IT’S ALWAYS good to take stock at the end of the week – and that’s what we do right here. Welcome to our round-up of the rest of the news from the Alphabet Castle – Alphabet, Google, Android, Chrome – if it didn’t make the main news, it may just pop up here.
GDrive kicks us off this week and its finally getting a Material design makeover on mobile devices. It includes a new account switcher, expanded search bar and a bunch of other goodies. It starts rolling out on iOS from today, with Android users joining the party next week.
Speaking of Google’s apps, GSuite admins are now being offered the option to disable two-factor authentication using a mobile phone, in order, it says, to improve security. It’s a reminder that although 2FA is a wholly wonderful thing, some instances of it are better than others.
Chrome users will see the Data Saver feature that compacts pages by running them through its own servers, is getting an upgrade to encompass HTTPS pages (a good thing as HTTPS is Google’s preferred method). You’ll start to see these “Lite” versions of pages where there is a slow connection. If you opt-in of course.
Support for Nintendo Switch controllers is coming to Chrome. Its thought that the planned rollout is another step towards the game streaming service, widely expected to roll out at Google I/O.
Google Allo, the company’s attempt to steer users away from its Hangouts service has been sunsetted. The service, which was completely incompatible with any other of the company’s myriad of offerings, never really took off in the wake of rivals like Facebook’s Whatsapp.
But lest we forget, several other services are marked for sunsetting in the next few weeks – Google+ will finally breathe its last, Google Inbox is being shuttered, despite promises it would remain as a ‘playground’ for new features, and perhaps most notably, but least reported, this is the end of the line for the goo.gl URL shortener, which we’re told will still support existing links but is no longer available as the company moves to Firebase Dynamic Links after it snapped up Firebase a couple of years ago.
But let’s not dwell on what we’ve lost, let’s concentrate on what we’ve gained – Android Q is out in beta for Pixel users. And rumours, as we put this column to bed, are flying that it’s been rooted. Already. μ
Source : Inquirer