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December’s Pixel feature drop offers ‘Now Playing’ enhancements and more

Google has added new wallpapers from Vancouver, B.C. artist Dana Kearly

Google’s latest Pixel feature drop brings more functionality to the tech giant’s smartphones.

For instance, Google has added new wallpapers created by Vancouver, B.C. artist Dana Kearly to celebrate International Day of Persons with Disabilities.

My favourite part of the update is what the tech giant has done with ‘Now Playing.’ Now Playing, an on-device feature that automatically recognizes songs playing in your environment, lets you save the current song playing as your favourite. There’s also a Favourites category where you can find the tunes you liked the most. Further, Now Playing now lets you manually search for a song playing nearby. You can also now turn on the new search button and Google will connect to the internet to find the song.

If you’re an owner of the Pixel Buds A-Series, you can open the Pixel Buds app and use a slider to manually adjust the bass from -1 to +4, giving you far more control over the wireless earbuds. The Recorder app can also now transcribe in Japanese, French and German on Pixel 3 phones and newer.

On your Pixel 4a with 5G or newer, you can now use ‘Quick Tap’ to access Snapchat, and you’ll soon be able to add a new Pixel exclusive lens to the platform.

Ultra-wideband is now available on the Pixel 6 Pro, which improves ‘Nearby Share,’ allowing you to share files, videos, map locations and more quickly. Additionally, the Pixel 6 Pro and Pixel 6 can work with digital car keys on select 2020-2022 BMW models.

Another new feature is ‘Conversation mode,’ an early-stage accessibility feature in the Sound Amplifier app. The feature uses on-device machine learning and connects to their conversation partner to better hear conversations in loud environments and tune out competing noise.

Lastly, Google has added a new ‘Car crash detection’ mode, but this feature isn’t available in Canada.

Source: Google

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