We were ridiculously excited by the prospect of a physical Google Wallet card when we reported on it just over a year ago, but six months went by without a peep until eventually the project was canned. Thankfully, awesome ideas don't disappear just because one company decides it's not ready to make them happen. Coin, a startup out of San Francisco, has announced a card of its own that promises to deliver much of what we were excited to see Google pull off themselves.
The Adobe Reader Android app has received another update, but you're going to have to hand over some money to take advantage of all of its new features. Adobe has rolled out new "Adobe PDF Pack" and "ExportPDF," which users can purchase from within the app. The former let users convert documents into PDFs, while the latter does just the opposite.
I reviewed the UE BOOM back in July and called it my favorite Bluetooth speaker. Four months and several speaker reviews later, it still holds that title. Today, UE is pushing out a firmware update to the speaker and adding new features to the Android app that makes it even more useful.
The standout feature of this update is an all-new Alarm feature. Basically, it turns your BOOM into an alarm clock, so you can wake to some killer sound.
We heard yesterday that the newest Transformer Pad was slated to get its Android 4.3 update on November 18th, but it looks like the bits are dropping a little early. Android 4.3 for the TF701T has been posted on the Asus support site, and you can download it right now.
Back on Halloween, Google promised that proprietary binaries and factory images for the Nexus 4, Nexus 7, and Nexus 10 would arrive shortly after devices received their OTA updates. Even though some OTAs haven't even rolled out yet, as of a few minutes ago, all modern Nexus devices now have Android 4.4 KRT16O factory images and drivers available for download.
This means you can flash stock Android 4.4 onto any supported device, even if an OTA either wasn't available yet or wouldn't work for some reason.
Gameloft introduced us to GT Racing 2 two months ago with a strange focus on Mercedes-Benz cars, but now the full game is available with a full complement of manufacturers. GT Racing 2 is a free download in the Play Store for devices running Android 2.3 or higher. You'll need just under a gigabyte of free storage to download it (not to mention a decent connection).
GT Racing is Gameloft's take on a racing simulator, a la Gran Turismo or Forza, as opposed to the more cartoony style of Asphalt.
PhoneSuit's Flex Pocket Charger is smaller than most options out there, but in this case, that's a good thing. This external battery pack plugs into your phone's micro USB port and rests there while it recharges. This makes it more mobile than the significantly larger 15,000mAh battery backs that you would typically leave stationary while your device charges, though that also means it will likely only recharge your handset once. Now it's available from Tanga for $29.99, a 50% discount from its usual price.
Google Now is pretty amazing, and it just keeps getting better as Google finds new ways to expose knowledge from its massive data repository. It's hard not to become addicted to everything that Now can offer. But what if you just got your hands on Google's latest flagship phone, went through the setup process, and then discovered Google Now doesn't work? Not only have some Nexus 5 owners had this experience, a few of them have even seen Google Now stop working across all of their other devices.
Remember when everyone was pissed off that the Verizon version of the Galaxy Nexus couldn't use Google Wallet because of "security concerns"? ISIS Mobile Wallet, the alternative carrier-sponsored NFC payment system (and the reason that last sentence was equipped with sarcastic quote marks) is finally available, just two years after Google Wallet was coincidentally blocked by the carriers that are pushing ISIS. Nice work there, fellas.
ISIS has been in a beta testing mode in limited markets for just over a year - the necessary Android apps have been available on the Google Play Store since then.
Today is a big day for Republic Wireless. After weeks of anticipation, the Moto X is finally up for sale alongside four new plans. The Moto X costs $299 from Republic, but that's without any kind of contract – the full price is $499 most places. You also get you choice of four super-cheap service plans on Republic Wireless.
This is only the second phone Republic Wireless has launched, with the last being the lackluster Motorola Defy XT.