About Chethan Rao
Chethan Rao is a news writer at Android Police, primarily focusing on weekend coverage. He has covered tech for over a decade and has a soft spot for the latest Android hardware. CR usually scours the internet for live cricket streams or watches NBA highlights in his free time. He also enjoys the occasional hour or two of console/mobile gaming.
The Fan Edition smartphone is on course to launch soon
Although Samsung is currently riding high on the recent launches of the Galaxy Z Fold 5 and the Galaxy Z Flip 5 foldables, the manufacturer is also expected to unveil the midrange Galaxy S23 FE this year. The smartphone has already appeared in leaked renders, followed by a confirmation from a Samsung executive about its imminent arrival. A new report is now providing additional info on the camera hardware of this upcoming Fan Edition device.
YouTube's new experiment is currently limited to English content
YouTube constantly adds new features to its mobile, web, and TV apps to enhance user experience. Some of the Google-owned platform's changes, such as the recent decision to jack up the prices of grandfathered Premium accounts, haven't gone down well with longtime subscribers. Nevertheless, YouTube continues to push on, and the brains behind the operation continue to add new functionality focused on both creators and viewers. We've seen a handful of under-testing features being added to the streaming service recently, and the makers are now adding one more — AI-generated video summaries.
The Galaxy SmartTag 2 was initially rumored to arrive at Unpacked
The Samsung Galaxy SmartTag made its debut in 2021, with the company following it up shortly with the SmartTag+, featuring ultra-wideband (UWB) connectivity for improved device tracking. It's been over two years since both were released, and based on recent leaks, there was hope that the company would unveil its next-gen smart tracker at Unpacked. But the event came and went, and the new smart tracker was nowhere to be found. Well, the Galaxy SmartTag 2 has now made its way to the FCC database, complete with a picture of the tracker, along with imagery of its internal components.
Weakened chip demand continues to haunt Samsung
Samsung's smartphone business is expected to receive a significant boost with the recent arrival of the Galaxy Z Fold 5 and the Galaxy Z Flip 5. However, the manufacturer will also have to deal with the upcoming lineup of Apple iPhone 15 models, rumored to pick up a bevy of new upgrades, especially in the camera department. The manufacturer has now published its quarterly financial report for the second quarter of 2023, showing operating profits dropping by 95% year-over-year, mostly due to weakened demand for chips.
The stable version of the app was unaffected
Being one of the most used communication apps in the world, WhatsApp is constantly evolving with the addition of new functionalities and user-friendly tweaks. The beta version of WhatsApp for Android is generally a good place to start experimenting with unreleased features before their release. However, not all beta updates go smoothly, and sometimes, these test versions could also carry bugs of their own. WhatsApp is fixing one such issue with the Android app now, where chats were unsorted and not organized based on recency, which is the default setting.
The app works on the cover screen, but without any UI
After months of rumors and leaks, Samsung officially unveiled the Galaxy Z Flip 5 and the Galaxy Z Fold 5 at Unpacked. Existing users of the Galaxy Z Flip 4 are likely aware that its cover screen doesn't support the Google Wallet app; you have to open the phone to access your virtual wallet. It's now coming to light that the newly refreshed Galaxy Z Flip 5 supports this feature, but not in the way you'd expect, thanks to a revelation by 9to5Google senior editor Ben Schoon.
Plus prototype Galaxy Z Flip 5 colors that didn't make the cut
Samsung officially revealed the Galaxy Z Fold 5 and the Z Flip 5 on Wednesday, accompanied by the Galaxy Watch 6 series and the Galaxy Tab S9 trio of tablets. The larger Samsung foldable has seen some minor upgrades under the hood, though the breadth of the changes is minimal compared to the Galaxy Z Fold 4 last year. We're now coming across an interesting revelation, detailing that Samsung was tinkering with a couple of different display aspect ratios for the Galaxy Z Fold 5.
The update also includes a minor visual change
Over the past couple of weeks, WhatsApp has begun the slow rollout of features like Channels for the global audience while also picking up a Wear OS app at long last. There was some bad news, too, with WhatsApp suffering a global outage momentarily last week. Despite this setback, WhatsApp has continued to add new elements to the beta version of the app, allowing select individuals to test under-development features before everyone else. Well, the newest addition to the beta version of the communications app is a Material You-based search bar.
But only if you're in one of the four eligible countries
For better or worse, ChatGPT has changed how we look at AI and its real-world consequences. At launch last October, the service was only available on the web. An iOS app debuted this May, with the promise of an Android app coming soon. Well, the Android version of OpenAI's tool went up for pre-registration last week and is now officially available for download in select countries.
YouTube is testing this feature among a select few mobile users
Much like its rival alternatives from TikTok, Snapchat, and Instagram, YouTube Shorts focuses on delivering an endless stream of content in a vertical feed. Similar to the standalone YouTube web and mobile apps, Google is frequently testing new features in a bid to drive user engagement further. The YouTube team is now announcing one such new experiment coming to a small group of Android and iOS users wherein viewers can use a comment from a clip they're watching and create a separate Shorts video from it.
A far cry from Google's current Android apps
If you've owned an Android phone at some point over the past few years, it's impossible not to have come across Google Photos. It's the default gallery app on Pixel phones and has a wide range of editing tools built-in to make it a complete package for anyone, regardless of their experience level with photography. This handy gallery app is now working on a visual refresh for many of its UI elements, which also involves the removal of the bottom navigation bar.
On course to launch over the next few weeks
One of the major benefits of Android is extensive customization options. People on Android devices can change the default text, themes, or even the default launcher, by picking from some of the best in the business. While Nova Launcher often makes the news as the most popular third-party Android launcher, Smart Launcher has also emerged as a popular name in the segment. The developer's latest update now adds a feature that even stock Android phones like the Pixel 7 don't fully support yet — themed app icons for unsupported apps.
Only 7 months left to learn more
The tech world's collective attention is currently focused on next week's Samsung Galaxy Unpacked event, which will play host to the Galaxy Z Flip 5, the Galaxy Z Fold 5, the Galaxy Tab S9 series, and two Galaxy Watch 6 wearables. It may seem too early to start talking about Samsung's 2024 flagships already, but it's no secret that manufacturers start working on devices several months in advance. With that in mind, a new rumor now claims that Samsung may not be mulling any major upgrades in the selfie camera department with the three Galaxy S24 flagships early next year.
Message scheduling is now rolling out to all users
Consistently ranked among the best encrypted messaging apps out there, Signal has changed with the times and added dozens of nifty new features — some visual and some focusing on security and privacy. Now it's time for the latest to arrive, as Signal finally picks up the ability to schedule messages scheduling — which has been
Currently rolling out to WhatsApp beta users on Android
Beta versions of WhatsApp, one of the best chat apps out there, give us a sneak peek into some of its upcoming functionality that is unavailable to regular users. While not all features in beta make the final cut, some minor UI tweaks usually get the nod for the stable release. The latest WhatsApp beta version is picking up one such small visual change for its Security notifications menu, with some new phrasing on top and a larger font for the existing text.
Leaked specs and renders paint a familiar picture
The Galaxy Tab S9 series will officially debut on July 26, although most of the world's attention will likely be focused on Samsung's new foldables — the Galaxy Z Fold 5 and the Z Flip 5. Nevertheless, we were quite impressed with the Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra last year, the most premium model in the lineup, and we're now learning that its successor may pack similar hardware, save for some handy upgrades.
Galaxy Watch 6 customers will get first dibs
The Samsung Galaxy Watch 6 is expected to debut next week alongside the Galaxy Z Fold 5 and the Z Flip 5, with the company's Galaxy Tab S9 series also crammed into the July 26 launch event. A bulk of the Galaxy Watch 6's hardware is already out in the open, revealing the presence of largely the same array of sensors as the Galaxy Watch 5 series, including the temperature sensor. Samsung has now confirmed that this sensor would be better utilized on the upcoming Galaxy Watch 6 series and the existing crop of Galaxy Watch 5 smartwatches using a new app called Thermo Check: LifeTemperature.
The company's first-party accessories have leaked ahead of Unpacked
The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 and the Z Flip 5 will be officially unveiled at Samsung Unpacked in a week's time. While it's customary to come across leaks of upcoming Android smartphones, Samsung's foldables have leaked so frequently that the official unveiling is merely a formality at this point. Nevertheless, more leaks continue to pour in ahead of the big event in Seoul, South Korea, next week, with prominent leaker Evleaks now shedding light on what appears to be a ring case/cover meant for each of the two foldables.
Swipe between pages directly from the lock screen
Among the myriad benefits of owning a Pixel smartphone is access to exclusive features like At a Glance — Google's dedicated lock screen and home screen widget — offering quick access to information on local weather, package deliveries, doorbells, upcoming events, and several other metrics. In its current form on Android 13, the At a Glance home screen widget provides swipeable pages when there is more than one alert pending in the stack. But users are unable to do so with the Always On Display (AOD) enabled or from the lock screen. But that seems to be changing now, at least with Android 14 Beta 4, with the At a Glance lock screen widget gaining swipeable cards, denoted with dots when there's more than one alert pending.
Animated avatars are coming to WhatsApp
Despite being slow to roll out certain features when compared to services like Telegram, WhatsApp continues to be one of the world's most popular instant messaging apps. We often come across under-development features being tested by the Meta-owned chat app courtesy of beta releases. Last week, it was revealed that the company enhancing the discoverability of stickers by linking them to their corresponding emoji. WhatsApp now appears to be working on another visual feature, as per the good folks at WABetaInfo, taking a cue from Apple's popular Memoji feature for iPhones.