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Allo v25 enables automatic transcriptions for audio messages, may hint at threaded conversations [APK Teardown]

A new version of Allo is rolling out just in time for the holidays. If you're thinking about singing Christmas carols or wishing somebody a happy new year, things are going to get a little more interesting thanks to the latest update. Your audio messages will now be automatically transcribed to text, so people can decide when to listen and have some idea of what they're going to be hearing. There's also a clue that may suggest threaded conversations will be supported. We're still poking around for other changes, but let us know in the comments if you stumble across anything else.

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MediaTek announces Sensio 6-in-1 biosensor module for smartphones


MediaTek has just announced a new smartphone biosensor module that can monitor 6 different health metrics. In addition to being able to measure a user's heart rate — which can honestly be done on any smartphone with a rear camera and flash — the MediaTek Sensio MT6381 can track heart rate variability, blood pressure, peripheral oxygen saturation (SpO2), electrocardiography (ECG), and photoplethysmography (PPG). MediaTek hopes that manufacturers will begin to integrate Sensio into their devices in the future.

The Sensio module works using an integration of hardware and software in order to measure all these health data in about 60 seconds, MediaTek claims.

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Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp passes 10 million installs on the Play Store in just 23 days

It can take quite a while for an app to reach a significant milestone. That is, if your name isn't Nintendo. The company's new Animal Crossing game slipped out a day early back on November 21st, and now, in just 23 days, it's garnered over 10 million installs on the Play Store. That's a huge number.

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Inbox has a new unsubscribe card for mailing lists you don't read

Most of the time, when you want to clean something up, the last thing you should do is ignore it. Messes have a habit of multiplying when they're out of sight. Check your email after a week's vacation, and you'll see exactly how inattention can make a problem bigger. But now, thanks to Inbox, ignoring spam messages can help keep your inbox clean. Inbox now asks if you'd like to unsubscribe from a sender's mailing list if you ignore their emails for a month. 

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Snapchat's Lens Studio will let anyone make and publish Augmented Reality 'Lenses'

Snapchat is an inexplicably popular service, but you know what it's missing? There just aren't enough augmented reality filters (known as Lenses) for your snaps, right? True or not, Snap has announced a new tool called Lens Studio that will let anyone create augmented reality objects and publish them for other Snapchat users.

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BEAM is a $99 smart wearable button with an AMOLED screen

Every once in a while, you want to make sure that your opinion on a subject is perfectly clear. Pins have long been used for protests, elections, and other favored causes. The idea might not be for everyone, but I'm sure we're all familiar with the concept, at least. And now a company called BEAM Authentic has released a self-titled product that lets you broadcast anything from a customized message or logo to an endless stream of cat GIFs from a battery-powered AMOLED screen on your chest. 

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The FCC has killed net neutrality protections in the US, and that's bad

Net neutrality was codified under the FCC's Title II regulatory authority nearly three years ago, regulations that covered both wired and wireless internet providers. The providers were none too happy about this - Verizon's morse code sass being the most memorable response.

Today, the FCC voted to end its authority over ISPs under Title II, putting an end to those net neutrality protections. Ajit Pai, chairman of the FCC, is largely credited with making this happen. This is all, to put it succinctly, very bad.

Today, you'll probably hear a lot about how your favorite websites will slow down, be blocked, or only be available as part of special paid packages.

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Amazon will start selling Chromecast and Apple TV after pulling them in 2015, Google Home still not available

Amazon removed the Chromecast, Nexus Player, and Apple TV from its online store in 2015. Amazon said the products' lack of Prime Video support (which Amazon itself is responsible for adding) could confuse buyers, but most saw it as a thinly-veiled attempt to boost sales of its own Fire TV lineup. Since then, Google and Amazon's feud has only escalated.

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Take a trip down memory lane with 'Oddworld: New 'n' Tasty'

I feel like it has been a long time coming, but it's finally here. Oddworld New 'n' Tasty has officially launched on Android, and you can pick it up today for $7.99. For some odd reason, Oddworld Inhabitants Inc. had only released two of their later Oddworld games (Oddworld: Stranger's Wrath and Oddworld: Munch's Oddysee) on the Play Store despite the fact that the first title in the series has had an HD port on PC and consoles since 2015. So while the discombobulated release order of these games on Android is questionable, nevertheless, we can all now finally enjoy the first title in HD glory.

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SoundCloud's redesigned home screen features personalized playlists and curated recommendations

SoundCloud has announced today that it's given the home screen of its Android app a fresh lick of paint. Until now, the app would open with a stream of the latest releases from the artists and labels you follow. That content is still there, in a new tab highlighted by a lightning bolt, but the home screen has a few new goodies to keep you interested.

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