Instagram is kinda, sorta going back to a chronological feed

Instagram seems to have finally gotten the memo that their god-awful algorithmic feed — introduced nearly 2 years ago — wasn’t the biggest hit with its users. Up until now they’ve pretty much been ignoring the haters (like the petition that amassed over 26,000 signatures) probably because the algorithmic feed better served advertisers than its actual user base. That’s fine. It’s a free service and Instagram has to do whatever they can to keep the lights on. We get it.

Throwing users a bone, Instagram announced yesterday that they’ve finally heard your cries and will tweaking their feed to show you posts in a more chronological manner. Now before you get too excited, Instagram says posts made recently are more likely to show up at the top of your feed — there’s still no guarantee. Simply put, this is NOT the return of the chronological feed.

One of the worst parts about the algorithmic feed was the app’s weird habit of auto refreshing the entire feed anytime you left. For instance, you could be scrolling through the feed, jump into a messaging app, and when you return, the entire feed automatically refreshes, causing you to lose your spot. Because the feed is different based on what you’ve already seen, you may never be able to find whichever post you were looking at ever again. It’s beyond frustrating but apparently it was by design.

To help solve this issue, Instagram will be adding a “refresh” button so you can manually refresh the feed whenever you like and shuffle in new posts to feast on. Why they couldn’t also add a “chronological feed” button as well is beyond me, but again — Instagram is all about throwing its users bones, not really giving them what they want.

Samsung looking into issues plaguing Galaxy S9 touchscreens

The Samsung Galaxy S9 and S9 Plus have been available for a couple of weeks, and there are already some issues. More and more users have taken to the Samsung support forums stating that there are “dead spots” in the touchscreen.

We aren’t on the brink of a “display-gate” type of issue, however, as this issue seems to be fairly limited at this time. It is a bit unsettling to see these issues arise so soon after Samsung’s latest devices were released.

Of course, this can simply be chalked up to a few devices not properly passing Samsung’s Quality Control. On the bright side of things, Samsung has already issued a response to these claims. The company provided the following statement to Engadget:

At Samsung, customer satisfaction is core to our business and we aim to deliver the best possible experience. We are looking into a limited number of reports of Galaxy S9/S9+ touchscreen responsiveness issues. We are working with affected customers and investigating.

We encourage any customer with questions to contact us directly at 1-800-SAMSUNG.

Let us know if you have run into any similar issues with your new Galaxy S9. If so, we urge you to contact either your carrier or Samsung directly to get your device replaced.

The Vivo V9 is a mid-ranger with a 24MP selfie camera

Vivo has been making headlines in 2018 due to its unique innovation. First, we saw the company unveil the first smartphone with an embedded fingerprint scanner in the display. Then, the Vivo Apex was shown off, revealing no bezels on all four sides, along with an embedded fingerprint scanner and a pop-up camera.

Well, taking a step back a bit, Vivo has just announced a new device with the Vivo V9. The device seems to be another take on the notch, with a near-bezel-less display, save for the notch at the top.

On the spec sheet, we have a 6.3-inch IPS LCD display with an aspect ratio of 19:9. Powering the Vivo V9 is the Snapdragon 626 chipset, which has been coupled with 4GB of RAM, 64GB of storage, and Android 8.1 Oreo.

The selfie camera, housed in the notch, features a 24MP sensor. Meanwhile, the rear-mounted camera system features a primary 16MP lens and a secondary 5MP sensor.

Some special features of the Vivo V9 include “AI Face Access”, which is nothing more than an upgraded version of Android’s Face Recognition. Vivo has also included Attention Sensing which monitors whether you’re looking at the display or not.

Unfortunately, Vivo stopped short of revealing pricing and availability information for this device.Which means that’ll we’ll just have to wait and see what Vivo is coming up with next.

Huawei could release the first device with 512GB of storage

While Huawei continues to see struggles with devices here in the US, that hasn’t stopped the company from attempting to innovate. According to a listing on TENAA (via PhoneRadar), a new Huawei device has passed certifications with a whopping 512GB of storage.

It’s already rare-enough to see a device released with 256GB of storage, but this would be a first for a smartphone. The device, with a model number of NEO-AL00, passed through TENAA with a combination of 6GB of RAM and 512GB of storage.


Unfortunately, the listing did not share any more details about the upcoming device. This leaves us with little to really go off of as to when it will be released or what other features it may have.

Nonetheless, it will be interesting to see what Huawei has up its sleeves in the next few months. First, the company will be making a pit stop in Paris to unveil the new Huawei P20 lineup. The big-hitting feature here is a triple camera setup, with a primary 40MP sensor.

Let us know what you think about this move and if you would like to see more devices launched with more than just 64GB of base storage. On the bright side, at least we can put the days of 16GB devices in our rear-view mirror.

Google Chrome will finally block annoying autoplay videos

Not many people ask me why I use an ad blocker because, well, chances are everyone’s using an ad blocker. But if someone were to ask me why I use an ad blocker, I’d only need to make them visit the first major news website that comes to mind.

I don’t know what it is about CNet and Fox and the like, but no matter how loud users scream they continue to plague their front pages with automatic playback ads at unnerving volumes.

Chrome has given us a way to ease the pain over the years with a handy mute tab option, but it’s a reactive one that still won’t save your ears from the pain unless you’ve been to that site before. Thankfully, an upcoming update changes that.


Chrome 66 will add an algorithm for detecting and muting tabs that are about to automatically play videos with sound. Some autoplay ads will still get through if they don’t start with sound, but this is mostly a non-issue — the sound is what really gets our gears in a jam. If you actually want those ads back, you’ll be able to click on them. That’s what we call a classic win-win, folks.

via Chromium