One of the many issues the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL have been revealed to have is poor audio while recording video. While we're not sure if this affects all units, it definitely affected Artem's, and I've noticed the problem in some videos I've shot as well on my Pixel 2 XL. Google has confirmed that the problem has been resolved in the second 8.1 Oreo developer preview, and we've got video samples from before and after to prove it. Read More
When you're having some sort of issue with your house, chances are that you immediately go to Google to find someone who can take care of the issue if you don't already have a go-to guy saved in your contacts list. However, it's not uncommon to see people with the same general profession specialize in different areas. Thankfully, Google will soon make it easier to figure out who you should call. Read More
The Google Home Mini may not be a very powerful speaker, but it's still a speaker that people use to listen to music with. However, some people are having their Home Minis crash and reboot when certain songs are played at too high a volume. We've got a couple of songs that you can try playing to see if your Home Mini is affected. Read More
Nest, maker of home automation and security devices, was purchased by Google in 2014 for $3.2 billion in cash. The company remained a Google subsidiary until 2015, when Google restructured and created a parent company for itself called 'Alphabet.' Nest and Google became sister companies under Alphabet, along with other former Google subsidiaries (like Waymo and X). Read More
Early last month, we started seeing the option to include Google Homes and Assistant-enabled speakers in rooms inside the Home app, just like you would for your lights and switches and thermostats. Now it seems that option has propagated to Android TV devices as well.
Artem spotted it this morning: in his Google Home app, his two SHIELD TVs appear in the Home control tab, under the Assistant section. Tapping on them lets him assign them to a room. Technically, that should allow him to turn on and off the TV along with the lights for example. That's one advantage I can think of. Read More
Ads are just a fact of life in mobile apps. You can't completely avoid them, but there are some ad implementations that are so annoying that Google has explicitly disallowed them from the Play Store. Remember Airpush? The current advertising scourge is ad-infused lock screens, which have shown up in previously safe apps like ES File Explorer, Peel, and Hotspot Shield VPN. Google has finally listened to our pleading, and lock screen ads are no longer allowed in the Play Store. Read More
Two years ago, when I started getting into smart home stuff, I had a small epiphany when I heard a podcaster say they set up their Christmas tree to turn on and off with their iPhone. Until then, I had considered smart plugs completely useless for me, since we use recessed ceiling lights a lot here in Lebanon and rarely have floor or desk lamps. But a Christmas tree and one you can turn on and off without kneeling, ruffling half the tree, and dropping several decorations in order to unplug and replug the lights?! That was a light bulb moment, if ever there was any. Read More
It's getting ridiculous at this point. Google Home has been available for over a year and despite the slow initial rollout of video services, things have picked up with Netflix being joined by CBS, HBO NOW, YouTube TV, CW, and most recently Viki. Now there's another one joining the fold of video partners and, no, again, it is not Google Play Movies. It's Crackle.
Crackle is an online streaming service owned by Sony and, according to Wikipedia, it is available in 21 countries. It's free and ad-supported, and it features original content as well as movies and TV shows from partners such as Miramax, MGM, Universal Studios, The Walt Disney Company, and more. Read More
Audiobooks are great, allowing busier people to listen to books while on the go. Google seems to sympathize with this notion, having just added new options for audiobooks in Google Search. This news comes not long after we discovered mentions of audiobooks in the Play Store v8.4 APK teardown. Read More