. But if there are any other great ideas, apps or devices out there, feel free to contribute through the comments or through our Mailbag.

Over 70 million Dropbox account log-ins were stolen back in 2012

Dropbox

Remember the 2012 hack which was believed to have compromised a few #Dropbox accounts? Well, it seems like the hacker managed to get his hands on nearly 70 million account log-ins back then, putting several customers in a state of worry. However, you’re safe if you have changed your password since then. If not, we recommend you do so right away.

A senior level Dropbox employee managed to confirm this, but decided to remain anonymous for obvious reasons. Further, a Microsoft staffer has already mentioned that he found his and his wife’s account credentials in the leak, so regardless of what you hear out there, the leak was pretty real. The solution, as we mentioned above, is pretty simple.

The problem appears to be with about half of the compromised accounts which use an older encryption system called SHA-1, while about 32 million of them were encrypted with bcrypt, which is considered to be among the best going around. Dropbox has started sending out password reset notifications to people since last week.

Source: Motherboard, Troy Hunt

Via: Engadget

Verizon rolling out June security patch for the Galaxy Note 5 and the Galaxy S6 edge+

Galaxy Note 5

The #Samsung #GalaxyNote5 and the #GalaxyS6edge+ on #Verizon Wireless are now seeing the June security updates, patching bugs in the process, if any. It’s already been about 17 days into June, but it’s good to see that a carrier variant of the smartphone is getting the update, as it can usually take painfully long.

Since this is just a maintenance/security update, the changelog shouldn’t be too long. Keeping this in mind, you will probably not see too many changes once the update has been downloaded and installed on your device.

As is the nature with software updates, you might not see it right away, so make sure you remain patient if it’s not appearing on your device yet. In any case, the patch should be hitting your device by the weekend. If you’re seeing the update on your device already, make sure you let us know by dropping a line in the comments below.

Source: Verizon

Via: SamMobile

Upcoming HTC smartphones to come with Keeper password manager app

Keeper - Password

Security is a vital aspect of mobile usage these days. Keeping your password secure is one of the biggest concerns for mobile users today. This is why there are a myriad of password manager apps out there aiming to offer the best experience to the customers. One of them is Keeper, which has just announced a partnership with HTC, with future smartphones from the company expected to feature the app by default.

It is said that users will be given the option to choose between a free and paid subscription, ensuring that current paid customers are not left out to dry. While HTC hasn’t clarified as to which handsets will pack Keeper, we can speculate that the One M10 a.k.a the Perfume will be a likely candidate.

Smartphones are the unified devices for online access. Convenience, security and privacy are all major concerns for mobile users. With Keeper, HTC customers can access their apps, sites and private information quickly and at the same time, feel safe knowing their passwords, photos and private information are secure in their Keeper vault,” said Keeper Security CEO and Co-Founder, Darren Guccione.

Google’s Project Zero team finds 11 security exploits on the Samsung Galaxy S6 edge

Galaxy S6 edge

The #Samsung #GalaxyS6edge is a highly rated smartphone from the Korean manufacturer that was released earlier this year. But Google’s Project Zero team has managed to uncover 11 security exploits that were hiding underneath the system.

These bugs were found in just one week by the team. Needless to say, Samsung was quick to react and is already said to have patched 8 of these bugs that were considered major while leaving out the remaining three (minor) bugs for later.

The Project Zero team is set out to find how using a skinned version of Android could make way for security loopholes, thus making the case for a stock Android UI across the board. However, manufacturers are not going to stop making custom UIs anytime soon, regardless of how many security loopholes Google manages to uncover.

While custom UIs give Android users the option to pick the best for their liking, it doesn’t make for an exciting reading when we come across reports like these. Are you a user of the Samsung Galaxy S6 edge? If yes, don’t let this revelation bother you as most of the bugs have been patched.

Source: Project Zero Blog

Via: Android and Me

New security vulnerability ‘Stagefright’ spotted on Android

Android Security Malware

Security on Android has always been a hotly debated topic. While Google has done its fair share to curb this menace, there’s no denying that hackers are still finding ways to find security loopholes on Android.

The co-author of Android Hacker’s Handbook and a security researcher at Zimperium, Joshua Drake mentions that the Hangouts application on Android has a massive loophole which allows any malware attacked to be masked in a video, without the users notice. The user doesn’t even have to open the message and the malware would creep in anyway.

The way it works is that a malware code is built into a short video and sent over to the target. And by default, Hangouts would auto-download that video so that the users are able to watch the video later at their convenient time. This is where the malware makes its way to the device, ultimately gaining access to the storage, camera and even the microphone.

Thankfully, Drake has seemingly sent out the full details of this security bug to Google, which means that a patch should be on its way soon. But even then, a patch cannot be sent out to all Android devices simultaneously as Google only has control over the Nexus devices.

Source: NPR, Zimperium

Via: 9to5Google

Five reasons why we need BlackBerry on the Android team

The rumor is not new. In some shape or form, we’ve been expecting BlackBerry to reach to the dark Google side for salvation for several years now. It seems to be the Canadians’ only shot at a hardware business revival of sorts, and by extension, the company’s survival as a whole.

BlackBerry Android

Granted, John Chen could always try to stop the ship from sinking by throwing the archaic QWERTY keyboard phones overboard and saving merely the semi-profitable software department. But that would obviously imply cutting thousands of jobs and settling for subsistence instead of aspiring to greatness.

Not an option yet, at least not until they experiment a little with an outside OS, probably to mutually beneficial effects. Come on, Android geeks, admit it. There may be something of value for us all in a BB recruitment on Big G’s team. Multiple advantages, actually, which we’d like to detail as follows:

Physical keyboards

Remnants of a time long past, these non-detachable “accessories” have to make a comeback in the Android landscape. They just have to. Businessmen, perennially on-the-run students or simply folks who live through typing need a user experience and interaction on-screen keyboards won’t ever be able to provide.

BlackBerry Classic

Sorry, SwiftKey and Swype, no matter how versatile and productive you get, you’re not the “real” deal. Meanwhile, the BlackBerry Classic is, and the awkwardly designed Passport comes pretty close. Now shut your eyes, imagine for a moment BB joins forces with Samsung and they devise a high-end QWERTY/touch hybrid powered by a lightly forked Android iteration.

Something to borrow the robustness and professionalism of BlackBerries, and at least part of the Galaxy S-series glitz. Sounds too good to be true? Unfortunately, we’re dreaming here and grasping at straws, really, when likely the best QWERTY Android around is the two year-old Jelly Bean-running LG Enact.

Security

Waterloo’s CEO may have wanted to exhibit tact when invoking the reason his outfit can’t dive into shark-infested Android waters yet, but he sure struck a nerve among malware-concerned mobile enthusiasts.

Android security holes

Let’s not beat it around the bush, stock Android has a security problem. And so far, Samsung, LG, Sony or HTC’s proprietary skins haven’t managed to deal with it in a universally satisfactory manner. Could BlackBerry perhaps reduce the typical risks associated with Google-powered devices?

Definitely, but of course, they need to modify code, customize features and even remove certain Google services, replacing them with their own. Do we want that? Not all of us, yet some would love, love, love the alternative.

Competition

Speaking of alternatives, wouldn’t it also be nice to find a balance between Eastern and Western tech forces? Clearly, gadget reliability doesn’t depend on geography, but stubborn, patriotic, slightly prejudiced North Americans will always show reservations to Chinese brands, favoring local companies… if they get the choice.

Android BlackBerry

If they don’t, they’ll go the Apple route and we obviously don’t want that. Call us haters, but Cupertino needs to lose a few market share points to once and for all align prices with real iPhone value. So, we’d like to see BB regain its lost touch, especially since they know how it feels at the peak of the totem pole and we trust they won’t allow themselves to tumble a second time.

Software diversification

Unpopular opinion – Android skins aren’t inherently bad or counterproductive. Samsung is this close to making TouchWiz not only prettier than its vanilla kin, but also smoother, faster and easier to master for novice users. Don’t shoot the messenger!

TouchWiz vs Stock Android

Now, HTC’s Sense UI is all that’s wrong with third-party “optimization”, and Amazon’s Fire OS is a fiasco of closed-mindedness, rival envy and ego. Narrowly behind Samsung, we’d probably list LG as the designer of a convenient, minimally intrusive interface that’s greatly evolved over the years.

If BlackBerry decides to follow the path of Android adoption and alteration, you have to figure they’ll tweak a number of things, particularly in the privacy department, but as long as they offer full access to Google Play, we’re game.

BlackBerry Passport

There’s also the question of updates, handled by the Canadians themselves when it comes to BlackBerry OS (duh), but likely contingent on multiple factors if our dream scenario pans out. Ideally, Google would understand the perks of collaborating with a security specialist of this magnitude, and who knows, maybe they’ll unite forces to make stock Android the best it can be.

A touch of safety renovation never killed an open OS, did it?

Great brands live forever

Consider this – if Nokia were to return next year (which is more than likely, by the by) with a super-sturdy handheld sporting a phenomenal camera and cutting-edge internals all in all, would you be interested? Intrigued, at least?

Of course you would, regardless of their lengthy struggles, Microsoft dumping and the eternity passed from their last hit. It’s the same with BlackBerry, whose esteemed name will stick to people’s brains until long after the Prague debuts, no matter if it strikes gold or flops as hard as the Z10.

BlackBerry building logo

This isn’t an ephemeral champ we’re talking about, with its 15 minutes of fame over and done. It’s an enterprise destined for enduring success going through a lousy phase. It’d be a shame for this to be the end, and it’d be too bad if Google and Samsung didn’t realize the comeback potential.

Go on, give them a hand for the sake of the entire industry, future developments, breakthroughs and progress. They’ll be always in your debt, even when if back on top.

Best business-friendly and enterprise-ready Android smartphones money can buy

Browsing the web, social media activities, taking the occasional selfie, playing mostly rudimentary but highly addictive games, loading up on YouTube cat videos and catching up on one’s favorite TV shows while away from a larger screen.

Business smartphone

For many of us, those are the essential purposes of a smartphone, and if it can adequately tick all the boxes, it’s a must-buy. Even better if it doesn’t cost a fortune. But then there is this particular category of mobile consumers, with a particular set of needs and requirements, which Android device manufacturers seem to be largely ignoring these days.

Not us, though. We’re here to make sure every specific necessity is fulfilled, so we’ll do our best to dig up your top options for work projects. Enterprise users, listen up:

LG Enact – $0.01 with Verizon contracts, $360 outright

  • The typing crackerjack

LG Enact

It’s beyond sad professional typists have to settle for a two-year-old with Android 4.1 Jelly Bean pre-loaded, no KitKat, let alone Lollipop update hopes, a cringe worthy 4-inch 800 x 480 touchscreen, laggy dual-core 1.2 GHz CPU and crappy 5 MP rear camera.

Not to mention the preposterousness of that no-contract price tag! But until BlackBerry goes for broke with a Google-endorsed, Samsung-co-manufactured slider, we’re afraid the Enact has to do. Oh, well, purely as far as text message and e-mail writing goes, the entry-level handheld is the closest you can get to a powerhouse. So, so depressing!

Samsung Galaxy Note 4 – $545 unlocked; $0 with AT&T financing; $200 and up at Verizon

  • The big, bad, ultra-secure, multi-purpose juggernaut

Galaxy Note 4 S Pen

If answering to urgent e-mails as fast as possible is only part of your job description, the Note 4 offers a huge on-screen keyboard, plus a host of extra business tricks. You have your S Pen always handy for note taking, a security-enhancing fingerprint sensor, full Knox compatibility and stellar multitasking prowess.

The non-optional stylus accessory needs no introduction, your unique fingerprint can be used to unlock the phone if PINs don’t feel safe enough, Knox services let you easily switch between personal and work modes and keep everything separate, while the large 5.7-inch display and generous 3 GB RAM ensure seamless running of multiple apps at once. Which you often yearn for when juggling various documents, files and projects.

Samsung Galaxy S5 Active – $0 and up with AT&T agreements; $559 unlocked

  • The bulletproof outdoor companion

Galaxy S5 Active

Travel a lot? Involved in construction or other potentially hazardous line of activity? Simply worried you’ll drop your precious, and both your personal and professional lives will spin out of control? Perhaps the S5 Active can’t take a bullet per se, but it’ll definitely survive a few bumps and contacts with hard surfaces, as well as up to 1 meter/30-minute swims.

Too bad Knox doesn’t work on the AT&T exclusive… for some reason, and despite the hefty price, there’s no fingerprint authentication provided either.

Sony Xperia Z3 Compact – starting at $380

  • The cheaper, more condensed nature-loving alternative

Xperia Z3 Compact

As tough as the S5 Active looks, it’s also short of portable excellence, which for many is probably a deal breaker. Enter the waterproof but not shock-proof Z3 Compact, endowed with advanced Smart Lock functions after a recent Lollipop update.

This fast and furious munchkin tips the scales at 40 grams less than the GS5 Active, and is far shorter and narrower for easier pocketability, all while handling everything you throw at it with grace, courtesy of a quad-core Snapdragon 801 processor and 2 GB RAM.

Motorola Droid Turbo – $150 and up on-contract; $650 outright for Verizon

  • The heavyweight battery champion

Droid Turbo

We can’t think of anything more annoying than remembering to take your charger or an external power bank on all your business travels, and always getting interrupted by skimpy cell capacity. Well, the Turbo is made of an entirely different mettle, with a gigantic 3,900 mAh pacemaker under the hood rated at a staggering 48 hours of continuous 3G talk time.

The design is ideal to complement your classic, classy, businessy look, with sharp edges, an overall industrial vibe, robust ballistic outer shells and a splash-resistant chassis. Last but not least, the 5.2 incher can go from 0 to 60 percent juice in half an hour, thanks to Quick Charge 2.0 technology.

Motorola Moto G (2nd generation) – $175 unlocked

  • The ultra-affordable option

Moto G 2nd generation

Not everyone is lucky to have their employer offer them gratis gadgets or start at a six-figure salary allowing them to score the costliest “tools” off the bat. So, provisionally, the 2014 G can get the job done.

It’s not any more secure than other Android soldiers, but on the plus side, runs a silky smooth, modern, near-stock OS iteration. No bloatware means fewer security risks, less chances of random system crashes or reboots, as well as vital data loss.

Blackphone – $629

  • The untraceable, privacy-first phone

blackphone

Listed as “temporarily out of stock” on Amazon, but likely to come back soon (hopefully, before the sequel drops), the extravagantly priced 4.7 incher protects your online anonymity like no other, through VPN.

Then you have a slew of privacy-centric functions for phone calls, emails, texts and even cloud backup, some of which unfortunately expire and require additional payments after a year of undercover use. Paranoid individuals will no doubt find extreme happiness in Blackphone’s arms, although we have to underline Android here is essentially unrecognizable, due to severe customization and “PrivatOS” forking.

Samsung Galaxy S6 – $590 factory unlocked; $200 with Verizon or Sprint pacts

  • The one you may not need, but really want

Samsung Galaxy S6

Today’s mainstream top dog isn’t specifically targeted at enterprise users, with a tiny, non-removable battery and sealed internal storage hands down its biggest flaws. Also, there’s no protection against liquid interaction whatsoever, let alone more advanced ruggedness.

Ergo, the S6 could break, fall apart or shut down on account of low battery in the middle of the most important video conference of your life, or while out on the job. But think about how good it’ll make you look in the eyes of your clients, partners and even superiors.

After all, your image is key for your deal-sealing abilities. Besides, it’s got touch-based fingerprint authentication, the most complex Knox support available and device protection-adding Android 5.1 software in certain territories, with others on the way.

Android Device Manager now supported by Android Wear

Android Wear Device Manager

Android Wear Device Manager

Security is a major concern for smartphone users these days. And to put customers at ease, manufacturers and software developers come up with security apps to ensure that your stolen or lost device is located quickly. Android Device Manager serves this very purpose for those using an Android handset.

And now, Google has just introduced support for this security feature on Android Wear smartwatches as well, meaning that you can now locate your lost phone directly through your wearable.

Here’s what Google had to say about the new addition – “Today we’re making Android Device Manager even more useful by introducing support for Android Wear to help you find your lost device. Misplaced your Android phone? No problem! Android Wear connects your phone to your wrist, and together with Android Device Manager, you can make sure it stays that way.

You can look for the Find My Phone app from the app list on your Android Wear device, which will start ringing your phone. For this to work, your phone has to be within proximity and connected via Bluetooth. So it doesn’t serve the same purpose as the smartphone/tablet app. But it’s still a neat feature to have if you’ve lost your phone in the couch cushion or forgotten where you’ve kept it.

The feature should roll out immediately with an update to the Android Wear app.

Source: Android Blog

Via: 9to5Google

Bitdefender app now supports Android Wear devices

Bitdefender

Bitdefender

Several app developers have already ported their applications to work with Android Wear smartwatches. Bitdefender has just joined that list with its dedicated Android Wear app which lets users control and sound alarms on their primary smartphone in times of an emergency. As a precautionary measure, the smartwatch will start vibrating whenever the paired device is taken away from its proximity. We’re guessing this feature can be turned off from the settings, but it’s a good feature to have nonetheless.

The app also supports voice commands, where a command such as “Where’s my phone” will help you locate the device. Customers can also sound off alerts and pings whenever necessary, which is activated even if the phone is on silent. So the developers appear to have covered all their bases with this new app.

If you own an Android Wear smartwatch, make sure you give the new Bitdefender app a go on your smartphone. You can download the app directly from the Play Store by heading over to the link below.

Source: Google Play Store

Via: Android Central

Best kid-friendly Android tablets: top picks, best deals and crucial pointers

So your little one is growing up. Fast. And as he or she is starting to pick up on what tickles your fancy, expect to notice major changes in behavior, interests and “hobbies”. What’s that, I’m preaching to the choir? Then let’s skip the introductions and get right down to the meat of it.

Kids with tablets

The playground, education, your offspring’s whole mental and physical development, they’re entirely different ballgames than what you remember from way back when you were a squirt. Hide-and-seek is no longer hip. Card games are boring, dodgeball is for losers, hopscotch is a thing of the past and so is “I spy” or Marco Polo.

Meanwhile, what goes down in kindergartens and schools resembles sci-fi movie storylines rather than similar activities from three, five, ten years ago. You’ve been caught in the middle of a digital revolution and adapting to new trends is not a choice.

Bottom line, you have to buy your bambino his own tablet. Maybe a smartphone and laptop too, but that’s a discussion for another time. Right now, let’s see what your best Android slate choices are and how many of the obligatory boxes they tick.

android.child

Keep in mind some of the options below suit the needs of toddlers first and foremost (yes, you may want to get him an Android gizmo that early), others are specifically designed for kids aged 3 to 5, 6 to 9 or tweens.  

6. Kurio 7S – $89.99 via Amazon; $99.99 from Best Buy, Toys R Us and Walmart

Right off the bat, this thing’s fundamental flaw is obvious. It doesn’t come from a household name in the hardware manufacturing business, or an OEM with a great tradition in building children-focused gear. So it’s normal to be a little wary about its build quality and reliability.

As far as the former is concerned however, we’re delighted to let you know the 7S is sturdy, versatile and good-looking. It comes with its own detachable protective bumper, so in theory, it’s ideal for kids aged three and up. Heck, even adults could pull off using the Kurio from time to time.

Kurio 7S

Needless to say it’s also extremely cheap, though I’m afraid the corners the tab’s creators needed to cut are glaring from a distance. The 7-inch display is horrible (1,024 x 600 pixels resolution), the battery minuscule (4,000 mAh), and there’s no Google Play support whatsoever, so at the end of the day, you can bet the farm your tween son or daughter will get bored with the 7S before you can fully unpack it.

5. Archos ChildPad 2 (80 ChildPad) – $89.99 via Amazon

Albeit strangely hard to come by stateside, the ChildPad 2, aka 80 ChildPad, benefits from Archos’ steadier reputation in the biz. Plus, a larger, higher-res screen: 8 inches, 1,024 x 768 pixels. Even better, it has access to the Play Store, which you can of course tweak, filter, censor or block altogether.

archos-80-childpad

The parental controls are rich, easy to understand and master, the HDMI port can help you hook up the slate to the big screen in seconds, and the on-board 1 GB RAM ensures breezy multitasking. Too bad the processor is a single-core. Also, the 4 gigs of internal storage are laughable.

Aesthetically, the 80 Childpad is colorful, playful and charming, but pretty fragile, so I wouldn’t recommend you letting your three-year-old use it.

4. LeapFrog LeapPad Ultra – $149 via Amazon, Toys R Us and Best Buy

It’s weird. At a first glance, the LeapPad Ultra is nothing special. Quite on the contrary, in light of its shabby 7-inch 1,024 x 600 pix res display, crappy 800 MHz processor and absence of both Google Play support and storage expansion options.

But looking beyond the surface, you’ll find LeapFrog has no rival in build quality (try all you want, you can’t break or scratch the LeapPad Ultra), educational content and autonomy. No, this little guy ain’t a looker. It’s for toddlers, three, four, five-year-olds tops. And the ecosystem is anything but rich. Yet for some parents, the 9-hour battery, total parental control and indestructibility will make it a must-buy.

LeapPad-Ultra

By the way, yes, we realize the LeapPad Ultra isn’t Android-based. It’s not exactly a “smart” device either, and mundane tasks like web browsing are really uncomfortable and clunky. But we have to give credit where credit is due, regardless of little things like operating system egos. Bottom line, there’s a reason this is an award-winning “toy” and Amazon’s best seller in kids’ electronic learning and education systems, and so you die-hard Android fans should be willing to ignore it’s not technically part of your world.

3.  Toys R Us Tabeo e2 – $129.99 through, well, Toys R Us

Legal controversies aside, retail powerhouse Toys R Us did a splendid job in cracking the children tablet market with the first-gen Tabeo, and the second-gen is just as solid. In many ways, it’s very similar to the Archos ChildPad 2, sporting the same 8-inch 1,024 x 768 pix res panel and targeting mostly preteens, with an elegant but fragile exterior.

Tabeo e2

The Tabeo e2 trumps Archos’ contender primarily in raw speed, thanks to a dual-core 1 GHz chip and 1 GB RAM, accommodating a bunch of extra games and videos too, with double the internal storage (8 GB). The Achilles’ heel is the lack of Google Play support, although the Tabeo App Store is refreshingly vast, while the battery is no pushover, but no champion either, rated at roughly 5 hours.

2. Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 Kids – $199 via Amazon and Best Buy

Look, we appreciate Samsung deems this market niche important enough to warrant its own spot under the Galaxy sun. But asking $200 for the Tab 3 Kids Edition when there are alternatives at half the price isn’t very smart.

galaxy_tab_3_kids

Besides, the bundled bumper case seems frail and the children-dedicated “ecosystem” falls a little short in the education department. On the bright side, the 7 incher is slim, thin and cute, performance is unrivaled and not only is Google Play unrestricted, but pre-loaded software perks include $40 worth of free games and apps. This is definitely the closest a kid tab has ever gotten to catering to both the needs of small children and teenagers.

1. Fuhu Nabi 2 – $157 via Amazon, $180 via Nabi Shop and Walmart

A true classic of the kiddie tech décor, the Nabi 2 is today, like two years ago, the all-around best children-oriented tab. Its reputation precedes the 7 incher, and for a good reason, as the quad-core (!!!) slate splendidly blends sturdiness, reliability and functionality into one nearly flawless package.

Fuhu Nabi 2

Running Android 4.1 Jelly Bean with full Google Play support since late 2013, the Nabi 2 can reportedly last around eight hours on a single charge and easily access the Amazon Appstore and Nabi App Zone in addition to GPlay.

It’s the perfect gaming device, but also an ideal learning tool, and parents can control anything and everything their kids do on the Nabi 2. Sure, it’s a little pricey given its age, the 7-inch 1,024 x 600 pix res screen is pretty lousy, and the design makes it difficult to market to tweens. But for toddlers and kids aged 3 to 5 (maybe 6 or 7), it… is… the… best.

Security based Blackphone to feature NVIDIA’s Tegra 4i SoC

Blackphone

SGP Technologies showed off a neat concept called Blackphone which would provide users increased security and encryption services to keep their data safe from watchful eyes. The company has now announced the choosing of NVIDIA’s Tegra 4i chipset to run on the smartphone.

For those that don’t remember, the Tegra 4i is an upgraded version of the Tegra 4 from last year. The LG G2 Mini is one of the first devices to feature the said chipset. Although it’s not high end by any means, the Tegra 4i is quite a capable chipset with a maximum clockspeed of up to 2.3 GHz. The version used on the Blackphone however will be clocked at 2.0 GHz. The smartphone will also feature the i500 LTE modem, so they have all their bases covered.

The Blackphone will also feature a 4.7 inch 720p display, 1GB of RAM, an 8-megapixel rear camera, a 5-megapixel front camera, a 2,000 mAh battery and Android 4.4 KitKat with PrivatOS which is a custom skin on top of stock Android where all the security features are based.

It’s clearly not a beastly phone in terms of hardware, but since security is the highlight of the device, the almost midrange hardware can be overlooked. Pricing and availability details of the Blackphone are yet to be confirmed.

Via: Talk Android

The HTC One M8 does a factory reset if the password is entered wrong 10 times

HTC One M8 Security

According to a new revelation, the new HTC One M8 reportedly has a security feature in place which will perform a factory data reset of the device if a user gets the password or unlock pattern wrong more than ten times. This feature will be beneficial in cases of theft, but could lead to potential abuse as well.

In many cases we see kids or friends handling phones and trying to crack the password too many times. Should such an incident happen with the HTC One M8, all user data including applications, images, music will be completely wiped and the users will have to start anew with their smartphone.

As of now, there’s no known way to disable this feature, which is particularly fearsome for users of the smartphone. We hope HTC is listening to these reports and decides to bring a fix soon.

Seems like HTC got this feature completely wrong. What’s your take on this new revelation?

Source: Phandroid