After paying a lot of attention to the mobile and connected TV experience, Netflix has announced a major overhaul of their browser interface. Before you sign in and get confused, today is just the beginning of the rollout, which they say will complete in a couple of weeks. Netflix bills this as the first major update in four years, though its look has certainly gone through several iterations over that time span. For a refresher, here's a side-by-side comparison of old and new (click to embiggen):
Left: current/old Right: new
Orange is the new black? Maybe, but black is the new white.Read More
Along with site notifications, the latest Chrome Beta v42 has another new feature for improving the web app experience. The ability to add a website to your home screen from Chrome has been there for a while now, but not all web pages are created equal in this regard. These shortcuts work best for fully-fledged web apps and now Chrome will let you know when you have visited a good candidate for home screen placement.
To get an idea of how it works, check out this GIF from HTML5 Rocks:
Perhaps the most important aspect of this feature is that it will not appear every time you visit a qualifying site.Read More
Samsung has been pushing its fancy new Milk brand hard lately, adding video and teasing virtual reality. But before today, listeners' biggest barrier to access was the fact that the app was only available on their Samsung-branded phones and tablets. That changes this morning with the launch of Milk Music for the web, accessible from desktop and Chrome OS browsers at milk.samsung.com. Log in using your Samsung account and you'll have access to the same songs and stations that you do on mobile.
Unlike the mobile version, the website's free service is available to everyone - you'll need a Samsung account to log in, but it will let you through even if you make a new one with no associated devices.Read More
Have you ever used Google+ on a mobile browser? It has never been very fun. Trying to share something or make sense of a link was no better. However, after over a year without noticeable improvements for mobile browsers, it has finally gotten a revamp. In fact, it's arguably a better experience than the current Google+ app for Android.
Here's a look at the new mobile web app.
If you don't remember how it was before, here are a couple snaps from Google's out-of-date mobile web apps page:
Quick, if you're on a desktop browser, open a new tab and head for Google Drive. You might just see a new interface for Google's document and storage service, first announced back at Google I/O. Drive is getting a makeover to make it more like navigating files in a desktop file manager, complete with thumbnail views for all items and keyboard modifiers that let you manage multiple files at once. Here, check out Google's slick intro for the new features.
The new UI seems to be spreading out slowly.Read More
Google Drive/Google Docs isn't the best online office suite in the world, at least in my experience, but it is a pretty great way to get a competent and instant editor for quick tasks. The only problem is that this tends to leave you with dozens of semi-finished items in your Drive, a bunch of quick paragraphs and hastily-formatted emails that need to be deleted one-by-one in the list view. Today Google Drive has solved this minor annoyance, if only on the web.
You can now delete the Doc, Slide, or Sheet that you're currently working on without closing it and going back to the list view.Read More
The platform behind this project is Apache Cordova, an open-source framework that enables web apps to be compiled much like native applications, allowing them access to native operating system functions and hardware sensors like the camera and accelerometer.Read More
Google has provided the tools for developers to create desktop Chrome apps for a while now, but it's looking like Chrome apps are going to be hitting mobile devices too. A GitHub repository managed by a Googler contains tools and documentation for the project. Google isn't really keeping it a secret, but neither is it discussing any official details.Read More