Is someone listening us?

Discussion in 'Android' started by Akinator, Jul 8, 2020.

  1. Akinator

    Akinator MDL Novice

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  2. MrMagic

    MrMagic MDL Guru

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    You only just noticed this?

    Of course they listen, that's how they make money from ads
     
  3. Yen

    Yen Admin
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    #3 Yen, Jul 8, 2020
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2020
    They do not listen by using your microphone at first place except you are using voice services just as 'hello google' with intent.
    Android out of the box is configured the way that you are very dependent on their services.

    They store and associate metadata to you / your account. By that they can make personalized ads....
    Android (Google) treats privacy with contempt. Data kraken per se.

    It's almost impossible to stop that completely except running a google-free ROM.
    I am aware of that when using my Android phone. I don't get (personalized) ads, but I am sure they violate my privacy anway. I am constantly using a pi-hole'd DNS and netguard as FW.
    (And except of playstore no further google service such as Gmail, gpay.....etc...)

    I don't root anymore and hence cannot run a custom ROM....
     
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  4. ThomasMann

    ThomasMann MDL Expert

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    Out of interest... generally speaking, what are you using Google Playstore for?
     
  5. Hadron-Curious

    Hadron-Curious MDL Guru

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    I used to think I am the only person experiencing this too. I get so paranoid that I have to disable all Google permissions at the Settings and that seems to solve the problem. But, often I get Google notification nag in almost every 30 minutes despite turning off all notification alerts. I am forced to revert all the permissions.

    I strongly believe every activity is being monitored by our smartphones. If you can live with the nagging notification to enable some permissions you are good to go with having few of these disturbing monitoring.

    It is becoming unbearable.
     
  6. Yen

    Yen Admin
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    I am using Android since 'Eclair' version 2.1. It was fun to modify stuff over at XDA (did own mods)....I used to purchase apps from playstore..to root Android was common sense and I could 'control it'...
    Version after version google cared about user's privacy lesser and lesser..., but the need to root a phone became also lesser and lesser, because Android itself got technically better and better.

    The remaining issue is privacy! TBH I still have a google account because I don't want to give up all my paid apps. This is the only reason.
    I had Samsung devices all the time now I moved to OnePlus. OnePlus devices are still easily to root and there is an active community still offering google-free ROMS.
    I wanted to have this as future option....but for now I decided to associate my new phone to my google account once again so I can use all my paid apps.

    I also like to 'figure' what I still can do against google's idea to collect anything....


    You can stop that nagging. Android usually 'does' what it's supposed to.
    Slide the notification to the right and click on the gear symbol..notifications are made via Android system and can be suppressed.

    Alternatively disable the nagging app completely...

    The real issue on Android is......to have it configured the way I personally 'can' run it I need to make lots of efforts.....AND some settings are reverted after (major) Android update..
    In the meantime all the settings are somewhere down the menus / account settings and ramified a lot...it takes a lot of time to click everywhere through it...
     
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  7. ThomasMann

    ThomasMann MDL Expert

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    Thank you... I use my phone as Music Player (for lossless/flac), "Navigator" instead of Google maps, Translator for Japanese and as a camera.... ah, yes, and as a phone. about three times a year.
    I have yet to see an android app I would pay for,
    Its an old ASUS with Andrid 5.1, rooted, most apps and all direkt Google removed.... and of course under a false name.
    I found using a VPN and (at least) six different identities should be a reasonable protection..
    At my age you have to be very foolish to still trust corporations like Google & Co. Even if it no longer matters... ;-)
     
  8. Yen

    Yen Admin
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    #8 Yen, Jul 10, 2020
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2020
    Well, it's of course personal taste. :)

    It seems you like to listen to good quality audio..me as well hence I have purchased USB audio player pro. (UAPP). I have decent headphones I like to drive with an external DAC. UAPP is best to drive an external DAC. Every cent worth IMHO.

    -Threema
    -Netguard pro
    -VPNCilla (yes I know Android can do VPN as well, but the time I wanted VPN connection to my home network it couldn't do it to my likes.
    -Mobile Observatory pro 3 (I love it..to identify objects at night sky especially when on holidays. I respect the author and his works)
    -root explorer (actually not needed anymore, but when rooted I did / will do again)
    -blitzer.de (radar warning ahem...saves money. LOL)
    -weather pro (best forecast IMHO)...

    Yea well not that important but like some personalisations.
    -A decent icon pack (outline Icons)
    -Nova launcher prime
    -wave
    -a few games (for instance the room 1 and 2)
    and a few old apps I don't use again (outdated)...

    All together not that much money....most of them I could re-purchase on another direct channel to run them again, as being said..a future idea when I decide to get rid of my google play apps...

    As navi I use maps.me. It's free as well but no google maps.
     
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  9. Hadron-Curious

    Hadron-Curious MDL Guru

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    I can suppress all but the one for Google Play Services, that is the major nag that pops up at the notification bar every 30 minutes or thereabout demanding for those permissions. I have tried everything and It cannot be stopped.

    One thing I notice is that when all these Google permissions are disabled my smartphone seems to be working very fluid and snappy
     
  10. ThomasMann

    ThomasMann MDL Expert

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    Thanks for the info.... nothing there that I might need. apkpure and apkmirror serve me well enough. Navigator works well, even in Tokyo amd im Bangkok. I will have a look at maps.me. For flac I never heard anything better than HFOnkyo, but the most important for listening are of course my Sony WF1000XM. My Sennheisers where from a different century...
     
  11. Yen

    Yen Admin
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    #11 Yen, Jul 11, 2020
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2020
    I have checked it. (I am on Android 10). For the Google Play Services I have only allowed storage and physical activity. The latter I cannot disable at all, it is greyed out! Storage I think is needed somehow, but TBH have not tried it without so far (download apps?!?).

    If I did not disable Google PAY Google Play Services started nagging for more rights. Maybe try to disable google PAY app additionally if you do not use it and try if you get rid of the nagging then.

    To have a sound quality independently from the playing device (phone) I got a little portable external DAC/AMP. I listen 'bit perfect enabled' either way. No sound manipulation of any kind.

    The software player here is secondary then, it's 'only' here to transport the digital stream (bit-perfect) to the analogue converter. (properly of course). And if needed you can disable bit perfect and manipulate sound.

    It also can MQA, but I have not tried that (hyped) format so far.

    (Before I had an external DAC I used viper4android to compensate the weaknesses of the in-built DAC of the phone, but this solution was never really satisfying.)

    When I first saw it I laughed about. It's the Dragonfly Cobalt. But after trying I knew I'll keep it for sure.
    It's really small (that's why I laughed first) but its output is unbelievable.

    I always liked the Beyerdynamic headphones. My recent one I like most is the T5P second generation. It's 32 Ohms good for portables. It has a fantastic sound stage.

    'All in one' portable players / devices which come with their own DAC are good when they have a good built-in DAC. It's at least my experience when I tried different kind of players and had a look which DAC they are using. And the software player itself cannot do much about when the hardware does not deliver.

    And those DACs that come with a phone are never that good (not even all portable music players have good ones)...

    The original headphone sound of my new Oneplus phone is very dull.
    Even by trying hard to adjust it, it cannot compare to the external DAC (without any manipulations), that's why I kept it.
     
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  12. ThomasMann

    ThomasMann MDL Expert

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    I bought the Sony, because for walking I wanted total wire free. I was always skeptical about bluetooth, so I ordered from amazon, to be able to return them...

    Absolutely no need to return, they even sit so perfectly, that I can run, jump and dance. Well, one negative is, they will not work with windows (on desktop)
    As I wrote, still used to 20th century toys
     
  13. Yen

    Yen Admin
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    I still am, but good to know you found yours. TBH I don't have any practical experience with BT headphones (yet).

    I usually use headphones when I travel and for relaxing. Wireless would be nice but a wire doesn't disturb me much.
    When walking I don't listen to music. I either have nothing at all or my Nikon to take photos with me.
     
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  14. ThomasMann

    ThomasMann MDL Expert

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    I used to have a pair of cheap one, which sounded exactly as I imagined they would. But as I wrote, that was last century. If your wired ones are great and reasonably new, then there is probably no need. As long as you are aware, that the most important part to listen to good sound in the digital age are good headphones $200 and up...

    There is plenty of websites and tests around... I found the to be correct.
    I usually walk the dog for about two hours in the very early morning, and the I listen to audio books....
     
  15. Yen

    Yen Admin
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    #15 Yen, Jul 13, 2020
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2020
    That's right. (My latest headphones are 3 years old and were ~800$) I love their sound...

    I hesitated to go for BT because of the BT tech itself....and the fact that they cannot keep pace with decent wired HPs ...(at least I thought so)...

    I mean there's FLAC at one side and a decent wired headphone at the other....why should I use a lossy BT transfer which 'destroys' that chain? Those were my thoughts 3 years ago...

    This objection seems to have gone with aptX since 2018/19.....still remaining the fact that you have another device with a rechargeable battery to take care of...I usually have a headphone a lifetime but what about its battery?

    How long can you listen with them after you'd have to recharge..just for info? :)
     
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  16. ThomasMann

    ThomasMann MDL Expert

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    These have a box, where they are stored when not in use, and automatically recharged. You have an app for the phone that shows you the three seperat percentages for left and right AND the storage container itself. I have never used them for more than four hours, and it was down to 70% restcharge... buit how reliable that is, I prefer not to find out.
    When, while using, you take one of them out of the ear, the player automatically stops. They have built in microphones, which you can bock completely or turn the on with a tap. You cn choose what one, or two, or three taps on left or right do.

    I don't know where you live, I ordered them from amazon, in case they were not worth the money... I believe they are. So if you can use amazon with regular return conditions...
    I do not know if I mentioned it, the only drawback they have is, that they do not work with a Windows desktop
     
  17. Yen

    Yen Admin
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    Thanks for the info...as long as I cannot travel due to COVID-19 I can take my time looking for BT headphones.
    Yes I usually order such things one should try first at Amazon because of their customer-friendly return policy.
    Anyway found out they are not the cheapest all the time. (at least .de)

    The funny thing at my latest beyerdynamics had been I ordered at co.uk. They were 400 bucks cheaper a short time!
    Amazon .de wanted 1200 that time, they are produced in Germany just a few 100 kilometers around here.

    When I ordered they were sent to England first and then back to my home. And I saved 400 by that. Crazy! That was finally the reason to buy them at all.
    For now I am good with the wired ones.
     
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  18. ThomasMann

    ThomasMann MDL Expert

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    They are not stupid and they are doing it to earn money. If something like that works for us. its good. If for the "others" its bad.
    The really good programmers don't work for MS or apple, it seems....
     
  19. NST_Adventure

    NST_Adventure MDL Addicted

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    #19 NST_Adventure, Oct 5, 2020
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2020
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  20. talhaaxhar

    talhaaxhar MDL Novice

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    I don't think so but it never happens to me i will get the add only when i searched for something.
    Thanks and have nice day.