Google to update Pixel 4 face unlock with eye detection ‘in the coming months`

One of the headline features for the Google Pixel 4 is that it adds a new, secure face unlock feature in lieu of a fingerprint sensor. Only it turns out that “secure” is a relative term, as the phone will unlock even if your eyes are closed. Google has given us a statement promising that it will issue a software update that will fix that problem up, but unfortunately the timeline for it is longer than users might like. Google says that “it has “been working on an option for…

Motorola may add flashy Moto E6 Play to its budget lineup, according to leaked renders

Motorola’s Moto E6 line is all about compromises for the sake of affordability. As a budget Android handset, you’re sacrificing high-end features, build quality, and oftentimes aesthetics for something cheap and functional. But according to new renders acquired by German website Mobielkopen, the E6 line may be getting a slick visual update in the form of a proper E6 Play variant of the phone. The $149 standard E6 came out this summer as a budget Android phone on the cheaper ned, just below the Moto G7 Play. But unlike last…

Wing’s delivery drones take flight for the first time in Virginia

Wing’s drone delivery service is now live in Virginia. The Alphabet subsidiary is now delivering snacks and health care products to residents of Christiansburg, Virginia, after receiving approval from the government and teaming up with major players like FedEx and Walgreens. Wing says it’s the first commercial drone delivery service in the US. Earlier this year, Wing became one of the first drone operators to be certified as a commercial air carrier by the Federal Aviation Administration, allowing it to deliver goods to people who may live miles away and…

Google can’t even get full RCS support for the Pixel 4

Google’s Pixel 4 won’t launch with support for RCS messaging on some of the biggest US networks. Verizon and T-Mobile both said on Twitter that the phone was not supported, as spotted by 9to5Google, and AT&T has yet to say whether it’ll be supported. Only Sprint has said, in an email to The Verge, that it will support RCS, which adds features like read receipts, typing indicators, and higher-quality attachments to the standard Android Messages app. The rollout of RCS messaging has been a complete mess. The standard, which is…

Here’s how Google Pixel Buds 2 and its wireless earbud competition actually look in your ear

Google announced a new version of its two-year-old Pixel Buds headphones on Tuesday, alongside the new Pixel 4 phone. The Pixel Buds 2 are smaller and lighter, and they also ditch that fabric-colored cord that connected the original pair. They’re truly wireless earbuds now, and that makes them a better contender against Apple’s AirPods, the Samsung Galaxy Buds, and others. We won’t know exactly how they sound or how well they’ll work till 2020, since Google won’t be shipping them until then. But what we can talk about right now…

Vergecast: Pixel 4 hands-on and Mark Zuckerberg’s speech on free speech

There are two big things we need to talk about today: Google’s new gadgets and Mark Zuckerberg’s remarks on free speech. So this week on The Vergecast, hosts Nilay Patel, Dieter Bohn, and Paul Miller go through all the products Google announced at its hardware event on Tuesday, then invite senior reporter Adi Robertson and Silicon Valley editor Casey Newton on to discuss Zuckerberg’s speech at Georgetown University on Thursday. In the first half of the show, the crew discuss what we saw Google announce this week: the Pixel 4,…

Google Maps on iOS will soon let you report speed traps and traffic slowdowns

Since 2018, Google has slowly added ways to report incidents on the road like accidents, road closures, and traffic slowdowns — something made popular by Google-owned Waze — to Google Maps on Android. Starting this week, though, Google says Google Maps users on iOS will soon be able to report road incidents as well. In a blog post (via 9to5Google), Google says that iPhone users will be able to report those crashes, speed traps, and traffic slowdowns now too. To report an incident, you’ll tap a new button under the…

Google’s Rick Osterloh shows off new Pixel and Nest hardware on The Vergecast

On Tuesday, Google held their annual hardware event in New York City to announce all their upcoming products under the Pixel and Nest line. Vergecast hosts Nilay Patel and Dieter Bohn attended and were able to record an interview with Google’s hardware chief Rick Osterloh, the company’s senior vice president of devices and services. Osterloh talked about the new products Google announced, including the Pixel 4, the Pixelbook Go, the Nest Mini, and the all-new Pixel Buds. The conversation also touched on Google’s approach to marketing its many hardware products,…

Google’s Pixel 4 face unlock has one major privacy weakness

Google came up with its own face unlock system for the Pixel 4 and 4 XL using those advanced sensors in the phone’s top bezel. The technology behind it is similar to Apple’s Face ID, and aside from just letting you into your phone, Google believes face unlock is secure enough to serve as an authentication method across Android. (There’s no more fingerprint sensor on the Pixel 4, remember.) And it’s very fast. But BBC News reporter Chris Fox has noticed an alarming privacy concern with Google’s face unlock: it…

Nvidia Shield TV Pro leaked on Amazon with Dolby Vision and even faster performance

The fan-favorite Nvidia Shield TV streaming box is getting a new refresh soon in the form of the Nvidia Shield TV Pro, which will bring a faster Tegra X1+ processor and a new remote, according to a now-removed Amazon listing that revealed the new product a few days ahead of an apparent October 28th release date, via 9to5Google. Visually, the Shield TV Pro is identical to the refreshed Shield TV from 2017: same design, same dimensions, same ports, same optional stand. Even the specs are largely the same; there’s still…

Google keeps adding Pixel features it claimed it didn’t need

With the Pixel 4, Google has finally added a second lens to the back of its phones. Speaking onstage at yesterday’s launch event, Google Research’s Marc Levoy explained the decision with a relatively simple statement of fact. “Some subjects are farther away than you’d like,” he said, “so it does help telephoto shots to have a telephoto lens.” It seems like a weirdly obvious point to make, but Levoy had to spell it out because until last year Google was claiming that its phones could get by with just a…

Google’s Stadia wireless controller won’t be very wireless at launch

You’ll probably be plugging in Google’s wireless Stadia controller when the cloud gaming service launches on November 19th. While it’ll work wirelessly while playing Stadia on a Chromecast Ultra, you’ll have to plug in a USB-C cable to use it with computers or phones at launch, Google tells The Verge. When Google first showed off the controller in March, the company touted how you could seamlessly switch from gaming on your TV to a laptop or phone while using the same exact controller, without having to pair it to each…

How to check which version of Chrome OS you’re running

I recently picked up a Chromebook that hadn’t been used for a while in order to try out a relatively new Chrome OS feature: virtual desktops. But when I hit the key that was supposed to bring those desktops up on my screen, I didn’t see anything. I did some checking around, and I found that the feature was expected to be available as of version 77 of Chrome OS — several iterations after the version I was running. While Chromebooks pretty much run on their own, and you can…

Google reportedly won’t sell Pixel 4 in India due to Motion Sense radar spectrum issues

Google’s recently announced Pixel 4 is reportedly skipping out on a launch in India — one of the largest phone markets in the world — due to a spectrum licensing issue with the Motion Sense radar technology that powers the phone’s gesture and face unlocking features, according to NDTV’s Gadgets360. Per the report, the problem is that Motion Sense (previously known as Project Soli) works on the 60GHz band of the spectrum, for which Google was apparently unable to get a license from the Indian government to use in the…

Google Clips is dead

Google may have introduced a lot of new Pixel camera tech at its 2019 fall hardware event this week, but it quietly retired a camera product as well: the Google Clips camera has been removed from Google’s online store (via 9to5Google). Google hasn’t responded to The Verge’s request for comment to confirm. The idea for Clips was an intriguing one: it was a tiny AI-powered wide angle camera designed to automatically capture short videos of precious moments with your loved ones. In theory, by setting up a Clips camera in…

Phone-based VR is officially over

Mobile virtual reality headsets helped millions of people try out VR, but as of yesterday, they’re all but officially a thing of the past. Oculus CTO John Carmack offered a “eulogy” last month for the phone-powered Gear VR mobile headset, saying that the headset’s days were numbered. And Google just revealed that it’s discontinuing the similar Daydream View mobile headset, in addition to omitting Daydream support from the new Pixel 4 phone. The app will still work on older phones, but Google has now given up on a platform it…

How the Pixelbook Go compares to other Chromebooks

After two years without releasing a new laptop, Google has finally announced the Pixelbook Go, a 13.3-inch Chromebook that starts at $649. Based on my colleague Dieter Bohn’s hands-on, it seems pretty good, and it’s a lot cheaper than the $999 Pixelbook. So now that there’s a midrange Pixelbook, it could be much harder to pick which one of the many Chromebooks should be your next laptop. If you’re looking for recommendations, Dieter’s got you covered. His top pick as of August 2019 was the Asus Chromebook Flip C434. Obviously,…

Nest is getting ready for the smart home’s Cambridge Analytica moment

For years, home automation tech has been a nightmare for security and privacy. Security pros love doing smart home hack demos — often flicking lights on and off from miles away — and the patchwork nature of the devices means a setup is only as strong as its weakest link. The data collected by those devices is often some of the most sensitive data you have, leaving the entire sector under the looming threat of a data breach. But with so many different companies moving in so many different directions,…

Can the Pixel 4 win back Google’s camera crown?

After Apple’s iPhone 11 event, I noted that while the company was catching up on features like ultrawide and night mode, it was unclear whether it’d be able to get on the Pixel’s level in terms of basic image quality. Over the course of our review process, it became clear that Apple had indeed achieved that. Apple says it has a class-leading camera every year, but this time it actually does. The next question, then, is how big a leap will come with Google’s new Pixel 4. We still can’t…

Most Democrats refuse to back Elizabeth Warren’s big tech break up plan on the debate stage

After six debates, the 2020 Democratic candidates addressed whether they would break up big tech companies like Facebook and Google, if they were elected president. In March, Elizabeth Warren announced her grand proposal to break up big tech firms like Facebook, Google, and Amazon, arguing that their sheer size and market power have staved off innovation and made the industry non-competitive. Outside of somehow conflating privacy regulation and content moderation into the antitrust discussion, no other candidate who answered the question of whether to break up Big Tech endorsed Warren’s…

You can’t use the Pixelbook Pen with the Pixelbook Go

Today, Google announced the Pixelbook Go, its first new laptop in two years. It starts at a modest $649, which is cheaper than the $999 Pixelbook, but that smaller price comes with some tradeoffs. Though the Go has a touchscreen, you can’t flip the that screen all the way around into tablet mode, like you can with the Pixelbook. Another tradeoff: the Go doesn’t support the $99 Pixelbook Pen, Google tells Android Police. The omission is a bit of a disappointment, as it would be nice to see the Go…

Google Pixel 4, Pixel 3 or Pixel 3A: Should you upgrade?

Google’s Pixel 4 and 4 XL are here at last, after a mountain of leaks. Preorders are beginning today, and the actual phones ship in just over a week. So let’s assume your heart is set on a new Pixel phone, and you’re not willing to wait for the reviews. Should you upgrade based on specs alone? And if so, to which? The choice isn’t quite as easy as “big” or “small” because Google’s new phones are expensive, at $799 and up — and because the excellent Pixel 3 and…

Chromebook 101: How to change your Chrome OS channels and get unreleased features

You might not know it from glancing at a Chromebook, but Google’s Chrome OS is in a constant state of evolution. The operating system receives minor updates every two to three weeks and major releases every six weeks. And at any given moment, Google’s staff is working on features and software enhancements that most people won’t see for a matter of weeks — or months. Here’s a little secret, though: if you’re feeling adventurous, you can gain access to those unreleased enhancements. All it takes is the flip of a…

Google to revamp Nest Aware with simpler pricing and new features

Google announced today that it will be rolling out a new version of its Nest Aware subscription service starting in 2020, with simplified pricing and new features. Since 2015, Google has offered Nest Aware as a premium subscription for its Nest security cameras for $5, $10, or $30 per month. The subscription gives you 24/7 continuous recording, access to video history, and more options for alerts, but if you wanted to use Nest Aware with multiple cameras, you had to pay a discounted monthly fee per additional camera. When the…

Pixel 4 vs. iPhone 11 Pro: a first look at camera photo samples

Google has just unveiled its latest Pixel 4 smartphone, following weeks of leaks. There’s a new face unlock feature, a high refresh rate screen, a faster Google Assistant, and spatial awareness using radar. All of those improvements look great, and you should check out our full hands-on for all of the details. But Pixel is synonymous with photography, so I wanted to see how the Pixel 4 fared against Apple’s iPhone 11 Pro. Pixel 4 camera specs: Main: 12.2-megapixel, 1.4 μm pixel width, dual pixel phase detection, OIS, ƒ/1.7 aperture,…

Google is discontinuing the Daydream View VR headset, and the Pixel 4 won’t support Daydream

Google has essentially abandoned its Daydream virtual reality platform. The company confirmed to The Verge that the new Pixel 4 phone won’t support Daydream, and Google told Variety and The Verge that it will also no longer sell the Daydream View mobile headset. It will continue to support the app — which only works on older phones — for existing users. “There hasn’t been the broad consumer or developer adoption we had hoped, and we’ve seen decreasing usage over time of the Daydream View headset,” a spokesperson said. Although the…

The Pixel 4 doesn’t include any headphones, or even a 3.5mm adapter in the box

Google’s latest phone, the Google Pixel 4, doesn’t include a pair of earphones in the box, nor does it come with one of the company’s USB-C to 3.5mm adapters. With its own true wireless Pixel Buds not due for release until next year, Google just offered every other headphone manufacturer a nice opportunity to capitalize on any new Pixel 4 owners who might not already own wireless headphones. Every previous Pixel phone offered a wired headphone option in the box, whether via a traditional 3.5mm headphone jack, a bundled pair…

How to buy the Google Pixel 4 and the 4 XL

A slew of new Google products is coming, with the new Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL phones heading the list. If you’ve already got a Pixel phone and are in the mood to upgrade or if you’ve finally decided that this is the year you’re going to take the plunge, we’ve got all the info you need. Where to buy the Pixel 4 and 4 XL Available for preorder today and shipping on October 24th, the Pixel 4 and 4 XL are (for the first time) going to be…

Pixel Buds 2 hands-on: Google takes on the AirPods

I just spent a few minutes with the new Google Pixel Buds hardware — the $179 truly wireless earbuds aren’t shipping until Spring 2020, and the units at Google’s fall hardware event aren’t actually turned on and working. So there’s no way to tell how they’ll actually sound, and how Google’s various software tricks work in practice. What I can tell you is that Google has produced a set of small, minimally designed earbuds that look like nothing more than little circles in your ears when you’re wearing them and…

Google Pixel 4 buyers won’t get unlimited photo uploads at original quality

The Pixel 4 and 4 XL will launch without one of the original great reasons for owning a Pixel phone: free unlimited photo backups to Google Photos at full resolution. Google’s website for the new devices only notes that they’re eligible for the same storage option as any other phone, which is unlimited backups at “high quality.” This option compresses your images when they’re uploaded to the cloud, which is why Google is able to offer it so freely. Nowhere on the Pixel 4 site does it mention free storage…