With so many things happening this week surrounding Google's new hardware, it's easy to overlook some of the software updates rolling out. The latest version bump to YouTube Music doesn't include much in the way of visible changes, but a teardown of the apk also reveals some worthwhile additions in the works for the future. As always, the apk is ready and waiting at the APK Mirror link below if the Play Store isn't already serving the latest version to you. Read More
Good news for those of you who love free stuff! Google is giving away some more albums on Google Play Music today. The two that are available are of completely different genres but share the same sweet price of nothing.
The first album is Play: Latin Vibes and features ten Latin songs by ten different artists including Ricky Martin. I listened to the first few songs, and I think it's a sweet mix that would be great to listen to while lounging poolside at a resort. Or, while basking in the flickering florescent lights of your cubicle while you eat a burrito from Chipotle. Read More
The popular Video LAN Client may finally have a stable release for Android, but that doesn't mean it can't be improved. The 1.2 update adds support for audio playlists, which was apparently missing from the previous releases. Unfortunately due to the limitations of M3U files (the default playlist type for the desktop version of VLC) it's tricky to simply copy your playlists from your computer to your phone. You'll probably need to set them up manually in the app, as below.
Other changes include natural additions like video cover art, sorting videos or songs by modification date, the ability to exclude Android storage folders from VLC's display, a quick button for playing the last video action, and a "double lock" for video files. Read More
Update: Well, that didn't take long. We've already received the APK for the update (Google Play Music version 5.7.1717Q.1530520). The download is at the end of the post.
Transparency! Contrast! Colors! Freakin' circles, man!
One of the new curated Songza-style playlists is "Coding Your Face Off." Nice.
Remember when Google purchased Songza, the company, service, and app that was hitherto a minor player in the streaming music marketplace? Today Songza's primary differentiating feature, playlists that are matched to a "mood" or situation, is being integrated into Google Play Music's subscription service. The new playlists should be live on the web right now, and the additional functionality will make it into Android and iOS app updates later today in the US and Canada. Read More
For some reason, it seems that streaming music is the new hotness in the world of tech firm acquisitions. Today, the New York Post reports that Google is eyeing the acquisition of Songza.
Songza is a popular music curating and streaming service that, with five and a half million active users, is nothing to sneeze at. The Android app is currently in the 1 million - 5 million download range, with almost 60,000 ratings.
The service does a pretty great job of figuring out what music you want to hear, basing choices not just on your listening habits, but by the activity you're doing or how you're feeling. Read More
One of the worst things about managing music playlists is adding new songs when we hear them. Sure, once we've identified them, we can always track the song down by name, but that can turn into a lot of manual labor. If we've learned anything from the popularity of music subscription services, it's that we want things to be quick, simple, and convenient. Rdio and Shazam agree, and they are doing something about it. In an announcement on Rdio's blog, the two companies have teamed up to create an automatic playlist based on your tagged songs.
To activate the automatic playlist, simply connect Shazam to your Rdio account. Read More
There are many ways to get into Android development - buying and reading Android books, visiting a plethora of Android-themed dev sites, navigating thousands of StackOverflow.com questions tagged with "Android," or even entering our book giveaways.
For visual learners, here's yet another one - a massive series of hands-on video tutorials amounting to almost 20 hours of footage. The series, created by TheNewBoston and mybringback YouTube users, and organized into a straightforward 200-video playlist by ChangingTheUnknown, contains tons of absolutely free content that, in my opinion, teaches using the best way possible - by showing you code. Lots of code. Read More