Have you seen the Nat And Lo video series from Google employees Natalie Hammel and Lorraine Yurshansky? It's an interesting collection of shorts that explore some of the lesser-known projects going on inside the company - the pair use Google's famous "20% time" allocation to produce and release them on their YouTube channel. They actually broke the news of the new Android Marshmallow name by documenting the "making of" the official statue, and now they're back to explore the history of Android's Easter eggs. Read More
One of the best things about smartwatches is that they finally give the fashion-inclined the ability to switch out watch faces without buying another $300 bit of wrist jewelry. There have been attempts to create systems whereby end users could easily create their own digital watch faces ever since the original Pebble, with varrying degrees of success. Now Asus, which has already released dozens of custom watch faces for its ZenWatch and ZenWatch 2 customers, has created its own custom watch face maker app. Read More
After signing up for Google's Project Fi I had only to wait a couple of days before a SIM card and "Welcome Kit" showed up at my door. I noted that the accessories - a battery pack, earbuds, and white case for the Nexus 6 - seemed to be carefully and thoughtfully designed, even if the hard plastic boxes for each seemed a little extravagant. The welcome kit was foreshadowing for the rest of the Fi experience - thoughtfully put together and pleasing.
I've been using Fi (switching over from T-Mobile) for over a month now, so I thought it might be helpful to rewind through my experience and answer some questions would-be Fi users might be asking. Read More
OnHub is Google's attempt at a router that's easy to set up and, unlike most others, pretty enough to leave out in the open. But it could be prettier. Rather than roll out new hardware this early in the game, Google seems to be interested in producing new cases—or shells—to replace the blue one that comes with the device.
At least one person has completed a Google Opinion Rewards survey (Google's way of acquiring user feedback in exchange for Play Store credit) asking questions about the OnHub. Particularly, would you be interested in purchasing one of three potential shells, and what price would you consider reasonable? Read More
Hey guys -- Marshmallow is officially available, just like Google promised last week. Factory images just went live for all Nexus devices that will be getting the update: 5, 6, 7 (2013), 9, and Player. Read More
Cables, the technological innovation that just won't die no matter how bad some folks want them to. There are wireless ways to charge smartphones these days, as well as options for transferring data without pulling out a cord. But frankly I still reach for a microUSB cable to do both of these things, and the number of people who do hardly stops with me. Read More
You've been able to tell Android to place calls by voice since time immemorial, but it has gotten a lot smarter over the years. Now, with OK Google commands, you can place a call without even touching the phone. It only makes sense you could activate the speakerphone in that situation, and indeed you can. At some point, Google added the ability to begin a call on speakerphone with only a voice command. Read More
Ah, Adobe. You can't turn around without Adobe either discontinuing or releasing another app that fits somehow into its complicated product ecosystem. Today we're getting Android versions of Illustrator Draw and an app called Capture CC. The functionality of this one isn't technically new—it's an amalgamation of three other apps, which are being phased out.
If you're looking forward to a night of kicking back on the couch for a serious Game of Thrones marathon – or maybe Archer – you might want to check out the latest update to Play Movies & TV. Google's premium video app just got an update to v3.9 and it adds a feature many of us will know all too well: binge watching. Also making the latest version is an easier setup experience for Roku devices. Read More
Android phones are beginning to cross over to USB Type-C for charging and data ports, notably with the OnePlus 2, Nexus 5X, and Nexus 6P. Other gadgets, laptops, and all sorts of electronics are also being equipped with the reversible port standard, but transitioning from the conventional USB ports (Type A, the rectangular shape) is going to make for some headaches over the next few years. If you and/or your family is stuck in the middle, check out this new car charger from Tronsmart: it uses both a USB Type-A port and a USB Type-C cable, and both of them are compatible with Quick Charge 2.0. Read More