It's 2013, and chances are that someone has asked you to make a Skype video chat at some point or another. This isn't too all-consuming on PCs, where a user can fire up their webcam and tuck the Skype client away in the corner. Anyone using an Android device, on the other hand, has had to devote the entire screen to the conversation. But thanks to the latest Skype update, many of us will be freed from the burden of giving a video chat our undivided attention, as we will now have the ability to tuck the entire session away into the corner.
The list of devices that offer support for Samsung's first smartwatch is constantly growing, and today Verizon's Galaxy S 4 Mini gets to join that elite crew. The support docs just updated with details of the OTA, which highlights the Gear's potential usefulness.
Gear support isn't all you'll find in this update, either. It also brings about some new bloatware (imagine that), like Verizon's MyInfoZone Widget, VMware, and Verizon Cloud. Exciting stuff.
Google's default Android keyboard has typically emphasized simplicity over anything else, but it has picked up quite a few new nice features over the years. It now offers Swype-style gesture support out of the box, and after the latest update, you can choose what color your swipe trail and accent colors should be.
Following the Android 4.4 redesign, the Google Keyboard defaults to a subdued black and white color palette.
An updated version of Minecraft for Android is hitting devices now, and it brings in a number of exciting things, including the use of powered rails. How a game called "Minecraft" could exist for this long without minecarts may be initially baffling, but this is the pocket edition after all, and some things do take time to bring over to our handy mobile platform. Gamers hooked on this immensely addictive title will also be happy to know that this isn't the only addition making its way over from the PC version.
Galaxy S4s running on the C Spire Wireless network started receiving OTA updates to Android 4.3 a week ago, bringing the devices up to the latest version of Jelly Bean. Now Samsung's older flagship is having its day in the sun. C Spire customers with Galaxy S IIIs are now getting the Galaxy Gear compatibility that has been rolling out to Samsung's high-end devices since the launch of the Galaxy Note 3.
Just hours ago the source code for Android 4.4.2 went live on AOSP, and now we already have our changelog from Al Sutton. With only four meaningful changes, this is probably the smallest changelog we've ever seen. That's not to say it isn't significant, as it further hides away App Ops and also shores up two fairly serious vulnerabilities.
Google only started the Android 4.4.1 update last week, but it looks like a new hotfix is already good to go, as 4.4.2 showed up for Nexus devices in the last hour. So far, we've seen it on the Nexus 4, Nexus 5, and the Nexus 7, but it's probably safe to say the Nexus 10 is not going to be far behind. Update: Nexus 10 confirmed too.
Google is rolling out an updated version of Hangouts, and while version 2.0.2 doesn't introduce much in the way of exciting new features, it squashes a handful of annoying bugs introduced when the app took on the ability to handle SMS and MMS messages.
The newer, SMS-tackling version of Hangouts came with a few quirks that have been rubbing more than a handful of users the wrong way. For starters, the app converted any text message sent to multiple receivers to an MMS, which is chargeable for many people.
Have a Nexus 10? Want the latest version of Android but haven't gotten the update notification no matter how many times you press the "check now" button? Good news - your update is ready to download directly from Google. If you've been around the block before, you know there's an easy way to download and manually install OTA updates for Nexus devices. We'll walk you through it below.