Whatsapp Has Introduced a Fingerprint Lock Feature for Android Phones


WhatsApp has become one of the easiest and fastest ways to communicate. However, if you share confidential information on the app, you need to be keen about your device’s security.

Anyone who masters your lock pattern or PIN can easily read your messages and misuse the information therein.

Sometimes you just forget to lock your device when the automatic lock is deactivated.

You can now keep your WhatsApp messages private with the new security feature. The upgrade enables you to secure your messages with your fingerprint.

Your fingerprint is unique and perhaps the safest way to secure your phone data.

WhatsApp is not testing the biometric authentication for the first time. The feature was first tested with iPhones in February (2019).

iPhone users have been enjoying both the fingerprint lock and facial recognition safety measures.

How to activate the fingerprint lock feature

For Android phone users, the fingerprint lock/unlock is now accessible via the WhatsApp settings.

You must activate the feature to enjoy the upgraded privacy. Here is the process:

1. Open WhatsApp (You may need to install or upgrade the app it in a new Android device)

2. Open the app’s Settings

3. Click on Account

4. Select Privacy

5. Select the Fingerprint lock option

You will need to confirm your fingerprint when you select this option. In addition, you can select the duration within which the app will automatically lock.

For instance, you can choose to activate the automatic fingerprint lock immediately after closing the app. You can also choose a longer duration like a minute or half an hour.

It all depends on how often you use the app or your current chat sessions.

If you cannot trust your friends or colleagues, it is safer to activate the automatic fingerprint lock immediately after closing the app.

Additional feature

Another security measure that comes with the fingerprint lock is the ability to control the content of WhatsApp notifications.

Most devices give a preview of a new message including the sender’s identity.

Sometimes the preview is the full message from the sender. Your friends can view the message even without unlocking your device or opening the app.

With the upgraded privacy, you can control the content of the notifications that the app gives.

The new security features were tested in Android beta in August and will soon be available on all Android platforms.

Pegasus

The new privacy feature has come at a time when the world is concerned about spyware that targeted WhatsApp users in India.

Pegasus spyware is NSO technology that extracts private data without the knowledge of phone users.

The politics that surround the Indian election are deemed to have prompted the Israeli firm to launch Pegasus in India.

The spyware sends WhatsApp users a link. If you click on it, Pegasus is automatically installed on your device.

You will view the information on the link without realising the security breach beneath the link.

Once the spyware is installed, it extracts data on your device. The developers are interested in your events, contacts, messages, passwords and call log.

Pegasus developers have managed to introduce the spyware to more than 45 countries. India has faced the security breach for the second time.

NSO claims that it developed the spyware three years ago to sell to governments. However, there are concerns that the technology has been misused.

In the case of India, questions arise on the authority to use the spyware to extract data from activists, journalists, and lawyers in an election year.

As a WhatsApp user, you need to be careful with the links you open on the app.

The titles of the links and videos we receive on WhatsApp are irresistible. However, clicking on the links could be the doorway to malware into your device.

Concerns about Cyber Crimes

While Pegasus is no secret to governments, the greatest concern is if the operators have licensed criminals to use the technology.

The same concerns arise about WhatsApp privacy settings.

The current encryption technology ensures that only the two people chatting on the app can read or access the conversation.

The system works for users but not for the police trying to track and stop crimes in time.

It is impossible for law administrators to read encrypted messages on the platform. This means that criminals can communicate on WhatsApp and plan crimes that the police cannot decode.

The new security feature makes it even harder for security forces to track and stop cyber crimes.

Unless the criminal is caught, reading messages on the criminal’s phone will be impossible.

To some security experts, communication platforms like WhatsApp are easy places for criminals to hide and talk.

However, the security concerns do not eliminate that need for app developers to provide the best security measures to users.

While the information shared on social platforms may be inaccessible to strangers, the operators can access the data from their servers.

The police can request for records of chats for specific numbers when investigating a crime.

Final Thoughts

App developers in Kenya and elsewhere around the world care about the data security of their users. Developers will go out of their way to outsmart cybercriminals with new security features. Facebook-owned WhatsApp has given users a new layer of data security. It is up to the users to activate the settings.

The same applies to malware links that cybercriminals send to app users. You can reduce cyber-attacks significantly by ignoring suspicious links on all social platforms on your device.

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Everything You Need to Know about Google’s Latest Products (Pixel 4, Pixel 4 XL, Buds)

We know Google as a search engine and a global marketing platform. Did you know Google sells hardware too?

In the latest hardware event, Google unveiled new smartphones, that is, Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL. We will discuss the specs of the two phones shortly but the company is big on competing with the world’s tech giants.

In addition to the smartphones, the Company announced new laptops and smart home devices.

Why announce new products at the close of the year, you ask? Well, we are headed to the Christmas season. The world goes into a shopping craze during the holiday.

Let us now look at the new products that Google released into the market

Smartphones: Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL

How would you like to take a clear picture of the stars at night? Have you ever tried that with your smartphone? We bet you did not like the output!

Google’s Pixel 4 enables you to get a clear picture of the Milkyway.  It has a powerful night camera not to mention the normal day-camera.

The company’s initial target market is the US. Buyers will thank Google for having this phone on during a car crash. The phone has a unique feature that detects a car crash.

It will automatically dial 911 when this feature is activated. That means the owner gets immediate medical attention.

Here is another feature that smartphone users will love. Google included a detection feature for gestures. Pixel 4 has the fastest face unlock, which competes with other phones in the market with such features.

With the radar detection, you can make a gesture in the air and the device will immediately unlock. You can also swipe in the air to move from one app to another.

The main difference between Pixel 4 and XL is the size. Pixel 4 XL has a 6.3 inch screen display while the normal Pixel 4 has 5.7 inch display.

The manufacturer has gone a step further to include 90hz display. Such a display prolongs the device’s battery life.

Another advantage of this new display is that it makes scrolling smoother and easier compared to the traditional display. You can turn the display on and off as you desire.

Google has made the new phones more accessible to buyers than previous Pixel models. For previous models, buyers had to unlock them from vendors including Google or from Verizon.

The new smartphones will be accessible through all the major carriers in the US. Are you curious about the price?

We know you are! The new Pixel 4 will start from $799.

Pixelbook Go

Google has explored the market for laptops alongside other hardware. In the event, the company introduced a new version of its Pixelbook laptop.

You can expect improved features every time a manufacturer has a new version of the same device. The new Pixelbook Go is lighter than the original version.

In addition, the bottom design gives you a better grip on the laptop. It has a longer battery life (12 hours). Yes, you read right, it is 12 hours.

Pause for a moment and consider the battery life of your current laptop. Can you work with it all day without charging?

Other improvements on the laptop include a magnesium casing and a larger 13.3-inch diplay.

The price of Pixelbook Go starts at $649.

Pixel Buds

Google introduced new Pixel Buds in the event. They will be available in the market in 2020. Music lovers will enjoy these Buds because of their amazing features include the wireless design.

Google introduced a previous version of the same buds that were connected through a wire. The new buds are completely wireless, so you can forget about tangled wires.

Look out for its adaptive sound technology. What does that mean?

You do not need to adjust the volume every time you change your environment. The Pixel Buds will automatically increase or reduce the volume to suit your environment.

The buds have a spatial vent design, which protects you from clogged ears. If you have used headphone for a long time, you know the irritation in your ears.

Google has boosted the speakers to improve the output and updated the sensors as well. However, the buds are still light to carry around.

Another feature we need to mention here is the long-range for the Bluetooth connection. You can enjoy the music on your headphones even when you move further from your device.

Nest Home Devices

Google has a Nest package of smart home products. The products in this package that have improvements include the Nest Aware and Nest Aware Plus.

The coverage for both programs has expanded. The updates will be available to Nest customers in the coming year.

Google has upgraded the Nest Wifi routers with 25% more coverage. The routers are faster than the previous routers. Starting November, customers can now choose between a 2 pack or 3 pack of the new routers.

The Nest Mini is also brand new with better speakers.

Stadia

Google did not leave gaming fans behind this year. Stadia is a service that enables users to stream their favourite video games.

The stream services started with a cloud feature earlier this year. Starting November 2019, you can use Stadia to stream video games to Google’s devices such as Chromebooks.

The streaming service comes with a special controller and retails at $9.99 per month.

A free take-home lesson

You define the limits for the growth and expansion of your business. Google started with answering search queries. It is the leading search engine in the world.

Millions of website and business owners rely on Google to reach their customers.

Today, Google is competing with top brands for mobile phones, laptops, and smart devices. Do not limit your business to one niche. Explore related niches.

We can also learn the need to keep updating products, including well-performing products.

The global competition is too steep for a company to maintain the same version of a product for years. Product development must be part of your business growth strategy.

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Smart Watches in Kenya

A wristwatch communicates your personality and sense of style more than any other accessory. Your watch makes a statement of who you are and what you consider as important. However, wristwatches now do much more than communicating the wearer’s style and personality. If you are still holding on to a traditional wristwatch, you need to upgrade it to a smart watch.  A smart watch can display the notifications on your smart phone, track your running route and speed, and monitor your heart rate among other functions.

The functions you enjoy on a smart watch depend on its features and capabilities. When buying a smart watch, you need to consider its features and compatibility with the operating system on your mobile phone. Other important considerations include the battery life, the quality of apps, and price. If you have finally decided to upgrade your wristwatch or your current smart watch, here is a review of the best smart watches you can buy in Kenya.

Aplus GV18 – 1.54″ Smart Watch

Do you miss your calls or notifications even when your phone is vibrating in your pocket? Well, this smart watch by Aplus will help you keep track of all your calls, emails, messages, and the social media updates. You can pick and dial your calls, send and receive messages, and record videos with the watch. The watch has a 0.3MP camera that enables you to take clear photos and videos. It displays high definition pictures on the 1.54-inch TFT LCD touch screen. You can play Mp4 videos and Mp3 music on the wearable via Bluetooth.

The smart watch has a RAM of 128MB and a CPU of 533MHz. The storage capacity is 64MB, which gives you enough space to save your photos and videos. It is NFC enabled and waterproof. Other important features that will make your life far much easier include the alarm, sleep monitor, calendar, browser, and recorder. You can synchronize your contact list and interact with your friends easily on the Aplus smart watch. The watch uses a 380mAh Li-on battery.

Smartwatch – 1.22 Inch Luxury Fashion Leather Smart Watch

You can keep your sense of style with this luxury brand by Smart Watch. The watch has a 1.22- inch IPS high definition screen and a 2.5D curved OGS screen. You can dial and answer calls, exchange messages and record your heart rate with the fashion accessory. Other amazing features on the accessory include a remote camera, sleep monitor, real-time stepscon, and a pedometer. If you are a music lover, you can play your favorite tunes via Bluetooth.

The smart watch is compatible with both Android and iOS operating systems. It is available in several languages including English, German, Spanish, French, Polish, Italians, and Turkish. You can receive email notifications and access your phonebook on the device. You can keep it on when washing your hands or in a rainy weather because of its waterproof feature. The gold and brown accessory comes with a complete user manual and a USB cable.

Excelvan NFC Bluetooth Smart Watch

The accessory is a combination of technology and an exquisite design. It functions as a GMS phone that works in any part of the world. It is light in weight and has an adjustable silicone wristband. It has an inbuilt alarm system that notifies you when you are leaving your smart phone behind. You can enjoy your music via its V3.0 Bluetooth and remote capture your photos with an android phone. You get all notifications on your smart phone on your wrist.

Other features include a sound recorder, sedentary reminder, FM, video player and recorder, and a sleep monitor. If you are looking for a sports companion, this watch will keep you on track with your exercise routine. You can record your sports data including the time, speed, distances, steps, and calories burnt on the accessory. It has an in-built speaker and MIC and its normal use battery life is 2 days.

H28 Bluetooth Smart Bracelet Sport watch

The smart watch is specifically designed for individuals who need a reliable sports partner. However, the bracelet has other features of smart watches including an alarm, calls reminder, date, time, and messages reminder. Others include music control, anti-lost and a remote camera. You can record your heart rate, speed, and calories with the bracelet when exercising.

The smart watch is compatible with the Android operating system and any IOS above 7.0. The bracelet is black in color and has 4.0 Bluetooth and a 50 mAh battery. It is made of Thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) and comes with a manual and USB cable.

Smart Gear D8 Plus – 0.49″  Smart Watch

This golden and sleek accessory will keep you in touch with your friends at all times. The instant messaging feature enables you to chat with your contacts easily. You can also dial or answer a phone call on the smart watch. You can synchronize the contacts on your smart phone for a better experience. The accessory has a 0.49- inch OLED screen and V3.0 Bluetooth that enables you to enjoy the music on your smart phone.

The smart watch has Mp3 music player and Mp4 video player. It uses a 300mAh Li-on battery. Other functions on the accessory include a pedometer, calculator, Browser 2.0, alarm, sedentary reminder and a sleep monitor. The smart watch also has a sound recorder and a calendar. You cannot miss any updates on your social media and email accounts with this device.

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7 Top Smartphones to Purchase in Kenya

Have you been thinking about buying a Smartphone? Are you aware of the best brands available in the market considering? Well, the following Smartphone devices have been ranked highly in the Kenyan consumer market:

  • Samsung Galaxy J7

Launched in 2015, this device is developed with the needs of sophisticated Kenyan consumers in mind. It is 5.5 inches in size and utilizes android OS platform. The internal memory is 16GB and 1.5 GB RAM, allowing you to store as much data as possible. The camera specifications are 13MP and allow for touch focus, face detection and geo-tagging. The browser is HTML5. Further, you can talk for at least 18 hours without charging the device. It comes in three different colors namely, white, black and gold. With close to 22,500 Kenya shillings, you can take the device home.

  • Techno L8

The dual mini SIM device was available in the market from 2016.  Its size dimensions are 5.5 inches, 720X 1280 pixels and 267 pixels for every inch. Its touch screen has the capacity to develop 16 million colors. The internal memory is 16GB while the card slot allows you to store up to 125 GB of data. The android 5.1 lollipop operating systems is featured. It has a loud speaker and can allow you to listen to MP3 ringtones. The connectivity features include Wi-Fi hotspot, Wi-Fi direct2G GPRS and 4.0 blue tooth version. It is sold at a price ranging from KSH 10,500 to KSH12, 000 in different stores in the Kenyan phone market.

  • Microsoft Lumia 640 LTE

The device was launched in the market in 2015 and has since been warmly embraced in the market. The technology used to craft is GSM/HSPA and LTE. It is 5.0 inches in size and has corning gorilla glass 3 for protection. The operating system is Microsoft windows phone 8.1 and can be upgraded. The internal memory is 8GB and the card slot allows the users to store up to 256 GB data. The camera specifications are 1/4 sensor size, 8MP, LED flash and autofocus. The browser used is HTML5. The price range is between 13,000 to 15,000 Kenya shillings.

  • Huawei Y6 Pro

The Smartphone was made available in the market in October 2015. It is 5.0 inches in size and a 720 X1280 pixels resolution. The internal memory is 16GB, 2GB RAM and a card slow allowing you to store up to 256 GB. The camera specifications are 13MO, LED flash, touch focus, face detection, panorama and geo-tagging. It has accelerometer and proximity sensors and LI-PO 4000 mAH battery. The technology used to make it GSM, LTE and HSPA. It is available in three colors namely gray, gold and white. It is sold at 13,500 to 15000 Kenya shillings.

  • HTC One M9

This device has a 157g weight and a size of 5.0 inches. The resolution capacity is 1080 X 1920 pixels and a corning gorilla glass 3 for protection. The platform utilized is android 0S 5.0 lollipop and an octa-core CPU. The memory dimensions are 32GB and 256 GB and a microSD card slot, allowing you to store up to 256GB data. The camera’s specifications are 20 MP, auto focus, touch focus, face and smile detection and geo-tagging. The browser used is HTML5 while the battery capacity is 2840 mAH. With 27,500 shillings, you can buy the device.

  • Cubot Rainbow

As the name suggests, the phone is full of color. It has a 16GB high speed storage and 128 GB expansible memory. The operating system used is android 6.0 marshmallow. The 5MP front camera has 4P lens and while the 13MP rear camera has 5P AF lens. It is 5.0 inches in size and cotton flax textured back cover to ensure that you get a gentle touch when using it. The core processor is MEDIATECK MT 6580, which makes the device powerful enough to allow for computational tasks and a smooth experience when watching videos and browsing. The battery capacity is 2200 mAH. The best thing is that it is affordable; at a price of KSH 7999, you can purchase the device.

  • LG G5

The device was launched in the market in 2016. It is 5.3 inches in size and operates on android marshmallow OS platform. The memory is 32 GB, GB RAM and has a microSD card slot of up to 256 GB. The camera features are dual 16 MP, laser autofocus, HDR, face detection, geo-tagging and panorama. The resolution is 1440x 2560 pixels and the browser featured is HTML 5. You will get the device at a price range of KSH39, 000 to KSH 53, 000.

Certainly, you will be spoilt for choice when buying Smartphone devices in Kenya. You have a chance to opt for the affordable to the most sophisticated devices with out of the world features. You must however find reliable and reputable dealers so that you can get value for your money. Some of the places to consider are Jumia, Safaricom Shops, and Kilimall.

 

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