David Ruddock
David's phone is whatever is currently sitting on his desk. He is an avid writer, and enjoys playing devil's advocate in editorials, and reviewing the latest phones and gadgets. He also doesn't usually write such boring sentences.

07
Jul
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Based on evidence from two tipsters, it seems all but inevitable that Google Now will be receiving media and music playback controls at some point in the future. Some users are already seeing these actions in proto-form on their devices, which can be activated simply by saying "next song." What appears, if your account is enabled for the feature, is shown in the left screenshot. If the function doesn't work, you'll see the one on the right.

07
Jul
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Another month, another set of platform distribution numbers. The constant ebb and flow of Android's population by version number continues to swing in KitKat's favor, though not by a whole lot. Android 4.4 is up 4.3% month over month during the 7-day period measured by Google from July 1st to the 7th, while Jelly Bean appears to have undergone its first net shrinkage. Though the number of 4.2 installs grew by 0.6%, 4.1 fell 1.2%, and 4.3 by 1.3%, marking a net decline for Jelly Bean of 1.9%.

05
Jul
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This weekend's question is an easy one: did you put down your cash for one of the newly-available Android Wear devices, the Samsung Gear Live or the LG G Watch? Both devices are available on Google Play in a handful of countries around the world right now, and are priced to compete. The G Watch comes in around 10% pricier than the Gear Live, though it has a larger battery than its Samsung counterpart.

04
Jul
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If you've been itching to use your USB DAC with your Android phones and tablets, get ready: USB audio-out support is coming to our favorite mobile OS, finally, in this fall's "L" release. Android has been without native USB audio support (some OEMs have added it in, but at the moment it's rare) since, well, ever, and the main ticket in the Android issue tracker has been there nearly two-and-a-half years.

02
Jul
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While Duolingo had previously announced its famous language-learning service was headed to Android Wear, today the company updated its standard Android app with the necessary bits to make that happen. Delta was also busy with Wear integration today, and as you might guess, the Delta app will now let you display your QR code boarding pass on a Wear device. Here are some images of Duolingo on Wear, and as for Delta, well, you can probably use your imagination.

02
Jul
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The Android Wear companion app is officially available for download on the Play Store, not that you can do anything with it without an Android Wear device. But hey, it's worth knowing where to find it when the time comes, right?

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So there it is. Download it. Pretend you have a Wear device. Or something. I'm not really sure.

02
Jul
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Well, this isn't great news - the guy responsible for designing Project Ara as part of Google's ATAP team (and previously, at Motorola), which Google picked up as part of the Motorola-Lenovo acquisition, is leaving! Dan Makoski is headed to another company to work on more amazing, innovative, interesting, game-changing products. Just kidding: he's going to work for a bank. Capital One, to be precise. He has this to say about it:

  1. there are few spaces as ripe for technology and human-inspired re-imagination as how people relate to their money,
  2. Capital One has been steadily building a quiet but extraordinary design thinking, strategy and execution culture on top of its already legendary data analytics capability,
  3. and when you stir the above and throw in the spark of vision & leadership:

*boom.

02
Jul
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Just a quick bit of info for our readers in Greece, Portugal, and Poland - soon, you'll be able to pick up Google Play gift cards at your friendly neighborhood retailer (well, unless they're jerks, then your unfriendly neighborhood retailer). There's no exact timing information, but the Play support page for gift cards was just updated with those three new nations. Greece and Portugal will be getting the same 15, 25, and 50 Euro denominations as the rest of Europe, while Poland will have gift cards at 50, 75, and 150 Złotych.

02
Jul
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Update: Looks like German and French have been live for a while now, though most of the other languages are pretty new. Again, if you're not seeing this feature yet, it's rolling out, so it may be days or even weeks before it's fully available.

If you're suddenly noticing that Google Now is telling you that you can activate it using the "OK Google" command, good news: you [probably] aren't going insane.

01
Jul
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The image you're seeing below popped up on Reddit this morning, and likely various tip boxes of numerous websites, offering a glimpse of what appears to be impending Google Voice and Hangouts integration - the holy grail we've all been seeking since the very announcement of Hangouts as a thing.

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Exciting, right? Well, curb your enthusiasm, because there's really not much to see here, in all likelihood. We've seen this migration message inside the Hangouts APK since April, and the graphic assets for this prompt have probably been in there for a while, too.

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