One of the more annoying aspects of the Play Store is that you can't manually check for app updates. We already covered how Google is testing a new installed apps screen, but we didn't get a look at one of the best aspects of it - a refresh button. Read More
At least since December, the Play Store on Android TV has had a particularly annoying issue. When selecting one of several app categories, including 'Action Games' and 'News,' the entire Play Store crashes. Now the issue appears to be finally fixed. Read More
There are a ton of people, even non-techies, who use Google Photos. After all, why wouldn't you? It's free with unlimited storage, allows you to access your photos from any device with the Internet, backs files up automatically, and is just an awesome tool in general. Photos' latest tweak for the web allows users to see which albums a particular photos belongs to. Read More
If you've been itching to DVR the live TV that you get via your OTA broadcast or cable card receiver on an Android TV box, then I've got some great news for you. Google has partnered with SiliconDust, creators of HDHomeRun, to bring you just that. If you have an Nvidia SHIELD or Nexus Player and a current-generation model of an HDHR, then you can get to recording and saving live TV. Read More
Everyone enjoys making music of some kind, from children hitting pots and pans together to an experienced musician performing to a sell-out crowd. I'm tone deaf and even I enjoy it. Today, Google announced it has a new experiment, A.I. Duet, which uses machine learning to respond to music that you play.
A.I. Duet was built by developer and musician Yotam Mann, based on the Magenta framework Google released last year. Using this, he's been able to have artificial intelligence learn how to play music based on hundreds or thousands of samples, through machine learning. While computers have been able to play music for a while, they would have to have been taught how to play. Read More
Google's Pixel and Pixel XL phones are sold in three colors - Very Silver, Quite Black, and Really Blue. While the last color is certainly the most eye-catching, it's only been available in the United States. Google originally stated that the model would only be a temporary US exclusive, and now we are seeing it arrive in other countries - first in Canada with Rogers, and now the UK with EE. Read More
One of the more common uses for the Amazon Echo (and other Alexa-compatible devices) is ordering items online. In this glorious future, you don't even need to touch your phone to order products online - just tell your smart speaker to buy it for you. Now Google has added 'smart shopping' to Assistant, including the Google Home. Read More
The Android army marches on, killing other operating systems left and right, leaving carcasses of once vibrant and flourishing platforms in its wake, dangling them more and more from the Gartner and IDC market share tables, until there's no place left for them but the ambiguous "Others" row.
The latest report is brutal for both BlackBerry OS and Windows Phone / Windows 10 Mobile / whatever Microsoft is calling its platform nowadays. It's the Q4 2016 report from Gartner and in it we learn that smartphone sales have grown 7% compared to Q3, that overall 2016 sales also increased a little, that Samsung lost its top spot as smartphone vendor for the first time in a while to Apple (likely thanks to the Note 7 kaboom), but most importantly, we also learn that Android still managed to grow its market share by 1% year-on-year, despite having crossed 80% worldwide. Read More
Google knows a whole lot of things about you, from the apps you use to the searches you make, emails you get, and more. So the company has been working for a while to make it easier for you to check all your Google data and manage it from one place. When the new Google account interface launched last year, it even added a voice command to display it without having to dig through settings or remember a URL. Simply saying "Show me my Google account" would open the page and get you started.
It looks like a few more voice commands have been added since then. Read More
Rich Communication Services (RCS) are one of the hottest topics in messaging circles nowadays, despite the fact that plenty of users have already committed to one or several non-SMS solutions for talking with everyone in their lives. But hey, you can't blame operators for wanting to keep you using their services instead of some third-party ones. Even if all RCS solutions are not created equal and the fragmentation of standards makes this an inelegant proposition, carriers are moving forward with their implementation.
The saga of RCS on Android started with Google acquiring Jibe, followed by the official launch of RCS support in the Google Messenger app and its first partnership with Sprint in the US, then another collaboration with Rogers in Canada, and now we're seeing it spread to Europe and Asia with Telenor. Read More