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4 years ago

Cab hailing service Hailo launches in the U.S, with its arrival in Boston

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We're big fans of Hailo, the service that lets you hail and pay for a cab using your Android device. It helps make commuting through London less of a struggle, and we like that. Almost a year on from its first inception in the UK, Hailo has since branched out to Dublin and to Toronto. But, from today, the service finally arrives on U.S. shores beginning with Boston. 

While Chicago and New York City are both currently under active development, it's Boston that gets the nod as the first to experience the service. By partnering with licensed taxi drivers, Hailo offers not only an easy way to flag down a cab, but also offers a guarentee of safety to its users. 

The app itself is free to download, and if you're in Boston and decide to try this out, hit us up in the comments with your experience. 

Source: Hailo via TNW

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4 years ago

Chameleon Launcher reaches v1.1 - Brings performance enhancements, UI refinements and major feature additions

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If you haven't gone all in with Chameleon Launcher it's quite understandable. While a beautiful next-level launcher it is, the entry price of $10 and somewhat limited feature set has made it a hard to justify purchase for some folks out there. The latest version may change some minds though as Chameleon has now reached v1.1 status and brings along with it performance enhancements, UI refinements and major feature additions. Some of which, have been long asked for by users:

  • Native Android Widget Support - Thats right, Chameleon widgets and native Android app widgets can now live side by side on your home screens. Android widgets in Chameleon work exactly as they would on the standard Android launcher, even while living inside our grid block containers. It’s almost like unicorns are real!
  • Chameleon Widget SDK 1.1 - One of the big, yet hidden features of v1.1 is the updates to the Widget SDK. There is a lot of plumbing that has been added that allows for access to local device data using Android Services. The Chameleon Widget API docs will be updated in the near future with details and examples. We have also published a design section on the make a widgets documentation site outlining how to handle CSS markup for your widgets, and handling widget resizing. You can find that here.
  • Twitter Widget - The Twitter widget has gotten the biggest boost out of all the widgets in this update. There are now inline options for reply, retweet and favorite. Retweeted tweets are also now displayed as per Twitters display guidelines. The cherry on the top of this enticing sunday is the ability to display your lists. Yummy.
  • Calendar Widget - For those who need to stay super organized, the calendar widget now supports an All Calendar view as well as an Events List view.

Overall, the update looks pretty pleasing. They've also gone ahead and corrected plenty of bugs in the system as well, including a major one wherein Chameleon tended to freeze upon start up. Whether or not the changes make it a more viable purchase remains to be seen but if nothing else, it shows support is still going strong and updates will keep on coming. If you've not checked out our hands-on review -- you can have a look at Chameleon right here.

Source: Chameleon

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4 years ago

Verizon Galaxy S3 receiving small update, still not Jelly Bean

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Users in our forums are reporting that their Verizon Galaxy SIII (S3) handsets are pulling down a moderately sized (62MB) OTA update. Unfortunately, this isn't the Jelly Bean update that most users are hoping for -- you're still on 4.0.4 for now -- but it does seem to be bringing some useful enhancements. The latest software version, VRALHE, brings the Enhanced Zooming feature to the browser, email and more. It also claims to fix an issue with device restarts, as well as enhance stability in Google Play.

All good and necessary updates, but let's hope the next OTA is to Android 4.1. Take a look at the support document for the update at the source link below, then head to the forums and let us know how the update process went for you.

Source: Verizon (PDF)Android Central Forums; Thanks, Christopher!

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4 years ago

Official Twitter app updated with large-screen improvements and bug fixes

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The official Twitter for Android app has been updated with a couple small but useful additions today. First off, the profile layout has been better designed to work on larger screens. As more and more people buy Android tablets, it's a good thing that Twitter is paying attention. We just hope they can continue this feature creep and add some more functionality to the app. Additionally, the changelog indicates there have been a few bug fixes in this update.

At this point, we don't see much reason to choose the official Twitter app considering how many great third party choices there are out there. But with the increasing restrictions on these other clients coming in the future, we're glad the official app is at least improving at some rate. Take a look at the update at the Google Play Store link above.

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4 years ago

Stock keyboard not cutting it on the Nexus 7? Why not try out the ASUS keyboard instead

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One of the greatest positives about the Android platform, is choice. Hardware, software, apps, theres something for everybody out there somewhere. Customizing your user experience to meet your every need is possible in so many different ways, including something that's used all the time. The keyboard. Like Twitter clients, there's a keyboard out there to suit everyone. 

So, let's focus a little. In particular, on the Google Nexus 7. A pure, un-tampered, vanilla Jelly Bean experience straight from the depths of Mountain View itself. The stock Jelly Bean keyboard is OK, some would argue it's better than OK. For some of us though -- on the Nexus 7 in particular -- the stock keyboard is nothing but frustrating. But, that's cool, we can change it. And, it looks like there's an alternative built right into the Nexus 7 from ASUS, that's possibly worth a look before handing over some of your dollars to buy a replacement, such as the ever impressive SwiftKey. The one caveat -- you may need to be rooted to try it out. Now that's out of the way, click on past the break and we'll show you how to find it. 

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4 years ago

Starbucks updates app to follow holo design guidelines

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They just keep coming. More and more developers have been publishing updates to their apps recently that apply the latest Android design guidelines. Starbucks joins the list today with an update to their app that brings a pretty noticeable UI redesign.

The new design follows the "holo" design language -- destroying the legacy menu button (which makes Galaxy Nexus uers happy) and replacing it with an overflow settings button. Tabs across the top of the app offer a cleaner look to navigation, and Starbucks simply changed the color scheme from default blue to a dark shade of green. The map of nearby stores is cleaner, and the entire UI seems to have received little bits of polish.

If you haven't given the Starbucks app a try yet, it's really worth a look. The app is free at the Google Play Store link above. If you're just curious about the new UI, we've got a few screenshots comparing the old (left) and (new) designs after the break.

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4 years ago

'It's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown' now available for Android

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It's that time of year when we see a few Halloween apps, and that list wouldn't be complete without a Charlie Brown storybook app. "It's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown" is coming to the Play Store in the form of an interactive storybook, narrated by Peter Robbins -- the original voice of Charlie Brown. The app incorporates remastered animations and original voice material from the original 1966 TV special. Surely this storybook recreation will do the original some justice.

Accompanying this storybook app is an interactive game, The Great Pumpkin Festival. With this app, you can create your own avatar with plenty of costumes and customizations, carve pumpkins, vote on other people's creations and complete achievements to get new costumes for your avatar.

For just over $5.00, this Charlie Brown classic can be yours at the Google Play Store link above. If you're content with a smaller bit of the experience, The Great Pumpkin Festival is available free on the Play Store as well.

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4 years ago

Gameloft's Real Soccer 2013 now available in the Play Store

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Gameloft's soccer simulation game, Real Soccer, has received a nice update to a 2013 edition. The update brings improved graphics and animations, along with a new management mode that provides a better in-depth game experience.

So, does Real Soccer 2013 have what it takes to challenge the incumbent FIFA 2012 (and impending FIFA 2013)? A gameplay trailer from the developer can be found below. If it seems like something you'd like, you can grab a download from the Google Play Store link above.

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4 years ago

Android 4.1.2 OTA rolling out to Wi-Fi Motorola Xoom

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Falling right into line with the Galaxy Nexus devices receiving an OTA, the Wi-Fi Motorola Xoom seems to be getting a 4.1.2 Jelly Bean update as well. Users in our forums are starting to report that their devices are pulling down the update and although these updates are usually on a staggered rollout, we would expect it to start showing up on all devices shortly.

We've seen the official 4.1.2 Jelly Bean changelog at this point -- with most improvements coming to the Nexus 7 -- but have yet to receive an official update page from Motorola. It will likely be put up once the OTA is a bit more widespread. If you're antsy, you can grab a direct download of the OTA file at the second source link. Before flashing, why not check out the forums and make sure you've got all the tips and tools you need.

Source: Android Central Forums; OTA download

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4 years ago

Grab all the medieval debauchery you can handle with The Bard's Tale, on sale now for only $2.99

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If you're looking for an epic action RPG to get into and have had your eye on The Bard's Tale, now is as good a time as any to pick it up. The game which, will keep you occupied for around 20-30 hours if you play through it all, is on sale right now in the Google Play Store for only $2.99 -- that's half price from it's original launch price of $5.95 in case you were wondering. You'll want to check your available device space however as this one comes in at over 3.5GB when all is said and downloaded.

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4 years ago

Google TV coming to Korea on LG Uplus IPTV

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It's Google TV, Gangnam style.

Google is making a pretty big step into the Korean market, partnering with LG Uplus (yes, they're an internet service provider too) to offer IPTV set top boxes with Google TV preloaded. The combination of an existing IPTV network with Google TV's offerings brings live TV, along with 50,000 on demand titles and the whole host of Google TV apps -- Search, YouTube, Google Play and of course the Chrome browser.

This is the first IPTV network to offer an integrated Google TV experience, and Korea is now the tenth country in the world with Google TV available. New and existing LG Uplus subscribers can get the new Google TV-equipped box starting today. The rest of us outside of Korea can wish for the day when IPTV becomes a reality.

Source: Official Google TV Blog

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4 years ago

TuneIn Radio Pro updated with holo design

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One of the most popular radio apps on Android, TuneIn Radio Pro, has been updated with a proper holo design. Since the release of Ice Cream Sandwich, Google has been engaged in getting developers on board with a design language that helps unify the user experience across apps. This "holo" design has been implemented in many of Google's own apps, and now many headline developers have implemented it as well.

Bits of polish show in a swipe across stations to choose available streaming qualities, pull to refresh and a proper blue / white / gray design. Beyond just looking better, the design change in TuneIn Radio Pro offers better usability. Swiping between UI panes feels more natural, and gives users access to "related", "twitter", "favorites", "options" and "recent" right from the main "now playing" screen.

We've got a few side-by-side comparison screenshots of the old (left) and new (right) design after the break. If you like what you see, you can buy the Pro version of the app at the Google Play Store link above for 99 cents.

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4 years ago

ESPN ScoreCenter app updated with Galaxy S3 DLNA sharing

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The ESPN ScoreCenter app has just been updated with a pretty handy feature for Samsung Galaxy SIII (S3) owners. With the latest update -- version 2.3.2 -- users that have a Galaxy S3 and a Smart TV (any DLNA compatible device, really) can push ESPN video from the phone to the TV over the local Wi-Fi network.

This is functionality we usually only see for specific boxes, or with specific manufacturer tie-in, so it's interesting to see ESPN integrate it at the app level -- and see it work with any DLNA device to boot. Hopefully future updates will expand functionality past the Galaxy S3 as well.

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4 years ago

Google opens new Google Play Developer Console to all

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If you'll recall back to Google I/O 2012, a new Google Play Developer Console was previewed, showing what Google intended for the future. Since then, Google has teamed up with specific developers to try it out and give feedback, and now it has released the new Dev Console to everyone.

The new console is designed to be bright, clean and easy to use. Features like good universal search -- a Google product staple -- and the ability to track user ratings over time are great additions that help developers improve their apps. Additionally, this latest version improves the publishing workflow, offers support for more languages and has automated language translations.

Take a look at the source link below for more information, the second link for a gallery of screenshots of the new UI, and stick around after the break for the video demonstration from Google I/O (jump to 31:30 in to see the Dev Console part).

Source: Android Developers Blog; Google+

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4 years ago

Star Command gameplay video showcases awesome strategic space combat

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The fine folks at Warballoon have released a hefty 13-minute gameplay sample of their upcoming spaceship simulation title, Star Command. The video shows off nostalgic 16-bit-style graphics and broad, compelling mechanics, all set to the hilarious commentary of some of the dev team members. 

Throughout Star Command, you hire new crew members with varying skills in science, engineering, and combat. Over time, you put them on missions to improve their skills and unlock new perks, as well as upgrade the ship's various rooms. Completing missions requires some light role-playing through various dialog options, tactical combat when your ship gets boarded, and finely-honed reflex-driven mini-games for ship-to-ship combat. I missed these guys showing off gameplay at PAX East last year and I've been kicking myself ever since. 

A lot of my friends have been playing FTL lately, but Star Command looks so good that I've been holding off just in case I get burned out on the space sim thing before Warballoon's game launches. Star Command will be available on Android, iOS, Mac, and PC, though there aren't any details on price or release date. Considering how polished everything is looking, I would be surprised if it didn't land before the holidays. As for price? Well, this might be one of those "shut up and take my money" situations. 

Hit up Star Command's home page for more screenshots and info. 

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