Android Police

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Google+ Collections Set To Launch Tomorrow, May 4th

Google is just about ready to introduce Collections to Google+ publicly, according to sources.

Evidently, Collections is expected to launch tomorrow, May 4th, in the morning (Pacific Time), with an announcement coming from the official Google+ page of ... Google+. After its announcement, the feature will activate for web and Android users on a rollout that's expected to last a day or so. There's no word yet on when Collections will come to iOS.

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[Bonus Round] Enchanted Cave 2, Ramen Sensei, SwapQuest, Dungeon Highway Adventures, And Lords Of Nurroth

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 dungeon-crawler, another Kairosoft management sim, a puzzle-RPG combo, an 8-bit endless runner, and a new Tin Man game-book.

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[Weekend Poll] How Much Mobile Data Do You Use In A Month?

Welcome back to the weekend poll, and this weekend we're asking you about your data habits. Specifically, how much mobile data (as in, 2G/3G/LTE/4G - not Wi-Fi) do you typically use in a month? Given our wide geographic distribution of readers, it'll be interesting to see how this shapes up - I personally know very little about people's data usage outside the US.

For an easy way to answer this question, just go into your phone's settings menu and look at how much you've used in the last 30 days (Android 4.0+). Or, just estimate - we all do vary month to month in our usage, I know I used a big hunk of data last week while traveling (I always forget to download music before I leave).

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InBrief
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Unsurprisingly, The Original HTC One Mini Also Gets Stiffed On A Lollipop OTA Update

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Alarm.com App Update Adds Easier Light Switches, Better Thermostat Management, And Actionable Notifications

Alarm.com, despite its security-oriented URL, has become a thriving platform for home management hardware and software both defensive and benign. The latest update to the app, version 3.2, adds a handful of small but important features and adjustments that should make it much easier for users of compatible automated home hardware to get stuff done. The updated version appears to be rolling out in the Play Store with no delays, so no need to track down the APK.

Screenshot_2015-05-02-15-00-48 Screenshot_2015-05-02-15-00-12 Screenshot_2015-05-02-15-01-57

Left: old light screen. Center and right: new light screen.

The biggest change tipped to us by an avid user is the new interface for managed lights.

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The Indiana State Congress Uses A Collection Of Nexus 7s And CyanogenMod To Let Members Vote

Here's a mildly interesting story discovered by one member of the CyanogenMod Reddit board. Apparently the state congress of Indiana uses a custom setup to allow its state senators and representatives to submit votes. A Nexus 7 running the CyanogenMod custom ROM is permanently attached to each congressperson's desk, connected to the building's intranet system using a custom Ethernet adaptor (to avoid problems from an overcrowded Wi-Fi connection - there are 150 senators who vote at once), and hooked into SmartVote software from Propylon.

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Like Stealing Candy From A Baby Phone: HTC One Mini 2 Will Not Be Updated To Lollipop

In response to a question posed on Twitter, HTC announced that the HTC One Mini 2 will not be updated to Android 5.0. The phone is barely a year old and is sold under the One brand that HTC reserves for its flagship devices. As you may recall, HTC made a promise to customers just last year that devices launched under the One brand would receive updates for a minimum of two years. The reason given for breaking this promise is rather unbelievable.

Screenshot 2015-05-02 at 2.56.22 PM

If devices like these recently announced LG mid-range handsets can run Lollipop just fine, then I see no reason why the One Mini 2 with similar specs (though a little older components) would be incapable of running the latest Android software.

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[APK Teardown] Play Music v5.9 Hints At Smarter Way To Handle Multiple Devices On The Same Chromecast

Update Wednesday came and went this week, leaving us with about a dozen new and updated apps. Project Fi and Google Connectivity Services were added to the Play Store in preparation for Google's first MVNO customers, and new versions were rolled out to bring Quick Reply to Messenger and prepare Google+ for the wide release of Collections. A small bump to Google Play Music also made the list, but there wasn't much in the way of visible changes. However, a look inside suggests there may soon be a new behavior when two or more devices try to use the same Chromecast at once.

TeardownHero

Disclaimer: Teardowns are necessarily speculative and usually based on incomplete evidence.
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[APK Download] Google Shopping Express Goes Material For Version 3.0

Before we go any further: Google's local delivery service Shopping Express is still limited to portions of the San Francisco bay area, Los Angeles, northern California, Chicago, Boston, Washington DC, and New York City. If you live outside of those areas, go ahead and skip this story, because Google Shopping Express (and similar competing services) aren't expanding outside of the densest US urban zones anytime soon. But for those who do qualify for the service, version 3.0 includes a new user interface.

2015-05-02 17.15.30 2015-05-02 17.15.38 2015-05-02 17.15.49 2015-05-02 17.16.11

New above, old below.

2015-05-02 17.25.04 2015-05-02 17.25.08 2015-05-02 17.59.58 2015-05-02 17.25.40

The app has been redesigned from the ground up, more or less, conforming to Material Design guidelines.

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Google Is Working On A High Performance, Java-Free App Framework For Android Based On Dart

Most of the standard (non-game) Android apps we use today are created with Java. Alternatives are available, like Apache Cordova and Mono for Android, but there's no doubt that Java is the only true first-class citizen. However, a team at Google is now working on a new cross-platform alternative called Sky, and it's able to deliver 120 FPS out of the box.

Sky is based on Dart, a custom web scripting language that emerged from Chrome's V8 development team. Dart was designed to make development of complicated Javascript applications faster and more manageable, but it also came with the advantage of higher performance and the ability to be distributed as compiled code.

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