Trade-in program through Google Store going live

When Google launched the Moto X4 Android One device on Project Fi earlier this week, one of their selling points was the potential for Nexus device owners to trade-in their old phone for a credit against their new purchase. The ability to trade-in a phone as part of a device purchase is expanding to now be available through the Google Store for select devices. This new option for consumers comes just in time for the launch of the new Pixel 2 devices in only a couple weeks.

Android One comes to U.S. on the Moto X4 through Project Fi

Throughout 2017 we have been monitoring several initiatives the Google has been working on to expand their U.S. smartphone offerings outside of their own Pixel devices. Two of the moves we have been watching involve the addition of non-Google devices to the Project Fi catalog and the launch of Android One in the U.S. Those efforts came together today with the official launch of the Moto X4 Android One device on Project Fi.

Bose QC35 II headphones with Google Assistant built-in reported to go on sale from Friday for $349

With the official unveiling of Google’s Pixel 2 smartphones a little over two weeks away, more details are emerging about the search giant’s other products, namely Google Assistant. Last week some code names and diagrams pointed towards the headset and speaker manufacturer, Bose, baking Google Assistant into a new set of over-the-ear headphones, the QuietComfort 35 II. Today, there is definitive proof that this is indeed the case, and that the new headphones will go on sale later this week.

Google Tez is new mobile payments platform in works for Indian market

India continues to show signs of becoming a major market for the tech industry despite challenges related to the relative lack of wealth and Google is working hard to capitalize on that growth. The latest move from Google involves a mobile payment platform that is localized for India going by the name Google Tez, which means “fast” in India. Google Tez will be a new platform joining Google Wallet and Android Pay.

Factory images with September’s Security Patch now available for Pixel and Nexus devices

Google has confirmed that it will indeed be launching the Pixel 2 on October 4, and we at TalkAndroid can hardly wait. In the meantime, if you own a Pixel or eligible Nexus device running Android 8.0 Oreo, you know what time of the month this is, it’s when you get the latest Security Patch on your handset as well as any other firmware tweaks. While security patches aren’t usually terribly exciting, the September update has the added bonus of fixing the BlueBorne flaw that affects a couple of billion Android devices. 

It’s official: Google will announce the Pixel 2 on October 4

It was previously thought that Google may announce its new smartphones on October 5th, but no, the search giant has chosen to confirm that Pixel 2 devices will indeed be launched a day earlier on October 4th. It would appear that a switch has flipped at Google HQ, turning the Pixel 2 hype machine on at full tilt with videos, billboards, and web pages all confirming the same thing. 

[Download] Use the official BlueBorne Vulnerability Scanner app to check if your phone is safe

By now, you may have heard a little about the BlueBorne Bluetooth vulnerability that billions of devices are exposed to. Even if you haven’t actually paired with another device, many of us leave Bluetooth active on our phones, which leaves them vulnerable to BlueBorne because it doesn’t even need to pair with the handset to take control of it. Scary, right? An IoT security company called Armis Labs first discovered ‘BlueBorne’, and has also published an app that you can download to check if your handset is vulnerable to this latest attack.

Upcoming ‘Baywolf’ headphones could sport Google Assistant built-in

With less than a month to go until October 5th where Google will take the wraps off of the Pixel 2 handsets, as well as possibly a Google Home Mini and brand new Pixel Chromebook, you could say that anticipation levels are sky-high. Besides the new hardware already mentioned, Google could well be branching out into headphones toting Google Assistant if the latest report is correct. 

Google adds HDR support to the Pixel and Pixel XL, sort of

Google has quietly added HDR support for the Pixel and Pixel XL in the YouTube app. Cool, right? It is, but how they did it is pretty interesting.

Typically, phones need to support HDR at the hardware level. Some newer phones and tablets are launching with it despite there not being very much HDR content, but you don’t see OEMs go back to add HDR support via software on older phones, but that’s exactly what Google did.

Google is fixing Pixel phones in the Houston area

Google has teamed up with UBreakiFix in the Houston to offer free cell phone repairs to anyone in the area that’s been affected by Harvey in the past couple of weeks. All you’ll need to do is bring your Google Pixel into any of the repair shop’s locations around Houston, and they’ll get your phone up and running again. It’s a small gesture, but phones are extremely important in times of emergency.

Google Dashboard gets redesign and new focus for users

In an announcement made today, Google shared an update on a major redesign to their Google Dashboard platform that will start rolling out next week. The Google Dashboard originally launched in 2009 as a way for users to quickly figure out what products they use and access some history and settings. Since then Google has introduced new tools and the world has changed to make even more use of touchscreens and mobile devices. Using this information and input from users, Google went about a redesign to address these changes in the landscape.

With numbers falling, HTC continues to court Google deal

HTC released their consolidated revenue numbers for August showing a sharp drop off for the smartphone manufacturer and their lowest monthly number in 13 years. Bad financial results for HTC are nothing new for the company and are a big reason why CEO Cher Wang has been courting investors who may be interested in buying out the company. One interesting name that came up in the past was Google and new reports have surfaced indicating that Google is in final negotiations to complete a deal with HTC.

Customer support pipeline filling for Google Pixel 2 release

With IFA 2017 behind us along with a host of new smartphone announcements, many eyes will be turning to Google and the expected launch of the Google Pixel 2 devices around a month from now. In a sign that things are ramping up for Google and the new phones’ release, an employment opportunity was spotted on LinkedIn for a customer support position specifically supporting the Pixel 2.