Google's Chrome browser is our go-to web tool on Android, but there are plenty of reasons not to like it, like the way the latest version hides the refresh button in a drop-down menu. For those users who aren't happy with the status quo, one of the more refreshing alternatives is Javelin, and independent browser made with a unique interface and Material Design visual elements. The latest update (4.1.3) includes some more advanced bookmarks and syncing features.
When Today Calendar first launched into the Play Store nearly half a year ago, it already looked pretty spiffy. But then Google I/O happened and the Big G showed off how different the next version of Android will look. Since then, developer Jack Underwood and Android Police's own Liam Spradlin have brought in a sweeping set of UI changes inspired by Google's new design guidelines. This isn't exactly what Android L apps will look like, but it's a good taste until they actually arrive.
Bank of America's official Android app has been able to cash checks by taking photos of them for the last few years. It's an extremely useful feature that eliminates one of the last common reasons to stand in a teller line. It's also bloody frustrating, at least with Bank of America's implementation - I'm a customer, and I've often had to find a solid black backdrop and a couple of table lamps just to make the photo clear enough for BofA's strangely picky system.
Aviary is one of the more popular mobile image editors out there, and now it's added a feature that, if you haven't used the app before, will probably blow your mind to hear is only just now getting added. Ahem, without further ado, the latest version of Aviary allow users to undo.
Allow that to sink in.
That's right, now users can undo and redo changes to pictures by swiping left or right after applying a tweak.
Several years back this company called Square produced a product that let people accept credit card payments on their smartphones using this portable swiper-thingy that plugs into the device's headphone jack. PayPal saw this and decided that it wanted in on this action, so it produced a similar offering known as PayPal Here. The solution worked with phones, but many businesses relying on such products for point-of-sale like to use tablets instead.
Before today, the official Starbucks app was perfectly serviceable - in fact, I'd say it was better than most retail apps. You can store pre-paid Starbucks cards in the app and pay with them, see your rewards for being a loyal customer, and find coffee shops with the built-in map (in case you can't see one by turning your head from side to side). But today's sizeable update from version 2.4 to 2.7 adds some neat stuff, most notably the ability to tip your coffee minion.
In addition to a handful of new Chromecast-supported apps announced by Google, Sling Media is getting in on the action. According to this blog post, the Slingplayer app for Android smartphones now has Chromecasting capability. Though the latest update for the app itself was way back in July, Chromecast support is often enabled via a server-side switch, so it should be working now. Compatible Sling hardware includes the Slingbox M1, 350, 500, and SlingTV.
Here's a Google app that few people would judge you for not knowing about. There's this thing formerly known as Maps Engine that lets people create custom maps and share them with others. Now it goes by the name of My Maps. And, put bluntly, it's a change that makes sense. This conveys to users what the app actually does. Map Engine? Not so much.
To go with the name change, Google has changed the app's icon as well.
Pandora is currently rolling out a redesigned version of its Android app that may just cause more than a few double takes. The Internet radio service has looked largely the same on Android for a few years now, but the UI introduced in 5.5 is strikingly different - at first, at least. This change is stark, but it's only surface deep.
The Pandora app has been stripped of its blue gradients.