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
Google's own launcher lacks many customization features you'd get with third-party options, but it has that cool Google Now panel that makes it that much easier to see your cards. Because that's part of the closed-source Google Search app, other launchers have thus far been unable to implement it. However, the newest 0613 nightlies of CyanogenMod 11 include this feature in the default Trebuchet launcher. Well, mostly.
There is apparently a sport called "soccer" (sometimes confused with football) that is somewhat popular in various places around the world. For those who are particularly serious about getting the perfect kick, BallTune claims to be able to measure the pressure of a soccer ball simply by watching it bounce with your device's camera. Truly this is the future.
Badland is one of those rare games that manages to be both gorgeous and completely engrossing. All you have to do is tap the screen to make your little bird-things flap their wings, but there are so many dangers in Badland! How will you ever make it alone? Now you can experience this killer game with three friends thanks to the new four-player co-op mode.
Most flagship phones are announced with a particular street date when you'll be able to buy them, or at the very least get in a pre-order. Not the OnePlus One. Oh no, this phone is in such short supply that the company has an invite system in place. After a short delay, the first wave of lucky invitees are about to get their phones.
Feedly has been one of the most popular feed readers in the wake of the Google Reader shutdown, but the service is having a rough morning. A distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack was launched on Feedly late last night and has continued all morning. According to the Feedly blog, the company is working to mitigate the impact and bring Feedly back online, but it's slow going.
Update 1: Feedly says the attack was neutralized as of 3:07PM PT.
Big tablets with built-in styluses are not easy to come by. In fact, Samsung is pretty much the only game in town. The Galaxy Note Pro 12.2 is the biggest and most expensive Note device, but you can get a good deal on it through eBay today. If you're in the US and don't mind a refurb, it's only $499.99.
The Note Pro 12.2 has a resolution of 2560x1600 and packs a speedy Exynos 5 Octa chip with 32GB of storage and 3GB of RAM.
It seems like everyone is making smartphone screens more useful when they're off, and LG's attempt is called Knock Code. This feature lets you securely wake and unlock the device with a series of taps on the screen while the phone is asleep. No need to buy a new phone, though. Knock Code is rolling out the the AT&T LG G2 via an OTA update right now.
Google hasn't completely forgotten about Voice – after nine months with nary a peep, the Google Voice app has suddenly woken up in the Play Store. The new version comes with version number 0.4.3.8, which isn't even a big jump from the last one (v0.4.2.82). Actually, the fact that the app has been updated at all is the most remarkable thing about this. There's almost nothing new here.
The selector isn't new, but the popup is