You can now grab the Daydream View VR headset from the Google Store

Back when Google announced the Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL, it also took the wraps off some other goodies as well. The recently released Google Home Mini was one, but another was the updated Daydream View VR headset. We weren’t given a release date at the time of the announcement, but it looks like the headset has just gone live. 

You can now head over to the Google Store (link below) and pick up the headset in either Fog, Charcoal, or Coral. If you want yours sooner rather than later, the Charcoal and Coral headsets are expected to ship by October 22, while the Fog headset is back ordered by two to three weeks. 

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The headsets all come with free shipping and will run you $99. That’s $20 more than the first generation model, but Google made some improvements on the headset so it obviously feels like it can charge a little more. Those improvements include an added head strap, a new heat sink to keep things cool, and controller storage. It also comes with a wider field of view to accommodate the trend of bezel-less phones and a game bundle that is valued at more than $40.

If you’re looking to get a free Daydream View VR headset, keep in mind that LG and Google have teamed up to give them away when you purchase an LG V30. The purchases must be made before November 6, 2017, and you have until November 20, 2017, to complete the registration form here

The Google Pixel 2 XL gets high marks for modularity in its teardown

iFixit

If you’re waiting on the brand new Google Pixel 2 XL, we have something that might tide you over until you can get your hands on it. Today, iFixit published its teardown guide and repairability score for the phone and gave us a look inside the device.

There are several interesting facts we can glean, like exactly how modular the components are and which parts will be the hardest to replace.

If the battery goes bad in your unit, you’re probably going to want to take it to a professional. Points were deducted from the repairability score due to how tightly walled-in the battery is. Additionally, it no longer has the pull-tab adhesive under the battery that the Pixel and Pixel XL employed. This makes separating the battery from the adhesive much harder in the Pixel 2 XL. The teardown also reveals that the battery capacity is 13.6 Wh, which is slightly more than last year’s 13.28 Wh.

See also: Google Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL vs the competition

Another area that iFixit criticized is the display. No, we’re not talking about the issues Google recently addressed, but how thin and poorly supported it is. The problem is especially bad around the phone’s grilles. Luckily, LG used foam to secure the display this year and it can be easily sliced through during repairs. This should make removing the display that much easier.

On the positive side, the phone does get high marks for its modularity. The Pixel 2 XL used parts that snap onto to the motherboard instead of being soldered onto it. That means repairs for minor issues will be much cheaper and easier to perform. Instead of replacing an entire motherboard, you can simply pop off the bad module and replace it. The phone also got high marks because it uses Phillips #00 screws instead of proprietary or a less common type of screw.

One of the smartest things that LG did in the entire process was attaching the USB Type-C port via its own board instead of soldering it to the motherboard. The USB port is a high-wear item and can easily go bad or break away from the motherboard. These problems would have been made even worse in the Pixel 2 XL’s case since Google removed the headphone jack and you must use the USB port for wired headsets. Putting the USB port on its own board will cut down on the difficulty and cost of repairs.

The Google Pixel 2 XL comes in with a repairability score of 6/10, slightly lower than last year’s 7/10 (higher is better). While this certainly isn’t an improvement, it is far better than some of its competitors like the Samsung Galaxy Note 8 (4/10), Samsung Galaxy S8 and S8 Plus (4/10), and the Essential Phone (1/10).

Google puts up ‘Made for Google’ partner page with a few more details

Update: A new “Made for Google” page has made its way to the Google Store. The page further highlights some of Google’s partners, and clicking on some of the options in the list will bring you to these brands’ websites where you can check out some of the official Made for Google accessories.

Original: Earlier this week, we brought you news about a rumored “Made for Google” program. The few details we had pointed to a program where Google would certify third-party accessories much in the same way that Apple does with its MFi program. During its Pixel event today, Google went ahead and made it official.

The program will start with 25 partners. The certified accessories span everything from cases to wall adapters, USB cables, and earbuds. Many of these accessories are already sold on the Google Store alongside the brand new Pixel 2 and Pixel 2 XL, Pixelbook, and Google Home Mini and Max.

So far, Google has included well-known names in the accessory world like Incipio, dbrand, Anker, and Lifeproof. There aren’t any details yet on what kind of support Google will provide to these companies or exactly what the requirements are for acceptance into the program.

Earlier this week, we speculated that the Made for Google program could ensure proper adherence to USB Type-C specifications. The specs are put out by the USB Implementers Forum Inc. to ensure safe charging and data transfer. But there have been a number of instances where unsafe cables had to be pulled from retailers like Amazon or have fried electronics altogether. Google’s stamp of approval could set some consumers’ concerns at ease.

What do you think of the new program? Are you more likely to buy a Made for Google accessory? Let us know down in the comments section.

Exclusive: This Moto Mod will let you cast DirecTV Now to your TV

Motorola deserves some credit for sticking to its vision when it comes to the Moto Mods add-ons. Unlike LG, who quickly ditched its modular smartphone idea after one failed device, Motorola continued to push the concept with multiple new Mods, including several from third-party partners.

Hot on the heels of the Alexa-enabled Moto Smart Speaker, Motorola is planning to launch a new Mod developed together with AT&T, Android Authority has learned.

Called AT&T Mobile TV Cast, the Mod includes a stick that users can plug into any compatible TV set, allowing them to watch DirecTV Now on a larger screen.

AT&T Mobile TV Cast

Owned by AT&T, DirecTV Now is a streaming service that includes dozens of live TV channels, as well as on-demand content, with prices starting from $35/month.

According to information shared by a source familiar with the product, the stick is USB-based, but we’re not entirely positive that this detail is accurate, considering that other similar devices (Chromecast, Fire TV stick, etc.) plug into the TV’s HMDI slot.

Setup is said to be very straightforward, with no pairing process required. It’s pretty much plug-and-play, and casting doesn’t require a Wi-Fi network. DirecTV Now doesn’t count against data plans of AT&T subscribers (as well as T-Mobile Binge On users), so content will be streamed over LTE, presumably directly to the stick.

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Users will be able to continue using their phone while casting to the TV, and, in addition to video content, the stick can also be used to mirror the phone’s screen, including local media.

The Mobile TV Cast also features a built-in battery of 2,730 mAh, which will presumably allow the Mod to act like an external power bank for the phone. It likely also powers the tech used to connect the included stick.

We haven’t found any details about the AT&T Mobile TV Cast’s price and availability. Considering the functionality it offers (casting + battery), we can speculate that the Mod could cost under $150, though new DirecTV Now customers may be able to get it at a promotional price.

What do you think of the AT&T Mobile TV Cast?

C Programming from n00b to L337? This bundle has everything you need, 98% off

Finding a good way to break into programming can be tough. However, knowledge of programming is becoming an essential part of becoming successful in today’s industries.

If you’ve ever wanted to learn how to make your own programs, apps, and games, then we’ve got good news! You don’t have to go to school for years and get a computer science degree. Nowadays, everything you need to learn is available at your fingertips through the form of online courses.

Unfortunately, these courses can still be pretty pricey, but every once in awhile you stumble across bundles and temporary price drops. That’s why we’re spotlighting The Complete C Programming Bonus Bundle. It ends next week, but if you grab it before it’s gone then you can get 10 courses for the price of 1!

This set of learning kits comes with everything you need to go from programming n00b to L337 coding master. 84 hours of tutorial experience, coursework, and projects curated by veteran programmers, including the author of the Little Book of Ruby.

Normally these courses would cost you $928 if you bought them separately. Right now, however, you can snag all of them for the cost of the lowest priced course in the bundle: just $39.

Here’s what you get!

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