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Redesigned Pixel Launcher makes early appearance at Google I/O

A brand new Pixel Launcher UI has been spotted at Google I/O during a sandbox session on Instant Apps. We've not seen anything official about it yet, so it's either going to be debuted soon, or somebody messed up and it's not even a fully tested product. It seems the unreleased launcher was being used to demo new functionality relating to the now more widely available Instant Apps, which it can show in search results alongside those on the Play Store. Previously, the launcher could only display apps already installed on your device.

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Chrome Dev has a new search widget you can try out

Google apparently thinks you don't have enough ways to search Google on your phone. On my Pixel, I have the Google search 'pill' on the home screen, and Google Assistant if I hold down on the home button or use 'OK Google.' If you have Chrome Dev, you can use a new search widget as well.

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User-voted tags may be coming to movie search results in the Google app

It appears that Google may be introducing tags to search results for movies, at least in the Google app on Android and potentially across Google search on desktop. We've received screenshots that show a section called Top voted tags in the Overview tab, alongside a little New sticker to indicate that this is indeed a very recent addition.

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Amazon Kindle adds ComiXology Guided View, searches through your notes and highlighted text

There's a small but neat little change in the Amazon Kindle app on Android: you can now not only search for words inside the book you're reading, but you can also search for what you've personally added as a note (like in the screenshot above). Words included in sentences and paragraphs you've highlighted will also show on top of all search results (screenshot below). This makes it easier to find a sentence you've highlighted in the book or a note you've written about a specific section or sentence.

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Google App 7.1 beta is testing a search bar in the notification panel and may begin showing pollen counts [APK Teardown]

The Google app is responsible for a pretty staggering number of features ranging from the standard search interface, a voice assistant, and even a fully functional launcher. The latest update coming through the beta channel doesn't seem to have any new features going live quite yet, but there are a lot of changes to text and other resources, including the removal of all references to Bisto from the last teardown. Most of them are minor tweaks to features we've covered in the past, but a couple point to things we haven't explored yet. Users can look forward to pollen counts with their local weather and possibly a search bar located right in the notification shade.

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Google's new search tools and changes could help combat fake news

Since time immemorial (1998) Google's bread, butter, and raison d'être has been search. Now Google's changing the way search works a bit, empowering users by adding new feedback tools and changing results from their search ranking to bring you more relevant and accurate information. With these changes users should see less in the way of so-called "fake news" and other non-factual content (excluding searches for that material), and more accurate and relevant information pertaining to their search.

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Local reviews are now translated to your preferred language automatically

Google's local reviews can be a useful way to decide where to go and what to see when traveling, but what if you don't speak the language where you are? You can fumble with Google Translate to copy and paste the text, but that's clunky. Now, Google search and Maps will translate reviews to your language automatically.

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Google now shows 'Similar Items' shopping links on select image searches

If you need to find an image of something, you're probably going to use Google image search. This is simply the nature of the internet right now. You might start noticing a new block of images showing up in your results going forward, though. Google has rolled out a "Similar Items" feature. These images are essentially shopping links for items that are similar to the ones in the image result.

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Google search on Android can now search through Google Drive files

Hidden all the way at the right end of the Google search app's tabs is 'In Apps' search. As you might guess from the name, it allows you to search within the apps installed on your phone. Now Google has added Firebase App Indexing to the Drive Android app, allowing you to find your documents straight from the Google search app.

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Google adds a recipe carousel UI to your culinary search results

I will be the first to admit that I am not a fan of football, but I have been to some Super Bowl parties that were actually fun. As I am sure most will agree, good food is crucial to the success of most any gathering. Being the host comes with a series of challenges, one of the largest being what to cook. Google has people like you in mind, and it is rolling out an update to Search that brings a carousel of culinary suggestions and full recipes.

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