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Most Wanted: The Google Pixel is Android Police's staff pick for 2016 Smartphone of the Year

In an internal poll of the Android Police staff, the Google Pixel has won overwhelmingly as our choice for smartphone of the year.

As I pick up my Google Pixel XL, nestled in its artwork Live Case (which, annoyingly, is cracking), I don't find myself missing much. I don't miss the almost artful curves and subtle refinement of the Galaxy Note7, the vast display canvas of LG's V20, or the Moto Z's... whatever. The Pixel XL just seems right, and if you were to ask me to give it up for any other smartphone today, I'd politely decline: this, for now, is as good as it gets.

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Project Fi offering $20 'Share the Fi Love' referral credit until January 11

Google's Project Fi has always been about saving money, as long as you don't consume a lot of data. Now Project Fi customers can "Share the Fi Love" with a new referral credit, accessible via the carrier's website. For each new Fi subscriber that uses the referral code, both the new subscriber and the original subscriber get a $20 Fi credit.

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Moto G4 and G4 Plus owners in India are seeing their Nougat updates in a slow rollout

Tis the season for timely Android OS updates. Most of the phones that get bumped to the latest version of Android before the end of the year are flagships and other high-end devices, but it looks like Motorola may be bucking the trend a bit with the latest G-series phones. Reports from a small number of users in India indicate that the Moto G4 and Moto G4 Plus are seeing over-the-air Nougat updates.

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Stitcher Radio updated to v3.8 with SD card support, ad-free premium upgrade, and more

Stitcher is a podcast player with a more "radio" vibe. You can create a station of all your favorite content and listen on-demand. The app has gone through a few big changes lately, and today's update to v3.8 adds more control over your front page, offline saving to SD cards, and a premium upgrade that ditches the ads. Sound good? Well, there's still more.

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Google Assistant can now control Nest thermostats from the Pixel, not just Google Home

For those of you who have used OK Google in regular Google Search before, then got a Pixel and a Google Home, the inconsistencies in what each of these can and can't do should be baffling. There are so many actions that Assistant struggles with on either the Pixel and Home that good'ol Google Search never had trouble with, and even within Assistant, there's a disconnect between what can be done from the Pixels or from Google Home.

One of the latter inconsistencies is that changing your Nest thermostat's temperature was possible with Google Search before and works with Assistant on Google Home, but for some odd reason, was not interpreted by the Pixel's Assistant.

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[Deal Alert] Save $100 on the 64GB Pixel C and $50 on the Pixel C Keyboard from the Google Store

Android tablets are in a bit of a lull right now, so I understand if you think this may not be the perfect time to invest in a Pixel C. But if you do want a new Android tablet, maybe for yourself or as a Christmas gift for someone, then the Pixel C should be a top contender. It runs Android 7.0 Nougat, has a 10.2" 2560 x 1800 display, 3GB of RAM, 32GB or 64GB of storage, and the Tegra X1 may not be the hottest processor on the bloc, but it does the job fine enough. The big deterrent however, is probably the hefty price tag, but that is changing for the next couple of weeks.

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Most Wanted: The top smartphones of 2016

The end of the year has arrived, and it's time to make our picks for the phones that represented the best of what the [Android] smartphone industry had to offer in 2016. Without further ado, here are the recipients of the Android Police Most-Wanted award in 2016 for "Top Smartphone," in no particular order.

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[Update: Austria] Google Opinion Rewards is now available in Switzerland

Hé, les Suisses, vous étiez jaloux des Français et de leur accès à Google Opinion Rewards? Bah maintenant, il n'y a plus aucune raison de rester envieux: Opinion Rewards est disponible en Suisse!

Of the national languages in Switzerland, I only speak French, so excuse me if I can't write that sentence above in German, Italian, or Romansh. But I'll translate the general sentiment to English for those of you who are still reading me: Google Opinion Rewards is now available in Switzerland.

According to a couple of tips we've received, the app is now downloadable from the Play Store in Switzerland and users can sign up, start answering surveys, and earn a little bit of cash for each of them. Four languages are available for surveys: French, Italian, German, and English.

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[Deal Alert] V-Moda Crossfade M-100 headphones on sale for their lowest price ever, just $144.33 after coupon code

Of all the products I have reviewed for Android Police, there are few that I have loved more than the V-Moda Crossfade Wireless headphones. They are built with precision, look amazing, and sound great. Yes, I'm gushing a bit, but V-Moda makes products that are worthy of praise.

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[Bonus Round] Hero Generations, Time Locker, Defend Your Turf, Eternal Maze Puzzle Adventure, Tower of the Wizard, Retro Winter Sports 1986, and The Station

Welcome to the latest entry in our Bonus Round series, wherein we tell you all about the new Android games of the day that we couldn't get to during our regular news rounds. Consider this a quick update for the dedicated gamers who can't wait for our bi-weekly roundups, and don't want to wade through a whole day's worth of news just to get their pixelated fix. Today we have a unique RPG-strategy game, a shooter/runner that controls time, a pixelated strategic combat title, an adventure in a corn maze, Game Boy and Atari-style throwback games, and a sci-fi text adventure.

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