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[Update: RUU file] Unlocked HTC One M9 starts getting Nougat OTA

Ready for some Nougaty goodness before the end of the year, HTC One M9 users? If you answered with an enthusiastic "yes!" then I hope you have an unlocked device, because that's the one getting the OTA update to Android 7.0 in the US. If you bought your handset from an operator, you will have to wait longer, unfortunately.

Both HTC USA and the famous Mo Versi announced the news on Twitter early this morning yesterday afternoon, saying that Nougat would start rolling out to the unlocked HTC One M9 "late this evening," ie.

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Google Search on the web adds movie and TV ratings from users

The movie-going public owes a great debt to Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert. The "thumbs up, thumbs down" system breaks down a complex opinion into a simple yes/no question, "did you like it or not?" Its effects can still be seen on Reddit and even in the comments section of this very article - now all we need is some digital implementation of The Wagging Finger of Shame. Google's on board with the thumb system of movie and TV reviews, and has lately implemented it on its search pages in the Knowledge Graph section.

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Report says Samsung will ditch the physical home button for the Galaxy S8

We're starting to hear a few Galaxy S8 rumors well ahead of the usual Mobile World Congress-ish reveal for Samsung's flagship series (usually around late February or March). That may or may not have something to do with the phenomenal failure of the Galaxy Note 7, after which Samsung must be scrambling to shift potential customers' attention elsewhere. So we're treated with two somewhat credible pieces of Galaxy S8 info in a single week: one that Samsung will drop the headphone jack, and another that the company will finally release its deathgrip on physical home buttons.

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CyanogenMod 14.1 nightlies come to the Galaxy S III, Moto X 2014, some Oppo phones, and more

It's no secret why CyanogenMod is the most popular custom ROM out there; not only does it support a metric crapload of Android devices, but it also keeps them going far past their primes. The latest devices to get support for CM14.1 (Android 7.1 Nougat) nightlies include two variants of the Galaxy S III, the second-generation Moto X, a few Oppo devices, two versions of the HTC One Max, two Xiaomi phones, and more.

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Actions on Google opens to the public, developers now free to create custom voice actions for Google assistant

The Google assistant makes for a pretty awesome companion on the Pixel phones and Google Home, but it's still young and feels constrained by the very limited number of things it can do outside of Google's sandbox of supported services. During the October 4th announcement, Google declared plans to open up the platform in early December for developers to build their own services. Staying true to that schedule, the Actions on Google platform opened the door today, allowing developers to integrate their services. Google is also launching an early access program to begin testing new features and upcoming expansions.

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Android Police Readers' Choice Award 2016: Cast your vote for the best smartphone of the year

What's your pick for best smartphone of 2016? For the first time (well, that I can remember), we're asking you to cast your vote for the phone you think stole the show this year. I've assembled a list of 15 devices that I think stood out in one way or another in 2016, so please note that the list does not purport to be exhaustive - this is, gently, curated.

With that in mind, consider your vote carefully. The tallying will continue through December 16th at 11:59PM PST, at which point the poll will close. We will announce the winner in a separate post the following week, declaring that phone the recipient of the Android Police Readers' Choice Award for Best Smartphone of 2016.

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The Huawei Watch departs from the Google Store

With all the uncertainty, I don't imagine Android Wear smartwatches will be a hot item this holiday season. Some people are probably still willing to take a risk, but pickings are getting slim either way. Even though it launched more than a year ago, the Huawei Watch is still considered by many to be the best Android Wear device. It's no longer on sale in the Google Store, though.

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Google launches 6 new Daydream VR games, plus HBO Now and Go VR

Google has a new round of games for Daydream VR out today, and some of them are pretty good. And some of them... are not that great. Hey, there's also HBO Now VR out today, which is only as good as the stuff you choose to watch. I've had the chance to play around with all of the new titles. Here's how they stack up.

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[Update: Available on Android] Google Drive Backups tab starts showing up, gives you a glimpse into your device and app backups

Android developers have been able to use Google Drive to back up and restore app and game data for their users for a couple of years now. Android devices too have been able to back up some data like installed apps, device settings, call history, and more to Google Drive and restore it to the same device after a hard reset or to a new one when you switch over.

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[Deal Alert] Motorola's fitness-oriented Moto 360 Sport is just $103.99 on Amazon right now ($96 off)

The Moto 360 Sport goes on sale pretty frequently, but that doesn't discount the fact that it's a pretty good smartwatch, especially for exercise use (if you couldn't already glean that from the name and the design). Currently, you can grab a white 360 Sport on Amazon for just $103.99 - that's nearly 50% off its MSRP.

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