It's starting to look like Google is getting back into the rhythm of regular releases after the holidays. It feels like forever since the last Play Store update began its rollout. We've got a new version for you, but this one doesn't seem to be sporting any user-facing changes, just a lot of bug fixes. However, a deep look inside reveals a lot to get excited about. Of course, if you stumble onto anything we've missed, let us know in the comments.
For those of you who didn't grow to hate the original Wave Wave, developer Noodlecake has rebuilt the game with new visuals and gameplay. Frustration, however, remains perfectly intact, so newcomers should have their blood pressure under control before diving in. Take a look.
I know, the trailer isn't particularly enlightening, so here's how Wave Wave works. You control a rapidly moving line in a maze-like world that's constantly changing direction and color.
I'm going to assume that you've never heard of Reserve, because unless you live in Boston, Los Angeles, New York, or San Francisco, there hasn't been much of a reason for the product to enter your radar. The concierge service lets people in these four cities pick a place to eat, reserve a table, and pay for the food all from a single app. It's cool, and now it's available on Android.
BIG Launcher takes a smartphone's core functionality and crams it into an interface that's easier on senior citizens and other people with vision problems. BIG Notifications, a new app from the same developer, gives a phone's notifications the same treatment.
While BIG Launcher is simply a homescreen replacement, BIG Notifications doesn't seamlessly replace your notification shade. Instead, the app creates a copy that's written in a bigger font, which you can access through a persistent notification.
Google typically phases the previous generation Nexus out whenever a new model comes to replace it, but the Nexus 6 is a partially massive device that leaves plenty of reasons to prefer 2013's smaller option. Unfortunately, the device has faded in and out of stock since its successor arrived, leaving folks to hunt on eBay and elsewhere. But now the Nexus 5 is back in the Play Store in both 16GB and 32GB.
Dedicated Google users may not be aware that the Bing homepage consists predominantly of a giant background image, sometimes animated, that changes by the day. In perhaps a fit of creativity, Microsoft has decided to release a lockscreen replacement app by the name of Picturesque that takes this background and makes it your phone's lock screen.
The Internet has made buying things as effortless as possible. You don't need to go to the store or even roll out of bed. You don't have to bother with cash, and in places where you frequently shop, you can do without pulling out a card either. A series of mouse clicks or finger taps is all it takes.
The inverse isn't so simple. Mailing packages typically requires making a trip to the nearest postal service and wrestling with packaging.
There are no shortage of ways to get links from one device to another, but this often involves signing up for a service and leaving behind a record of what you're sharing. CaastMe is a new Android app that has an innovative way of getting around this, account-free.
The software relies on QR codes, but it uses them in the opposite of the way you would expect. Instead of prompting your device to open a URL, CaastMe tells the computer displaying the code where to go.
MakerBot has brought its mobile app to Google Play, empowering users to control their MakerBot printers from an Android-powered device. The app accesses 3D models saved in your cloud library, which you can now print, monitor, and cancel from your phone or tablet.
This is MakerBot's second Android app to enter the Play Store. Its first, Thingiverse, came to Android roughly a year ago. Following the latest update (version 1.3), the two pieces of software can work together, enabling you to print 3D models straight from Thingiverse.