If you've been paying attention to the news cycle lately, you've probably heard that Google—by way of the obscure "Niantic Labs"—released a game of some kind. You saw a trailer that depicted people discovering hidden energy fields within statues, landmarks, and artistic sculptures. You had no idea what was going on. You signed up for an invite anyway, because like any other weird Google product, you want in regardless of what it is.
It's coming. Black Friday (and Cyber Monday), an event so important to retailers in the US that the physical trampling retail employees to death hasn't stopped it. People go nuts for this stuff. And, when you see the "$100/$75/50%/3-hour-only sale" sign plastered onto something, bleary-eyed and over-caffeinated at midnight, or frantically deciding what to put in your digital cart on Monday morning before heading to work, making a bad decision can be all too easy.
If you're thinking of getting your little munchkin a Nexus 7, Barnes & Noble Nook HD, 7" Kindle Fire HD, or a similar 7-inch tablet/e-reader for Christmas, then you'll undoubtedly want a way for them to keep it safe. But c'mon - this is your kid we're taking about. They don't want a folio, gel case, or even a nifty Active case for their device. They want something fun. Something unique.
About a week after the Takju variant of Samsung's Galaxy Nexus got its 4.2 update, it looks like the same is rolling out to the Nexus' Yakju variant. The update (build JOP40C), for those not willing to wait, is also available for manual download and flashing (check the link below).
It should be noted that this update is meant solely for the Galaxy Nexus Yakju – that's the international version not from the Play Store – and your device should be running build JZO54K before you try to install the update.
Update: The Nexus 10 32GB is also in stock in the UK and Canada, too.
Not much to say here - the Nexus 10 32GB is back in stock on the US Play Store right now. If you're on the fence, no pressure - they might only be gone in an hour. Or a few minutes. Or thirty seconds before you stopped debating and clicked the link. You better hurry up.
Way back in February, a man by the name of Ben Randall demoed an amazing voice control app called "utter!" that he had started developing. The initial video (a whopping 22 minutes long) demonstrated some amazing capabilities - take a look for yourself:
But that was over 9 months ago, and aside from the initial release of the (very limited) alpha, we haven't heard much about the app, though Mr. Randall has kept interested parties updated via his very active XDA thread.
It seems like the Android world is getting a ton of extra tablet love in the past few months. Today, Skype joined the party by finally introducing an optimized UI for those of you with a little more screen to love. While the new look is nice, it bizarrely forces your slate into landscape mode. Even on the Nexus 7, you have no choice but to use the wider layout. This probably isn't a bad thing, since it looks great in this mode, and might seem cramped otherwise.
Eight cores, in a mobile processor? Balderdash! But according to EETimes, that's just what Samsung's planning on unveiling in February at the International Solid-State Circuits Conference (that sounds so exciting).
Now before you get too excited, this isn't - technically speaking - an eight-core processor. It's a dual quad-core, which is to say, a two-processor chip. The design is based on a reference architecture thought up by ARM themselves, dubbed "big.little," and is designed to combine the light-load battery life of a high-efficiency quad-core 28nm ARM A7 chip with a super-hi-po A15 processor for heavy lifting.
It's pretty disheartening to get an awesome new phone only to realize the bootloader's locked down tight. That's means no custom recovery, no ROMs, no custom kernels, no... anything fun. Until, of course, some dedicated developers get ahold of the device in question and bend it to their will. That's exactly what Project FreeGee has done for both the Sprint and AT&T variants of the LG Optimus G.
The tool essentially unlocks the bootloader of both devices, allowing a custom recovery - and eventually, custom ROMs - to be flashed.
The Amazon Appstore has been updated to version 22.214.171.124C, and this release brings a few new goodies, along with a much-needed Android 4.2 compatibility fix. Previously, switching users on an Android 4.2 tablet would require you to log into the Appstore on each user account every time you switched, this has now been rectified. A battery drain bug has been stomped as well, along with the typical "other bug fixes and stability enhancements."
The UI of the Appstore has also received a light refresh, probably to be a little more in line with its appearance on the Kindle Fire HD and the latest iteration of Fire OS.