Westworld Now Available in the Play Store

Westworld for Android

After being announced last week, the new Westworld game is now available as a free download in the Play Store.  The game, which looks and plays very similar to Fallout Shelter, is set up as a trainee simulator from the Delos corporation, you build up the simulators AI, build hosts and please the guests who are visiting Sweetwater in the game.  It plays along the same story lines as the hit television show on HBO.

If you have played Fallout Shelter or other similar style games, you will be right at home with Westworld.

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Sprint Beings Rolling Out Android Oreo to The Samsung Galaxy S7 Lineup

Samsung Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge

Following the release of Android Oreo on AT&T and Verizon, Sprint has now begun rolling out the update to the Samsung Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge on their network.  The updated build is R16NW.G93xPVPU6CRE7 and it comes in at a 1.7GB on the download.  The update has been released by Sprint so you should see it at any point if not already.

Essentially, the update is the same that was pushed out to AT&T and Verizon customers.  It brings the April Android Security Update Patch and all of the goodness that comes with Android Oreo.  It also brings the new Samsung Experience 9 user interface and experience to the 2016 flagship.

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YouTube TV Brings Starz Lineup Add-On for $9 Per Month

YouTube TV for Android

The available movies on YouTube TV just got bigger – a lot bigger.  The cord cutting streaming service has announced that Starz is now available on the service for $9 per month.  As usual, it comes with a 7-day trial so you can check it out prior to your first billing.

What’s cool about this is that it isn’t just one Starz channel.  In all, you get the entire 16 channel lineup from Starz with all of the benefits that you have with YouTube TV such as a cloud-based DVR.

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Google Podcasts Officially Launched for Android

Google Podcasts

After several leaks and some speculation, Google pulled back the covers on their latest app, Google Podcasts.  The app has an index of some 2 million podcasts for you to listen to on your Android device – and it works great on a Chromebook too.

The app is fully supported by Google Assistant, allowing you to begin listening to a podcast on your phone then finish it up at home on your Google Home.  Further, thanks to Google’s AI, recommendations are given to you based on your listening habits.

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YouTube Music and YouTube Premium Now Available

YouTube Music

After being announced last month, literally in the middle of the night, Google has now pulled back the covers on the rebooted YouTube Music subscription service as well as the YouTube Red rebranded YouTube Premium.  The two services combined are $11.99 per month and bring you a wealth of music and video content on your Android phone, tablets, PCs, and Chromebooks.

The updated services bring ad-free music and videos to your devices with both original content and official music channels for artists that you can subscribe to and follow.

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Google Begins Rolling Out Messages for Web

Messages for Web Instructions

One of the more anticipated features of Android Messages, the texting app from Google, has been Messages for Web.  As the name implies, it links Messages on your phone with your laptop to allow you to send and receive text messages without having to touch your phone.  Google has flipped the switch and the new site for the feature is live.

Navigating to the Messages for Web site walks you through the instructions to link your phone to the site via a QR code.  You scan that QR code within the Android Messages app under the overflow (three vertical dots) menu.

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Google Assistant Can Now Remind You Where You Parked

Google Assistant Remembers Where You Parked

The features and abilities of Google Assistant, both on Android and on Google Home, continue to impress and one of the latest is incredibly handy.  You can now tell Assistant where you parked your car, then ask where you parked and get directions to your car.

Isn’t living in the future cool?

How it works is pretty straightforward.  When you park your car, just open up Assistant by saying, “Hey Google, remember where I parked my car.”  You will get a confirmation and there is a special “P” pin that is put into Google Maps.

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Google Maps No Longer Supports Ride Share Direct Booking With Lyft and Uber

Ride Share Changes in Google Maps

Google has made a small but important change to Google Maps, no longer allowing you to book a ride sharing service like Lyft or Uber directly from within the app.  The change appears to be recent and is reflected in the support pages for the feature.  Now, instead of being able to book from within Google Maps, you have a link to go to the ride share apps from the providers.

The feature got a lot of hype when it was launched early last year and a way to prevent users from having to move around from app-to-app to book a car to pick them up.  You could also see ride share options to a destination you picked in Maps, such as a restaurant, from your location.

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