Just under two months ago, the American Red Cross released a genuinely impressive app called First Aid. As you'd guess from the name, it's an app dedicated to helping you through medical emergencies; what you wouldn't guess from the name is just how good of an app it is.
Ditto for the organization's eponymous new app, Hurricane. Dedicated to helping you monitor and prepare for hurricanes coming through your area, the app looks every bit as well done as First Aid, and comes with a long list of features:
- Step-by-step instructions let you know what to do even if the cell towers are down and the power is out.
Listen, the relatively popular, if neglected, podcast app from Google has been surreptitiously pulled from the Play Store recently. It's unclear just how long ago Google pulled it (though it appears to be within the last week or so), and users are looking everywhere for it. There is also no indication on what Google has planned for it from here on out. We've reached out to Google for comment but have not heard back as of publication.
Sudo Make Me An App has just released Sudo QuickLaunch to the Play Store, an app that handily replaces Google Search's swipe-up gesture in Jelly Bean with a list of your favorite apps.
If you're like me, you hit the search bar in Jelly Bean more often than you swipe up to get to Google Search, so Sudo QuickLaunch is a welcome addition that not only makes that gesture useful, but can keep your home screen clutter-free.
The Spotify Android app typically lags behind not only its counterpart on other platforms, but even its own desktop app. One of the nicest features that the streaming service offers on the desktop is its Radio services. Using your own selections as a starting point, Spotify will put together automated playlists based on your taste. You know, like Pandora. As of today's update, the Radio functions are not only available on mobile but are even accessible even if you don't have Spotify Premium.
One of the great things about Android's ecosystem is the number of indie developers who are able to enter the market successfully, providing a great product and inspiring would-be developers to join in. For many though, Android development in general is a mysterious topic. How an app or game goes from an idea to an entry in the Play Store is unknown, but (thankfully) not unknowable.
Of course, considering how major development studios bring apps to life doesn't require too much thought – major companies like EA, Disney, or Rockstar have no problem hiring designers and developers to crank out and maintain polished apps.
The games are underway in London and the whole world is watching. If you'd like to follow the course of the events without spending the next couple weeks glued to your television, Yahoo! may just have you covered. The app is decidedly slick-looking, though some users have reported some trouble with the app, however in our test runs, it's worked adequately. Your mileage may vary.
The app has sections for news, photos, and quick access to which countries have won what medals for which events.
Word Lens, the sometimes jittery but generally impressive visual language translator, is getting in the Olympic spirit. For a limited time, the language packs—which are acquired via in-app purchases to unlock full translation support—are being offered for $2.99 per pack, which is $2 off the normal price of $4.99. Huzzah!
It comes at a particularly poignant time. As the Olympic games get underway and the world remembers there's more that the nations of earth do together than wage war and make gadgets, Word Lens can be helpful in breaking down the language barrier and acting as a catalyst for that type of international camaraderie.
The Nexus Q, unveiled at this year's I/O conference to a somewhat unsure audience, is a device that looks to unify your living room's media experience, allowing the streaming of all your Play Store content to connected speakers and TVs, while also allowing for remote control from your (or your friends') Android devices.
One of the Nexus Q's main claims to fame is that it allows anyone in the room to connect and share Play Store content quickly and easily.
The Google Dashboard is a handy tool for keeping up with what information Google has stored for you in its various different products. One piece of the handy information, though, has taken a while to become available but it's there now: your Android devices. It's unclear if this feature has been around for a while, but either way, it's useful. If you'd like to see which devices are registered with Google, and more interestingly, which apps on those devices have backups stored on Google's servers, you can do so from your dashboard.
Alright, follow me on this one. Pushover is an app for Android that allows web apps, scripts, and a ton of other fancy developer things to plug in to your notification shade on your phone or tablet. Ifttt (short for 'If This, Then That') is a web app that lets you script actions that will be performed when predetermined conditions like new emails, new dropbox files, new RSS feed posts, etc., are met.