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Google Home v1.24 prepares to give Google Home users an option to automatically cast to specific TVs and speakers without naming them each time, Bluetooth support coming soon [APK Teardown]

Quite a few Google apps were given minor version bumps today, but nothing has been all that interesting until it was teardown time for the latest release of the Google Home app. It doesn't seem to have any changes in the live interface quite yet, but there are a couple of things from the resources that deserve a look. To begin with, we have a status update on the subject of Bluetooth pairing. On top of that, it looks like it will be possible to set default TVs and speakers to be used as output devices for Google Home.

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[Lame] Netflix places limits on how many times you can download certain content

Netflix added download support for a large chunk of its library late last year, which is great. It was long overdue, but still a much appreciated addition. However, Netflix's downloading functionality comes with a nasty catch that many people have just recently started running into: some content can only be downloaded a certain number of times. The worst part is Netflix doesn't tell you about that until you're almost out of downloads.

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Popular television progress tracker TV Show Favs is testing a new material design layout

Users of the popular television management app TV Show Favs have some new features to look forward to. MKDevelopment, the guys behind its development, are currently testing v4 of their app with a beautiful new material design version. The redesign is almost unrecognizable, and an enormous visual improvement over the previous version's dated Holo-era design. In addition to a visual overhaul, there are a few other new features, like app shortcuts. This latest release is still in testing so there may be more features to come.

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[Deal Alert] Several movies and TV episodes on Google Play are on sale for Memorial Day

If your Memorial Day weekend plans are being ruined by poor weather, Google has an offer for you. It recently tossed up a little holiday sale on movies and TV shows over on Google Play, including some deals that are over 50% off their regular prices. So if you can't go camping or throw that family barbecue because of rain, at least you and your loved ones can snuggle up inside while you binge watch The Wire. It'll be good for little Johnny's character.

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Android TV is getting a new launcher with Android O

Android TV hasn't had much attention from Google in the past few months. The first Android O Developer Preview had no noticeable differences on the platform, and YouTube TV still doesn't have an Android TV application. I suppose good things come to those who wait, because Android TV is getting a brand new launcher with Android O.

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YouTube in the living room now supports 360-degree video

I can't say I watch 360-degree videos much on YouTube... or at all. But I'm sure some people do, and if you are one of those people, you'll be happy to know that you can now easily view 360-degree content on your living room TV.

Google says the new functionality should work on any YouTube television apps, be it on your Xbox One or Android TV. I assume it will work on the Chromecast as well, but that was not explicitly mentioned. When viewing 360-degree content, you can use your remote's directional keys to move the viewfinder.

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YouTube has passed 1 billion hours of videos watched per day, watchtime on TV increasing rapidly

YouTube is no pushover. It's a gargantuan platform for content creators and, odds are, there is something on there for everyone to enjoy. Personally, I watch stuff there more than on Netflix, Hulu, or Plex — it's usually about something involving video games. Turns out that all of us who watch YouTube collectively view 1 billion hours of videos per day. Think about that for a second.

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Google Home now streams TV content from many more services, including HBO Now and Hulu

One of the most interesting new features introduced during the Google I/O keynote has to be the integration between Google Home and Chromecast. The intelligent assistant can now show visual responses to interactions you have via any Chromecast connected TV. For a while now we've been able to play videos through our Chromecast via YouTube and Netflix, and now many more services are being added.

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Google Home will soon provide you with contextual visual responses

While Assistant on the Google Home is useful, there are certain things that are best expressed visually rather than via audio. Whether you're wanting to see your calendar information, check out what's trending on YouTube, or navigate to your next event, Home will soon provide you with visual responses on the appropriate screen.

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NBC releases its app for Android TV

Last night the US cable network NBC released an app for streaming content to the Android TV platform. It's pretty similar to NBC's other Android app, but, you know, for Android TV. The UI has been reworked to look better on a larger-format display but, presumably, offers all the same content you expect.

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