11
Dec
sett

App Ops showed up in Android 4.3 and made it possible to revoke permissions on a per-app basis. It wasn't exposed in the main system settings, but it was easy to access. Then Android 4.4 made it quite a bit harder to get to, and now it appears to be completely missing in 4.4.2. What gives? Well, Android engineer Dianne Hackborn has indicated App Ops was never meant to be a user-facing feature in the first place.

10
Dec
11

Google is already selling zip-up sleeves and some stylish cases for the Nexus 7, but now you can add the new folio case to the list. This is essentially a bumper case with a front flap that can fold back and be used as a stand. It actually looks pretty neat.

2013-12-10 13_58_18-Nexus 7 Folio (Bright Red) - Devices on Google Play

The folio case comes in black and bright red, just like the Nexus 5 bumper. Unlike the N5 bumper, this is more of a bumper design with the back of the N7 exposed.

10
Dec
af (2)

Just when you thought Google couldn't drop any more Android news today, the Sony Xperia Z Ultra has appeared in the Play Store as a Google Play Edition device. This phone runs Android 4.4 KitKat on a big 6.4-inch screen and will cost you $649.

2013-12-10 13_19_33-Sony Z Ultra Google Play Edition - Devices on Google Play

10
Dec
nexusae0_Chromecast-Thumb_thumb

The Chromecast launched last summer with a lot of promise, but very limited app support. We've been limping along these last few months with only the occasional addition like Pandora and HBO Go to keep us going. Well, now the floodgates are beginning to open. Google just announced 10 new apps are launching with Chromecast support, and some of them are super-exciting.

2013-12-10 10_21_42-Chromecast

07
Dec
Nexus_10

Have a Nexus 10? Want the latest version of Android but haven't gotten the update notification no matter how many times you press the "check now" button? Good news - your update is ready to download directly from Google. If you've been around the block before, you know there's an easy way to download and manually install OTA updates for Nexus devices. We'll walk you through it below.

06
Dec
cc

To wrap up the year, TIME's been working on a "Top Ten of Everything 2013" series, listing off the top ten items in various categories from Pop Culture and Social Media to, of course, tech gadgets. In that category, TIME listed things like the LEAP Motion controller, Oculus Rift Developer's Kit, and new iPads, but they awarded the top spot to Google's plucky Chromecast dongle.

The piece, published Tuesday and shared by Larry Page on Google+ this evening, lauds the Chromecast's focus - it essentially only does one thing but does it so well, makes it so easy, and costs so little, that picking one up is really hard to resist.

05
Dec
Google_Play_Music_icon

Google's streaming music subscription service continues to creep across the globe, arriving in new countries suddenly and without warning. It's kind of like the Black Death, except fewer people die (so far). Today Google Play All Access has hit Germany with millions of songs for just a few bucks per month.

Google Play Music All Inclusive

German users were greeted by the All Access popup in Play Music yesterday and immediately began shouting from every social media rooftop.

05
Dec
VoiceSearch-Thumb

Just by tapping the microphone icon in the search bar, English speakers can ask Google any number of questions and have their phone respond in their native language. Thus far, others haven't been so lucky. But now Google is expanding that functionality to more languages. Starting today, French, German, and Japanese speakers shall also be able to ask their Android devices questions and hear answers spoken in the same tongue.

Voice

The changes should take place server-side, so you don't have to wait for a update (as long as you already have the latest version, that is).

04
Dec
nexusae0_unnamed-6_thumb4

So you're trying to choose between a new Altima and a Civic for your next car. Naturally you Google them both to check out their specifications and features. But it turns out that you can get most of the important numbers without clicking on a single link. Today Google pulled the wraps off of a new addition to Search's Knowledge Graph both on the web and on mobile: car stats.

04
Dec
robots

When Android founder Andy Rubin announced that he was leaving the Android team back in May of this year, it was a shock to say the least. At the time Mr. Rubin confirmed that he was staying with Google itself, but declined to say what his new role would be. Six months later, a report from the New York Times seems to have the first information on what he's been doing.

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