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Wednesday, February 18, 2015

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Verizon reportedly adding a $60 prepaid plan with 2.5GB of data on March 1st

Posted: 18 Feb 2015 12:59 PM PST

Galaxy S5 owners: How's the Lollipop update treating you?

Posted: 18 Feb 2015 12:54 PM PST

Even more GS5s are getting Android 5.0, but is it a net positive for everyone?

After Lollipop started slowly rolling out to Galaxy S5 owners in Europe, Verizon put us back on alert with the big update to its own Galaxy S5. Sprint followed suit the next day and T-Mobile pushed a couple weeks later. As is the case with every major operating system update, some people are likely to hit a few snags when jumping between Android versions. There are some features and designs of Lollipop that are disliked, but there are also issues with the update process itself.

We've received a few emails to our tips inbox and read a few comments in the forums indicating there are issues, but that's also combined with plenty of folks who seem to be happy with the update. So, for those of you who have installed Lollipop on your Galaxy S5, how is the update working on your device?

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HTC’s vice president of product management hints at new Android update in March

Posted: 18 Feb 2015 12:49 PM PST


We've seen some rumors on Android 5.1 already, and now we're getting hints from Mo Versi, HTC's vice president of product management, that the update is on its way.

After being prodded by a Twitter follower on when a bug in the Google Play Edition of the One M7 would be fixed, Versi responded by tweeting, "It'll be tied to Google's next MR, which is in March. Thanks."

This could be hinting at the forthcoming Android 5.1, and it's nice to have a bit more information from a more reliable source. Of course, the tweet's content is open for debate and leaves room for interpretation, but this tidbit is what we've got to work with for now.

Source: @moversi

Come comment on this article: HTC's vice president of product management hints at new Android update in March

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Android 5.1 could come in March, according to HTC’s Mo Versi

Posted: 18 Feb 2015 12:35 PM PST

HTC One camera

Android 5.1 has been popping up on Android One phones left and right, but Google has yet to come out and say anything about it. While they leave us to wonder, HTC's Mo Versi might have spilled the beans on when we can expect a formal, widespread rollout of the firmware for everyone else.

The company man Tweeted to someone asking about a fix for capacitive buttons on the HTC One M7 Google Play Edition, and his response was that the fix would tie in with Google's next "MR" in March. We can only imagine that stands for "maintenance release." That leads us to a few different possibilities:

  1. HTC is referring to Android 5.0.2 as the Google Play Edition never got upgraded beyond 5.0.1. It would be odd for Versi not to mention 5.0.2 by its exact version instead of referring to it as the "next MR."

  2. HTC is referring to Android 5.1, as we would obviously hope.

  3. HTC is referring to some other incremental upgrade — possibly Android 5.0.3 — though considering we haven't seen a shred of evidence of this or any other versions this is highly unlikely.

We're still digging for more, and we hope Google will have more to share on both the arrival day of Android 5.1 and all the changes it'll bring once it finally arrives.

[via Twitter]

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Possible pricing for LG Watch Urbane appears on retail site

Posted: 18 Feb 2015 12:34 PM PST


The LG Watch Urbane, the all-metal, all-luxury big brother of the G Watch R, was announced earlier this week, but without pricing and availability details.

Today, a product page on MobileFun.com appears to have some more information on the forthcoming smartwatch.

While an availability date is not yet announced, the site lists the Watch Urbane for $368.99 and is currently accepting pre-orders.

We'll get you more on the device as a release date nears, but this is all that's known for now.

Source 1: Mobile Fun 1 / Mobile Fun 2

Come comment on this article: Possible pricing for LG Watch Urbane appears on retail site

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Google has a food photo sharing service in the works

Posted: 18 Feb 2015 12:20 PM PST

Google looks to be working on a food photo sharing service called Tablescape. The rumor comes from El Android Libre and shows several screenshots of an unreleased Google+ extension that's reportedly being tested as a community and service in which to share great food photos. The service includes icons for different food categories, a content stream, a "Dish of the Day" and a myriad of options for discovering new food photos.

Android Police did some detective work and found that the rumors seems to add up. Screenshots reveal that several users of the app are Googlers, with other connections that tie the rumor together into a very legitimate report. In short, Tablescape looks to be real and is currently being tested within Google.

There's no info on if or when Tablescape will be released to the public. It's entirely possible that Tablescape is simply a fun experiment within Google, never intended to make it out. It also could be a real service that would allow Google to target a more specific audience with Google+. In any case, we'll keep you posted on any future news regarding Tablescape.

Tablescape Tablescape (3) Tablescape (9) Tablescape (8) Tablescape (7) Tablescape (6) Tablescape (5) Tablescape (4) Tablescape (2)

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Google could offer a Google+ extension called Tablescape soon, a place for sharing foodographs

Posted: 18 Feb 2015 12:17 PM PST


I know many of you like taking pictures of your food and sharing them because I see them regularly on Twitter and Google+. If you're one of those people, you will be happy to know that Google might soon offer something just for you called Tablescape. It's a place for sharing foodographs.

It appears to be some sort of extension to Google+, similar to the Photos app. What I mean is that it would be a separate app on your mobile device, but it will actually be part of Google+ just like Photos is.

Google_Tablescape_03 Google_Tablescape_04 Google_Tablescape_05 Google_Tablescape_06 Google_Tablescape_09 Google_Tablescape_08 Google_Tablescape_07 Google_Tablescape_02

As you can see from the images, Tablescape looks a lot like Google+ so I am wondering how it will work. Will all food posts just automatically congregate to the Tablescape app? How is really different than just sharing a picture of your pork chops the current way on Google+?

I guess we will have to wait and see. In fact, we might never find out. It's being tested right now among Googlers, but that doesn't mean that it will ever get released.

source: Androide Libre
via: Android Police

Come comment on this article: Google could offer a Google+ extension called Tablescape soon, a place for sharing foodographs

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Nvidia Shield Tablet update version 2.2 brings better standby battery life and much more

Posted: 18 Feb 2015 12:14 PM PST

Motorola boss fights back against Apple designer's criticism of Moto Maker

Posted: 18 Feb 2015 11:53 AM PST

Motorola President Rick Osterloh disagrees with Apple designer Jony Ive's criticism of the Moto Maker phone customization program. In a recent profile of Ive, the designer sharply criticized an unnamed competitor that allowed customers to "make it whatever you want," saying that that "I believe that's abdicating your responsibility as a designer." Osterloh wasn't about to take that sitting down.

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Monkey King Escape, an endless running game from Ubisoft, released in the Play Store

Posted: 18 Feb 2015 11:47 AM PST


Games of the endless running genre have a lot of popularity on mobile devices. It makes sense considering the learning curve is basically nonexistent and the genre is rather flexible when it comes to gameplay and environment. From Temple Run to Dinosity, there is an endless running game for everyone. Today, we say hello to Monkey King Escape from developer Ubisoft. Players control the Monkey Key as he avoids being captured by the Emperor of Heavenly Kingdom. The Monkey King, after being told that he would not have a place among the gods, decided to consume the Peaches of Immortality, causing the Emperor to pursue him. Now, the Monkey King must escape Heavenly Garden without being captured.

Hit the break for more.

These are the features highlighted by Ubisoft:

  • BECOME THE MONKEY KING and learn his amazing powers

  • RUN, JUMP, SLIDE, FLY… and dash your way through Heaven!

  • DEFEAT EPIC BOSSES in exciting one on one fights

  • TRANSFORM INTO ANIMALS to wield their special powers!

  • Enjoy beautiful and colorful HD GRAPHICS

  • UNLOCK 4 additional playable characters

  • ColLeCT boosts and power-ups

  • HELP your friends, or COMPETE against them for the high score!

Click here to view the embedded video.

monkey_king_escape_app_gallery_1 monkey_king_escape_app_gallery_2 monkey_king_escape_app_gallery_3 monkey_king_escape_app_gallery_4 monkey_king_escape_app_gallery_5 monkey_king_escape_app_gallery_6 monkey_king_escape_app_gallery_7

qr code

Play Store Download Link

Come comment on this article: Monkey King Escape, an endless running game from Ubisoft, released in the Play Store

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Building for Android Wear: Depth and Flexibility

Posted: 18 Feb 2015 11:39 AM PST

Posted by Timothy Jordan, Developer Advocate

With so many recent updates and improvements to Android Wear, it's high time to share an updated overview of the platform. We're certainly not done—there's a lot more to come—but this is the picture today as you start or continue developing your groundbreaking Android Wear user experiences.

The Android Wear platform emphasizes depth and flexibility. Built on Android, it allows developers to use familiar APIs to create useful, performant, and imaginative apps that run directly on the watch. In the spirit of Android, you have the freedom to make substantial changes to the user experience, including the creation of custom watch faces. There are three main categories of experiences you can build: apps, custom watch faces, and notifications.


Apps that are built for Android Wear run directly on the watch and can do nearly anything a phone can, from tracking your run to giving you a little entertainment while waiting for the bus. Some even work without a connection to the phone, such as fitness and music apps. There are libraries to help you move data between the phone and the wearable, as well as create stunning and adaptable UIs. Here's a list of some of the great features you have access to:

Feature Documentation
Full screen activities with touch eventsCreating Custom UIs for Wear Devices
Notifications and custom actionsUI Patterns for Android Wear
Custom Watch facesCreating Watch Faces
Layouts for round and square devicesCreating Custom UIs for Wear Devices
OpenGLDisplaying Graphics with OpenGL ES

  • Accelerometer

  • Gyroscope

  • Compass

  • Barometer

  • Heart rate sensor

Voice actionsAdding Voice Capabilities
GPSDetecting Location on Android Wear
Offline storing of data / musicTransferring Assets
Media playback controlsMediaSession, MediaController
Framework based on Android 5.0 API 21Android 5.0 APIs
Standalone or synchronized appsSending and Syncing Data

Watch Faces

The ability to create custom watch faces gives you direct access to the most prominent UI element on a user's most personal device. The API is simple enough to build watch faces quickly and flexible enough to allow personalization. Again, given the depth and flexibility of the Android platform, you can create something for the user that's both beautiful and packed with unique features.

The development journey starts with the simplicity of bringing your design to the wrist. At the core of the watch face API is the onDraw method that allows you to draw whatever design you can think of to the canvas at a high enough frame rate to deliver fluid animation. This will come through at full fidelity while the watch is in interactive mode.

At other times, when the watch is in ambient mode, you're able to draw a more discreet version of the watch face. Additional preferences can be set to arrange the system UI elements appropriately for your design. Once those basics are covered, the limits are your imagination! You can go further with additions like the moon phase, current weather, or fitness stats. Watchmakers call these items "complications" -- but with Android they're hardly complicated. Once you have the data, just draw it on the canvas as you did the time.


Of course, Android Wear Notifications are the easiest way to get started in the world of wearables. If you've got an Android app with notifications -- they already work on a Wear watch. If you've already enhanced your notification with actions, this is even better and also automatically already works. You can take things further with Wear-specific functionality like Stacks, Pages, and Voice Replies that make your notifications richer experiences on the wrist.

The user experiences you build for Wear get to take advantage of the power and flexibility of the Android platform. It's easy to get started and possible to create truly groundbreaking UI for your users. Together, we can create an ecosystem of user experiences as diverse as the watches they run on and the people who wear them.

Check out the developer videos and documentation for more, and share your thoughts on the Android Wear Developers community. We can't wait to see the innovative user experiences you will build on Android Wear.

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Maintenance release for Lollipop coming in March, probably Android 5.1

Posted: 18 Feb 2015 11:34 AM PST

Android's next maintenance release will be coming in March, according to a tweet by HTC's VP of product management, Mo Versi. Android 5.0 Lollipop was a major update to Android, and as such, it predictably had some quirks and bugs that hadn't been sorted out. Fortunately, Google seems to be prepping an update to fix these issues, and it looks like we won't have to wait much longer, as March is just around the corner.

The update will likely be Android 5.1, which has already been spotted on Android One devices in Thailand. While the update likely won't contain much in the way of new features, it should solve many of the problems that Lollipop users have been dealing with. We'll have to wait and see for sure, but don't expect Google to release another major Android update anytime soon.

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LG G Flex 2 vs LG G3

Posted: 18 Feb 2015 11:31 AM PST

[Bug Report] DROID Turbo won’t ring when receiving calls and goes straight to voicemail

Posted: 18 Feb 2015 11:09 AM PST


I know it's hard to imagine, but some smartphone owners actually do make and receive phone calls with their devices. If you're a DROID Turbo owner though, unfortunately you might find yourself waiting and waiting for that girl or boy to call you back.

Turns out there is some sort of bug that prevents the Turbo from ringing when receiving a call and it goes straight to voicemail. I stumbled up on this when a friend, who owns a Turbo, was asking if I knew of a way to fix it. It turns out that many other users are experiencing the same issue.

It seems to be software related since not everyone has the problem out of the box. For some, everything was fine for the first couple of months and then the problem arises, and for others, the problem started as soon as their first week with the phone. Verizon customer support can't offer a solution other than blame Motorola and suggest a fix is coming.

If your DROID Turbo is experiencing the issue, here are some of the things that you can do to help alleviate the issue.

  1. Power off and Power back on – Everything will be fine after a reboot, but unfortunately not much more than a day, if that.

  2. Dial *73 to turn off Call Forwarding – I know you probably didn't turn on Call Forwarding, but for some reason, it's possible your Turbo either thinks it's supposed to forward calls or the software is inadvertently putting it in Call Forward. Where it's trying to Forward to, I have no idea. This fix is much like option (1) in that it's likely to be a short-lived aspirin and you might find yourself dialing *73 several times a day.

  3. Replace your SIM card – One person that I know of tried this and things were okay for up to two weeks. Still not an absolute fix, but this might be better than powering off your phone and/or dialing *73 five times a day. Just head into your local Verizon store and ask for a replacement SIM and they should give it to you.

  4. Ask for a replacement device – Since this is either a software or hardware issue, this is likely not going to help. However, there are users that aren't experiencing the issue so it might be a decent option. The only downside is that you might receive a refurbished unit instead of a shiny new one.

When Motorola and Verizon will fix this issue is anyone's guess. We can only assume that it will happen with the Lollipop update, but I often wonder why carriers and manufacturers wait for so long to fix something so crucial as this? It's possible that they still don't know what's causing it. Let's hope the fix comes sooner rather than later.

If you're a DROID Turbo owner, please let us know if you're experiencing this issue or not. If so, have you found a better solution?

sources: Verizon Community (1) (2)

Come comment on this article: [Bug Report] DROID Turbo won't ring when receiving calls and goes straight to voicemail

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TravelCard is a backup battery that puts 1,500mAh of power in your wallet [Deal]

Posted: 18 Feb 2015 10:51 AM PST

TravelCard-wallet If you rely on your smartphone and other mobile devices, the last thing you want to see before the end of your day is a low battery warning. But if you slip a TravelCard into your wallet, you have 1,500mAh of extra juice that'll top up your devices when you need it most. And thanks

The post TravelCard is a backup battery that puts 1,500mAh of power in your wallet [Deal] appeared first on Cult of Android.

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We're answering your LG G Flex 2 questions on the Android Central forums!

Posted: 18 Feb 2015 10:38 AM PST

We're hard at work putting together our full review of the LG G Flex 2, LG's second-generation curved, flexible phone boasting Qualcomm's latest 64-bit processor. That means we've got the device in-hand, and we're ready to answer any burning questions over on the Android Central LG G Flex 2 forums.

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A quick look at three quick-charging car chargers that charge quickly

Posted: 18 Feb 2015 10:38 AM PST

Maybe having a quick-charging car charger won't change your life. But it makes plugging in during a 20-minute commute so much more useful.

I'm used to maybe getting 10 or 15 percentage points on my way to or from the office while using my old, standard charger. It's not a long commute really, about average, according to the US Census bureau. But after taking a look at a few Quick Charge 2.0 for the car, I'm that much more excited about this tech that's finally hitting the mainstream in 2015. The short version: The charger and your phone work together to safely allow more juice to flow, then slow down the charge after that initial burst. So you'll go from dead to, say, 60 percent much faster, then slow the rate to finish the job.

And in the car, when you might just have a quick drive and a short amount of time to juice up, that makes a big difference. So let's take a quick look at two car chargers from a couple of respected accessory manufacturers.

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Buy an NVIDIA Shield Tablet, get a $30 gift card

Posted: 18 Feb 2015 10:38 AM PST

For a limited time, if you buy an NVIDIA Shield Tablet from one of several retailers, they'll be throwing in a $30 gift card for that store with your purchase. The Shield Tablet is one of our favorite tablets, and getting as much as 10 percent back (if you opt for the Wi-Fi-only 16GB version) isn't a bad deal.

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Dropbox will soon let you open shared links right into its app

Posted: 18 Feb 2015 10:38 AM PST

Dropbox is now in the process of rolling out a new feature for mobile users that will let you open shared Dropbox links an email or in a browser right in the mobile app for Android and iOS. Opening a link directly in the Dropbox app allows you to get rich previews of documents and images and easily save files.

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Xposed Module Removes The Eye-Searing Orange Theme From Lollipop's Battery Saver Mode

Posted: 18 Feb 2015 10:06 AM PST

ap_resize (1) Android 5.0 has a lot of smart features, and battery saver mode is one of them. When your phone reaches a user-defined low battery level, Lollipop will automatically reduce animations, turn off most background data, cut vibration from alerts, and lower the standard brightness on the screen. It's a smarter implementation of the feature than, say, the ultra power saving modes on recent Samsung or HTC phones, which disable all but a few apps.

Read More

Xposed Module Removes The Eye-Searing Orange Theme From Lollipop's Battery Saver Mode was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Deal: Pay what you want for 8 different courses in this Learn To Code Bundle

Posted: 18 Feb 2015 09:59 AM PST

5 problems that could halt Xiaomi’s rise to glory

Posted: 18 Feb 2015 09:59 AM PST

PSA: Google Voice + Hangouts MMS is not currently sending, but here’s an easy workaround

Posted: 18 Feb 2015 09:49 AM PST

google voice

Quick heads-up for those of you using Google Voice through Hangouts: something is a bit screwy with MMS messages. Users have found that they can not successfully send an MMS for whatever reason.

The issue doesn't affect their ability to receive MMS messages, so if someone sends you something you should be OK. The issue also doesn't affect SMS in any way.

The good news is that Google is on the case, or so says Googler Alex Weisen over at a Google Groups thread discussing the issue:

Our engineers are looking into this now, sorry for the inconvenience! I'll update again when I have more information.

Even better news is that there's an easy workaround to get your MMS to send while we wait for Google's fix: simply add some text before your MMS attachment, and it appears the MMS messages go through just fine.

We've tested this fix and it's consistent enough for our liking, so be sure to keep it in mind if you find yourself needing to send a picture message at some point. We'll be sure to update this story with any more information Google provides.

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Action Launcher 3 update brings resizable icons, Quickpage, lots more

Posted: 18 Feb 2015 09:23 AM PST

Action Launcher 3's new Quickpage feature. Photo: Killian Bell/Cult of Android Action Launcher 3, one of the best third-party launchers for Android, today received a terrific new update that adds a bunch of welcome new features and improvements. It's now incredibly easy to resize your icons, set your default home screen, and backup your layouts, while the awesome new Quickpage feature puts your favorite apps and

The post Action Launcher 3 update brings resizable icons, Quickpage, lots more appeared first on Cult of Android.

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Unlocked Galaxy S5 now receiving Lollipop update in Germany

Posted: 18 Feb 2015 09:22 AM PST


Samsung has at last started rolling out the eagerly-awaited and much-anticipated Lollipop update to all unlocked models of its flagship smartphone, the Galaxy S5, in Germany. This upgrade transports the latest version of the Android operating system, together with a multitude of new features, bug fixes and stability improvements.

The full changelog can be seen below:

  • Android 5.0 Lollipop update

  • Lock screen and Notification: New Lollipop UI style with enhanced privacy features

  • Recent apps: Support multiple pages

  • Addition of search function within settings

To start the upgrade, make sure you're connected to a Wi-Fi network. Then, from the home screen, press the Menu key, followed by Settings. Scroll to the bottom and tap 'About Device', followed by 'Software Update and 'Update Now'.

Come comment on this article: Unlocked Galaxy S5 now receiving Lollipop update in Germany

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