Early mentions of the Pixel 9 show up in the Google app

Summary

  • The latest beta version of Google app reveals new details specific to Pixel 9
  • The update had two files of interest, one of them being a setup animation
  • The Pixel 9 may introduce Pixie AI assistant that runs on Gemini



Like clockwork, the latest in the Pixel series will arrive later this year and with it, we’ll get Android 15 and also some new and exciting software features. While we have high anticipation for what’s to come, it looks like we’re getting a new leak that makes mention of the upcoming Pixel 9, showing up in the latest version of the Google app.


Related
Google Pixel 9: News, leaks, rumored price, and release window

The Pixel 9 series is Google’s biggest mobile shakeup since Tensor — here’s what we’re expecting

This new piece of information was uncovered in the latest beta, version 15.14.34.29, and has some code that looks to be specific to the Pixel 9. And while it’s not the most exciting leak, it looks like there are some details relevant to the phone that could appear during the Google Assistant setup process.


Some new details but no reference to Pixie

The news comes from The SP Android, sharing two files, one of which actually has an animation file that could appear on the upcoming Pixel 9. You can see the animation in the image above, and while it’s cute, there really isn’t too much to see here — aside from the fact that Google appears content to stick with its Corporate Memphis art style into its next generation of hardware.

Pixel 9 setup animation


And we do know quite a bit about the Pixel 9 series already, which could arrive as a trio of devices later this year: the Pixel 9, Pixel 9 Pro, and Pixel 9 Pro XL. As

Read More ...

The popular custom ROM ‘Pixel Experience’ shuts down

Under the most disappointing of circumstances, the widely admired Pixel Experience ROM is shutting down. It’s opting out of the Android custom ROM scene leaving users in search of alternatives. The lead developer, José Henrique, made this announcement today that he is terminating the project. He also confirmed that older builds will still be accessible.

Popular Pixel Experience custom ROM is ending development

Even so, the lack of new releases means that it’s all over for the Pixel-inspired Android experience, leaving fans disappointed. Through a short blog post, José Henrique has shared his thanks with the community without disclosing why he decided to quit developing Pixel Experience any further.

Although older builds might still be around for a while, Henrique has left those who love Pixel Experience wondering why exactly the project ended. Per the internet claims, reasons could range from possible time constraints to dwindling interest on Henrique’s part.

Nevertheless, no clear explanation leaves an aura of ambiguity around the occurrence. Users are wondering what provoked such an abrupt decision. The decision may let down people as they do not understand what will happen next and how the developers will wrap up things in a good way.

The custom ROM community might find a way to recover from this

However, there could still be other developers to take over the project or start another one that has similar objectives; thus the custom ROM community is not entirely dead. But even though for a decade now we have been seeing a decline in the world of custom ROMs, Android’s allure will keep enthusiasts looking for different firmware to try out.

For users who have said goodbye to Pixel Experience, their hopes are still high about further development of custom ROMs. The Android community remains innovative and exploring

Read More ...

Pixel Watch April 2024 update goes live with new features and bug fixes

What you need to know

  • Google introduces new features with the April 2024 update to the Pixel Watch.
  • It brings haptics to the current time when a user gestures on the watch face.
  • The update also brings improvements to auto brightness settings.

Google announced today (Apr. 3) that its first-gen Pixel Watch will receive the April 2024 update. In the announcement post, the Pixel Watch support team shared the new update bearing the build number TWD9.240405.001. Its rollout has begun, and it is likely to reach all Pixel Watch owners over the next week, per their carriers and device models.

The global firmware rollout “includes new features, numerous bug fixes, and performance updates for Pixel Watch users.” It additionally brings a Vibration Watch feature, and as the name suggests, users will notice the current time playing haptics whenever a Pixel Watch user utilizes gestures on the watch face.

Additionally, users can also experience improvements in auto brightness functionality on the Pixel Watch. With the new update, the relevant auto-brightness settings will improve, allowing “users to perceive the difference when switching levels easily.”

Pixel Watch owners can head over to their smartwatch’s Settings> System> System Updates and tap on the “Your watch is up to date” screen to check for the OTA update, per the rollout timeline, as mentioned earlier.

Google Pixel Watch with Lemongrass Google Pixel Watch Active Band on top of a laptop

(Image credit: Namerah Saud Fatmi / Android Central)

While it seems like a minor monthly update to the original Pixel Watch, it is still unclear whether it includes the recently spotted tracking app downloads feature. For the unaware, the Pixel Watch tested a new progress bar for app updates downloaded via Google Play Store, similar to what we see on Pixel phones, like the Pixel 8 Pro.

That said, the latest firmware release comes along with the March feature drop,

Read More ...

Android Zero-Day Flaws in Pixel Phones Exploited by Forensic Companies

Apr 03, 2024NewsroomMobile Security / Zero Day

Android Zero-Day Flaw

Google has disclosed that two Android security flaws impacting its Pixel smartphones have been exploited in the wild by forensic companies.

The high-severity zero-day vulnerabilities are as follows –

  • CVE-2024-29745 – An information disclosure flaw in the bootloader component
  • CVE-2024-29748 – A privilege escalation flaw in the firmware component

“There are indications that the [vulnerabilities] may be under limited, targeted exploitation,” Google said in an advisory published April 2, 2024.

While the tech giant did not reveal any other information about the nature of the attacks exploiting these shortcomings, the maintainers of GrapheneOS said they “are being actively exploited in the wild by forensic companies.”

Cybersecurity

“CVE-2024-29745 refers to a vulnerability in the fastboot firmware used to support unlocking/flashing/locking,” they said in a series of posts on X (formerly Twitter).

“Forensic companies are rebooting devices in After First Unlock state into fastboot mode on Pixels and other devices to exploit vulnerabilities there and then dump memory.”

GrapheneOS noted that CVE-2024-29748 could be weaponized by local attackers to interrupt a factory reset triggered via the device admin API.

The disclosure comes more than two months after the GrapheneOS team revealed that forensic companies are exploiting firmware vulnerabilities that impact Google Pixel and Samsung Galaxy phones to steal data and spy on users when the device is not at rest.

It also urged Google to introduce an auto-reboot feature to make exploitation of firmware flaws more difficult.

Found this article interesting? Follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn to read more exclusive content we post.


link … Read More ...

Google says Pixel 8 scrolling will be fixed in Android 15

Scrolling issues have been reported by some Google Pixel users for years now, with the issue resurfacing recently on Pixel 8. Now, though, Google claims that Pixel scrolling issues should be gone for good in Android 15.

On the Issue Tracker, a thread dating back to October of last year has amassed hundreds of comments from users, particularly on Pixel 8 and Pixel 8 Pro, who have found that the device is frequently stuttering while scrolling. The issue shows up through the system and some apps, too.

In a poll we ran back in October, over 50% of 9to5Google readers said they noticed scrolling issues in certain apps, while over 35% said they never noticed scrolling issues at all.

Google, in an update shared on the thread (via Android Police), says that this issue is “fixed” with the solution being distributed as part of the “next Android release,” probably referring to Android 15.

Ongoing optimizations in performance and power are slated for the next Android release.

These include improvements positively impacting overall system UI jank as well as use cases tied to some Android applications.

Android 15’s final release is still quite a ways away, though, as we’re just now on the second developer preview.

This wouldn’t be the first time Google acknowledged and claimed a fix for this issue, though. When the Pixel 7 first launched, users reported scrolling issues, only for Google to fix the problem a ways into Android 13’s release schedule.

More on Google Pixel:

Follow Ben: Twitter/XThreads, and Instagram

FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links. More.


link … Read More ...

Google Photos Android 14 share sheet appears on Pixel phones

Back in October, Google Photos started rolling out a native Android 14 share sheet instead of its custom implementation, and we’re not seeing it widely available on Pixel phones.

Android 14 allows developers to add application-specific actions to the system share sheet. Google Photos has long used a custom implementation with a “Send in Google Photos” carousel of people and shortcut to create a “New group.” This is followed by high-level buttons for “Nearby Share” and “Create link,” while “Share to Apps” appears at the bottom. 

Google Photos is now replacing its custom implementation with a native one. The “Sharing image” sheet features a preview, with support for multiple pictures. You then get a carousel of actions: Create Link, Send in Photos, Add to Album, and Create Album.

This is followed by the usual Direct Share targets and app grid that you scroll up to access.

In mid-October, the Android 14 Google Photos share sheet only widely rolled out to the Pixel 8 and 8 Pro. We’re now seeing it on every Pixel phone, including the Fold, running version 6.71 of Google Photos. However, it’s not appearing on the Pixel Tablet or a Samsung phone running Android 14.

Meanwhile, Google is also more widely rolling out auto-grouping Stacks and a system photo picker with Google Photos support.

More on Google Photos:

FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links. More.

link … Read More ...