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5 years ago

Google Chrome for Android updated for better bookmarking, adds switch for mobile view

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Heads up, boys and girls. Android's Chrome browser (still in beta, natch) just got a pretty significant update. Here's what's new:

  • You can now request the desktop version of a website, in case you would rather not view the mobile version.
  • You can now add bookmarks as shortcuts on your home screen, so you can get to your favorite sites faster.
  • Choose your favorite apps to handle links opened in Chrome.
  • Have a proxy setup for Wi-Fi access? You can now use Chrome with the system proxy configured in Android settings.

Huzzah! Remember that Chrome is still only available for devices with Ice Cream Sandwich. We've got download links after the break if you need 'em.

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5 years ago

Read It Later, the "DVR for the web", is now Pocket

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Read It Later, the popular multi-platform "DVR for the web", is now Pocket, and is now available for free in the Google Play store. With a free account, Pocket will save the articles, photos, and videos of your choosing to your queue (or “pocket”), which is accessible from your phone, tablet or computer. The content you save is optimized in a layout that’s easy to read, and once you sync your pocket, it is available for offline viewing.

Along with the new name, the update brings new content filters, more organizing tools, and faster syncing. Accounts are free, and your Read It Later account will work seamlessly with Pocket. Hit the break for the full presser and the Google Play link.

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5 years ago

Google Drive to launch next week with companion Android app?

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Google Drive has been one of those long rumored products that never seems to be released. Google has been steadily releasing increased functionality to Docs so that you can use it as a cloud drive, but there just isn't a desktop interface like the other competitors such as Dropbox.

That all may change next week. According to a variety of sources, including The Next Web and Techcrunch, Google is planning to launch Drive as early as next Tuesday.

Here are some details as to what the service may offer:

  • 5GB for free
  • Will work in desktop folders on Windows and Mac
  • Android and iOS apps will also be released

Sound compelling? I've used Docs for cloud storage for a variety of file types, but I do miss the ability to simply drop a file in a folder and have it sync. As much as I love Dropbox, Google Drive sounds as though it can offer more storage for cheaper. What will it take for you to switch from your cloud service of choice?

Source: The Next Web

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5 years ago

Verizon announces a slew of expansions and additions to its 4G LTE network

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Verizon has been quickly working to expand its 4G LTE network and today they announced more additions, expansions and enhancements for it. If you're city is on the list, you won't have to wait long, as these announcements will take effect April 19th.

Additions:

Expansions:

Enhancements:

It's always great to see more LTE support and its apparent that Verizon is trying to expand as quickly as possible.

Source: Verizon Wireless

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5 years ago

Breaking: We still have no idea what Samsung's 'next Galaxy' will bring

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Unless you count any of the past months' fake renders and fan-made mock-ups (like the one above), Samsung's done a great job of  keeping the Galaxy S III next Galaxy under wraps. So much so that a sort of online news vacuum has developed, which, in the absence of any actual news, draws in unsubstantiated rumors and speculation. As the phone's May 3 unveiling draws near, we're seeing even more reports of what "might" be coming in Samsung's next flagship product.

Firstly, let's look at what we do know. Yesterday's press invite references the "next Galaxy" smartphone, and in an interview with BNN.ca, Samsung Canada's VP of Mobile Communications, Paul Brannen, says that it'll be a "flagship" phone, and the next evolution of the Galaxy line. Neither mentioned any specific branding, and Brannen in particular seemed to go out of his way to avoid doing so (for obvious reasons.)

Today's latest set of rumors comes from CNET's Crave blog, sources for which suggest that the "Galaxy S III" will be more of an incremental upgrade than a revolutionary product -- "like the iPhone 4S was to the 4." The problem with that is Samsung already has plenty of incremental updates to the Galaxy S II. In 4G LTE markets, there's the Galaxy S II LTE (aka Skyrocket), and in Asia, there's the Galaxy S II HD LTE. And then there's the Galaxy Note, which already offers a larger screen in addition to both LTE connectivity and an HD display.

Due in part to the lack of reliable leaked info, consumers' expectations are sky-high for Samsung's next flagship -- comment threads and forum discussions speculate on ridiculous features, like a 2GHz quad-core chip, 2GB of RAM and a 1080p display. With this in mind, it's possible that Samsung's merely trying to manage expectations going into a major product launch -- the old adage "under-promise and over-deliver" applies here.

CNET's source also suggested Samsung may do away with its current naming convention, saying "don't expect it to be called the S3." We'd be surprised if Samsung completely abandoned its Galaxy S branding, though. The manufacturer's sold 20 million Galaxy S II's worldwide, and in its native South Korea, more than 10% of the entire population owns one. With such a popular device, it'd make sense to have a clearly identified successor. In a world of Samsung Galaxy S II Epic 4G Touches and HTC EVO 4G LTE's, the "Galaxy S III" name is clear and succinct enough to do just that.

Spec-wise, reports have been circulating for months suggesting a quad-core phone with a 720p display. That's highly likely, but not even remotely surprising. The likes of HTC, LG and Huawei have already set the bar at this level for their 2012 flagships.

So the bottom line is we still have no idea what to expect on May 3. And that makes the event all the more exciting, considering how rare it is to go into a major smartphone announcement knowing absolutely nothing. Whatever form it ends up taking, we'll be on the ground in London on the day to bring you full coverage of Samsung's next flagship.

Source: BNN.ca, CNET Crave

More: Samsung Galaxy S III forums

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5 years ago

Google Maps updated with 'critical bug fix'

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We're not sure exactly what's involved in the 'critical bug' that's just been fixed in Google Maps for Android, but if you're a Maps user (and we're guessing most of you are), you'd best head to that apps list and get updating. The new Google Maps version 6.5.1 offers just a single bullet point in its change list -- "includes a critical bug fix." It seems whatever the issue is, it affects both tablets and phones alike, as we're seeing the update on our Honeycomb devices too.

Head to "My Apps" list in the Google Play Store to grab the new version of Maps. And be sure to shout out in the comments if you've noticed anything different in this new version.

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5 years ago

TeamViewer for Meetings updated with VoIP support

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The folks at Teamviewer have pushed out quite the update for their TeamViewer for Meetings app, bringing some minor bug fixes, full hardware acceleration for Honeycomb and Ice Cream Sandwich tablets, and VoIP support. VoIP support on top of the already excellent Teleconferencing application really opens up things on a Wifi-only Android tablet, and better hardware acceleration support for those same tablets means a better -- and more productive -- user experience. 

TeamViewer's apps and servers (they make an awesome Remote Desktop-style product as well) are 100 percent free for normal, non-commercial users. The Windows server has the ability to host meetings used with the mobile application, but as of yet the Mac and Linux versions do not, offering only the remote control abilities. We've got a mess of links below, and TeamViewer's press release after the break.

More: TeamViewer

Download the TeamViewer for Meetings Android app

Download the TeamViewer for Remote Control Android app

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5 years ago

Late-night poll: Is GPS useful on a tablet?

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ASUS started sign-ups for the free GPS hardware thingy that should ease issues with location services on the Transformer Prime today. Right off the bat, I wanna say it was nice to see a company say "oops" and issue a timely fix for a hardware problem, rather than ignore it, -- or even worse -- blame the user for doing something wrong. A lot of people are giving ASUS shit for letting it get out the door with the issues, and I can't help but feel the same way, but we also need to acknowledge that they are doing the right thing. When a company does the right thing, I look their direction first the next time I'm shopping. OK, enough editorializing.

But we got to thinking. Just how useful is GPS on a tablet? Not the Galaxy Note or other mini-tablet, but a full blown 7-inch or bigger Android tablet. There's the fact that most folks have a Wifi only tablet, and you need a data signal to effectively use any navigation, but that's easy to overcome with map caching or hotspots. I think maybe the biggest obstacle is the sheer size. I know I don't have room (or desire) for a 10.1-inch Transformer Prime on my dashboard. But I'm sure many feel differently, and I'd like to know how many and why. Vote in the poll, then jump in the comments to let everyone know why you voted the way you did -- maybe you can bring something new to the discussion.

 

Is GPS useful on a tablet?

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5 years ago

Temple Run updated with Twitter integration and numerous bug fixes

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With 10 Million people having now downloaded Temple Run for Android it has given the folks at Imagni Studios something to work on for the past little while and now, they've rolled out the latest update to address some bugs and features in the game. As noted in the change log, the latest release includes the following bug fixes:

  • Fixed a bug with scoring that was making it harder to get points
  • Fixed a bug that made the runner accelerate too fast
  • Fixed a bunch of other bugs and some spelling mistakes

In addition to all those fixes, you'll find the latest update also has Twitter integration so that you may get your humble brag on when you get an epically high score in the game. If you happen to find any remaining bugs, by all means forward them on to Imagni Studios. In the meantime though, you'll find the Temple Run download link beyond the break if you've yet to give it a go.

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5 years ago

ZTE Optik getting a minor update, brings some fixes and enhancements

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Sprint is pushing out a small update for the 7-inch ZTE Optik today, bringing a few welcome bug fixes to the tablet and some decent software enhancements. According to the official changelog, we should be seeing the following:

  • Google DRM solution
  • Google Music
  • Google+
  • Persistent notification after BT transfer
  • Software version corrected in x-wap profile
  • Sim City closes when attempting to purchase while connected to Wifi
  • Sim City download issue fixed
  • Response when connected to a computer via USB cable

As the Optik ships with Honeycomb, Google Music and Plus weren't baked in. This update changes that and drops the Google services, along with unwanted, but necessary, DRM solutions into the system itself. Add in some small fixes for Bluetooth notifications, app specific bugs getting addressed, and hopefully a fix for the issue where a computer couldn't communicate via the USB cable and you have the makings of a nice little update here. 

I just finished up the review for the Optik this weekend, but I'll hold it back a few days and check out this new update.

Source: Sprint

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5 years ago

Want to be a Masters Champion like Bubba Watson? Check out the data from his MOTOACTV

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The Masters golf tournament is a week gone now, and Bubba Watson came out on top to claim the coveted green jacket. Now, thanks to Motorola and the MOTOACTV, you can check out the data from Bubba's practice round in Augusta where you can zoom in on routes and even get a visual look at all the long drive shots he took. Check out the video above and then hit the source link below to start digging into the data from Bubba's MOTOACTV golf edition.

Source: Motorola

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5 years ago

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy Nexus, May 3rd in London! [From the Forums]

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We've kick off another week here at Android Central and Samsung got things going early for us with the announcement of their upcoming unpacked event. If you missed that or any thing else from today, get yourself caught up here on the blogs and in the forums.

If you're not already a member of the Android Central forums, you can register your account today.

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5 years ago

Android Central weekly photo contest: Shapes and texture

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There's all sorts of interesting things to see around us, and shape or texture can make for a great photo. With the right light, and a steady hand even the most mundane things, like a bag of coins, can be made into a really cool photo. Sometimes, it's the technique and photographer that makes it all work and not the subject.

Let's explore that this week. Poke around your house, office, or wherever and see what you can find that makes for a great photo opportunity. You'd be surprised what great pictures can come from subjects you'd normally scoff at. Yes, we're going to bump it up a notch and judge on the technique and photographic quality. I can't wait to see your entries.

If winning a contest from the best Android blog on the planet isn't enough incentive, this week we're giving away a pair of MOTOROKR S305 Bluetooth headphones so you can crank up the tunes without the wires. They are one of the best rated items at ShopAndroid, with good reason. Just follow the simple rules:

  • Use an Android device to take a picture. Any Android device
  • Submit the picture in the forum thread we have set up for this week, so everyone can see your handiwork. E-mail was swamping us, and not everyone got to see all the entries. This way, we get to see them all. We like seeing it all.
  • Only submit one. We're going to check, and we'll know if you try to game the system.
  • Be sure to tell what device you used, and any effects or filters used on the photo. We can learn from these as well as have fun.
  • Get your picture in by Friday midnight (your local time). We'll pick the winner and the runners-up and throw them on the blog Sunday afternoon.

Good luck!

Enter the weekly photo contest

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5 years ago

AC on the Road: Anker Astro2 8400 mAh external battery

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We talk a lot here about travel because, well, we travel a lot. And in the past few months we've been talking a lot about keeping our phones charged, as more manufacturers are switching to non-removable batteries. And so with meetings on the left coast this week, I've got a new today. That's the Anker Astro2 8400 mAh external battery. It's not small. It's not light. But with that sort of capacity, you wouldn't expect it to be. And, perhaps more important, it's got some output power at 5V 2A or 5V 1A. It ain't subtle, and it won't be trickle charging anything. (And, as you can tell, it'll charge two devices at once.)

Wanna hear the scary part? There's a 10,000 mAh battery available, too. And it's all pretty affordable. I got this one on Amazon for $47. The 10,000 mAh version isn't much more, either. (Mine also has a flashlight -- just in case.)

Got a little video after the break if you're interested, and stick around as we all find out how it performs.

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5 years ago

ShopAndroid Daily contest winners!

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If you're a registered member here at Android Central then you know our forums always have a contest happening. And if you're not registered, well -- now is as good a time as any. This week's winners are as posted after the break, and if you were chosen watch your email as we'll be following up during the week. Stay tuned for more upcoming contests folks. Congrats to the winners!

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