Welcome a fresh update of Google Maps to the world. Version 9.78 began rolling out to the beta channel last night, and with it come a few visual tweaks and a cool new feature for custom lists that shows the places you've visited. Turning to the teardown, it looks like Google will be giving contributors a little more visibility and control over their public profiles. Drivers in São Paulo, Brazil will also be getting a useful tool for navigating through or around the rodízio. Read More
Keeping young kids entertained is a full-time job and sometimes the only solution is to give them something to watch. If you have more than one kid, especially at different ages, that gets much harder to do because video content changes quite a bit as they grow up. The latest update to YouTube Kids is making this a little more manageable with a brand new system for kid profiles. Once set up, all kids have to do is switch to their own profile and they'll immediately get recommendations appropriate to their age. Read More
Since the launch of Android 5.0 last month, the sheer number of app updates has been magnificent – and downright overwhelming. Believe it or not, most of the new versions haven't done much more than add Lollipop support and splash a fresh coat of Materialized paint on the UIs. Seriously, we've been checking. This isn't entirely a bad thing, as it's giving me time to work on some other projects... You'll see soon enough <wink>. But, we've finally got something to talk about with the latest release of Google Play services 6.5. Strictly speaking, a few of tidbits to follow were actually first seen in different minor releases of 6.1, but we're putting it all together here. Read More
Along with a handful of new tablets, Amazon has officially announced Fire OS 4 (codenamed Sangria), which it says adds hundreds of new features to the "content-forward" operating system.
First and foremost, Amazon says the user interface in Fire OS has gotten a facelift. Amazon hasn't gone into detail in describing its UI changes, but visual tweaks are certainly welcome to an interface that can at times seem scattered.
Besides that, Amazon is touting new features like ASAP, Smart Suspend, and the addition of individual user profiles to make for easier sharing among families.
ASAP stands for "Advanced Streaming And Protection," a feature from Amazon's Fire TV that attempts to predict what you want to watch next and queue it up automatically for playback as soon as you get done with the current content. Read More
Update 2: Llama has been returned to the Play Store this morning as promised, listed as version 1.2012.12.29.1412. As for the pesky silent mode/vibrate bug? This version's changelog indicates that it is "hopefully fixed."
Update: It looks like KebabApps has pulled Llama from the Play Store while the developer sorts out "a pain-in-the-butt problem involving silent mode," in which the app can – for some users – switch what should be silent mode to vibrate mode. KebabApps, in a blog post, provides more information on the issue, along with a (hopefully) fixed download, which users are encouraged to test, and which will be uploaded to the Play Store "tomorrow morning."
Llama, an extremely popular location-based profiling app, was issued an "über üpdate" today, bringing a handful of big changes from a new UI to bug fixes. Read More
Well, folks, we don't want to say we told you so. But if you'll take a look at any app in the web version of the Google Play Store, you'll see that almost all of the reviews have had the name entry changed to "A Google User." Try to add a review, and you'll find that you're required to do so from your Google+ account.
The change seems to have affected the on-device view a little differently - according to checks on multiple devices here at Android Police, the names that were formerly there (usually linked to the old Google Profiles) are just plain gone. Read More
Finance radio! Are you excited yet? Good. Bloomberg has released an app for the company's 24 hour network of audio shows discussing economics, business, and investment. Through Bloomberg Radio+ you can either choose to listen to whatever's on the air right now, or pull from a list of on-demand shows. You can even download the episodes for offline listening.
The app actually looks very well made. It's as feature-packed as one would want a streaming radio service to be. There's even a persistent stock ticker at the bottom of the screen. Because you can't talk about money without one. Read More