We've pointed out before that Android has a lot of somewhat questionable birthdays, but November 5th is arguably the birth of the platform. On this day in 2007 the Open Handset Alliance was formally announced, uniting Google, HTC, Samsung, LG, Sony, Motorola, and dozens of software companies, chip manufactures, and mobile carriers, in the cause of promoting Android. It was presented as an open-source alternative to then-dominant mobile operating systems like Microsoft's Windows Mobile, RIM's BlackBerry, Nokia's Symbian, and - at least at the time - the looming specter of the iPhone.
The mobile market changes fast, and in "just" eight years it's been radically altered. Read More
India is big. Really big, and really complicated. I don't think it's possible for an American white guy like me to wrap his head around a place where every region has languages, dialects, and cultures that are found nowhere else on the planet, yet are still ostensibly united into a single country. That being the case, having a single keyboard to support India as a whole, where many of its residents rely on their regional language and actually speak English better than (or instead of) Hindi, seems a little odd. Read More
There's a new version of Drive rolling out today, and it focuses on improving the experience around file sharing in several ways. Notifications for shared files and folders are getting better in a few ways, getting access to files is easier, and you can preview files in Drive even if you haven't logged in. It's not all live right away, but you can install the updated app right now. Read More
We're seeing more and more devices come to the market with USB Type-C charging ports instead of MicroUSB. The new standard is reversible, more convenient, and potentially faster and more powerful than the previous Type-A one. (David Ruddock wrote a detailed explanation that I advise you to read in order to understand the intricate details of this new connector.) However, it is creating a bit of a ruffle with consumers who are now opening up their brand new Nexus 5X boxes, for example, only to find a Type-C charger and a single cable included. In order to charge those shiny phones from computers and traditional Type-A chargers, they have to buy new cables and adapters. Read More
Inbox by Gmail is Google's way of experimenting with your email account. The service comes up with new ways to present information and organize it effectively. Now the search giant is taking the next step and responding to your email for you. Well, almost. It will look at your message and provide you with a few logical responses to pick from. Or you can use these snippets to jump start your reply if you feel you have more to say. Read More
The Wall Street Journal dropped a bombshell last week when it reported that Google planned to merge Chrome OS with Android and phase out the Chrome OS we've come to know and love. Googlers (including Android/Chrome head Hiroshi Lockheimer) reiterated the company's commitment to Chrome OS. Now, Google has made a post on the Chrome blog to set the record straight once and for all—Chrome OS isn't going anywhere. Read More
Nick Butcher (Developer Advocate at Google) recently published the source code for Plaid, an app meant to showcase material design on Android with playful animations, impeccable typography, and a simple, bold aesthetic. The code will provide useful examples for developers, but the app itself is worth keeping installed too - Plaid pulls stories from Designer News, Dribbble, and Product Hunt to serve up design news and inspiration, catered to your preferences.
Besides more standard material elements, the app has a few unique tricks. Specifically, the toolbar is behind the content rather than lying on top of it, making the scrolling action on the main grid a little more elegant. Read More
A number of Android phones can capture RAW photos now, but editing them on Android is tricky. There are a few apps that do it, but they're clunky or as in the case of Lightroom, cost money. Now Google's free Snapseed editor has been updated to v2.1 with RAW editing tools. We've got the APK on APK Mirror if you want to take it for a spin. Read More