Headlines

4 years ago

Aro proves the strength of Android's 'chaos,' says Scoble

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 Aro preview

Robert Scoble, a well-known tech pundit and current iPhone user, recently got a hands on demo with Aro, a new app in closed beta for Android. The app is a complete replacement for nearly all your communication apps: email,  SMS, phone, etc. By tapping into all your messages, the app is able to intelligently link names, places, and other data together. It is a pretty complicated process, and Scoble sums it up pretty well:

What does Aro do? If, say, Bill Gates sends Steve Jobs an email, copies me, and is talking about Larry Ellison, Larry’s name will have a little square around it. Click on that square and a new UI fans out, letting me see other info. It’s like Rapportive or Xobni, but done much better and for the mobile interface. It makes your phone much more productive than it would be otherwise and that’s why I feel it’s so important.

In addition to previewing the app, Scoble talks a bit about how this kind of app is simply not possible on the more closed iPhone. Apple actively prevents developers from changing the core experience of using the iPhone, even if those changes make the phone easier to use or offer more features. A perfect example is the Swype keyboard many Android users (myself included) have fallen in love with or WiFi syncing with iTunes. There are pros and cons to both approaches, but it seems the tables are tipping in Google's favor as of late.

Scoble has posted videos of his interviews and demos of both Sywpe and Aro, which can be found past the link. If you want to sign up for the closed beta of Aro, click on the "Aro" link. [Scobleizer, Aro]

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4 years ago

Android Quick App: pvz -- a Plants vs Zombies clone [video]

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pvz

We're all waiting for PopCap to get Plants vs. Zombies on Android, but developer lzn1007 goes a step further, and has released pvz -- a near-perfect clone.  Pvz has three modes, Day Mode, Night Mode, and Challenge, which correspond pretty closely to the original.  There's also two challenge modes, and they, too are essentially the same as the authorized version.  Speaking of the authorized version, I fully expect this one to get taken down for trademark or copyright issues.  I'll let the developers duke it out over those, I just wanna kill some zombies.

Fair warning -- the application asks for some permissions you're not going to care for, like location and phone state.  There's an online social-gamer component that goes through a Chinese service called WiYun (use Google Translate, link is in Chinese, and seems legit), but you can leave it disabled and play offline.  I tested it here with WiFi and mobile data disconnected and had no problems.  I also ran it through Lookout, which didn't find anything glaringly wrong.  When it's all said and done, I'm certain that enabling the online component means your submitting data to the developer, so use your own best judgment. There's a video, and download link (free, all versions of Android) after the break.

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4 years ago

Yahoo! Mail for Android requiring off-Market update [update -- Yahoo has fixed]

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Yahoo!

From the department of things that really suck: Yahoo! Mail for Android is prompting users to upgrade to version 1.2.0.  Normally we all love updates, but this time Yahoo is forcing users to download and install this update from outside the Android Market.  Users who fail to accept and install the update from mobildl.zenfs.com are unable to use Yahoo! Mail on their phones or tablets.  We've reached out to Yahoo for a response, especially since AT&T users are out in the cold -- unless they use the Android Central Sideload Wonder Machine that is -- and if they respond we'll update accordingly.

We get it -- Yahoo and Google are competitors.  But this only serves to alienate your users, Yahoo.  Here's hoping you care enough about them to get this righted. Thanks Matthew for the heads-up!

Update from Yahoo! Mail for Android's Market page:

"IMPORTANT! A pre-release alpha version update was accidentally published on OCT 25th. If you downloaded this broken non-market version, please remove from your device and reinstall 1.0.4 from the Market"

So there you go, it was all a slip of the finger, err mouse.  Uninstall and reinstall from the Market and you're set.  I take back all those evil thoughts.

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4 years ago

Hide yo kids - hide yo wives -- Antoine DodsonSex Offender Tracker app

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This is either the funniest thing you'll see today -- or it's the most offensive. But every so often an internet video goes so viral that the rest of the world simply cannot ignore it. And sometimes the stars, or subjects of these videos become so popular and so recognized, that they're launched into a some minor realm of celebrity status.  And that's exactly what has happened to Antoine Dodson.

Cautious parents will get what might be their first introduction to Augmented Reality with Sex Offender Tracker.  Published four days ago to the Android market, Sex Offender Tracker uses your device's camera, and GPS in conjunction with the compass to provide you with real-time data about your surroundings, and in this case, the residence of sex offenders.

Although anybody can dig through the online sex offender registry any time of day, some feel this app may be an invasion of privacy, saying this app makes it much too easy to locate the names and homes of registered sex offenders. Then there's the $1.99 price tag, which will put off a bunch of you, we know.

Watch Antoine Dodson do his thing, and get download links, after the jump. [via BGR]

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4 years ago

Adobe releases Max Companion app for next week's conference

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Adobe Max

Adobe is hosting its Adobe Max conference today through Wednesday in Los Angeles. It brings together designers, developers and business leaders to discuss the current state of technology and emerging trends. 

Adobe has also developed an app to help those attending be a little more organized. The app features:

  • Max Agenda
  • Detailed session information
  • Speaker list
  • A personalized Max schedule
  • Maps for all the venues
  • Updates news about Max sessions and social events
  • Max information, such as ATM locations, wireless shuttle service and more)

If you're on your way to Adobe Max or are already there, consider downloading the Max Companion app; it will make your life a lot easier. [Adobe via Twitter]

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4 years ago

Android Quick App: MyReminders

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All your reminders right in one scrollable widget. View and modify your list of reminders.

I am an extremely forgetful person. Several times throughout the day I need to leave small reminders or notes for myself. Whether it’s something I need to grab at the store when I get out of work, a band I want to check out, or a movie I’ve been meaning to watch, I always seem to have great difficulty remembering these things on my own.  Thanks to this handy little app, I no longer come home from work with a bunch of sticky notes in my pocket.

MyReminders by Brian Swartzfager is a perfect example of simple and useful.  There are many apps out there that allow you to jot down a quick note, or set a quick reminder, but with MyReminders, it’s all about the implementation. It gives you quick and easy access to all your notes right from its widget. From the home screen you can scroll through all your reminders, or add a new one to the top or bottom of the list. And this, for me, is what really makes MyReminders stand out. Read more about MyReminders, and check out some more screen shots after the jump.

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4 years ago

Android Quick App: Deer Hunter 3D

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Deer Hunter 3D

It's fall here in the Northern Hemisphere, and for a good many of us that means days in the woods looking over a rifle or down an arrow shaft at our local big game.  Deer Hunter 3D, a new game on the Android Market from Glu Mobile brings the thrill of the hunt in a more compact form for those times when life, or even work, interferes with time in the stand.

Simply put, it's fun.  You have a choice of venues and weapons, and as you get better and advance in the game, harder levels are bigger animals are unlocked, making it even more fun.  Successful hunts give points that can be used to improve your skills -- which you'll need in the hardest levels where only perfect shots and the largest trophies will allow you to advance.  As we've come to expect from Glu Mobile, the game is smooth, the 3D objects are nicely rendered, and the replay value is high.  You can find Deer Hunter 3D in the Android Market, with both a free trial version (Android 2.1 or higher) and a full version for $4.99 USD.  Check out a video of the game in action, as well as the trial version download link, after the break.

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4 years ago

Android Central Editors' app picks for October 21, 2010

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apps

For many of us the hunt for a new application is on that is done nearly every day, and some times there is gold to be found, and others we come up empty. For those that have hit a dry spell, or those just simply looking for a new application to try without having to search for hours, check out what we use on a daily basis on our devices!

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4 years ago

Google Voice Search adds Russian, Polish, Czech, Turkish

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Google Voice Search

Good news for those of you who speak Russian, Polish, Czech or Turkish -- Google Voice Search now supports you, too. You can now get your search on in your native tongue. Just another reminder of how widespread Android is. Congrats! [via Google]

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4 years ago

Introducing our 'Member Favorites' forum

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Android Central forums Member Favorites

For most of us, the best part about having a smartphone is the applications.  From its humble beginnings a year and a half ago, to today's 90,000-odd apps in more than 30 countries, the Android Market is filled with apps that offer just about anything you or I will ever think of.  Sorting through them all looking for the hidden gems can be a daunting task for even the seasoned smartphone vetran.

Sure, tools like AppBrain and our weekly editor picks help, but now we're going one step further with our Member Favorites forum.  It's chock full of polls and posts that feature what you guys think is the cream of the crop in almost every category, and we're counting on you to make it the first stop on the 'net to see what people like ourselves think about apps, which ones are favorites, and why.  Check out the Member Favorites forum, and let the world know what you think today!

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4 years ago

Docs to Go 3.0 for Android now available

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Documents to Go 3.0

Weren't we just talking about Docs to Go 3.0? And sure enough, it's now available in the Android Market. Version 3.001 will run you $14.99. But judging by the number of e-mails we've already gotten, that likely won't be that big a deal for many of you. Download link after the break, folks. Thanks to everybody who sent this in!

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4 years ago

Hands-on with Winamp for Android: Great music app, easy wireless syncing

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Winamp for Android

I've never really gotten into playing music on my phone, for one reason or another. That ends today, with Nullsoft's Winamp hitting the Android Market in a beta version. That's right, the same Winamp that was my very first desktop player some 13 years ago (back when a 6-megabyte music file didn't seem to make any sense).

So what do we get here? A simple but powerful multimedia player, complete with widget and homescreen music controls. And, best of all, is the ability to add music to your phone over Wifi. Syncing music (or anything, for that matter) has never been terribly easy on Android. With Winamp, it's just a few clicks.

You really have to see this in action. Full video review of Winamp and Wifi sync is after the break, folks, along with download links.

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4 years ago

Hands-on with the new and improved YouTube app for Android

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 YouTube frontpageYouTube browsing

A new YouTube app has hit the Android Market. That's right, it's been broken out of the ROM and is in the Android Market, part of that whole break-out-of-the-ROM-and-into-the-market movement that's going on.  And it only takes a couple of minutes' use to see that it's much-improved over its predecessor. The new app is only for those devices sporting Android 2.2. Some of the new features:

  • Much improved UI
  • In-page playback so users can read comments while watching videos
  • The ability to watch videos in portrait or landscape mode
  • Personalized home-screen video feed
  • New player controls

If you have Android 2.2 already, go try this much improved version of the YouTube app in the market. Find the download link, more pics and our hands-on video after the break! [via Droid Life]

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4 years ago

Android Quick App: Letter Rip

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Letter Rip gameplay Letter Rip

I love word games and fortunately there have been a lot of good ones to come out on Android in the past year. The majority of the games that I like have a similar premise: to find as many words from tiles in a certain amount of time. A new game, called Letter Rip, is a bit different yet equally as fun.

Normally in word games, the screen is full of letter tiles for the user to use. This time, the board is empty at the beginning. The game is divided into two phases. In the first phase, the user must spell as many words as possible without allowing the board to fill up. You can move tiles around as often as you want, but don’t back yourself into a corner or the board will fill up quickly. Phase two occurs once the board fills up. You must spell words to clear the board, using the help of extra black tiles. However, words in phase two are only worth half as much, so try to stay in phase one as long as possible.

There are many customizable options that users can utilize. You can change the size of the game board, the game speed, the color of the tiles, the minimum word length, whether or not you're right or left handed, and various sound effects.

If you're a fan of word games, try out Letter Rip. It's refreshing as the game is not just a regurgitation of other games on Android, it makes the user think about strategy in a different way. Look for the download link and more after the break. 

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4 years ago

How to fix stuck app downloads [From the Forums]

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the hidden .android _secure file

Having issues with applications from the Market not downloading, or stalling during installation?  There's a fix that might help, and we've detailed it in the forums.  It's not complicated, doesn't require root or any real hackery, and we've even covered the method to make the fix stick so you aren't doing it every time an application wants to install itself to your SD card.  It all circles around the .android_secure folder on your SD card, which is the place applications using the "install to SD card method" that comes along with Froyo want and need to be. 

Hit the forums and have a look, because even if you're not having problems now, you never know when they might spring up.  [Android Central Forums]

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