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Head into the weekend with 29 temporarily free and 29 on-sale apps

We've reached the end of another week — I hope that your Friday has been great so far. This obviously means that it's time for the final apps sales post for the first full week of September. Before you go, be sure to go back to Wednesday's list. Without further ado, let's dive in.

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Google is preparing to deploy a mandatory Assistant update that forces you to relink smart home devices

Google Assistant is always getting smarter and learning new tricks, but it doesn't usually need big user-facing updates to make it happen. You will, however, need to get your hands a little dirty for a new Assistant update if you're using any smart home devices. Google is sending out an email to Assistant users to let them know smart home gadgets will need to be relinked after the latest update.

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New features for both Google Assistant and Lens shown off at the GDD Europe Day 2 keynote

GDD Europe (Google Developer Days) might have flown under your radar, which is understandable. GDD isn't Google I/O, and it often doesn't get as much attention. But, at the recent event in Kraków, Poland, Google showed off some cool new features for the Google Assistant and Google Lens, and they're worth checking out. 

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Google reportedly close to acquiring HTC's smartphone business

HTC produced the very first Android phone in 2008, and it went on to become one of the most prominent makers of Android devices as the platform grew. However, it's been years since the Taiwanese company had a hit. As financial losses continue to mount, there are new rumors that Google is nearing a deal to acquire HTC's smartphone division.

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Drive File Stream is rolling out to all G Suite users

A lot of us have Google Drive repositories that are quite large, and that's especially true for enterprise customers. Cloud storage isn't as appealing when you need to sync all those files to your computer to get anything done, and that's why Google announced File Stream earlier this year. It was only for early adopters at the time, but now it's about to roll out to all G Suite users.

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[Update: Maestro cards and more banks] Belgium is the tenth country to get the Android Pay treatment

Belgium is next up in Google's ongoing, slow-moving initiative to bring Android Pay to more countries. Starting today, Belgians can use the contactless payments service at over 85,000 locations including places like McDonald's, H&M, and Carrefour.

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Here are 29 temporarily free and 27 on-sale apps for your Wednesday

Welcome back, everyone. I hope that you all enjoyed your three day weekend — if it was anything like mine, it was probably too short. Seeing as it's Wednesday, I figured I'd get another app sales post up for you all. Yes, I know it's a bit late, but I think you'll manage. As always, the times noted below are accurate at time of writing.

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Business owners can now manage their listings via a dashboard right in Google Search

When I'm looking for information on a local store (and I'm sure many of you guys do the same), I head straight to Google Search. It usually has the correct address, phone number, operating hours, accurate reviews, etc. But Google isn't perfect, and sometimes there'll be some incorrect info listed. To alleviate this, our favorite Mountain View-based company has just introduced a dashboard for business owners right in Google Search.

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Google's cool collaborative whiteboard, Jamboard, comes to the UK for £3,999

Google's Jamboard looks like an awesome collaborative cloud-based whiteboard for enterprises. I haven't used one, like almost everyone here, but if I worked in a physical company (the virtual AP offices don't count), I'd probably be begging my boss to get us one. Jamboard was launched in May in the US and now it's rolling over the Atlantic to the UK.

If your company uses G Suite (Basic, Business, Enterprise, or Education, though the latter will have to satisfy some requirements), you can now purchase the Jamboard for £3,999 in the UK (about $5,213).

The price includes two styluses, one eraser, and one wall mount.

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Google app v7.11 beta suggests the next Android version is 8.1, adds battery levels for Bisto headphones, prepares to tweak user-defined actions, and more [APK Teardown]

The latest update to the Google app is rolling out to beta channel members right now. There aren't any immediately obvious changes on the surface, but as the tradition often goes, there are some things under the hood worthy of discussion in a teardown. This version brings a pretty good indicator that 8.1 will be the next version of Android. There are also signs that user-defined actions are going to get some changes in the future. We're also going to hit an option to turn off the built-in screenshot handler and a little bit more about Google's upcoming "Bisto" headphones.

Teardown

Disclaimer: Teardowns are based on evidence found inside of apks (Android's application package) and are necessarily speculative and usually based on incomplete information.
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