On the eve of I/O, Google managed to finalize deals with Universal Music Group and Sony Music Entertainment to bring a music subscription service to both YouTube and Google Play, according to a report by The Verge that is now being corroborated by The Wall Street Journal. If everything goes smoothly, a preview or launch of the new service tomorrow isn't out of the question. The Journal similarly says the streaming solution could launch "as soon as this week." That would give Google a substantial leg up over Apple, which is still in the process of negotiating contracts for its own music streaming solution.
From time to time, we like to dive into the murky depths of the Play Store and see what cool root-only apps we can dredge up. If you went to the trouble of rooting your phone, you'll want the best root apps to take advantage of all that freedom. That's just what we have here, the best root apps carefully chosen as must-have additions to your arsenal.
Read on for eight more killer root apps that change the flow of time, liberate your music, test your network, and more.
This article deals with a couple of advanced topics. If you’re unfamiliar with some of the terms, hit up our primers here:
- Rooting Explained + Top 5 Benefits Of Rooting
- Top Android Apps Every Rooted User Should Know About: Part 1 (Apps 1-8),Part 2 (Apps 9-16), Part 3 (Apps 17-25), Part 4 (26-33), Part 5 (34-41), Part 6 (42-49)
- Custom ROMs Explained And Why You Want Them
- How To Fully Back Up And Restore Your Android Phone Using Nandroid Backup
- How To Flash A Custom ROM To Your Android Phone With ROM Manager + Full Backup & Restore
- So You Want To Know About Bootloaders, Encryption, Signing, And Locking?
There's no denying the value in Google Music – it lets you store all of your tunes in the cloud and take them everywhere you go without using up precious free space on your device. The problem is, however, that you have to use Google's proprietary player to stream the music. If you prefer something like PowerAMP, Winamp, or one of the many other media players in the Play Store, you're simply out of luck.
Not accepting that as a be-all-end-all, XDA Developers forum member bubbleguuum decided to come up with a way to bring GMusic's cloud-stored tracks to other media players.
Well, this is exciting. We knew it was only a matter of time before El Goog decided to get into the music streaming biz, and according to the Wall Street Journal, the company is currently in talks with several record labels to fire up a Spotify-esque service.
If true, the service is said to become part of Google Music, which only makes sense. Currently, Music allows users upload their own music libraries and stream them from any web browser or Android device, and the addition of a streaming service would likely give users access to unlimited music outside of that collection for a monthly fee.
While Google's fledgling music service is pretty good, it's still far from perfect. Most GMusic users could probably jot down a laundry list of issues with both the app and service at a moment's notice; however, Google's slowly-but-surely doing its part to correct some of those problems. Let's take today's Play Music app update for example.
Google just released an update for Play Music that brings a number of small, but desired features to the application. The biggest of the bunch is probably gapless playback support, a must-have for the more audio-conscious among us. Other than that, this new version also adds the ability to keep thumbs up, last added, and free/purchased music locally on the device, automatic playlist creation based on your favorite tracks, and other improvements.
Google went on a minor update spree this afternoon, issuing revisions to four Google apps on the Play Store, including Play Music, Wallet, Drive, and Shopper. All four updates are relatively mundane, but here are the various changes.
Hidden in the old Drive changelog from the previous update (here) is a small note regarding gestures. The new version is 220.127.116.11.
11. Updates to gesture detection
Shopper has received the most substantial update of the four to v2.6, with changes to filtering options and search, as well as performance and stability improvements.
What's in this version:
* Filter weekly sales at featured local stores by category so you can focus on your favorite deals
* Browse visually similar products when searching for apparel
* Improved performance and stability
Wallet has been bumped to version 1.5-R81-v4, and will now suck down less of your battery (did it before?).
If you use Google Play Music, then you may want to check your app updates - Music just got a pretty decent one. This new version brings a handful of useful features and enhancements:
* Now Playing queue that allows for queuing and reordering of currenty playing music.
* New UI for navigation with transport controls on the action bar.
* New large album art view on Recent.
* Playlist art is now constructed from album art of songs in the playlist.
* Now Playing widget has album art and support for thumbs up.
* Harder, better, faster, stronger.
After messing around with it for just a few minutes, I can already say that this update is more intuitive and easier to use than previous versions of Music, as the swiping action is a much better way to navigate through the interface.
Google recently decided to make my life a lot easier by releasing the changelog for Jelly Bean. Cool!
While, of course, I take issue with its thoroughness, it also wasn't all that accurate when it was first published. It's since been corrected, but the internet never forgets. Check out this Google listing:
Yeah... There isn't actually a ringtone editor in Jelly Bean. Google seems to agree, because, after the initial posting, the mention of the editor was completely removed from the changelog.
So, apparently, the Jelly Bean version of Google Music was supposed to include a ringtone editor, and it was far enough along that it was accidentally included in the changelog.