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Australian carrier Telstra accidentally ships Pixel pre-orders a week early

Living in Australia seems rough. Not only does every animal on the continent want to kill you, but you usually have to wait longer to get your hands on new electronics gadgets than folks in other regions. Google's Pixel launch is an exception, though. Pre-orders are live via the Google Store and on carrier Telstra, and the carrier managed to screw that up in the best way possible by sending out pre-orders a week early.

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Search recommendations now appear inside Google search results

Google has long offered related searches at the bottom of search results, but this is a bit different. The above widget, which now appears for some users when you tap on a search result and then go back, shows relevant searches to whatever page you tapped on.

As opposed to the related search results at the bottom of each results page, this appears directly under whatever link you picked. Considering the vast amount of searches I do on my phone don't require me to scroll all the way down to the bottom, it makes sense to add recommendations directly into results. Additionally, the results seem to be tailored to the link itself, as opposed to being based on your query.

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[Not Calendar] Google's AdSense and Analytics sites get a Material Design makeover

Ever since its introduction many, many moons ago, Material Design was promised as an adaptable design language that's suited for our modern web: it works across platforms, it feels vibrant and responsive, and it brings layers and a sense of real interactions with something as static as a flat mobile or desktop screen. But even Google hasn't been diligent about implementing Material Design in its own sites. Contacts and Google+ are perhaps the most prominent two that got the makeover, but other entities still lag behind. (Like Calendar... Why?!)

Today, however, is a happy day for MD lovers who also happen to manage sites or ads — ie, probably not many of our readers.

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Google pushing Pixel pre-orders with popup on Google homepage

Google really, really wants you to pre-order a pixel, or at least to be aware that it exists. If you head to the Google homepage, you very well may see a popup encouraging you to pre-order the Pixel. Forget for a minute that most variants of the Pixel are sold out—Google is getting as much attention as possible for this phone.

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A bunch of devices receive CyanogenMod 13 updates, HTC One and Wileyfox Spark among them

CyanogenMod 13, based on Android 6.0 Marshmallow, was formally released back in March, but it's only just arriving for some devices, in the form of nightlies. The most notable of these devices are probably the original HTC One and the Wileyfox Spark, plus the Spark X - the Spark's bigger, more powerful brother.

The HTC One is being bumped up from CM12.1, which was based on 5.1 Lollipop, while the Spark and Spark X are receiving their first taste of the custom ROM, albeit not their first Cyanogen flavored taste though, since they run the in-house Cyanogen OS, which has recently been killed off.

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AndroidN-ify Xposed module brings Google Assistant to Marshmallow devices

Bless you, Xposed Framework. Thou art the last refuge of power users whose hardware has been forsaken by manufacturer and ROM developer alike. The root-enabled tool has a new module that back-ports a bunch of Android Nougat features to earlier versions of the OS. It's called AndroidN-ify, and the latest update includes a tweak that exposes Google's fancy new voice-controlled Assistant search tool to users on Android 6.0. An earlier build.prop tweak allowed Android 7.0 users to try Assistant on non-Pixel phones, which won't be officially supported when the new hardware launches.

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Google Phone 5.1 includes UI changes, swipe up to answer, and more [APK Download]

We're still tearing down all the applications from the Pixel system dump, and the included Google Phone 5.1 app is certainly worth talking about. Without further ado, let's dive in!

New call UI

The first major change is the brand new Call UI, which is now a translucent blue shade over your wallpaper. The new interface looks a bit like the iOS dialer, with large buttons and a circular Caller ID icon at the top.

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Verizon and Google confirm Wi-Fi calling and HD voice will work with Pixel phones from Google Store

With the launch of Google's Pixel devices, consumers have to make the choice to buy from Verizon, the Google Store, or Project Fi. Unlocked phones sold outside the carrier sometimes don't work with carrier-specific features, like Wi-Fi calling. Thankfully, both Verizon and Google have confirmed to Android Police that all Pixel phones will work with Wi-Fi calling and HD voice on Verizon.

Google's statement says that even Pixel phones purchased through Project Fi will work fine with those features. This essentially means there is no reason to buy a Pixel phone through Verizon, as they will work identically. Buying the Pixel from them actually has some downsides, namely the locked bootloader.

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Verizon says it will not delay system updates to the Pixel [Update: Google agrees]

Google announced the Pixel early this month in partnership with Verizon. While you can get the phone from the Google Store, Verizon will be the only carrier that will sell the phone directly. Our collective flashback to the Galaxy Nexus mess was seemingly confirmed when it was revealed that Verizon would be managing the system updates for the Pixel. Now, Verizon says those updates won't be delayed.

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The Google Now Launcher's search widget is getting a transparent sub-widget

Google is no stranger to testing changes server-side before releasing them for public consumption; in fact, we reported on them testing multiple Play Store UI tweaks at the same time just a few days ago. For several weeks, we've been getting tips about this new extension for the Google search widget, but it seems to be rolling out more widely now.

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