Going to school online is what all the cool kids are doing. And the really cool kids are doing it without paying a dime (if you can stretch the definition of "school" to services offering commitment-free classes to thousands of people at once who don't earn college credit). Coursera is one of the more popular options for this non-traditional learning, and now it's got an Android app to make it even easier.
Netflix. Google Play Movies. Hulu Plus. What do these services have in common? They're all better than VUDU, a long-standing streaming service for movies and television whose Android app leaves something to be desired. But it's a little more desirable starting today, as a reader tipped us: VUDU now allows users to stream rented or owned movies and TV to a handy Chromecast.
VUDU didn't mention this in the app update text on the Play Store, and there are no peeks at the familiar Chromecast button in the screenshots.
Ready for another Google Now rumor? We've already seen evidence of contact-based reminders reliant on your proximity with another person, and "inferred events," whereby Now would pluck mentions of meetings or other appointments from your conversations to automatically create calendar entries. This time, we have something just as useful - a new bill pay card and interface, evidently headed for Google Now.
Most people rely on Amazon, Google, Barnes and Noble, or some other all-in-one ebook service for their digital literary fix, but there is a thriving community of users who prefer the flexibility and lack of DRM that comes with independent reading apps. This has led to more than a few excellent choices in the space, including Readmill, an ebook app dedicated to simplicity and readability. Apparently Readmill users aren't the only ones who were impressed: Dropbox has acquired the app (or at least hired the employees who made it) and the service is shutting down.
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 exhaustively realistic flight sim, a Dance Dance Revolution clone, a colorful slot racing game, and a kid-friendly puzzle game.
WebDrive, as its name would suggest, allows users to access files stored remotely as though they were available locally. The concept is far from unusual these days, with cloud storage progressively replacing local storage as the default way people save files. Still, this piece of software has built a name for itself on Windows and Mac. Now, after first shipping for iOS, an Android version has hit the Play Store.
Facebook's new Messenger beta program is already making great strides with a jump to v4.0. You'll have to be in the beta program to get access, but it's quick to set up. Once opted in, you'll get to check out a few interesting new features in Facebook's chat app.
Cut the Rope isn't Angry Birds, but in term's of popularity, it's come pretty close. The original game centered around getting a piece of candy into the mouth of the most adorable green, one-eyed something we've ever seen. The core gameplay in the latest sequel is, unsurprisingly, largely the same. Players will still spend their time feeding the appropriately named Om Nom by cutting the many ropes that some unspeakably evil being (game designer) has used to keep the poor creature hungry.
Google sometimes gives us a hint of what it's working on if you're willing to dig for it. Buried in the new Chrome Beta for Android update is something called contextual search. It's not completely functional right now, but you can take a peek at some aspects of it.
To enable contextual search in Chrome Beta, go to chrome://flags/#contextual-search in the address bar. Tap enable to activate this feature, then restart the browser using the button that pops up.