The just-announced Pixel 5 has somehow already been unboxed

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The Pixel 5, Google’s latest Android flagship, was just announced today, and someone on YouTube has already posted an unboxing video of the new device ahead of its release (via 9to5Google).

What’s in the box is fairly standard — there’s the phone itself, as well as a charger, a USB-C to USB-C cable, and a USB-C to USB-A converter. The YouTube user who has the phone, who goes by the name Sergiu, does power it on, giving us a look at the phone’s 6-inch 2340 x 1080 OLED screen and 8-megapixel hole-punch selfie camera. Sergiu doesn’t use the phone all that much in the video, though, sticking mostly to the phone’s home screen.

Sergiu also zooms in on back of the Pixel 5, showing the phone’s aluminum back, fingerprint sensor, and square…

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One of Google Stadia’s most interesting features, Crowd Choice, is finally coming this week

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Photo by Amelia Holowaty Krales / The Verge

Google has always wanted its cloud game-streaming service, Stadia, to change how YouTube streamers interact with their fans. Nearly ten months after release, Google is finally bringing its “Crowd Choice” feature to its first two games. Crowd Choice allows viewers to vote on, say, which team a streamer joins in the game, which piece of dialogue they pick, or other in-game choices the player might make. The streamer can ultimately decide if they want to follow the audience’s suggestion or make their own choice.

On October 1st, Dead by Daylight will launch on Stadia Pro, and it will be the first game to integrate Crowd Choice. In Dead by Daylight, the feature gives the audience a chance to vote whether the streamer should be a “killer” who…

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Here’s how the new Pixel 5 compares with the Pixel 4A 5G and Pixel 4A

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Photo: Google

Google’s fall hardware event ended this afternoon after a breezy 30 minutes of rapid-fire product announcements, with the stars of the show being the new Pixel 5 and Pixel 4A with 5G. Google now has three primary smartphones; two midrange ones (one with 5G and one without) and one flagship. That’s a refreshingly simple lineup, compared with some of the messier, more bloated offerings from competitors.

But that doesn’t mean choosing between the devices is necessarily clear-cut. The 4A 5G is not just a 4A with a different modem; the two phones have some key hardware differences, making the Pixel 4A 5G more of a Pixel 5 alternative than a budget phone. The three devices, grouped together, hit price points of $349, $499, and $699, so…

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Google’s new ‘Hold for Me’ feature saves you from elevator music

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Hold for Me

For many of us, calling a doctor’s office, an insurance carrier, customer support, or indeed any kind of administrative office has become an exercise in frustration — especially these days, when increased demand and cuts in staffing have made phone waits interminable. Yes, you can simply use speakerphone to monitor the line, but do you really want to listen to that awful music for over an hour?

A new Android feature called Hold for Me, which Google just announced, may just be able to make those phone waits a bit more tolerable. Hold for Me is currently available as a preview feature in the US for Google’s new Pixel 5 and Pixel 4A (5G) phones.

Here’s how it works, according to Google: if you call a toll-free number and are put on hold,…

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Chromecast Ultra is dead, long live Chromecast Ultra (and this new Ethernet dongle)

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Google’s new $50 “Chromecast with Google TV” has supplanted the Chromecast Ultra in practically every way — so you probably won’t be surprised to hear Google is getting rid of its original 4K streaming device. The Chromecast Ultra is now out of stock at every major US retailer, including the Google Store, where its product page redirects to the new Chromecast.

It’s not formally “discontinued,” mind you: Google says it will still be available at “select retailers,” even though we’re seeing no stock at Amazon, Best Buy, Target, Walmart, The Home Depot, Staples, etc., and even though B&H Photo actually lists it as “discontinued” right now.

But there is still one way to buy one — because when Google announced its 2020 Chromecast, the new…

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Verizon has an exclusive Pixel 4A 5G that’s $100 more expensive

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Pixel 4A 5G UW (Verizon exclusive model in “Clearly White”)

Image: Verizon

Verizon is getting an exclusive model of the Pixel 4A 5G: it comes in white, it supports Verizon-specific 5G bands, and it’s $100 more expensive. Verizon has dubbed this model the “Google Pixel 4A 5G UW” to highlight its support for the carrier’s “ultra wideband” 5G network.

If you’re on any other carrier, you’re not missing out. And if you’re on Verizon, this is probably a worse option than buying a standard Pixel 4A 5G at the regular price of $499, rather than spending $599.99 on Verizon’s model.

The issue here is Verizon’s limited 5G network. Unlike AT&T and T-Mobile, Verizon’s 5G network so far relies only on millimeter wave (mmWave) connections. Those connections are the fastest you can get…

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How to preorder the Google Pixel 5, the Pixel 4A 5G and the Nest Audio

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Google announced a bunch of products at its big hardware event. As expected, we saw the Google Pixel 5, its new $699 flagship 5G-ready phone. We also saw a more affordable Pixel 4A with 5G support that costs $499.

In the US, only the Pixel 5 is available for preorder with a release date of October 15th. The Pixel 4A 5G is coming to most countries in November and you can join a waitlist through the link below (it’s coming to Japan first on October 15th).

If you were interested in the new Chromecast, you won’t have to preorder that; it’s available starting today from a variety of retailers, including Best Buy and the Google Store. As for the Nest Audio, it will be available in 21 countries starting on October 5th.

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Google’s Recorder app is getting an audio editing feature

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Google Recorder

Google

At today’s Google event, the company announced that its Recorder app, which is available for Pixel 2 or newer phones, is getting a nice update that should make it a lot easier to search through audio files. The update will allow you to select a snippet of audio from a recorded clip, which you can then either share or remove from the larger audio file.

Additionally, you can search for specific words in a recorded transcript and delete them. So if you’re someone like me who tends to say “uh,” “um,” or any other crutch word during interviews, you can theoretically find and remove them with this new update.

According to Google, you’ll be able to use this feature offline, in the same way its live English transcription function works without…

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Google’s new Nest Audio smart speaker is official, costs $99.99

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Google Nest Audio | Photo: Google

Google has officially announced the new Nest Audio smart speaker, the latest in its line of smart speakers powered by the Google Assistant. The Nest Audio replaces the original Google Home from 2016 as Google’s midrange smart speaker, slotting above the Nest Mini and below the Nest Max in the lineup. It costs $99.99 and will be available starting October 5th in 21 countries. You can preorder it right now.

Unlike the Google Home’s air freshener aesthetic, the Nest Audio’s soft rounded corners and vaguely rectangular shape make it more reminiscent of a loaf of bread standing on its end. Like the Nest Mini, it’s completely wrapped in fabric, which you can get in a few different colors. Also like the other Nest speakers, there are four…

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Google announces the Pixel 5 for $699

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Google has officially taken the wraps off of the $699 Pixel 5, its latest Android flagship. Compared to last year’s Pixel 4, Google is focusing less on dramatic new technology — like the much-hyped Motion Sense gestures on last year’s model — and emphasizing instead the unique features that already help set the Pixel apart, like its stand-out camera software.

The Pixel 5 will feature a Snapdragon 765G processor — notably not the top-tier Snapdragon 865 or 865 Plus — complete with Qualcomm’s integrated X52 modem for 5G support (a benefit of the slightly less powerful chipset.) It’s a break from the usual Pixel strategy, which has sought to offer comparable flagship specs to other top Android devices from companies like Samsung or OnePlus…

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Google announces Pixel 4A 5G with larger 6.2-inch display for $499

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Image: Google

Google today announced the Pixel 4A with 5G, a variant of the budget phone it released back in August that supports 5G networks, during its “Launch Night In” fall hardware event. The device costs $499, a $150 jump over the standard 4A, but the 5G variant comes with a few notable hardware differences beyond its upgraded cellular modem. The phone is launching later this month in Japan, with more countries to follow in November.

The Pixel 4A 5G’s OLED screen is larger, for one, at 6.2 inches over the standard 4A’s 5.8-inch display. The device also carries a slightly faster processor, the Qualcomm Snapdragon 765G, compared with the standard 4A’s Snapdragon 730G. That’s the same inside the newly announced Pixel 5, which also supports 5G…

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Google announces new Chromecast with the new Google TV interface

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The new Chromecast

The new Chromecast | Google

After seven years on the market, Google is finally giving the Chromecast its most-requested feature: a remote control. Today, the company is announcing the launch of a new Chromecast that also runs new software. And its official name is the somewhat awkward “Chromecast with Google TV.” The company is resurrecting the Google TV as an interface layer that runs on top of the actual OS powering the new Chromecast, Android TV.

The Chromecast with Google TV will cost $49.99 and is available in the US beginning today. Actually, it was available a couple days ago if you happened to visit the right Home Depot, and Chris Welch has already posted his review which you can go look at right now. It comes in three colors: gray, pink, and blue (or as…

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The 7 biggest announcements from Google’s Pixel 5 event

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Photo: Google

Google just wrapped up its fall hardware event where it debuted the Pixel 5, the less expensive Pixel 4A 5G, the oft-rumored Chromecast with Google TV software built in, as well as the Nest Audio smart speaker. It’s a lot of good news for people who like new hardware. All said, the quick half-hour event contained mostly announcements we expected, but there were a few unexpected surprises. Here’s everything you might have missed at Google’s event.

Google’s Pixel 5 is a different spin on a flagship phone

In the case of specs, the Pixel 5 isn’t trying to go up against the most powerful phones in the world. Instead of beating them when it comes to raw speed (it has a midrange Snapdragon 765G processor, but the 8GB of RAM should deliver some…

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Improved Google Photos editor is rolling out now on Android

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Google is starting to roll out a new editing mode for Google Photos on Android, which adds machine learning-powered automatic suggestions, and improved tools for more granular manual controls to help make your photos look even better.

The biggest change is a new “Suggestions” tab in the photo editing menu, which will offer recommendations for edits for the specific photo you’re currently looking at, automatically adjusting things like “brightness, contrast, and portrait effects.” The broad edits are also just a starting point — Google will also show you what edits it made, and let you tweak them further.

To start, Google is offering some basic options for suggestions, like “Enhance” and “Color Pop,” but the company…

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SanDisk’s latest portable SSDs have boosted speed and security

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Image: SanDisk

The SanDisk Extreme and the Sandisk Extreme Pro are a pair of speedy external SSDs that also have the hardware to keep your data safe and secure. The more expensive SanDisk Extreme Pro claims speeds of up to 2000MB/s for both read and write, while the regular SanDisk Extreme offers transfer speeds of up to 1050MB/s read and 1000MB/s write.

This puts the new SanDisk Extreme Pro among some of the fastest drives on the market, without having to put up with the more limited compatibility of a drive that connects over Thunderbolt 3. Tom’s Hardware has already put the 2TB version of the drive through its paces and notes that it delivers “very strong sequential read and write performance” over the latest 20Gbps USB 3.2 Gen 2×2 standard, and it…

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Marshall adds Qi wireless charging to its latest headphones

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Image: Zound Industries

Zound Industries has announced its latest pair of Marshall-branded headphones, the Major IV. Like previous Marshall headphones, the Major IVs have a formidable battery life, which extends up to 80 hours on a single charge this time around. When it comes time to recharge, you can either plug in a typical USB-C cable or charge them wirelessly using a Qi-compatible charger.

We’ve seen numerous true wireless headphones embrace wireless charging over the last couple of years, but the feature is far less common with on-ear headphones like the Major IV. As well as wirelessly charging the headphones at home, the technology means you’ll also be able to charge them using any smartphones that support reverse wireless charging like the Samsung…

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Xiaomi’s Mi 10T Pro has a 144Hz screen and a 5,000mAh battery

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Xiaomi has announced the Mi 10T Pro, its latest flagship phone. The device follows the strategy seen last year, where the sleek Mi 9 was followed by a largely unrelated Mi 9T Pro with a heavier emphasis on specs. The Mi 9T Pro was one of the best phone bargains of 2019 in markets where it was available, so expectations should be high for the 10T Pro.

The two standout specs on the Mi 10T Pro are its screen and its battery. It uses a 6.67-inch 1080p 20:9 LCD with a refresh rate of 144Hz. That refresh rate is what you’d expect from a high-end gaming monitor, and until now it’s mostly only been found on gaming-focused smartphones, making this the most mainstream phone yet to achieve it. Because the screen uses an LCD panel, though, the…

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