An annoying but understandable quirk about the current state of most augmented reality applications is that virtual items imposed on an AR view don't relate to the world in a believable way: they just sit on top of a scene, regardless of whether or not real-world objects should appear in front of them. "Pokémon Go" developer Niantic showed off its impressive solution to this problem today in what it's calling Codename: Niantic Occlusion — using of course, Pokémon.
The yearly E3 expo is always a major event for video games, but smartphone games are rarely showcased. Even Fortnite, one of the most popular smartphone games in existence at the moment, only had playable demos of the home console versions. Earlier this week, Bethesda announced The Elder Scrolls: Blades for iPhone and Android, and it showed off the game to E3 attendees.
For anyone tempted by the Samsung Galaxy S9 or S9+ who wants to learn more about what it can do, there's an app for that. The Experience app for Galaxy S9/S9+ does exactly what the name suggests. It can be downloaded on most Android phones (Marshmallow 6.0 and up) and it gives you a sense of what it would be like to own Samsung's latest flagship.
When you think of the US Postal Service, I doubt that the first thing to spring to your mind is "whitewater kayaking." They're more known for shipping (and losing) mail and packages in the US. Well, for whatever reason, the USPS has an app titled "USPS® VR," and instead of an immersive mail-tracking experience (or even a tech demo for, say, the exciting technology behind mail sorting), you get a kayaking trip.
A new app named Audio Factory for Daydream VR devices has just been released by Google. It appears to be a demonstration meant to show off their new spatial audio engine for future Daydream products. Perhaps we might have some more news about it at I/O, but for now, it's just a way to check out Google's latest audio VR tech in what looks to be a nifty way.
Welcome to the latest entry in our Bonus Round series, wherein we tell you all about the new Android games of the day that we couldn't get to during our regular news rounds. Consider this a quick update for the dedicated gamers who can't wait for our bi-weekly roundups, and don't want to wade through a whole day's worth of news just to get their pixelated fix. Today we've got a complex battleship defense game, a mobile runner tie-in for a Steam title, an adventure game in the Warhammer 40K universe, a unique twitch game, and a demo for a stylish puzzler.
It's time to get out your Cardboard viewers, there's an update to Google's demo app for the lil' VR platform that could. Version 1.8 came out yesterday with a brand new demo called Arctic Journey. It's a brief tour through some of the experiences we can have in VR, set in the frozen landscape of the very, very far north. As you might expect, words are inadequate to describe the scenery, so here's some idea of what you might encounter on a trip to the North Pole.
Last year, Google released an open-source web project called Topeka. The project demoed the power of Polymer and material design on the web, and aimed to give developers some direction on how to execute material design in their own projects.
Google Search is a really handy feature, but are you using its voice features to the fullest? Probably not, unless you're Jean-Louis Nguyen. This YouTube user posted a video last year showing off everything Google Voice Search was capable of, but that was early on. Google Search has evolved a lot in the past year, and Nguyen got in touch to let us know there's a new demo video. It's over 10 minutes of voice search queries, many of which you probably didn't know were possible.
The video starts by showing off the conversational search features Google talked about back at I/O.
Most Android keyboards have gotten pretty good at figuring out what word you're trying to type. Anyone that lives with SwiftKey day-to-day can certainly attest to that. But is the suggestion bar really putting that data to use? The folks behind Dynamic Keyboard have a different approach. This keyboard, set to launch on September 14th, alters the size of keys it believes you are more likely to tap.