In Part 1 of this teardown, we saw what may be the return of Android@Home, or at least something similar. There were also new pieces to Nearby, Google's unique technology for finding two devices (and people) in close proximity, and a possible (subtle) change to the way Smart Lock responds to wearable devices. In Part 2, we'll continue with the possible centralization of Chrome Sync to Play services, project Sidewinder, a mysterious appearance by Facebook, and more.
The Nexus 6 is the first Nexus phone to have an official home on all four big US carriers. That means there are bound to be some carrier-specific updates, even for a Nexus phone. T-Mobile recently hinted that 5.1.1 was on the way with WiFi calling, and now we've got a leak from Sprint that says 5.1.1 (LMY47Z) will be out on May 26th.
If you're looking for a nearby place to eat and want directions on how to get there, open Google Maps first. If you try using the Google Search app or the web, you probably won't get the results you want.
You see, Search is currently having a hard time giving out directions. If you tap the icon underneath a restaurant, it will open up Google Maps, but after that... nothing.
Sony's decision to drop the Walkman brand from its music app left people strangely upset, but maybe this will cool some hot heads. The latest update of the beta music app adds Google Cast support. It's "experimental," but it's better than nothing.
Google is no stranger to testing new features or design tweaks on its live products, and search has been receiving quite a bit of attention lately. It doesn't necessarily come as a surprise, then, to see new design tweaks appearing for some users in Google's image search results.
The new design, which so far appears to be in very limited testing, offers a brighter layout for individual images - the background is a light #eeeeee as opposed to the solid black seen in its current iteration, and there's a relocated "close" button along with a new way to show image details.
In the current layout (as you'll see below), details are behind an overflow button.
NVIDIA is getting ready for a big push with the GRID gaming service and the SHIELD console. GRID has been free so far, but it's expected to transition to a paid service soon. So is it worth it to pay monthly for access to streaming games? That all depends on the value you're getting, doesn't it? A page put up by greenrobotgamer.com calculates how much the GRID catalog is worth, and it's a lot—over $960 right now.
I remember the Cartoon Network of the early 2000s, back when shows like the Powerpuff Girls, Johnny Bravo, and Ed, Edd n Eddy were the latest things out. But the channel has moved on to a new generation. These days I find myself writing about cartoons I've never heard of, like Steven Universe and Mixels. The latter apparently involves tribes of colorful creatures that defend Mixel Land from destructive things called Nixels.
Now there's a new game for Android called Mixels Rush... and it involves mixing Mixels to combat Nixels (what did I even just say?).
Mixels Rush requires you to get to the right side of a level before Major Nixel's Nixelstorm catches up with you.
Today Sprint has announced that it will start selling LG's latest flagship on June 5th, and you can pre-order one right away in leather black or plastic gray. If you buy one between now and June 21st, you get an extra battery, charging cradle, and 32GB microSD card in the mail for free.
The G4 will go for $600 outright, $200 with a two-year contract, $25 a month for twenty-four months with Sprint Easy Pay, or $18 a month with Sprint Lease.
The new version of Shazam has a feature that will probably appeal to smartwatch people. You can now use your Android Wear watch to identify songs and see lyrics without ever touching your phone. In fact, you only have to touch the watch twice (or zero times) to get it done.