16
Aug
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Last Updated: August 23rd, 2012

Are you the kind of obsessive-compulsive shutterbug that has to know exactly where and when you found the perfect pair of hipster glasses? Then Instagram's update is aimed right at you... for better or worse. The biggest update to version 3 of the Android app is the Photo Maps feature, which places all your photos on a selectable Google Maps overlay, assuming that you tagged their location when you took them.

16
Aug
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Last Updated: October 9th, 2012

It's no secret that most of us hate cables. We want wireless sync and charging. Wi-Fi. Bluetooth. NFC. The list goes on and on. Why then, would we settle for earbuds that remain physically tethered to our device? We wouldn't. Unfortunately, Bluetooth earbuds aren't nearly as commonplace as their wired counterparts, and they oftentimes costs thrice as much (or more). Still, if you just can't stand the thought of using a wired set of 'buds, it's really your best (and only) option.

16
Aug
gs3-jelly-bean-info

We saw a video yesterday of a Samsung Galaxy S III running Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, with a revamped notification bar and access to Google Now. Fast forward 24 hours, and you can now get hold of that firmware yourself to try it out on your very own Galaxy S III.

Update: A newer firmware I9300XXBLH4 got leaked over at XDA by Samsung-Updates.com. It's an OTA (meaning incremental update) that applies directly on top of I9300XXBLG8/I9300OXABLG8/I9300XXLH1.

16
Aug
2012-08-15_15h18_23

It's not quite live yet, but Google would like you to know that Google Maps 6.10 is on its way to handsets by the end of the day. "What's new for me, the public transit user?" I hear you ask. Quite a bit, in fact! First off, Google has announced that it now has data on more than one million transit stops worldwide, spread throughout almost 500 cities. In an effort to make that information more usable, the Transit Lines map layer can now me narrowed down to a single method of transportation.

16
Aug
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At the beginning of the month, the Dolphin team released a new version of their popular browser to the Play Store. It featured the normal UI and performance enhancements, but apparently that just wasn't good enough for the Dolphin crew. Today, they have released a public beta of Dolphin Browser that brings some pretty impressive numbers where HTML5 rendering speed is concerned:

How fast? Dolphin Browser Beta's HTML-5 rendering is:
• 5 - 10X faster than the default Android browser
• 100% faster than Chrome (at times)
• Initially scored over 450 when tested on HTML5test.com.

16
Aug
2012-08-16_12h45_40

When Google announced that it would support all major credit and debit cards, it was big news. What may have slipped under the radar, however, is that Mountain View also sent an open invitation to card issuers to sign up for tighter integration into the service. Today, Google is announcing that you can add your Discover card to Google Wallet directly from your account on Discover's website. You even get fancy card graphics now, too!

16
Aug
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Last night, Artem tore down the APK of the new Play Store and found a whole bunch of upcoming goodies, including  support for wishlists and gift cards. The first physical evidence of said gift cards has now landed in the hands of Android Central, showing off what we'll likely see soon in retail stores across the country.

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That, of course, raises another question: which stores will sell these gift cards?

16
Aug
2012-08-16_07h14_12

Chinese company Xiaomi (known for their popular ROM MIUI) has just announced a new phone, and this one looks to be every bit as impressive today as the original was when it was announced a year ago. The specs on the cleverly named Xiaomi Phone 2 stand out even in the world of quad-core superphones, and the company has managed to do so while maintaining a price point of just $310 USD.

15
Aug
play

One of the most common complaints against Google's Play Store is the lack of certain content or functionality in countries outside the US. Google has been making progress in expanding access to other corners of the globe, though. You may remember, for example, that Play Books hit France just last month after Play Movies opened for the French in March and for Spain in June.

Today, Google (finally) brought Play Movie rentals to Germany, much to the delight of German users who have been asking for more Play content for quite some time.

15
Aug
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Last Updated: October 17th, 2012

A new Google Play Store v3.8.15 apk started rolling out to Android devices today, but upon running through its UI, I was unable to uncover anything different from the versions before that. Yet the apk size gained a few pounds kilobytes, and not knowing what the 300KB of code and resources added was killing me. Not to worry, a few minutes later, I decoded both 3.7.15 and 3.8.15 and compared their contents.