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Wearing a watch lets you tell time with just a glance. Android Wear has expanded this at-a-glance experience to other useful info like your next meeting, daily step count, or messages. Today, we’re launching interactive watch faces, making it easier (and more fun) to stay connected, right from your wrist. Now, with just a tap, your watch face can change its design, reveal more information, or even launch a specific app.

Bits: Choose the info you want at a glance—from weather, to unread mail, to upcoming meetings. Want to know this afternoon’s weather forecast? Just tap on the weather complication.
Under Armour: Stay motivated with fitness stats on your wrist. Tap the watch face to see your step count, calories burned, and distance.
Together: Android Wear’s Together Watch Face lets two people stay close throughout the day by turning the entire watch face into a space for sharing. Once you’ve paired your watch face with a partner’s, you’ll be able to share things like photos and emoji, as well as your activities (like if you’re working out, on the phone, or stuck in traffic).
Today’s updates are rolling out to all Android Wear watches in the coming weeks. So pick your favorite watch face, or pair up with your favorite person, and start wearing what you want.

Posted by Flavio Lerda, Software Engineer, Android Wear 

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If you’re online in Nigeria, chances are you’re on a smartphone. Of the more than 50 million Nigerians who use the Internet, 95% do so on a mobile device and thanks to those devices, the number of people across Nigeria and the rest of Africa with access has grown tremendously. 

However, simply having an Internet connection isn’t enough. It’s important that people getting started with the Internet have a great, reliable, and relevant experience right away. This can be a challenge in places where local content may be limited, connectivity slow or intermittent, and quality phones costly.

While there’s still much more to do, we’re excited to take a step forward in addressing some of those challenges. Today in Lagos we’re announcing new products and features made to improve people’s experience when using a mobile phone to access the Internet. 

First, the Android One program is expanding to Nigeria, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Egypt, and Morocco with the launch of the Infinix HOT 2. This is the first Android One device made with our hardware partner Infinix, one of the hottest, fastest growing smartphone brands in Africa. Starting today, the HOT 2 is available in Nigeria at select retail outlets and online through Jumia at a recommended retail price of N17,500* (~88 USD), and it will become available in the other countries over the next few weeks.

Like all Android One phones, the HOT 2 combines a high-quality hardware experience with pure Android software. Bringing together a quad-core MediaTek processor with 1GB memory, dual SIM support, and black, white, red, blue, and gold (with 2GB memory) models, the hardware is a great complement to Lollipop 5.1.1, which provides up to 2x better performance and extended battery features. The Android One HOT 2 will also receive an update to the next version of Android (according to Infinix’s schedule), and thus stays fast and responsive over time.

Second, for people who already own a smartphone, we’re helping them get more for their MBs through a streamlined version of Google Search rolling out to devices worldwide and offering a faster experience on low RAM phones, such as those with 512MB. This feature can reduce data usage on the results page by up to 90%, while removing up to ⅓ of the time it takes to load results.

Finally, we will make the YouTube viewing experience even better by extending YouTube offline to Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana, and Egypt within the next few months. This feature of the YouTube app lets you store many of the videos on YouTube for up to 48 hours, so you can watch them later when your connection may be slow or non-existent. And if you want to quickly re-watch a video with friends without waiting for it to load, that works great too.

Nearly one year ago, Google introduced the Android One program and YouTube Offline in India. Today, 6 countries in Africa — with combined populations of 379 million people — join the list of places where Android One phones are sold. We’ve been thrilled by the progress and feel humbled by the work that’s left to do. But we look forward to continuing our work with partners to ensure that people have a great way to access the Internet, using it in ways that are relevant and useful. 

Posted by Caesar Sengupta, VP, Product Management

* The pricing may differ from seller to seller in offline retail stores

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Security has always been a major focus for Android and Google Play: Android was built from day one with security in mind.

For example, the “Application Sandbox” model keeps applications running separately from other apps and the rest of the device to keep your data safe. With Verify Apps, over 1 billion devices are protected via Google Play, which conducts hundreds of millions of antivirus-like security scans of devices per day seamlessly in the background. Also, Android is open source so that anyone can comb through the code to identify and address potential security risks, which makes the platform stronger. In fact, the Android Security Rewards Program financially rewards security researchers who invest their time and effort in helping make Android more secure.

We believe the combination of these approaches has led to there being fewer than 0.15% of devices with any kind of potentially harmful app installed, as long as apps were installed from Google Play. (See more of our research.)

An additional approach to further increase the security of Android users involves updates to the device software. For the past three years, we have been notifying Android manufacturers every month through bulletins of security issues so that they can keep their users secure.

Nexus devices have always been among the first Android devices to receive platform and security updates. From this week on, Nexus devices will receive regular OTA updates each month focused on security, in addition to the usual platform updates. The first security update of this kind began rolling out today, Wednesday August 5th, to Nexus 4, Nexus 5, Nexus 6, Nexus 7, Nexus 9, Nexus 10, and Nexus Player. This security update contains fixes for issues in bulletins provided to partners through July 2015, including fixes for the libStageFright issues. At the same time, the fixes will be released to the public via the Android Open Source Project. Nexus devices will continue to receive major updates for at least two years and security patches for the longer of three years from initial availability or 18 months from last sale of the device via the Google Store.

Security continues to be a top priority and monthly device updates are yet another tool to make and keep Android users safe.


Posted by Adrian Ludwig, Lead Engineer for Android Security, and Venkat Rapaka, Director of Nexus Product Management

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Whether you’re exploring a new country or reconnecting with an old neighborhood this summer, Android Wear can help you get timely and local information, directly on your wrist. With an updated Google Maps app and API for Android Wear, it’s now even easier to know where you’re going, while leaving your phone in your pocket or purse.

Google Maps for Android Wear
Just say “Ok Google, navigate to…” to bring up Google Maps’ improved turn-by-turn guidance and full-screen navigation view on your watch. And with always-on screen support, your map view remains on your wrist in battery-saving mode, even when you’re not actively looking at your screen.


Glanceable maps in lots more apps
Many travel apps integrate with Google Maps on Android Wear to bring what’s around you to your wrist. Use HotelTonight to track hotel rates and get notified right on your watch when the price is right. Forgot to pack your toothbrush? Priceline customers can use Android Wear to locate the closest convenience store.

As you stroll through a neighborhood, Foursquare will make sure you won’t walk by and miss a restaurant’s legendary burrito. And TripAdvisor will tell you about the city’s best comedy club that you should visit now (or save for tomorrow night, directly from your watch). You’ll blend right in with the locals as you expertly navigate a new city’s public transport with Citymapper’s step-by-step directions right on your wrist.

No matter how caught up you get in your adventures, be sure to take the time to check-in with your loved ones. With Glympse on Android Wear, you won’t even need to take out your phone! And should your vacation inspire bigger life changes, use Trulia or Zillow to glance at all the home sale listings in your new, beloved neighborhood.

No matter where you go, Android Wear lets you stay on track while freeing your hands for an ice-cream cone—or two. So before you hit the road this summer, be sure to pack your Android Wear watch and your favorite travel apps.

Posted by Ben Greenwood, Product Manager, Google Maps

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Watches tell the time, all the time, helping you stay on track and make quick decisions at a glance. That’s why Android Wear supports always-on screens and always-on apps. You get the info you need as long as you need it, while saving on battery and avoiding arm twists just to wake your display.
Bring! Shopping List in normal and always-on modes.

Always-on fitness
Going out for a run? Now, you can keep an eye on distance and pace just by glancing at your watch with Endomondo, MapMyRun, and Runtastic. If golf is more your game, Golfshot gives you accurate distances from tee to pin so you can always grab the right club from your bag.

Always-on productivity
Competing in your personal weekly supermarket sweep? No need to slow down to bring out a list or phone. Just glance at your watch to see what’s next with Bring! Shopping List and Google Keep.

Always-on travel
And if you’re catching a flight, apps from American AirlinesDelta, and KLM show you flight status, gate, and seat info right on your wrist. Wearing your boarding pass keeps your phone in your bag and out of the airport lost and found.  
With a wide range of Android Wear watches available in the Google Store, it’s easy to find a watch that matches your personal style. No matter which watch you choose, you’ll always be able to stay on track by keeping important info on your wrist.

Posted by Joe LaPenna, Software Engineer and Watchmaker



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Music for everything you do

Need some music right now to make whatever you’re doing better? If you’re not already a Google Play Music subscriber, we’ve now got you covered. Google Play Music now has a free, ad-supported version in the U.S., giving you a new way to find just the right music and giving artists another way to earn revenue. In less time than it takes you to read this sentence, you could be exercising with Drop-a-Beat Workout, cooling off with Poolside Chic, or spending quality time with Songs To Raise Your Kids To.
At any moment in your day, Google Play Music has whatever you need music for—from working, to working out, to working it on the dance floor—and gives you curated radio stations to make whatever you’re doing better. Our team of music experts, including the folks who created Songza, crafts each station song by song so you don’t have to. If you’re looking for something specific, you can browse our curated stations by genre, mood, decade or activity, or you can search for your favorite artist, album or song to instantly create a station of similar music.

We hope you’ll enjoy it so much that you’ll consider subscribing to Google Play Music to play without ads, take your music offline, create your own playlists, and listen to any of the 30 million songs in our library on any device and as much as you’d like. You’ll also get ad-free, offline and background features for music videos on YouTube. And with or without a subscription, you can store and play up to 50,000 songs from your own collection for free.

To help you get started, check out the top 10 most popular activities on Google Play Music, with each offering several radio stations to choose from based on what you like:
  1. Brand New Music
  2. Driving
  3. Working Out
  4. Boosting Your Energy
  5. Having Friends Over
  6. Having Fun at Work
  7. Entering Beast Mode
  8. Waking Up Happy
  9. Unwinding
  10. Bedtime
The new free, ad-supported version of Google Play Music is launching first in the U.S. It’s available on the web today, and is rolling out this week to Android and iOS. And while you’re checking it all out, we’ll be catching up on our Blogged 50.

Posted by Elias Roman, product manager

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Ever wish you could change your look throughout the day? With Android Wear, fashion is equal parts physical and digital. Now, in addition to our growing collection of watches, you can also pick from 1500+ downloadable watch faces to match any outfit, mood, or occasion.
Today, we’re showcasing 17 new watch faces from all over the globe—from the adorable characters of Angry Birds, Hello Kitty, and Moomin, to the elegant accessories of Cynthia Rowley, Lulu Frost, and Triwa, to eye-catching brands and artists like Bang & Olufsen, Muji, and Kevin Tong.

So whether you’re into games or glamour, you’re sure to find a watch face that lets you wear what you want.


Posted by Feng Yuan Xu, Product Marketing Manager, Android Wear