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Google updates Play System with improvements to QR code scanning, password management and more

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Google usually reveals news brought by routine updates gradually, and with the release of the Play System Update for January 2023, users can discover several improvements that will come to Android and other big tech systems, such as can be seen in the release notes released this Thursday (19).

One of the new features that should make the platform more complete is the reading of QR codes from smart home devices with the Matter standard, allowing for even faster configuration. This will become a native Android solution, but handset makers are already creating their own optimizations for the smart home protocol.

(Image: Google)

The update also adds the ability to select an existing image to scan codes and detect UPI patterns, primarily used in India, which allows mobile payments without the need for NFC sensors.

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Google Password Manager is also getting a major improvement: starting with this month’s update, users will be able to add notes to stored passwordsmaking it a useful addition for those who have different accounts on a website or app.

The Wallet is getting ready to receive a visual update in its web version. There are no details on what will change, but it’s possible that the service’s interface will feel more integrated with the site it will be used on.

Security improvements are coming to Android’s native app store. The Play Store will become “smarter” to detect malware disguised as legitimate apps that can cause serious harm to users. Additionally, Play Games is expected to become more comprehensive, possibly expanding the list of supported games.

To check if the latest version of the system is already installed on your device, just access the settings and look for the software information section, next to the Android version. If the data is marked “January 2023”, the improvements will already be available for your cell phone or tablet.

January 2023 update changelog

critical fixes

  • [Telefone, Wear OS] Bug fixes for account management, security and privacy, system management and diagnostics, and utility-related services.

Games

  • [Telefone, PC] Expansion of the range of users and use cases supported by the Play Games profile.

Google Play Store

  • New features to help you discover the apps and games you love.
  • Optimizations that allow for faster and more reliable download and installation.
  • Continuous improvements to Play Protect to keep your device safe.
  • Various performance optimizations, bug fixes, and security, stability, and accessibility improvements.

Security and Privacy

  • [Telefone] Password Manager helps you save different passwords in your Google Account and allows you to use them across multiple websites and devices. With the new change, you will be able to add annotations to your existing and new passwords.

Portfolio

  • [Telefone] Visual and infrastructure updates to Wallet’s mobile web experience.

Developer services

  • [Telefone] New features for Google and third-party app developers to support device and service connectivity with machine learning and AI.
  • [Telefone] Update to QR scanner with the ability to select an existing image and add support for handling Matter and UPI codes.

System Management

  • [Telefone] Updates to System Management and Usability Services that improve Device Connectivity, Device Performance, Network Usage, Privacy, Security, Stability and Usability.
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