Back when Hangouts first debuted, it was quickly discovered that Google's messaging app included several easter eggs, ranging from ponies prancing across the screen, to a weird dinosaur hiding behind a house, to changing your chat's background color at random. Until yesterday, though, these bonus features weren't available for those using Hangouts on Android. As of the 2.1 update, users can make use of three easter eggs - one that will stream an infinite line of ponies across your screen, one that will send just one pony across, and one that will send an angry mob across, pitchforks and torches included.
The doubleTwist developers have introduced the ability to stream Google Play Music to AirPlay devices using MagicPlay, their own personal means of streaming music from Android to an AppleTV or AirPlay-compatible speakers. The process taps into the same API that Google uses to stream to the Chromecast and that which Sonos uses for Google Play Music to stream to its devices.
A mobile keyboard is only as good as the number of languages it supports. Keyword: supports. The keys we press on our keyboards may seem pretty simple to get right, but sometimes manufacturers don't ship devices with everything functioning and available out of the box, including entire languages. In those cases, the sooner an update arrives, the better. So HTC is making over 40 Sense Input languages available on Google Play, speeding up and simplifying the way it can push out future updates and language packs.
If you want to know why Facebook spent just one billion dollars shy of twenty Instagrams for WhatsApp, look no further than the instant messaging app's number of users. WhatsApp today announced that it now has over half a billion active users. This means that 50,000,000 have signed up since the company's acquisition two months ago and continue to use the app. That's a ton of communication, much of it in parts of the world where Facebook's footprint isn't as large.
HBO has a mobile app. It lets you watch shows, and it supports Chromecast. Really, that's all that matters here. There's little else it needs in the way of features that will determine whether or not users will turn to it when the opportunity comes to spend some time with HBO. The real question is - do you really want to watch all those sex scenes on the family TV?
Let's go through the checklist.
Smartwatches get all the credit, but they're largely nothing without the companion app calling all the shots from a nearby smartphone. So when said companion receives a pretty substantial update, it breathes new life into the accessory it's paired with. Today Sony has rolled out such an upgrade for its Smartwatch 2 companion app, introducing a brand new watch face editor.
From this interface, wearers can choose which watch face and widgets (weather, calendar, etc.) that they want on their watch.
Today's Hangouts update was a bit of a surprise. Besides landing on Monday, the update was a fairly large one. Users of the latest version of Hangouts are already enjoying merged SMS/Hangouts threads, improved status markers, a new home screen widget, new sound effects, the ability to share contact cards, and other touches. But - as with any Google update - it's worth looking a little deeper in the app to see what may be hiding in the code.
So the Google Nexus Twitter account was doing some impromptu support for a user and included a screenshot. How helpful! Well, more helpful than they intended it to be. The screenshot shows a slightly tweaked dialer app with a blue action bar. First they took our #33b5e5, now they're coming after the gray. Actually, I think I'm okay with that.