Welcome to the latest entry in our Bonus Round series, wherein we tell you all about the new Android games of the day that we couldn't get to during our regular news rounds. Consider this a quick update for the dedicated gamers who can't wait for our bi-weekly roundups, and don't want to wade through a whole day's worth of news just to get their pixelated fix. Today we've got a classic adventure sequel, a game about pixelated sushi, and a math-based puzzler.
Here at Android Police, we're no strangers to digging around in Google's code and finding surprising stuff inside. Apparently some members of the CyanogenMod team did the same, and found a hidden feature in KitKat: Heads Up notifications. These floating notifications are meant to be used in full-screen apps or Immersive Mode, but for whatever reason, they aren't switched on in AOSP code. (Perhaps they're intended for the next major Android release.) You can probably guess what happens next.
We don't have news about whether a Nexus phone exists, but we do have information related to HTC's Volantis (or Flounder), an 8.9" Nexus tablet. The information provided to us indicates possible specs, features, and pricing, as well as an early look at the form factor, though the images we have don't appear to be final renderings of the device.
HTC's new One M8 flagship has been out for three months. At this point in its product cycle, we wouldn't expect to see any dramatic discounts, except perhaps for on-contract phones. But one eBay vendor is bucking the trend, selling a new, factory-unlocked M8 for $549.99, a full $150 off the list price from HTC's own website. You can grab the phone and get free shipping to the United States, and unlike many eBay deals, the seller is shipping to a variety of countries around the world.
There have been rumors recently that LG's G Watch might be the focus of Google I/O's Android Wear discussion, with the nascent device possibly being handed out to attendees. Whether Moto's watch, the Moto 360, would make an appearance has remained unclear. Until today though, those were the only two Android Wear devices even rumored for I/O cameos.
Cnet has reported, however, that Samsung will (according to sources) be throwing its hat into the Android Wear ring at I/O as well, debuting an Android Wear smartwatch of its own.
Nest really is completely into this whole "home automation" thing, isn't it? The guys who put out the first smart thermostat and smoke detector have just entered into an agreement to buy Dropcam for $555 million monies. Oh, and in case you've forgotten, Google owns Nest. So, technically, Google is buying Dropcam. That's pretty sweet.
According to Nest's post on the acquisition, they'll begin working together to "reinvent product that will help shape the future of the conscious home and bring our shared vision to more and more people around the world," which sounds pretty exciting.
Mozilla employees have mentioned a few times that the company is working on its own streaming device to compete with Google's $35 Chromecast, and now we're getting our first look at how it will work. The device is based on Firefox OS and actually plugs into most Chromecast-enabled apps out of the box.
Right now, in the slide-out "hamburger" menu of most Google apps, there's a Help button, with a tiny circled question mark icon. If a user needs help with the app (or anything else), this button will pull up a web page. Once on the web page, users can browse through categories for help articles and potential solutions or, if all else fails, request a support call from Google.
It looks like Google wants to make that experience a little more elegant, though.
There are a lot of Bluetooth transceivers out there, but Motorola's newest product, the Moto Stream, undoubtedly tops them all for looks. It's just kind of mesmerizing.
But is it worth the $50 price tag? I ordered one to find out, though admittedly I did so only after finding it on sale for half off using a now-expired coupon code, bringing the price down to just over $30 shipped. At that price, I'd say the Stream is totally worth it - it's really neat to look at, easy to get up and running, and has a few noteworthy features that make it stand out.