Android Police

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Google Releasing A FABulous New Design Support Library [Updated]

One year on, Google's material design philosophy is still picking up steam. As popular as it's become in the community though, there are still some holes left to fill in terms of implementation.

Until now, developers have had to rely on third-party libraries (in conjunction with Google's own support library) to create elements like floating action buttons, but Google is looking to fix that, releasing a new design support library today that fills in some of the holes.

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[Download] Android "M" Developer Preview Images Are Live Now For Nexus 5, 6, 9, And Player

Android "M" preview images for Nexus 5, 6, 9, and Player are now live. Here are the direct download links.

If you run into problems during flashing like the dreaded "missing system.img" error, check out our article with instructions for doing a "dirty" flash (piece by piece) here.

Google has also announced that the "M" preview will be updated more regularly than L's, and specifically that updates will be issued over the air - no need to flash updates yourself. That will be very nice indeed.

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NVIDIA SHIELD And SHIELD Pro Review: Easily The Best Android TV On The Market, But Don't Toss Out Your Game Consoles Just Yet

When you hear the name "NVIDIA," the first thing that comes to mind is most likely graphics cards, or at the very least the company's Tegra chips that have been powering Android devices for several years now. Either way, it's probably not "the company that makes the killer Android TV box that's hanging out in my living room."

But after today, it honestly might be.

We've spent the last week or so playing with both the base model SHIELD and storage-laden SHIELD Pro, which at this point are unquestionably the best Android TV boxes that money can buy.

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[I/O 2015] Google Introduces Family Star, A New Set Of Kid-Friendly Filters And Parental Tools For The Play Store

The Play Store has a crap-ton of content, much of which you might not want your kids to access. Google is aware of this, and at I/O 2015 the company has announced a new set of tools specifically designed to help parents find age-appropriate content, plus a few extras to help kids engage with the content itself. It's all being introduced to the Play Store under the "Family Star" label and logo.

star rating

Family Star extends across apps, games, video, and book content, but it's primarily intended for games. Searches specifically for kid-friendly content filter out everything else, and content under the Family Star logo is separated by age range.

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[I/O 2015] Developers Can Now Build Custom Landing Pages On Google Play

If you check the other apps from a developer in the Play Store right now, you get a boring generic list of apps. Going forward, you'll start seeing richer, branded pages where developers can properly display their wares.

2015-05-28 13_18_22-Google I_O 2015 - Keynote - YouTube

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[I/O 2015] Google Is Working On Smarter Play Store Search

Besides new family-friendly and kid-friendly efforts on search and discovery in the Play Store, Google announced during its keynote today that Play Store search will be getting smarter overall.

Specifically, Google wants to more effectively surface apps when users search for vague or topical queries. The example given in the screenshot above shows the user searching for "shopping" apps. The Play Store then returns, of course, shopping apps. But those apps are then categorized intelligently into different sub-genres like Fashion and Coupons.

This may seem like a small tweak to most users, but - if Google is right - it will help introduce users to the right app when the user is not sure exactly what they're looking for, which is a good step in helping along discoverability in the Play Store as a whole.

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[I/O 2015] Android M Will Support App Deep Linking Without That Annoying Selector Prompt

We've all seen, probably many times, the common situation where you click a link on your Android device and you are then asked with which app you would like to open it. On one hand, this is a great feature; merely guessing could be very annoying and it is a sensible way to allow users to assign default apps. Sometimes, though, certain types of links should always open in a particular app without prompting the user.

app-selector

A new addition to Android M, as discussed at I/O today, will allow that to happen. Developers can add an "autoVerify" attribute to their app manifest to tell the operating system that there is no need to prompt the user for certain types of links.

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[I/O 2015] Google Opens Up A/B Testing For Play Store Listings For Developers

When it comes to getting users to your app, your Play Store listing counts for a lot. What users see (and read) when they reach your app's listing can make or break their decision to download or buy, so carefully crafting a good listing is important.

To that end, Google has announced that it will open up what amounts to A/B testing for Play Store listings, meaning developers can play with their listings by testing different screenshots, graphics, etc. to see what performs better and end up with the best possible listing.

To facilitate this, Google will add "Listing Experiments" to the Play Store developer console.

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InBrief
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[I/O 2015] Google Announces Cloud Test Lab To Remotely Test Your App On The Top 20 Android Devices

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[I/O 2015] Android M Will Support Fingerprint Readers For Device Unlocking, Mobile Payments, And App Authentication

Google has made fingerprint scanner support in Android official, but of course we knew that was coming. The Nexus 6 was supposed to have a fingerprint reader, but now future Android devices will be able to reap the benefits of native biometrics. This will be used for accessing the device, of course, but that's not all.

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