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Microsoft is launching a 'Skype Insiders Program' with a standalone beta version of the app

Skype, for all its flaws, is one of the most popular VoIP and video chat services in the world. You can help make it a little better by joining Microsoft's new Skype Insiders Program. It's basically a beta program, but they don't call it that. There's also a separate standalone app that you can install alongside the regular one.

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Snapchat 9.43 adds augmented-reality World Lenses, sending snaps to other users, and more [APK Download]

Are you one of the hip kids that use Snapchat? Then you're in luck, because today Snapchat has brought a few changes to their application on Android and iOS. The most notable new feature is 'World Lenses,' which applies various augmented-reality effects to your back camera's view of the world. This is similar in functionality to the existing lenses, but is not limited to images of faces.

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[Deal Alert] Kingdom Rush Origins and Stellarium Mobile Sky Map are now $0.10 in some countries (not U.S.)

So let's just get this out of the way. Neither of the deals here are valid in the U.S., nor are they likely to be available in most other countries. Although, it never hurts to check to see if you are in one of the lucky few. We have all seen these 10-cent deals before, so we should all know the drill by now.

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Android Auto v2.0 is rolling out with on-phone mode [APK Download]

Google announced it would be making Android Auto available directly on your phone's screen a while back, but it didn't offer any time frame. It was starting to look like it was never happening, but lo and behold, Android Auto on phones is now rolling out. It's part of the Android Auto v2.0 app, and we've got the APK ready for you.

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Twitter's stable release implements app shortcuts, multi-window, and rounded icons on Android Nougat

A couple of weeks ago, Twitter updated its alpha release version to add several of Android Nougat's features. Now these options have made it onto the stable release version of the app, so you no longer need to live on the bleeding edge to benefit from them.

Version 6.22 of Twitter is the one that brings it all. There are Android 7.1's launcher shortcuts, which you can access if you're using the Pixel, Nova, or Action Launcher, as well as a rounded icon that will likely only be visible if you have a Pixel or if you're running a launcher that supports them.

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Google VR Services gets an update in preparation for Daydream VR

Daydream VR was revealed alongside the Pixel phones and Google Home last month, but while those other things began to ship, news surrounding Google's latest virtual reality headset remained sparse. However, the Mountain View-based company has just pushed an update to Google VR Services, the framework needed for Daydream VR to work with the Pixel and Pixel XL.

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Latest Google Play services update restores the 'Check for updates' button on Nexus and Pixel devices

With a security update looming on the horizon, we thought now would be a good time to point out that there's a small incentive to update to the latest version of Google Play services ahead of its normal rollout schedule – assuming you didn't already do it for those handy little Cast notifications with player controls. If you happen to miss repeatedly slamming on the update button after it was removed from Nexus devices with the Android 7.1 update, you'll appreciate knowing that Play services v10 restores the button to its former state of existence.

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Weekend poll: Do you use Google Photos cloud backup?

Google Photos' unlimited cloud backup is one of the best things Google's done with an app product in a while, if you ask me. Unlimited storage of intelligently compressed (or original quality for some phones) photos and videos means you can keep every moment your smartphone (or other camera) captures without ever [realistically] worrying about storage space. It's great. But other photo backup services do exist, and some people just don't like to use (or trust) the cloud for backing up their personal data.

So, do you use Google Photos cloud backup feature? If not, why not?

Do you use Google Photos cloud backup?

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The new Play Store UI that Google leaked in one of its own videos is real, and it's going live for some

As many Android enthusiasts may know, Google is constantly experimenting with new features and UI changes for its apps. Just a few days ago, in a recently published Google video featuring the Pixel, we noticed a never-before-seen Play Store UI on the device. This user interface possessed a new color scheme, a larger "Install" button, and more. Now, we're starting to see elements from that video pop up on enthusiasts' devices.

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Play Store has a new Trending section for entertainment, and it's fantastic

It feels like Google changes the Play Store UI every few weeks. A larger button here, adjusting the font size there, and so on. But the new 'Trending' section on the Play Store is absolutely new, and is both incredibly useful and well-designed. The new addition can be found in the entertainment section, just below the new movie releases.

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