Indoor maps are becoming the hot new thing in the world of not getting lost. Google may be using fancy 3D planes to map everything the sky can see, but sometimes it's just as easy to get lost in a train station as it is in a city. Google's recent indoor maps have made navigating easier, and now UK locations are being added to the supported list.
The maps have been seamlessly integrated into the Google Maps app.
We non-Jelly Bean plebeians have been envious of those with access to Android 4.1 for some time now, and a recent video from JLishere provides yet another reason to be jealous. The video, a demo of the much-anticipated Google Now, shows off just how accurate JB's voice recognition can be - in fact, it was able to pick up on the subtle differences between words like 'Worcester' and 'Wooster.' It also exemplifies the impressive number of commands Now (in cooperation with the Knowledge Graph) can register - from "call the Drake Hotel" to "do a barrel roll."
Enough balderdash, though - watch the 47-question demo for yourself:
Update: 20 more questions:
One last note: as JLishere notes in the video description, the demo was performed on an early build of Jelly Bean - this, in other words, should be considered a beta feature that will only get better with time.
Perhaps the most popular (and complete) free repair manual in existence, iFixit, launched an official app for Android recently, bringing detailed step-by-step repair instructions and (of course) the saucy teardown images we've come to know and love from the service's online counterpart to your Android devices.
For those who don't know, iFixit provides users with incredibly detailed repair guides for a huge variety of things from laptops to mobile devices, game consoles, and even cars, including great imagery and nice explanations for why hardware is the way it is.
Depending on how fanboyish you want to be you want to look at it, things are either getting better by the day, or still dismal as can be. First, the charts:
Obviously, the good news is that in the past month, Ice Cream Sandwich (Android 4.0+) has moved up from 7.1% to 10.9% - and considering there are hundreds of millions of devices running Android, that seemingly meager 3.8% is actually quite a few devices.
Costco, promising to take customers "beyond the warehouse walls with the ease of [their] smartphone," released an official Costco Wholesale app to the Play Store recently.
The app, created by one of the most popular (and largest) wholesalers in America, allows users to do much of what they could do in a physical Costco location, or shopping online – users can shop Costco.com's "unique, expanded" collection, locate the nearest Costco location, grab online and in-store coupons, refill prescriptions, read "The Costco Connection," choose business or home delivery options, and take note of what you need to buy with a handy built-in notepad.
Back in May, HBO updated their HBO GO app to support Ice Cream Sandwich, but even then the app was still missing support for tablets, a major issue for an app designed for streaming video. Fortunately, they've rolled out an update today to address that problem, bringing support for tablets running anything up to Android 4.0.4 (sorry, no Jelly Bean support here yet). Oddly enough, HBO's MAX GO app was also updated today, but still lacks support for tablets.
Motorola has released yet another pair of updates for their Android-based sports watch, the MOTOACTV, bringing the version number up to either 7.10 or 7.11, depending on your model. The 7.10 update is only for devices that already have the golf features installed, while the 7.11 update is only for some versions of the 8 GB ACTV that do not have the golf features. Fortunately, you don't have to do anything to determine which update to download - simply plug your ACTV into your computer and the MOTOCAST software will download the appropriate update.
If the combination of summer heat and apocalyptic storms have you feeling a little down, Madfinger Games is here to help. Madfinger develops some really killer titles like Shadowgun, Samurai II, and the upcoming Dead Trigger (which was actually supposed to land today, but has been delayed until tomorrow for some last-minute bug fixes). Starting today, you can get Shadowgun and Samurai II on sale for $0.99.
Shadowgun is an amazing third-person shooter with great graphics and surprisingly good voice acting.
One of the most starred Android issues of all time, currently #20 of 21363 from the top with 1191 stars, is the absolutely awful quality of synced contact photos (issue #3870, opened in 2009). ICS attempted to resolve the issue by bumping the quality to 256x256 pixels, but Google sync would without mercy squash it right back down to blurry pixel dirt (96x96).
To recap, there are actually a couple of issues:
Contact photos set in Gmail.com are downsized to 96x96.
Amazon-owned development house A9 Innovations has released a product search app built on the idea that instead of tapping buttons to take pictures of products, you'd rather just point your camera at products. Probably not a bad notion! Not exactly the most important thing to spend a bunch of money and time developing, but hey, if you can just wave your phone in front of a movie and get pricing and review information, it's gotta be worth it, right?