Snapchat, the company best known to us for creating a horrible Android app, has just announced two big pieces of news; not only is Snapchat renaming itself Snap Inc., but it's also releasing 'Spectacles', a pair of sunglasses built just for Snapchat that is equipped with a wide-angle camera.
Let's start with Snapchat's new name - Snap Inc. According to CEO Evan Spiegel, the California-based company is taking on this new identity because it's beginning to offer products other than Snapchat. This is understandable; lots of companies, including Google and Facebook, have undergone name changes to redefine themselves. Read More
Setting up and using 2-factor authentication on a Google account used to be a fairly miserable affair. The sign-in process lurched from a native interface into a browser where users were expected to quickly enter codes, various apps weren't compatible and required special 1-time use passwords, and the app for generating codes felt completely unfinished. These days, all of those problems have been solved, and now Google's Authenticator app is even taking steps to further improve its look and usefulness. The latest update brings a great looking refresh to the UI, adds a dark mode, and finally adds its own built-in scanner functionality. Read More
Allo was finally released earlier this week, much to my own excitement. Google's latest messaging app seems pretty appealing in some regards and I am always willing to try something new. Thus far, I am enjoying it.
It seems that I am not alone. Allo is listed as number one in the Top Free Apps chart in the Play Store. That means it is beating Facebook/Messenger, Snapchat, and Instagram. It is mirroring its cousin, Duo, which also reached number one in the Top Free chart shortly after its release just over a month ago.
From this vantage, it is pretty easy to draw parallels between the two apps — both were announced together as Google's new messaging solution. Read More
Hangouts v12 came out last month and we took an opportunity to have a couple laughs at its expense over what appeared to be the only actual new feature: a ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ emote, accessible by typing /shruggie into a message box. With this update, that little guy brought all of his friends. Yes, the rest of the emote list is now accessible in Hangouts v13. There is also a new option to open web links with an in-app browser, though it may not be available to everybody just yet. And finally, the teardown shows Hangouts will have its own launcher shortcuts when Android 7.1 comes out. Read More
￼"The other browser, that one with the red O as its logo, um... Opera!" is the way I've often heard Opera referred to. It's a great browser, but for whatever reason it doesn't seem to have the same public mindshare as Chrome or Firefox does. Today, it's getting a brand new lick of paint in version 37, which might help it in the ongoing quest to overhaul the aforementioned 'big boys' of the browser game.
Opera says in a blog post that the new look is more modern, fresh, and importantly (at least for some), material. The browser's Speed Dial feature has had a complete redesign, while the news feature is to the right of that. Read More
Earlier this month, we reported an issue with both Chrome Beta and Dev on Nougat. Despite both apps being installed on your phone, they didn't show up in the list of My apps & games in the Play Store, which meant that they were never automatically updated and you had to manually search for them, open their listing, and then see if an update was available or not to download it.
The issue, as we rightfully suspected, was related to the change of the signature keys in Chrome. As Googler Alexander Mineer explained to us in the comments on the original post, the keys had to be changed due to Chrome's new ability to act as a WebView provider in Nougat. Read More
There's a new version of Pokémon GO hitting the Play Store, but prepare to be disappointed if you were expecting big changes. We do at least get the capture locations back, but they aren't as good as before. Those of you with the Pokémon GO Plus accessory will be able to use it a little more often too. Read More
We've highlighted each entry of the Sorcery! series as they've arrived on Android, because each has been a compelling blend of a 'Choose Your Own Adventure" book with a tabletop RPG. Sorcery! 4: The Crown of Kings has arrived, and now it's time to see how your particular story is going to end. Read More
The YouTube Gaming app received an update yesterday, taking it to v1.7. Google has already posted the changelog and this release appears to be mostly about fixing up the chat experience. There are improvements to both the chat interface and the underlying code that drives it. There are supposed to be changes to better support Android 7.0 Nougat, although it's unclear what they are, and the typical assortment of bug fixes and performance improvements. Of course, with each new version comes a new easter egg. Read More