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[Update: Latest Google app beta update has a fix] Google Assistant on Pixel 2 is not detecting voice input through Bluetooth headphones

Most owners of OG Pixels can attest that Bluetooth on those devices is not the best. We've written a fair few articles about the various issues over the past year, but with the launch of the new Pixels we were hopeful that Google might have improved things somewhat. While Bluetooth performance so far does seem to be more consistent, we've just learned about one particularly annoying bug that Pixel 2 owners have uncovered.

According to the many posters on this Pixel User Community thread, when you connect Bluetooth headphones to a Pixel 2 or 2 XL and activate the Google Assistant, it makes a sound to indicate that it's listening but doesn't detect your voice.

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Android 8.1 Developer Preview 2 brings Pixel C launcher to parity with Pixel phones [APK Download]

Though tablets often feel like the unloved member of the Android family, the Pixel C has gradually received features that first debuted in the Pixel series of phones. Android 8.1 Developer Preview 2 carries over some features from the Pixel launcher for phones. While it seems like it should be the other way around—the Pixel C was released in December 2015, 10 months before the Pixel phones—tablets are not the realm of innovation. Foremost among the changes is the updated menu when you long-press an app in the launcher.

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Lens in Google Assistant is rolling out widely on Pixel phones today

Google announced a few weeks ago that Lens was coming to Google Assistant, but the deployment would take some time. It's showed up sporadically for users since then, but it appears to be rolling out widely on Pixel phones today (in select markets). Open Assistant, and you may very well have the Lens button down at the bottom.

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[Update: OTAs going out] Android 8.1 Developer Preview 2 is now available for Pixel and Nexus devices

Google dropped the first developer preview for Android 8.1 last month, and now it's time for an update. The second dev preview build is now available for download via system images on the developer site. This is your chance to be on the bleeding edge of Android, but as usual, running beta software comes with some risks.

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Google makes Pixel battery life estimates more accurate with personalized on-device model

If you own a Pixel and you've noticed that your battery life estimates have gotten more accurate in the past few days, that's not a coincidence. A Google product manager made an announcement yesterday regarding the new, smarter way that your Pixel will calculate your remaining battery life.

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Google fixes disabled bootloader unlock on Pixel 2 phones

There are plenty of good reasons to buy a Pixel, but for many, it's the unlockable bootloader that's most appealing. Imagine the disappointment when some Pixel 2 devices from the Google Store showed up without an unlockable bootloader. Google seems to have gotten right to work on the bug, and it's now fixed.

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Google Assistant is able to troubleshoot problems on your phone (Pixel 2 only, for now)

The Google Assistant on the Pixel 2 and 2 XL is more powerful than ever before, and it can help you do a bunch of things with your phone like change settings or initiate a conversation with support. Thanks to a whimsical request from a reader, we now know about one more ability the Assistant has.

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Google fixes Pixel trade-in factory reset and misclassification problems

Just a bit before the new Pixel 2 phones launched, Google released a new trade-in program that allows you to swap an older phone for credit that can be applied (in the form of a partial refund) on a purchase. Since it rolled out, there have been reports that the inspection being performed on phones isn't accurate, resulting in an incorrect trade-in value assessment. According to a statement by a Google rep, this issue seems to have been fixed, at least when it comes to Pixel phones and factory reset/device classification. 

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Android's monthly security bulletin now details functional updates for Pixels and Nexus phones

Google has been publishing its security bulletin for the monthly Android patches for a long time, but starting October 2017 (last month), it created a special bulletin for Nexus and Pixel devices. With the newly released November patch, Google has started populating one new section in the bulletin that details "Functional updates."

Google has recently started using the monthly patches not just for security fixes, but also as an opportunity to fix functional bugs on Nexus and Pixel phones and add really urgent features that could not wait until a full system software update. So it was only a matter of time before the bulletin started mentioning these other non-security changes.

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Google's November system images and OTA files for Nexus and Pixel devices are (mostly) live [Update: Pixel 2 XL OTA rolling out]

The month is getting underway, and that means it's time for Google to issue its monthly raft of Pixel and Nexus updates. The updates will filter down to phones in the next day or so, but the system images and OTA files for most devices are available now if you want to sideload. There's not a ton new here, but as this is a November patch level, you should have protection from the KRACK vulnerability.

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