Android Police

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Google Daydream hasn't done anything to fix VR's biggest problem - it's just not very good (opinion)

Today, I uninstalled the Daydream app from my Pixel XL, because I hadn't used it in nearly three months. When I reviewed the experience in November last year, I had the sneaking suspicion this is where I'd end up. Not because I felt Daydream was uniquely lacking in some way, or even that the sparse content ecosystem would quickly be depleted through my use. It's because the exact same thing has happened with every Samsung Gear VR I've been sent to evaluate over the years. And Gear VR's Oculus Store has tons of stuff - hundreds of experiences, games, 360-degree videos.

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Nest app updated with automatic door detection, app shortcuts, and more

Most home security cameras have mediocre apps (if you're lucky), but Google's Nest app is the exception. It tends to support more OS features, has better integration with other services, and it looks nice. It's getting better today. Nest is rolling out an update that includes some cool learning features, support for some Android 7.0 features, and more.

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Chrome Beta 57 adds full tab controls to Chrome Custom Tabs

Chrome Custom Tabs were introduced back in 2015, as a way for applications to open pages in Chrome without the slow process of actually opening the Chrome app. Custom Tabs load quickly, retain the color of the host app, and can open the page in the full Chrome browser easily.

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BlackBerry releases 'Notable' screen capture and markup app, available first on BlackBerry devices

We don't cover all the apps that hit the Play Store, just the notable ones. This app is actually called Notable, so we kind of have to cover it. But really, it is kind of notable because it's BlackBerry's latest effort to convince people to pay for its Android software suite.

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[Update: Winners] Two new games added to Humble Mobile Bundle RPGs, and we've got ten free codes to give away

The Humble Mobile Bundle RPGs came out last week, packing 7 great games that total almost $50 on the Play Store. The Bundle has now had 2 new games added to it, and even better, we have 10 free codes to give away.

The new games are in the second tier - the 'pay more than average' one - which currently stands at a price of $5.75. Mage Gauntlet comes from RocketCat games and publisher Noodlecake. It was inspired by classic RPGs games from the 80s and 90s on the Super Nintendo, such as Legend of Zelda: LTTP and Secret of Mana.

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Content suggestion thumbnails on YouTube while playing full-screen video are rolling out slowly

Google seems to be trying many new things in terms of content on YouTube, including video thumbnails once a video has been completed, cards at the top of searches, video recommendations as notifications, and numerous tweaks to the now playing screen. We've been made aware by multiple readers of a new video suggestion feature while watching a full-screen video.

In the most recent version of the YouTube app, 12.05, when watching a full-screen video, suggestions will pop up at the bottom, giving you ideas for what to watch next. These show up as a preview of a thumbnail, but can be tapped on to bring them into view. Presumably, this is an attempt by Google to get people watching something else if they're bored with what they're watching, which would seem to be a wise move, because ads.

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Amazon enters the meeting, video call, and messenger space with Chime

Conference calls and video meetings have almost been synonymous with Skype for the longest time, but Amazon is looking at changing that. Chime, a new Amazon Web Services platform, wants to simplify communications between teams and individuals and cater to their different aspects in one app: video call, voice call, chat, and screen sharing.

Chime is now available on Android, iOS, Mac, and Windows. According to Amazon, the service was built from the ground up with mobile in mind, so the apps work well on phones and let users seamlessly transition from and to their desktops. There are a few other advantages to Chime, like the lack of any long pins (meetings ring up like a phone call), quick options to get out of a meeting or let others know you're running late, a view of all participants and their current status, the possibility to mute one specific person's microphone if there's too much ambient noise around them, and the ability for anyone to share their screen without too much hassle.

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Huawei CEO Richard Yu confirms the Huawei Watch 2 will be announced at MWC

The Huawei Watch was many people's favorite Android Wear smartwatch back when it was released in 2015, and it remains so because of its round screen and 'classic' watch look. Huawei CEO Richard Yu has now confirmed on Weibo that the Huawei Watch 2 will be unveiled at MWC, following earlier speculation that this would be the case.

Yu doesn't say anything about the Watch 2, but shares a promotional picture, featuring a man in sports attire wearing the watch. Could this indicate the new model is aimed at the sports watch market? This would mark quite a change from its predecessor, although it's what VentureBeat reported on last month.

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12 new and notable (and 2 WTF) Android apps from the last 2 weeks (1/31/17 - 2/13/17)

Welcome to the roundup of the best new Android applications and live wallpapers that went live in the Play Store or were spotted by us in the previous 2 weeks or so.

Please wait for this page to load in full in order to see the widgets, which include ratings and pricing info.

Looking for the previous roundup editions? Find them here.

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Google Assistant, four months later: Still fragmented, still unfinished, still the best

Back at Google I/O 2016, we got a first look at Google Assistant. It was designed to be a conversational assistant, as opposed to the search-based Google Now. Then when Allo was released in September, it shipped with a beta version of Assistant. Finally when the Google Pixel phones were released in October, Assistant was a major selling point.

Google has a tendency to rush products out the door without fully finishing them, and Assistant was no exception. So now that about four months have passed since the official introduction of Google Assistant (roughly five months if you count the Allo beta), has anything changed?

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