Gboard for Android Update Brings The Ability to Make Your Own GIFs

Make Your Own GIF in Gboard

The latest update to Google’s keyboard app Gboard for Android is rolling out and it is bringing a lot of new features.  With the update, version 7.2.9 for those keeping score at home, will allow users to create their own GIFs to share with others.  The feature requires that you give Gboard access to your camera and when you do, it will fire up the selfie camera on your phone to record about 3 seconds of video.  It then uses the video to create the short animation and will allow you to add filters to it as well.

The new feature is found when you open up Gboard for Android and then tap on the emoji icon (the smiley face) then tap on the GIF option.

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Nudges in Gmail for Android are now Live

Nudge Settings in Gmail

After debuting on the new Gmail experience on the web, nudges has landed in Gmail for Android too.  The feature gives you suggested reminders to follow up on emails or to reply to emails that are in your Gmail inbox.  The feature is a cloud-side update so as long as you are running the latest build of Gmail on your Android phone, you should see the feature.

Nudges in Gmail uses AI to survey your inbox and give you gentle reminders (aka nudges) to reply to an email or to follow up on an email.  The idea is to help you with a reminder so you don’t have something you need to follow up on slip through the cracks.

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Microsoft Launcher Update Brings Creature Comfort Improvements

Microsoft Launcher

Microsoft has rolled out a new update to their Android launcher app, Microsoft Launcher.  The new build, version 4.9.0.42615 for those keeping score at home, doesn’t bring a lot of orbit changing updates but rather focuses on creature comfort updates.  In other words, small tweaks that makes the launcher a little bit easier to use.

In this update, Microsoft Launcher has improved Home screen import logic from another launcher to make it a little bit less clunky of a process.  You can now also sort your apps alphabetically in folders on the Home screen so you don’t have to manually arrange them.  Display names of apps or folders are now visible in your dock while you can get customizable gesture for pressing the Home button from the Home screen too.  There is also a new gesture to quickly lock the layout of your Home screen.

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Google News App Finally Arrives in the Play Store

Google News for Android

After being announced last week at Google I/O, the new Google News app is now available in both the Google Play Store for Android users as well as Apple’s App Store for iPhone users.  While the app makes the AI-driven news app available, the Google News site is still hasn’t been updated at the time of this posting.

As you may recall, the new Google News app has an entirely new look and feel, drawing heavily on Material Design for its overall look with lots of visual content for news articles.  It is a far cry from the nearly all text-based version of the old News app.

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Revamped Google News App Released With Fresh UI and Content

Google News for Android

Confirming a rumor from last week prior to Google I/O, the Mountain View company pulled back the curtains on the all new Google News app and service yesterday at the event.  The new look site and app brings an significantly updated, more Material Design look to the apps while also bringing more visual and video content along with it.

Along with the updated look, there is now a Newsstand tab in the app which brings in magazine and online content subscriptions to the app.  With that, it spells the end of the Google Play Newsstand app.

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Fitbit for iOS Update Brings Improved Female Health Tracking

Fitbit for iOS - May 2018

Fitbit for iOS has a new update rolling out that finally brings one of the most requested features of female users of the fitness tracking app and devices.  With the new update, women can opt-in to a new Female Health Tracking which will allow women to track their monthly menstrual cycle to better understand their bodies and their cycles, something that is unique to every women.

Fitbit announced the new feature last month and it is rolling out to iOS users today while it should hit Android users later this month.  Once you have the app update and have identified yourself as a female in the app, you should get a pop-up to opt into the new feature.  It is only available for women 13 years and older.

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Gmail for iOS Update Brings Mail Snoozing and Sending Money With Google Pay

Gmail for iOS - May 2018

Gmail for iOS has a new update rolling out in the App Store, bringing with it two key new features in tow.  The new build, version 5.0.180422 for those keeping score at home, brings the ability to snooze emails along with sending money to contacts via Google Pay.

The ability to snooze emails is a new feature to Gmail in general, having arrived in the new user experience for the mail service online as well as in the Android app.  It allows you to select a day and time when you want to respond to an email.

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Microsoft Launcher for Android To Get Windows 10 Timeline Support

Microsoft Launcher

Over the course of the past couple of years it has been clear that Microsoft’s mobile strategy is developing apps for Google’s Android and Apple’s iOS.  This isn’t a bad strategy overall and it is clear from presentations this week at Build, Microsoft’s developer conference, that they are continuing that strategy.

One of the more exciting announcements on the first day of the conference is Windows 10’s new Timeline feature making it to both Android and iOS.  For Android users, access to Timeline will come via Microsoft Launcher while iOS users will have access to via Microsoft Edge.

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