What do you get when you take a traditional web browser, crunch it through some cloud servers, compress the data and make it more mobile friendly by sharing the load locally as well as in the back end? That's Amazon's Silk browser. Actually, it sounds a bit familiar, but it's going to get some prominent play on the new Amazon Kindle Fire tablet, which is likely to be a hot seller when it launches Nov. 15 for $199. Check out the video above for how it all works.
If country music is your thing and you're a Sprint customer, the latest Sprint ID may be right up your alley. The folks from CMT have teamed up with Sprint to create the ultimate country music Sprint ID pack complete with apps, widgets wallpapers and more. Included in the pack aside from Rhapsody, Soundhound and The Grand Ole Opry is quite a few CMT select items such as:
CMT Insider: CMT Insider gives access to country music’s biggest stars with exclusive videos, articles and photos. Follow artists on Twitter and stream music with Rhapsody audio clips.
CMT On Air: CMT’s On Air App features the network’s full lineup, videos and allows fans to connect with other fans of CMT as they converse across Twitter.
CMT Video Widget: Check out new videos featuring country music artists, CMT shows or the latest in country news.
CMT Photo Widget: The CMT Photo Widget offers instant photos, updated often, of country music's biggest stars and events.
CMT Twitter Widget: Check out instant updates from CMT's official Twitter accounts and stay connected to your favorite artists and CMT Shows.
The CMT ID pack is free to download with an Everything Data plan from Sprint on supported Sprint ID devices. You can check out the pull press release past the break or hit up the source link for the full details.
Rather then just simply offering you another address book, Smartr organizes your address book and takes it to the next level by offering a solution of making sure the people you contact the most, are always at your fingertips. Contacts are no longer arranged alphabetically, your contacts are now ranked by how often you reach out to them -- bringing the most important to the top. In addition to the better organization, profiles can be completely filled out with a photo, job title, company details, email history, common contacts and info from social networks.
Acessing your Smartr contact information is easy as well, you have access to them from the home screen, via the main search bar, the widgets, or the Smartr app. If you're in need of a better contact management system for your device, give Smartr a look. Couple it with Smartr contacts for GMail and you have a pretty awesome solution for keeping your contacts organized. We're going to have a full review up soon but for now -- it's available in the Android Market for free and you'll find the download, press release and a video further explaining the services past the break.
Better known for its microSD cards, Sandisk has released its own memory management application onto the Android Market. Whereas popular file management apps like Astro allow you to dive deep into the file system on your device, Sandisk aims to cast a wider net by linking into cloud storage services as well.
The underlying intent is to assist you with backing up your device's contacts, photos, music, videos, documents and even apps to either your memory card, or to your Dropbox and Box.net accounts. It also works the other way allowing you to restore from these locations. You can set up your backups to occur automatically at different time intervals using the "Backup/Restore" function. This only allows you to utilise automatic backups over wifi by default, so you don't need to worry about gigabytes worth of data uploading in your pocket while you're sat on the bus. There is still an option to allow upload over cellular data though should you want it.
The app also allows you to access your Picasa and Google Docs accounts. Through both of these services you can both upload to and download your content from the cloud to your device as well as deleting files from your cloud storage.
The app has a really nice looking UI, and splits all your files into type; music, images, videos, documents, and applications. If theres something specific you have in mind that you're trying to find, a little of the work is taken care of.
It comes at the moment with the beta tag, but feels really polished and could well replace a number of memory management applications by combining so many services into one.
Sandisk Memory Zone is available free in the Android Market. Download links and screenshots available after the break.
If you're a fan of the Firefox browser for Android, know that Firefox 7 is now available in the Android Market. Officially, the changelog is as follows:
Improved copy and paste: Copy any site content and paste to other applications, SMS, or text fields
Built-in language detection on first run
WebSockets API: Powerful tool for Web developers to build responsive Web apps and sites
The list of desktop changes is a bit longer, but rememeber that the mobile app is cut from the same cloth, and we're very much enjoying this accelerated release schedule. Download links are after the break.
Here's how to flag an app as 'inappropriate' in the Android Market
We suppose it should be flattering that there's currently a fairly massive Twitter campaign calling for Google -- and Android Central -- to remove the obviously offensive (and ridiculous) "Is my son gay?" app from the Android Market.
If only it were up to us.
Actually, we don't even like calling attention to this app -- or any of the other scores of offensive apps that are in the Android Market. That's one of the pitfalls of having a relatively open app ecosystem -- you have to take the bad with the good.
But that doesn't mean you have to like it, and petitions and Twitter campaigns are two great ways to let Google know you don't want apps like this in the Android Market. You can also flag an app as being inappropriate, and we recommend you do so. Here's how:
On your phone, go to the app in the Android Market. (Here's a link for you.) Scroll down, then tap "Flag as inappropriate." Then chose a reason.
Not too long ago we took a look at the Uber50 theme for UberSocial for Android, and today the folks from UberMedia are back at it again with a new custom theme for us to enjoy. This theme is martial arts themed, and is called UberWarrior. The theme includes a custom wallpaper, martial arts styled sounds throughout and gives you the MMA UberChannel to keep you in the loop at all times. So if you are rocking UberSocial for Android and want to kick it up a notch, hit the break and download UberWarrior.
Can you believe it, back already for yet another round of some of our favorite Android applications. Finding them is the hard part, and using them is the fun part, so why not skip the hard, and jump into the fun as we take a look at some of our favorites for you this week.
If listening to a lot of podcasts and internet radio is your thing but you've yet to check out Stitcher, now is as good a time as any. The latest update brings quite a few changes to the table -- most importantly the UI as a whole has been revamped for a more fluid design. So what do you get from Stitcher? Check out the features below:
Seamless listening: Hear the latest episodes of your favorite shows without the hassle of downloading and syncing
Live radio: Listen to live streams from thousands of sources around the world
Custom Stations: “Stitch” together your favorite shows to create your own customized station.
Discovery: Discover new shows based on what other listeners of the same shows also like. Like Fresh Air on NPR? Discover what other listeners of the show also listen to.
Sharing: Share interesting content easily with friends via Facebook, Twitter or email
There is a lot of podcast and live radio apps available on the Android Market and while Stitcher has always been fairly highly ranked among them - this update looks great and fixes some of the bugs from previous builds. Coupled with the UI update, it's certainly worth a look plus, the Android Central podcast is available on there. That alone makes it worth checking out, download link is past the break for you all.
Seems like everyone's trying to get into the grassroots, local news movements as of late and Meporter is the latest to enter the fray. The idea behind it makes me think of something like CNN's iReport, but maybe even better because this is truly up-to-the-minute, whereas on something like iReport, you better have a really cute kitten stuck in a tree to make the front page.
Meporter Local News Desk turns your phone into a reporter's notebook by coupling our own inane obsession with instant news and instant gratification with the power of social media networks to disseminate information.
Make sure you've got an account, and whenever you see anything of interest, simply snap a picture or take a video and attach it to your story, throw in a title and some body text, and then choose if you want to post to Facebook and Twitter. Your news will also go to Meporter's website, where people can read it and share it in turn.
The app interface on the phone is clean and simple, consisting of only five buttons, the most used of which will probably be Post. You can also pull up a map of the surrounding area that'll show you where other Meporter's stories have been written as well as your local newswire, your friends list, and your own profile.
I think Meporter has potential, but only if its userbase continues to grow. If you're an aspiring newshound or just love to contribute on social media, Meporter is worth taking a look at. With how overwhelmingly relevant social media has become (and continues to be) in our day-to-day lives, it's only a matter of time before a platform like Meporter becomes a go-to brand for information.
Meporter Locan News Desk is free in the Android Market and we've got download links after the break.
I've said itbefore and I'll say it again: I like words. They keep my brain sharp and vocabulary growing. But what good is knowing a bunch of words if you don't know how to spell them? Sure, you could use spell check, but what if you were the spell checker?
That's where Spelling Bee comes into play. You can study and you'll be given a word and a definition, and can even have the app pronounce the word using text-to-speech. Swiping left and right moves you from study card to study card, and the only words you'll be given are the ones you'll eventually be tested on.
The actual spelling bee component is pretty cool and well done. You're only given the definition and a text box to enter the word. There's also the option to have the app say the word to you, which is probably the most powerful and revealing part about the test. Once you're confident, just enter your word in the text field and enter it. You'll be given immediate feedback as to your correctness, and if you misspelled the word, you're also shown the correct spelling.
At the end of the quiz, you're shown your overall percent correct. From there you can quit or go back to the main menu to study some more and drill yourself.
The settings menu allows you to change the length of the quiz (5, 10, or 20) as well as the difficulty of the words. Mine came set to "hard" out of the box, but there's also beginner, easy, and medium difficulty settings. The other two options are to show a timer and to enable vibration.
As a total package, Spelling Bee delivers on what you'd expect in a nice and neat little app. There's not a lot of unnecessary extras, but the core of learning words and spelling them is well done. Spelling Bee is also aesthetically pleasing, with a nice, yellow-colored beehive wallpaper and aesthetic throughout.
Thanks to the variable difficulty levels, Spelling Bee can work for people of all ages, from kids all the way up to well-read adults. If you're looking to improve your vocabulary, Spelling Bee is a scant 99 cents in the Android Market.
We've got lots of pictures and download links after the break.
One of the best parts about CyanogenMod 7 is the powerful theme engine. No flashing zip files or anything is such a relief, plus, the theming and skinning community has delivered a multitude of awesome themes to try out. One of those is MattedBlues, which is made by the same fellow who created the MellowYellow Theme for CM7.
MattedBlues was the original theme created by this person (group? The developer name is Team MattedBlues), but just because it's older doesn't mean it's still not great. A lot of the features we saw in the MellowYellow theme are present, just in a cool blue instead.
Per the usual with these kinds of themes, once you've selected MattedBlues from the Theme Engine, all your icons, check marks, highlights, and even the bounce color when a list hits the top or bottom turns blue. There's also a different 3G icon, but the other icons are par the course, just in this particular shade of blue.
The notification pulldown menu is the same as it is in MellowYellow (I assume MellowYellow actually borrowed it from MattedBlues), with the same, happy little Android head at the bottom, except he's blue. Pretty stock, except on this theme, it says "MattedBlues" inside of his head. I don't know why, but I feel like it could do without that.
The phone dialer is similarly transparent, with a better looking font replacing the stock font. If only the Theme Engine itself supported changing the fonts the entire phone over, I think this theme would truly kick it up a notch.
For those who aren't a fan of yellow but still want to theme their CM7'd phones, MattedBlues is another great entry by a great theme developer. I'm still pushing for an orange theme myself, but for those who find blue as their color of choice, MattedBlues is for you.
MattedBlues for CM7 is $2.99 in the Android Market.
We've got more screenshots and download links after the break.
If I had to pick my favorite cuddly nature animal, squirrel would probably win. They have big, bushy tails, look really soft, and one time I saw one run up to a guy and take the remainder of his sandwich out of his hand. (No lie.) When I found a game about a squirrel busting open nuts on his head and eating them, I figured it was worth a look. That game is Noogra Nuts.
Noogra Nuts is an entirely tilt-based game where your aim is to bounce falling nuts on this squirrel's head until the shells crack, then eat the delicious innards as they come tumbling down to your mouth. This sounds like a pretty fun game until you realize it's completely tilt-based and there's no options to change it to some sort of touch screen control.
There's a lot of good about Noogra Nuts, though, like the graphics. Continuing the theme of nature and squirrels and nuts and stuff, Noogra Nuts has nice green grass fields you jump on, cartoonish nuts that fall, and a terrifyingly absurd looking squirrel that's the star of the game. Yeah, he makes cutesy noises when he jumps and when nuts bonk him on the head, but those eyes freak me out.
The sound is good too, with this loop of weird, upbeat techno on the title screen and nature sounds during gameplay. Nuts bouncing off of the squirrel's head have a satisfying if not muted knocking sound to them, but it's not ill-placed.
Back to the controls, they're just not precise enough for my taste. Doing a completely motion-based game is cool, but it feels like you're either not tilting hard enough or you tilt too hard and overcompensate to move. The result is your squirrel inching along or bouncing from side-to-side on the screen, missing most of the stuff he's supposed to be bouncing up. If the developer added in something as simple like a thumb press on each side of the screen, I think it'd make Noogra Nuts much more intuitive and enjoyable.
At the very least, Noogra Nuts is OpenFeint supported and doesn't cost anything to play. There is an ugly ad on the front of the title screen that you have to pay (via an in-app purchase) to remove, but it never shows up in gameplay, so it's not too terrible of a deal.
To get your nutcracking skills on, there's download links after the break.
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