Android Police

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Chrome Beta 60 adds new search widget, limits the Vibration API to combat malware ads, and more [APK Download]

Chrome 59 was just released, which means Chrome 60 has graduated to beta status. This version includes a few interface changes, like a new context menu and file picker, as well as a new search widget. The Vibration API also has some new limitations to combat malware ads. Let's take a look.

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Android O feature spotlight: Ongoing media notifications are now colored based on album art / thumbnails

Android O's third developer preview has just landed, and we're already spotting some pretty cool changes. Among the first we spotted is color-coding for rich media notifications, meaning that these notifications will be themed based on album art / video thumbnails.

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Release notes for Play Services v11 have been posted with a new API for smooth SMS verification and several significant additions and deprecations

Now that Google is through with its biggest developer conference of the year, it's time to deliver a few updates and fulfill some of the promises made during the event. Some of that is happening through an update to Play services. Google posted the release notes for the update and it includes a lot of additions, both big and small, and a few deprecations.

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Gear S3 Classic LTE now available from Verizon

Carriers and manufacturers are still trying to figure out how to sell smartwatches, and the latest idea is to make watches your phone away from phone. The LG Watch Sport and Verizon Wear24 are two Android Wear watches with LTE connectivity, allowing you to pop in a SIM card and receive phone calls and texts without a Bluetooth connection to your phone.

The Gear S3 and S3 Classic are Samsung's latest Tizen-powered watches, but until now, only a Wi-Fi version of the Classic model was available. An LTE model was announced in March, and it's finally available today at AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile.

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Duo v12 enables auto-hiding controls, hints at low-bandwidth audio mode and a couple logical notifications [APK Teardown + Download]

Duo remains one of Google's most minimal apps, so it feels like even small changes were carefully considered before earning a place in an update. The latest version of Duo is rolling out now with one such tweak that allows the on-screen controls to disappear when they're not in use. A teardown also reveals plans to make audio calls even more resilient on low-bandwidth connections and to add a couple of notifications that might give users more reasons to open the app more often.

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Android O is confirmed to be 8.0 in the latest developer preview

We've all been debating about what the official name of Android O will be (it's going to be Oreo, guys, trust me), but there hasn't been much talk about the official version number. There were only ever two real options - 7.2 or 8.0. With the release of Android O's third developer preview, Google has revealed that it will be Android 8.0.

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[Deal Alert] Dual SIM Galaxy S8 and S8+ on sale for $639.99 and $727.99 via eBay

The Galaxy S8 and S8+ have been out for a few months, so the sales are really starting to make a dent in the price tag. Today, the dual SIM variants are available on eBay for the lowest price we've see yet. The S8 is $640 and the S8+ is $728. Those are both more than $100 cheaper than the standard carrier variants.

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Android O Dev Preview 3 is rolling out with final APIs [Update]

Google dropped the second Android O developer preview on the first day of I/O last month, but here we are just a few weeks later and Dev Preview 3 is available. The full system images are available for immediate flashing on supported devices, and beta program devices will probably be updated soon. Importantly, this update should include the final APIs for Android O.

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LineageOS now supports the Nexus 9, Xiaomi Mi MIX, and other devices

I find myself constantly impressed with the LineageOS community. Formed from the remains of CyanogenMod, the project has continued to add support for new devices and maintain most of CM's library. Since our last post, Lineage has added support for a handful of Xiaomi phones and updated the Wi-Fi Nexus 9 to LOS 14.1.

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Opinion: Software updates shouldn't just be faster, they should be better

The software update giveth and the software update taketh away - it’s a tale as old as updateable tech. On the one hand, updates come bearing gifts: exciting new features intended to breathe new life into our devices, as well as the essential security patches necessary to ensure they are protected from exploitation. On the other, every new software build is also an opportunity for the update deliveryman to enter your home unannounced, pick up a metaphorical hammer, smash your device to a practically useless pulp, and leave - with little to no recourse available once the warranty period has expired.

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