Google has seen fit to grace us with a nice little Chrome Beta update this update Wednesday. if you're on Lollipop, you'll immediately notice one thing in particular—the address bar now goes all the way across the screen, but only if you have a certain setup. You'll have to dive into the flags for the rest, but it might be worth it.
Is Google+ 4.8 a big deal? Not unless you're really into seeing a few buttons get moved around. But since these changes do impact how people use the app, we're going to detail them nonetheless. Here goes.
When you're ready to make a post, the send button has moved from the bottom right corner to the top right corner of the window. Essentially, it has swapped places with the menu button.
PlayLater lets you record online video on a PC and save it for later use. PlayOn takes that content and makes it viewable on your TV or mobile device. The latter can help you find shows available online and, as long as you have the requisite subscriptions (to Netflix, Amazon Prime, etc.), get you up and running.
Altogether, these are good tools for cord cutters to add to their digital utility belts.
We all know that sometimes a device reboot fixes stuff, but Google would never admit to that. Android is supposed to run constantly and keep things in order as it's designed to, but the new Device Assist app finally lays all the cards on the table. The top suggestion (and for some, the only suggestion) is reboot your phone. Dammit, Google.
Update Wednesday has begun! We're starting off with a pretty small bump for Google Play Games, taking it from v2.1 to v2.2. There aren't any big new features, but a few things have been polished up.
Like so many other Google apps, the first-run experience has been updated with a short introduction to explain what the app does and the value users can expect to get from it. Of course, this generally won't show up if Games has been in active use already.
Whether or not you know the name, you've encountered a CAPTCHA before. It's the little window typically found at the bottom of an online registration form that's meant to separate real people from robots or scripts that could potentially flood a site with phony accounts and fraudulent purchases. reCAPTCHA is a Google-owned implementation that you've probably seen across the web, and convincing it that you're a real person usually consists of squinting at a set of funky letters and re-typing them as best as you can.
There are a lot of cloud storage apps out there, but StreamNation is one that has a very particular focus. As you might guess, it's all about the stream: the app and service are designed around remotely accessing video, audio, and photo content on top of everything else. The new Android app was just released in the Play Store, and it's surprisingly complete for a new service. You'll need a free account, or link it to Facebook (but not Google+).
The internet is a mysterious and magical place full of Wikipedia rabbit holes, animated GIFs of Ron Paul, and cat videos as far as the eye can see. There are also plenty of ads watching which of those things you are looking at. If that makes you uncomfortable, maybe Ghostery is the browser for you.
That fingerprint reader that came with your Samsung Galaxy gadget can secure your lockscreen, but unlocking your device isn't the only task it can help speed up. For heavy PayPal users, it can be an ideal way to make online purchases more quickly. Instead of keying in your PayPal credentials, you can apply your print. Now this ability has come to the Play Store version of the app.
Smartphones are great—except when they don't work right. Google aims to make sure that doesn't happen as often with the new Device Assist app for Nexus, GPE, and Android One devices running Lollipop. Just open the app and it can (maybe) tell you what's wrong.