Back when I had my Nexus One, my favorite launcher hands down was ADW. I loved it. I loved the animations, the speed, the configurability - ADW was my jam. But as time went on, ADW and I grew apart, support for the app waned (apart from the release of ADW EX), and Android's stock launcher began to mature and gain features. But I never lost my soft spot for ADW. Read More
Shazam is usually very good at identifying songs you encounter throughout the day, but you have to open the app and make it do that. Well, not anymore. In the most recent update, Shazam has gained support for auto mode on Android. Just start it up and go about your business while Shazam catalogs all the songs it hears. Read More
Google Now On Tap has been, to put it gently, less than totally useful to most people. While the high-minded concepts behind Now On Tap were quite impressive, Google has had a harder time than I think many of us thought it would actually making it into a consistently helpful and intuitive product. It appears that in the last couple of days Google has been rolling out an all-new set of features to Now On Tap that honestly make it a bit more of a virtual assistant than a contextual search engine.
What you see in the hero image above are two new card streams, one for nearby places, the other for common tasks you might ask of your phone. Read More
What photo manager doesn't let you show off images in a slideshow? Google Photos, it turns out. If this is news to you, then you're finding out right at the moment when the situation is changing. Google Photos has now added a slideshow option. Read More
Facebook announced an all-new layout for its Messenger app today (presumably for Android and iOS, though only iOS screenshots were provided). The new "home" area in Messenger is designed to make the app more than just a dumb message hub, and much more of a "Facebook people I care about" hub. Instead of simply being a list of chats, Messenger will now show you your favorite contacts, upcoming birthdays (because Facebook), and who's online now. Recent chats will still sit at the top of the "home" area in the app, there just won't be as many living there anymore. Read More
SwiftKey was snapped up by Microsoft recently, but the company isn't giving up on making its app better like so many other companies have post-acquisition. A new version of the SwiftKey Beta is out today with a much-requested feature—a clipboard manager. It temporarily saves everything you copy, lets you add new items manually, and more. Read More
When Google announced its new chat app Allo, the first thing many people did was go to the Play Store and search for the term "Allo." To their surprise, perhaps, there was a shockingly on-point result: a chat app named Allo Group Voice Chat. This seemed... problematic for Google's new chat platform trademark, to say the least. We asked both Google and [not-Google-]Allo what was being done about this and we haven't heard anything since late May. Read More
Let me just start this article with the following caveats: one, Google makes it more than clear that not everything will work in a Developer Preview Android build, or in the new beta system in general. Two, Android Pay is hardly an essential service - suddenly losing access to it doesn't make your credit or debit cards stop working. Three, it's easy enough to get it back by flashing an older Developer Preview or stock build on any Nexus device that's likely to run into this particular problem. Read More
A couple of months ago, Google's Calendar app received an update that allowed users with an Apps or Edu account to schedule meetings with multiple people based on when everyone was available. While Google Apps users are often last on the pecking order, this time it was regular users who didn't have access to the new "Find a time" feature, likely due to privacy concerns (it's one thing to share your work calendar with your coworkers, but entirely another to share your personal calendar with anyone with your email address).
The newest version of the Google Calendar app doesn't yet let regular users resolve schedule conflicts with other people, but it does the next best thing by solving conflicts with yourself. Read More