Nothing can break a good app quicker than an ugly interface. Conversely, a subpar app can be thrown into the limelight thanks to a beautiful UI. The point is: we're all slightly vain and love to look at pretty things. If you're a developer, making your app visually appealing is absolutely clutch for success; if you're just not sure where to start, however, we've got a book that should be just what the doctor ordered: Android User Interface: Turning Ideas and Sketches into Beautifully Designed Apps ($25, Amazon). Read More
Syrian Electronic Army, a hacking group responsible for several visible attacks in the last few weeks, has evidently taken control of BSkyB's Sky apps in the Play Store, replacing the promo headers with SEA's logo, and the app descriptions with "Syrian Electronic Army Was Here."
In a tweet earlier, BSkyB's Twitter account (which we now know was also compromised) warned its users to uninstall all Sky apps, as they "were hacked and replaced." Indeed, BSkyB's apk files were replaced by the hacking group. Read More
Between Hangouts, the gorgeous new Maps, Play Music All Access, and everything else discussed in I/O's opening keynote this morning, several revisions to the Play Store developer's console were announced.
Perhaps the most interesting addition to the console will be an organized method for alpha and beta testing, and staged rollouts. Basically, developers can select alpha and beta testers, receiving all feedback directly (instead of through reviews) and, when the time comes, roll out the app to certain percentages of the user base. Read More
Right off the bat here at Google I/O, the company is telling developers about some awesome new tools for apps. A new series of APIs will enable a variety of new services for both developers and end users. Here are some of the highlights.
Version 2 of the Location API, which includes:
- Geofencing (assigning triggers to specific geographical locations) and up to 100 fences per app
- a fused location provider, which should allow for active location gathering at just 1% battery drain per hour or increased accuracy
- Activity recognition - API can recognize if users are walking, biking, driving, et cetera.
Holy cow! If you write Android apps, you need to look over here right now. You've probably heard of AIDE, a complete development environment that runs on and builds for Android. While it was pretty impressive before, you won't believe what the appfour GmbH team has in store now. Just today, version 2.0 of the Android IDE was pushed to the Play Store with support for building native apps with C/C++, quick previews of XML layouts, and a cleaner and even more Holo-themed interface, along with major enhancements to Git. Read More
As usual Google has updated monthly platform distribution numbers for Android in its developer dashboard. The numbers, based on devices accessing the Play Store over the last 14 days (ending May 1st), tell developers which versions of Android are most prevalent, and which are on the decline.
This month, as last month, we're seeing a decline in Gingerbread and a rise in Jelly Bean. Gingerbread has dropped from 39.8% to 38.5%, a 1.3% drop for those keeping tally at home. Read More
Earlier today, Google started pushing some new open source code to AOSP (Android Open Source Project) marked with 2 new tags: android-4.2.2_r1.1 and android-4.2.2_r1.2. The build number corresponding to the 4.2.2_r1.2 release is JDQ39E.
The dates you see here are commit dates, not dates the commits were made public (which is today, April 17th 2013)
After weeding out the changes from the commit logs, it looks like all of them are, as expected, very minor. Read More
We've enjoyed Deflecticon, the 3D variant on the classic Pong game with some fantastic graphics and totally warped perspective. In a sad turn of events, though, the developers have stated that they will no longer be able to support the game. Given this situation, they're making it available entirely for free in an as-is state. Pretty cool, devs!
While obviously we wouldn't expect this of everyone, it is nice to see one publisher be up front about the fact that no more updates will be coming, so if something doesn't work it will not work forever. Read More
Do you have an extra $649 burning a hole in your pocket? Do you have a hankering for a carrier and bootloader-unlocked HTC One? If so, we've got some news for you. HTC just opened up pre-sales for the HTC One Developer Edition to US customers.
- Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 processor
- 2 GB RAM
- 64 GB of storage
- Front-facing stereo speakers
- Two dual-membrane microphones for recording
- Multiple frequency compatibility:
- HSPA/WCDMA: 850/1900/2100 MHz
- GSM/GPRS/EDGE: 850/900/1800/1900 MHz
- LTE: 700/850/AWS/1900 MHz (US)
Back in March, HTC announced plans to sell a limited quantity of the unlocked HTC One. Read More
Today, Google launched a couple new features for developers that will give them a lot more flexibility in storing data associated with apps. For starters, using what's called "app data folders," a developer can store important files in a user's Drive storage space. This is huge news as, up until this point, the main method for backing up data has been the Backup API, which is great for small things that are 1-2MB or so, but isn't really sufficient for larger files. Read More