Good news this morning for anyone who finds Maps' use of UI space in map view wasteful on Android: you can now tap to dismiss most of the UI elements in the Maps app in version 9.11, an APK for which you can grab right here. Here's what that new feature looks like.
Left: UI showing, right: UI hidden. Simply tap on an empty part of the map UI to switch it on or off.
There are millions of smartphones out there with the processing power to get real work done, but they spend most of their time idle. That's what you want for battery life, of course, but Folding@Home offers a way to contribute some of those unused cycles for the greater good while your phone is on the charger. [insert Snapdragon 810 overheating joke here]
Microsoft is striving to be more experimental and branch out to other platforms with the Microsoft Garage project, which means we get some interesting stuff on Android. Not all of it is probably going to last, but hey, some good short-term fun. The latest app from the garage is Tossup, which can be used to gather opinions from your friends so you can make plans quickly and easily.
The classic game emulation scene for Android is really blowing up. Not only do we have more single-use emulators than ever, more powerful hardware is opening up the sixth generation of home consoles like the Dreamcast and Gamecube. Today one of the more notable all-in-one emulators is getting a huge update on the Play Store: RetroArch. The multi-platform, multi-console emulator has updated its entire user interface system and added a few under-the-hood changes as well.
Welcome to the latest entry in our Bonus Round series, wherein we tell you all about the new Android games of the day that we couldn't get to during our regular news rounds. Consider this a quick update for the dedicated gamers who can't wait for our bi-weekly roundups, and don't want to wade through a whole day's worth of news just to get their pixelated fix. Today we've got a spaceship game about eating humans, a spaceship game about rescuing humans, a spaceship game about spinning around like drunk with an inner ear infection, and a match three puzzler..
Anyone who's used the Internet for a few days knows that Google (and all the other search engines at this point) will suggest alternative search terms if the algorithm determines that you've made a typo or a mistake. At least one user is now seeing this behaviour on the Android app version of Google Search, and seeing it before you would expect to: right in the drop-down search results that appear before you actually press Enter.
You might think that a game like Minecraft, where there's no story and you essentially build an entire world out of complicated digital LEGOs, doesn't lend itself well to the adventure game format. You might be right. But if anyone can make a licensed story out of Mojang's phenomenal open-world title, it's TellTale Games, who have successfully adapted such diverse properties as The Walking Dead, Borderlands, Game of Thrones, and Back To The Future into episodic adventure games with near-universal appeal.
Mozilla, keeping pace with their regular rapid release schedule, released an update for Firefox Beta today. v39 graduated to stable, sending v40 to the beta channel. With some focus on changes to the desktop version, there aren't major user-facing changes in this Android update. Still, there should be some performance enhancements along with a nice UI improvement for navigating forward and backwards through a tab's history.
The overflow menu has been home to the forward and back shortcuts for quite a while now, but there wasn't an efficient way to navigate by several pages.
When an app reaches 1 billion installs on the Play Store, it's like being officially recognized as one of the cool kids. Chrome for Android is the latest to join the clique, sliding through the door just a week behind Hangouts, making it the 12th app to flash a 10-digit install base.
While induction into this elite group hasn't been quite as impressive since membership hit the double digits, Chrome is among the first of Google's apps that doesn't owe all of its success to pre-installs.