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Google Is Rolling Out Compressed Numerical Star Ratings To The Play Store On Android

Google started testing a new way to display star ratings in the Play Store client a few weeks ago, and now it looks like the change is rolling out to everyone. Open your Play Store app, and you might notice app rating stars are displayed numerically throughout the store.

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Google Explains Requirements For 'Professional Audio' Devices In Android 6.0

Android has long had trouble with audio latency, which has made most music creation tools unworkable on the platform. Things were vastly improved in Android 5.0 to the point that many devices achieved the low latency needed for various audio apps to function. However, not all devices are created equal. In Marshmallow, Google has added a professional audio package manager and there are requirements laid out for devices that take advantage of it.

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The Nexus 5X Ships In Multiple Countries Today, And Google Is Offering Instant Project Fi Invites To Celebrate

There's good news if you pre-ordered a Nexus 5X in the last few weeks. Google is starting shipments of this device today in the US, Canada, UK, Ireland, India, Japan, and Korea. To celebrate this momentous occasion, Google has opened up Project Fi invites to everyone. Just head to the Fi signup page and you can join without waiting, but only if you act today.

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Google Buys Panorama-Making Company Digisfera—Discontinues PanoTag And Plans To Open Source Marzipano

I don't know about you, but sometimes Google Street View still blows my mind. Living in 2015, we have the ability to take out our phones and experience what it's like to walk the streets of a distant city. From my browser I've had views of Europe, South America, and Southeast Asia that I will likely never have in person.

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Google Launches Official Play Store Beta Test For The Google App

Google is always making little tweaks to its apps, and now you can get an early look at some of those tweaks by beta testing the Google app. That's the one that powers the Now Launcher, Google Now cards, Now On Tap, and more. Just a few clicks and you're in the exclusive beta testing club. There's not much to see yet, but who knows what the future holds?

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Nexus 5X Review Preview: Plastic Fantastic

The 2013 Nexus 5 was a much beloved device—it was great at a few things, good at others, and cheap enough that its shortcomings didn't seem so glaring. It struck such a good balance that many owners passed on the (humongous and expensive) Nexus 6 last year. Now, there's the Nexus 5X, a spiritual successor to the 2013 Nexus. I haven't had the 5X for long enough to give it a proper full review, but I've got some impressions to share in advance of the review.

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[Copy All The Things!] You Can Now Copy Changelogs And App Descriptions Using Android Play Store App

Earlier today, Kirill Grouchnikov, the face behind the Play Store Android app, detailed a set of relatively substantial design tweaks and RTL language support destined for an upcoming update. Unfortunately, the APK uploaded to APK Mirror shortly after did not seem to have the majority of these changes live just yet, but Kirill, who also announced his departure from the Google Play team, managed to sneak in one last parting gift.

And it's the best gift he could have possibly given us. Or at least me, considering I copy changelogs all day long for APKMirror.com. I think I now owe him 100 beautiful white roses.

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Device Art Generator Updated With Nexus 5X And 6P Shells

The Android Asset Studio is an indispensable tool that offers quick icon and nine-patch generation, along with a device art generator that graduated to Google's official Android Developers site. And since there are new Nexus devices (hopefully shipping soon), it's time for new shells to frame your screenshots. Today, the Nexus 5X and 6P joined the lineup.

Of course older devices are still available under a separate dropdown - the Nexus 4, 5, 6, 7 (2012), and 10 are all represented though interestingly the Nexus 7 (2013) has fallen out of the selection.

Screen Shot 2015-10-13 at 8.20.02 PM

Google still advises developers not to use device frames in their Play Store collateral, since materials with device frames may end up looking dated and may distract from things like screenshots, but then again Google itself doesn't always follow this advice, right?

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Google OnHub Rooted, Turns Out To Be A Chromebook In Router's Clothing

Google hasn't said much about how its new OnHub router works—it's a mysterious black box (blue cylinder, technically) with inactive radios and updatable firmware. The modders from Exploitee.rs have gotten their hands on an OnHub, and it didn't take long for them to root it. Interestingly, they rooted it like a Chromebook because that's sort of what the OnHub is—a Chromebook with no screen acting like a router.

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Google Play Movies & TV App Joins The 1 Billion Installs Club

There are only a few apps on the Play Store with more than a billion downloads, and you've probably heard of all of them. Most are Google apps like Gmail and Maps, but Facebook has a few on the list as well. Now, Play Movies & TV has hit this milestone just a few weeks after Newsstand did so.

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