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61

Huawei reaches agreement with TomTom to create Google Maps replacement

The never-ending drama between Huawei and the United States government has only sped up the company's desire to rid its dependence on U.S. technology. Huawei is already making its own operating system and app store, and now Huawei's phones will have a mapping tool ⁠— courtesy of TomTom.

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16

Get a Pixel 4 and a $200 Amazon gift card for $699

The smaller Pixel 4 has floated around $600-700 since release, and currently goes for $799 from the Google Store. If you buy the Pixel 4 from Amazon right now for $699.00, the retailer will throw in a $200 gift card, effectively discounting the phone to $499.

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9

Google app's new Labs lets you disable Doodles in the homescreen widget

A few days ago, a new Labs section showed up in Google's search app on Android. In it, users are able to choose which upcoming features they want to enable and which ones they're not interested in. At first, only two options were there: Pinch to zoom on search results and Screenshot editing, sharing, and actions. Now, a third one has joined them: Search Widget Doodles.

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31

Google removes Duo access for G Suite users (Update: Working again)

Despite getting lots of extra features, G Suite users often feel like they've drawn the short end of the stick when it comes to any of Google's general consumer-facing options and services. Over the past year alone, we've seen G Suite users get shafted with code redeeming and app reviews on the Play Store, Stadia access, and several Assistant features like reminders, messages, and the new UI. Here's one more to add to the list of inaccessible features: Google Duo.

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32

Chrome for Android tests reminding you to clean up your old tabs, since you clearly can't handle them yourself

 

I'll be the first to admit that I am terrible at closing Chrome tabs on my phone, constantly filling them with things that I can't get to at the moment, but also don't deserve a new bookmark. Because of my poor tab management, I'm regularly greeted by a smiling emoticon in place of any indicator of my current number of open tabs. Thankfully, Chrome for Android appears to be testing a new feature, by way of a new flag, that will periodically suggest users clean out their old, unused tabs.

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64

Google Assistant routines haven't worked on Android Auto for over a year, still no fix in sight (Update: Google acknowledges)

Assistant's features are far from consistent across platforms and have been like that since the service's launch. Some commands work on phones but not speakers, others vice-versa, not to mention smartwatches, TVs, cars, Bluetooth headsets, and other types of devices. Here's another example of this fragmentation: Routines aren't working on Auto. In fact they haven't been supported for over a year and there's no solution on the horizon.

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179

All the games on Google Stadia (Update: Cyberpunk 2077 delayed)

Google's cloud gaming service, Stadia, begins trialing on November 19 — you'll need to buy a $130 Founder's Edition kit to get access — and is expected to expand to the general audience sometime in 2020. So far, 30 games have been announced for the early roster and we expect more of them to pop up as we go along this year. It can be a little hard to keep track of things, so we've got you covered with a handy list of all the titles that have been announced for Stadia.

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202

The Pixel 4a is putting Google in an unwinnable war — with itself

I don't think it meant to, but Google has backed itself into a corner with the anticipated Pixel 4a. The previous Pixel 3a was a smash-hit of a phone, doubling the company's phone sales amid some serious troubles. The 3a was so great it even earned our 2019 Smartphone of the Year accolade over the company's "flagship" Pixel 4 series. But based on what we've heard so far, I think the upcoming Pixel 4a could be a disaster for Google.

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161

Google shuts down Xiaomi access to Assistant following Nest Hub picking up strangers' camera feeds (Update: Fully resolved)

So-called "smart" security cameras have had some pretty dumb security problems recently, but a recent report regarding a Xiaomi camera linked to a Google account is especially disturbing. One Xiaomi Mijia camera owner is getting still images from other random peoples' homes when trying to stream content from his camera to a Google Nest Hub. The images include stills of people sleeping and even an infant in a cradle. In the meantime, Google has entirely disabled Xiaomi integration for Google Home and the Assistant while it works out the issue with Xiaomi.

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82

Exclusive: Google is working to bring official Steam support to Chrome OS

Last week in Las Vegas while at CES, I spoke with Kan Liu, Director of Product Management for Google's Chrome OS. In a wide-ranging discussion about the Chrome platform and ecosystem, Liu dropped something of a bombshell on me: the Chrome team is working—very possibly in cooperation with Valve—to bring Steam to Chromebooks.

Liu declined to provide a timeline for the project, but did confirm it would be enabled by Chrome OS's Linux compatibility. The Steam client would, presumably, run inside Linux on Chrome—a platform for which it is already available. Liu implied, though would not directly confirm, that Google was working in direct cooperation with Valve on this project.

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