The midterm elections are fast approaching in the United States, and you know what that means: horrible commercials interrupting all of your football games. But it also means that citizens should sincerely evaluate candidates for local and national posts and make informed decisions while performing their civic duty. And if you'd like to do that without taking a few hours off of work in November, you can register to vote early in most states.
When the 4.4W.2 firmware version began rolling out a few days ago, it became possible to swipe down on the top-most card to show an unobstructed view of your favorite watch face. This still left Wear with the irksome tendency to put a card preview back on top when a new notification came in. Not only did the W.2 update give us the ability to hide that card, but there's also an option to keep new cards from getting in the way.
If you've not heard of Revolv, the company was an all-in-one smarthome "hub" solution that wanted to operate as communication nexus for all the stuff in your house. Sprinklers, lights, door locks, stereos, TVs, you name it. If you want an example, you can watch this incredibly awkward video.
According to Re/code, an organizational reorganization will see Sundar Pichai, head of Chrome and Android, appointed as "czar" of all Google's major products. This includes ads, Search, research, Google+, Maps, commerce, and infrastructure. These duties previously fell on CEO Larry Page. Page will retain his leadership positions, though, at Nest, Calico, Google X, corporate development, finance, and business. Page will also most likely retain final say in most decisions he chooses to be involved in, being CEO and all.
Good news! Those lucky individuals who are already using Inbox by Gmail, Google's latest comprehensive reimagining of email, are now able to invite three people to the service, just by hitting (or hovering over) the compose button (which Google calls "speed dial"). It's not clear if every user has received their allotment of three invites just yet, but Google says everyone can expect to get three invites "soon."
Deezer, a company that provides an online music streaming service, announced today that it has acquired Stitcher, the well-known internet radio and podcasting brand. Sometimes acquisitions leave us scratching our heads in confusion. Other times they leave us feeling uneasy as we wonder whether the buyer will be able to successfully navigate the market they're now setting foot in. Occasionally companies are simply after talent. Then in certain situations, we watch as beloved brands disappear under a competitor's name.
It's getting to be the time of year when developers drop sales on us left and right, and a few are already getting into the habit. There are two franchises of games on sale, and a couple other neat apps are along for the ride.
Amazon's Android app has received an update to 5.1 that's all about reducing how much typing you need to do to use the app. We've spotted changes to the search UI that make it possible to perform inquiries using your voice. We've also come across strings hinting that credit card scanning is either already included or on its way.
When you hit the magnifying glass in the action bar to begin a search, the screen that appears will now contain a microphone for voice searches.
When you search for certain artists, movies, or figures, Google sticks a card within the results that displays background information all in once place. This way you can potentially get what you need without having to click on a single link. Recently the company started giving video games this same treatment.
When you search for a particular title, Google will toss up such details as a brief history, the developer, release dates, and supported platforms.
The newest Android Wear update has started rolling out to the Samsung Gear Live after hitting G Watch and Moto 360 devices in the last few days. The update comes with version number 4.4W.2 and makes a handful of tweaks to the OS, not the least of which is the option to hide notification cards on the watch face.