21 Feb 2017


Get a look at the on-screen buttons from the Samsung Galaxy S8

The world is still waiting for Samsung's 2017 flagship and will continue to do so for a couple more weeks, but leaks are beginning to come in at a quicker pace. Now we're getting all different types of information regarding the Galaxy S8 coming this spring. Things like its launch date, appearance, and logo have […]

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21 Feb 2017 4:24pm GMT

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Unofficial Nougat AOSP ROM for Sony M4 Aqua now available, still not stable

It is highly unlikely that the Sony M4 Aqua will get an official Android Nougat update from Sony, given the fact that they've already announced that only the Xperia Z family of devices will get a taste of Android 7.0. Never mind that this midrange phone might actually have the chops to run Nougat. So […]

21 Feb 2017 4:00pm GMT


Hands-on photos show off Moto G5 with new design and fingerprint gestures

It's proving more and more difficult with each passing year for manufacturers to keep their new smartphones a secret. Just days after a huge leak showing off promotional materials for Lenovo's upcoming Moto G5 and Moto G5 Plus, hands-on photos have appeared online showing the smaller device in all its glory - and with one […]

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21 Feb 2017 3:06pm GMT

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Viper4Android updated with Android Nougat support

One of the best reasons for rooting your device is that you'll be able to install Viper4Android. Ever since rooting became a thing and smartphones became the logical source for your portable music, Viper4Android was one of the simplest ways to improve your phone's audio output, and it's ridiculously effective. Now with this latest update, […]

21 Feb 2017 3:00pm GMT


LG confirms waterproofing for the G6

LG's teasing another new feature for the upcoming G6 on their Instagram account, and they're not-so-subtly confirming that you'll be able to take their 2017 flagship into the swimming pool or shower. There's no indication of exactly how water resistant this thing will be, but we know it's happening. Water resistance has been pretty standard […]

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21 Feb 2017 1:30pm GMT

[TA Deals] Become an Ethical Hacker with this massive bundle (92% off)!

There's often a bad connotation with the word "hacker." Many people relate it to the problem with breaches at banking institutions, stores and so much more; however, there are "good" hackers, too. These people are often tasked with breaking into network systems, finding the security flaws and then proposing ideas to the business to fix […]

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21 Feb 2017 1:29pm GMT

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WhatsApp brings new end-to-end encrypted Status feature

WhatsApp is about to have its 8th birthday and to celebrate this milestone, they are bringing, or rather, reinventing, a new way of letting people know what you're up to through not just through text but decorated photos and videos. Yes, the status feature will act like what Snapchat Stories, Instagram Stories, and Messenger's your […]

21 Feb 2017 1:00pm GMT

Samsung’s Secure Folder app for Galaxy S7 now available

The Samsung Galaxy Note 7 fiasco is over. We're considering the case closed because the company already revealed the real cause and results of the investigations: battery suppliers were at fault. Some people may not totally agree with the reports of the South Korean tech giant but it is what it is now-the Note 7 […]

21 Feb 2017 12:00pm GMT

Google trolling us us again with Android Oreo and Android Pocky teasers

Guess what the next dessert Google will serve the Android community? Obviously, it will be Android O. But what could the 'O' be? We bet you're thinking Oreo right now like most people and the latest tweet by Google's SVP for Android, Chrome OS & Play Hiroshi Lockheimer just basically showed the world an Orea […]

21 Feb 2017 11:00am GMT

OnePlus users have taken to Lineage OS, OnePlus One has most number of active installs

Lineage OS is, as you know, the result of the evolution of CyanogenMod. In a sense, it's still the same community working on the same project, but it's called Lineage now. They've released some stats as to the most number of active installs, and it's no surprise that OnePlus phones dominate the top numbers. OnePlus […]

21 Feb 2017 4:00am GMT


AT&T LG G5 update to Nougat now available

Add another device to the list of Android 7.0 Nougat smartphones as AT&T has released the update for the LG G5. Owners of the device will have to be content with just getting Android 7.0 and not Android 7.1, but they will get the bulk of the improvements that Google makes available via Nougat. […]

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21 Feb 2017 3:45am GMT

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Huawei MediaPad T3 clears TENAA, entry-level specs for 8-inch tablet

Huawei is back in the entry-level tablet market it seems, with the Huawei MediaPad T3. The tablet just cleared China's regulatory organization more popularly known as TENAA, and as you know, once TENAA publishes the clearance, we can usually get a few pics and specs from the official website. It looks like this tablet is […]

21 Feb 2017 3:00am GMT


[Video] Unboxing the LG Watch Style

Google recently launched, after a bit of a delay, Android Wear 2.0. In conjunction with the launch of the next generation of their smartwatch optimized operating system, Google also announced the launch of two new smartwatches that will be the first to come equipped with Android Wear 2.0. Retaining branding from their manufacturer, consumers will […]

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21 Feb 2017 3:00am GMT

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Project Fi testing out Voice over LTE for some users

While not a lot of networks are already offering Voice over LTE services for their users, it is a technology that is said to be of great benefit for those who have strong data connections and who still make a lot of voice calls. Google's Project Fi MVNO (mobile virtual network operator) announced that they […]

21 Feb 2017 2:20am GMT


Google to launch RCS in Europe and Asia with help from Telenor

Google announced late last week that they are upgrading the text messaging service available to Android users in Europe and Asia through the addition of RCS service to users on the Telenor network. RCS stands for Rich Communications Services and is widely considered an upgrade to the traditional SMS platform that has powered text messaging […]

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21 Feb 2017 2:14am GMT

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LG Heritage videos claim superiority over other smartphones

A few more days and we're off to see and get our hands on the new LG G6. The other South Korean tech giant has been working hard on this one and we actually have high expectations. We're excited to see that FullVision display, that big screen that fits, non-removable battery, and Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 […]

21 Feb 2017 1:40am GMT

Images of HTC’s budget phone gets leaked, the HTC One X10

We heard that HTC was going to put out a budget version of the HTC 10 around December of last year, and that it was going to be called the HTC One X10. We haven't had any official information about the phone yet, but we have a leaked image today that might just give us […]

21 Feb 2017 1:00am GMT

Android 7.0 Nougat update now available for AT&T Samsung Galaxy S7, S7 Edge

Variants of the Samsung Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge from different mobile carriers are finally getting the much-awaited software update. T-Mobile started rolling Nougat for the two since last week after months of preparation. Samsung released the update officially last January after many weeks of the Galaxy Beta program. We know each Galaxy S7 would receive […]

21 Feb 2017 12:00am GMT

20 Feb 2017

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OPPO’s new 5x optical zoom to be unveiled at MWC 2017

What's up with OPPO? We haven't heard anything about it recently except for that OPPO Find 9 rumor and the release of the Oppo R9S New Year Anniversary Edition last month. We're expecting the Chinese OEM will launch a new one at the upcoming Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain and this teaser tells us the […]

20 Feb 2017 11:30pm GMT

Google Play Store testing out a refresh button for updates

Don't you sometimes wish you had a refresh button for a lot of things in your life? Well if one of those things that you're wishing for is for the Google Play Store, then your wish just might come true. It seems like Google is testing out a refresh button to make it easier for […]

20 Feb 2017 11:00pm GMT

Learn how AI works and save 50% with code — Ends Friday [DEALS]

Want to enter a groundbreaking professional field? Then you should check out The Complete Machine Learning Bundle, marked down to just $39 for Android Community readers. Receive 50% off this low price with code LEARN50 at checkout - but only until this Friday. Let's be honest: The term 'artificial intelligence' has gotten a bit of […]

20 Feb 2017 9:00pm GMT


Watch the first trailer for ‘Alto’s Odyssey’

The sequel to Alto's Adventure is being released this summer, and today the developer behind it is showing the first trailer for Alto's Odyssey. Here's the trailer: Start stretching now because it's going to be a wild ride The trailer doesn't show much, but it's enough to keep up excited about the upcoming game. It […]

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20 Feb 2017 8:00pm GMT

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Next LG G6 will boast of high-quality wide-angle camera with 13MP sensor

It's only a week before the MWC 2017 opens so we're anticipating a barrage of rumors, leaks, teasers, and even early announcements. LG for example is actually generous with giving information as it already teased the G6 phone. Phone was confirmed to only use a Snapdragon 821 processor and that 'FullVision' display was also made […]

20 Feb 2017 8:00pm GMT


[TA Deals] Get certified in Linux/UNIX networking for cheap

Being capable in Linux and UNIX systems is a huge selling point in today's market, especially considering how prevalent it is when dealing with servers and backends. That's why we're offering a huge discount on a set of training courses to help you on your way to becoming officially Linux/UNIX certified. This bundle offers two […]

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20 Feb 2017 7:51pm GMT

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Next LG V30 flagship will run 6GB RAM, Snapdragon 835 chipset

LG is busy preparing for the big launch of the G6. We're expecting it will be a bit grand because right now, we're saying it will be the Star of the Mobile World Congress since Samsung isn't introducing the Galaxy S8. The latter only has its next-gen Galaxy Tab to show off while the other […]

20 Feb 2017 7:00pm GMT


HTC One X10 gets pictured online

HTC's upcoming "budget" phone - the One X10 - has leaked online, this time from Chinese social networking site Weibo. The One X10 will be considered as the successor to the One X9. The One X9 was a budget phone designed for the India market. Considering that the One X10 will be its successor, we're […]

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20 Feb 2017 6:34pm GMT

How to turn off ‘OK, Google’ always listening feature in Google Now

Google Now has a neat ability to listen for the "OK, Google" command to automatically launch the app and get you into Search as fast as possible. But, you may not want Google Now to listen to that prompt or hotword for some reason or another. Good news-it's super easy to turn off! Join us […]

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20 Feb 2017 6:15pm GMT

The Spectacles from Snap just went on sale online

Phones are what we've all been using for Snapchat, but there could be a groundbreaking way of uploading photographs and videos to the service that takes over in 2017. The Spectacles, a special pair of glasses with two cameras enabling more immersive content to be captured, have just gone on sale online for everyone to […]

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20 Feb 2017 5:45pm GMT

Now AT&T’s Samsung Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge are getting Android 7.0 Nougat

Next up for a software update including Android 7.0 Nougat are the 2016 flagships from Samsung on AT&T's network. It turns out the carrier began sending Nougat to the Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge on Friday, February 17. Here's what a community manager on AT&T's forums said: "Effective February 17, 2017, AT&T released an […]

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20 Feb 2017 5:10pm GMT

Samsung’s reputation dips in the United States

Samsung's reputation has dropped significantly in the United States, according to the 2017 Reputation Quotient Ratings by Harris Poll. The Galaxy Note 7 debacle had a part to play in this, but you might be surprised - it's not the only factor. In 2015, Harris Poll put Samsung in third place among the 100 corporation surveyed. […]

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20 Feb 2017 4:00pm GMT

LG G6 will have a dual 13-megapixel camera setup, company confirms

LG confirmed in a blog post that the G6 would sport dual 13-megapixel rear cameras, basically what's found on the LG V20. In addition, the front camera will be getting a bit of an upgrade as well. Megapixel count wasn't mentioned in the post, but it'll have a 100-degree field of view, allowing you to […]

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20 Feb 2017 3:00pm GMT

16 Feb 2017

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And the winners of the Google Play Indie Games Contest in Europe are...

Posted by Matteo Vallone, Google Play Games Business Development

Today, at Saatchi Gallery in London, we hosted the final event of the first Google Play Indie Games Contest in Europe. The 20 finalists, selected from nearly 1000 submissions, came from 12 countries to showcase their games to an excited room of gamers, industry experts and press. Selected based on the votes of the attendees and the Google Play team, the Top 10 pitched in front of a jury of industry experts who chose the top winners.

Stay tuned for more pictures and a video of the event.

Without further ado, join us in congratulating the winners!

Winner & Unity prize winner:

Reigns, by Nerial, from the United Kingdom

You are the King. For each decision, you only have two choices. Survive the exercise of power and the craziness of your advisors... as long as you can.

Runners up:

The Battle of Polytopia, by Midjiwan AB, from Sweden

A turn based strategic adventure. It's a game about ruling the world, fighting evil AI tribes, discovering new lands and mastering new technologies.
Causality, by Loju, from the United Kingdom

A puzzle about manipulating time, altering the sequence of events and changing the outcome of each level to help a group of astronauts find a route to safety.

The other top games selected by the event attendees and the Google Play team are:

Blind Drive, by Lo-Fi People, from Israel

You're driving blindfolded as a mysterious voice gives you suicidal commands on the phone. Survive on-rushing vehicles using only your hearing to guide you.
Gladiabots, by GFX47, from France

A competitive tactical game in which you design the AI of your robot squad. Use your own strategy, refine it online and fight for the top of the leaderboard.
Happy Hop: Kawaii Jump, by Platonic Games, from Spain

This isn't just an original one-tap endless hopper, it's also the cutest one. Ever wondered what's in the end of the rainbow? That would be Happy Hop.
Lost in Harmony, by Digixart Entertainment, from France

Experience music in a new way with the combination of rhythmic tapping and choreographic runner to go through two memorable journeys with Kaito and M.I.R.A.I.
Paper Wings, by Fil Games, from Turkey

A fast-paced arcade game which puts you in control of an origami bird. Avoid the hazards and collect the falling coins to keep your paper bird alive.
Pinout, by Mediocre, from Sweden

A breathtaking pinball arcade experience: race against time in a continuous journey through this canyon of pulsating lights and throbbing retro wave beats.
Rusty Lake: Roots, by Rusty Lake, from Netherlands

James Vanderboom's life drastically changes when he plants a special seed in the garden. Expand your bloodline by unlocking portraits in the tree of life.

Check out the prizes
The prizes of this contest were designed to help the winners showcase their art and grow their business on Android and Google Play, including:
  • YouTube influencer campaigns worth up to 100,000 EUR
  • Premium placements on Google Play
  • Tickets to Google I/O 2017 and other top industry events
  • Promotions on our channels
  • Special prizes for the best Unity game
  • And more!
What's next?
The week is not over just yet for Indie games developers. Tomorrow we are hosting the Indie Games Workshop for all indie games developers from across EMEA in the new Google office in Kings Cross.

It's been really inspiring to see the enthusiasm around this inaugural edition, and the quality and creativity of the indie games developed across the eligible European countries. We are looking forward to bringing a new edition of the contest to you in late 2017.

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16 Feb 2017 7:59pm GMT

15 Feb 2017

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Tips for building high-quality and accessible financial services apps

Posted by Joel Newman & Ashraf Hassan, Strategic Partnerships, Finance, Google Play

Millions of people around the globe have limited or no access to basic financial services to enable them to manage their day-to-day finances. Mobile technology can help bridge this gap by connecting historically underserved consumers with high-quality tools to help them improve their financial health.

Often faced with an uncertain regulatory environment and/or a highly fragmented financial marketplace, many developers struggle with building great app experiences while also navigating this complex financial space. That's why we recently worked with CFSI, the authority on consumer financial health, to create the FinTech App Development Compass, a six-step guide for building high quality mobile apps to make financial services more accessible on Google Play.

Below, we're sharing six tips to consider when building a financial services app. For more, read the complete FinTech App Development Compass.

Tip 1: Know Your User
Understand who your consumer is and what difference your product can make in their day-to-day life. What are their financial needs? How can your product improve their financial health? How does your product fit within the context of their financial lives?

Tip 2: Focus on Access
Responsibly expand access to your product. Consider how your product can fit seamlessly into your users' routines. Consider your users' circumstances, including that English may not be their first language and that they may be using older devices with limited data plans.

Tip 3: Establish and Maintain Trust
Trust is at a premium in the financial space. Make sure you are developing mutually beneficial financial solutions that deliver clear and consistent value. Similarly, make sure you are using the latest security tools available from the Android platform to secure your users' data.

Tip 4: Test and Iterate
Before releasing any product to the public, make sure it has been thoroughly tested. From a financial perspective, be sure to measure the actual impact of your product on users over time. From a technological perspective, be sure to leverage Google Play alpha and beta channels for distributing apps before their public release.

Tip 5: Drive Positive User Behavior
Drive positive consumer behavior through smart design and communication. Leverage the Android platform tools like Material Design and notifications to steer users toward positive action or take financial action at appropriate times.

Tip 6: Recognize the Value of Mutual Success
Remember that the best business models are win-win: If your users' financial health improves, your company profits. Consider embedding financial impact and technological tracking capabilities within your platform from the beginning.

For additional information, refer to the CFSI Compass Principles and get the Playbook for Developers app to stay up-to-date with more features and best practices that will help you grow a successful business on Google Play.

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15 Feb 2017 5:29pm GMT

09 Feb 2017

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Android Wear 2.0 is here with new hardware features!

Posted by Hoi Lam, Lead Developer Advocate, Android Wear

Today, we are releasing the final SDK for Android Wear 2.0. In this release, we have added support for the new hardware features announced yesterday. If you have not done so already, it really is time to publish your apps so as to not miss the consumer hardware launch tomorrow.
Throughout the developer preview program, you have given us a lot of constructive feedback as well as bug reports. Thank you again!

Android Wear 2.0 recap

Android Wear 2.0 is our biggest update since we launched Wear in 2014, with numerous platform and developer enhancements. Some of the highlights include:
  • Material Design for Android Wear - A new system user interface and design guidelines, featuring a darker colour palette, vertical layout and visual components such as the WearableRecyclerView and WearableNavigationDrawer. We have also enhanced notifications on the watch with the new MessagingStyle rich notification style and inline actions.
  • Watch Face Complications - Complications are areas of the watch face that display information other than time. Apps can supply data to supported watch faces by creating a ComplicationProviderService, and watch faces can render this data in a style that suits the watch face design.
  • Standalone Android Wear apps and iOS support - Apps can now be downloaded directly to Wear devices via an on-watch Google Play Store. In addition, these apps can access the internet directly without relying on phone apps. This means that apps can now run on Android Wear devices that are paired to iOS devices.

New hardware support

The first two watches with Android Wear 2.0 give users more ways to interact with their smartwatches. In the final SDK, we have added API support for physical button locations and rotary input. At present, developers will need the new LG Watch Style or LG Watch Sport to test these new functionalities; however, we are working to add these new hardware features to the emulator. Stay tuned for updates! The SDK also includes a few other final bug fixes, such as support for more than three items in the Wearable Action Drawer.

App review changes

Now that Android Wear 2.0 is live, we'll soon update the Android Wear App Quality review process with two important changes. First, enhancing your phone app notifications for Android Wear will no longer be sufficient for passing the review. Second, it will soon be required that you upload a watch APK that's compatible with Android Wear 2.0. Only apps that pass these criteria will receive badging in Play Store on the phone and be eligible for top charts for Android Wear apps. These changes will ensure a more consistent experience for users and allow us to streamline the review process for you.

The journey doesn't stop here!

The Android Wear 2.0 developer preview lasted longer than we originally planned, but we think that the extra time has paid off in a big way. Thank you once again for your input and patience. You helped us achieve a higher quality bar than we could have achieved on our own.

We have integrated the Android Wear 2.0 Developer Preview documentation into the main Wear developer documentation site and we continue to maintain links to the factory images for the preview devices. For developer related bugs, please continue to file developer bug reports or post comments in our Android Wear Developers community.

From the Android Wear team: Thank you again for your feedback and support!

09 Feb 2017 6:05pm GMT

Android Things Developer Preview 2

Posted by Wayne Piekarski, Developer Advocate for IoT

Today we are releasing Developer Preview 2 (DP2) for Android Things, bringing new features and bug fixes to the platform. We are committed to providing regular updates to developers, and aim to have new preview releases approximately every 6-8 weeks. Android Things is a comprehensive solution to building Internet of Things (IoT) products with the power of Android. Now any Android developer can quickly build a smart device using Android APIs and Google services, while staying highly secure with updates direct from Google. It includes familiar tools such as Android Studio, the Android Software Development Kit (SDK), Google Play Services, and Google Cloud Platform. Android Things supports a System-on-Module (SoM) architecture, where a core computing module can be initially used with development boards and then easily scaled to large production runs with custom designs, while continuing to use the same Board Support Package (BSP) from Google.
New features and bug fixes
Thanks to great developer feedback from our Developer Preview 1, we have now added support for USB Audio to the Hardware Abstraction Layer (HAL) for Intel Edison and Raspberry Pi 3. NXP Pico already contains direct support for audio on device. We have also resolved many bugs related to Peripheral I/O (PIO). Other feature requests such as Bluetooth support are known issues, and the team is actively working to fix these. We have added support for the Intel Joule platform, which offers the most computing power in our lineup to date.
Native I/O and user drivers
There are many developers who use native C or C++ code to develop IoT software, and Android Things supports the standard Android NDK. We have now released a library to provide native access to the Peripheral API (PIO), so developers can easily use their existing native code. The documentation explains the new API, and the sample provides a demonstration of how to use it.
An important new feature that was made available with Android Things DP1 was support for user drivers. Developers can create a user driver in their APK, and then bind it to the framework. For example, your driver code could read a GPIO pin and trigger a regular Android KeyEvent, or read in an external GPS via a serial port and feed this into the Android location APIs. This allows any application to inject hardware events into the framework, without customizing the Linux kernel or HAL. We maintain a repository of user drivers for a variety of common hardware interfaces such as sensors, buttons, and displays. Developers are also able to create their own drivers and share them with the community.
TensorFlow for Android Things
One of the most interesting features of Android Things is the ability to easily deploy machine learning and computer vision. We have created a highly requested sample that shows how to use TensorFlow on Android Things devices. This sample demonstrates accessing the camera, performing object recognition and image classification, and speaking out the results using text-to-speech (TTS). An early-access TensorFlow inference library prebuilt for ARM and x86 is provided for you to easily add TensorFlow to any Android app with just a single line in your build.gradle file.

TensorFlow sample identifying a dog's breed (American Staffordshire terrier)
on a Raspberry Pi 3 with camera

Thank you to all the developers who submitted feedback for the previous developer preview. Please continue to send us your feedback by filing bug reports and feature requests, and ask any questions on stackoverflow. To download images for Developer Preview 2, visit the Android Things download page, and find the changes in the release notes. You can also join Google's IoT Developers Community on Google+, a great resource to keep up to date and discuss ideas, with over 2900 new members.

09 Feb 2017 5:01pm GMT

06 Feb 2017

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Get ready for Google Developer Day at GDC 2017

Posted by Noah Falstein, Chief Game Designer at Google

The Game Developers Conference (GDC) kicks off on Monday, February 27th with our annual Google Developer Day. Join us as we demonstrate how new devices, platforms, and tools are helping developers build successful businesses and push the limits of mobile gaming on Android.

Expect exciting announcements, best practices, and tips covering a variety of topics including Google Play, Daydream VR, Firebase, Cloud Platform, machine learning, monetization, and more. In the afternoon, we'll host panels to hear from developers first-hand about their experiences launching mobile games, building thriving communities, and navigating the successes and challenges of being an indie developer.
Visit our site for more info and the Google Developer Day schedule. These events are part of the official Game Developer's Conference, so you will need a pass to attend. For those who can't make it in person, watch the live stream on YouTube starting at 10am PST on Monday, February 27th.

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06 Feb 2017 5:50pm GMT

Fashion gets a digital upgrade with the Google Awareness API

Posted by Jeremy Brook, Group Creative Business Partner, the ZOO

Last summer, we made the Awareness API available to all developers through Google Play services for the first time, providing a powerful and unified sensing platform that enables apps to be aware of all aspects of a user's environment. By using a combination of context signals, such as location, physical activity, weather and nearby beacons, developers can better understand their users individually and provide more engaging and customized mobile app experiences.
We have already seen some great implementations of the API in obvious scenarios, such as shopping for a new home in the neighborhood or recommending a music playlist while starting a jog. For New York Fashion Week, we explored other creative integrations of the Awareness API and collaborated with H&M Group's digital fashion house Ivyrevel and its Fashion Tech Lab to bring couture into the digital age with the 'Data Dress,' a personalized dress designed entirely based on a user's context signals.

Currently under development, the Android app specifically uses the Snapshot API within the platform to passively monitor each user's daily activity and lifestyle with their permission. Where do you regularly eat out for dinner or hang out with friends? Are they more casual or formal meetups? What's the usual weather when you're outside? After the course of a week, the user's context signals are passed through an algorithm that creates a digitally tailored dress design for the user to purchase.

The Android app is launching in closed alpha stage, and is currently being tested by selected global style influencers including Ivyrevel's co-founder Kenza Zouiten. If you want a truly 'tailored' digital experience, sign up here to participate in a future trial of the app before the public release.

06 Feb 2017 4:00pm GMT

01 Feb 2017

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Introducing Associate Android Developer Certification by Google

Posted by JP Souchak, Program Manager

The Associate Android Developer Certification program was announced at Google I/O 2016, and launched a few months later. Since then, over 322 Android developers spanning 61 countries have proven their competency and earned the title of Google Certified Associate Android Developer.

To establish a professional standard for what it means to be an Associate Android developer in the current job market, Google created this certification, which allows us to recognize developers who have proven themselves to uphold that standard.

We conducted a job task analysis to determine the required competencies and content of the certification exam. Through field research and interviews with experts, we identified the knowledge, work practices, and essential skills expected of an Associate Android developer.

The certification process consists of a performance-based exam and an exit interview. The certification fee includes three exam attempts. The cost for certification is $149 USD, or 6500 INR if you reside in India. After payment, the exam will be available for download, and you have 48 hours to complete and submit it for grading.

In the exam, you will implement missing features and debug an Android app using Android Studio. If you pass, you will undergo an exit interview where, you will answer questions about your exam and demonstrate your knowledge of Associate Android Developer competencies.

Check out this short video for a quick overview of the Associate Android Developer certification process:

Earning your AAD Certification signifies that you possess the skills expected of an Associate Android developer, as determined by Google. You can showcase your credential on your resume and display your digital badge on your social media profiles. As a member of the AAD Alumni Community, you will also have access to program benefits focused on increasing your visibility as a certified developer.

Test your Android development skills and earn the title of Google Certified Associate Android Developer. Visit g.co/devcertification to get started!

01 Feb 2017 8:24pm GMT

30 Jan 2017

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Get a sneak peek at Android Nougat 7.1.2

Posted by Dave Burke, VP of Engineering

The next maintenance release for Android Nougat -- 7.1.2 -- is just around the corner! To get the recipe just right, starting today, we're rolling out a public beta to eligible devices that are enrolled in the Android Beta Program, including Pixel and Pixel XL, Nexus 5X, Nexus Player, and Pixel C devices. We're also preparing an update for Nexus 6P that we expect to release soon.

Android 7.1.2 is an incremental maintenance release focused on refinements, so it includes a number of bugfixes and optimizations, along with a small number of enhancements for carriers and users.

If you'd like to try the public beta for Android 7.1.2, the easiest way is through the Android Beta Program. If you have an eligible device that's already enrolled, you're all set -- your device will get the public beta update in the next few days and no action is needed on your part. If your device isn't enrolled, it only takes a moment to visit android.com/beta and opt-in your eligible Android phone or tablet -- you'll soon receive the public beta update over-the-air. As always, you can also download and flash this update manually.

We're expecting to launch the final release of the Android 7.1.2 in just a couple of months, Like the beta, it will be available for Pixel, Pixel XL, Nexus 5X, Nexus 6P, Nexus Player, and Pixel C devices. Meanwhile we welcome your feedback or requests in the Android Beta community as we work towards the final over-the-air update. Thanks for being part of the public beta!

30 Jan 2017 10:31pm GMT

26 Jan 2017

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Engaging users during major events: How The Guardian used innovative notifications

Posted By Tamzin Taylor, Partner Development at Google Play

Major sporting, cultural, political events present an opportunity to re-engage users if you can find a relevant and unique way to serve them information. For example, The Guardian was able to substantially increase user engagement with its mobile app during the recent US election by using new notifications functionality in Android 7.0 Nougat. While notifications themselves are nothing new, The Guardian used innovative techniques and design elements to give their users a rich, real time update on the election results as they happened.
How The Guardian innovated with notifications

Users who opted-in received a single, continuously updating notification which was persistent on their lock screen as results came in on election night. The notification used avatars of the candidates and a progress bar to bring the information to life.

The notification showed the most up-to-date numbers of electoral votes won and states called, an indication of which swing states have been called, and the breakdown of the popular vote between the two leading candidates.

"Having the ability to have a constantly updating notification on screen, allowed us to keep our users engaged throughout election night".
- Rob Phillips from The Guardian

Another important feature was the ability to notify users of major updates with a link to detailed information and analysis. In order to do this, the Guardian allowed the newsroom teams to push notifications of major events, such as when the 270 vote mark was passed.

"Our newsroom could let our readers know in real time when there was a serious milestone, and we were able to deliver 101 unique notifications during the course of the evening. The clear menu options acted as key drivers to our journalism as the news unfolded, and meant we could get our readers connected with our content when they were most receptive".
- Rob Phillips from The Guardian
Results and next steps
The engagement results were impressive:
  • 170K people signed up to see the alert, with 122K users interacting with the alert
  • The average number of interactions was around 620K, or 5.1 per user
  • 74% of users who saw the notification tapped through to the main live blog
  • 25% of users who saw the notification tapped through to our full results content
Finally, perhaps the most impressive statistic is that promoting live updates (via the notification) resulted in 103% increase in daily installs during election week.

"By providing our users with the ability to quickly and easily check information, to highlight major moments and to direct people to where to find more information, we can deliver value to our readers, helping them make sense of the events wherever they are, quickly and succinctly. After all, that's what we're here to do as a news company, and we're delighted that the new functionality on Nougat lets us do that"
- Rob Phillips from The Guardian

On the back of the success of using Android N capabilities for live notifications, the Guardian plans to test the same approach with sports content, and explore how it could be applied more extensively to other major events like The Oscars and the Super Bowl.

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26 Jan 2017 6:06pm GMT

25 Jan 2017

feedAndroid Developers Blog

Discover and celebrate the best local games at Indonesia Games Contest

Posted by David Yin, Business Development Manager, Indonesia, Google Play.

It is a great time to be a mobile game developer on Android with the opportunity reaching more than a billion global users on Google Play. At the same time, developers in fast growing mobile markets like Indonesia have an additional opportunity in the form of a huge local audience that is hungry for local content. We have already seen thousands of Indonesian developers launch high quality, locally relevant games for this new audience, such as "Tahu Bulat" & "Tebak Gambar".

In our continuous quest to discover, nurture growth, and showcase the best games from Indonesia, we are really happy to announce Indonesia Games Contest. This contest celebrates the passion and great potential of local game developers, and provides an opportunity to raise awareness of your game with global and local industry experts, together with gamers, from across Indonesia. It's also a chance to showcase your creativity and win cool prizes.
Entering the contest

The contest is only open to developers based in Indonesia who have published a new game on Google Play after 1 January 2016. Make sure to visit our contest website for the full list of eligibility criteria and terms. A quick summary of the process is below:
  1. If you are eligible, submit your game by 19 March 2017.
  2. Entries will be reviewed by Google Play team and industry experts, and up to 15 finalists will be announced in early April 2017.
  3. The finalists will get to showcase their games at the final event in Jakarta on 26 April 2017.
  4. Winner and runners up will be announced at final event.
To get started

Visit our contest website to find out more about the contest and submit your game.
Terima Kasih!

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25 Jan 2017 4:00am GMT

24 Jan 2017

feedAndroid Developers Blog

Final Android Wear 2.0 Developer Preview: iOS support. Time to upload your apps to the Play Store!

Posted by Hoi Lam, Developer Advocate

Cross platform support by Telegram Messenger

Today, we are releasing the fifth and final developer preview for Android Wear 2.0. In this release, we have added iOS support and included a number of bug fixes and enhancements. Apps compiled with this preview are now ready for final submission to the Google Play Store, so it's time to publish your apps. As Android Wear 2.0 approaches its final release in early February, we would like to thank you for your continued feedback during the developer preview program. Your input has helped us uncover bugs as well as drive critical product decisions. Thank you!

iOS Support

Since 2015, you've been able to pair Android Wear watches with iPhones, and now you can distribute your apps to iPhone-paired watches as well. To do so, just set the standalone=true flag in your watch app manifest. This lets the Play Store know that your watch app doesn't require an Android phone app, and therefore can appear in the Play Store on watches paired to iPhones. To pair your watch to an iPhone and test, just follow these steps.

<application …>
   <meta-data android:name="com.google.android.wearable.standalone" android:value="true"/>

The available network bandwidth for standalone apps can be lower than expected, as the platform balances battery savings vs network bandwidth. Make sure to check out these guidelines for accessing the network, including accessing Wi-Fi and cellular networks on watches paired with iPhones.

Also with this developer preview release, Android Wear apps running on watches paired with iOS devices will be able to perform phone hand-off flows such as OAuth and RemoteIntent for launching a web page on a paired iOS device.

Uploading Your App to the Google Play Store

The final developer preview includes an update to the Wearable Support Library. Apps compiled with API level 25 and this support library are considered ready for deployment in the Google Play Store. Please note that there are no updates to the preview watch image or emulator in this developer preview release.

Other Enhancement and Bug Fixes

  • Navigation Drawer: Flip a flag to toggle to the single-page, icon-only navigation drawer, which provides faster, more streamlined navigation to different views in your app.
  • NFC HCE support: NFC Host Card Emulation FEATURE_NFC_HOST_CARD_EMULATION is now supported.
  • ProGuard and Complication API: New ProGuard configuration means complication data container classes will no longer be obfuscated. This fixes a ClassNotFoundException when watch faces are trying to access data supplied by a complication data provider.

Countdown to Launch

Thank you for the fantastic level of feedback we have gotten from you as developers. Check out g.co/wearpreview for the latest builds and documentation, and be sure to publish your apps before the Android Wear 2.0 consumer launch in early February. As we work towards the consumer launch and beyond, please continue filing bugs or posting comments in our Android Wear Developers community. We can't wait to see your Android Wear 2.0 apps!

24 Jan 2017 6:10pm GMT

23 Jan 2017

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Android Instant Apps starts initial live testing

Posted by Aurash Mahbod, Software Engineer, Google Play

Android Instant Apps was previewed at Google I/O last year as a new way to run Android apps without requiring installation. Instant Apps is an important part of our effort to help users discover and run apps with minimal friction.

We've been working with a small number of developers to refine the user and developer experiences. Today, a few of these Instant Apps will be available to Android users for the first time in a limited test, including apps from BuzzFeed, Wish, Periscope, and Viki. By collecting user feedback and iterating on the product, we'll be able to expand the experience to more apps and more users.

To develop an instant app, you'll need to update your existing Android app to take advantage of Instant Apps functionality and then modularize your app so part of it can be downloaded and run on-the-fly. You'll use the same Android APIs and Android Studio project. Today, you can also take some important steps to be ready for Instant Apps development. The full SDK will be available in the coming months.

There has already been a tremendous amount of interest in Instant Apps from thousands of developers. We can't wait to hear your feedback and share more awesome experiences later this year. Stay tuned!

23 Jan 2017 6:00pm GMT

19 Jan 2017

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App Security Improvements: Looking back at 2016

Posted by Rahul Mishra, Android Security Program Manager
In April 2016, the Android Security team described how the Google Play App Security Improvement (ASI) program has helped developers fix security issues in 100,000 applications. Since then, we have detected and notified developers of 11 new security issues and provided developers with resources and guidance to update their apps. Because of this, over 90,000 developers have updated over 275,000 apps!
ASI now notifies developers of 26 potential security issues. To make this process more transparent, we introduced a new page where developers can find information about all these security issues in one place. This page includes links to help center articles containing instructions and additional support contacts. Developers can use this page as a resource to learn about new issues and keep track of all past issues.

Make sure to check out our new Security for Android Developers page, which highlights the latest security posts, security best practices documents and security checklist. These resources are all aimed at improving your understanding of general security concepts and giving you examples that can help you address app-specific issues.

How you can help:
For feedback or questions, please reach out to us through the Google PlayDeveloper Help Center.
To report potential security issues in apps, email us at security+asi@android.com.

19 Jan 2017 10:00pm GMT

Android Developer Story: Wallapop improves user conversions with store listing experiments on Google Play

Posted by Lily Sheringham, Developer Marketing, Google Play
Wallapop is a mobile app developer based in Barcelona, Spain. The app provides a platform to users for selling and buying things to others nearby in a virtual flea market by using geolocalization. Wallapop now has over 70% of their user base on Android.

Watch Agus Gomez, Co-Founder & CEO, and Marta Gui, Growth Hacking Manager, explain how using store listing experiments has increased their conversion rate by 17%, and has allowed them to optimize organic installs.

Learn more about store listing experiments. Get the Playbook for Developers app to stay up-to-date with more features and best practices that will help you grow a successful business on Google Play.

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19 Jan 2017 4:42pm GMT

Tips from developers Peak and Soundcloud on how to grow your startup on Google Play

Posted by Francesca Di Felice, Developer Marketing at Google Play

At Playtime 2016, Google Play's series of developer events, we met with top app and game developers from around the world to share learnings on how to build successful businesses on Google Play. Several startups, including game developer Peaklabs and audio platform SoundCloud, presented on stage their own best practices for growth, which you might find helpful.

Testing for growth, by Peak

Hear from Kevin Shanahan, Product Manager from Peak, a brain training app, on how to grow sustainably.

  • Test lots of ideas: You can't be sure of what will work and what won't, so you need to test lots of ideas. Peak ran four different tests to try to increase conversions to Pro (their subscriber offering):
  1. Made the ability to replay games a Pro feature
  2. Reduced price of Pro by 25% in top 2 markets
  3. Bundled add-on modules from partners into Pro
  4. Showed a preview of Pro-only content
One of these tests resulted in a 50% increase in conversions.

  • Get the basics right: Start with a great product and have a data-informed culture. Don't only test app features, experimenting your store listing using store listing experiments is also important.
  • Build a robust A/B testing process: Having a well-defined A/B testing process and a system for tracking your experiments is key to testing quickly and effectively.

Improving user retention, by SoundCloud

Andy Carvell, former Product Manager at SoundCloud, an online audio distribution platform that enables its users to upload, record, promote, and share their originally-created sounds, explains how they focus on retention to improve growth.

  • Design your retention strategy: Apps with poor retention grow slowly. To increase your retention you should:
    • Convert new users to repeat visitors by providing a strong onboarding experience for new users and taking a high-touch approach during the first days and weeks.
    • Increase visit frequency within this group by providing frequent, timely, and relevant messaging about content or activity on the platform.
    • Target returning users who were not seen over the last period, who are 'at risk of churn' users, by giving them reasons to come back for another session before losing them.
    • Re-activate lapsed (long-term churned) users with campaigns to remind them about your app and offer an incentive to return.
  • Build 'growth machines': Create repeatable processes that testing has proven to positively impact retention, retaining users, and preventing churn.
  • Use activity notifications in a personalised and effective way: At SoundCloud there are plenty of things that happen when users are not in the app that might be relevant to them, for example new content releases or social interactions. They tested 5 new notification types, always keeping a control group to better keep track of the impact, and managed to increase retention in a 5%. Watch the video above for more of Andy's tips on making better use of notifications.

Other speakers, such as Silicon Valley VC Greylock, have also shared their tips for startup growth. Watch more sessions from this year's Playtime events to learn best practices from other apps and game partners, and the Google Play team. Get the Playbook for Developers app to stay up to date with news and tips to help you grow a successful business on Google Play.

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19 Jan 2017 9:01am GMT

18 Jan 2017

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Southeast Asian indie game developers find success on Google Play

Posted by Vineet Tanwar, Business Development Manager, Google Play

Indie game developers bring high quality, artistic, and innovative content to Google Play and raise the bar for all developers in the process. In fact, they also make up a large portion of our 'Editor's Choice' recommended titles.
Southeast Asia, in particular, has a vibrant indie game developer ecosystem, and we've been working closely with them to provide tools that help them build successful businesses on Google Play. Today, we're sharing stories from three Indie developers based in Singapore, Vietnam, and Indonesia, who joined us at our 'Indie Game Developers Day' workshops in May 2016 and all of whom have experienced significant growth since.

Inzen Studio from Singapore learned how to use store listing experiments and has improved the conversion rate of their newly launched game Dark Dot by 25%. Indonesia based studio, Niji Games, creator of Cute Munchies, implemented 'Saved Games' and 'Events and Quests' from Google Play games services to significantly improve user retention, and also earned an 'Editor's Choice' badge in the process. Ho Chi Minh City based developer, VGames, optimized monetization and introduced new paid products for their game Gungun online, and grew revenue by over 100%.

Indie game developers who are interested in meeting members of Google Play and who would like to work closer with us are invited to join our next round of SEA workshops in March 2017. To apply for these events, just fill in this form and we will reach out to you.

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18 Jan 2017 5:37pm GMT