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android messages

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[Update: Money transfers & Duo calling are live] Android Messages v2.7 prepares to add new message indicators and RCS support for dual-SIM phones, drops 6 MB in size [APK Teardown]

It's time for a new version of Android Messages. The latest update takes a slightly larger than average jump from v2.5 to v2.7, but no obvious changes to the UI are really popping out. However, the apk did get much smaller with this release, and there are some things visible through the lens of a teardown. We'll keep watching for other changes, but let us know if you see anything.

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Google Wallet v21 comes with cosmetic improvements, prepares to add reminders, multi-person requests, and Android Messages integration [APK Teardown]

The Google Wallet app hasn't seen a lot of activity in a while, but an update began rolling out late yesterday that shows that there's still quite a bit happening to the app. Version 21 brings a number of visual enhancements that make the app look a bit cleaner and not quite as formal. Under the covers, a teardown also shows that the Wallet developers are about to launch multi-person money requests for those times when everybody splits the cost, a new reminders system to keep you from forgetting to take care of business, and confirms Android Messages integration is coming soon.

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Duo and ViLTE video call integration with Google Phone, Contacts, and Android Messages is rolling out to Google-supported phones

If 1950's science fiction has taught me anything, it's that video calling is supposed to be the future. Today Google announced in a blog post that we're one step closer to that vision of reality. Integrated video calling (via Duo or ViLTE) is rolling out to first-generation Pixel, Android One, and Nexus devices, via the Phone, Contacts, and Android Messages apps. No schedule yet for ray-gun or jetpack integration. 

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Google prepares deeper Duo integration with your dialer and Messages, goes live in Phone app v13

Duo has started to establish itself in Google's Android suite of apps and products, and the company has recently been preparing to integrate it further into its existing apps and thus make it easier for any Duo user to video call their contacts. Now we have one integration going live and two on the way.

Duo video call option on the in-call screen

Artem spotted this on the in-call screen of the new Pixel 2 XL during Google's event last week. A "video call" button shows up when talking to a contact who has enabled Duo, and tapping it hangs up the current voice call and starts a Duo video call with that person.

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Android Messages updated again, reinstating the FAB and potentially fixing the notification bug [APK Download]

Google's stock SMS app for Android should be an undramatic affair, but it's been in the news more than you might expect recently. This is largely due to a bug that has been preventing notifications for many people, and that's a pretty big problem for a messaging app. The decision to remove the FAB (floating action button) in the last update has been controversial, too. In the latest update, it seems everything is back to "normal."

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Android Messages has broken new SMS notifications for many people since its latest update

Google fixeth and Google breaketh away. That's the mantra of any app or software update from our beloved company (we're really masochists, aren't we?). The latest update to version 2.5.207 of Android Messages seems to have broken one essential feature for a messenger app: notifications.

It looks like notifications will stop working at some point in the app, thus no longer informing you of incoming SMS: no sound, no pop-up, no vibration. The only way to know you have new messages is either if you have Pushbullet mirroring SMS to a desktop computer or by looking at the unread counter in Nova Launcher for example.

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Android Messages v2.5 removes the FAB for new conversations, prepares to launch video calls, read QR codes, and exchange money [APK Teardown]

"The Only Thing That Is Constant Is Change." That's a famous quote by the pre-Socratic Greek philosopher Heraclitus. Nobody knew it at the time, but he had been sent back from the future and was actually making a snarky comment about Google's approach to design. It was only about two years ago when every app was adding FABs (floating action buttons) regardless of how much or little they made sense, and now we're saying an abrupt goodbye to the one in Android Messages as it vanishes with the latest update. Alongside that simple change, a teardown also turns up signs that the app will soon provide shortcuts to launch video calls, exchange money with contacts, and read QR codes.

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Android Messages v2.3 update that adds 'Mark as Read' button in notifications is now available for all [APK Download]

Android Messages v2.3 was introduced with Android O Developer Preview 3 back in June, and it brought a small yet powerful thing: a 'Mark as read' button in notifications. This was something that many people were glad to see, but it was only available in DP3. Now, Android Messages v2.3 has rolled out to all devices, meaning that all of you can now experience what a wonderful feature this is.

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Android Messages v2.3 from Developer Preview 3 adds "mark as read" to notifications, replaces settings with Notification Channels, and prepares to add smart replies [APK Download + Teardown]

The third developer preview of Android O came with a stack of new versions for Google's assorted apps. Many of them are essentially unchanged from the regular versions available through the Play Store, but there are a few offering up some excellent new features. Android Messages falls into that group as it adds the option to mark a message read from the notification shade and customization for contact notifications has been completely reorganized to take advantage of Android O's Notification Channels. A teardown also reveals that Android Messages is going to join the ranks of semi-intelligent chat apps that offers suggestions based on context.

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Android Messages v2.2 cleans up the setup for solo and group messaging, allows adding new people to conversations [APK Download]

Not all updates have to introduce a big feature to make a big difference. The latest version of Android Messages demonstrates just that. It includes a couple of relatively small changes to the way group messaging is set up and should be a little faster for most people, and might remove some confusion for a few.

The screen for creating a new conversation in earlier versions was geared in favor of group chats. To be more specific, tapping on a contact would put them into a list of recipients and allowed users to keep adding more people until the user pressed a button to finalize the list and begin typing messages.

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