Well, it was nice while it lasted. A few months ago prolific Android developer Chainfire introduced a method of rooting Android devices without modifying the /System partition. It had the added and extremely welcome benefit of getting around SafetyNet detection for applications that were intentionally disabled on rooted phones, like Android Pay. But it looks like Google has caught on: starting this weekend (as reported on the /r/Android subreddit ), Android Pay and other SafetyNet apps no longer work with the roundabout root method. Bummer.
Google's system uses a server-side update, so at the moment there's no way to get around the check even with older versions of Android Pay, Google Play Services, et cetera. Read More
If you're an American and you've heard the tongue-twisting country music ballad "I've Been Everywhere," odds are that you've heard the most popular version from Johnny Cash, or perhaps the earlier version by the unequaled Hank Snow. There have been dozens of adaptations of the song, for everywhere from Texas to Singapore. But the original was written by Geoff Mack way back in 1959 and popularized by Lucky Starr, and the first set of lyrics was exclusively tailored to cities, towns, and regions in Australia. The song featured such multi-syllabic municipalities as Megalong, Tamborine, Woodenbong, and Grong Grong. Read More
Google is rolling out a new build of Chrome today, and it's the stable version. Since it's been through both dev and beta channels already, we've got a pretty good idea what's new this time. Among the most important on the user-facing side, there's better support for colored status bars and enhanced websites notifications. Read More
Google is constantly evaluating its products so it can break your heart by killing the services you love. How dare they? The most recent product to fall victim to a tyrannical "management decision" is My Tracks. Google will shut down the service on April 30th, and the latest app update makes sure you know it. Read More
Well this is frustrating. The bug that caused the "Until Next Alarm" function of Android's Do Not Disturb mode to disappear, which manifested itself in late December on a number of Android phones running Lollipop 5.1 and later, is back. The timing of the month seems more than coincidental. Since the problem manifested late in December, presumably Google didn't have time to implement a fix in the latest round of scheduled Android updates.
It looks like this will keep occurring at the tail end of the month until Google fixes it - hopefully in the latest round of Nexus updates. Read More
Hangouts updates are usually an opportunity to be let down, but not this time. Get ready to feel a mix of excitement, annoyance, and concern; a feeling that, as far as I'm aware, does not have a name. So let's just say we're all about to feel a little "Hangouts." The v7.0 update is starting to hit devices, and it finally adds quick reply. However, it also nags you to install Google Messenger. Perhaps the rumor about SMS being removed is going to come true soon? Read More
When Google thinks it knows something you might be interested in, like a middle schooler at lunch time, it has to get this information off its chest. Usually this comes in the form of a Google Now notification.
These are marked by blue icons containing a symbol that indicate what type of information you're about to read, such as a cloud for weather or a soccer ball for sports. Now these images have badges with Google's logo. Read More
Gmail is still Google's flagship email product, but Inbox is growing and evolving in interesting ways. Today, Google is announcing two improvements to search functionality in Inbox. Searches can now bring up quick answer cards, and your search results will be grouped by relevance. Read More
The Nexus 5X has come down in price a fair amount since it was released just a few months ago. The 16GB started at $379, but has since dropped to a regular price of $349. You can pick one up even cheaper today on eBay for $312 with free shipping. Read More
Some users have already seen the revamped Google weather card in search, but now everyone can expect to get the new look very soon. Google has updated the Inside Search blog to announce the new UI and give a rundown of its features. It's a bit cartoony (okay, a lot), but there's much more detail than you get with the old card. Read More