Google's Creative Lab internal division certainly has a diverse body of work. Between all the experimental apps and weird web tools released under the name, you can find entries that range from novel to straight-laced and back again. The latest addition to the catalog falls into the former category. Verne: The Himalayas is a virtual tour of the world's highest mountain range, utilizing both Google's 3D satellite mapping technology and a cartoon abominable snowman. Read More
The Google Maps app is back again with a fresh update, and this one is certainly interesting. As far as live features go, there are some changes related to navigation that will help keep maps oriented north, even with accidental swipes. A teardown also shows that Google is planning to give advice about parking at different locations, and Local Guides can look forward to status indicators for edits. And finally, there's evidence suggesting the return of Launcher Shortcuts.
- New 'Keep map north up' setting
- Accidental swipe protection for North-up mode in Navigation
Keep map north up
Left: previous version with tilt map toggle. Read More
YouTube has a lot of content, not all of which is acceptable for kids. Actually, a lot of it isn't acceptable for grown ups either, but that's beside the point. The YouTube Kids app was launched last year to aggregate kid-friendly videos, but it didn't support YouTube Red. Now, it does support YouTube Red, which we predicted in an APK Teardown earlier this year. Read More
We may have all been a bit dubious about Samsung Pay when it was first announced, especially as another duplicate service that Samsung was launching to provide its own solution instead of Google's or Apple's, but Pay has proven to be more of a success story so far. Launches in multiple countries, ease of use, and MST compatibility make it a great contender in the mobile payment segment.
With this continuous improvement comes a new feature of Samsung Pay: Samsung's own Rewards card. You can earn it by participating in different promotions — there's one right now for a $20 Rewards card after making your first payment in the US — and it'll show up as a VISA card inside your Pay account. Read More
Look, it's not as if we at Android Police are fanatically opposed to Cheetah Mobile as a company. I can see how one could get that impression from reading the previous Cheetah stories, I really can. But between screwing up an otherwise anticipated game sequel with in-app purchases, screwing up a perfectly good ASUS phone with bloatware, or screwing up future generations of developers with bloatware classes, it's hard not to see them as the cackling cartoon villains of the Android software world. The company's latest acquisition is a French news aggregator call News Republic. Read More
If typing is too much effort for you or you don't enjoy pecking at small buttons on your screen, then you might enjoy the art of handwriting a lot more. And in that case, you're probably using Google Handwriting Input (or a similar keyboard) to satisfy all your scribbling needs.
After adding a few languages in its 1.5 update, the app is now receiving more of them in version 1.7 and improving support for several existing languages. The new additions are: Corsican, Hawaiian, Kazakh, Luxembourgish, Samoan, Scottish Gaelic, Shona, Tajik, Uzbek, and Western Frisian.
The app also now supports Android N so you can install it on your Nexus devices if you're running a developer preview build, and has more emojis. Read More
In the past year or so, I haven't had the time or opportunity to travel or explore new countries and cities. What I do have time for is my job where I sit behind a desk and write about people who are traveling and enjoying new places and who also have enough free time to use Snapchat to chronicle their trips... Oh how I envy their lax lifestyle.
Anyway, these people — you or your friends or your kids or your parents even — now have a new feature in Snapchat that uses their location to show appropriate stickers to add to photos or chats. Read More
Android Pay is cool and all, but if your bank or credit union isn't supported, it really doesn't matter. You can't take part in the fun.
Many of the big banks gained support first, catching headlines and impacting the largest number of users. Now we're seeing Android Pay make its way out to many of the financial institutions that serve as bedrocks of their local communities. Read More
Kids these days love Snapchat. That's my understanding, anyway. And news like this only feeds into that impression. Instagram is now introducing Stories, a feature similar to one Snapchat launched three years ago. Read More
You should spend money on good content to support developers, but that doesn't mean you have to always pay full price. I mean, if there's a sale, shouldn't you take advantage of it? Of course, and here are all the best sales live in the Play Store. Read More