My only understanding of the roommate concept comes from movies and TV series. The way it's always portrayed is with people hanging up flyers with detachable numbers that others can call to enquire about a certain room available for rent. That's so last century. Nowadays we have the internet and there are useful/creepy places like Craigslist to find roommates, but with services like Airbnb making it easier to communicate with people before you let them into your home, a roommate equivalent service was bound to pop up. That's Roomi.
Roomi has been available on iOS since June, but it just made the relocation to both Android and the Web. Read More
So here's the scenario: you're in San Francisco for the first time. You're starving, but have no idea where to go, what's good, or where to even start. What do you do?
Now, you can open Google Maps, hit the Explore link, and get all the recommendations you could ever hope for. But not just "hey, here's some stuff near you" - starting now, Google is offering curated results in San Francisco, New York City, and London. Basically, this will make it easier to find exactly what you're looking for around your location. That's pretty awesome.
If you're not in any of those areas, though, you can still get the "hey, here's some stuff near you" recommendations, and it looks better than ever thanks to the new interface (in the US and UK only, though). Read More
Sprint would really like you to buy a phone. Really. So much so that they're willing to throw a salesperson and a bunch of phones in a branded car and drive to your door to sell it to you, preferably along with a service contract and a $30 case. The new Direct 2 You service will also offer assistance to existing Sprint customers; the example given in the press release is moving data from one phone to the other.
The service launches today in metro areas in and around New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Denver. Wait, what? Denver? Read More
Google's self-driving cars have come a long way since the days when they were Lexus SUVs stuffed with electronics. Halfway through last year the company unveiled an adorable prototype car that lacked a steering wheel and pedals. By December, the vehicle was fully functional. Models have spent the time since driving around tracks in Google test facilities.
Now they're ready to hit the streets of San Francisco at a brisk 25mph.
These new prototypes use the same software that powers Google's existing fleet of self-driving vehicles. Those cars have logged nearly a million autonomous hours on the road. Google's math comes out to nearly 10,000 miles spent driving a week, which it says equals 75 years of typical American adult driving experience. Read More
When you're hitting up the city and need to get from point A to point B, you turn to Uber. When you're looking to transport your kids, you turn to Shuddle. Fortunately, the service is now opening its doors to Android-using families.
Never heard of Shuddle? I understand. That's because it isn't available in your area (or mine either). In what should surprise no one, its drivers only navigate around the San Francisco Bay Area. The company comes from one of Sidecar's co-founders (another company that probably doesn't support your city).
Like other ride-sharing apps, Shuddle lets you request a trip and provide payment using your phone. Read More
Dedicated gadget geeks will be aware of Xiaomi, a huge player in the Chinese smartphone market. In fact the company has become so big (and become big so quickly) that it's now the third-largest smartphone maker in the world by volume, more or less on the strength of the expanding userbase in China alone. But most other people in the west, even those who know the major players of the smartphone market, might not even know the company exists. Xiaomi wants to change that.
Hugo Barra, Xiaomi's current global VP and former Google mobile product manager. Image credit: MIUI
Xiaomi will host a stand-alone press conference in San Francisco on Thursday, February 12th. Read More
Before we start: Square's Order service is still only for eateries in San Francisco and New York City, because those are the only two places where people use smartphones. If you fall paradoxically outside of the service area (like all but one of Android Police's staff), you can stop reading now. For everyone else, check out the sizeable upgrade to Square Order, now rolling out in the Play Store. The app, which allows you to order and pay for food at restaurant tables, gets a fresh new look and some other goodies.
New above, old below.
The biggest addition to the updated app is arrival predictions. Read More
When a tech company holds a conference for developers, you can pretty much bet the speakers will have something new to share with the attendees. At the very first Samsung Developer Conference, this pattern continues as 5 new and updated SDKs have been announced for the company's various platforms. This batch of SDKs are centered on Android, Smart TVs, and enterprise development.
- Samsung Smart TV SDK
- Samsung Multiscreen SDK
- Samsung Multiscreen Gaming SDK
- Samsung KNOX SDK
- Samsung Mobile SDK
The Mobile SDK is technically new, but it's really meant to bring together various TouchWiz SDKs that had previously been distributed separately. Read More
There's a new app available from the San Francisco Metro Transit Authority: an official Muni bus guide called Muni+. It's available right now for Android and iOS. And this dual release seems to have given the promotional department a bit of a problem. See if you can tell what it is by looking at this freeze frame of the new TV commercial now airing in the Bay area.
Photo via Artem Russakovskii
If you said "that Galaxy Note II is upside down for some reason," you're absolutely right. The model appears to be trying to get to the homescreen via the earpiece. Read More