In this week’s top stories: Thanos snaps his way through Google Search results page in an Avengers: Endgame Easter Egg, Huawei announces EMUI 9.1 for almost 50 more devices, we review the Anker Roav Bolt the first standalone Google Assistant device for the car, and more.
Google got in the Avengers’ spirit this weekend by adding a fun Easter Egg to Thanos’s Knowledge Graph, involving an Infinity Gauntlet. Clicking the gauntlet will animate it to show Thanos’s signature “snap,” then the page will scroll around to show The Decimation of half of your Google Search results.
This Thanos Google Easter Egg is not the only tie-in with Avengers: Endgame. Last week, Google introduced more Marvel superhero Playmoji to Pixel phones. Captain Marvel, Rocket, War Machine, Thor, and Black Widow join Iron Man, Captain America, Hulk, Nebula, and Okoye from last fall.
Speaking of destroying half of something, Google Fi inadvertently followed in Thanos’s footsteps to celebrate their 4th birthday by taking half off the price of the Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL in a one-day sale. While discounts are always appreciated, it just goes to further prove our Ben Schoon’s point of not buying a Pixel at launch.
At half off, this birthday deal [brought] the 64GB Pixel 3 to $399 (128GB: $449) and the 64GB Pixel 3 XL to $449 (128GB: $499). This [was] better than previous offers in January and February that discounted the phones by only $150.
In a strong show of support for their existing customers’ devices, Huawei has announced that their Android Pie-based EMUI 9.1 will be arriving on nearly fifty Huawei and Honor phones and tablets released in the past few years, in addition to the handful of devices EMUI 9.1 has already landed on. Later in the week, Huawei began beta testing for twelve of these devices in China, with no word on whether global devices will receive any beta updates.
- Huawei’s EMUI 9.1 is set to head to a further 49 devices soon
- EMUI 9.1 beta rolling out to 12 devices including Huawei Mate 20/P20 Lite, Honor View 20, Honor 8X in China ahead of global launch
This week, our Ben Schoon got to review a first-of-its-kind device: the Anker Roav Bolt, a Google Assistant-powered car accessory. The device—like a Google Home Mini for your car—is definitely the best way for vehicles without Android Auto to get connected with our phones and the Google ecosystem.
My favorite bit, though, is that it even makes Android Auto look complicated. For long road trips, I’d absolutely still recommend using Auto if you have access to it, but the Anker Roav Bolt gives you an immediate, wireless connection, as well as freeing up your USB-C port for charging. 8 times out of 10, I don’t even use Android Auto in my car just because I don’t like waiting for it to load up. With the Bolt, I can get in, start the car, and the Assistant is ready and waiting.
Last month, a bug in Google Photos with potentially serious privacy implications required that Google disable ability to cast to Android TV from a Google Home. Earlier this week, Google confirmed to us that a proper fix has finally been rolled out to almost all Android TV devices.
However, if you’re like me, the problem was still affecting your device. Google has an answer for that too. Apparently, the process of disabling those functions may not come back on perfectly for all users. The company says that a factory reset (for the Android TV device) should fix the issue going forward, and I’ve been able to verify that on my Nvidia Shield.
The rest of this week’s top stories follow:
- OnePlus confirms triple camera array for OnePlus 7 Pro as launch event tickets go on sale
- Exclusive: Chrome screenshots confirm ‘touchless’ Android based on Oreo [Gallery]
- [Update: Investigation underway] Nokia 9 PureView update enables a faster fingerprint sensor that can be easily fooled
- Google reportedly bans Play Store developer w/ over 600 million installs due to ad fraud scheme
Apps & Updates |
- Google Calendar and Google Fi readying dark modes
- Google Fit now available on iOS with Apple Health sync
- Google app 9.72 beta breaks weather app, adds newest/oldest sorting in Podcasts, new Lens icon [APK Insight]
- Google Photos gaining Android Foldables support, backup status gallery
Chrome / OS |
- Initial evidence suggests Google will bring Android Q to Chrome OS
- Chrome 74 for Android rolling out w/ ‘reduced motion’ support, Translate menu, renamed ‘Lite mode‘
- Chrome 74 for desktop rolling out with Windows Dark Mode support
Google Pixel |
- Here’s some new Case-Mate ‘Made for Google’ cases for Pixel 3a and 3a XL
- [Update: Spoilery details] Google Pixel 3 appears in ‘Avengers: Endgame’
- iFixit thinks it knows how Samsung Galaxy Fold screen failures happen
- Samsung Galaxy Wearable app has been broken, preventing full set up for Galaxy Watch, Gear S3
- Review: The Samsung Galaxy S10e is my favorite Galaxy S10
- Samsung taking back Galaxy Fold review units as it seeks to salvage reputation [U]