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Republic Wireless Brings Its A Game: New GSM Partner And Plenty Of Modern Devices To Choose From Starting July

I never thought there would be a day when I'd know this much about US carriers and MVNOs, but this is what happens when you work on a US-based site like Android Police. Republic Wireless though comes a lot less often on our radar, and I just discovered why. Until now, the MVNO only had a couple of devices to choose from. Literally, a couple: the Motorola Moto G (3rd Gen) and Moto E (2nd Gen). It also seems to be ahead of its times, relying on Wi-Fi calling and piggy-backing on Sprint's network when Wi-Fi isn't available.

But things are about to improve by a few leaps and bounds for Republic Wireless.

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[Huh?] YouTube Is Getting In-App Messaging For Some Reason

When I sit down for a YouTube session, I often think: how cool would it be if I was able to message my friends through YouTube? I don't even have to leave the app/website to do it, and it'd be so much easier if I could message here than on Facebook, Hangouts, or SMS. Awesome!

For some utterly bizarre reason, YouTube is getting in-app messaging. The tab has been appearing on a small number of Android devices over the last 48 hours or so, and Wired published a post explaining the new feature. Apparently, users can get others into the service by inviting them to chat.

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[Rumor] Google Is Working On An Amazon Echo Competitor Codenamed "Chirp"

About two months ago, when Amazon announced two new Alexa-powered devices, the Echo Dot and Amazon Tap, many of you voiced the same thought: this is the kind of product Google should be working on. With "OK Google" commands being some of the most powerful voice search and personal assistants on the market, Google shouldn't have a lot of trouble inviting itself into your home and living room or making automation independent from your phone and more integrated with your life.

At the time, we knew (check Artem's comment) that Google was indeed working on an Echo competitor, codenamed "Chirp," and we were rooting for a Google I/O announcement.

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[It's The Little Things] Google Calendar Now Automatically Detects And Dials Passcodes For Conference Calls

Those of you who have to frequently deal with conference call meetings have probably faced more than one where an access code or a passcode was required to let them in. It's a security measure that helps the host make sure that no unwanted guests will sneak in, but it usually ends up being a pain in the butt of those who have been officially invited and who often have to scramble around looking for that passcode and curse for having to manually dial it in each time.

Google Calendar is about to make things a lot easier for invitees. When the passcode or meeting ID is detected in the event's location or notes field, it will offer to automatically dial it for you, saving you from hunting down the passcode and memorizing it then manually entering it.

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Google Photos 1.20 Adds Commenting And Smart Suggestions For Shared Albums [APK Download]

Google Photos 1.20 has started rolling out, bringing with it the second social feature for the platform: comments in shared albums and photos, plus smart suggestions for relevant additions to a shared album.

Commenting is for either individual photos or an entire album. Cody already found evidence of it in his Photos v1.16 teardown, so it's not a total surprise it's turned up now. When enabled through an album's sharing options (the feature is off by default), there will be a button on the footer when viewing a photo, or "add a comment" is added at the bottom of an album.

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Google Updates Design Spec With New Recommendations On Motion & Growth

Google, following through on its promise that the material design spec is a "living document," has updated its design guidelines and suggestions again, this time adding more guidance on motion design, along with new sections for growth & communications and expanding panels.

First up, let's look at what's new in motion - Google has given motion design a more comprehensive section, outlining the principles of motion in material design. The section explains that material motion is responsive, natural, aware, and intentional. Transitions should be quick, clear, and cohesive.

Screen Shot 2016-05-11 at 9.51.30 PM

After that brief primer, the motion section goes on to detail - at length - everything from duration and easing to transforming pieces of material and thinking about custom motion patterns that fit in with the material world.

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Google Adds A New Goodie For Chromecast And Chromecast Audio Owners: Two Months Of Ad-Free Pandora One Membership (US Only)

Chromecast owners know that even though Google's tiny stream machine is one of the cheapest on the market, it occasionally gets freebies for online video and music streaming services that add some major value. The latest goodie to come to owners of the original Chromecast and the Chromecast Audio is Pandora One, the music service's premium advertising-free tier. New owners can get two months of listening free, which has an approximate value of $8.

Offers tend to come and go, and it isn't always clear who's eligible based on when they bought their Chromecast. This one isn't showing up for me, so neither my original Chromecast model nor my Cast-enabled SHIELD TV are eligible for the promotion.

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Google Adds Exchange Services To The Play Store

Exchange Services has been available in Android for a long time, but now it's also in the Play Store. As with other Google apps in the Play Store, that means it will be possible to improve the feature over time without waiting on OS updates. In fact, this version of Exchange Services will add some new capabilities.

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Google Translate Updated To v5.0 With Floating 'Tap To Translate' Button [APK Download]

Google Translate has gained a ton of cool new translation features over the years, but you usually have to open the app to use them. That's not the case with the latest update. Now, you can just copy text and have it translated on the spot. It's called Tap to Translate and it's part of the new Translate v5.0 update.

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[Deal Alert] Woot Has New (Yes, New!) 32GB Nexus 5 Phones On Sale For $150, Today Only

Nexus phones tend to last a while, at least in terms of software - thank Google's spot as the gatekeeper of Android for that. I'm still using my Nexus 6, and will probably continue to do so when the 2016 models come in and it passes the two-year mark. The previous phone, LG's Nexus 5, is coming up on three years old, but it still has access to the latest version of Android with new security releases every month. It's still a great budget phone, especially for enthusiasts and developers.

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