Google has been running some Android Pay promos lately, a stark contrast to the Google Wallet days when Google pretended mobile payments didn't exist. Last month there was the Best Buy gift card deal, and now you can get some freebies simply by using your phone to pay 10 times between now and the end of February. There are some caveats, of course.
You might have seen some banter about a way to bypass factory reset protection (FRP) on Nexus devices recently—just like LG and Samsung. It's true that there was a way to get around factory reset protection from the setup wizard, but not anymore. Despite what a certain video seems to claim, Google actually patched FRP in the January security update. Read More
There's a solid chance that if you're using Google Drive or Inbox by Gmail on your phone, you probably use the desktop versions too. Google has recently rolled out some improvements to both. Read More
Google Street View has been on many expeditions through time and through our planet, from the Amazon to Greenland, from the Philippines to Jordan to Machu Picchu, but no mission has been as cute as this exploration of the world's largest model railway in Hamburg, Miniatur Wunderland.
It's an exhibit of a tiny world with tiny buildings, 13000 meters of tiny tracks and tiny things with more than 200000 tiny citizens doing what they do. Everything is interactive, the lights change with the day, the trains move, the planes lift off, the fair rides turn, the people dance and bike, and the nature and surroundings are as much of an honest replica as they can be of the real thing. Read More
Recently, we've had a spate of people emailing and contacting us via social media with complaints that their Nexus 6 on AT&T has not yet received an over-the-air update to Android 6.0 Marshmallow. This is very annoying. Likely, even if you do wait long enough and get Android 6.0, you'll have the same problem with getting Android 6.0.1, or any subsequent update, too. In fact, this has been true of literally every OTA update for Nexus 6 devices on AT&T: they take abnormally long to receive them, AT&T branded or unlocked, versus other carriers in the US. Read More
I've long been an advocate for the usefulness of Android tablets, but even I've been questioning my own words over the past year or so. After switching to a Chromebook Flip as my main laptop and tablet, I rarely even use my Android tablets for anything more than reading in bed or playing a quick game.
But deep down I guess I'm a dreamer—I keep hoping Google will step up and make Android tablets not only relevant for more than the "I want a cheap tablet" market, but for power users. People who want to get things done and don't always want to break out a laptop to do it. Read More
Google Drive keeps getting small incremental improvements on the Web and on mobile platforms to enhance the experience for anyone who uses it regularly or semi-regularly to create, edit, and share files. The team has just announced two such small changes that, for now, are coming to Google Drive on the Web.
First, search is getting easier and cross app. Whether you're in Docs, Sheets, or Slides, typing a new search term will not only look for a document of the corresponding type, but across all of your Drive. This will make the experience more consistent if you're editing a couple of related documents and presentations for example and don't what to manually hop over from Docs to Slides to work on the file. Read More
You can cast webpages from your computer to your Chromecast, but it requires installing a dedicated extension. As it turns out, Chrome's developers are working on cutting out this requirement. In the future, you may be able to cast content without going through any additional setup on your end. Read More
Google's cheaper option for this year's Nexus phone is now a little cheaper. Without any special fanfare, the LG Nexus 5X has dropped its price in the Google Store. The 16GB model is now $349 (down from $379) and the 32GB model is now $399 (down from $429). That places both of them more firmly in the mid-range price bracket, which is pretty nice considering the high-end processor and screen, not to mention quick Android updates from Google.
At the moment the price drop seems to be on the Google Store only. There's no mention of a "sale" or any of the usual indications of a limited-time promotion, so it looks like these price drops are permanent, something that's not unprecedented with Nexus models. Read More
Google CEO Sundar Pichai just tweeted the first details on when and where Google I/O 2016 will be happening. Google's annual developer conference will be taking place May 18-20th this year, but it won't be in San Francisco as it has been in recent years. It's going back to the Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View, which is where the first I/O took place a decade ago.