Are you having a good day? Well, Google might be about to ruin it. The Google I/O ticket drawing is complete, so you should have the results in your email. Acceptance emails started going out a few days ago, but now everyone else should have their rejection. Bummer.
Left: Yay, Right: Boo
Android Auto is finally here! Sort of. It's available in exactly one (incredibly expensive) car stereo at the moment, meaning that there are probably more active users of the Nexus Q right now. But that isn't stopping some responsible developers from adding the support for the new hardware into their apps, and today popular podcast manager BeyondPod joins them. The latest beta version, available as a direct download or via the Play Store beta system, works with Google's automotive electronics push. Read More
Does your business, service, app, or other technological entity rely on Google's enterprise cloud services to function? Then you might want some way to manage that service from your phone or tablet. Here it is: the Cloud Console app for Android. This handy little tool is currently in beta, but those who rely on Google's hosting and virtualizing service will surely be able to overlook that. The app has been popping in and out of the Play Store for the last week, so we threw it onto APK Mirror in case it disappears again. Read More
Personally, I'm usually not a secure lock screen user. Very rare is the occasion that my phone is out of my sight, so I usually just breeze right past the lock screen. But after a tip from a reader, I'm giving the lock screen a second look on Android 5.1. For users who rely on a pattern-based lock, Android 5.1 has yet another delightful detail - a new animation after a successful unlock. Now, the pattern dots float up more elegantly, gently rolling into the transition that delivers the home screen. The dots have animated in gracefully since 5.0, so it's nice to see their out animation catch up. Read More
There were a few leaks of a larger version of the M9 in advance of the announcement, but it didn't show up back at MWC. Still, it looks like this phone is still going to be released in the Asian market. New images of the M9+ have been leaked, and it's not an attractive device. I realize design is subjective, but 4 out of 5 AP staffers think this is a truly ugly phone.
Last year the XBMC project changed its name to Kodi, giving the media manager a much-needed fresh start considering how it has long since expanded past its original Xbox roots. Yatse is a popular remote app for use with the platform that recently got a spiffy material redesign.
Fast forward several months, and Yatse has disappeared from the Play Store (though you can still find the unlocker and several plugins). Read More
Have you noticed that it's impossible to search for a game-related video on YouTube without seeing dozens of hour-long "Let's Play" videos? You're not the only one. According to a report from The Daily Dot, Google is looking to re-make YouTube's live streaming service (the one you use for every official Android event) with a focus on video games. The report cites anonymous sources "within the streaming industry," so it's firmly in the rumor department for the time being.
DOTA 2 2014 World Championship Tournament. Image credit: Polygon
While there's no way to confirm the report, it certainly makes sense. Read More
Some bugs only cause problems for a select few users, but that was not the case when Google bungled the reminders voice command in a recent update to its back end. A lot of people noticed. Instead of setting a reminder when you asked for one, Google Search would set an alarm, which isn't really as useful. Now that appears to be fixed.
Google apparently has a service in the works called Pony Express that will improve the way Gmail users manage the bills flooding into their inboxes, and perhaps even some that currently don't. This news comes through a Re/code report stating that the search giant is working with third-party vendors that print and mail out bills to bring even more of them online. Google will then give users the ability to pay these bills without having to leave Gmail.
Re/code got its hands on a document showing ways users will be able to interact with the service. To sign up, they will provide their names, addresses, and social security numbers to an outside company to verify their identities. Read More
Let's get something out of the way right from the start. The LG G Pad 7.0 isn't a particularly exciting piece of hardware. It's powered by a Snapdragon 400 1.2GHz quad-core processor and 1GB of RAM. That 7-inch display only provides 1280 by 800 pixels. On the software front, you're looking at Android 4.4.
But if you turn your eyes towards Woot, you will see that the site is offering a refurbished LG G Pad 7.0 LTE for only $89.99. That's a pretty good price for an LTE-equipped tablet. Paired with the right data plan, it's a decent way to keep the little ones in the backseat occupied during long trips (and perhaps short ones, too). Read More