A late-night update to Google Maps on Tuesday brought the version up to 9.21. Despite a moderate bump to the version number, this appears to be a relatively minor release. Of course, knowing the Maps team, we'll end up with an update in a few days with an official changelog that includes at least a couple more interesting additions. In the meantime, there's a new setting to control notifications about responses to your edits. Maps has also expanded its list of supported countries for the recently released Driving Mode and the "Explore around you" feature. Read More
Version 1.50 of YouTube Kids started rolling out early Thursday morning. This update brings a really great new feature, and parents are going to love it. It's now possible to pause the watch history of YouTube Kids, and it doesn't affect the rest of your YouTube apps. A teardown also shows that parents will soon enjoy the benefits of YouTube Red, as well. As usual, if the update hasn't hit your account yet, jump to the bottom of the post to find a download link. Read More
Street View is a fun digital tool for exploring the huge world we live on. An update to version 220.127.116.11257855 began rolling out earlier this week, and in addition to bringing far too many digits, it also has a few new features, a few visual tweaks, and improved support for spherical cameras. It looks like this one is rolling out pretty fast, but if you're in need of a download link, it's at the bottom of the post. Read More
Many of us are anxiously awaiting the official launch of Podcasts in Play Music. While a few people have already been given an accidental early look, there are good reasons to be confident that the real launch will happen sometime in the next week and a half. It should come as no surprise that the latest update to the Play Music app happens to include a few fixes and features for podcast listeners. On top of that, Google is preparing for an exclusive deal with the BRIT Awards.
For those that want to know about new features, it doesn't look like there's anything to talk about right now. Read More
Before Skype was known for video, it was known for placing calls. These began as one-on-one exchanges, but eventually the service started letting multiple users converse in groups. Then the service introduced the ability to chat in groups over video, but only on desktop platforms. Now that's changing. Read More
It's pretty rare that we get to talk about Google's text-to-speech engine. Updates are fairly uncommon and most of them can be summarized as bug fixes and performance improvements. But every once in a while there's an update that brings a pretty cool new feature to this workhorse of an app. Version 3.8 adds one of the top requests to speech output: user selectable gender and voice variations for each language.
The official changelog has been posted for TTS v3.8. It mentions support for seven new languages, higher quality speech output, faster speech for offline voices, an updated Indian English voice, and the usual bug fixes and performance improvements. Read More
For the next week and a half, Spotify is giving people in the US and the UK who have never tried Premium a chance to get a free Chromecast if they sign up for three months, which comes out to $29.97 or £29.97. The company clearly hopes you will enjoy the experience enough to, at the very least, not notice that you forgot to cancel your subscription when the time is up. The deal ends February 28th. Spotify will send out an email within 7 days of your accepting the offer. Read More
Smartphones have replaced digital cameras as the primary way millions of people take photos. But these days, many devices don't let users pop in a microSD card to store their photos as they would on a dedicated device. Companies have come up with an alternative solution by letting you upload and store your images on their servers.
Apple has iCloud, and Google has Google Photos. Dropbox, Microsoft, and most any other service that lets you back up files remotely will gladly host all of your photos too. Flickr is an option that's dedicated exclusively to your photos, and so is Everalbum. Read More
Running remote desktop software from an Android device has a different purpose than doing the same from a traditional PC. When you're connecting from a laptop, you're probably accessing an application at home or work that only exists on that one machine. But on Android, you have the option to greatly expand what your phone or tablet can do.
In a way, it feels like cheating. Read More