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Google Chrome showcases potential icon designs to better match macOS Big Sur - 9to5Google
Google has teased some potential alternate icons for Chrome to better match the design language that Apple used for macOS Big Sur.
With the latest update to Chrome, Google has launched a new rounded square icon for the browser on macOS. However, it seems another icon redesign is on the way with Google teasing some potential icons for Chrome to better match the design language of macOS Big Sur. Google Chrome version 87 launched today on Windows and macOS, bringing a host of new features, but the most immediately noticeable change was a new icon for macOS, partially themed to the style of Big Sur. Matching the style of the icon of Chrome for iOS, the new icon simply places the standard Google Chrome icon into a rounded square with a white background. To make Chrome look and feel more at home on macOS Big Sur, Google seems to be working on a more significant redesign of the browser’s icon. On Twitter this evening, Elvin Hu, a member of Google Chrome’s design team, shared three potential designs to add a flair of Big Sur’s “neumorphism.” As many of you noticed, we introduced a new Chrome icon for macOS Big Sur today The team has also been exploring some further macOS-aligned options (some examples here), and were interested in hearing what you think about them pic.twitter.com/dUS70OZdCr — Elvin (@elvin_not_11) November 17, 2020 The first design is exactly what you can see as of today’s Chrome 87 release on macOS, while the latter two use light and shadow in different ways to create a sense of depth. The tweet is intended as a way to open the floor to community feedback on which direction makes the most sense. Elsewhere on Twitter, Alex Ainslie, head of design for Google Chrome, briefly shared about the delicate balance of keeping each of Chrome’s logos across various platforms feeling consistently “Chrome-y,” “Google-y,” and “OS-y” meaning it matches the design language of a particular operating system. One of my favorite things about making @googlechrome for ChromeOS, Mac, Windows, Linux, Android, and iOS is that we get to negotiate how to be 1) Chrome-y and 2) Google-y and 3) OS-y all at the same time. So, in your opinion, which of these three potential icons for Google Chrome best suits the design language of macOS Big Sur? Let us know in the comments. FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links.More. Check out 9to5Google on YouTube for more news:
Future Pixel phones reportedly won’t have unlimited Google Photos storage - 9to5Google
Unfortunately and somewhat unexpectedly, Google isn't offering free storage on Photos to future Pixel smartphones despite older ones keeping the perk.
Yesterday’s news of Google Photos losing free unlimited storage was a bummer, but one bit of good news for Google Pixel owners was that they wouldn’t be losing that perk. Unfortunately, though, future Pixels won’t have the same luxury. As we explained yesterday, Google did confirm that Pixel 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 devices would all retain free Google Photos storage going forward. That’s in part because some of those devices have lifetime guarantees for free storage, which is often used in marketing for those devices. Google further explains on a support page: If you have a Pixel 5 device or earlier, your current backup quality options and benefits remain unchanged. Uploads in High quality from your Pixel 2-5 devices will continue to receive unlimited free storage. However, photos and videos backed up from other devices in High quality after June 1, 2021 will start to count towards your Google Account storage. It’s not something you’ll be hearing in the future, though. Android Central reports that future Google Pixel smartphones won’t be eligible for unlimited Photos storage for pictures and videos. Rather, they’ll end up pulling from the same 15GB free or 100GB+ paid pots as every other smartphone out there. Really, this is a bit surprising. It would have been easy to assume that Google would keep this perk around as a reason for people to buy Pixel smartphones. After all, unlimited free storage is a massive selling point, especially on a service as good as Google Photos. FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links.More. Check out 9to5Google on YouTube for more news:
Google says Pixel 5 screen and body gap is ‘normal part of the design’ - 9to5Google
As customers started receiving the Pixel 5 in mid-October, some noticed a small gap between the display and frame. Google Pixel 5 gap...
As customers started receiving the Pixel 5 in mid-October, some noticed a small gap between the display and frame. Google has investigated the issue and says this is a “normal part of the design” that will not impact water resistance. A “Community Specialist” this afternoon said that Google investigated affected units and looked at “quality control data from the factory.” …we can confirm that the variation in the clearance between the body and the display is a normal part of the design of your Pixel 5. One immediate concern that arose was the impact on the IP68 rating. The company says today that there is “no effect on the water and dust resistance or functionality of your phone.” That said, it will “work with customers on an individual basis to address any concerns they may have.” The full statement is below: Weve had a chance to investigate units from customers and, combined with our quality control data from the factory, we can confirm that the variation in the clearance between the body and the display is a normal part of the design of your Pixel 5. There is no effect on the water and dust resistance or functionality of your phone. We will work with customers on an individual basis to address any concerns they may have. According to user reports, there is a variance between Pixel 5 units exhibiting this condition. Some are more pronounced than others, while most phones do not appear to be impacted. The inside of the phone is not visible through the gap, but dust does collect and can get trapped. As we summarized before: In most cases, the gap appears to show around the corner that houses the front-facing camera, but not exclusively in that spot. These reports also make it seem like the gap is appearing from the moment they take the phone out of its box, which is a bit comforting. If this gap appeared after the phone was being used, it would be a very serious cause for concern. A teardown over the weekend revealed that the display in addition to adhesive is secured to the frame using five clips. As such, there are two layers of protection against the phone hypothetically falling apart. Even with Google’s statement that there are no functional issues with Pixel 5 devices exhibiting gaps, it’s still strange that only some phones are affected. The intended design is presumably seamless, with the response suggesting that the company will work or be willing to exchange units. FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links.More. Check out 9to5Google on YouTube for more news:
Stadia 2.42 prepares to add State Share to captures, Stadia Pro trial without credit card, more - 9to5Google
Stadia 2.42 points to State Share being connected to your screenshots and videos, as well as the ability to try Stadia Pro without a credit card.
Since its first debut, Google has touted that Stadia can enable features that aren’t possible on non-cloud platforms. One of those features, State Share, is set to get expanded by being integrated directly into Stadia’s screenshot and video capture capabilities. About APK Insight: In this APK Insight post, weve 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), were 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. Well try to enable those that are closer to being finished, however, to show you how theyll look in the case that they do ship. With that in mind, read on. State Share in screenshots On Stadia today, you can use the official Stadia controller to take screenshots and videos in full quality on the server side rather than capturing your stream, which would have more compression artifacts. Currently, the only way to share those captures is to download them from Stadia’s web app, but a more direct way of sharing these has been quietly in the works for some time now. In Stadia for Android version 2.42, we find that Google has found a way to connect State Share a feature that lets you jump into a specific place in a Stadia game directly into screenshots and videos captured by Stadia. This capture contains a game state To play or share your game state, open this capture at stadia.com on a computer See game state details Include game state To include your state when sharing, open this capture on a computer at stadia.com It’s too early to say exactly how games will make use of this capability, but using Crayta a Stadia exclusive way to create games and play games others have created, and currently, the only game/app that supports State Share as a baseline, we imagine that if you take a screenshot or video of a particular game in Crayta, such as Prop Hunt, someone who later views that capture would be able to use the State Share link to jump straight into Prop Hunt on Crayta. This is just one of the many ways that Google is working to improve captures, as Stadia 2.36 pointed to being able to include your voice in recorded video clips. Third-party controller setup guide Right now, in the Stadia app for Android, the controller button in the top-right corner is exclusively for initializing a new Stadia Controller onto your network or pairing it with your phone. With Stadia 2.42, it seems Google is preparing a detailed connection guide to make it easier to play Stadia on Android with an Xbox or PlayStation controller. Specifically, Stadia includes instructions for connecting the official “Xbox Wireless Controller” and Microsoft’s “Xbox Adaptive Controller” as well as Sony’s DualShock 4 through Bluetooth or USB. Connect your Xbox Wireless Controller using Bluetooth or a compatible USB cable. To use Bluetooth, activate pairing mode by pressing and holding the Pair button for 3 seconds. Connect your Xbox Adaptive Controller using Bluetooth or a compatible USB-C cable. To use Bluetooth, activate pairing mode by pressing and holding the Pair button for 3 seconds. Connect your DualShock 4 controller using Bluetooth or a compatible micro-USB cable. To use Bluetooth, activate pairing mode by pressing and holding the PS and Share buttons at the same time. The light bar on the back of the controller will start flashing once pairing mode is active. On your device, go to Bluetooth settings and turn Bluetooth on. Scan for new devices and then select your controller. Other controllers or gamepads may also work with Stadia by connecting over Bluetooth or USB. Consult your device’s manufacturer for gamepad compatibility. Messaging (again) For quite a few months now, we’ve been watching as Google has steadily worked on adding messaging capabilities to the Stadia app, including an onboarding process to introduce players to sending messages. With Stadia 2.42, we see more texts pointing to Google getting even closer to launching the feature. Messages now available We’ve added messaging to Stadia Now you can quickly chat with your friends and other players about your next play session and keep the fun going across all your screens. Anyone can send you messages, but you can choose whose messages are visible to you. Stadia Pro without payment method As it stands today, to sign up for a free trial of Stadia Pro, you need to give Google a credit card or other form of payment that will be charged once your trial ends if you don’t choose to cancel. To help give prospective players the ability to try Stadia Pro with no commitment whatsoever which can be especially important, as many may not be sure if their connection is good enough for game streaming it appears Google Stadia may be preparing a way to try Stadia Pro without a credit card. Throughout the app’s code, we see references to “fopless” trials, which we’re assuming is short for “form of payment (FOP) less” free trials. In the bit of text below, it looks like these “fopless” trials will let you enjoy Stadia Pro for a shorter amount of time before requiring you to “Add a payment method later” to unlock the remainder of the usual 30-day trial. Unfortunately, we don’t know how long these trials will last, as the text below gets filled in with a length of time. Try Stadia Pro for the next Add a payment method later to continue your trial. More on Stadia: FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links.More. Check out 9to5Google on YouTube for more news:
Google Pixel 5 camera earns 120-point score from DxOMark - 9to5Google
Despite a flawed point-scoring camera ranking system, DxOMark has awarded the Pixel 5 the highest score for a Google device at 120 points.
Despite the incredibly flawed and confusing nature of ranking cameras using a point-based system, the Google Pixel 5 has achieved a 120-point score from the defacto industry camera experts DxOMark an 8-point bump over the Pixel 4 according to the French firm’s ranking system. Considering that the Pixel 5 camera hardware offers a new focal length, but retains the same core camera sensor, the scoring seems all the more confusing. Even more so when you consider that the Pixel 5 actually lacks the Pixel Neural Core for faster on-device processing, although this hints that software is playing an even more crucial role in the camera performance of the firms latest flagship. Unlike in previous years, where a 120-point total camera score would place a Pixel device firmly in the top 10 in DxOMark’s ranking, the Pixel 5 barely scrapes the top 15. This is no doubt due to the lack of a telephoto zoom lens, as DxOMark’s scoring system means a higher average based upon the number of lenses a device has at its disposal. For photos, the Pixel 5 received what seems like an impressive 129-point total. As we have said, and many others will tell you, these scores are sometimes completely out of sync with what you see in the real world. However, criticisms aside, the rankings are a who’s who of the best in the business. DxOMark praised the exposure, color, and autofocus capabilities of the Pixel 5, alongside the way the device handles image artefacts. With an overall DXOMARK Camera score of 120 points, the Google Pixel 5 puts in middle-ranking performance for devices evaluated under our latest testing protocol. The main camera fares slightly better with a Photo score of 129; and with key strengths for exposure, color, and autofocus, as well as well-controlled artifacts, the Pixel 5 delivers solid results for the most part. Intricate details and texture are notable high points of the Pixel 5 camera system according to DxOMark, but noise appears to be an issue as they noted “visible noise in virtually all images” being a major weakness when using the digitally enhanced Super Res Zoom. This results in a 49-point score for the zoom capabilities, which is a marginal bump down compared to the 81-point score awarded to the Pixel 4 last year. The ultra-wide-angle lens is a first on a Google Pixel series device, and DxOMark suggested that the field of view is “limited” but produces solid shots something that we’ve proven ourselves: Ultra-wide shots are pleasant enough for exposure and color, but its limited field of view puts it at a disadvantage compared to devices that squeeze more into the frame. The Pixel 5 saw big strides in video performance and features, which has resulted in the highest video score for a Google device in DxOMark’s testing. A major commendation from DxO was the video autofocus, while the stabilization was also highly praised at 4K UHD. A 107 score was awarded for the video portion of the Pixel 5 camera. The biggest complaints were the “underwhelming exposure and obvious color casts are also visible in low light”. However, bright and standard lighting conditions were strong suits of the Pixel 5 video shooting capabilities. Oddly, DxOMark chose not to test the dedicated Night Sight mode on the Pixel 5, with no explanation as to why not. However, the conclusion is that the Pixel 5 manages to offer an excellent camera experience that goes toe-to-toe with devices costing double and triple: With limited hardware, the Pixel 5 stands behind top performers for attributes such as texture, noise, bokeh, and zoom, where extra sensors and lenses really help. That said, its main camera delivers nice images, with the Google device delivering close to top scores for the basics of exposure, color, and autofocus. Naturally, it will be interesting to see just how the scoring system evolves over the coming years, as it’s hard to seek out a bad flagship smartphone camera experience at this stage of 2020. Heck, we’d never suggest buying a device just from a DxOMark-awarded score. While we criticize the potentially flawed scoring system, it’s always important to note that camera preference is still highly subjective. What do you think? Let us know down in the comments section below. More on the Google Pixel 5: FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links.More. Check out 9to5Google on YouTube for more news:
OnePlus ditches Facebook bloatware on the 8T and future phones following user backlash - 9to5Google
In a complete reversal, OnePlus will stop pre-loading Facebook apps and services on its phones, starting with the new OnePlus 8T.
Following the launches of the OnePlus Nord and OnePlus 8 series, it was made apparent that the company was pre-installing Facebook bloatware on its devices. Now, in a reversal, OnePlus is officially stopping that practice. In case you missed the original story, earlier this year users became aware that OnePlus was pre-installing some Facebook apps on its phones. Specifically, the OnePlus 8, 8 Pro, and Nord, the former two being the company’s most expensive phones to date. While many of the user-facing apps from Facebook could be removed, but some behind-the-scenes services could not, and those could send data to the social media giant. Obviously, the company’s community was not happy about that revelation and, likely, they even lost some customers over it. Our own comments section was flooded with only negativity about the change. Speaking to Input, OnePlus directly confirmed that Facebook services are not preloaded on the OnePlus 8T something we can gladly confirm on our review unit and that future devices wouldn’t include the junk either. The company stopped short of saying that this is a permanent change, but the foreseeable future contains only OnePlus devices with Google, OnePlus, and Netflix apps pre-loaded, nothing more. Generally speaking, actions like this are not common. After all, OnePlus was probably raking in a fair bit of cash from a deal with Facebook. The decision actually came directly from feedback from fans and the media. Specifically, an op-ed piece from Input “made its way to the very top.” This is great news, but unfortunately OnePlus didn’t have any comment or solution for OnePlus 8, 8 Pro, or Nord buyers still stuck with Facebook. Shame. FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links.More. Check out 9to5Google on YouTube for more news:
Google Meet rolling out Education support for up to 100 breakout rooms per call - 9to5Google
As previewed in August, Google Meet is now rolling out breakout rooms. At launch, it's only available to Enterprise for Education customers and is meant...
As previewed in August, Google Meet is now rolling out breakout rooms. At launch, it’s only available to Enterprise for Education customers and meant to aid distance learning. Organizers of Enterprise for Education meetings can now use breakout rooms to divide participants into smaller groups during video calls in Meet. Participants can then easily rejoin the original meeting following their smaller group discussion. This has been a highly-requested feature from educators that want to increase classroom engagement by “splitting students up for simultaneous small group discussions or working time.” Moderators are able to jump into these conversations at any time. Admins can control the number of rooms, set a timer, and shuffle. The control panel notes how everyone is grouped with quick editing available. You can create up to 100 breakout rooms in a call. Call participants will then be randomly and equally distributed across the rooms. You can also manually move people into different rooms. Breakout room creation is only available on the web, but anyone with a Google Account regardless of device can join. Google Meet breakout rooms are rolling out now and will be fully live over the next few days to all Enterprise for Education users. Google plans to make it available to other Workspace tiers in the future. FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links.More. Check out 9to5Google on YouTube for more news:
YouTube TV is now ‘YT TV’ on Android homescreens as icon tweaked on Google TV - 9to5Google
A super minor update to YouTube TV for Android today sees the app name change to "YT TV." Additionally, the Android/Google TV app icon has also been...
A minor update to YouTube TV for Android today sees Google change the app name to “YT TV.” Additionally, the Android/Google TV app icon has also been ever so slightly tweaked. Version 4.40 for Android (phones and tablets) sees the app name change from “YouTube TV” to “YT TV.” This change is reflected on homescreens and app launchers, but not on the app info page or Play Store listing. The abbreviation matches “YT Music,” and sees “YT TV” move to the right of the audio streaming application. For most people, YouTube TV is now the last item in their alphabetically arranged app drawer, though this might pose some challenges when searching depending on your device’s launcher. Based on your set font size, “YouTube TV” might have been truncated to “YouTube …” before. Today’s change means that this is no longer the case for most — if not all — users. This new version is still rolling out via the Play Store. Meanwhile, on the Android TV / Google TV front, another update sees the YouTube TV app card change. It was previously the red YouTube play button followed by “TV” against a white background. This is also how in-app branding appears. It’s now the icon and “YouTube TV” behind a black card, with both stretching edge-to-edge. The background change distinguishes it from YouTube and the YouTube Music shortcut. One benefit is that it stands apart in the app carousel, though Chromecast with Google TV users always have access to it in the new “Live” tab. Theres now also a red tint/glow when selected. This change should be widely rolled out today. FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links.More. Check out 9to5Google on YouTube for more news:
October security patch rolling out to Google Pixel, factory images & OTAs live - 9to5Google
Following last month's launch, the first update to Android 11 is rolling out today with the October security patch. It's is available for the Pixel...
Following last month’s launch, the first update to Android 11 is rolling out today with the October security patch. It’s available for the Pixel 2, Pixel 3, Pixel 3a, Pixel 4, and Pixel 4a. With Android 11 last month, Google dropped the latest Pixel Feature Drop. Location Sharing in Google Maps Live View was the highlight, while the company re-touted several features spotted during the Developer Preview/Beta cycle: Smart Replies in Gboard’s suggestions row when using chat apps, app suggestions in Pixel Launcher dock, automatic folder naming, Recents multitasking redesign, new screenshot corner pop-up, and other “Overview Actions.” There are 20 issues resolved in the October security patch dated 2020-10-01 with two additional Mainline updates and 28 for 2020-10-05. Vulnerabilities range from high to critical, with the most severe relating to the media framework and a remote attacker possibly executing arbitrary code through a crafted file. In the Android Security & Privacy 2018 Year in Review, Google notes that “no critical security vulnerabilities affecting the Android platform were publicly disclosed without a security update or mitigation available for Android devices.” Additionally, there was an 84% year-over-year jump in security patches during Q4 2018 compared to the prior year. The dedicated bulletin for Google devices lists no extra security fixes, but several functional updates. FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links.More. Check out 9to5Google on YouTube for more news:
Is Google’s new phone called the ‘Pixel 4a (5G)’ or ‘Pixel 4a with 5G’? - 9to5Google
With the launch of the Pixel 4a in August, Google teased the two other phones that would make up its 2020 lineup. The Google Pixel 4a (5G) is now here...
With the launch of the Pixel 4a in August, Google teased the two other phones that would make up its 2020 lineup. The Pixel 5 and Pixel 4a (5G) are now here, though Google is also calling that latter device by a slightly different name. Many already consider the non-flagship phone that Google announced on Wednesday to be quite odd. The inclusion of 5G necessitates the need for a different chipset than the regular 4a (765 vs 730), while the company also decided to add a dual-camera array that features a wide-angle lens. Despite those two key hardware improvements — in addition to the larger screen and battery, it’s still a device in 4a line. Specs aside, Google in August teased it as the Pixel 4a (5G) — pronounced straight through. That’s what it was unveiled as at Launch Night In — though without the parentheses, but the Google Store throws that naming into question. No less than three places on the Google Store homepage refer to the phone as the “Pixel 4a with 5G” — cover image, main product carousel, and a dedicated card. That’s also the brand on the product listing in the top-right corner. However, reading through the page you start seeing “Pixel 4a (5G),” while accessories for the device also use that name. The Google Store’s top navigation also uses the parenthesis version. Looking at the launch blog post from Google, it’s consistently the “Pixel 4a (5G)” again, but a comparison chart included at the bottom refers to it as “with 5G.” The extra “with” is a bit clunky and serves to elongate the device name. Given the teaser, Google looks to have settled on “Pixel 4a (5G)” early on only to introduce the other version later in the process. This is a minor discrepancy in the grand scheme, but it does add unnecessary confusion to an already odd piece of hardware and strategy. FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links.More. Check out 9to5Google on YouTube for more news: