Updates to Google Play services are typically developer-focused, offering new features that creators of Android apps can get excited about. With the release of Google Play services 7.3, though, there are a few additions that us end users can utilize.
The update to Google Play services 7.3.27 is now rolling out, bringing with it an improved version of Trusted Places that lets you easily tweak your “Home” area using a ring of blue dots. You can also enter specific map coordinates rather than typing in your home address. Trusted Places is a feature that, when enabled, will allow you to bypass your phone’s lock when you’re in that area. This feature apparently went live for some users a while ago, but this update looks to be bringing it to everyone.
The second big user-facing feature of Google Play services 7.3 involves Android Wear. Many Android Wear owners are likely aware that when they have their smartwatch paired with their phone, there’s a constant notification that alerts them to the connection. You can dismiss that notification with the newest Google Play services, though, and some say that it’ll disappear on its own after a while. The notification will reappear if your watch loses its connection or gets reconnected, but you can always dismiss it again. Hooray for a less cluttered notification panel!
Finally, the update includes a slight tweak to Google+, changing the app’s pull-to-refresh animation from an animated bar to a rotating arrow.
These two new features aren’t exactly huge, earth-shattering additions to Android, but they’re definitely nice for anyone that uses Trusted Places or Android Wear regularly. We haven’t heard any announcements from Google about this Google Play services 7.3 update, but it appears to be rolling out now. If you don’t feel like waiting, the folks at Android Police have the APK ready and waiting for you to sideload right this second. Grab it at the link below.