Keeping a constant data connection is getting easier every day, whether we're in heavily populated areas or in the middle of nowhere. But there are still situations when we're bound to lose service, perhaps during a power outage or while driving through a dead zone. Just because you've lost access to Google's servers, it doesn't mean you should lose all of the powerful capabilities your phone has to offer. Google has just enabled a small set of voice commands for use even when you're completely offline.
If your phone was offline about a week ago and you tried a voice action, you probably would have seen a "Something went wrong" error message pop up just below the Google search box. Read More
YouTube updates have been rolling out at a pretty speedy rate lately, averaging about 3-4 each month. The latest bump is relatively minor, but it includes a useful new feature to quickly wipe any offline content from your device. A teardown also reveals that there may be a new auto-syncing feature that will download content for offline viewing without the need to manually pick out videos. As usual, we've also got a download link at the bottom if you'd like to grab the apk. Read More
Most of the app updates this week were relatively quiet, with the notable exception of Play Music with its new ad-supported radio feature. That doesn't have to mean some of the updates don't have something new to offer. The Google app (formerly "Search") was bumped up to v4.8 yesterday, but it doesn't seem to have any noticeable changes right now. However, a look under the hood reveals some pretty interesting features on the horizon.
Disclaimer: Teardowns are necessarily speculative and usually based on incomplete evidence. It's possible that the guesses made here are totally and completely wrong. There is always a chance that details may change or plans may be cancelled prior to the launch of a new feature discovered in a teardown.
Loading up a website without a connection established is a real shame. Instead of the information you were looking for, Chrome shows you a dinosaur and an error message. You're left sitting there, out of luck.
But if there's a cached version lying around, Chrome can display that instead. There's an experimental flag available that turns this feature on. Just look for the "Enable Show Saved Copy Button" that you can find at chrome://flags/#show-saved-copy. (This applies to Chrome Beta and Dev. For Chrome stable, see update.) Afterwards, you should see the button at the bottom of the screen. Read More
YouTube updates have been rolling out about every week or two for the last couple of months. Most of the changes haven't been very big, but they're polishing up little aspects of the app in notable ways. The latest version bump doesn't bring significant modifications, either, but it's continuing the trend of small but visible changes. A permanent Cast button has been placed in the action bar and there are updated icons in the privacy selector for uploads. A quick teardown also reveals that we might finally be able to choose to download just the audio track for offline playback, which should make it much easier to store music for the road. Read More
Update: India isn't the only country invited to the party. In a blog post, Google has announced that offline viewing is now available in Indonesia and the Philippines as well.
While hyping up the Android One initiative a couple months ago, Google revealed that it would bring the ability to save YouTube clips for offline viewing to India. The feature is now going live. Users throughout the country are noticing the option to save clips for later use.
A download icon appears underneath videos that, once pressed, prompt users to store the content in standard or high definition. To drive home the purpose of the feature, YouTube provides the file sizes next to each option. Read More
The YouTube app was supposed to get an offline playback mode some time ago, but like the subscription music service, it hasn't materialized yet. That's not stopping Google from teasing it, though. Right in the Play Store you'll find a few screenshots with a navigation menu listing for offline videos.