It was just six weeks ago that we featured Rockmelt, an Android app with a bit of an identity crisis. It didn't know whether it wanted to be an RSS reader or a browser (but it did know it wanted to look like Pinterest). Well, the eponymous company that makes Rockmelt is the latest in a series of acquisitions by Yahoo. And they've killed the Android app deader than a dove at an NRA convention.
Hi. Welcome to the future. Mountain View, California, 2012. I'm telling you it's great here. You've got a location-aware, always-connected supercomputer in your pocket. What good is it, though, if you're only ever using it to check what's going on in Facebook land? Enter Field Trip, the latest app to be released by Google (via the obscure Niantic Labs), which offers you information about all the things around you, including trivia, facts about local monuments, restaurant reviews, and more.
Mapsaurus, released today by a developer team of the same name, is perhaps the new app to end all new apps. By pairing an interactive map of Google's Play Store with an intuitive UX, Mapsaurus takes app discovery to a new level – not just of ease, but also of convenience.
The app, which promises to help users "discover apps you never would have known to search for," can branch out an interactive web of apps and games based on apps you already have installed, curated subcategories, or general categories and function sets.
In the world of the future, where music is as easily accessible as air, the new bread and butter of the music industry is discovery. While services like Turntable.fm center around small social gatherings, and Pandora uses fancy algorithms to predict your tastes, 8tracks asks "Um, hey, what was wrong with how radio worked? Also, do you guys like tablets?" The answers, of course, are "You know, that's a good point," and "Um, YEAH."
8tracks was already a great service centered around user-created playlists.
In the information age, discovery is a profitable trade. Google even built its fortune on discovering new and relevant info. As everyone and their mother begins sharing everything about their lives online, startups and large corporations alike have a new source of data to pull from. Enter Likes!, an app that uses things your friends and family have liked on Facebook to help you discover restaurants, movies, events, and more.
The app is a great concept.
HowStuffWorks.com, together with its numerous video and podcast series, like the hilarious Stuff You Should Know, is arguably one of the most interesting websites on the Internet. It's no wonder - HSW is owned by Discovery Communications, which you may recognize from, oh, I don't know, the Discovery channel. Sometime ago, Discovery finally decided that Android users are not discovering enough and not figuring out exactly how all of this stuff works, and got to work on a dedicated HowStuffWorks app.
As the results of our Friday poll show, quite a few of you aren't convinced by Google's official Android Market Web Store; it looks like a lot of people are sticking with good old AppBrain. Well you AppBrain fans will be happy to hear that one of the site's best features - Fast Web Installer - has finally returned after being disabled back in November of 2010.
Google's web-based Android Market announcement earlier this week was by all means no surprise to anyone - we've been waiting for it to arrive ever since its announcement at last year's Google I/O. In the meantime, alternative web-based markets, such as AppBrain.com, have skyrocketed in popularity because they allowed Android users to browse apps and games from their computers rather than being confined to their small phone screens. Even more importantly, alternative web markets had full control over app presentation, which allowed them to develop their own app discovery mechanisms.