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 bubbleguuumdecided to come up with a way to bring GMusic's cloud-stored tracks to other media players.
I'm not sure we even have enough wat for this, but let's give it a go. Snoop Dogg—that is to say, the previous incarnation of the entity now known as Snoop Lion—will soon be appearing in a rhythm fighting game on Android called 'Way of the Dogg.' Developed by Echo Peak and under development for two years, the title will show "how we evolve as individuals." Plus, "[Echo Peak has] incorporated the journey of my own personal reincarnation as Snoop Lion into my character," says the rechristened rapper in a ringing endorsement.
The game—set to launch alongside Snoop Lion's new album, Reincarnated, and accompanying documentary of the same name—will follow America Jones, the "best fighter in the city" as he trains with Snoop, learning how to roll 81 a day evolve as a person and gain the strength to avenge his lost love.
As we get closer and closer to Google I/O, speculation inevitably ramps up about what Mountain View will be unveiling this year to set the Android world on fire. The most likely plans involve boosting Play Store features and availability, given the recent push not only to expand into new countries, but to frame the Nexus line as a great content consumption platform. If Fortune is right, then Google may have a huge axe to swing in that battle with not one, but two different subscription music services coming soon.
First off, YouTube. The idea would be that users could listen to any music tracks they want for free.
From the moment it was released, Poweramp has been one of the most beloved music players on Android. While it doesn't have that Google cloud magic, the developer has done a great job of keeping the app fresh with updates. This most recent update really piles on the goodies, too.
The developer has added some neat features for users of a few select devices. If you're on Android 4.2, Poweramp now has a proper lockscreen widget. There is also experimental support for Samsung's MultiWindow mode, which is cool if you've got a Galaxy Note II or some versions of the Galaxy S III.
Bringing to market a simplistic, clean take on the puzzler genre, Appxplore released Sporos today. The concept behind Sporos is simple: place sporos (which, by the way, is some sort of "special seed") on the board, watch the adjacent rows or columns light up, and repeat until every cell on the board is illuminated.
Seems easy, right? It would be, except that the levels get progressively harder, with more complex cell patterns, and you've only got a certain number of sporos to work with, each able to light up a certain set of directions.
To keep you from getting too frustrated, the game has calming electronic music, which pairs nicely with its neon, pseudo-biological graphics.
To call this game "Tetris on a sphere" would be a bit disingenuous. It's far, far more complicated than that. Tetris merely requires you to place falling pieces such that they create solid, dissolving rows and thus abate, if temporarily, the peril of becoming overwhelmed by the steady stream of burdens in what I can only assume is a clever metaphor for adulthood. Globulous, on the other hand, has a clear goal: clear out layers of the sphere and reach the prize inside. It's the method that gets complex.
The gameplay is a little difficult to grasp at first (as is any puzzle game that operates in 3D), but thankfully there are plenty of tutorials.
I like comics. They're wonderful. While the modern world makes it difficult for local shops to maintain the footprint they once did, online distribution has made it insanely easy (and cheap!) for major and minor artists to gain a following and make money doing it. However, is digitally reproducing static artwork on a powerful, portable computer really the best we can do? Narr8 doesn't think so.
The app functions similarly to most digital comic stores now: you can download individual "episodes" and keep track of all entries in a series. However, the capabilities of each story go far beyond regular graphic novels.
Back in December, Media Monkey released a beta of the Android version of the media player app that received a level of success on the desktop. It still packs the same ability to tag and run scripts that the original possessed. Now it's arrived on the Play Store, which should make rolling out bug fixes much easier.
Speaking of bug fixes, the most recent set includes ensuring that playback position will be remembered, improving memory utilization and preventing duplicate tracks. Here's the full changelog:
What's in this version:
Build 100: Added playback position should be remembered Fixed several situations that result in a freeze Fixed USB (wired) sync can result in empty MMA db Fixed DB may not be updated on update of MTP content Fixed several situations that can result in duplicate tracks Fixed several cases in which the application fails to terminate correctly Improved memory utilization Build 98: Fixes video playback problem on some devices Build 97: First version published
As if there weren't enough contenders out there for music subscription service, Slacker Radio has updated its business model. You can still get the standard ad-supported radio station features that were always available. However the company has added a Spotify-like buffet option for $10/month. Pony up the dough and you can remove all ads and listen to as many tracks as you want.
The combination is pretty powerful, as one of the biggest complaints over Spotify is its discovery problems. Slacker Radio never really dethroned Pandora, but it did offer some stiff competition. There has been relatively little overlap between radio and subscription services.
Can we be honest with ourselves? Plex kinda sucks. Hard to blame it, most third-party media centers on Android do at the moment. As a lengthy blog post by the developer points out, part of that has been due to Android's inflexibility and lack of a coherent UI in its history. That's changed over the last couple years and now Plex has been rebuilt from the ground up to be a lot more beautiful and a lot more functional.
The new version has followed the Android Design Guidelines very closely and it shows. While most of us here at Android Police are of the opinion that Holo alone does not make a good UI, the addition is most welcome, given the way the old version looks.