Sprint Integration with Google Voice

I finally found out why I had do much trouble integrating Sprint with Google Voice: Blocked Calls on my Sprint account were the simple problem. I deleted the few annoying numbers on Sprints site, waited a bit, then tried to integrate on Google Voice again, Voila! [My Experience: No need to have Sprint remove the Block Service, simply self delete any phone numbers you’ve entered to Block on your Sprint Account.] For some reason Blocked Calls wasn’t in anything I’d read, that I recall, but I found it in a deeper help menu today.

I like Google Voice Integrated, but am not sure about sms and mms now. I liked getting it all anywhere I was before integrating. Plus I was used to using Hangouts for everything since getting a Nexus 5 on Feb. 2, 2014.

I was sms’ing with Sprint or Google from my  PC, and my WiFi tablet, as well as my phone, all in Hangouts. Now it’s a mess, everything feels separate, but the simple one number for phone calls is genius. I just want to get all my stuff and be able to send all my stuff from anywhere. [And what’s with Google Messenger anyhow? I didn’t look at that ever because when I got my Nexus 5 that was what Google recommended, unless I had another favorite SMS app. I’ve just used Stock most of the time before, but using Hangouts that has gotten better, but now it’s not as good, I mean I don’t know what to do with it, not loving Messages Stock via Samsung exactly but … ahhhhhgggrrrrhhhh, it’s tediously overwhelming.]

Experimenting is key, as no help written up about Sprint and opting out of Google text and voice in Hangouts makes a lot of sense in how to set it up on one’s other devices. It makes sense to a point, but reading further confuses the issues.

I could un-Intergrate Sprint, go back to how I had it, but then I had only my phone ringing sometimes, and everything ringing other times, while on my phone twice if the Google Voice number was called. Integrated as I am I am losing my G-Voice number. Choosing the 2nd Integration wouldn’t be much more than how I was using it before.

Another symptom I don’t like much is custom screening. I’ve set up what I want but still, when my hubby calls I have to hit 1 to answer. I’m not sure if hubby is calling differently, that’s why, or if it’s something else. Sure Custom Screening is a great feature. It’s just not what I want to deal with for my Starred contacts who are the only people that really call me ever. Starred options are nil, they don’t work. Personal options, each person separately, I went that route then, and still no joy.

Hubby comes home tomorrow night, then I can figure more out. As it is, I can use a WiFi only device to call my phone number, all WiFi devices ring, but my phone doesn’t get the call at all. Seems weird. Everything is that way, simple and messed up at the same time.

Digital Locker Movies

Once upon a time there were things called movies. They were magical and could be seen on a large screen in many towns, for a small price one could have a seat for a viewing.

Then came the television. TV Shows and Movies on a box in one’s own home. Amazing!

Later came other forms of media, thing that came and went, but eventually we got to bigger movie screens, bigger tv’s, boxes that held tape with video on it that could be displayed on one’s tv, then large discs, then smaller and then better.

The future arrived. Blu-ray and Digital HD.

For a long while there was something called Digital Copy and it came with DVD’s one could buy, when new. To Redeem these Digital Copies you had to use either: Windows Media Player or i-Tunes.

I, the writer, opted for WMP redemption twice. Never again. i-Tunes being nearly evil, was better than having no movie available digitally, like happens when WMP decides you don’t own the license because you … “whatevered” your computer.

For years Digital Copy was redeemed via I-Tunes.

Disney had a slot in the digital locker arena. Disney Movie Rewards, then and now, allows one to enter a Magic Code found on DVD’s to get points towards real rewards one could exchange points for.

In this time-frame a new media medium came to life. Blu-ray discs. The best home buying option for media to date. Digital Copy continued on, I dutifully entering redemption codes into my apple id i-tunes account, the only thing I ever did with it … I may have watch a few things, but I didn’t buy actual stuff from them, nor listen to music via i-tunes at all.

Disney had a locker streaming service and many of the movies you entered Magic Codes for would also be Digitally available to you. There was a point when some movies would not be a digital version code with Disney but they let you upgrade to a streaming version of a disc you registered, for a mere $5.

So you could enter a movie into i-Tunes but also have it on Disney’s streaming service.

Something called Ultraviolet started later. Disney also changed things with their Locker service, plus bought Marvel which changed the Digital Copy world for my family.

Ultraviolet was looked at skeptically, I admit. It seemed convoluted. What is convoluted though is the lack of digital copy choice for a Windows Pc/Android handheld person. At that time it was nil.

Things progressed, more and more movie companies partnered with UV (UltraViolet) which made UV more and more prevalent, and very misunderstood by many, though I was gaining in much better comprehension of what I was doing with it.

I got a Vudu account. I had also had account at a few of the movie companies, but it was just too much for me to consider the few times I might get bonus features by doing that … uh, no thank you. Also, like Sony Pictures … your account is deleted if there is no activity in a year. Yeah, easy for that to happen.

Both Vudu and Flixster work well with UV. You can redeem UV at either of the two services, also UV has a direct redeem feature on their site now.

In any case, redeem a UV movie and it’s in your UV Locker. Associate your locker with Vudu, Flixster, as well as other services I won’t go over. Once new content is in your locker it’ll populate in the services your locker is connected with. For the most part that works well, occasionally one service may not have exactly the same version, or title at all. The other might, it’ll be in UV in any case, once it’s redeemed it could and probably will show up at the other service provider eventually.

So there was Vudu. Then also my movies in i-Tunes. (They are lost to me there.) Vudu is where my non-Disney movies go now.

Disney Movies Anywhere started. Their old locker system was converted over, and I didn’t lose anything there, but still all I could do was stream though a browser. One could link ones i-Tunes account … then anything in your digital copy library that Disney owned would be in Disney Movies Anywhere too even if it wasn’t a Disney Streamable movie for you. Cool, but useless.

Then Digital HD came about. Now Disney movies were more than kids movies mostly, it was all this Marvel stuff too. Oh the travesty, but Digital HD saved the day.

I can take a redemption code for something Disney, whether it’s animated or the modern Marvel Universe of movies … I can choose where to redeem it, on Vudu, or … Google Play, or i-Tunes etc. Magic Codes are still a part of it, and the movie will be in Disney Movies Anywhere.  Still not totally useful, but at least I can watch it on my PS3 or PS4 via Vudu.

Then later, very recently, the best partnership so far happened. Disney Movies Anywhere came to Android as an App, and even better than that, one could also link a Google Play account to the service and voila! You own the content in Google Play Movies too!

Now I still have many movies locked in i-Tunes, but some of them don’t suffer that fate, some Blu-rays I’ve gotten into UV via Vudu-to-Go disc to digital conversion. Also I’ve done some DVD’s that we like but haven’t looked for on Blu-ray. In any case, not all of the discs are eligible for UV. Many of them are actually UV titles, but my discs read as ineligible for whatever licensing reason is out there.

So then, I can watch The Avengers (2012) on Disney Movies Anywhere, stream from their site, or from my Android tablet or phone, or even download it for offline viewing on Android. I could even watch it in i-Tunes if I “wanted” to.

Relegated to that fate as well are Thor and Captain America: The First Avenger.

But Iron Man3 and Thor the Dark World and Captain America: The Winter Soldier are available via Vudu and through Disney Movies Anywhere’s site and on Anroid. Win! Win!

One new Disney movie I was able to redeem the same way, The LIttle Mermaid. Now Re-releases on Blu-ray are worth the buy.

About Disc Conversion: The biggest part of it that totally isn’t nice is that ANY disk you have that is owned by Disney now, is not eligible for Disc to Digital, even if it’s an old title held by some other movie house.

What Vudu fails on is not allowing portable devices to download a movie in HD or HDX, they only allow you to stream and/or download in SD, no matter what kind of spectacular device you may have (like a Nexus 10 for example.) So a large portion of my digital library is locked online and viewable only, the best way, in a PC browser or via a console of some variety hooked to your big television screen.

A smaller smattering of my content is locked into the Disney world and at least it’s now watchable on Android in Glorious HD and connected with Google Play, thus also Chromecast-able to the big screen in the livingroom.

I still love discs, but have come to rely on things like Netflix on my gaming consoles, as well as Vudu there. The content I have in i-Tunes wastes away, and I can only hope that someday I can link that stuff to something else too.

I do have Flixster but haven’t tried to watch any of my UV content there. I’ve heard one can HD with them on Android, but I’m just stuck in a Vudu on PS3/PS4 and Android for Disney mode.

I look forward to Guardians of the Galaxy, having it both places, and other Disney movies we may get in the future. It’s the older content though, locked on a disc, not eligible, other digital copy, not transferable to anywhere, only recourse is to find a UV code for sale, or buy it again on disc just for the code to get it into UV or Vudu, at least, and not have to pay 22.99 or higher to buy it digitally for things you already have in multiples, like a DVD, plus a Blu-ray copy, Digital i-Tunes copy, and another DVD that came in that pack. Forget those movies.

So from my perspective, we have it fairly good now. It’s not the best of times, nor the worst of times.

Movies Unlimited is a service from PlayStation. It’d be great, but I don’t only have Sony devices. I have Android, and Google Play is a more useful partner for me, and then using Vudu on PlayStation. Having Google Play Movies on PlayStation would be a dream come true.

Some nice snappy pictures in this post would be great, but it’s not about pictures, it’s about words about moving pictures, and best read, not just looked at.

Additional Note: November 18, 2014, 8:10am EST. >>So with the whole thing written up and posted yesterday I find today that, holy cow, I can actually link Disney Movies Anywhere with my Vudu account now too. OK. Things are looking up,  improving even more than I had hoped.

(un)Holy Cow! PSN takes the cake

Sony is depressing me terribly today. I’m glad I didn’t go to their playstation blog yesterday, when I really couldn’t have dealt with it at all. I’d have thrown all my PS* stuff out by now if so. And seriously be considering the best way to … I don’t know, live without PlayStation, get rid of my whole love of PlayStation stuff and go to Nintendo, or … no, I couldn’t go there, or there solely like I could have with PS.

The stinking part of it is, I was GOING to get the PlayStation 3D Display and a 3rd PS3 to go with it, plus a pair or two of extra 3D glasses, extra controllers, and have a great office/craft room/playroom by early 2012.

Must re-think it all now.

My eldest son is 15, he and I are PSP fans. 3 other children are younger and getting interested in PSP’s.

UMD’s aren’t really being produced much now. PSP’s will eventually have no new disc content, only PSN ability and old UMD’s.

PSN content after Nov. 18th of this year (2011) can only be on up to 2 activated PS3’s and 2 activated PSP’s/PSVita’s

How it is right now, we have 2 PS3’s and we have 3 PSP’s and (plus 1 that is still activated, but we don’t have it, it was exchanged at Best Buy with their Black Tie service, but oops, forgot to “de-activate” it right. I tried, but it’s not done according to the one place I can see that stuff, the music unlimited site. [login with PSN ID])

How about the big plan we had: For Christmas me and my son were gonna get PS Vita’s. Ha. That isn’t happening, no matter how much we want it, it’s not coming to America until practically Spring 2012. (Where we live it usually is nearly Spring by then, and it’s close a lot of places)

Now if we go with when the PS Vita will be available, will we even want one? Before today, yes, but I was wondering how they’d change activation, and it looks like it’s so frickin restrictive that I’m gonna totally puke. In our house we have more because it’s 2 adults and 4 children, we all play video games.

I guess I can only play what I can get on my Google Android tablet now (or soon). I’ll be stuck with my old digital content on my PSP and whatever UMD discs I have and hope to God I don’t get sick of them or that the machine breaks.

OR I get a Vita and so does my son. No one else can have one and no one else can have our old PSP’s except as closed off things.

I’m not so sure I’m very thrilled with the idea of playing Dust 514 anymore, or Resistance: Burning Skies, or Starhawk.

We enjoy playing together when we can. We had 1 copy of Warhawk bought recently (disc) we went and found another right away, it was a lot of fun. We were looking forward to a third PS3 and maybe a 4th eventually, playing together online. We’ll be able to do it with Warhawk, it’s an old game, lots of them available in stores for $20 and down to $8 depending where you go. That one it’s OK about it to buy it for each machine, we get enough value out of it.

Not so with how Warhawk from PSN is, only 1 account can use it. Only 1 PS3 in any 24 hr. time slot can use it. Yikes!

It costs a lot on PSN too, so no biggie, we bought it for $8 each at Gamestop.

Resistance 3 is out now. I’d like it, was gonna get it with the pre-ordered 3D Display we payed $5 for holding one for us … were gonna get it in a few weeks when the Display was in stock. We hubby had different plans than I did, and Sony is releasing it sooner than originally they said, so hubby is on a different page about it than I am, and we will not be getting it until December at the earliest, so I am NOW saying, we ain’t getting one at all. Nope.

It makes me so mad. All of it together, or just Sony PlayStation Nov. 18th crapola all by itself.

How about this quote from the future: “Sorry, children, only me and your one of you are aloud to play this game. It’s not you though. When you get a job, you can buy it for yourself.”

We aren’t paying $59 for most games. Some we do and we only get 1 copy of them. Some things we’ve bought digital but it won’t be so friendly as it is now, any PS3 it’s OK for now, but soon enough it would have been alright with the 3rd I wanted. This is just so restrictive, it’ll end up hurting them more than us, I dare say.

We’ll seek other things and other ways and Sony will have been the cause of their own demise. At least they have shot themselves in their collective foot.

HTC Sense 2.1 Calendar All-Day Event problem

I have an HTC Evo 4G phone, and an HTC EVO VIEW 4G tablet. [HTC]

I like them both. The tablet has an updated HTC Sense. The Calendar is nicer on the tablet, from the phone, with this one caveat:( It’s very annoying) All-Day Events in the calendar show up at the top of the day, also show in the agenda, but if you TOUCH one of them, that opens a “No Appointment” blah screen.’ Where are the details? In the event, but they aren’t accessible unless you EDIT the event, and for that you need to long-press on the event in another view, you can’t do anything with it in the “No Appointment” screen.

I don’t WANT to edit the event though, only VIEW the information.

On my phone the list of events for a day, the same All-Day Event shows in the list of things for the day, and if you touch such an event it opens a View Event screen of all the details for the event.

That is what I am missing. I hate how the tablet treats the very same events as the phone has, so differently. Same calendars, it’s not the old “HTC Calendar Bug from 2010” It’s Sense 2.1 induced, no doubt, and I can find not ONE SINGLE entry online about it yet.

I’m assuming that the HTC Flyer (1st cousin of the HTC EVO VIEW, or little brother, whatever) has the same problem.

It’s not just my calendar, it’s also calendars I share that belong to someone else, they all work one way on my phone, great, and a different way on my tablet, not great, bad in fact.

I hate having to search and search endlessly and never come up with something. I use a billion different ways to describe what I’m looking for but can’t find anything but the old calendar bug about All-Day events from early 2010.

Treat this post as an entry into the arena for this HTC Sense 2.1 calendar bug (or design) –get rid of it HTC! Fix it so the details for the All-Day Event show when a basic touch is performed.

Waiting for Google Music Beta Invitation

I’m getting impatient. Actually wishing for this as soon as Voice Actions for Android came out with “Listen To” but only worked with cloud music services that implemented the functions in their apps. It didn’t work with the stock music player on my HTC Evo. That got me looking for other things, and I tried mSpot. A joke for me.

mSpot couldn’t ever get my stuff uploaded. It took over night to get like 10 songs. It took all day, then all night, to get a few songs. I deleted everything from mSpot, and re-did the info as to what to upload, and it wasn’t any different. Now I have a large library of music, but it’s not that big really. Also it’s not encoded in anything but .wma or .mp3 and neither at a very high rate (it bothers me, but less than making higher rate rips that take up tons of space, so I live with not quite up to snuff, but good enough to get more on my player, which never made a difference anyhow with playing music at any high or low rate with it. Good earphones worked well enough also. Whatever. I digress.

I’m waiting for the $$ to put together a new desktop computer. On this future computer I was going to re-rip all of my music on higher settings. I wanted a cloud music service to be able to listen on a device that way (therefore not needing huge Micro-SD cards just for the MUSIC anymore.)

All I have ever wanted was a connected device and a way to use it with MY music.

Enter Android. I got an Android phone in September 2010 and very shortly dreamed of what it could be for me if only …

Google Cloud Music would happen.

I found a leaked Honeycomb music player, found the .apk file for it, installed it on my phone. That’s the one that also installed “Jumper Test” and that had a music sync thing that worked, it seemed, though I never tried it without my Micro-SD card installed with the music still on it. The app was nice, but not everything that should have been was implemented. Basically it would play my music sideways, and that made me happy, plus it scrobbled.

In any case, recently I looked for an update, and found an updated version. I installed that .apk (had to uninstall the above one before it would install) and the app was similar, but better, yet had no “Jumper Test” and the “add google account” area for syncing music was “empty” … but otherwise the regular player was nice, worked awesome with the music on my phone.

Just yesterday, early morning I was on my computer and found more information, that Google was unveiling the Cloud Music that very day … So I got over to music.google.com and requested an invite. And I’m still waiting. It’s been over a day. I used to Tweet about how much I wanted this. I wish to try it out so badly since I really want this, now use a SoundBlade with my phone to listen to music via bluetooth.

I have the official 3.0 Google Music app on my phone now. It’s the same as that last one I tried, minus all the streaming stuff in the menus. I mean, it’s not in the menus at all. I’m wondering if it’ll magically appear once my invite arrives?

On my Google Account it’s there, but I can’t access the service yet. It’s in my Dashboard as “Music by Google Beta” with “Manage Music Library” and “PrivacyPolicy” links. I’m anxious to have access to this, and part of that is my curiosity to see if something is there already, from the Jumper Test days of the previous few months.

Also, on my HTC Evo I have “Listen To” use with this app. That’s a great step ahead. My basic need though is for that to be cleaned up. If I say “Listen To … Wasteland” if there is other noise around me it asks me if I meant Listen To Wasteland and many other options.

If there isn’t other noise it loads the
“Listen To Wasteland”
“Go Cancel”
window, then the music app with the search field filled in with “Wasteland” and the song category is shown with the song listed below it, and the keyboard is popped up. But, the song then plays, without showing the Now Playing screen (which I find highly annoying) without me touching anything.

Right now I tried another

The Cure has an album, Disintegration. There is also a song on that album with the same name.

I touched “Voice Search” and said “Listen To … Disintegration”

“Listen To
Disintegration”
“Go Cancel”
Window Loads
Then the music app with “Disintegration” in the search field and the Abum category showing the album on top, with the song below it. The keyboard is also open, of course. Without touching anything, the album begins playing. Yes, the first song in the album, then the next, etc.

How to distinguish you want the song, not the album, or Vise Versa? I don’t know.

I really wish it would play what you want when you ask for something specifically, without the search junk showing, just play it and show me the Now Playing screen.

Because of this I am now more into the idea of using Playlists, naming them with quippy unique names. It’d be nice to have the Instant Mix thing of Google Music. It’s not in the Music app I installed yesterday. I can make a new playlist, but just a regular one. Oh well. I know the video they have for the new service shows using the web browser version to do that, but I did read the info for the Android version and it mention doing it in the app (but you must be online to do it, hence why I can’t access it though I am online, I’m not allowed access to Music Beta …. 🙁 )

I just want a cleaned up way of dealing with what loads with Listen To, and what to say to get this or that implemented better. Accessibility to the cloud storage in order to easily have any of my music at my beck and call without having to “load it” on every device!!!!!!

Like I have the new Duran Duran album. I still haven’t gotten it on to my phone, and I just don’t feel like connecting it to my computer, accessing it like a drive, dragging or syncing anything now. Just waiting for full implementation of what it should be like to live in the 21st Century!

Google Calendar Troubles

For some reason, my Google Calendar’s I have in Thunderbird Lightning using the Google Calendar Provider add-on didn’t load any data today when I looked at them. I hadn’t done anything different for that to happen. I right-clicked and chose “Reload Remote Calendars” but the calendar stayed blank.

So I was recalling sometime in the past when something similar was the case, I had re-installed the add-on for Google Calendar Provider … then with a restart it worked to load the calendars.

In this case today, I realized I STILL hadn’t put my husband’s work calendar into the newer computer setup, so that’s why I discovered this problem in the first place today. I got the URL for the calendar he shares with me and added the calendar in Lightning, it didn’t load, none of my things were there either.

I went to “Tools–>Add-ons” and checked for updated Add-ons, but nothing came up as having updates. I searched then for the Add-on in question and it couldn’t find anything, tried a few times, then gave up and went to the browser. Only thing is, no links for that Thunderbird Add-on would load … I realized then I have it sitting in my download folder from before, so I went back to Thunderbird Add-ons and “installed” it and after re-start of Thunderbird, opening Calendar … stuff started to load right away.

I also have a Palm Pre. On it, having Google Calendars is good but bad. I share that work calendar with my husband. He owns it, only he controls it, I just share it for viewing. If he puts stuff on it I get it on my Pre. But what if he changes it? It’s not updating on my Pre no matter how many times I tell it to “Sync Now” … so that trick that works is “delete Google Calendar account” on the Pre, then add it back again. Deleting is fast, adding back in it takes a pretty long time to put it all back, but it’s back correctly. Thing is, how do I know if my hubbies calendar is wrong on my Pre? Only if I question something and tell him what mine says and he says his says different, and/or I open Google Calendar in my browser and see that it’s correct there and my phone says it’s different.

Now I can track it in my Thunderbird Lightning Calendar again, as I did used to on my older laptop before. My hubby didn’t have a Pre then, does now. He uses Outlook, but has CompanionLink software to bi-directional with Google Calendar. Also, he usually uses Google in the browser to work on the calendar there, so I’ve been led to believe.

I usually put stuff on my calendar on my phone. It seems to tri-directional fine for me. I will do more tests on mine and my hubbies over the weekend.

For him, it’s a matter of this time, he put appointments on the wrong date, then corrected them later. My Google Account picked them up when they were new, of course, and Synergy put them on my phone like that. End of story. Ridiculous, but true.

We need to test whether or matters or not if I share to view only, or can edit, or have shared complete control … this isn’t about “invites” since I asked him a while ago not to do that with his stuff, things were getting over complicated when I shared and he also sent invites, and he wasn’t managing the information the best. I was seeing double and triple. I mean, I share calendar to see it, that’s enough.

Calendars on WebOS phones are layered and that’s something nice, but also not always so nice. This is the case of troubles I’ve had to solve by deleting my account on the phone before. But I hate having to do that. Insane it is, nearly for sure.

Chrome

I’m trying the newer browser by Google “Google Chrome”. It is nice looking, very minimalist (something I like a lot) and it seems OK. I use a small theme in Firefox for keeping the interface small to allow more “browsing space”. The look of Google Chrome is flat and that is also nice.

I have a “view in chrome” add-in for Firefox installed. That will come in handy, just as the View in IE one does a-times.

I still use Firefox as my main browser though. 🙂