Android Police

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Google Keep v3.3.243 puts a pin in note pinning [APK Teardown]

Last week brought a rush of new app updates from both the Play Store and the Android N developer preview. There were surprisingly few new features to discuss, and not much for teardowns; but the Google Keep app does have at least one notable addition in store for us. It looks like Keep is going to give users the ability to pin important notes so they remain readily available and won't get lost as new items are added.

Teardown

Disclaimer: Teardowns are based on evidence found inside of apks (Android's application package) and are necessarily speculative and usually based on incomplete information.
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Deal alert: HTC Re camera shows up on eBay for just $69

Looking for a handheld action camera on the cheap? You'll struggle to do better than this HTC Re on eBay, just $69 and brand-new in the packaging. The Re may not support ultra-high resolution or exceptional bitrates, but it has a reasonably well-rated Android app, an exceptionally wide-angle lens, is waterproof, and a shape that makes it easy to just hold and capture. It also has a standard mounting thread on the bottom if you want to set it up for more passive capturing of your action.

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Really: Opinion Rewards survey asks if you'd like on-demand Wi-Fi drones to download movies on the go

If I were to walk up to you on the street and ask, "Excuse me, Android Police reader... What if a drone-based service existed to facilitate video download for poor internet connection (see image below for an overview of how it could work). Would you be interested," you might respond in one of several ways.

  • "David, you forgot the question mark."
  • "David, what image below? Below what? The ground?"
  • "David, what drugs have you consumed recently? May I have some?"

And I would grant you that all of the above responses would be quite reasonable given the inquiry I have just posed you, hapless person on the street.

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Google is getting a symptom search feature, making it easier than ever to convince yourself that headache is brain cancer

The internet has changed the way we live our lives by delivering the entirety of human information to your hands. However, that includes medical diagnosis. As we all know, if you search for symptoms on the internet, you will invariably come out of it thinking you have cancer. Now, Google can deliver the bad (and not accurate) news to you as well. Google search will get built-in symptom search in the next few days.

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Candl Apps follows up popular 'Month' calendar widget with an agenda version

Life is busy, what with all those social and family obligations. You could just give up and run away to live on an island somewhere in the middle of the Pacific, or more likely just try to keep better track of all the stuff you have going on with a widget. Month was a very popular suite of calendar widgets, and now the developer has released Agenda. You can probably guess what it is from the name.

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Newest version of Messenger in Android N greatly improves direct reply with mini conversation view

Direct reply is easily one of my favorite new features of Android N, and apps are actually being surprisingly quick to adopt it - Twitter and Facebook are already on board, along with Google Hangouts and Messenger. But the implementations we've seen to date are, in my opinion, a little less than optimal.

When I first saw direct reply, my first thought was: "Oh, great - mini conversations I can just have in my notification bar - no need to open the app!" Which seems like what Google was going for, but that Hangouts and Messenger didn't really initially accomplish.

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[Update: dev kit pre-order] That unofficial 'Game Boy' smartphone adapter from April Fool's is now a working product, may actually come to market this year

A little over a year ago, one of the endless April Fool's jokes that cropped up around tech sites struck a chord with gamers. The "SmartBoy" from Hyperkin, sellers of new replacement parts for classic consoles, was a concept that slid an iPhone into a plastic case that perfectly reproduced the buttons and grip of the original Game Boy from 1989. It also included a real game cartridge slot, so authentic Game Boy games could theoretically be played using a modern smartphone screen. It was a little ridiculous - today's phones can already emulate Game Boy titles with ease, and even simulate the buttons with a Bluetooth controller - but the idea seemed to resonate with Nintendo fans.

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[Impressive] Chrooma Keyboard 3.0 adds gestures, themes and adaptive colors, Google Now integration, an action bar, more

Whoa. It's not easy for me to be impressed by a keyboard. I have been a staunch Google Keyboard user on all of my devices from the day it was released as a standalone app on the Play Store many moons ago. Every other keyboard I have tried — and I've tried plenty — fails to even register within the usable spectrum for me: lags and/or lack of precision have killed many revered third-party options.

I confess, I'd never tried Chrooma before today, mainly because I'd given up on finding any third-party keyboard, regardless of how many cool options it has, that lets me type as efficiently and comfortably as Google Keyboard has.

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Google has already fixed the weird notification toggle behavior from the last Android N dev preview

Most of the intrepid users who tried the most recent Android N developer preview were none too pleased with the new notification toggle behavior. Google changed the WiFi and Bluetooth buttons from simple toggles to connection list triggers. After more than 1,500 issue tracker stars in just a few days, Google has relented.

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Puzzle game _PRISM unfolds its wacky sacred geometry on Android

Most games have tutorials or some sort of instructions, but not _PRISM. I don't know if there's a scrap of text anywhere in it other than the name. You're left to tease out the secrets of each puzzle in this fascinating game on your own, but that's part of the fun. It just arrived on Android after launching on iOS earlier this year.

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