We haven't heard a lot from Pushbullet lately, but it's still out there mirroring notifications and flinging data between devices. It almost had to stop, though. Google threatened to remove the Pushbullet extension from the Chrome Web Store, but it didn't explain why. As a result, the developers had to scramble to address Google's concerns... whatever those were. After a little helpful prodding, Google has accepted Pushbullet's updated extension.
After more than two years without a major update, Pushbullet rose from the dead last month with a ton of new features. The app received a new bottom navigation bar, adaptive icon support, and a dark mode (if you have Pushbullet Pro). Another update has now arrived, with even more long-requested features.
Pushbullet was one of the first apps that successfully made your Android notifications more accessible and useful. With Pushbullet, you can sync notifications to other devices, reply to messages on your PC, and so much more. Development of the app slowed down over the last couple of years, but Pushbullet comes roaring back today with a major update. There are various design changes based on material theming, easier navigation, new icons, and more.
To say that there are a lot of SMS clients on Android would be an understatement. Yet most people tend to stick to the default one that came with their phones and we know that a lot of those lack any useful or cool features. The name of Klinker should be familiar to some, since they gave us Talon for Twitter, Sliding Messaging, and EvolveSMS. Even though it's just Luke now, that doesn't mean that the neat apps have stopped. You may recall that back in September, Klinker released a beta for a new messaging app (then called "Messenger"). That app officially released today under the name of Pulse, and it's pretty awesome.
One of the many issues with Google's latest messaging app, Allo, is the total lack of a desktop application. Picking up my phone to respond to a message, when I'm already at my computer with a physical keyboard, seems silly. Allo 2.0, released yesterday, added the ability to quick reply from the notifications. Today's Pushbullet update taps into the quick reply functionality to add Allo support.
Pushbullet, despite some unpopular pricing changes, still remains one of my favorite Android applications. I use it every day on multiple devices, but Mac owners haven't been lucky enough to receive an official client. Your only choices until recently have been to use the Chrome extension (which requires Chrome to always run in the background) or a paid third-party client called PushPal.
There's still not an official client for macOS, but Noti was released recently. Noti is a free and open-source Pushbullet client, designed specifically for macOS. You can respond and take action on notifications, just like with the Chrome extension, but Noti uses the macOS Notification Center instead of the ugly Chrome notifications.
There was a bit of a dust-up the other day when Pushbullet began sending out some scary-sounding emails to users. The emails explained that a few services making very heavy use of the Pushbullet API were going to be blocked. Today, Pushbullet has decided to change its approach to coping with this problem after getting feedback form users. Nothing will be blocked, but there will be a new API push limit for free accounts.
Join, by joaomgcd of many Tasker plugins and automation apps fame, has been in beta for nearly two months now. When I tried it out at launch, it already had a lot of its functionality covered, allowing your phones and computers to share things with each other: links, SMS messages, screenshots, media files, copied text, and more. The app has been getting frequent updates since then, adding Tasker integration and making it possible to send SMS from any browser without the need for a Chrome extension. You could say that Pushbullet's little brother has grown up to actually compete against it.
Pushbullet began as a quick way to send files, links, and other data from one device to another. Along the way, the team took the infrastructure it had in place and introduced instant messaging (through a phone using SMS). Last month the feature grew to include group conversations. Today, the service has evolved to support sending picture messages.
Pushbullet added two small, but useful, new features this morning. First, replying to group SMS from a computer or tablet is now (finally) supported. In a small gesture of holiday goodwill, Pushbullet won't count group SMS messages against the 100 message limit for non-paying users for the rest of the month.
Group texting is now available through Pushbullet's Chrome extension, Windows desktop app, and Pushbullet's website. Support for Safari, Opera, and Firefox is coming soon. Replying to group texts also requires a phone running Android 5.0 and above.
The second change Pushbullet added this morning pertains to the new remote files feature that was added earlier this month.