The more capable a microwave oven is, the harder it is to figure out what buttons to press to make it do the thing you want. Or so I've heard. Today, Amazon announced that it will save us all from furiously button-mashing to just heat up some leftovers by adding cooking capabilities to its Smart Home Skill API and working with appliance manufacturers to add its Alexa assistant to cloud-connected microwave ovens.
The latest (minor) update to the Google app brought with it a surprise twist as it enabled customization in the search bar widget. As it turns out, that's not the only new thing in this update. A teardown also turned up quite a few clues relating to a new on-screen interface for Google Home or a new Home device with built-in display.
One of my favorite parts of this job is that I get to work from anywhere with an internet connection, which of course means that I never leave my house. Being the one who is home all day, I am responsible for cooking. Oftentimes, I like to find new culinary ideas, but keeping my phone or tablet on the counter where it's readable can lead to it getting a bit messy. Luckily, my Google Home will soon be able to read off recipes to me, which is just awesome.
HelloFresh is the kind of service that I would use in a heartbeat if I lived in the US or any of its other supported countries. I like fresh food, I love cooking, and I prefer variety and change to repetitiveness. However, I have little time to research new recipes, plan meals, and go to the store to buy every single ingredient needed to make everything. Plus, it's sometimes hard to find esoteric ingredients and even if I do, I'd only use them once or twice for very specific recipes. That'd be a waste.
HelloFresh aims to simplify that entire process by choosing some recipes for you, letting you pick the ones you like in the classic or vegetarian plan, finding and packing a week's worth of all the fresh ingredients needed, and delivering them to you.
June didn't see any huge releases in terms of Android apps, though we did finally get a publicly-available version of the Kodi Media Center, and Photoshop for Android (yes, yet another version of Photoshop). There are also some new tools for cloud storage fans, and probably the best cooking app on the Play Store. We've got some notable extras (especially if you're a Stephen Colbert fan). Here in no particular order are the best seven new apps from June, along with some honorable mentions.
Gone is the grey toolbar that greeted you when you first opened the app, replaced with a floating white search bar and a hamburger menu. A FAB sits at the bottom of the screen and spawns another action button to compose a new recipe. Inside the app, the toolbar has switched to Cookpad's signature bright orange, and the status bar is made transparent to fit with it.
During the dawn of personal computing, PC manufacturers claimed that a huge selling point for women was the ability to store all their recipes in one simple location. We've come a long way since then, but they weren't completely wrong: technology is definitely helpful in the kitchen. While there are dozens of personal cookbook apps floating around on Google Play, Flavourit looks to set itself apart from the rest with a few unique features.
It's got an interesting and intuitive interface that makes adding and sorting recipes quick and easy, but my personal favorite feature is sharing the recipe as an image. Anyone who cooks has needed to share some homebrewed concoction before, so the ability to just instantly create a good-looking and informative graphic is super cool.
Growing up in a traditional Lebanese home taught me the value of a great home cooked meal but limited my food experience to the local Mediterranean cuisine. It wasn't until my late teens that I started putting aside my preconceptions about flavors and experimenting with recipes. Nowadays, whenever I feel the need to do some creative cooking, I head into the kitchen with my Nexus 7 in tow. It houses twelve excellent recipe apps optimized for tablets, with some of them specifically designed to be used during the cooking process.
Food Network In the Kitchen
Whether you're looking to start your culinary exploration or to enhance your skills, you should first check the Food Network.
I like to cook, and sometimes I bring my tablet into the kitchen with me to look up a recipe. For some of you, this might not be dedicated enough. You demand a dedicated kitchen tablet, and Archos is ready to deliver. Their new ChefPad is "a tablet for the cooking enthusiast." It comes with a selection of cooking oriented apps and a silicone case that makes it a dream come true for the four of you who could not settle for anything less.
The Archos ChefPad comes with Chef Apps Zone, which filters through the Play Store to present a curated selection of cooking apps.