Oh Google, all the mysterious ways in which you work will continue to elude us, but now we shall shed the light on one very important puzzle that's been making us scratch our heads for months, nay years. One day you say "OK Google" to your phone and it responds with a ding letting you know it's listening. A few weeks later, you try again, and there's no ding so you have to look at your display and spot that tiny animation on the bottom to figure out if it's listening to you or not. What's the difference? It's not your phone's volume level - you sometimes hear the ding even with Do Not Disturb on and then other times you don't hear it with the volume up to maximum. Read More
With the introduction of the Home Mini and Home Max, there are now three types of Assistant-powered hardware from Google. The Assistant is already very capable, but that isn't stopping the team from continuing to add useful features. At Google's event earlier in the month we learned that Google Home can now easily find your phone, and it also recently added the ability to turn off your Chromecast-connected TV.
The latest addition to Google Home's feature set is a new type of timer. It's already possible to set timers for things like cooking or game time, but we can now also set a sleep timer that will stop your music playing at a given point in time. Read More
The internet can be a dangerous place, especially for kids. Many routers these days have some sort of parental control settings to help block access to nefarious or unsavory websites. Google's Wifi system is joining the party with the latest update. There's more stuff to be had here, but site blocking is certainly the highlight. Read More
One of Google Photos' main selling points is how easily and accurately it can identify faces in photos and group them together. The face recognition is seriously impressive, and it saves a lot of time when you're looking in your library for pictures of a specific person. Now, as we first saw in a teardown, Google is rolling out the same feature for cats and dogs, allowing you to easily locate photos of your furry friends. Read More
We noticed over the last week that some listings on Google Play are showing when items are available via HBO's NOW streaming service. We aren't entirely sure how new this is, as neither company has made any announcements related to it. In fact, some of us here at AP aren't seeing it at all, regardless of whether we have HBO NOW installed or not. Read More
The days of multiple browser toolbars in Firefox and Internet Explorer are (mostly) gone, but malicious browser extensions are still prevalent. In fact, you don't even have to venture outside of the Chrome Web Store to find a few. Today, Google announced that it is taking further steps to alert users about malicious extensions/setting changes. Read More
If anyone saw our hands-on with the Pixel 2 XL at Google's October 4th event, you may have noticed the phones are rocking some intriguing new live wallpapers. They are obviously intended to be Pixel 2 exclusives, but if there's one thing that you can rely on in the Android developer community, it's that someone out there will be on hand to mod an interesting new app and get it working on more devices.
The new Pixel 2 launcher thankfully works on other phones without modification, although if you want the swipe-for-Google-Feed functionality on phones other than the first generation Pixels and Nexus devices, you'll need to install it as a system app. Read More
Google Assistant doesn't need to do a whole lot more to earn the "spooky" tag, but that's not stopping the team behind it from trying — but this time for smiles, not shivers. The virtual assistant is now equipped with interactive, intentionally humorous responses to some Halloween-related questions and commands. Read More
I have bad news, and I have good news. The bad news is headphone jacks are dying, and Google is helping to kill them. That means you need adapters to keep using your existing audio devices with 3.5mm jacks. The good news is you can buy a Type-C adapter on the Google Store for much less money than you could a few days ago. Silver lining, and all that. Read More