Google's remote application for controlling Android TV with your smartphone is... OK. It's adequate. It beats inputting passwords letter-by-letter with a physical remote, and that's about all you can say in praise of the app. While it lets you perform a voice search, it won't launch TV apps without going back to the home screen, and its trackpad isn't a cursor (as some apps might benefit from), it's just a gesture pad. Read More
Apps with tens of millions of users tend to either spend a lot of time and effort conforming to Android's visual standards... or spend none at all, considering their own cross-platform UI more important. Dropbox has tended to fall into the former category, but it's taken them a while to get on board with the Material Design standards introduced with Android 5.0. That changes today: version 220.127.116.11 adds a new UI that follows the Material Design playbook. Read More
Our long national nightmare is finally over—Google has updated Maps with a translucent status bar. No more will you stare at that flat black status bar and curse your life and everyone in it.
Left: old, Right: new Read More
Version 5.5 of Google+ is straightforward. About as straightforward as it gets, really. So let's just get to it.
When you select the help option at the bottom of the drop-down menu, the app will no longer shoot you out to a help page tucked inside a web browser. Now you can view that same content directly inside the app. The posts won't look drastically different, but at least Google+ will stop passing you around like a basketball downcourt. Read More
There's a lot to cover on Update Wednesdays, so sometimes things slip onto Thursdays. Some of you have already played around with these files, but here's an overview of what has changed.
Google Docs and Slides now let you insert images directly into your reports and presentations. You can import photos from your gallery or snap one on the spot. Read More
Android TV may look different from vanilla Android, but underneath that tiled interface is the same operating system you know and love. That means it's possible to sideload whatever APKs you want. The thing is, without a touchscreen, most of them are pretty useless.
Take the regular Amazon Instant Video app. Besides requiring that you have the general Amazon app installed first, it fails to provide a passable experience on Android TV (which lacks an officially sanctioned Instant Video app because Amazon). Read More
Google Fit users, it's time to get off your butts and update the activity-tracking app. Version 1.52 has rolled into the Play Store, and it's ready to hit the gym with a new set of clothes and one of those fancy wristbands.
For starters, Fit can now track distances and calories. Fire up the app to see how far you've gone and how much you've burned in the process. Google has tweaked the look a bit, and you can now group your fitness history by days, weeks, and months. Read More
Google I/O 2015 is drawing ever closer, and that means it's time to start lining things up for the big event. As tradition dictates, Google is working on a fresh update to the Google I/O app. We've now got a beta release of the app, which just started rolling out to a small group of people who signed up last year. Read More