Category Archives: Android Blog

News and notes from the Android team

Android Developer Challenge: the winning apps, powered by ML

Finding the right words faster in Gmail. Helping you pick the most popular dish on a menu with Google Lens. Automatically captioning videos or podcasts on your Android phone with Live Caption. What do all of these features have in common? They use Google’s machine learning to help you get things done faster and easier throughout your day.

This technology is becoming more accessible to the developers who build the apps you use everyday. To encourage more developers around the world to build apps using machine learning, we launched the Android Developer Challenge last year. And after months of hard work, today the 10 winners of the Android Developer Challenge are launching their apps ready for you to try out. Each of these projects was created by the developers individually not Google:

  • AgriFarm helps farmers detect plant diseases and prevent major damage in fruits and vegetables such as tomatoes, corn and potatoes. [Balochisan, Pakistan]
  • AgroDoc helps farmers diagnose plant disease and make treatment plans. [Navneet Krishna; Kochi, India]
  • Eskke simplifies mobile money management for people in the Congo, letting them transfer money, pay bills, and buy subscriptions and essential airtime for sending SMS. [David Mumbere Kathoh; Goma, Democratic Republic of Congo]
  • Leepi helps students learn hand gestures and symbols for American Sign Language. [Prince Patel; Bengaluru, India]
  • MixPose is a live streaming app that gives yoga teachers and fitness professionals the opportunity to teach, track alignment, make sure you’re in the correct pose, and give real-time feedback. [Peter Ma; San Francisco, California, USA]
  • Pathfinder could help people with visual impairments navigate complex situations by identifying and calculating the trajectories of objects moving in their path. [Colin Shelton; Addison, Texas, USA]
  • Snore & Cough helps you identify and analyze snoring and coughing, so you can listen to and send recordings from a night’s sleep. [Ethan Fan; Mountain View, California, USA]
  • Stila pairs with a wearable device, like the Fitbit wristband or a device running on Wear OS by Google, to monitor, track and help manage the body’s stress levels. [Yingdin Wing; Munich, Germany]
  • Trashly makes recycling easier. Just point the on-device camera at an item, and through object detection, the app identifies and classifies plastic and paper cups, bags, bottles, etc. [Elvin Rakhmankulov; Chicago, Illinois, USA]
  • UnoDogs helps owners better support their pet’s wellness, providing customized information and fitness programs. [Chinmany Mishra; New Delhi, India]

You can learn more about all of these winners, and the Google technologies behind these apps. There's still so much potential when it comes to machine learning, and developers will help us uncover it.

Source: Android


Android Developer Challenge: the winning apps, powered by ML

Finding the right words faster in Gmail. Helping you pick the most popular dish on a menu with Google Lens. Automatically captioning videos or podcasts on your Android phone with Live Caption. What do all of these features have in common? They use Google’s machine learning to help you get things done faster and easier throughout your day.

This technology is becoming more accessible to the developers who build the apps you use everyday. To encourage more developers around the world to build apps using machine learning, we launched the Android Developer Challenge last year. And after months of hard work, today the 10 winners of the Android Developer Challenge are launching their apps ready for you to try out. Each of these projects was created by the developers individually not Google:

  • AgriFarm helps farmers detect plant diseases and prevent major damage in fruits and vegetables such as tomatoes, corn and potatoes. [Balochisan, Pakistan]
  • AgroDoc helps farmers diagnose plant disease and make treatment plans. [Navneet Krishna; Kochi, India]
  • Eskke simplifies mobile money management for people in the Congo, letting them transfer money, pay bills, and buy subscriptions and essential airtime for sending SMS. [David Mumbere Kathoh; Goma, Democratic Republic of Congo]
  • Leepi helps students learn hand gestures and symbols for American Sign Language. [Prince Patel; Bengaluru, India]
  • MixPose is a live streaming app that gives yoga teachers and fitness professionals the opportunity to teach, track alignment, make sure you’re in the correct pose, and give real-time feedback. [Peter Ma; San Francisco, California, USA]
  • Pathfinder could help people with visual impairments navigate complex situations by identifying and calculating the trajectories of objects moving in their path. [Colin Shelton; Addison, Texas, USA]
  • Snore & Cough helps you identify and analyze snoring and coughing, so you can listen to and send recordings from a night’s sleep. [Ethan Fan; Mountain View, California, USA]
  • Stila pairs with a wearable device, like the Fitbit wristband or a device running on Wear OS by Google, to monitor, track and help manage the body’s stress levels. [Yingdin Wing; Munich, Germany]
  • Trashly makes recycling easier. Just point the on-device camera at an item, and through object detection, the app identifies and classifies plastic and paper cups, bags, bottles, etc. [Elvin Rakhmankulov; Chicago, Illinois, USA]
  • UnoDogs helps owners better support their pet’s wellness, providing customized information and fitness programs. [Chinmany Mishra; New Delhi, India]

You can learn more about all of these winners, and the Google technologies behind these apps. There's still so much potential when it comes to machine learning, and developers will help us uncover it.

Source: Android


Android 11 Beta is available today

As we shared with you last week, we postponed our beta release of Android 11 so that people could focus on important discussions about racial justice. Today’s release looks differently than originally planned—instead of a livestream event, we’re sharing a few videos and online resources to consume at your own pace when the time is right for you. We humbly thank those who are able to offer feedback on this release at this time. Your feedback is essential in building a helpful mobile platform for billions of people, developers and manufacturers around the world. 

Read on to find out what’s new in this year’s release, Android 11. 

Focusing on people to make communication easier

Across Google, we’ve been thinking about how to help people communicate more effectively with each other. Google Meet is now available to everyone and can support larger meetings, and family mode for Duo lets you doodle on calls and add masks and effects, helping you express yourself in new and fun ways. 


To make communication easier and simpler on your phone, Android 11 will move all of your conversations across multiple messaging apps to a dedicated space in the notification section. This makes it easy to see, respond to and manage your conversations all in one place. You can mark a conversation as priority to give it preference so you never miss an important message. These key conversations show up on your always-on display and can even “break through” a Do Not Disturb setting. 


Android 11 also introduces Bubbles, a new feature to help you respond and engage with important conversations without switching back and forth between your current task and the messaging app. You can open a bubble for your conversation right from the notification and multitask without missing a thing.   


In addition, when you type using Gboard in Android 11, you’ll get relevant and automatic suggestions for emoji and text. This is possible because of secure on-device intelligence that takes advantage of Federated Learning, and it works without Google ever seeing anything you type.

New ways to control your connected devices and media

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Caption: Android 11 makes it faster and easier to access and control your connected devices

As the world around us becomes more connected with ambient computing, Android 11 is helping you better manage all of your connected devices. 


You can now quickly access and control your smart devices in one place by long pressing on the power button. Adjusting the temperature, turning on the lights or unlocking the front door can now be done with a tap without opening multiple apps. 


Your device controls will show up alongside other things you need at the ready, like your payment methods or your boarding pass (when we’re flying again). We like to think of it as  a “pocket” for your digital wallet, keys and more.


We’re also introducing new media controls in Android 11, making it quick and convenient to switch the device your audio or video content is playing on. It is now easier to bring your music with you from your headphones, to speakers, or even to your TV. 

Media Controls.gif

Caption: New media controls in Android 11

More privacy improvements


Every Android release has new privacy and security controls that let you decide how and when data on your device is shared. Android 11 has even more granular controls for the most sensitive permissions. With one-time permissions you can grant apps access to your microphone, camera or location, just that one time. The next time the app needs access to these sensors, it will have to ask you for permission again.


In addition, if you haven’t used an app for an extended period of time, we will “auto-reset” all of the permissions associated with that app and notify you of the same. You can always choose to re-grant the app permissions the next time you open the app. 

Android 11 screens.gif

Caption: New privacy controls in Android 11: One-time permissions and auto-reset

Available in Beta today with many more features


Android 11 brings many more features to your smartphone, like screen recorder, updated Voice Access, improved performance, and an improved share menu that makes it easier to share content from your phone. You can find many of these features in Beta, available on Pixel 2+ phones today and other devices in the coming weeks.

Source: Android


Bedtime tools to help improve your sleep

With sleep, the quality is just as important as the quantity. Right now, those of us who no longer commute and are staying close to home may be able to sleep in, but how well and how much we’re sleeping can still be a struggle. In fact, there’s been a rise in sleep-related searches like “insomnia” and “can’t sleep,” which reached all-time highs in April and May. At Google, we believe that technology should improve life, not distract from it–including your sleep. Today we’re sharing a few tips and new bedtime tools to help you get better and more restful sleep.


Turn on Bedtime mode to limit interruptions

A dark, quiet environment can help with falling and staying asleep. With Bedtime mode, formerly known as Wind Down in the Digital Wellbeing settings, your Android phone can stay dark and quiet while you sleep. While Bedtime mode is on, it uses Do Not Disturb to silence calls, texts and other notifications that might disturb your sleep. Grayscale fades the colors on your phone to black and white to reduce the draw from enticing colors that keep you up.


We’ve now made it easier to customize how and when you turn on Bedtime mode. Based on your bedtime schedule, you can choose to have it turn on automatically or after your phone is plugged in to charge. You can also add Bedtime mode to your phone's Quick Settings panel to instantly turn it on or off with a single tap. And if you need a few more minutes, you can pause Bedtime mode without needing to adjust your schedule. Bedtime mode is available on all devices with Digital Wellbeing and parental controls settings.

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Bedtime mode limits interruptions by keeping your phone dark and quiet.

Get more consistent sleep with Clock

A regular bedtime and wake-up schedule (including on your off days) helps your body establish a strong circadian rhythm and can improve the quality of your sleep. With the new Bedtime tab in the Clock app, you can set daily sleep and wake times to maintain a consistent sleep schedule.
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Set a sleep schedule and see your bedtime habits with the new Bedtime tab in Clock.

While sticking to a schedule is something to strive for, real life often requires flexibility. It’s helpful to start with a wake-up time and work backwards when you set your bedtime schedule. In Clock, you’ll see a preview of tomorrow’s calendar and a tally of the total hours of sleep you’d get, and you can adjust your bedtime if needed. 


To help you get to bed and fall asleep, you’ll receive a reminder before bedtime and an option to play calming sounds from Calm, Spotify, YouTube Music and more. For those with Digital Wellbeing installed, you can pair with Bedtime mode to limit interruptions while you sleep. And if you happen to stay on your phone later than planned, you can see how much time you’re spending and which apps you’ve used after your set bedtime. 


Being woken up by an alarm can be jarring. To avoid interrupting deep sleep and wake up more gently, the Sunrise Alarm gives a visual cue that your wake up time is approaching, 15 minutes prior to your audio alarm. Make it an even more pleasant experience by adding your favorite song or sounds.

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The Sunrise Alarm gradually brightens your screen to help you wake up gently.

The new bedtime experience is rolling out to Pixel devices starting today and will be available in the Clock app on other Android devices later this summer. 


Set a bedtime reminder in YouTube

We also made it easier to manage how much time you spend watching on YouTube on your phone after bedtime.You can now get a reminder that it’s time for bed in the YouTube app. You can choose to see the reminder at bedtime or after your video completes. And if you need a bit more time, you can snooze to continue watching and be reminded again in 10 minutes.
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YouTube’s bedtime reminders make it easier to set helpful boundaries.

Keep devices locked at bedtime with Family Link

Family Link helps you set digital ground rules for your children, including managing their screen time activity, app downloads, in-app purchases and even bedtime for their device. You can create a daily bedtime schedule, adjusting it on certain days or weekends as needed. Once bedtime rolls around, your child’s device will lock, but will still allow calls in case your child needs to reach you.

5 Family Link. .png

With Family Link, you can lock your child’s device at bedtime.

We hope these bedtime tools can help you and your family unplug and get the consistent, restful sleep you need.

Source: Android


Accessibility updates that help tech work for everyone

Editor’s note: Today is Global Accessibility Awareness Day, and we’ll be sharing resources and tools for education, as well as new accessibility features for Android and Google Maps

In 1993, Paul Amadeus Lane was an EMT with his whole life planned out. But at age 22, he was in a multi-car collision that left him fighting for his life and in recovery for eight months. After the crash, Paul became quadriplegic. He soon realized that his voice was one of his most powerful assets—professionally and personally. He went back to school to study broadcasting and became a radio producer and morning show host. Along the way, Paul discovered how he could use technology as an everyday tool to help himself and others. Today, he uses accessibility features, like Voice Access, to produce his own radio show and share his passion for technology.

Stories like Paul’s remind us why accessible technology matters to all of us every single day. Products built with and for people with disabilities help us all pursue our interests, passions and careers. Today, in honor of Global Accessibility Awareness Day, we’re announcing helpful Android features and applications for people with hearing loss, deafness, and cognitive differences. While these updates were designed for people with disabilities, the result is better products that can be helpful for everyone. 

Action Blocks: One-tap actions on Android for people with cognitive disabilities

Every day, people use their phones for routine tasks—whether it’s video calling family, checking the weather or reading the news. Typically, these activities require multiple steps. You might have to scroll to find your video chat app, tap to open it and then type in the name of the contact you’re looking for. 

For people with cognitive disabilities or age-related cognitive conditions, it can be difficult to learn and remember each of these steps. For others, it can be time consuming and cumbersome—especially if you have limited mobility. Now, you can perform these tasks with one tap—thanks to Action Blocks, a new Android app that allows you to create customizable home screen buttons

Android Blocks

With Action Blocks, tap on the customized button to launch an activity.

Create an Action Block for any action that the Google Assistant can perform, like making calls, sending texts, playing videos and controlling devices in your home. Then pick an image for the Action Block from your camera or photo gallery, and place it on your home screen for one-touch access.

Action Blocks is part of our ongoing effort to make technology more helpful for people with cognitive disabilities and their caregivers. The app is available on the Play Store, and works on Android devices on Android 5.0 and above. 

Live Transcribe: Real-time transcriptions for everyday conversations

In 2019, we launched Live Transcribe, an app that provides real-time, speech-to-text transcriptions of everyday conversations for people who are deaf or hard of hearing. Based on feedback we’ve received from people using the product, we’re rolling out new features:

  • Set your phone to vibrate when someone nearby says your name. If you’re looking elsewhere or want to maintain social distance, your phone will let you know when someone is trying to get your attention. 
  • Add custom names or terms for different places and objects not commonly found in the dictionary. With the ability to customize your experience, Live Transcribe can better recognize and spell words that are important to you. 
  • It’s now easier to search past conversations. Simply use the search bar to look through past transcriptions. To use the feature, turn on ‘Saving Transcriptions’ in Settings. Once turned on, transcriptions will be saved locally on your device for three days.
  • We’re expanding our support of 70 languages to include: Albanian, Burmese, Estonian, Macedonian, Mongolian, Punjabi, and Uzbek.

Live Transcribe is pre-installed on Pixel devices and is available on Google Play for devices Android 5.0 and up. 

Sound Amplifier: Making the sounds around you clearer and louder

Sound Amplifier, a feature that clarifies the sound around you, now works with Bluetooth headphones. Connect your Bluetooth headphones and place your phone close to the source of the sound, like a TV or a lecturer, so that you can hear more clearly. On Pixel, now you can also boost the audio from media playing on your device—whether you are watching YouTube videos, listening to music, or enjoying a podcast. Sound Amplifier is available on Google Play for devices Android 6.0 and above.

Sound Amplifier

Use Sound Amplifier to clarify sound playing on your phone.

Accessibility matters for everyone

We strive to build products that are delightful and helpful for people of all abilities. After all, that’s our mission: to make the world’s information universally accessible for everyone. If you have questions on how these features can be helpful for you, visit our Help Center, connect with our Disability Support team or learn more about our accessibility products on Android

Source: Android


Accessibility updates that help tech work for everyone

Editor’s note: Today is Global Accessibility Awareness Day, and we’ll be sharing resources and tools for education, as well as new accessibility features for Android and Google Maps

In 1993, Paul Amadeus Lane was an EMT with his whole life planned out. But at age 22, he was in a multi-car collision that left him fighting for his life and in recovery for eight months. After the crash, Paul became quadriplegic. He soon realized that his voice was one of his most powerful assets—professionally and personally. He went back to school to study broadcasting and became a radio producer and morning show host. Along the way, Paul discovered how he could use technology as an everyday tool to help himself and others. Today, he uses accessibility features, like Voice Access, to produce his own radio show and share his passion for technology.

Stories like Paul’s remind us why accessible technology matters to all of us every single day. Products built with and for people with disabilities help us all pursue our interests, passions and careers. Today, in honor of Global Accessibility Awareness Day, we’re announcing helpful Android features and applications for people with hearing loss, deafness, and cognitive differences. While these updates were designed for people with disabilities, the result is better products that can be helpful for everyone. 

Action Blocks: One-tap actions on Android for people with cognitive disabilities

Every day, people use their phones for routine tasks—whether it’s video calling family, checking the weather or reading the news. Typically, these activities require multiple steps. You might have to scroll to find your video chat app, tap to open it and then type in the name of the contact you’re looking for. 

For people with cognitive disabilities or age-related cognitive conditions, it can be difficult to learn and remember each of these steps. For others, it can be time consuming and cumbersome—especially if you have limited mobility. Now, you can perform these tasks with one tap—thanks to Action Blocks, a new Android app that allows you to create customizable home screen buttons

Android Blocks

With Action Blocks, tap on the customized button to launch an activity.

Create an Action Block for any action that the Google Assistant can perform, like making calls, sending texts, playing videos and controlling devices in your home. Then pick an image for the Action Block from your camera or photo gallery, and place it on your home screen for one-touch access.

Action Blocks is part of our ongoing effort to make technology more helpful for people with cognitive disabilities and their caregivers. The app is available on the Play Store, and works on Android devices on Android 5.0 and above. 

Live Transcribe: Real-time transcriptions for everyday conversations

In 2019, we launched Live Transcribe, an app that provides real-time, speech-to-text transcriptions of everyday conversations for people who are deaf or hard of hearing. Based on feedback we’ve received from people using the product, we’re rolling out new features:

  • Set your phone to vibrate when someone nearby says your name. If you’re looking elsewhere or want to maintain social distance, your phone will let you know when someone is trying to get your attention. 
  • Add custom names or terms for different places and objects not commonly found in the dictionary. With the ability to customize your experience, Live Transcribe can better recognize and spell words that are important to you. 
  • It’s now easier to search past conversations. Simply use the search bar to look through past transcriptions. To use the feature, turn on ‘Saving Transcriptions’ in Settings. Once turned on, transcriptions will be saved locally on your device for three days.
  • We’re expanding our support of 70 languages to include: Albanian, Burmese, Estonian, Macedonian, Mongolian, Punjabi, and Uzbek.

Live Transcribe is pre-installed on Pixel devices and is available on Google Play for devices Android 5.0 and up. 

Sound Amplifier: Making the sounds around you clearer and louder

Sound Amplifier, a feature that clarifies the sound around you, now works with Bluetooth headphones. Connect your Bluetooth headphones and place your phone close to the source of the sound, like a TV or a lecturer, so that you can hear more clearly. On Pixel, now you can also boost the audio from media playing on your device—whether you are watching YouTube videos, listening to music, or enjoying a podcast. Sound Amplifier is available on Google Play for devices Android 6.0 and above.

Sound Amplifier

Use Sound Amplifier to clarify sound playing on your phone.

Accessibility matters for everyone

We strive to build products that are delightful and helpful for people of all abilities. After all, that’s our mission: to make the world’s information universally accessible for everyone. If you have questions on how these features can be helpful for you, visit our Help Center, connect with our Disability Support team or learn more about our accessibility products on Android

Source: Android


Exposure Notification API launches to support public health agencies

Note: The following is a joint statement from Apple and Google.

One of the most effective techniques that public health officials have used during outbreaks is called contact tracing. Through this approach, public health officials contact, test, treat and advise people who may have been exposed to an affected person. One new element of contact tracing is Exposure Notifications: using privacy-preserving digital technology to tell someone they may have been exposed to the virus. Exposure Notification has the specific goal of rapid notification, which is especially important to slowing the spread of the disease with a virus that can be spread asymptomatically.   

To help, Apple and Google cooperated to build Exposure Notifications technology that will enable apps created by public health agencies to work more accurately, reliably and effectively across both Android phones and iPhones. Over the last several weeks, our two companies have worked together, reaching out to public health officials, scientists, privacy groups and government leaders all over the world to get their input and guidance. 

Starting today, our Exposure Notifications technology is available to public health agencies on both iOS and Android. What we’ve built is not an app—rather public health agencies will incorporate the API into their own apps that people install. Our technology is designed to make these apps work better. Each user gets to decide whether or not to opt-in to Exposure Notifications; the system does not collect or use location from the device; and if a person is diagnosed with COVID-19, it is up to them whether or not to report that in the public health app. User adoption is key to success and we believe that these strong privacy protections are also the best way to encourage use of these apps.  

Today, this technology is in the hands of public health agencies across the world who will take the lead and we will continue to support their efforts. 

Source: Android


Fast Pair makes it easier to use your Bluetooth headphones

Bluetooth headphones help us take calls, listen to music while working out, and use our phones anywhere without getting tangled up in wires. And though pairing Bluetooth accessories is an increasingly common activity, it can be a frustrating process for many people.

Fast Pair makes Bluetooth pairing easier on Android 6.0+ phones (learn how to check your Android version). When you turn on your Fast Pair-enabled accessory, it automatically detects and pairs with your Android phone in a single tap. So far, there have been over three million Fast pairings between Bluetooth accessories, like speakers and earbuds, and Android phones. Here are some new capabilities to make Fast Pair experience even easier.

Easily find your lost accessory

It can be frustrating when you put your Bluetooth headphones down and immediately forget where you placed them. If they’re connected to your phone, you can locate your headphones by ringing them. If you have true wireless earbuds (earbuds that aren’t attached by cables or wires), you can choose to ring only the left or right bud. And, when you misplace your headphones, in the coming months, you can check their last known location in the Find My Device app if you have Location History turned on.

Ringing Screen (1).png

Know when to charge your true wireless earbuds

Upon opening the case of your true wireless earbuds, you’ll receive a phone notification about the battery level of each component (right bud, left bud, and the case itself if supported). You’ll also receive a notification when your earbuds and the case battery is running low, so you know when to charge them.

Battery (1).gif

Manage and personalize your accessory easily

To personalize your headset or speakers, your accessory name will include your first name after it successfully pairs with Bluetooth. For example, Pixel Buds will be renamed “Alex’s Pixel Buds.”

On phones running Android 10, you can also adjust headphone settings, like linking it to Google Assistant and accessing Find My Device, right from the device details page. The setting varies depending on your headphone model.

Device details

Harman Kardon FLY and the new Google Pixel Buds will be the first true wireless earbuds to enjoy all of these new features, with many others to come. We’ll continue to work with our partners to bring Fast Pair to more headset models. Learn about how to connect your Fast Pair accessory here.

Source: Android


The new Google Pixel Buds are available today for your listening pleasure

In October, we introduced the all-new Google Pixel Buds—with high-quality sound, an unobtrusive design that fits securely and comfortably in your ear and helpful AI features. We wanted to make sure whether you're streaming content while working out or sitting in a noisy room talking on a conference call, you have the best possible audio experience. Today, Pixel Buds are available for $179 in Clearly White in the U.S. 


We sat down with some of the team behind Pixel Buds to learn more about what’s new, and also to hear how they’ve been using them. 


Get started easily with Fast Pair

“I always used to use wired headphones because I had concerns about the reliability of Bluetooth® connectivity, as lots of other earbuds have pairing problems, including the original Pixel Buds. With the new Pixel Buds, we focused on improving Fast Pair to eliminate these pain points and easily connect to your phone.”

- Ethan Grabau, Product Manager

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Clear calls with special mics and sensor

“To give you clear calls, even in noisy and windy environments, Pixel Buds combine signals from beamforming mics and a special sensor that detects when your jaw is moving. This helps so you don't have to look for a quiet place to take a call. It’s come in particularly handy these past few weeks for me working from home with two young daughters.”

- Jae Lee, Audio Systems Engineer


Adaptive Sound for better audio  

“Adaptive Sound is perfect for those moments like when you’re steaming milk for a latte, or when you're washing your hands or the dishes. Those noises can eclipse your audio experience for a bit, until the latte, or your dishes are done.” 

- Basheer Tome, Senior Hardware Interface Designer


“To help, Adaptive Sound temporarily and subtly adjusts your volume to accommodate for the new noise in your environment, and goes back to normal after it’s dissipated. It works kind of like auto-brightness on your phone screen: It momentarily adjusts to the world around you to make the experience of using your device a little simpler.”  

- Frank Li, UX Engineer  

Hands-free help with Google Assistant

"When I’m working in the yard and wearing gloves, I can use  ’Hey, Google’ on my Pixel Buds and easily control my music. I can also hear my notifications, and reply to a text message with just my voice and Google Assistant. 


And when I'm taking my dog on our daily walk and using my Pixel Buds, I use Google Assistant to navigate and check my fitness progress hands-free while juggling a leash and bag of dog treats. The Pixel Buds are slim enough they fit snag-free under a hat or hoodie, too." 

- Max Ohlendorf, Technology Manager 

HeyGoogle.png

Real-time translations with conversation mode 

“We set out to see how we could use Google Translate on Pixel Buds to reduce language barriers. Making the conversation as natural as possible even with the use of the phone was important, so we decided to create the split screen UI to show exactly what was being said, and translating it in real time on the screen with conversation mode. Any exposure to a different language is also an opportunity to learn, so we wanted to make the feature is not only as helpful as possible for things like being in a different country, but also as simple as being able to help bilingual households across generations connect through language.” 

- Tricia Fu, Product Manager


Peace of mind with Find My Device

“The fear of losing expensive wireless earbuds is real, and in many cases a reason why people are afraid of trying them. We tried to reduce that fear a bit with Find My Device. If an earbud falls out when you’re walking or running, you know right away. But you may be less aware when you return home and absentmindedly put them down somewhere. So we built the ability to let you ring your earbuds from your phone. We also wanted to make sure we were thoughtful in what that experience is like. You can ring one earbud at a time, to focus on finding either the left or right earbud. The moment your hands touch the lost earbud, the ringing will stop. We hope people won’t need to use this feature often, but if they do, they can find misplaced earbuds more easily.”

- Alex Yee, Interaction Designer

RingEarbuds.png

Like Pixel phones and other Google devices, Pixel Buds will get better over time with new features, including an update to Find My Device which will show the last known location of your earbuds. Check out more cool features on Pixel Buds and see which features will work with your device.

Pixel Buds are available through the Google Store and retailers including AT&T, Best Buy, Target (coming early May), T-Mobile, U.S. Cellular, Verizon and Walmart. Other colors—Almost Black, Quite Mint and Oh So Orange—will be available in the coming months. Pixel Buds will come to more countries in the coming months as well. 

Source: Android


Apple and Google partner on COVID-19 contact tracing technology

Across the world, governments and health authorities are working together to find solutions to the COVID-19 pandemic, to protect people and get society back up and running. Software developers are contributing by crafting technical tools to help combat the virus and save lives. In this spirit of collaboration, Google and Apple are announcing a joint effort to enable the use of Bluetooth technology to help governments and health agencies reduce the spread of the virus, with user privacy and security central to the design.

Since COVID-19 can be transmitted through close proximity to affected individuals, public health organizations have identified contact tracing as a valuable tool to help contain its spread. A number of leading public health authorities, universities, and NGOs around the world have been doing important work to develop opt-in contact tracing technology. To further this cause, Apple and Google will be launching a comprehensive solution that includes application programming interfaces (APIs) and operating system-level technology to assist in enabling contact tracing. Given the urgent need, the plan is to implement this solution in two steps while maintaining strong protections around user privacy. 

First, in May, both companies will release APIs that enable interoperability between Android and iOS devices using apps from public health authorities. These official apps will be available for users to download via their respective app stores. 

Second, in the coming months, Apple and Google will work to enable a broader Bluetooth-based contact tracing platform by building this functionality into the underlying platforms. This is a more robust solution than an API and would allow more individuals to participate, if they choose to opt in, as well as enable interaction with a broader ecosystem of apps and government health authorities. Privacy, transparency, and consent are of utmost importance in this effort, and we look forward to building this functionality in consultation with interested stakeholders. We will openly publish information about our work for others to analyze.

All of us at Apple and Google believe there has never been a more important moment to work together to solve one of the world’s most pressing problems. Through close cooperation and collaboration with developers, governments and public health providers, we hope to harness the power of technology to help countries around the world slow the spread of COVID-19 and accelerate the return of everyday life.

Apple and Google partner on COVID-19 contact tracing technology


More information and technical specs are available at google.com/covid19/exposurenotifications.

Source: Android