Android Nougat MR1 to bring Google Assistant, new Launcher

Android Nougat MR1 to bring Google Assistant, new Launcher

Android 7.0 Nougat is barely out the door, and here we are already talking about its first Maintenance Release, a.k.a. MR1. That, however, is to be expected, as the fresh new Android dessert apparently didn’t come with all the new features we’ve seen in leaks, like a redesigned Nexus Launcher, Google Assistant, and slightly different navigation bar. Worry, as those are still coming, but a bit later, around the time both the MR1 and the new Nexus smartphones come out of the woodwork.

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‘Narcos’ season 2 arrives September 2, new trailer teases premiere

‘Narcos’ season 2 arrives September 2, new trailer teases premiere

Netflix has a lot of great shows, and it has a lot of obscure low-quality shows. The divide between the two is vast, and distinctly existing on the “great” side of the spectrum is Narcos, an original series chronicling the lives of DEA agents, drug lord Pablo Escobar, and the terror that rises in his wake. The show received ample praise in its first season, and soon after launching it Netflix promised there'd be a second season. Now that second season is nearly upon us, and Netflix has released a new trailer teasing it.

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Pinterest acquires Instapaper, the ‘save anything’ service

Pinterest acquires Instapaper, the ‘save anything’ service

Instapaper, the service that advertised itself as a 'save anything' tool, has been acquired by Pinterest, marking the latest evolution in both companies' platforms. With Instapaper, users are able to save anything from around the web to read later -- articles, recipes, etc -- on whatever device they'd like, whether it is their laptop, Kindle, smartphone or whatever else. For the average Instapaper user, nothing about this changes.

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Tesla’s biggest challenge is batteries, and there’s no easy fix

Tesla’s biggest challenge is batteries, and there’s no easy fix

Suddenly, battery chemistry is the most interesting - and arguably most frustrating - topic in technology. Tesla's announcement today of a new, larger battery pack which will make its debut in even-faster versions of the Model S and Model X may sound like just another spec bump as the automaker looks to further eclipse gas engines, but according to CEO Elon Musk it's never been harder to improve range and performance.

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Zero Breeze is a portable air conditioner for an increasingly hot world

Zero Breeze is a portable air conditioner for an increasingly hot world

The world keeps getting warmer, and maybe the thought of a summer day spent camping is ruined by the promise of triple-digit temperatures. The solution? In the future it may be a portable air conditioner like Zero Breeze, which in this case also functions as a Bluetooth speaker and a night light. The device looks something like a large handheld vacuum, but it’s not — it’s a small and quiet air conditioner that can be placed in a boat, a tent, or any other small space where heat may be an issue.

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Prisma offline mode puts filters on your disconnected iPhone

Prisma offline mode puts filters on your disconnected iPhone

Hit photo editing app Prisma has gained offline support, addressing one of the most common criticisms about the tool that uses artificial intelligence to manipulate images with artistic styles. Launched back in June, initially only on iOS but subsequently for Android users too, Prisma takes advantage of a neural network to analyze photos and then apply different filters to them, spanning a range from Pop Art through to classical watercolors and oil paintings.

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Facebook testing new ‘Add Contact’ option in Messenger

Facebook testing new ‘Add Contact’ option in Messenger

Facebook Messenger is testing a new feature that will make the app entirely more useable for some individuals: the ability to request adding a contact with another Messenger user rather than having to add that individual as a ‘friend.’ The new feature is aptly called ‘Add Contact,’ and would exist between Facebook friendship and messaging someone sans any formal affiliation with them; you can, for now, message someone who isn’t a friend by sending them a message request.

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Pokemon GO update’s controversial Appraisals rolling out now

Pokemon GO update’s controversial Appraisals rolling out now

The latest Pokemon GO update is rolling out to iOS and Android gamers, and in among its changes and improvements is a big help to new players and those needing a little extra tutoring from their team leaders. Already out for Android as Pokemon GO version 0.35.0 - and in the pipeline as 1.5.0 for iPhone - the update includes a variety of bugfixes and tweaks, but there's one significant feature that's been added, even if it's not making every player happy.

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Google Search will penalize sites that use interstitial ads next year

Google Search will penalize sites that use interstitial ads next year

Advertisements on the internet can range in annoyance, with intrusive interstitial ads that pop-up over text being among the most frustrating. Google is gearing up to take a harder line against sites that show these kinds of ads early next year, and it's doing so as a way of making content easier to access on mobile.

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Opera’s free VPN app arrives on Android

Opera’s free VPN app arrives on Android

In May, Opera unveiled an iOS app that gives Apple device owners free VPN access for their various Internet browsing activities. That itself followed the company's announcement earlier this year that it was adding a free VPN to its browser. If you're on Android and feeling left out, good news: Opera is finally launching a free VPN app for Android, too, the addition of which means most Internet browsers now have at least one way to use Opera's offering.

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Xiaomi accused of stealing Jawbone’s speaker design

Xiaomi accused of stealing Jawbone’s speaker design

Chinese company Xiaomi has been accused of ripping off one of Jawbone's speaker designs, an accusation that isn't the least bit surprising to anyone familiar with Xiaomi's long list of 'inspired' looks. The speaker in question is the Xiaomi Mi Speaker Box, a portable Bluetooth speaker that looks strikingly similar to the Jawbone Jambox speakers. Though both have their own individual design choices, the Xiaomi's speaker grille design is remarkably similar to the one found on the Mini Jambox.

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PlayStation Now PC launch confirmed, DualShock USB adapter revealed

PlayStation Now PC launch confirmed, DualShock USB adapter revealed

Earlier in the month, we heard that Sony might be plotting to bring its PlayStation Now service over to Windows. As it turns out, those rumors were true, with Sony confirming the jump to Windows PCs today. The company also revealed a new PS4 DualShock adapter, which will allow players to cut out the USB cord and use their controllers wirelessly with their PCs.

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