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.
Shazam, the app that makes identifying songs and TV show sound bites simple, also makes acquiring said content easy as well. Now the company has announced that it's adding Google Play Music to the app's list of supported streaming services and is integrating it directly into the experience. It's even giving Google's offering top placement.
The latest version of the Android app shows the store alongside Rdio, Beats Music, and Spotify. The option to stream is available in a drop-down arrow next to the play button.
You may have been enjoying Netflix's streaming video service for a few years, but not everyone the world over is so lucky. Netflix announced earlier this year (and clarified in July) that it was going to expand the service into Europe this month, and it's starting with France.
With a Sonos sound system, people can pump music through every room of the house using their Android phone or tablet as a master control device. This wireless audio jujitsu previously required users to directly plug a Sonos Bridge into their routers, which would create a dedicated network for the system to do its business on. With version 5.1, the Bridge is no longer required. New customers can set up their Sonos systems using their existing Wi-Fi networks.
Google's official Glassware selection has a new member today - Pandora. As Carl Edwards explains in a post to the official Pandora blog, the addition of Pandora to the Glassware page of Google's MyGlass interface is the result of Pandora's semi-annual 72-hour hackathon. "It was such a hit," the blog says, "that we decided to show it to Google."
In keeping with Google's UX vision for Glass, the Pandora app is exceedingly simple.
Earlier this summer word got out that Mozilla was working on a media streaming stick of its own that's intended to be a more open option than Google's Chromecast. The device would allow anyone to cast to it, regardless of their platform or the content they're hoping to cast. Yet even with these big plans, the organization has still taken the time to bake Chromecast support into Firefox, starting with the nightly builds.
Google knows using YouTube on a TV could be better, so the company has started to push out an updated version that fits in more with the company's latest sense of style (Android TV, anyone?) and, more importantly, makes content easier to access.
YouTube looks great on a TV, but it's not as easy to browse as other media services such as Netflix and Hulu, where users can just shift through movie titles and the latest shows without having to go through all that much effort.
Well this is amusing. The International Olympic Committee has released an Android app into the Play Store that is arriving just in time to stream video from this year's Summer Youth Olympic Games, which will take place in Nanjing, China. Ironically, though, China is the one place where Olympic TV is explicitly labeled not to work. It's written in plain sight on the app's Play Store page.
The event will take place this year from August 16th to the 28th and provide teenagers with a venue to compete in all manner of athletic games.
Amazon's flaming media streaming and gaming box is currently marked down to $84. This is a savings of $15 on the original price. The difference here isn't enough to get Fire TV detractors to change their tune, but if you were considering picking up Amazon's little black box, this might just help with the decision.
We've put the Fire TV through its paces in a lengthy review, and to sum things up shortly - it's not a bad box.
A number of new and interesting features are headed towards the Xbox One, but I'm going to ignore most of them. What has caught out attention is the ability to stream TV to Android devices using the SmartGlass app. The feature will join the Xbox One Digital TV Tuner in coming to various European countries in the months ahead. It will allow users to stream TV to other smartphones and tablets while continuing to play games on the Xbox One.