Pocket began as a way to save a website and read it later. But like any company providing a free service, Pocket started using the information it gathered on users to make recommendations. Then it introduced a way to follow friends and interesting strangers in order to keep up with what they're reading and read their comments. What began as a useful web utility has turned into a social network. Read More
There are a few ways to enable 2-factor authentication. One common approach is to send a text message to your phone containing an authentication token. Another option is to have an app installed that will generate that string of numbers without making you wait.
There are a few apps out there that will do the job. Google Authenticator is one. Another is Authy, which was acquired by Twilio a year ago. The latest version of the latter adds support for six, seven, and eight digit authentication tokens. Not only that, it makes those digits significantly easier to read. Read More
We all love podcasts, amirite? I'm currently listening to the latest 'No Such Thing As A Fish' episode. Audible, the audiobook company owned by Amazon, has officially put live 'Channels,' a way to listen to news shows and podcasts in the same app you listen to books in.
Audible members get unlimited access to Channels, meaning they can listen to ad-free podcasts, news shows, and comedy at no extra charge. The content in a channel can be either streamed or individually downloaded for offline listening. Channels can also be followed, giving users an easy way to stay up-to-date.
Left: The main Channels screen. Middle: A list of content in a Channel. Right: The Channel Player, similar to the audiobook player. Read More
This weekend many sons and daughters will be celebrating their mothers, and Google hopes Hangouts will be a part of the occasion. When you wish your mom a Happy Mother's Day, a random animation will pop up to mark the moment. Read More
Music is great, but what if you want some pretty pictures with your tunes? ProjectM is a good option for music visualization, but the UI looked pretty old-fashioned until now. A new update adds Chromecast support as well as a more modern material-ish UI. Read More
Sound sounds better when it's coming from more directions. Okay, that may not be entirely how audio works, but I never claimed to be an expert in the area. I can say this. When an explosion happens to your left on screen and you hear it come that direction, it's very cool. That's an objective statement of fact.
Since this is the case, Google has added Dolby Digital Plus surround sound support to Android TV and Roku. Read More
Netflix recently noted that it has been throttling data on carriers like AT&T that have overage charges, but that was just a temporary measure. The company had planned to roll its mobile data saver feature out to everyone in May, and here we are. The feature should be live for everyone right now, no update needed. Read More
It feels like Facebook is on a roll at the moment: Messenger has been getting lots of updates recently, as has WhatsApp, and there's new Instagram UI too. Now it's the turn of the main Facebook app. It would be an understatement to say it needs a lot of development time. If I had a dollar for every time I've seen a complaint about the Facebook app, I'd be richer than Mark Zuckerberg.
New Sharing Popup
The first item is the new sharing popup. We're not entirely sure when this first appeared, but it's there. The popup allows users to change where they're posting to - 'Post to Facebook,' 'On a friend's timeline,' and 'In a group.' This can be switched using the top spinner. Read More
The idea of contactless payments has turned out to be an unusually divisive topic. Some people are certain that we're only a couple of years away from abandoning physical credit cards in favor of using smartphones at the checkout line, while others see it as an obnoxious novelty that slows down everything and should be ignored. Whatever the case, it's interesting to watch the progress of mobile payment methods as they grow and evolve in an effort to capture consumer interest. The latest update to Android Pay v1.3 doesn't appear to bring any immediately available new features, but a teardown reveals that we will soon have the option to use certain types of cards without unlocking our phones. Read More
On the scale of meh to super duper exciting, this Google+ 7.8 version update falls low, really low. Unless you get excited about bug fixes, which I know is a legit reason to love an update if a specific bug had been ruining the app for you, but is as dry and drab a topic to read about as a 0.1 pH change in a cleaning solution, you can pretty much say that nothing significant has changed.
I know I'm telling you to close this tab and go read something else, but since you're still here and you're clearly interested in the littlest changes Google introduces in its apps, I'll satisfy your curiosity. Read More