Six Google apps get free updates that improve their functionality, security and accessibility. Some of them are late, like Google Maps getting universal dark mode throughout the app, while others incorporate perks available in other services, like using Messages to schedule a text to the advanced.
The six apps that receive updates are: Google Maps, Messages, TalkBack, Password Checkup, Google Assistant, and Android Auto.
Android update *: Messaging✅Security✅ Accessibility✅Google Assistant✅PLUS, Pixel exclusives to come too! * Android updates for at least 3 years from the date the device is first available on the Google Store in the US See https: // t. co / EbrZZ78stM https://t.co/Yb242cnjZFFebruary 23, 2021
There doesn’t seem to be any rhyme or particular reason for these apps to get any improvements, according to Google. blog post, but we’re not complaining – just keep in mind that they don’t come on all versions of Android, with different minimum versions for each update (we’ll disclose those thresholds below). These updates will roll out to Android phones “ soon ” as well, so they can reach your devices in days, weeks, or more, but they will be coming.
Let’s go through each app update one by one.
Google Maps with dark mode
Google Maps had dark mode, but it only triggered when actively navigating to a destination. Now every screen in the app will follow the visual pattern of easy-to-watch Dark Mode.
Once your Google Maps has been updated, you can activate it for your entire phone by going to Settings> Theme and selecting Theme always dark. As far as we can tell, it happens on Google Maps in all versions of Android.
Scheduling a text message in Messages
This one is pretty easy. Once your Messages app has been updated, you can compose it normally and then long press the “ Send ” button to open a menu where you can select the date and time you want it to. be sent.
This feature is available for owners of Messages apps running Android 7 and above.
TalkBack screen reader: best all around
Google’s screen reader application, TalkBack, has been revamped with input from blind and visually impaired communities to be more intuitive, flexible and responsive. There are more voice and gesture commands, a unified menu, a new playback control menu that lets you customize gestures, and more.
These updates seem to be coming to all versions of TalkBack – just download the latest version, which is available now.
Password Checkup checks passwords on all your apps
An update to the password check will tell you if the login information you used has been compromised – and now the feature can scan all of your apps.
If you use Google’s password manager to auto-populate usernames and passwords in apps or online in Chrome, Password Checkup can help you by analyzing every credential you use against. to publicly accessible lists of passwords that have been compromised – i.e. known to be stolen and potentially involved in the massive leaks.
If Password Checkup detects that you have used any of these passwords, it will alert you through a pop-up window to change it. This feature is available for users of Android 9 and later. Not sure if you’ve turned on autofill? Head to Settings> System> Languages & input> Advanced to tap on the autofill service, although that’s not the path to select autofill on your Android phone – in this case, use your search function to find “ AutoComplete ”, like CNET recommended.
Google Assistant: interact when the screen is locked
A new update for Google Assistant will make it respond even when the screen is off and the device is locked – if so, it will display cards with larger text that is easier to read from further away, which will make it less tedious to check the Assistant’s responses to your requests.
To activate the feature, go to Settings> Google Assistant and tap Personal results from the lock screen. This is probably available for all versions of Android.
Android Auto: shortcuts and other wallpapers
Android Auto update adds shortcuts to the launch screen that will give quick access to your contacts, Google Assistant, weather and more. Cars with larger touch screens can use a split screen feature to use Android Auto with Google Maps and media controls. You can also add a privacy screen that controls when Android Auto appears on your screen.
The update also adds voice-activated games, like Jeopardy and other trivia-like titles.
Finally, the update now allows users to choose from a selection of wallpapers, including those with “ car-inspired backgrounds, ” as the update says. The new features should be available in the coming days for users running Android 6.0 or higher.