Android 11 has arrived, which means Samsung’s custom One UI skin is also due for an update to incorporate Google’s latest software, One UI 3.0, which the company has started rolling out to selected developers in the US and South Korea in a “pre-beta” ahead of a larger public beta test.
The early screenshots, obtained by XDA-Developers, give us a nice look at what changes we can expect in the update, which includes a mixture of new features that are being added at on OS-level, thanks to Android 11, along with Samsung-specific tweaks and enhancements. Android Police has posted the full changelog for the update, which gives a broader overview of what to expect.
Visually, One UI 3.0 looks fairly similar to the current One UI 2.5, although there’s a host of new features and gestures added. For example, you can now touch and hold an app on your home screen to view all of the widgets that can be added for that app (instead of having to navigate through the usual widget menu) as well as double-tap your home screen to turn off your display. There’s also a variety of DeX improvements, a new volume slider UI, and enhancements to Bixby routines. That’s in addition to Android 11 features like the new chat bubbles and the updated media player.
Right now, Samsung is only offering One UI 3.0 — and therefore, Android 11 — for its Galaxy S20 lineup (which includes the S20, S20 Plus, and S20 Ultra), although the finished product should be available on a wider range of devices once it leaves beta. The public beta will be available in China, Germany, India, Poland, South Korea, the United Kingdom, and the United States, although Samsung has yet to announce a release date.
Facebook will ban ads that wrongly claim election victory
Facebook will ban ads that wrongly claim victory in the US presidential race. The news comes a week after the company announced it would reject ads from Donald Trump or Joe Biden claiming a premature win on November 3rd.
The policy covers ads that claim legal forms of voting — like voting by mail — will corrupt the outcome of the election. It also bans ads that claim rampant voter fraud could alter the results of the election.
This is a real concern for the 2020 race. Due to mail-in voting, the electoral process is expected to take longer than in years past, and the official results likely won’t be announced on November 3rd. Experts worry that because more Democrats are expected to vote by mail than Republicans, Trump could declare an early victory, then sow doubt about the results as more Biden votes trickle in.
Google likely had this in mind last week when it announced it would ban election ads after polls close on November 3rd.
Similarly, Facebook is seeking to limit the spread of misinformation about the vote with ad policies targeting the 2020 election. It already banned new political ads the week before the election. Now it’s looking past the election, too.
Baldur’s Gate 3 on Google Stadia will let YouTube viewers help steer the game when it arrives October 6th
Google has always wanted its cloud game-streaming service, Stadia, to change how YouTube streamers interact with their fans. Nearly ten months after release, Google is finally bringing its “Crowd Choice” feature to its first two games. Crowd Choice allows viewers to vote on, say, which team a streamer joins in the game, which piece of dialogue they pick, or other in-game choices the player might make. The streamer can ultimately decide if they want to follow the audience’s suggestion or make their own choice.
On October 1st, Dead by Daylight will launch on Stadia Pro, and it will be the first game to integrate Crowd Choice. In Dead by Daylight, the feature gives the audience a chance to vote whether the streamer should be a “killer” who is tasked with killing the other players in the match or one of the four “survivors” that is trying to evade or run away. As you can see below, Dead by Daylight’s Crowd Choice shows what percent of the audience voted for each role.
On October 6th, Baldur’s Gate 3 will be the second game to support the feature. Unlike Dead by Daylight, which is an asymmetric survival horror game, Baldur’s Gate 3 is an RPG with the option to play solo or online with other players. When Crowd Choice is enabled, the streamer’s audience can vote on what narrative decisions the creator should make to progress the story. In Baldur’s Gate 3, Google says “everything from who your character falls in love with, to which friend becomes a foe can be decided by viewers.”
Despite not being a Stadia player myself, I’d like to watch a Stadia streamer play Baldur’s Gate 3 so I can vote on the goofiest dialogue option for them to choose.
Alongside Dead by Daylight, Stadia’s paid Pro subscription is also adding five additional games to its library on October 1st — Human: Fall Flat, Superhot: Mind Control Delete, Lara Croft: Temple of Osiris, Celeste, and Jotun.
Stadia’s one-year anniversary is coming up in a few months, and it looks like it’ll have more serious competition: the cloud gaming market has recently started heating up with the announcement of Amazon’s Luna and the release of Microsoft’s xCloud.
Verizon’s mmWave version of the Pixel 4a 5G costs $100 extra
Earlier today, Google announced the Pixel 5 and Pixel 4a 5G, both of which Verizon (Engadget’s parent company) will carry. But if you want to purchase the latter through the carrier, you’ll have to pay $600 or $25 per month on a two-year Verizon Device payment plan to get the device. That’s $100 more than the $499 Google plans to sell the Pixel 4a 5G through its website when the phone goes on sale next month.
You can chalk up the price hike on the fact Verzion’s version of the phone, the Pixel 4a 5G UW, has additional radios and antennas to take advantage of the carrier’s mmWave 5G buildouts. If you live in a city with mmWave coverage, you’ll get access to blazing-fast download speeds, but finding those areas can feel like a scavenger hunt. Here’s the other thing. For a $100 more, you can buy the Pixel 5 through Verizon and get a phone with a bigger battery, IP68 water resistance, Qi wireless charging, a 90Hz display and more RAM. Oh, and it too can connect to Verizon’s mmWave network.
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