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Google adds new Profilers to Android Studio for app performance visualization

Google is adding a new tool for developers in the form of the Android Studio Profilers, which allow for quick visual interpretation of an app's operations. Recently announced at I/O, the feature is already part of Studio 2.4 Preview as well as 3.0, and replaces the Android Monitor. The new tools allow you to visually monitor the network, CPU, and RAM use of an app on a timeline graph, along with pertinent info like interaction events. Android Developers everywhere will have a slightly easier time, now, finding and fixing weird stutters and slowdowns in their apps.

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Google says Android O could make your phone reboot twice as fast - apps could see doubled speeds, too

During today's keynote at Google I/O, Google revealed a couple of interesting figures about the upcoming Android O release. Namely, it should be a lot faster in certain regards. Google says that the Pixel, for example, will reboot up to twice as fast on Android O (it does take a while at the moment). It wasn't immediately clear what optimizations allowed for this boosted performance.

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Android O feature spotlight: Smart Text Selection automatically highlights the right words at a double tap

One of the new features in Android O that was recently announced at I/O is Smart Text Selection. Selecting the right text can be hard on a small screen, but Google's data shows that most of the time when we are selecting information it's something like an address or phone number. Now in Android O you can double tap text, and the selection automatically expands as needed. It even shows a convenient predictive shortcut so we can use it in another context, or save it. Of course, we can use the Assistant to do all those things if we remember, but it's good to have multiple ways of solving the same problem.

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Blobs be gone: With Android O, Google completely redesigns its emoji again

Android O is going to bring a lot of changes to our favorite mobile platform, and one of the most visible for those of us using Nexus and Pixel products will be the emoji: Google is completely redesigning them. Again.

The new emoji are teased over at Emojipedia, who got an exclusive look at the redesigned characters. If you want the tl;dr - they're more circular now.

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Android O feature spotlight: Notification Dots put notifications on your icons

Android has handled notifications in pretty much the same way since its inception. Oh, there have been refinements over the years, but you go to the same place for notifications. That's changing in Android O with Notification Dots. You've probably seen something like this on custom launchers, but this is much more integrated with the OS.

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Google's Android Go is a new Android variant that plugs the entry-level hardware gap

Android Go is a new version of Android that is meant to run on super low-end, incredibly cheap hardware. Think the Android One initiative, but applied to software only, as applied to really cheap devices. We're talking optimized at an OS and app level for sub 1GB, near-disposable phones. This should help Google bring Android to more people in more places.

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[Update: Nope, ASUS messed up] Android Wear 2.0 is now rolling out to the ZenWatch 3

Android Wear 2.0 was officially released in February, but many watches are still waiting on an official update. The ZenWatch 2 and 3 were confirmed to get the new version (the original ZenWatch was left out), but last we heard, it would come sometime in Q2 2017. Now the rollout seems to be in full swing, at least for the ZenWatch 3.

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Unlocked LG G5 in the US (RS988) gets Android 7.0 Nougat OTA

OTA updates are amazingly unpredictable. Sometimes, the US versions of devices get them first and international variants have to wait weeks and months, other times it's just the opposite. The latter is the case of the LG G5. My fiancé's unlocked model got the OTA around last December in Lebanon, but apparently the US unlocked version has been lingering on Marshmallow until now. That's a 6-month delay — whoa.

Well, the OTA is finally (never has this adverb been so rightfully used) rolling out to that variant of the G5, which is lovingly called the RS988. It weighs over 1300MB and when it installs, it pushes your device up to software version RS98821a, Android 7.0, with the April security updates.

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[Update: RUU] AT&T's HTC One M9 is being updated to Android 7.0 Nougat

AT&T customers holding onto HTC's 2015 flagship should be happy to hear that the carrier's page for the phone has been changed with the details of an update to Android 7.0 Nougat, including instructions on how to pull down the OTA (version 4.27.502.7). Although we haven't seen any first-hand reports for the update on any devices yet, the mention of the OTA on the page would seem to imply that it should appear soon.

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Developer Preview 4 of Android Things OS is now available

Google officially released Android Things OS last year as a developer preview. If you're not familiar with it, the OS is a lightweight version of Android that maintains support for popular Android developer tools and APIs, like Android Studio and Google Play Services. The developer preview has received a few updates since then, with the last one adding support for the Google Assistant SDK.

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