Ford is showing off the current state of its Android Auto implementation at CES, which will roll out to current and future Sync 3-equipped cars later this year. In many ways, it matches that of other auto makers where Android Auto is sort of like an app inside of their own custom interface. However, a representative at Ford's booth explained that Sync 3 has been optimized to stay out of the way when Android Auto is running by hiding its own redundant systems like the built-in navigation and phone apps. Many other in-car systems tend to prefer their own navigation and dialer if they are opened from within the custom interfaces, but Ford will automatically launch Google Maps and Auto's own dialer, regardless of which interface you're looking at. Read More
At CES 2016, New Balance announced the launch of a new Digital Sport division that aims to mix its physical activity expertise with modern technologies and bring it into a more modern era of sports and active lifestyles.
There are several aspects to Digital Sports' ecosystem: a Strava-based community of runners called Run Club, plans for embedding sensors and smart technology into future New Balance footwear and apparel and sports equipment (though nothing tangible has been announced there), and finally New Balance-branded wearables. The first product to launch in that latter category will be an Android Wear smartwatch.
Details are almost non-existent, but New Balance says the watch will be first and foremost focused on running. Read More
It's the beginning of the month, and that means Android platform distribution numbers have been updated. It's also yet another opportunity to wonder who is still using Froyo? Android 2.2 remains steady at 0.2%, but everything else has moved at least a little. Both Marshmallow and Lollipop have moved up, and everyone else is down. Read More
Most of the Android Wear devices out there are similar takes on the same use case, but watchmaker Casio is trying something a little different. The Casio Smart Outdoor Watch (WSD-F10) is an Android Wear device with sport watch styling and a seriously rugged design. It can even run for as long as a month in basic monochrome mode. It might not be a watch you wear every day, but outdoorsy folks might really dig it. Read More
There's a version of the latest Moto X that we here in the States can only get in the form of the DROID MAXX 2. The Moto X Play, as it's called, offers a weaker processor but increased battery life compared to the Moto X Pure Edition. Owners in Brazil and India have reached out to us with word that Android 6.0 is now rolling out to their devices. Read More
The monthly security update for January is starting to roll out to Nexus devices. Factory images turned up yesterday morning and now we've got some changelogs from the Android Open Source Project (AOSP) if you're interested in taking a deeper look at exactly how things have been tweaked.
Unlike the 6.0.1 release in December, this month's adjustments appear to be entirely focused on security fixes. Google has a bulletin describing the relevant security issues addressed with this release. There are also a couple of builds specific to the Pixel C, including one that appears quite large. Like some of the previous changelogs, this is merely because it technically starts from a base version (i.e. Read More
Android Auto is probably the most expensive form of Android you're considering paying for, and the options aren't nearly as diverse as they are with phones. You either have to buy the latest model from a car maker that offers support, or you upgrade your stereo. On the positive side, more manufacturers are jumping on board. Fiat Chrysler will show off Android Auto support at this year's CES. Read More
Google's Android Auto system is gaining a bit of steam, but you still need to hunt for a manufacturer and model that support it (assuming you're buying a new car and not just upgrading your stereo). That will be a little easier later this year: in the lead-up to CES, American manufacturing giant Ford has announced that its semi-proprietary SYNC system will soon support Android Auto. Specifically, those cars that are currently on the road and use SYNC version 3 will be upgraded with Android Auto capability, and 2017 SYNC-equipped models should have Android Auto support built in.
Android Auto support will come along with a host of other upgrades, including simultaneous support for Apple's competing CarPlay standard. Read More
If you've been experiencing some intermittent problems getting timely email alerts on your Nexus phone, you're not alone. According to lengthy threads on both Google's official Nexus Help Forum and the AOSP issue tracker, quite a few Android users running Android 6.0 and later builds on Nexus hardware are seeing similar issues. The problem seems to result in late or missing notifications for Gmail and Inbox, as well as less frequent alerts for other apps, and less definable errors with some Google services like Google Now.
The issue tracker entry has been starred by 140 people at the time of writing, indicating a fairly widespread problem, though it isn't universal. Read More