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Android Wear 4.4W.2 Build KNX01Q Starts Rolling Out For The LG G Watch, Brings Offline Music And GPS Support (Though You Can't Use The Latter)

Back in September, we heard Google's official plans to update Android Wear and add more functionality to the platform and its watches. The first update promised to bring GPS and offline music playback capabilities, so that Wear watches could be used without a phone to track activities and listen to tunes via Bluetooth. The second update is supposed to add native support for watch faces. And it looks like LG's G Watch is the first Android Wear device to start benefiting from these additions.

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Chainfire Explains His Root Method For The Latest Lollipop Developer Preview, Modified Kernels May Become A Requirement

The final round of Developer Preview images released on Friday left a number of users without root access on their devices, but a lightning fast quick-fix by Chainfire had them back in business the following day. Yesterday, he took to Google+ with a follow-up of how it works and the issues that are making it more difficult to acquire root on the latest version of Android.

Due to increasingly effective security measures and stricter enforcement of SELinux, it seems that many, or possibly all of the available methods for initializing the SuperSU daemon at startup have been rendered ineffective.

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[Animation Bonanza] Android 5.0 Lollipop In GIFs

Android 5.0 has a lot of really useful features, which we've been covering in detail as part of the Lollipop Feature Spotlight series. You know what else it has, though? Animations. Many, many lovely animations. If you follow Artem on Google+, you've probably seen him post some GIFs of Lollipop looking hot, but we've pulled together all those GIFs along with some new ones to give you a quick tour of Google's latest and greatest.

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Nexus 6 Will Come With 'Ambient Display,' Its Own Personalized Take On Moto Display

You can simply look at a Nexus 6 and this year's Moto X to see the strong similarity between the two devices. While it may be somewhat of a disappointment to see the Nexus venture away from the design found in last year's phone and Google's two most recent tablets, there are some good things to come from this turn of events. One such nicety is the inclusion of something akin to Moto Display, formerly known as Active Display, and referred to here as Ambient Display.

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[Lollipop Feature Spotlight] Google Keyboard Comes With Various New, Redesigned Emoji

In Android 5.0, the default keyboard looks substantially different from how it has looked largely since the days of Ice Cream Sandwich. The new out-of-the-box method of typing comes with a flatter theme that supplies a stark new feel. At the end of the day, though, it's still used primary to punch in letters onto the screen, and there's nothing particularly exciting to share there. One change we would like to highlight though is the addition of new emoji.

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[Lollipop Feature Spotlight] Smart Lock Brings 'Trusted Face' Mode That Makes Face Unlock So Amazing You Might Actually Use It

Face unlock was added in Android 4.0, but it was little more than a clever tech demo. It was a pain to use for many reasons, not least of all it actually took longer to unlock the device than a regular lock screen. Along with trusted devices, Android 5.0's smart lock functionality includes trusted face mode. It fixes face unlock, and fixes it good. It's seriously amazing.

2014-10-20 06.54.07 2014-10-20 07.42.18 2014-10-20 07.43.48-1

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[Lollipop Feature Spotlight] Smart Lock Includes Trusted Bluetooth And NFC Devices That Let You Skip The Lock Screen

Google showed off the trusted device unlock support back at Google I/O, but the feature didn't make it into the last dev preview. Well, it's there now and it works as advertised. Just pair your favorite wearable or Bluetooth gizmo, and the secure lock screen goes away. Lose connection, and it's back.

2014-10-20 07.22.28 2014-10-20 07.22.38

Screenshot_2014-10-20-03-13-45 Screenshot_2014-10-20-03-14-06 Screenshot_2014-10-20-03-15-03

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[Lollipop Feature Spotlight] Chrome's Tabs Are Now Treated As Separate Recent Tasks In The App Switcher, But It's Optional

We've known Google was looking to bring Chrome into the app switcher since we learned some details of "Project Hera" earlier this year (and confirmed at I/O). The framework for making that happen appeared in Chrome beta in September, but now it finally works in the new developer preview.

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When you open Chrome Beta on Android 5.0, you will get the above splash screen telling you where to find all your tabs.

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[Lollipop Feature Spotlight] The Quick Settings Menu Includes Battery Percentage And A Flashlight Toggle

A couple of the more popular aftermarket additions to Android have been added in Lollipop's pull-down Quick Settings menu. If you regularly flash a custom ROM or add in a widget from the Play Store for easy access to a battery percentage readout or a flashlight (camera LED) toggle, well, you won't need to in Android 5.0. Both of those functions are available in Quick Settings, as seen on the latest Lollipop Developer Preview on the Nexus 5.

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[Lollipop Feature Spotlight] WebView Is Now Unbundled From Android And Free To Auto-Update From Google Play

Not all of the changes to Android 5.0 Lollipop are meant to be seen by regular users, but that doesn't make them any less important. One of the core components of the operating system is about to break free from the shackles of firmware updates and join the Play Store and Google Play services in receiving automatic updates directly from Google.

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