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Articles Tagged:

api

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Google Photos gets new sharing previews for users who don't have the app installed

Towards the end of 2016, Google introduced an API called App Preview Messaging. It debuted with Allo, where it lets you message anyone regardless of whether they have the app installed. They receive a preview message, handled by Google Play Services, which they can respond to as though they do have the app.

Duo recently added support for this, too, so you could receive and answer a video call from a contact even if you've never heard of the app. Next to add the feature is Google Photos, which now lets you share media with friends or family members who don't have the app via their phone number.

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Google could block access to hidden and undocumented APIs in Android P

We're probably just a few months away from the first developer preview release of Android P, but there are some hints of what Google's cooking in AOSP. According to a report at XDA, Google might be planning a move that'll upset some developers. New commits suggest Google will remove access to unofficial APIs in the next big Android release.

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The Google Home has a hidden API that local devices can use

The Google Home works with a massive number of smart home products, but developers looking to tinker with it are usually out of luck. It doesn't have any kind of public API, so custom functionality can really only be added through IFTTT (or by writing your own Assistant app). Now there is a way to obtain some data from a Google Home, as one developer has discovered an undocumented API that the Google Home uses.

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Alexa will soon operate your very complicated microwave for you

The more capable a microwave oven is, the harder it is to figure out what buttons to press to make it do the thing you want. Or so I've heard. Today, Amazon announced that it will save us all from furiously button-mashing to just heat up some leftovers by adding cooking capabilities to its Smart Home Skill API and working with appliance manufacturers to add its Alexa assistant to cloud-connected microwave ovens.

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Google will remove Play Store apps that use Accessibility Services for anything except helping disabled users

For years, Android has allowed apps to modify the behavior of other applications, using Accessibility Services. While the intended purpose is for developers to create apps for users with disabilities, the API is often used for other functionality (to overlay content, fill in text fields, etc.). LastPass, Button Mapper, Signal SpyTasker, and Greenify are just a few examples of applications heavily using this API.

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Google announces Nearby Connections API v2.0 with full offline functionality, more bandwidth, and less latency

Some of you might remember the Contextual App Experiences talk at I/O this year. The seemingly convoluted name actually held some pretty big news, as it was during that talk that Google revealed its plans to refresh the Nearby Connections API. That set of APIs is used to provide communication between your phone and other things in physical proximity to you, further expanding your ability to share info and data locally. Well, as of today version 2.0 of that API is now available, bringing new features for developers. 

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Bluetooth battery level indicators could be coming to stock Android soon

Over the years, one of the most annoying feature omissions in stock Android has been a battery indicator for connected Bluetooth devices. There is a public standard for reporting battery life from (supported) Bluetooth devices, but stock Android just doesn't use it. A few OEMs have implemented it themselves in the last few years, like Samsung and LG, but not Google.

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Release notes for Play Services v11 have been posted with a new API for smooth SMS verification and several significant additions and deprecations

Now that Google is through with its biggest developer conference of the year, it's time to deliver a few updates and fulfill some of the promises made during the event. Some of that is happening through an update to Play services. Google posted the release notes for the update and it includes a lot of additions, both big and small, and a few deprecations.

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Google shuts off Chrome Sync API for third-party browsers on Android, citing a security vulnerability

If you aren't familiar, Chrome has two versions: the open-source Chromium project, and Google's proprietary Chrome builds with added functionality (like a built-in Flash player). Numerous browsers on Android are based on Chromium, including the popular Snapdragon-optimized CAF browser. Unfortunately, Google has now shut off access to the Chrome Sync API on Android for anything but Chrome itself, including vanilla builds of Chromium.

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InBrief
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Google Play services v9.8 update brings Goals API for Fit, auto-fill support for phone numbers, and more

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