10
Oct
SmartIR-Thumb

What timing. Just over a week ago I transitioned my HTC One over from Sense 5 to CyanogenMod, accepting the fact that I was sacrificing IR functionality in the process (and yes, that was something I used somewhat regularly). Now an update for Smart IR Remote has landed that adds IR functionality back to HTC Ones and Samsung Galaxy devices with custom ROMs installed, even if the ROM lacks IR drivers.

10
Oct
Youtube-Thumb

Last month YouTube announced that they were going to introduce an offline viewing option to their mobile apps sometime in November. They've since rolled out details about how it's going to work. If you add videos to your device and then disconnect it from the Internet, you will be able to watch the content for up to 48 hours. After those two days have passed, you will have to reconnect in order to watch the videos again, but the 48 hour window will refresh, and the content will remain on your device.

10
Oct
doubleTwist-Thumb

One strength of iOS is that everything works seamlessly together. If you have iTunes installed on your computer, it doesn't take much effort to get music over to your iPhone. With Play Music, Google has taken a different approach for Android users looking at an out of the box experience, and if you don't have the internet connection to rely on the cloud for music listening, it's less than ideal. doubleTwist takes the iTunes approach, and with the reinvented doubleTwist Sync app that's now available for Windows, it looks more promising than ever.

10
Oct
bb

Mercury Browser has been one of the top alternatives to Apple's Safari browser on iOS for a while, and now the developers have finally ported it to Android. It might not be sewn into the fabric of your Google account like Chrome is, but Mercury Browser has a slick interface and plenty of advanced features.

1 3 5

09
Oct
maps

Earlier today, Google started a staged rollout of a new point release of Google Maps. We've been poring over all the UI differences between the new version 7.3 and the previous version 7.2 from last month for the last couple of hours and managed to catch a few interesting changes. Since the official changelog isn't out yet, these will have to do for now.

Here's what we've spotted.

wm_Screenshot_2013-10-09-23-44-46

What's New?

Duration, distance, and estimated arrival time in the expanded notification

The expanded notification now carries a lot more information than before.

09
Oct
Quickoffice-Thumb

Google left many of us scratching our heads when they relaunched Quickoffice last month as a free app, one that probably should have shipped as a Google Drive update instead. Nonetheless, a new version has rolled out that nudges things in the right direction. Now opening a Google document inside Quickoffice will launch the file using the Google Drive app. Previously the document was merely displayed as a PDF instead.

09
Oct
55

There are plenty of alternative Android keyboards, but SwiftKey is perhaps the most well-known and capable of the lot. Even this paragon of customization is not perfect, though. The newest update to SwiftKey includes a lot of bug fixes and responds to some specific user complaints.

timthumb

09
Oct
unnamed (10)

Flashier Twitter apps have come and gone, but I'm still pretty enamored with Plume. One reason is that the developer (LevelUp, of Beautiful Widgets fame) is constantly rolling out new features, and today's update adds a doozie: push notifications. You should get notifications for new tweets, replies, mentions, and messages more or less instantly, and the widget and main feed can now use a "Live Stream" mode.

2013-10-09 06.55.49 2013-10-09 07.08.04

The service experimented with push background notifications before, but the developer wasn't satisfied with the battery-hungry feature.

09
Oct
unnamed (21)

This is what I like to see in an Android monetization model: options. The BitTorrent company released a full-function version of µTorrent (AKA uTorrent or MicroTorrent) a little more than a year ago. The beta app was free, but now there's a paid version that drops the beta tag in favor of a "Pro" label. The new app is $2.99 and includes all of the improvements made to the original app, with a little extra.

08
Oct
Xfinity-Thumb

Comcast provides an Android app for people with active cable subscriptions, but it's a supplementary product, and sometimes it really feels like one. Today I'm reporting on the arrival of a feature that you could reasonably have assumed was included from the beginning. The latest version of the Xfinity TV Player adds HD support for devices with resolutions high enough to handle it, and if you've bought a smartphone or tablet in the last two years, there's a good chance yours is one of them.

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