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Android Auto v1.4 Cleans Up The Companion App Interface And Adds Granular Control For Previously Connected Cars [APK Download]

The Android Auto companion app is generally one of those things you're probably only going to work with a couple of times before you're done setting things up, then it'll stay tucked away, never to be seen again. But that doesn't mean it shouldn't look good and be as useful as possible. An update to the Android Auto app began rolling out today and it's a near total refresh of the user interface. Granted, there's not a lot to change, but it now looks much more like the companion app for Android Wear.

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Cardboard v1.7 Adds A Slick Welcome Video And New Demo Screen, Photospheres For App Screenshots, Drops Windy Day [APK Download]

Google surprised everybody back in 2014 with an unusual project called Cardboard, a low cost and simple viewer that could work with a smartphone to create simple virtual reality environments. Cardboard has quickly grown into a very engaging tool and it has been adopted in many classrooms as a result. The latest update to the demo app polishes up the experience as well as makes it a bit easier to find new apps to play with. Sadly, Windy Day is no longer included.

What's New

Welcome Video

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The first time you launch Cardboard after the update, you'll be greeted immediately by one of the big changes: a brand new welcome video.

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Android Pay v1.1 Begins Rolling Out To Fix Some Of Those Pesky Bugs [APK Download]

Android Pay has been kicking around for a little while and it's time for an update. Version 1.1 just started rolling out and it seems to be focused on fixing bugs. There are a lot of little adjustments to text, but no major new features to be seen. Nevertheless, if you use Android Pay regularly, or if you've had issues in the past, you'll probably want to grab the update. As usual, we've got the download link below.

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Latest Microsoft Office For Android Updates Bring Easier Sign-In, Reduced App Size, Cloud Font Support, And More

Microsoft Office is available for Android. No, this isn't new news, but considering how unlikely that seemed not many years ago, it's nice to reflect every now and then. Anyways, an update has rolled out for the full suite of Office apps. Word and Excel now come in smaller packages, with Microsoft boasting a 50% reduction in size.

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Nick Butcher's Plaid App Is A Gorgeous (Open Source) Showcase For Material Design

Nick Butcher (Developer Advocate at Google) recently published the source code for Plaid, an app meant to showcase material design on Android with playful animations, impeccable typography, and a simple, bold aesthetic. The code will provide useful examples for developers, but the app itself is worth keeping installed too - Plaid pulls stories from Designer News, Dribbble, and Product Hunt to serve up design news and inspiration, catered to your preferences.

plaid_demo

Besides more standard material elements, the app has a few unique tricks. Specifically, the toolbar is behind the content rather than lying on top of it, making the scrolling action on the main grid a little more elegant.

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YouTube v10.43 Cleans Up Some Icons And Prepares To Add Fast Forward And Rewind [APK Teardown + Download]

Since the launch of YouTube Red, there have already been a couple of minor updates to fix little bugs and make further tweaks to the interface. The most recent upgrade, version 10.43, just started rolling out this morning and it appears to share the same purpose. However, a teardown also reveals YouTube is preparing to introduce a feature many of us have been dying to see: fast forward and rewind.

What's New

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Left: previous versions.

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[APK Download] Google Sheets Gets Better Zooming, Filter Viewing, And Special Pasting—Slides And Docs Get Subscript And Superscript Formatting

Updates to Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides tend to travel in groups. They're timid that way. Few of them are bold enough to jump out at you directly. But taken together, they're worth a look.

Sheets brings the bulk of the changes. Google's spreadsheet app will now show you more content when you zoom in and out of a spreadsheet. The toolbars will disappear and reappear as needed. And while you're taking a look at things, you can now view filters that were created on the web.

Then once you start tweaking a document, Sheets' paste special option will also let you copy content and paste only associated values, formula, data validation, and other formatting.

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Google App v5.5 Beta Points To Upcoming Support For Chrome Custom Tabs, Concert Tickets, And New Status Cards [APK Teardown]

The Google app now has its own beta channel, and the first official version dropped last week. Of course there are a number of bug fixes and probably some fine tuning for performance, but no notable features seemed to turn up between the two releases. However, like most other updates, there are new clues about features we've yet to see. This time around, there is evidence of Chrome's Custom Tab feature coming to search results, a new event card for concert tickets, and a pair of new cards for system status toggles.

Teardown

Disclaimer: Teardowns are necessarily speculative and usually based on incomplete evidence.
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Latest Skype Update Lets You Apply Filters To Video Messages

Sending a Skype video message is like placing a video call, only instead of having to be online at the same time, the person on the other end can pick up whenever, the conversation is completely one-sided, and the entire affair is limited to a couple of minutes. Following the latest update to the Android app, you can now spice up those short clips by applying filters. Add in balloons, warp your face, turn things negative—that sort of thing.

To apply any of the effects, hit the icon in the bottom left while recording a message. Since we're approaching the end of October, Skype has also included a few Halloween-related options and emoticons.

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Google Photos v1.8 Allows Users To Hide Identified People [APK Download]

Google held a press event last month and talked about a few of the interesting new features planned for the Photos app. We're still waiting for collaborative albums to be turned on, but we've already seen other features come to life, like Chromecast support and setting labels for matched faces. This version doesn't appear to unlock collaborative albums – that may be waiting for a server-side switch – but it does add another feature to the facial matching feature: the ability to hide somebody.

Google's changelog is up

Google posted an official changelog for Photos v1.8:

  • Now in more countries: Finding the perfect photo of your best friend or family member just got easier.
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