YouTube Go is aimed at Indian customers on spotty connections.

Last year, Google announced that it would be introducing a barebones version of YouTube for Indian consumers primarily on 2G connections. Dubbed YouTube Go, the app is now available in beta from the Play Store for those located in India, offering a simplistic user interface and the ability to save videos offline.

YouTube Go offers previews, allowing you to see segments of a video before proceeding with playing or downloading that particular video. You can also choose the resolution of the video to download, with two options available: basic (240p) or standard (360p) quality. If you want to locally save 720p or Full HD videos, you’ll have to fall back to the full-fledged YouTube client. There’s also the option of saving videos either onto the primary internal storage or onto an SD card, and you can also share downloaded videos with your friends over Wi-Fi Direct. The social aspect of YouTube Go is interesting, and it’s easy to see that the app is targeted at a younger audience.

That said, one of the main drawbacks of the app is that it doesn’t show you the channels you’re subscribed to. All you get is a home page that shows videos trending locally. As I’m in Hyderabad, I get a lot of video suggestions in Telugu when I’m on LTE. As such, discoverability is a major problem. Playlists and comments are also missing from YouTube Go.

The app is available in eight local languages, making it easier for customers looking for regional content to start using the service. You sign up for YouTube Go using a phone number, and if Google finds an account associated with that number, it will ask you to sign in to YouTube Go with that email address. The interface is broken down into two tabs — Home and Saved — and you get a search box through which you can search for videos.

Overall, the app is significantly pared down when it comes to the features from the standard YouTube client, and the result is that it absolutely flies on my Pixel XL. It’s obviously not aimed at high-end devices, but it’s simplicity works in its favor considering a majority of devices sold in the country are under-powered and do not offer a lot of internal memory. For those devices, a lighter version of YouTube — the app’s download size is 8MB, and it takes up 33MB of space — makes a lot of sense. As we’ve seen recently, Facebook Lite has amassed over 200 million users, so there is a market for lightweight apps that load fast and don’t consume a lot of data, particularly in developing countries.

Google’s efforts in rolling out internet access to the “next billion” users in India have been fruitful thus far, with the free Wi-Fi initiative now available at over 100 train stations across the country. At an event last month, Sundar Pichai reiterated Google’s commitment to the Indian market, announcing new initiatives aimed at getting small businesses online. YouTube Go is a continuation of that vision. The app isn’t catered to everyone, but for those that are on a metered data plan or are in an area where cellular connectivity is spotty (read: most of India), YouTube Go is a decent alternative.




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 | Posted by | Categories: Android |

This week, Andrew, Russell and Daniel talk about the biggest announcement of the week — of the month! — Android Wear 2.0 and the new LG Watch Sport and Watch Style.

Android Wear 2.0 is a pretty massive update for the nascent wearable platform, but is it good enough to convince people to take the smartwatch plunge? And why is the LG Watch Style so lacking in actual features? And have you seen my keys?

Podcast MP3 URL: 
http://traffic.libsyn.com/androidcentral/androidcentral324.mp3




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 | Posted by | Categories: Android |

The Shield Tablet is still great and the Android 7 update means you won’t have to buy a new tablet this year.

Android 7.0 is on the way for your Shield Tablet K1, extending the life of everyone’s favorite 8-incher and bringing all the new features of Google’s latest.

Besides the Android 7 enhancements — split screen, Doze 2.0, better notifications and those sweet, sweet emojis 🌮 🦄 — we see some extra awesome tossed into the mix with support for the new 2017 controller and an exclusive Shield Rewards loyalty program that we’re eager to check out.

The update is pushing out now, so grab your Shield and make sure it’s charged up. Now begin mashing that button! NVIDIA’s full changelog is below.

SHIELD Controller (2017) Support

  • Updates to SHIELD controller support

New Multitasking Features

  • Split-screen: Run two apps side by side* in Portrait or Landscape modes
  • Quick switch: Double tap the Overview button to quickly switch back to the last opened app

Improved Notifications

  • Multiple notifications from the same app are now bundled for a streamlined experience
  • Reply to messages directly from within the notification*
  • Tap and hold on a notification to quickly silence or block notifications from the app

Improved Power Consumption

  • Doze on the Go: Doze is now smarter & kicks in even when the device is being carried around

Emoji

  • Includes all-new Unicode 9 emojis

Usability Improvements

  • Display & Font size can now separately adjustable to improve readability or screenspace
  • Quick Settings can now be customized directly from the menu by tapping “Edit”
  • The top Quick Setting tiles can now be accessed with a downward swipe from the lock screen
  • Settings now includes a Navigation Menu & Suggestions to improve usability
  • The “Clear all” option in Overview have been relocated to the top right

System wide improvements including:

  • New Data Saver: when enabled, limits access to Cellular data for background apps
  • New JIT compiler: improves the speed of App & System updates
  • Update to Android Security Patch Level December 1, 2016

SHIELD Rewards Program

  • Introducing SHIELD Rewards, the exclusive loyalty program for SHIELD owners




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 | Posted by | Categories: Android |

Hear yourself talk, just like in real life!

We don’t usually think about how isolating headphones are for VR experiences, because the overall goal is to be able to immerse yourself in the virtual world by only hearing that world. For exploring something new in VR, immersive audio can be a powerful way to really feel like you’re in the game, but there are plenty of PlayStation VR games where being able to hear yourself and other is also important.

Fortunately, your PlayStation 4 has a feature that allows you to tweak your microphone so you can enjoy audio immersion and the reality of your own voice. It’s called sidetone volume, and here’s what you need to know!

Read more at VRHeads.com




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 | Posted by | Categories: Android |