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Google launches new Android features – Reading mode, emoji mashups, security alerts and more

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Google Android December 2022 New Features Update

On December 1, Google launched plenty of new features for Android devices, including phones and tablets. Starting Pixel phones, these newly debuted Android features will soon be available on your Samsung Galaxy smartphone or tablet, as well as Galaxy Watch (with Wear OS).

According to the information, Google introduced new features for Android including Reading mode app for web pages, improved Google Cast, Digital Car Keys via Wallet, new collage styles in the Google Photos app, replies to specific messages in Google Messages, new emoji mash-up by Gboard, and better security alerts.

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Security alerts

When it comes to security, Google apps will now start showing safety alerts along with recommended actions so your account stays secure against every kind of threat. In case any of your phone’s apps, webpage, or service is possibly a threat to your account, you will get prompted by Google.

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Reading Mode

Starting Reading mode, this new Android feature can be grabbed by installing the app from Google Play Store. It works under the accessibility function of the operating system, which extracts text from web pages and select compatible apps and presents without ads and pop-ups. [Download Reading mode]

For even better readability, the Reading mode allows you to adjust the font, font size, line spacing, and background color, and switch between dark and light modes. In case you don’t want to read a big article, the Android’s Text to Speech feature can be used and you can hear the text.

Gboard

If you love using Google’s keyboard app – Gboard on your Samsung device, the Emoji Kitchen also has new emojis you can mash up into creative sticker combos. With the holiday season update, you can now add some extra holiday flair to your messages with compatible emojis.

Google Photos

Google Photos adding new collage styles from two new artists — Australian husband-and-wife visual duo DABSMYLA and renowned watercolor artist Yao Cheng. You just need to select your photos, finalize the design and rearrange the layout with simple drag-and-drop controls.

Google Android December 2022 New Features Update

Google Wallet

Samsung Wallet already gained the availability to store the digital car and home keys, however, Google Wallet is now getting support as well. Following the holiday season update, the Google Wallet app lets you easily share Digital Car Keys without compromising security.

Google TV

Aside from this, Google updated the Google TV app, which allows you to cast any video with a single tap and continue browsing other content. Moreover, you can also use the mobile application to operate compatible Android TV or Google TV-based smart TV. [Download Google TV]

James is the lead content creator on Sammy Fans and mostly works on Samsung's firmware section. His first phone was the Galaxy S4 and continues to get new S series devices. Most of the time, James tries to learn about new technologies and gadgets but he also sneaks a bit of free time to nearby rivers and nature.

Android

Android 15 to boost wireless charging with NFC support

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Android 15 NFC wireless charging

Google plans to introduce support for NFC Wireless charging (WLC) with Android 15. This feature is a significant development for charging small electronic devices. Unlike the widely-used Qi wireless charging, NFC wireless charging does not require large coils, making it ideal for devices with limited internal space.

With the Android 15 update, NFC wireless charging is expected to become more common in smaller devices such as earbuds, styluses, smartwatches, and tracker tags. This support will enhance user convenience and device functionality.

Announced in 2020, the NFC Wireless Charging technology uses antennas that are reportedly smaller than one centimeter. These antennas are versatile, serving both as a means for wireless charging and NFC data transfer. This dual functionality is particularly beneficial for smaller devices.

The slow adoption of NFC Wireless Charging in the market has been attributed to a lack of support from major operating systems. However, the recent Android 15 beta release indicates that Google is now integrating NFC Wireless Charging capabilities into the Android platform. This move could lead to an increase in WLC-enabled accessories.

This feature could transform the charging of devices like tracker tags, which could use NFC for both power and data, and styluses that comply with the USI 2.0 specification.

Android 15 might allow Google Play to update your phone’s NFC

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Android

Android 15 expands default wallet app choices

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Android 15 wallet choices

Google has recently released the first beta version of Android 15, which brings a significant update as lets users select a preferred app to serve as their default wallet application. This feature enhances the system’s flexibility, allowing for a personalized choice of NFC payment apps.

Previously, Google Wallet was the default NFC payment app on Pixel phones. With the new update, users have noticed that the AMEX app is also compatible with this setting.

This change is also expected for various payment apps to become the default wallet app on Android devices. Google explains that wallet apps are designed to store essential items like credit cards, loyalty cards, and even car keys, facilitating different types of transactions.

This update is notable because it differs from Apple’s approach on iOS, where alternative digital wallet apps are not allowed. Previously, Android hasn’t blocked third-party wallet apps but this new default setting will make it easier for users to integrate these apps into their payment processes, giving them more options and enhancing the overall user experience.

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Android 15 might allow Google Play to update your phone’s NFC

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Pixel 9 samsung modem

Google’s upcoming Android 15 update is set to bring a transformational change in the way NFC technology is updated on smartphones. The company promises to reduce the complexity of operating system updates with Android 15. Notably, the NFC feature offers contactless payments and data transfer.

Back in 2019, Project Mainline was introduced by Google to address the challenge of updating the Android operating system across various devices. Project Mainline allows Google to update essential parts of the operating system directly, bypassing the device manufacturers. This method simplifies the update process and ensures that all devices receive updates simultaneously.

With the introduction of Android 15, Google plans to increase the number of updateable modules from 37 to 40 within Project Mainline. The addition of the ‘com.android.nfcservices’ package is significant because it includes the NFC stack.

Android 15 NFC update

The presence of the NFC stack package along with two other packages indicates that Google is preparing to add these as new modules to the project mainline. Although it has not yet been confirmed whether these will be included or not.

As Android 15 gets closer to its release, it’s clear that Google is working towards a more unified Android experience. The ability to update the NFC stack directly through the Google Play System is a step that provides users with a more consistent and secure operating system.

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