We're naturally big fans of Google here at Android Police. But living in Google's world as we do, it's easy for us to see the flaws in the enormous company, and it's also our duty to point them out. One of the biggest problems with Google is that it's often terrible at providing customer service to its hundreds of millions of active users. So it is with the first major problem to pop up for Music Key, YouTube's new music subscription service.
By now you may have seen YouTube's experimental new web player UI. The new interface has been popping up for some users for a while now, but if you haven't used the new player yet and you're feeling left out - good news. Today we've learned there's a way to enable the UI for yourself using a simple Chrome extension.
Advertising is a necessary evil. If you look around this very page, you'll see ads that keep Android Police afloat. (Unless you're blocking them, in which case you owe me a beer for every paragraph you read.) Google knows its way around ads - that's how an incredibly expensive, bandwidth-intensive video service like YouTube makes money.
Have you noticed that it's impossible to search for a game-related video on YouTube without seeing dozens of hour-long "Let's Play" videos? You're not the only one. According to a report from The Daily Dot, Google is looking to re-make YouTube's live streaming service (the one you use for every official Android event) with a focus on video games.
Play Music's v5.8 rolled out last month with a slew of fixes and improvements to make the app fit better with Material Design's guidelines and provide some added functionality like biography and history for artists, and a previous song button in the collapsed notification. The app has since seen a few incremental changes, but the latest v5.8.1836R got a rare treatment from Google: an official changelog.
A fresh update for YouTube began rolling out today, bumping the version number to 10.10. This appears to be a fairly minor release, as it only includes some visual tweaks and adds the new 4K video search filter. Still, it might appeal to anybody with a screen and hardware that supports super high-def video.
Just in case you were getting comfortable with the YouTube app's latest design, it looks like there may be more changes in store. It seems a number of users are encountering a new YouTube interface, apparently triggered server-side without an app update.
The change sees YouTube's hamburger menu flipping right out of the interface, going the way of Google+ in discarding the left-side navigation drawer.
We spotted some references to 360-degree videos in a YouTube APK Teardown last month, and now it's live. Google has highlighted several channels that have already published the first 360-degree videos, which are essentially moving Photospheres. They work on desktop Chrome and in the Android app. Check out the playlist below.
February saw some considerable new apps, both in terms of new services like YouTube Kids and Sling TV, and in expanded tools like PhotoMath and Microsoft's first custom keyboard for Android. If you find it hard to see the tiny type on your new ultra-high-res phone, check out BIG Notifications. Below are our top seven picks from last month, along with some honorable mentions.
The folks over at YouTube have had a busy week after launching YouTube For Kids, and then turning on video trimming a few days later. To keep the ball rolling, the YouTube team shipped a brand new update to its primary app last night that finally enables stats for nerds.