It feels like Facebook is on a roll at the moment: Messenger has been getting lots of updates recently, as has WhatsApp, and there's new Instagram UI too. Now it's the turn of the main Facebook app. It would be an understatement to say it needs a lot of development time. If I had a dollar for every time I've seen a complaint about the Facebook app, I'd be richer than Mark Zuckerberg.
New Sharing Popup
The first item is the new sharing popup. We're not entirely sure when this first appeared, but it's there. The popup allows users to change where they're posting to - 'Post to Facebook,' 'On a friend's timeline,' and 'In a group.' This can be switched using the top spinner. Read More
The idea of contactless payments has turned out to be an unusually divisive topic. Some people are certain that we're only a couple of years away from abandoning physical credit cards in favor of using smartphones at the checkout line, while others see it as an obnoxious novelty that slows down everything and should be ignored. Whatever the case, it's interesting to watch the progress of mobile payment methods as they grow and evolve in an effort to capture consumer interest. The latest update to Android Pay v1.3 doesn't appear to bring any immediately available new features, but a teardown reveals that we will soon have the option to use certain types of cards without unlocking our phones. Read More
Even though it was announced almost a year and a half after the original LG G Pad 8.3, the G Pad X8.3 (notice the X?) is only a small improvement over its predecessor. The size, screen, software, storage, battery, remained more or less the same. Only the processor was bumped from a Snapdragon 600 to a 615 and the camera from a 5MP to an 8MP shooter.
Still, if you bought the X8.3 on Verizon, you might have been bummed because your relatively new tablet was stuck on Lollipop even though all the cool flagship phones got Marshmallow. Well, no more. Read More
On the scale of meh to super duper exciting, this Google+ 7.8 version update falls low, really low. Unless you get excited about bug fixes, which I know is a legit reason to love an update if a specific bug had been ruining the app for you, but is as dry and drab a topic to read about as a 0.1 pH change in a cleaning solution, you can pretty much say that nothing significant has changed.
I know I'm telling you to close this tab and go read something else, but since you're still here and you're clearly interested in the littlest changes Google introduces in its apps, I'll satisfy your curiosity. Read More
About a week ago, a couple of readers reported to us that direct carrier billing was showing up for Idea Cellular subscribers in India, but it seemed at the time that the feature wasn't live for everyone and wasn't working reliably for those who had it. Now it's official: the Google Asia Pacific Blog has announced the availability of carrier billing on Idea Cellular.
The post explains how direct carrier billing has positively impacted purchases on Google Play, citing Indonesia as an example of 4x growth in the number of people who make app and in-app purchases after the introduction of operator billing. Read More
We've spent months with barely any example use of Google's Nearby API by third-party apps, but in only a couple of days several apps have popped up with this proximity sharing method. First it was Radon for sending regular links, then Card Case for contact details, and now it's app links' turn with an app called, predictably, App Links.
The app was just updated to version 2.0 and it no longer only supports sending links of your preinstalled apps with Android's Share intent. There's a new Nearby icon in the app's title bar (which looks like two overlapping playback buttons) that simply broadcasts the apps you have selected to devices that are close to you, and looks for apps being shared back by them. Read More
All flagship phones tend to get better and better prices the farther out you get from the release date, but Samsung's latest crop seems to be dropping in price especially fast. For example, one eBay merchant is offering a 32GB Galaxy S7 Edge Duos for just $649.99, a solid $150 off the retail price (or much more, depending on where you buy it). That's even better than the aftermarket price for the same phone just a couple of weeks ago. The seller is based in New York, but this particular phone is being sold with a UK-standard phone charger, so you'll need a spare one to use it. Read More
I've always found myself nervous when Q&A sessions come up at a talk or presentation - I want to ask a question but can never find the willpower to actually put my hand up and ask it. Slides Q&A, in the latest version of Slides, appears like it might remedy or at least go some way to fixing that situation with its digital, typically Google-y approach to question and answer sessions.
With the update, Q&A is open all through the talk, with a link on the presentation screen. The audience is able to submit questions to the speaker, which can then be voted up or down by other members of the audience. Read More
SharePoint has millions of users, but none of them are connecting to the service through a mobile app. That's because Microsoft hasn't yet released one. Users have had to settle for working through a browser instead.
That's now changing. Read More