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40

Google would really like to remind you that all Duo calls are end-to-end encrypted

Google would really like to remind you that all Duo calls are end-to-end encrypted

Since its launch in 2016, Google Duo has used end-to-end encryption for calls, messages, notes, and all kinds of communications carried through it. That encryption is one of the reasons we recommend using Duo to catch up with friends and family, but most users may not be aware of it. Now Google is boasting this privacy-centric approach for everyone to see, and while it's at it, it added the option to send more emojis to your contacts.

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10

Plex lets you host virtual movie nights with remote friends and family members

Plex lets you host virtual movie nights with remote friends and family members

There are third-party extensions like Scener that allow us to watch content from Netflix, HBO, and other services together while staying apart during these times of coronavirus-induced social distancing orders, but Plex is ready to up this with a native solution. It has announced a new Plex Labs experiment that allows you to watch shows, movies, and videos from your library together with others, perfectly synced up for everyone.

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27

OnePlus Launcher adds support for Android's Freeform windows (APK download)

OnePlus Launcher adds support for Android's Freeform windows (APK download)

OnePlus has recently revamped the app switcher part of its launcher on Android and introduced a few nifty features. One of them lets you quickly jump between all open apps, the other introduces freeform window support.

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21

Google Duo no longer requires phone numbers on tablets (APK download)

Google Duo no longer requires phone numbers on tablets (APK download)

Last week, Google Duo started rolling out a long-awaited feature that let others reach you over your email address, which meant you didn't have to share your phone number with anyone you wanted to video call. When we covered the news, we tried setting up Duo from scratch using only an email address, but discovered we still needed a phone number for the first sign-up. It turns out there's a nuance: you do need a phone number on phones, but not on tablets.

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100

Messages v6.2.031 promises end-to-end encryption over RCS and expanded web features for Google Fi (APK Teardown)

Messages v6.2.031 promises end-to-end encryption over RCS and expanded web features for Google Fi (APK Teardown)

Google Messages has become the app to watch now that new leadership has been tasked with cleaning up some of sprawl created by projects of the past. A new dogfood build of the app made it into circulation, and it contains signs for some important features people have been looking forward to. For those with a desire to keep their messages private, Messages will soon support end-to-end encryption over RCS. And if you're a Google Fi user, get ready to see some huge improvements to the Messages for Web service that will bring browser-based access to calls and voicemail.

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4

Google's Sound Amplifier app now works with Bluetooth headphones (APK Download)

Google's Sound Amplifier app now works with Bluetooth headphones (APK Download)

Google's Sound Amplifier takes sound picked up by your phone's microphones and pipes it directly into your earbuds. It's a great idea, but its utility has historically been limited by the app only working with wired headsets. Version 3.0, rolling out now, lifts that restriction, finally letting users listen through Bluetooth headphones.

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29

Google's Action Blocks let you create widgets for often-used Assistant tasks (APK download)

Google's Action Blocks let you create widgets for often-used Assistant tasks (APK download)

Google is working on making Android as inclusive as possible, only recently updating features like Live Transcribe and Sound Amplifier. Along with announcing the improvements to these accessibility functions, the company has also shared that it's launching a new app called Action Blocks. The app is targeted at people with cognitive disabilities, but it certainly looks like it can be useful for anybody. It lets you create single-tap actions for Google Assistant in the form of widgets instead of having to say them over and over.

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22

WhatsApp beta lets you share your profile with others via QR code (APK download)

WhatsApp beta lets you share your profile with others via QR code (APK download)

WhatsApp's reliance on phone numbers for authentication is part of the reason the app took off so fast — no username, no email, no password, no fuss. But that requirement has become a hindrance over the last few years, be it in the lack of multi-device support or the inability to quickly start chatting with someone without adding them to your phone's contacts first. There are workarounds for the latter, but nothing too straightforward. Now WhatsApp is starting to address this by adding QR codes for profiles in the latest beta.

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4

Google Live Transcribe gets updated to v3.0 with two new nifty accessibility features (APK download)

Google Live Transcribe gets updated to v3.0 with two new nifty accessibility features (APK download)

A year ago, Google introduced two accessibility apps for Android: Live Transcribe and Sound Amplifier. As the name implies, the first one lets deaf and hard-of-hearing people use their phones to instantly transcribe any conversation around them and read it on their screen. The app has now been updated to v3.0 and gained two new features: Custom words and Vibrate when name is spoken.

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19

Authy gets renamed to 'Twilio Authy' and rolls out dark theme in latest beta

Authy gets renamed to 'Twilio Authy' and rolls out dark theme in latest beta

Five years after its acquisition of Authy, Twilio is now adding its ownership stamp on the app. The Play Store listing has been renamed to "Twilio Authy," though the launcher icon retains its simpler "Authy" name. The app also rolled out a new dark mode in its latest beta.

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