Android Police

Development

21

Google is testing a new "Explore" UI in Chrome's new tab page, can be enabled in flags

Google appears to be testing a new content discovery interface in the Chrome browser's new tab page called 'Explore,' and you can access it on Android right now by enabling an experimental flag.

The interface is clearly in its early stages, and contains a large number of placeholder sites at the moment - most of them of specific interest to Indian users. I don't actually think this suggests the feature will be targeted to the Indian market, necessarily, just that the websites appearing in this new UI have been chosen as examples by whoever is in the process of developing it.

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14

Google to more closely monitor SMS and phone permissions of apps on Play Store

The Play Store may be packed with content, but there are some pretty strict rules in place when it comes to the things apps distributed by Google can do, and once in a while those rules are refreshed or tweaked. Starting this month, Google has refined its Developer Program Policies to include limits to call log and SMS permission access, explicit prohibitions against surveillance and "commercial spyware apps," and new Android Contacts API restrictions.

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7

Google is trying to make Chrome extensions safer

As Uncle Ben said, "With great power comes great responsibility." Browser extensions can be incredibly powerful tools, but many of them demand full access to all web pages. Stories about popular extensions stealing user data or running cryptocurrency miners have become all too common. Google today announced a series of upcoming changes to Chrome extensions, some which aim to make them more trustworthy.

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3

Google Play extends developer registration and merchant support to 10 new countries

Google has quietly added more countries to its supported locations for developer and merchant registration. First up, developers in Palau and the U.S. Virgin Islands, two countries that were previously completely off the list, can now register on Google Play as well as create merchant accounts. Their payments will be made in USD, which is the official currency of both nations.

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12

[Update: Stable version now available] Android Studio 3.2 Beta is out with App Bundle support, Emulator Snapshots, and more

Android Studio is Google's recommended environment for developing Android applications, and plenty of new features were announced at Google I/O. Some of those improvements have now landed in the beta branch, with the release of Android Studio 3.2 Beta.

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7

Amazon expands 'Multi-Room Music' speaker sync to third-party hardware

In addition to all the other hardware-related news today, Amazon is also rolling out its multi-room audio feature to third-party hardware. Called Alexa Multi-Room Music, the expanded support for other Alexa-powered devices will allow you to group third-party speakers, including offerings from companies like Bose and Sonos, together with Amazon's Echo hardware for synchronized playback.

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47

[Update: Google Photos API generally available] Google launches Google Photos partner program

Google introduced a program today that will allow developers to integrate Google Photos into their services. The program includes an API that lets third-party services use some of the features Google Photos offers, such as the platform's powerful search functionality.

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5

[Update: Registration now open] Google announces Android Dev Summit on November 7-8 in Mountain View

Google I/O was just a few months back, but Google has another developer-focused event coming up later this year. The Android Dev Summit will be a smaller event that eschews the flashy demos and giveaways that attract non-devs to I/O. It's happening at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View on November 7-8.

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