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YouTube has passed 1 billion hours of videos watched per day, watchtime on TV increasing rapidly

YouTube is no pushover. It's a gargantuan platform for content creators and, odds are, there is something on there for everyone to enjoy. Personally, I watch stuff there more than on Netflix, Hulu, or Plex — it's usually about something involving video games. Turns out that all of us who watch YouTube collectively view 1 billion hours of videos per day. Think about that for a second.

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Google's Android Go is a new Android variant that plugs the entry-level hardware gap

Android Go is a new version of Android that is meant to run on super low-end, incredibly cheap hardware. Think the Android One initiative, but applied to software only, as applied to really cheap devices. We're talking optimized at an OS and app level for sub 1GB, near-disposable phones. This should help Google bring Android to more people in more places.

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Google Home now streams TV content from many more services, including HBO Now and Hulu

One of the most interesting new features introduced during the Google I/O keynote has to be the integration between Google Home and Chromecast. The intelligent assistant can now show visual responses to interactions you have via any Chromecast connected TV. For a while now we've been able to play videos through our Chromecast via YouTube and Netflix, and now many more services are being added.

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Google Photos will now suggest pictures to share automatically

Google Photos is one of my favorite Google products. It's not only great for photo backups, but also for sharing images quickly and easily. Google is adding more machine learning magic to Photos with the introduction of 'Suggested sharing,' which aims to take all the work out of sharing pictures.

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Google Home will soon provide you with contextual visual responses

While Assistant on the Google Home is useful, there are certain things that are best expressed visually rather than via audio. Whether you're wanting to see your calendar information, check out what's trending on YouTube, or navigate to your next event, Home will soon provide you with visual responses on the appropriate screen.

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Google Home will now warn you about upcoming events, support for setting reminders is coming soon

One of the problems with "smart" assistants is that they really only help you when you ask them. Just yesterday, Amazon announced that Alexa will start supporting notifications, and now the Home will have a similar system. Called 'Proactive Assistance,' the feature will alert users of important information.

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The Actions on Google platform spreads to phones, with new payment support and a ton of new features

Google has announced that its Actions on Google platform will be coming to the Assistant on iOS and Android. Previously the platform was just available on Google Home, but soon it will work on all your phones, too. This change significantly expands the number of third party services and tools you can access on your phone via Assistant. It even works across devices, so you can pick up your phone and continue your action there if you have to run away for a bit. There are even new tools for developers, as the platform is tied with a new payments API.

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Google Home to add hands-free calling, personalizes the experience

You'll soon be able to make free hands-free calls using your Google Home to any landline or mobile number in the U.S. or Canada. Google announced the feature today and leaped over the Amazon Echo with its ability to call anyone and personalize the experience. Since your Home can recognize who is talking to it, you'll be able to access your own contacts when making a call. So, when you ask it to call mom, it will call your mom and not your roommate's mom.

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Google Home will now let you schedule calendar appointments, reminders coming soon

One of my biggest complaints about the Google Home has been its inability to schedule calendar appointments or set reminders. I tend to forget little things like running a specific errand, cooking supper, or doing the laundry... I take after my father that way. From what I've seen across the internet and from you fine folks who read AP, I am not alone.

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Bluetooth streaming added to Google Home, now you can play anything

Google’s Rishi Chandra took to the stage during Google's I/O keynote to talk about incoming features for Google Home. After announcing that some great music services will be coming to the smart speaker — including Spotify, Deezer, and SoundCloud — he also dropped the news that support for streaming over Bluetooth was incoming.

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