Skip to main content

After Hours: Roku finally has customizable remotes, NYC gets 5G, more

Huawei’s Google-less Mate 30 Pro went official today and YouTube announced tighter requirements for channel verification too. Outside of the Google bubble, though, we saw exciting news from Roku which is finally launching a remote with customizable buttons, and more.

About After Hours: In this daily roundup, we cover some of the more minor stories regarding Android and Google from the day with additional commentary. To catch up on everything we publish, check out some of the biggest stories of the day below, and listen to 9to5Google Daily every morning.

Verizon launches 5G in New York City later this month

The world is slowly moving over to 5G connectivity right now, and Verizon just announced a huge step forward. The carrier is planning to start bringing its early 5G technology to parts of New York City starting later this month. Manhattan, Queens, the Bronx, and Brooklyn will all see 5G go live to some extent, but you shouldn’t expect coverage to be anything like what 4G LTE offers now.

Starting September 26, 2019, customers in parts of New York City will be able to access Verizon’s 5G Ultra Wideband network, bringing the total number of U.S. cities with Verizon 5G mobility service to 11.

Roku launches new devices with customizable remotes

Roku dominates the US streaming market, but one gripe customers have had for quite a while has been with the remotes. Specifically, the fact that Roku remotes always feature four buttons along the bottom which are locked to services that the customer might not even be using.

As The Verge reports, that’s finally changing. Roku launched a new version of its Ultra streaming box which comes with a remote that still has those four buttons, but also two buttons which are customizable by the user. These buttons can be customized to do anything that a voice command can, which includes simply opening the desired app that doesn’t have its own button already.

roku customizable remote

The new customizable remote from the Roku Ultra

The new Roku Ultra is still the most expensive in the lineup at $99, but this is a good sign the feature will trickle down to cheaper models eventually. Roku also announced a new $29 streamer today as well as Roku OS 9.2 which includes useful features such as sleep timers and enhanced search.

Apple moves up its iPadOS release

In a world where Android tablets are mostly irrelevant, we’re always curious to see what Apple’s iPad is up to. Today, the company revealed that the release of iPadOS had been moved up to September 24th. Our colleagues at 9to5Mac have all the details on that.

Today’s Top Stories:

Huawei Mate 30 Pro goes official w/ no Google apps, ‘horizon’ display

Huawei Watch GT 2 goes official w/ two week battery life, two size options

Chrome for Android officially getting grid layout and tab grouping

Comment: I think there was a second Pixel Watch, and it got canned too

Samsung shows how fragile the Galaxy Fold is with official care guide [Video]

YouTube is removing verification badges from channels as requirements get tighter

FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links. More.

You’re reading 9to5Google — experts who break news about Google and its surrounding ecosystem, day after day. Be sure to check out our homepage for all the latest news, and follow 9to5Google on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to stay in the loop. Don’t know where to start? Check out our exclusive stories, reviews, how-tos, and subscribe to our YouTube channel

Check out 9to5Google on YouTube for more news:



Avatar for Ben Schoon Ben Schoon

Ben is a writer and video producer for 9to5Google.

Find him on Twitter @NexusBen. Send tips to or encrypted to

Ben Schoon's favorite gear