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Droid Life Q&A Session: Volume 22

There is so much taking place right now in the Android ecosystem, with Samsung and Motorola set to announce new devices next month, as well as a new version of Android currently cooking in the oven down in Mountain View. We know that many of you may have questions about these things, so the Droid Life Q&A Sessions is the perfect time to ask us anything that might concern you.

Not only do we enjoy answering your questions about Android and Android-related topics, but we also answering questions about other off-topic subjects. This could include sports, food, travel tips, and anything else you might come up with. There are not too many things that are off limits, so go for gold. 

On Friday, we will compile a list of our favorite questions, then let the team have at them. Until then, shoot your questions below in the comments section.

To see all of our previous Q&A’s, check them out here.

  • wtd2009

    when do you think we’ll see a new nexus tablet from google?

  • XvierX

    Any guesses on what kind of features may be introduced with the new earpiece/headset that’s been teased in Moto’s invite? Are prepaid plans good enough nowadays that you would recommend your family and friends avoid renewing their contracts? Tim, now that you’ve had the shield tablet for quite sometime, have you found any downsides yet?

  • objektiv_one

    Are any of you guys looking forward to the G3’s bootloader unlock?
    I sure am.

  • kixofmyg0t

    I can’t remember the last time we had a Custom ROM Friday.

    Do you think custom ROM’s still matter?

  • maybe

    kellen have u tried veu theme on ur oneplus? what other themes do u like best

  • Austin g

    Would you guys like to see the moto x+1 have a qhd display?

  • Adam

    Once Google implements actual voice commands (like Commandr) what is the coolest thing we will be able to do? What non-standard voice command do you want to see implemented?

  • John

    Why was there a whole 10min section devoted to Ron complaining how apps in the Iphone “shows” more content yet he didn’t really elaborate on the fact that you can’t see any of it unless you zoom in? And what happens when you zoom in? You see less of the content on the screen which is all so pointless. And I got the impression he will write an article about it? Seriously?

  • CaptainObvious

    Israel vs Gaza? Who’s gonna win this war?

  • Meninjeans

    Suggest a good case for LG G2.

  • DanThompson87

    Will there ever be a non-janky Android phone?

    I own the GS5 and it’s laggy as hell. Since I got my original Droid 2 I’ve been wanting a smooth expirience I’ve so far only seen on iOS with the possible exception of the Moto X and Nexus 5 but neither of those are current-gen phones.

    • Suicide_Note

      I don’t think Samsung has ever released a non-janky phone. Touchwiz is a cancer that needs a cure.

    • calculatorwatch

      So you’re saying there’s already been a non-janky Android phone (Moto X / Nexus 5)
      The real question is will there ever be a non-janky Samsung phone?

      • DanThompson87

        I haven’t played with them enough to tell if they are janky or not.

  • Ben Myton

    What impact do you see iOS 8 and a large-screen iPhone having on the Android ecosystem?

    • Ben Myton

      For context, the S5 left a really bad taste in my mouth. Without a significant performance edge, hardware design, or a meaningful OS feature, I wonder if there are becoming fewer compelling reasons to go Android over iOS.

      • Suicide_Note

        Um, Apple has been aping Android features left and right the last several years.

        • Ben Myton

          That’s more or less my point. Either this batch of feature matching moves the two camps closer together, or it doesn’t matter 🙂

          For me, the last feature to really excite me from Android was the touchless and active display aspects of the MotoX.

          • Droid Ronin

            We still got home screen widgets, true multitasking, app-on-app overlay (Link Bubble, Chat Heads), third party launchers, just to name a few. And how can we forget deep Google services integration?

          • Ben Myton

            All great points, and deep Google integration is the one thing I truly miss on iphones, GVoice just isn’t good.

  • z32589

    One of the major differentiators between iOS & Android has always been app support & design. The media tends to claim apps come out first for iOS & are designed better. Do you see this changing, especially with Google releasing a Dev Preview of Android for the first time like Apple does with iOS?

  • SeanPlunk

    If HTC gives the M9 a great primary camera, does it become the flagship to beat for the first half of 2015?

    • Bryan Mills

      They have to add more RAM and a bigger battery. Less bezels too.

      • SeanPlunk

        The battery life of the M8 is really good, so I’m not sure that’s so much of an issue. The amount of RAM is also up for debate, I’m inclined to think 2GB is sufficient. I would like to see smaller bezels though. If they can get rid of the black bar beneath the screen even better.

    • Qwerty

      Not in order of importance.

      1. HTC can make the battery even more efficient. That’ll give them an angle some other companies still seem to not get around and, if they market it correctly, they can gain some more customers on this alone.
      2. Keep the existing screen size or make it a bit larger, as long as the phone isn’t taller than it is wider and bezels don’t take up much of the screen. At this point, HTC doesn’t need to remind its customers that they own an HTC phone every time they glance at their screen by placing a logo towards the bottom. Keep the logo in the back and let the user immerse themselves in the phone without any distractions.
      3. No more of this ultra-pixel business. At least design a phone with a camera that’s up to par with something like those Samsung phones. Take some cues from Nokia as they seem to include excellent cameras on their devices.

      4. Change the design. The M9, assuming that’s what they’ll call it, shouldn’t be a refined M8 like the M8 was with regards to the M7. Not that the M8 had anywhere near a bad design, but they need to offer a device that someone can look at and say “That looks good, yet different from HTC flagships from the last two years”.
      5. Maybe polish up Sense a little bit more. Or even better, do what Motorola did and include a near stock Android OS. Just add some intriguing features that will keep it from being so vanilla.

      Those are just some things I’d personally like to see on the next HTC flagship. Don’t know if it’ll make it the one to beat during the first half of 2015.

      • SeanPlunk

        My take on what I’d like to see in the M9:
        1) 5″ 1080p LCD. Focus on brightness and contrast. Don’t worry about going to 1440p. As an added bonus an S805 or S810 powered M9 with a 1080p screen would outperform 1440p competitors.
        2) Make it smaller. Trim the side bezels and get rid of the black bar below the screen.
        3) Focus on the camera. HTC’s cameras always seen to lag behind LG/Samsung/Sony. The interface is nice, so I don’t know if it’s the sensor itself or the processing HTC is adding. Whatever they’re doing, it’s not working. They should copy anybody’s camera except for Motorola. Keeping or ditching Ultrapixels is irrelevant – just make the camera good!
        4) Keep going with the metal/premium design language. As the phones start to be internally more alike, the premium design can be a difference maker.
        5) Make it 32GB ROM + SD Card Slot standard. With the limitations Kit Kat brings to SD cards, 32GB should be the minimum.
        6) Put in at least a 2800mah battery, 3000mah would be even better.

        I feel like HTC is so close. With a great camera the M9 has a real chance to stand above the GS6 and go toe to toe with the G4.

  • FortitudineVincimus

    Has the creepy little kid hand tattoo ever been explained?

    • calculatorwatch

      Tim explained it in one of the DL shows a few weeks back. Basically, it’s part of an unfinished tattoo of a woman and is supposed to end up very dark and sexy and not like a weird little baby hand.

      • FortitudineVincimus

        So essentially, the tattoo artists is not very good as that outline, it’s never going to become womanly or sexy feeling (unless Picasso comes back from the grave).

  • Duane Westerhaus

    You said that Motorola is apparently hinting at a new earpiece(s) that will be presented alongside the new X, G, and 360 on September 4th. So, what are your thoughts on what would make it special enough to warrant an unveiling? Do you think it would have some unique functionality to the 360?

  • Blue Sun

    I’m heading to Portland for the weekend. Do you have any brunch recommendations?

    • inklenotrump

      Tasty N Son’s, Mother’s, Screen Door, Besaws, – if you’re in town on a Saturday go to the Saturday market at PSU and get awesome food.., tin roof is pretty good, Ken’s bakery is pretty good but more just pastries IIRC, that’s all i can name off the top of my head at the moment..

      • Blue Sun

        Thanks for the tips. I’m gonna try & hit up several of those places.

  • Shane Redman

    Now that we have android phones, tablets, watches, tv, car dashes, glasses….what’s next? or are we running out of places to put software?

  • Greg H

    Since NCAAFB is almost here, what is the DL Preseason Top 25?

  • Knlegend1

    What determines a worthy upgrade for a phone?

  • Droid Ronin

    What is your favorite burger/beer combo now?

  • Nicholas Ruiz

    Why has the Droid Life show and even the site in general become more negative and cynical?

    • PoisonApple31

      Maybe you just turned soft?

  • Droid Ronin

    Do you guys still root your devices? If so, what do you do with root?

    • Bryan Mills

      Plant trees.

    • Raven

      Ti Backup FTW.

  • Greg H

    As Samsung’s decline becomes more and more apparent, who do you think will be the company to rise up as the Android king? And what changes would Samsung need to make in order to regain their reign?

  • shelooga

    i feel like, although maybe expensive(shooting form the hip here), it would be easy to put some form of a solar panel on the bezel or back of a device. am i on drugs or is there a reason i havent seen this gimmick yet? i can tell you right now, id buy into it. it wouldnt charge quickly, but in a pickle it could help

    • Adam

      If the solar panel is doing it’s job the device wouldn’t get all that hot from the sun, as most (well, 20% maybe) of that radiation that would be turned to heat is used for electricity instead.

      Why don’t they do it? I would guess mostly for design and durabilty reasons. A back solar panel would add several millimeters to the phone at minimum, probably close to doubling the current thickness. Solar panels at the moment are also very rigid and would probably tolerate flexing worse than the screen, so goodbye phone the first time you drop it or bump a table corner with it in your pocket. In the end you would have a device that is bulky, fragile, cannot use a case and all for functionality that you would use practically never.

      Buy a standalone solar charger instead, hook it up to your phone or to a battery backup and you’ll be much happier.

  • 213ninja

    on launch days, why do you post multiple articles about the same launch product? for example, on the s5 launch, there were upwards of 5 to 8 articles covering the features, specs, pricing, carrier announcements, live event feed, etc. with a ton of overlap. as an avid reader, it’s tough to carry conversations in all of those threads when at a high level they are all about the same thing. it’s almost like you are tweeting on your blog. i’m not knocking the approach, i’m just wondering why you choose that approach as opposed to using one or two posts and just update them as info roles in…..

    thanks for looking at my question.

    • After those days are done, it’s easier to find one specific post (specs, polls, announcement, live blog, etc) when we need to link to it in a future post. Just makes for a cleaner/more organized system on our end.

    • Clicks, bruh. clicks.

      • 213ninja


  • chaluim

    What ever happened to the Google Wallet card?

    • I’m actually waiting for mine to arrive this week. Excited to try it out.

    • Shane Redman

      I have and use mine all the time. I give myself an allowance per pay period to help me save.

  • This might be slightly off-topic, but it’s something that you guys deal with on a weekly basis. Live Streaming.

    I’m a professional wedding photographer and a recent client has requested of us to live-stream her wedding ceremony this upcoming weekend for her family in Europe. I know that you guys use Hangouts to live stream the DL Show, and I was just wondering:

    Best mobile hardware recommendation? Should be quick and easy. I have a Nexus 7 (2013) that I can set up, but ideally for the future, I would like to do a GoPro or something more optically robust.
    What potential issues you might run into while streaming? Things to look out for?
    What other streaming services did you consider at first, or what other newer services would you recommend now? (YouStream, etc.)

    Thanks for the feedback.

    • 213ninja
      • Thanks for the link. I’m going to do some homework this week. Thank god for unthrottled unlimited VZW 4G for the moment.

    • mcdonsco

      Dude, please tell me you are not actually considering using an n7 for streaming that event?

      Need to get a decent/aood actual HD camera and use that from a laptop connection.

      • I Agree with you. We are already shooting with a 5D and a dedicated Panasonic AVCHD camera for wedding coverage. However, this was a last minute request for her family in Europe. It’s not within her budget for adding the additional expense of another person to manage another camera, laptop, etc. It has to be dead simple. The N7 is already connected and has a nice wide angle that will be adequate for capturing the ceremony from a stationary position.

  • S Fraud

    Why is Bryan Mills such a douchbag? Mommy issues?


  • mcdonsco

    Curious if you guys at DL keep and stick with a DD, one you always go back to after testing something new and if so, how long on average you stick with that DD, a few months? A year until the revision of it comes out?

  • imronburgundy

    Atlanta Braves… Most frustrating team in baseball right now?

  • James


    What are the chances the next Nexus will actually be made by Motorola?
    How ’bout the chances of it being around 5 inches rather than the rumored behemoth?

    What new features do you expect / hope to see?

    • Suicide_Note

      The latest leak had the screen size at 5.2″, so there’s hope it won’t be a phablet.

  • Suicide_Note

    When are we going to get a Droid Life swimsuit edition?

  • SeanPlunk

    What are your expectations for the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6L (5.5″ model)? Do you think Apple will add any extra functionality to the larger model to better compete against the Note 4 or will it just be a larger iPhone?

    • Suicide_Note

      My guess is it will just be a larger iPhone with the same features as the smaller model.

    • Bryan Mills

      A8 will be a beast of a processor. Larger battery than Samsung. Premium material that Samsung also lacks. I hope Apple kicks Samsung’s asss.

      • SeanPlunk

        1) The A8 will be a beast.
        2) Larger battery? The GS5 has a 2800mah battery and the Note 3 has a 3200 mah battery. The iPhone 6 is rumored to be 1810 mah and the iPhone 6L is rumored to be 2915 mah. The battery life may be comparable, but your “larger battery” claim is without merit.

        • Bryan Mills

          It’ll last longer than a Samsung phone.

          • SeanPlunk

            Then perhaps that’s what you should have said 😉 I have an iPhone 5S and a Note 3. In practical use they are very similar as far as battery is concerned. The iPhone seems to have a slight advantage in stand by battery life.

  • T4rd

    What would it take to get Ron to ditch his iDerp devices? =p

    • Nick

      Seriously interested in this. As far as I can tell, he just really likes that all of his icons have the same shape, but that’s why we have icon packs. And I won’t accept “it’s easier to use” as a valid answer.

      • Suicide_Note

        I tried using a 4S and found it to be one of the most frustrating, non-user friendly experiences I’ve ever had. Same with my son’s iPod touch. I don’t get how people say iOS is so easy and intuitive.

        • Droid Ronin

          I agree. I had to use an iPhone 5 for work for a short while and it was very frustrating to use. The keyboard was difficult to type on, getting rid of notifications on the status bar required tapping on a infinitesimal ‘x’ button, and overall, I just got bored with the way the interface looked and how I couldn’t customize anything.

  • SeanPlunk

    What are the must have items for next year’s flagships? Do you think 1440p screens have become a requirement?

    • Raven

      I sure hope not. I would not want a phone with greater than 1920×1080 pixels. It would be an absolute waste of processing power on a small screen.

  • Johnny

    Motorola Shamu; Nexus or Android Silver?

  • How often would you say you guys get products early that come with an NDA keeping you from talking about them until a certain date?

  • inklenotrump

    What is the fall tablet lineup looking like in Android land? Specifically should we expect a refresh on the N7 and a new nexus 9 or 10? haven’t heard the latest rumors.

  • Tony Spencer

    What’s your take on the Motorola XT1254 quark_verizon, aka Droid Turbo?

    • kixofmyg0t

      If I may piggyback on your question….

      Do you think the marketing team that came up with “DROID Turbo” should be fired?

      Yes. The answer is yes.

      • michael arazan

        DROID TURBO, if you ever find an Uncongested tower maybe from 3-4 AM, this phone will be able to handle the speed

  • Brandon Rosonina

    Does this site, or any other site, have any influence on manufactures on what users want in specs/screen size in a phone?

    • BillySuede


  • SeanPlunk

    What do you guys make of the Moto S on Verizon rumors? Have you heard anything from your sources?

    • Anthoni

      Going on this, what do you think about TK tech news? Do you think there is any credibility there?

    • michael arazan

      Any Rumors of the Motorola Nexus or any Google Products coming to Verizon?

      What happened to the 2 Google products that were supposed to come to Verizon?

  • David B

    I’m going to switch from an iPhone to a android phone. Should I get the LG G3, the Galaxy S5, or the HTC M8?

    • inklenotrump

      G3 or M8 – S5 is meh

    • Maxim∑

      I’m just going to put you in reality.

      Your saying this now but when the iPhone 6 comes out you’ll end up just buying it. But if you really meant that I’d recommend the Oneplus or M8.

      If your more on a budget either Moto G or Nexus 5

      • David B

        I really mean it. I’m also done with ios.

    • 213ninja

      you might want to wait a couple of months. ios8 is supposed to be game changing from what i read. i’m diehard android, but if i were an ios user, i’d be interested in seeing what ios8 is bringing to the table. the other reason i’d wait, upcoming beast ass phones…..note4, moto x+1, moto droid hyper, nexus 6….

      all that being said, i do some impulse buying myself, so if you absolutely had to jump ship today and choose one of the 3 phones you listed, i’d go G3.

      • John

        Doesn’t apple say that about all of their “new” ioses? They added the flashlight shortcut. I know cuz my boss was bragging about it.

        • 213ninja

          i’m talking about what a read here…lol….i don’t read their stuff….

      • Droid Ronin

        You forgot to say that iOS8 will be “revolutionary”!

        • michael arazan

          Now they’ll say “Evolutionary” as iOS turns into Android for all the features copied

    • schoat333

      None. Wait for the iPhone 6 or Nexus 6.

    • Mario

      Moto X+1 FTW