Samsung Galaxy S9 and S9+ get 128GB and 256GB capacity options

Thanks to 4K video recording, movie files are getting much larger. I recently bought an iPhone 8 Plus 64GB and was excited to use the 4K60 functionality. While it worked well, I very quickly ran out of available storage, making it an overall poor experience. While 4K is great, 64GB of storage just wont cut it.

Samsung has finally seen the light, and today, it announces that it will be selling both the Galaxy S9 and S9+ with 128GB and 256GB storage options. This will make 4K video recording a much better experience. Video aside, it will also allow more apps, music, games, and other file types. Best of all, micro SD expandability remains.
"Designed for how consumers are increasingly communicating via photos and videos, the Galaxy S9 and S9+ feature state-of-the-art camera technology. With new 128GB and 256GB storage options, consumers can take and store even more 4K movies, epic Super Slow-mo videos and amazing low-light pictures. For users, more on-board storage means more ease, flexibility and convenience to manage their photo and video libraries. The new Galaxy S9 and S9+ continue to support external microSD cards of up to 400GB capacity," says Samsung.
The company further says, "The Galaxy S9 and S9+ 128GB and 256GB options are built for the way people work today, giving them a smartphone with the flexibility of work and play on one device. Because these devices have extra storage, there’s plenty of space to store both your personal and business files, photos and videos. With Knox, the Galaxy S9 and S9+ can keep business and personal content separate."
These higher-capacity variants will be sold in three colors starting tomorrow, May 1 -- Coral Blue, Lilac Purple, and Midnight Black. They can only be purchased from Samsung's website directly.
As is to be expected, pricing is higher for more storage, with the 128GB S9 costing $770 and the 128GB S9 plus being $890. The 256GB S9 price is $820, while the S9+ with the top capacity is a sky-high $940.
To soften the blow, Samsung is giving away free Gear IconX wireless earbuds with every purchase through May 17. Don't need headphones? You can forgo the Gear IconX and instead opt for the Gear S3 Frontier smartwatch at a discounted $99. The choice is yours.

How to upgrade your PC to the Windows 10 April 2018 Update now

The latest feature update for Windows 10 is available to users now. But while Microsoft might have started the process today, it will likely be quite a while before you’ll be offered it. Only newer PCs will get it at first, and it might take weeks, or months, before it reaches your system.
The good news is, if you’re willing to take a bit of risk, you can start the upgrade immediately.

To install the April 2018 Update, all you have to do is go here, and click on the Update now button.
A small upgrade file will download. Launch it, and the program will check your PC, and should report back that your system is not "currently running the latest and most secure version of Windows 10."
To begin the upgrade process, click the Update Now button. It will check to make sure your device is compatible, and fetch the update. You can minimize the window, and keep working while the upgrade is prepared.
You can also cancel at this point if you change your mind and decide you want to wait.

How to download Instagram Data using Instagram Data Export Tool

If you have been using Instagram image and video sharing website, it might interest you know that you can download Instagram data using Instagram Data Export Tool. Instagram recently started rolling out this feature for Android and iOS app. However, you can do the same in the Web version as well.

What can you download from Instagram

Although it doesn’t collect information like Facebook does, you will find the following information in the downloaded archive-
  • Photos: You can find all the images that you uploaded earlier on Instagram.
  • Videos: Not only just image but also you can download shared videos from Instagram.
  • Comment: If you have commented on any photo or video, you can find that as well.
  • Profile information: All the profile data including your email ID, phone number, website, etc. can be downloaded through this method.

How to download Instagram data

To get started, open Instagram and log into your account.
Click on your profile avatar and the settings gear button visible next to your profile username.
On the popup, select Privacy and Security. Next, you need to switch from Edit Profile tab to Privacy and Security if it is not already open.
Scroll down a bit until you find Data Download title.
Click on Request Download button.
download Instagram Data using Instagram Data Export Tool
Following that, you need to enter your email ID and password of your profile.
download Instagram data
You need to now wait for sometime until you get an email containing all the information. As per the official statement, it may take up to 48 hours to get the email. But chances are you might get the email within one hour or so.

Windows 10 April Update is releasing for Public on 30th April 2018 (Monday)

It has been a rough few months in the Microsoft world. The v1803 feature update for Windows 10 was earlier spotted to be called as the Windows 10 Spring Creators Update. This lead to some criticism in the community. 

After that, a confirmed release was withdrawn due to a last minute blockage bug. A newer build was issued to Windows Insider and the quality for the release was tested. Finally, Build 17134 was finalized for the release. With this, a new name as April Update was spotted by various keen observers. There has been a lot of mystery and curiosity within the community about when this be available to the public.
Windows 10

Windows 10 April Update to be released on 30th April

Today, Yusuf Mehdi, Corporate Vice President of the Windows and Devices Group at Microsoft wrote a blog post to announce that the next major release of Windows 10 would be called as Windows 10 April Update and it will be available to the public starting 30th April 2018 i.e. Monday.
This means that, if a user manually checks for update via the settings app on or after Monday, they will get the April Update for sure. But, talking about the general rollout, the company is targeting May 8th, 2018.
Talking about the criticism of the marketing name for the release, Aaron Woodman from Microsoft said in a statement that
We floated a number of different names to a lot of customers that provided that proactive feedback, and really the simplest way to help people understand the update was to give it a time that people can clearly understand and works really globally much more efficiently.
Some of the major features that come with this release include Timeline, Focus Assist, Dictation, Microsoft Edge improvements, Cortana improvements and more.
If you wish to learn more about this, we have got you covered. 

Microsoft Added some last minute polish to the Windows 10 April 2018 Update

Having finally named the next big feature update for Windows 10, and come up with a release date for it too, Microsoft now has to actually get it ready for non-Insiders.
The RTM build, Build 17134, has already made its way through the Fast, Slow and Release Preview rings, and Microsoft has today pushed out an update which will tidy things up a little.
Once applied, KB4135051 will update the RTM build (which is actually 17134.1) to 17134.5.
There’s currently no changelog available for the update, but it’s safe to assume it doesn’t contain anything too exciting, given it’s a quick install.

Are you on build 17134.1? If so, check for updates! KB4135051 is now published and will update you to 17134.5. This applies to all rings: Fast, Slow, and Release Preview. This is a quick download/install. Let us know how it goes!

Apple Launches Battery Replacement Program for Non-Touch Bar 13-Inch MacBook Pro Models

Apple today announced a new worldwide battery replacement program for some 13-inch MacBook Pro models that do not have a Touch Bar. Affected machines were manufactured between October 2016 and October 2017. 

Apple says that a limited number of these units feature a component that can fail and cause the built-in battery to expand. It is not a safety issue, according to the company, and Apple will replace all eligible batteries. 

Customers who want to see if their machines are eligible for a fresh battery should use the serial number checker on the MacBook Pro Battery Replacement page. You can find your serial number by clicking on the Apple logo in the menu bar and selecting "About This Mac." The serial number is located at the bottom of the information window. 

Affected customers who are eligible for a new battery will need to visit an Apple Authorized Service Provider, make an appointment at an Apple retail store, or mail their device into an Apple Repair Center after initiating a repair with Apple Support. 

Apple suggests customers who are getting a battery replacement back up their machines ahead of time. Apple also says that if the MacBook Pro in question has damage that will impair the replacement of the battery, it must be addressed prior to the battery replacement process. 

Any customer who has already paid for a replacement battery can contact Apple Supportabout a refund. 

The battery replacement program covers affected MacBook Pro models for five years after the first retail sale of the unit.

How to Enhance code on Visual Studio Code with the help of Extensions

You must be aware of Visual Studio Code already by now. This is so because we already talked about it in an article a while ago. Now, in this article, we are going to talk about how to make the programs that you write better. For me, ‘better’ refers to the notion of error-free, optimized code which will lead to smoother deployment and execution of the respective project. We will be covering everything about writing some code on the IDE in this article. But before that, we should cover what all languages and technologies are supported better by Visual Studio Code.

How to write & enhance your first program on Visual Studio Code

This Visual Studio Code tutorial for beginners will show you how to compile or write your first program or code. Microsoft added support for extensions in Visual Studio Code. These extensions help to enhance and optimize your code for languages like PHP, C, C++ and more!

Languages supported by Visual Studio Code

According to the webpage published on the official website of Visual Studio Code, the following are the main languages supported by the IDE. They include C++, C#, CSS, Dockerfile, Go, HTML, Java, JavaScript, JSON, Less, Markdown, PHP, Python, Sass, T-SQL, and TypeScript.
Now with this, you get some language features that help you write better code. This better code is similar in the track of what we talked about above. So, with support for numerous extensions, we get the rich support for the following:
Syntax highlighting and bracket matching, Smart completions (IntelliSense), Linting and corrections, Code navigation (Go to Definition, Find All References), Debugging and
When the language or the file extension is supported by the IDE, you will see the name of that particular language in the Status Bar on the bottom right corner. Else, it will show you markdown or plaintext written.
For example:

The above image is when the IDE identifies the file as a known type (HTML).
The above image is when the IDE does not identify the file as a known type. Hence, it is mentioned as Plain Text.
Now, let us take a look at how to install and use these extensions to leverage the full advantage of their capabilities.

How to install Extensions on Visual Studio Code

So, in the first step when you open Visual Studio Code, you might see a screen somewhat similar as shown in the snippet below.
After that, click on the Extensions button on the left side vertical menu as shown in the screenshot below.
Then you will see a new panel sliding from the left side itself. In the Search bar of the panel, search for the language or service you want an extension for. I will be searching for an extension for PHP because I will be demoing it.
From the list that you get as search results, select the one that is most suitable to fulfill your needs. If you click on the listing of the extension, you will get more details like description, developer’s name, features, size, compatibility, and more.
Once you hit on the Install button, you are good to go!
Now as I installed the PHP IntelliSense Extension on Visual Studio Code, it starts displaying smart suggestions and auto-completion for different syntax. Hence, this will decrease the chances of an error and will make the execution and deployment of your application smooth.
The real-time example of IntelliSense working with a PHP file is inserted here.
Bonus: What did I do to demo?
If you are curious to try out what I did now, just follow these quick steps.
Install Visual Studio Code and then, search or get the extension for PHP as instructed in the steps above or follow this link
Now create a new file and save it in .php extension for the file.
    echo "This is Ayush from";
Save and then move the files to the htdocs folder of XAMPP or WWW folder of WAMP.
Now, finally open your favorite web browser and enter the local URL for your file. Then you will see an output like this.
So, this is how extensions help you to enhance and optimize your code on Visual Studio Code.
Hope you find it easy to understand.

U.S. Department of Justice Investigating Claims AT&T, Verizon and GSMA Colluded to Prevent Customers From Easily Switching Carriers

The United States Department of Justice today launched an antitrust investigation to determine whether U.S. carriers, including Verizon and AT&T, have coordinated to prevent consumers from easily switching wireless carriers, reports The New York Times

AT&T, Verizon, and GSMA, an industry group that sets mobile standards, were asked in February for documents related to their efforts to hinder the implementation of eSIMs. An embedded SIM, or eSIM, is a standardized chip that's designed to replace a physical SIM card. 

A physical SIM card slot in an iPhone, via iFixit

With eSIM technology, there is no need to swap out SIM cards when switching carriers, making it easier to make a switch from one carrier to another. eSIMs are designed to be compatible with all major carriers, regardless of network type. 

eSIMs are a major change from physical SIM cards, which require customers who wish to switch carriers to obtain a new SIM card when changing providers. eSIMs make it simpler for customers to swap carriers while traveling, and, of interest to device makers, they free up space currently taken up by a SIM card. 

AT&T and Verizon are accused of colluding with the GSMA to create standards that would allow devices with eSIM technology to be locked to their networks. Representatives from the two carriers attended a meeting for a private task force called GSMA North America earlier this year and advocated for the ability to keep eSIM devices tied to a single carrier.

Verizon reportedly claimed that phones needed to be locked to its network in order to prevent theft and fraud. 

At the heart of the investigation is whether the nation's biggest wireless carriers, working with the G.S.M.A., secretly tried to influence mobile technology to unfairly maintain their dominance, in a way that hurt competition and consumers and hindered innovation in the wider mobile industry. 

AT&T and Verizon together control about 70 percent of all wireless subscriptions in the United States. A technology that made it easy to switch carriers could lead to more churn and fewer subscribers for them.
The Department of Justice launched began the probe several months ago following formal complaints from at least one device maker and one wireless carrier. The investigation may include other carriers beyond Verizon and AT&T. 

AT&T, Verizon, and other U.S. carriers have long resisted features that would make it easier for customers to switch carriers at will without being tied to a specific network. Verizon, for example, refused to allow Apple to offer Verizon service through the Apple SIM built into newer iPads. The Apple SIM, a multi-carrier SIM card, is designed to make it easier for customers to choose a carrier after an iPad purchase and switch to a new carrier when traveling. 

Apple, Google, Microsoft, and other wireless carriers in the United States are proponents of the eSIM. Apple, for example, is said to want to use eSIM technology in its 2018 iPhones, but may instead opt for dual-SIM technology because "some carriers are resistant to the idea." 

Apple has already implemented eSIM technology in the Apple Watch Series 3 models equipped with LTE connectivity. The eSIM is also a feature of the Google Pixel 2 smartphone and the Microsoft Surface. 

Update: According to CNBC, all four major U.S. carriers received requests from the U.S. Justice Department.

Featured Apps in Revamped iOS 11 App Store Can experience a 800% Download Boost

Earning a featured spot in the revamped iOS App Store can increase app downloads by up to 800 percent, according to new data sourced from app analytics site Sensor Tower and shared by TechCrunch

The data, collected from September 2017 to the present, suggests an app that's highlighted using either the "App of the Day" or "Game of the Day" feature in the U.S. sees the greatest increase in downloads. 

Specifically, "Game of the Day" apps have seen a median download increase of 802 percent for the week following the feature, while "App of the Day" apps have seen a boost of 685 percent. 

Other features, such as a developer story or an app list can increase downloads by up to 240 percent. Stories resulted in a 222 percent boost in downloads, while app lists increased downloads by 240 percent. A theme feature had the lowest impact at a 164 percent increase in downloads. 

Sensor Tower has also outlined what kind of data Apple has chosen to highlight through the new App Store design. Many of the top publishers that have been featured are larger companies, like Electronic Arts, Warner Bros., Square Enix, Gameloft, Noodlecake Studios, and King, which is unsurprising as these companies have put out some of the most popular apps in the App Store. 

13 of the top 15 featured publishers had at least one million U.S. iPhone downloads since the launch of the new App Store. 

Apple has, however, also focused on highlighting indie apps. 29 percent of apps featured since the launch of the new App Store have been from publishers who had fewer than 10,000 downloads at the time.

"While it's clearly the case that big publishers are more likely to receive the largest number of features, small publishers still very much have their chance to benefit from a feature on the App Store," said Sensor Tower's Mobile Insights Analyst, Jonathan Briskman.
Apple introduced the redesigned App Store in iOS 11 to offer additional opportunities for exposure to app developers. The new App Store includes a "Today" section that's updated daily with app suggestions, featured spots, app lists, developer features, and more, and it splits apps and games into two distinct categories. 

Content featured in the new App Store is chosen and curated by Apple's App Store editorial team, which ensures high-quality recommendations that don't rely solely on popularity rankings. 

As noted by TechCrunch, Sensor Tower's data suggests that Apple's goal of increasing developer exposure through the new App Store design has largely been a successful venture.

Apple Notifying WWDC 2018 Scholarship Winners

Each year, Apple offers free WWDC scholarships to students and STEM organization members who don't have the $1,599 necessary to purchase a ticket to the company's annual developer conference. 

For the upcoming 2018 event, Apple accepted scholarship applications from March 26 to April 1, and since then, Apple has been going through the submissions and choosing winners. As of today, all scholarship applicants who are being awarded with free WWDC attendance are receiving emails from Apple. 

Apple is awarding up to 350 scholarships, all of which include a free WWDC ticket, free lodging, and a free one year Apple developer membership. 

Scholarship applicants were asked to create a short, three-minute interactive scene in Swift Playground. Apple judged applications based on technical accomplishment, creativity of ideas, and content of written responses on the accompanying application. 

All applicants were required to be enrolled part-time or full-time in an accredited course of study or were required to be members of a STEM organization. Apple held its developer ticket lottery back in March and notified developers who won a full-price ticket on March 23

This year's Worldwide Developers Conference will kick off on Monday, June 4 and it will last through Friday, June 8 at the McEnery Convention Center in San Jose, California. Apple is expected to hold a keynote on June 4 where new software and perhaps new hardware products will be unveiled. 

Scholarship students and developers who were not chose to attend the event will be able to follow along with the conference using the WWDC app.