Notifications have been one of the areas that Android has excelled in since day one. In Jelly Bean, that feature got a boost with the ability to expand a one-line entry, turning it into what is essentially a widget. Quickly happens to be one of the neatest uses we've seen of this new feature. This app creates a persistent notification in your shade that can be expanded to reveal an app launcher.
Did you know that, since the last update to Google Search, developers have been able to utilize offline voice recognition? Previously, any non-system app that wasn't an IME (Input Method Editor) that hoped to recognize your voice without a web connection needed a rather kludgy typing overlay. Since the update though, apps can hear and interpret not just your words, but essentially any command that doesn't explicitly require web access.
Amazon isn't exactly impartial when it comes to tablets... you may have heard about this little thing called the Kindle Fire. But they aren't ones to let competition get in the way of a little profit, which is why the latest update to their storefront app includes compatibility with a plethora of new Android tablets, including the coveted Nexus 10. Previously it was limited to Android 4.1 tablets with very specific resolutions.
Last summer, we saw the launch of Tweet Lanes – a beautiful, functional Twitter app that – due to Twitter's reformed API – ceased active development just a few months ago. Today, Chris Lacy has issued a "further update" on the status of development, writing in a post to Google+ "just because I am no longer actively developing Tweet Lanes doesn't mean that development of the app has to stop."
Yes, after "countless requests" to do so (and an offer to sell), Lacy has taken the project open source – opening up the TL client itself, its SocialNetLib library, and its associated AppEngine project.
No one ever accused Facebook of being swift or thorough with its app updates, but they're at least usually very welcome when they arrive. Back in 2011, the social network introduced 'Timeline', the now-mandatory profile layout that gives you one giant photo at the top, with a secondary profile picture in the bottom-left corner. Up until recently, you couldn't change your cover photo on mobile. Now, in version 2.2, you can.
We'll do our best to stay away from spoilers for the newly-released Die Hard movie (Happy Valentine's Day!), but the companion endless-runner game Fox just released to the Play Store isn't doing us any favors on that front. The app—which is somewhat shadily referred to as simply "Die Hard", trading on the name of greater movies—takes inspiration from titles like Temple Run. Just, not enough inspiration. (Note: some screenshots are very slightly spoiler-y, so if you're still planning on seeing the movie and you're a purist, you might want to wait to hit up the source link.)
One of the first things you'll notice about this game versus other endless runner titles is that it's in landscape mode.
Back in December, Media Monkey released a beta of the Android version of the media player app that received a level of success on the desktop. It still packs the same ability to tag and run scripts that the original possessed. Now it's arrived on the Play Store, which should make rolling out bug fixes much easier.
Speaking of bug fixes, the most recent set includes ensuring that playback position will be remembered, improving memory utilization and preventing duplicate tracks.
As if there weren't enough contenders out there for music subscription service, Slacker Radio has updated its business model. You can still get the standard ad-supported radio station features that were always available. However the company has added a Spotify-like buffet option for $10/month. Pony up the dough and you can remove all ads and listen to as many tracks as you want.
The combination is pretty powerful, as one of the biggest complaints over Spotify is its discovery problems.
There's little doubt that Pokémon is the very best at separating parents from money. Like no franchise ever was. Getting Nintendo to relinquish control of content, though, is a real test. It doesn't generally stream its show for free without good cause. Today, however, it's available across the land. The animated series can now be streamed to Android handsets far and wide.
Admittedly Pokémon licensing is something I don't understand, but it's pretty powerful that this app has free episodes inside.