The adoption of Google's Play Games collection of APIs and tools has been rapid, and very welcome among Android gamers - it's one of the first things that gets requested when a new title on the Play Store omits it. Now it's a little easier to tell which games support Play Games tools and which ones don't, without having to download them first. Users, including those of us here at Android Police, are starting to see a Play Games logo appear prominently in the Play Store app description of those apps that support the system. Read More
Since the DROID series remains a Verizon exclusive more than six years after the original QWERTY model hit shelves, the DROID Turbo 2 is Verizon's de facto flagship phone, in so much as no one else can use it. So those customers who have spent their money on the modified version of the Moto X will be glad to know that a Marshmallow update is fast approaching. For a lucky few, it's available now: the "soak test," a closed alpha for Motorola firmware, has begun. Read More
I have a 55 inch Sony TV with Android TV in my bedroom. I love it, the picture is beautiful, the apps load quickly and work well, and it's running freaking Android! That being said, I love it a little less today, because my TV is 1080p, and I paid more for it than the 55 inch 4K Sony that is on sale today. Dang it. Early adoption sucks sometimes.
The Sony XBR-55X810C 55-Inch 4K TV is available on eBay for $799.99 for a limited time. That is a great price on an excellent TV which retails elsewhere for a grand. It's a full $50 cheaper than the last time it went on sale. Like the TV in my bedroom, it runs Android TV and supports Google Cast out of the box. Read More
The Google App's version 5.10 update rolled out to the beta channel yesterday with a new waiting animation, but one change that was lurking behind is the option to open links from search results and Now cards in Chrome Custom Tabs instead of redirecting to the full Chrome browser (or your other default browser).
The option was first discovered by Cody in the APK teardown of version 5.5, but it appears to have just been activated now in the app. But, as with all things Google, there are a few asterisks attached to when it does and doesn't work. I have a Nexus 5X (Marshmallow 6.0.1) and an LG G4 (Lollipop 5.1), both running the Google App 5.10.23 and an old version of Play Services 8.4.89. Read More
Google's "Monotune" Android commercial is pretty cool. The musical analogy is interesting (and it ties in well with Google's "be together, not the same" marketing campaign), but there's an impressive technical aspect to it as well. The producers modified a grand piano so that all 88 keys were turned to middle C, so that pianist Ji-Yong Kim could really play the music using a single note. As cool as that commercial is, they might have taken things a bit too far with the latest promotion: an entire album of music played with that one-note piano. Read More
Motorola rolled out Marshmallow to the 2015 Moto X Pure a few months ago, but now the first factory image is available for download. Well, "available" might not be the right word. We're under the impression that it exists, and you can theoretically obtain it, but you have to ask Motorola for the privilege. Read More
Remember when Sprint said that it wouldn't be offering the tried and true two-year phone contracts anymore? Yeah, not so much. Fierce Wireless reports that the carrier is once again offering two-year service contracts, and the Sprint Wireless website bears this out. New phones are being sold with a significant discount, up to 100%, in exchange for customers signing a promise not to stop paying for 24 months. Everything old is new again.
If you'll recall, two-year contracts fell out of favor after T-Mobile made a big show of discontinuing them as part of its "uncarrier" initiative in 2013. Instead T-Mo started promoting a new payment program which allowed customers to buy phones in installments with interest-free financing, very much like European carriers have been offering for years. Read More
The Google app has gone through some fairly rapid-fire updates over the last month or so, with new versions popping out every few days. Just yesterday, a somewhat buggy v5.10.22 rolled out in the morning, only to be replaced in the evening by a minor v5.10.23 update to fix some issues with crashing. The changes from v5.9 to v5.10 appear to be rather minor, but a close examination turned up a couple of little things we couldn't ignore. Read More
Samsung and Apple have largely ended their ongoing patent animosity, but the earlier cases are still winding their way through the courts. In the most recent ruling, a previous $120 million judgement against Samsung was thrown out by a federal appeals court. In fact, the court found it was Apple that infringed one of Samsung's patents. Read More
Welcome back to another week of the Android Police Podcast. To catch us live on Hangouts On Air every Thursday at 5:30PM PST (subject to change as per the calendar widget below), just head over to androidpolice.com/podcast. For the unedited video show, click here (warning: this video is uncut). As always, we'll take your questions at 530-HELLO-AP and also at our email address: podcast at androidpolice dot com.
On this week's show: Our MWC special! Galaxy S7, LG G5, Xperia X series, Xiaomi Mi 5, and more - it's all here. Strap in for all the new phone news you can handle. Read More