Google began its transition to Hangouts as a universal messaging platform a little over a year ago, but true SMS integration didn't arrive until much more recently. To encourage use of Hangouts, the company offered forwarding of Hangouts messages via SMS in select countries, but now that's going away as of tomorrow.
The Mad Catz M.O.J.O. didn't exactly get a glowing review from us back in February, but bless its little heart, it's still trying. The latest official firmware update adds some significant features to the device, making its $199 retail price a little more palatable. The MOJO is now the first device to support OUYA Everywhere, which means that it gets access to the games on the proprietary OUYA store in addition to the built-in Google Play Store.
Speaking of which, access to the Play Store is being expanded as well.
Can you believe it's been three years since Google introduced its very own social network in private beta? We can - Android Police has published hundreds (Hell, maybe thousands) of articles about Google's social network, since it's been tightly integrated with the company's mobile, web, and search platforms. There have been a lot of big changes since then, and it still isn't the Facebook-stomping behemoth that some people hoped it might be.
So long, QuickOffice, we barely knew you. Well, that's not true - the app has been around for years, long before Android itself, and before Google acquired the company last year it was considered one of the better options for those who needed Microsoft Office-style editing on the go. But now that Google is integrating the main features from QuickOffice into Google Drive/Docs, most notably the ability to edit Microsoft Office files, there's no reason to keep it around.
Edit: As some of you have stated, donating corrected voicemails on a per-voicemail basis was previously possible, and those messages would then be analyzed by a person. This new feature is a toggle that shares all of your voicemails with Google, which are then analyzed by a machine, not people. So, this will presumably result in much faster improvements, and hopefully much better accuracy, by using a much wider data set.
As Google typically does upon the release of a new product, it has updated its support documentation with a series of common questions and issues users may find themselves facing when using Wear devices. Some are pretty handy. For example, if your phone is too far from your watch to maintain the pairing connection, you lose voice action controls. You can still set alarms, check your calendar, step count, heart rate, and a few other basic features, though.
Google Play Services is that app on your phone that doesn't look like it does anything, but actually does a lot of things. This is how Google rolls out new services and features to the core of Android sans OS updates. Today we've got the details on Play Services v5.0. This covers some of the features Google announced in the I/O keynote and a few smaller ones as well.
If you're still toting around a stock AT&T Galaxy Note II, good news: your phone is finally getting Android 4.4.2. The rollout should be starting now, and includes all of the basic 4.4 goodies you can expect coming from 4.3, like wireless printing, the new storage access framework, SMS default app selection, Google Wallet tap-to-pay support, and a few others. Here's Samsung's full changelog:
OS upgrade to Android 4.4.2 KitKat
- New Lock Screen Access
- Media Controls - full-screen album art and media controls when listening to music
- Camera Shortcut - access the Camera application right from the lock screen
- Improved user experience when multiple messaging apps are installed - All SMS and MMS messages are together in the same app, alongside other conversations and video calls.
There's no denying that Samsung's current tablet lineup is a convoluted, confusing mess for anyone outside of the tech circle – just in the current run we have the Galaxy Tab 4 7, 8, 10.1; Galaxy Note 10.1 2014 Edition, Galaxy Note Pro 12.2, Galaxy Tab Pro 10.1/12.2, and now the newest member of the family, the Galaxy Tab S. Deep down, I still wish they would've named it the Galaxy S Tab, just so we could call it the Galaxy Stab.
Cyanogen, the corporate arm of the popular CyanogenMod custom ROM, is on a roll. After a few high-profile hires from the world of aftermarket Android ROMs earlier this year, the company is after some more conventional hires for its leadership team, dipping their toes into the pool of corporate technology. This week they welcome Tyler Carper, formerly of HTC, Vikram Natarajan, formerly of OEM parts manufacturer MediaTek, and Dave Herman, formerly of Microsoft, Amazon, and Hulu, as new vice presidents.