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Biggest announcements from the Google I/O 2019
Posted On May 8, 2019
Here are some of the biggest highlights.
THE PIXEL 3A AND 3A XL GO ON SALE TODAY The cheaper Pixels are official with the Pixel 3A and 3A XL that, yes, come with headphone jacks. (Cue furious applause.) The phones start at $399, and they come with the advanced camera features that the Pixel line has been known for, including features like Night Sight, Super Res Zoom, and portrait mode on both the rear- and front-facing shooters.
THE NEST HUB MAX IS A SMART DISPLAY WITH A CAMERA Google announced that the Google Home line will now be rebranded under the Google Nest umbrella, and it announced a new product for the line: the $229 Nest Hub Max. The device is essentially a combination of the Nest camera, Google Home Hub, and the Google Home Max, offering a security camera, smart display, and loudspeakers all in a single gadget.
ANDROID Q BETA 3 DROPS: DARK THEME, A NEW DIGITAL WELLBEING MODE, SMART REPLY You can download the latest Android Q beta today, which now offers Dark Theme for every standard Android app. We saw this in the early Android Q beta, but we were unable to turn it on / off. Now, you can select the inverted app colors manually or turn it on using battery saver mode.
ANDROID WILL SOON OFFER LIVE SUBTITLES ON ALL VIDEOS Google is bringing Live Caption to all videos. When you watch a video, whether it’s on your camera roll, on an app / the web, or even video chats, Google can soon begin adding subtitles to what is being said right underneath. The company says it’s built this for people who are deaf or hard of hearing, but some people might also use this when they’re watching videos in public and want to keep the volume low or while they’re on a call.
Live Caption is also being added to phone calls, adding a live transcription of the current conversation to help those who may be hard of hearing clearly understand what’s being said.
PROJECT MAINLINE AIMS TO GET YOU ANDROID UPDATES FASTER Starting with Android Q, Google will begin releasing software updates directly through the Play Store instead of waiting on phone manufacturers or carriers. Called Project Mainline, Google says the new system of updates will be offered in “modules” that help tackle specific parts of a device, such as “media components” for camera bugs, for example. That should also prevent a bug update from screwing up other parts of the device that’s not meant to touch.
GOOGLE MAPS GETS INCOGNITO MODE As part of Google’s effort to try to minimize location and search tracking, Google Maps will soon gain an Incognito mode for more private searches. This will be available for both the web and on the app, and it comes just a week after the company announced that it will allow users to automatically delete their location, web, and app activity between periods of every three to 18 months.