Android Police

Apps/Games

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16 new and notable (and 2 WTF) Android apps from the last week (9/19/17 - 9/25/17)

Welcome to the roundup of the best new Android applications that went live in the Play Store or were spotted by us in the previous week or so.

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Genesis, the luxury arm of Hyundai, now does personal test drives via an app

Hyundai has been pushing the tech envelope when it comes to its new luxury brand Genesis. The company recently rolled out support for Google Assistant, but now you can even arrange for a test drive from the convenience of the Genesis Valet app. There's no need to visit a dealership in person, and you can even arrange it for a time and place that's convenient to you, like your own home. It's a whole new level of luxury. 

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Google Maps v9.62 relocates layer modes to FAB and adds dedicated tab for videos, prepares enhanced commuting features and more [APK Teardown]

Google Maps is one of the most feature-packed apps in existence, and fitting everything into easily reachable places is a challenge that requires regular changes. The latest update to v9.62 makes a big move by pulling the layer modes out of the navigation drawer to place them in a new persistent FAB (floating action button) right on top of the map. Amonth many other things, this update also adds a dedicated tab for videos uploaded by the community. On the teardown side, there are signs of some more significant improvements coming for commuters, and much more.

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Motorola releases camera tuning app for the upcoming Moto X4

It's common for device makers to tweak the performance of a phone's camera after release, but it usually requires a full software update. However, last year Motorola used an app in the Play Store to make changes to the Moto G4's camera. It looks like the company is taking a similar approach to managing the camera on its upcoming Moto X4. A tuning app for that phone is live right now ahead of the phone's official launch.

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[Neat] "OK Google send voice message" records and sends WhatsApp audio clips

You know what has puzzled me for months? You can say, "OK Google, send a message," and it will listen and transcribe everything you say, but in apps that already have a voice/audio messaging feature, why go through all the trouble? Or at least why not offer the option to just send the audio clip of what you said, as it is, without trying to transcribe it? That would work wonderfully in WhatsApp (and Telegram, Viber, Allo, and other apps) in situations where you either think the speech-to-text won't pick up on some of your words or where you want to say something in a language that isn't supported.

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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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Android 8.0 Oreo settings app crashes for some when viewing Wi-Fi or mobile data usage

Picture the scene: you're near your monthly data allowance and you want to check your usage to see what you should turn off to avoid some astronomical overuse charges. We've all been there. But imagine when you get there your settings app decides to give up the ghost, over and over again. That's been the situation for Artem the last couple of days, as you can see from the tweet below.

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Android Messages has broken new SMS notifications for many people since its latest update

Google fixeth and Google breaketh away. That's the mantra of any app or software update from our beloved company (we're really masochists, aren't we?). The latest update to version 2.5.207 of Android Messages seems to have broken one essential feature for a messenger app: notifications.

It looks like notifications will stop working at some point in the app, thus no longer informing you of incoming SMS: no sound, no pop-up, no vibration. The only way to know you have new messages is either if you have Pushbullet mirroring SMS to a desktop computer or by looking at the unread counter in Nova Launcher for example.

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Pocket Casts announces Web Player 2.0 Beta, adds many features from the Android app

I listen to podcasts on an almost daily basis (including the excellent Android Police podcast, of course), and for as long as I can remember, my app of choice has been Shifty Jelly's Pocket Casts. It's easy to use, has all the features you'd expect, and the design is great. The developer is always looking to improve the experience, and for me it, became a whole lot more useful once a web player was added. The beta of the new 2.0 version of it has just been announced, and it looks like a big update.

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Amazon Prime teams up with the NFL to launch live Thursday Night Football

For NFL fans with Amazon Prime memberships, a new perk is sure to liven up your Thursday nights. Starting September 28th, with Chicago Bears v Green Bay Packers, live Thursday Night Football games will be streamed on the Amazon Prime site and the Prime Video app.

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