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Google Rolls Out Play Services 7.8

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Aug 13, 2015, 3:32 PM   by Eric M. Zeman

Google today said it has finished updating most Android devices to Play Services 7.8. This new version of Play Services adds several functionalities that developers can take advantage of when writing apps. For example, Nearby Messages adds a cross-platform API to let devices communicate with beacons more efficiently based on proximity. It melds Bluetooth, WiFi, and ultrasonic audio to connect devices. Play Services 7.8 adds a Face API, which developers can put to use finding human faces in images and video. It performs better than the Android FaceDetector.Face API. Google said it is much quicker to see eyes, noses, and mouths no matter how the image is oriented. Google sees this API being helpful in games and photo apps. The Barcode API lets apps recognize barcodes automatically in real-time. Google says it can read multiple barcodes at once and supports many types of barcodes. Google improved Google Cloud Messaging, too, which gains expanded notification support localization. Last, Google added high and normal priority notifications to Google Cloud Messaging, which will be a feature in Android Release M, due later this year. Play Services 7.8 is compatible with most Android devices running 2.3 Gingerbread and later. It should already be updated for the majority of users.


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