Most of the intrepid users who tried the most recent Android N developer preview were none too pleased with the new notification toggle behavior. Google changed the WiFi and Bluetooth buttons from simple toggles to connection list triggers. After more than 1,500 issue tracker stars in just a few days, Google has relented. Read More
If your company uses Google apps to manage email, contacts, cloud storage, and all the other stuff that Google Apps for Work does, then you'll want the latest app in the collection post haste. Springboard is a sort of universal search tool for all the stuff that accumulates in Google Apps, plus a handy agenda view that shows everything new on the company account. Unfortunately it's in an invite-only stage right now, so even if you use Google Apps for Work, it may still be inaccessible. Read More
Google gave us a little sneak preview of Google Keyboard v5.1 in the Android N dev preview back in May. You could sideload that APK on other versions of Android to get the new themes, but now the final build appears to be hitting the Play Store. As with all Google releases, this one is staged. We've got the new version available for sideloading, though. Read More
Android Auto works in a few dozen markets already, but until today Japan was not among them. Google has announced that its in-car platform is available in Japan effective immediately, and several cars will be ready to accept Android Auto connections just as soon as Japanese users can find a USB cable to plug in. Read More
Google offers the Gmail API to developers as a way to integrate with the email service. What app makers can do with Gmail is limited to the functionality provided in the API. This then limits what we users can do.
Get excited. Google has updated the Gmail API with new endpoints for managing settings. Read More
Google Now on Tap sounded really cool when it was announced as part of Android M, but the reality of using it has been largely disappointing so far. Google has been adding new features in an attempt to make On Tap more engaging, and today there are three additions. In the latest round of updates, you'll have easier access to translation, content discovery, and barcode scanning. Read More
Google has shown a lot of interest in computer vision over the last few years. You need only look at the way it digs around for similar images in Google search and identifies specific objects in your uploaded photos. It can always be better, though, so Google has purchased a French company called Moodstocks that specializes in image recognition. Read More
We occasionally see apps pulled from the Play Store for trivial (but valid) violations of the rules. Google has been more proactive about enforcing its guidelines, but it's often pointed out it could be more consistent. Case in point: there are, right now, two listings on the Play Store from a warez site called BlackMart that offers paid apps for free. One of them has been up for months and has more than 100,000 downloads. C'mon, Google. Read More
The Chromecast only costs $35, which is a great value for the hardware. That's just the start, though. Google regularly offers promos for Chromecast users such that you might actually make money on the device over time. The latest offer is for 75% off any movie rental in the Play Store, but be aware this is US only. Read More
Most of us probably use the Google app for searching on our phones, rather than through Chrome or - *gasp* - another search engine. I've often found that on slow connections, the Google app can take ages to bring up results - think 2G or even 3G mobile networks. To combat this, it appears that Google is either testing or rolling out a notification to tell you when the app has completed searching and showing results.
Three Google Search notifications. Note: this is MIUI, which is why it looks a bit... iOS-y.
This may not be used only for slow connections, but will probably come in handy the most on a network where speed is hard to come by. Read More