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.
Google's Android Developer's site got a massive overhaul today, with a brand new UI, tons of new features, and a unified guide for developers on how to design, develop, and distribute their apps all in one place. The new site is fantastic-looking. Clearly Google wants to engage developers more and give them more guidance on how to succeed on the Play Store. So, what say we take a tour?
For anyone who's been kept in the dark, or just doesn't know everything there is to know about Android yet, Google's provided newcomers with a section just to tout the advantages of developing for Android.
With the introduction of Draw Something's "fresh new look!" update a couple of days ago came many design changes, not all of them entirely great. Just for fun, I decided to take a shot at making Draw Something's design slightly "fresher," or at least slightly more sensible. Just like my last design critique, I'll start by taking a look at what issues the current design has, and then make a few suggestions (with some quick mockups) as to what I think could be improved.
Motorola introduces a novel idea with its Atrix phone: a lapdock. The idea was simple. All these Android app can be extremely productive, so why limit them to a single, small screen? Plug your phone into the lapdock, use its frankly-over-powered processor to run a larger screen with a keyboard and trackpad. Well, that's exactly what the ClamBook does. Only it does it way better.
As you can see in the renders above, when most phones are plugged in, you're presented with a tablet-styled UI.
One of the nicest things about Android that gets taken for granted is the ability to customize your user interface. While most folks tend to stick to app icons for launching their apps, Tagy offers an alternative approach: a tag cloud. Tagy is actually a set of widgets that let you specify a list of apps, contacts, or bookmarks to appear in a single widget. Then, as you use the widget, the items you use more often will get bigger.