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Google appears to be downsizing its laptop and tablet hardware division, asking employees to transfer to other groups

Google's in-house laptop/tablet gambit may not be panning out as well as the company had hoped. According to Business Insider, the company is telling dozens of employees on the Google Create division, which oversaw the Pixelbook and Pixel Slate, to temporarily move to other positions within Alphabet amidst "roadmap cutbacks."

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Qualcomm's new Snapdragon 712 debuts as an ever-so-slightly-faster 710

Qualcomm's Snapdragon 700 series sits in an odd place in the market, one we don't really see in the US. The not-quite-flagship SoCs don't have quite the oomph the 800 series does, but the differences are strong enough to pull it away from the more mid-range 600 series. The newly announced Snapdragon 712 has an interesting, in-between state itself: On paper, it's essentially a Snapdragon 710 with clock bump.

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What We Use, 2018 Edition: The stuff Rita can't live without

It's been four years since I shared with you all the gadgets and quirky things that I own and love in my previous What We Use post. In the time since, a lot has changed in my personal life. I met the most awesome, weird, and pun-loving man. We got married, moved into an apartment of our own, and started traveling a little more frequently.

But a lot is still the same. I still pull double work duties: I own and manage my pharmacy, and I work here at Android Police, obviously. In between selling drugs and counseling patients, I sit back at my desk, clean up hundreds of emails a day, write a few posts, virtually shout at the entire team if they miss an Oxford comma, and come up with silly or inappropriate jokes.

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MediaTek reveals new Helio A series for entry-level handsets, starting with the A22

MediaTek gets a lot of flak—and, at least in part, it's deserved—but the company's products occupy a necessary niche. After pretty much every ARM chipset manufacturer excluding Qualcomm pulled out of the smartphone race in the early 10's, MediaTek was left to fill the entry-level void, and it has. The fact that its chipsets typically end up in lower-end devices means we're especially excited for today's news, as the company is launching the Helio A series destined for low to mid-range hardware, starting with the A22.

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iFixit tears down the Huawei P20 Pro to learn its triple-camera secrets

Remember a few years ago when smartphone makers were just racing to have the most megapixels possible? Ah, those were quaint times. Now, it's about the number of cameras you can cram into a phone. Huawei is leading the pack with three rear cams on the P20 Pro, but how'd it manage that? The phone-destroyers at iFixit are here to find out. They've taken a P20 Pro apart to find out what's up.

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Spotify is preparing to manufacture its own hardware

One of the major selling points of smart speakers is integration with third-party services like Spotify, Pandora, iHeartRadio, and others. However, the companies making the speakers often try to push their own music services over competitors, like how Play Music is the default on the Google Home. Apple has taken things a step farther with its HomePod speaker, which only supports Apple Music.

According to new job listings, Spotify is currently developing its own line of "category defining" hardware products, and is preparing the manufacturing process.

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Nest is being swallowed up by Google's hardware team

Google acquired Nest about four years ago, but it kept the company at arm's length. Nest products are still designed and managed by Nest, an Alphabet company. That may be changing soon. Google says it's merging Nest with the Google hardware team to "supercharge" Nest's mission.

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Google completes $1.1 billion acquisition of HTC hardware team members

Ever since Google worked with HTC to design and manufacture the original Pixel phones, rumors had been circulating about Google possibly acquiring the company. The news finally became official in September, when Google announced it would pay $1.1 billion for HTC's Pixel hardware team and various hardware licenses.

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Google hires ex-Apple chipset veteran to help design SoCs for Pixel phones

Google's hardware plans for the future are getting bigger. Variety is reporting that Google has hired Manu Gulati, a hardware architect, away from Apple. Gulati is reported as having previously played a significant role in the development of Apple's SoCs for the last eight years and was hired sometime in the last few weeks. His new title at Google is Lead SOC Architect, and he's expected to work on custom chipsets for future Pixel phones.

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The Information: Google plans to release a Google Home with mesh networking

Ever since the release of the first Chromecast, Google has been working hard to establish a place in your home. Last year's $129 Google Home was a major release, but it seems like Google isn't stopping there. According to a report from The Information, Google is working on an upgraded version of the Home to compete with the Amazon Echo.

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