18
Sep
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Google Now is only as good as the cards it tosses up for users to play around with. Since launch, TV cards and the ability to customize them has been a luxury exclusively available to people in the US. Now it looks like the feature is trickling out to residents of the UK as well.

A couple of readers on that side of the Atlantic Ocean sent us these screenshots of the feature in action.

18
Sep
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At Google I/O this year, we learned that Google Play Services is generally updated on a six-week cycle. As expected, the mighty puzzle piece behind Google's Android services is getting an update starting today that introduces a number of small changes that most users probably won't notice but which may make developers' lives a little bit easier.

Among the changes users probably will notice are some UI tweaks. The Google Settings app has a refreshed header (which is carried through all GMS-bound settings), and Google Play Games has a new dialog for toggling your profile from public to hidden.

18
Sep
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Among the many things announced at Google I/O was support for casting custom backdrops to the Chromecast. We haven't heard anything about it since then, but now users are beginning to report seeing "Casting Backdrop" listed on their devices.

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18
Sep
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An over-the-air software update is set to hit AT&T's version of the Galaxy S4. The change log for this one isn't particularly long, but it will bump users up to baseband number KOTH49H.1337UCUFNB1. There's a certain satisfaction that comes from having the freshest set of software available on a device, and that feeling is what the bulk of owners will notice about this release.

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As for what's actually new, AT&T says this update will provide better connectivity when making calls and text messaging.

18
Sep
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Last Updated: September 20th, 2014

Update: the developers released another quick update on September 19th, explicitly supporting the MOGA family of controllers. The NES30 mentioned below, a generic Bluetooth HID controller, is also working. Well done, Noodlecake and RocketCat!

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I've been playing the heck out of Noodlecake and RocketCat's Wayward Souls RPG-roguelike ever since it landed on Android. While the top-down action game does have some excellent touchscreen controls, there's just no substitute for a real gamepad.

18
Sep
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The updated Moto X just went on sale earlier this week with delivery dates toward the end of the month. So far only the GSM devices for AT&T and T-Mobile have popped up, but Verizon has confirmed it too will have the phone soon. If you have been waiting on the seemingly inevitable Sprint announcement, you are about to get some bad news—Sprint won't carry the 2014 Moto X. Ouch.

18
Sep
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Last Updated: September 19th, 2014

Google Play gift cards are now available at the bottom of the world. No, not Antarctica-look up a bit. There you go, South Africa. In the most southern of African nations, gift cards are starting to appear on store shelves in increments of R 150, R 250, and R 450. Residents can rush to their neighborhood shop and pick one up for the low price of, well, any of the three numbers I just listed.

18
Sep
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According to Google, approximately one out of every two hundred Android users reading this post actually placed the built-in YouTube app widget on their homescreen. That's not really surprising: the one that has been a part of the YouTube Android app for years isn't all that useful, it just grabs a handful of videos that the search algorithm thinks you might be interested in and plops them down in a stacked list.

18
Sep
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Google is set to institute a new policy in the Play Store, and it has some developers up in arms. A message in the developer console (seen below) has appeared asking developers to add a physical address to their account profile. For those offering paid apps and in-app purchases, this is mandatory as of September 30th. Failing to do so could result in Mountain View pulling the apps.

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18
Sep
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The longer you wait, the more affordable products become. These aren't necessarily words to live by, but they're generally true. Not too long ago we were happy to share with you a new Galaxy Tab S 10.5 we found on Amazon going for $446. Now we've come across a refurbished one on eBay available for just $399. That's $100 off what is one of the best tablets out there, just so long as you don't mind dealing with Samsung's added software and its love for physical home buttons.

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