When it comes to Google-powered social networking, its track record hasn't been so great. Today, though, a new social service has been announced by El Goog: Google+. It's been a long-time coming, and judging by what I've seen thus far, it looks like it won't disappoint. In my opinion, it's the social network to save us from social networks by adding a very real-world feel to the mix. Google has clearly put a lot of thought into how to incorporate our virtual life with the way we do things in the real world.
If you've been looking for a live wallpaper that offers up a bit of functionality and nice physics, then Gravity Home may fit the bill perfectly. It's a live wallpaper / launcher hybrid, and unlike some of the competitors in the Market, it's actually useable.
The concept behind Gravity Home is simple: instead of having static icons on your homescreens, why not have icons that dynamically move around as your device moves?
Following a lengthy period of beta testing (about 1 month), version 1.6 of the Facebook Android app is now in the Market. As expected, the update brings with it:
- video uploads
- access to pages
- improvements to the news feed (though the expected comment liking did not seem to make it for some reason)
Not much to say here - the amount of new features is really not that extensive. Go grab the update from the Market or use our widget below and let us know what else you find (what are these "improvements" to the news feed for example?).
So, two new tablets from Archos weren't enough for you? Apparently, it wasn't for them either - enter two new products that put Android in places that we haven't really seen it before: on your radio, and on your... home phone. Yeah, it took me a moment to digest the idea of a home phone as well; I haven't used one of those in years.
With that in mind, let's take a look at the 35 Smart Home Phone first.
When it comes to Android tablets, we've become accustomed to seeing near-identical specs for each one: 1GHz dual-core processor, 1GB of RAM, and 16/32GB of storage. While those specs are still pretty awesome, Archos is looking to change the game completely with its newly announced 80 G9 and 101 G9 tablets. If you haven't already guessed, the biggest difference between the two tabs is the screen size, with the former offering 8 inches at 1024x768, and the latter with the more common 10.1-inch 1280x800 display.
It's no secret that benchmarks can easily be spoofed to show some pretty amazing results. Regardless of that, it has become an almost standard practice to demonstrate a device's power and prestige by using such tools. Over time, a few different apps have made a name for themselves and become clutch in the realm of benchmarking tools: Quandrant, Linpack, and SmartBench, just to name a few.
A new benchmarking tool has now been released by the same dev that brought us Chainfire3D called CF-Bench.
In a page taken directly from the Firefox playbook, the team behind Dolphin Browser have thrown the newest beta version of Dolphin HD into the market alongside the current stable version. This allows you to test out all of the upcoming features in Dolphin while they're still bleeding edge, without sacrificing the stability of the current version, as you can have them both installed at the same time.
I'm not entirely sure what they were thinking when they chose that font.
This is the 2nd part of this week's roundup and is dedicated to apps. For games, see 32 Best New Android Games From The Last 2 Weeks (6/2/11 – 6/16/11).
Surprise, surprise - Rovio's has issued the next major content update to Angry Birds Rio early! The Carnival update is now available on the Amazon Appstore (unfortunately that's the only place you can get it for now).
Here's the basic changelog:
- 15 levels in new world named Carnival Upheaval
- Blue, the Macaw, can now be used alone.
- The new hidden fruits are papaya (thanks to everyone who helped us figure this out)
Update: This update is in the Android Market now, too.
This is the first part of the roundup, which features games only. Apps will come in a separate post soon.