Google's Pixel went up for pre-order on October 4th, and the first versions to sell out were the limited edition Really blue finish (a temporary US exclusive). Within hours of the phones' announcement, in fact, there were no more Really blue Pixels to be had. Since then, they've never come back in stock (at least not for any appreciable time we're aware of), and many people have begun to assume that the brief first wave of sales was the end of the road for Really blue after all.
Not so, according to Google. After a reader reached out to tell us they had heard from a Google product manager that the Really blue device was no longer on sale and would not be restocked, we got in touch with the company. Read More
High Dynamic Range, or HDR for short, is quickly gaining ground in the media industry. In a nutshell, HDR videos have a much higher contrast and color range than standard video content - essentially making the video more true to real life. Google's Chromecast Ultra, the PlayStation 4, Xbox One S, some Blu-ray players, and various other devices all support the playback of HDR video. Read More
Google's monthly Android patches are live, and it's a momentous occasion this time. This is the first cycle that the Pixel and Pixel XL are included in the lineup. In addition to the security patches, which can be read about in the security bulletin, this update should enable Daydream VR support on the Pixel phones. You can either wait for the update, or do it manually. Read More
Google's entry into the connected home market looks unassuming, but has thus far proved to be amusing. Even though it might be lacking in features and integrations right now, that could easily change down the road. In the spirit of Home's release, iFixit has given us their sacred teardown tradition to determine repairability for the smart speaker. Complete with photos and x-ray shots of the whole process, the process showed a few surprises. Read More
Daydream VR was revealed alongside the Pixel phones and Google Home last month, but while those other things began to ship, news surrounding Google's latest virtual reality headset remained sparse. However, the Mountain View-based company has just pushed an update to Google VR Services, the framework needed for Daydream VR to work with the Pixel and Pixel XL. Read More
As many Android enthusiasts may know, Google is constantly experimenting with new features and UI changes for its apps. Just a few days ago, in a recently published Google video featuring the Pixel, we noticed a never-before-seen Play Store UI on the device. This user interface possessed a new color scheme, a larger "Install" button, and more. Now, we're starting to see elements from that video pop up on enthusiasts' devices.
It feels like Google changes the Play Store UI every few weeks. A larger button here, adjusting the font size there, and so on. But the new 'Trending' section on the Play Store is absolutely new, and is both incredibly useful and well-designed. The new addition can be found in the entertainment section, just below the new movie releases. Read More
There's always a Google A/B test going on in the background to figure out what could get users to better discover options or take them to what they're looking for faster. One of these tests was a series of search shortcuts that had a very distinct circle design in the Google Now (now known as Feed) page right below the search bar. That interface didn't spread to a wider user base, but it appears that Google is still toying with the idea, albeit in a different look.
Below are a couple of screenshots from two different users who are seeing these shortcuts or hints below the search bar. Read More