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Monday, August 31, 2015

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Samsung introduces the Tizen-based Gear S2 and S2 Classic

Posted: 31 Aug 2015 02:42 PM PDT

Samsung has two new smartwatches to share with the world today, both running on the Samsung-backed Tizen OS, not Android Wear. The Samsung Gear S2 and Gear S2 Classic are Samsung's latest attempt at a more rounded smartwatch.

Both the Gear S2 and S2 Classic come with a 1.2-inch circular Super AMOLED display at 360×360, or 302ppi, 1GHz processor, 4GB of internal storage, 512MB of RAM, IP68 water and dust resistance, a bevy of sensors, 250mAh battery, NFC for mobile payments, a rotating bezel for navigation and run on Tizen OS. There's also a 3G enabled version of the S2 with a 300mAh battery and "the first-ever e-SIM with voice capability, to perform quick functions without being closely tethered to their phone."

Though identical internally, externally the Gear S2 features a sleek, minimal and modern design, while the Classic sports a more traditional design with a leather band. Both devices have not been priced and their release dates are still unknown. They will, however, both be on display at IFA this week.


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Top 5 most popular Android apps from last week: Framed, Lara Croft GO

Posted: 31 Aug 2015 02:33 PM PDT

Every week we cover new Android apps with Fresh Meat on Wednesday, followed by Android Gaming on Thursday and Top 10 App Updates on Friday. When Monday rolls around, we look back to see which apps were the most appealing to our audience. Read on for the five most popular Android apps from last week. These apps are ones that are most likely new and haven't appeared in the top five list more than three times.

1. YouTube Gaming

YouTube Gaming

App info: YouTube Gaming keeps you connected to the games, players, and culture that matter to you. Featuring videos and live streams with chat — including let's plays, reviews, speedruns, trailers, and more from your favorite gamers and publishers — you can explore the games you care about more deeply than ever before.


2. Win 10 Launcher

Win 10 Launcher

App info: Win 10 Launcher is here for you (Inspired by Windows 10®). Customize your phone with unique look and feel with the fast, clean and energy efficient Launcher. Surprise your friends with new look of your Android and also share it with your loved ones.


3. Lara Croft GO

Lara Coft GO

App info:  Lara Croft GO is a turn based puzzle-adventure set in a long-forgotten world. Explore the ruins of an ancient civilization, discover well-kept secrets and face deadly challenges as you uncover the myth of the Queen of Venom.


4. Merchants of Space

Merchants of Space

App info: Build and develop your space station, mine resources, trade with astronauts and aliens, challenge your friends in the weekly competitions and be the biggest space merchant ever!


5. Framed


App info: FRAMED is a multi-award winning noir-puzzle game where you re-arrange panels of animated comic book to change the outcome of the story.


Note:  To ensure that all apps receive a fair chance to make the list, we will retire any app that has made the list for three consecutive weeks.

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Specs on new LG Nexus 5 leak

Posted: 31 Aug 2015 02:33 PM PDT

While the more affordable, mid-range Android handset market is jam-packed now and getting fuller by the day, there's still one name that makes every Android fan's ears perk up: Nexus. According to some new, reliable information from Android Police, an updated LG Nexus 5 is coming soon, and it's exactly what fans of the first Nexus 5 were looking for.

It might not have the best specs, but neither did the original Nexus 5. Instead, you can expect the new Nexus 5 (if it is called the Nexus 5) to come in at under flagship pricing with respectable specs:

  • Snapdragon 808
  • Adreno 418 GPU
  • 3GB of RAM
  • 16/32 GB storage
  • 5.2-inch 1080p display
  • 2700mAh battery
  • USB-Type C
  • 12.3-megapixel camera
  • 5-megapixel front-facing camera

Though the Snapdragon 808 isn't quite as powerful as the 810, paired with 3GB of RAM and a lower density display (which will still be ridiculously sharp, mind you), there's no reason to suspect the new Nexus will feel like anything less than a top of the line device. And with a 2700mAh battery, battery life could be impressive as well.

As for when the new Nexus 5 will be released, Android Police is hearing late September. That means only a month to go.

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HTC Zoe 2.0 Lets You Create Videos On Your Phone Without Uploading First, Expands Length To 3 Minutes, And More

Posted: 31 Aug 2015 01:46 PM PDT


Zoes are little video highlights that are similar to GIFs but tend to be longer, so don't call them that. The functionality launched as an HTC exclusive back in the days of the original HTC One. Then things opened up to other devices as the manufacturer expanded Zoe into a social network of sorts. Along the way some things changed, like the ability to create Zoes locally.

Well, Zoe 2.0 is now available in the Play Store, and it lets you create things on your device rather than using the cloud again.

Read More

HTC Zoe 2.0 Lets You Create Videos On Your Phone Without Uploading First, Expands Length To 3 Minutes, And More was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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GoPro App Updated With Clip Sharing From The Camera And Improved Software Updates

Posted: 31 Aug 2015 01:46 PM PDT

unnamedGoPro owners can capture all sorts of daring stunts with their rugged action cams, but at the end of the day they still have to deal with an app that hasn't always been the best. Although, the official GoPro app is getting an update today that makes a few useful changes.

1 2 3

Here's the changelog for the new update.

  • Create 5, 15 or 30-second clips from videos while they're still on your camera and share them to Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and more!
Read More

GoPro App Updated With Clip Sharing From The Camera And Improved Software Updates was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Maps v9.14 Rolls Out New Navigation UI To Everybody, Adds Chart To Businesses For Popular Times [APK Download]

Posted: 31 Aug 2015 12:56 PM PDT


Google Maps was updated just about a week ago and there's already a brand new version bump for your navigational pleasure. The latest update rolls out a new UI for planning out your navigation, including a a big interactive map, more information, and convenient route selection. There's also a new chart in the details page that details just how busy a business gets at different times of the day. If you can't wait to try it for yourself, grab the download link at the bottom of the article.

Read More

Maps v9.14 Rolls Out New Navigation UI To Everybody, Adds Chart To Businesses For Popular Times [APK Download] was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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Smarter watches: Android Wear works with iPhones now

Posted: 31 Aug 2015 10:39 AM PDT

android-wear-iosGoogle's smartwatch platform, Android Wear, has officially gained support for iPhones. The Android Wear for iOS app is currently rolling out and anyone with an iPhone 5, iPhone 5c, iPhone 5s, iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus can start using the Android Wear app at last. Just make sure you're running iOS 8.2 or later. The move

The post Smarter watches: Android Wear works with iPhones now appeared first on Cult of Android.

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Games developer, Dots, share their Do’s and Don’ts for improving your visibility on Google Play

Posted: 31 Aug 2015 10:16 AM PDT

Posted by Lily Sheringham, Developer Marketing at Google Play

Editor's note: A few weeks ago we shared some tips from game developer, Seriously, on how they've been using notifications successfully to drive ongoing engagement. This week, we're sharing tips from Christian Calderon at US game developer, Dots, on how to successfully optimize your Play Store Listing. -Ed.

A well thought-out Google Play store listing can significantly improve the discoverability of your app or game and drive installations. With the recent launch of Store Listing Experiments on the Google Play Developer Console, you can now conduct A/B tests on the text and graphics of your store listing page and use the data to make more informed decisions.

Dots is a US-founded game developer which released the popular game, Dots, and its addictive sequel, TwoDots. Dots used its store listings to showcase its brands and improve conversions by letting players know what to expect.

Christian Calderon, Head of Marketing for Dots, shared his top tips with us on store listings and visibility on Google Play.

Do's and Don'ts for optimizing store listings on Google Play



Do be creative and unique with the icon. Try to visually convince the user that your product is interesting and in alignment with what they are looking for.

Don't spam keywords in your app title. Keep the title short, original and thoughtful and keep your brand in mind when representing your product offering.

Do remember to quickly respond to reviews and implement a scalable strategy to incorporate feedback into your product offering. App ratings are important social proof that your product is well liked.

Don't overload the 'short description'. Keep it concise. It should be used as a call-to-action to address your product's core value proposition and invite the user to install the application. Remember to consider SEO best practices.

Do invest in a strong overall paid and organic acquisition strategy. More downloads will make your product seem more credible to users, increasing the likeliness that a user will install your app.

Don't overuse text in your screenshots. They should create a visual narrative for what's in your game and help users visualize your product offering, using localization where possible.

Do link your Google Play store listing to your website, social media accounts, press releases and any of your consumer-facing channels that may drive organic visibility to your target market. This can impact your search positioning.

Don't have a negative, too short or confusing message in your "What's New" copy. Let users know what updates, product changes or bug fixes have been implemented in new versions. Keep your copy buoyant, informative, concise and clear.

Do use Video Visualization to narrate the core value proposition. For TwoDots, our highest converting videos consist of gameplay, showcasing features and events within the game that let the player know exactly what to expect.

Don't flood the user with information in the page description. Keep the body of the page description organized and concise and test different structural patterns that works best for you and your product!

Use Google Play Store Listing Experiments to increase your installs

As part of the 100 Days of Google Dev video series, Kobi Glick from the Google Play team explains how to test different graphics and text on your app or game's Play Store listing to increase conversions using the new Store Listing Experiments feature in the Developer Console.

Find out more about using Store Listing Experiments to turn more of your visits into installs.

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Skype v5.11 Adds Quick Reply And Call To Heads Up Notifications

Posted: 31 Aug 2015 09:58 AM PDT


When you get a text message in Google's Messenger app, you can reply without having to first pull up the entire conversation. You just tap the buttons that appear in the notification. This capability appeared years sooner in apps like Gmail, which allowed you to reply, archive, and delete messages.

It turns out this feature is available in the latest Android version of Skype. When an incoming notification appears in your notification shade, you will have the option to call the person or reply via text.

Read More

Skype v5.11 Adds Quick Reply And Call To Heads Up Notifications was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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5 Popular Tools That You Might Know Work on Android Tablets

Posted: 31 Aug 2015 09:46 AM PDT


tablet-572868_640 There are certainly many more solid apps available for Android tablets than there were a few years, yet there are still many times when someone will ask me if one of my recommended tools is available for Android. In no particular order, here are five of my most frequently recommended tools that will work on Android tablets as well as on Chromebooks, iPads, and in your laptop's web browser.

Padlet is probably my favorite tool for quickly creating an online space in which students can post short notes, respond to questions, and share links to things they've made and or discovered. Padlet now offers an iPad app, but they don't offer an Android app. However, Padlet does work quite well if you just open it in the web browser on your Android tablet.

Storyboard That is an excellent tool for creating short stories in a comic strip style. By offering more than 40,000 pieces of artwork for students to use in their storyboards, Storyboard That makes sure that students never run out of possibilities. Learn more about Storyboard That in this webinar recording. Like Padlet, Storyboard That does not offer an Android tablet, but it works very well in the web browser on my Nexus tablet.

Animoto has long been a staple of my ed tech toolbox as it provides a good way to quickly introduce people to making simple videos. I find that making a video in Animoto is a confidence builder for people who have never tried to make a video. Once that confidence is built then we'll move on to trying more robust video creation tools. Animoto has offered an Android app for a couple of years now, yet it many people are still surprised when I mention it.

ThingLink is another staple of my ed tech toolbox. ThingLink is a free tool for creating interactive images. The ThingLink Android app has been offered for quite a while, but people still seem surprised when I mention it. If you don't want to install the app, the browser-based version of ThingLink will work on your Android tablet too. I like to use the ThingLink app in conjunction with the PicCollage app to have students summarize the highlights of a field trip. Click here for an example of that.

When searching for data or other computational information, Wolfram Alpha stands superior to other search engines. I recommend Wolfram Alpha not only for searches involving mathematics but for many searches that are in seek of static information like the lifespan of a president, height of a mountain, or the lyrics to Smells Like Teen Spirit. If you open Wolfram Alpha in the browser on your Android tablet you will be prompted to buy the app ($2.99) but you can bypass that by scrolling to the bottom of the page and tapping the link to "continue to Wolfram Alpha."

Disclosure: Storyboard That is an advertiser on my other blog, FreeTech4Teachers.com.

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Android Wear now supports the iPhone

Posted: 31 Aug 2015 09:45 AM PDT

We've long been enjoying Android Wear on our wrists, including Google Now alerts and voice commands, for a while now. And starting today, our iPhone-toting friends can do the same.

Google today officially announced Android Wear support for iPhone. iOS users will get many of the same features that Android Wear on Android offers, including alerts for phone calls and messages, always-on displays, and notifications from various apps. They'll also have access to fitness tracking with Google Fit, "Ok Google" voice commands, the ability to set reminders, and Google Now functionality like traffic and flight info.

Unfortunately for iPhone users, they won't get the same watch face selection that we enjoy. While Google Play offers thousands of different faces, iOS users will have to make do with a handful of faces selected by Google and included with the Android Wear app.


Android Wear for iOS supports the iPhone 5, 5c, 5s, 6, and 6 Plus, and it requires iOS 8.2 or higher. Right now you can only use the LG Watch Urbane with iOS, meaning that you can't pick up a cheap LG G Watch or Moto 360 to try it out. However, Google says that all future Android Wear watches will support iOS.

Kudos to Good Guy Google for extending support for Android Wear to iOS. And while Android Wear for iOS isn't quite as fully-featured as it is on Android, is supports most of the basic features that you'd expect from a smartwatch, and iOS users will soon have a much wider selection of smartwatches to choose from.

You think Apple will ever add Android support to the Apple Watch?

Via: The Verge
Sources: Official Android Blog, App Store

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Android Wear Will Now Work On The iPhone

Posted: 31 Aug 2015 09:29 AM PDT


One of the most requested functionality for Android Wear was compatibility on iOS and while there were 3rd party hacks on getting it working, Google had remained quiet until today as it officially launches Android Wear for iOS.

For those of you who own an iPhone, the app will be available today on the App Store and will work on the iPhone 5, 5s, 6 and 6 Plus running iOS 8.2 or greater. For now the only watch that works on iOS is LG's G Watch Urbane and in the future, Huawei Watch and ASUS ZenWatch 2. Android Police asked Google to comment why, and the reason was this:

We wanted to make sure that iOS users would have a great experience with Android Wear out of the box. We've worked with manufacturers to ensure that the newest watches work really well with modern iPhones, but last year's watches aren't officially supported.

Hopefully Google releases a future update allowing older Android Wear watches to work on iPhones.


Android Wear Will Now Work On The iPhone is a post from: Android in Canada Blog

The post Android Wear Will Now Work On The iPhone appeared first on Android in Canada Blog.

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Android Wear now works with iPhones

Posted: 31 Aug 2015 08:57 AM PDT

(Cross posted on the Official Google Blog)

When you wear something every day, you want to be sure it really works for you. That's why Android Wear offers countless design choices, so you can find the watch that fits your style. Want a round watch with a more classic look? Feel like a new watch band? How about changing things up every day with watch faces from artists and designers? With Android Wear you can do all of that. And now, Android Wear watches work with iPhones.

Android Wear for iOS is rolling out today. Just pair your iPhone (iPhone 5, 5c, 5s, 6, or 6 Plus running iOS 8.2+) with an Android Wear watch to bring simple and helpful information right to your wrist:
  • Get your info at a glance: Check important info like phone calls, messages, and notifications from your favorite apps. Android Wear features always-on displays, so you'll never have to move your wrist to wake up your watch.
  • Follow your fitness: Set fitness goals, and get daily and weekly views of your progress. Your watch automatically tracks walking and running, and even measures your heart rate.
  • Save time with smart help: Receive timely tips like when to leave for appointments, current traffic info, and flight status. Just say "Ok Google" to ask questions like "Is it going to rain in London tomorrow?" or create to-dos with "Remind me to pack an umbrella."

Today, Android Wear for iOS works with the LG Watch Urbane. All future Android Wear watches, including those from Huawei (pictured above), Asus, and Motorola will also support iOS, so stay tuned for more. 

Dr. Seuss once said: "Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You." We agree. So whoever You are, and whatever You like—Android Wear lets you wear what you want.

Posted by David Singleton, Director of Engineering, Android Wear
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Moto 360 Sport shows up in new leak

Posted: 31 Aug 2015 07:45 AM PDT

Motorola's 2nd gen Moto 360 is expected to arrive soon, and while the leaks have given us a good idea of what to expect from it, we're now starting to hear about a variant. @upleaks is reporting that the 2nd gen Moto 360 will launch in September, while a variant called the Moto 360 Sport will arrive a couple of months later in November.

What's the difference? Well, a leaked image from @upleaks shows us that the Moto 360 Sport will ditch the metal body and metal or leather strap and instead replace it with a polyurethane body and strap. It will also come in at least three color options of black, white and orange. Additionally, the image shows off a fitness tracking app that we haven't seen on the existing Moto 360, and it can track heart rate, distance, pace and time, making the Moto 360 Sport a great fit for those looking to increase and track activity. Given the change in design materials, it also wouldn't surprise us if the Moto 360 Sport came in at a lower price than the standard Moto 360, much like Apple has done with the Apple Watch.

You can check out the Moto 360 Sport in the tweet below. We'll keep you posted on more leaks regarding Motorola's upcoming smartwatches.

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Qualcomm Smart Protect coming with Snapdragon 820 for improved security

Posted: 31 Aug 2015 06:40 AM PDT

Qualcomm is known for being a huge name in mobile processors, but it's also put a lot of effort into working on mobile security. Its latest effort is Qualcomm Smart Protect, which uses cognitive computing for real-time malware detection, classification and analysis. That allows it to protect against zero-day malware threats and complement ordinary signature-based anti-malware programs, with Qualcomm Smart Protect detecting and protecting against new threats even before a signature is updated.

Since Smart Protect will be built right into upcoming Snapdragon processors, such as the Snapdragon 820, it can constantly monitor apps and services to detect if any malicious activity is taking place without your knowledge. Qualcomm is also working with existing anti-malware companies, such as Lookout and AVG, to make their services and Smart Protect work in the best way possible together.

Qualcomm will launch Smart Protect in 2016 with the launch of the Snapdragon 820 processor.

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T-Mobile targeting “network abusers” who use too much tethering data

Posted: 31 Aug 2015 06:30 AM PDT

T-Mobile has garnered a reputation for standing out from the crowd in what it's willing to do, and today it's taking another interesting step. The company is now going after what it calls "network abusers," which are T-Mobile users who are taking advantage of the company's network and its unlimited 4G LTE data plan.

The unlimited data plan comes with 7GB of data for tethering and unlimited reduced-speed tethering after that, with the option to pay for more high-speed tethering data as needed. However, some T-Mobile customers are using all sorts of workaround to hide their tethering data, allowing them to use high-speed tethering data unchecked. T-Mobile has developed technology that has allowed them to see which customers are using these workarounds and has decided to take a stance against them, as some of the customers are using — or in T-Mobile's words, "stealing" — as much as 2TB (that's 2000GB!) of data every month.

The total number of users who are using these workarounds comes to about 3,000, which is a small amount, but even those few can have a significant impact on the data speeds for their area. To combat them, T-Mobile is sending out warnings to all of the customers beginning this morning, August 31. If the customers don't stop abusing the data plan, T-Mobile will move them to the cheapest plan with a set amount of 4G LTE data, thus neutralizing the workarounds, which rely on labeling tethering usage as smartphone data usage.

The move could be controversial, but most will likely support the fact that T-Mobile is taking care of its network by eliminating those that are knowingly and intentionally taking advantage of T-Mobile's unlimited data offer. In any case, it'll be interesting to see how it plays out. We'll keep you posted if anything notable happens.

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LG Watch Urbane Luxe has a gold case and a $1200 price tag

Posted: 30 Aug 2015 08:26 PM PDT

LG has been a big supporter of the Android Wear platform, having released several different smartwatches to date. Now LG has introduced a new, luxury version of the LG Watch Urbane that's the most expensive Android Wear device yet.

The LG Watch Urbane Luxe is a luxury version of the Watch Urbane that's got case made of 23-karat gold and an alligator leather band. The device, which LG touts as being "designed with a specific wearer in mind," will cost $1200 when it launches at the end of October. It'll be available for pre-order at www.reeds.com and Reeds Jewelry stores.


LG says that there will be 500 units of the Watch Urbane Luxe made. Each will be engraved with its serial number to ensure authenticity.

While the Watch Urbane Luxe appears to be similar to the Watch Urbane in terms of specs, its gold case and alligator leather band could make it more appealing to folks that want a more jewelry-like smartwatch. The limited edition aspect ought to help make this luxury smartwatch even more appealing to the "specific wearer" that LG is targeting.


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Moto 360 (2nd Gen.) shows its face in leaked press renders

Posted: 30 Aug 2015 04:32 PM PDT

There's been a flurry of Moto 360 (2nd Gen.) leaks lately, including several photos that show the device out and about. Now another leaked image has surfaced that shows the new Moto 360 in official-looking press images.

The two devices show look similar the Moto 360 (2nd Gen.) models that we've leak lately, complete with exposed watch band lugs and a button that's slid up a bit to the two o'clock position. We're also seeing two different case colors and two different band materials.

That's about all of the information that can be gleaned from this leak. However, past reports have suggested that the new Moto 360 will be sold in two sizes — a small and a large — which could make the new 360 attractive to folks who found the original model too large.

Spec details for the Moto 360 (2nd Gen.) are still up in the air, but a recent report suggested that Motorola will unveil a new Android Wear device at IFA this week, so it may not be long before all is revealed. Until then, what do you think of the Moto 360 (2nd Gen.) so far?

Source: @evleaks

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Google Releases Its 'On' App For OnHub

Posted: 30 Aug 2015 03:43 PM PDT

Earlier this month, Google surprised us with OnHub, a $200 WiFi router made in partnership with TP-Link that looks great and packs in some smart technology (even if it only has one ethernet port). We knew Google planned to release an app to pair with and control the OnHub, and today Google On hit the Play Store.

The app appears to be super straight-forward, guiding users through initial setup with a variety of simple, pleasing illustrations, and - after that - allowing for easy troubleshooting, speed testing, and network sharing.

Read More

Google Releases Its 'On' App For OnHub was written by the awesome team at Android Police.

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