With just a few weeks left until Google I/O 2016 kicks off, Google has dropped a new version of the I/O app into the Play Store. It includes a schedule of events, notifications, a map, and more. The mobile website has gotten very good this year, but the app still provides a few benefits.
It's common for American carriers to mandate the removal of FM radio functionality from popular phones. After all, they'd much rather you used their network services to gobble down data. Something very unusual is happening in the new GS7 update. Samsung and T-Mobile are actually turning on the dormant FM radio functionality.
The off-topic tag doesn't get a lot of use here at AP, but why have it if we aren't going to let it stretch its legs once in a while? I thought I'd start off the morning with a video I found particularly hilarious. Everyone knows about Google's self-driving, steering wheel-less car. It's adorable and, ostensibly, the future. But this GTA V parody of a news station's "first ride" clip from the car's public debut had me in absolute stitches, it's the funniest thing I've seen in weeks.
Just a bit of light, pedestrian-striking humor to get your day started. It's all in good fun, though; technological breakthroughs are worthy of the occasional well-intentioned mocking.
Love it or hate it, T-Mobile's crusade against other wireless carriers, has given us a lot of chuckles, maybe some good laughs, and probably a healthy dose of groans and cringes. This last attempt, I think, falls on the innocuous side of the equation, quirky enough to be interesting for us to cover without being too distasteful or annoying.
Writing on T-Mobile's blog, John Legere compared AT&T to the Evil Empire and cited its dark methods of detaining customers and its pathological need to dominate and control and keep everything secret as the reason why its powers are akin to the Death Star.
The LG G5 has been out for a few weeks and it hasn't exactly been a big hit. The $700 price tag certainly isn't helping, either. There's a sizable discount on the international dual SIM variant on eBay right now that seems like a much more reasonable deal. It's just $574.99 and it'll work on any GSM/LTE network; two of them at the same time, actually.
Quik lets you select photos and videos from your device's storage or Google Photos library, then it analyzes them and automatically trims the best moments from videos and focuses on faces to reframe photos. You can still do that manually though if you prefer. Quik then chooses one of 28 styles, adds transitions, filters, graphics, and sounds from a collection of 70 included tracks or your own music library, and syncs the beat to the photo and video transitions.
Cody found evidence of an improved smartburst for Google Photos in his v1.16 teardown, and on the v1.17 official changelog it listed 'Improved burst photo support' as one of the points. Now, just after the v1.19 update, it seems the new Smartburst is finally starting to rollout to general users via a server-side update.
Sometimes app developers surprise us with a big push of new versions and features after leaving us in the cold for the longest time. The Vimeo team, for example, had an ugly mess of an app for years until an update to version 2.0 last December completely rewrote it from scratch and made it several folds better. That was followed by the addition of Chromecast support in version 2.1 in February, and now another update to 2.2 is introducing offline videos.
When you start watching any video inside the Vimeo app, you'll see a new download icon in the overlay on top, which slowly breathes a blue hue to attract your eyes.
The Samsung Gear VR is more akin to Google's Cardboard than HTC's Vive or LG's 360VR. You rely on your phone for the screen, like Cardboard, but you have more possibilities for control thanks to the included physical buttons. Samsung has also been pushing its Milk VR store heavily, collaborating with different content providers and benefitting from its Oculus partnership to provide exclusive material to its Gear VR users. It has created an interesting gadget and platform, one that I have personally been eying for a while but haven't had the chance to test yet.
While many users have gotten a Gear VR for free with the pre-order of a Galaxy S7 or S7 Edge, even more Samsung smartphone owners don't have the virtual reality headset yet.