MX Player is now ready for Android Lollipop. No, it's not any prettier than it was before. There's no Material Design to drool over, no bright colors, nor a floating action button to make us feel like we're living at the end of 2014. This video player is largely the same app as before. Its developer has just removed the restriction that prevented it from running on 5.0 devices. Now people who rely on MX Player don't have to do without when upgrading to Lollipop.
|Bertel King, Jr.||Born and raised in the rural South, Bertel knows what it's like to live without 4G LTE - or 3G, for that matter. The only things he likes sweeter than his tea are his gadgets, and while few objects burn more than a metal phone on a summer day, he prefers them that way anyway.|
Update: As it turns out, this offer applies to recently-purchased Chromebook purchases too. If you have not yet claimed your free Google Drive storage, you might want to head over to the goodies page to redeem your 1TB right away.
If you're like me, you keep quite a bit of the files you interact with on your mobile devices saved on Google Drive. The service has gotten spiffier over the years, and Google has done its best to make interacting with the storage feel as though you're tinkering with something saved locally.
Motorola isn't wasting its time pushing out Android Lollipop to a number of its devices, and it needs to keep its apps current as well if it wants to deliver a cohesive experience to users. So the company has pushed out updates to a handful of its apps, primarily Camera and Gallery.
The camera has been flattened and given an extra dose of color. Functionality-wise, Motorola has added a new timer mode and a twist gesture to switch between the front and rear shooter, with the latter only available for the Moto X, Droid Ultra, and Droid Turbo.
The LG G Vista is a great phone for people who want an LG G3 but don't have G3 money at the moment—it offers a 5.7-inch screen and a similar form-factor (such as those rear-facing power and volume buttons), but it's powered by a weaker 1.2Ghz quad-core processor, 1.5GB of RAM, and just 8GB of internal memory (fortunately supplemented by a microSD card slot). Verizon Wireless has pushed out an over-the-air update that hits users with a few UI tweaks.
The Pebble folks have announced a big update to the smartwatch that many wearers have been waiting a long time for. With version 2.1 of the Android companion app, users can receive notifications from any app they have on their device, rather than a few preset options, without having to turn to a third-party solution. People will have the ability to receive all notifications or select specific apps.
The update is only available to 10% of users today, but it will gradually roll out to more people running Android 4.3 or higher.
Droid Zap began as an exclusive feature that Verizon and Motorola hyped up together, but since then, the feature has spread out to all Android phones and iOS as well. Now the app is getting a visual refresh that should make it look at home on modern devices. The colors are bolder, cards are all over the place, and cute imagery ties everything together. There's also a floating action button hovering in the corner.
Evernote premium users on Android are now receiving a feature that can take the frustration out of managing a stack of business cards. Instead of storing them all someplace never to be seen again, people can use the app to take a picture of the card and have the information digitized into a note, with Evernote automatically populating the appropriate contact fields.
If you integrate the app with LinkedIn, it will also pull down their photo and other information from the site.
Half a year ago, Google purchased Divide, a security-focused startup that isn't exactly a household name in the consumer space. The company appealed to enterprise clients by separating personal data from work-related stuff using containers. The acquisition, we figured, came as part of Google's efforts to make Android a better option for corporate users that have traditionally acted squeamish towards the mobile OS.
Now we're seeing at least one byproduct of that arrangement.
You can navigate the Android TV interface using a remote control or dedicated app, but Google would really like for you to use your voice. Even if you're typing, the company would prefer you search for what you're looking for, rather than browse manually. This is Google, we're talking about.
The TV version of the Google search app has now found its way into the Play Store, which should allow for easier updates going forward, even if there's no particular reason to rush and download it right away.
Unified Remote gives your PC the TV treatment, letting you control it from afar with just the right blend of convenience and laziness that have turned us into the society that we are. Its developers have created a solid app, and they're not wasting any time making sure it looks up-to-date.
Version 3.1 preps Unified Remote with those touches of Material Design that should make it feel more at home on a device running Lollipop.