Is the Uber app causing Android to repeatedly crash?

I’m wondering if I am not the only person who has had this issue, but so far I have not found anything online describing the problems that I have been experiencing over the last two days. 

In the one week that I have been overseas I let my app updates stockpile to 22! That’s a heck of a lot of updates for one week, so finally I tapped “Update All” and let the Google Play Store work it’s magic. 

After doing this my phone would just randomly reboot. I witnessed it happen at least a dozen times, but it’s possible it could have rebooted more times whilst sitting in my pocket or back pack. 

I booted my phone into Safe Mode and the issue went away, so now my mind was in Sherlock Holmes mode and I started using the power of deduction to troubleshoot which of the 22 recent updates had royally screwed up my phone!

Luckily I didn’t have to do much!! After rebooting back into regular mode I noticed there were two pending app updates: Google & Uber.  

Under Google it said one week ago, but under Uber it said 13 hours ago. I figured that either a failed Google app update caused it or Uber has very quickly identified and resolved an issue with yet an even newer update. I installed both updates, but the issue continued, so I left my phone alone for the rest of the afternoon. I am on holiday after all!!!

When I started to settle down for the night I noticed that there was another pending update and sure enough it was from Uber. Under the entry it said “Last updated 6 hours ago” and so now I really started to question this app. Of course, I installed the update and unfortunately the issue persisted, so I uninstalled Uber and thus far I have not had any more issues!

Has anybody else experienced this issue on Android? If so, please leave a comment. 

This is the hardware and software that I am using: Google Pixel (5″) running Android 7.1.2. 

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Happy New Year!

Howdy folks! It’s your friendly neighborhood Platform Agnostic Technologist here wishing you the happiest of new years!

To kick-start the new year I have switched to a Google Pixel phone and started over with an entirely new Google account. 

I didn’t want to instantly upload all of my files and photos because there’s a lot of clean up that needs to be done and if I don’t take this opportunity now, then I know I’ll get lazy and never take the time to do it properly. The only thing I have imported, though, is my music collection from iTunes into Google Play Music. 

The switch to Android did make me nervous I must admit. My entire family and nearly all of my friends use iOS, so I would miss out on the ease of sharing photos via iCloud Photo Sharing, simple messaging via iMessage, an email account I have used since the days of .Mac, the integrations between iOS, watchOS, and macOS as well as just the plain and simple fact of learning something new. 

I have dabbled with Android in the past when I had borrowed a Samsung Galaxy Note 3 running Android KitKat and then my ISP sent me a Samsung Galaxy Tab running Android Lollipop just for being a loyal customer. I still use the Tab here and there, but neither of them felt compelling enough for me to switch to Android full time. 

What appealed to me about the Pixel was that like the Nexus devices of years past it would be running pure Android and it would be the first Android device to be running version 7.1 of the new OS codenamed Nougat. However, unlike the Nexus devices the Pixel was designed from the ground up by Google. HTC is the manufacturer, but there is not a single hint of HTC on the device itself or when you compare it to other HTC phones out there. 

Another cool thing is that I was eligible for a free Daydream View VR headset! I’ve played around with it quite a bit and I have to say I absolutely love it!! More on this another time. 

The main reason for the switch was to finally break free of my iShackles. Now, I don’t want this to sound like I’m bashing Apple and that I am 100% against them because that is not the case. The problem I’ve always had when trying to live a plagtech lifestyle is that I’ve always ended up right back where I started, so this time I need to make a big change. 

When you look at the history of this blog most of the changes I have made were related to applications that I used and if I did switch between Operating Systems it was at the desktop level, but historically I have always stuck to the same mobile OS. This is where I think I have failed to commit to any of the other changes, which is why this time I decided to switch up the phone I am using and see where this takes me. 

One major benefit of Android over iOS that I like already is being able to use VLC player. We have a number of movies on DVD that we purchased legally and rightfully own that I ripped into digital format. I’ve always had to rely on VLC on my laptop to play them because VLC player was short lived on iOS. Well on Android this is not a problem because VLC player works perfectly fine and seeing as my Pixel has 128GB’s of storage I have more than enough room to store the movies, especially the ones that keep my son happy 🙂

The other benefits to switching to a Pixel is that I get the benefit of pure Android without having to change carrier, updates come directly from Google, the monthly installments are 60% cheaper than what the iPhone 7 would have cost me, and I get unlimited storage on Google Photos for full res pictures and 4k videos.  

One of the other reasons/benefits of making the transition to Android in general is that in the next 2-3 years when it’s time to get a new phone I have the freedom to explore multiple manufacturers. One thing I am already envisioning is that I could buy a phone from WileyFox outright as well as unlocked to use in other countries versus paying my current carrier an arm and a leg in international roaming and data fees. As everything is tied to my Google account I am not restricted to one type of phone anymore. The same goes for Android Wear too, but I’ll hold off on mentioning wearables until Android Wear 2.0 is released. 

Lastly, before I wrap up this wouldn’t be a true plagtech post if I didn’t end with a list of the apps I currently use, so here goes:

  • Email = Gmail
  • Calendar = Google Calendar
  • Browser = Google Chrome
  • Photos = Google Photos
  • Music = Google Play Music
  • Movies = VLC, Netflix & Netflix VR
  • Messaging = Messenger (native Android app), Facebook Messenger & Slack
  • Notes = OneNote
  • Health = Strava, Garmin Connect, MyFitnessPal & Google Fit

Google on iOS 

Since my last post I have basically been using all Google developed apps on my iPhone. The experience has been rather pleasant and everything seems to be working really well. 

The only thing I sync natively with iOS are my personal Gmail contacts, but everything else is done via a separate iOS app developed by Google. 

What I really like about this is that the experience between my iPhone 6 and Galaxy Tab 4 is pretty much the same. I even went as far as loading the same wallpaper from the Tab 4 to my iPhone 6, but that’s just because I am dorky like that. 

Of course there are subtle differences with how to navigate the apps due to the difference between iOS and Android, but for the most part it is like using the same device. I have to add though that things look a lot cleaner on the iPhone 6 with regards to the UI. I’ll provide side-by-side screenshots in a different post. 

For now though, here is a look at my current iOS setup:

  
If you would like a copy of the wallpaper, then here you go:

  

The Google Test

I feel as though one of the reasons I always run back to Apple is because I never fully detach myself from them. I love my @me.com email address and whenever I use another cloud service provider I instantly setup iCloud to forward to said @gmail.com, @yahoo.com, or @outlook.com address and then in turn I configure said service send email as my @me.com addy. In addition to that I manually setup my calendars using CalDAV and my contacts I have to do a quick check between the two to make sure there are no discrepancies.

One thing I never blogged about after my Windows 10 testing was jumping to the Post-PC era. I successfully used an iPad as a replacement for my laptop for an entire week! I never thought that I could do it, but was very surprised when I did.

I believe the iPad test was very successful for two reasons:

  1. All of the apps I needed to carry out my job were available and worked really well.
  2. My iCloud account took care of all my personal items.

This meant, just like my MacBook Pro, that I had the best of both worlds on a single device.

My next Post-PC challenge will be to use my Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4 as my primary device, but in order for me to make the most out of it I will need to get everything working on my personal Google account.

This will not be too difficult, but this time around I don’t want to go through the whole reconfiguration process. I want to use the device as it is fully intended to be, so that I can get the most accurate feel for how it all works together under the Google ecosystem.

Windows 10

I have been using Windows 10 on both my Dell E6430 and my workstation at the office. It is very slick looking and like the fact that the start menu has returned to its former self, but with still enough change to make it more than just the kind of start menu from previous versions.

I don’t have any complaints to be brutally honest. By doing this I have finally found an awesome PuTTY replacement. The Git for Windows application comes with a Bash Shell, which is far better to use for SSH’ing to servers than the NT looking PuTTY application. It’s also nice to be able to use the command line for Git operations versus a GUI.

This week I’ll be switching back to OS X as my primary operating system to see what I have missed. At the same time I will be switching my workstation over to Ubuntu 15.10 (Wily Werewolf). I’ll keep the E6430 running Windows 10, so that way I can interchange between all three.

 

A week with Fedora 23

After my week with Fedora I am once again drawing to the same conclusion that I have before. It’s a solid OS, especially for all of my geeky tasks like running Vagrant boxes, writing Chef recipes, using Git, and various other tools, then Fedora is a dream come true.

However, for day-to-day GTD I really like the native Microsoft Office apps on Windows and OS X. I don’t mind using their web-based counterparts (in Firefox) when using Linux for say, a quick glance at OneNote, but the Linux platform doesn’t have the neat integration’s with apps like Box as they do with OS X & Windows. This, you will say, is because Box doesn’t develop the same apps for Linux, but that’s not my fault unfortunately.

Also, when it comes to tasks like managing my photos or music there’s just something that feels unfinished about Fedora. It’s as if the software is in constant beta mode. People may snarl at me for saying so, and yes, I know it is all open source software and community driven work (which I do admire!), but when it comes to trusting software with my sacred photo collection of almost 10 years I can’t help but feel safer using software that is more well polished. From my experience the application Shotwell is an iPhoto clone and I can’t stand iPhoto (now Photos), especially with the way it sorts my pics. I’ve fully converted back to the old school method of creating my own folders and dragging and dropping the pics from my camera’s SD card. So retro, but it works the way I like it!

So, do I still like Linux? No, I love Linux! However, it will still not be my full time OS for personal computing at this time.

What’s coming next? I am currently on my RDMBP typing this post as I wipe Fedora off the E6430 and install Windows 10.