Of the many cool goodies in Google Search, this must be one of the most interesting and useful ones. Simply open Google Now or Google Search in Chrome and look for "bubble level," and you'll get a, well, bubble level. Quite expectedly.
The level appears as the top search card and is interactive. It adapts to whether you're holding your phone in portrait or landscape, or laying it flat on a table. While you may not use this for some very precise work, it is super cool and could come handy if you want to hang a poster or painting and just need an average way to know it's not completely crooked without installing a third-party app. Read More
The dream of OUYA was not to be. It turns out that overturning a decades-old industry by disrupting it with mobile hardware and open-source software is a tough row to hoe, and adding on a semi-exclusive game market (you know, that thing that consoles do that's already universally hated) wasn't the best opening move. So OUYA floundered in the maturing set-top box market until Razer snapped it up in the hopes of bolstering its own Forge TV, which had been on the market for months and was already known as the worst option in an extremely limited field.
Huh. Maybe they just wanted some company to commiserate with.
In any case, the customers who bought and paid for OUYA hardware are getting a couple of dividends out of the deal. Read More
Motorola is swiftly making its way through its Moto X flagship series, upgrading all of them to Android 6.0. Today it's the Moto X 2014 Pure Edition's turn - that's the one that was sold carrier-free in the US on Motorola's website between last fall and this fall. Several Android Police readers, plus posters on Reddit and XDA, say they've been given the over-the-air update as of yesterday. To be clear, we haven't heard anything about the various carrier editions of the Moto X 2014; presumably those will be trickling in over the next few weeks as the carriers run their various tests and certifications. Read More
Rohit Paul, also known as user rp1226 on Reddit, is lucky enough to be invited to test a new feature on Google. It's all about signing in to your Google account without having to bother with passwords and two-step authentication. It relies on you having your phone nearby and using it to let yourself in.
According to the screenshots Rohit posted and the email he got from Google, this works by first setting it up on your compatible phone. Read More
A few months ago, Nexus 4 owners felt a little bit abandoned when their darling device was left out of the Marshmallow party. While the Nexus 5, 6, 7 (2013), and 9 all got their new dessert flavor, the Nexus 4 was left with a used Lollipop that didn't taste just as sweet as it did when it was first released. But fret no more, you old-school Nexus warriors, CyanogenMod is here to save you from descent into irrelevancy thanks to the latest CM 13 nightly.
Released a few hours ago, this CM 13 nightly for the Nexus 4 (mako) weighs about 277MB and brings a build of Marshmallow to the device. Read More
Look, if you want a phone that won't break the bank, there are a lot of options worse than the Blu Vivo Air LTE. It's an upgrade over the original Vivo Air in many ways—the addition of LTE, more RAM, and on-screen buttons easily make the shortlist. I was kind of disappointed in the Snapdragon 410's performance overall when I reviewed it, but it's not atrocious by any standard.
For a very limited time—about five and a half hours at the time of publication, in fact—you can score the Vivo Air LTE for just $150. That's $50 off the normal price of $199, so it's a pretty solid deal. Read More
The saga of OUYA is a cautionary tale of how hard it is to build a new gaming platform. After an initial crowdfunding success, OUYA had trouble attracting developers and keeping gamers interested. The company was gobbled up by gaming giant Razer earlier this year, and now the OUYA store is back as Cortex for the Android TV-powered Forge TV. Read More
While a video published last week teased it, NVIDIA's new (kind of) Shield Tablet K1 officially made its Marshmallow debut today - the update is available right now. NVIDIA just published an announcement on its forums, from which we've excerpted the changelog you see below.
This update for SHIELD Tablet K1 upgrades the Operating System to Android version 6.0
NVIDIA SHIELD Camera
- New UI inspired by Material Design, improved burst photo functionality
- Adds new real-time HD Image Effects
Now on Tap
- Quickly find information related to what you are seeing on the screen, also from inside an app
MicroSD cards can be integrated with main internal storage, auto managed by system
User Interface Upgrades
- Personalize Home & Lock screens with different wallpapers, new NVIDIA wallpapers
- Personalize Quick Settings menu, add/remove, rearrange toggles
- Google Now voice commands can be launched from lock screen
Improved App Permissions
- Permissions are now managed centrally
- App Standby power improvements
- Improved BT Low Energy scanning power efficiency
System wide improvements including
- Monitor Memory Usage with detailed usage of each app
- Optimized preloaded apps
- Adds Fallout Shelter game
IMPORTANT: IF YOU ARE CURRENTLY USING A MICROSD CARD IN THIS SHIELD TABLET: In Android 6.0 there are changes to how expanded storage works.