As a cycle enthusiast, I've often used My Tracks to keep track of distance traveled, route, and time spent on each ride. And while we all thought it was a dead project for a long while (it was one of the first Android apps, after all), it received a much-needed facelift back in September of 2012, which brought a new record interface, better widget, and pause/resume functionality. Fast-forward to today, and another small-but-useful update has been pushed to the app.
If you've ever been one to tinker, build, or indulge in DIY projects, you've probably visited Instructables at one point or another. It's a great resource for those looking for specific how-tos, or just wanting something to do on a rainy day. Illustrated instructions are provided by the site's users, and can be discussed, favorited, or even downloaded.
Today, Autodesk (purveyors of other excellent apps like Pixlr Express) brought the crowd-sourced do-it-yourself spirit of Instructables to Android in an official app.
"We're living in a new kind of computing environment," says Urs Hölzle, SVP Technical Infrastructure and Google Fellow in a new post to Google's official blog. The search giant has resolved to make a second sweep at spring cleaning that began two years ago. After this round of cleaning is complete, the total number of features and services Google will have closed will number 70.
In the post, Google announces the closure or deprecation of eight features and services, but buried four items deep is the one that will probably affect the most users: Google Reader.
According to Android developer Jared Rummler and a number of other sources, Google has begun purging known ad-blocking software from the Play Store today.
Got a notification from Google and it looks like all Ad Blockers were removed from Google Play today.
— Jared Rummler (@jrummy16) March 13, 2013
Popular app AdAway was among those removed, and received notice that its app was in violation of section 4.4 of the Play Store Developer Distribution Agreement.
Many moons ago – way back in December of 2012 – the GO Launcher team released a new thingy called Next Launcher. As its name suggests, it's a launcher. The next one, even. It was to take the place of Go Launcher, which was essentially defunct on Android 4.0+.
But Next came with a price. A $16 price, to be exact. And honestly, not many people want to shell out nearly $20 for any app – much less a launcher they can't try first.
I've been a big fan of Battery Widget Reborn since we first covered it back in July of 2012. In fact, it's been installed on every device I've owned (or tested) since then. Why? Because it looks good, brings a lot of info to the table, and is constantly updated with new features.
One of my other favorite widgets is the more-recently announced DashClock Widget. There's a lot to love about it, too – like the fact that it supports extensions, making it infinitely customizable.
Some apps don't need much explanation. Sidewalk Buddy is one of those apps... but I'm going to explain it anyway. So, as everyone knows, attempting to chat or text on your phone as you walk on a busy city street is a great way to make people hate you. It's also a great way to bump into someone and drop your phone. But a lot of us still do it from time to time, because it seems like a good idea - and it's so efficient!
While there's no denying that Square Enix's Chaos Rings series is a decidedly un-revolutionary take on traditional JRPG's (Japanese RPG), that's like saying an Audi R8 is a decidedly un-revolutionary take on the supercar - it's still fantastic regardless. The Chaos Rings series is one of Square Enix's lesser-known franchises, but is without a doubt the company's most serious investment in mobile gaming at the moment. I've always thought of it as a test-bed for the first true "made for smartphone" Final Fantasy game (which still doesn't exist at this point).
Remember back in the day when MTV actually showed music videos instead of two-dozen different [completely moronic] shows that you don't really want to watch? Well, it looks like VEVO wants to bring that sort of always-on music video channel back from the dead with its freshly-announced VEVO TV. As the name suggests, it's a TV-like channel that can be accessed any time, where you can watch music videos in real-time with everyone else.
Most of you will be familiar with Real Boxing after following the coverage on NVIDIA's Project Shield, in which the iOS pilgrim was heavily featured. While you'll have to wait a few more months to get a hold of NVIDIA's gaming hardware, the boxing game is available today on Google Play. $4.99 will get you what's easily one of the most graphically intensive titles on Android, though you'll need to be rocking a Tegra-powered device to see them.