The Amazon Echo, as a sort of physical embodiment of the functionality that voice-controlled services like Google Now offer, is an interesting idea. But without a screen or much in the way of direct input, its utility is limited by the number of services that it ties into. For example, before today the Echo could only access music from iHeartRadio, TuneIn, and Amazon's own cloud music service. The latest software update enables much-needed support for Pandora. Read More
BlinkFeed debuted with the HTC One M7, and while not everyone appreciates a Flipboard-style home screen with limited news sources, it has its fans. HTC uploaded the launcher into the Play Store last year in time for the M8 launch, and for the M9's release it has renamed the app to Sense Home.
HTC's new homescreen implements a few predictive capabilities that we've seen pop up over the past year or two in apps such as Aviate and EverythingMe. Read More
Reddit is a great resource for casual news browsing and/or wasting hours and hours of time, but the website is still hell to view on a small screen. That's probably why reddit clients are such a popular niche on Android, and one of the more popular entries in said niche is the third party app Reddit News. Today it's getting a new name and a bit of a facelift: say hello to Relay for reddit. Read More
Do you want to use Chrome in fullscreen immersive mode, without add-on apps or root modifications? According to entries in the Chromium project on Google Code it's coming soon, possibly in the next beta release. But don't get too excited just yet.This behavior is specifically for website elements, not the browser itself (which was possible in some versions of the old AOSP browser). It will enable certain sites or web apps to go fullscreen with Android's immersive mode, just like HTML videos do now. Read More
Attention: the following roundup contains absolutely no mention of the new release of Google Reader... because that happened in April. But it does have some great picks for new apps from March, including our top seven and a handful of honorable mentions. News readers, social tools, and root-only apps are covered, plus some diagnostic tools for tech heads. And if customization is your thing, check out the honorable mentions section for cool icons and live wallpapers. Read More
April 1st isn't the safest time to browse tech blogs on the web. One third of all of the posts that go up are likely a fake (this one, though, is entirely legitimate). Yet while Facebook's latest app looks like it could be a joke—it isn't. Riff is a collaborative way for friends to make videos with one another using the social network.
Riff lets you shoot a clip that's up to 20 seconds long and share it for others to see. Read More
For any readers visiting this post on or after April 2, check the post date before continuing :)
In 2013, Google announced the death of its RSS reading platform Google Reader. At the time, Google cited declining usage as the official reason for Reader's closure, wrapping it up along with things like Cloud Connect, Voice for Blackberry, and Building Maker as part of a second round of "spring cleaning."
It comes as a huge surprise then to see the app back in the Play Store almost two years later with a new icon and brand new interface, jumping from version 1.1.8 up to 2.0. Read More
The typical Update Wednesdays, wherein Google released new versions of its many and varied Android apps, will be a little less busy from now on. Not that Google released many updates for the Android version of Google Finance anyway - according to the Internet Archive, the last time the app was touched was way back in January of 2013. In any case, it's gone now: Finance disappeared from the Play Store without ceremony last night.
Between the lack of updates and a surprising apathy on Google's part, it's unlikely that the Android version of Finance will be missed. Read More
The News & Weather app is a bit of a dark horse among Google's lineup. It's also not as talked about as Google+, or as vital as Gmail; and it doesn't fit in with the Play-branded apps like Newsstand, which it is effectively a direct competitor to. For many people, News & Weather is just another widget that came pre-installed on a Nexus device, at least until it was made available on the Play Store, in late August. Since then, a few really big updates have drastically improved the once stale app. Read More