Amazon's Android app has received an update to 5.1 that's all about reducing how much typing you need to do to use the app. We've spotted changes to the search UI that make it possible to perform inquiries using your voice. We've also come across strings hinting that credit card scanning is either already included or on its way.
When you hit the magnifying glass in the action bar to begin a search, the screen that appears will now contain a microphone for voice searches. Tapping on this will prompt the question: "What are you searching for?" The process saves you a tap, as you no longer need to hit the mic on your keyboard. The Flow option also has a new icon.
Amazon keeps the voice recordings associated with each search in order to improve the accuracy of future results, but it provides the option to delete them that's tucked away under account settings.
We've found strings inside the Amazon app that explicitly deal with credit card scanning. Users will be able to add new cards to their accounts by scanning it using their device's camera. Amazon has a webpage up that details how this feature works, but we haven't yet figured out how to initiate it within the app, as the option isn't present on the My Account page. Either the feature is already included, or it's on its way.
<string name="cc_scan_app_name">Scan your Card</string><string name="cc_scan_center_card">Line up your card with this frame</string><string name="cc_scan_amazon_secure">Amazon secure</string><string name="cc_scan_card_not_stored">Actual card image will not be stored.</string><string name="cc_scan_scanning">Scanning…</string><string name="cc_scan_success">Successfully scanned</string><string name="cc_scan_trouble">We are having trouble reading this card.</string><string name="cc_scan_rescan">Rescan</string><string name="cc_scan_manual">Type it in</string><string name="cc_scan_help_page_us">https://www.amazon.com/ccscanhelpus</string>
When you go to download the updated Amazon app below, it will request two new permissions: the ability to control your flashlight and record audio. The latter is obvious. As for the flashlight, it could sure come in handy when trying to scan in the dark.
The APK is signed by Amazon and upgrades your existing app. The cryptographic signature guarantees that the file is safe to install and was not tampered with in any way. Rather than wait for Google to push this download to your devices, which can take days, download and install it just like any other APK.
File name: com.amazon.mShop.android-5.1.0-501002-minAPI9.apk.
Version: 5.1.0 (501002)(Android 2.3+)