Yesterday brought a brand new update to the Play Store, bringing the version up to 5.10.29. There are some new UI elements, even if most of us aren't allowed to see them yet, and we can now copy text from the what's new and description sections. Naturally, Google included a few hidden tricks and treats just waiting to be discovered. We can expect to see books organized by series, apps described with size, and some friendlier welcome and exploration messages.
Disclaimer: Teardowns are necessarily speculative and usually based on incomplete evidence. It's possible that the guesses made here are totally and completely wrong.
Hollywood is bringing The Martian by Andy Weir to life on the big screen in a few months, but you can get the original novel for a pittance if you act quick. This book is usually $9.99 on Google Play, but it's on sale for $1.99 right now. Amazon has also lowered its price to match, as it tends to do.
A good eBook reading experience isn't defined solely by what you're reading, the device you're reading it on, or a couple of settings – it's defined by all of those things; and as one of those things changes, the others may have to change along with it. If you're popping open a copy of Hitchhikers Guide for the third time, you might have to tinker with the background color and font so a full page of text is comfortable to read. On the other hand, those options don't make sense when you're looking at graphic panels from the latest issue of The Walking Dead.
The media playback situation on Android Auto is not great, but it's a little better today now that Audiobooks.com works in the car. This is somehow the first audio book source with proper support for Google's car platform. Hey Audible, maybe you want to get on that too? Thanks.
As much as we all love to live in a digital world, there's just no replacing books. Sure, ebooks are good - but there's something awesome about having a physical copy and flipping through the pages. That's especially true if you're already using your computer for something else - you know, like work. Let me give an example.
Let's say you're a developer, and you're working on...something. You're having issues squashing a bug or getting a specific feature to work the way you want. Then you remember that you have this killer book from Packt Publishing on the shelf behind you that covers the very thing you're having an issue with you.
The Goodreads app wasn't bad when it came out, but it's been far behind the times pretty much ever since. With the most recent update, however, it's getting a fresh coat of paint with a number of subtle changes. It's not material, but it's creeping slowly in that direction.
Niantic Labs is mostly known for the game Ingress, and now the Google internal startup has announced its next project. The upcoming Endgame: Proving Ground is another immersive alternative reality experience, but this time it's part of a larger fictional world. This game will take place in the Endgame universe created with the help of author James Frey.
We are, at this point, familiar with fake apps in the Play Store—they pop up from time to time, but Google swiftly eliminates them. It seems like for all its efforts in cleaning up the Play Store, Google has a blind spot when it comes to books. There are multiple publisher accounts in Google Play Books that claim to offer cracked APKs for a dollar or two, and people are buying them. Instead of getting a cheap game, all people are getting is disappointment and malware.
I'm no Android developer, but I figure if I wanted to get started, I'd check out some videos and pick up a couple of books. That leads to the obvious question: where are these things? Packt, a publisher of both eBooks and good old-fashioned print ones, is currently offering its full catalog of development-oriented works for $5 each (in digital format only). It's also offering a few videos at the same price.