Remember that 500GB version of the Shield Android TV that leaked on NVIDIA's website last month? Remember how they said it wasn't a "consumer" device, but a development partner system? Well, I'm going to go ahead and call NVIDIA a bunch of lying liars who lie, because a 500GB "Shield Pro" console listing just popped up on Amazon.
This weekend's discussion should be one near and dear to all of hearts: our first Android phone. When did you buy it? What phone was it? Why did you pick it? Was it terrible? Great? Liberating? Life-changing? (Hey, you never know!)
Android is obviously a common thread for all of us, and our first Android phone was what strung us along to this point, reading (and in my case, later writing for) Android Police and talking about obscure phones and Lollipop and Google Play Services and tons of other things that many people have no freaking clue even really exist. But that's what makes a community great, right?
Amazon, cut this crap out. Seriously, I'm getting really sick of it. As someone who pays you for media on a regular basis, to say nothing of my recurring Amazon Prime payments, I feel like I'm more than justified in telling you to stop sabotaging your own damn products.
Ahem. A little backstory, before we get to the central point here. After years of pretending that their customers simply didn't want to watch Amazon Instant Video on non-Fire devices, while concurrently giving iOS owners free access to their bought-and-paid-for video libraries, Amazon finally relented and released an Android app. Not a great Android app, mind you.
It takes a special skill set to make something as repetitive, boring, stressful, and annoying as blood pressure (BP) monitoring look and feel good. While I'm lucky enough to still be too young and healthy to worry about my own BP, I do manage a small town pharmacy in Lebanon, which requires me to perform routine measurements on many patients.
Unroll the cuff, slide it around the arm, correctly position the diaphragm, close the cuff, adjust the stethoscope, inflate the cuff, let it slowly deflate while listening in, and finally remove everything after the readout is done. Rinse and repeat. It always feels like there are way too many steps involved than necessary.
In what would be an extremely controversial move, several European mobile carriers are reportedly working on a system to block online advertisements on their networks. Though none are named in the original report by Financial Times, the operators are said to be cooperating with Israeli startup Shine, who is developing the technology to accomplish the task. While specific timelines and details of the implementation are lacking, this would obviously have wide ramifications.
The report says multiple variations may be brought to market, possibly starting as an opt-in service. While it would block the types of ads you see on Android Police, the sponsored posts you see on social networks would be unaffected.
Some time before late February earlier this year, Garmin removed its Viago navigation app from the Play Store (as well as iTunes). No explanation was given, and no announcement was made - it just went away. The app cost $2 ($0.99 if you got it on sale) and had numerous in-app purchases for expensive map packs and add-on features (ranging from $5-20). Viago was basically Garmin's attempt to compete with Google, Apple, Waze, and other virtual navigation apps, and it did so using Nokia's HERE map data.
Now, this may sound pretty dull (and it kind of is, but wait!), until you realize just how long Viago had been around: at most, the Viago app was available 8 months before it was discontinued.
I'm a vegetarian. Okay, pescetarian. Since I do occasionally eat fish, I'm aware that some animals have to die to sustain my current diet. But I did not know that was also the case when I put tofu in my stir fry. Fortunately, Adult Swim Games has opened my eyes. In Tofu Hunter, I learned that even when I'm not eating meat, that doesn't mean some poor creature wasn't gunned down to put food on my plate.
Tofu Hunter is what used to be known as a light gun game. Old timers will recognize the formula from Duck Hunt or Time Crisis. Kids these days might think of Overkill.
Have a Galaxy S6 or Galaxy S6 Edge? Great! Want to use OK Google's hotword functionality from anywhere but the Google app or the Google Now launcher? Not great!
You see, for the past month or so since the S6 launched, there's been a slight issue with OK Google Everywhere on the Galaxy S6. Specifically, it just stops working completely. All the options except "From the Google app" disappear, voice model training goes away, and you can only use the 'OK, Google' hotword from the Google app or the Google Now Launcher (which is, essentially, the Google app).
Razer's Forge TV/console/box thing, which runs Android TV, has started shipping to pre-order buyers, and they're not liking what they find once they kick back to watch some Netflix... because they can't.
Attempting to find Netflix on the Play Store is a no go, casting from your connected phone won't work, and even sideloading the Android TV Netflix v2 APK (and even with rooting and build.prop edits) won't get you around this issue. The only solution is to sideload the standard phone APK, which then reverts to 480p only mode and uses the tablet UI, which is of course terrible on a TV.
Sprint is so good, you can take it with you when you leave the country. Okay, maybe its service isn't the best. Whatever. It's cheap. That's why you signed up, right?
Now when you travel to Colombia, Denmark, Honduras, Ireland, Italy, Paraguay, or Sweden with an International Value Roaming plan, you can roam data for free. You're limited to 2G speeds and might not always be able to find a connection, but again, it's free. If you do need faster connectivity, you can get 3G for the not-at-all-tempting prices of $15-$50 for 100-500MB of data that last up to fourteen days.
These additions join the likes of Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Germany, Guatemala, Japan, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Russia, South Korea, Spain, and the UK.