I know, I know - there are tons of VNC viewer apps on the Play Store. Some of the good ones are even free. But if you use RealVNC, and you (or your workplace) demand an encrypted connection for remote access, this is the only app we're aware of that will allow you to connect from your Android device. RealVNC is highly popular, so we thought we'd point out this deal, which saves you five bucks over the ten it would otherwise run you.
If you're looking for yet another song-matching app (really, a SoundHound / Shazam alternative), Rhapsody's got something you might be interested in - a new app called Songmatch.
Songmatch, thankfully, does not require a Rhapsody subscription, and is completely free. You can match songs against Rhapsody's library of 16 million tracks, get artist info, track listings, and more.
That may sound pretty basic at first glance, but it gets better if you're a Rhapsody subscriber.
In addition to Google Search, the Google Translate, Authenticator, and Voice apps - along with five others - have been updated today as well, though these revisions aren't quite as exciting as new Google Now cards.
First, the Translate app received a bump to 2.5.3, adding text recognition via the camera translate function for Chinese, Japanese, and Korean. Handwriting recognition has been added for a number of new languages, as well, including: Afrikaans, Croatian, Czech, Icelandic, Latvian, Lithuanian, Macedonian, Slovak, Slovenian, Ukrainian, and Welsh.
Google Search received a pretty significant update this morning, adding yet more Google Now cards, speed enhancements, and three new voice actions. The now cards include nearby events, "suggestions to help you with your research" (whatever that means), QR code boarding passes (!) from Gmail, location-sensitive search by camera (aka Google Goggles), weather at places Now thinks you're travelling to based on Calendar and Gmail, and monthly summaries of your walking and biking activity.
Alright, yes. We've spent over a month getting upset because Christmas starts just way too dang early these days. It's December now, though. Is it finally okay to get in the holiday spirit a bit? Cool. Because these Spheros—robotic balls that can be remotely controlled by Android and carry an array of sensors and lights—are beautiful. The company behind the bots choreographed these 28 units to the tune of Christmas Eve/Sarajevo 12/24, as performed by the Trans-Siberian Orchestra.
Republic Wireless hit the scene with an interesting idea: to offer full-fledged mobile service for $19 a month. The low-cost service relies on customers using Wi-Fi and "hybrid Wi-Fi calling" in order to keep the cost low, and, for the time being, RW only has one phone: the Motorola Defy XT.
Bringing what it calls the first multiplayer online battle arena (MOBA) game for mobile consoles to Android, Gameloft today released Heroes of Order and Chaos to the Play Store.
The game, a spinoff of the original Order and Chaos, takes place in a "unique fantasy setting" where players will join a battle that's been raging for centuries. It pits teams of three or five players against each other in one of two maps (depending on your party size), combining non-stop arena combat with RPG elements.
Of all the services that I use on a daily basis, Dropbox is probably the one that I absolutely can't live without. I store nearly everything in it, use it to quickly (and automatically, thanks to FolderSync) transfer screenshots to my PCs, and easily share files with other AP team members, friends, and family. However, the fact that files and folders couldn't previously be moved from within the Android app has always been pretty annoying.
Sometimes, it can be a bit arguable what counts as a "low end" phone these days. Even cheap phones are so powerful that calling them anything lower than mid-range can seem insulting. This one, however, makes us pretty comfortable with the moniker. With a 1GHz Snapdragon S1 processor, a 320x480 TFT display, and a 3.2MP rear camera, the Xperia E fills out Sony's budget line just fine.
Optionally, the Xperia E Dual has the option for dual SIM card slots, which is great for business users, and those who need to work with multiple networks.
For the last few weeks, I’ve had the fortuitous opportunity to spend some time with the Microsoft Surface RT. I have a few thoughts I’d like to share about that experience.
Productivity (Office vs. Drive)
Drive / document editing and creation at large on Android sucks. Office on the Surface RT blows it away. Not even close. Office RT still has its quirks, but Microsoft continues to show that it dominates the spreadsheet and document ecosystem for a reason: it’s had nearly 30 years of experience perfecting it.