Riding on an airplane is the fastest way we currently have to get from one place to another, but boarding one is also one of the quickest ways to cut yourself off from the rest of the world. Not all flights provide Wi-Fi access, and connections are often slow on those that do. Thankfully, Gogo is working to speed up airborne Wi-Fi connections, according to the Wall Street Journal, and Virgin America has already signed up to give its new service a go. The company plans to introduce Gogo's service on its 53 planes starting in the second half of next year.
I really like the Sonos system of wireless music servers and speakers. I also can't afford it due to a wretched and unshakeable habit of collecting novelty egg cups. But my job does give me a paper-thin excuse for buying tons of Android devices, and it just so happens that a new app will let me cobble those together to make a vague approximation of a connected music system.
SoundSeeder is more or less a straight-up copy of Samsung's Group Play, with the obvious addition that you don't need Samsung hardware at either end to use it. Open up the music player on your host device and make sure that all your Android gadgets are connected to the same WiFi network.
If there is one thing we all eventually rely on with mobile devices, it's having a sturdy Wi-Fi connection. Whether it's because of a low data cap, you live or work somewhere with a weak cell signal, or like me, the local cellular technology is stuck in the stone age, you probably have a few wireless networks saved on your phone or tablet. While you probably take it for granted that your devices will automatically connect to these networks when they are in range, some people are finding that feature hasn't been working as expected since upgrading to Android 4.3.
The common thread among the complaints is that taking your device beyond the range of an access point for more than a few minutes can leave it unable to automatically reconnect when a signal is found later.
If you're paranoid about losing both your smartphone and your tablet... well, you probably shouldn't be carrying both in an area where either is likely to get stolen. But if you do, and feel like you need an extra layer of protection, McAfee is here to indulge your fear. Smart Perimeter Plus (in the Security Innovations app) links your Android phone and tablet, then sets off an alarm if either are separated from the same WiFi network. It's a free download for devices running Android 2.1 or later.
The concept is pretty simple: connect both your phone and your tablet to the same WiFi network, then pair them with the app-specific PIN.
It looks like Google is gearing up for the Glass Explorer program, launching the MyGlass companion app and a new Glass setup page, both accessible to the general public.
The companion app relies on Google's now-signature "Card UI," and the listing's screenshots show off some of the app's functionality, though Google reminds us "if you don't have Glass, then downloading this will be a waste of time. Sorry about that." The description goes on to comfort readers, however: "But if you swipe the screenshots to the right, you'll see there's a picture of a puppy in pajamas. So not a total waste of time after all."
Of course, users can still install the app, though it (obviously) won't be able to complete Glass setup properly without an actual Glass unit.
We first heard about a carrier-free, WiFi-only Galaxy Camera back in February. At the time we had no information on when it would come to market or how much it would cost, but today that's no longer the case! Samsung has officially announced that the smartphone-ified point-and-shoot will land on the company's website and authorized retailers "later this month" for $449.
For those who don't memorize specs of unreleased cameras months before they come to market, here's what's inside:
Don't let the title fool you: this app isn't a WiFi-exclusive version of Skype. That would be silly. Instead, it's an easy access app for Skype's network of partnered WiFi access points, which the company claims is more than a million strong in various airports, cafes, and train stations. There's nothing stopping you from using them normally (or using the standard Skype VOIP app), but Skype WiFi will quickly connect and authenticate your Android-powered device.
What may be even more useful is the fact that you can pay for access with your Skype credit. While this is obviously less desirable than a free access point, it means that as long as you've got some Skype credit available, you won't have to dig into your wallet for a credit card or go through a PayPal prompt.
While it's not a major Android version update, Sprint is rolling out a pretty good upgrade to Evo LTE customers. The over-the-air software will add the ability to stream audio/video to a television set or other display via an MHL cable. Neat!
The update will also bring a variety of improvements, including to WiFi, Bluetooth compatibility, and the proximity sensor while listening to voicemail. So hopefully you won't have to worry about your face pressing buttons now. Additionally, an issue where certain processes or applications shutdown unexpectedly should be resolved.
The OTA (3.16.651.3) is rolling out to users right now.
Today, the UK's public broadcasting service, the BBC, upgraded its mobile app for Android. The update brings improvements to the UI to bring the interface a bit more in line with Android's Holo guidelines. The new version also adds support for Jelly Bean 4.2, improved video streaming over WiFi, and a new content channel.
Here's the full changelog:
What's in this version:
Many thanks for all of your feedback on our last update. Here’s what’s new in this release: - We’ve polished up the design of the app - Video performance over Wi-Fi has been improved(with more improvements still to come) - Added Android 4.2 Jelly Bean support - You’ll find a new channel - BBC Alba As ever, let us know what you think @bbciplayer
Of course, the BBC iPlayer isn't available outside the UK, so international users need not excite themselves too much.
If there's one thing you can say about Samsung, it's that the company is at least trying to push out updates, with a sizeable number of devices already running Jelly Bean. Sure, it's 4.1 and about six months behind the Nexus baseline, but the company is better than most manufacturers about rolling out updates lately. As if to demonstrate this, the Wi-Fi Galaxy Note 10.1 (N8010) has started to receive Jelly Bean 4.1.1 (JRO03C) in Germany.
XDA users in Germany are reporting that the update is rolling out to their devices right now. No word yet on when or if this will roll out to any other countries, but we imagine that slates unbound by carrier restrictions will see it sooner rather than later.