Though there's a definite streak among power users to prefer Google's "pure" Android on their phones, some of the manufacturer skins from HTC and Samsung have charming features as well. Modder and ROM developer Paul O'Brien, better known as MoDaCo, has been testing a solution to give you the best of both worlds. MoDaCo.SWITCH is a dual-boot solution for power users that lets two ROMs (manufacturer stock and AOSP, for example) which share user data, allowing a seamless switch between interfaces.
After giving us a sneak peek back at I/O in May, Google has finally rolled out the new version of web Play Store. The new UI looks totally killer, but there's a big shakeup in the features to go along with that new interface, and not all of it is good news. After the Maps update fiasco, it's starting to look like Google is pulling features it doesn't feel are being used by enough people.
So here's the thing, Skype just received a major 4.0 redesign introducing a whole new look and feel that would feel at home on any Metro device. It just so happens that Metro's UI is pretty Holo-friendly. Windows Phone influence or no, the new version of Skype should still feel right at home on your Android phone of choice.
The new release doesn't usher in a wave of new features along with the new coat of paint, but Skype does boast that it is much faster and reliable, with emphasis placed on improving performance and load times.
Let it be not be said that Google neglected the Google TV platform today at I/O. Though it wasn't mentioned during this morning's 3 hour-plus keynote, the company rolled out a new version of the YouTube app for TV during the presentation.
Specifically, the updated application brings a simplified UI, enhanced video playback controls, and support for paid channels. The video discovery and subscription tabs now show playlists with blown-up video thumbnails and bolded titles for easier browsing.
The difference is huge - it's like it went from Cupcake days to Jelly Bean in the blink of an eye. It would be nice if you could update Android the same way, wouldn't it?
Here are some images of the old (visible at archive.org) and new sites side-by-side (can you guess which one is which?):
WeatherBug has been a big name in online weather forecasting for a number of years, and it was one of the first full-featured weather apps on Android. The problem, however, is that the app looked like it was designed by inebriated orangutans. Well, no more. The WeatherBug app has been updated with new features and a streamlined (not ugly) UI.
The new app has Holo-style tabs up top along with a drop-down for your locations.
We've been seeing leaks about a new Google Play Store UI, that we all thought was going to be released at I/O this year. Nope! The rollout starts today, chaps! According to a post over on the official Android blog, the fancy card-based UI is coming to Android phones and tablets running Froyo (v2.2) and up. Worldwide, the new version will be available "over the next few weeks.
Oh, and you should be happy to know that the ugly pattern across the Action Bar is, in fact, not part of the final release.