Android Police

Editorials

59

Stadia one year later: The grass is looking greener from up here in the cloud

Stadia one year later: The grass is looking greener from up here in the cloud

It's finally here — the day when everyone who said Google's cloud gaming platform would be canceled in less than a year are officially wrong. That's right, Stadia is turning one today. It's been a rollercoaster of a ride with plenty of highs and lows. However, despite it all, I still believe Stadia has grown a lot in 12 short months, and it's time we give it some credit.

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42

Stadia is a year old today — and it's still not a viable alternative to console and PC gaming

Stadia is a year old today — and it's still not a viable alternative to console and PC gaming

One year ago today, Google launched Stadia, which, at the time, seemed like a promising new player in the gaming space. I reviewed it back then and found that while streaming performance was everything I could've hoped for, the selection of games and availability of basic features were both lacking. The number of available games on the platform has increased roughly fivefold since day one, and a lot of the features that weren't ready for launch, like achievements and family game sharing, are here — but against the backdrop of the new PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X, the service is still feeling half-baked.

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227

Apple is holding back messaging progress across the entire world with iMessage

Apple is holding back messaging progress across the entire world with iMessage

Google's rollout of its RCS-based "Chat" in the Messages app is now complete, delivering on the years-long promise of a better, universal messaging standard on Android. But, it's still not the "iMessage for Android" many of us hoped it might be. And, perhaps ironically, it's Apple that's standing in the way of that.

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70

Next year's Pixels need to charge faster than 18W

Next year's Pixels need to charge faster than 18W

Since the very first Pixels in 2016, the fastest any of Google's flagship phones has charged was limited to 18W. Back then, it wasn't an issue: Fast-charging standards of the time like Qualcomm's Quick Charge 2.0 could ostensibly go higher, but they practically topped out at a similar speed, and it wasn't a huge gap. In the end, Google elected for the better and more universal USB Power Delivery standard. But now, four years and five Pixels later, 18W doesn't cut it.

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144

Opinion: OnePlus has jumped the shark

Opinion: OnePlus has jumped the shark

OnePlus has come a long way from the scrappy, super-disruptive startup it used to be. For years, its phones posed the best spec-to-price "anti-flagship" value ratio of pretty much any Android phone, with software that was praised for its simple and stock-like appearance, supplemented by frequent and consistent updates. More than just a poor-man's Pixel, OnePlus phones had an enthusiastic (if not rabid) following for their confluence of features and price. But somehow, in the last year or so, OnePlus has lost its way.

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129

Should you upgrade from a Pixel 2 or 3 to the Pixel 5?

Should you upgrade from a Pixel 2 or 3 to the Pixel 5?

Most people upgrade phones every 2-3 years, a schedule that's often dictated by carrier promotions and on-contract deals. While our readers likely buck that trend, Pixel owners hanging onto the same model for the last 2-3 years are probably considering upgrading. In the case of the Pixel 2 and 2 XL, there's not much choice — it's that or stick with a phone that's less and less secure with each passing month. So is the Pixel 5 a worthy upgrade? For some of our readers, it might be, especially if they waited out the Pixel 4, as we generally recommended.

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90

From hyper-nationalism to brazen racism, Micromax’s comeback has started off on the wrong foot

From hyper-nationalism to brazen racism, Micromax’s comeback has started off on the wrong foot

The box you see above is Micromax’s media invite, sent out for its momentous return to India’s smartphone market after a long absence. But the charm of these quirky props all withers away when you read the prominent slogan in transliterated Hindi, “aao karein cheeni kum.” The phrase is used here as a double entendre, as the Hindi word cheeni is used for both sugar and the demonym Chinese, to allusively mean ‘let’s cast out the Chinese.’ This is Micromax stooping to a new low just days after its founder tried to capitalize on border skirmishes in a video promoting the brand’s resurgence.

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75

Google's lack of foresight and strategy is stifling Pixel sales in India

Google's lack of foresight and strategy is stifling Pixel sales in India

When Google announced that its new budget champ, the Pixel 4a, would cost ₹30,000 — a whole 25% less than the Pixel 3a — it felt like Google has finally learned to hit the right note for India. The company nearly checked all the right boxes: the release was well-timed, coinciding with Flipkart’s month-long Diwali extravaganza, and user interest in the phone was right at its peak. It all paid off when the 4a opened to blockbuster sales with units flying off the (virtual) shelves, and then… Google happened. Stocks dried up in a matter of minutes, and Google wasn't able to replenish them for over two weeks.

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18

Spam in Calendar, Drive, and Photos will always be an issue if Google keeps trying to catch it after the fact

Spam in Calendar, Drive, and Photos will always be an issue if Google keeps trying to catch it after the fact

Another large wave of spam has been hitting Google Drive users over the past few weeks. You might have noticed it either through an email in your Gmail inbox or a notification on your phone — or both — saying that an unknown email address mentioned you in a document. The comment includes a URL that you should absolutely not click. This is not the first time spammers have abused Drive, Calendar, or even Photos, and it likely won't be the last. Google's steps to remedy the different situations have been nothing but a band-aid over a bleeding, gaping hole.

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42

The Pixel 4a 5G hits the value sweet spot of 2020

The Pixel 4a 5G hits the value sweet spot of 2020

It's nearly the end of the year, and while many of us are waiting for the expected autumnal/Black Friday sales to upgrade phones, it's time to put that list together and consider just which models you'll be keeping an eye out for. And if you're still on the fence examining the 2020 lineup, we've got a specific recommendation: The Pixel 4a 5G. At $500 bought outright and unlocked, it offers a nearly ideal balance of value to performance.

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