29
Oct
image

Earlier today, Google started rolling out a major update to Google+ for Android. Together with our readers, we've examined every corner of the app and found a whole bunch of things that are new to this version 4.2 but haven't been mentioned in the official announcement. You should definitely read through the list if you haven't yet.

However, one new feature that I found fascinating managed to fly completely below the radar because it's located not within the app itself but rather in the widget menu.

29
Oct
image

Earlier today at a livestreamed event in San Francisco, Google's SVP of Engineering Vic Gundotra announced a slew of new features slated for Google+ and Hangouts.

While we're still waiting for the Hangouts update that will enable SMS support, animated GIFs, and location sharing to hit the Play Store, which should happen in a few days, the Google+ update 4.2 is already live.

What's New?

G+ Photos is now Photos

After playing around with this version for a bit, I'm glad to report that the annoying and superfluous G+ Photos shortcut is now gone.

09
Oct
maps

Earlier today, Google started a staged rollout of a new point release of Google Maps. We've been poring over all the UI differences between the new version 7.3 and the previous version 7.2 from last month for the last couple of hours and managed to catch a few interesting changes. Since the official changelog isn't out yet, these will have to do for now.

Here's what we've spotted.

wm_Screenshot_2013-10-09-23-44-46

What's New?

Duration, distance, and estimated arrival time in the expanded notification

The expanded notification now carries a lot more information than before.

28
Sep
gmail

Now that the insane week of Google app updates has passed (gotta love those Rollout Wednesdays, right?), I've had some time to dig into the APKs and have found a number of interesting things in some of them.

We'll start with Gmail, which received a fairly significant Card UI update with version 4.6.

wm_Screenshot_2013-09-25-10-51-27

Ads are coming to Gmail

The most significant under-the-hood and probably not active yet addition to Gmail 4.6 is ads.

26
Sep
movies

Google Play Movies & TV received an update to version 2.7.15 today (or yesterday, but I haven't seen anyone with an APK until today), and while the changelog is still missing, we have noticed a number of new things.

The previous version was v2.6.9, so these line up with a point release - nothing too significant, but still more than just bug fixes.

Update: I just realized that the changelog, which Google updated on September 18th, is actually current - they just never released the update until now.

12
Sep
maps

Earlier today, Google started slowly rolling out an update to Maps with version 7.2. This is a point release, up from 7.1, so I expected more than just minor changes. While not as big as the quiet Drive update yesterday, Maps 7.2 brings a few notable changes to the table that Google has not yet (or won't ever) itemized in the changelog. Upon getting my hands on the APK, which you can find at the bottom of this post, I hopped onto the teardown couch and dug in.

11
Sep
drive

Google started a staged update to Google Drive earlier today with version 1.2.352.9 and a completely useless changelog that just said "Bug fixes and other improvements."

As it turns out, these fixes and improvements are actually kind of significant compared to the previous version 1.2.228.32. In this post, I will show you what's really new in Drive v1.2.352.9.

Since the rollout is staged, some of you may not see the update in the Play Store yet - in that case, you can find manual APK download links at the bottom of this post.

20
Sep
icon_white_backgound
Last Updated: October 8th, 2012

Hello and welcome to a new feature! I'm going to start calling this "What's Really New," the series where we do more than just post a change log with the canned screenshots when something important gets updated. We're going in-depth (as usual). We'll be ripping apart APKs, doing full side-by-side comparisons, and, hopefully, letting you know about all the cool new stuff before it comes out.

timelinewm_2012-09-19 19.06.10

Previous experiments in this area have been a stunning success.