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3 years ago

Android Central Editors' app picks for March 24, 2012

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You love apps, right? Well, let me warn you -- this week we got a ton of them for you. So, without any further delays let's hit the break together and check out some of our favorites from this week.

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3 years ago

MyFitnessPal [Android App Review]

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One of the hardest pieces to the fitness puzzle is eating healthy, and paying attention to what you are consuming on a daily basis. While many of us think what we are eating isn't all that bad for you, most of the time we are completely wrong unfortunately. Today's society makes it so easy to grab a burger on the go, eat a chocolate bar in place of a lunch, and not only is it easier but it is also cheaper.  Since many of us don't know how many calories are in the average meal or any of the other nutritional facts we look to applications to help keep us informed, and that is where MyFitnessPal comes into play.

Taking control of what you eat is extremely important, and unfortunately if it is something that requires to much time it is something you are not likely to do. After downloading MyFitnessPal an account needs to be created with some basic personal information such as your height, weight, and gender. This information is very important, and you will want to input accurate information in, as this will actually help create your daily goals. After you enter the basic information it will ask how active you are on a daily basis, whether you have a desk job or an active job, and then it will also ask whether you wish to maintain, lose or gain weight.

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3 years ago

Flight Track gets update for ICS, bugfixes

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Flight Track -- an indispensable app for those of us who go places to do things for a living -- just got itself a sizable (if slightly cryptic) update. First, the changelog:

  • Customizable time zones for flight times
  • Added calendar-style date selection (phone)
  • Significant reduction in app size
  • ICS-based enhancements (phone and tablet)
  • Missing string localizations for some languages
  • Minor bug fixes

And now, a little tough love: We're not quite sure what these "ICS-based enhancements" are, but we know one thing: Flight Track is still using the legacy menu design that is supposed to be phased out with Ice Cream Sandwich. But Flight Track's still got the telltale menu button tucked down with the ICS navigation buttons, and that's not good.

Hey, developers. It's time for some spring cleaning. We're picking on Flight Track right now, but this remains true for far too many applications. And it's probably a good thing that they be updated now, before Google decides to bring down the hammer.

End of lesson. We've got download links for Flight Track after the break.

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3 years ago

First look: Tapatalk 2 beta

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Tapatalk is a great way to browse forums from your Android phone, and the bar just got moved a notch or two higher with the beta release of Tapatalk 2. It's the same basic premise --  an app that connects to forums software (through a plug-in installed on the server) so it can deliver an experience optimized for mobile devices. You have controls designed to be easy to use, forum-specific menus and features that you just don't get from a web browser, and a bandwidth-saving U.I. that focuses on delivering content versus themes and other fluff designed to look good on a computer. 

Tapatalk 2 just does all this better. There also are a couple new features, namely an improved UI with multiple theme support, improved moderation tools, a nicer conversation style, and cloud-based account sync. Move past the bullet points and this means all the things you love about Tapatalk work better, look better, are faster and sync back to your phone when you reset the data on your phone. 

We know a lot (as in a lot) of people use Tapatalk to peruse the Android Forums here at Android Central. Tapatalk 2 is going to make all of us happy.  You'll love the new UI and theme options, forum moderators will love the new moderation options, crack-flashers will love the new sync option, and everyone will love how much faster it is. This is how you provide a major update -- everything works just like you're used to it working, and the improvements make the entire experience better without any change in the way you use the app. If you spend any time on forums from your Android phone, you need to give this a try. After the break you'll find a bunch of screenshots and a Google Play store link to the current version of Tapatalk (Android 1.5 and up, $2.99). You can also hit the source link and learn more about the beta from the folks at Quoord Systems Ltd.

More: Tapatalk forums 

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3 years ago

The King of Fighters Android arrives for a handful of phones

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Classic SNK fighting game The King of Fighters has launched for Android today, and is available to download from the Google Play Store, assuming you own one of the handful of supported devices. The 2D beat-'em-up will set you back £3.79 in the UK, or $4.99 stateside, and includes 20 fighters from previous KoF titles, along with five game modes. If you're into unlockables, you'll also be able to gain access to bonus content including "gallery" mode and trading cards.

Unfortunately, The King of Fighters Android is currently marked as incompatible with a large number of devices, and from what we can tell, only a handful of Samsung and Sony Ericsson phones have access at present. Owners of other phones and tablets may be out of luck until the game's updated to explicitly allow access on other devices. 

Hit the break for the Google Play link, and today's announcement press release from SNK.

Source: Eurodroid

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3 years ago

Light Flow LED Control [Android App Review]

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YouTube link for mobile viewing

I absolutely adore my Galaxy Nexus. It's fast, has a gorgeous screen, and perhaps most of all, has a notification LED that supports more than three colors. While that might sound a tad bit ridiculous, when I caught wind of the fact that I could potentially have a custom LED color for specific types of notifications, I clicked my heels with joy.

Enter Light Flow LED Control. If all you want to do is customize your LED colors, you'll get all that and more out of Light Flow.

Once you've opened up the app, you're presented with a pretty bland menu screen. You've got general settings, a list of additional apps Light Flow supports that you don't have installed, and even a tools menu, but notifications is where the magic really happens.

Hop into the notifications menu and you're greeted with a pre-populated list of notifications your phone can already handle and what color the LED will flash for them. Changing an LED color is as easy as pie. Select the notification you want to change and you'll move into a notification-specific menu.

Within this menu you can turn the notification on and off, designate what clears the notification, and most importantly, select your color. Light Flow boasts an impressive list of colors (18 plus the ability to have a custom color), so in the event you've got more than 18 notifications you want to customize, you're not out in the cold.

You can also set how quickly the LED will flash and how long it will last before automatically turning off, and if you're so inclined, enable sounds and vibration patterns. It's very cool for Light Flow to give you the option, but be aware: the sounds and notifications you set within Light Flow can conflict with the standard notifications, so you'll either have to turn one set off or deal with double of everything.

If you're curious what the various colors look like, Light Flow has an "all enabled LEDs test" within the tools menu. It's cool to look at, fun to show off with, and if you're just getting started, the fastest way to get an idea of what all the colors show up as on your phone, so you can get your notifications set the first time.

If you're as OCD as I am about controlling your phone (or just like the idea of having lots of cool, custom colored LEDs), then Light Flow LED Control is the app for you. It's got a simple, easy-to-use interface, supports more than 200 applications, and essentially works like a charm.

Light Flow LED Control is $1.99 in the Google Play Store. We've got download links after the break.

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3 years ago

Android Central on the judging panel for the Galaxy Note S Pen App Challenge

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Samsung recently announced their Galaxy Note S Pen App Challenge -- say that 10 times fast -- encouraging development for their 5.3-behemoth and its stylus S Pen. They're still in the submission period for interested developers, but the details on just who will be on the judging panel have emerged. 

We've got a representative from Samsung, someone from Gameloft, BlueRun Ventures and even the AT&T VP of Consumer Marketing. Not bad, but sitting top of that list -- and no, we're sure it isn't because everything is in alphabetical order on who they work for -- is our very own Mr. Phil Nickinson.

That's right, folks, AC is on the panel, and will be involved in making one lucky developer very happy. About $100,000 happy to be precise. There is of course a judging criteria, and apps will be judged upon the quality of the idea, the implementation of the idea and overall user experience. Cash bribes sent to Phil will have absolutely no influence whatsoever. 

Judging begins April 9. with the winners announced on April 20.

Source: Galaxy Note S-Pen Challenge

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3 years ago

Verizon teams up with IndyCar to offer exclusive access to IndyCar Mobile

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Verizon has now teamed up with IndyCar to offer exclusive access to the Official IZOD IndyCar Series Mobile application. The app is being made available to all Verizon customers for their smartphones and tablets. If you're an IndyCar fan, this is the app to have:

  • Live In-Car Cameras: Watch the race from the driver's seat and see the intensity first hand.
  • Live Driver-Pit Crew Chatter: Hear the live radio communication between drivers and pit crews during the race.
  • Mosaic: Four live features on a split screen - Streaming Race Control, Real-Time Track Mapping and two in-car camera views.
  • Real-Time Track Map: See the real-time position of every car across the track during every race.
  • Streaming Race Control: Get behind-the-scenes video and audio of the officials that run the race.
  • Real-Time Leaderboard: Keep up to date with the current running order of each race.
  • Driver Profiles: More information about your favorite 2012 drivers.
  • Live Radio Broadcast: Listen to the full radio commentary of each race.
  • Exclusive Video Content: Get app-only content including behind-the-scenes footage and interviews.
  • Historical Race Footage: Watch video clips from historical races and famous IndyCar moments.
  • IndyCar 101: Get the basics on the IndyCar Series.

That's a pretty compelling list of features for an app and will surely satisfy any IndyCar fans needs. If you're on Verizon, you can grab the app from the Google Play Store using the link below. Keep in mind, it may not be supported by all devices but it's leaps and bounds over last years version.

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3 years ago

Kindle for Android updated with Send-to-Kindle functionality, access to children's books, comic books, and graphic novels

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If you frequent using the Kindle app for Android, you may be happy to know that Amazon has added some new functions and access to the app. The latest update, available now introduces the "Send to Kindle" function plus, opens up the doors for users to purchase illustrated children’s books, comic books, and graphic novels. Kindle for Android is available for free from the Amazon Appstore for Android and Google Play, download link can be found past the break.

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3 years ago

Google acknowledges Gmail app may be flickering, says fix is on the way

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We've gotten a bunch of reports from you fine folks today regarding your Gmail apps causing a screen flicker, and being unable to get to your inbox. We never experienced it here, but that doesn't mean it wasn't happening, as forum threads were popping up all over the place.

Google's just gotten back in touch with us and says a fix is on the way. Googler BrittanyBee explains thusly in the Google Product Forums:

Beginning this morning, we've received reports of a bug causing some Gmail users on Android to experience screen flickering when they open the app.  We are in the process of fixing it and the issue should be resolved shortly.  We apologize for any inconvenience.

Glad to see they're on it, but that's a pretty big whoopsie. (And believe us, we know about whoopsies.)

Source: Google 1, 2; more: Android Forums 1, 2, 3, 4

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3 years ago

Google Voice updated, brings folders and dialer integration for ICS

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If you're a Google Voice user there's quite the update waiting for you in the Google Play store this afternoon. The newest version (0.4.2.54) features tight integration with the Ice Cream Sandwich dialer, a new voicemail option, and the inclusion of labels (think folders) for your inbox. Here's the not-so-fun part -- unless you have a phone with Ice Cream Sandwich, you won't get to see most of it.

All phones will get the inbox labels, which is one thing many folks, myself included, have been waiting for. If you use your Google Voice inbox as a catch-all storage and never delete anything you can now attempt to keep things organized and access it all from your phone. This is the best change for me, but the others are nice as well.

Voicemails are now able to be played through the native Ice Cream Sandwich dialer, just like carrier voicemail. You can adjust the speed to play them faster or slower (handy when skipping to the good part). You enable this in the Google Voice settings, and it's a great way to manage two numbers if that's how you roll. That is how I roll, and it's really handy. Too bad it's ICS only. Hit the break for a couple screenshots of all this, and the download link if you need it.

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3 years ago

Zookeeper DX Touch Edition [Android Game Review]

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YouTube link for mobile viewing

Imagine this with me, if you will: Blocks are raining from the sky. Strange hieroglyphs are scribbled upon them, and with each hieroglyph, a color. They continue to stack and higher and higher, until suddenly, an epiphany! If I move the same blocks together in groups of three, they vanish! With this new knowledge in hand, you get to work, saving the world from a block-ridden mess.

If that sounds even remotely familiar, it's because a number of games have that exact premise. In Zookeeper DX Touch Edition, the hieroglyphs are funny looking animal sprites, but the color-specific point is still dead-on. Still, just because this kind of game has been done before doesn't mean it's not fun, so let's take a look at exactly what makes Zookeeper DX Touch Edition worth your time (and money).

For starters, the graphics look great. Sure, you don't need to have stellar graphics for one of those block-swapping games, but Zookeeper DX still doesn't disappoint. Colors and contrast jump off of the screen at you, and there's almost so much visual stimulation taking place (especially on a tablet) that you won't even want to drag your finger across the screen. Then again, that might be the most evil ploy to keep you from focusing on the task at hand.

The music has a catchy, techno pop groove to it, and it definitely exemplifies the playfulness that Zookeeper DX is going for. An angry and tyrannical zoo owner sends his lowly zookeeper to save the day? It's as goofy as it sounds, and the music definitely sets that up.

I'd be remiss if I didn't actually talk about the sprites and gameplay, too. The sprites are hilarious. To advance from level-to-level, you've got to capture (or is it release?) a certain number of every animal, and if you're slacking on a particular type, they scowl at you. Why is an angry, stereotypical animal sprite so endearing? I have no idea, but it works. Make sure you don't forget that each set of blocks you remove gives you a bit of time back on your bar, too. It's just that​ much more incentive to actually meet the game's objectives! Brilliant.

Zookeeper DX Touch Edition is 99 cents in the Google Play Store. We've got download links after the break.

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3 years ago

Lookout releases 'Mobile Lost & Found' info-site with results of phone loss study

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Did you know that over $30 billion worth of phones will be lost in the U.S. alone this year? Yeah, that number shocked me a bit as well. But it came from Lookout's 15 million strong user base and was part of their Phone Loss study compiled of last years (2011) data. They didn't stop there, either. They've compiled lists full of factoids about when and where phones are getting lost, and just how much it's costing us. Granted, Lookout sells a product to help find lost phones, but it's still fun to have a look at the numbers. 

Using the Foursquare API to turn Longitude and Latitude into a venue, they expound the numbers a bit as well. Trivia like the fact that in Chicago it's common to lose a phone in a church (number three on the list), while in London it common to do so in the pub (number one) come from this sort of data. Unfortunately, another thing they noticed is that many of the top locations in the U.S. where people "lost" their phones also happen to be cities with high crime statistics. These are just examples of the things you can find out about lost phones, but they have some good news as well -- 9,000,000 smartphones (that's one every 3.5 seconds) were lost then located with Lookout last year. That's a great reason to use an app like Lookout, or one of the many others, to help you find your phone when (not if) you lose it.

There's a couple screenshots and the press release after the break, and you can check it out yourself by heading to Lookout's Mobile Lost & Found page.

More: Lookout

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3 years ago

Fruit Ninja updated, new multiplayer capabilities added

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The fruit-slashing favourite, Halfbricks' Fruit Ninja, has received an update today that brings with it some pretty nice new multiplayer features. 

The "pomegranate" update is now live in the Google Play Store. The multiplayer options are now available using both local and online multiplayer services. At first glance, it seems to work really well too. You can choose who you want to play against, or swipe over the quick match option to be taken to a random opponent. 

Beyond this, as with any good update we also get some bug fixes too. There is a compatibility update for a small number of devices that were experiencing a "minor audio bug." 

Download links are after the break. Note though that this update is only for the paid version of the application. 

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3 years ago

Angry Birds Space now available for Android

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If you've been patiently waiting for the next series in Rovio's blockbuster hit Angry Birds, then you'll be pleased to know that Angry Birds Space has now lifted off. Rovio has been teasing the new series for quite some time now with it being a whole new twist on the original series. For now, it's available in the Amazon App Store for $1 so if you have access to that, you can hit the link below to grab it. If you can't access the Amazon App Store or just would rather wait until it appears in the Google Play Store, you can grab the ad-based version past the break to hold you over. Now, excuse me -- I have to go defy some gravity.

Source: Amazon

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