When it comes to alternative launchers based on the standard Android homescreen design, I think it's safe to say at this point that Nova Launcher is the best available. But developer TeslaCoil isn't resting on its laurels: the app is constantly being updated, tweaked, and improved. Today the biggest update to Nova Launcher in years is going out on its Google Play Store beta channel... and yes, it has Material Design.
Folks editing their WordPress blogs from an Android device running Lollipop are in for a treat. The latest version of the app applies a fresh taste of material design. At the end of the day, the experience doesn't look fundamentally different, but you get a full hamburger menu, a floating action button, and a sidebar that slides out on top of everything else.
Secret is a social network that doesn't connect you with other people, it connects you with their semi-private thoughts. People send their musings out into the Internet anonymously, where folks in their community or the far reaches of the globe can respond. It's intended to be a safe place to communicate about things you may not want to associate with your name.
The latest version of the app comes with a complete refresh.
Google's Finance app is in desperate need of attention. If you haven't checked in on it lately, it's still stuck with Gingerbread design. No seriously, go look. Tiny header bars, legacy menus, odd layouts, and assets that look tiny or pixelated (or both) on today's high resolution devices.
Just for fun, I decided to take a look at the app and see if I could give it a fresh coat of paint, inspired by material design.
When Today Calendar first launched into the Play Store nearly half a year ago, it already looked pretty spiffy. But then Google I/O happened and the Big G showed off how different the next version of Android will look. Since then, developer Jack Underwood and Android Police's own Liam Spradlin have brought in a sweeping set of UI changes inspired by Google's new design guidelines. This isn't exactly what Android L apps will look like, but it's a good taste until they actually arrive.
Pandora is currently rolling out a redesigned version of its Android app that may just cause more than a few double takes. The Internet radio service has looked largely the same on Android for a few years now, but the UI introduced in 5.5 is strikingly different - at first, at least. This change is stark, but it's only surface deep.
The Pandora app has been stripped of its blue gradients.
All the Voice Over IP talk in the last day or two has focused on a certain Google property, but Hangouts isn't the first one available on Android, and certainly not the most full-featured. Seven months after being acquired by Japanese retailing giant Rakuten, mobile call and text app Viber is getting a major refresh. Version 5.0 has a new look for both phones and tablets, but the big news is that the app now supports video calling.
If you're a customer of Chase Bank, you probably know the pain of opening the bank's crusty old app and dealing with legacy menus and other interface nonsense. But you probably also got an email in late August letting you know that the app would be completely redesigned, and that Chase planned to launch the redesign in September. Well, that redesign is finally a reality, and available in the Play Store right now.
Dear football fans. Remember that makeover that you were too insecure to get? Well one of ESPN's many sports apps is getting it done for you. Not only does the network's College Football app look like a whole new person, it has a new name to boot. ESPN Championship Drive, despite being version 4, wants you to view it as a separate individual.
There comes a time in the evolution of every tech company where things just need a refresh. For Foursquare, that time is now. Last month the company branched its core app into two separate offerings, with the friends-hanging-out portion taking the name of Swarm. Now the mainline app's refresh has arrived, and it's all about delivering personalized recommendations. Think more Yelp and less Twitter.
The new Foursquare wants you to find places, food, and things that turn you on.