Third-party music players are a little less important ever since Google cleaned up Play Music, but there's still something to be said for the venerable old doubleTwist. This app has gone through several UI iterations and adjusted its feature set to better serve Android users as time went on. With the newest update, the app improves support for tablets with a UI overhaul, among other improvements.
The Chromecast is only $35, but CheapCast is as cheap as it gets – free. Just install it on your Android device and it shows up on your network like a Chromecast. This is handy in a number of situations, but the app has been lacking some features since it launched. The new version that just showed up in Google Play should address some of that.
If you have a lot of events and/or deadlines to keep up with, then Google Calendar is a good way to know what's coming up and know where you stand in terms of time. One of the biggest benefits of Android (in my opinion, anyway) is widgets, so a Google Calendar widget is a quick and easy to see your schedule at a glace. The thing is, the stock Calendar widget is pretty...
Since the dawn of Chrome Beta for Android, Google blocked it from the Play Store's search results for some reason. For those who use the browser as their default, this was a huge pain in the ass, as it meant searching Google to find a direct link to the browser when installing it on a new device. Sure, that may sound minor, but not being able to find your favorite browser from the device's Play Store search results is just annoying.
A few months ago Spotify introduced the ability for users to stream music over Wi-Fi to a select speakers. The feature, coined Spotify Connect, was unfortunately limited only to iOS devices. Now an update has landed for the Android app that officially makes it multi-platform.
You will need a Spotify Premium subscription in order to make use of this feature, but that's not all. Only a few speakers currently work with Spotify Connect.
It's back to the daily grind today, but you can still maybe have some fun in between all the soul-crushing monotony and meetings about meetings. We can even save you some money on apps, which will certainly be a great conversation starter when you run into the head of international accounting and compliance at the vending machine. Actually, if your job is anything like that, you should maybe just quit and enjoy the cheap apps.
SwiftKey introduced several new keyboard layout options earlier this month, including the ability to split keyboards and move them around, empowering users to position the keyboard precisely where its most accessible. Unfortunately, some features were lost in transition. Today's update does its part to address these drawbacks. Now left-handed users, or people who just prefer having the option, can again move the number pad to the left side of the keyboard.
One of the strangest changes with regard to Android 4.4 was the apparent removal of the hidden App Ops menu. You remember this one – it was the interface that allowed you to restrict permissions on a per-app basis. Well, apparently it's still in there – Google just made it harder to find. Color Tiger, developer of Smart IR Remote has just released its new App Ops 4.3/4.4 app that pulls up the standard App Ops and can add new features with root access.
The Xposed framework is a major boon to those of us who use an Android device that doesn't have a lot of support from the custom ROM community. It allows a lot of the things you want in custom ROMs - visual tweaks, interface changes, behavioral and button functions, fixes for annoying bugs, and a host of other things - via independent modules, with only root privileges. The latest beta release from developer "Rovo89" includes support for Android 4.4 and a bevy of performance improvements.