Headlines

2 years ago

Google Chrome for Android updated for better bookmarking, adds switch for mobile view

22

Heads up, boys and girls. Android's Chrome browser (still in beta, natch) just got a pretty significant update. Here's what's new:

  • You can now request the desktop version of a website, in case you would rather not view the mobile version.
  • You can now add bookmarks as shortcuts on your home screen, so you can get to your favorite sites faster.
  • Choose your favorite apps to handle links opened in Chrome.
  • Have a proxy setup for Wi-Fi access? You can now use Chrome with the system proxy configured in Android settings.

Huzzah! Remember that Chrome is still only available for devices with Ice Cream Sandwich. We've got download links after the break if you need 'em.

Read more and comment

 
2 years ago

Read It Later, the "DVR for the web", is now Pocket

24

 

Read It Later, the popular multi-platform "DVR for the web", is now Pocket, and is now available for free in the Google Play store. With a free account, Pocket will save the articles, photos, and videos of your choosing to your queue (or “pocket”), which is accessible from your phone, tablet or computer. The content you save is optimized in a layout that’s easy to read, and once you sync your pocket, it is available for offline viewing.

Along with the new name, the update brings new content filters, more organizing tools, and faster syncing. Accounts are free, and your Read It Later account will work seamlessly with Pocket. Hit the break for the full presser and the Google Play link.

Read more and comment

 
2 years ago

Google Drive to launch next week with companion Android app?

47

Google Drive has been one of those long rumored products that never seems to be released. Google has been steadily releasing increased functionality to Docs so that you can use it as a cloud drive, but there just isn't a desktop interface like the other competitors such as Dropbox.

That all may change next week. According to a variety of sources, including The Next Web and Techcrunch, Google is planning to launch Drive as early as next Tuesday.

Here are some details as to what the service may offer:

  • 5GB for free
  • Will work in desktop folders on Windows and Mac
  • Android and iOS apps will also be released

Sound compelling? I've used Docs for cloud storage for a variety of file types, but I do miss the ability to simply drop a file in a folder and have it sync. As much as I love Dropbox, Google Drive sounds as though it can offer more storage for cheaper. What will it take for you to switch from your cloud service of choice?

Source: The Next Web

Read more and comment

 
2 years ago

Verizon announces a slew of expansions and additions to its 4G LTE network

38

Verizon has been quickly working to expand its 4G LTE network and today they announced more additions, expansions and enhancements for it. If you're city is on the list, you won't have to wait long, as these announcements will take effect April 19th.

Additions:

Expansions:

Enhancements:

It's always great to see more LTE support and its apparent that Verizon is trying to expand as quickly as possible.

Source: Verizon Wireless

Read more and comment

 
2 years ago

Breaking: We still have no idea what Samsung's 'next Galaxy' will bring

41

Unless you count any of the past months' fake renders and fan-made mock-ups (like the one above), Samsung's done a great job of  keeping the Galaxy S III next Galaxy under wraps. So much so that a sort of online news vacuum has developed, which, in the absence of any actual news, draws in unsubstantiated rumors and speculation. As the phone's May 3 unveiling draws near, we're seeing even more reports of what "might" be coming in Samsung's next flagship product.

Firstly, let's look at what we do know. Yesterday's press invite references the "next Galaxy" smartphone, and in an interview with BNN.ca, Samsung Canada's VP of Mobile Communications, Paul Brannen, says that it'll be a "flagship" phone, and the next evolution of the Galaxy line. Neither mentioned any specific branding, and Brannen in particular seemed to go out of his way to avoid doing so (for obvious reasons.)

Today's latest set of rumors comes from CNET's Crave blog, sources for which suggest that the "Galaxy S III" will be more of an incremental upgrade than a revolutionary product -- "like the iPhone 4S was to the 4." The problem with that is Samsung already has plenty of incremental updates to the Galaxy S II. In 4G LTE markets, there's the Galaxy S II LTE (aka Skyrocket), and in Asia, there's the Galaxy S II HD LTE. And then there's the Galaxy Note, which already offers a larger screen in addition to both LTE connectivity and an HD display.

Due in part to the lack of reliable leaked info, consumers' expectations are sky-high for Samsung's next flagship -- comment threads and forum discussions speculate on ridiculous features, like a 2GHz quad-core chip, 2GB of RAM and a 1080p display. With this in mind, it's possible that Samsung's merely trying to manage expectations going into a major product launch -- the old adage "under-promise and over-deliver" applies here.

CNET's source also suggested Samsung may do away with its current naming convention, saying "don't expect it to be called the S3." We'd be surprised if Samsung completely abandoned its Galaxy S branding, though. The manufacturer's sold 20 million Galaxy S II's worldwide, and in its native South Korea, more than 10% of the entire population owns one. With such a popular device, it'd make sense to have a clearly identified successor. In a world of Samsung Galaxy S II Epic 4G Touches and HTC EVO 4G LTE's, the "Galaxy S III" name is clear and succinct enough to do just that.

Spec-wise, reports have been circulating for months suggesting a quad-core phone with a 720p display. That's highly likely, but not even remotely surprising. The likes of HTC, LG and Huawei have already set the bar at this level for their 2012 flagships.

So the bottom line is we still have no idea what to expect on May 3. And that makes the event all the more exciting, considering how rare it is to go into a major smartphone announcement knowing absolutely nothing. Whatever form it ends up taking, we'll be on the ground in London on the day to bring you full coverage of Samsung's next flagship.

Source: BNN.ca, CNET Crave

More: Samsung Galaxy S III forums

Read more and comment

 
2 years ago

Google Maps updated with 'critical bug fix'

23

We're not sure exactly what's involved in the 'critical bug' that's just been fixed in Google Maps for Android, but if you're a Maps user (and we're guessing most of you are), you'd best head to that apps list and get updating. The new Google Maps version 6.5.1 offers just a single bullet point in its change list -- "includes a critical bug fix." It seems whatever the issue is, it affects both tablets and phones alike, as we're seeing the update on our Honeycomb devices too.

Head to "My Apps" list in the Google Play Store to grab the new version of Maps. And be sure to shout out in the comments if you've noticed anything different in this new version.

Read more and comment

 
2 years ago

The Best Android Apps

156

Are you looking for the absolute best Android apps, utilities, and games, the Play Store has to offer? You've come to the right place.

There are a lot of Android apps out there, and we've rounded up the very best across each of the Play Store's major categories. Keep in mind that these are our subjective choices, and are always welcome to hear about what you're digging in the comments, so don't be shy!

Best book & reference app for Android: Kindle

Amazon's Kindle remains the de facto standard for e-reading and offers the widest marketplace for books and reference materials. The app includes a wide range of features, including definition look-up, text scaling, contrast adjustment, and location memory. You can even load Mobi and PDF files to be read in the Kindle app (though not ePub).

Best business app for Android: Splashtop

Splashtop is a remote desktop access app that allows users to get access to everything they need on your home or work PC. So long as your computer is on, the desktop client is running, and you have an active subscription, you can use your Android device to click around your desktop, open applications, browse files, and make use of touch shortcuts to get more done faster. Encryption is enabled for business customers concerned about security.

Best comics app for Android: Comics by Comixology

In no uncertain terms, Comixology made comics on mobile popular. Issues are made available to purchase the same day they’re out on print. There are a bunch of free issues available, and the selection spans major publishers like Marvel, DC, IDW, and Disney. You’ll also find related news and podcasts tucked away in there.

Best communication app for Android: Hangouts

It seems like an easy pick since it’s baked into Android, but really, nothing comes close to providing consistent, quality communication than Google Hangouts. The tie-in with Google+ allows for easy access to your wider social circle and group chat. A status bar in the chat log shows you how caught up participants are. Location and pictures can be easily shared. Cross-platform support means nobody’s left out, plus having it all cloud-based means you can easily reference your chats later. Handling SMS is handy, since it puts all of your conversations in the same place.

Best education app for Android: Lynda.com

Lynda remains a top source for current, high-quality instructional videos. Though the bulk of the service relies on a hefty $25/month subscription fee, there are a lot of free videos available. Many of the areas of subject matter are technical and surround certain types of software, but you’ll also find photography, music, art, and other major topics covered.

Best entertainment app for Android: IMDb

IMDb is an invaluable tool for figuring out which films and shows actors are from, digging up obscure quotes, and seeing which shows are topping the charts. After watching an HD trailer, you can find showtimes at theatres near you, or mark it on your watchlist to catch it later. Between the full photo galleries, recent news, and information on every movie under the sun, IMDb is insanely useful.

Best finance app for Android: Mint.com Personal Finance

Mint.com is an outstanding organizational app to stay on top of your budget. It plugs directly into your existing bank accounts and identifies transactions across broad categories so it can visualize the information in helpful way. You can set monthly budget limits for different types of activities, and manually add in transactions that aren’t using any of your bank cards. Investment totals made through your bank are displayed here as well.

Best health & fitness app for Android: Endomondo Sports Tracker

Endomondo is still one of the best all-around fitness trackers available on Android. You can track speed, distance, and time for running, walking, cycling, or any other overland activity and share the results to your friends on Facebook. If you’re willing to go with the pro version, you’re able to enjoy goal setting features, an audio coach, and view detailed graphs for your progress throughout a workout. You’ll also find that a wide range of popular fitness bands and accessories will feed data into Endomondo.

Best lifestyle app for Android: Tinder

Tinder is a hugely popular location-based dating app. Users log in with their Facebook credentials, which populates a Tinder profile with all of their interests and a profile image. You’re then presented with a stream of potential matches based on those nearby and with overlapping interests and common Facebook friends. With a swipe, users anonymously decide if they like someone or not, and they get a notification when someone they picked has picked them as well. Then it’s just a matter of using the chat system to taking things from there.

Best media & video app for Android: Plex

Plex is a widely-respected media-sharing app that helps you get content on your Android device from your PC. Just run the media server software on your computer, and you can access music, video, and pictures from anywhere. Extra features, like Chromecast support and cloud saving, are available with a PlexPass subscription.

  • Plex ($4.99, $29.99/year)

Best medical app for Android: Medscape

Medscape is a rich medical reference library that allows users to pour over thousands of procedures, drugs, and news articles. Specialities can be tagged so that relevant information can be made more prominent. The data is pulled in through WebMD, which is highly reputable in the sphere. One of the more useful sections for everyday users is a drug database and cross-referencing for potential interactions. For those really into medicine, there’s an educational section where you can read up on the latest research and catch embedded videos going over the content.

Best music & audio app for Android: Songza

Songza is a wonderful free music service where users can pick their mood from a selection based on the time of day and year, and enjoy expertly-tailored playlists. The sheer number of hand-curated playlists is boggling, with one being available for just about every conceivable occasion. Users can cook up their own playlists, even though they can’t listen to them on-demand. For $0.99/week you can ditch the pre-roll video ads, though they’re very quick, and the banner ads aren’t awful either.

Best news & magazine app for Android: Flipboard

Flipboard has become the new way people take in web content on their phone. Users build up a list of subscriptions, and content is fed into a beautiful interface. Swipes cause each page to turn smoothly, and a single tap on the header image takes you into the full text of an article. Though reading through your favorite sites is great, you can build your own magazines built from web content and share them with the Flipboard community at large.

Best personalization app for Android: Nova Launcher

Nova Launcher is widely regarded as the most popular launcher available on Android. It has tons of customizability available for icon sizes, home screen transitions, app drawers, gesture recognition, and lots more. Icon packs and additional UI graphics can be downloaded to change all of the system defaults, and there are plenty of color pickers available to change accents. For those that want full control of their Android experience, Nova Launcher will provide.

Best photography app for Android: Snapseed

Snapseed is a highly polished photo editing app built smartly for touch input. Tapping navigation buttons along the bottom allow users to switch between tools, such as rotating, cropping, color correction, and filters. Then, swiping up and down on the picture lets you select the type of adjustment, and going left and right changes the amount of adjustment. It’s a great interface for smaller screens, and provides all the major editing you might need to do.

Best productivity app for Android: Trello

Trello is a task app the can scale as large as company-wide project handing, to as small as grocery lists. Set reminders, add labels, organize in collections called boards, assign other members, attach pictures and documents, and much more. Trello has a very good-looking web client too, making it easy to manage your tasks by PC as well.

Best shopping app for Android: Amazon

Amazon is the grand-daddy of online retail. If you’re shopping for anything at all, it’s worth checking out to see what Amazon’s offering. They have crazy deals all the time, just about every physical object you could possibly want to acquire, and with Prime, you’ll get it on your doorstep lickety-split. A separate price check app can help by scanning barcodes of physical products and seeing if you can get it any cheaper on Amazon.

Best social app for Android: Facebook

Like it or not, Facebook is the most ubiquitous social network out there. Everybody’s on it, sharing everything they do. With the Android app, you can quickly post status updates, share links through the browser, upload and tag pictures, send instant messages, and leave likes on your friends’ status updates. On many devices, Facebook information is tied to your address book, ensuring that their information is up-to-date and the image is their latest profile pic.

Best sports app for Android: theScore

theScore remains a high-quality, broad-field sports app that helps you get all the news you could possibly want. NFL, NBA, NHL, EPL, UFC, and more are covered with news, scores, pictures, and video clips. Users can mark teams or players as favorites so they can track what’s up more easily.

Best tool app for Android: Tasker

Tasker lets you set up a wide range of tasks to execute automatically given certain circumstances. You can set antenna to go off when you leave a certain location, turn on an app after tapping an NFC tag, or mute your ringer after connecting to a specific Wi-Fi network. With the help of third parties plugging into Tasker, you have a ton of options for if/then statements here.

Best transport app for Android: Uber

Uber has become such a force in the sphere of transportation that it has displaced the entire taxi industry in many major cities. Uber acts as the go-between for pedestrians looking for a ride and a legion of private drivers. Uber drivers are vouched for by users to ensure security, and thanks to GPS, you can find the closest one easily. Prices are dictated by supply of drivers, which means you can get some very reasonable fares, though there are occasionally surges in pricing during busy periods. Payments are made through Uber, so there’s no need for cash at any stage. If you’re lucky enough to be in a city with Uber service, this is hands-down the way to get around.

Best travel & local app for Android: Foursquare

Foursquare originally made its name as the way of sharing where you are, but over time has become the place to go to find out which restaurants are highly-regarded among friends, tips for shopping from knowledgeable locals, and discovering events happening in unfamiliar environs. There’s a to-do list baked in so you can line up destinations for your trips, or view publicly shared lists of locations.

Best weather app for Android: Yahoo Weather

Yahoo Weather is a beautiful, functional weather app complete with resizable home screen widgets and tracking for multiple locations. Hourly and weekly forecasts are readily available with wind and pressure information, precipitation, and meteorological maps. It hauls in geo-located Flickr images for backgrounds which align with the time of day and weather, which is just a nice touch overall.

Best widget for Android: Beautiful Widgets

Beautiful Widgets is a full complement of home screen widgets, including weather, time, and battery. Though Android includes many of those natively, the real selling point with is that Beautiful Widgets has a whole store full of styles to chose from. Combination widgets which include multiple data types, such as weather and clock, can use different themes together to create a really unique look.

Best live wallpaper for Android: Muzei

Muzei is a simple, gorgeous way of livening up your wallpaper rotation. By default, the background is blurred, and with a double-tap, it leaps into focus. You can set how long it takes for a new wallpaper to come in, or decide to leave the wallpaper permanently in focus. An open framework allows other extension apps to find and pick wallpapers for you, either based on your location, social network, cloud collection, and many other sources.

Best keyboard for Android: Swiftkey

Swiftkey has established itself as the leading virtual keyboard on Android thanks to its smart usage-based prediction engine. There’s a custom tablet-optimized feature that allows users to split their keyboard in two, which is great when typing with thumbs in landscape orientation. It has evolved to include swipe-based typing and a handful of color schemes to suit your tastes, but at its core remains a highly accurate, comfortable typing experience for any Android device.

Best podcast app for Android: Stitcher

Stitcher is the easiest way to catch podcasts on Android. There’s a vast library of shows, split up by category. You can listen to live streams, or store locally, and mark episodes to listen to later. If you have to duck out mid-show, your spot is remembered in the app. A player is built into the notification tray so you can see at a glance what you’re listening, and make use of playback controls.

Best arcade & action game for Android: Super Hexagon

Super Hexagon is in all likelihood the hardest game you will ever play. Players tap left and right to rotate a triangle around a central shape to avoid walls that are perpetually collapsing inwards. The spinning, bouncing perspective and intense speed make this a particular challenge, especially once you start getting to the higher stages. Simple, elegant controls, thumping soundtrack, and intense pace make Super Hexagon a classic.

Best brain and puzzle game for Android: Dots

Dots is a casual, easygoing and sharply-designed puzzle game. Players very simply have to draw lines connecting same-colored dots on a grid in order to collect them. Those dots can then be spent on power-ups which can help further in the dots-collecting endeavor. Bonus dots are awarded for completing full loops, and there are game modes available with limited time and limited number of moves.

Best cards and casino game for Android: Zynga Poker

Fans of Texas Hold ‘em will likely be familiar with Zynga Poker. Sporting full online support, players enjoy custom stakes games, tournaments, and banter over the built-in chat. There are even fun virtual gifts you can send to fellow players. More in-game currency can be bought through in-app purchases, or you can hold out for a free spin at the slots to get some starting funds once you’re out.

Best casual game for Android: The Sims FreePlay

Sims FreePlay puts players in charge of a whole town full of people. You need to tend to their basic human needs, manage relationships, build careers, and outfit a home. Over time, you can have kids, watch them grow up, and in turn guide your first Sims through old age. Though freemium elements such as premium currency and timers are employed, for a laid-back game like this where just about every measure of progress is an issue of vanity anyway, it feels well-balanced and appropriate.

Best racing game for Android: Asphalt 8

Asphalt 8 is an over-the-top, white-knuckled racing game for Android. Power-ups litter the fantastic courses set in real-world locations, which can help you launch off ramps for amazing (and physically unlikely) stunts. Hopefully in the process you can trash some of the competition in explosively cinematic crashes. Some freemium elements are employed, such as purchasable currency and premium power-ups, but on the whole, the game is entirely playable without spending a cent.

Best sports game for Android: FIFA 14

FIFA 14 offers all of the excitement of a live footie match to your Android device. Teams work their way through leagues, players progress, and managers upgrade their home stadium and sponsors. Controls include the standard virtual button and joystick layout, or you can try out some great finger-friendly gesture controls. No doubt soccer fans will appreciate the top-notch graphics and real player models.

Your favorite Android apps?

Those are our picks for the very best apps for Android, but there are a lot of apps out there and new ones are coming out all the time. Leave a comment with your favorites!

Read more and comment

 
2 years ago

TeamViewer for Meetings updated with VoIP support

6

The folks at Teamviewer have pushed out quite the update for their TeamViewer for Meetings app, bringing some minor bug fixes, full hardware acceleration for Honeycomb and Ice Cream Sandwich tablets, and VoIP support. VoIP support on top of the already excellent Teleconferencing application really opens up things on a Wifi-only Android tablet, and better hardware acceleration support for those same tablets means a better -- and more productive -- user experience. 

TeamViewer's apps and servers (they make an awesome Remote Desktop-style product as well) are 100 percent free for normal, non-commercial users. The Windows server has the ability to host meetings used with the mobile application, but as of yet the Mac and Linux versions do not, offering only the remote control abilities. We've got a mess of links below, and TeamViewer's press release after the break.

More: TeamViewer

Download the TeamViewer for Meetings Android app

Download the TeamViewer for Remote Control Android app

Read more and comment

 
2 years ago

Late-night poll: Is GPS useful on a tablet?

73

ASUS started sign-ups for the free GPS hardware thingy that should ease issues with location services on the Transformer Prime today. Right off the bat, I wanna say it was nice to see a company say "oops" and issue a timely fix for a hardware problem, rather than ignore it, -- or even worse -- blame the user for doing something wrong. A lot of people are giving ASUS shit for letting it get out the door with the issues, and I can't help but feel the same way, but we also need to acknowledge that they are doing the right thing. When a company does the right thing, I look their direction first the next time I'm shopping. OK, enough editorializing.

But we got to thinking. Just how useful is GPS on a tablet? Not the Galaxy Note or other mini-tablet, but a full blown 7-inch or bigger Android tablet. There's the fact that most folks have a Wifi only tablet, and you need a data signal to effectively use any navigation, but that's easy to overcome with map caching or hotspots. I think maybe the biggest obstacle is the sheer size. I know I don't have room (or desire) for a 10.1-inch Transformer Prime on my dashboard. But I'm sure many feel differently, and I'd like to know how many and why. Vote in the poll, then jump in the comments to let everyone know why you voted the way you did -- maybe you can bring something new to the discussion.

 

Is GPS useful on a tablet?

Read more and comment

 
2 years ago

Temple Run updated with Twitter integration and numerous bug fixes

15

With 10 Million people having now downloaded Temple Run for Android it has given the folks at Imagni Studios something to work on for the past little while and now, they've rolled out the latest update to address some bugs and features in the game. As noted in the change log, the latest release includes the following bug fixes:

  • Fixed a bug with scoring that was making it harder to get points
  • Fixed a bug that made the runner accelerate too fast
  • Fixed a bunch of other bugs and some spelling mistakes

In addition to all those fixes, you'll find the latest update also has Twitter integration so that you may get your humble brag on when you get an epically high score in the game. If you happen to find any remaining bugs, by all means forward them on to Imagni Studios. In the meantime though, you'll find the Temple Run download link beyond the break if you've yet to give it a go.

Read more and comment

 
Show More Headlines

Pages