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  • Google is adding an option to disable all network media notifications on Chromecast and Google Home devices

    The addition of Chromecast network notifications probably seemed like a good idea at the time. They allow you to control media even if you aren’t the one who started playback. However, you see those notifications on your device even if you’re not watching or listening to the content, and you can end up with multiple cast notifications on a busy network. Google is finally making these notifications optional with a toggle that turns off all the network notifications for your Chromecast or Google Home.

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    Google is adding an option to disable all network media notifications on Chromecast and Google Home devices was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

  • Instagram 10.22 adds Location and Hashtag Stories to the Explore tab [APK Download]

    Instagram created a carbon copy of Snapchat stories last year, but now the company is making them far more discoverable. In a blog post, Instagram announced that Stories will now be accessible by location and hashtags.

    The app’s Explore tab previously had recommended photos and video, based on what your friends like/follow and your current location. A new Story ring will be visible at the top of Explore, featuring Stories tagged with a location nearby to yours.

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    Instagram 10.22 adds Location and Hashtag Stories to the Explore tab [APK Download] was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

  • [Deal Alert] Grab an unlocked LG G5 for $299 from B&H ($230 off) and get a free LG 360 VR headset (worth $129)

    LG’s 2016 flagship, the G5, is still a solid phone, even if it never quite reached the same heights as other headline devices of the time. While you may not be willing to pay through the nose for it, $299 is an attractive price given its specs, and that’s made even better when B&H are willing to throw in an LG 360 VR headset for nothing.

    We’ve seen a carrier-unlocked LG G5 this low before on eBay and locked versions have been going for even less, but neither with the added bonus of a VR headset.

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    [Deal Alert] Grab an unlocked LG G5 for $299 from B&H ($230 off) and get a free LG 360 VR headset (worth $129) was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

  • Netatmo Weather Station is long on looks, longer on data

    It was time to update my home weather station from something functional but ugly to something decidedly more modern. Netatmo has fit the bill nicely.

    I was going to show you my old weather station — a venerable beast from Oregon Scientific, which is quite good at this sort of thing. But alas, as soon as I took it off the wall it disappeared to wherever Phil’s Old Stuff disappears. (Basically an older, less sexy version of this.)

    So. Time for something new. Something connected, and something definitely more modern.

    A quick search of ye olde internet consistently returned offerings from Netatmo. They haven’t changed a lot over the years, which actually is a good thing in this case. So that’s the direction my credit card was pointed.

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    The basics: the standard Netatmo Weather Station comes a relatively small indoor sensor, and an outdoor sensor. They look, well, like silver cans. The indoor one measures temperature and humidity and soun…

  • Ikea Trådfri smart lights will get support for Assistant and Alexa later this year

    What’s the point of having smart home devices if you can’t control them with your preferred voice interface? Ikea’s Trådfri  lights are a little cheaper than Phillips Hue, but they don’t work with Assistant right now. That’s going to change soon, though. Now if only you could pronounce it.

    The press release on the news is only available in Swedish at the moment, and Google Translate does rather mangle that language. From what we can gather, the update for the Trådfri Gateway will roll out during the summer or fall.

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    Ikea Trådfri smart lights will get support for Assistant and Alexa later this year was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

  • HTC U11 hands-on: MrMobile’s new squeeze

    By now you’ve seen the HTC U11 hands-on treatment: the smudge-prone but beautiful backplate; the conventional face; the interface that reacts to a squeeze as well as a swipe. But thanks to some canceled flights and some overzealous NYC security guards (long story) I got to spend a little longer with the HTC U11 than I might have, and as a result I was able to produce a slightly more in-depth hands-on than would otherwise be possible. That’s thanks to Android Central, whose HTC U11 review unit I took for a spin around Mountain View during Google I/O, so be sure to give Android Central’s HTC U11 Preview a look once you’re through watching MrMobile’s hands-on … and stay tuned for much more coverage on the smartphone you can squeeze in the weeks ahead!

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    The Web

  • How (and when) to clear app cache or data on Android

    Apps sometimes can misbehave. If it happens to you, here’s something to try.

    Update May 2017: This post has been updated to be in line with newer versions of Android.

    Every Android smartphone has an application manager that you can get to through the settings menu. It’s usually in the top level somewhere, though it can vary a little by phone. But once you get to it, you’re at the heart of the matter. This is where you can see every application that’s installed on your phone or tablet. And it’s a handy place to clean things up a bit should they go wonky. Here’s what’s up:

    Clearing the app cache

    As you use applications, they start storing files for reference later. These files are stored in an app “cache.” For instance: When you’re using the Android Central app, it’ll save images and other pieces of the stories you’ve read so that they don’t have to be downloaded each and every single time the app needs them. This saves you time and data.

    But maybe you want to clear an app’s cac…

  • How to prepare your Galaxy S8 for Google Daydream

    The countdown to Daydream with a Galaxy S8 has begun, are you ready?

    Samsung’s Galaxy S8 will soon be the only phone capable of using both forms of high quality mobile VR, so if you’ve been eager to see if the grass really is greener on the other side you’ll soon be able to see for yourself.

    Just like the Gear VR, you need to do a few things to make sure your phone is good to go for Daydream. Here’s what you need to know!

    Read more at VRHeads.com

  • Fixing Play Music: How Google can improve its streaming music service

    How can Google Play Music improve? Let us count the ways…

    I’m not exaggerating when I say this: Google Play Music is the first app I use every morning and it is the last thing I see before I put my phone to sleep at night. And no, that’s not just because Google Play Music is my alarm clock. Music is what keeps me sane during chaotic work days, and it’s what cheers me up when life inevitably happens. Google Play Music always has been my most-used app, and it’s changed a lot in since it launched in 2011.

    Not all of those changes have been good, and there are more that still need to happen. Here are the biggest things still missing in one of Google Play’s most important services.

    UI Overhaul

    Four years ago, Google Play Music went from Holo blue/black to a more retina-searing orange/white. Ever since, Play Music has been adding and adding features without any major UI changes, which has lead to the app becoming a bloated mess.

    The home page was the portion of the app to most…

  • How to prepare your HTC Vive for Star Trek: Bridge Crew

    Is my Vive ready for Star Trek: Bridge Crew?

    Star Trek: Bridge Crew, the hotly anticipated game that many VR and Trek fans have been waiting for forever is finally dropping May 30, 2017. The ability to sit on the bridge of the USS Aegis and work as a team with your friends on Oculus Rift and PlayStation VR is bound to be popular, but how can you get your Vive ready for what promises to be an authentic Trek experience? Here are a few tips to ensure your bridge station is as good as possible.

    Read more at VR Heads!

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