Now that Amazon has consolidated most of its Android offerings into a single Play Store app, the company will need to keep it updated and relatively interesting to remain relevant to users. The first major update since the redesign does just that, making sure that the Amazon app is compatible with the new Android 5.0 devices and software builds. But wait, there's more! The updated app now includes support for Android Wear.
Amazon's Android app has received an update to 5.1 that's all about reducing how much typing you need to do to use the app. We've spotted changes to the search UI that make it possible to perform inquiries using your voice. We've also come across strings hinting that credit card scanning is either already included or on its way.
When you hit the magnifying glass in the action bar to begin a search, the screen that appears will now contain a microphone for voice searches.
People talk on Twitter, they crack jokes, they share pictures, and they even try to sell things. Just as users used to have to link out to images before the service started offering that service natively, users will soon be able to make purchases without having to hop out to another site. Twitter is currently testing a feature that will embed a buy button directly into tweets.
When a user decides they want to buy something, Twitter will prompt them for their shipping and payment information.
If you're a frequent online shopper, Slice is the ultimate tool you can install on your Android (and iOS) device. By crawling through your email inbox, Slice grabs all the details of your purchases, tracks shipments and your spendings, organizes everything into categories, deduces your shopper profile, and even monitors items for later rebates and recalls. The app has been available for over two years and has made enough of a splash that it just got acquired by Japanese online retailer Rakuten for an undisclosed amount.
Some of you have probably been coveting Google Shopping Express, the service which delivers groceries and other items from local retailers directly to your door on the same day, ever since it launched. But with an extremely limited rollout in only certain areas of San Francisco, Los Angeles, and New York City, it's not exactly widespread. A report in ReCode says that Google plans to spend a huge sum of money, as much as $500 million, to give the shopping service a true nationwide rollout, covering major urban areas from coast to coast.
Remember Flow, Amazon's augmented reality shopping aid that kinda sorta worked? Well now you don't have to, because the functionality has been rolled into the main Amazon shopping app. Now you can scan barcodes and even full products (at least some of the time) to compare their prices to everyone's favorite online megamart. And incidentally, you don't need a second app to do it.
The Flow features work best with a barcode, but the camera scanner will try to identify anything.
When a product on Amazon says it takes two days to arrives, Sunday typically doesn't count. Hey, that's no jab against the company, as this is standard practice in the shipping industry. But now Amazon is expanding Sunday delivery to fifteen cities, giving millions of customers the chance to see this new delivery date show up at checkout.
The lucky metropolitan areas are as follows:
- Indianapolis, IN
- Lexington, KY
- Louisville, KY
- New Orleans, LA
- Shreveport, LA
- Cincinnati, OH
- Columbus, OH
- Oklahoma City, OK
- Philadelphia, PA
- Austin, TX
- College Station, TX
- Dallas, TX
- Houston, TX
- San Antonio, TX
- Waco, TX
The cities are concentrated in only a handful of states, with six of them situated in Texas alone.
Amazon's big Fire TV announcement yesterday left us a bit perturbed that there's still no way to get Amazon Instant Video on standard Android devices, but the retailer is continuing to support the more conventional side of its business. Take the Amazon For Tablets app for example: the latest update adds some handy features, most notably support for the Amazon Fresh grocery service. But since Amazon Fresh is still only active in parts of California and Seattle, that won't effect a large percentage of users.
We've all been there: you're hours deep in a friendly get together, poker game, or Android Police podcast. Suddenly disaster strikes - your spirits run out, both literally and figuratively. If you've got the brand new Drizly app for Android, you can resupply your booze in under an hour without ever having to leave the house. Unfortunately, this incredible service is only available in very specific parts of Boston, Manhattan, and Brooklyn for the time being.