Android Police

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[More Room For Spam] Google Play raises the app title limit from 30 to 50 characters

I'm sure there's a legit reason why Google has changed one of its developer policies on the Play Store, but I can't think of any right now. Back in mid-July, it announced in a newsletter to developers that the character limit for app titles has been raised from 30 characters to 50. The change, however, seems to have been in effect even before because Waze changed to a much longer name between June 13 and 14.

Witness the tragedy:

  • "Waze - GPS, Maps & Traffic" => 26 characters, pre-June 14.
  • "Waze - GPS, Maps, Traffic Alerts & Live Navigation" => 50 characters, June 14 and onward.
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[Update: Now available in the Play Store] Game Live from Samsung will live stream your screen to Facebook, Twitch, or Youtube

Samsung gets a lot of stick for what's perceived as bloatware on its devices, even if that situation has improved somewhat in recent years. With that, it's easy to forget that the Korean company does actually produce some really useful software, as evidenced by a new app that's aimed at mobile gamers. Samsung Game Live will allow users to live stream their gaming prowess to various other services.

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Xiaomi, Huawei, and Oppo make huge gains in Q2 2017, as global smartphone shipments top 360 million

Sales figures for the second quarter of the year are in and it would be fair to say the smartphone industry is in rude health. According to research from Strategy Analytics, global shipments saw solid growth, up 6% year-on-year to 360.4 million. While Samsung and Apple predictably held on to first and second spots in the manufacturer rankings, Chinese challengers Xiaomi, Huawei, and Oppo recorded significant gains as they worked to close the gap.

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[Update: It's really live now] Alexa devices can now control your Fire TV

One of the Google Home's best features is the ability to control playback of a Chromecast with voice commands. For example, you can ask "OK Google, play Gravity Falls on the living room TV" to start playing content without having another device nearby. Now the Fire TV can do that, but with Alexa devices.

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InBrief
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Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides add support for keyboard navigation of on-screen controls [APK Download]

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Lionsgate's Pantaya offers up hundreds of new and classic Spanish-language movies for $5.99/month

Fun fact: Spanish has more native speakers globally than English, trailing only behind Mandarin in this regard. Given the popularity of services such as Netflix and Hulu, it only makes sense that a Spanish-language movie streaming service would exist as well. Now, Lionsgate has introduced a new service called Pantaya, which will enable US residents to watch hundreds of Spanish-language movies for $5.99 per month.

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Facebook is testing a standalone video chat device, could be running Android

According to a report from Bloomberg, Facebook is building a video calling device for the home, in what is essentially a new product category. It apparently has a laptop-sized screen and smart camera technology that gives users the impression of being in the same room as one another.

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Allo v15 adds a shortcut to your contacts so you can quickly start messaging [APK Download]

A new version of Allo began rolling out yesterday, but unlike so many previous releases, this one wasn't preceded by any Twitter announcements from the developer team. That's not too surprising because this looks more like a maintenance release. However, there was one subtle enhancement that's definitely worth pointing out: Allo now integrates with contacts on your phone so you can quickly jump to the app and start a conversation. A teardown of the apk revealed that most of the other changes are in service to the upcoming launch of an Allo web client, which had been examined in detail with a teardown of v14.

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17 new and notable (and 1 WTF) Android games from the last week (7/26/17 - 8/1/17)

Welcome to the roundup of the best new Android games that went live in the Play Store or were spotted by us in the previous week or so.

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Verizon Up is the carrier's new rewards program, replaces Smart Rewards

Today Verizon has opened up a new rewards program for its customers. It is meant to replace the company's older Smart Rewards program, which also ended as of today (though points remain valid for use until November). The new system is called Verizon Up, and it's a very different kind of rewards program.

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