[Update: Google is working on a fix] Downloading Motion Photos via Google’s Backup and Sync is broken for some

For many people, especially those of us here at Android Police, Google’s various backup tools are an integral part of our daily workflow. Frankly, I’d have to entirely restructure how I do things without the convenience of Google Photos and Google Drive/Backup and Sync.

Read More

[Update: Google is working on a fix] Downloading Motion Photos via Google’s Backup and Sync is broken for some was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

Downloading Motion Photos via Google’s Backup and Sync is broken for some

For many people, especially those of us here at Android Police, Google’s various backup tools are an integral part of our daily workflow. Frankly, I’d have to entirely restructure how I do things without the convenience of Google Photos and Google Drive/Backup and Sync. For some, the combination of those two services isn’t working as expected when it comes to Motion Photos, and backup synchronization to a desktop fails for those MVIMG-labeled images. 

This isn’t the first time Motion Photos have introduced problems with Google Drive. Last year, shortly after the introduction of the new Motion Photos, MVIMGs files deleted via Google Photos weren’t actually being deleted (much to our own Artem’s chagrin).

This new problem, in which Motion Photo images refuse to download via the Backup and Sync client, has been reported since around the beginning of the year, and not everyone seems to be affected. Again, Artem is experiencing the problem on his account, but mine is synchronizing Motion Images/MVIMG-labeled photos just fine.

So far reports on the Product Forum are mostly for Windows clients, but some of our readers on OSX are also affected. You should be able to confirm the problem by glancing at the status of Backup & Sync on your desktop (right-clicking the icon in the taskbar on Windows, clicking the app icon in the menu bar on OSX, or righteously raging at Google for the continued lack of a client on Linux) and checking for “can’t sync” errors. If any are present and the files associated with the problem begin with “MVIMG,” then you are likely affected.

  • Thanks:
  • Jason Martin

Google Assistant shortcut app now installs on Lollipop, tablets

The Google Assistant listing on the Play Store might only be a glorified shortcut, but it’s still one avenue for accessing the Assistant on supported devices. And, as of a few days ago, it was officially updated to support devices running Lollipop 5.0. Explicit Android tablet support was also added, which brings parity to today’s announcement that the Google Assistant is now supported on the iPad, too. 

Lollipop support might not seem like a big deal, but almost 25% of Android devices are still running Android 5.0/5.1 according to February’s platform distribution numbers.

Read More

Google Assistant shortcut app now installs on Lollipop, tablets was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

Android P: Our 5 favorite new features so far

Today marks the 7th day that Android P’s first developer preview has been available. In the time since, we’ve spent countless hours digging through P on our phones, decorticating every feature, and checking every tip about small and large changes alike. Our full list of P features has now surpassed 50 items and we’ve rounded them up with a quick description in case you don’t want to spend hours reading each one (though we encourage you to).

Read More

Android P: Our 5 favorite new features so far was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

Google Keep for Android Wear gets a new UI, removes shortcut to open a note on your phone

Google Keep for Android Wear has made a significant jump from version 2.0.08 to 4.1.091. Along with this jump comes a new design that makes note actions easier to get to, though it does remove one neat feature that I often used.

To start, it’s not clear to us whether this is the first proper Android Wear 2.0 APK for Keep or not. From the changelog’s wording, it seems like the app is just now being directly distributed on the Play Store to Wear watches instead of the APK coming from the Keep app on your phone – the fact that it’s now become compatible with iOS lends credence to that, but again, we’re not 100% sure.

Read More

Google Keep for Android Wear gets a new UI, removes shortcut to open a note on your phone was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

Googler: We’re in the Process of Making Allo Usable on Independent Devices


For people like myself, Allo is difficult to use. While I appreciate the mobile app experience, things fall apart when it comes to using the web client and app simultaneously, then switching phones every now and then.

As of right now, using Allo on the web means opening the Allo app on your phone, then scanning a QR code to gain access to your account. It’s not just a simple login system, since Allo specifically requires a mobile number for usage. Don’t ask me why Google decided on this, but that’s what we have.

However, good news may be on the horizon. According to Justin Uberti on Twitter, a lead engineer at Google working on the Duo and Allo services, “We are in the process of migrating the backend system to support completely independent devices.”

Independent devices, you say? If this change occurs, it means users should be able to use the Allo service independently from one another, meaning no more QR code scanning to gain access via the web client. This would definitely be a step in the right direction, but could take some time considering we’re talking about the migration of the entire backend system. There’s no way to know what that all entails for Allo, but I assume it’s complicated.

So, yeah. Allo could soon be more useful for people like me and this makes me happy!


Google is testing a rounded search bar on its mobile site

Google is well-known for constantly experimenting with new designs and UI changes, mostly via limited server-side tests. What we see here is no different; the company seems to be trying out a more rounded search bar, one that matches more closely with the one seen on the Pixel Launcher, on its mobile site.

 

left: Old. right: New.

Along with the reshaping of the search bar, there are a couple of other changes.

Read More

Google is testing a rounded search bar on its mobile site was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

Every new Android P feature we have found so far [Continuously updated]

Android P hero

It’s that time of the year again. The days are getting longer, new hardware is being released, and Google has revealed the next version of Android. As of the March 7th release of the developer preview, we’ve worked our way down Alphabet’s alphabet all the way to “P.” We still don’t know what P is going to end up standing for (Pineapple upside-down cake?), but by now we’ve got some idea for the changes present in this latest/upcoming version of Android. 

To paraphrase David, “I turned around, and it was Christmas.” Thanks to all our tipsters— we ❤ you— our collective Android Police inboxes overfloweth in a deluge of developer discovery.

Read More

Every new Android P feature we have found so far [Continuously updated] was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

Start the weekend with 29 temporarily free and 38 on-sale apps, including Baldur’s Gate

As the first full week of March comes to a close, I have returned for the final round of app sales. Today’s list is rather extensive for a Friday, in contrast to Wednesday’s disappointment, so have some fun. There are definitely some goodies below, especially Baldur’s Gate and Talon for Twitter.

Free

Apps

  1. English for all! Pro $0.99 -> Free; 6 hours
  2. Speccy Spectrum Analyzer $0.99 -> Free; 3 days
  3. Thug Boyz Entertainment Ultra $0.99 -> Free; 3 days
  4. Applock – Fingerprint Pro $1.49 -> Free; 4 days
  5. Automatic Call Recorder (ACR) Pro $3.99 -> Free; 4 days
  6. Bluetooth Mono Media $0.99 -> Free; 4 days
  7. Super Shortcuts $1.99 -> Free; 4 days
  8. VFR GPS Airplane Navigation $8.99 -> Free; 4 days
  9. Fake GPS Location PRO $1.99 -> Free; 5 days

Games

  1. Defense Zone HD $2.99 -> Free; 6 hours
  2. Defense Zone 2 HD $2.99 -> Free; 6 hours
  3. Defense Zone 3 Ultra HD $2.99 -> Free; 6 hours
  4. Quik: Gravity Flip Platformer $1.49 -> Free; 2 days
  5. TA: Little Red Riding Hood $0.99 -> Free; 5 days
  6. Dead Bunker 4 Apocalypse $0.99 -> Free; 6 days
  7. Classic Sudoku PRO(No Ads) $2.49 -> Free; 7 days
  8. Dead Bunker II $0.99 -> Free; 7 days

Icon packs & customization

  1. Wild West 3D Live Wallpaper $0.99 -> Free; 1 day
  2. Delux Black Pixel – S9 Icon Pack $1.49 -> Free; 2 days
  3. Transparent Screen Pro: Transparent Live Wallpaper $0.99 -> Free; 2 days
  4. Timmy Fish Live Wallpaper $0.99 -> Free; 3 days
  5. Mystic Portal $0.99 -> Free; 4 days
  6. Space Watch $0.99 -> Free; 5 days
  7. Nomo – Icon Pack $0.99 -> Free; 5 days
  8. Ravic – Icon Pack $0.99 -> Free; 5 days
  9. Retax – Icon pack $0.99 -> Free; 5 days
  10. Sweetbo – Icon Pack – Apps on Google Play $0.99 -> Free; 5 days
  11. Rumber – Icon Pack – Apps on Google Play $0.99 -> Free; 6 days
  12. HD Wallpapers – Full HD (Pro) $0.99 -> Free; 7 days

Sale

Apps

  1. Inventory Management Premium $2.99 -> $1.99; 1 day
  2. iRadTech $24.99 -> $16.99; 1 day
  3. Discover by Submittable $4.99 -> $1.99; 2 days
  4. How to Tie a Tie Pro $3.99 -> $1.49; 2 days
  5. Scarf Fashion Designer Pro $3.99 -> $1.49; 2 days
  6. 3D Earth Pro – Weather Forecast, Radar & Alerts UK $4.99 -> $0.99; 3 days
  7. Learn French Language: Listen, Speak, Read Pro $3.99 -> $0.99; 3 days
  8. Learn Chinese Mandarin Language Pro $3.99 -> $0.99; 4 days
  9. Change DNS Pro (No Root 3G/Wifi) $1.99 -> $0.99; 5 days
  10. GIFShop Pro – GIF Maker, video to GIF, GIF Editor $3.99 -> $1.99; 5 days
  11. Learn Italian Language Pro $3.99 -> $0.99; 5 days
  12. PhotoMaker Pro – Apps on Google Play $2.99 -> $1.99; 5 days
  13. App Backup & Restore Pro $2.99 -> $0.99; 6 days
  14. Belly Fix – 12 days PRO $2.99 -> $1.49; 6 days
  15. Meeting Notes $3.49 -> $0.99; 7 days
  16. Network Analyzer Pro $3.99 -> $0.99; 7 days
  17. VGB – GameBoy (GBC) Emulator $3.99 -> $1.99; 7 days
  18. Talon for Twitter $2.99 -> $1.99; Time left not specified (my favorite Twitter client)

Games

  1. Add and subtract within 20 $2.49 -> $0.99; 5 days
  2. Addieren bis 10 $2.49 -> $0.99; 5 days
  3. Baldur’s Gate: Enhanced Edition $9.99 -> $2.49; 6 days
  4. Monster’s Socks $2.99 -> $0.99; 6 days
  5. Radium $2.49 -> $0.99; 6 days
  6. Redsun RTS Premium $1.99 -> $0.99; 6 days
  7. Rima: The Story Begins – Adventure Game $4.49 -> $2.24; 6 days
  8. Multiplication Math Trainer $2.49 -> $0.99; 7 days
  9. Multiplication Tables $2.49 -> $0.99; 7 days
  10. Puppet Show 7 $2.99 -> $1.49; 7 days
  11. Puppet Show: Destiny (Full) $2.99 -> $1.49; 7 days
  12. Puppet Show: Lost Town $2.99 -> $1.49; 7 days
  13. Stray Souls: Dollhouse Story.

Read More

Start the weekend with 29 temporarily free and 38 on-sale apps, including Baldur’s Gate was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

Google I/O 2018 schedule is up: New things for Wear, Chrome OS, Assistant, but no sign of TV or Auto yet

The Google I/O 2018 ticket sign up registration is now closed, but there’s something else on the I/O website that should grab your interest: the event schedule is now up and you can see that there might be two main keynotes on May 8, one from 10am to 11:30pm and one from 12:45pm to 1:45pm. I don’t think this format was used in the previous years: it used to be one long main keynote.

Aside from the main event, the schedule has a long list of sessions to look through just to try to gauge a bit what the next focus points for Google will be over the next year. There’s never anything super juicy there or any large slip, as Google often tends to leave a few sessions out from the schedule because their name is reliant on something being announced in the main keynote. But still, I took a quick look and found a few interesting/telling sessions:

And there are many sessions for developers about Kotlin, Firebase, Flutter, Instant apps, AR/VR, developing for the web, Google Pay, Assistant, and some sessions about understanding memory usage and battery drain in apps. All in all, it’s the usual except for two main missing topics: no Android TV, no Android Auto. Google sometimes adds more sessions as we approach I/O and even adds more sessions after the main keynote event, so there’s hope for them still, but this is where things are at for now.