Podcasts have been a major part of mobile platforms for years, but Android has never had a native podcast listening experience... until now. Google has just announced podcast support in Play Music, and podcasters can start uploading shows to Google for approval right now. You won't be able to start listening right away, though. Read More
Do you care how much battery life your phone has? No, do you really care? You have a spreadsheet set up in Google Slides documenting your experience over the past few weeks. You can recall at a whim the amount of screen on time you've experienced on every Android device you've owned since Gingerbread. You don't get mad at your hardware when it dies at 4PM—you blame those wakelocking S.O.B apps. Read More
For basketball fans, tonight marks the start of the most exciting time of year: the beginning of the 2015-2016 season. Just like the start of every season, there are new players to look forward to seeing, old players on new teams, new coaches, new player dynamics, and so much more. I know I'm stoked — can't wait to see what my Bulls do this year under new leadership.
But I digress, this isn't about the Bulls. This is about the league as a whole, because the NBA just updated the GameTime app for the 15-16 season, and it's completely different. One may even argue that it actually makes sense now. Read More
Remember that time you were super jazzed about Hangouts 4.0, and when it finally came out, it wasn't that great? How about when v5.0 began its rollout, and it was basically the same thing, but with working animated GIFs? Version 5.1 is now making its way out into the world, but if you weren't happy with the previous releases, you're probably not going to be too thrilled with this one. It looks like a relatively light bug fix update, and nothing more.
It's probably no coincidence that a v5.1 update was also just released on the iOS App Store with a very sparse changelog. Read More
It has been a busy month for Google. Marshmallow was officially released, YouTube finally has the subscription service we've been asking for, and some new Nexus phones are shipping. Also on the docket for this month was a new version of the Play services apk. A couple of weeks ago, v8.2.98 began rolling out to a short list of handsets. It was followed a few days later by a .99 release, and then another minor bug fix pushed it up to v8.3.00. There hasn't been a blog post to discuss new features or APIs, which is a bit unusual, but there are a few interesting bits in the apk waiting to be seen. Read More
You might recall almost two years ago when AT&T started working on a sponsored data program. The idea was companies could pay AT&T to exempt certain services from your data cap. AT&T has now rolled out a different take on sponsored data as an app called Data Perks. By completing offers, you earn teeny tiny buckets of data that can be applied to your monthly plan. If you sign up now, you get a whopping 25MB of data to start. Twenty-five whole megabytes!
Remember Samsung's Smart View app? It's OK if you don't - it's basically a mix of a remote control and some Chromecast-style functionality, exclusively for use with both Samsung phones/tablets and Samsung smart televisions. It's the kind of cross-platform"synergy" that gets a lot of play in press releases and on-stage product reveals, but is rarely used by actual customers. The app listing in the Play Store is plagued with negative reviews complaining of frequent bugs and infrequent updates.
Samsung is apparently ready to start over, and I mean that literally: the new version of Smart View gets a completely separate listing from the older app (which is still available to download at the time of writing). Read More
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 a stylish puzzle game, a south-of-the-border runner, an opera-inspired sliding puzzle, a new Noodlecake runner, a Warhammer 40K game-book, and a ported bullet hell shooter. Without further ado:
Ghosts of Memories
Ghosts of Memories isn't shy about it's story-focused puzzle game inspiration - there's a lot of Monument Valley DNA in there. Read More
Google Keep received a seemingly minor update this week, bringing the version number up from v3.2.354 to v3.2.415. There aren't any visible new features or even any particularly notable changes, but that doesn't mean the only changes are bug fixes. A teardown shows that Keep is due to receive its own built-in drawing mode so users can easily record their own doodles, scribbles, and sketches. Additionally, users will be able to annotate imported images like photos and screenshots. Read More