GIFs are nothing new, but these days, they're mainstream and everywhere. That has driven big tech companies to come up with their own approaches for awkwardly animating pictures. Google automatically strings together several similar images and lets you export them as GIFs. Apple doesn't call them GIFs―they're Live Photos. Now Instagram is introducing Boomerangs, which you create using its new app called Boomerang.
YouTube Red is a damn good idea, and I'm not even going to qualify that statement. You know why it's a damn good idea? Because YouTube needs to grow up, and step one is getting rid of those garbage advertisements we all love to hate so much. Step two is convincing average, rational human beings that maybe, possibly, they could see themselves in a world in which they might actually pay to more conveniently watch the things and people they really, really, really like to watch.
At the moment, and probably for a while yet, basically all of YouTube's revenue comes from advertisements.
Are you enjoying TellTale's latest batch of episodic Android adventure games? Good. They're both coming to an end. For the moment, anyway - the first batch of Tales from the Borderlands episodes (based on and vastly improving the story behind 2K's Borderlands shooter series) is available in full on the PC and consoles right now, and the last episode is scheduled to hit the Android version tomorrow, October 22nd.
If you prefer fantasy to sci-fi, then the Game of Thrones series will end next month with its sixth episode. "The Ice Dragon" will release on all platforms on November 17th. Though TellTale has been putting its console and mobile releases closer and closer together for the last year or so, this will be the first time that an episode releases on Windows, consoles, Android, and iOS on the same day.
The day we've been waiting for is finally here—the ad-free YouTube Red service is a reality. Well, technically it will be a reality in a week on October 28th (close to the date we had before), but we've got all the details now. For $9.99 per month you'll never see another ad on YouTube, and it includes a number of other cool perks.
Bugs happen. As a result, bugfix updates also happen. Kodi 15.2 is the second such release since version 15.0 of the app formerly known as XBMC went stable, and it tackles quite a list of issues. Head's up—all of them are very specific.
On several Android devices that used an Amlogic chipset, Kodi 15 only showed a zoomed in display or only used part of the screen. 15.2 addresses this.
Some users lost video after fast-forwarding. This, too, has been squared away.
15.2 also fixes refresh-rate switching on Android devices like the Nexus Player and NVIDIA SHIELD TV.
Other fixes address non-DVB and MicroDVD subtitles, incompatible MySQL queries, PulseAudo on Linux, default sorting for songs over UPnP, volume adjustment for Xbox controllers, and the time format when setting regions.
Google Photos' decoupling from Google+ dates back to May, which means five months have now passed since. In this time, Google Photos has received several updates and gained essential features like Chromecast support and albums for adding and reordering images. Now the Photos team is ready to reflect on these five months and share with us a few stats about the app and service's use.
Photos now counts 100 Million active monthly users, but how that number is tallied I couldn't tell you. Does a single search or view count, or did they require uploads for users to be marked as active? I'm not sure. 15 Million animations and collages have been created, either manually or through Assistant.
HTC has officially announced the One A9 today, with a 5" Super AMOLED 1080p display with Gorilla Glass 4, a fingerprint scanner, microSD slot, and Android 6.0 Marshmallow with a revised version of sense. This will make the A9 the first non-Nexus device to launch with the latest version of the Android OS. The One A9 will be available in 4 colors, pictures below (we're not sure which markets will get which colors, yet). It's powered by a Qualcomm Snapdragon 617 octa-core processor clocked at 1.5GHz for the high-power cores and 1.2GHz for low-power, and is available with 16GB or 32GB of internal storage and 2GB or 3GB of RAM, respectively, though the US is only getting the 32GB version, which has a an introductory price of $399.
Welcome to the roundup of the best new Android applications, games, and live wallpapers 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.
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Last month HERE showed off its upcoming route sharing feature, which lets users send others the route they're taking to get to a destination. This way you can answer "How are you getting here?" without having to go through the effort of explaining. Tapping the standard share button and having the question-asking-person read the plain text that appears on his or her phone, or open the instructions inside HERE, should be much less of a headache.
Now you no longer have to be in the beta program to try out the feature. The stable version of the app is getting the goods in the newest update.