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Google Suggests Dark UI Mode Could Finally Be Coming to Android

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Google focuses more on the interface and user experience of Android more than it ever has in the past. Android Pie is more thoughtfully designed than past versions of the platform, and Google’s interface design is coming together on app and service at a time. However, it’s coming together with a lot of white. At Google’s Android Dev Summit, Google more or less confirmed a dark UI mode is happening, but it didn’t say when.

Google has nibbled around the edges of dark mode for years, which has to be one of the most requested features of the OS among users. Starting back in the Android M beta (later Marshmallow), Google included a dark mode toggle that changed the settings and system UI from white to dark gray. However, the feature didn’t survive to the final release. Again in the Android N beta, we saw dark mode. Surely this time we’ll get it, right? But alas, Google removed it from the final build of Nougat.

Naturally, Android enthusiasts have been irked that Google is basically teasing us with dark mode only to go and make all its apps even more white than they once were. Now, it looks like there is finally change on the horizon.

At the Dev Summit, Google shared testing data on power consumption in apps with various colors. It used an original Pixel XL as the test device. Since most high-end phones use OLED panels, there’s no backlight that has to be on all the time. So, certain colors can use less power because the light comes from the pixels themselves. Black pixels use no power because they’re completely off. Indeed, Google’s data showed that the phone used less than a fifth as much power when displaying black as opposed to white.

Google went on to acknowledge the prevalence of white in its apps and the way it pushes devs to use it, but there could be a method to its madness. Presenting this data to developers seems like the first step of making a case that integrating dark UI options is important. There are already some signs of change. The official Google Dialer, Messaging, News, and YouTube apps all have configurable dark modes now.

For this to happen on a system level, Google will need to make it part of a future Android upgrade. It’s been encouraging developers to adopt the new Material Design guidelines, which provide more freedom than the old version. It also makes it easy to swap in different colors. My guess is Google will include an API in an upcoming Android release that will allow Material apps to flip their theme based on a system-level toggle. Google is just priming the pump with all these white apps.

Now read: Samsung Unveils Flexible Display That Will Launch in 2019Google’s Project Treble Hasn’t Fixed Android Updates Yet, and Google Pixel 3 XL OLED Scores Record High Marks in DisplayMate Testing

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Google One storage plans arrive in UK and Canada, here are the pricing details

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Google One might be the new all-in-one subscription package for Drive storage, online support for services and include other handy perks, but the system has so far been a US-exclusive. Now, this new system is slowly expanding beyond US borders with UK and Canadian users able to sign up to the service.

Originally pointed out by Android PoliceGoogle One has been announced for Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Mexico and India but we’ve yet to see a release in those nations as yet. Back to Canada and the UK though, if you do subscribe you’ll get access to more than just extended online storage.

A few other benefits of the system include credits on the Google Play Store and deals on hotels found in Google Search. Google One subscribers also get 24/7 live support for Google’s products — from Google Calendar to Gmail to Google Docs. Users have long been stuck digging through Google’s support site for help with those products, but now that’s changing.

Whilst the pricing is in a different currency, they translate well across the Atlantic for the most part. Here’s the full storage tier pricing for the UK:

  • 15GB – Free plan
  • 100GB – £1.99 per month
  • 200GB – £2.99 per month
  • 2TB – £9.99 per month
  • 10TB – £79.99 per month
  • 20TB – £159.99 per month
  • 30TB – £239.99 per month

The pricing does translate well, but the exchange rate might irk some in the UK a little — for the record I don’t really care. With exchange rate bumping prices for the 2TB plan, for instance, to around $13. That won’t break the bank, but it might sting a tiny bit.

As for Canadian pricing, they translate to around pretty much the same as they do at this side of the pond:

  • 15GB – Free plan
  • 100GB – CA$25.99 per year
  • 200GB – CA$3.99 per month
  • 2TB – CA$13.99 per month
  • 10TB – CA$139.99 per month
  • 20TB – CA$279.99 per month
  • 30TB – CA$419.99 per month

More on Google One:


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Fortnite Wins Big At The Esports Awards 2018: See The FULL Winners List

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Fortnite and Ninja led the way at the third annual Esports Awards in London!

More than 2 million viewers tuned in to watch live on Twitter, while more than 3.3m fan votes were cast to crown the winners and honour the year’s biggest games and steamers, and was hosted by Eefje “Sjokz” Depoortere, Alex “Goldenboy” Mendez, Adam Savage and Lottie Van Praag, while esports stars such as Trevor “Quickshot” Henry, Ali-A, Vikkstarr123, Frankie Ward and Two Angry Gamers all presented awards, too.









Fortnite won Breakthrough Game of the Year at the 2018 Esports Awards / Epic Games

It was a big night for Fortnite! The gaming phenomenon won Breakthrough Game of the Year, and Fortnite streamer Ninja was crowned Personality of the Year and Streamer of the Year.

Check out the FULL list of winners at the 2018 Esports Awards here…

Photographer of the Year – Helena Kristiansson
Videographer of the Year with adi.tv – Hitch
Breakthrough Game of the Year – Fortnite
Streamer of the Year – Ninja
PC Player of the Year with Turtle Beach – S1mple
PC Rookie of the Year with Intel – Bwipo (Fnatic League of Legends top-laner, pictured)
Organisation of the Year with with Coutts & Co – Cloud 9
Team of the Year with H4X.gg – Astralis
Personality of the Year – Ninja
Play of the Year – Faze Attach
Coverage Website of the Year with Sizzle Creative – ESPN Esports
Supporting Agency of the Year – Evolved Talent Agency
Game of the Year – Overwatch
Commercial Partner of the Year – Intel
Journalist of the Year – Jacob Wolf (ESPN)
Hardware Provider of the Year – Nvidia
Publisher of the Year – Blizzard Entertainment
Streaming Platform of the Year – Twitch
Console Player of the Year with Scuf Gaming – MsDossary
Console Rookie of the Year – Kenny
Broadcaster of the Year with Blinkfire – Maven
Live Event of the Year with Touch of Ginger – Overwatch League Grand Finals
Unsung hero of the Year – Milos Nedeljikovic

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Black Friday phone deals 2018: $600 Note 9, $320 Galaxy S9, $300 gift card

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There are some generous Black Friday deals already cropping up for Samsung phones as premium as the Note 9 and Galaxy S9, to more humble models you can buy for under $100. This is just the beginning, so you should expect even more offers from now through Cyber Monday. Promotions range from discounts to gift cards. 

Black Friday always falls on the day after Thanksgiving — this year that’s Friday, Nov. 23. The sales start as early as Nov. 16. We’ll update this often with even more Black Friday phone deals as they appear. You have plenty of options, so let’s dig in!

Just so you know:

  • The deals below are current as of Nov. 13, and include Samsung.comTargetAmazon and Best Buy. Times are local unless otherwise specified.
  • CNET may get a share of revenue from the sale of the products featured on this page.
  • We link to the current listing at the retailer’s website when one is available, but you may not see sale pricing reflected on the page until the sale begins.

Galaxy Note 9 for $600, S9 Plus for $440 and S9 for $320 on Samsung.com (save $400)

Angela Lang/CNET

A 40 percent savings on a $1,000 phone makes this $600 offer the best deal we’ve seen yet for a 128GB Note 9. Samsung also sheds $400 off the S9 Plus and S9, giving you a Galaxy S9 for $320 and an S9 Plus for $440. The offer locks in Verizon service, and you’ll need to sign on for a device payment plan.

Sale begins

Nov. 22 (Thanksgiving Day)


See at Samsung


Note 9 review

Unlocked Note 9 for $800, S9 Plus for $640, S9 for $520 from Samsung.com (save $200)

Angela Lang/CNET

This deal shaves $200 off the Note 9 (128GB), Galaxy S9 (64GB) or S9 Plus (64GB) when you buy them unlocked from Samsung’s website. That means you’ll spend $800 for the Note 9, $520 for the S9 and $640 for the S9 Plus. That doesn’t count additional savings you might receive if you trade in an old phone as well — Samsung will give you up to $300 when you buy either phone.

Sale dates

Nov. 18, 2018 at 12:01 a.m. ET through Nov. 26.


See at Samsung

Save $200 to $372 off Note 9, S9 Plus, S9 from T-Mobile, AT&T, Sprint

Sarah Tew/CNET

AT&T, T-Mobile and Sprint are also lowering their prices on the Galaxy S9, S9 Plus and Note 9. Savings range from a minimum of $200 off to $372.01 off the S9 Plus when you pick up Sprint’s service. All the deals originate on Samsung.com.

Start date

Nov. 18


See at Samsung

Get Note 9 for $800, S9 Plus for $640, S9 for $520 (save $200) and get a free starter kit

Sarah Tew/CNET

Buy a Galaxy S9, S9 Plus or Note 9 from Samsung to get $200 off the ticket price and a Starter Kit. Samsung throws in a DeX cable, wireless charger, case and studio-grade AKG headphones (not ear buds). With this deal you don’t get as much money off, but Samsung values the starter kit bundle at $300, so it’s worth looking at if you’re also in the market for a set of over-ear cans.

Sale dates

Nov. 18 at 12:01 a.m. ET through Nov. 26.


See at Samsung

Galaxy S9, Note 9, S9 Plus: Save $300 at Best Buy

Josh Miller/CNET

T-Mobile customers won’t be able to benefit from any of Best Buy’s offers, but $300 off any of Samsung’s premium phones is a pretty good deal. The deal requires a qualified activation, and exact pricing on the phones appear to vary based on the carrier.

Nov. 22 (Thanksgiving Day) at 5 p.m. With activation on AT&T, Sprint or Verizon.


See at Best Buy


Galaxy S9 review

Samsung Galaxy Note 9: $300 Target gift card

Angela Lang/CNET

You pay full price for this superphone for the doodlers, tinkerers and Android lovers, but a $300 gift card is nothing to sneeze at — and if you’re buying the bulk of your gifts at Target, there’s something to say for one-stop shopping during the holiday crush.

Sale dates

Nov. 23 through Nov. 25. Requires qualified activation on AT&T or Verizon. Limit two per guest.


See at Target


Galaxy Note 9 review

Galaxy S9, Note 9, S9 Plus, S8, S8 Plus with a $300 Walmart gift card

Josh Miller/CNET

You’ll have to pay full price for the Galaxy Note 9, S9, S9 Plus, S8 or S8 Plus, but if you’re already a frequent Walmart shopper, $300 of “free” Walmart cash will sweeten the deal. Note that you’ll need to activate the phone in-store with AT&T, Sprint or Verizon in order to qualify for the gift card.

Sale dates

In-store only: Nov. 22 at 6 p.m. through Nov. 23. Schedule an activation appointment at 6 p.m. Activations begin at 8 p.m.

Galaxy S8, unlocked for $450 at Best Buy (save $150)

Josh Miller/CNET

Last year’s Galaxy S8 is a smart alternative to the Galaxy S9 for people hoping to save a few more bucks. This discount for the 64GB unlocked version (black) makes the offer more compelling. The Galaxy S8’s specs are strong enough to take you through 2019 and beyond. An unlocked phone means you can choose your own carrier and you won’t be forced to activate in-store.

Sale dates

Nov. 22 (Thanksgiving Day) at 5 p.m, through Nov. 24.


See at Best Buy


Galaxy S8 review

Galaxy S7 for $200 at Walmart (save $130)

Josh Miller/CNET

Straight Talk customers can snatch up 2016’s prepaid Galaxy S7 for $200. You’ll get it in black, with 32GB of storage.

Sale dates

Online: Nov. 21 at 7 p.m. PT
In-store: Nov. 22 at 6 p.m. through Nov. 23


See at Walmart


Galaxy S7 review

Samsung Galaxy J3 Orbit for $65: Save $35 to $85 at Target, Best Buy

Samsung

An entry level phone like the Galaxy J3 Orbit won’t offer much in the way of camera prowess or speed, but it’s relatively portable with a 5-inch screen. Target and Best Buy both sell the phone for $65 through a combination of prepaid services. Target partners with Total Wireless, while Best Buy’s offer works with Simple Mobile, TracFone and Total Wireless.

Sale starts

Target: Nov. 22 (Thanksgiving Day).
Best Buy: Nov. 22 at 5 p.m., through Nov. 24.


See at Target


Best Buy

Galaxy J7 Crown for $80, $100 (save $110 at Walmart, $90 at Best Buy)

Samsung

The Galaxy J7 Crown is a midrange phone with a 5.5-inch screen and 13-megapixel cameras on both the front and back. At Walmart, the phone sells for $80 through Straight Talk’s service. At Best Buy, it’ll cost $100 and uses Total Wireless or Simple Mobile’s networks.

Sale dates

Walmart: Online: Nov. 21 at 7 p.m. PT (10 p.m. ET). In-store: Nov. 22 at 6 p.m. through Nov. 23.
Best Buy: Nov. 22 at 5 p.m. through Nov. 24.


See at Walmart


See at Best Buy

Samsung Galaxy J7: Save $90 at Target

One of the more robust entry-level Android phones you can buy, the $100 Galaxy J7 has a 5.5-inch screen and 13-megapixel rear camera. This offer is for Total Wireless service.

Sale starts

Nov. 22 (Thanksgiving Day).


See at Target


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Black Friday 2018: CNET’s complete coverage

Originally published Nov. 9.
Updated most recently on Nov. 13.

CNET’s Holiday Gift Guide: The place to find the best tech gifts for 2018.

Best Black Friday 2018 deals: The best discounts we’ve found so far.

Samsung Galaxy Note 9

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