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Android Entertainment Space lets Google invest in tablets without new hardware

Android Entertainment Space lets Google invest in tablets without new hardware

Google revealed a new Android tablet experience called Entertainment Space in May of 2021. This new experience - a new home screen replacement of sorts - is a different approach to Android. It's difficult to see what they presented with Entertainment Space without thinking about Amazon's series of Fire Tablet devices and their take on Android. The software, as Google showed it on May 5, 2021, centers on Google-hosted media - everything from the Google Play app store, books store, videos, shows, and games.

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Google I/O 2021 schedule revealed with focus on What’s New

Google I/O 2021 schedule revealed with focus on What’s New

Google released the schedule of events set for Google I/O 2021, including keynotes, sessions, and breakouts of several sorts. On the first day of Google I/O 2021, Google will deliver sessions and keynotes in three key areas: Android, Google Play, and "web platform." They also have Chrome in the title of events on the schedule - same for "Wear", but they're not part of the big three on day 1.

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Android Nearby Share with everyone incoming

Android Nearby Share with everyone incoming

It would appear that Google has a new way to share files in the mix with Android. Per the latest version of Google Play Services and some creative work looking at the code for the system, Nearby Share with "everyone mode" is nearly ready for the pubic. This update would add "Everyone" to device visibility right next to "Contacts" and "Hidden" in Nearby Share.

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Google Play Movies & TV on some smart TVs is shutting down

Google Play Movies & TV on some smart TVs is shutting down

Google is notorious for having a handful of overlapping and sometimes redundant messaging platforms but it seems to be a trait shared by almost all of the company's digital content services. Until just last year, YouTube Music and Play Music competed for attention and subscriptions and Google also had multiple news and magazine apps. It has recently also been trying to consolidate its videos and movies catalog and it is Google Play Movies & TV that will be getting the short end of the stick, especially on some smart TV brands.

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New Android malware spreads via malicious WhatsApp auto-replies

New Android malware spreads via malicious WhatsApp auto-replies

A new and malicious Android malware was discovered on the Google Play Store. The malware was disguised as a Netflix content enabling app called "FlixOnline." The malware spreads itself via malicious automatic replies to WhatsApp messages sent to the user. Payloads for the malware are received from a remote command and control server.

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Google Play Pass adds Dead Cells, KOTOR to its growing list

Google Play Pass adds Dead Cells, KOTOR to its growing list

When Apple launched its Arcade subscription service, it was expected that Google would also soon follow suit. Unlike Apple Arcade, Google Play Pass, in theory, includes not just games but also apps, though the focus, unsurprisingly, has been on the entertainment side of mobile software. So when Google announced the new members of its growing Google Play Pass family, it's no surprise that they are almost all made up of games, ranging from some obscure titles to popular hits like Dead Cells.

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Google Play will limit apps that can see what apps are installed

Google Play will limit apps that can see what apps are installed

Every Android release has seen a refinement of what was once an overly broad app permissions system. Today, users can grant or deny permissions on a case-to-case basis and developers are required to be more upfront about the permissions they need and why they need them. There are still some cases, however, where even the fine-grained permissions can be abused, forcing Google to tighten the noose. One such case is the ability to see what apps are installed on a phone, and starting next month, Google will start culling apps that don't have any business doing that.

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Google Play Store crowdsources optimizing Android apps

Google Play Store crowdsources optimizing Android apps

Once upon a time, Android apps were these monolithic packages that contained almost all versions of the app for all architectures and languages that it supports. Recently, Google has been pushing for a new system that put Android packages on a diet to make downloading, installing, and running them faster. Its latest trick is to learn how to better optimize that process and it's pretty much roping in almost all Android users in a crowdsourced "study" on how apps are being used after they are installed.

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Google Play Books can now read stories to young kids

Google Play Books can now read stories to young kids

Google has added new features to its Play Books platform, ones aimed at young kids who may not yet know how to read or who may have limited reading skills. In addition to a new read-and-listen feature, the app also now offers a kid-friendly dictionary to help young readers learn new vocabulary while reading stories.

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Android Sleep API to make sleep tracking apps more efficient

Android Sleep API to make sleep tracking apps more efficient

There has been perhaps an overabundance of focus on activity trackers, most of them targeting, well, activities. While movement and exercise are, of course, important, they aren't the only measures of a healthy lifestyle. Sleep is just as important, perhaps even more so these days. In an effort to help app developers and, consequently, users develop better sleeping habits, Google is launching its new Sleep API to empower better low-power sleep tracking on all Android devices.

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Android Nearby Share can share Google Play Store apps

Android Nearby Share can share Google Play Store apps

There has been a focus on device-to-device file sharing on Android recently, partly due to the revelation about popular app SHAREit's security flaws. The reason third-party apps like this proliferate is that Android itself hasn't had a reliable, long-term file-sharing system across different phone brands. Google has been slowly, very slowly, working on its Android Nearby framework and its latest trick is to let users share not just files between two phones but even apps from Google Play Store.

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National Park Services rolls out a unified app for national parks

National Park Services rolls out a unified app for national parks

In the past, the National Park Service maintained a separate app for each national park or landmark around the United States. The challenge of keeping all those updated was probably significant, but that has now changed. The National Park Service now has a unified app for all parks allowing people to research and monitor hundreds of landmarks in a single location.

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