Android Police

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19 new and notable Android apps from the last 2 weeks (11/29/16 - 12/12/16)

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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[Deal Alert] Pick up a JBL Go speaker in your choice of eight colors for just $20 (half off)

Looking for a last-minute stocking stuffer or white elephant gift? No worries, we've got your back covered here at AP – check this deal out. JBL.com has the JBL Go Bluetooth speaker on sale for just $20, which is half its retail price. It's available in a plethora of colors (yes, I know what a plethora is) and ships free and will arrive in plenty of time for Christmas.

The Go is the smallest speaker in JBL's lineup, but according to its reviews on Amazon (4.5 stars), it still packs quite the punch. It's portable, sports five hours of battery life, and sounds pretty good – what else could you want in a $20 speaker?

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U.S. Mobile Passport updated to v2.0, brings support for cruise ships

It's a big travel time in many parts of the world, especially in the United States. If you're an international traveler, I hear that the lines to enter through U.S. customs can be pretty ridiculous. We have talked about the Mobile Passport app before here on Android Police, since it's awesome for those who have a U.S. passport or Canadian B1/B2 visas. This update brings with it cruise ship support, allowing travelers to enter the country via sea.

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[Deal Alert] Grab an Asus ZenWatch 2 for up to $50 off at Best Buy today only, plus $25 off with Visa Checkout

The Asus ZenWatch may be growing a bit old at this point, but it is still a capable performer. Today brings us a few deals on the last memorable square Android Wear watch, but most notably is the offering from Best Buy. You can score some versions of the watch for $100 today only, but you'll get the additional $25 off if you use Visa Checkout. An effective $75 for the ZenWatch 2 is not bad at all.

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Play Books v3.11 adopts a bottom navigation bar, sub-lists for series, and a settings link for Night Light [APK Download]

As the holidays close in (at least for many readers), Google is rolling out a stream of updates to various apps. In addition to the major Keyboard update earlier today, Play Books is making some changes, as well. The big change on this release is the adoption of the bottom navigation bar. Digging a bit deeper also reveals improvements to the way issues are displayed for comics and other series, and a couple of other visual tweaks.

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Gboard expands keyboard GIF support beyond Android 7.1

One of the few substantive changes in Android 7.1 was the addition of GIFs in the keyboard. When typing in a supported app, you can use the GIF button to drop in an image. This was only working on Android 7.1 previously, but the new Gboard keyboard update changes that.

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LineageOS (or Lineage Android Distribution) seems very likely to be CyanogenMod's new name, at least for now

Steve Kondik didn't mince words in what is now viewed as his parting statement from Cyanogen Inc. earlier this month. In that statement, though, he alluded to the potential intellectual property issues CyanogenMod might face if it was reorganized under a new non-profit corporate entity, and so the possibility of a new name was raised. It seems that name has, at least provisionally, been decided upon: LineageOS. Or Lineage Android Distribution - it could apparently be either.

We've heard from sources close to the project that one current internal nickname is "Laos" or LAOS, standing for Lineage Android Operating System.

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Instagram live video will start rolling out in the US today

Instagram's focus on sharing pictures has expanded steadily ever since the Facebook acquisition, and now it joins its parent company in offering live video. After announcing the feature a few weeks ago, Instagram says the feature is rolling out to all US users this very day. It's a bit different than the way Facebook and others handle live video, though.

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Most Wanted: The Google Pixel is Android Police's staff pick for 2016 Smartphone of the Year

In an internal poll of the Android Police staff, the Google Pixel has won overwhelmingly as our choice for smartphone of the year.

As I pick up my Google Pixel XL, nestled in its artwork Live Case (which, annoyingly, is cracking), I don't find myself missing much. I don't miss the almost artful curves and subtle refinement of the Galaxy Note7, the vast display canvas of LG's V20, or the Moto Z's... whatever. The Pixel XL just seems right, and if you were to ask me to give it up for any other smartphone today, I'd politely decline: this, for now, is as good as it gets.

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Project Fi offering $20 'Share the Fi Love' referral credit until January 11

Google's Project Fi has always been about saving money, as long as you don't consume a lot of data. Now Project Fi customers can "Share the Fi Love" with a new referral credit, accessible via the carrier's website. For each new Fi subscriber that uses the referral code, both the new subscriber and the original subscriber get a $20 Fi credit.

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