Nearly two months after we first saw the in-progress Hangouts 4.0 update, we were starting to worry it would never make its official appearance on the Play Store. But recently our collective wish was granted and Hangouts got a big update. Google says this is Hangouts' update to material design, but what exactly does that mean for the app? There's more here than just a new FAB, so let's take a closer look at some of the notable design changes in Hangouts 4.0.
The journey to material
Despite what the change log may suggest, Hangouts didn't suddenly arrive at "material" with the 4.0 update.
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 platformer with Asteroids DNA, a sequel to Game Studio Tycoon, a casual game about drilling, a Square-Enix surprise, and a blank screen. Without further ado:
Imagine moving around a standard platforming game with the look and movement mechanic of Asteroids.
Not every game needs to have dozens of quests, tiered objectives, and an hour of cut scenes before you get to the actual game. Gathering Sky is a simple adventure game with great music and a casual gameplay style. One thing it doesn't have is in-app purchases.
Android offers developers a great deal of freedom to experiment with apps and come up with (maybe) the next big thing. Now Google has launched a website where it plans to show off some of the most interesting projects on Android. It's called Android Experiments and there are already 20 apps and demos to check out.
Here's the thing about modern consumer products. Sometimes you have a piece of merchandise that's just fine the way it is, but you need to come up with something new in order to get people's attention. What's a manufacturer to do?
Jaybird has decided to take the original Bluebuds X Bluetooth earphones that it released back in 2013 and give them a revamp. This year's model is called the X2. The core design is still the same. Specs, on paper, remain unchanged. You're still looking at an estimated 8 hours of battery life.
What's different? According to Droid Life, this model comes with modern parts such as redesigned ear fins that should be more comfortable.
Solitaire and sword-and-sorcery fantasy wouldn't seem like an obvious combination, but the rookie Android game from Arnold Rauers does just that. Card Crawl has you facing a giant troll in an oddball card game, mixing elements of solitaire, battle card games like Magic the Gathering, and roguelike dungeon crawlers. It's an interesting little game that lends itself towards more strategy than might be immediately apparent.
Here's the gist: your opponent is the "deck," and he gives you 54 random cards three at a time. Each card is either an item like a sword or shield, a monster that you have to kill, a potion that can heal you, or coins that can be saved up for purchases.
HTC's Desire brand has hung on through two revisions of the "company-wide" One moniker, oddly adopting features and style queues from the flagship series while aiming for a lower price point. So it is with the latest Desire phones to come to Verizon, the 526 and 626. Verizon announced the pair earlier today, with the cheaper Desire 526 going on sale tomorrow (August 13th) and the Desire 626 available "in the coming weeks."
The 526 is the cheaper of the two phones, with a 4.7-inch 960x540 screen and an 8-megapixel camera (according to Verizon's short press release). HTC's website has rather more information, revealing a Snapdragon 210 processor, 1.5GB of RAM, 8GB of storage plus a MicroSD card slot, a rather diminutive 2000mAh battery, and a 2MP front-facing camera.
The time has come. Dear people who use Twitter as their instant messenger of choice, your direct messages are no longer limited to 140 characters. Twitter announced today that it has removed the restriction and will begin rolling out the change to both Android and iOS.
Motorola briefly posted a tweet shortly ago that included a September 3rd release date for the new Moto X Pure in the US. It took the tweet down, and it's not clear why. It doesn't matter, though. The secret is out.