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2 years ago

TeliportMe panorama app completely overhauled in latest update

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The photography app space is a crowded one, and increasingly so since Android 4.0 because of the improvements in the stock camera app. Even with Android brining its own panorama -- and now Photo Sphere -- features, a popular panorama app TeliportMe (aka Panorama app: 360) has stuck around. Today we're seeing the latest iteration of the app -- a version 3.0 update -- and it brings a complete overhaul of the UI from top to bottom, as well as some new features.

The new update brings a completely "holo" UI, integrating all of Google's design guidelines such as overflow menu buttons and standard navigation paradigms. Version 3.0 also brings a "stitch later" functionality, which lets you capture these full 360-degree panoramas when your battery is low, and do the processing of them later when you have more charge. TeliportMe is also working on building the community aspect of the app, letting you follow users and easily search for pictures by location or keyword. This is one area where the app is working to stand out from the crowd.

We've got several screenshots of the new UI for you to check out after the break. If you're interested in trying out the new version, you can find it at the Google Play Store link at the top of this post.

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2 years ago

UberConference app now available on Android

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UberConference is launching an app today on Android (and iOS) that lets users quickly and easily set up conference calls from their cellphone. The app is focusing on ease of use, letting users simply select the contacts to be invited to the call and letting the app do the rest. UberConference will automatically send out dial-in details to contacts or even call out to them individually when the call is started.

The app also integrates to social networks, letting you view more information about the contacts -- via Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+ -- in the call while it is ongoing. The call screen even shows which contact is talking at that time so you don't get lost in a call that has several people involved.

The app is available now in the Google Play Store via the link above, and is free to boot.

Source: UberConference

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2 years ago

Dead Trigger 'Merry Christmas' update brings North Pole arena, new boss

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Dead Trigger is keeping in the holiday spirit of joy and cheer today by bringing a "Merry Christmas" update to its game. You'll continue to kill countless hordes of undead, but now they'll be festive with Santa hats on. This update brings a new North Pole arena, as well as a new boss named "Zanta." There's some holiday-agnostic updates as well, including a new grenade launcher, price discounts on upgrades and new story missions. There have even been some memory optimizations for low-end devices.

We'd venture to say most of us don't normally associate the holidays with killing zombies. But if that happens to be your cup of tea, go grab Dead Trigger at the Google Play link above and get to work.

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2 years ago

Google Play's 'surprise calendar countdown' starts today

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Google is kicking off a new promotion on Google Play starting today called "Surprises." This holiday-themed offering -- at least today -- is giving users that download an app a specific deal to go along with that app. This is kind of a mash-up of Google Play and Google Offers, another sign that Google is trying to integrate all of its different properties. There are lots of eyes on Google Play every day, so they have a good chance at success putting it on the front page of the Play Store.

Today's deal is a $35 gift certificate to put towards a hotel room when you download and use the app "Hotel Tonight." If you're interested in the app or deal, hit up the source link below.

Source: Google Play

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2 years ago

Applorer adds friends and groups to game discovery app

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Applorer, a free game discovery portal for Android, updated today with a whole bunch of new social features. Users can now see which titles their friends and other users have installed, create groups (dubbed circles, appropriately enough) for those with common interests to keep tabs on one another, and leave comments, mark favorites and share screenshots with the community at large. Applorer also provides tailored app recommendations based on what's installed on your device and what's popular among your friends. 

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2 years ago

Photo buffs - be sure to give Snapseed a good long look

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Like that old dog who is reluctant to learn new tricks, I may have written off the new Android Snapseed app a bit too soon. In our last podcast, I was quick to dismiss it as yet another hipster filter app, with controls that are too difficult to use on a phone. We all agreed that it's better on a tablet (and it still is -- real estate FTW) but after a bit of practice today -- inspired by Google Android engineer Tor Norbye -- I'm Loving it. With a capital L. 

Gesture based apps aren't really new, but most folks are used to controls and numbers being shown when editing photos. I know I am, but after actually trying it for a while, I've got the hang of it and can use the image adjustment tools that aren't grunge and other lo-fi dramatic effects. It's helpful for phones with less-than-stellar cameras like the Nexus 4, and really does a number when you're using something like the Galaxy S3 or One X.

Take a few and try it on some old pictures. Chances are you'll see what all the fuss is about and end up keeping it. Be sure to show them all off, and enter the photo contest with your result. Install it by clicking the link up top.

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2 years ago

Apps of the Week: Ski & Snow Report, Christmas Countdown, Holo Lamp and more!

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Welcome back to another edition of our Android Central app picks. We've only got a few more of these before the end of 2012, so we're hoping to make the most of 'em. It's the holiday season, so of course we've brought a couple of seasonal apps here -- with a few of our usual great picks thrown in as well. Stick around after the break and see how we did this week.

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2 years ago

Why Plume is still my Twitter client of choice

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It seems like there's a new wizz-bang fancy Twitter client released every week. Every single time you hear claims that it's the next best thing. Every once and a while those claims actually hold some merit, but it seems like more often than not these new clients just fade off into the ether and everyone goes back to their previous choice. For me, that choice is Plume and I've yet to find a client that can pull me away.

I've been using Plume exclusively since about February of this year, and it's only improved since then. After trying it out for about a week -- coming from the official Twitter app -- I paid $4.99 for the "Premium" version and never looked back. I initially chose Plume because not only did it ditch the legacy menu button, but also followed Android's new "holo" design guidelines extensively. There's something refreshing about apps that fit in nicely with the rest of the OS. Plume doesn't cut any corners in features or functionality to get "holo" either -- you have full customization of refresh, notifications (although not push, unfortunately), backgrounds, colors, display, URL shorteners, picture hosting and multiple accounts.

You also get three extremely functional widgets -- 2x1, 4x1 and 4x2 to 4x4 expandable. The largest is information dense and offers scrolling, tabs for tweets/mentions/messages and dedicated tweet/search keys. I interact with Plume through the widget a majority of the time, and it really is a joy to use. The developers are on top of updates for the widgets as well, offering an Android 4.2 lockscreen widget just days after the code released.

It's hard for me to consider using any other client when there's nothing I find in my use of Plume to drive me away. I'm not using it because it's the least broken out of the clients available -- I'm using it because I think it's the best available.

So what is your Twitter client of choice, and what has kept you from switching away? Let us know in the comments.

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2 years ago

Photoshop Express, Snapseed and the best photo editing apps for Android

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Fixing pictures on your phone has become a pretty big deal lately. Big players like Facebook and Twitter are starting to bundle photo filter and adjustment tools into their apps, but there’s still a home for the dedicate photography app. There are a ton of popular ones that continue to thrive and offer armchair photographers the opportunity to share some really slick shots. As a point of comparison, I’ll be using three pictures and sending them through each of the apps to give you an idea of what to expect: one portrait, one close-up, and one landscape shot. Here are the originals.

So, in order of personal preference, my top photograph editing apps are...

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2 years ago

Major Google+ app update launches, including new photo + event features [updated]

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Update: The new version of the Google+ app is now live on Google Play. Go get it!

Google's been on a roll with software and feature updates this past week or so. And so when Google social boss Vic Gundotra remarked that he "couldn't sleep" last night, we suspected there might be big Google+ news coming today. And it seems that's exactly what we're getting, as Google prepares to roll out version 3.3 of Google+ for Android, along with updates for the web version. Highlights in this release include new photo features, including better Photo sphere support, and integration with the newly-launched G+ Communities feature.

The new Google+ app will land later today, along with new features for the desktop version of Google's social network. Here's what we can expect from the new app --

  • New photo stuff -- Instant upload now offers up to 5GB of  full-sized photo backups. Photo sphere panoramas recorded on Android 4.2 can be viewed on devices running Android 2.2 or higher.
  • Events and communities -- Communities support for the mobile app. And it's now possible to send messages to individual event guests and see who's opened invitations.
  • Hangouts -- Now only 150kb of bandwidth is required to participate in a hangout.
  • General improvements -- The ability to edit your profile on-the-go, new "subtle" notices when new posts arrive, and improvements to the posting menu. 
  • Google Now integration -- Birthday notifications through cards on Google Now, including G+ links to wish the person a happy birthday.
  • Other goodies -- Animated GIF support and a lock screen widget for Android 4.2. Also, new "mood" posts based around a gallery of emoticons.

Several other updates for the web version of Google+ are expected to be rolled out today too, including improvements to solo broadcasts via Hangouts on Air, the ability to easily create duplicate events and easier RSVPing. You'll find more details over at Google's full feature breakdown, linked below.

We'll keep you posted with further details when the app update drops later today.

Source: Google

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2 years ago

Facebook SDK 3.0 for Android comes out of beta

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Alongside its release of a native Android app, Facebook is bringing its SDK 3.0 for Android developers out of beta today. The Facebook SDK for Android lets app developers on the platform integrate social functions into their apps by calling Facebook API's and embedding their functions. This means simple actions like connecting a Facebook account to another app or calling up a friend or location list will be easier to implement and use. For example, users will be able to log-in to their Facebook account without ever leaving the primary app -- really cool stuff.

Facebook says the beta version of the SDK was downloaded over 80,000 times since it was released, so let's hope that some of those developers give it a closer look and use the tools to their advantage. This isn't something most end-users will be dealing with, but we all want this regardless. When developers have better tools, they provide an improved experience for all of us.

Source: Facebook Developers

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2 years ago

Walmart improves Android app to help holiday shoppers

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Walmart has made some subtle updates to its app -- now v1.4.1 -- that should help customers looking to ease the headaches of shopping this holiday season. Now in addition to online ordering and shopping cart management, you can view the localized ads for specific stores in your area. After letting the app view your location, you can see the newspaper circular for each store, and see if there are any special deals. You can swipe through the pages casually, and if something catches your eye you can tap into a certain page and get a simple list of the items on it.

The app with the updated UI is out now, and can be downloaded at the Google Play Store link above.

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2 years ago

BBC iPlayer app updated with new UI, higher quality video and Android 4.2 support

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Also BBC Media Player improvements, including background audio playback

Yesterday the BBC detailed exactly what it's planning to do with its iPlayer app for Android over the next few months, highlighting the importance of tablet support, feature parity with iOS and improved video quality. Now it seems the first of those improvements have arrived, as the Beeb is now pushing out an update to version 1.5.0.666 of the TV and radio streaming app.

New features include better video quality over Wifi connections, a re-vamped UI more in keeping with Android's "Holo" design guidelines, and support for Android 4.2. Previously, it had been possible to use iPlayer on an Android 4.2 device, but only if it was installed before applying a 4.2 update. Today's app update means iPlayer has full support for the latest version of Google's OS, and can be directly downloaded onto newer devices like the Nexus 4. There's also support for Gaelic-language TV channel BBC Alba, which may be of interest to viewers in Scotland.

Alongside iPlayer, the BBC Media Player companion app has also been updated. That update brings similar improvements in video quality over Wifi, along with background audio playback support, including ICS lock screen controls, and "currently playing" info in the notification bar. This makes it possible to listen to radio content without keeping the app in focus and the screen switched on. The Beeb cautions that there are still issues with the Sony Xperia Arc running Android 4.0 on this version, however, so owners of that device may want to hold off updating.

Readers in the UK can hit the Google Play link above to grab the new version of iPlayer, or here for the BBC Media Player app.

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2 years ago

Google Calendar adds more actionable notifications, location improvements

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Google has updated the Calendar app to improve notifications, location entry and event creation today. We were very happy to see Google break Calendar out of Android and make it available to everyone (provided the device is on 4.0.3 or higher) in the Play Store back in October, and now we're seeing the fruits of that decision because updates can be rolled out independent of the OS.

Now when you create an event, the app will suggest proper locations as you type. For example when I type "Starbucks" in the location field, it will suggest specific addresses of store locations, much like the location field in Google Maps does currently. Additionally, when you receive a notification for the event, you can act on it by either snoozing or going directly to a map view of the location in the event.

This is a great update and we're glad Google is improving even on its most basic apps. It is an interesting update, however, because this is functionality that's already included as part of Google Now, which will alert you of upcoming events and even adjust the alert time based on traffic or other appointments. This is a good stopgap for devices that are on Ice Cream Sandwich and can use the new Calendar but not Google Now, but that group of devices will only be getting smaller as time goes on.

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2 years ago

Facebook finally releases a native Android app

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After what seems like an eternity of dealing with a sluggish web view Facebook app on Android, the social media behemoth is finally releasing a new and improved version written in native code. Everyone got their hopes up when an improved, native app came to iOS a few months ago -- but the status of the Android version was still "coming soon."

The new version will drastically improve performance in critical areas such as load/resume times, navigating the timeline and loading of photo albums. Because much of the computation is now happening quickly on the device, there's no more waiting. Facebook's main descriptor when talking about the update is "fast," and keep stressing that this is a complete rebuilding of the app.

The update is now live in the Play Store at the link above. We're just getting through the features initially here and things are looking good. This one is definitely going to be a worth-while update for any Facebook users out there.

Source: Facebook; (2)

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