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.
Google may have introduced Google TV earlier this year, but Apple TV has been around long before that. Problem is, there hasn't been any Apple TV Android app, and that includes for Android TV devices — at least, until now. Select Sony ATV models are receiving an update that installs the Apple TV app, which includes access to Apple TV+, Apple TV channels, new and popular movies, and personalized and curated recommendations. A month after its announcement, the app has now arrived in the Play Store.
Earlier this year, it came out that Google paid around $1.5 billion in 2019 to be the default search engine on various devices in the UK alone, most of which naturally goes to Apple. Factor in other countries, and it's likely to be a multi-billion dollar deal between the two tech behemoths (the DoJ estimates it at around $8-12 billion). It's a convenient arrangement that goes back more than a decade. Apple gets to serve the best search results to iPhone and iPad users, who in turn get served with Google's ads — everyone wins. Except for consumers, according to US antitrust authorities, and it's this increasing scrutiny that is pushing Apple to develop a competitive search engine of its own.
Apple is preparing to launch iOS 14, and that means there are updates incoming for all of its system apps, including Music. It looks like the company is working on bringing over these latest changes to Android as soon as possible, as the latest Apple Music beta v3.4 already sports almost all of the new stuff that will come to iOS 14: there's a new icon, improved search, autoplay, and Listen Now, which replaces the For You section of old.
Camera quality has always been a major differentiating factor when choosing between smartphones, but it seems like the competition has gotten more intense over the last few years. Some manufactures like OnePlus and Huawei use sensors with big megapixel counts to stand out from the crowd, while others like Apple and Google rely more on the marriage between hardware and software. With such a tight race for the winner of the camera crown, we're highlighting three recent YouTube comparisons worth a watch.
MagSafe is Apple's new wireless charging tech for the iPhone 12 series. It uses magnets to connect the charger to the phone, basically making it a fancier way to plug in your phone with some minor accessory support. While most people assumed it would effectively only work (correctly — as in, magnetically) on the iPhone when it was announced, turns out, that $2000 Z Fold2 actually came with some hidden added value.
Google has just announced the launch of a YouTube Music app for the Apple Watch. For folks keeping score at home, that means the streaming service all Google Music users are being forced to migrate to has debuted support for Apple's wearable platform before Google's own Wear OS. This makes the company's priorities pretty clear from where we're standing.
Apple Music gained a bunch of fresh new features in iOS 14, and they're enough to make YouTube Music jealous. The changes that landed on Android in beta version 3.4 include autoplay, a new smarter search experience, a revamped Now Playing interface, and one that got lost in all the other new stuff: crossfade.