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Google has added text to the Pixel Launcher search box for some, and nobody wants it

Google is no stranger to testing both warranted and unwarranted design changes in its apps on normal users, so this comes as no surprise. This time Google is testing a small change to the Pixel Launcher, but it's one that nobody asked for, and seemingly nobody wants it either.

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Inbox has a new unsubscribe card for mailing lists you don't read

Most of the time, when you want to clean something up, the last thing you should do is ignore it. Messes have a habit of multiplying when they're out of sight. Check your email after a week's vacation, and you'll see exactly how inattention can make a problem bigger. But now, thanks to Inbox, ignoring spam messages can help keep your inbox clean. Inbox now asks if you'd like to unsubscribe from a sender's mailing list if you ignore their emails for a month. 

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Amazon will start selling Chromecast and Apple TV after pulling them in 2015, Google Home still not available

Amazon removed the Chromecast, Nexus Player, and Apple TV from its online store in 2015. Amazon said the products' lack of Prime Video support (which Amazon itself is responsible for adding) could confuse buyers, but most saw it as a thinly-veiled attempt to boost sales of its own Fire TV lineup. Since then, Google and Amazon's feud has only escalated.

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Non-essential app blocking for corporate-managed phones comes to G Suite

Corporate data security is paramount—particularly in industries with regulations like HIPAA which include steep fines for negligently handled personal data. Accordingly, allowing employees access to that data on mobile devices is not without its share of risks, as the potential of malware or lost/stolen devices may result in expropriated data. Google has introduced an extra step for IT managers to ensure that devices are compliant with corporate-defined security policy. Device Policy will now restrict apps determined to be nonessential (like Chrome or Gmail) from running until a device is returned to compliance.

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[Update: Allo too] You can speak to Assistant in Korean on your phone and Android Wear watch

At I/O this year, Google promised support for the Korean language would be coming by the end of the year to Assistant. Then at the October Pixel event a couple of weeks ago, Google also stated that Actions on Google (third-party Assistant integrations from different services) now support Korean. Between then and now, it appears that support for the Korean language has gone live on Assistant.

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Google's 'Year in Search' highlights solar eclipse, natural disasters, elections, and technology

Google has a yearly tradition of publishing the most-searched terms and phrases, aptly-named the 'Year in Search.' Earlier today, the company revealed the top searches of 2017 with a new video and a detailed Trends page.

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Google Assistant is rolling out to phones running Lollipop and tablets on Marshmallow or later

Google launched Assistant over a year ago with the original Pixel phones, but it expanded to more devices just a few months later. However, only phone with new-ish software were included. Starting now, Assistant is coming to more phones and (finally) tablets.

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Google seems to have locked the Pixel Launcher's install count to '1-5' in the Play Store [Update]

The Pixel Launcher comes pre-installed on Pixel phones, but it's also listed in the Play Store for easy updates. However, Google appears to have made an unusual change to the app listing there. It no longer shows the actual number of installs. Instead, it's locked to the smallest "1-5" group.

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Google Backup & Sync for desktop gets a big update with ignored file types, photo/video-only sync, and more

Google completely revamped the desktop Google Drive client this year with the move to Backup & Sync. The initial rollout was a bit of a mess with Google essentially breaking Drive for some people. It eventually worked all that out, and Backup & Sync has been running smoothly since then. There haven't been many feature additions, but there's a big one rolling out now. In the latest version, you have more control over which files are synced, and it's easier to add new folders to Drive.

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Google PhotoScan version 1.5 adds automatic saving to Google Photos [APK Download]

It's been a while since we've seen an update to Google's handy photo digitizing app, PhotoScan. Back in April, version 1.4 brought with it in-app sharing and the ability to turn off the glare removal feature – although I'm not sure why you'd want to do that. Version 1.5 is now available on the Play Store, and it now saves your creations to Google Photos automatically.

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