You know that spiffy hamburger icon animation in the Play Store? Wave goodbye—the new version of the Play Store is hitting devices and it switches to the full height drawer. There's less divisive stuff going on too, like shadows. Who doesn't like shadows?
We were begging Google to add SMS to Hangouts for so long, and now it seems like a case of be careful what you wish for. Well, at least there's the new Messenger app. This SMS alternative from Mountain View is getting an update today that makes it prettier, which is always nice.
It was only a few months ago that Google finally updated its long-neglected News and Weather app, sometimes called the Genie widget because of the package name. Today there's already a sizeable update for the app that brings a new dark theme, material animations, search, and more.
Google has seen fit to grace us with a nice little Chrome Beta update this update Wednesday. if you're on Lollipop, you'll immediately notice one thing in particular—the address bar now goes all the way across the screen, but only if you have a certain setup. You'll have to dive into the flags for the rest, but it might be worth it.
Update Wednesday has begun! We're starting off with a pretty small bump for Google Play Games, taking it from v2.1 to v2.2. There aren't any big new features, but a few things have been polished up.
Like so many other Google apps, the first-run experience has been updated with a short introduction to explain what the app does and the value users can expect to get from it. Of course, this generally won't show up if Games has been in active use already. Read More
The Team Win Recovery Project is a great custom recovery, but it isn't pretty. Back in the Ice Cream Sandwich days, it kind of blended in. Nowadays, it's just that outdated screen you largely don't care about while you flash .zips.
But what if TWRP could look just as sleek as the rest of Android 5.0? Thanks to the work of XDA developer z31s1g, it can get close. He has released a Materialized TWRP theme that changes the appearance of every screen, including when you're wiping partitions or running scripts. Read More
It's not Google's job to account for all the quirks of custom ROMs, but there's been one pervasive bug that has driven some users up a wall in recent weeks. Chrome would render in a bizarre little floating window on ROMs like Paranoid Android. The latest Chrome Beta release fixes that, and you can grab it below.
Left: broken, Right: not broken Read More
While we weren't able to find anything else particularly interesting (note: Music Key is not linked to this update, previous versions had it, too), YouTube 5.18 does include some interesting strings referring to upload trimming. Specifically, these strings:
<string name="upload_edit_video_tutorial_title">Trim your video</string>
<string name="upload_edit_video_tutorial_description">Drag the handles to trim.</string>
<string name="upload_edit_video_tutorial_zoom_description">Touch and hold to get a closer view.</string>
<string name="upload_edit_video_tutorial_got_it">Got it</string>
It looks like a new upload interface is on the way for YouTube's Android app, and it's probably about time - the current UI is pretty dated. Read More
Over the last few weeks, we've heard of a feature popping up for Google Play Music All Access users here and there (thanks for the tips!), whereby the app or web interface would link users to relevant music videos inside the app. When listening to or browsing music, the app would show a YouTube icon, sometimes in the center of the screen, sometimes weirdly positioned in the "now playing" bar. It was clear Google was still testing the feature but it looks like now, with the publication of an official change log for Play Music's latest update, Google may be flipping the switch on a wider basis. Read More