WhatsApp's interface is starting to look dated, especially now that Google has announced the latest iteration of its design guidelines during its developer conference, Material You. But the messenger app is making small adjustments here and there to keep things fresh, like new wallpaper theming options. And as spotted by WABetaInfo, voice messages are in for a tweak next.
It's frustrating to deal with broken audio on your Chromebook. With much of the world relying on video calls to communicate with family, friends, and work colleagues, issues with audio input and output can be a pain to troubleshoot and threaten disrupt an otherwise productive day. But with the help of a forthcoming Chrome OS update, you might just be able to find out why your speaker or microphone isn't performing as intended.
Many of us have been working from home for a long time now, and if you've got a stressful job, it's vital to take time relaxing and winding down after work. With the vast catalog of apps now available for Chromebooks thanks to the Play Store, it's easier than ever to get hooked on addictive games like PUBG or Among Us. But despite Google's efforts to optimize Android on Chrome OS, a lot of games are still incompatible with keyboard and mouse input — simply because the developers built them for phones and tablets. So if your Chromebook lacks a touchscreen, you've been out of luck.
It's no secret that emoji play an integral part in today's daily communication. From a user experience point of view, emoji pictographs make up a universally recognized language that adds emotional nuance to conversations. They've been integrated throughout our digital lives, and in 2018, Chrome gained a shortcut to quickly insert them on the desktop. It poses a problem for Chrome OS users, though — clicking on the context menu launches the on-screen keyboard, which is clunky and unintuitive with a mouse. However, that's changing soon as Google is working on a dedicated emoji picker for Chrome OS.
The touchscreen on your phone is the primary way you interact with it, so it absolutely needs to work. That makes problems like so-called "dead zones" or ignored/unregistered inputs among the most annoying out there. Based on reports, many are running into those types of touchscreen input problems with Samsung's Galaxy S9+.
Do you long for the simpler days of pen and paper? Do you need direct pen input to your tablet or phone for drawing or equations? Do you just want a really nifty folio case to make all the other board members jealous at the next meeting? In all three cases, Wacom has you covered. The famous graphics tablet company is branching further into mobile accessories with the Bamboo Paper, a folio that combines some impressive technology to let you write on standard paper and save your work digitally to Android or iOS.
Here's how it works. The Spark includes a specialized Bluetooth-enabled pen, but it's writing in old-fashioned ink - there's no stylus, powered or otherwise, in the package.
Update Wednesdays are always exciting, but particularly so when Google releases a new app. Today, Google has hit "publish" on Google Handwriting Input, a new keyboard option that - as the name implies - allows users to type by handwriting text in 82 languages.
Google says the app supports print and cursive, written with or without a stylus. If you draw a smiley face, Handwriting Input will even suggest emojis.
Of course the input method is styled to resemble Google's other input methods, using the same light grey and teal (or dark blue-grey and teal if you choose the dark theme) colors found in Google's main Keyboard app.
If you don't use any language with a non-Latin alphabet, you've probably seen at least one of Google's alternative language keyboards and promptly dismissed it. But for a huge portion of Android's userbase, those things are essential tools for daily interaction. Today almost every one of Google's customized input/keyboard apps has been given a major update: Google Hindi Input, Google Japanese Input, Google Korean Input, Google Pinyin Input, and Google Zhuyin Input.
Old on the left, new on the right.
To be honest, none of us at Android Police have need for any of those, so we're not the best to comment on what's been changed or improved.
The SwiftKey developers are getting ready to introduce a version of their popular third-party keyboard with Japanese input support. Prominent features should transition over just fine, with the keyboard still able to make personalized predictions and suggest emoji that it thinks may be appropriate. It will be able to switch back and forth between Japanese and English, making it useful for native Japanese speakers and friends of Japanese speakers alike.
The app is currently in beta, but it's open for anyone to download and try. To do so, just head over to http://www.swiftkey.net/jp. There you can sign up for the open beta and help the team work out the kinks.
Google makes cool stuff. There's self-driving cars, that funky street view camera, and those experimental glasses anyone will be able to buy for one day only tomorrow, April 15th. Yet for every product that comes out, there's another in the pipeline that may or may not ever see the light of day. Last month we learned of a patent application for a pair of smart contact lenses that would process blinks as input for wearable devices. Now Patent Bolt has reported on a separate application for a micro camera component for those lenses.
The first thing that comes to mind here is the ability to take photos using just your eyes.