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preview

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[Hands-on] Hungry Dragon, Ubisoft's medieval take on its Hungry Shark series

Hungry Dragon is the newest installment in the Hungry franchise from Ubisoft that recently soft-launched in Australia, New Zealand, Thailand, and the Philippines, and is currently available as a pre-registration listing for everyone else. The official release of this game is supposed to take place on August 30th, and you can earn exclusive in-game rewards if you pre-register ahead of its publication. But before that day arrives, I wanted to take a moment to fill you in on what you can expect from the game, which is what this hands-on is all about.

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Android P DP4 gesture app switcher now has full-width slider and larger previews

One of the most divisive (read: generally disliked) features in Android P is the new gesture navigation system, which brings all the convenience of unintuitive, non-descriptive interface elements together with precisely none of the visual space-savings you'd expect to gain from gestures. The latest Android DP4/Beta 3 tweaks the pill-based app switcher a bit, stretching the track for the slider to fill the full width of your screen and expanding app previews to be a lot bigger.

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Google Photos gets new sharing previews for users who don't have the app installed

Towards the end of 2016, Google introduced an API called App Preview Messaging. It debuted with Allo, where it lets you message anyone regardless of whether they have the app installed. They receive a preview message, handled by Google Play Services, which they can respond to as though they do have the app.

Duo recently added support for this, too, so you could receive and answer a video call from a contact even if you've never heard of the app. Next to add the feature is Google Photos, which now lets you share media with friends or family members who don't have the app via their phone number.

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Microsoft OneDrive introduces improved navigation in the latest beta release [APK Download]

If you're looking for a decent alternative to Google Drive for cloud storage, you could do a lot worse than Microsoft's OneDrive. Most of us have an old Hotmail account knocking around somewhere anyway, so it's easy to set up and get 5GB free storage. The developers seem to pay attention to it, too, and they've just released a bit of a redesign on the beta channel for users to give feedback on.

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[Update: Wide rollout] YouTube is testing video previews when you adjust your position on the seek bar

Lately, YouTube has been pushing a ton of server-side changes to users. In just the span of a few weeks, the comments section has been tweaked, the bottom nav bar test returned, and expanded replies were improved upon. The video-sharing service isn't stopping there; today, it seems that YouTube has begun displaying to a few users little snapshots of the video you're watching when you seek through it.

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Google Home preview program is now available

Google Home is good at a lot of stuff, but it's also missing some very basic features. After nearly a year on the market, this smart speaker still can't set a reminder. Maybe it'll be able to do that soon, though. There's a new preview program rolling out if you want to try the latest software updates a little early.

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Level 6+ Local Guides can apply to preview new Google Maps features before they go public

Google's Local Guides program for Google Maps has proven to be quite successful, with tons of people offering additional feedback and providing photos about various destinations. Part of this is due to the rewards that Google gives to Local Guides; for instance, Google is currently offering me three months of free Play Music and 75% off a movie rental. The latest reward is kind of a double whammy for Google - an opportunity to preview new Google Maps features before the public does.

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ZTE announces Android 7.1.1 preview for Axon 7 Mini users

ZTE managed to get Android 7.1.1 rolled out to the Azon 7 a few weeks ago, making it one of the few phones to have the latest build of Android. Now, it's the Axon 7 Mini's turn. Well... sort of. ZTE is starting up a preview program for the Nougat update, but not everyone will get access.

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Titanium Backup developer offers a preview version of EvGenie, a synced calendar app

Google Calendar covers most of the basics for synced calendar users, but anyone who wants something more robust needs to go on a bit of a hunt. Titanium Track, the indie developer team behind the power user favorite Titanium Backup, is on the job. Their latest project is EvGenie, an advanced calendar designed for seamless backup across multiple devices and sharing with family members or coworkers. It's currently on the Play Store in an open preview. It's free to download.

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First Chromecast Preview firmware removes all Chrome branding

Not too long ago, Google began offering users the chance to test unfinished Chromecast firmware. The first preview firmware, version 1.21.72444, began rolling out to users recently. Google's release notes for the update only state, "General bug fixes and stability improvements." Really helpful, Google.

Thankfully, tipster Rafael sent us the screenshots above and below. They indicate that all references to the word 'Chrome' have been removed. The current public firmware shows the Chrome logo when the device starts up, which is now replaced by a Google logo.

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