It was just six weeks ago that we featured Rockmelt, an Android app with a bit of an identity crisis. It didn't know whether it wanted to be an RSS reader or a browser (but it did know it wanted to look like Pinterest). Well, the eponymous company that makes Rockmelt is the latest in a series of acquisitions by Yahoo. And they've killed the Android app deader than a dove at an NRA convention.
Google just dropped a bomb on the official Android blog moments ago: Android Device Manager, a tool to help locate your lost phone. It's simple - you can track your phone from a web interface (or the official Android app!), and then ring or wipe it. Simple? Yes. Absolutely something we've all wanted since, I don't know, ever on Android as a standard feature? Duh.
Android device manager will be part of - you guessed it - Google Play [Services].
When it comes to mobile security, we readily recommend Avast's option. Not only does it offer fantastic malware protection, but the built-in Anti-Theft is one of the best tools you can have installed should your device ever get lost or stolen. Today, the company is taking advantage of Google+ Community beta testing with Mobile Security, Anti-Theft, and a new product called Backup.
The beta testing period will only last for a week, during which time the company is inviting advanced users to give this new trio a shot and provide feedback before they become available to everyone.
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 an RPG-puzzle mix, two, count 'em, two helicopter games, a stylish retro platformer, and another puzzle game from Noodlecake.
Mobile gaming has evolved a lot over the years. Early phones were weak, so manufacturers stuffed more powerful CPUs inside them. Screens were small, so they've been stretched out to 5-inches or more. Number keys were functional, but touchscreens allow for a greater degree of interaction. Yet despite all of this innovation, trying to play a first-person shooter on a mobile device still sucks. The Drowning is one game that promises to fix this problem.
Double Fine is a maker of quality games like Psychonauts, Brutal Legend, and now Dropchord. The latter title has just been released, and it's going to get your head bobbin' and your fingers dancin'. Really, the finger dancin' is mandatory. You have to keep up with the music as you guide a beam of light through a technicolor gauntlet.
Dropchord comes with ten full-length electronic music tracks that dictate the pace of the music and the kind of obstacles you'll encounter.
SwiftKey needs no introduction at this point. It's widely considered by many to be the premier keyboard available for Android, if not any mobile device, for its ability to more accurately predict words by learning a user's habits. SwiftKey Cloud, on the other hand, is the new service that will sync your keyboard across multiple devices, preventing each install of SwiftKey from having to start fresh. A new beta is now available, so get it while it's hot.
Netflix profiles have been showing up intermittently on some streaming devices, but now the feature is officially launching. Profiles will start hitting some platforms in the coming days, with more to follow soon. Sadly, our beloved Android is not in this first batch.
When you create profiles on Netflix, each one acts like a sub-account with its own recommendations, history, and streaming queue. Although, Netflix didn't even mention the individual queues this time – they seem more interested in personalized recommendations and Facebook integration.
It's a good time for both the young and the young at heart. Disney has released four games into the Play Store all on the same day starring well-known characters like Muppets to lesser known stars such as ... a piggy bank? I may not know what the kids are into these days, but that says nothing to diminish the potential value of these four titles. First up, Monsters, Inc.