Dave Burke, Android Engineering VP, relinquishes position to pursue “AI/bio” roles within the company

Dave Burke
Long-time Android Engineering VP Dave Burke said today that he is stepping down from the role. Burke, who spent 14 years building Android, is not leaving Alphabet and is exploring “AI/bio” projects within the company. Burke was involved in pivotal projects, including building Nexus/Pixel phones, developing Chrome for mobile phones, starting Android TV, and spearheading efforts to build and ship developer tools. “So… after 14 yrs leading Android engineering, I’ve decided it’s time for a change. So… after 14 yrs leading Android engineering, I've decided it's time for a change.

Apple’s Messages App Finally Adds RCS and Scheduling Text Features

Scheduled Send
The biggest updates coming to Apple’s iMessage and its Messages app in iOS 18 aren’t its AI emoji, Genmoji, or even the ability to send texts via satellite. Because of Apple’s longtime refusal to add support for RCS, texting with Android users meant no typing indicators or read receipts, broken group chats, and blurry photos and videos. Instead, the text box indicates in a light gray font that your texts with someone support both “Text message + RCS,” while the texts themselves are still green. However, issues that make the Messages app a broken experience for Apple’s customers will be addressed, it seems, as Apple says it will support the standard later this year. That’s likely why there was no mention of encrypted messaging in Apple’s announcement of RCS.

Remove Stalkerware from Your Android Phone in Just a Few Simple Steps

Stalkerware Spill Hed Guide
Your Android phone could have stalkerware — here’s how to remove it How to remove common consumer-grade spywareConsumer-grade spyware apps that covertly and continually monitor your private messages, photos, phone calls and real-time location are a growing problem for Android users. This guide can help you identify and remove common surveillance apps from your Android phone, including TheTruthSpy, KidsGuard and other apps. Checking to see if your Android device is compromised can be done quickly and easily. Android users who do not use accessibility apps or features should not see any apps in their Android settings. Force stopping and uninstalling a stalkerware app will likely alert the person who planted the stalkerware that the app no longer works.

Localized Integrations Launches for Google Wallet in India, Pay to Remain Unaffected

Google Wallet
That’s a different strategy from just about every other market, where Google has been merging Wallet and Pay experiences together under a single Wallet app. We’re continuing to invest in the Google Pay app to give people easy, secure access to digital payments,” a Google spokesperson said in a statement to TechCrunch. Then, it tried to replace the Wallet and its Android Pay app with Google Pay. In 2022, Google relaunched the Wallet app as its digital wallet platform for Android, Wear OS and Fitbit OS. However, in February this year, the search giant announced it would replace Google Pay with the Wallet app in the U.S.

Truecaller Debuts Web Client for Android Users

Truecaller For Web
Initially, the web version, called Truecaller for Web, will only be made available to Android users in India, the company said, but it plans to roll out the support in other territories in the future. All Truecaller for Android users in India can now link their devices to the web client on a PC or a Mac through a QR code. This is akin to linking the web version of a messenger like WhatsApp or Telegram. Now users will be able to look up numbers without any such limitations on the web client, the company said. Last month, it launched a “Max” feature update for Android users to block all calls from unapproved contacts or spam detected by AI.

Automattic,’s Owner, Purchases Beeper Messaging App for $125M

01 Mobile owner Automattic is acquiring Beeper, the company behind the iMessage-on-Android solution that was referenced by the Department of Justice in its antitrust lawsuit against Apple. One of the reasons why there are no other people building this type of app is it costs a surprisingly large amount of money to build a damn good chat app,” Migicovsky noted. As for Beeper’s products, the company has now briefed the DOJ on what happened when Apple blocked its newer app, Beeper Mini, which aimed to bring iMessage to Android. Beeper on Android launches to allThe company is instead releasing an updated version of its core app, Beeper, on Android. In this rewritten version of Beeper, the company is starting to roll out fully end-to-end encrypted messages across Signal.

“Breaking News: Google Expands Find My Device Network to US and Canada”

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Google is launching its upgraded Find My Device network in the U.S. and Canada, the company announced on Monday. Find My Device’s crowdsourced network of over a billion Android devices can help users find their misplaced Android devices and everyday items. The Find My Device Network, which is similar to Apple’s Find My network, works with devices running Android 9+. The new Find My Device network also integrates with Nest smart home gadgets and shows a lost device’s proximity to home Nest devices. “Multi-layered protections built into the Find My Device network help keep you safe and your personal information private, while keeping you in control of the devices connected to the Find My Device network.

Android Studio’s newest update: Gemini integration provides increased coding support

Google Gemini
Google continues rolling out Gemini to different products as today the company announced that Android Studio’s bot is getting upgraded with Gemini Pro. In May 2023, during the Google IO developer event, the company first introduced Studio Bot powered by the PaLM-2 foundation model. The company is rolling out Gemini in Android Studio in over 180 countries for the Android Studio Jellyfish version. Just like the Studio Bot, the new Gemini bot lives in the IDE (Integrated Development Environment) and developers can ask coding-related questions. The company said users can easily access the Gemini API starter template through Android Studio to add generative AI-powered features to their apps.

Corporations Strengthen Defenses as Demand for Zero-Day Exploits Surges

Android Spyware Malloc
In its previous price list, published in 2019, the highest payouts that Crowdfense was offering were $3 million for Android and iOS zero-days. In a report last month, Google said it saw hackers use 97 zero-day vulnerabilities in the wild in 2023. Spyware vendors, which often work with zero-day brokers, were responsible for 75 percent of zero-days targeting Google products and Android, according to the company. Zero-day brokers, as well as spyware companies like NSO Group and Hacking Team have often been criticized for selling its products to unsavory governments. “All the companies and governments directly sanctioned by the USA are excluded.”At least one company, spyware consortium Intellexa, is on Crowdfense’s particular blocklist.

“Revamping Content: Discord Advertisements, AT&T Passcode Restoration, and Podcast Modifications for Android Audiences”

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Hello, and welcome back to Equity, a podcast about the business of startups, where we unpack the numbers and nuance behind the headlines. This is our Monday show, where we dig into the weekend and take a peek at the week that is to come. We’ll talk more about Wednesday, but this is Y Combinator Demo Day week, so expect a deluge of startup news. On the podcast today we dug into the latest news from Discord that indicates it is moving towards opening its gates for advertisements. Equity is TechCrunch’s flagship podcast and posts every Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and you can subscribe to us on Apple Podcasts, Overcast, Spotify and all the casts.