Back in KitKat, we were introduced to translucent system bars, which gave app developers the ability to make the navigation and status bars semi-transparent. Reclaiming as much of the screen as possible became an obsession for many fans as they demanded their favorite apps go "full bleed." With Android L, Google is treating us to even more flexibility by allowing developers to set their own color for the status bar, or even turning it completely transparent.
Welcome to the latest entry in our Bonus Round series, wherein we tell you all about the new Android games of the day that we couldn't get to during our regular news rounds. Consider this a quick update for the dedicated gamers who can't wait for our bi-weekly roundups, and don't want to wade through a whole day's worth of news just to get their pixelated fix. Today we've got a game that gives you an excuse to "dance" with people, a science fiction puzzler, a game made out of squiggles, dots, and lines, Disney's half-hearted soccer cash-in, and a half-hearted Disney spoof.
It's raining wearable apps. After Google, Delta, Duolingo, and IFTTT updated their apps with Android Wear functions, it looks like the floodgates have opened. The Google Play Store now has a page dedicated to apps that include support for Wear, including Google's own apps and the ones we've already covered. The page is propagating through the Play Store right now, so you might not be able to see it quite yet.
Arranging transportation can be time consuming, so the Lyft folks crammed the ability to locate and schedule a ride into a simple app. Still, while using a smartphone is easy, even that can take up too much time (work with me here). Now the company has added Android Wear support that lets you request a ride by speaking into your wrist. Stop everything, guys. I think this is as easy as things are going to get.
One of the less exciting (but still important) announcements at Google I/O 2014 was that Google will be adopting part of Samsung KNOX as a security platform in Android itself. KNOX, which is currently only on Samsung devices, is a business-oriented security solution that keeps work and personal data separate and secure on a single device. Sounds pretty good, right? Not to BlackBerry CEO John Chen, but you know what is good enough?
Custom ROMs move fast... as long as you're willing to flash nightly builds. Just days after adding the settings search feature from Android L, CyanogenMod is getting some handy cursor control keys, but they're not where you'd expect – they pop up in the navigation bar at the bottom of the screen.
Google started rolling out a massive improvement to voice search in the Google Search app last week by enabling "Ok Google" hotword detection everywhere. Really cool, but it has been slowly making its way to users on a per-account basis. Tired of waiting? Just a few taps, and you can (maybe) get instant access to the feature. Note: Probably US English only.
HTC has had a rough time in recent years as Samsung has risen to dominance in the Android device market. The resulting slump culminated in a year of losses for the Taiwanese OEM, but today's Q2 2014 numbers signal a potential turnaround. HTC had a small profit of NT$2.26 billion ($75 million) over the last three months.
We've known since late May that the LG G3 was on its way to Sprint, it's just been a matter of finding out when and for how much. Well, the deets are in. The G3 will be available for pre-order starting July 11th, with the actual purchase date being the 18th. Sprint customers can get the phone for 24 monthly payments of $25, which totals up to an even $600.
Those who hop on the deal using Sprint Easy Pay before July 24th and register by August 7th may be eligible to get $150 back in the form of a rewards card.
It's been a while since we've heard from HyperDevBox, maker of the ExZeus arcade shooters. This time we're getting a different kind of game from the developer – racing. Specifically, the Indy 500 in this officially licensed arcade racer.