Android Police

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Google removed FX File Explorer from the Play Store, wrongfully accusing it of displaying deceptive ads

Google has a serious problem with draconian, overreaching app removal policies in the Play Store. Instead of taking the time to discuss minor issues with developers, the company loves to use a sledgehammer to crack the nuts. The latest app to take the hit is FX File Explorer, a popular file manager with more than 5 million downloads and a 4+ rating. It has been removed without warning because it allegedly sports deceptive ads, which is not true as far as we can tell.

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11

Google Recorder v1.1 availability expands to Pixel 2 and 3 (APK Download)

Google's Recorder app has been one of those especially popular revelations from the launch of the Pixel 4, and rightfully so —the voice transcription and search features are incredible. However, plenty of people weren't happy with the Pixel 4 exclusivity. That changes now...kinda. The Recorder app is now also officially available to the Pixel 2 and Pixel 3, but that's about it.

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15

Google Assistant can now adjust your bed, open your closet, and start your lawn mower (Update: 11 more kitchen appliances)

Google Assistant keeps reaching its tentacles into our homes. After adding support for most of our bathroom equipment, it's now moving into the bedroom to become compatible with our bed, closet, and drawer, so we literally no longer need to get out of bed to do anything. Also new is support for mowers and radiators.

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81

Google starts shipping Stadia Premiere Edition, shares new strategy for Stadia news (Updated)

Stadia is having a rather bumpy start, but Google is trying to make up for the problems by improving communication with customers. When the company took to Reddit to announce that Stadia Premiere Edition boxes and codes have started shipping, it also shared that it wants to experiment with daily updates on new features and enhancements going forward.

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138

Genius sues Google over anticompetitive use of its lyrics (Updated)

Google's knowledge graph is a two-edged sword. On the one hand, it's great for us users and offers us information at a glance before we ever need to enter a website. On the other hand, publishers are losing a lot of impressions because people don't click through to them anymore. This is particularly evident for lyrics providers; ever since Google started to offer song texts in search, traffic has naturally dropped for them. Now, one of the biggest players, Genius, has accused the search engine of illegally lifting lyrics from their platform and has provided evidence in the form of clever apostrophe use.

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30

Google Assistant now follows your dietary restrictions when recommending recipes

For anyone that loves cooking and spending time mixing and matching things in the kitchen, online recipe sites are a godsend. You type in a few ingredients and get dozens if not hundreds of recipe suggestions. But if you have a dietary restriction and don't want to waste your time sifting through the results looking for the ones that fit your preference, you can now tick a couple of boxes and Google will remember that for you. At least it will do so in Assistant on smart displays.

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3

Google and Santa are teaming up to bring the festive spirit to your devices

Christmas Eve is only 20 days out, and as such, Google has teamed up with Santa's Elves just in time to spread the festive spirit around the world. Google Assistant will offer you fresh broadcasts from the North Pole Newscast every day, and the Elves have polished up the Google Santa Tracker, which lets you explore Santa's village starting today.

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10

Google continues to tease Google Pay access in the power menu

Soon after Google released the December security patches for the Pixel phones, it followed up with a changelog detailing which new user-facing features have made it in. Among those, the company also teased a "Fix for Pixel Wallet display in power menu" in reference to the quick Google Pay shortcut seen in a beta version of Android 10. Since we never found any evidence of the functionality's availability in the stable release, we asked Google about it. That led the company to rewrite the changelog twice to finally say that it's currently an experiment that may roll out in a future update.

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3

Google Disability Support now offers video chat help from sign language specialists

With recent Android feature additions such as Live Transcribe and Sound Amplifier, Google has sought to make life easier for users who are deaf or hard of hearing. The next step is making sure those same users get the help they need to get the most out of their Google hardware and software products.

To this end, Google has added American Sign Language specialists to its Disability Support offering, with video chat available Monday to Friday, 8:00-17:00. The service is provided in partnership with Connect Direct and Telus International.

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