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[Monthly Home Screen Challenge] And The October 2011 Winners Are...

There were a ton of excellent entries for our first Home Screen Challenge, and whittling down all the home screens was no easy task. That's why we've chosen two winners this month - Xal and Austin C, who each showed us their own twist on a visually stimulating, yet practical home screen layout. Our winners will be contacted shortly to claim their AP shirts.

As promised, we've prepared a full overview of each of our winning home screens, highlighting each of their elements so that you too can create a home screen design that is both beautiful and functional.

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[Getting To Know Android 4.0, Part 3] YouTube Grows Up

YouTube is the ugly duckling of the Gapps family. That's right, I said it.

The 100% black design and horrible gradients make it look like a 13 year old boy's geocities page. It certainly doesn't look like it's from a professional company. It's only saving grace it that, since it's a video app, you aren't subjected to the UI that often when you are using at it. Thankfully, with the arrival of Ice Cream Sandwich, amateur hour is over.

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[Getting To Know Android 4.0, Part 2] Google Talk Gets A Facelift

Google Talk is one of my favorite parts about Android. If you have other Googly friends, between Android, Gmail, and G+, they are almost always available. In Android 2.3.4, Google Talk got a big upgrade in the form of voice and video chat.

There will be many similarities to the to the Ice Cream Sandwich version of Gmail, which was the subject of Part 1 of this series. So go read about it or risk falling behind the rest of the class.

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[Hunt For The Best Dialer, Part 7] Contapps Contacts & Dialer Is An Undoubtedly Impressive, Beautiful Dialer Replacement

Continuing on the quest for the perfect dialer to replace Android's stock phone application, I've come across Contapps Contacts & Dialer, an app I had never heard of until I began scouring the market. For a free dialer app, it has a lot to offer, and I'm surprised that it isn't more popular.

At A Glance

Contapps is a dialer replacement that is simple, practical, and well-designed, with enough extra features to make it feel new.

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56 (And 4 WTF) Best New Android Apps And Live Wallpapers From The Last 3 Weeks (9/27/11 - 10/21/11) - PART 2

Welcome to the weekly roundup of the best new Android applications, games, and live wallpapers that went live in the Market or were spotted by us in the previous 2 weeks or so.

This is PART 2 of the app roundup. You can find PART 1 here. The game roundup from this week can be found here and the tablet app roundup here.

Please wait for this page to load in full in order to see the AppBrain widgets, which include ratings and pricing info.
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[Getting To Know Android 4.0, Part 1] Gmail: Android's Most Important App

For many people, Gmail is Android's killer app. It's the best email app on any platform, and one of the biggest draws to Android. So anytime there is a change, it's pretty big news. With Ice Cream Sandwich, Gmail got a huge revamp. Every inch of the app has changed. Today we're going to find out just what is so different.

I'm sure you've read other articles on the new ICS apps, but those are just rehashing what was shown in the Hong Kong demo.

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56 (And 4 WTF) Best New Android Apps And Live Wallpapers From The Last 3 Weeks (9/27/11 - 10/21/11) - PART 1

Welcome to the weekly roundup of the best new Android applications, games, and live wallpapers that went live in the Market or were spotted by us in the previous 3 weeks or so.

This is PART 1 of the app roundup. You can find PART 2 here. The game roundup from this week can be found here and the tablet app roundup here.

Please wait for this page to load in full in order to see the AppBrain widgets, which include ratings and pricing info.
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Interview With Android UX Lead Matias Duarte: "Google Is Taking Design A Lot More Seriously"

Let's get the preliminary question off the plate first: who is Matias Duarte? Well for one thing, he oversaw the designing of a few small projects such as webOS, Sidekick OS, and Helio (the little carrier that could... be bought out). And, oh yeah, he also played a large part in Honeycomb's development.

Yesterday he sat down with Joshua Topolsky of This is my Next (soon to be The Verge) to discuss the "philosophy" of Android and, more specifically, Ice Cream Sandwich.

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38 Best New Android Games From The Last 3 Weeks (9/23/11 - 10/18/11)

Welcome to the weekly roundup of the best new Android applications, games, and live wallpapers that went live in the Market or were spotted by us in the previous 3 weeks or so.

This edition focuses only on new games. The app roundup is coming up soon, and you can find the tablet app roundup here.

Please wait for this page to load in full in order to see the AppBrain widgets, which include ratings and pricing info.
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[Hunt For The Best Dialer, Part 6] Angel Dialer Offers An Alternative To The Stock Dialer For Those Who Like Simplistic, Pre-Defined Interfaces

Joining the vast crowd of dialer replacements in the Android Market, our hunt has brought us to Angel Dialer, an uncomplicated app that effectively replaces the stock Android dialer, but which may have compromised necessary functionality for a no-frills implementation.

At A Glance

While Angel Dialer takes a concerted stance against superfluous features, its simplicity is not always a plus. While its features work, and it provides the same basic functionality we've seen before, it is lacking a few things that would take it up a level, and make it a decent dialer replacement.

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