In the storied history of ugly phones, there are few that can stand up to the horrendous might of the Casio G’zOne Commando. This device may not be a looker, but it's rugged and now it has a spiffy new software update. Version C771M140 is available to download now for anyone still hauling the original Commando around.
The new software package makes a few changes to the functionality of the Commando, but it doesn't push it past Android 2.3.
HTC said a while back that the Android 4.3 update would hit all US HTC One handsets by the end of September. That obviously didn't happen, but the company wasn't too far off in the case of Sprint. That version of the device is getting the update today.
Good news! 4.3 will begin to push to HTC One users on Sprint today.
Root Explorer is a solid file manager, but - surprise, surprise - it's even better for people who have rooted their phones. Back when Android 4.3 first arrived, many root enabled file managers suddenly had broken root support, but not Root Explorer. And since the functionality is already so solid, the latest update introduces a new feature some of us would consider superfluous. If you like Root Explorer, now you can make it prettier, look more integrated, or be as obnoxious as your eyes can handle without permanently rolling over backwards and staring into the darkness between your ears.
Yahoo seems to be taking a page out of the NFL's playbook: the official Android app just jumped from version 1.1.4 all the way to 3.2. (It's probably been changed to match the iOS version.) But at least there's plenty of new content to justify the jump. In addition to a new Holo-style user interface sporting the revamped Yahoo logo (which still clings annoyingly to that vestigial "!"), the app has a ton of new options for content consumption.
If you've been waiting for the newest and shiniest Samsung tech to get a bit of Magenta branding, wait no longer: the Galaxy Note 3 is now available from T-Mobile.com. The Galaxy Gear should be on sale, but at the time of writing the online store pages for the watch are returning errors. T-Mobile retail stores should be offering both devices starting today. The Galaxy Note 3 is $708 at full price, $199 plus a $21 monthly charge over 24 months, or $29.50 per month with zero down (if you qualify).
We've all been there: for 20 minutes during takeoff and landing, the cabin of an American airliner becomes a virtual Faraday cage as every passenger is told to turn off everything with a battery, from the latest Android superphones to the humble Game Boy. This practice has been heavily criticized in the last few years, and there's finally some real movement towards tossing it out the window. The Wall Street Journal reports that a Federal Aviation Administration advisory panel has recommended approving electronic devices for use during takeoff and landing, including WiFi data access.
When the Chromecast launched it had only one non-Google content source from Android devices: Netflix. Now that service's primary opponent, Hulu, also has the ability to "cast" video directly to Google's streaming dongle. Of course, like everything else concerning Hulu, you'll have to shell out $8 a month for access to the Hulu Plus service and corresponding Android app to take advantage of it.
To start using this feature, just press the Chromecast button from any window in the Hulu Plus app.
There seem to be two distinct AAA strategies evolving in the mobile gaming world: make a premium product and charge a premium price (typified by most of Square-Enix's RPGs) or make a premium product that's free or incredibly cheap and make people pay for almost everything (Electronic Arts, Glu, and many others... including Square-Enix). With NBA 2K14, 2K Games is standing in stark contrast to EA's blockbuster Madden and FIFA series.
If you were drooling over a few of the themes in our first look at Themer the other day, some of you now have the opportunity to play around with them on your own phones. The official beta has hit the Play Store, but only approved testers will be given codes to activate the app. Sad, but you can still get on the list for access.
Themer is a one-click method for setting up a home screen theme on your Android device.
You gotta love it when a community of developers congregates around some exciting hardware. That's certainly what's happened with the Pebble smartwatch: it's been getting steadily more capable ever since its release, thanks in no small part to Android and watch app developers. We've seen apps link the Pebble and the popular automaton engine Tasker before, but PebbleTasker (catchy!) does it better than anything else so far.
This go-between app will install a companion app on the Pebble and allow you to assign any three tasks you want to the top, select, and bottom buttons on the right edge of the watch.