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Android Lollipop and the automatic Carrier app updates

Android Lollipop and the automatic Carrier app updates

If you'd not heard already, Google is bringing on Android 5.0 Lollipop sooner than later. Maybe not to your smartphone if it's not new enough, but for those of you that just purchased a Nexus 6 earlier today - you're in luck. Sort of. Today's revelation is that with this update, carriers will be able to have Google Play install their apps automatically - without your consent, that is to say. But no more than they've ever been there without your consent - so we can all just chill out. There's actually a really great thing happening, too.

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Google Play Movies & TV update: Material Design and second-screen

Google Play Movies & TV update: Material Design and second-screen

Watching movies or TV via Google Play just got a bit prettier, and lot more useful. An update, rolling out today, brings Google’s Material Design to the app, and adds a bit of second-screen functionality. Streaming movies to your Nexus Player or Chromecast might just give you some info about what you’re watching, like which actors are involved or what that song playing is. If you’re the kind of person who’s mind wanders a bit during a movie, this update will bring you back into focus a bit.

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Nexus 6 now available for pre-order [Update]

Nexus 6 now available for pre-order [Update]

You wanted it, and Google is giving it to you: the Nexus 6 is available for pre-order. The flagship Android device, straight from Google, is now available direct from the Play Store. At $649 for the base 32GB version, it’s not going to be the easiest pill to swallow when the credit card statement comes — and gets harder if you upgrade to the 64GB variant, which is $699. Still, if you’re anxious to get your hands on some Android Lollipop, you can!

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Google Fit now available via the Play Store

Google Fit now available via the Play Store

With Apple’s HealthKit, we were promised a core app in Health that would give us insight on our overall wellbeing, based on apps that worked with the platform. though HealthKit had a rough start, it’s here, and when used properly, not all that bad a take on your health and fitness stats. Google previously announced their own health platform in Google Fit, which aims to do the exact same thing HealthKit does — just for Android. Google has now published their app to the Play Store, and it’s compatible with just about every Android phone around.

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Amazon App Store now on Google Play (sort of)

Amazon App Store now on Google Play (sort of)

Google might not be pleased when they realize the implications of Amazon's newest app update. Instead of Amazon relying on you to head to their webpage to download the Amazon App Store app, you've only to download the Amazon App from Google Play. The big deal here is not that Google forbids apps outside their own store - they certainly do not. The big deal here is App Updates. Google forbids that apps that come from the Google Play app store be updated through any other means than the Google Play app store itself.

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Nexus Player now available to order via Google Play

Nexus Player now available to order via Google Play

Google’s answer to Roku, Amazon fire TV, and Apple TV — the Nexus Player — is in stock and ready for purchase via Google Play. The player, which is the first to offer Android TV on a broad scale, is Google’s latest play for your living room space. Offering up a central hub for your media consumption and streaming, Nexus Player is also a great device for more casual gaming. Voice command via the remote could also have you pushing less buttons.

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Is Nexus too big and expensive, now?

Is Nexus too big and expensive, now?

The Nexus 6 smartphone and Nexus 9 tablet are official, and available for scrutiny via the Play Store. The two newest flagship devices from Google are also big; bigger than the devices they replace. Are they too big, though? Is the price Google is asking too much? Both new Nexus represent a new direction for the platform, but has Google turned some fans off? A lot of criticism has been levied against them for these two big, more-expensive-than-your-usual-Nexus devices — but is it fair?

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Pre-order your Nexus 9 from Google, Best Buy, or HTC

Pre-order your Nexus 9 from Google, Best Buy, or HTC

Ready for the Nexus 9? Google’s answer to the iPad mini is now available for pre-order! Branded as one “for mover’s and makers”, the Nexus 9 has arrived on the Play Store, with all options listed. The full compliment of official accessories — the keyboard folio and various “origami” stands — are also listed, but are noted as “coming soon”. If you’re not interested in add-ons, you might be able to find the Nexus 9 you want, but some options are missing.

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Galaxy S5 Google Play Edition with Lollipop release imminent

Galaxy S5 Google Play Edition with Lollipop release imminent

While we did, honestly, expect the Samsung Galaxy S5 Google Play Edition to be launched several months ago at this point, it would seem that they’re finally ready to roll. With the launch of Android 5.0 Lollipop and the official preview we saw courtesy of Samsung itself earlier this month, there can’t be much time between now and the GPE. What with Google’s update of their Android homepage still including the elusive Google Play Edition of the Galaxy S5 alongside the new Nexus family, we have only to ask - what’s the holdup?

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