Google Pixel Feature Drop for June 2023: Check what's new
Google is celebrating the summer with a range of updates across Android, the web, and WearOS. The brand has introduced the Pixel Feature Drop for June, and it brings new widgets, updated Emoji Kitchen, Reading Practice, Dark Web report, and Keep tile. As usual, these features are rolling out in the US first, with broader availability at a later date.
New widgets for three popular Google apps/services
The latest update introduces new widgets for apps/services such as Google TV, Google Finance, and Google News. According to the company, these updates will help users stay up to date on new entertainment options, stock information, and general news. The widgets adhere to the Material You design aesthetic. They are rolling out to devices running Android 6 or newer.
New add-ons to Emoji Kitchen on Android 6 and above
Over the years, Emoji Kitchen has undergone a lot of changes. And with every passing month, it is getting even better. With the latest Feature Drop, Google has added new summer-themed emoji combinations, that you can send to friends and family. Though the company hasn't provided many specifics, the official teasers reveal that some of the new combinations will involve "sharks."
Google Play Books receives a "Reading Practice" feature
Google pulled the "Rivet: Better Reading Practice" app in 2020. Three years later, the brand has now integrated a "Reading Practice" service into Play Books on Android version 8 or newer. It can be accessed from a special in-app section. Reading Practice will help kids read highlighted words aloud, and also get any necessary pronunciation help. The feature is available for paid/non-paid children's books.
Dark web reports for Gmail to check for security compromises
Google announced dark web monitoring at I/O 2023, initially for Google One subscribers. However, the feature is now accessible to anyone with a Google account. Google One members are still in for additional perks though. Users can perform a one-time scan via the Google One website/app, to see if their Gmail ID has been exposed on the dark web, and get instructions accordingly.
WearOS gets Spotify, Wallet, and Keep
Spotify DJ: WearOS 2 and 3 device users can now play a custom playlist of their favorite podcasts/radio hosts. Google Wallet ticket support: Now import your SmarTrip and Clipper cards to Google Wallet, and use them right from your wrist on Wear OS 2 and 3. Keep tile: Wear OS 3 device owners can now access personal to-do lists/notes right from the watch face.