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VLC 3.0 exits beta, adds Chromecast support, faster seeking, and more

Last month, possibly the most-anticipated feature for VLC finally made it into the Android version - support for Chromecast. Now the feature has reached the stable branch, with the release of VLC 3.0. It's the first major version bump since 2012, and includes plenty of new features and bug fixes.

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InBrief
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Super Mario Run passes 100 million installs on the Play Store

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Samsung releases Oreo kernel source code for the Galaxy S8/S8+

Android OEMs are required to release the kernel source code every time they push a new Android version to a device. It includes any modifications they've made and its what tinkerers then use to build custom ROMs and other mods. Some OEMs are quick to release the code after an update, whereas some drag their heels. In this instance, Samsung has been impeccably fast.

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Android Auto adds new partnerships with Clarion, Boss Audio, Karma Automotive, and more

Android Auto had a lot going for it as CES last month, but in all of the hubbub, new partnership announcements got missed. Some big names, like Clarion and Boss Audio, were added to the list over the course of the last few weeks, as well as other aftermarket OEMs and car manufacturers.

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[Bonus Round] Earth Wars, StrikeMaster Bowling, Super Crossbar Challenge, Dungeon Survivor II, Grand Summoners, and Sea Game

Welcome to the latest entry in our Bonus Round series, wherein we tell you all about the new Android games of the day that we couldn't get to during our regular news rounds. Consider this a quick update for the dedicated gamers who can't wait for our weekly roundups, and don't want to wade through a whole day's worth of news just to get their pixelated fix. Today we've got a 2D side-scrolling ARPG, an arcade helicopter landing game, an arcade bowling game, a soccer ball kicking game, a dungeon crawler with an old-school feel, a gacha hero collection game, and a multiplayer-focused strategy game.

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It's Friday, so here are 22 temporarily free and 35 on-sale apps

Another week is over, which means that I need to get in this final round of app sales for you all before the weekend. Much like Wednesday's, today's list has a few notable entries, so be looking out for them. Otherwise, have a good weekend.

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Latest Nest app update lets you merge duplicate familiar faces of the same person, and more [APK Download]

Nest's been in the news a lot lately, with word that it's being folded into Google's hardware division closely followed by the announcement that its last remaining founder is leaving the company. Nest's in that position because of its great connected home products, and thanks to a new app update they stand to get even better.

If you have a Nest Cam IQ, you might have encountered an issue whereby you have multiple familiar face entries that it just doesn't understand are the same person. Thankfully, Nest has solved that problem in the latest update by allowing you to merge those duplicate entries together.

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[Update: It's working!] WhatsApp payments now showing for beta testers in India

We've known for a while that WhatsApp has been prepping a built-in payment service for its users in India, and the beta version of the app is now showing the new payments interface. The feature plugs into the UPI (Unified Payments Interface) program that includes many of the country's most popular banking institutions.

Although not officially announced by the company yet, beta testers have noticed a payment option in the attachment menu between Document and Gallery. According to TechCrunch, iOS users have been able to make payments with the service already. Gizmo Times has tried this out on Android, but it shows a "Couldn't add bank account" error message (below right).

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Matt Rogers, co-founder of Nest, leaves Google

After months of rumors, Google finally announced yesterday that it is merging Nest into Google's in-house hardware team. Nest was acquired by Google in 2015, but it remained a mostly-separate entity, and later became a subsidiary of Alphabet. But it's not all good news for the companies - Nest's remaining co-founder is heading for greener pastures.

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Android Messages v2.9 prepares to launch Allo-like web interface, Google-enhanced chat features, and payments to businesses [APK Teardown]

There's a new version of Android Messages rolling out to our phones. So far, we haven't seen any significant changes to the UI, but huge things are happening under the surface. A teardown reveals Google is getting ready to launch a web interface that would allow users to pair their phones with a computer for all of their texting needs. Google may also be planning to offer its own enhanced chat features to work with RCS messaging. And finally, it looks like we'll be able to buy things from companies right from within Android Messages. Grab the APK at the bottom of the post if you'd like to get your hands on it before everybody else.

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