26
Sep
movies

Google Play Movies & TV received an update to version 2.7.15 today (or yesterday, but I haven't seen anyone with an APK until today), and while the changelog is still missing, we have noticed a number of new things.

The previous version was v2.6.9, so these line up with a point release - nothing too significant, but still more than just bug fixes.

Update: I just realized that the changelog, which Google updated on September 18th, is actually current - they just never released the update until now.

26
Sep
Remote-Thumb

Smart IR Remote has been missing from the Play Store for over a month, but now it's back, and it comes with greatly needed changes. For starters, you no longer have to purchase a separate version of the app to use it on both the Galaxy S4 and the HTC One, a deal that's bigger than you would expect considering that we're talking about two $10 purchases. And since the app is currently available for 50% off, you can get support for both smartphones for just $4.99.

25
Sep
unnamed (5)

We've got one last Google update to discuss this evening – YouTube. Bumping up to version 5.1.1, YouTube didn't get an official change log, but there are a few things worth discussing briefly (before Artem does his teardown magic, anyway).

First up, YouTube has a new permission for receiving data from the internet, which it uses to give you new video notifications.

25
Sep
nexusae0_unnamed_thumb32

Somewhere amid the rest of Google's app updates today, Google updated its Search app. While the Play Store still shows an old change log, there are at least a couple of notable changes with the new update.

First among them, as part of Google's ongoing quest for better language processing, is the ability to have language packs automatically update themselves. This is something we uncovered in our last APK Teardown, though some of the more exciting features we saw evidence of (custom hotwords) haven't quite hit prime time yet.

25
Sep
tuneinradiopro

Yesterday, TuneIn Radio Pro, one of my favorite radio apps, was updated to version 9.0 and brought a bunch of sports-related improvements. However, a pretty significant bug made its way into the app as well - pausing and rewinding live streams, which are two of the most important features of Pro, no longer worked.

Reviewers started making a stink, a bunch of users on Reddit got sad, and TuneIn soon realized what they'd done.

25
Sep
hangouts

It's update Wednesday, and Google is making good use of this one. Earlier today the company showed off the new version of Gmail with a card-based UI in the conversation list, and now it's Hangouts' turn to get a nice little feature bump.

The Hangouts update – which brings the app up to version 1.2 for those who like to keep count – brings about some mighty useful (and oft-requested) features:

  • You can finally see who is on Hangouts!

25
Sep
Lucid-Thumb

When the LG Lucid first hit store shelves, it was one of the best mid-range handsets available at the time. It served as a shining example that a budget phone didn't have to feel like it was a budget phone. Now an OTA update is rolling out to the handset over a year after its release, further evidence that not all budget phones are destined for neglect. This new software version doesn't fundamentally change things, but it's nice to have security patches and a newer version of Google Map Services, among other things.

25
Sep
gmail

Google started rolling out a nifty update to Gmail with the Card UI earlier today, but since the update is staged, it may take a while to get to a device near you. Not to worry - we've gotten a hold of the APK (thanks, Kevin!) and verified it's indeed legitimate. You can find it below on several mirrors. As always, just download and install - simple as that.

25
Sep

Cards, cards everywhere, but not a drop to drink. Or something like that.

That seems to be Google's mantra these days, as everything is getting card-ified. Not to say that's a bad thing, because cards are clean, simple, and effective. All three of those things have been a clear goal in Android in the Duarte era, so it makes sense that cards have been so widely adopted.

Today, it's Gmail's turn.

23
Sep
JackThreads-Thumb

JackThreads keeps its shoppers at the forefront of fashion, but until recently, its Android app failed to do the same. The curated, members-only website offers clothing sales that lasts for a few days to a week, a formula that all but ensures that its offerings never get stale, yet its mobile app smelled of Gingerbread at a time when users were increasingly developing a taste for Kit Kats. Now the JackTheads app should look as stylish as that trendy pair of jeans you snagged for 50% off.

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