Well, here's a bit of a nice surprise: one lucky XDA user just got an update to 4.1.2 on his Sprint Optimus G. And then another. And another. And some more. All with nary a word from The Now Network, which is usually pretty on top of announcing updates for devices. Ergo, at this point, we're not entirely sure if this is the start of a full-on rollout or just a "soak test" of sorts.
From the moment it was released, Poweramp has been one of the most beloved music players on Android. While it doesn't have that Google cloud magic, the developer has done a great job of keeping the app fresh with updates. This most recent update really piles on the goodies, too.
The developer has added some neat features for users of a few select devices. If you're on Android 4.2, Poweramp now has a proper lockscreen widget.
There are a number of popular podcast solutions on Android, but those apps are about to get some fresh competition with the release of Pocket Casts 4.0. This app has long had solid features, but it wasn't quite able get the same traction as Doggcatcher or BeyondPod. The new version might do the trick, though.
As with the old version of Pocket Casts, this app uses server-based refreshes to keep your podcasts updated.
If you have an aging-but-not-yet-dead Epic 4G just waiting to be upgraded, maybe now's the time to slap a good ol' dose of CyanogenMod on it. Why now? Because it just got its first official CM10.1 nightly. Sure, you could've been running CM10 for some time, but now you can have the latest build that AOSP has to offer.
With CM10.1 – which is based on Android 4.2.x for those who may not know – you get fun things like lockscreen widgets (so you can finally get in on the DashClock action), Quick Settings, and a few other, less obvious tweaks.
If you caught the announcement of Google Play Services 3.0, aka "Google+ Sign-In," you're already halfway up to speed on this. Google Play Services is an APK that many of Google's apps rely on to hook into Google+ and, just like the Play Store, Google has the ability to silently update it.
Andy Rubin, you coy devil. I suppose we could ignore those rumors about Google retail stores if you ask nicely and bat your eyes at us. That's what the head of Android would like us to do, anyway, as he spoke at Mobile World Congress stating that "Google has no plans [for a retail store] and we have nothing to announce."
Why not, though? This sure sounds like a good idea to a lot of us in the Android fan world.
I'll be honest: I have no idea what's going on in this game. Towelfight 2: The Monocle of Destiny appears to be a pretty basic twin-stick shooter, right up until you notice that your wizened player character is shooting homicidal, spherical animals out of his eye. These critters have powers of their own, including lasers, chainsaws, and explosions. And when you kill enemies, they burst into Batman-style sound effects, which for some reason include "dirigible" and "maple syrup." Also, there's a dog, and you can play fetch with him.
Late yesterday, we headed over to the ZTE booth to check out the company's latest smartphone - the Grand Memo. The selling point? It's big and powerful - sporting a 5.7" display with a Snapdragon
800 600 processor of some kind.
Of course, that big display is only 720p. And that processor is paired with only 1GB of RAM. And it's using ZTE's Android acid trip of a UI overlay.
It took almost no time for Roman Nurik's DashClock Widget to explode, and dozens of apps have been adding support for the almost-infinitely customizable widget in the few short weeks that it's been out. We've already seen additions from apps like Any.DO and PushBullet, as well as a slew of independent extensions.
Today's extension from GoneMAD Software – the creator of GoneMAD Music Player – is a simple one, but could be useful for some users.