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Samsung and Huawei come out on top as global smartphone market grows for first time in two years

Ever since the global smartphone market started to decline back in 2017, it has stubbornly remained stagnant. Surprisingly, the trend has finally reversed itself as the global smartphone market has managed to eke out a 1% growth in Q3 2019, just barely reversing the two-year-long decline. The resurgence was led by market share leaders Samsung and Huawei, who experienced double-digit annual growth rates from Q3 2018. On the other hand, two of the top five smartphone vendors — Apple and Xiaomi — experienced single-digit declines in market share, while the number five Oppo saw some minor growth.

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34

YouTube Music adds Siri support on iOS, while Assistant integration remains laughably inconsistent

YouTube Music is slowly spreading its tentacles and establishing itself as Play Music's successor. While the service still lacks many essential features for some users, it's good enough for others. Its most recent addition is Siri support on iOS — while Android integration with Assistant is still iffy.

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125

Google aware of free original quality HEIC photo backups for iPhones, says it's a 'bug'

After the Pixel 4's announcement, we were surprised to discover it didn't offer free original quality backups on Google Photos like its predecessors. The next day, a Redditor made things even worse for Pixel users by explaining that the new iPhones do get unlimited original quality backups on Photos because they use the HEIC format. We've reached out to Google and got confirmation that this is indeed the case, but it's a "bug" that'll be fixed.

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20

Google Voice adds proper Siri support before Google Assistant

Google Voice is quite a convenient service letting you call and text internationally for cheap. It's even a proper phone line replacement for some. There's one thing that we've been waiting for the service to implement forever, though: using your voice to initiate a ... Voice call. That's changing, but only if you have an iPhone or an iPad: In a collective slap in the faces of Android and Nest users, you can now talk to Siri to make calls or send text messages through Google's service.

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49

Is Google Play Pass worth it? Depends on who you are

I have 500 words to tell you whether or not I think you should get Google Play Pass for $5 a month or if you're better off with an alternative solution. Frankly speaking, if you're the type that constantly uses a wide array of apps and games and are always curious enough to try just one more every so often, you should pull the trigger. But let's not get ahead of ourselves, here.

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60

[Update: Now in stable] Apple Music beta adds Chromecast support and 100,000 radio stations

Earlier this month, Apple Music received a beta update that added a new dark mode and synchronized lyrics with the music. While that did cross off two of the most wanted features in the app, there was still one request that Apple hadn't yet answered: Chromecast support. Now, nearly four years after the service launched on Android, it can finally play our tunes on Chromecast speakers.

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340

On iPhone day, Google's big Pixel phone problem looms large

Today, Apple will announce some new iPhones. Before the year is through, it will sell tens of millions of these phones worldwide, with each sale averaging a price any other smartphone maker could only dream of. Around a month from now, Google will offer its retort, in the form of the Pixel 4. The Pixel 4 will not be the source of any grand claims about sales figures, because Google will probably be lucky to even crack a million units before 2019 ends, if the Pixel 3's struggles are any sort of evidence.

After three years and soon four generations of Pixel smartphones, Google has failed to generate meaningful marketplace traction for its in-house smartphone brand.

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11

Apple Music finally gets a web interface

Apple Music finally has a home on the web. The service launched more than four years ago and quickly became one of the top music streaming platforms, but until now, it's only been accessible through dedicated applications. Now, it's got a web interface that should work in any browser.

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117

Samsung made some cringeworthy GIFs to help you fight iPhone users' blue bubble elitism

We all have that friend who disses us for not having an iPhone. Especially when you're texting, your mate isn't going to leave out an opportunity to remind you that he can't use all the glorious iMessage features like read receipts, high-quality image sharing, and more, because your text bubbles are green. In fact, iPhones are incompatible with RCS, which could solve the problem of high-quality cross-platform SMS texting. With no resolution in sight, Samsung's marketing team has decided to pour oil into the fire instead. It now offers a selection of green-bubble comeback GIFs on Giphy, each one weirder than the other.

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