Android Police

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Google makes 4K video official in Google Play, but only for the US and Canada right now

We started getting reports of 4K videos rolling out in Google Play several weeks ago, but not everyone could see the 4K option and Google didn't list a separate price for it. Google has now made it official—4K video is available for rental or purchase in the Play Store. However, there isn't very much of it right now, and you can even get 4K everywhere.

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Google commits to 100% renewable energy for its global operations, starting in 2017

Google is one of the largest and most far-reaching companies in worldwide tech, but it's also known for progressive (if not necessarily selfless) projects that go beyond its standard interests. Those include sponsorships and massive purchases for renewable energy, like buying portions of solar and wind energy production from farms in the US, Chile, and Sweden. According to the latest post on Google's Keyword blog, those purchases combined with renewable energy credits will account for 100% of the company's business operations in 2017.

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Google Home makes a guest appearance on Modern Family to the absolute delight of Phil

Modern Family's resident nerd and geek, the awkwardly and adorably funny Phil Dunphy is no stranger to hot gadgets and new technology products that we all drool over. In the last Modern Family episode, Phil seems to have decked the Dunphy house with some Google love: there's a Google Home right on the kitchen counter and it's not just there for show, it's also part of the plot — albeit a very small part.

Toward the start of The Alliance episode (season 8, episode 8), Claire talks about the romantic Italian movie she and Phil watched the evening before. Phil then turns toward Google Home and says, "OK Google, play the soundtrack to Spaghetti for Pepe." The nice female voice in Home answers him and starts playing some Italian-sounding music.

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Samsung Galaxy S8 rumored to drop the headphone jack

There are some hardware advances that make sense—moving to the USB Type-C standard, for example. It's a pain at first, but the benefits are clear. Removing the headphone jack, however, still seems dumb at this juncture. Still, SamMobile says that Samsung is planning to drop this port in the upcoming Galaxy S8. Boo.

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Google Opinion Rewards is now available in Switzerland

Hé, les Suisses, vous étiez jaloux des Français et de leur accès à Google Opinion Rewards? Bah maintenant, il n'y a plus aucune raison de rester envieux: Opinion Rewards est disponible en Suisse!

Of the national languages in Switzerland, I only speak French, so excuse me if I can't write that sentence above in German, Italian, or Romansh. But I'll translate the general sentiment to English for those of you who are still reading me: Google Opinion Rewards is now available in Switzerland.

According to a couple of tips we've received, the app is now downloadable from the Play Store in Switzerland and users can sign up, start answering surveys, and earn a little bit of cash for each of them. Four languages are available for surveys: French, Italian, German, and English.

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YouTube Red crosses the Pacific and lands in South Korea

YouTube Red has been available for over a year in the US and has since expanded to New Zealand and Australia followed by Mexico. But there's a fifth country that has either gotten YouTube Red recently or will be getting it soon: South Korea.

According to Google's Support page for YouTube Red, the service is now available in "Korea," by which we presume it's South Korea, because rumors about the launch in the country have been spreading for a few months... and because launching in North Korea sounds just a little far-fetched. The paid subscription would grant users ad-free access to YouTube on all devices where they're signed in with their account, offline video saves, background playback, as well as the possibility to watch YouTube Red Original Movies and Series.

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Unlocked HTC One M9 starts getting Nougat OTA

Ready for some Nougaty goodness before the end of the year, HTC One M9 users? If you answered with an enthusiastic "yes!" then I hope you have an unlocked device, because that's the one getting the OTA update to Android 7.0 in the US. If you bought your handset from an operator, you will have to wait longer, unfortunately.

Both HTC USA and the famous Mo Versi announced the news on Twitter early this morning yesterday afternoon, saying that Nougat would start rolling out to the unlocked HTC One M9 "late this evening," ie. Tuesday December 6 Monday, December 5 at night. So start checking your phone for updates in a few hours and be patient if it doesn't show up for you just yet — these things can take time to reach everyone.

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Blink releases weatherproof outdoor Blink XT camera with 1080p video, night vision, 2 year battery life

Blink has an interesting proposition as a connected security system: one sync module that plugs into MicroUSB for power but connects to your network over WiFi, and 1 to 10 completely wireless cameras that you can place anywhere without worrying about power or connection cables. They only get triggered by motion and record short clips (max. 60sec) then go back to idling. When I reviewed the system last week, I found the idea promising but complained about the slow app and the missing hardware features: no weatherproofing and no night vision were big deal-breakers for me, and the 720p resolution was limited too.

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Google Wifi review: Probably the best home Wi-Fi system you can buy right now

I'm reviewing Google Wifi because my apartment sucks. Well, specifically: my apartment's walls suck. And the placement of my router is far from ideal. You see, because I need a hardline to my desktop PC in my office, that means keeping the router in the office, too, or snaking around fifty feet of unsightly ethernet from my living room along the wall (in-wall cabling is not an option for me). This presents a conundrum, because it means that if I want my apartment to have well-distributed Wi-Fi, I need a big, ugly, long cable running the length of the place. If I don't want to run the cable, it means lopsided Wi-Fi coverage.

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The slow, uninteresting death of Android tablets is unfolding, and it is no one's fault (opinion)

Android tablets are dying. There are signals that bear this out: sales estimates, web traffic, an utter absence of meaningful innovation or even competitive products in the segment. We've watched Android tablets struggle from day one: when Samsung's Galaxy Tab was utterly panned for its subpar performance and pricing, to the years of Honeycomb suffering under the yoke of underpowered chipsets and endless bugs, and finally to the unspoken abandonment of Android tablets by Google's own app teams over the past few years. Android tablets have never been particularly lively, but in 2016, I think we've finally watched the market's pulse near flat-line.

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