Titanium Backup, one of the most powerful – and popular – backup utilities available for Android, got an update to version 6.0 today. Don't get too excited though – the version bump consists primarily of bug fixes and optimizations, along with a few updated translations. Oh, and a redesigned menu. Yes, Titanium Backup's design is finally getting some attention, but not quite in the way we'd hoped – take a look at the before and after screens below.
Twitter continues its march towards being taken seriously as a social network with today's update to its mobile app that brings some interesting new profile additions. For starters, header images. With Facebook and Google+ beginning the trend, it seems a social network can't have just a profile picture anymore. Everyone who's anyone has a profile picture, and a hero image.
Curiously, the header images can only be added via the mobile app itself. The background photo that you chose for your Twitter profile a billion years ago and promptly forgot is not used. Also, just going to app settings won't get you to the dialog to add one.
Mapsaurus, released today by a developer team of the same name, is perhaps the new app to end all new apps. By pairing an interactive map of Google's Play Store with an intuitive UX, Mapsaurus takes app discovery to a new level – not just of ease, but also of convenience.
The app, which promises to help users "discover apps you never would have known to search for," can branch out an interactive web of apps and games based on apps you already have installed, curated subcategories, or general categories and function sets.
What's great about Mapsaurus is that it not only helps you find new apps and games, but that the selections it displays are curated to ensure that no "mediocre" or sub-par entries are suggested.
Google Translate, the frequently-overlooked wonder app of the 3rd millennium, got some new features today. Chief among them is an amazing new image-based translation mechanism. The app now supports use of your camera to take a picture of the text you would like to translate. Once that's done, just "brush" over the word or phrase you need to read and Translate will do what it says on the tin: render that text in your preferred language. It's not quite WordLens' live view, but then, if you've ever used WordLens' pause feature, you know that slowing things down a bit might actually be helpful.
Word Lens, the sometimes jittery but generally impressive visual language translator, is getting in the Olympic spirit. For a limited time, the language packs—which are acquired via in-app purchases to unlock full translation support—are being offered for $2.99 per pack, which is $2 off the normal price of $4.99. Huzzah!
It comes at a particularly poignant time. As the Olympic games get underway and the world remembers there's more that the nations of earth do together than wage war and make gadgets, Word Lens can be helpful in breaking down the language barrier and acting as a catalyst for that type of international camaraderie.
If you are a developer, you will want to fire up SDK Manager right now and perform an update. Besides the Honeycomb SDK preview that we'll talk about separately, Google also unleashed the next version of Android Development Tools, or simply ADT, for Eclipse as well as SDK Tools r9. I've been using ADT versions 9.0.0 preview 1, 2, and 3 for a number of weeks now, and I can tell you that 9.0.0 is a huge step up to where a serious set of development tools needs to be.
Numerous improvements to the Visual Layout Editor, "go to declaration" hyperlink support for quicker navigation around declarations, near-instant AVD restarts (holy crap!!!