Let's think about filters for a moment. They are immensely useful, allowing users to direct (junk) mail from particular senders to the appropriate location (the trash) or apply the correct label (stuff to ignore). Gmail has had the ability to create and manage filters for years, but its app hasn't. In fact, it still lacks this functionality. Yahoo, on the other hand, has rolled the feature into the latest release of its Android app, version 2.6.
The Samsung Gear Live launched with a built-in heart rate monitor, but unfortunately, it could only take measurements one at a time. There was no way to monitor a wearer's heart rate continuously, such as during a workout. Now developer Portable Pixels has hit Google Play with an Android app that makes this functionality possible, one that goes by the rather straightforward name of "Heart Rate Training."
The developer's previous creations skew more towards the amusing side, but that doesn't limit the capability of this app.
I'm at a point in my Android life where I can live without root access if I need to. I don't use very many root applications at all – I generally only use it for a one-touch reboot on phones without a built-in option in the power menu, and Greenify. I love Greenify. I don't use it for every app installed on my phone, but it's a fantastic tool when something just won't quit chomping down on the battery.
In July, Chrome Beta was updated with a new interface that more closely adhered to Google's new design vision - material design. Fitting with Google's occasional habit of stripping things down during major refreshes (see Google Maps on the web), many elements of the interface were sliced, rearranged, or simplified, including the tab indicator in the top right corner of the screen. Previously, the indicator showed users how many tabs were open, but after the redesign it simply displayed a square (or two stacked squares if you had multiple tabs open).
The Play Store has a ton of apps and games, often at very reasonable prices. Still, we live in a world where apps are priced very low, sometimes to the point that people scoff at paying even $0.99 for something. Developers can't just give it away, but they can occasionally drop the price to entice those of you on the fence. So stop with the indecisiveness, and buy some stuff that's on sale.
Today Microsoft is rolling out updates to its OneDrive app across all three of the big mobile platforms: Android, iOS, and Windows Phone. The full list of changes are detailed in the company's blog post, but ironically, Android tops the page with the most new features while Microsoft's own OS is situated at the bottom, not yet equipped with the features that I am about to share.
The Android version of OneDrive is the first to let people import both a personal and work account.
Auto insurance is a thing, and OBD-II diagnostic plugs are also a thing. Metromile brings these two things together in a marvelous fusion of data and pragmatism. With the new Android app, you can get diagnostic data out of your car and take advantage of Metromile's insurance rates based on how much you drive.
Update: A Google representative reached out to inform us that the bug report feature only appears if your phone is also in developer mode (tap repeatedly on the Build Number in the "About Phone/Tablet" menu). You may need to enable developer mode on Android Wear as well, as one commenter points out.
If you've found a problem with your Android Wear watch, you can now submit a bug to wearable app developers.
Update 8/27/14: The new features are now out of beta and available to everyone, just 5 days after the beta release.
Nova users, there's some good stuff happening in the beta channel, so if you're not already aboard that ship, now's a good time to jump on. Today's beta update is a good example of why: it brings some killer new transition animations and app drawer search for those who just have too many pages of apps to swipe through (*cough* Artem *cough*).
Google's official Glassware selection has a new member today - Pandora. As Carl Edwards explains in a post to the official Pandora blog, the addition of Pandora to the Glassware page of Google's MyGlass interface is the result of Pandora's semi-annual 72-hour hackathon. "It was such a hit," the blog says, "that we decided to show it to Google."
In keeping with Google's UX vision for Glass, the Pandora app is exceedingly simple.