The Xposed Framework and its associated modules are the best friends of users who know their way around root-level tools, but don't want a full custom ROM (or can't find one for their less-popular devices). One downside is that Xposed is the passion project of a single developer, "rovo89." He (we have it on fairly good authority that it is he, though the dev is very private) works on the framework outside of his day job, and it's often several months before rovo89 has it working to a level that's ready for general users. Read More
Ever since March of last year, Google has been testing a new payment method called Hands Free. The premise was that you could pay for goods with your smartphone without ever having to remove it from your pocket. The pilot was limited to the Bay Area and to only a few businesses. But now, the experiment has hit its end of life for the time being.
As of February 8, Hands Free will shut down. Read More
Looks like Instagram is testing the ability to add multiple photos to a single post in the latest Android beta build. This feature will allow you to create an album in your timeline, something that could prove pretty handy if the service is your photo-sharing spot of choice. Read More
Google Maps was recently promoted to v9.45 in the beta channel. This update includes a partially redesigned arrival card when users reach their destinations and introduces a feature where Google will send emails with highlights from your timeline. Turning to the teardown, it's clear that Google will soon allow users to share their custom lists with others. As usual, there's a download link at the bottom of the post, but since the v9.45.1 update came out shortly after the .0 release, both versions are linked. Read More
Snapseed is one of the apps Google has actually been keeping up after acquiring it, and good thing too. Adobe's mobile apps aren't great, and Snapseed is excellent for simple image edits. In the first update of 2017, Snapseed has a new curves editing tool, and there are changes to the way text and face detection work. Read More
RCS, short for Rich Communication Services, has been aiming to replace SMS for years. But unlike the universal SMS standard, there are multiple RCS implementations that don't work with each other. Google has been trying to solve this, by adding RCS support to Google Messenger and working with carriers to implement Jibe's 'Universal RCS Profile.' Read More
Take a look at the Play Store's top free apps chart today, January 31st, and you'll notice that Google Allo does not appear on said chart in the top 500 listings (technically, top 540 - I'm not sure when they grew the list, but yeah). It seems that Allo, based on App Annie's historical data, has actually fallen out of the top 500 several times in recent weeks, but this is the first incidence we've noticed. Read More
Plex wants to be the hub for all your content, but right now you mostly have to download that content separately and store it on your Plex server. The company has just acquired Watchup, a streaming news service that could make Plex a more robust platform. This isn't Plex's first foray into true live streaming, but it's certainly the biggest. Read More
If it's indie music and new, unknown artists, chances are it'll be on SoundCloud. The Berlin-based company has long pioneered a music platform that doesn't focus on the big, stadium-filling artists, but on the small, independent ones. An update to the app adds in Charts, letting users see what others are listening to on the service and what is popular at any given moment. While these were actually implemented in the previous version, they've just been added to the changelog, indicating it's possible they were rolling out on a server-side basis.
The charts are separated into two sections - Top 50 and New and Hot. Read More