Is it just you, or when you launched your browser did you happen to do a double take when seeing the same Google Doodle as yesterday?
Each year, millions of Google loyalists expectantly await the release of their smartphone’s new mobile operating system. And every time, changes take a little getting used to, but ultimately improve both battery life and productivity. Usually, there’s even an element to aesthetic updates which heighten the excitement of the general masses. But in the year 2017, Android fans may be a little disappointed.
Recently, it came to light that Google has updated SafetyNet once again. This recent update added some extra root and tamper checks, breaking tools like Magisk. However, the Magisk developer managed to patch the new update almost immediately with their v13.0 beta. While this is good news for Magisk users, it further emphasizes that Google is playing out a cat and mouse game between their SafetyNet checks and root hiding tools like Magisk. A game that Magisk is eventually going to lose.
A Reddit user named the-solar-sailer recently posted screenshots of a newly redesigned Google Now Feed after he rebooted his Pixel XL.
Just about everyone would love for Google to design their own chips for the Pixels. Qualcomm’s Snapdragons are great and all, but they only offer max 2-3 years of support and still fall short of the speeds of Apple’s processors. However, according to Variety, Google has just hired Manu Gulati, a key Apple chip architect, to build custom chips for the Pixels.
Just recently we found that Google had shelved “muskie”—the supposed Pixel XL successor. Muskie is likely to be replaced by “taimen,” an even larger device. Now, reports are saying LG might be the manufacturer of that larger device.
Google’s SafetyNet is an API available for developers, to protect device security and provide a health check of the device to an app. An app can then refuse to run if the device health check fails, or disable features. An app known for doing this is Pokemon Go. This was one of the first apps which actively refused to run on a device that has been unlocked or tampered with. A simple API for developers to implement, huge ramifications for the end-user. The intention of SafetyNet is to provide a protection for the end-user and the IP of a company or to prevent cheating in games, but invariably hurts the end-user and, it can be argued, causes more problems than it solves.
We’re already five days into June and Google’s rolling out new Android builds to its devices. If you don’t want to wait for the OTA to hit you, we’ve rounded up the links for you. Google also says that this update should address the problem for any Pixels experiencing freezing.
The Pixel is by far one of my favorite smartphones ever, but it’s far from perfect. I’ve owned quite a few Android devices, and while the Pixel delivers an experience like no other, it is a good time a wishlist was compiled for Google to consider for the second generation Pixel.