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[APK Download] Microsoft's Next Android App Is Arrow Launcher, An Aviate-Inspired Homescreen Replacement Now In Beta

In line with their recent trend of developing for all platforms, Microsoft has quietly released a semi-private beta of a launcher app called Arrow. The early release sports an interface reminiscent of Aviate, but appears less devoted to contextual recommendations. While the current version is fairly basic, the big ideas may still be on the horizon.

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The first thing I noticed is that Arrow replaced the stock icons for system apps like Phone and Messages, which isn't in and of itself a bad thing but an unexpected behavior.

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Finger, Knuckle, Nail, Or Stylus? Qeexo FingerSense Is A Really Cool Software Solution That Knows The Difference

Knock Knock. Tap Tap. Scratch Scratch. Jot Jot. Wait, that's not how the joke goes. Let's try again. Knock Knock. Who's there? Fin. Fin who? Fin Gersense. Aha, now it makes sense.

Bay Area start-up Qeexo has been working on its FingerSense technology for several years, and it looks like it's starting to reap the fruits of its labor. The software solution, which allows modern touchscreen devices to detect the difference between fingertips, knuckles, nails, styli, and erasers, has been licensed by Huawei (under "Knuckle Sense") and has been shipping with its P8 and P8max since April. It's also included in the company's more recent Honor 7.

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Pixate Joins Google And Makes Studio Free To Use, Form Updates To Version 1.3 With Material Design Patches, And More

Pixate is a tool that helps designers prototype native mobile applications without pulling their hair out. Now it's a part of Google.

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The first immediate impact of this acquisition is that Pixate Studio is now free to use. You can go download the software to a Windows PC or Mac right away to create interfaces for your Android or iOS device. Then, if you want to share your prototypes with teammates online, Pixate's new cloud plan goes for $5 a month or $50 a year. The desktop software integrates seamlessly with cloud accounts.

Pixate has set up a FAQ page dedicated entirely to explaining how becoming a part of Google will affect things.

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Sygic Buys Fuelio And Makes All Of The Fuel Logging App's Pro Features Available For Free

Sygic, the company behind one of the world's most popular mobile navigation apps, has purchased Fuelio. And to sweeten the deal for users, the company is making all of the app's pro features available for free. That includes Dropbox and Google syncing, a widget, and detailed information presented in the form of stats, summaries, and charts.

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In case you've never taken Fuelio on the road with you before, this app logs how much you spend on gas and how much you're getting out of each gallon. With GPS support and Google Maps integration, you can track all the places you get gas.

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[APK Teardown] Google Play Services v7.8 Makes Significant Progress On New Location Sharing Feature, Improves Smart Lock Features, And More

The long-awaited Nearby is on the horizon, and it will be launching with Play Services 7.8. The APK is in the midst of its rollout right now. It contains a few elements of Nearby, and surely plenty of bug fixes and tweaks, but there are also plenty of interesting pieces hidden inside, as well. After a quick long examination, we've got the interesting bits and pieces ready for viewing, along with some theories about what it all means. It's time for a teardown!

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Disclaimer: Teardowns are necessarily speculative and usually based on incomplete evidence. It's possible that the guesses made here are totally and completely wrong.
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[Bonus Round] RPG Tears Revolude, Wars And Battles, Mountain Goat Mountain, Stuntman Stuart, And Tap Archer

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 new JRPG from Kemco, a historically accurate turn-based strategy game, a new Zynga title that isn't terrible, a pixelated falling game, and a free take on Worms. Without further ado:

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RPG Tears Revolude

Kemco is a prolific publisher of Japanese-style RPGs, and a big help for fans of the genre who are tired of paying Square $15 a pop for 20-year-old games.

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[Weekend Poll] Would The Loss Of An SD Card And Removable Battery Make You Less Likely To Buy A Galaxy Note 5?

While far from completely definite, strong rumors abound that the Galaxy Note 5 will not have a removable battery or an SD card slot. Given that the phone is suspected to essentially be a giant Galaxy S6 with a stylus, that makes sense.

What may not make sense is the continued allure of the Note series of devices if this is true, at least among you - people who read Android Police. The stylus isn't without value to some users (I, personally, have never been one of them), but the flexibility of a removable battery and expandable storage have long made the Note series the all-around power user device of choice among Android fans.

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Moov Announces 'MOOV NOW,' And It Basically Improves Everything Over The First One

Late last week I took a look at Moov and its cycling app for Android. I had a few things to critique about the unit (which isn't unusual), like its inability to connect with external heart rate monitors. It appears that Moov was already working on something that would fix essentially everything I found "wrong" with the first one, because it just announced MOOV NOW, and it looks like it'll be better in basically every way. Here are just a few things it can do over the existing model:

Features and Benefits of MOOV NOW™:

  • Customizable: MOOV NOW™ is available in Stealth Black, Blizzard White, Aqua Blue and Fusion Red colors.
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Pushbullet Update Brings Full SMS Messaging Support To Your Desktop

It's been scarcely two weeks since Pushbullet had its last big update, and here we are again. A new version is rolling out in the Play Store that fully integrates SMS into the website, browser extension, and desktop apps. You could reply to SMS before, but this update syncs all your conversations to the computer.

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Report: Facebook Is Working On A Personal Assistant Called 'Moneypenny' To Compete With Google Now, Possibly Use Humans To Perform For-Fee Tasks

According to an anonymously-sourced report from The Information, Facebook is working on their own entry into the virtual assistant market. Unlike Google Now, Siri, and Cortana, however, early indications are that Moneypenny—the current name used internally to refer to Facebook's offering—could be more service-oriented than the machine-driven, contextually-aware competition.

It is expected to be integrated with Messenger, but it would likely be a waste if it were not a part of Facebook's web and mobile interface as well.

At this point, details are very sparse. The Information speculates that Moneypenny may resemble startups like Magic and GoButler, which use humans to fulfill user requests for a fee.

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