The September 2017 Android security update is here, and the bulletin contains the usual details about vulnerabilities that could be affecting various Android devices. Images and OTAs that include the September patches should protect against any possible issues, but so far they're only available for the Nexus 9 on Android 7.1.1. There are no Android 8.0 Oreo images with September patches for Pixel or Nexus devices live yet, but it shouldn't be too long before they are added. Read More
I love music but I was definitely not blessed with a musical ear that's able to peel away layers and guess notes from one listen — a conclusion that took an excruciating 7 years of piano and keyboards lessons to get to. However, I am always trying to bring out the engineering mind inside me to figure out the exact way a song is built. That's why I'm fascinated by Google's latest experiment, Inside Music.
Using WebVR and in collaboration with popular Radiotopia podcast Song Exploder, Google has made a site where you can visualize the layers of 6 different songs in 360deg. Read More
Eight years ago, Circuit City closed its remaining stores, Michael Jackson died, and Barack Obama became the 44th President of the United States. Eight years ago was also the last time Google's Street View cameras got a major upgrade. According to Wired, the company has started rolling out updated cameras to its fleet of picture-snapping cars.
The new rig now features just seven cameras, down from the 15 mounted on the old version. Each camera has a 20MP sensor, and two 'cans' on the front and back for laser radar. All these upgrades will make for higher-resolution pictures with enhanced image clarity. Read More
The latest buzzword for language input is transliteration. And, it's actually a pretty big deal. By typing the way something sounds instead of the way it's spelled, you can write in a language, even if you only know how to speak it. SwiftKey and Google have both been pushing the technology hard, and today Google has rolled out support for "Greeklish" or transliteration for the Greek language via Latin characters. Read More
This flew under our radar back at I/O, but it's big news. On compatible devices, the new Verified Boot changes in Android 8.0 Oreo will prevent a device from booting should it be rolled back to an earlier firmware. The new feature is called Rollback Protection. So if your phone is flashed with older software, you (and your data) are protected from whatever potential security vulnerabilities may have been present in earlier versions. Read More
Many of you have probably seen yesterday's XKCD comic about the laughably terrible state of volume controls on mobile devices. The issue is particularly bad in Android apps, and developers really need to do something about it. Quite honestly, it's embarrassing that this is still a problem in 2017. Read More
Thus far, we've most commonly seen $10 discounts on Google's Chromecast Ultra. That's really not that great of an incentive, but if you're on the West Coast, you may be able to grab one of these 4K-capable streaming devices for just $29.99 - a whopping 57% off the MSRP. Read More
A bit over a month ago, we heard that Chromebooks might be getting SMS notification support via something called SMS Connect, which was exciting news. The folks over at Chrome Unboxed, who initially discovered this coming functionality, just found a bit more information on the subject. Not only will we be able to see when we get an SMS, but we might even be able to read and reply to them, all from the comfort of your Chromebook. Read More
The update to version 2.0 ushered in some major changes to YouTube for Android TV. Many of them were superficial, but there were also useful things like being able to turn off autoplay. It also got a fair amount of criticism for essentially just being a web wrapper and having some things missing. The biggest disappointment for many was that you could no longer sign in with a brand account or switch channels as you could in the previous release. Google said they would be brought back soon and has just made good on that promise with a new update. Read More