Google announces 11 features, updates for Android
Google has announced 11 new features and updates that will help users personalise their devices. These features are being rolled out across Android phones and tablets, Wear OS smartwatches and Google TV devices as well as Google Messages.
In addition to this launch, Google is commemorating a significant achievement in RCS technology with a milestone of over 1 billion monthly active users, a number that has increased from 800 million in May 2023. Notably, Apple, under regulatory pressure, has reluctantly agreed to support this SMS replacement technology.
One of the new features is Emoji Kitchen sticker combinations, while another feature is Voice Moods in Google Messages (beta) that adds a unique background and moving emoji theme to voice messages.
The "Reaction Effects" feature, set to be included in Google Messages, is another beta addition. This feature introduces a full-screen animated emoji, reminiscent of Apple's iMessage message effects. However, unlike a simple thumbs up, these animations are designed to react to specific individual messages.
Across other Android platforms, smartwatch users will now be able to control their smart home devices and light groups from their watch’s small screen. This includes smart appliances like robot vacuums and mops. Users can also set the mood by adjusting their light groups for different themes — like focus time, reading, dinner and more. In addition, users will be able to set their Google Home status to “Home” or “Away” from their smartwatch, shutting lights off, turning cameras on and locking doors and more when leaving, and the reverse upon their return.
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