Perhaps the most interesting feature exclusive to Google Pixel, at least officially, is Google Assistant. We have a review of Assistant's current functionality, but in a nutshell, it's essentially a conversation-based version of the former Google Now. XDA user brianelv has posted a short guide on enabling Assistant, and it should work on any Android 7.0 (or higher) device with the Google app 188.8.131.52 or newer.
If you have those prerequisites, the actual guide is fairly short. All you need to do is change your build.prop file, reboot, and clear Google app cache. Either root (to manually edit the build.prop) or a custom recovery (if you want to flash the zip) is required. In our own testing on a Nexus 6P, switching to the Google Now Launcher might be required to trigger the Assistant setup. Read More
Earlier this month, we reported an issue with both Chrome Beta and Dev on Nougat. Despite both apps being installed on your phone, they didn't show up in the list of My apps & games in the Play Store, which meant that they were never automatically updated and you had to manually search for them, open their listing, and then see if an update was available or not to download it.
The issue, as we rightfully suspected, was related to the change of the signature keys in Chrome. As Googler Alexander Mineer explained to us in the comments on the original post, the keys had to be changed due to Chrome's new ability to act as a WebView provider in Nougat. Read More
I think we all long for a real, proper tablet interface for Android and not just a blown-up phone UI, like on the Pixel C. We reported on Taskbar, an app that adds a Windows-like taskbar to your device and enables freeform windows mode, a few weeks ago. Developer Braden Farmer has updated Taskbar to version 1.2, adding in a new way to launch the app as the default homescreen, plus a few other improvements. Read More
If you own a Nexus device and have updated to Android Nougat, and you use Chrome Beta or Chrome Dev, you may have noticed something. Alright, maybe you didn't notice it because you don't have the eagle eye of Artem. Regardless, the issue is there and it's not a matter of #ArtemsLuck: I was able to replicate it on my Nexus 5X too.
Both Chrome Beta and Chrome Dev do not appear under My Apps in the Play Store on devices running Nougat. Even when they're installed on your device, you won't see them in the Installed list, which means that they won't detect updates and download and install them automatically when all of your apps do. Read More
After some confusion over the statuses of Android 7.0 Nougat OTAs and factory images for several devices, including the Nexus 6P, Vodafone Australia has finally given us some answers. Just a few days ago, their support page was updated to confirm that the update has been halted for the 6P. Read More
When the Android N developer previews were released, we learned about a hidden "Freeform mode" that takes multi-window to a whole new level. Instead of being limited to two apps on top of each other or side by side, Freeform would let you open as many apps as you want and resize them any way to fit on the screen. But we later learned that Freeform wasn't going to be enabled on any existing Nexus devices, not even the Pixel C which would benefit a lot from it. Read More
The saga of Night Mode on Android is a bit of a dramatic story that started with a sneak peek in Android M, disappeared, returned again in N dev previews, only for our excitement to be short lived as we learned that it might not make it to the final release. And make it, it didn't. With the latest dev previews and Nougat's official release, the signs of Night Mode started disappearing one by one.
But there's hope after all. It seems that Night Mode is still hidden in the System UI Tuner, and all you need is an adb command to unleash it. Read More
You've all been asking: "how is this crazy weird new home button with the little colored dots going to work?" Today, we finally have an answer for you. In animated GIF form. Because that's the best kind of answer. Before the GIF - a bit of background. At this point, it is our basic assumption that the reasoning behind the home button's rather radically colorful redesign is in order to promote Google Assistant (possibly via Now / On Tap functions), which has been teased by Google in the past using these four little colored dots. Read More
It's the new phone season of the year, part deux. After seeing the G5, S7 and S7 Edge, HTC M10, and more flagships at the beginning of the year, we're now ready for the second wave of releases. It started with the Note7, but not one to let its thunder get stolen, LG is quickly following up with the V20.
And the hype train is on. LG already teased the V20 a couple of days ago, saying it will be released before the end of the quarter — September being a good approximation — and it will be the first Android phone to ship with Nougat. Read More
The APK for the new "Nexus Launcher" we detailed yesterday is now floating around the internet, but I've yet to see anyone point out one rather important detail about the whole thing: it doesn't replace Google Now Launcher when installed, but rather is clearly separate in name and branding. Going to the launcher picker with Nexus Launcher and Google Now Launcher installed, you can see both sport different logos and, obviously, names.
Now, this in and of itself is not direct confirmation of the Nexus Launcher being a standalone app, but it seems like a pretty decent bet to make. This leads us to another question: will the Nexus launcher only work on Nexus devices, or does Google plan to make "Nexus" a software branding? Read More