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Google

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Google app v7.16 beta suggests tablet rollout coming soon, reveals Routines can run after alarms, more on Quartz and podcasts [APK Teardown]

There's a fresh version of the Google app rolling out on the beta channel right now. This one doesn't appear to put a lot of new stuff in front of us for use right now, but there are hints scattered around that tablet support is ready to launch. A teardown brings the more interesting clues, including more capabilities for Routines, additional details for the screen-enabled Google Home (i.e. Quartz), and even downloadable podcasts.

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Here are 13 temporarily free and 13 on-sale apps to start the week

It's Monday again, which means that we're due for the first round of app sales for the week. November is already half over, and Thanksgiving is next week (here in the U.S.). Our list today is short, especially for a Monday, with a couple of good ones mixed in. And apologies for how late it is — better late than not at all, yes?

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November 2017 platform distribution shows an anemic 0.1% increase for Oreo and a larger bump for Nougat

It was beginning to look like Google wouldn't get around to releasing platform distribution numbers this month, but it just came through. The news, however, isn't great if you've been pulling for Oreo to catch on. After debuting last month at 0.2% market share, Oreo is up just another tenth of a point this month. Meanwhile, Nougat saw a more substantial increase.

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Broadcast for Google Home is rolling out now, allowing you to talk to everyone in the house

A ton of products and features were announced at Google's October 4th event, and among those was a broadcast feature for the Google Home line. If you have several Homes in your home, this is sure to come in handy when you need to communicate something with the entire house.

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Pixel 2 cameras don't like LED lights, display strange banding when aimed in their direction

There's no doubting that Google's 2nd generation Pixels are excellent phones, but like any major release, they've not been without their fair share of teething problems. The screen of the Pixel 2 XL has captured the most headlines, with various issues which may or may not have been overblown in some media circles. With all that talk of the display, the camera must have been feeling left out. Well not anymore.

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[Update: €349 in rest of Europe] Google drops Pixel C price significantly in the UK, now just £299

The Pixel C tablet is something of a forgotten product. That has a lot to do with where Android tablets are right now: the category is all but dead by this point. The space has been taken over by cheap Chromebooks, many of which can now run Android apps and operate in tablet mode.

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Google will remove Play Store apps that use Accessibility Services for anything except helping disabled users

For years, Android has allowed apps to modify the behavior of other applications, using Accessibility Services. While the intended purpose is for developers to create apps for users with disabilities, the API is often used for other functionality (to overlay content, fill in text fields, etc.). LastPass, Button Mapper, Signal SpyTasker, and Greenify are just a few examples of applications heavily using this API.

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Google updates Assistant interface with white background and rounded cards

Over the past few weeks, Google has been changing the interface of a few applications, making them brighter with more rounded edges. The mobile search site recently switched to this layout, and the in-progress Chrome redesign has it too. Assistant now fits in with this design language, as a visual change has started to roll out to users.

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End the week with 16 temporarily free and 16 on-sale apps

Happy Friday! The end of another week is upon us, coupled with whatever the weekend has in store for you. We have yet another short list today, which is okay in my book. Be sure to check out Wednesday's if you haven't already.

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Pixel Buds pre-orders are now shipping from the Google Store

Google announced a lot of things at its October 4th event including the new Pixels and the Pixelbook. However, the Pixel Buds sort of stole the show with that rad universal translator demo. These babies don't come cheap, but those who dropped the requisite $159 will be happy to know orders have started going out.

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