The American Red Cross has been releasing a series of apps to help people deal with disasters. We've already seen apps dedicated to hurricanes and earthquakes, as well as one for first aid. The fourth app in the series just hit he Play Store, and this one's designed to keep people safe during a wildfire.
Much like the Hurricane and Earthquake apps, Wildfires can alert users of nearby fires and offer quick ways to stay safe:
Step-by-step instructions let you know what to do even before/during/after an wildfire, even if no data connectivity.
You'd be forgiven for not knowing exactly what Color is or does. The sordid history of this app, and its parent company Color Labs, is a complicated one. Headed by Bill Nguyen, famous for founding Lala, the incredible music streaming service that was purchased by Apple and promptly closed down, Color Labs received $41 million in funding for its initial app Color for Facebook. Several fundamental changes and a year and a half later, the company is reportedly going to close the books on itself. Read More
One of the biggest drawbacks to buying apps on things like the Play Store is wondering if it does what you need it to do before you put your money on the line. AppSurfer, an India-based startup, is building a platform to alleviate this concern and give developers a web-based tool to let users test drive their apps before they buy. If this sounds familiar, it's because Amazon allows customers to do this very thing on its Appstore. Read More
It seems like you can't go a day anymore without something new being added to Google+. Today, the mobile app is seeing an update that brings some much-requested features, including the ability to manage Pages from mobile. The method is a little wonky. Unlike on the web version, you can't just hop over to a page you're managing. You have to manually log out then log back in, at which point you will be asked what profile or page you want to control. Read More
According to a Czech press release unearthed by The Verge, Microsoft may be readying native Office apps for Android. As of right now, the only programs that have mobile versions on the Play Store are OneNote and Lync. Otherwise known as "the ones very few people care about." If this report is to be believed, though, we may see native versions of the entire Office suite.
According to the Verge's translations, Microsoft said this:
"In addition to Windows, Office will be also available on other operating systems, Windows Phone, Windows RT, Mac OS, Android, iOS and Symbian"
Redmond, by way of the Czech Republic, also pointed out that there would be new versions of its Office Web Apps. Read More
There are no shortage of keyboard replacements on the market. Between SwiftKey, Swype, and the various manufacturer-skinned versions, you can't help but have three or four options on your phone. Today's latest entrant, iKnowU, still manages to stand out with the ability to predict entire phrases and highlighting of the next letters it thinks you're going to type. Pretty impressive.
Of course, the feature that catches our eye most of all is phrase prediction. Read More
Amazon, in an effort to continue expanding its services globally, announced today that its Android app distribution service, the Amazon Appstore, is heading for Japan.
The shopping and media giant is now inviting developers to submit their apps and games for distribution in Japan, giving them the chance to participate in a new market with Amazon and "expand their business." Jim Adkins, VP of the Appstore, explained:
Opening our portal to app and game developers looking to reach Japanese customers is an important milestone as we strive to serve consumers and developers globally.
For the uninitiated, 2Checkout is a web-based storefront service that allows users to both create an online checkout system for their products as well as handle merchant services like credit card payments. If you've ever tried to set up your own shop, you know how difficult it can be to get all the moving parts together. Now, 2Checkout is making it even easier with the release of its mobile app that will allow sellers to track sales, issue refunds, and even contact customers. Read More
Amtrak, aiming to give you a "new way to take the train," released an official app to the Play Store recently.
The (logically named) Amtrak app allows passengers to plan their entire train excursion, from buying tickets (which can be displayed right on your device) to navigating to a nearby station, changing/upgrading seat selections, checking train schedules, and using an Amtrak Guest Rewards account.
"Optimized for Android," the app carries a holo-ish interface with swiping tabs, proper navigation and scrolling, and all the visual flair you may expect from an app in line with Android's design guidelines. Read More