Field Trip is an oddity in Google's app lineup. It comes from Niantic Labs (the people who went on to create Ingress), looks fantastic, and it's made for a very specific kind of user. The app highlights attractions of historical, cultural, and entertainment value in your immediate area, using GPS and services like Thrillist, Zagat, and Cool Hunting to create a "hyperlocal" experience. Of course, any travel app is only good if it works where you are, which was a sticking point for international users.
If you need a way to take your mind off how depressing it is to not be at Google I/O, then maybe a new app or game will help with that. There just so happens to be quite a few on sale today that may be able to help keep your busy brain at bay, lest you might drive yourself insane.
- G-Stomper Beat Studio – $2.99 (50% off)
- Pano – $1.97 (33% off)
- SwiftKey – $1.99 (50% off)
- SwiftKey Tablet – $1.99 (50%)
- World of Goo – $0.99 (80% off)
- Starlink – Free (100% off)
- Tigris & Euphrates – $0.99 (75% off)
- Majesty – $0.99 (50% off)
- FireJumpers – $0.99 (50% off)
Now, stop being so blue, panda bear.
Some games are old, and some games are really old. Karateka falls into the latter category. This side-scrolling karate action game was first developed in 1984 by the creator of Prince of Persia, and today a port enters the Play Store nearly 30 years later. Android gamers can now experience one of the grandfathers of the beat 'em up genre.
Karateka first appeared on the Apple II, and is the product of a time when the number of colors your monitor displayed could be counted on your hands and feet.
Dateline: 1988. Across the country, thousands of Amiga computer owners discover a revelation: they can now play a game that includes both white-knuckle driving and indiscriminate violence (without heading to the arcade to spend a quarter on Spy Hunter) with Fire And Forget. The little-known but much-loved Titus game has been given new life in Fire & Forget: The Final Assault. This is no nostalgia trip, it's a brand new title, complete with modern graphics and a new trick for your rolling death machine: flight.
Hey, have you heard? Google Hangouts is now a thing. And by a thing, I mean Google's new universal, cross-platform chat solution. Ron's closer look hands-on should give you an idea of how Hangouts works (and how it doesn't). But the launch of Google's Talk / G+ Messenger replacement hasn't gone entirely smoothly, and there remain a few bumps to be ironed out - bumps Google has promised to fix.
In our review of the Pebble SmartWatch, we only had two complaints about the software: a lack of apps, and a lack of utility. The second point stems from the fact that the Pebble can only receive alerts from your phone, and it can't send information back. Both issues have now been addressed by the Pebble SDK. Developers have been cranking away on watch apps for some time, but the latest SDK update adds AppMessage, a method of implementing bi-directional communication for Pebble.
The Galaxy S4 is a beast of a phone, and very likely to be the best-selling Android device in the world this year. It's also pretty bloated when it comes to software: on a brand new, unsullied phone, more than 6GB of internal storage is taken up by Samsung's TouchWiz version of Android. Most markets don't yet have access to a 32GB or 64GB model, and the base 16GB version has less than 10GB of user-accessible storage available.
There’s no denying that the switch to Broadcom’s Bluetooth stack in Android 4.2 has created some stressful situations for frequent users of the short range networking technology. The added attention also raised awareness for some features that are woefully lacking in the OS, something that other OEMs have been working to resolve independently. To a round of applause during the Best Practices for Bluetooth Development session, Sara Sinclair Brody announced Google will finally address two of the most popular requests.
The first and most important day of Google I/O 2013 is drawing to a close. If you've just gotten home from a long day at work and don't have time to sift through a mountain of Android Police live coverage, fear not: there's a roundup for that. Here's a concise list of everything that's new and updated in the Googleverse.
If you'd like to spend almost four hours watching Google show off all its new goodies, our Live Blog has the keynote embedded, plus Artem and David's reactions.