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app

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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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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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Google's Family Link adds teen supervision, expands to more countries

Family Link, Google's set of parental management tools for their children's Android accounts, has received positive feedback since its U.S. launch in September 2017, leaving parents in unsupported countries eagerly awaiting the service. Thankfully for them (or at least, most of them), the wait is soon to be over, now that Google has announced it will roll Family Link out to "nearly every country in the world" over the coming days.

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Update Notes for YouTube, Duo, Drive, the Google app, and more (September 16, 2018)

Every week, I examine somewhere in the neighborhood of a hundred app updates while looking for changes. The most interesting things turn into APK Teardowns or Download posts. Many of the remaining updates are unremarkable, amounting to a few bug fixes, routine updates to libraries, or even just pixel-level adjustments to layouts and images. However, there are usually a few updates that land somewhere in between. I don't want to spam readers with dozens of short posts, but I hate to ignore things that people might want to know about, so I'm going to wrap up the leftovers for a little weekend reading and call it Update Notes.

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Google launches FameBit marketing app for influencers on the go

If you aren't a Youtube content creator, then you probably aren't familiar with FameBit — unless you remember the (now debunked) Pixel 3 release date rumor from last month. For the uninitiated, it's a service for YouTubers and other content creators to connect with marketers, helping "influencers" make a bit of cash with sponsored content. And now, conveniently enough for both parties, Google has released an app for it.

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Google app v8.20 beta adds screenshot donation, renames Saved back to Collections, and more [APK Teardown]

The last two versions of the Google app have been fairly sparse for significant changes, likely because we're closing in on the major Google event next month. With the release of version 8.20, there are a few things worth quickly running through, including a new option to donate screen captures, additions to Podcast screens, and Saved pages has been renamed back to Collections (again).

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Play Store v11.6 reveals rewards program called Play Points, hints at new voting system [APK Teardown]

Things have been quiet for the Play Store for the last few months, but a pair of updates to v11.5 and v11.6 began rolling out with some interesting clues hidden under the hood. Two new features appear to be in the works. The first is a loyalty program called Play Points, which works a bit like rewards points on a credit card that can be used for in-app purchases and Google Play credit. The second feature is a new voting system where users can play a role in picking favorites.

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Google Voice v2018.36 prepares Mark as Read in notifications, support for more attachment types, and a contact list fix [APK Teardown]

Google Voice was once thought to be abandoned, but these days we're seeing regular updates and improvements. The latest version bump hit yesterday with small fixes and tweaks to the UI, plus preparations for some future enhancements.

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Google+ v10.14 plans termination of Events and prepares bookmarking for favorite posts [APK Teardown]

A new update to Google+ struck yesterday, but it doesn't appear to include any visible changes. However, a look through the APK points to a new built-in feature for bookmarking posts to open again in the future. There's also a warning that Events are likely to be shut down sometime soon, and one line raises some questions about the upcoming titles feature.

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Gmail v8.8 removes follow-up reminders and quick replies, also readies the return of Inbox's snooze until someday [APK Teardown]

Gmail's latest update began circulating a few days ago. This version is uncommon in that it's removing features rather than adding them. The 'nudges' feature on Gmail accounts and quick responses for other types of accounts appear to have been removed entirely.

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