Recent Articles | Android Central

Shop: Insanely Cheap Wireless Plans | Chromebooks: Asus Flip | Acer R13

Headlines

3 years ago

Android reaches 900 million activations

13

At the Google I/O keynote in San Francisco, Android and Chrome head Sundar Pichai has just revealed that Android has passed the milestone of 900 million activations, up from 400 million in 2012 and 100 million in 2011.

Pichai called the milestone "an extraordinary ecosystem achievement," but joked "there are 7 billion people in the world, so we have a long way to go, and we think we're just getting started." 

Follow our live coverage of the Google I/O keynote for the rest of the day's news!

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

Google I/O 2013 keynote liveblog

64

Full coverage of all Google's announcements, live from San Francisco!

OK, boys and girls. This is it. We're live from the Google I/O developer conference this week in San Francisco, for all the developer/services/apps/hardware/whatever Google can throw at us.

Kicking things off today is the week's only keynote, and it's a 3-hour whopper. We're all charged up and ready to go. The keynote starts at 9 a.m. PDT -- that's noon on the east coast and 5 p.m. in the UK.

So join us for the livestream, our photos and commentary, and basically the best Android coverage on the planet.

Hit the break for the whole kit and kaboodle.

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

Google Play Games outed by game changelog ahead of launch

11

It's turning out to be the worst-kept secret of this year's Google I/O -- 'Google Play Games' has cropped up once again in game changelogs ahead of its presumed launch during today's keynote. Eufloria HD has been updated with support for "Google Play Games achievements," and a note adding "We hope you enjoy using Google Play Games to save and share achievements!" A number of Gameloft titles have been updated too, with more subtle references "game services" support being included.

We're sure it'll all be official in just a couple of hours or so. Stay tuned to our Google I/O keynote liveblog for all the latest.

Source: Google Play

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

Android Central App Version 1.1 brings landscape support, scrollable widget

50

Updates are always good, and this one is filled with some of the things you've been asking for

Our awesome Android Central app just got .1 more awesomer, as we've pushed out an update that addresses some of the things you've been asking for. With version 1.1, you've got a sexy new scrollable widget (which is also resizable and will work with your lock screen if you're running Android 4.2.2) that puts the latest Android news right on your home screen, keeping you up to date. (It currently refreshes every half-hour -- we're looking at making that more frequent in a future update.)

Normally, that in and of itself would be enough to make a new release, but that's not how we roll here. In addition, you've got landscape support throughout the entire app, including the settings panel tucked on the left side. That same side menu now works on all screens, too. 

One last thing -- when we write a story that includes a link to Google Play, you'll now have a shiny Google Play Store icon in the Action Bar across the top of the app. Tap it, and you can open the link to the app directly in Google Play using Android's powerful intents system. 

We think you'll enjoy this latest version, and we're already hard at work on the next -- using your feedback as a guideline. Update your copy of the Android Central app through Google Play, or you can just tap the link above to check it out. You'll also find a handful of screenshots after the break.

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

SwiftKey keyboard updated to version 4.1 with new themes, bug fixes

52

Paid version also half-price for a limited time

Popular keyboard replacement SwiftKey has hit version 4.1, and the new version is now rolling out through the Google Play Store. SwiftKey 4.1 adds three new themes -- dusk, pitch and regal -- and fixes a variety of bugs and other issues. Glitches with Facebook personalization are reportedly fixed, as are bugs with the ".com" button in Google Chrome. The Opera browser also receives better support in SwiftKey 4.1. On top of that, there's a wide variety of crash fixes.

To celebrate the launch of version 4.1, the paid version of SwiftKey is now half-price for a limited time. That brings it down to an insanely cheap $1.99 / £1.49 / €1.99.

To grab the latest version of SwiftKey, hit the Google Play Store link up top. If you've already got an earlier version installed, just head to "My Apps" in the Play Store app. You can find the full SwiftKey 4.1 changelog down in the source link.

Source: SwiftKey 4.1 changelog

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

Samsung says it's already shipped 6 million Galaxy S4s

27

Four million shipped in first four days, Korean press reports

With strong brand recognition, an colossal marketing budget and plenty of anticipation among smartphone buyers, it was almost inevitable that Samsung was going to see enormous demand for its new Galaxy S4 handset. According to an unnamed Samsung executive quoted by Korea's Chosun Ilbo newspaper, the company shipped four million Galaxy S4s between Apr. 26 and Apr. 30, and as of May 10, shipment numbers stood at 6 million.

Of course, a unit shipped isn't necessarily a unit sold to a customer, but the shipment figures do show a strong appetite for Samsung's latest handset among its carrier and retail partners. The Galaxy S4 has benefited from a smoother global roll-out than its predecessor, with Europe, North America and parts of Asia, including Samsung's native South Korea, getting the phone in late April.

If previous Galaxy handsets are any indication, this isn't the last story we'll be writing about shipment and sales milestones for the Galaxy S4. Samsung itself is hoping to hit the 10 million shipped mark by the end of May, the Chosun Ilbo reports.

Source: Chosun Ilbo; via: UnwiredView

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

Google 'App Data' sync setting appearing on devices

41

We'll probably learn more about the mystery checkbox at today's Google I/O keynote

Well here's an interesting development. Head to the Android sync options for your Google account right now and you'll probably see a new checkbox sitting up top for 'App Data' sync. The new setting seems to have appeared overnight for most people, and we're currently seeing it on all our devices.

What exactly this new sync setting does remains a bit of a mystery, but with the Google I/O keynote due to take place today, chances are we'll find out sooner rather than later. One possibility might be saved-game synchronization through the rumored Google Play Games service, however 'App Data' sounds a bit broader in scope. With just five hours to go until the keynote, at least we shouldn't have long to wait before we find out more.

What's more, the Google Play Store app itself is also being updated on some handsets, with some folks reporting minor visual changes in the UI.

Chances are these won't be the only updates we see from Google today, so stay tuned for our live coverage of the Google I/O keynote, which kicks off at noon EDT.

Update: Reports from the Android Central forums reveal another new checkbox to sync "People Details" which is apparently separate from "Contacts."

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

LG 'Optimus it' headed for NTT Docomo in Japan with Android 4.2

2

720p display, 13MP rear camera, LTE and Android 4.2, though we may never see 'it' outside of Japan

Japanese carrier NTT Docomo has unleashed their annual summer lineup, and dropping nicely into it is this offering from LG, the unusually named Optimus it. But, while the name may amuse, the rest of the device is serious business, headlined by carrying Android 4.2

While Android 4.2 may well be underneath, it looks very much like LG has gone right over the top of that with their own custom UI. Hardware wise we're looking at a 4.5-inch 1280x720 IPS display, a quad-core 1.7GHz processor, a 13MP rear camera and a 2100mAh battery. Pretty tasty, then. NTT Docomo customers can look forward to picking up the Optimus it at the end of June. 

Sadly, if this one is anything like the Japanese version of the Optimus G Pro, there's a strong chance we'll never see this outside of Japan. Ever. Shame. 

Source: NTT Docomo (1), (2)

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

Galaxy S4 headed to NTT Docomo May 23, blue color confirmed

3

New color option for Japanese Galaxy S4

Japan's NTT Docomo will start selling the Samsung Galaxy S4 from next Thursday, May 23 -- and as per the pre-announcement rumors, it'll be getting a "blue arctic" color option in addition to "white frost" and "black mist." The Docomo version will also support digital terrestrial TV broadcasts through a pull-out antenna, and FeliCa NFC payment capabilities.

Besides that (and some branding changes) it's pretty much the same old Galaxy S4 we've come to know over the past few weeks. In case you were wondering, Japan's getting the quad-core Snapdragon 600 version most other countries are selling, as opposed to the rarer "octa-core" Exynos version.

YouTuber mappan777 has posted a quick side-by-side comparison between the new blue version and the better-known black model, which we've embedded past the break. (Quick spoiler: you're going to have a hard time telling these two colors apart.)

More: Samsung Galaxy S4 review

Source: NTT Docomo, Video via SamMobile

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

NTT Docomo announces the Sony Xperia A

2

Mid to high-end handset looks like an Xperia ZR for Japan

As rumored, Japanese carrier NTT Docomo has announced a new handset from Sony today. The Xperia A looks set to fit in Docomo's range somewhere below the Xperia Z -- despite sharing many design features with Sony's 5-incher, the Xperia A is a smaller handset with a little less going on under the hood. In fact, the specs and design are all but identical to the Xperia ZR, a device announced globally just a couple of days ago.

That means you're dealing with a 1.5GHz quad-core Snapdragon S4 Pro CPU, a 4.6-inch 720p display on the front and a 13-megapixel Sony Exmor RS shooter around the back. Like the ZR it's also waterproof, and rated IP55/58. You'll also get some Japan-specific features like digital terrestrial TV capabilities and FeliCa mobile payment support. On the software side, it's still Android 4.1 Jelly Bean and the Sony Xperia UI running the show.

The Sony Xperia A on NTT Docomo will go on sale this Friday, May 17 in white, black, pink and "mint" colors.

Source: NTT Docomo; via: Engadget

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

HTC Backup now available for the AT&T HTC One

13

A bit of good news tonight for those who have the AT&T HTC One. AT&T decided not to use HTC Backup -- which deftly does exactly what it says, backing up your phone via Dropbox -- in its version of the HTC One, which is a shame, because it works quite well. AT&T instead went a different route.

But tonight HTC has released the backup tool as a standalone app. You'll need to sign in with your HTC account, and it'll then back up and restore your phone through Dropbox instead of through Google, which previously was the only option. 

Repeat: If you don't have the AT&T HTC One, you don't need this.

And a quick note for those with the developer version (and quite possibly the developer version) of the HTC One: Having an AT&T SIM might let you install the app, but not let you run it, says ol' Jerry.

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

HP announces SlateBook x2 Android tablet with detachable keyboard

29

HP's second entry into the Android market is decidedly different from the Slate 7

Following in the footsteps of both ASUS with its Transformer series as well as other Windows OEMs with their convertible laptop/tablet hybrids, HP is announcing SlateBook x2 today. We're basically looking at a standard 10-inch Android tablet, but in the configuration of what HP is calling a "two-in-one device" that has a keyboard dock. As is usually the case, the tablet is completely contained as a stand-alone device, with a 1920x1200 IPS display, Tegra 4 processor and 64GB of storage. The SlateBook x2 is also shipping with Android 4.2.2, and what looks like very limited customizations from HP -- it even goes so far as to say this is "HP’s push to offer access to the Google experience". The docking station has a full keyboard and trackpad, along with a USB port, SDcard slot and an additional battery to charge the tablet.

Based on the information given to us right now the HP SlateBook x2 is expected to ship in August in both grey and white lid colors, and the pricing seems quite nice at $479.99. However this is a "starting price", and it isn't clear whether or not that includes the keyboard dock. The tablet market may be a bit different by the time this device hits store shelves, but it certainly seems like it will have a better shot at grabbing sales than the Slate 7 does. Stick around after the break for a promo video of the device by HP.

Source: HP

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

Facebook open-sources its 'Buck' Android build tool

9

Developers can now benefit from Facebook's trial and error building Android apps

Following lots of development time creating a new Android build tool to aid in development of its own Android apps, Facebook has decided to open-source it for other developers to use. Developed at a hack-a-thon last summer, the new build tool, named "Buck", was created to better address the needs of Facebook as it moved to making more native apps -- rather than just using WebViews -- for Android. The move to Buck from Ant in August of last year cut down build times for its apps dramatically, leaving no reason to continue using the old tools.

Because it improved the build times and overall development cycle for Facebook's project so notably, the engineers decided to also open-source it, making the entire code base available to check out from GitHub. According to Facebook, Buck will help most when developers are building apps with many small modules rather than just a few large ones. Development-minded folks among us can of course take a look at the tools themselves and see if it could work for their own project at the source link below.

Source: Facebook; GitHub

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

Google I/O 2013 app updated with DashClock support, session feedback form

1

Making it even easier for attendees to find and interact with sessions

On the eve of Google I/O 2013 kicking off in San Francisco, Google has just updated the official I/O 2013 app with a few tweaks to make following the conference a little easier. There's now a session feedback form for attendees to let Google know how a session went after the fact, as well as improved Maps functionality to let you navigate the expanses of the Moscone Center and find those sessions. The update also upped the resolution of speaker photos, and added DashClock widget support -- presumably to let you keep tabs on upcoming events.

We'll be awake bright and early tomorrow morning to cover the three hour long marathon of a keynote starting at 9am PT, so be sure to set a reminder from that Google I/O app so you don't miss a minute. We'll see you there.

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

Verizon offering free Droid DNA promotion for limited time

34

A quick way to save on a great device if you're going to order online

Verizon has just started running a promotion on its website offering a coupon code that knocks down the price of a Droid DNA to $0 on-contract, which is a substantial savings. Holding its spot as the flagship for the "Droid" brand on Verizon since November last year, the DNA has stayed at $199 on-contract since its release. All you have to do to get a coupon code for the device is provide your email address to Verizon at the source link below, where you'll then receive a code to apply at the online checkout for the savings. The promotion is only valid until May 21st, so you've got a week to make up your mind on this one. Even at 6 months old the DNA is still a great option on Verizon.

The fact that Verizon is running a promotion to sell a device that is over 6 months old now should come as no surprise to anyone at this point. Carriers (often inexplicably) go through phases of discounting and promoting devices that they want to push, especially when they get to be this far into their lifecycle. However it will be interesting to see whether or not the standard price of the DNA will drop following this promotion.

Source: Verizon

Read more and comment

 
Show More Headlines

Pages