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YouTube announces new tools to customize your video recommendations

With billions of videos available about every topic you can think of and then some, YouTube is, statistically, filled almost entirely with content you don't want to watch. The platform has always tried to narrow what it suggests to each user down to videos they're likely to click — and today, the platform announces several new ways of doing just that.

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YouTube Music will download up to 500 liked songs for offline playback automatically

Google's move from Play Music to YouTube Music is still unresolved — especially since the final transition of libraries and uploaded content between the two still hasn't happened — but the latter is picking up a new feature to help with offline playback. "Smart Downloads," as it's called, will pull down up to 500 songs that you've "liked" via that button, intelligently selecting and downloading them over Wi-Fi for later enjoyment.

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TripIt integrates with Assistant and Alexa to get you quick updates about your next flight

For those of us who only travel occasionally, Google search and alerts about upcoming flights are more than enough. But if you're a frequent traveller, you likely use a service like TripIt to stay on top of every detail regarding your flights. Starting today, you won't need to open the app on your phone to do so, you can simply ask your Google Home or Echo speaker and get the answer.

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[Update: Official] Google Maps keeps you safe by alerting you if your taxi goes off-route

When you're traveling to a new country, region, or even an unfamiliar part of your own town, and hailing a ride, you may be suspicious of the driver taking advantage of your cluelessness to charge you more or for more nefarious reasons. That's why I often keep a tab on the drive in Google Maps when riding a cab while traveling, but I have to repeatedly glance at my phone to notice any awkward routing. Maps recognizes this use case and is now offering to do the work in the background and notify you when your driver goes off the logical path.

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Duolingo helps you learn the difficult but beautiful Arabic language

Being a native Arabic speaker, it never occurred to me how complicated the language is compared to many others. I learned to speak it, read it, and write it ever since I was a kid, so I rarely notice its idiosyncrasies and instead simply think of all of it as second nature. If you come from an another background though, Arabic can be a daunting language to learn, but that's exactly what Duolingo has taken on. The service now offers Arabic courses for English speakers in its apps and on its site.

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Rebranded Beats app lets you easily control and update your Bluetooth headphones

Beats, the headphones brand now owned by Apple, has rebranded its Android app. Previously dedicated to the Beats Pill+ speaker, and therefore called "Beats Pill," the app now services several of the company's headphones too and has thus been renamed to a simple "Beats."

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Microsoft may launch a dual-screen, foldable Surface that runs Android apps and iCloud

As Samsung and Huawei attempt to re-engineer their foldable phones so that they don't break so easily once they limp to market, we're left with smartphones with tack-on screens, laptops, and convertible or so-called 2-in-1 tablets. Microsoft seems to have mastered the folding aspect of its hardware with its Surface lineup of PCs, but it may be stretching to produce a new "foldable" tablet that will run, of all things, Android apps.

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23 temporarily free and 28 on-sale apps and games to start the week

Welcome to the final week of June. Today's list of app sales isn't all that impressive, but some of you might something you like.

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Google Camera takes page from iPhone playbook, preps wide-gamut imaging — maybe to debut on Pixel 4

The camera in Google's Pixels has always taken some of the best photos in the world of smartphones, but they might be getting some expanded color chops soon — if not in existing hardware, then maybe in the Pixel 4. Google may be gearing up to add P3 wide color gamut support to the Pixel's first-party Google Camera app. According to some code dug up and enabled by developer cstark27 and subsequently tested by XDA Developers, Google has already integrated at least some of the required changes, and they were able to turn it on for testing.

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Chrome OS will soon show cloud storage apps natively in Files — but no Dropbox

Fans of third-party cloud storage providers will be excited when Chrome OS 75 finally reaches the Stable Channel. The update will deliver an optional flag which enables storage services other than Drive to finally integrate into the Files app in Chrome OS via Android apps — though not all third-party storage solutions are compatible.

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