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LG G Pad 8.3 GPE And NVIDIA SHIELD Tablet Get Chromecast Screen Casting Support In What Continues To Be The Slowest Rollout In History

Google added screen casting support to a select few devices earlier this year, but the wide rollout has been very, very slow. Today there are two new devices listed on Google's screen cast support page—The NVIDIA SHIELD Tablet and the LG G Pad 8.3 GPE.

2014-11-21 19.19.30

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[Update: Existing Ones, Too] New Chromebook Purchases, Even As Low As $199, Will Come With 1TB Of Free Google Drive Storage This Holiday Season

Update: As it turns out, this offer applies to recently-purchased Chromebook purchases too. If you have not yet claimed your free Google Drive storage, you might want to head over to the goodies page to redeem your 1TB right away.

goodies

If you're like me, you keep quite a bit of the files you interact with on your mobile devices saved on Google Drive. The service has gotten spiffier over the years, and Google has done its best to make interacting with the storage feel as though you're tinkering with something saved locally.

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Google Play Services 6.5 Spruces Up Android's System Update Screen Too

Google Play Services version 6.5 began rolling out to users a few days ago, and as we work on an APK teardown to see what's under the hood, it looks like there's at least one more user-facing change in the update. Specifically, Android's system update screen is prettier.

The screen which, until now, consisted of the same drab title, horizontal break, "last checked" text, and "check now" button, has been granted a better design treatment.

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Google Play Music Starts Providing Shortcuts To Relevant YouTube Videos

Over the last few weeks, we've heard of a feature popping up for Google Play Music All Access users here and there (thanks for the tips!), whereby the app or web interface would link users to relevant music videos inside the app. When listening to or browsing music, the app would show a YouTube icon, sometimes in the center of the screen, sometimes weirdly positioned in the "now playing" bar. It was clear Google was still testing the feature but it looks like now, with the publication of an official change log for Play Music's latest update, Google may be flipping the switch on a wider basis.

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AT&T's Nexus 6 Is SIM-Locked, Checks Mobile Hotspot Subscription Status For Tethering, And Has The Carrier's Ringtones

After last night's news that the AT&T-sold Nexus 6 has the carrier's logo on the back of the device as well as the boot screen, you just knew there was more to come, right? Well, that time is upon us. It appears that the carrier's Nexus 6 variant is SIM-locked, won't let you tether without verifying your subscription status, and has AT&T's suite of ringtones as well.

Nexus 6 SIM Unlock N6 tethering N6 ringtones

It should be noted that none of these things mean that AT&T has a different ROM than any other Nexus 6 - quite the contrary, in fact.

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[APK Teardown + Download] Google Maps 9.1 Offers Helpful Tips About Your Destination And More

Since Google Maps got its update to version 9.1 yesterday, we've been taking a closer look to figure out exactly what's new, and - of course - taking a quick look inside as well.

So far, it doesn't seem like a huge update, but there's at least one big change worth highlighting. In 9.1, Maps will provide helpful information about your destination or a location you look up. The app will give you the current weather and time at the given location, and will provide some fun facts too.

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Google Play Newsstand Joins The 500 Million Download Club

Joining the likes of other Google apps like Play Movies, Play Books, and Play Music, and Facebook's Messenger app, Google Play Newsstand became the latest Google app to reach the 500 million download mark, reaching it some time this month. This number obviously reflects only downloads/installs, not active users, but it's still an impressive figure.

Screen Shot 2014-11-20 at 4.31.49 PM

Of course this count is including downloads from the days when Newsstand was still Google Play Magazines, before it superseded both Magazines and Currents as Google's de facto news-and-magazine reader.

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AnandTech Posts Side-By-Side NAND Performance For Nexus 6 Encrypted Vs. Unencrypted - It's Not Pretty

As many of you doubtless know by now, Google's first Android 5.0 devices ship with full-disk encryption enabled out of the box - encryption that can't be disabled without flashing a new ROM to the device. We've heard from at least one source that this encryption shouldn't really affect on-device performance noticeably, but new benchmarks from Anandtech seem to suggest otherwise.

The heavily tech-focused review and news site didn't publish storage benchmarks for the Nexus 6 in their review, because the app used - Androbench - was deemed to be producing inaccurate results on Lollipop devices (and it definitely is).

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[APK Teardown] Google Play Services 6.5 Adds Android Auto, Smart Profiles, Lockbox, Kid Accounts, And Expands On The Mysterious Firmware Updater

Since the launch of Android 5.0 last month, the sheer number of app updates has been magnificent – and downright overwhelming. Believe it or not, most of the new versions haven't done much more than add Lollipop support and splash a fresh coat of Materialized paint on the UIs. Seriously, we've been checking. This isn't entirely a bad thing, as it's giving me time to work on some other projects...

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