If you caught our review of Thumb Keyboard last month, you'll know the gist of this clever keyboard app that aims to make two-thumbed typing a breeze. It's a novel (and potentially very useful) tool for a phone, but with recent updates that have accentuated the tablet layouts, this has now become my keyboard of choice on large tablet screens, and is a potential game-changer in the new slate arena.
On phones, trace keyboards like Swype and SlideIt are extremely hard to beat in the speed department (world texting records seem to be broken on a regular basis with Swype), but on the wider tablet screen, tracing suddenly becomes much less convenient.
A couple of weeks ago, EA released Bejeweled 2 to the Android Market, and many Bejeweled fans jumped on it like bees on honey. Most found the game in the Market just fine for $2.99, but others were stumped when they saw a whopping $7.99 price tag.
Those others were all Verizon customers, as we found out after digging in, because apparently EA decided to release 2 separate, but otherwise exactly identical versions of the game - one for VZW customers and one for everyone else.
CNN is not the only news organization with a tablet-optimized Honeycomb app - USA Today today (ooh, 2x "today"s in a row, it must be your lucky day) jumped on the same bandwagon with their own take on what a tablet news app should be like. News, Money, Sports, Life, Tech, Travel, Photos, and Weather sections are available, and... well, there is not much else to say about this - it's a news app on a larger screen.
The long planned, much anticipated update to WidgetLocker that adds themes has been released, and it's every bit as awesome as we expected. Perhaps the best part about it is that there's already a broad selection of themes available in the XDA thread, and it's likely that number will increase substantially as time goes on thanks to the groundwork laid by previous WL mods.
Once you find a theme you like, installation is very, very easy:
1) When clicking on a link in the form of http://…foo.wltheme.zip, chose WidgetLocker to open the link rather then your browser.
If you remember, during Google's Honeycomb showcase in the beginning of the month, one of the tablet-optimized apps demoed was made by CNN. Considering CNN is one of the Honeycomb/XOOM launch partners, the new app showed up in the Market like clockwork for an easily digestible price of free. For those who need a refresher, here's the video from the presentation again:
The CNN app features a swipable navigation bar on the left-hand side and a grid story layout on the right side.
You read that right: the Market now includes a totally awesome Books site. To be honest though, none of us is really sure what all has changed, since none of us really used it before - but it doesn't seem like a lot, other than a flipped switch. Let's start with what it looks like:
Notably, there's now a dropdown to sort by genre (to the left of the search box, above).
Lookout Inc's Lookout Mobile Security app is one of the most popular and trusted security apps on the Market, and while the company is going to continue active development of its flagship product, today it is launching Lookout Labs - a separate Android Market developer account dedicated to "pushing the bounds of mobile apps."
The first fruit of Lookout Labs' labor is a brilliantly simple yet very useful app called Plan B.
In a minor update to the official Gmail app, Google has addressed one of "the little things" that have been plaguing Android since the beginning. In this case, a lack of uniformity for copying text.
In all previous versions of the Gmail app, a user would have to press Menu, More, and then Select Text. Fortunately, this update fixes that issue by making copying text the same as in the Browser or a textbox: by long pressing it.
Today, Google got the ball rolling on Gingerbread updates for the two official "Google phones", the Nexus One and Nexus S. While this is exciting, long awaited news for owners of the Nexus One, the Nexus S crowd may have some reason for disdain.
One of the things that got me really excited when I bought my first Android phone was the ability to import the numbers and email addresses of all my Facebook friends to my contact list automagically.
Ever heard of MenuPages? I hadn't until today, but I guess I live in a cardboard box. The popular website now offers an Android app for your convenience - but what's MenuPage's big feature when competing against the likes of UrbanSpoon and Yelp? You may have guessed it has something to do with menus.
MenuPages indexes the (wait for it, it's mind-blowing) menu contents of any restaurant their service lists, meaning you can search by the exact food you want, as opposed to browsing through broad genres of cuisine.