BaconReader, one of the most popular Reddit-browsing clients available for Android, has just received a major update to version 2.1. Among other things, the update brings a new "Welcome Guide" for new users, access to subreddit sidebars, subscription functionality, support for spoiler alerts, a dark theme for the app's "large" widget, and a few minor fixes.
Of course the real story in this update is the app's UI overhaul. BaconReader has finally crossed over to a new design, which ostensibly follows the highly-exalted Android Design Guidelines.
It's not just European markets that are getting some Amazon-related goodies today. The Appstore has been updated to version 4.0 (technically, version 4.0.634.0, but who's counting right?) and brings with it an improved UI, the ability to remove items from the My Apps section and, perhaps most importantly to Artem, a fix for a major battery drain bug. All good news!
The new UI doesn't look too much different from the old version, aside from getting rid of a lot of the white, opting instead for the darker theme that's more in line with the Kindle Fire UI.
PayPal's official Android app received a big update recently, bringing it up to version 184.108.40.206. The update carries a much-needed interface redesign, bringing the web payment solution's mobile client more into line with Android's design language. Using a warm, espresso-and-orange color scheme with a few well-placed textures and conservative gradients, the app's new interface looks infinitely better than its previous iteration.
The update isn't just about looks though – it also carries some functional improvements.
Movies by Flixster has a very interesting design history. The developers behind this app are usually among the first to adopt new Android design guidelines—they had a Honeycomb-style action bar back when the Xoom was the only Android tablet around—and today it got another new refresh. The good news is that now it looks better on the Nexus 7, as opposed to the broken mess it was before. Now, for the bad news.
Mapsaurus, released today by a developer team of the same name, is perhaps the new app to end all new apps. By pairing an interactive map of Google's Play Store with an intuitive UX, Mapsaurus takes app discovery to a new level – not just of ease, but also of convenience.
The app, which promises to help users "discover apps you never would have known to search for," can branch out an interactive web of apps and games based on apps you already have installed, curated subcategories, or general categories and function sets.
Leave it to Comcast to be ahead of the curve on keeping up to date with new technology*. The Comcast subsidiary Xfinity has just updated its TV Player app to be compatible with Android 4.1, with special emphasis on supporting the Nexus 7. The app is technically compatible, though the release notes say that the next version of the app will include a UI designed specifically for the 7" form factor.
Aiming to "unlock the world's creativity," the team at Fluid Software recently completed a project that began in January 2011 with the release of Fluid UI 1.0. The tool, which is powered by HTML 5 and based online, allows users to quickly and easily create mobile UI mockups for Android (both tablets and phones), as well as iOS using a simple interface that includes all of the basic building blocks (clip art icons, navigation elements, system bars, etc.) for beautiful, style-guide friendly interfaces.
I have a confession to make: I don't use ringtones. Most of the time, my phone is on vibrate, and when it's not, I insist that my ringtones actually ring. However, if I were to use custom ringtones, Ringtonium is the app I'd use to set them up. This app is beautiful. In a way that few apps are. The interface is brilliantly easy to use and accessible to even the most tech illiterate users.
Google Currents has always been a pretty impressive app - arguably the best Android news aggregator around town. Especially praised has been its beautiful UI; however, that didn't stop Google from looking at what it had and making it even better.
Indeed, the app just hit version 1.5.1, and the UI has been updated to "Android standards." Notably, the top navigation bar now features "auto hide" and "touch-to-show" controls, and it includes the library/trending toggle that was previously located elsewhere.
Sony just announced its Internet Player, and Google is continuing the Google TV news with a revamp to its Google TV landing page. The site gives users a brief overview of what the platform does. Most notably, the "How It Works" page explains the distinction between the two types of Google TVs: integrated and what is apparently now known as "buddy box" style.
The site also now lists many of the major Google TV products, which aren't all that numerous.