Headlines

3 years ago

Android Game Review: Racing Moto

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Youtube link for mobile viewing

Here's a fun little time-waster that's floating around the Honeycomb apps list in the Android Market. Racing Moto is a very simple racing game. You've got a motorcycle and a need to go fast. Put a finger on the screen  and enable the boost feature, which makes you go really fast (relatively speaking) and ups the score multiplier. Avoid cars, avoid the walls.

So Racing Moto's not going to be one of those games you play hour after hour, day after day. But if you've got a few minutes and don't might the occasional sight of someone skidding across pavement, you could do worse, we suppose.

Racing Moto's free, with in-app advertising. Download links are after the break.

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3 years ago

Youtube app updated to fix the last update

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The last Youtube update seem to bork things up a little bit? No worries. A new update has been pushed to update the old update. So as long as you've updated your update with this latest update, you should be good. Follow?

Here's the official changelog: "Bug fixes for some devices."

Everybody better now?

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3 years ago

Google App Inventor killed off with Google Labs, will live on as open-source code

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Some sad news tonight for your fans of the Google App Inventor project. With the demise of Google Labs, so, too, do we learn of the demise of App Inventor. This was a slick little tool that let anyone (theoretically) create an Android app, without having to actually now how to code anything. That's not to say it was easy -- yours truly made his way through the tutorials and did a sweet version of Wack a Mole with his daughter's likeness (it's a long story). But you still need a certain mind-set to really make use of it.

Anyhoo, according to a post last week on the Google Laps group (you'll note how this was killed off and nobody noticed for a few days), App Inventor's being phased out along with the rest of Google Labs, but it will live on as an open-source project.

The current App Inventor site will live on for the next three months. RIP, App Inventor. You were a good idea, but probably a little before your time. For a retrospective of Google App Inventor, check out the video after the break while we pour out 40 lines of code for our homies.

Source: Google Labs Group; via +Jason Howell

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3 years ago

Adobe Flash player for Android updated, brings security fixes and enhancements

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Adobe has updated the Flash player for Android to version 10.3.186.3, which fixes security issues and provides feature enhancements for certain phones and websites.  It's always recommended to update your Flash player, and this update is no different.  Besides the security enhancements we see every month or so, the specifics for this update are:

  • Enabled NEON optimizations for OMAP4 (Cortex A-9) based devices.
  • Corrected an issue on the Samsung Galaxy S where H.264 video at resolutions of 720p and below was not displayed.
  • Fixed an issue where app packaging would fail for Android Apps using Flash Player in WebView that set android:hardwareAcceleration to True in their AndroidManifest.xml.
  • Fixed a crash on the HTC EVO that some users encountered with specific video.
  • Fixed an issue that caused video frames to stop rendering on long streaming videos (> 1 hour) on some Motorola devices.
  • Fixed an issue where touch events were getting delayed with Kongregate.com games.
  • Fixed an issue where games on Kongregate.com freeze when users exit from Full-Screen mode.

The security specific fixes are outlined by Adobe here, and you'll find the link to download or update after the break.

Thanks everyone who sent this in!

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3 years ago

Greedy Spiders brings 8-legged strategy to Android

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Youtube link for mobile viewing

If you like Cut the Rope, it's time to give Greedy Spiders a try. It's a little more cerebral (and a little more creepy), trading Om Nom for spiders and flies.

The idea is this: There's a spider. There are flies. You need to cut the flies out of the web. But every time you cut a strand, the spider moves closer. So, you'll need to cut as few strands as possible, and do it in a way that keeps the spider from reaching the fly. Sound simple enough? It is ... at first.

Greedy Spiders has some nice graphics, and there's an ad-supported lite version in addition to a paid version. We've got free download links after the break.

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3 years ago

Android gets a dedicated Facebook messenger

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While the cool kids are off doing their group huddles on Google+, Facebook keeps plugging away, and a new dedicated group messing app apparently is in the works. Hardly a surprise, given that Facebook bought Beluga earlier this year. And judging from Facbeook's placeholder page for the mobile messenger, it's pretty much the same thing. Simple, easy to use group messaging.

So let's see. One app for IM. One app for Facebook. Another for Google+ huddles. Text messages. E-mail. That about cover it? 

Download links are after the break.

Source: Facebook, Facebook blog; Thanks, Milad!

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3 years ago

Android App Review: Weeds on Showtime

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Weeds is one of the most popular shows on TV today. The Showtime series that centers around a widowed mother who sells pot to provide for her sons now has an official Android app. With the app, fans of the show can enjoy a good experience on their mobile device.

When you first open the app, you’ll see four main tabs at the top as well as a scrolling home screen that displays the latest features. For example, you’ll see a picture of Mary-Louise Parker that contains an Animated Recap of the last episode. This is all under the Home tab.

The next tab, The Show, provides extensive information about all aspects of the series. You can read the premise for the current season, sift through an episode guide, see when the show will air on Showtime and view the main cast list with full biographical information.

The third tab, Videos, contains a full episode that users can view for free as well as various video clips to browse through such as interviews and short snippets from the season.

The final tab is the Photobooth option which offers the most user interaction. It allows consumers to insert a photo of their choosing into a Weeds-themed background which can then be shared with friends. Themes include: Mugshot, Case File, Passport, Baked, Jail, Subway, Photocopy and Airplane.

This app is perfect for the ultimate Weeds fan. If you haven’t gotten into the dark comedy yet, now is the time to start. The app is free from the Android Market and links to it can be found after the break along with more screenshots from the app.

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3 years ago

Android Wallpaper Review: Spring Zen HD

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Down here in Texas, the heat is so sweltering and the air so dry, everything is reduced to an unfortunate shade of brown. Fortunately, I can still see some green grass and lively nature in the Spring Zen HD live wallpaper.

Spring Zen HD is pretty simple at first glance, giving you a nest with eggs in it, falling leaves, a bench, and the occasional butterfly. Occasionally the whole scene pans around a bit, giving you a better look at the bench, leaves, and nest.

It runs incredibly smoothly and the graphics are fairly top-notch. Everything has a soft glow to it, and the colors are vibrant. The paid version also boasts a considerable settings menu.

The settings menu gives you two preconfigured themes: Sakura and Maple. Sakura is the pink-flowered one, Maple is a maple leafed one.

From there you can choose to randomize the entire scene every time you turn on your screen, or you can specify very criteria, like what tree type, bench type, or egg color. You can also toggle things such as a butterfly, falling flora, sun beams, and the river.

Overall, Spring Zen HD is a pretty, aesthetically pleasing live wallpaper that performs well. It only sets you back a dollar, and for those who don't want to pay, there's also a free version, but it lacks the settings menu entirely.

More screenshots and download links are after the break.

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3 years ago

Android Game Review: Switch

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Youtube link for mobile viewing

This one's dizzingly addictive. Switch is an Android racing game that's about distance, speed and trying to send you running for a barf bag, while trying to do an impression of Tap Tap Revenge at the same time.

You've got a little triangular racing thing, which goes speeding down a four-lane track. The idea is to miss things that are coming at you.. The game starts out pretty slow. But once it speeds up, it throws a wrench into things by going all sideways. It's an interesting mix of simple gameplay and visual tricks, and keeps things exciting.

Switch is free, and we've got download links after the break.

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3 years ago

Android Kids App: Bord Chalkboard

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Here's a nice little Honeycomb-optimized chalkboard called, appropriately enough, Bord. As far as virtual chalkboards go, Bord works quite nicely. You've got six colors and three sizes from which to choose, and you can have either a green board or black board. There's a sponge for, erm, sponging, and you can load and save your drawings, and even play them back in real time. Or, you can share over e-mail or Facebook. Cleanup's simple -- just shake the board.

Best part is that it's free, though the in-app ad is pretty annoying, at least visually. Bord is definitely worth taking a look at, though. We've got download links after the break.

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3 years ago

Android Quick App: Color Confusion

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I'm not sure how to explain Color Confusion. Well, that's not entirely true. I'm just not sure how to describe the frustration you'll feel as you realize learning the basic colors (red, yellow, blue) won't help you at all in this game. Oh, well.

Color Confusion has a simple idea: mix cans of paint to create the colors that need to be made. Easy description, mind-blowingly difficult concept (at times).

You get a limited number of "mixes" per level, and if you run out of mixes before you've discovered how to make all the colors, you lose. Fortunately, you can then choose to be shown what colors at your disposal you needed to mix, and (one would assume) learn.

If you find yourself not liking the colors you were dealt, the bottom right-hand corner of the screen has a "remix" button. We're not talking dance party, dubstep remix, just a "have some new colors" remix. As far as I can tell, you get unlimited remixes, so don't be afraid to grab some colors you know how to create.

You're timed on how fast you complete a level, so there's some incentive to not completely lollygag. As you advance through the levels, more and more colors need to be mixed at a time, but the game compensates by upping your mix count to balance things out.

Overall, Color Confusion is definitely for those who want a serious challenge, but not for the faint of heart. There's both a free version and a paid version on the Market, but the paid version only sets you back one greenback (standard fare 'round these parts), so don't hesitate to show your support if it's something you enjoy.

Download links are after the break.

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3 years ago

Android Quick App: GUN BROS

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YouTube link for mobile viewing

Inside of every man, woman, and child is a tiny little urge to shoot comically large guns and single-handedly stop a force of bad guys doing ... bad guy stuff. While there might be a slew of options to choose from over the course of your life, at this time, on this day, GUN BROS (hereafter referred to as Gun Bros) takes that crown.

What you've got in Gun Bros is a goofy plot (you go around offing T.O.O.L. bad guys, cause who likes a tool?) with big guns, large, muscular men, and awesome gameplay. Gameplay is pretty straightforward. Run around with the left digital joystick, point your guns with the right. Fortunately, there's no fire button. As soon as you activate the right joystick, you unleash the fury of your boomstick.

Your object is to survive wave-after-wave of baddies, running around picking up health and explodium, as it reveals itself. When you finally run out of life, you're taken back to the menu screen. No game over, no sad music, none of that. When back on the menu, you're free to refine your explodium ore for gold coins, which you can then spend on better weapons, armor, and other misc. stuff. (Pro tip: buy big guns first.)

Ultimately, you're hoping to survive all of the waves in a given level, so you can unlock the next series in that section of the game, but even if you don't, other planets (with more T.O.O.L.s on them) still reveal themselves, so you can bounce around a bit if anything starts to feel stale.

The controls are relatively tight, although sometimes it feels like both joysticks lag up a bit as you need them, so be prepared to both run and shoot a little preemptively if you don't want to take damage. Other than that, everything is mad responsive, just as it should be.

Gun Bros is absolutely free in the Android Market, so if any of this has piqued your interest, I'd go download it without hesitation. Solid graphics, great gameplay, and saving the world (near single-handedly) is just too much to pass up.

Download links are after the break.

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3 years ago

Google Movies update pushing out to Galaxy Tab

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Well, this is interesting.  I recently went into the Android Market on my Galaxy Tab and it asked me to accept the terms and conditions again.  I accepted, and the app closed down.  When I booted the market back up I had a shiny new "movies" tab.  In my preview of the Touchwiz UX update, I noted that the update came with the "Google Videos" app pre-installed but that the market didn't have movies available for purchase yet.

One puzzling thing is that the playback worked flawlessly on my rooted galaxy tab, but Josh's rooted phone just gave him the playback error we all know and love.  My device is running essentially a "stock" Touchwiz build, so that might have something to do with it.

Like most market updates, expect this rollout to go out gradually, but it can't hurt to clear the cache to try and force and update.  One additional screen capture, and a blurrycam pic of actual playback (since the videos app seems to block screen capture methods) after the break.  If you get it on your device, be sure to sound off in our forums.

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3 years ago

Watch UFC events live on your Android phone with UFC TV

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Settling in for UFC 133 tonight? If so, you'll want to grab the UFC TV app from the Android Market. The app itself allows for viewing live UFC events and if you have a device capable of HDMI out you can broadcast them direct your TV plus, you get to view all the press conferences and weigh-ins live for free. Live events and past events do cost you some money but the app itself is free. Pretty decent app for UFC fans out there. Download link can be found past the break.

Thanks, Mike for sending this in!

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3 years ago

Android Central Editors' app picks for August 6, 2011

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Apps. They make the world go round. OK, well maybe not quite, but they are an enjoyable part of the Android platform and finding new ones can be a bit difficult at times. With so many apps in the market it can be hard to find the right one for you, so let's hit the break and take a look at some of our favorites.

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