Ever since the unexpected delay between XE12 and XE16, the Glass team has been in a near rapid-fire mode with the OTAs. There were a staggering 5 updates of XE16 in the month of April (6 if you count the 2-parter with XE 12.1) and 3 official versions of XE17 during the month of May. As it turns out, there may be a fourth, unreleased May update to Google's experimental wearable.
Following the release of full factory images for all supported Nexus devices, Google has begun pushing Android 4.4.3 to the Android Open Source Project (AOSP). The push is ongoing and should be complete within an hour or two.
The build numbers are KTU84M for the Nexus 5 and KTU84L for the rest of the Nexus devices. The AOSP branch is kitkat-mr2-release, with the tag most likely named android-4.4.3_r1 expected to arrive shortly.
Fun fact: because of the enormous expense of shooting on location, a surprising number of American television series are shot and produced in Canada. Often when you see "Chicago" or "New York" on the small screen, it's really Toronto or Vancouver standing in as a body double for an entire city. Supernatural's Winchester Brothers are almost always running around British Colombia, and the rolling Wild West frontier of Hell On Wheels is really Alberta.
Chromebooks are normally a little outside of our wheelhouse here at Android Police, but we figured that enough of our international readers would want to hear this that it warranted a post. According to this unaccountably rhyming entry on Google's official Chrome blog, Chromebooks will be available in nine new countries in the next few weeks.
Chile, Denmark, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, and the Philippines should have models coming in a matter of days (Google says "starting today"), and Belgium, Italy, and Spain will get them in the next few weeks.
Update: T-Mobile has made a mention of Android 4.4.3 for the Nexus 4 as well. This update should move the handset up to build version KTU84L and weighs 91.7 MB.
T-Mobile has announced that the Android 4.4.3 OTA software update for Nexus 5s and 2013 Nexus 7s is due out starting today. According to information on T-Mobile's support page, the update will bump smartphone owners up to version KTU84M following a 77.9MB download.
Recently, Google's ambitious and public-spirited ventures are sounding less like the careful expansions of an international megacorp and more like the pet projects of Dr. Benton Quest. Self-driving cars, medical contact lenses, industrial robots - seriously, we're just waiting on a Walking Eye and Steve Ballmer in a villain costume at this point. The latest report from the Wall Street Journal (which tends to be spot-on when it comes to Google's plans) says the company is preparing a fleet of low-orbit satellites that will deliver Internet access.
A while ago, we posted about information we'd received indicating that sometime soon, Google's search functionality (and other actions) would be expanding beyond the Search app, moving into other apps for device-wide search interaction and - eventually - app-specific functionality.
It appears that isn't the only Search trick Google is working on, though. According to the information available to us, Google is working on functionality for now known as KITT (get it?) or "Android Eyes Free" internally.
Let's face it: at this point, Google TV is a certified flop. For all its good points, its adoption was hampered by expensive hardware, limited apps, and a clunky interface. Google is hoping to revive their set-top plans with "Android TV," an as-yet unverified platform revealed by The Verge last month. Others found more details of Android code powering a Google set-top box in the Android 4.4.3 changelog. Now anonymous sources tell GigaOM that the device will get a formal introduction, if not a full rollout, at Google I/O in June.
Over the years, Google has been shoring up security on Android in a bid to make the operating system more attractive to governments and businesses, and to reduce the threat of malware for regular users. Unfortunately, these changes often come at the expense of flexibility in our beloved platform. As we close in on the next major release of Android, due to be announced next month, SuperSU developer Chainfire has discovered a set of commits to the Android Open Source Project (AOSP) that may seriously impact some of the functionality currently enjoyed by many root users.
Google's reinvention of the Chrome bookmark system, called Google Stars, was first spotted by Florian Kiersch nearly a month ago. Today, it looks like the Chrome extension and web interface are already live for the public, preceding any official word from Google about the burgeoning bookmarking service. For now, it looks like Stars is still in a dogfooding or testing phase.
Users who install the Chrome extension (linked at the bottom of the post) will be able to access the service's web interface, which will automatically "add the Google magic to your data," collecting a history of topics you're interested in or things you've bookmarked, arranged automatically by date.