Over a year ago, Google removed the Grooveshark app from what was then the Android Market due to a violation of the terms of service. Of course, with a service like Grooveshark, being removed from the Play Store was just the first of its worries - the company has definitely seen its fair share of legal issues over the last several months. Still, after its departure from the Store, Grooveshark continued to offer the app free of charge through its website.
One of the worst phrases a human being can put together is "automatic video editor." The whole thing feels like it's set up for failure. Like "vasectomy in a box" or "snooki's pregnant." Add in "for Android" and, well, let's just say I've been burned before. So it came as an unbelievable shock when I tried out Magisto, which claims to be both of these things, and it was good.
A bunch of new fun stuff is coming down the pipeline, Google-fans! Your favorite search giant has just pushed several updates to some of its headlining properties, including Play Music, Play Magazines, and Google Goggles. We've got the full rundown for you.
For starters, Google Music has added expandable notifications to its repertoire. It doesn't look like you'll see much more info if you expand it, but Play Music continues to be one of the best examples of how to make notifications robust and useful.
Okay, now that I've got that out of my system, let me introduce you to Spirits. This game features a series of ethereal spirit beings (see where they got the name?) that steadily stream out of the entrance to a level. Your job is to transform some of the aural manifestations into clouds, vines, and all manner of natural tools to lead the remaining wisps to the exit of the level.
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.