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Google VR SDK out of beta just in time for Oct 4 event

Google VR SDK out of beta just in time for Oct 4 event

This week Google announced that their very own virtual reality software developer kit was graduating out of beta. This announcement came just in time for the release of their all-encompassing hardware and software event, set to take place on the 4th of October. At that event we'll likely see new software for all Android devices, but specifically for two new devices Google will (likely) introduce as their first Pixel-branded phones. There, Google Daydream can begin to take off.

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With Google Pixel, the Android promise fulfilled, at last!

With Google Pixel, the Android promise fulfilled, at last!

This October Google will have fulfilled the promise they've been making on the Android operating system for the past decade. In the year 2005, Google acquired Android. In 2011, Google acquired Motorola (then, not long after, sold everything but their patents). In 2016, Google is in a position to not only create a set of Android smartphones and control the hardware, sales, and distribution, but the software, too. Google will be panned for copying Apple's game plan with these devices, but these devices will be exactly what consumers want, and will buy.

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Google Pixel phones tipped to barely have water resistance

Google Pixel phones tipped to barely have water resistance

Our smartphones these days have become part and parcel of our lives to the point that we bring them with us anywhere and everywhere. That runs the risk of exposing them to elements, so consumers have mostly come to expect that their smartphones will survive a bit of a splash. Most flagships for the past years do promise some peace of mind in that regard, with a few exceptions. And unfortunately, according to a “reliable source”, the Google Pixel smartphone will be one of those exceptions, getting only an IP53 rating, which means having no special water resistance at all.

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Galaxy S7 recall: not a Note thing to worry about

Galaxy S7 recall: not a Note thing to worry about

It's come to our attention that thousands of Samsung Galaxy S7 users have begun searching for details on their own device's recall. In reality, Samsung has issued no such recall for the Galaxy S7. It's the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 that's been recalled, while the Galaxy S7 (a completely different device) has had no issues as such. The trending of this topic is just the latest in a series of unfortunate events that've created what's essentially a perfect storm of negative publicity for the brand.

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Google Allo released with iMessage’s biggest mistake

Google Allo released with iMessage’s biggest mistake

Apple was sued in May of 2014 for an iMessage texting snafu that was the bane of mobile carrier help desk assistants' existence. "Why am I not getting my text messages," they'd say, "I was getting them just fine on my iPhone, now on this Android phone I can't see them." Google is making a mistake at the launch of Google Allo - routing messages - including SMS messages - through their own servers, capturing one's phone number in the process.

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Google quietly removes “Google Now” references in Search app

Google quietly removes “Google Now” references in Search app

Let the conspiracy theories roll. In an investigation done on the still rolling update to the Google Search Android app, Android Police discovered that almost all but one publicly visible reference to Google Now has been removed, replaced instead by descriptions of their corresponding functionality. Given how heated the personal digital assistant competition has been, it is probably not the case that Google is bowing out. Instead, it could simply be paving the way for a “re-launch” under the upcoming Google Assistant heading.

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Hello Google Allo smart messenger! Download the APK here

Hello Google Allo smart messenger! Download the APK here

Back in late May, Google revealed two new messaging platforms, each with its own distinct appeal. Duo, the tech giant’s latest take on simplified video chats, already launched a while ago. Now it’s Google Allo’s turn, and it has a lot to say. Calling it a smart messaging app, Allo promises to not only make it easier to reply to messages by barely typing anything, it also tries to bring some AI-powered smartness via a preview version of Google Assistant through, what else but a chatbot.

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Google Search now shows AMP labels for all

Google Search now shows AMP labels for all

While almost everyone nowadays browses the web through their smartphones at one point or another, not all websites are still designed with mobile constraints in mind, leading to non-optimized, slow-loading content on smartphones. Google’s AMP, short for Accelerated Mobile Pages, is an effort to encourage websites to pick up the slack, both using technologies and a little preferential treatment. The initiative has apparently been quite popular that Google is now stepping up the game to make AMP’ed pages even more prominent in Google Search on mobile, putting labels on websites that provide mobile-optimized content.

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Google Drive search refined with natural language processing

Google Drive search refined with natural language processing

Google Drive’s search has been refined with natural language processing, Google has announced. The functionality is currently only available for Google Drive search on the web, but it is joined by other improvements that make the searching process faster and more simple overall. Simply put, the addition of natural language processing means a user can type a search term phrased the same way they’d say it if they were talking, such as, “find my November 2016 budget."

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Galaxy Note 7 recall update: Do I have an exploding phone?

Galaxy Note 7 recall update: Do I have an exploding phone?

Samsung Galaxy Note 7 users that purchased their phone earlier than last week and haven't exchanged them for a new unit: yes, this is an "exploding phone." One of the top search terms at Google over the past week related to the Galaxy Note 7 has been "exploding" edged out just a bit by the word "recall". Today Samsung made it clear where Galaxy Note 7 owners should go to participate in a recall, and how they'll know if their device is, indeed, a new model.

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Google Photos now shares with anyone, creates themed movies

Google Photos now shares with anyone, creates themed movies

Most people prefer to use their smartphones, even if less capable, over cameras to take pictures because of two reasons primarily. One, smartphones are almost always readily available and always with you. Second is because it’s a lot easier to share them directly off your phone than through a camera. The latest Google Photos update has made that even a lot easier, maybe even lazier. Now you can share with people more directly rather than wasting time trying to juggle sharing with apps.

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HTC Desire 10 line seeks to break the mold [UPDATE]

HTC Desire 10 line seeks to break the mold [UPDATE]

In the past, HTC Desire devices were known for their ability to entice at a level just below that of the brand's hero smartphone line. They've always been fine phones, and they've always had price points that put them in direct contention with the best in the mid-range market around the world. Now, with the HTC Desire 10 pro, the company would - at first - appear to be doing something entirely new.

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