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app

60

Hangouts v27 upgrades to an adaptive icon, teases Mark as Read from notifications [APK Teardown]

Updates to the Hangouts app have been sporadic this year with big gaps in the earlier months, and new ones coming out about every month or two since I/O. Most new versions also seem to be lacking in any tangible changes, though that doesn't preclude bug fixes or other behind the scenes improvements. However, the latest update does show some signs of life.

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105

Google Phone v24 beta includes first pieces of Dark Mode [APK Teardown]

As many people had hoped, Google has been progressively adding dark modes to some of its core apps. Last month, there was even a teaser added to the Play Store changelog for the Google Phone app that promised to give users a choice between the all white look that has become so common, or a dark look that promises to be easier to the eyes, especially at night. The latest version is out, but unfortunately, this update won't be the one to enable dark mode. However, with a bit of tinkering, it's possible to see what the new theme looks like in its current state.

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21

Oculus introduces $399 wireless Quest headset, Go gets YouTube VR

Since the advent of virtual reality hardware, there's been a drive toward wireless. But the dream of an exceptional VR headset that doesn't tangle isn't quite there yet — the performance and graphics quality can't compare to wired systems. Facebook's Oculus seems to believe it has cracked the code, though. At Oculus Connect 5 (OC5), the new all-in-one Oculus Quest headset debuted with the advertising copy: "This is the VR experience everyone's been waiting for." In addition to the new hardware, the VR headset maker announced that its mobile app now supports the Oculus Rift, and that Oculus Go will soon gain access to YouTube VR's full library.

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12

Google Play Games v5.12 adds hidden Doodle Jump easter egg, achievement rarities, several visual tweaks, and more [APK Teardown]

The Play Games app went through a major visual refresh just a little less than a year ago, but an update from today is taking that work and refining it further through almost every corner of the app. A teardown also reveals some interesting new things are coming, including achievement rarities, notations for the rarity of achievements, a home screen widget, and more. And best of all, the previously spotted Boingo game easter egg is now operational, but it's hidden.

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30

ARCore v1.5 adds support for OnePlus 6T, ROG Phone, Razer Phone, Xperia X, and many more [APK Teardown]

Google's ARCore team just rolled out a new update that appears to bring the augmented reality framework to several more phones and tablets. Some hot new (and upcoming) devices are on the list, like the Galaxy Note9, OnePlus 6T, and ROG Phone. These are also joined by some older models like the Sony Xperia X.

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19

Wear OS v2.16 prepares priority notifications for favorite contacts, optional media controls, and much more [APK Teardown]

Android Wear, or Wear OS as it's now known, seems to have found renewed momentum lately with fresh efforts in fitness, updates to the interface, and new hardware coming on the horizon. The latest update brings one notable change the improves the interface for managing notifications, but also carries with it the signs of many other changes and additions to come.

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32

Google+ v10.15 hints at custom streams with unread counts [APK Teardown]

Google+ may have fallen out of the spotlight, but we've seen one update after another in the last few months that point to what may turn out to be a really significant revision to the social network. There have been signs for new formatting capabilities, a title layout, and even bookmarking posts to revisit later. The latest update speaks to yet another new feature that may allow for a new type of customizable stream.

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16

Google app v8.22 beta adds new Sound Search widget, prepares auto-download for podcasts, Contributions page, Pixel Stand promotion, and more [APK Teardown]

Google is rolling out v8.22 of its self-titled app. You'll now find a new widget for Sound Search hidden away, and a teardown includes several topics related to auto-downloading podcasts, Google Assistant for Households, a page for your contributions, and an animation to promote the upcoming Pixel Stand.

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5

Xfinity Stream now lets you buy TV content in-app, download rentals

Comcast's Xfinity Stream app, one of the cable company's main plays for a digital audience, offers customers access to live TV and on demand content (plus DVR recordings, for X1 or Instant TV Cloud subscribers), from their Android, iOS or Amazon device. In the recent 5.0 update to the platform, the company added the ability to watch and download rentals to the app, as well as the option to rent and buy directly through the app. A few other upgrades came along with 5.0 as well, but so far the update hasn't stemmed the poor to middling reviews for the service.

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32

Google Photos v4.1 prepares live albums, mixing together of albums and shared libraries [APK Teardown]

Google Photos is fairly fresh off of its Material Theme update, but the latest version doesn't appear to have any significant changes on the surface to add to the new look. But that's not where the interesting things are on this update, we're looking into the APK to find details of what is coming in the future. The big addition will be an enhanced album that uses facial recognition to fill itself with pictures of your family and friends. Photos will also begin directing people to install a RAW editor if they're taking photos in that mode.

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