Google Opens Up Assistant and Home to 3rd-Party Apps
Google today made the necessary tools available that will let other companies build apps for Google Assistant and Google Home. The developer platform for Google Assistant is called Actions on Google. Developers can now create Conversation Actions for Google Home in order to push data, services, or help to end users upon request. Google says end users won't have to enable skills or install apps as they do with Amazon's Alexa; instead, people will be able to simply talk to Google Home to access the desired actions. Google is allowing developers to sign up for early access to the program, which entails a new API along with a collection of samples and voice user interface resources. Google says some of its early partners will roll out their Conversation Actions for Google Home in the coming weeks. Google Assistant is at the heart of Google Home, and that means Conversation Actions will reach the Pixel and Pixel XL smartphones, and the Allo messaging/assistant app down the road. For example, Google plans to add support for purchases and bookings via Google Assistant, as well as deep integration across other verticals. Google didn't say exactly when it might bring Conversation Actions to the Pixel or Allo. Developers can find more information via Google's developer web site.
First Look: What's New In Android O
Google this week released the first public beta of Android O, the next version of its core mobile platform. Android O has a handful of interesting new features, including picture-in-picture, notification dots, autofill for app logins, easy text selection, and much more.
Review: Google Clear Case for Pixel XL
Google's own Clear Case for the Pixel XL lets users focus on the phone rather than a busy design, but it falls short in covering some basics. It's an inexpensive option, to be sure, and yet you can probably find better ways to spend your money.
Review: OtterBox Commuter for Google Pixel XL
OtterBox's Commuter case for the Pixel XL is a rugged, rubber-and-plastic shell that provides plenty of protection for your pricey smartphone slab. The Commuter delivers more safeguarding against drops than many other options for the Pixel XL.
5 Best Unlocked Smartphones
Unlocked smartphones let you use your device on the carrier of your choice, whether at home or travelling overseas. Though unlocked phones tend to be pricey, you can't really put a price on the freedom they offer.
Google Pushes Second Beta of Android 7.1.2
Mar 21, 2017
Google has released a second beta update for Android 7.1.2. Build NPG47I is rolling out to the Google Pixel, Pixel XL, Pixel C, Nexus 5X, Nexus 6P, and Nexus Player devices, as long as those devices are enrolled in the public beta program.
5" display 1080 x 1920 pixels
Snapdragon 821 processor 4 GB RAM
2,770 mAh battery
Headphone Jack (3.5mm), NFC, Fingerprint Reader, VR-ready