Google has given a bunch of its apps the Material Design treatment. Thus far, YouTube isn't one of them, even if you're running Android 5.0. But a few users have noticed a UI change that nudges things in that direction. They've fired up the app and slid out the sidebar, only to see that it's now white. With their avatar in the top left atop a colorful background, YouTube is starting to look ever-so-slightly more like what Lollipop users would expect.
The advertising for the latest round of Android software and devices has been pretty catchy. Have you seen the "party" ad? Nice. Google just posted four more short 45-second spots to the official Android account on YouTube, so you can expect to see these pop up on American television over the next few weeks. All of them star the cartoony Androidify figures, presumably including at least some created by users of the official app.
When you're using a social network, getting tagged in messages is par for the course. Unfortunately Google hasn't always made it easy to find all the times you've been mentioned. Sure, you could look back over all of your notifications, but that list gets cluttered quickly with comments on your posts, +1's, and follows.
Thankfully, Google has added a "Mentions" tab. It's situated between the "More" and "Explore" sections on the right-hand side.
The Google Search app is about to get the Material Design treatment. In a blog post today, Google has officially announced version 4.0 of Search, which we detailed (APK download included) nearly a month ago.
To refresh, the visual changes aren't all that drastic. Google Now already relied on cards, and swiping them away already felt pretty tangible. But now we have the extra layer of Lollipop-style flourish.
If you're a Chromecast owner - and let's be honest here, you probably are - then you'll be pleased to know Google is moving to make this little streaming stick even more versatile. With everyone getting together for the upcoming holidays, it's not only getting a couple of new movie channels, but also a handful of additional games:
- Wheel of Fortune
- Monopoly Dash
- Scrabble Blitz
- Connect Four
- Simon Swipe
- Just Dance Now
- Big Web Quiz
- Emoji Party
Most of these titles make perfect sense for something like Chromecast - they're simple enough to run on its limited hardware and interface, and still fun enough to be entertaining.
If you're impatiently waiting for a new Nexus device to be shipped to you and/or for Google or another manufacturer to send an Android 5.0 update your way, then you've probably read every word that Android Police has published on Lollipop. On the off-chance that you want to read even more, Google has just published an official Quick Start Guide for Android 5.0 on the Play Store. You can download it for free right now.
Listen up if you're one of the 6 persons who bought a
overpriced TrekStor SurfTab xintron i 7.0 tablet for EUR129 from Amazon.de and gave it an average rating of 4 stars (Edit: the previous link, pricing, and reviews were for the 10" version). You're going to be super happy now, provided you also have a Chromecast or you got your hands on an Android TV box. You can now mirror your TrekStor SurfTab xintron i 7.0's screen to a TV through casting.
Update: ...aaaaand it's gone.
After literally years of waiting, Amazon finally gave Android users access to their purchased movies and television shows on non-Kindle Fire devices. And lo, the heavens did open and a chorus of angels did declare, "where's the Chromecast support?" With Amazon promoting its Fire TV platform and a new Chromecast competitor of its own, it looks like we might have an even longer wait for that particular feature.
Have you felt the draw to get into app development, but didn't really know how to get started? Google wants to make things a little easier with a brand new guidebook that's meant to get developers on the right path. The Secrets to App Success on Google Play is an 81-page eBook that outlines the process and best practices for developing and submitting your software to the Play Store, and hopefully make some money on it.
Placing a voice call over Google Hangouts is a nice way to save some money. If you and another user both rely on the service, you can start chatting with anyone regardless of where they live. But placing a call to a traditional phone number comes with a few more restrictions.
On the positive side, Google has announced that it's loosening a major one for users in India. Now residents there can place international voice calls using Hangouts.