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Newest version of Messenger in Android N greatly improves direct reply with mini conversation view

Direct reply is easily one of my favorite new features of Android N, and apps are actually being surprisingly quick to adopt it - Twitter and Facebook are already on board, along with Google Hangouts and Messenger. But the implementations we've seen to date are, in my opinion, a little less than optimal.

When I first saw direct reply, my first thought was: "Oh, great - mini conversations I can just have in my notification bar - no need to open the app!" Which seems like what Google was going for, but that Hangouts and Messenger didn't really initially accomplish.

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[Update: dev kit pre-order] That unofficial 'Game Boy' smartphone adapter from April Fool's is now a working product, may actually come to market this year

A little over a year ago, one of the endless April Fool's jokes that cropped up around tech sites struck a chord with gamers. The "SmartBoy" from Hyperkin, sellers of new replacement parts for classic consoles, was a concept that slid an iPhone into a plastic case that perfectly reproduced the buttons and grip of the original Game Boy from 1989. It also included a real game cartridge slot, so authentic Game Boy games could theoretically be played using a modern smartphone screen. It was a little ridiculous - today's phones can already emulate Game Boy titles with ease, and even simulate the buttons with a Bluetooth controller - but the idea seemed to resonate with Nintendo fans.

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[Impressive] Chrooma Keyboard 3.0 adds gestures, themes and adaptive colors, Google Now integration, an action bar, more

Whoa. It's not easy for me to be impressed by a keyboard. I have been a staunch Google Keyboard user on all of my devices from the day it was released as a standalone app on the Play Store many moons ago. Every other keyboard I have tried — and I've tried plenty — fails to even register within the usable spectrum for me: lags and/or lack of precision have killed many revered third-party options.

I confess, I'd never tried Chrooma before today, mainly because I'd given up on finding any third-party keyboard, regardless of how many cool options it has, that lets me type as efficiently and comfortably as Google Keyboard has.

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Puzzle game _PRISM unfolds its wacky sacred geometry on Android

Most games have tutorials or some sort of instructions, but not _PRISM. I don't know if there's a scrap of text anywhere in it other than the name. You're left to tease out the secrets of each puzzle in this fascinating game on your own, but that's part of the fun. It just arrived on Android after launching on iOS earlier this year.

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Logitech Harmony Remote functionality is coming to Amazon's Alexa voice control platform

Here's something interesting for those of you who've gone head-first into the smart home craze. According to ZatsNotFunny, a blog dedicated to connected home tech, Logitech is recruiting beta testers for a new tool integrating Harmony remotes with the voice control features of Amazon Alexa/Echo. Basically, users who have both should be able to speak commands into their Echo and have the remote perform them without ever picking it up. Neat.

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NBC's Olympics app includes scores, schedules, news, and video of everything except the actual events

The summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro should be interesting to watch this year, if only in the same sense that a burning building is hard to ignore. As it has been for decades, NBC will be the sole media outlet for the games in the United States. Sports fans can use the official NBC app to keep up with the Olympics on their phones and tablets... though keep in mind that the results of the games, including medal winners, statistics, and a general schedule, will be available in all the usual places like ESPN and Google Now.

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Galcon 2 revives a simplified space strategy game with new multiplayer modes and more complex tactics

Here's a blast from the past. The original Galcon came to the Play Store when it wasn't even the Play Store - back in 2010 it was still going by the name "Android Market." It was a super-simple strategy game, adapted from an almost ancient PC shareware title called Galactic Conquest. The original mobile game was quite a popular one - sort of a Threes for the real-time strategy crowd - and today the very welcome sequel has arrived on Android.

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[Review + Deal Alert] AUKEY's new 6 port charging station with 2 USB Type-C ports will charge all your things

Chargers and cords are not really sexy tech. I imagine they aren't your favorite things to read about – they certainly aren't my favorite accessories to write about. They are, however, very important because they give daily life to the gadgets we love.

Phones, tablets, smart watches, and Bluetooth speakers; they all need to be juiced daily. Wouldn't it be nice if there was one charger that could charge them all simultaneously – regardless of whether they charge via Micro USB, QC 3.0, or Nexus quick charge?

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Samsung Galaxy S7 Active (AT&T) review: a phone that's tough to kill and tough to recommend

This review is about 4500 words long. We do that a lot here at Android Police, and if you want an exhaustive breakdown of the hardware and software in the Galaxy S7 Active, then by all means, read on. But if you want the long and the short of it, here it is: the S7 Active is a Galaxy S7 with a permanent "tough" case around it and an extra 1000mAh of juice. If that sounds like a good thing, and good enough that the $100 premium AT&T asks is reasonable, then the phone is right up your alley.

If you'd rather have something smaller, or more trendy, or with a bigger screen or a modular capacity, look elsewhere.

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Google says that Android apps will come to the Chromebook Pixel 2015 and Acer R11 'soon' in another developer release

Chromebooks can run Android apps from the Play Store now, and it's ridiculously cool. Well, on one Chromebook, anyway: the ASUS Chromebook Flip. As of Chrome version 53 (currently in the early bird Developer channel) it's the only device that's been updated with the functionality. That's a little odd, since Google promotes plenty of other Chromebook devices via the Google Store, including its own Google-branded Chromebook Pixel machines.

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