11
Nov
gg

So you didn't get a Nexus 5 – that's okay. You can still get that shiny new KitKat look and feel with the new Nova Launcher beta. It won't get you all the way there (the transparent nav bar is limited, for example), but the new version of this third-party homescreen has a lot of little visual tweaks to make it look almost like the real thing.

Screenshot_2013-11-11-13-03-39 Screenshot_2013-11-11-13-02-29 Screenshot_2013-11-11-13-03-18

The Nova Launcher developer posted recently about the changes that were coming in light of KitKat, and now here we are.

11
Nov
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A new week has dawned, and that means the time for carefree fun is at an end. Or is it? There's always the fun of finding a new app or game on sale. We can even help with that.

monday

11
Nov
mic

Have you noticed that sometimes your Nexus 5 reverts to the old Ice Cream Sandwich-style pop-up for voice dictation in some apps, as opposed to the less disruptive "endless dictation" on-the-keyboard style? You're not alone. Our fearless leader Artem found that his N5's microphone icon was missing from the default keyboard, and using contextual mic icons (in search boxes and other places) caused the aforesaid behavior. It was also affecting third-party keyboards like SwiftKey.

11
Nov
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At some point in your childhood, one of your parents may have warned you against making faces - "knock it off," they said, "or your face will freeze like that." That sound advice might not actually be true, but it seems to have a pertinent application for the latest versions of the Hangouts app on Android. Reddit user Recon2012 found an app-killing bug within Hangouts relating to the new emoji functionality in the Android keyboard.

10
Nov
sol calendar

Since the ye olde days of wired-syncing on Blackberry, I've loved calendar apps. It's the app I use most on my phone, and so I'm always curious to try out new ones. SolCalendar looks especially lovely, so I gave it a trial run.

Setup

Setup was a breeze. It has on-screen instructions and immediately synced with my Google calendar without me having to log in or anything. Interestingly enough, it found a calendar to sync that I don't actually have (Nike Calendar?), but whatever.

08
Nov
LightFlow-Thumb

Have a KitKat device? If so, you've made the leap to the latest version of Android faster than most other people. That's the fun part. You've also jumped to Android 4.4 before most apps. That's the not so fun part. While older apps are generally stable and compatible, sometimes an update is in order to iron out the kinks. Thus a new version of Light Flow is now available that makes the app more compatible with Android 4.4 and the Nexus 5.

08
Nov
Chipotle-Thumb

There's an intense burrito-folding, salsa-serving war being waged out there between Chipotle, Moe's, Qdoba, and other purveyors of delicious tacos. Passions burn hotter than fresh chilies, and I'm not bold enough to throw my weight behind any of the involved establishments. But I will stick my neck out just enough to share that Chipotle's Mobile Ordering app is now open to all locations, and it's awesome.

Chipotle1 Chipotle5 Chipotle2

No, Chipotle doesn't deliver, but the company's app still saves you the effort of standing in line, shouting your order over the sound of hungry children, and asking the server what that goopy red stuff is next to other, slightly darker, goopy red stuff.

08
Nov
Nexus5-Thumb

The Nexus 5 is a ground-breaking device. For Android fans, this is the first high-end handset that customers can buy unsubsidized and activate on all but one of the major American carriers. This isn't a big deal with AT&T and T-Mobile, as Nexus 4 buyers could already use their networks last year, but the addition of Sprint is reason to take notice. If they can do it, it stands to reason that so could Verizon.

08
Nov
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You might just be seeing a new version of Google Maps in your Play Store downloads today - Google has updated the app from version 7.3 to 7.4. There's not a whole lot of new stuff going on inside, certainly not compared to the cavalcade of UI changes that happened earlier this year. A few tuned gestures, a few refreshed UI elements, and that's about it. APK downloads below.

2013-11-08 12.47.09

If you're a regular Maps user, you'll notice that the one-finger zoom gestures have been reversed.

07
Nov
GoogleKeyboard-Thumb

An updated version of Google Keyboard has made its way into the Play Store, taking most of the previously Nexus 5-exclusive features and expanding them out to other devices. We've covered the improvements in-depth before (and provided an APK), but in short, the swiping trail is now white, emoji are built-in, and users can swipe multiple words without having to lift up their finger. Unfortunately, some features still require KitKat, such as full-color emoji.

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