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phone

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Weekend poll: Are you giving someone an Android device for the holidays?

Finding the right gift for someone this time of year can be tricky. But if there's one thing we're apt to recommend here at Android Police, it's an Android device.

Ripping open that wrapping paper to find a phone or tablet is an excellent way to cap off your holiday. It's better to give than to receive, though, and with all the recent sales, it doesn't have to be a very costly proposition. So are you planning on giving anyone an Android device this holiday season?

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Google Phone v15 adds assisted dialing for international travelers, white nav bar, and possibly pre-call support for dual-SIM phones [APK Teardown]

An update to Google's Phone app began rolling out to users earlier today. Besides enabling the seamless video calling feature with Duo, which also works on v14, this update comes with a few additions of its own. The previously discussed Assisted Dialing feature for international travelers has been enabled and is ready to make life a little easier, and users on Android 8.1 will now see the white navigation bar that's been creeping into a few of Google's apps. If you're using a dual-SIM phone, you might also be getting the option to pick your SIM immediately before a call, though this might not be live yet.

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Google finally enables button to instantly start Duo video calls from ongoing phone calls

During Google's reveal of the Pixel 2 on October 4th, we spotted a new video call button appearing on the Phone's in-call screen. Tapping on it was meant to switch both members to a video call using Google Duo. Google later added details to support articles that implied this functionality was already live, but the button remained hidden through a few updates to Duo and a couple to the Phone app. That changes today as the video call button is now going live in Google's Phone app when you're calling a number registered with Duo.

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Google Phone v14 prepares to offer voicemail transcriptions for other carriers and automatically correct international phone numbers [APK Teardown]

A new version of the Google Phone app began rolling out this weekend with a few bug fixes and some new hints about what may be coming in the future. We've checked for the *infamous 'switch to video call' feature* that was spotted during the October 4th event, but it still doesn't appear to be operational yet. However, a teardown of this update reveals that the Phone app will automatically correct prefixes when you make a call to international numbers and it may begin offering voicemail transcriptions on behalf of carriers.

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T-Mobile's 'REVVL Plus' budget phone will go on sale November 17

Back in August, T-Mobile released its own branded budget phone, the 'REVVL.' For $125, it offered a few features rarely found at its price point, like a fingerprint sensor. The carrier said it sold three times more REVVL phones than it initially planned, so now T-Mobile has released a higher-end model, fittingly named the 'REVVL Plus.'

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Credit card-sized 'NichePhone-S' coming to Japan, runs Android 4.2

Eastern Asia is home to some interesting smartphones, like various Android-powered flip phones from Samsung and LG. Earlier today, the 'NichePhone-S' from FutureModel was announced in Japan. It's a phone the size of a credit card priced around 10,000 yen (or $88 USD), with a heavily customized version of Android.

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Xiaomi Mi A1 (Android One) review: Almost the perfect budget phone

Xiaomi phones always have the same problem. While the company's devices have generally great specifications and design for the price, the software experience is usually not very good. If you've read one of our Xiaomi device reviews, or used one of the company's phones yourself, you probably know what I'm talking about.

All of Xiaomi's phones and tablets ship with MIUI, a heavily modified version of Android that has countless problems. Some of these include Bluetooth connectivity bugs, terrible notification handling, and over-the-top power management that can outright break notifications for many apps. Jordan went in depth about MIUI's issues here, if you're interested in details.

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Duo and ViLTE video call integration with Google Phone, Contacts, and Android Messages is rolling out to Google-supported phones

If 1950's science fiction has taught me anything, it's that video calling is supposed to be the future. Today Google announced in a blog post that we're one step closer to that vision of reality. Integrated video calling (via Duo or ViLTE) is rolling out to first-generation Pixel, Android One, and Nexus devices, via the Phone, Contacts, and Android Messages apps. No schedule yet for ray-gun or jetpack integration. 

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[Update: Frank team responds] Indiegogo suspends campaign for "frank." phone after Terms of Use violation

Earlier this month, two entrepreneurs from Ottawa, Canada launched a crowdfunding campaign for the "frank." phone. The main premise was that smartphones are too expensive, and there needs to be a phone priced competitively that does everything you need it to. The project had a very edgy tone, using phrases like, "It’s just another fucking phone but it’ll only cost you $180," and, "It’s about time to disrupt the shit out of the North American smartphone industry."

Unfortunately for the Frank team (and anyone who wanted the phone), Indiegogo has now suspended the project's crowdfunding campaign and automatically refunded all contributions.

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Google Phone v12 reveals further Duo integration is coming [APK Teardown]

Over the last few months, Google has been taking small steps to integrate Allo and Duo into different pieces of the phone. Most recently, Allo shortcuts were added to the Contacts app, but today's teardown is more closely related to Duo recording its video chats to the system call log. It looks like Google's next step may involve having its Phone app be a little more forward about Duo.

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