Google has toyed with Assistant's interface on Android countless times so far, adding a keyboard input method, Google Lens, then the Explore section, and finally the Now-like interface of upcoming cards (aka "visual snapshot"). But two things have puzzled me about it: one is that Explore and Visual Snapshot were almost invisible to people and I always had to explain where the icons were and what the did, and two is that getting to your Assistant's settings was an even more obscure process, and it was almost easier to just do it from the Google Home app than Assistant. Well, it seems that Google is working on solving at least the first of these problems. Read More
Back in December of 2017 we learned that Niantic would be rebooting its aging augmented reality mobile game Ingress into something called Ingress Prime. After a lot of fan feedback and a delayed release, Ingress Prime is finally heading out to users. This major update basically replaces the old game and attempts to deliver plenty of quality-of-life upgrades and a flashy new UI. Sadly, it would seem that these changes also introduce some new problems, and the player base isn't very pleased. Read More
During its F8 2018 conference in May, Facebook previewed a major redesign to Messenger that it had teased earlier in the year, saying it would simplify the experience, remove some of the unnecessary interface elements, and put emphasis on the features most users want to get to quickly. Oh, and it should have a dark mode too. While the company said the new look would come soon, it took a bit over four months for us to see the first sign of it. Read More
With the release of the Fire TV Cube in June, Amazon also debuted a more minimalistic interface for Alexa. The new UI has been exclusive to the Cube up to now, but the version 188.8.131.52 update for Fire TV and Fire TV Stick devices brings them in line with their square-sided sibling. Read More
Google Keep for Android Wear has made a significant jump from version 2.0.08 to 4.1.091. Along with this jump comes a new design that makes note actions easier to get to, though it does remove one neat feature that I often used.
To start, it's not clear to us whether this is the first proper Android Wear 2.0 APK for Keep or not. From the changelog's wording, it seems like the app is just now being directly distributed on the Play Store to Wear watches instead of the APK coming from the Keep app on your phone - the fact that it's now become compatible with iOS lends credence to that, but again, we're not 100% sure. Read More
Today the MediaFire Android app is turning 2.0, an age that resembles 20 but generally brings along more change in the life of an app. Software seemingly goes through digital puberty overnight and finds itself tucked inside a new body that looks different and similar at the same time. The latest version of MediaFire won't look unfamiliar to people who have known the app for a while, but most would probably say it has aged for the better.
There's very little that needs to be said about the new UI. It used to be clean, and now it looks even more so. Read More
BBC has just pushed the Go button on its big iPlayer redesign. Now an updated version of the app is available in the Play Store that introduces tweaks to the way users stumble across new things to watch. The changes are apparent on the home screen, where the refined focus on discovering content is apparent right from the go. There are also new pages for browsing channels and perusing through categories.
All of these pages now include collections, a way for the channel to group shows together according to series or theme. This, again, highlights another change the company has made to better present its content to potential viewers. Read More
NBC is finally taking the time to give its Android apps some tender loving care. The company has finally brought its mainline news app out of the Froyo era, but wisely choosing not to stop there, it has updated its Breaking News app as well. Read More
Sports apps typically aren't the most attractive pieces of software tucked away on Google Play, because let's be honest, why bother? Your average user will just be happy to pull up scores and stats in the palm of their hand, and whether the app adheres to Android's design guidelines occupies about as much thought as that thing they're supposed to be doing instead of watching the game. But if you're as likely to cry foul on a hideous app as you are a bad play, then the latest CBS Sports update may just make you smile.
If an attractive sports app sounds surprising, it gets better. Read More