Headlines

3 years ago

Android kids app: Kids Maps for Honeycomb tablets

3


Youtube link for mobile viewing

Android tablets are great educational (and babysitting) tools. And it's with that in mind that we take a look at Kids Maps, as reviewed by a soon-to-be 5-year-old.

Kids Maps is really nicely done, blurring the line between puzzle and teaching tool. You've got 50 states, and you have to put them in the right place. When a new state appears, you get a quick fact about it. For instance: Polar bears live in Alaska. Betcha didn't know that.

Gameplay's really simple -- you just drag the state to the empty map. Dragging is smooth, but it's pretty easy to just drag the state around until it finds the right spot, as you'll see my little cheater do in the video. If you do manage to drop the state in the wrong place more than a couple times, it'll outline the correct spot.

There aren't many options to this one -- you can choose either to place states randomly, or receive them alphabetically, which can be helpful if someone's having to learn the states in alphabetical order.

The game itself is really nice done, with nice music and clear speech and instructions. Our only real complaints are that 50 states are a lot to do in one sitting -- perhaps breaking it down by regions might make things a little more fun. Also, more facts will make playing it a second and third time a little more fun. But if you've got a budding geography expert who also loves puzzles, you could spend $2.99 worse ways.

We've got download links after the breaks if you want to give Kids Maps a go.

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

Star Legends: The Blackstar Chronicles Video Preview

2


YouTube link for mobile viewing

Because I like you guys and because I know some of you are pining away for a beta key, I thought I'd show everyone the first level of Star Legends: The Blackstar Chronicles.

Yes, the first level is short, but it's nothing short of superb. The makers of Pocket Legends really know how to craft a quality, seems-pretty-epic mobile MMO. Hopefully we'll have some more beta keys to giveaway soon, but until then, this will have to tie you over.

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

Netflix works just fine on the Motorola Photon 4G

7

Read Part 1 of our Motorola Photon 4G review

When Netflix updated its Android app a couple weeks ago, the number of officially supported devices climbed to two dozen. The number of devices that the app actually works on is even bigger. And another one of those devices is the Sprint Motorola Photon 4G.

The Photon wasn't -- and as of this writing still isn't -- on the list of supported devices. But Netflix is visible in the Android Market on the Photon, downloads and installs just fine, and we were watching Toy Story 3 in no time at all.

Not sure if this is an oversight, or if we're just lucky, but either way, it's a good thing.

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

Android Open Mini Maker Faire wants modders and hackers for the Android Open conference

1

O'Reilly's Android Open conference, being held Oct. 9-11 in San Francisco, is looking for modders, hackers, and DIY-ers to participate in the Mini Maker Faire on the final day of the event.  They are looking for any project that involves Android hardware or an embedded board running Android, but are specifically looking for projects that feature:

  • Kinect/Computer Vision
  • Arduino/Lilypad/ADK
  • Processing for Android
  • Beagle Board/Panda Board
  • NFC/RFID
  • Gadgeteer
  • Wearables
  • Makerbot/Reprap created accessories
  • ROBOTS!!!!

You'll need to register by Aug. 22, and space is limited.  Hit the source links for info, grab your soldering irons, and be sure to let us know if you're going!

Source: Android Open; via Make Magazine
Tip o' the hat to @lizasperling

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

Amazon App Store updated to v1.15 - Improves stability, app compatibility checks and more

14

A new Amazon App Store update is now rolling out to users. Once updated you'll be sitting pretty at v1.15 that brings with it some nice improvements and things that should satisfy both users and developers who place their apps in there. The change log:

  • Feature: Improved the initiation of search
  • Feature: Improved app compatibility check
  • Feature: Improved customer feedback
  • Fixed: Customer reviews bug
  • Fixed: Periodic install failure on Android 1.6
  • Fixed: Rotation issues on purchase
  • Fixed: Force-close on repeat taps on refine button
  • Fixed: Search box bug
  • Stability *improvements*

Amazon took some heat over their feedback process and app compatibility checking recently, so the changes in the list are welcome. If you're not seeing the update as of yet, open the app up and check for updates manually -- it should show up for you after that.

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

Gmail update brings custom notifications, better sync for battery life, picture options, new actions

42

Better syncing, better notification options lead the way

Gmail's just gotten itself a beautiful little update, and the changes are some we've been wanting for some time. In handy bullet form, the changes are:

  • You can choose which mail to sync to help save on battery life. Have a bunch of labels? You can choose which ones to keep synced, and which ones you want to update automatically.
  • For the labels you're keeping synced, you can set custom notifications. That includes whether to receive notifications, which ringtone you want to use for which label, whether to vibrate when a label gets an e-mail, and if you want it to only notify you on the first new e-mail.
  • Know how if there's an image embedded in an e-mail, you must tell it to display the image -- on each and every single e-mail? That "feature" has blessedly been changed so that you can tell it to always display images from a particular sender -- just like in desktop gmail.
  • There's "new options for message options." When you go to the settings area of gmail -- and notice it's been split into "general preferences" along with individual account preferences -- you'll see "Message actions." You can choose to always show them, or show only in portrait, or only in landscape. Nice.
  • Plus, "performance enhancements."

There you have it. Pretty big improvements, if you ask us. Update your app now and give it a whirl, or check out a few more screen shots after the break.

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

Android Quick App: Roboto

14

 


YouTube link for mobile viewing

I think most of you would agree gaming on Android has improved, but there's not quite as many heavy-hitters as we'd like. That's why I'm so excited to introduce you to a new game in the Market -- Roboto.

Simply put, Roboto is out-of-this-world awesome. You play a hoverboarding robot on a quest to find his lady love after she takes a spontaneous trip into the wild blue yonder right in front of your eyes. Is the story original? Not so much, but it doesn't matter. The gameplay is where it's at, and in this regard, Roboto delivers.

You're looking at a typical side-scroller, standard fare to any of us who grew up in the '90s. Where things get interesting is when you look at all the futuristic, robo-inspired tricks and abilities in the gameplay. For starters, you've got an energy gun. I'm not quite sure what to call it, but it shoots out little blue orbs, and when enough of them pew-pew your enemies, they explode.

There's also environmental things, like the reverse gravity portals, for lack of a better term. Whenever you pass one of these physics-defying purple spots, your whole world gets turned upside down. Roboto flips over and starts riding on the ceiling, and it's wild. There's usually a purpose for one being in your way, so take that into account and just go with the flow, and you'll be a happy camper hoverboarding robot.

There's also some cool wall climbing you can do, but only if you jump right next to a wall. It's a fun, not-often-seen ability, and it's a lifesaver (literally) if you find yourself overestimating your jump distance and near-plummeting to your demise. There's also a hover function for your hoverboard. Did I mention that?

On every level there are three big gears that are just asking to be collected. Successfully collect all three and you're on your way to some big point bonuses when you finish a level. Other factors that influence your score are things like enemies destroyed, energy left in your bar, time, and other gears picked up. It's a fun incentive to add some replayability to levels, especially for the completionists out there.

The touch controls are responsive and tight, just as they should (but often aren't) be on any game. In my time playing Roboto, I didn't experience any lag or stuttering between the joystick and my movement on-screen, and the jump and shoot buttons just work. It sounds like something small, but if you've played as many games with poor touch recognition as I have, you'll instantly recognize that this is something great.

The graphics are buttery smooth, eye-catching, and overall gorgeous, to boot. There's an incredible layer of polish from top to bottom here, and having graphics this impressive on an Android phone is something I definitely hope to see more of.

I can easily say that Roboto is one of the finest games I've played on Android to date. From the graphics to the gameplay, the lack of load times and the responsive controls, I'd recommend this to anyone. Fenix Fire has obviously developed an incredible product worthy of your time, and if you're interested in getting your game on, Roboto is where I'd do it. Roboto runs $2.99 right now, but after August 8th is jumping up to $4.99, so for a premium price and a great game, it's definitely something I'd jump on sooner rather than later.

Tons of pictures, plus the download links are after the break.

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

Gogo Inflight finishing up its Android app, gives us a tease

10

If you're up in the air anywhere near as much as we are, you've likely used Gogo Inflight to get online at 30,000 feet. We've long been awaiting a proper Android app, and it looks like we're closing in on takeoff. (Plane pun No. 1.) Until now, if you wanted to use your Android device on Gogo's network, you'd have to wing it (pun No. 2) and sign in with the mobile browser. It works, but far from a smooth ride (pun No. 3). This app should make things much easier.

For now, we've just got this teaser pic on Facebook. But keep your eyes to the sky (pun No. 4) for the app to be released soon.

Source: Facebook

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

Nyan Cat Android live wallpaper

25

No need to thank us. Just doing our jobs here. Download links are after the break.

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

Google Authenticator updated with countdown timer, improved translations

12

If you use two-stage authentication to keep your Google account safe, then you'll want to grab the latest update to the accompanying Google Authenticator app, which was released today. Version 0.6.4 of the Authenticator rolls back some permission changes added in a previous version, and adds a countdown timer under the authentication code, so you know how long you've got before the code expires. In addition, there are some improvements to non-English translations for international users.

Hit the Market to grab your update, or use the QR code after the jump.

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

Android Quick App: Groupon

3

For all of the money and time saving tips and tricks that Android gives us, every service deserves it's 15 minutes of fame. Yes, there's LivingSocial and Yelp, and even things like our dear friend GasBuddy, right now, the moment belongs to Groupon.

And for good reason, too. Besides the services that Groupon offers to us, like sweet coupons for all sorts of stuff (food comes to mind), they've actually developed a pretty strong Android app to let us all carry a bit of Groupon around with us.

For starters, the interface is really, really green and pleasant to look at. Everything is pretty easily laid out, and it's not hard to get around. Open up the app and once you move past the giant logo, you're presented with your coupon of the day. Don't like what you're being shown? A simple tap on the "More Deals" tab will pull up a larger, longer, and more comprehensive list of all the deals that'll lighten your wallet (all while saving you some dough at the same time).

If your city is wrong, the top left corner pulls up a list of all of Groupon's cities, leaving you to find your city of choice.

Quite possibly the coolest feature I discovered (if this has been out for a while, cut me some slack) is ability to find deals that are within a certain time frame, but only today! You can find all of this by clicking the "Now!" tab, and after your phone gets a rough idea of your location, you can see all sorts of different deals, along with their price and time frame you're allowed to use them in.

You can also (obviously!) log into your Groupon account, and if you don't have one, sign in with Facebook, if that's your sort of thing. The settings menu is a bit bare, but it lets you turn on and off Groupon's notifications, which is really helpful, especially if you're not planning buying everyday.

It's completely free to download and install and it runs pretty well, so if you're a bargain hunter extraordinaire, you know what to do.

Pictures and download links are after the break.

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

Google Maps updated to v5.8 - Adds photo uploads, my Places and more

11

Another Google Maps update is now available in the Android Market bumping it up to v5.8. This update according to the change log covers some requested features surrounding the use of 'Places'

  • Upload photos for a Place
  •  My Places as a simple way to manage the Places you’ve starred and recently viewed
  • Descriptive terms for Places in search results
  • Add a new Place on-the-go when checking in

Having the ability to add photos to places is great, you can snap a pic and share with everyone what it looks like plus, the ability to add a place just makes a whole lot of sense considering not all places will be covered. In addition to those things, Google also added ‘Bigger text’ to Labs features and ‘Download map area’ has been renamed ‘Pre-cache map area.’ You can find the download past the break.

Source: Twitter; via: Google Mobile Blog

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

Words with Friends updated, brings Facebook play to Android

7

Words with Friends has been updated to allow cross platform play with Facebook players, but only on the phone version for now.  According to the changelog on the Android Market:

What's in this version:
This is a big update! You now have the ability to play with your friends on Facebook! Just link together your Facebook and Words accounts and you'll be able to see which of your friends also have the game and start playing with them instantly (Honeycomb users, Facebook features are coming soon).
We've also improved stability and fixed several additional bugs.
As always, we appreciate your feedback! And if you like the new update, please rate us 5 stars!

Bug fixes are always nice, and we all know that Words with Friends can use them.  The lack of an update for Honeycomb is a bit concerning, but hopefully Zynga can get that taken care of soon.  In the meantime, if you haven't completely moved to Google+, link up those accounts and get playing!  Download link is after the break.

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

Win one of 10 MyBackup Pro licenses

28

If you've ever switched Android phones, or like to tinker and are always changing things up a bit, you know how nice it is to have a backup program that works.  That's where MyBackup Pro comes in -- it's powerful and full of options for the advanced user, but simple enough for the average user to get all their data safely backed up with little fuss.  It's one of those apps that you'll hear recommended quite a bit, and for good reason.  You can back up things like your SMS messages, browser bookmarks, contacts, applications and more -- either locally or on Rerware secure online servers.  And if you're rooted, you can even back up your application data so you never lose your Angry Birds levels again.

There's a lot to love, especially with the latest update, and we're going to take a deeper look at it.  But in the meantime, the folks at Rerware have hooked us up with 10 licenses for MyBackup Pro to share with you guys.  You won't wanna miss out on this one, there's a reason it has over 7,500 five-star ratings in the Android Market.  Hit the contest forums for contest details and a chance to win, and we've got a link to download the 30 day trial version after the break.

Android Central forums

Read more and comment

 
3 years ago

DubMeNow & AT&T bringing AT&T Campus Guide to smartphones

2

AT&T today has announced a new partnership with the folks from DubMeNow. The agreement will help bring the AT&T Campus Guide to thousands of schools across the U.S. and assist students by offering up nine features that help them with Campus information:

  • Courses: Students can connect with classmates and professors in real-time using AT&T Campus Guide, viewing grades, assignments, announcements and detailed class information.
  • Events: Wondering when the next big game is?  Not sure when exams start?  The events calendar on AT&T Campus Guide provides important dates and times for campus happenings.
  • Directory: Search and browse contact information and connect with other students and faculty, without paging through a campus phonebook.
  • Maps: Freshmen, visiting students and alumni will particularly appreciate campus maps and turn-by-turn directions between buildings.
  • Notifications: Timely notifications announce school cancellations and remind students about overdue library books, tuition payments and more.
  • News: Find the latest campus news, sports scores and Tweets – all in one place.
  • Friends: An always up-to-date and backed-up address book of all students’ classmates, friends and campus contacts.  Any time students lose or replace their phones, they can just reinstall the AT&T Campus Guide app to their new phones and all of their contacts are restored.
  • My Card: Students can easily share their customizable contact information to keep in touch with their friends, classmates, potential employers, alumni and advisors..
  • Info: Looking for more information?  Click on Info for miscellaneous details about campus.

No longer will you be stuck carrying a ton of paper and flyers around with you, if you have a smartphone you can just load up the AT&T Campus Guide and find everything you need at your fingertips. Full press release is on past the break.

Source: AT&T

Read more and comment

 
Show More Headlines

Pages