About the Author

Abner Li

@technacity

“It’s Google’s Alphabet’s world & we’re all just living in it.”

The above is Abner’s philosophy and why in his 6 years of writing about tech Google and Android has been the main focus.

He resides in Los Angeles.

Send tips to abner@9to5mac.com.

Email or Twitter @technacity if you want to discuss anything remotely Android or Google related with him.

Today

In honor of the first live performance of Bohemian Rhapsody 44 years ago this month, Google is partnering with Queen on the “FreddieMeter” app. This web experience available for Android, iOS, and desktop rates how closely you sound like Freddie Mercury.

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Yesterday

The Motorola Razr is likely the most iconic flip phone ever released. In 2011, Motorola and Verizon tried to revive the brand with a series of thin — for their time — Android phones. The Lenovo-owned company is now bringing back the Razr as an Android Foldable.

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Following the Stadia AMA this afternoon, Google has updated its support pages with details about Stadia-compatible third-party controllers.

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For previous generation Pixel phones, the last major Camera update was in August and saw Night Sight elevated to the main interface. Google Camera 7.2 — which first rolled out on the Pixel 4 — is now coming to older Pixel devices via the Play Store.

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Google Discover recommending more interests for you to follow

Over the past day, some Google Discover users have been served a “Discover more” recommendations card that prompts them to customize their feeds with more interests. There’s also a home view for topics and tweaked article cards.

You’ll be able to buy Stadia games with Google Play gift cards on Android

Toward the tail end of today’s Stadia AMA, Google revealed that Stadia games and other in-game content can be purchased with existing Play Store credit on Android.

In addition to demonstrating how games are casted, Google during the Stadia AMA revealed more of the Stadia interface for Android, iOS, and Chromecast-connected televisions. Highlights include the setup process, homescreens, and settings.

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In addition to revealing a slew of Stadia details, Google teased a new accessory for Pixel phones and the Stadia Controller during the Reddit AMA. Named the “Claw,” it’s a Made for Google product and will only be available via the Google Store.

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As the Stadia AMA continues this morning, Google showed off the workflow for casting a Stadia game from Android to a television. Demoed publicly for the first time, the Stadia game cast experience is not too different from sending music or other videos.

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During today’s Stadia AMA, Google provided an overview of its “approach to releasing features” for Stadia. New functionality will come as soon as a week after launch and continue from that point onwards.

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Stadia is launching in under two weeks on Tuesday, November 19. Ahead of that, Google is hosting another Reddit AMA next week to “help answer any questions you may have before launch.”

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When traveling abroad, mapping and translation are likely your two most-used apps. Google is now integrating Maps and Translate “closer together” with a new translator feature that pronounces place names and addresses.

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November 12

Following reports of “Project Nightingale” coming to light, Google Cloud last night published a blog post detailing its “partnership with Ascension.” One large aspect sees the health provider move data to the cloud, while another sees the two companies working on future technology to improve patient care.

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In recent years, Google has increasingly monetized Maps through ads and other subtle methods. One of those ways is by allowing location pins to feature a store’s logo, with that branding soon appearing when people get directions.

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Over the past year, Play Games has gained a dark theme and Material Theme settings. Google is now rolling out an organization revamp that sees Play Games gain dedicated tabs for key parts of the Android app and a “Home” feed.

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November 11

The latest Gboard beta is rolling out today after features like translating emoji into GIFs and stickers emerged over the weekend. Gboard 8.9 introduces a new design for the sticker tab, while making some visual tweaks in settings.

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First spotted in September, Google Photos for Android is now widely rolling out a redesigned bottom sheet menu for viewing image info and taking actions. It replaces the old overflow implementation for a much cleaner and more centralized interface.

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Beyond the acquisition of Fitbit earlier this month, Google’s health ambitions are multi-faceted and extend into services for hospitals and health providers. Such an effort named “Project Nightingale” was detailed today, along with the end product: “Patient Search.”

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From the start, speed has been a “core principle” of Chrome and one that Google advocates for on the web. Google is now experimenting with loading indicators that inform users how long it typically takes for a site to load.

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The 2019 Chrome Dev Summit kicks off today and Google is showcasing future technologies for the web. This includes killing, loading, and allowing more native experiences, while the browser is getting performance and memory improvements.

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