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What We Use 2014: The Stuff Michael Can't Live Without

Howdy. The name's Michael Crider, and I hope you've noticed that I've been hanging around here for the last year or so. I'm a web writer and general geek, born in Texas and now living in Colorado Springs. How I came to work for Android Police over the last 12 months (or possibly a bit longer) is a long and boring story.

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Here are the bullet points you need to get context on the following exploration of my stuff: my dad was a computer engineer who worked for General Dynamics and Lockheed back in the 80s, and so I've been surrounded by varying bits of technology for essentially my entire life.

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[APK Teardown] YouTube v6.0.11 Adds The Framework To Allow Licensed Music In Your Videos

The YouTube update on Friday brought a generally well-received redesign, incorporating the Material theme and a whole lot of red. The app didn't just receive a visual refresh, it also gained much needed functionality in the form of search filters. These changes are certainly enough to justify a major version bump, but those weren't the only noteworthy things to turn up in this version. Here's a hint: we can look forward to much more music on our YouTube videos in the future.

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35 Best New Android Games From The Last 2 Weeks (11/26/14 - 12/7/14)

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Welcome to the roundup of the best new Android games from the previous 2 weeks or so.

Please wait for this page to load in full in order to see the widgets, which include ratings and pricing info.

Looking for the previous roundup editions? Find them here.

Featured App

Swish

This week's roundup is brought to you by Swish from developer Devionix. This free physics game stars a pair of space aliens with an inexplicable love of basketball.

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[APK Teardown] Play Store v5.1.11 Adds Support For Discounts Through 'Reward Vouchers'

If the rollout of an updated Play Store yesterday with some tweaked interface elements and an order history page was exciting, just wait until you see what else was hidden inside the latest version. I don't think there's any point in teasing, this might be the one we've all been waiting for. The Play Store is finally going to enable a method to offer discounted purchases. There are still a lot of unknowns, but it's real, and it's probably coming very soon.

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[APK Teardown] Google+ v4.8 Tests Out Bandwidth Optimizations, Prepares For A Personalized 2014 Google+ Photo 'Yearbook'

A brand new version of Google+ began rolling out to Android users yesterday, but it didn't initially appear to do much more than tweak a few layouts and change the colors to something more theme-appropriate. During the initial teardown, we also stumbled onto the newly expanded Pinning feature, but Google beat us to the punch. Of course, since the feature is on a staged rollout to users, plenty of people won't see that quite yet.

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Upcoming Nexus 6 OTA (Probably 5.0.1) Will Include Trusted Face Lighting Fix

The trusted face component of Lollipop's Smart Lock system is really neat, but it's a little buggy on the Nexus 6. Shortly after launch, users noticed that the front-facing camera wasn't very good at recognizing them. According to the Google Groups thread, Google has fixed the problem in the Android code and an update is on the way.

2014-11-22 02.50.21 Screenshot_2014-11-20-15-17-21

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15 Best New Android Apps And Live Wallpapers From The Last 2 Weeks (11/20/14 - 12/1/14)

Welcome to the roundup of the best new Android applications, games, and live wallpapers that went live in the Play Store or were spotted by us in the previous 2 weeks or so.

Please wait for this page to load in full in order to see the widgets, which include ratings and pricing info.

Looking for the previous roundup editions? Find them here.

Featured App

Expense IQ - Expense Manager

This week's roundup is brought to you by Expense IQ - Expense Manager from Handy Apps.

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35 Best (And 1 WTF) New Android Games From The Last 2 Weeks (11/11/14 - 11/25/14)

Welcome to the roundup of the best new Android applications, games, and live wallpapers that went live in the Play Store or were spotted by us in the previous 2 weeks or so.

Please wait for this page to load in full in order to see the widgets, which include ratings and pricing info.

Looking for the previous roundup editions? Find them here.

Games

Kingdom Rush Origins

Android Police coverage: Clear Your Schedule—Kingdom Rush Origins Is Now Available

Arguably the best-known tower defense game on mobile has another installment.

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[Lollipop Bug] Manual Account Sync Button In Settings Is Broken, Gets Stuck On "Cancel Sync" For No Apparent Reason

While manually syncing your phone's linked accounts isn't something most of us are in the practice of doing these days, there are situations where it can be prudent to disable syncing certain items, such as those you don't find yourself using very often. Previously, when you did want to sync these un-synced items on your phone, you went into the accounts UI in settings and tapped "sync now" to force all the items on an account to sync immediately.

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[Lollipop Bug] Users Reporting Apps Frequently Restart And Performance Suffers The Longer You Go Without A Restart

Being on the bleeding edge is great and all, but there are drawbacks. For example, many users of Android 5.0 devices are reporting that apps seem to be restarting an awful lot in the background. There are also performance issues that seem to crop up more the longer a device runs without being restarted.

2014-11-25 16.00.15

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