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The Best Updates in Google Maps' 15th-Anniversary Redesign – Lifehacker

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Screenshot: David Murphy (Google)

In celebration of Google Maps’ 15th birthday, Google is updating the service with a new logo and icon, and it’s rolling out several new features for the app. Here’s everything included in the big update.

New and redesigned tabs

Image: Google

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The biggest change in the new Google Maps is its updated UI. The app’s various features and pages have been organized into five new tabs that line the bottom of the app screen. Here’s what each one does:

  • Explore: Offers reviews and recommendations for nearby restaurants, activities, and attractions.
  • Commute: Gives directions to a location, travel time estimates, traffic alerts, and more.
  • Saved: A customizable list of saved locations for quick access. The list can be organized by category and shared with others.
  • Contribute: Submit reviews, photos, and other suggestions for places on Google Maps.
  • Updates: A feed of recent reviews and other updates for places you have visited in the past, trending locations, and recommendations from Local Guides. You can also interact with businesses listed on Google Maps directly through this tab.

Screenshot: Google

Live view assistance and transit attributes

Several helpful updates are also included in the 15th-anniversary redesign that will help you get around more effectively and safely.

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The Live View mode, which offers real-time AR assistance when you’re walking to a location, will now show you the exact distance and direction of your destination.

For those who are traveling by public transportation, Google Maps now displays important information about the vehicles and facilities along your route. Google Maps already shows how crowded your route is but users can now find (and contribute) information about several other “transit attributes” like the current temperature in the bus or train; whether there are wheelchair and disability-accessible entries, seating, and other assistance; and if there’s security personal and other safety measures onboard. Some regions will also list if there are designated sections for women and, in Japan, you’ll see how many train carriages are available on your route.

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Google's Android 13 statue swings its way to the Mountain View campus – Android Central

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What you need to know

  • Like the previous OS iterations, Android 13 also gets a new statute.
  • The new sculpture resembles a swing in the shape of the number 13.
  • The statue is on display at Google’s Mountain View campus.

Early this March, we saw Google’s Android statues that went missing from the company’s Mountain View campus. The reports later suggested that they were removed were on purpose as they were undergoing repairs and kept in storage to find a new home. Five months later, Android 13 officially arrived on Pixel devices, and so is its statue on the Mountain View campus, which is notably not in the form of a dessert.

Twitter user Rahul Ravikumar has posted the image of the Android 13 statue that takes a Swing form factor installed at the campus. Former Verge reporter Dieter Bohn has also posed with the new Android 13 swing statue.

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The Android 13 wing sculpture on the Mountain View campus is modeled by the number 13 — the blue pole represents the “1,” and the seats are obviously a “3.” A standard Android bot logo is also placed on top, identifying the entire thing as Android 13 to the audience. In addition, it looks like the blue rod has the word “thirteen” inscribed in 13 different languages, including English. Furthermore, there is also a 4-bit binary language also engraved on it.

Google also provides the AR version of the same statue on its Android website, where users can hit the ”View in 3D” button. When viewing it on an Android phone, you can place the statue anywhere as your own virtual desk ornament.

The statues and AR models of the native Android versions are not new. Google has made the Android sculptures available since its inception, although these were primarily desserts, given Android’s history of using dessert names for each new version. Some of these, particularly the last two, were available in AR. However, now that Google has largely done away with publicly naming new versions after delectable snacks, it’s somewhat fitting that the company would change things up.

Android 13 has started rolling out to Pixel devices (Pixel 4 and higher) beginning this week, so this is clearly a celebration of that fact. Later this year, the rollout is expected to other Android devices from Samsung, Asus, iQOO, Xiaomi, and others. The noticeable enhancements on the Android 13 include extending Material You’s app color theming to third-party applications, setting language options to individual apps, improvements to multitasking, and enhanced privacy controls.

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Samsung quietly changed trade-in values for its Galaxy Z Flip 4 promotion – XDA Developers

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Over the past few years, Samsung has been aggressive when it comes to new smartphone launches, offering trade-in promotions, credits, and other incentives to lure in new and old customers. With the release of the Galaxy Z Flip 4, things were no different. The company delivered outrageous offers, like giving $900 in “enhanced” trade-in credit for a Galaxy Z Flip 3. This was a steal, considering the phone had a retail price of $999.99 when it was released a year ago. But now, it looks like Samsung is pulling back its offers, quietly changing its trade-in values.

The folks at 9to5Google spotted the changes, reporting that Samsung had lowered its trade-in values for the Galaxy Z Flip 3. As mentioned before, Samsung previously offered $900 in trade-in credit for any version of the phone. But now, the trade-in credit offered starts at $700 if you trade in a 128GB model of the Galaxy Z Flip 3. Those with a 256GB model will be eligible for $800 in credit, and the Bespoke Edition will bring in $900 in credit. Of course, these changes will disappoint some who were on the fence, but the offers are still pretty good even with the lower trade-in values.

    Samsung’s latest and greatest. The Galaxy Z Flip 4 improves on its predecessors, offering a sturdier more refined foldable handset.

The Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4 offers a familiar clamshell design with a more refined look, thanks to squared-off edges and a redesigned hinge. The compact foldable packs the latest Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1 SoC paired with 8GB RAM. The 6.7-inch FHD+ Dynamic AMOLED display offers a 120Hz refresh rate, with deep blacks and colors that pop. It gets a slightly larger battery than its predecessor, coming in at 3,700mAh. The phone offers wireless charging or 25W wired fast charging as an option if you’re in a rush. Those that love capturing the moment while on the go will be glad to know that the phone has dual 12MP cameras capable of shooting beautiful photos and videos.

Despite the lower trade-in values, Samsung is still offering other incentives like up to $200 in instant Samsung Credit that can be used towards accessories. It also offers a free memory upgrade, with the base model Galaxy Z Flip 4 upgraded to 256GB of internal storage. It’s also throwing in a case valued at $39.99. On top of that, by purchasing a Galaxy Z Flip 4, you’ll be eligible to receive four months of YouTube Premium, four months of SiriusXM streaming, three months of Spotify Premium, and six months of 100GB of OneDrive cloud storage for free. Simply put, this is still a great deal and should be taken advantage of.


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Apple reportedly plans iPhone and Apple Watch event for September 7th – Ars Technica

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Enlarge / The iPhone 13 Pro Max.
Samuel Axon

Three things in life are certain: death, taxes, and new iPhones in September. Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman reports that this year’s iPhone event will be held on Wednesday, September 7th.

According to Gurman, the non-pro iPhone 14 lineup will axe the 5.4-inch mini display size that Apple has sold for the last couple of generations. The standard 6.1-inch model will instead be joined by a large-screened 6.7-inch version, matching the screen size of the current iPhone Pro Max model. But these phones will also continue to use the current Apple A15 Bionic chip and will look externally similar to the iPhone 13.

The iPhone 14 Pro will reportedly be more exciting, replacing the current camera notch with a pair of pinhole cutouts for the front-facing camera and FaceID scanner; many Android phones have already switched to similar pinhole cutouts to save screen space. The Pro phones will also reportedly get a faster chip and an even-larger three-lens camera assembly anchored by a 48-megapixel wide-angle camera plus 12-megapixel ultra-wide and telephoto cameras.

Apple also plans to introduce new Apple Watches, the report says. The Series 8 watches will reportedly include a standard model that looks similar to the current Series 7, plus a long-rumored larger and more “rugged” titanium model with more battery life and additional fitness tracking features.

The basic Apple Watch SE will reportedly receive a faster chip—the current SE uses an Apple S5, and a new one could use an S6, S7, or some newer as-yet unannounced chip. This new SE model will hopefully mean the end of the long-lived Apple Watch Series 3, which the company still sells even though it won’t be receiving the watchOS 9 update this fall.

A September 7th announcement for the new iPhones and watches probably means at least some new devices will be available to buy toward the middle of the month, roughly coinciding with the release of iOS 16—Gurman says that Apple Store employees have been told to prepare for a September 16th launch.

Apple often holds an iPad- and Mac-focused event in October to complement the September event, which is when we’d expect to see updates to those products and the release of macOS Ventura and the reportedly delayed iPadOS 16. Gurman predicts we’ll finally see a USB-C version of the low-end iPad, new M2-based iPad Pros, and updated Mac mini and MacBook Pros before the end of the year.

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