Google's web-based Android Market announcement earlier this week was by all means no surprise to anyone - we've been waiting for it to arrive ever since its announcement at last year's Google I/O. In the meantime, alternative web-based markets, such as AppBrain.com, have skyrocketed in popularity because they allowed Android users to browse apps and games from their computers rather than being confined to their small phone screens. Even more importantly, alternative web markets had full control over app presentation, which allowed them to develop their own app discovery mechanisms.
Before anyone jumps on me, I know there's a number of remote torrent management applications out there on the Market, including ones that work with uTorrent. This app, however, is being put out by none other than BitTorrent Inc., the owners of uTorrent. That means you can expect a remote torrent client that actually works, as opposed to the aforementioned mediocre alternatives. Not to mention the fact that uTorrent Remote packs a feature set other remote torrent apps simply can't match.
Those of you who are familiar with F7U12 (FFFFFFFUUUUUUUUUUUU) comics will appreciate this: developer Jor dan has released a Forever Alone widget for the stock messaging app. When your unread SMS count is 0, the widget displays the Forever Alone face. When you have unread messages, it switches to the happy Forever Alone face (coincidentally, is there an official name for that?) and shows the count.
If this doesn't make sense to you because you're not familiar with the meme, perhaps the screenshots can help clarify:
Left: no unread messages because you're forever alone.
Android users have been clamoring for an official online Android Market solution for ages, and today, El Goog finally delivered with the Android Market Web Store. Once the issues with the "Sign in" button (clicking it returned an 'Invalid Request' error) were fixed, we didn't think twice about delving in and giving it an in-depth look. Read on for our first impressions!
The front page of market.android.com (aka the Android Market Web Store) is simple, clean, and sexy - just the way we like it.
We can't say we didn't see it coming, considering we saw this preview of the tablet-optimized SwiftKey keyboard during CES, but what SwiftKey is announcing today looks quite a bit different, to say the least.
Allow me to introduce Swiftkey Tablet - a tablet-only Honeycomb keyboard set to launch around the same time as the Motorola XOOM tablet. Sticking with the 3-way-split design, the new holographic look reminds me quite a bit of Tron.
As you can see, a list of featured/best selling games populates the front page, along with a list of categories, a "Sign in" button (
which, at the time of this writing, leads to an 'invalid request error'), and a "Search" function.
We've already seen a few apps shown off at Google's live Honeycomb event, including two 3D games that take full advantage of both cores on the Tegra 2 processor. Monster Madness, ported from the PS3 to Android, is a hack and slash game with amazing 3D graphics and destructible environments, while Great Battles is an epic RTS that's also called an "educational game." While that doesn't sound that cool, just take a look at the pictures of the game in action.
We don't want to jump to conclusions here, but it's February 2nd - the day of Google's Honeycomb- and "Android ecosystem"-related event, and the Market is currently experiencing downtime. It makes perfect sense given the rumors we've been hearing about an upcoming update to the Market, though it could, of course, be nothing more than scheduled maintenance.
The official Google Maps app has been updated again, this time with a major addition to Latitude - check-ins. Just as Hotpot seemed to be a Yelp-killer, Google must now have Foursquare in its sights, because Latitude's check-ins have a few major advantages over Foursquare and its competitors.
Latitude will notify you when it recognizes your location, giving you the option to check-in wherever you are. However, you can also set up automatic check-ins for only the places you want, an incredibly convenient feature that still covers any privacy concerns.
Welcome to the weekly roundup of the best new Android applications and games that went live in the Market or were spotted by us in the previous week or so. WTF apps were definitely in abundance this week.
Looking for the previous week's roundup? Find it here: 46 Best (And 2 WTF) New Android Apps And Games From Last Week (1/18/11 – 1/24/11)