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experimental features


Labs in Google app now available for many, lets users try experimental features

Google's always experimenting with tiny improvements to its search experience with the hope of helping out users who feel like their wants and needs are stuck in the margins. Fortunately for them, after months of it hiding in the background, they can now finally access these experimental features through a new Labs section of the search app.

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YouTube's experimental Explore tab begins testing on Android (Update: Still testing, new look)

Back in July, YouTube began testing a new Explore tab on the home page of its iOS app. Not many people saw it — only about one percent of users on that platform. Apparently feedback has been positive, though, because YouTube has announced that the test is now expanding to more platforms, including Android.

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Gmail Smart Compose is going live as an 'experimental feature'

Gmail Smart Compose, a nifty new feature that predicts what you're going to type and fills it in with a press of the tab key, is going live. It's only available on the desktop version of the new Gmail, and to use it, you'll have to enable experimental features in Gmail's settings.

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Android P feature spotlight: Here’s how to bring back System UI Tuner

Sometimes Google takes features away, but sometimes they're just hiding. Turns out, Android P still does have the System UI Tuner that we previously thought was removed. It's just not user-facing anymore. Interested parties can still access that hidden list of UI modifications, you just have to do it the long way, and we've got two methods here. 

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[Update: Still there, just hiding] Android P feature spotlight: System UI Tuner is nowhere to be seen

The System UI Tuner has never really been a feature for the masses. It was a way of hiding experimental features from the majority of users — you had to long press the quick settings cog to activate it — while still letting the more inquisitive of us play around if we wished. In the early Oreo developer previews there were quite a few interesting things in there, but by DP3 it was reduced to just a couple of status bar and DND settings. In Android P, it appears to have been removed entirely.

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