Ryan Whitwam
Ryan is a tech/science writer, skeptic, lover of all things electronic, and Android fan. In his spare time he reads golden-age sci-fi and sleeps, but rarely at the same time. His wife tolerates him as few would.

He's the author of a sci-fi novel called The Crooked City, which is available on Amazon and Google Play. http://goo.gl/WQIXBM

22
Oct
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Listen up, ghouls and goblins—the new Humble Mobile Bundle is available for purchase, but since it's getting to be that time of year, it's actually the Humble Mo-Boo!-ile Bundle. There is no acceptable way to pronounce that. At any rate, there are six cool games available right now, plus one free game.

2014-10-22 15_29_37-Humble Mo-boo!-ile Bundle (pay what you want and help charity)

22
Oct
2014-10-22 13_30_01-Samsung Galaxy Mega ™ _ Sprint Android Smartphone _ Samsung Mobile

The Galaxy Mega is a big phone. This update, on the other hand, is somewhat modest. Still, for those rocking a Galaxy Mega it's a big enough deal. The NJ1 update adds a few new calling features as well as some patches for Android security vulnerabilities.

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22
Oct
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Google is rolling out a big update to the Google Earth app, and as usual it's a staged deployment. Never fear, we are here with an APK download. In this new version (8.0) you'll find better 3D images, cleaner maps, KML import, and more.

earth-n9-before

What’s New

Google hasn't updated the changelog on the Play Store yet, but there's a whole blog post about Google Earth v8.0. The gist of it is that 3D images will look much better now with the new rendering engine.

22
Oct
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Microsoft released a remote desktop app for Android just over a year ago, but now there's a new separate beta version of the app listed in the Play Store, and it makes some big changes. Of course, this still uses the RDP protocol, so you'll need a Pre version of Windows to use it. It's pretty robust if you've got the support built-in.

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22
Oct
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Trying to do something Googley this fine evening? No you're not—Google is suddenly experiencing widespread issues with services like Google+, Gmail, and Hangouts. This looks like a larger outage than most, but presumably Google is working to restore service.

2014-10-22 02_29_44-Google

21
Oct
2014-10-21 19_59_59-Moto 360 Wireless Charging Dock - Devices on Google Play

Google has slowly been adding replacement charging docks for the Android Wear devices to the Play Store. That's important in the case of watches like the Gear Live, which uses a special clip to charge the watch. It's less of an issue for the Qi-equipped Moto 360, but the official stand is in stock now anyway.

2014-10-21 19_58_57-Moto 360 Wireless Charging Dock - Devices on Google Play

The listing for the dock appeared recently, but it wasn't available for purchase. That's changed now, and you can order it for $39.99.

21
Oct
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Google is rolling out an update to Android Wear that brings the first of two waves of promised features. So far it is arriving on LG watches, but Motorola just chimed in with specifics for the Moto 360. It's mostly the same as what other wearables will get, but with a few key exceptions.

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21
Oct
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Among the many features Google talked about when the Android L preview rolled out was an improved version of Android Beam, and it's here in the new Android 5.0 dev preview. NFC sharing has existed since Android 4.0 in some form or another, but now it's finally something you can use without second-guessing yourself. Just pick a file and start beaming.

2014-10-21 19.41.40 2014-10-21 19.42.04 2014-10-21 19.43.53

21
Oct
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Nova Launcher continues to let you emulate the Google Now Launcher while enjoying a plethora of customizations options. The newest version brings Lollipop animations and icons, along with a few tweaks to the existing functionality.

2014-10-21 19.25.26 2014-10-21 19.22.30

21
Oct
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Google has used the CRT-style screen-off animation since Gingerbread. That animation is gone in Lollipop, replaced with a gentle fade out. Frankly, I'm surprised the CRT stuck around this long. However, the new animation isn't just a fade to black. It actually fades to black and white—observe.

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Left: normal speed, Right: slowed by 5 times

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