Sprint adds new calling feature to its version of the Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8+.

Sprint has released an over-the-air (OTA) update for its version of the Samsung Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8+. In addition to the usual round of bug fixes and security improvements (not that those aren’t important), the company also took the time to add its new “Calling Plus” feature.

The feature allows users to use voice and data at the same time, no matter if the user is on LTE or calling over Wi-Fi. The previous “WiFi Calling” feature has now been rolled in as well. From Sprint:

Calling PLUS combines two features: one old and one brand new!
WiFi calling – our VoIP calling feature that lets you make and receive calls over WiFi [sic]
Voice and text on the Sprint LTE network, allowing simultaneous voice and data

Calling PLUS is delivered to your device by software update. Once your device has received the software, set up is easy!

  1. On the phone, select Settings > Calling PLUS.

  2. Slide Calling PLUS to On.

  3. Customer can view Tutorial pages to learn more information about the service.

  4. View pre-populated address.
    If the Country field says Non-USA, Select the Country and choose USA.
    Enter a USA address manually.
    If address is not shown or is incorrect, enter the address manually.
    Address must be within the USA.

  5. Select Save.
    Your phone will validate the address required for E911 service and completes the enablement of Calling PLUS.

6.Select Calling PLUS options to enable each feature:
Wi-Fi Calling is On by default.
LTE Calling is optional but recommended to allow both Simultaneous Voice and Data and call handoffs between Wi-Fi Calling and LTE Calling.
Call handoffs will go from Wi-Fi to LTE even if the LTE Calling switch is Off. LTE Calls require the Wi-Fi Calling switch to be turned On for a handoff to Wi-Fi.

That’s it! Your phone is now enabled for Calling PLUS. You can call anyone using Calling PLUS, the person or party that you’re calling does not need to have Calling PLUS in order for it to work.

Sprint has also added the Calling Plus feature to the LG Stylo 3 and the Samsung J7 Perx.

Has your phone received this update yet? Let us know down below!

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“I’m back! Uncharted territory! Bold new discoveries!”

Scrooge McDuck is back, and he’s got his great-nephews in tow. A golden jewel of Disney Afternoon is coming back on Disney XD, who is offering the opening double-episode special “Woo-oo” for free on Google Play. Say it with me now: WOO-OO!

DuckTales new series has a new art style that pays tribute to its comic-book roots, more diversified personalities for its cast, and a lot of great voice talent. David Tennant, aka The Tenth Doctor from Doctor Who, makes for an utterly delightful Scrooge McDuck, seamlessly switching from crotchety to cocky to charming as his great nephews drag him into peril after peril. The triplets are back, and Donald Duck’s nephews are more than a different color this year, from the reckless, adventure-seeking Dewey to the organization-obsessed goody-goody Huey to smooth-talking slacker Louie, who are all eager to escape from Donald’s overprotective watch and go have some fun. Even Webby has gotten a geek-girl upgrade.

If you’re wanting to check out the special before adding it to your carefully curated Google Play library, the special is also free to watch on YouTube right now, too. But really, why would you stream it there when you can own it for free?

DuckTales on Google Play

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Thoughts from a pretty weird, disturbing Saturday.

I was supposed to be watching tennis. Instead, I had my neck bent at an uncomfortable angle, my fingers scrolling through a Twitter timeline that would prove to engulf my day and imbue it with a frenetic energy that, sitting on a couch hundreds of miles away, I had trouble controlling.

What happened in Charlottesville unfolded in real time, on Twitter and elsewhere, similar to other events that we now, months or years later, refer to primarily by their location — Ferguson, Paris, Brussels, San Bernardino — or the name of the victim. There are so many victims.

Yesterday, though, I had a sober thought amidst the chaos: that despite the divisive and horrific nature of the images being captured and conveyed across myriad channels, they were being captured by everyone, all at once, and disseminated through an open internet that does not discriminate of the type or origin of the content itself. Whether it was Twitter, Facebook, Periscope, Livestream or any number of platforms, no one was being prevented — no company or government stood in the way — from seeing the turmoil and judging for him or herself the verisimilitude of the claims therein.

The networks stayed up and performed their function without bias — they were dumb pipes.

On the other side of the argument — and this isn’t sexy, but it’s business — the recent ramp-up of competition in the wireless space in the U.S., led by T-Mobile, allowed people in Charlottesville to continue streaming without fear of enormous overage charges or punitive throttling. And that despite the concentration of people, we didn’t hear about any one network struggling to keep up with the strain of people hammering its core with a stream of video-intensive activities. The carriers performed as they were meant to: as dumb pipes, not distinguishing between perceived right or wrong, good or bad. That judgment isn’t for the networks to make, but for the people — and it was made, forcefully and with no ambiguity.

Other countries are not quite as lucky. Many protests, and the media covering them, are kept from the public because of repressive internet laws and governments that oversee, or even own, the providers themselves. They control the networks and the frontiers for debate and exchange of ideas, the social networks and the video platforms. The U.S., as divided and chaotic and, well, frustrating as it can often be, still protects the right to free speech and doesn’t impose restrictions or block the exchange of those ideas through the internet, which has become the primary source of such traffic — for the left and the right.

I abhor much of the imagery I saw yesterday. There is no place for Nazis, nor white supremacy, in the U.S. or anywhere in the world. Here in Canada, which is believed to be largely above the hate and division, the defiling of mosques and synagogues is a common occurrence. People of color and religious minorities are taunted and beaten, and, though less prominent, there is an intense, growing empowerment of white supremacists. No country is beyond what happened in Charlottesville, but an open and free internet allows regular people to see it and judge it for themselves.

If, a month ago, you sat by passively and did nothing during the Net Neutrality Day of Action, or criticized the movement as anti-consumer, think about how different things would be if your provider decided to side with one particular viewpoint or another, or if a carrier that also owned a media outlet decided that its message was the right one at the expense of, well, neutrality. This could happen if and when Title II is stripped away.

A few more thoughts this week:

  • Back in the day, Phil was criticized for making this Editor’s Desk column too political. I understand the need to remove oneself from the fray every now and then and just read about Android, but that’s not the world we live in, especially not when the maker of Android needed to fire someone for a memo he wrote that contravened the company’s code of conduct.
  • Google’s culture of openness and inclusiveness was systematic in making Android into the biggest operating system on the planet. Its willingness to work with people of all cultures, and engage with both men and women, is largely why Android has been so successful. To agree with James Damore’s ideas about women is to tacitly support a culture within Google that could not build Android, or Chrome, or any number of services that empower girls and women in countries around the world that are a hell of a lot less inclusive than we are in North America.
  • On a lighter note, this is the beginning of Crazy Season, with a number of device launches in the cards for the next couple of weeks. The Galaxy Note 8 and LG V30 are certainly the most exciting of the two, but we also have the Essential Phone, more details of which are expected this week, and new flagships from Sony, Huawei and others in the coming months.
  • Perhaps most interesting of all is Google’s strategy around Android O and the Pixel. We’re expecting Android O — the final, finished, ready-for-consumer version on August 21. That will probably be Android 8.0, or 8.0.1. When the Pixel 2 line is unveiled, likely in late October, they will ship with Android 8.1, bringing some device-specific enhancements that may or may not trickle down to the older Nexus and Pixel models.
  • I am also incredibly intrigued by the rumors that Apple, with its Phone 8, will do away with fingerprint biometrics and move straight to face and retinal authentication, mainly because of how tough that transition has been for Samsung. The eye is always going to be more secure than the finger, but it’s also a lot more difficult to do properly, as we’ve seen.

It’s been an emotional few days, and I am looking forward to some nice work-related distractions in the weeks ahead. I hope you’ll join us on that ride — it’s going to be good.


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