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Wear Mini Launcher 3.0 Comes With A Material Design-Inspired Companion App And A Couple Drawer Tweaks

Google may not want managing apps to be a primary part of the Android Wear experience, but that doesn't mean all users must agree. Wear Mini Launcher shrinks a traditional app drawer onto that tiny display, where you can access your petite apps with just a swipe.

Today version 3 has hit Google Play, and while it does a number of things to streamline the watch experience, the big item on the changelog deals with the companion app.

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The Next Android Revision Is Indeed 'Android 5.1 Lollipop', Shipping On Android One Phones, Coming To Nexus Devices

A few hours ago, we spotted no less than five mentions of "Android 5.1" on Google's Indonesian Android One page. Considering that 5.1 is quite a jump from 5.0.2, and something like 5.0.3 seemed more likely as the next bug fixer, we were cautious to suggest it may have been a mistake or a very persistent typo.

But as it turns out, Android 5.1 is real, and it's indeed shipping on Android One phones in Indonesia.

Here, take a look:

wm_android 5.1 lollipop

wm_2015-02-04 wm_2015-02-04 (1)

wm_2 wm_2015-02-04 (2)

wm_2015-02-04 (4) wm_2015-02-04 (5) wm_2015-02-04 (7)

wm_2015-02-04 (6) wm_2015-02-04 (8)

As it's still very early, we don't yet have a changelog for this update, but it should arrive soon enough.

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Microsoft Updates Yammer App With Android Wear Support And Improved Notifications

Yammer is a social network for people in suits, a way for corporate employees to learn about their colleagues and communicate without all the distractions that come with relying on a platform that's connected to the entire world. Microsoft bought the service in 2012, but apps remain available for iOS and Android. In the latest round of updates, the latter version is getting Android Wear support.


Out of the box, Android Wear could already display any notifications that Yammer shot out. This new integration adds the ability to like messages and reply using speech.

The notification experience has improved on the host device as well.

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SwiftKey Keyboard Learns Chinese, Khmer, And Lao In Version 5.2

The newest version of SwiftKey opens the third-party keyboard up to millions upon millions of people. How? By officially bringing Chinese language support out of beta. There are seven new input methods total, with ways to type in Simplified, Taiwan Traditional, and Hong Kong Traditional Chinese.


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HTC One M8 Android Lollipop Update Now Rolling Out To Devices In Europe

HTC One M8 owners in Europe are getting a lollipop-flavored treat. That's right, Android 5.0 is now hitting devices across the pond. We have multiple layers of confirmation on this one. For starters, HTC senior communications manager Jeff Gordon had this to say earlier today:

Respected ROM developer LlabTooFer followed up later with more specific information. The update version number is 4.16.401.10, and it comes in at 780MB.

Then someone who received the update tweeted out an image that confirms the version number and file size mentioned above.

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Runtastic Running And Fitness App Gets The Material Design Treatment In Version 5.4

I'm not much of a runner, but I've occasionally made use of the Runtastic Running and Fitness app to keep track of my time and distance while jogging around the neighborhood. Given that it's the middle of winter in the US, I won't be firing up the app anytime soon. But the more dedicated among you may be happy to know that the latest update (version 5.4) has made the few visual adjustments needed to better fit in on Lollipop devices.

Runtastic1 Runtastic2 Runtastic3

Runtastic4 Runtastic5 Runtastic6

The Material Design overhaul is the big highlight here. With a floating hamburger menu button, a sidebar that slides on top of the action bar, and a colored notification bar, the experience will look spiffy on devices running stock Android 5.0.

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[Let's Try This Again] AT&T Pushes Out HTC One M8 Android 4.4.4 Update, Includes Eye Experience And VoLTE

Update: Here's a screenshot, courtesy of an Android Police reader.


As it turns out, the Android 4.4.4 update for the AT&T HTC One M8 that we covered over a week ago never actually rolled out to devices. The company pulled its page down, which suggests that it went up sooner than anticipated. HTC Vice President of Product Management Mo Versi took to Twitter over the weekend to announce that the OTA was actually due out this week, and that it would include both VoLTE support and the HTC Eye Experience software enhancements.

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Amazon Music 4.3 Makes Streaming Easier Thanks To A New Prime Music Section, Quicker Access, Better Search, And More

Those of you with an Amazon Prime account also have a stockpile of music open to you through the company's half-a-year-old streaming service, and with version 4.3 of the Android app, the retailer is making those tracks easier to access.

Instead of browsing through the company's virtual store shelves and adding albums to your library as though you were buying them, you can just browse through a separate Prime Music section. When you click on a song there, it simply starts playing. No fuss. But if you do want to add an artist's work to your personal library, the option is still there. Amazon says it has improved the search experience too, with queries yielding more thorough results.

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Samsung Galaxy Alpha On AT&T Gets OTA Update Bringing Minor Enhancements

The Galaxy Alpha is a slick piece of hardware. While the bulk of the phone remains plastic, Samsung decided to surround this handset with a metal frame, giving it a more premium look and feel than the flagship that came before it, the Galaxy S5. Now AT&T is gracing the phone with a minor over-the-air update that provides unnamed "user experience enhancements." The OTA will leave the device running software version G850AUCU1ANL1.


The update is only 17MB in size, so presumably the changes being made are relatively small. After everything is done, your phone will be still be left running Android 4.4.4.

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Google Maps Updated To 9.3 With Shareable Directions [APK Download]

Google Maps, for its part this Update Wednesday, has received a bump to version 9.3. The changes aren't immediately apparent to users just opening the app, but there are at least a couple of things worth mentioning in the new update.

First, shareable directions. Once a user looks up directions or navigation to a destination, they can share the directions with any app in the normal share menu or - if Google Glass is connected - to Glass.

Screenshot_2015-01-14-15-31-28 Screenshot_2015-01-14-15-31-44

Users can also permanently dismiss the GPS nag dialog that pops up if a user's location settings aren't ideal for Maps. (Thanks Allen!)


The app also comes with new permissions, including access to Bluetooth settings and devices, and the ability to run at startup.

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