Google has released a set of tools that help developers more easily create apps in line with both their own brand identity and the evolving Material Design guidelines. The Material Theme Editor, available as a plugin for the macOS design app Sketch, automatically applies consistent thematic changes to things like buttons, fonts, and color palettes throughout an app. Read More
It's been apparent for some time that Google was working on a new Tasks app, and further confirmation of this came with the leaked Gmail redesign. Now it's official. Google Tasks has been completely overhauled and is now unrecognizable from the hardly-used husk of a Gmail add-on it has been up to now. It comes as the Gmail refresh is starting to roll out more widely, but there's also a separate app for Android, iOS, and the web that you can try even if you don't use Google's email app.
A reference to "Material Design 2" was noticed in a Chromium Gerrit commit back in February, which was made private soon after it was pointed out. That commit has since been reopened to the public and has changed references to a Material Design update to mentions of a touch-optimized UI for Chrome. There is, however, a hint that Google plans to roll out a Material Design 2 refresh for Chrome on the browser's 10th birthday in September. Read More
SMS Backup+ was a popular app back in the day, and for many, it's still indispensable. For the unfamiliar, it's an open source app that allows you to back up your SMS and MMS messages into a simple and intuitive conversation view in Gmail, so not only are they automatically stored elsewhere, you can quickly and easily sort through them.
Up until recently, the app looked a bit dated, with a decidedly Holo-esque aesthetic and no updates since 2015, but a new beta version (1.5.11-beta8) was just released with some UI modernization and other improvements. Read More
Google unveiled Material Design all the way back in 2014 (has it really been that long?). At the time, the company promised that it would use that design language across all its products, on mobile and desktop. It has taken a while for Google to deliver on that claim, at least for its desktop apps and websites.
One of the major holdouts was the Google Calendar web app, which has changed very little over the past few years. Back in May, Google announced during a G Suite presentation that Calendar would receive a redesign in Q4 2017. Then in August, the interface began a limited rollout, but it was never fully released. Read More
The Netflix app on Android has looked the same for a long time, but the company is apparently trying something new. One Reddit user has shared the updated UI that popped up on his phone, which includes a bottom navigation bar. There are some other changes as well, but all the same functionality should be included. If you're looking for an APK download, sorry. This looks like a server-side switch. Read More
Keeping track of what you're watching on TV is an absolute nightmare at the moment; there are just too many great series and not enough time. As with most problems we face these days, there's an app for that. TV Show Favs is a powerful tool that helps you track and manage the viewing of your favorite shows, with all sorts of useful features such as calendar integration and reminder notifications. The devs will probably be the first to admit it hasn't always been the prettiest app (Holo everywhere), but that changes with the latest update. Read More
Popular media player VLC just updated the stable branch of its Android app to 2.5, and it's one of the biggest updates in recent memory. This latest update has a dynamic new UI that better fits with Material Design guidelines, PiP mode, Android Auto support, 360-degree video support, and search improvements (including Google search integration), among a ton of other smaller features. As the first major release in over a year, we've been looking forward to it for quite a while. Read More
Do you remember the NEXT Live EMEA 2017 G Suite product roadmap talk where we discovered a small line of text telling us Calendar would get a new web interface in Q4 2017? As it turns out, there's more to that presentation, but we're so perpetually busy here that we couldn't check out the video in its entirety. If we did, we would have spotted something else, just as interesting.
At about 31" into the video, we get introduced to several new features that the G Suite team is working on implementing in Gmail: smart reply, smart groupings, and snooze. Read More
Google started testing a Material Design makeover for the desktop YouTube site over a year ago. The design went into open beta a few months ago, and now Google is finally flipping the switch for everyone. Also, YouTube has a new logo. Read More