Android Police

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Verizon Wants You Longer, Harder: Subsidized Hardware Upgrade Cycle Extended To A Full 24 Months

As if you needed another reason to hate cell phone contracts. For the last few years, Verizon's upgrade cycle has been 20 months long - that is, you bought a new, discounted phone on-contract, and you could upgrade after 20 months. (Not to be confused with the cellular contract itself, which is a full 2 years/24 months.) According to an official statement from Verizon Wireless, customers now have to wait the full 24 months before upgrading.

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DROID Bionic Jelly Bean Update (Android 4.1.2) Announced On Verizon Site, Rollout Starts April 15th

Verizon has just announced the Jelly Bean update for the Motorola DROID Bionic, bringing Android 4.1.2 to a handset many thought would never make it past Gingerbread. Motorola has been on an update spree the last few months, and the decision to bump the Bionic to Android 4.1 was made official by Motorola back in October 2012. The version number for the Jelly Bean update is 98.72.22, and it will begin rolling out in phases on April 15th.

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Chat Heads Come To Facebook Messenger Without Facebook Home, Regular App Updated To Prepare For Home Arrival

Today, both of Facebook's current apps have been updated to prepare for the arrival of Facebook Home. The main app merely added an extra permission that Home will eventually use. However, the real fun came to Messenger, which now has the ability to pop out Chat Heads, regardless of if you're using the replacement launcher.

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As you may recall from the Facebook Home launch event, chat heads are little bubbles that float over whatever you're doing and allow you to jump straight into a conversation no matter where you are in the OS.

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Dynamite Jack Review: So Good I Won't Cheapen It With A Pun About 'Explosive Fun'

In Dynamite Jack, you play the part of a space marine that has been captured by the enemy and forced to work in the Anathema Mines. You don't have time for that nonsense, so escape it is. It seems like your alien captors are not the brightest stars in the cosmos – they leave explosives, flashlights. and keycards laying around everywhere.  Lucky for you.

Gameplay And Controls

You start at the lowest level of the mines, and your goal in each stage is to find the exit denoted by a shimmering point of light.

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CyanogenMod 10.1 Finally Comes To The International LG Optimus G, Starting With Nightly Builds

Good news, everyone! ...or at least, everyone with an international LG Optimus G and an inclination to try out custom ROM builds. The ubiquitous CyanogenMod ROM is now available for LG's flagship, beginning with nightly CM 10.1 (Android 4.2) builds. CyanogenMod developer Ricardo Cerqueira broke the news on his Google+ account, noting that the new builds are possible thanks to the FreeGee tool expanding to the international (E975) model.

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As always, you'll need a custom recovery to apply the ROM, and ClockworkMod has also been ported from to the international Optimus G model.

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[New App] Chainfire's Hotspot Control Harnesses The Latent Power Of Your Device's Tethering Menu

Stock Android has had built-in tethering since version 2.2 way back in 2010, but most carrier-branded devices in the US have the option disabled. Sure, there are root apps and various workarounds, but they can be a mess. If you don't need web access, but want your devices on a local network, you're often out of luck. A new app from well-known developer Chainfire gives you back some control (on some devices), and it doesn't require root.

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[New Game] Hills Of Glory 3D Lands On The Shores Of Android, Takes The Fight To Your Device

If there is a parallel universe in which World War 2 didn't occur, I'd bet there are far fewer games there. Well, like it or not Hills of Glory 3D is a WWII-themed title that's part strategy and part "castle defense." On the upside, it's pretty enjoyable.

This is a follow up to the original Hills of Glory, but this time with a whole extra dimension. The graphics are clean and cartoon-y – it actually looks surprisingly good for only being a 49MB download.

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[New App] Everything.me Launcher Is Like Building A Home Screen On Google's 'I'm Feeling Lucky' Button

The founders of Do@ (often spelled DoAT) believe your smartphone is boring and stale, and they want to make it "dynamic" with Everything.me Launcher. I always love new and innovative launchers, or, just about anything that could dramatically change how I interact with my smartphone. When I saw the video, which promises your smartphone will adapt to whatever you are interested in, I was more than a little intrigued. The idea is for people to declare what they want to see at the moment, and then immerse them with imagery and apps.

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[Editorial] Five Android Gaming Fads That Need To Die

I've been handling a fair bit of the gaming coverage here on Android Police for the last nine months, to say nothing of our regular game roundups. And while I'm still ecstatic that there's such a plethora of variety on the platform, there's definitely a few game elements that are far, far beyond their sell-by date. I'd hate to discourage developers from making games, but consider this: if your mobile game features any of the following bullet points, and (perhaps more importantly) a lack of innovation, you're doing something wrong.

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StatusAgenda Keeps Your Google Calendar Events In Your Notification Shade For Easy Access

Since the introduction of expandable notifications in Jelly Bean, the shade has increasingly become the home for widgets and easy-access controls. StatusAgenda brings this concept to your calendar, creating a persistent list of upcoming events accessible from anywhere in the operating system.

statusagenda1 statusagenda2 statusagenda3

At the moment, the app is pretty barebones, but it doesn't need too much fluff. You can choose from either a larger or more compact layout, and the list of events can be collapsed with the regular gestures you use to open and close expandable notifications.

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