Is It Time to Start Buying SSDs and Flash Drives?

Is It Time to Start Buying SSDs and Flash Drives?


The price of flash drives and solid-state drives (SSDs) steadily increased over the last decade, but recently we’ve seen a change in that trend. For the first time in a while, prices are starting to go down. You can now buy new hardware for less money than ever before.

But what’s causing the price decrease? Should you buy now or will prices drop still further? And which products offer the best deals today? Let’s take a look.

Why Are SSDs More Expensive Than HDDs?

Generally speaking, SSDs are a better product than hard disk drives (HDDs). They have access speeds that are nearly 100 times faster, their lack of moving parts results in better reliability, and they draw less power than HDDs. Plus, they are quieter, smaller, and cooler.

But none of that necessarily explains why SSDs are traditionally so much more expensive than their counterparts. There are a few factors that push up the price of SSDs.

1. The Manufacturing Process

SSDs are considerably more “high-tech” than their HDD counterparts. HDDs consist of a simple circuit board with a few chips, a couple of motors, and the read/write parts.

On the other hand, SSDs deploy billions of memory cells and many chips, each of which needs associated logic. Creating those cells and semiconductors is much more complex; it’s more labor-intensive and requires a far higher level of perfection.

All that combined leads to greater manufacturing costs, and thus higher retail costs.

2. Supply and Demand

Historically, consumer demand for SSDs has been considerably lower than demand for HDDs. As such, market economics dictate that manufacturers need to charge more to cover the production costs and make a profit.

The second issue is the mobile market. Lots of SSD large manufacturers have focused on making proprietary SSDs for smartphones rather than traditional 2.5-inch drives for computers.

As a result, smaller manufacturers need to pick up the slack. But thanks to favorable supplier contracts, the large SSDs have the power to stockpile the required production materials.

Consequently, smaller manufacturers making PC drives need to pay more for components, and they pass that price onto the consumer.

3. Growth of the Sector

While consumer uptake of SSDs has been slower, the enterprise-level use of SSDs and flash drives is skyrocketing.

To keep up with demand, manufacturers need to build more factories. The cost of new factories needs to be amortized, and thus is included in the retail cost of the drives.

On the other hand, the cost of making HDDs has long since been amortized by the manufacturers, leading to lower prices.

Why Is the Cost of SSDs Falling?

While SSDs do still cost more than their HDD counterparts, the costs have been falling rapidly over the last 12 to 18 months. The price of NAND flash—the type of memory used in SSDs—is expected to decrease by 10 percent per quarter starting in the third quarter of 2018.

The decline is curious. Quarter three is usually a time of rising prices, as computer and smartphone manufacturers start to stockpile products ahead of the Christmas rush.

So what’s going on? Experts think three factors are helping to force prices down:

1. Smartphone Sales

In 2018, smartphone sales have remained reasonably flat. This has led to an oversupply of NAND flash, thus driving down prices.

2. Notebook Sales

The first half of 2018 saw above-average notebook sales. As a result, demand has dropped in the second part of the year, again leading to an oversupply.

3. Server SSDs

For manufacturers, a server-grade SSD is more profitable than consumer-level SSDs. This has led to more manufacturers entering the sector, thus increasing both competition and supply. Again, these two factors help to lower prices.

All told, demand for SSDs and NAND flash memory is expected to drop 15 percent between January and December 2018, while supply grows by 45 percent.

The theory is borne out by the facts. Look at the cost of the Samsung 860 EVO 1TB 2.5 Inch SATA III Internal SSD on Amazon (via CamelCamelCamel). The price has been on a steady downward trend throughout 2018. The current price is almost half of what it was in January:

camelcamelcamel cost of samsung ssd decreasing over time

Will the Price of SSDs Continue to Fall?

Now we come to the million-dollar question. If you’re in the market for an SSD, should you buy it now, or wait and see if the price goes down further?

Of course, it’s impossible to know this with 100 percent accuracy. But we can use the information available to us to make a prediction.

DRAMeXchange—one of the leading marketplaces for buying NAND flash memory—predicts that prices will continue to drop until at least mid-2019. Computer sales are traditionally slower in the first six months of the year after Christmas, while IDC thinks smartphone sales won’t pick up until after the summer.

Of course, holding off on your purchase also means some new technologies might be available by the time you get your wallet out.

In late 2017, we saw the arrival of new, higher-capacity NAND flash. During 2018, three-level (TLC) and quad-level (QLC) flash have become increasingly available at lower prices. That trend is likely to continue.

You also need to consider the continued growth (and lowering price point) of ultra-fast NVMe SSDs. They can read data four times faster than the SATA SSDs and can locate the data on the drive 10 times faster. Indeed, if you’re in the market for a new computer, you shouldn’t really consider any other form of storage media.

Our SSD Recommendations

If you want to buy a new SSD right now


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, which products are emblematic of the current low NAND prices?

We’ve already mentioned the Samsung 860 EVO 1TB 2.5 Inch SATA III Internal SSD, but you should also consider ADATA’s ASU650SS-960GT-C SU650 3D-NAND 2.5″ SATA III drive (approximately $0.146 per GB).

Team Group’s 480GB L5 LITE 3D 2.5″ SATA III 3D NAND drive (also $0.146 per GB) and Patriot’s Burst SSD 480GB SATA III SSD ($0.150 per GB) are both good choices as well.



Samsung 860 EVO 1TB 2.5 Inch SATA III Internal SSD (MZ-76E1T0B/AM)


Samsung 860 EVO 1TB 2.5 Inch SATA III Internal SSD (MZ-76E1T0B/AM)

Buy Now At Amazon
$167.99



ADATA ASU650SS-960GT-C SU650 960GB 3D-NAND 2.5″ SATA III High Speed Read up to 520MB/s Internal Solid State Drive


ADATA ASU650SS-960GT-C SU650 960GB 3D-NAND 2.5″ SATA III High Speed Read up to 520MB/s Internal Solid State Drive

Buy Now At Amazon
$139.99



Team Group 480GB L5 LITE 3D 2.5″ SATA III 3D NAND Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) T253TD480G3C101


Team Group 480GB L5 LITE 3D 2.5″ SATA III 3D NAND Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) T253TD480G3C101

Buy Now At Amazon
$76.98



Patriot Memory Burst SSD 480GB SATA III Internal Solid State Drive 2.5″ – PBU480GS25SSDR


Patriot Memory Burst SSD 480GB SATA III Internal Solid State Drive 2.5″ – PBU480GS25SSDR

Buy Now At Amazon
$71.99

Learn More About Data Storage

Ultimately, current SSD NAND prices represent some of the best value-for-money that we’ve ever seen in the market. There’s no question that it’s a great time to purchase.

If you’d like to learn more about internal storage before making your decision, check out our comparisons of NAND and eMMC flash memory


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and PCIe vs. SATA SSDs.


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How Smart Contracts Using Blockchain Really Work

How Smart Contracts Using Blockchain Really Work


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A smart contract is a piece of code that works with a blockchain to enforce the terms of a particular contractual agreement. They allow trusted transactions to take place between anonymous parties, thereby creating a transaction record that’s transparent, traceable, and irreversible—all the while eliminating the need for third-party middlemen.

Sounds great! But how does a smart contract really work?

What Is a Smart Contract?

Even though smart contracts feel like new technology, they were first proposed back in 1994 by American computer scientist, Nick Szabo. (Nick Szabo is alleged to be Satoshi Nakamoto, the creator of Bitcoin, but he vehemently denies it.) Szabo’s paper theorizes smart contracts as a “computerized transaction protocol that executes the terms of a contract.” Put forth way ahead of their time, many of Szabo’s proposals have now become the central features of a modern smart contract.

Smart contracts help people by facilitating the exchange of things by way of computer code. In a sense, smart contracts are glorified examples of “when X takes place, do Y” code. Blockchain-based contracts bring the control of financial transactions back into the hands of users and vendors (away from institutions like banks) while ensuring there is a permanent record of those transactions.

Unfortunately, the term itself—“smart contract”—causes confusion. When you think of a traditional contract, you think of a signed piece of paper that outlines details of a legal agreement. A smart contract doesn’t just outline but enforces the terms of an agreement using cryptographic code linked to the blockchain.

5 Examples of How Smart Contracts Work

While smart contracts are predominantly associated with Ethereum


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, Bitcoin has always had basic smart contract support. It’s just that Bitcoin’s limited programming language made it difficult to create worthwhile smart contracts. Ethereum later came in and took up the mantle with smart contracts based on an easier-to-code programming language.

Here are a few examples to help get a better sense of how smart contracts work:

Example 1: You’re running a campaign to create a blockchain-based Kickstarter equivalent (in fact, Acorn Collective does just this). The smart contract automatically collects fees up until the project funding goal is met, and if the goal isn’t met by the deadline the smart contract returns funds to supporters.

Example 2: The US voting system faces intense scrutiny due to claims of hacking and tampering. A smart contract system using immutable blockchain technology would be more secure than current electronic voting booths. Follow My Vote is a blockchain-based voting platform that “embodies all the characteristics that a legitimate voting system requires: security, accuracy, transparency, anonymity, freedom, and fairness.” Voters use government IDs, a webcam, and a computer to remotely log in and cast their vote.

Example 3: uPort uses Ethereum smart contracts to manage and protect your identity. For instance, if you’re traveling across borders and have uploaded your passport documents to uPort, you can choose to only reveal the information required at passport control, and only after you verify the information the agent is requesting. The contract rejects any attempt to overreach data, limiting the amount of data that can be revealed.

Example 4: A Midasium Contract is a “digital representation of the mutual agreements contained in a traditional real estate contract.” Midasium creates self-executing and self-enforcing real estate contracts that move bank funds, title deeds, and reconcile payments. Midasium contracts remove the need for costly third-party intermediaries. Better still, users can convert their Midasium smart contracts into regular paper contracts at any time for legal purposes.

Example 5: Another great smart contract implementation is the AXA fizzy flight compensation partnership. Instead of having to wait weeks for claims processing, AXA fizzy gives direct compensation. You purchase cheap flight insurance through AXA, who uploads your record to fizzy. In turn, fizzy records your purchase on the Ethereum blockchain. Your smart contract is connected to global air traffic databases, so as soon as your flight is delayed by two hours, compensation automatically triggers.

Once a smart contract is written, it’s uploaded to the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM). The EVM is like a universal runtime propagate out to every connected Ethereum node, where each node can check that the conditions of the smart contract have been met. If so, the nodes respond accordingly and carry out the smart contract’s instructions.

Going beyond, smart contracts aren’t just useful as specialized contract tools—they also pave the way for decentralized apps, and that’s one of the main reasons why there’s so much excitement around the ongoing development of smart contracts. Learn more about this in our What Is a Decentralized App?


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article.

Can You Trust a Smart Contract?

Remember, a smart contract is:

  • Self-executing
  • Self-verifying
  • Self-enforcing
  • Immutable

Smart contracts save money by removing third-party entities from the equation and allowing parties to deal with each other face-toface. Yet while that sounds great in theory, for many people, using a third-party intermediary isn’t always about cost—it’s about security. In the case of a smart contract, how can you trust it if you didn’t write the code for it?

Once the smart contract writes its transaction to the blockchain, it’s publicly recorded for all to see. That record cannot be erased, and anyone can double-check it at any time. But when the smart contract executes, it carries out the instructions exactly as it was coded to do, and it’s this part that has people worried.

In principle, contracts based on “if-then” agreements make sense because there are constant inputs and verifiable outputs that can be confirmed—but the confirmation itself still relies on verification, and in many cases will require human arbitration. That’s when the human factor comes back into play, along with trust issues.

Smart contracts are still young. They aren’t without flaws, and the technology still needs a lot of work.

In fairness, trust in smart contracts can be enhanced with interdependence. In other words, we can create trust in smart contracts with more smart contracts. It’s smart contracts all the way down.

Smart contracts can be set up so that verification of conditions is dependent on the preceding contract, and so on. Also, smart contract oracles can submit real-world data to the blockchain for use in smart contract verification. Smart contract oracles play an important role in smart contract trust, and will continue to do so.

Smart Contracts Are the Future

Smart contracts will become more useful as cryptocurrency and blockchain evolve. The questions being asked of smart contracts are part of that evolution.

Right now, the technology is new and the boundaries are unknown. Regular users (especially those who aren’t already exposed to cryptocurrency and blockchain) might find it difficult to trust digitized contracts that they can’t touch, feel, or even modify after execution. But give it enough time and we’ll soon see the power of smart contracts in action.


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What Are the Differences Between Bitcoin and Ethereum?

What Are the Differences Between Bitcoin and Ethereum?


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Over the course of 2017, the price of 1 BTC shot up from $963 to $19,694. Similarly, the price of 1 ETH rocketed from $8 to $747. Since that time, the price of Bitcoin and Ethereum has dropped significantly, but at the time would-be investors and enthusiasts were going crazy for crypto.

But aren’t cryptocurrencies just virtual money? What’s the difference between these two? And why is there still so much interest even after the massive price drops? This article will answer all of those questions and more.

How Bitcoin Works

Bitcoin is a digital currency that aims to be:

  • Decentralized (no organization controls the creation or flow of the currency)
  • Anonymous (one’s ability to make transactions isn’t tied to identity)
  • Transparent (all transactions can be viewed by anyone at any time)

All of this is possible through the blockchain and peer-to-peer networking.

The Bitcoin blockchain is just a file that keeps tracks of all valid Bitcoin transactions ever made. Every 10 minutes, all new transactions are recorded together in a block and then added to the end of the file. Hence, blockchain.

This means some database value doesn’t determine your current Bitcoin balance. Instead, your current balance is simply the tracing of all past transactions to the present time. Currency never actually trades hands.

Bitcoin doesn’t reside on a single server or cluster of servers. Rather, it’s distributed across thousands and thousands of computers around the world (called nodes) and anyone can join that network whenever they want.

Whenever a transaction is made, it gets distributed to all the nodes on the Bitcoin network, and each node exists to verify that the transaction is valid. This is what Bitcoin mining is: you dedicate your machine’s computational power to help keep the blockchain validated and in return, you can earn some Bitcoins.

To send or receive transactions, you need a Bitcoin wallet. A wallet is just a public key (the address that others use to send you Bitcoins) and a private key (basically a signature that authenticates transactions made from your wallet). Anyone can create a new wallet at any time, which is what makes Bitcoin an anonymous currency.

Since the blockchain is distributed across all nodes, it’s entirely public and transparent. Anyone can view the entire blockchain and see every single transaction ever made.

How Ethereum Works

Ethereum is a massive worldwide network that’s distributed across thousands of computers around the world in peer-to-peer fashion. The Ethereum platform incorporates blockchain technology in much the same way that Bitcoin does, but expands upon it in several ways.

The key component of Ethereum is the smart contract.

The Ethereum platform comes with its own special programming language—called Solidity—that allows people to write Ethereum scripts, and these scripts are called smart contracts. Smart contracts are distributed to the network and, when requested, are executed on all Ethereum nodes.

Ethereum also involves a digital currency called Ether. Since executing smart contracts costs computational resources, node owners are compensated with Ether. The more computation-heavy the smart contract, the more it costs to execute. If it costs too much, it won’t be allowed to complete. This encourages the creation of efficient smart contracts.

The Ethereum blockchain is similar to Bitcoin’s blockchain, but instead of only containing Ether transactions, it also contains the results of executed smart contracts.

Every node on the Ethereum network maintains a copy of the blockchain just like Bitcoin does, and the process of verification is similarly called Ethereum mining. Miners spend computational resources to verify that every Ether transaction and smart contract result is valid. In return for their efforts, they earn Ether.

You can also directly send and receive Ether from wallet to wallet.

Ethereum is proof that the blockchain concept is expandable to areas outside of financial technology. Because of this, Ethereum is often called “programmable money.” Yes, it is a digital currency, but money that can execute code.

Bitcoin vs. Ethereum in a Nutshell

In short: whereas Bitcoin is just a digital currency, Ethereum is far more than that. Bitcoin and Ethereum have fundamental differences in their long-term aims, as well as differences in their underlying technology that influences their value and perceived use in the wider world. For instance:

  • Bitcoin’s average block time is 10 minutes, whereas Ethereum’s average block time is 15 seconds. Ethereum transactions can be confirmed much faster.
  • The amount of Bitcoin earnable as a mining reward is cut in half every four years. The total number of minable Bitcoin is set at 21 million. When miners reach that number, mining for new Bitcoin will cease. The amount of Ether earnable through mining is capped at 18 million per year, so there is always new Ether entering circulation.
  • Bitcoin is best mined using ASICs


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    , dedicated hardware that is vastly superior to regular hardware. The need for specialized hardware pushes miners into large mining pools that consolidate mining power, while simultaneously consolidating Bitcoin mining rewards to “mining cartels” that dominate the market. Ethereum, however, is best mined using GPUs, which are more readily available and arguably more equal, even with the rises to GPU prices because of Ethereum mining


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    .
  • Bitcoin is often referred to as “digital gold” because it has a holding value and many other cryptocurrencies are “pegged” to the Bitcoin price. Ethereum is more often seen as “digital currency” because it has a spending value and lower entry point.

However, the main difference between the two cryptocurrencies is the ease of making programmable smart contracts on the Ethereum blockchain. Initially, the Bitcoin network was unable to process smart contracts. As Bitcoin and its blockchain evolved, support for smart contracts was added, though Bitcoin continues to play second-fiddle to Ethereum in this regard.

Ethereum advocates point to this ease of use as one of the main reasons Ethereum is the future of cryptocurrency. Also, Bitcoin has traditionally been slow to implement new changes and, in many people’s eyes, is only still around because it was the first cryptocurrency.

While the cryptocurrency industry is still in its infancy, there’s no doubt that blockchain technology is slowly transforming the world. There are hundreds more cryptocurrencies, too, each attempting to decentralize and disrupt the status quo within their given industry (like a completely decentralized internet).

But remember: not all cryptocurrencies are what they seem. Many are straight-up scams, as evidenced on multiple occasions. Need help deciding? Check out our article on avoiding cryptocurrency scams


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—it’s a great starting point.


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What Is Google Assistant and How to Use It

What Is Google Assistant and How to Use It


While Apple’s Siri started the mobile voice assistant craze, it’s easy to argue that Google Assistant has surpassed it. Combining a natural speaking format with the power of Google, using Assistant is one of the best perks of Android.

In this article, we’ll show you everything you need to know about Google Assistant, what it can do, and how to use it.

What Is Google Assistant?

Google Assistant is Google’s virtual assistant. It’s an evolution of Android feature known as Google Now, which provided you information without you even asking. It competes with Apple’s Siri, Amazon’s Alexa, and Microsoft’s Cortana.

Assistant launched in May 2016 as part of Google’s smart messaging app Allo. Shortly after, Assistant made the jump to Google’s Pixel phones. It was only available on the Pixel line for a while, but it’s now free to download for anyone using Android 5 Lollipop or above.

In addition to Android Wear support, there’s an Assistant app for iOS. And the Google Home line of smart speakers


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is powered by Google Assistant too.

Do I Have Google Assistant?

Use Google Assistant

If you’re using an Android device, you can summon Google Assistant by pressing and holding the Home button. Should you see Assistant appear, then it’s already built into your phone and ready to go. If you have it built-in but disabled it, you’ll see a prompt to enable it when you hold Home.

Some Android devices require the standalone Google Assistant app. Check to see if you have that installed if you didn’t see Assistant when you held Home.

On iOS, you can access Google Assistant if you have the Google Assistant app installed. And for Google Home devices, Google Assistant is built in.

How to Get Google Assistant

Went through the above steps and found that you don’t have Google Assistant installed? Here’s how to get Google Assistant on your device.

Android users: Download the Google Assistant app from the Play Store. For it to work, you must update the standard Google app on your device too.

You must have a phone with Android 5 Lollipop or higher, or Android 6 Marshmallow or higher on tablets. Additionally, your device must have at least 1.4GB of memory and a 720p screen. Note that you don’t need this app if Google Assistant is built into your device.

iPhone users: Download the Google Assistant app from the App Store. It requires iOS 9.1 or newer, which should be no problem for most users.

How to Use Google Assistant

To call up Google Assistant on compatible Android phones, press and hold the Home button or say OK Google. With some phones, you can also say Hey Google. On an iPhone or iPad, you’ll need to open the Google Assistant app and either say OK Google or tap the microphone icon.

If you don’t want to use your voice, you can also type out a question. Touch the keyboard button to enter text into Google Assistant. It will respond just as if you were talking.

Google Assistant Use Keyboard

What’s cool is that Google Assistant understands context quite well. For example, if you ask When was Denzel Washington born? and then say What movies is he known for?, Google knows you mean Washington when you say “he.”

Once you’ve pulled up Google Assistant, you can ask it anything you’d like


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. Assistant can interact with lots of apps and services, and it will pull up Google results if it can’t help with your question.

What Can Google Assistant Do?

Some of the most popular questions you can ask Google Assistant


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:

  • How’s the weather?
  • Find sushi restaurants near me.
  • Navigate home.
  • Call Sam.
  • Text Jim “I’ll be there in an hour.”
  • Wake me up at 8am.
  • Remind me to clean the bathroom when I get home.
  • Play some country music.
  • Did the Giants win their last game?
  • Define “vivacious.”
  • How do I say “You’re beautiful” in Japanese?
  • Decrease the brightness.
  • How old is Gal Godot?
  • Open Telegram.
  • Let’s play a game.

We’ve looked at some of the hidden Google Assistant features


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if you’re interested in more. And if you just want to have some fun, check out goofy questions to ask Assistant


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.

How to Set Up Google Assistant for Efficiency

Google Assistant Settings

Google Assistant doesn’t require any real setup to start working. But you can tweak a few options to make it work to your liking.

Open the Google app, then tap the three-bar Menu button. Select Settings, then tap Settings again under the Google Assistant header. From here, you can modify several settings. Here are a few important ones:

How to Turn Off Google Assistant

Turn Off Google Assistant

You can disable Google Assistant if you never use the feature or are concerned about Google listening.

Open the Google app, then tap the three-bar Menu button. Choose Settings, then look for the Google Assistant header. Tap Settings under this header. On the resulting page, tap the name of your device under Devices. Disable the Google Assistant slider to turn the feature off.

Once you’ve done this, you’ll see a prompt to turn Google Assistant back on if you hold the Home button. You can also follow these steps to turn the feature back on. If you tap Settings under Google Assistant, your phone will ask if you want to use it again.

Ready to Work With Google Assistant?

We’ve taken a look at some of the most popular questions about Google Assistant. Now you know what it does, whether you have it, and how to use it. Voice commands are super useful, so you’re in for a treat if you haven’t used Assistant yet.

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.


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This Is Why Your Phone Is Charging So Slowly!

This Is Why Your Phone Is Charging So Slowly!


Your smartphone can do a whole lot—but not if the battery’s exhausted. Unfortunately, as your phone gets older, it might take longer to charge.

Let’s talk about how mobile device charging works and the different charging methods available for current-generation phones. We’ll also see why older phones might require more time to charge and what you can do about it.

Understanding Rechargeable Batteries

Every mobile phone has a battery. For the most part, each battery delivers power the same way


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.

A cell battery contains two electrodes (one positive and one negative) and an electrolyte. Through usage, ions form in the electrodes, which drives a flow of electronics to your battery’s negative outer terminal, thereby giving off a charge.

In non-rechargeable batteries, these chemical reactions only occur one time. With rechargeable lithium-ion batteries, like the ones found in phones, the chemical reactions are “reversible.” Thus, recharging allows the cell to absorb power.

In broad terms, there are two ways to charge your smartphones: wired and wirelessly. You’ll find pros and cons for both.

Pros and Cons of Wired Charging

Like other consumer electronics, smartphones have always shipped with cables for charging purposes. These cables haven’t changed that much until recently.

For almost a decade, non-Apple devices have shipped with USB cables that have supported the USB 3.0 architecture. By contrast, since 2012, Apple devices have used Lightning, a proprietary computer bus and power connector.

“Fast Charging” technology has increased wired charging speeds


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considerably in recent years. This type of technology typically requires a newer USB Type-C connection. Fast charging specifications differ by manufacturer and device.

Most claim a certain percentage of the battery becomes recharged in 30 minutes. For example, using fast charge


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, you can recharge your iPhone up to 50 percent battery in 30 minutes.

Pros of Wired Charging
The most significant reason to stick with wired charging technology, at least for now, is efficiency. And don’t discount its familiarity.

Cons of Wired Charging
Not surprisingly, cables are the biggest reason to ditch wired charging technology. Cables are annoying and can become worn over time. Besides, they’re ugly to look at.

Pros and Cons of Wireless Charging

This brings us to an increasingly popular form of phone charging: wirelessly. There are a lot of benefits to using wireless charging, although it does come with some drawbacks.

Pros of Wireless Charging
With wireless charging, you no longer have to worry about finding a cable. Instead, you just set your phone on a stationary charging pad. This means less wear and tear on your device and fewer costs, at least in the long term. Charging cables can be expensive, after all.

Convenience is another reason consumers are embracing wireless charging. Many of the charging pads on the market today allow you to charge multiple devices at the same time.

Cons of Wireless Charging
In 2018, wireless charging is still slower and less efficient than wired charging. However, because most mobile phones can now go an entire day between charges, this discrepancy isn’t as significant. Just place your phone on the charger before going to bed, and you’re good to go.

Wireless chargers also tend to generate some wasted heat, which could lead to your phone overheating


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. To avoid injury, make sure you only buy certified wireless charging bases. Wireless charging products are also more expensive than wired solutions.

5 Reasons Why Your Phone Is Charging Slowly

Now that you know how battery charging works, it’s time to look at what might be slowing down your older phone while charging. Most likely, it’s because of one of the following reasons:

1. Bad Accessories

The most straightforward reason your cell phone might be charging slower than before might have nothing to do with the phone itself. Instead, you could have a bad cord or adapter, or weak power source.

USB cables get put through a lot, especially in homes with multiple users and devices. These cables are often dropped, bent, kept in locations where temperatures can vary significantly, and even stepped on. Therefore, before anything else, change the cable and see if that eliminates the problem.

You should also switch out the adapter and see if that makes a difference. In your household, do you continue to use the same adapter even after buying a new phone? You should probably use the newer one.

Many like to charge their mobile devices using a port on their computer. This isn’t always an ideal solution, depending on your computer’s age and whether other ports on your machine are in use at the same time.

Everything else being equal, you should use a direct source to charge your phone. In other words: use a wall charger whenever possible.

2. Port Issues

Your cable isn’t the only element that could have problems from daily charging. Your phone’s charging port could also suffer some damage. Look at the port for corrosion or an obstruction. While this probably isn’t the reason it’s taking more time to charge your device, you should at least rule it out.

phone charging slow - check iPhone Charging Port

To find the latter, use a flashlight and magnification to look around inside your phone’s port. Try to remove any object (lint, dust, etc.) that doesn’t belong, being very careful not to cause damage to the port’s components.

My advice? Use a plastic toothpick to remove any objects. Using a small, soft brush inside the port is also recommended.

3. Background Apps

Phones that take forever to charge can also have a hard time keeping a charge when in use. A rogue app, or background apps in general, could be the reason for this.

Both Android and iOS now have tools for you to find out what apps are running in the background. For Android-based devices, check out the battery usage menu located at Settings > Battery. On your iPhone, select Battery in the Settings app to see which apps are using the most battery.

phone charging slow - Android Oreo Battery Usage

When you think you’ve located the nasty app, delete it and see if your battery life and charging speed improves.

4. Aging Battery

If you’ve exhausted the other tips on this list and the battery still seems to take forever to charge, you might think about having the battery replaced.

At the end of 2017, Apple was criticized for how the company handled batteries in aging iPhones


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. It did so for a reason, though.

The little industry secret is that lithium-ion batteries don’t last forever and can only be recharged a limited number of times. Therefore, it could be that the battery itself is what’s causing the slow recharging. Take your phone to an authorized dealer for more information on replacing the battery in your device.

5. The Problem Is You

Are you the type of person that has to use your smartphone even when it’s charging? Perhaps you’re the reason the device takes so long to recharge.

Apps such as Facebook are notorious for sapping battery life on phones. Nowhere is this more apparent than when you’re attempting to recharge your device while also leaving posts on your social network.

Instead of doing this, take a break. Make a rule that you won’t use your phone while it’s charging.

When in Doubt, Get It Fixed

It shouldn’t take a long time to recharge the battery on your phone. If you’ve noticed it slowing down significantly, there’s probably an issue that’s easy to resolve. If the tips found in this article haven’t helped, consider taking your device to the nearest authorized service center to have an expert take a look.


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