Somewhere on the Apple campus—presumably in a dark, musty basement—there are several Android developers who are tasked with supporting the Apple Music Android app. I bet the other Apple employees call them names and throw things at them in the halls. These brave souls have completed work on a new version of the app, and it's in the Play Store right now. It adds a playback widget, gift card support, better playlists, and more. Read More
Google yesterday pushed out updates to the Sheets and Slides apps, bringing compatibility with more file formats and automatic titling for Slides. Together with these changes are the normal bug fixes and performance improvements which accompany any Google app update.
More File Format Support
Both apps have had a significant amount of file formats added for sharing and exporting your creations. For Slides, there is now the possibility of exporting presentation slides to .JPG, .PNG and .SVG, as well as the already-available .PPTX, .PDF, and .TXT. These can then be sent to others or downloaded to your device. Read More
For all its flaws, mobile gaming is kind of a big deal. Even world-class gaming hardware and software companies like Sony would be ill-advised to ignore it. And they aren't: today Sony announced that it's forming a new first-party development company called ForwardWorks, which will work exclusively on game development for mobile. Presumably that means Android games (since Sony manufactures Android hardware and leverages it with its PlayStation brand) and iOS games (since it would be foolish to ignore that potential revenue).
ForwardWorks will be based out of Tokyo as a fully-owned Sony subsidiary. At the moment it isn't clear what the focus of the developer will be: mobile tie-ins to popular Sony franchises like Killzone, Infamous, Little Big Planet, and Uncharted are obvious picks, but there's plenty of money to be made in mobile-only franchises as well if developers can score a win with the first title. Read More
The recent Google spin-off Niantic Labs is cooking up what might be the first worthwhile Pokémon experience on a mobile device with Pokémon GO. A bit of footage was shown off at SXSW last weekend, but now Niantic has posted some proper details and screenshots. Get your Pokéballs ready. Read More
VentureBeat is claiming to have wind of a new app by YouTube, named 'Connect.' The app will reportedly be used for live-streaming, in much the same way as Periscope and Facebook. According to VentureBeat's sources, Connect has many of the same features as those two apps, including a 'news feed' to see which of your subscriptions are streaming or have shared video, and chat among users.
This marks the fourth YouTube spin-off app, following Gaming, Music, and Kids. It's interesting to note that Connect will introduce a social element to the internet's go-to video service. While YouTube does have a subscription feed updated with videos from creators you subscribe to, it's a poor rendition of a true news feed à la Facebook. Read More
Google+'s app redesign and changes might not be universally liked, but there's little doubt that the team is actively trying to add requested features, improve usability, and make the app and experience more enjoyable and less stressful with each update. With version 7.5, Google+ gets a lot of bug and issue fixes, improves the link preload feature that was introduced in version 7.3, and adds one new element.
As demonstrated in the screenshots above, there's a new notification when a post fails to send that takes you to a screen of pending posts where you can resend or delete any of them. Read More
Baseball games tend to veer on the side of "simulator" sports titles - they've been getting progressively more complex, and more technically taxing, since the 16-bit days when players stopped looking like a collection of squares. The latest high-profile game to hit NVIDIA's SHIELD Android TV device bucks that trend with a setup tuned for quick play that emphasizes fun over everything else. Super Mega Baseball: Extra Innings combines cartoony visuals and an unlicensed feel with surprisingly deep physics and a ton of options. It's available on the Play Store now for the high price of $20, and unfortunately, it's only compatible with the SHIELD TV. Read More
Developers, we know you work hard on your apps. So does Google. But they also know that sometimes it's hard to make apps easy to use when you're elbow deep in their design. To that end, the new Accessibility Scanner app allows you to check other apps for potential problems or possible improvements in terms of accessibility. It's a free download in the Play Store, but at the moment it looks like it's limited to Android 6.0 devices. Read More
If you own an Android TV box or a television with it built in, there's a pretty good chance you've also taken the time to install Google's remote control app to go with it. It's not that the app is necessary, but it's a great backup in case your main remote is lost or the batteries die. All things considered, it's a pretty basic utility app; but it might not be quite so simple in the near future. A teardown shows that this little remote control is about to turn your phone into a full-fledged gamepad. There are also signs that it may soon take care of shutting off your TV for you and we might also gain control over the volume of voice responses. Read More
It's update Wednesday, so Google is going to be pushing out some new versions of its apps. What about the other stuff in the Play Store, though? Well, some of that is on sale. If you're ready to get some new stuff and save some cash, read on. Read More