Thursday, February 25

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android, android 12, Android Beta Feedback app, Apps & Games, Google, News

Android Beta Feedback App Update Suggests Android 12 Preview On The Way

Google has updated its Android Beta Feedback app via the Play Store in preparation for the eventual release of Android 12. Since the inception of Android 10 / Q in 2019, the tech giant has released the Android Beta Feedback app, which allows users to report bugs without the hassle of going to its bug tracking website. This app appears automatically when a user downloads the beta / developer preview app that was released last year. Those who did not uninstall the feedback app after the preview program will now update it to version 2.15. Even though the app received an update, it is still unusable and does not explicitly hint at the Android 12 developer preview / beta. However, the update itself is still a sign that Android 12 Developer Beta is on the way. ....
Apps & Games, Google, News

Google tests new animated weather experience ‘Weather Frog’ for Nest Hubs

Google is testing a new 'Weather Frog' feature that brings an animated weather experience to Nest Hubs and smart displays. 9to5Google notes that the tech giant is testing the new 'Photo Frame' background option, which brings Weather Frog from mobile search to smart displays. The Weather Frog has been in the testing phase since last September and appears to be rolling out to more users in recent weeks. It is worth noting that it has not been officially implemented for all users and it is unknown when this may be the case. Users will be able to see the new option when they access the device's background settings and select the option to change the photo frame. It will appear above the traditional Google Photos, Art Gallery, and Full-screen Clock options. Wi...
android, Google, News, Phones

Google’s Pixel 4a 5G ‘Clearly White’ is now available in Canada

Following its launch in the US in late January, the Pixel 4a 5G 'Clearly White' is now available in Canada via the Google Store. The smartphone, which was launched in October 2020, was previously only available in 'Just Black'. Like its darker counterpart, the Clearly White Pixel 4a 5G costs $ 679. It's worth noting that instead of a black power button, the white version of the device features a lime green switch. The smartphone features a 6.2-inch OLED screen with a resolution of 1080 x 2340 pixels, a Qualcomm Snapdragon 765G processor with 5G capacity, 6 GB of RAM, and a 3800 mAh battery. The Pixel 4a 5G also includes a dual-lens rear camera suite that features a 12.2-megapixel rear shooter along with a 16-megapixel ultra-wide ...
Apps & Games, Google, News

Google’s small camera update brings a switch to disable Auto Night Sight

An update that rolled out to the Google Camera app this week allows users to disable Auto Night Sight mode on their Pixel phone. With the launch of the Pixel 5 and Pixel 4a 5G last year, Google added Auto Night Sight to Google's camera, allowing the camera software to detect low-light environments and automatically switch to Night Sight. Users could tell when the camera made the switch as the shutter button would get a moon icon. While Auto Night Sight meant that users didn't have to swipe across the camera interface looking for the Night Sight option, the feature wasn't perfect. For example, if you disabled Automatic Night View and then exited the Camera app, you would re-enable Automatic Night View. Also, some Pixel phones wer...
Apps & Games, Google, News

Google Docs to display out-of-office information when replying to users

Google Docs is rolling out a new feature that will display information outside of the office when replying to or mentioning users in a comment. "When you mention a single user in a new comment or thread, you will see the OOO banner and information on when they plan to return," Google described in a blog post. The search giant notes that for multi-person threads, you'll see condensed information outside of the office. You can also select the information icon to view more information about each specific person. This will be a welcome change, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, as you can no longer walk to a co-worker's desk to ask a quick question. The feature should make it easier for large teams that often work together on a...
Apps & Games, Google, News

Chrome now hides web notifications when sharing your screen

Google Chrome will now automatically hide pop-up notifications from the web when you share your screen during a meeting. The search giant says this includes notifications from Google Chat, email notifications, and other third-party websites. “When you have finished sharing your screen, all the muted notifications will be displayed automatically. Note that notifications are already muted when a tab is shared on Google Meet, ”Google described in a blog post. Google says that since there has been a dramatic change in the way we work amid the COVID-19 pandemic, many people are relying on screen sharing tools. Note that this feature is intended to reduce distractions and prevent personal information from being accidentally displayed w...
Apps & Games, Google, News

Gboard 10.2 beta teardown reveals updated themes with new design

Google's keyboard app, Gboard, released a new beta version for users. A quick teardown of Gboard 10.2 revealed work to expand the new theme to other keyboard colors along with a host of new features in development. As with disassembling any app, it's important to take things cautiously. Unmounts involve decompiling application files and looking for new features in the code. Often times these new features are in progress and could change significantly before launch, or never release. With that in mind, let's take a look at what Google has in store for Gboard. For the first time, 9to5Google's demolish discovered the new Gboard theme in more keyboard colors. For context, Google has been working on an updated Gboard layout for som...
Apps & Games, Google, News

Google tests small tweaks to improve desktop search

Google announced a redesign of its mobile search experience a few days ago, and now it seems that some of those changes are coming to desktop design. 9to5Google reports that the search field is now always on the rest of the page. Before the change, this only happened when hovering over it. Another small tweak reduces the blue underline that appears below the current category you are in, such as 'News' or 'Pictures'. This little tweak coincides with Google's mobile redesign. The biggest change seems to be the use of the exclusive Google font "Google Sans". The font is now used for page names and search controls. Google previously only used the font for section headings. It's worth noting that site descriptions and other text ar...
Apps & Games, Google, News

Google Photos for Android gets a revamped interface for tablets

Google Photos for Android receives a new interface optimized for tablets in order to take advantage of large screens. Before this, the interface of the tablet was similar to that of the mobile with a bottom bar spread across the entire screen and had a lot of wasted space. Although Google redesigned the app on mobile devices last year, it stayed the same on tablets. Now it seems that Google has optimized the app for Android tablets. 9to5Google reports that the new interface includes a search field in the top bar called "Explore". The location of the bar depends on the width of your screen. On smaller tablets, it's placed next to your profile picture and on larger devices, it's on the left side next to the "Upload" button. Also, ...
android, Google, News, Phones

Google May Bring Back Android 11 Preview Double Tap Gesture in Android 12

Last year, during the Android 11 developer preview phase, it appeared that Google was planning to add a double-tap gesture that would allow people to tap on the back of their phone to activate certain features. While the feature never made it to Android 11, it apparently didn't go away either; It seems that the double tap could arrive as part of Android 12. As reported by 9to5Google, the double-tap gesture could make its way to Android 12 Pixel phones with a few tweaks. When the feature appeared in Android 11 with the codename 'Columbus' (named after the Zombieland character and its 'double tap' rule), it would launch the Google Assistant, but it also had several alternate functions to activate instead. Also, the version of Andr...
android, Google, News, Phones

Android 12 could make it easier to use two apps at the same time

A new report mentions that Android 12 could be following the lead of other versions of Android and will add a useful shortcut to open two apps at once. This function is programmed to be called 'application pairs', depending on 9to5Google. This feature differs from the existing multitasking built into Android by being a built-in shortcut that opens two apps at the same time. This functionality seems very useful for dual screen devices where it makes sense to run two apps side by side. For example, being able to open both Keep Notes and the YouTube app or something at the same time might be a handy shortcut for some people. The real change for single screen Android devices is that users will be able to tap the divider between the tw...
android, Apps & Games, Google, News

Google Messages could stop working on non-certified Android phones in March

A string of code detected in a teardown of the most recent update to Google's Messages app suggests that the company may restrict access to Messages to 'certified' Android devices by the end of March 2021. While it may seem scary, it is important to note that the change, should it become a reality, probably won't affect most people. Before we get much deeper into it, it's also important to recognize where the information is coming from: the teardown of an app. For those unfamiliar with the practice, removing apps involves taking new 'APK' files from the app and decompiling them to look at the code and see what's new. In this case, XDA Developers performed the unmount and found a string of code that would display the following war...
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