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Applications

62

Google Podcasts gets proper queue and bottom bar in big redesign (Update: Explore episode topics)

Google Podcasts may be well-integrated with Assistant and Home and Nest speakers, but compared to many other players out there, it has always been rather lackluster: Among other things, people have been complaining about missing features such as queues and auto-downloads. It looks like Google took this criticism to heart, as it's starting to roll out a redesigned version of Podcasts that adds these two along with bottom tabs and an improved home screen.

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4

Take a world tour from your couch with these apps

With all of us stuck at home because of the Coronavirus pandemic, a supermarket run is starting to feel like the biggest excursion and adventure we can go on for the foreseeable future. Travel is out of the question, local trips are restricted in many countries, and even the simple idea of stepping out of your house is as daunting as an alcohol and paranoia party. I've been yearning for a vacation for a while — I even had a trip planned for May before all of this went down — but since that's been canceled now, I've found myself thumbing through old pics and 360 photos I've taken during my trips, reminiscing about better times and nicer places, then it occurred to me that I could do something similar but also discover new countries and cities I've never visited, all through the magic of Google Maps, Earth, and Street View.

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11

Discord app adds bottom navigation bar in server-side test

Discord is one of the most popular messaging applications worldwide. While the Android app hasn't changed much as of late, there are a few interface updates being tested, including a new bottom navigation bar.

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0

Alex Jones's Infowars app has been kicked out of the Play Store for spreading coronavirus misinformation

The Infowars app has been removed from the Play Store. Originally booted from the iOS App Store back in 2018, the Android version had remained available through Google's app venue until today. It was removed to combat the spread of harmful misinformation included in the app which pertained to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic (popularized as "coronavirus"), which is against Google's developer policies.

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41

You may want to cancel your Instacart order for next week — workers plan to strike (Update: Instacart responds)

According to a report published earlier today by Vice's Motherboard, Instacart workers are planning a nationwide strike next Monday, March 30th. Instacart's shoppers, who handle the "front-line" work of actually buying the goods you order, are requesting additional benefits from the company, including access to hand sanitizer, disinfecting wipes, and soap; an expansion of paid sick leave to cover those with pre-existing conditions warned not to work; and an extra $5 per order as hazard pay.

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14

Coronavirus has upended the Play Store top app charts — here are the winners and losers

The coronavirus pandemic has changed the world in many ways, including how we work, study, or even communicate. This is even visible when you look at the apps people download on their phones, as some have become indispensable these days. We've analyzed top app charts from last month and compared them to today's to see how they've evolved, and some of the results are interesting.

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69

Behind every delivery app is a person—tip them well, especially now

Right now, almost all of us are relying more on delivery and on-demand services than we ever have in our lives. Be it Instacart, Uber Eats, Grubhub, DoorDash, Amazon Prime Now, or Postmates, the gig delivery economy is operating at heretofore unseen levels. In many ways, this is great: it means Americans are staying home, reducing their exposure to others, and doing their best to flatten the curve of the coronavirus pandemic that is now spreading across the globe. But in using these services, it's critical to remember that the people bringing you these goods often aren't well paid, and rarely enjoy any kind of benefits.

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61

Google officially introduces emoji mashup stickers on Gboard as 'Emoji Kitchen' (Update: Compact interface)

Gboard is constantly under construction as Google keeps finding ways to improve one of the most used tools on our phones. The latest experiment looks extremely similar to an earlier test that added GIF and sticker suggestions for emoji last year. This time, the company is experimenting with stickers that put one emoji's emotion on another emoji's shape, and the results can be hilarious.

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1

28 temporarily free and 57 on-sale apps and games for Friday

Welcome to Friday, everyone. The past two weeks have seen a crazy amount of sales, and today things appear to be finally coming down, and yet I still have some awesome sales to share today. Most notably, the gorgeous puzzle adventure game Monument Valley 2 is being given away for free for the next seven days. I would also be remiss if I didn't mention the sales for the games Carcassonne and Little Inferno. As always, I've highlighted all of the interesting titles in bold to make discovery easier. So without further ado, here are 28 temporarily free and 57 on-sale apps and games for the end of the week.

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5

Here's another way to watch live news, TV, and movies for free with your phone

There are a lot of different free streaming services out there, and it's tough to know which is worth your time. We've looked at both live and on-demand services from Pluto TV to Plex and Kanopy, and based on our reader's repeated recommendations, now we're taking a dive into XUMO — another option for free live TV as well as on-demand content.

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