We've seen a few apps and services offer virtual phone numbers before - numbers that aren't tied to a specific SIM card and can be used with an account connection rather than dedicated hardware. It's especially handy for bring-your-own-device situations at work. But T-Mobile seems to be the first major American carrier to embrace the idea with its new DIGITS system. The service allows customers to use any number of, um, numbers tied to their wireless accounts, including disposable numbers that can be added and abandoned with ease. Read More
Long before the Chromecast audio was a twinkle in Larry Page's eye, Sonos was the undisputed king of smart home audio. With its multi-room speaker systems, you can rock out all over the house. Sonos has been adding more service to its selection of listening sources, and today it's getting Spotify. Read More
The long-running Ace Attorney series from Capcom manages a practically impossible feat: making players sympathize with defense attorneys. With a mix of classic adventure game elements and anime-style hyper-dramatic courtroom scenes, the games have become incredibly popular both in Japan and with a worldwide audience. Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney, the fourth game in the series (and the first to break away from the iconic Phoenix Wright protagonist), is now live on the Play Store for $15.99. Read More
Duo hasn't been the hit success that Google expected it to be, but that should only serve as motivation for engineers to make it better. The video-chatting app has just been updated to version 5.0, which not only fixes a few bugs, but also improves on the entire user experience. Read More
The Phab 2 Pro is the first phone to feature Google's Tango. Tango is, to put it lightly, not really ready for anyone aside from curious tech reviewers and maybe developers looking to get into AR content. The Phab 2 Pro itself also isn't a very good phone, and frankly costs too much to justify a largely gimmicky feature. In short, this product has "commercial flop" written all over it, and I think even AR enthusiasts and Tango phones can understand that. I honestly didn't ever expect it to be commercially marketed: this is a gadget that has some novelty and development value, but essentially zero real consumer appeal at this time. Read More
The history of Android on tablets is complicated. Just as Apple had done in 2007 with the first iPhone, the iPad's release in 2010 set a very high standard for the rest of the market. The next year, Google released Android 3.0 Honeycomb on the Motorola Xoom, designed specifically with tablets in mind. The Xoom wasn't the iPad killer that Motorola had hoped for, and there have been very few Android tablets that could stack up to Apple's iPad line.
Since Honeycomb, Android has shifted away from most tablet-specific features in favor of a shared UI on all screen sizes. There's still a large number of major applications clearly not designed for tablets (Hangouts comes to mind). Read More
Welcome to the roundup of the best new Android games that went live in the Play Store or were spotted by us in the previous 2 weeks or so.
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Looking for the previous roundup editions? Find them here.
Android Police coverage: Amanita Design (maker of Machinarium) releases Samorost 3 in the Play Store
Samorost is a franchise that's now over ten years old, but the third entry is the first one to come to Android. Read More
The name Prince of Persia should be familiar to many gamers. The series has been around a long time, seen many reboots and remasters, and platformed onto several... well, platforms. Chronologically set after Prince of Persia Classic, Shadow & Flame introduces some new combat and movement mechanics optimized for mobile. It is currently $0.10 in certain countries (yep, another one of those). Unfortunately for us United States fans, the U.S. is excluded from this sale. Read More
João Dias, better known online by his handle Joaomgcd, is one of the most prolific indie developers around. In addition to his work on a smorgasbord of Tasker plugins, he's also released Join, a Pushbullet alternative that allows sending commands to your phone via a Chrome extension on a nearby PC. The latest update to the extension adds voice control, so users can "push" links to Android or perform other tasks with a Star Trek-style voice command. It even uses "Computer" as the prompt - classy. Read More
There are more than a few racing games available on Android, but more technical racing simulators are a bit hard to come by. That's probably because mobile controls and hardware limitations don't appeal to developers (or players) hungry for painstaking accuracy. But today we get a new racing sim, from Codemasters no less - the developer of such franchises as GRID and Dirt, among many others. F1 2016, originally released on the PC and consoles in August, now has a full Android version on the Play Store for $10. Read More