Next month will be the two-year anniversary of Gmail becoming the most widely used email service on the planet. While it remains the uncontested champion, the Gmail app for Android struck its own accomplishment last week as it became the first conventional app in the Play Store to reach 1 billion downloads. Technically, the Google Play services package crossed the same mark back in January, but it is automatically installed on any device equipped with the Play Store and running Android 2.2 or higher.
HTC's upcoming flagship is leaking left and right in all sorts of ways. We've seen press images from numerous carriers, and there was that long video "review" as well. Now we've got something you can enjoy on your own device. The wallpapers and sounds from the M8 have appeared online, and you can grab them now.
The wallpapers have a mix of geometric and nature themes – close-ups of flowers, plants, and abstract lines.
The goodies from Android 4.4 continue to trickle out even before the Nexus 5 reaches buyers. This time it's the updated Google Keyboard (v2.0), and you can install it right now over top of the old version. This updated keyboard adds a feature that will be familiar to anyone who has spent time with SwiftKey recently.
The first thing you'll notice with the new keyboard is that the swiping trail is now white instead of Holo-blue.
Several days ago, I started a series of rumor posts on my personal Google+ account discussing some Android rumors I felt were interesting enough to share, but didn't feel confident enough yet to do so here on the site. The posts were heavily prefixed with disclaimers that none of them may turn out to be true but that I had a certain level of confidence to talk about them in public unofficially.
Scarcely a day has passed since the Google Play Edition Galaxy S4 and HTC One went on sale, and their software bits are already floating around online. You can grab the files to get the new red SunBeam live wallpaper, boot animation, and updated camera app on your device. These are only confirmed working on AOSP-based devices, and 4.1.2 TouchWiz in the case of the camera. Do be careful!
The Google Glass Explorer program is all about experimentation, hacking, and learning. With that in mind, Google has already posted the factory image for the XE6 update from earlier today. Hooray for openness! You know... if you're lucky enough to be in the super-exclusive Explorer program.
Back in January, we learned that if you want to be a developer and avoid leaving money on the table, you need to be on both Android and iOS. One or the other isn't going to cut it. However, according to AppAnnie, if you have to choose just one platform, Android is still struggling to prove it's the one you should go with.
According to the report, Play Store downloads are nearing App Store levels, reaching close to 90% as much as the iOS store.
I don't know about you, but when I think of the holidays, my mind immediately jumps to gang violence, prostitutes and M ratings. Which is great for me, because Grand Theft Auto III (normally $4.99) and Max Payne Mobile (normally $2.99) are both on sale for just a dollar each on the Play Store right now. God bless us, everyone indeed!
If you decide to buy these games, be sure to clear out plenty of space on your device.
You may remember that in December of last year, Google announced they had surpassed 10 billion app downloads in the Play Store, and had a $0.10 sale to celebrate. Today, the company is announcing that the Play Store has hit a whopping 25 billion app downloads. It took over 3 years to hit 10 billion; it took just 9 months more to hit 25 billion.
Accordingly, the Play Store is again having a sale for the next five days, with many products discounted to just $0.25: