Update, 11-6-13: We've added in all the relevant stories from the following week.
As you may have noticed, your friendly neighborhood Android Police writers have been more than a little busy in the last couple of days. Google had the odd notion of launching a new flagship device and a major operating system update on a holiday, so it's understandable if you haven't been able to keep up. If you spent most of last night escorting your kids around the neighborhood (or if you don't have kids, and you spent most of this morning nursing a Halloween hangover), here's everything we've got on KitKat, the Nexus 5, and anything else you want to know.
It ain't exactly Gone In 60 Seconds, but at least one thief is now sitting on a pile of electronics worth more than any sportscar. CNET reports that a truck stolen from a Gary, Indiana truck stop contained 22,500 LG G2 smartphones, originally intended for a Sprint distribution center in Kentucky. At the unsubsidized price, the combined value of all those phones is more than twelve million dollars.
At the moment there don't appear to be any leads in the case, though police in Indiana and Illinois are looking for the truck and the thief, and the FBI is aware of the situation.
Recently, we tore down an unreleased version of Google's Play Store 4.4 update and discovered that Newsstand, an upcoming Play service we first learned about back in March, had made some progress.
It can be a pain to type on a virtual keyboard in a language that doesn't use Latin characters, but for the many speakers of Cantonese, Google is here to help. A new Cantonese input app has appeared in Google play to make typing in Cantonese a breeze. Well, maybe not a breeze, but that rhymes better than 'faster and more accurate.'
The app supports multiple keyboards including Pinyin, Cangjie, handwriting, and voice input.
It's been leaked more than a few times, but early this morning HTC finally took the rather large wraps off the One max. The new phone is essentially a supersized version of the HTC One stretched out to a massive 5.9 inches. HTC hasn't been sitting on its hands for the last few months: the One max (little "m") also includes an oh-so-trendy fingerprint scanner beneath the camera.
From a hardware perspective, the One max and the older One have quite a lot in common indeed.
Popular radio and podcast streaming app Stitcher has made the leap to version 3.1 today, and while it hasn't picked up many new features along the way, the few it has are doozies: a new navigation menu makes it easier to get around the app, and you can now designate entire playlists for offline listening. This means you can start streaming at the comfort of your office desk and walk out for lunch without your listening session coming to an abrupt and jarring end.
It's not hard to keep track of the news on your smartphone, as seemingly every major news organization (in the US at least) has released their own app. People who don't like the idea of bouncing back and forth between apps can use a dedicated RSS reader or any number of curated news offerings ranging from Flipboard to Google's own Currents. But there's one issue that none of these apps address - they deliver full-length articles to people who may not want or have time to read such lengthy content on their phones.
Yahoo seems to be taking a page out of the NFL's playbook: the official Android app just jumped from version 1.1.4 all the way to 3.2. (It's probably been changed to match the iOS version.) But at least there's plenty of new content to justify the jump. In addition to a new Holo-style user interface sporting the revamped Yahoo logo (which still clings annoyingly to that vestigial "!"), the app has a ton of new options for content consumption.
I'm a big fan of public radio, podcasts, and any form of news consumption soothing enough to lull me to sleep if there isn't enough light stimulating my eyes. Umano suits me well. It's an app that lets users listen to articles from top news sources read by professional narrators. There's no excessive emotion, no pundits talking over each other, no background music, and no silly sound effects (okay, there are a handful of those).
Digg Reader is a news service that wrangles the best stories from all over the web and delivers them to you in an attractive and sensible way. Using some social networking magic in addition to actual living humans, Digg decides what the most relevant and talked about stories of the day are. Today, they've released the Digg Reader app onto the play store and, my oh my, is it pretty.