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Danny Holyoake
373 followers -
I like gapless playback.
I like gapless playback.

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My mum's Moto G 2nd Generation just got Marshmallow! I'm very pleased by the level of support this cheap phone has received from Motorola.

(I don't think she's as excited about this as I am...)
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Getting 'Permission Denied' and 'No Such Directory' error messages when trying to sync to SD card on Marshmallow. Granted access to the SD card. Is this still not fixed? :(

Getting 'Permission Denied' and 'No Such Directory' error messages when trying to sync to SD card on Marshmallow. Granted access to the SD card. Is this still not fixed? :(

So +YouTube emailed me the other day to inform me that my YouTube Music Key subscription would be coming to an end. I'll still pay for Google Play Music, but the YouTube features that I use every day (background play and no ads) will no longer work.

The reason behind this is that YouTube is rebranding YouTube Music Key to the equally-as-bad-sounding Youtube Red, which is currently US-only. YouTube Music Key was a subscription service that was available in multiple countries, including the UK.

There's something not quite right about Google just removing features of a service I pay for, all because of a rebrand. I understand that YouTube Red covers all of YouTube, while Music Key only covers videos with music in them, but I don't see how that makes it OK for Google to just remove paid features.

The email did say that Google is working to bring YouTube Red to the UK - but no timeline or ETA was given whatsoever. Can I expect it before 2016? I'm being left in the dark completely, and I don't see how that's right.

#YouTubeRed   #YouTubeMusicKey #MusicKey   #Google  

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"To put all this into perspective;

The Nexus 4 and 10 from 2012 will not get Android Marshmallow.

The iPhone 4S and iPad 2 from 2011 just recently got iOS 9.

Some Windows Phones released in 2012 will be updated to Windows Mobile 10 as well."
The State of Android Updates is Still Abysmal

This post was inspired by Google's recent decision not to to update their Nexus 4 and Nexus 10 to Android Marshmallow, and the lingering issue of millions of devices that'll never see Marshmallow.

Android as a whole, has never been good with update speed, deliverance or longevity. Nexus devices are often considered exempt from this criticism as they are updated directly by Google, and it's true Nexus devices will often be updated faster and longer than comparable flagship handsets from other Android OEMs.

But that by no means makes updates "great" on Nexus devices. Google recently published some clearance on how long Nexus devices would be updated(http://officialandroid.blogspot.com/2015/08/an-update-to-nexus-devices.html). Basically what Google said was that Nexus devices would receive major updates for 2 years, and security updates for 3 - 4 years. 

That update guarantee doesn't sound bad, and it isn't, especially compared to other Android handsets. But it isn't great either, if you pit it against iOS or Windows Phone. 

iOS devices are guaranteed 3 - 4 years of support, and security updates going as far up to 5 years. Windows Phones on the other hand have an inconsistent track record with major OS updates but there are a number of devices from 2012 which will soon be updated to Windows Mobile 10, Microsoft provides security patches for over 5 years.

To put all this into perspective;
The Nexus 4 and 10 from 2012 will not get Android Marshmallow.
The iPhone 4S and iPad 2 from 2011 just recently got iOS 9.
Some Windows Phones released in 2012 will be updated to Windows Mobile 10 as well.

A recent rebuttal I heard too the policy of 2 year updates was that Nexus devices are "inexpensive" and 2 years of support are "perfectly fine." Alright, let's assume for a second that that argument is correct and price = update longevity. If so, let's imagine that I am a person that keeps my devices for 3 years and I've been using iOS for a while now, and I'd like to switch to Android, what device should I get that will get major updates for 3 years? Because if I buy a Nexus it's too cheap to receive updates for a long time, and if I buy a $600+ device from another OEM it's not going to get updated anyways beyond 2 years, examples include the HTC One and Xperia Z1, both devices cost quite a bit when they were released in 2013 but they aren't getting updates anymore. 

And if we step aside from the flagship devices for a moment, what about the millions of other devices? Does Google have any plan to get them to Marshmallow?

The most notable exception I've found is the Android One lineup, these phones get updated for 2 years and that's perfectly fine in my opinion, but Android One are a very small portion of the entire Android market, Google needs to seriously think about how to resolve updates for other devices.

I've been defending Android updates for as long as I can remember, but I don't even think its worth it any longer. 
Credits to +Droid Life  for image.
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Many people feel that Android Marshmallow doesn't 'deserve' its 6.0 version number. This post does a good job of illustrating that Marshmallow is, in fact, a big deal!
Some people believe that Android M doesn’t deserve the title of Android 6, mainly because it isn’t as big of an overhaul as previous Android 1.x releases have been or because it doesn’t accompany the visual changes we’ve seen on previous 1.x releases.

While on some level this is true, going over the long list of improvements does really put into perspective how big of an update M truly is.

Let’s go over all the features we will(or might) see on Android M:
• Now on Tap
• Permissions Management
• SD Cards can be “merged” with internal storage
• Android Pay
• Native fingerprint authentication
• Automatic app data backups
• App Links (you’re going to see less of those “what do you want to open this in?” prompts)
• Doze and App Standby
• Multi Window(currently hidden, uncertain future)
• Theming support(currently hidden, uncertain future)
• Dark theme(removed, uncertain future)
• Customisable Quick Toggles along with other UI tweaking
• Visual Voicemail Support
• Redesign of the Clock Widget and Music Identification Widget
• New “Memory” Section in Settings(it was there before, but hidden)
• Support for deleting screenshots directly through the notification centre after they’ve been taken
• Landscape mode available for the Google Now Launcher(feature will likely be backported to older versions of Android)
• New app and widget drawer with scroll bar support and vertical scrolling
• Built-In File Manager receives a bump in functionality
• Native tap to wake support
• Ability to disable “heads up” or “peeking” notifications
• Native 4K output support
• Stricter APK validation
• MIDI support
• USB Type C support
• New boot animation
• Introduction of a “voice interaction” API to allow better interaction with voice actions in apps
• Toggling battery saver by voice
• Ability to undo and redo text changes with bluetooth keyboard shortcuts
• Multi-selection to merge, delete or share has been added in the contacts application
• Faster text selection along with a floating toolbar for text actions
• Default apps UI
• Direct share can allow you directly share stuff with contacts through the share menu
• Much more granular app info
• Native bluetooth stylus support
• Split-screen keyboard
• Mobile radio active bug will be fixed
• Better do not disturb along with repeat caller exceptions
• Bluetooth scanning to improve location accuracy
• Native flashlight API
• Easier access to Multi volume controls(ringer, media, alarm)
• Smoother volume scrubbing (credits to Jason Efstathiou)

Putting all those features aside there are also a number of under-the-hood improvements that seem to have had a very positive impact on both performance and power usage.

I’m puzzled as to how someone could call this a “minor” update. 

Credits: +Android Police​​​
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What coming back to a code base after two weeks of vacation feels like.
#pixelpushing
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Google Hangouts is social
I wish Google took other social stuff (like Instant Messaging) as seriously at it once took Google+. Other companies are investing billions here and Hangouts continues to be neglected. 

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Why you need comments
I swear The Verge turned off comments because they were tired of getting yelled at for screwing up posts like this.

http://www.theverge.com/2015/7/22/9013455/sony-android-concept-xperia-z3-software-preview

"The goal, says Sony, is to develop new software "from the ground up," meaning no Google Play Services or superfluous apps, just the core Google communications software and Sony's stack of custom apps like Camera, Music, and Xperia Lounge."

The second half of this sentence contradicts the first. You can't have Google apps without Google Play Services—they wouldn't work. Also releasing Android without Google Play Services would be in violation of the "anti-fragmentation clause" in their MADA contract and Google would pull their Google Play license.  

They don't even link to the actual Sony blog post so people can get the correct information. (it's here: http://blogs.sonymobile.com/2015/07/22/launching-sonys-concept-for-android-initiative-in-sweden/ )

IF The Verge had comments turned on, this post would be getting ripped to shreds. Now they can misinform people in peace. 
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