It's Update Wednesday, and you know what that means. Yes, time to sideload some APKs, because staged rollouts are lame. First on your to-do list is the new My Tracks update, which runners will be happy to see has a new map option. You can now see your path with an "Earth" overlay.
Left: Old, Right three: New Read More
Frequent travelers know Google Maps all too well. It's one of the most widely used apps on Android for a reason. A brand new update to version 9.8 just turned up, and there are a few notable changes to take a look at. This release appears to be dedicated to fine-tuning different parts of the interface, so there aren't any big changes here. Read More
Google Keep was one of the first apps to add support for the Android Wear platform, giving users a quick, simple, and mostly effortless way to record short notes without reaching for a smartphone. Since then, the main application has seen several updates, but the Wear-specific companion app has gone mostly unchanged. With the latest update, the tables have been turned, and it's time for the Wear app to go through a moderately sizeable refresh. Read More
Google hasn't updated Chrome Remote Desktop on Android for a while, but today it's jumping from v39 to v43 to match the latest Chrome release. The good news is the app no longer looks like a relic from the holo age, but I'm not seeing any feature additions as of yet.
Left: Old, Right: New Read More
Google's mobile version of Chrome has become the de facto standard browser for Android, but never let it be said that it's the only option. Mozilla Firefox, which predates Chrome on both desktop platforms and Android, has been downloaded from the Play Store 100 million times. Mozilla decided to toast the occasion on its official blog.
Aside from the obvious user interface differences, the Android version of Firefox has gradually added compelling features like integration with synced Mozilla services (which are a godsend if you use the desktop browser as your primary web interface), extra user-accessible tools like a fullscreen switch, customized search engines, and add-ons that expand the base app's functionality. Read More
The Play Store is where you go to watch your other apps get updated, but occasionally it's nice to sit back and watch as the store gets its own renovation. Sometimes the changes are stark. Other times, there are just a few new lights here or there.
In version 5.4, it's not about what's been added, but what's been taken away. The notification bar has lost its color. Now Play Store pages appear with banner images that reach towards the top of the screen. Read More
This update Wednesday brings the first big change to Keep in a few months. Google's note/list app has been bumped to v3.1 and it includes two new features—labels and recurring reminders.
That mysterious LMY47E build of Android 5.1 for the Nexus 6 has arrived on Google's factory image download page. This build leaked online as an RSD image last week, but it wasn't clear what its purpose was. It's not really clear now either, but you can download and probably flash it.
The Google Search app plays host to quite a few features and capabilities we take for granted on our phones, especially for anybody that makes extensive use of Google Now and the Google Launcher. An update just started rolling out that brings the app up to v4.3, but there aren't any immediately obvious changes in this release, at least not from a user-facing perspective. It's likely that this release is preparing for the soon to be open Cards API that will allow developers to insert their own content into the Google Now stream. Read More