The latest Google app beta is rolling out this evening with several notable features in development. Google app 9.66 reveals a dark mode for the notoriously white app and Face Match training, as well as “Intelligent tips” for the At A Glance widget.
About APK Insight: In this ‘APK Insight’ post, we’ve decompiled the latest version of an application that Google uploaded to the Play Store. When we decompile these files (called APKs, in the case of Android apps), we’re able to see various lines of code within that hint at possible future features. Keep in mind that Google may or may not ever ship these features, and our interpretation of what they are may be imperfect. We’ll try to enable those that are closer to being finished, however, to show you how they’ll look in the case that they do ship. With that in mind, read on.
At A Glance: Intelligent tips
After introducing reminders, the At A Glance widget in version 9.66 adds “Intelligent tips” that are “Assistant powered.” Like with last week’s addition, we’ve yet to encounter the new alerts appearing at the top of the Pixel Launcher.
The Google app is stark white, and in need of a dark mode given that many other apps have already adopted one ahead of Android Q. Version 9.66 features various strings related to a “Dark theme,” with users manually able to invoke it — “Always” — from the General settings menu once live. There will also be an option to “Follow system setting” or “Never.”
<string name=”dark_mode_preference_title”>Dark theme</string>
<string name=”dark_mode_preference_dialog_title”>Enable dark theme</string>
It’s unclear what parts of the Google app will receive the dark theme, but Discover is the obvious candidate. That feed would presumably be styled similarly to the Pixel Launcher. A dark look would also be ideal for the Search results page and Google Assistant, with earlier betas already hinting at one.
<string name=”dark_mode_follow_system”>Follow system setting</string>
Face Match training
Both the Google app and Google Home have confirmed that a “Face Match” feature is being developed for Smart Displays. Codenamed “avocado,” Google app 9.66 includes a “unicorn” prompt for possibly training other people’s faces with your phone.
<string name=”unicorn_handoff_img_content_desc”>Hand Over the Device</string>
Meanwhile, this beta adds an interesting “hint_leftright” animation that could signal to users that they need to show each side of their face as part of training. The outer ring could fill up after you’re in view for an appropriate amount of time.
Voice Match redesign
Similar to other Assistant menus, a Material Theme redesign of Voice Match settings is coming. We enabled the new look today where various elements are centered and the FAB is replaced with an “Add devices” button.
Pixel Stand: Wirelessly Charging
Android Q Beta 2 replaces “Charging rapidly” and “Charging slowly” to “Wirelessly Charging.” Google app 9.66 does the same for the Pixel Stand, though that change is not live in Android 9 Pie with this update. Q is likely required.
<string name=”charging_status_charging_time_fast”>%2$s • Charging rapidly (%1$s until full)</string>
<string name=”charging_status_charging_time_fast”>%2$s • Wirelessly Charging (%1$s until full)</string>
Assistant could gain a “Privacy advisor” feature that would presumably help users see related account settings.
<string name=”assistant_settings_privacy_advisor_preferences_title”>Privacy advisor</string>
Users will be able to provide feedback on some form of user-generated content:
<string name=”disparaging_to_individuals”>Disparaging to individuals</string>
<string name=”hateful_to_groups”>Hateful to groups</string>
<string name=”irrelevant_or_intrusive”>Irrelevant or intrusive</string>
<string name=”sexually_explicit_and_vulgar”>Sexually explicit and vulgar</string>
<string name=”violence_and_gore”>Violence and gore</string>
Under “Hands-free” in the Voice menu, Google has renamed the settings for “Bluetooth headset” and “Wired headset” to be more explicit about what users are allowing.
How to update?
You can sign-up for the Google app’s beta program here or by heading to the Play Store listing on Android and scrolling to the bottom. The latest beta version of the Google app is immediately rolled out when it’s available.
We do not post APKs to download directly given the legal challenges associated with copyright and possibility of removal. Meanwhile, that model is perilous given Android App Bundles and Google Play’s Dynamic Delivery.
Thanks to JEB Decompiler, which some APK Insight teardowns benefit from.
Dylan contributed to this article
FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links. More.