Google+, for all the criticism it has garnered from the "hip" tech crowd, has been an incredibly important product for the search giant since its unveiling back in 2011. Remember when you had to get an invite to join Google+? How far we've come.
But Google+ quickly became more than just Google+. The Hangouts messaging platform and, later, Google+ Photos were key leaps forward for Google in two areas where the company was arguably becoming stagnant.
It's been a number of months since the Google Now Launcher debuted in the Play Store as an exclusive for Nexus and Google Play Experience devices, but today that changes. The newest update has opened up official access to all devices running Android 4.1 or higher.
By now, you've probably heard a lot about Amazon's Fire Phone. I figure that most people aren't really curious about what the overall phone is like – if you've used a Kindle Fire/HD/HDX then you already know. It's about Amazon services and a weird launcher layout thing. Most people are curious about the four front-facing cameras and Dynamic Perspective. I'm with you on that – that's exactly what I was curious about before getting this phone for review.
Nutrisystem's NuMi is an online program that caters itself to a person's lifestyle in order to help them lose weight. The site logs a person's meals, water consumption, activities, and other trackable things. It then uses this information to make meal recommendations, providing thousands of recipes. Now Nutrisystem has consolidated this offering into a mobile form with its newly available Android app.
Most of us approach Amazon as consumers. Whether it's a physical product or some digital goodie, we want to buy everything we can get our hands on. The site loves this about us, so it's made itself so compelling to use that the thought of shopping elsewhere is often proceeded by "Meh, I'll check Amazon first." The thing is, Amazon's selection wouldn't be nearly as comprehensive without the many merchants who also use the site to sell their wares.
You would think the pace of Wear apps would slow down after the initial rush to be the first to do one thing or another, but no. Bigno. The flow of new Wear-enabled apps has yet to abate, so the roundup is back a little early to show you what's cool and new in the Android Wear universe.
HP is gearing up to unveil a smartwatch in cooperation with luxury goods discount site Gilt and awarded men's fashion designer Michael Bastian. The watch will work with both Android and iOS devices, and HP is in charge of heading up the software effort. That means, yes, that this watch will 100% definitely not run Android Wear, but could quite possibly be Android-based.
Fashionista seems to have been given advanced access to information about the watch, which will "[allow] the wearer to receive email and text message notifications, control music remotely and check weather, stocks and sports updates." The teaser image, below, does look pretty nice.
There's always a free app of the day in the Amazon Appstore, but sometimes consumers are treated to multiple giveaways on the site at the same time. Today's free app, Sorcery, is joined by Carcassonne, which just happens to be going for the glorious price of $0.00 at the same time.
The Samsung Gear Live got an extra OTA update a few weeks ago, and now it looks like it's the G Watch's turn. There are scattered reports today of an OTA update rolling out with build number KMV78Y. The current build is KMV78V.