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14

Google delays death of Chrome Web Store apps on all platforms

Chrome Web Store apps have been flailing for a while now. Google announced in 2016 that these Chrome Apps would be phased out by 2018 — that obviously didn't happen. Earlier in the year, Google committed to a timeline to slowly end support for them, but the company has just released a revised schedule that extends end-of-life dates on all platforms due to "feedback from customers and partners."

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20

Hangouts conversations appearing in Google Chat for some non-G Suite Google accounts

The long-awaited transition from Google Hangouts to Google Chat began earlier this year for G Suite users, but signs that the change has also started for general Google accounts have also been spotted. Some folks are seeing Hangouts messages from plain old non-G Suite accounts appearing in Google Chat.

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33

YouTube will end email notifications for new videos on August 13

YouTube has a few different methods of notifying you about new videos from specific channels, including push notifications on the mobile apps, alerts on the desktop site, and email. However, the last option is going away in a few days, as Google alleges email alerts aren't used very often.

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18

Get a Pixel 4 for $549 ($250 off) from B&H and Best Buy while you still can

If you hadn't heard, the Pixel 4 was officially discontinued a few days ago. At $800, this imperfect phone was always a bit of a hard sell, but it becomes more enticing when you knock $250 off the price. B&H is currently offering Pixel 4s at $549 a pop; plus, it's throwing in a TPU clear case with each purchase. Best Buy is offering the same deal, but without the case.

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12

New Google Assistant voice typing UI showing up in Gboard

Gboard users are being fed some new features that run the gamut from big to small. The biggest out of them is that some Pixel owners are now seeing a new Google Assistant-powered voice typing UI.

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6

Pixel 4, 4 XL, and 4a pick up security certification from ioXt Alliance — required for Android 11's Enterprise Recommendation

Pixel phones have always been some of the most secure in the market, which is something Google has always been proud of. Today the Pixel 4 family, including the newly released Pixel 4a, picked up yet another security accolade by becoming the first smartphones to be officially certified by The Internet of Secure Things Alliance.

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19

YouTube Music tests playing personal playlists via Google Assistant

In another "I can't believe it couldn't already do that" feature addition, YouTube Music is now testing the ability to pick and play your personal playlists from the Google Assistant. So the next time you need to fire up that "Summer 2017 workout jams" playlist, you can just ask the Assistant with your voice.

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39

Android 11 will make password autofill much better thanks to keyboard integration

Android has offered native autofill since Android 9 Pie, but despite that being an official method, actually filling out passwords and addresses is sometimes wonky, and phones often need a few seconds to recognize password entry fields. Google wants to improve that experience with Android 11 and has introduced a new autofill method that integrates with your keyboard, be it Gboard or a third-party app.

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4

Google Fit now details pace per mile, helping you better judge your running performance (APK download)

Google Fit helps you keep an eye on your fitness, be it via a smartwatch or just via your phone's own sensors. To make it even easier to parse how you did during your latest run, the company has added a pace per mile/km bar graph to a workout's details. The disappearing and re-appearing elevation map has also returned for some with this release, though not for everyone.

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45

Pixel 4 vs Pixel 4a: $450 cheaper, but not $450 worse

The Pixel 4a is hands down a winner, even when stacked up against the already great Pixel 3a from 2019. We gave Google's new budget phone a glowing review, and there are ample reasons why. But at $350, you may be wondering how it compared to the premium Pixel 4, a phone costing more than twice as much ($800). Is there really $450 more smartphone in Google's high-end Pixel? We really don't think so, even when you're just comparing spec tables. But when you get down to the raw experience, the comparison is even more favorable to the 4a: this isn't just a great phone for the money, it's a great phone, no asterisk necessary.

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