Headlines

3 days ago

Domino's Pizza will now let you pay with Google Wallet, give you free chicken

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Domino's pizza has been a vanguard of mobile pizza ordering, what with their Android app that lets you order on the go — and now they're going even more mobile with Google Wallet support. Announced this morning, the app has been updated to support payment via Google Wallet.

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3 days ago

A word of caution on using the Google Now Launcher on the Samsung Galaxy S5

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Samsung Galaxy S5

Largely all is well, until you enter ultra power saving mode

Here's a quick word of caution to anyone sideloading the Google Now Launcher onto their new Samsung Galaxy S5. Largely Google's own KitKat launcher works faultlessly on Samsung's latest Android handset. It's smooth, it's snappy, and it's a great option even if the Galaxy S5 isn't officially supported. But you do run into some issues when you switch in and out of ultra power saving mode.

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3 days ago

GPe HTC One M8 for India mistakenly mentioned in local press release

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Update: Looks like the Google Play edition HTC One M8 won't be making its way outside of the U.S. just yet. In a statement issued to BGR India, HTC India says the Google Play edition M8 was "incorrectly" mentioned in its press release for today's Indian M8 launch. Instead it seems the Sense version of the phone will be the only one available in that country.

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3 days ago

WSJ: Exclusive games latest battleground for Google, Amazon, Apple

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Are the best games on Android or are the best games on iPhone? That's a question that's becoming increasingly important to both Apple and Google, and they're reportedly willing to help developers get massive marketing pushes in exchange for periods of exclusivity for hot new games. This will come as a surprise to precisely no one familiar with the console market, or the basics of running any store, real-world or virtual. Mario, Sonic, Halo, and other exclusive franchises made the console wars of the past, and on mobile, and for iOS and Android, that's now translating into Plants vs. Zombies 2, Cut the Rope 2, and others. Ian Sherr and Daisuke Wakabayashi, writing for the Wall Street Journal:

As Android's influence has grown, Apple's editorial team has been factoring in exclusivity to a greater degree after it deems an app to be attractive, according to people familiar with the process. The editorial team also will give greater consideration to titles recommended by its developer-relations staff, they said.

Android, both in the form of Google's Play Store and Amazon's appstore, are working promotional angles in their own way as well:

Google has struck deals to help promote apps that integrate Android branding. [...] Amazon.com Inc, too, has gotten into the act. The online retailer has sought exclusivity deals with game developers as a way to boost the appeal of its Kindle family of Android devices. Amazon is offering premium placement on its app store's home screen in exchanges for exclusivity, according to people familiar with the matter.

There's apparently no money changing hands, but the massive marketing boost preferred placement in Google, Apple, or Amazon can provide in terms of downloads and purchases is just as good. Apple once-upon-a-time made a game of their own, Texas Hold 'Em, but has long since removed it from sale. Google acquired and maintains Ingress, their own Android-exclusive game. None of them have gone to Mario, Sonic, or Halo levels yet when it comes to exclusive gaming, however. But is that just a matter of time?

How do you feel about platform exclusives? Do they influence your buying decision or just frustrate you if and when you have to wait?

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3 days ago

Facebook reportedly ready to launch mobile ad network

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Facebook, the world's most popular social network, is reportedly looking to get into the lucrative mobile ad game, perhaps as early as their F8 developers conference set to kick off in San Francisco on April 30, 2014. Facebook has been serving their own ads for a long time now, but this would be a way for developers to integrate Facebook ads into their own apps and services, and it would bring Facebook into direct competition with Google's AdMob, Apple's iAd, among others. Mike Isaac, writing for Re/code:

Facebook will pitch the ads to publishers and developers as a way to leverage the social network’s vast database of user information for better ad targeting. And Facebook wins by expanding its ad reach — now it can make money from its billion-plus users even when they’re not on Facebook’s own properties.

The world is increasingly mobile and Facebook, which launched on the traditional computer and web browser, missed out on making the most of the initial transition. If this story pans out, they'll be late to the game on mobile ad networks as well, but in this case late is absolutely better than never.

Anyone actually looking forward to seeing Facebook-powered ads in their apps instead of Google, Apple, or someone else?

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4 days ago

Android 4.4.3 tipped by one of Google's apps

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Google Devices for Edu

App that helps schools set up tablets mentions Android 4.4.3 in recent changelog

Android 4.4.3 still hasn't been officially announced or anything, but it's still officially pinging our servers, and not in a way that suggests it's just kids playing with their build.prop file. And on April 16 the Google Edu Device Setup app — an official app straight from Google that helps set up tablets purchased through Google Apps for Education — was updated for Android 4.4.3 support.

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4 days ago

How to set a lock screen password or fingerprint scan on the Samsung Galaxy S5

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By default, the Samsung Galaxy S5 just needs a little swipe to wake up from the lock screen, but anyone with even a tiny sense of security will want something more. The S5 offers a bunch of different ways to keep your device locked when not in use

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4 days ago

From the Editor's Desk: Process all the things

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Yacht Club

As we continue to search for the best smartphone camera, let's take a minute and enjoy the damn pictures

When, exactly, did we become so damn cynical about smartphone cameras? In my lifetime we've gone from Polaroids and those point-and-shoots with the crazy five- or six-shot (I don't remember how many) flashes to friggin' computers with 4- or 16- or even 20-megapixel shooters in our pockets. We're able to take multiple pictures, select, edit and then share them with the world just seconds later. No more 24-hour processing. No more hoping you get the right prints back. No more lugging out large photo albums that you might care about once or twice a year. We have unlimited virtual storage.

So why the hell can't we just enjoy the shots?

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4 days ago

Apps of the Week: Alpha Zero, Bloom.fm, Zoodles and more!

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Apps of the Week

Another wonderful roundup of apps from the writers at Android Central

Another week is in the books, and that means it's time for the latest edition of our Apps of the Week post. We round up a single app picked by each of the writers here at Android Central and put them on display every Saturday afternoon. The apps we pick out never have to follow a theme or a certain purpose — all that matters here is that we use the app and want to tell more people about the reasons why.

This week we have another great roundup of apps, including a new game, another music service and a great way to repurpose an old Android device for your kids. Read along with us and see how this week's picks stack up.

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5 days ago

This week's sidebar poll: Tell us how you feel about the new TouchWiz

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TouchWiz

It's different, and many would say improved - but what do you say?

Right now, the hottest thing in the Android Universe is the Galaxy S5. Usually we're the hottest thing in the Android universe, but we're OK being behind the new phone from the biggest Android OEM for a few weeks. And because this is the Internet, you can't say the words Galaxy S5 without someone else saying the words TouchWiz.

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