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2 years ago

Into the deep end: We dive head-first into Android's Pool Party photo sharing app

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Thanks to a generous reader, we've found ourselves taking a couple of laps through the Pool Party, the photo sharing application developed within Google by its "Slide" team. Whether Pool Party's an active part of the new Google+ social network on Google or just an internal project whose innards will be (or have been) adopted by services such as Google+ remains to be seen.

So what is Pool Party? Plain and simple, it's photo sharing. You log in, create "Pools," and share photos. You can invite individual users to a Pool, and in the process grant them access to view, comment on, save, share and "like" photos within that pool. You can have multiple pools (no idea if there's a maximum), with different people in each pool.

And that's about it. Photo sharing, plain and simple.

The app itself -- which is still in private beta as of this writing -- is simple, straightforward, and plenty fast. It's pretty spartan, with little in the way of user interface or settings. You can change your first and last name, profile photo, gender, and whether you want to receive live updates.

As for the Pools themselves, you can change the Pool name; view, add and remove members; receive e-mail updates on pool activity (including each time a photo or comment is posted); and whether or not to receive push notifications.

There's also a web component (at poolpartyapp.com), which is pretty much the same thing, just in browser.

So will we see a Pool Party in Google+? Or will the services be folded in? That remains to be seen. But let's certainly hope so, as the Pool Party app (there's also one available for iOS, which our pals at TiPb have given the what-for) is clean, easy photo sharing, and that's a must-have for a social network looking to break the Facebook hold on the world.

We've got a plethora of screen shots after the break.

Thanks, Dr_Mcq!
More coverage: TechCrunch

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2 years ago

Android Central Podcast Ep. 62: Writers' roundtable on Google+

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Audio-only stream below

It's time for another writers' roundtable! We got Phil Nickinson, Jerry Hildenbrand, Alex Dobie, Joshua Munoz and Kurt Schutte into the Hangout chat on Google+ to talk about ... Google+. Listen in!

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2 years ago

Droid 3 appears headed for Verizon stores on July 14

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Direct fulfillment to start July 7

If you've got a hankering for the latest iteration of the venerable Motorola Droid, it's looking more and more likely that we'll see it here in the next couple of weeks. The latest round of leaked Droid 3 material shows a July 7 direct fulfillment (aka shipping) date, with in-store availability on July 14. Specs remain the same as what we brought you yesterday, with a 4-inch qHD display, dual-core 1GHz processor, five-row sliding keyboard, but no LTE data.

We can't help but wonder after last year's low-key launch of the Droid 2 (which was quickly replaced by the Droid 2 global), will Verizon throw a parade for this one? Or just settle with another press release? Either way, look for official word (and official pricing) next week.

Source: Droid-Life

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2 years ago

Did the Motorola Droid Bionic just clear the FCC?

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A Motorola cellular communications device, with EVDO and LTE 700MHz radios, Bluetooth, Wifi b/g/n, and inductive charging battery cover has cleared the FCC today.  I can't say with 100 percent certainty, but this sounds like it could be only one thing -- the Motorola Droid Bionic

There's not much to be gleaned from any FCC filing (see them at the source link) for most of us, but one interesting thing here is that the photos of the device and the user manual are under a confidentiality agreement that ends on August 7.  You make what you will out of that, but I'm pretty certain that means we'll be seeing this one before that date.  How soon before, is anyone's guess.

Source: FCC

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2 years ago

Skype adds Nexus S 4G to its video calling roster

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Yesterday we saw the Skype app received quite a large update that brought an enhanced interface to everyone, but video calling to only a few select devices. The Google Nexus S was included, but not its Wimax cousin on Sprint. But Skype just tweeted that they have added the Nexus S 4G. While we would sure like to see more devices, it is a start, and at least we know they are working on it behind the scenes still.

Source: Twitter: Thanks, John!

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2 years ago

Waste your afternoon playing Nexus Contraptions (we are!)

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Sometimes, Google does something just because it's fun.  Nexus Contraptions, a browser-based game in the style of Apparatus is one of those things.  Move objects around so they get in the path of a "g" branded ball, and bounce it into the funnel.  Sounds easy, but it isn't.  Sounds fun, and it is!  You're timed, so if you're feeling competitive you have that, too. 

Fun aside, is this the first step to Google integrating web gaming?  If so, I like where it's going based on this one.  Now quit listening to me and go waste some time!

Nexus Contraptions via @googlenexus

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2 years ago

Vizio 8-inch Android tablet now available for pre-order

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Back at CES Vizio told us that they would be releasing an Android tablet this year, and they have held to that with an 8-inch Android 2.3-powered tablet that is now available for pre-order. We saw the device information and pricing pop up at WalMart, and now you can pre-order it direct from Vizio. The device appears to be launching with a $379 price tag which will get you an 8-inch 1024x768 display, a front facing camera, along with 2GB of available storage, all powered by a 1GHz processor. So, is the price right for you? Will you be snagging one of these for yourself or someone else?

Source: Vizio: Thanks, OJ!

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2 years ago

Cincinnati Bell updates Milestone XT720 to Froyo, throws in root access

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Now here's something you don't see every day. Cincinnati Bell has released the Android 2.2 update for the Motorola Milestone XT720 -- and long with it, a tool to root the thing.

Repeat: A carrier updated a phone and gave you a way to do it.

It's using the Super One Click method from CLShortFuse, launched through its own Android Commander app. Plus, it tosses in Titanium Backup. No two ways about it, that's pretty damn awesome.

Source: Cincinnati Bell; via Syrenz32
More: Shortfuse

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2 years ago

Google reportedly in talks to buy Hulu

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Google is participating in preliminary talks to buy Hulu, according to a report today by the Los Angeles Times. The article cited anonymous sources close to the situation who say that Google is interested in the advertising potential behind Hulu, which owns rights to a number of TV shows’ current seasons. Also participating in talks with Hulu are Yahoo and Microsoft.

While a takeover is far from reality, it would be a major acquisition for Google, and would likely have an impact felt across the company’s brands, including Android. Hulu player standard on all Android devices? We can dream. Hit the source link for the Times’ full report.

Source: Los Angeles Times

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2 years ago

Android Quick App: Thunderstorm Live Wallpaper

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I know that Android usually makes us all think about little green puppies and robotic rainbows, but sometimes, things can't always be so bright and sunny. Maybe your girlfriend just dumped you. Maybe you lost the chess tournament. Shoot, maybe you live in the South (like me!) and just wish it would rain once in a while!

If you find yourself in similar circumstances or just enjoy the doom and gloom a good thunderstorm brings, you've got to check out Thunderstorm Live Wallpaper.

Thunderstorm Live Wallpaper is an incredibly slick, detailed, and fairly realistic depiction of Mother Nature at her finest, and it runs really well, to boot.

Fortunately, you're not stuck with a one-trick pony, as Thunderstorm Live Wallpaper boasts a pretty full settings menu. From there, you can set cloud count, bolt frequency, wind speed, camera speed, and bolt color. They're all little things, but they're the kind of little thing that helps you make your wallpaper experience both unique and totally your own.

I mean, shoot, red lightning? That's too cool.

Thunderstorm Live Wallpaper is free in the Market, but there's also a donate version for 99 cents, if you're so inclined to show the developer some love. If you like lightning, storms, or are just looking for a new wallpaper to use, I'd definitely check out Thunderstorm Live Wallpaper.

A few more pictures as well as download links are after the break.

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