Android Police

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Google makes ADB, fastboot, and other platform tools available without full SDK or Android Studio download

As an Android nerd, there are times you probably need ADB or fastboot to mess around with your phone. Maybe you're flashing an OTA or unlocking the bootloader. You used to need to grab a giant package of other junk from Google to get them, but no more! Google has started hosting platform tools downloads without the other stuff that are a mere 3.5MB.

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Google acquires Limes Audio to create "the best online voice quality on the market"

Google today announced that it has acquired Limes Audio, a Swedish sound company specializing in acoustic echo cancellation and speech enhancement. The move reaffirms Google's intentions to continue improving sound and call quality across its suite of products, particularly in Google Hangouts.

Poor internet connections or noisy environments like coffee shops can have a significantly adverse effect on the audio quality in an online chat, making it hard to understand the person on the other end. Hardware solutions like noise cancelling microphones are designed to filter out ambient noise and today come standard in most mid- to high-end phones, but they do little to reduce echos — and do nothing to address connectivity issues.

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T-Mobile's next 'Uncarrier' move gets rid of all non-ONE plans, pays back fees and taxes, offers credit for low data users

T-Mobile's allegedly revolutionary ONE Unlimited plan has been met with a lot of skepticism thanks to its oxymoronic limitations on streaming video and tethering, plus new tiers of service that undermine the idea of a "single" data plan for everyone. Even so, CEO John Legere said that the company is "doubling down" on the ONE plan. In his typical bombastic and profanity-laden style, Legere announced that starting January 22nd, T-Mobile will only offer the ONE Unlimited plan to new post-paid customers. That's $70 for talk, text, and "unlimited" data for the first line, $120 for two lines, and $20 for each line after.

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Sony's CES announcements include new sound bars, TVs, and headphones

Sony is, of course, at CES 2017 in Las Vegas. As you'd expect it has a great many new products, ranging from new TVs to new Blu-Ray players. However, in our opinion, what is most exciting in Sony's announcements are the Chromecast built-in (or is that Google Cast?) products and the newly-unveiled Android TVs, plus some new headphones.

Sound bars and speakers

First up is a new sound bar, the catchily named HT-ST5000. This is Sony's flagship sound bar for 2017, so it has all the top-of-the-line features, such as Dolby Atmos, hi-res audio, and twelve advanced speakers. Sony says the HT-ST5000 is for home theater setups, and proves that with the number or ports and connectivity options: three HDMI ports, one HDMI ARC port, a USB input, Bluetooth and NFC, and a number of digital and analog connections.

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Google Calendar goals now have Google Fit integration [APK Download]

For a while now, Google Calendar has let you add goals so you can keep track of your efforts at self-improvement. One of the most popular uses (especially this time of year) is exercise goals. In the latest version of Calendar, you can plug in Google Fit to automatically complete your goals.

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Android 7.1.1 image and OTA files finally available for the Nexus 6

Google's shiny new Pixel phones and the slightly older Nexus 5X and 6P, and the Pixel C tablet have had access to the latest and most tasty flavor of Nougat for a month now, but the Nexus 6 (from 2014, if we're keeping score) has been puttering along on the more outdated 7.0 build. As promised, the 7.1.1 update is now available for Nexus 6 owners in both full system image and over-the-air update form - though of course, it may be a while before you see the actual OTA roll out to your phone.

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Polaroid shows off 4K TVs with built-in Chromecast at CES

Believe it or not, Polaroid does still exist. The company is no longer the entity it once was, living on now as a shell to license the brand and forge hardware partnerships. Still, Polaroid has something new at CES you might find interesting; a new line of 4K TVs with Google Chromecast built-in. They start at just $499.

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SoundHound's Hound voice assistant making its way to Onkyo speakers and Shenzhen robots

It can be hard to keep up with all the major voice assistants - Google Assistant, Siri, Cortana, Alexa, the list goes on. SoundHound, perhaps best known for its music recognition app, has been working on its Hound voice assistant since 2015. At CES, SoundHound announced they have partnered up with Onkyo and Shenzhen to produce Hound-powered speakers and robots, respectively.

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Amazon's Alexa voice assistant is coming to Ford vehicles

Amazon has successfully turned Alexa into a capable home automation and assistant platform, but it's about to branch out from your home. Amazon and Ford are partnering to bring Alexa to the car. Not only can you control your car remotely, you can use Alexa commands while driving it.

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iHeartRadio is coming soon to Google Home, Samsung's Family Hub, more

iHeartRadio, the online radio service, recently announced its paid on-demand All Access plans and it's now officially making them available (even though they have been accessible for almost a month). But that's not what we're here for. Another announcement coming from the company at CES is its upcoming integration with Google Home and a few other hardware and software partners.

Google Home support isn't live yet, but when it becomes available, you'll be able to play iHeartRadio stations or artists by asking the Assistant to do so. It looks like the integration will be direct, like Spotify works now, without requiring you first to speak to iHeartRadio and then ask for a station, but that's an assumption based on the vague PR description.

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