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YouTube Go is offline-centric and available now [APK Download]

Even with ever-improving mobile data coverage and an increasing number of WiFi hotspots, it's often still difficult to watch videos anywhere you'd like. This problem is especially prevalent in less-developed countries. Because of this, the YouTube team has created YouTube Go, an app that centers around saving videos to view later.

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LG Watch Style: First impressions and thoughts

LG is no stranger to making Android Wear smartwatches. In fact, the South Korean company is arguably Google's greatest smartwatch partner, having created the first consumer Wear device: the very rectangular G Watch.

Lately though, Android Wear hasn't been doing so well, with sales dropping and notable manufacturers such as Motorola veering away from the platform. It didn't help that Android Wear 2.0 was delayed by several months. That being said, it's here now, and it's pretty sweet on this brand new LG Watch Style.

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The February security OTA may have fixed the Pixel speaker issue for some people

Back in December, we reported on an issue afflicting certain Google Pixel handsets, whereby the speaker would make a 'popping' sound, otherwise described as a harsh clipping, when watching videos or listening to music with the sound at a specific volume. However, not all devices were affected, and it was unclear what exactly was causing the problem.

In the recent February security update, this seems to have been at least partially solved. According to a thread on /r/GooglePixel, many users are saying the issue is no more after testing on a trailer for The Mummy. Others are saying it has not been fixed, and it is still happening, as bad as it was before, although those commenting it has gone as of this month seem to outweigh the people whose devices still have the issue.

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Chrome Dev 58 seemingly removes option to disable New Tab page recommendations

Until Chrome 54, the New Tab page only showed a grid of commonly-visited pages and quick shortcuts to Bookmarks and Recent tabs. Then the shortcuts were removed, and replaced with a list of recommended articles (much like Google Now/Google Feed). I wasn't a fan of the change, and the comments on that post indicated many of you were not either.

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Google Cloud Search is the latest addition to the G Suite, brings the power of search to internal workflow

What if businesses could leverage the power of Google Search to find internal information faster than ever before? Cue Google Cloud Search, the answer to that question. Replacing the service formerly known as Springboard, this new product uses machine learning to provide a unified experience across the G Suite.

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Google's researchers explain the challenges and calculation process behind the new Parking Difficulty feature in Maps

A few weeks ago, a new Parking Difficulty icon started showing up in Google Maps 9.44 beta in some cities in the United States, then Google officially announced it and specified where it's available. It also said that the estimate is "based on historical parking data," similar to how traffic and popular times and visit durations are calculated, but it didn't go into a lot of details. Now those details are further clarified in a post on the Google Research Blog.

The difficulties of calculating parking availability stem from the many, many factors that can influence the equation: time and day and weather and holidays/events, permit or illegal parking in park-meter areas, vacant spots with paid park-meters from cars that left early, parking lots with multiple levels and different structures, and so on. Even with these issues accounted for, there's the false data coming from private/gated parking spots, taxis dropping users who look like they immediately found a parking and reached their destination, and bus stops showing up in the data sets as popular parking spots.

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Google is working on ways to help identify page-freezing code in Chrome

Modern websites are extremely complex, composing of code running on both the user's device and the web server. Trying to perform all the tasks required to load a page, like rendering the content and executing JavaScript code, can often cause the browser to become unresponsive.

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Google is trying to make AMP pages less confusing, will change how links are handled

Google's Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) project is a decent idea, with not-so-great execution. AMP pages are designed to be extremely lightweight and load almost instantly, as a solution to mobile web sites being generally terrible. Sites have to opt-in to generating AMP pages of all existing pages, which Google then caches on its own servers for faster loading.

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Google releases February security bulletin, OTA and system images available for Google devices

It's that time of month again where Google releases security fixes for Android. The Android Security Bulletin for February 2017 has just been posted, addressing 35 critical bugs - most of which affect Nexus and Pixel devices. The most severe issue that the February patch level fixes could enable remote code execution when processing media files.

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Verizon is sending a free Daydream View headset to some Pixel customers whose orders were late

Because Google vastly underestimated the number of people who would want a Pixel smartphone, many had, or have had, delayed shipments - some up to 2 months - and other issues with actually getting their hands on the device they had purchased. Telus even sent out an email saying Google had stopped production, although this was later proved false. To make up for this, Verizon, the exclusive carrier for the Pixel, has started sending out Daydream View headsets to "a subset" of its customers.

For people who experienced late shipping on their Pixel (although it's not clear what exactly 'late' means in this context), they will receive a phone call from a number, (844) 340-4325, which is a third-party service being used by Verizon for this very purpose.

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