It seems like all hands are on deck to get Google's apps to conform on the new workmark. In all of the rush, a minor snafu occurred yesterday. A dogfood version (generally intended for internal testing) of the News & Weather app was uploaded to the Play Store, adorned with the cute little paw print badge. Well, the accident has been cleaned up and the proper version has been uploaded to the Play Store today. Let's just hope nobody had their noses rubbed anywhere.
Left: Old launcher icon. Center: Dogfood icon. Right: New launcher icon.
Disclaimer: Teardowns are necessarily speculative and usually based on incomplete evidence.
We know that Android Pay is going to drop any day now, and that means Google Wallet is changing too. The Wallet app will no longer be used for paying in stores, but it will be used to send money. The new Wallet app is now live in the Play Store as a different listing than the existing Wallet app.
Building a good, profitable game these days is more challenging than ever. Players are more demanding, business models require more creativity (at least they should), and there are plenty of competitors that are just as desperate to hold the attention of players for as long as possible. Since users are all over the world and generally don't point a camera at themselves while they play, the hardest part is actually figuring out what works and doesn't work for them. Google Play Games is trying to help with that by launching some very informative tools that can help make player behavior a little easier to understand. Read More
There's a new version of Hangouts rolling out to devices today, and it's a big jump from 4.0 to 4.2. I know that you're wondering. Does it fix that thing that you personally hate about Hangouts? Nope, that thing (whatever it is) is unaffected. This update is laying the groundwork for Android 6.0. Read More
Amazon Cloud Drive is a way to get around storing your stuff on your own hardware. Instead, you can keep it on someone else's. It this case, Amazon's.
IFTTT is a service that automates the way the sites you visit interact with each other. Those letters stand for "If This Then That." Read More
So you're interested in Android TV, but the $199 Shield seems too spendy? Well, you can grab a Nexus Player for less than $50 on Groupon. The deal is for $49.99, but there's a coupon code that can take a few more bucks off. Read More
YouTube Kids is like YouTube... but for kids. Okay, it's not the most difficult concept in the world. Neither is the urge to take a video streaming to your tablet and make it bigger. With the latest version of YouTube Kids, your little one now has that option. Chromecast support has arrived. Read More
Minecraft Pocket Edition updates are often filled with minute changes that you have to be familiar with the game to understand. Version 0.12.1's changelog includes a number of these tweaks. For example, there's "Ocelots! Try taming one with a fish" and "Golems. We recommend you approach with caution." Also, "Sneaking and sprinting! Express yourself through movement!" Read More
Everybody loves more RAM, especially in their Android smartphones and tablets. Because seriously, can we have some more? I'll take whatever you can give me. And today, Samsung is continuing in its grand tradition of responding to that demand with a brand-new DRAM design that squeezes 12Gb (not to be confused with GB) onto each chip, for a maximum of 6GB (again, not to be confused with Gb) of total memory in the package. Samsung claims it can fit that 6GB in the space that is required for 3GB currently, so no extra room is needed.
The new chip is also 30% faster than Samsung's older 20nm-process 8Gb chips, and Samsung claims they'll be able to produce in significantly greater quantities thanks to manufacturing changes. Read More