Headlines

4 years ago

Flightview Android travel app updated, improves itineraries, battery life

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FlightView for AndroidFlightView for Android

Android travel app Flightview -- read our initial review -- just announced an upgrade, adding a trio of improvements. They are:

  • Manage Travel Itineraries - with the updated My Trips feature, users can save grouped flights together, record reservation information and personal notes, and sort saved flights by trip name or date.
  • Plan for Flight Delays – with the upgraded airport delay map, including the new “Low Traffic” indicator, users can get first looks at probable delays in departures or arrivals – ahead of airline announcements.
  • Conserve Battery Life – by optimizing FlightView’s servers, the new Android app allows users to track numerous flights at the same time, share travel information through social media outlets like Facebook and Twitter, and quickly rebook when flights are delayed or cancelled – all without draining the smartphone’s battery life.

Still missing is support for automatic itinerary -- such as you get through Tripit -- but we're still expecting it at some point. Flightview has been downloaded by more than 40,000 users since its launch in late July, the developer says. It's in the Android Market for 99 cents. Download links after the break. [Press release]

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4 years ago

Twitter for Android updated to 1.0.3

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twitter for Android update

Late last night we noticed that Twitter for Android (the "official" Android Twitter app) was updated to 1.0.3 without a changelog. (Seriously? Changelogs should be mandatory in the Market listing, folks.) After some digging, I found a semi-explanatory post on Twitter (where else to best find Twitter client updates?) explaining that the new version was a patch for some bug fixes, and the client has been improved so that it now uses OAuth for signing in to Twitter.  And nothing earth-shattering or magical was seen.   Grab the update from the Market, if you don;t have Twitter for Android installed, you can grab it after the break.  [via Twitter]

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4 years ago

Google Earth updated to 1.1, brings the exploration of the oceans

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Google Earth for Android

Google Earth for Android has been updated to version 1.1, which allows users to explore the oceans in great detail. Now, you are able to zoom in underneath the surface and explore the terrain that makes up nearly 70 percent of our Earth. 

Included in the 1.1 update:

  • A layer called "Explore the Oceans," which features hundreds of photos and videos submitted by users 
  • The gold highlighted icons represent those submitted by the Mission Blue Hope Spot Initiative

There are also features only for those with 2.2 (Froyo):

  • Supports Flash in balloons, which means that you can watch videos directly in the balloons
  • Also, the application was made easier to navigate, with Google allowing users to roam around with two fingers rather than the on-screen controls

This update will work with most devices with 2.1 (Eclair) or higher. If you want to download it, links are after the break. [Google Mobile Blog Spot]

 

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4 years ago

Text message speed record broken on a Galaxy S using Swype

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Swype record text 

Mellisa Thompson, of Salford, England, has broken the Guinness World Record for the fastest texter, using Swype on a Samsung Galaxy S with a time of 25.94 seconds.  The previous record of 35.54 seconds, held by Franklin Page of the U.S. was also set using a Samsung phone (the Omnia II) using Swype.  We're glad to see this one come to Android :)

For all the aspiring record breakers out there, the "official" text used is:

"The razor-toothed piranhas of the genera Serrasalmus and Pygocentrus are the most ferocious freshwater fish in the world. In reality they seldom attack a human."

Punctuation and capitalization counts, so none of that ez txt spk.  Unfortunately, Swype is still in closed beta, so we can't help you there.  If you have what it takes, fire up the camera and send in a video -- we'll see that it gets to the right place if you can beat the record!  [Google News]

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4 years ago

Android Quick App: Worldmate

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Worldmate Android travel app

I might have just found my perfect Android travel app. Worldmate is now in beta for Android, and it pretty much combines every feature I need in an app to keep me pointed in the right direction while on the road.

You'll start by either signing in or signing up with Worldmate, which was painless enough. Then you sign into the app and are greeted by the screen you see above. Let's work our way down.

  • My trips: There's no manually inputting flights here. Like with some other travel apps, you'll e-mail your itinerary-- flights, hotel, etc. -- to Worldmate, which snags the details and forwards them to your phone. Once it's there, you have flight info, maps, ticket info, weather, the works. You can share your trips and get reminders all on your phone.
  • Book a hotel: Just like it sounds. Book a hotel from your phone through Hotels.com.
  • Weather forecast: Get the weather in your city, cities you're slated to visit, or search for a city's weather.
  • Currency converter: Figure out how much something costs between dozens of currencies.
  • Travel notification: Customize your notifications.

For me, it comes down to a few things: The ability to upload entire itineraries at once, maps, weather and flight info -- and the all-important confirmation number -- all in once place. I'm going to have to use this on the road to give it final judgment. But the early verdict is that, at least for me, it combines the right info with enough UI juice to keep me up to date but not overwhelmed. Check out more screen shots after the break, and get your beta copy now. [Worldmate]

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4 years ago

Developer: Android is a viable revenue stream, posts numbers to prove it

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Advanced Task Manager

Aaron La, the developer behind Advanced Task Manager, has opened his books and gives us some interesting insight into the Android Market, profitability and his own opinions of the market.We'll let Aaron break down the numbers for you, but some interesting points:

  • The free version of ATM can bring in as much or more advertising revenue monthly than straight sales of its 99-cent counterpart.
  • Aaron hasn't quit his day job, but an average of $10,000 a month is quite a lot of pocket change.
  • Google Checkout and the Market app themselves are a couple of big anchors holding back Android. (And that's a sentiment certainly echoed by a whole lot of people).
  • The 24-hour return policy isn't evil.

Give the entire blog post a read. It's a good one. [Aaronla.com via @romainguy]

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4 years ago

Android Quick App: Zune Home launcher

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Zune Home launcher replacement for Android

I'd be lying if I said I wasn't intrigued by what Windows Phone 7 will be bringing to the proverbial smartphone table in a few short months. And so when we ran across the Zune Home launcher replacement [via FrAndroid], I had to give it a shot. It's a 99-cent launcher replacement that roughly mimics the UI of the Zune and (even more roughly) Windows Phone 7. It's definitely not the same experience, though it has potential. Check out the video and download links after the break.

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4 years ago

Trillian multi-client IM app now in open beta for Android

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Trillian IM chat

Who has two thumbs, seven Android phones and has a hankering for some multi-client instant messaging on Android? This guy. The popular desktop IM client Trillian is now in open beta for Android for a limited time. With it, you can keep up with your pals on AIM, Gtalk, IRC, Mobile Me, Facebook, MySpaceIM, Yahoo and a handful of other protocols, all from a single app on your phone.

Along with the usual Trillian support, you get tabbed chats, landscape mode, and can sent emoticons, photos and send pings (oh boy) to your friends "to demand attention."

The beta period won't last forever, and the app will expire at the end of the beta (at which time we'll likely have to pay for it. So snag it now and give it a shot. [Trillian]

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4 years ago

From the Forums -- aHome 4 beta released

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aHome beta 4  aHome Beta 4

Whether you're getting tired of the vanilla look, or feeling like PhilBlur just isn't for you, or just ready to try something new, the good people at Mappn have delivered. We looked at aHome 4 a few weeks back when we got hold of some leaked screen shots, and now you can, too.  The developers are actively seeking feedback, and looking for some artistic types to work up some more themes as well.  Give it a look! [Android Central forums]

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4 years ago

Custom recovery for Droid X -- almost there

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Droid X recovery

Android hacker Koush has done it again, this time by creating a method to (almost) have his famous Clockwork recovery on the Motorola Droid X.  He does state that this isn't a "real" recovery, and there's a big list of caveats and issues attached. Frankly, unless you understand the cautions and warnings pointed out, wait another week before giving it a whirl.  I don't think this can brick your X, but it could leave you scratching your head and feeling helpless while it refuses to boot up.

The good news -- this is Koush we're talking about.  If anyone can work magic on a Moto, he can.  He already has plans to get this in Rom Manager, which will make things easier, and while the locked and encrypted bootloader may keep a full custom recovery from ever happening, you can bet this working method will be refined and made more usable in the near future. 

Moto, we love you.  We love your Android phones.  Do you see now that it isn't worth it?  As long as you make handsets we want to buy, we will find a way to open them up.  Save yourself the headache, and the money and stop locking down your phones, please.

We're not going to give any download links for this one, because each and every person who plans to use it needs to read the warnings from the developer himself.  You can find those, as well as download information in the source link.  [MyBrainHurts -- Koushik Dutta's blog]

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4 years ago

Symantec's latest -- Tapsnake: watching your every move?

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Tapsnake

Symantec has found more malware in the Android Market1, even going so far as to give the app it's own 'viral' name AndroidOS.Tapsnake.  Symantec states that Tapsnake sends your GPS data, and users with another application can read your location.  And they're right -- but read further and you'll see that calling this any type of threat is as silly as developing it in the first place.

In Symantec's own words:

"For the application to really be used maliciously, an attacker would need to have access to the phone to install the program. For it to work, an email address and “key” must be typed into the phone running AndroidOS.Tapsnake. This same registration information must later be typed into the phone running GPS Spy." 

In other words, you not only have to download a Snake game that tells you it's going to use your GPS data, you also have to enter a keyword, and the e-mail address of the person who will be doing the spying.

There are real threats out there, but this isn't one I'm going to worry about.  Watch what you download and use the tiniest bit of common sense and you'll be just fine.  [Symantec]

1. author's note: I tried seven different Android phones, and couldn't find Tap Snake on the Android Market.  Symantec says it is available, so your mileage may vary.

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4 years ago

GetGlue releases Android application

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getglue

GetGlue, a popular web-based and iOS social networking application, has announced its new Android application. For those who are unfamiliar with GetGlue, it is a social networking game, similar to Foursquare, except you don't even have to leave the comfort of your house. Users are able to "check in" to share with their friends what book they are reading or what movie they are about to watch. Once you check into a few of a particular category, the system can pick up your trend and it will actually begin to provide you with suggestions of other books, movies, or musicians you may be interested in.  In addition to the release of their Android application, they are also announcing some new partnerships with companies like HBO, PBS, Universal, and more, which just helps expand their game.

Instead of receiving badges upon check in's, users receive stickers instead as part of the game. One of the neatest features is that a user can go online to their website at any time and request physical copies of any stickers that they may have earned. GetGlue will send you, free of charge, a copy of the stickers and all they ask in return is a picture showing where you used the sticker. With over 500,000 users, and nearly five million check ins and ratings a month, this application is bound to keep those looking for new material on their toes. Finally, in addition to their iOS, web based, and Android application they will be offering a very light mobile web version so you can keep up with your friends on the BlackBerry and webOS devices for the time being, so spread the word! Download link and screenshots are after the break.

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4 years ago

NDrive and Android Central giving away 20 NDrive licenses [contest]

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NDrive navigation

We all love Google's turn by turn navigation system, but many times we're looking for a solution that works off-line.  Enter NDrive -- the world navigation system that stores map data on-device, ready to work with no data or WiFi connection.  But off-line maps is only a small portion of what NDrive offers -- wait until you see the video after the jump!

The good people at NDrive have reached out and are offering full license and USA maps to 20 lucky Android Central forum members (a $500 total value).  To enter, see the rules and official contest thread in the forums HERE, and after the break is that video overview of NDrive that we promised, check it out!

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4 years ago

Android Quick App: Kids Finger Paint

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Used to be my daughter would sit in the back of the car, bored, and ask to use my wife's iPhone to draw. No more, now that I've got Kids Finger Paint. It's about as simple as it gets, which is how it should be for a drawing app. Touch the screen, and you draw. To get a different color, you touch the color wheel. No hidden menus to mess with. Now I'm the coolest parent in the car. The app costs a perfectly reasonable 99 cents. Download info after the break.

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4 years ago

Android App Review: G4 TV

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G4 has changed a bit since its birth in the TechTV days, but its new app is absolutely packed with features and awesomeness. Videogame fans have long had to deal with the mobile versions of popular gaming websites, such as Gamespot or G4's own version. These were often clunky and slow even on the latest phone. Navigation was a nightmare and often video was left out entirely. Join me past the break to discover how G4 has shown the gaming press how its done. 

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