Google Maps is one of the most feature-packed apps in existence, and fitting everything into easily reachable places is a challenge that requires regular changes. The latest update to v9.62 makes a big move by pulling the layer modes out of the navigation drawer to place them in a new persistent FAB (floating action button) right on top of the map. Amonth many other things, this update also adds a dedicated tab for videos uploaded by the community. On the teardown side, there are signs of some more significant improvements coming for commuters, and much more. Read More
It's common for device makers to tweak the performance of a phone's camera after release, but it usually requires a full software update. However, last year Motorola used an app in the Play Store to make changes to the Moto G4's camera. It looks like the company is taking a similar approach to managing the camera on its upcoming Moto X4. A tuning app for that phone is live right now ahead of the phone's official launch. Read More
There are times when Google completely baffles us by adding a feature that we didn't even remotely think could be possible, or needed, or useful. Like now for example, there's a new Search bar when you visit the list of Assistant actions. How groundbreaking!
Whether you check the list by tapping the blue icon on the top right after launching Assistant, or by browsing in the Google Home app, you can see a new search bar on top. That lets you search through all the possible Assistant integrations, from first-party ones like Hue and SmartThings and Honeywell, to third-party services like Alarm.com, Logitech, Roomba, and more trivial things such as Number Genie, Knock Knock Who, and others. A search icon also shows up on the top right when you're browsing different Assistant categories, so it's always easy to look for something specific. Read More
Picture the scene: you're near your monthly data allowance and you want to check your usage to see what you should turn off to avoid some astronomical overuse charges. We've all been there. But imagine when you get there your settings app decides to give up the ghost, over and over again. That's been the situation for Artem the last couple of days, as you can see from the tweet below. Read More
I listen to podcasts on an almost daily basis (including the excellent Android Police podcast, of course), and for as long as I can remember, my app of choice has been Shifty Jelly's Pocket Casts. It's easy to use, has all the features you'd expect, and the design is great. The developer is always looking to improve the experience, and for me it, became a whole lot more useful once a web player was added. The beta of the new 2.0 version of it has just been announced, and it looks like a big update. Read More
We're not sure when exactly this started showing up, but we think it's relatively new: the Google Play Store app on Android is showing your nearest Play balance expiration date. That should come in handy if you've been gifted or you purchased some Google Play credit and you forgot when you applied it and when it would expire (usually after one year).
I learned that expiration date lesson the hard way once: I got $100 of Play promotional balance and used about $30 sparingly for a few purchases, thinking the rest would last forever, until I once logged in and my balance was zeroed out. Read More
Nothing says 'the future' like asking your smart speaker to buy groceries for you. While the Google Home can't drive to the store itself, it can order them through Google Express. Google previously announced that it would partner with Walmart to offer easy voice shopping through Assistant, and now it's live. Read More