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How to install Google Play on the Amazon Fire 7 tablet with Fire OS 8 (12th-gen, 2022 model) – Updated

The 12th-gen Amazon Fire tablet is the first device to ship with Fire OS 8, the latest version of Amazon’s tablet operating system, and it’s now available from Amazon for $60 and up. While Fire OS continues to put an emphasis on Amazon’s apps and services, making Fire tablets most useful for customers who stream […]

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Android’s “Check for update” button finally seems to work (with Google Play Services 12.2.09)

Dig into the settings of your Android phone or tablet and you’ll find a “check for update” button in the System Update section. Tap it and… most likely nothing will happen. At least that’s been true for years. But it looks like it’s finally starting to change. Multiple users are reporting that the latest version […]

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Google is pretty much abandoning Android 2.3 Gingerbread in 2017

It’s been six years since Google released Android 2.3 Gingerbread, but there are still some devices running the aging operating system rather than a newer build. According to Google’s stats for devices that connected to the Play Store, about 1.3 percent of Android devices are still running Gingerbread. But many Android apps require newer versions of […]

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Free and open source Android framework attempts to replace Google Play Services

Google’s Android operating system may be open source software, but some of the most popular Android apps including YouTube, Google Maps, and the Chrome web browser are not. Neither is Google Play Services, which is a framework that many apps from Google and other developers tap into. So while any device maker can load up […]

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Google’s Smart Lock for Passwords keeps you logged into Android apps… even when you switch devices

When you login to a website, most modern web browsers ask if you’d like them to remember your password. And some of those browsers, like Google Chrome, can sync your password between devices so that if your home computer knows your Netflix and Facebook passwords, you can automatically login to them at work just by […]

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Android 5.0 Trusted Places keeps your phone unlocked at home (or work, or wherever)

It’s a good idea to protect your phone with a PIN, pattern or password so that strangers can’t unlock your device and access your personal information. But it can be annoying having to actually enter your PIN, pattern, or password every time you want to use your phone — even when you’re at home or in another […]

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Google Play Services 4.4 brings Street View to apps, knows when you’re walking or running

Google is rolling out an updated version of the framework for its core Android apps and services. You might not notice many changes right away, but the new rollout of Google Play Services 4.4 means apps from Google and third parties will get a few nifty new features, including the ability to tell whether you’re walking […]