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Friday, June 13, 2014

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1080p and 480p streaming options added to latest YouTube app

Posted: 13 Jun 2014 03:54 PM PDT

Last week we told you that a change in the latest YouTube app allowed better control over the resolution when streaming, and now two new (and requested) options have been added — 1080p and 480p streaming.

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Samsung Galaxy S5 rumored to get Android 4.4.3 this month, S4 to follow

Posted: 13 Jun 2014 03:30 PM PDT

samsung galaxy s5 aa (11 of 36)

New rumors suggest the Samsung Galaxy S5 is set to receive a very welcomed update to Android 4.4.3 this month, with the previous-generation Samsung Galaxy S4 to follow in July. This makes for one of the fastest proliferations we have seen in a new Android version.

We are not sure if updates are getting much easier to handle or manufacturers are finally improving their game. Android 4.4.3 emerged at the beginning of June, and so far Nexus, Google Play Edition and even Motorola devices have gotten the anticipated update.

This rumor originates from a leaked document, which states the SM-G900F and SM-G900H will both be updated this month. The first would be the international, unlocked version, while the latter is a model compatible with US, Canadian and Latin American carriers (also unlocked).


Carrier versions will need to go through their test periods and be approved by their respective network providers, which means it may still take a while before you see the update showing up. The Samsung Galaxy S4 version slated to get Android 4.4.3 next month is also an unlocked iteration of the device, labeled under model number GT-I9506.

Software updates are looking bright in this Android universe us geeks live in. We certainly hope more manufacturers follow suit and get faster with their updates. Granted, this was not an upgrade that brought huge changes, but such speedy delivery has been unheard of until now. Unless you had a Nexus device, that is. And sometimes even those took longer to get updated!

Samsung Galaxy S4 hands-on

Those who want to learn more about Android 4.4.3 can go ahead and check out some of our previous coverage, in which we go through the new features and Google's handling of bug fixes. Otherwise, stick around for upcoming details on these updates!

Also, don't forget these leaks don't always prove to be true. We wouldn't hold our breath on these updates, at least until more details emerge.

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YouTube is quietly testing 1080p option for their Android app

Posted: 13 Jun 2014 03:04 PM PDT

YouTube 1080p Android

You may remember the big hoopla that was made after the folks at Google finally updated the YouTube app for Android with the ability to choose an actual 720p HD stream. We know many of you were surprised to find that after all this time, you actually weren't watching YouTube videos in the full HD resolution, even when phones with 1080p displays are now pretty much commonplace.

Well, praise the Google gods that be, it seems they're finally addressing this issue in the backend. According to some Android users, they've reported seeing the option to stream in 1080p popping up on their devices (480p too). This lets us know that Google is, at the very least, already testing the feature. It's not 100%, and you wont see the option appear for every video, but shout out below if you're seeing the new 1080p option on your phone.

[Google+ | via AP]

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Friday App And Game Sales: Out There, WiFi Mouse Pro, The Amazing Spider-Man 2, And More

Posted: 13 Jun 2014 02:22 PM PDT

thumbnail You're going to want to drop what you're doing right now and get ready to spend a little cash. And I do mean little. These are good sales on some great apps and games.



WiFi Mouse Pro – $1.99 from $3.22

PocketBand Pro – $4.99 from $9.99


Abalone Brazil Edition – $1.39 from $3.49

SHADOWGUN – $0.99 from $4.99

Dots & Triangles – Free from $0.99 (promo code 'appoftheday')

Out There – $1.99 from $3.99

The Amazing Spider-Man 2 – $0.99 from $4.99

Friday App And Game Sales: Out There, WiFi Mouse Pro, The Amazing Spider-Man 2, And More was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Tired Of People Swiping Through Your Photos Without Permission? Check Out Focus

Posted: 13 Jun 2014 02:22 PM PDT


We've all dealt with it before: you hand someone your phone to show them a photo, and the jackass swipes forward and/or backward to look at your other photos. That's a huge no-no, but unfortunately there are still people out there who didn't get the memo (or are just too damn rude to care). Fortunately, there's a way to keep this scenario from happening ever again.

It's a simple app called Focus, and it basically puts other photos under a PIN code, so when someone tries to swipe left or right, they're greeted with this message:


There are two versions of Focus: an ad-supported, free variant; and a paid version that costs a dollar.

Tired Of People Swiping Through Your Photos Without Permission? Check Out Focus was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Google Helpouts Version 1.3 Adds Improved Listings, Referral Management, And More

Posted: 13 Jun 2014 02:22 PM PDT

unnamed (6)

Google's burgeoning live how-to service, Helpouts, got a brand new version of its Android app yesterday, bringing it up to version 1.3. The service, for those unaware, pairs those who know how to do things with those who do not know how to do things, connecting the two over video. Those doing the helping can charge or offer their insight for free.

At any rate, the updated app offers users improved Helpouts listings, the ability to share Helpouts, refer friends, and manage referrals.

Google Helpouts Version 1.3 Adds Improved Listings, Referral Management, And More was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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‘First Look’ video of Galaxy Tab S released by Samsung

Posted: 13 Jun 2014 02:07 PM PDT


With the Samsung Galaxy Tab S having been released yesterday, many are wondering just what the device can do. Samsung has released a new "First Look" video, detailing exactly what the new tablet is capable of. The video starts out by showing off the thin design of the device, and then moves onto things like the display, fingerprint scanner, and so on. Hit the break to watch the video for yourself!

Click here to view the embedded video.

Come comment on this article: 'First Look' video of Galaxy Tab S released by Samsung

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Peek update brings post-wake activation among other changes

Posted: 13 Jun 2014 01:50 PM PDT


A few weeks ago, the Paranoid Android team released Peek in the Play Store. Peek is an app that lets users quickly see and interact with notifications. With some time spent in the Play Store, the developer is ready to unleash version 2.0 for users to have fun with. The update improves upon the motion detection for displaying notifications. Of course, Paranoid the Android team also worked on any bugs and implemented some enhancements.

Hit the break for the full changelog and download links.

What's New

  • Peek now can be shown after turning your screen on, even if sensor polling time has ended!

  • Motion detection algorithm has been optimized to be more reliable and precise.

  • Now you can use Peek without immersive mode.

  • Multiple unlock sound has been fixed.

  • Persistent notifications will not wake screen up (Google Music, Downloads, etc).

  • Support for devices without full required hardware (at your own risk).

qr code

Play Store Download Link

Come comment on this article: Peek update brings post-wake activation among other changes

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Friday Pro Tip: You can manually alter accounts that sync on your device

Posted: 13 Jun 2014 01:30 PM PDT

Nexus-5-Android-4-4-1 If you're a frequent Android user, I'm pretty sure you have tons of accounts stored on your device, such as Facebook, Twitter and Dropbox, which sync several times throughout the day in order to provide you with information you'd expect to see the instant you open the app, without ever having to wait for the

The post Friday Pro Tip: You can manually alter accounts that sync on your device appeared first on Cult of Android.

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Google Is Apparently Testing 480p And 1080p In YouTube For Android, Options Randomly Show Up For Some Users

Posted: 13 Jun 2014 01:24 PM PDT

Youtube-Thumb Version 5.7 of the YouTube Android app introduced the ability to select precisely which quality level you want to stream a video in, as long as that level was 720p or lower. Even then, the options skipped from 360p to 720p. Since that release, users have apparently started to see 480p appear in between the two. Not only that, 1080p has shown up as well.


We haven't been able to get the settings to load on our devices, but some of you have reported having better luck.

Google Is Apparently Testing 480p And 1080p In YouTube For Android, Options Randomly Show Up For Some Users was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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New Samsung smart watch passes through FCC, possibly powered by Android Wear

Posted: 13 Jun 2014 01:21 PM PDT

Samsung has released quite a few smart watches this year, and still has plans for more. There are rumors of a smart watch with a SIM slot that works independently of your smartphone, as well as an Android Wear smart watch to be sold alongside all the Tizen powered ones the company has already released. And thanks to the FCC, we might now know the model number of the latter.

According to FCC documents, the SM-R382 has a face that's 46mm tall. This is 10mm shorter than the Samsung Gear 2, which means it probably lacks things like a camera and a physical home button. Both hint at the possibility of this being powered by Android Wear, since the operating system does not support either. It could also be some budget smart watch, but that seems less likely.

I'm happy to see that Samsung is striving to support Android Wear despite having its own line of Tizen-powered smart watches. This means that Android Wear gets more attention and support, which can only be a good thing. Hopefully the product will be good and not intentionally neutered to make the Gear 2 look good. Would you buy a Samsung watch powered by Android Wear?

Via: SamMobile

Source: FCC (2)

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Microsoft is considering bringing Cortana voice assistant to Android and other platforms

Posted: 13 Jun 2014 01:19 PM PDT


While Google Now is great for bringing you the information you need before you need it, for some, there's still a need (or want) to interact with a voice controlled "personal assistant." This is partly the reason Siri has grown into a sassy pop icon she is today, and why Microsoft introduced their own in-house personal assistant dubbed Cortana.

Only available via a developer preview for Windows Phone 8.1, Microsoft is preparing the service for a worldwide debut later this year. As a major selling point to help get more consumers on board with Windows Phone, you'd think Microsoft would be hoarding Cortana all to itself. But in an interview with Search Engine Land, it appears Microsoft is actually open to the idea of bringing Cortana to rival platforms like Android and iOS. In an interview with Search Engine Land , Windows Phone Group Program Manager Marcus Ash mentioned,

"We want to scale Cortana internationally and across devices. The Android/iOS question is interesting. We're asking, would Cortana be as effective if she didn't have access to the details on your phone? We're still trying to get Cortana adopted on Windows Phone and figure out what it wants to become there. But we're actively talking about this."

Ash also hinted at the possibility of Cortana arriving on desktops and vehicles, but because Cortana is still finding her identity on Windows Phone, it's unlikely we'll see her making a trip on over to the Google Play Store any time soon. With rival services being offered by Google and Siri, we have to admit it'd be nice to see a little competition in the personal assistant space. After all, options are good.

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Take a spin through the eyes of dads, thanks to Google Glass

Posted: 13 Jun 2014 01:09 PM PDT

Sunday is Father's Day, so here's a Google Glass video of one of the small pleasures of being a dad. It might not be as touching as their Mother's Day vide, but it'll still put a smile on your face.

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Homey voice-activated smart hub takes your smart home to a whole new level

Posted: 13 Jun 2014 12:59 PM PDT


While companies like Google and Apple are just starting to get their feet wet when it comes to advanced home automation efforts, there's little denying that connected, smart homes are part of our future.

Right now, smart homes are far from commonplace though we're seeing an increasing number of DIY smarthome efforts and even mainstream companies like Samsung and LG are pushing smart appliance and lighting. Looking for a truly next-gen smart home experience, though? A recent Kickstarter project promises such a device, which the startup playfully had dubbed as the Homey.

With 13 more days left to go, the Homey campaign has already blown past their original goal of €100,000

With 13 more days left to go, the Homey campaign has already blown past their original €100,000 goal, with €178,016 earned at the time of this writing. Okay, but what exactly is Homey, and what makes it so special? Homey is essentially a powerful voice-activated home automation hub made by a small Netherlands-based company called Athom.

The device is designed to work with many of your existing electronic devices, including televisions, your home's lighting (with some modifications), smart thermostats and even smart appliances. The Homey also works with devices that support standards like AirPlay and NFC, and there's even support for apps like Spotify and more.

At it's most advanced, you can use Homey as a voice-controlled system for doing smart functions like adjusting thermostats, fading your lights on/off at specific times, controlling the televisions in your home, turning on the stereo, and really just about anything you can imagine. For situations where you need to control your home remotely, there's also an Android app.

What if you don't have smart appliances and other smart devices around your house? Out of the box, Homey can still connect to your phone and can do things like read your emails and messages out loud to you. It can also still control your television and other devices that use remote waves, and it even has support for older TV models. Homey will also provide you with important information throughout the day, such as telling you its going to rain soon when you're getting ready to exit the house, so you know to grab an umbrella or rain jacket.

Bottom-line, Homey opens the door to some pretty cool things, as you can see in the videos. But how much does it actually cost? Right now you can secure a Homey for €229 ($309.91), with an estimated ship date of June 2015. That's quite a wait, but it's probably worth considering if you're really into the idea of voice-controlled home automation.

Athom plans to not only use the funding it gathers for manufacturing the Homey, but they've even introduced some stretch goals for the project. If they reach €200,000 they will create an interactive flow-editor for your actions, giving you this-then-that style of controls. This means things like filling the tube right when you wake up, and then starting morning music after 15 minutes (their example). At €300,000 they promise to introduce new colors including Fire Red, Apple Green, Aqua Blue and Ninja Black.

For more details on the Homey, you'll want to head on over to Kickstarter. What do you think, interested in the idea or not?

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Samsung Gamepad review

Posted: 13 Jun 2014 12:08 PM PDT

Samsung's controller accessory aims to turn your phone into a portable console

As smartphones become larger and ever more powerful, their gaming potential continues to increase, to the point where many high-end phones now match the graphical prowess of console titles from the previous generation. But while touchscreens are great for web browsing, apps games specifically designed around them, they're less ideal for traditional titles. There's something about playing a racing game, a shooter or a platformer on a touchscreen that just feels fuzzy and imprecise. Sometimes you just need an analog stick and some buttons.

As such, gaming accessories are big business, with the likes of Moga pushing portable controller accessories designed to fit your phone. Never one to turn down the chance to bolster its accessory lineup, Samsung recently entered the fray with its own gamepad accessory. The Samsung Gamepad has been a long time coming, first revealed in mid-2013 and having gone through some serious design changes since then.

Building on its strength in the Android smartphone space, Samsung's aiming to set its controller apart from the competition with a companion app, dubbed "S Console," to help gamers find compatible titles. So what's the end result? Join us after the break to find out.

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Belkin's new folding covers will protect and prop up your new Galaxy Tab S

Posted: 13 Jun 2014 12:08 PM PDT


After yesterday's announcement of the Samsung Galaxy Tab S line-up, Belkin has followed with their own accessories for the tablet. Specifically, a set of folding flip covers that serve double protective and standing-up duties. The aptly-named "Tri-Fold Cover with Stand for Galaxy Tab S" comes in both 8.4-inch and 10.5-inch sizes, and purple or black flavors.

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OnePlus One gets dunked into a puddle of water, how did the $300 phone hold up? [VIDEO]

Posted: 13 Jun 2014 11:43 AM PDT

OnePlus One hands-on wm_21

While many of you are still anxiously awaiting your opportunity to pick up a OnePlus One, others are still a little leery about the phone. Top notch specs, sure. But as a smartphone built by a relatively unknown company, build and quality control issues are a reasonable concern. As OnePluses begin trickling out to customers, one lucky owner was willing to put his device through a stress test of sorts, simply to satisfy his curiosity (or blood lust).

YouTube content creator GadgetGuruHD decided to take his OnePlus One out in the rain, operating the device as water droplets began gathering on the display. Unsurprisingly, the phone was still fully functional, operating normally as if it were dry. That's when the YouTuber felt daring enough to fully submerge the OnePlus One in a dirty puddle of what. The results — described as "legit crazy" — was the phone, once again, came out unscathed.

Now, we know. One of the most basic quality control tests manufacturers put their hardware through is ensuring a phone can handle some light rain or moisture. But full water submersion? In a phone with a removable back no less. Now, we're not sure about any long term effects the OnePlus One will face after the water dunk, but it seems safe to say that in the event you drop your phone in a puddle of water (or heaven forbid, a toilet), the phone should be operational. Nice work, OnePlus.

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Firefox OS web apps run seamlessly on Android

Posted: 13 Jun 2014 11:35 AM PDT

Firefox OS is a web-based operating system that runs HTML5 apps built for the web. Using things like WebGL, these HTML5 apps can interact with the hardware to allow true native apps outside of a browser along with graphics-intensive things like games. And thanks to the web-based nature of these apps, Firefox OS apps can run on Android devices without a single change in code.

These apps can be installed with the latest version of Firefox for Android, version 29. They behave just like native Android apps in that they appear in the launcher and can be uninstalled through the Settings menu. Their performance is arguable, as web apps have historically been less than optimized, but we'll have to see.

This is awesome for developers, as they can make the same app work on Firefox OS and Android without changing anything. Not only is it easier, but it actually gives developers incentive to support Firefox OS (which is really important for developing countries, as the latest phone is only $25). What do you think of web apps coming to Android?

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Samsung smartwatch passes through FCC, could run Android Wear

Posted: 13 Jun 2014 11:05 AM PDT

fcc samsung watch

Android Wear is expected to hit some more devices relatively soon, and we may have our eyes on one here.

The FCC has recently put documents on its website which reveal a Samsung smartwatch (codenamed SM-R382). It's 10mm smaller than the Gear 2 (top to bottom). We know Samsung has said a Gear-branded Android Wear device would be released soon, so our guess is that this is it.

This is obviously all speculation and rumor, but there's a pretty good shot that this could be true.

Via: 9to5Google

Source: FCC

Come comment on this article: Samsung smartwatch passes through FCC, could run Android Wear

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Cheer your team at the World Cup with Adidas Live World Cup Wallpaper!

Posted: 13 Jun 2014 10:39 AM PDT

Show your nations pride this World Cup time and play with balls!

Two years ago adidas launched a live wallpaper app for Android to help celebrate the Euro 2012 football championships. Now, it's World Cup time and it's back with a pretty sweet update that still lets you play with balls! The tournament is going down right now in Brazil – with the hosts kicking things off in style in the opening game – and this live wallpaper is just the ticket to help you cheer on your team!

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Coming up at 4 p.m. EDT — it's the Android Central Podcast!

Posted: 13 Jun 2014 10:23 AM PDT

This week's going to be a bit weird. Fair warning. We're doing our regular live show, as usual. And it's going to be epic, as usual. But even if you're a regular on Friday afternoons, you're going to want to check out the audio-only version we publish afterward, as it's going to have a couple guest interviews on it.

That's right: We want you to listen to us twice. C'mon. We're worth it.

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Google Now begins suggesting events based on your emails

Posted: 13 Jun 2014 10:18 AM PDT

now gmail events

Google is making another push to make your life easier with Google Now. The latest update adds the ability to offer event suggestions based on the content of your emails. Before you freak out about Google reading your emails, remember that they have been doing this for a while for flight information and shipping updates. You don't have to opt-in to this.

Google Now has been suggesting events based on your location, but now it will make those suggestions more personal. If someone invites you to a party Google will ask if you want the event in your calendar. This functionality is currently rolling out to users. To activate this card you can find it in the "Everything else" section of the Now settings.

Do you allow Google to go through your emails for information? There is a lot of awesome stuff that Google can do with that info, but some people are wary of it. Calendar events is just the latest in a long list of features that require your email information. Should Google branch out to read things like Hangouts and Google+? Do you prefer privacy or cool features?

[via AP]

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Reddit Offline feeds your addiction even when you’re… offline

Posted: 13 Jun 2014 10:09 AM PDT

Reddit-offline If you've got a Reddit addiction, you need a regular fix of the front page whenever the urge strikes — even if you're offline. Reddit Offline for Android helps you get that. This free app downloads Reddit content in the background when you do have a Wi-Fi or data connection so that it's ready and

The post Reddit Offline feeds your addiction even when you're… offline appeared first on Cult of Android.

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5 Android apps you shouldn’t miss this week! – Google Play Weekly

Posted: 13 Jun 2014 09:43 AM PDT

This was an exciting week in the world of applications! In this week's episode we talk about the Final Fantasy VII G-Bike game that's coming. SwiftKey is now free with in-app purchases. Amazon has a brand new music streaming service for their Amazon Prime customers. Google may be unifying their Google apps across all platforms both desktop and mobile. Finally, here are five Android apps you shouldn't miss this week!

Android apps - AereoAereo (beta)

[Price: Free]

First up in our trending applications this week is Aereo. You may already know this app for its ability to stream live TV straight to your device without prior cable service being required. The app got a huge update this last week that has added Chromecast support. There were also some bug fixes and performance improvements.

Get it on Google Play

Google I/O Android appsGoogle I/O 2014

[Price: Free]

If you're interested in what's going on at Google I/O, you can find everything you're looking for in the official Google I/O application. Using this app you can watch the keynote and sessions on live stream, get reminders about events, look at prior years, and it even comes with widget support. What I like about this app is how it's useful even if you aren't going to Google I/O so if you want to be there but you can't actually be there, this is the app to have.

Get it on Google Play

Google I/O android apps

Android apps - Action LauncherAction Launcher

[Price: Free / $3.99]

The last big update to Action Launcher was actually a couple of months ago, but there are some big things brewing in the beta version that includes awesome features like the Okay Google hotword and a new feature that lets you double tap your screen to put it to sleep. It's estimated that these features will reach the stable release sometime in the relatively near future, so why not try it out now?

Get it on Google Play

Android apps - Amazon KindleAmazon Kindle

[Price: Free]

Amazon Kindle is already a popular application and it's had a huge update this last week. Some of the new features include switching between reading and listening modes on the fly, some copy and paste features, improved cross device syncing and notifications, and more. If you have it, the update should have been available in the Play Store for a few days.

Get it on Google Play

Amazon Kindle android apps

Angry Birds Epic - Android appsAngry Birds Epic

[Price: Free with in app purchases]

Last up this week is Rovio's attempt to turn Angry Birds into an RPG. Dubbed Angry Birds Epic the app was released just yesterday and so far the reviews are surprisingly good and the rating is surprisingly high. The game play seems pretty good and so far there really aren't any egregious complaints. It's free with in app purchases so there's no real reason not to try it out if you like Angry Birds, RPGs, or both.

Get it on Google Play

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[New App] BallTune Tells You If Your Soccer Ball Is Properly Inflated By Watching It Bounce

Posted: 13 Jun 2014 09:23 AM PDT

btu There is apparently a sport called "soccer" (sometimes confused with football) that is somewhat popular in various places around the world. For those who are particularly serious about getting the perfect kick, BallTune claims to be able to measure the pressure of the soccer ball simply by watching it bounce with your device's camera. Truly this is the future.

FIFA regulations require a ball to be inflated to between 8.5 and 15.6 PSI, but getting it just right can allow for better control.

[New App] BallTune Tells You If Your Soccer Ball Is Properly Inflated By Watching It Bounce was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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