Order the Google Pixel 2: Verizon | Best Buy | Shop: Black Friday 2017

Headlines

4 years ago

Help beta test AirCast by playing any of your videos on your Chromecast

59

Cast videos directly from your Android Gallery, Dropbox or Google Drive with AirCast

AirCast,  a new concept application from everybody's favorite Android hacker and developer Koushik Dutta, will let you play any videos from your Gallery, Dropbox and Google Drive on your Chromecast equipped television. Using your Android, you select a video from any of the three locations and use the share menu to cast it to your TV.

Koush has worked around the closed SDK issue by reverse engineering the Chromecast protocols, which means he is allowed to share this app for us regular folks to have a go with and test it. Apps using the official SDK are not yet allowed to be released under the current agreement users of the SDK are bound to.

You'll definitely want to give this a try, so grab the APK file from Koush's website right here and give it a look. Keep in mind that this application will expire in two days, but Koush has said he has plans to release a freemium version, a Chrome extension, and the code he used to make it all work in the future. Remember, you're testing this so be prepared to submit feedback for any bugs you may find. See the source link for more details.

Source: +Koushik Dutta

Read more and comment

 
4 years ago

Apps of the Week: Dots, KeePassDroid, Middle Manager of Justice and more!

40

See the apps, games and tools we've been using this week

It's that time of the week where we give everyone a look into the app choices of the Android Central writers in our Apps of the Week column. We take this post on Saturday afternoon to round up a single app pick from each of the folks here at AC that they have been using and want to tell everyone about.

We've got a jam-packed list of app picks this week, from games and entertainment to tools and icon packs. Read along with us after the break and see how these apps stack up to the rest.

Read more and comment

 
4 years ago

Check out Swipe Home Button for gesture-based home screen control

42

A couple people have told me about Swipe Home Button, a new app that brings gesture controls to your Android home screen, and I had to take a look. I'm not a big fan of having a whole slew of gestures to try and remember to do things like open notifications or open apps, but Swipe Home Button doesn't have some huge list of gestures that I won't remember.

There are five actions — swipe up, swipe far up (about two-thirds of the screen height), swipe up then down, swipe up and to the right, swipe up and to the left — that you can set up to perform five actions — go back to the "home" home screen, show recent apps, show notifications, play the next track in a playlist and open an app.

The program was designed for phones with "real" buttons (read physical and/or capacitive), and can cause issues on phones with on-screen buttons. I'm not sure what issues — the developer doesn't say. We'll just trust him on that one. But so far, on the Galaxy S4, I'm kinda feeling it.

I'll play with it for a while before I can give any recommendations, but I wanted to pass it along for folks who ae always on the lookout for new apps. Grab the free trial (seven days) from the Google Play link above and jump through the break to see some images and a demo video.

Thanks, onthecouchagain and doobie for the heads-up!

Read more and comment

 
4 years ago

Goodbye Google+ Messenger, hello G+ Photos

67

Out with the old, and in with the new

You might have noticed a new addition to the application drawer on your Android (provided you have the Google+ app installed) as well as the absence of a long familiar face. You're not seeing things — it's part of the Google+ app update that started rolling out a few days ago.

It seems like most users have the update by now, so they're noticing that the old Google+ Messenger application was removed (the whole service is basically gone, usurped by Hangouts), but it's been replaced by an equally redundant app icon, the G+ Photos app.

We hesitate to call it an app. It's more like a shortcut to the Photos tab inside the Google+ app. There's absolutely nothing wrong with the way the psuedo-gallery-app-thing works or looks, it's just a bit superfluous. It's easy enough to hide with a custom launcher if you just can't deal with it. 

Thanks everyone who sent this in!

Read more and comment

 
4 years ago

Google Maps update brings back the scale bar

108

The bar is back, but there aren't any settings to control it

The recent Google Maps redesign was great, but were you missing the measurement scale bar? Well it wasn't just you, and Google has apparently responded to some criticism and put the scale bar for measuring distances back in with this latest app update.

There aren't any settings to show or hide the bar, and it seems to only appear when you move the map or re-zoom to a new distance, then disappears quite quickly. We might have preferred if Google just gave an option to keep the bar on or off permanently, but beggars can't be choosers, we suppose.

Go grab the update from the Play Store link above. It seems to be pushing out widely right now.

Read more and comment

 
4 years ago

Facebook Beta update brings animated stickers, music on lock screen for Home

19

Beta track continues to get quick and useful updates

The beta track for the Facebook app has been updated today with a few useful features, showing once again that it intends on iterating quickly with its beta fixes. This update brings one new feature to the Messenger function, and that is animated stickers for some of the categories — Pusheen, Beast and Anooki are listed — which has been the case on iOS devices for some time now, but stickers don't seem to be animating properly for us at the moment. A new feature for those using Facebook Home is the ability to control music playback on the lock screen.

Also included is a fix for a bug that caused album covers to show rather than a specific photo you tapped, as well as a bug that crashed the app when viewing photos in full screen mode. Naturally, various bug fixes and speed improvements were made as well.

Read more and comment

 
4 years ago

Press adds offline image caching, settings redesign

4

Caching saves on data, new settings get you in and out quickly

One of our favorite RSS readers on Android, Press, has just made some significant improvements in its latest update in terms of interface and features. The biggest feature inclusion is likely offline image caching, which will download article images when syncing so that you're not pulling them down every time you open an article. It's great for low connectivity or low data cap situations when you still want to get your news. By default images aren't cached, but you can turn it on, restrict it to just Wifi and limit or clear the cache at any time.

Helping you manage these new cache options is an entirely redesigned settings menu, which breaks up settings into separate categories. Now you won't have to scroll through an annoying long list to get to that one setting you need to change.

There are also a new settings for changing the look and feel of the app, with the ability to show just titles in the articles list or on the widget, and a few new options for readability and accessibility. Press also says that there are performance, sync and bug fixes — although we were hard pressed to find any hiccups before.

Read more and comment

 
4 years ago

Asphalt 8: Airborne launching August 22

13

Dev offering the chance to win pre-launch download codes for Nexus 7-optimized racer

First unveiled at Google's Nexus 7 and Android 4.3 event in San Francisco a few weeks back, Gameloft's Asphalt 8: Airborne was due to be released back on Aug. 8. Obviously that didn't happen, however there's now a new release date on the cards — next Thursday, Aug 22.

But if you can't wait that long, Gameloft is giving away a pre-launch code to one lucky winner, who'll be able to play the game before anyone else. To enter, you'll need to subscribe to the developer's YouTube channel and fill out the form on its website.

Asphalt 8 is one of the new Android titles optimized for OpenGL ES 3.0, the new 3D graphics standard included in Android 4.3. The title promises 180 events, 47 licensed cars and social integration, including  Facebook support.

Source: +Gameloft; Gameloft blog

Read more and comment

 
4 years ago

Google Translate adds Hindi and Thai handwriting input, camera input for four more languages

10

Further expanding the methods of communication with a single app.

Android is an operating system that is truly global, and Google is expanding the capabilities of Google Translate today to reflect that by adding important new languages. First are two new languages that can be used for handwriting recognition, and those are Hindi and Thai. It's especially important for handwriting recognition for languages such as these because they have a non-Roman character set that is difficult to use on a standard keyboard layout.

Today's update is also expanding the capabilities of Google Translate's "camera input", which reads languages you capture from physical objects with your phone's camera, to Afrikaans, Greek, Hebrew and Serbian. With these new capabilities in Google Translate for six more languages, Google is adding to an ever-expanding list of foreign languages that can help people communicate whether they're traveling or hosting travelers themselves.

Read more and comment

 
4 years ago

GIF Chat launches on Android, offers looping video clips and text messaging

4

Another way to show off your 6-second video skills.

The group messaging app space is full of great choices, but GIF Chat is trying to get in on the craze with its own set of features. Walking the line between apps like Snapchat which only do short video clips and fully-featured voice, video and text chat apps like Viber, GIF Chat offers group chatting with up to 6-second looping video as well as text chatting.

Given it's name, GIF Chat naturally focuses on the video aspect of the service, with plenty of features for recording and editing videos. Using either front or rear cameras, you can collect up to 6-seconds of video, select the playback speed and even set how many times it will loop — 1 to 10 times or never — before disappearing.

GIF Chat launched on iOS last week and is cross-platform compatible with the Android version, which is also a nice feature. The app is free and displays ads at the bottom of some pages from time to time, and there's no indication of whether or not there will be a paid, ad-free version. Ready to try another group messaging client? grab a download from the Play Store link above.

Read more and comment

 
4 years ago

'Dots' game comes to Google Play, Amazon Appstore

19

Another great and simple puzzle game makes its way to Android.

Popular iOS game "Dots" is making the move to Android today, and its bringing with it a new game mode as well. Well-known and enjoyed for its simplicity, Dots has basic puzzle-style gameplay based on connecting dots with the swipe of a finger to build up bonuses and points. The standard gameplay gives you 60 seconds to connect as many dots and get the most points.

New to the game in its move to Android is a "Moves" mode, which gives you a limited set of moves rather than a limited amount of time. It's another way to think of the game that's a little more relaxed. The game is free in both Google Play at the link above, as well as the Amazon Appstore for Kindle Fire owners at the source link below.

Source: Dots (Amazon Appstore)

Read more and comment

 
4 years ago

This new Weather app from Yahoo! makes every day beautiful

50

If you appreciate beautiful, full-bleed graphics in an app that performs as good as it looks, the all-new updated Yahoo! Weather app is one you'll want to have a look at. Checking the weather on our phones is one of those things nobody needs to do —getting up and looking outside would be good for anyone — but most of us do it. It's convenient, and lets us see what the skies and temperature are like in places where we're not. Maybe you're traveling and need to know whether to pack an umbrella or which jacket to take, or you're wanting to know the forecast of the place you're going. Or maybe you just like being able to check something as trivial as the weather through your expensive smartphone. We never judge.

There are a lot (as in a whole lot) of apps out there that show you the weather, but Yahoo! has found a way to stand out from the crowd. Using high-resolution pictures from Flickr —a company Yahoo! owns — that show the location and current conditions as a backdrop, the weather never looked this good. I've been playing with the update here for a couple hours, and I'll tell you that looking at the weather in Berlin is better when the background is a gorgeous picture of the Brandenburg Gate in the background. The same goes for a sunset picture of the National Mall in Washington, DC. Of course not all locations are going to be covered, so if you live somewhere out-of-the-way like, for example, Bunker Hill, West Virginia, you'll have a generic image.

The app is also really feature-rich. The settings cover everything from unit types (Celsius or Fahrenheit) to persistent notifications and alerts. You can add as many locations as you like, and of course your current location is always available. Add in things like 10-day forecasts, 24 hour forecast, the chance of precipitation, wind and pressure numbers, the moon phase, UV patterns, sunrise and sunset times, an interactive map and a set of widgets of all sizes and you've got the recipe for an app everyone will like. There's even a lock screen widget if your Android supports them.

The app is free, and if you're already using the Yahoo! Weather app you'll be getting an update notification soon. If you're not, and want to give it a try, grab it via the Google Play link above. We've got a whole slew of screenshots of the UI and settings after the break.

Read more and comment

 
4 years ago

Amazon's Silk browser gets a new interface, features

1

 

New features and interface backup previous performance increases.

Amazon's in-house developed browser, Silk, is receiving a big update today that leverages previous behind-the-scenes updates with a refreshed UI. If you're not familiar with Silk, it is the stock browser on Amazon's lineup of Kindle Fire devices, and aims to speed up the browsing process by managing bandwidth and page loads with the help of Amazon's cloud infrastructure.

The latest version of Silk has made several improvements, starting with a new tutorial that gives users a better look at the features when launching the browser for the first time. Once the tutorial is completed, you'll now be greeted by a new start page with a listing of most-visited pages and an empty address bar so you can quickly get to browsing.

Other improvements include a better tab layout to make navigation easier, a new slide-in panel navigation bar as well as an improved "Readability view" that strips out the excess parts of a page to make it easier to get through long articles on web pages. As a whole, the Silk browser seems to have received a much-needed facelift that should impress Kindle Fire users.

Read more and comment

 
4 years ago

Middle Manager of Justice now available on Google Play, save the world from your cubicle

8

Command your team to make the world a safer place, just like you learned to do in business school

The highly-touted game Middle Manager of Justice is now available for Android. It's a "save-the-world-because-you're-a-superhero" game with a big twist, because instead of honing your super powers and seeking out evil crime lords in a one on one setting, you're the department manager of the team.

You hire and assemble your team, and increase their skills by forcing asking them to do menial tasks around the office. When the time comes to go up against the forces of evil, you're in control of the action and your heros are at your command. It sounds a lot like the Android Central offices, but with more exercise and less foot long Subway sandwiches.

You fortress, err office, is customizable ala something from the Sims series. Deck things out the way you like, or to optimize training, or what ever silly scheme comes to mind. Irreverence and silliness abound in Middle Manager of Justice — and that's what makes it great.

You can find it for free (with the obligatory in-app purchases) in Google Play through the link above. If you download and run the game on a Tegra device, you'll have access to extra costumes for the Crimebot and @Man characters. It looks like a really fun time-waster, and a great way to spend the rest of the day. The trailer and some screenshots are after the break.

Read more and comment

 
4 years ago

Notif Pro hits v1.0 with new reminders functionality

12

A different take on the notification system.

Notifications have a renewed sense of importance since the improvements to the system in Jelly Bean, and while most apps use them as an entrance to another interaction with their app, Notif uses them in a bit of a different way. The main idea of Notif is to be a tool for you to create custom notifications of any type and display those in a number of ways to fit your needs.

Notif is a new way of thinking outside the box about notifications on Jelly Bean devices, and with its latest update to version 1.0 it is adding even more functionality and polish to an already useful app. Hang with us after the break where we spend a little more time looking at the new features.

Read more and comment

 
Show More Headlines

Pages