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3 years ago

Super Hexagon is ridiculously hard, ridiculously addicting

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We usually like to do our own demo videos of apps whenever possible. It's our job, for one, and it's always fun to see "the pros" occasionally suck at games on camera. But in the case of Super Hexagon, we're going to keep our shame bottle up deep inside, where it belongs. This game is that hard.

The idea is that you have to guide the triangle through the spaces of the incoming designs as they collapse in on the central hexagram. Cool 1980s-esque video game music helps keep up the pace (at least for those of us old enough to remember the sounds of an actual arcade). It's fun. It's addicting. And it's hard as hell. Literally. The three unlocked levels are "hard," "harder" and "hardest." Frankly, we're a little afraid to explore the other difficulties. Our pride has taken a beating here. But, still, we can't put it down. Another dollar well spent.

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3 years ago

PIC adresses Inaugural 2013 app's privacy policy concerns

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A couple days ago we told you about Inaugural 2013 -- a very nicely done app from the Presidential Inaugural Committee that had a pretty peculiar privacy policy, and on the surface looked like a nonpartisan app about the Inauguration. The folks at PIC (The Presidential Inaugural Committee) have clarified their privacy policy a bit with the Washington Post, and want to let everyone know you don't have to share anything with anyone.

Contrary to some concerns, the app only collects one sort of user data: cellphone numbers that users voluntarily share and can opt out of sharing, for use in sending texts to users – such as late-breaking changes and emergency updates. The app has no way to collect e-mails, names or other personal information from users.

The original privacy policy (since replaced in Google Play with a generic page from AT&T) still allows the sharing of any information, but PIC is saying they won't collect any unless you opt-in to use all the services the application offers. If you don't want or need to use any of the location or alert portions of the app, and instead only use the news and video portions, nothing can be collected and shared with third parties.

What's not readily apparent, but certainly notable, is that there are numerous links to the PIC website that encourages users to submit information that will be shared under the original PIC privacy policy.

It's a better situation than we originally thought, as the Inaugural news and video portions of the application could be useful. We're still not ready to recommend this one, but we did want to advise everyone of the Presidential Inaugural Committee's response to privacy concerns and criticism.

Source: Washington Post

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3 years ago

In town for the Inauguration? Metro Navigator (Metro 24) will help you navigate

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If you’re in town for the President’s Inauguration this weekend, you’re going to need a good app for the DC metro that will guide you around the city. While DC has a great metro system, it can be confusing for newcomers and those who don’t use it all the time. Having a metro map and schedules right on your phone is incredibly valuable and will make your trip less stressful.

Metro 24 is one of the top apps for navigating around different subways. It is a bit pricey at $4.00, but it is a general app that, once purchased, gives you access to a variety of city metros. The only US cities supported at the moment are Los Angeles, New York and Washington DC, but there are a lot of international cities available.

Once you open the app, you’ll choose which metro you would like to view and it will bring up a map of the entire system. Each stop is clickable and will give you a variety of options:

  • From Here: Gives you directions from the metro station selected
  • To Here: Provides directions to the metro station of your choosing
  • Favorites: Adds the station to your favorites for easy access in the future
  • What is nearby? Gives you recommendations for restaurants, tourist sports and more around the station
  • I’m Here!: Will make your phone remember all WiFi/GSM transmitters at the station selected so you don't have to go through the process every time
  • Next Train: Lets you know the next train from the station
  • There’s also a button on the bottom left side of the app that notifies you of the current status of the metro. It gives you a simple graphic as to whether the lines are delayed or running as scheduled.

Another useful button within the app is one that helps plan a trip. You choose which station you want to go to and it will provide detailed instructions as to how to get there.

For the Inauguration, here are details: The official swearing in will take place on Monday, January 21st at 11:30am on the National Mall.  There are a number of metro stations that you can get off at for the National Mall. Smithsonian (blue & orange), Federal Triangle (blue & orange), Archives (green & yellow), L’Enfant (blue, green, orange, yellow), Federal Center (blue & orange).

The National Mall is the area between the Capitol and the Lincoln Memorial. You’ll be right at the Reflecting Pool and the major Smithsonian Museums. It is in a great location and is likely to very crowded this weekend and on Inauguration day.

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3 years ago

Second Carbon backup beta brings Dropbox support

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Let us turn now to the other Carbon app for Android (no, not that one -- this one), which today has seen its second beta release. This Carbon serves as a way to back up your app and, perhaps more important your app data, and move both between devices. 

This second beta brings Dropbox support, gives more control over what you can back up (more apps at once, or all apps), and you can choose to backup everything at once, if you want. This one's still a root-only thing, but Koush says that should change with the third and final beta release.

Source: @Koushik Dutta

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3 years ago

Chrome Beta update fixes issues, has a new icon

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Since a proper Chrome Beta channel app came into the Play Store, we knew we'd be in for some frequent updates. Alongside a new icon that has a black/white "BETA" tag on it, rather than the angled grey/white one before, this update brings many small fixes:

  • 165783 - Enable compositing scrollable frames on Android
  • 168368 - Chrome progress bar should be displayed as soon as the user clicks a link
  • 165244 - Text handler jumps or disappears when moving
  • 162486 - iframe scrolling broken

There are still some glaring bugs, as is the case with Beta releases, such as yahoo.com page links not working and some intense graphical glitches on certain devices. This is all part of the fun though, and we know what we're getting into when moving to the Beta channel of a browser.

You can't find Chrome Beta by searching the Play Store, so if you're interested in staying on the bleeding edge of browser updates you can install it directly from the link at the top of this post.

Source: Chrome Release Changelog

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3 years ago

A non-official XBMC build released, promises a new level of user friendliness

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XBMC, the well known open-source program that brings a set-top style media player experience to almost any device, has a new custom build tonight from the folks at XBMC for Android. This version is still filled with all the goodies you expect from XBMC -- things like the awesome meta data scraping XBMC is famous for -- and has a few twists that should make it easy to set up and use.

The biggest difference with this particular build is the way a third party media player can be integrated. As of now, XBMC built stock for Android does not support hardware rendering in the player. To fix this, the folk at XBMC for Android have integrated support for MX Player to handle all the heavy lifting, while still using XBMC's interface and options.

Take a look at the source link and give it a go if you've been waiting to try XBMC on your Android device. 

Source: XBMC for Android

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3 years ago

Ingress update brings UI improvements and performance fixes

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Everyone's favorite "walk around town and look awkward" game, Ingress, was just updated to version 1.18.1 today. It's a pretty mundane update overall, but with several improvements that should make users eager to update and get back out there. On the user-facing front, we're seeing UI improvements in various places, as well as enhancements in animations (Google specifically notes "XMP explosion animations.) On the back end there are many bug fixes included, along with improved memory usage and faster app resume times for any device with an Adreno GPU. Anyone who has played a lot of Ingress knows it can be a bit sluggish when resuming.

The changelog notes that there's still one big known bug, that portal shields are nearly invisible when viewing them from the map view. Hopefully that one gets squashed in the next update as well.

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3 years ago

Press app updated with background sync, quick-navigation and more

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The folks at TwentyFive Squares have updated the Press app, bringing the most requested features to the popular Google Reader application. Ignoring the important  "performance enhancements and bug fixes" that accompany every application update, the new feature list looks impressive.

  • Quick article navigation to go to next/previous articles -- Use the volume keys to move backwards and forwards inside your article list. Enable this in settings.
  • Background/automatic syncing -- enable frequency of background syncing in the app settings.
  • Sync on app launch -- Your Reader feeds will sync when the Press app is opened.
  • Background syncing notifications -- Get notifications when background syncing finds new content.
  • New text-alignment options -- Left, Right, and Center justification supported.
  • Show image title and URL in the image viewer -- No more guessing at image URLs.
  • Date and time formats now match device settings
  • Article title is now included when sharing to social networks

We're fans of the Press app here, and it looks like this is an awesome update. Check Google Play for your update notification, or if you're looking to try Press for the first time ($1.99; Android 4 or higher) you can click the Google Play link above.

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3 years ago

Android 4.1.2 update reportedly rolling out to unbranded Australian Samsung Galaxy S3

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Owners of an unbranded Samsung Galaxy S3 in Australia have cause for celebration -- the Android 4.1.2 update is reportedly rolling out to those devices right now. The guys at Ausdroid received the initial tip from one of their readers, and it seems the update is available to download via KIES. There's no word on an OTA variant pushing out just yet. 

Besides the 'Premium Suite' goodies the 4.1.2 update brings such as Multi Window, it's also said to contain fixes for the Exynos exploit and the so called 'sudden-death' that was affecting some handsets. If you own one of these eligible Galaxy S3s and have snagged the update for yourselves, be sure to share your experiences with us in the comments below, or head on into the Samsung Galaxy S3 forums.

Source: Ausdroid

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3 years ago

Temple Run 2 jumping and sliding its way onto Android on Jan. 24

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While we may not today be basking in the glow of Imangi Studios' sequel to their smash hit Temple Run like our iOS friends, we shall not be waiting long. British newspaper, The Guardian, ran a lengthy interview with the developers, and garnered a release date for the Android version of Temple Run 2. One week from today, Thursday Jan. 24. 

Temple Run 2 looks on the face of it a lot like its predecessor. After all, it's still an endless runner. But, Temple Run 2 has more aspects to the game this time around in that you pilot a runaway mine cart, running isn't just straight lines, and you get to slide down zipwires. There's also an in-app purchase available of a coin-doubler, and what looks like a power up for some crazy fast running. We'll naturally be giving Temple Run 2 the once over next week when it launches in Google Play, but for now, we'll make do with the official launch trailer. 

Source: The Guardian

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3 years ago

Real Racing 3 continues to look incredible, due to drop in February

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Real Racing 3 has looked downright gorgeous ever since we were first teased of its existence back in August. The latest video in the Developer Diary series showcases some more incredible looking visuals, along with a little background on the process of creating the circuits in the game. The short version -- this is a game we're looking forward to seeing. 

Say the developers:

Real Racing 3 lets gamers compete against friends and rival drivers from around the world. Fans can race on real world circuits with powerful dream cars from all-new manufacturers like Porsche, Audi, and Dodge. With the improvements achieved with Real Racing 2, the team aimed to raise the bar on expectations and continue to give their artists the ability to create the most realistic graphic effects on cars on an individual basis. Including realistic reflections, customizable cars and improved details down to glosses and finishes, Real Racing 3 delivers the unique experience of speeding in some of the best cars on world famous race tracks.

The video also talks us through creating a brand new, unique track for the game in Melbourne, Australia. This isn't a rehash of the Grand Prix circuit, but a creation from scratch based on the city streets. The latest release news is that we can expect Real Racing 3 to drop some time in February, and hopefully it will be cross platform at launch.  We want this one. We want it a lot. 

via iMore

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3 years ago

SEGA's Kingdom Conquest II hits the Play Store

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As a follow-up to the very popular Kingdon Conquest game, SEGA is releasing Kingdom Conquest II on Android today. This RPG (Role Playing Game) style game brings in traditional action-packed gameplay along with some strategy that gives the game long-term playability. As a worthy successor to the first game, the storyline continues but is improved with new graphics and gameplay. There are solo, cooperative and multiplayer modes available, giving you plenty of options to play with other users around the world. You'll have a big pool of players to choose from as well, as the game has already been downloaded over 100,000 times. SEGA says the original title was downloaded over 3.5 million times worldwide.

Kingdom Conquest II is free, which is nice if you're looking to get a quick look to see if you like it. You can grab a download at the Google Play Store link at the top of this post.

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3 years ago

Carbon (the Android Twitter app) may yet live on

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Developer, after months of silence: 'We're back ... we're listening'

You're going to meet the following sentences with a great deal of skepticism. And you should. For it's been the more than a year since we first heard that Carbon, an excellent Twitter app that originated on webOS and then made (briefly) it to Windows Phone, would be coming to Android. It's been six months or so since one release window came and went. Another passed by in September. And then, Carbon disappeared without a trace, leaving the odd (odd) blogger to tell tales of alpha testing late at night after many beers. So, you're right to be skeptical. We all should be.

Only today the developer, through the @CarbonAndroid Twitter account, tweeted the following:

No ETAs. No hints yet as to what, when and how we'll ever see Carbon for Android. Just "We're back!" Read through the Twitter stream. Read the replies to folks who were thinking what you're probably thinking now. Read the mea culpas. Is Carbon back? Will it stand a chance in a world in which Twitter itself is clamping down on third-party clients, and apps like Falcon Pro have achieved near universal approval? We'll see. But we're definitely keeping one eye open for it again.

Source: @CarbonAndroid; via Android Central Forums

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3 years ago

Lode Runner Classic hits Android

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What's the price for nostalgia? If you're a child of the '80s, $2.99 and 24 megabytes will get you Lode Runner Classic from Tozai. For those three bucks you get 150 levels, a pair of game modes -- expedition and time attack -- a magnification effect that zooms in on the runner, multiple speeds, a slew of settings and more.

The controls, which as you can see are pretty damn large, take a little getting used to, and you lose a good bit of actual gameplay real estate. On the other hand, these are 8-bit graphics we're talking about, so what the hell. 

Now excuse us while we throw on some Huey Lewis and the News, pop open a bag of Doritos and live the good life for a little while.

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3 years ago

Dolphin Browser updated with sharing to other devices on Wi-Fi network

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Dolphin, a popular third-party browser for Android, updated today with new sharing options, including built-in Evernote clipping so you can reference pages later on through the cloud service, posting to Twitter and Facebook, and best of all, shunting web pages to other devices on your local Wi-Fi network. This includes mobile devices that also have Dolphin Connect-enabled apps installed, as well as desktop browsers that have the right plug-in. That plug-in also enables bookmark syncing, which is always handy. 

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