This may not be strictly Android-related news, but it's safe to say that what Google does to search results is relevant to our readers' interests, no? Today, Google announced via its Inside Search blog that the company will start including the volume of valid copyright removal notices as a factor in determining how high or low a site ranks in its search results. Translation: pirate sites won't be removed entirely, but they'll start ranking lower than legitimate sites.
If you keep up with the wider electronics world, you know that Apple has introduced a proprietary streaming protocol for its computers and mobile devices called AirPlay. If you're one of the surprisingly large number of people who combines Apple and Android hardware, you'll want to check out Android HIFI, the pet project of an XDA Developers member. The app turns your Android device into an AirPlay receiver, allowing you to play music or standard audio from Mac or iOS hardware.
Back in February of 2011, Eric Schmidt took the stage at MWC to announce Google's latest tablet-oriented app: Movie Studio. It was a rather exciting new addition to Google's first foray into the tablet world. This made it possible for tablet users to not just view content, but to create it as well. This was a big deal. At the time, Apple already had a year-long head start on tablets. Not only would Android need a lot of third-party app support, but first-party apps would be essential to the platform's success.
The Spotify Android app typically lags behind not only its counterpart on other platforms, but even its own desktop app. One of the nicest features that the streaming service offers on the desktop is its Radio services. Using your own selections as a starting point, Spotify will put together automated playlists based on your taste. You know, like Pandora. As of today's update, the Radio functions are not only available on mobile but are even accessible even if you don't have Spotify Premium.
Smule is a developer best known for creating some really amazing novelty music apps. The company's latest is AutoRap which does exactly what it says on the tin: it takes your speech and automagically turns it into a rap. To test this feature, I fed it the only logical thing to run through an auto-rapping app: Shakespeare. Specifically, Puck's closing monologue from A Midsummer Night's Dream.
If your head's not bopping and your butt's not shaking, you have no appreciation for music or literature.
Earlier this week, we mentioned that the amazing folks behind the XBMC project are bringing the app to Android. Well, it's still very early, but would you like to see what it's gonna be like? Of course you do. If you've got a Nexus Q or an Android-compatible set top box, you can download the apk from our mirrors below. For the rest of you, here's what it looks like running on a lovingly hacked Nexus Q, courtesy of Cyanogenmod developer Jason Parker:
The interface is still very much centered around arrow keys/a d-pad.
Mixcloud is a streaming audio service that's gained quite a following for its wide selection of live music and DJ tracks. No longer will you have to head to a computer to listen to Mixcloud; the new Android app gives you access to the same cool beats on your phone.
From within the app you can dive into any of the popular streams from clubs all over the world.
In the world of digital music stores that aren't iTunes, Amazon is a crowd favorite. With DRM-free downloads of widely-compatible MP3s and a cloud storage player that isn't the worst in the world, it's hard to not enjoy the utility of Amazon's music service. If that's not enough, though, how about some free stuff? Amazon is currently offering $3 worth of free music to anyone who asks. As long as you ask before midnight (PST), that is.
Hope you've got a large available line of credit for this year's Google I/O, because the big G is not holding back. After we've found leaks of the mysterious
orb of power Nexus Q, now Google's device page has shared some more secrets: expensive bookshelf speakers to go along with its new "social streaming media player."
The speakers will only be available in the US initially, and seem to be of a pretty high quality.