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Google's predictive search suggestions could be getting a makeover, with new thumbnail images and descriptions

When you search with Google on your device, either with the home screen search box/pill, in the Google feed pane, or directly in the Google app, you'll often see predictive search suggestions as you type your query. These come not only from the web, but from your contacts, songs in your Play Music account, and so on. The web suggestions are usually indicated simply by a magnifying glass icon, but this could be about to change.

According to a tip we received on Google+, it appears that Google is trialing additional information for search predictions. As you can see from the screenshots below, thumbnail images and descriptions of each item are showing for our tipster.

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Google Image Search on mobile is getting an updated UI

Google doesn't tend to rest on its laurels when it comes to the design of its search interface, be it in the Google app or in browser, and it's always testing new ways to make search results easier for users to navigate and in turn generate those all-important clickthroughs. A couple of months ago badges were added to make it easier to find recipes and products, and now further changes have been made that make the image search UI a little clearer.

It's when you tap on a result that things change. The new design includes an "X" in the top left corner to go back to the image search results, the same as would happen if you hit the back button.

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Redesigned Google app UI could arrive with new Pixels, including bottom navigation bar and dedicated Lens button

The Google app and its feed, formerly Google Now, have been through a plethora of changes recently, and they could be about to see another redesign alongside the launch of the new Pixel phones. The whole interface looks like it's going to be tweaked, with more rounded corners on cards and new menu navigation.

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[Update: Also live outside the US for some] Google Search Lite app appears to be available in the US for some

In August we heard that Google was following the recent trend and testing a lite version of its Search app aimed at users with slow data connections. Search (Test App) has only been available in Indonesian and Indian markets while being tested, but it was updated to a newer version a couple of days ago, and now it appears to be available in the US for some.

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VLC stable sees first major update in a year (v2.5) including an improved UI, search changes, support for Android Auto and PiP

Popular media player VLC just updated the stable branch of its Android app to 2.5, and it's one of the biggest updates in recent memory. This latest update has a dynamic new UI that better fits with Material Design guidelines, PiP mode, Android Auto support, 360-degree video support, and search improvements (including Google search integration), among a ton of other smaller features. As the first major release in over a year, we've been looking forward to it for quite a while. 

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Google app now has home screen shortcuts for entertainment, sports, and more

Google has been fiddling with the layout and options in the Feed for a couple months, and some users are seeing an interesting new option appear. In certain Feed categories, Google offers to create home screen shortcuts so you can get back to that section without even visiting the Feed.

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[Revolutionary] Google Assistant now lets you search through first and third-party services

There are times when Google completely baffles us by adding a feature that we didn't even remotely think could be possible, or needed, or useful. Like now for example, there's a new Search bar when you visit the list of Assistant actions. How groundbreaking!

Whether you check the list by tapping the blue icon on the top right after launching Assistant, or by browsing in the Google Home app, you can see a new search bar on top. That lets you search through all the possible Assistant integrations, from first-party ones like Hue and SmartThings and Honeywell, to third-party services like Alarm.com, Logitech, Roomba, and more trivial things such as Number Genie, Knock Knock Who, and others. A search icon also shows up on the top right when you're browsing different Assistant categories, so it's always easy to look for something specific.

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Your local library's eBooks now appear in Google search

Big readers on a small budget have always had a hard time. Library waiting lists can get pretty long, and sometimes titles aren't even available locally. But today Google added a new feature to its search that helps library patrons everywhere. Now the next time you search for a book title, you can see if the e-book is available to borrow from your library. 

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Google is making it easier to find a good deal for your next vacation

In its quest to make our lives easier, Google has recently taken on the travel industry by giving us search tools for flights and hotels, as well as an app to help us plan and organize trips we've already booked. Google Search already shows when a slight adjustment to travel dates can save us money, but now it's adding more robust tools for people whose travel dates are more flexible.

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Google's rolling out new products, services, and programs for Indonesia, including YouTube Go, Google Assistant, and Primer lessons

Today Google had a huge announcement for Indonesia, in which it detailed six new products for the nation that are arriving now or coming soon, as well as milestones and new initiatives for residents of the country. Among the more exciting announcements are support for the Google Assistant in Bahasa Indonesia, the rollout of Google Stations for expanded WiFi internet access, YouTube Go for the country, Waze support for the capital's odd-even license plate policy, and expansion and milestones for Google's programs in the area.  

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