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Google allegedly testing Russian support for Assistant

Google Assistant currently supports English, French, German, Hindi, Indonesian, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, and Spanish. As you may have noticed, Russian is one of the many languages missing. The 150+ million native speakers represent a huge potential market for Google, and now it looks like the company is Russian (heh) to add support for the language to Assistant.

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[Update: rolling out to G Suite customers] Google Calendar on the web finally moves to Material Design

Google unveiled Material Design all the way back in 2014 (has it really been that long?). At the time, the company promised that it would use that design language across all its products, on mobile and desktop. It has taken a while for Google to deliver on that claim, at least for its desktop apps and websites.

One of the major holdouts was the Google Calendar web app, which has changed very little over the past few years. Back in May, Google announced during a G Suite presentation that Calendar would receive a redesign in Q4 2017. Then in August, the interface began a limited rollout, but it was never fully released.

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Google unifies its payment platforms under the new 'Google Pay' branding

Google offers various ways to pay for things on devices and the web, and all these transactions fall into one of several products buckets. It's a bit confusing, but Google is streamlining its payment branding today with the launch of Google Pay. Android Pay, Google Wallet, and even Chrome autofill payment info will be unified under this brand. As for when—this is happening right now. Some people already see hints of Google Pay on their devices.

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Schlage Sense Smart Deadbolt will soon integrate with the Google Assistant

Just ahead of CES proper, Schlage has announced that its immensely popular Schlage Sense Smart Deadbolt (say that five times fast) will soon work with Google Assistant. A few months back, it added support for Amazon's Alexa, right after adding an Android app for remote control. And now, sometime in Q1 of this year, you'll be able to 'Hey Google' your way into locking or unlocking your Schlage-equipped front door.

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Acer Chromebook 11 (2018) hands-on: USB-C and a blue finish keep things fresh

The Chromebook product segment continues to gather steam as time goes on. Acer recently announced a 2018 refresh for its Chromebook 11, adding USB-C ports and Android app support (versus mixed support on older models). For our first stop here at CES, we dropped by Acer to take a look at this laptop. Best of all, we got to see the nice-looking blue model, which immediately caught my eye.

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Google Home Max review: The best (and most expensive) smart speaker

The chances are almost 100% that everyone reading this has some way to access the Google Assistant. You might even have more than one Assistant device now that most phones released in the last few years have support and Google is handing out Home Minis like they're going to expire. The original Google Home has a respectable speaker for the size, and many people use it to listen to music. Yet, for anyone who's serious about their tunes, the Home and Home Mini just don't cut it. That's where the Home Max comes in. This smart speaker is not screwing around—it's big, heavy, and incredibly loud.

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Google is investigating Pixel 2 XL voice messaging bug affecting WhatsApp, Allo, and Telegram

The Pixel 2 XL has suffered from several issues since its launch, both hardware and software-related, just like pretty much any other consumer product of its kind. The latest bug to come to light is a curious one that affects the sound output level of a voice clip sent via a messaging app. According to a number of users on this Pixel User Community thread, this issue is limiting the volume level when recording voice messages on the Pixel 2 XL.

When you send a voice clip recorded on a phone suffering from the bug, the recipient gets a message with very low volume, even when their phone is turned up all the way.

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'Spectre' and 'Meltdown' CPU vulnerabilities become public, most Google products already protected

A report from The Register yesterday claimed that Windows and Linux developers were scrambling to fix a "fundamental design flaw in Intel's processor chips." The flaw theoretically allows any program to view the layout or contents of protected kernel memory areas, which often contain passwords, login keys, cached files, and other sensitive data. Even a web app could potentially read kernel-protected data.

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Report: Google working on major G Suite improvements, including 'Wolverine' VoIP service

Over a year ago, Google rebranded Google Apps for Work as 'G Suite.' Since then, the company has been working to make G Suite more competitive with Microsoft's Office 365 and other cloud-based work products. The 'Jamboard' digital whiteboard, Hangouts Meet and Chat appsGoogle Drive for teams, and Gmail Add-ons are just a few examples of Google's new focus on the enterprise market.

According to a new report from The Information, Google is planning significant improvements to G Suite.

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Android's Security Director moves to Nest, replaced by Dave Kleidermacher

It's no easy task to keep an operating system secure, especially one as widespread as Android. Adrian Ludwig has served as the Director of Android Security since 2011, but now he's jumping to another part of the Google mothership - Nest.

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