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Google embarks on a massive Chromecast ad campaign

As this is an Android enthusiast website, I would expect most readers probably have or at least know about the Google Chromecast. The little streaming stick has found its way into millions of homes, but now Google has started on a massive advertising campaign for the device, following on from the even bigger 'Phone by Google' Pixel ad campaign.

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InBrief
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Google Street View adds support for Daydream

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[Deal Alert] Certified refurbished Amazon Echo $120 on Amazon ($51 off)

It seems like ever since the Google Home launched, we can't have enough of these Amazon Echo deals. Maybe it's related, but maybe it's just the fact that the Echo is about 2 years old now, or that the new Echo Dot is super cheap and causing internal competition in the line-up. Regardless of the reason, we love it when prices drop so we can get the same gadgets for less — or more gadgets for the same budget, because let's face it, the bucks we save here will be spent on other gear.

The Amazon Echo normally costs $180, but recently we've seen its price drop to $140 new and $260 with a Philips Hue A19 Starter Kit.

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Pixels seem to be having trouble with LTE band 4 connectivity, possibly other bands, around the world

Google's Pixels are advertised as supporting LTE band 4, an AWS frequency. The band is commonly used throughout North and South America, and a number of readers from both continents have gotten in touch to let us know the Google Pixels are having difficulty with this band which, in some regions on some operators, is basically the only LTE signal available to subscribers. A Google Product Forums thread where these problems are being discussed can be found here.

Users in other countries have reported LTE issues on other bands, but band 4 is currently the source of most complaints, and we can't verify that reports of other bands not connecting are widespread.

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Samsung Pay is now live in Canada with support for CIBC

You still can't use Android Pay in Canada, but Samsung is now happy to offer mobile payments for whatever it is Canadians buy. Maple syrup, I imagine. If you have an account with CIBC, your card can be added to Samsung Pay as of today. Everyone else will have to wait.

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CyanogenMod 14.1 (Android 7.1) will roll out soon to the Nexus 6P, OnePlus 3, LG G4, and others

There was a time some years ago that CyanogenMod was the surest way to get the latest build of Android on your phone. It's a little slower these days, but development continues to chug along. The CM team hopes to roll out the first nightly builds of CM14.1 later tonight, but not all devices will be supported right away.

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Lenovo will now release all its smartphones under the Moto name

The long-rumored Moto M was released today on Motorola's Chinese site, with no indication of a North American release. Now Lenovo has announced that all future smartphones developed by the company will be branded as 'Moto' phones.

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Sony’s Concept for Android Nougat firmware now available on Xperia X in Europe

Sony has been toying with a different take on Android for the last year. The company calls it the "Concept for Android" program, and it gives Sony a place to test out new features for its phones with a cleaner build of Android. It's only available on select phones in certain markets, but another one is being added to the list today. The Xperia X in Europe can now download the latest Concept for Android.

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Motorola Moto M official in China, with lackluster specs and no Nougat

Motorola's latest phone, the Moto M, has finally materialized on the company's Chinese website after months of rumors. The phone has an all-metal body, a 5.5" 1080p display, a fingerprint sensor on the back, and splash/rain resistance. The specifications are nothing out of the ordinary, besides perhaps the Mediatek CPU in the place of a Qualcomm chip.

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Hands-on with Android Nougat's seamless update on the Pixel

One of the features buried in Android N while it was still a Developer Preview was seamless update. Just like Chromebooks, Android devices would be able to download new OTAs in the background, install them while they're still running, and only switch to the updated software after a reboot. We later learned that existing Nexus devices would not benefit from the option since they didn't have the partitioning necessary to manage the technical feat of having two firmwares installed at the same time, even if temporarily.

So in order to see seamless update in action — or not see them, that's the goal really — we had to wait until the Pixel shipped, since it's the first phone to support them out of the box, and until there was an OTA update for it.

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