Data throttling has been standard practice by carriers for years. At first it mostly applied to customers going over their data limits, but recently carriers have begun throttling certain content (like streaming services) for everyone by default, especially in the face of a less strict FCC. Project Fi has been experimenting with an opt-in (not default) throttling feature, which ended up disabling the SIM cards of some customers. Read More
Allo has now existed for more than a year, and there are some people who use it. Not many, by all accounts, but some! Those brave few will today be treated to a more widely available web client. When Allo for the web was launched in August, it only worked in Chrome. Today, support expands to Opera, Firefox, and iOS (sort of). Read More
As more and more Chromebooks support running Android apps, it's becoming more important than ever to make sure developers create Chromebook-friendly apps. Google offers extensive documentation to help developers, but there was no way to test these apps without buying a real Chromebook. Thankfully, that could change soon, as recent code commits indicate a Chrome OS emulator will be arriving soon in the Android SDK. Read More
One of the more annoying aspects of the Google Home (or any smart speaker, really) is the response volume is static. Unlike a normal person, it won't talk to you at the same volume you are speaking. If you were blasting music earlier in the day and you forgot to turn it down later, asking to turn off a lamp later could result in an ear-popping "OK, TURNING OFF THE LAMP!" Read More
Ever since Google acquired Firebase in 2014, it has grown to be a formidable platform for mobile and web app developers. Earlier this year, Google used its I/O 2017 app to feature some of the advantages provided by the Firebase Realtime Database and Cloud Functions for Firebase. Now Firebase is launching a new product called Cloud Firestore, a fully-managed NoSQL document database, and it boasts a pretty compelling set of features for developers.
Like the Firebase Realtime Database, Cloud Firestore is built on top of Google Cloud Platform for high reliability and performance. Firebase also designed it to automatically scale based on user demand so it can handle spikes if an app suddenly becomes popular, and Cloud Firestore performs multi-regional replication so it has low latency and reliability in the event a node goes down. Read More
Google really wants you to use Android Pay. Dunkin' Donuts really wants you to get hooked on its donuts and/or coffee. That's sometimes all it takes in the world of commercial tie-ins, and sure enough, that's how this deal was born. A free $5 gift card for Dunkin' Donuts is up for grabs, and all you have to do is use Android Pay a few times. Read More
Earlier in the year, Google announced that it would be working with hardware partners to launch Street View ready cameras that anyone could buy. There were four different types of cameras mentioned: mobile, auto, VR, and workflow. Thanks to Insta360, it's now possible to get your hands on the very first Street View auto ready camera. Read More
Android One has been getting a fresh breath of life in the past months thanks to an expansion into new countries with the Xiaomi Mi A1 and Moto X4 Android One version. One other device we've been hearing about is the HTC U11 Life, codenamed HTC Ocean_Life. Last month we got a glimpse at what it would look like and now HTC leakster @LlabTooFer has posted the alleged specs of the phone. Read More
Google is gearing up for tomorrow's Pixel event and one of the first hints of everything we've got coming our way is a redesign of the Google Home app that seems to be rolling with the new version 188.8.131.52. We're seeing it on all of our devices so this doesn't seem to be a sever-side test.
First, upon launching the app, you'll notice a new animation of squares and circles and triangles in Google's traditional yellow, green, red, and blue colors, interspersed with a little grey. It looks nice and you'll notice that the app now has two tabs on the bottom: Discover and Browse. Read More
We've been hearing about the Google Home Mini for a couple of months now: first we revealed Google's plans to make a smaller Home then Droid-Life leaked the Mini's design and price. Now we have one more confirmation of the Mini's existence and look.
Raymond Durk, who lives two blocks away from the Google campus, spotted a new Google Home Mini ready to be set up in his Google Home app. Read More