An APK teardown of version 8.4 of the Google Play Store app shows that there could be some exciting changes on the horizon for Android users.
Perhaps the most interesting revelation is that Google appears to be on the verge of introducing audiobooks to the store. This means that you may soon be able to ditch the likes of Audible and buy your audiobooks direct from Google -- and there could also be free audiobooks! The teardown also shows that there are new notification and app update options to come as well.
While there have -- as ever -- been endless rumors about the next handset from OnePlus, there has been very little concrete news from the company about the OnePlus 5T. Today that changes.
OnePlus has made numerous allusions to the successor to the OnePlus 5 -- including tweeting pictures of five cups of tea -- but now chief executive Pete Lau has officially spoken about the upcoming handset. He confirms that there is definitely a 3.5mm headphone jack.
About nine months ago, Razer bought smartphone-maker Nextbit. To be honest, at the time, I thought it was a terrible idea. It felt like Razer was getting involved in too many projects, losing its focus as a gaming peripheral and accessory maker. Not to mention, Nextbit seemed like a poor acquisition, since its design philosophy was cute, colorful, and whimsical, whereas Razer is all about being dark.
Today we finally see the fruit of this marriage, and oh my -- it looks amazing. The "Razer Phone," as it is called, is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 and is packing a monstrous 8GB of RAM. It will undoubtedly handle all apps and games you throw at it without breaking a sweat. It even has dual rear 12MP cameras and a huge 4,000 mAh battery with Quick Charge 4+. So, yeah, the specs are great, but that is only part of the story. It is also jaw-droppingly gorgeous! I guess the Nextbit purchase was smart after all...
Google has announced Fast Pair, an update to Bluetooth connectivity that speeds up the process of connecting a Bluetooth device -- such as headphones -- to an Android phone or tablet. It's an idea that's not entirely dissimilar to the technology used by Apple to connect AirPods to iPhones.
Using a combination of BLE (Bluetooth Low Energy) for advertising and discovery, and traditional Bluetooth for pairing, the focus is on speed and security. It's compatible with devices running Android 6.0 Marshmallow and above, and it's part of Google Play services 11.7+.
Windows 10 Mobile is now officially dead, and Microsoft has switched its attention to Android and iPhone, releasing a growing number of apps for those operating systems.
You can now also link your Android device or iPhone to any PC running Windows 10 Fall Creators Update, which will allow you to start a task on your phone, and then continue it on your PC. Here’s what you need to do.
One of the great things about modern web browsers -- desktop and mobile variants -- is that they can store your passwords for you to save you from ever having to type them in. But this does have its drawbacks; stripped of the need to enter passwords, it's very easy to forget what they are!
The desktop version of Chrome has long given users the option to view the passwords they have saved, and now this same feature has made its way to the Android version of the browser. There's now no need to use the Google website to manage your passwords.
Samsung has announced an upcoming tablet, the latest addition to the Galaxy range. The Samsung Galaxy Tab A (8.0") -- also known as the Galaxy Tab A (2017) -- has been "designed for the whole family" and is a budget tablet that you won't mind sharing it with, or giving to, the kids.
The specs are, generally speaking, nothing to get too excited about, but that's not the aim of this tablet. The metal body gives an air of quality to what Samsung describes as "an everyday, versatile tablet," and a 5,000mAh battery can power the device for up to 14 hours. Although this is pitched as a family device, there is a strong focus on children.
It's not all that long since the launch of Android 8.0 Oreo -- not that many people have it on their phones -- but Google has already pushed out a developer preview of Oreo 8.1.
As this is an early beta, there are not a huge number of changes to see in Android Oreo 8.1 developer preview -- but under the hood, there's quite a lot going on. For now, compatibility is limited to the Nexus 5X, Nexus 6P, Pixel C, Pixel, Pixel XL, Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL, but for these handsets new features include a Neural Networks API to improve machine learning, improved autofill, and Android Go optimizations.
Despite the OnePlus 5 only having been available for a few months, there have been rumors that its successor, the OnePlus 5T, is not far away. The sudden 'out of stock' status of the OnePlus 5 served only to fuel these rumors further, and now a pre-order page for the handset has revealed much of what you might want to know.
In recent days we've seen leaks of what the upcoming phone looks like, but now we know many of the specs, the price, and an approximate release date
I’m a big fan of e-ink Kindles -- preferring them over real books. If you do a lot of reading, they’re great. However, some people prefer the versatility of an iPad, Android tablet or smartphone, and there's a clear benefit to those. You only need to carry around the one device.
Today, Amazon launches a rebuilt Kindle app for both iOS and Android that provides easy access to the most popular Kindle features, and adds new functionality, such as built-in access to the Goodreads community.
If you've ever wondered what happens to the data Google collects via Chrome, today's announcement gives you something of an idea. The newly unveiled Chrome User Experience Report is a collection of data from users who have opted in to usage statistic reporting, the idea being that developers will be able to see how users experience the websites they visit.
Google launched the new tool at the Chrome Dev Summit 2017 in San Francisco, and at the same time also announced Trusted Web Activity. This is essentially a way to provide app-like behavior in Chrome to create a more cohesive experience.
As promised earlier in the year, Google has launched its payment service to streamline the checkout process for Android users. Pay with Google aims to kill the frustration that can stem from having to fill out endless forms in order to complete a purchase.
To start with, Pay with Google is supported by 15 vendors including Instacart, Kayak, iFood and GameTime, but there are plenty more big names -- like StubHub, Deliveroo, Airbnb and Just Eat -- due to join. The service is available from today, and can be used in various Android apps, or Chrome on the web.
Tweaking tools used to be all the rage for Windows, but not so much these days. The phenomenon has, however, spread to the mobile world to a certain extent. OnePlus owners have the streamlined OxygenOS to work with for an experience that's near to pure Android; but there's always scope for tweaking.
Whether you have rooted your phone or not, JOnePlus Tools gives you the opportunity to tweak your phone to within an inch of its life (in the best possible way, of course). As well as working with rooted and non-rooted phones, it even works with the Oreo betas that are available from OnePlus at the moment.
Calling up the Google Assistant on your Android phone takes nothing more than bellowing "OK, Google" at your handset. But you may be someone who feels that this is just too many syllables to utter.
Google Home users have a slightly easier time. As well as "OK, Google" it is also possible to say "Hey, Google" -- meaning you can start getting help in two thirds of the time! Now the same option is making its way to Android phones.
Developers who want to sell apps or offer in-app subscriptions on Google Play have to give 30 percent of the revenue up. It's the cost of doing business on Google's popular app store -- and the same goes for the App Store and Microsoft Store as well.
However, in a move that mirrors Apple's policy change last year, Google will soon take a lower cut from developers who retain subscribers for more than a year.