It's update Wednesday, and you know what that means. It's right there in the name—updates. There's a new version of Google+ rolling out, but it doesn't look like a huge change so far. As usual, we're digging in to see what's what, but you can grab the new version below.
Attention British people, the BBC News app has been updated with a completely new look—material design and all that. So people must be happy, right? Of course not, because things have changed and change is bad. Sure is pretty, though.
Dropbox has decided to buy CloudOn, an Israel-based company whose bread and butter consists of providing iPhone and iPad owners with a means of editing Microsoft Word documents in the cloud. The company gained popularity doing this at a time before Microsoft was fully ready to commit to the idea itself. The service worked with a number of cloud storage providers, of which Dropbox was one.
With the acquisition, Dropbox is positioning itself to expand into even more corners of the world. Read More
The Instagram app for Android might have a few problems, but you can be among the first to get fixes if you join the new official beta program (or maybe just bugs, hard to say). It's a regular Play Store beta, so sign-up only takes a few seconds. Just don't get too excited about the first beta build. Read More
Asana is a popular collaboration tool that keeps members of a team in contact without scattering conversations around in emails, text messages, and so on. The problem until now has been that the app was horrendously clunky and unpleasant. It was actually just a web wrapper—but no more. Asana v3.0 is a native app, and it's all material and whatnot.
Update: Bans are occurring on at least one other 3rd-party WhatsApp client, WhatsAppMD, so it can likely be assumed that any usage of a 3rd-party WhatsApp client at the moment may get you temporarily banned, at least until workarounds are developed. According to the developer of WhatsAppMD, the fix may be as simple as changing the app signature to match the official app's. If that solution does work, you'll likely see it implemented shortly. Read More
Field Trip is one of Google's less-known official apps (from the same people who work on Ingress), and appropriately, one of the most unique. The urban exploration app gets its 2.0 update today, bringing the user interface in line with Material Design standards introduced with Android 5.0. As nice as it is to see Google keeping its apps fresh, I have to say that the redesign takes something away in this case. Read More
Battery not working correctly? Well, just defrag it! It's all so obvious now. No, but really, there's an app in the Play Store that claims to repair your battery and basically looks like a hard drive defrag program. The weird part, it's been in the Play Store for a long time and people (some of them real) rate it quite highly. This is very sad.
YouTube has always been one of Google's less conventional properties, but the sudden leap from version 6.0 to 10.0 gave everybody a surprise. Even stranger is that with such a substantial jump in versions, there are virtually zero meaningful changes to the user-facing features. While there's relatively little for us to enjoy right now, a full teardown reveals that there are at least a few additions that might be worthy of a major version bump. Read More
You will soon have fewer options for getting web content from your computer to your phone. Google is pulling the Chrome to Mobile browser extension and shutting down the "Print to my Phone" feature from Google Cloud Print in early February. Users are instructed to use tab sync instead.