Sony's relationship with "pure" Android is an interesting one. As a company they generally make it easy to root or otherwise modify their phones or tablets, with a few notable qualifiers. The AOSP for Xperia project, which provides the basic tools for building standard Android ROMs on popular devices, is also one way that Sony stays relevant for those who buy phones with the intent to add aftermarket software. Today it gets two new flagship options, the older Xperia Z1 and Z2.
Jelly Bean seemed to stick around longer than other versions of Android. While most previous iterations were content to move along with each point release, Jelly Bean stuck around for 4.1, 4.2, and 4.3. It took quite a while for KitKat to arrive, and for some people, that wait has been longer than others.
If you purchased an AT&T Galaxy Note 8 back when it launched in 2013, you probably didn't think you would be stuck with Jelly Bean for this long.
After Star Wars, Marvel, and The Walking Dead, it seems like just about any property is fair game for Zen Studios' expanding pinball franchise. The latest addition is South Park, Comedy Central's foul-mouthed animated show now in its 18th season. As usual with Zen Pinball expansions, you can get the two new 3D tables as either a stand-alone paid app or as in-app purchase expansions to the original game. The separate app is $4, or each table is $2, so it works out the same.
There's no shortage of ways to track your data while working out, especially when it comes to things like running and cycling. There's Runkeeper, Map My Ride/Run, Endomondo, Strava, and many others. Which one you choose really comes down to personal preference, but each has its own set of benefits and features that may make it a better fit into your life. Personally, I've been using Runtastic since I reviewed the Orbit a couple of months ago, and settled in with the company's dedicated road cycling app after getting the Runtastic-branded Speed & Cadence Sensor and Heart Rate Monitor.
The cool kids like the quality of their music turned up all the way to 320 kbps (the coolest ones prefer lossless), but that's a luxury that often goes away with streaming music over the Internet. Rdio says it's had enough with that lower quality crap (I can't really tell the difference, but the cool kids tell me that stuff's awful), so it is bringing in the ability to stream and download songs at 320 kbps over both Wi-Fi and a cellular connection.
Do you want to relive the adventures of The Lord of the Rings trilogy? Of course you do! It's not like reading the original books, watching a blockbuster film series, playing through countless console titles, and devouring fan fiction could adequately immerse anyone in the world J.R.R. Tolkien created six decades ago. So here's a mobile game that you can install on your Android device and take with you absolutely everywhere.
Android 5.0 has only been official for about 24 hours now, and already OEMs are lining up to explain their upgrade paths. Yesterday was Motorola, and today Sony is laying its cards on the table. Sony has a lot of cards. The company has confirmed that all its Z series devices will get Android Lollipop. That's a whole mess of phones.
Google announced the Nexus Player on Wednesday as the first Android TV device, but there was no news on an updated Chromecast. Google's $35 streaming stick has been a big hit, and it's been more than a year since it was released. Now a device has passed through the FCC, and it's clearly a Chromecast with the updated model number A4RH2G2-2A.
If you were a fan of "sim management" games in the early 2000s, you probably played at least one version of RollerCoaster Tycoon. Next year Atari will revive the franchise with RollerCoaster Tycoon World on the PC, but for now the official fourth installment of the series is oddly limited to mobile, arriving about six months late on Android. RollerCoaster Tycoon 4 uses the same basic structure of the original 1999 game, albeit with remixed limits and annoyances for the free-to-play format.