I’m one of those “weirdos” who still wears a watch even though Iv’e got a perfectly good cell phone in my pocket to tell me the time. What can I say, I still like watches and I don’t mind having to look and see where the little hand and the big hand are to see if I’m late for an appointment.
However, I am very interested in all of the wearable tech, including watches, that seems to be heading our way. And that goes double for what Google announced this week. It’s a new SDK called Android Wear and damn if it doesn’t look pretty cool.
It’s basically Google Now and provides you with information as you need it or as it happens in a card-style format. The company is starting with watches, but you can imagine other products not far behind.
Here’s some other highlights of Android Wear:
• Straight answers to spoken questions. Just say “Ok Google” to ask questions, like how many calories are in an avocado, what time your flight leaves, and the score of the game. Or say “Ok Google” to get stuff done, like calling a taxi, sending a text, making a restaurant reservation or setting an alarm.
• The ability to better monitor your health and fitness. Hit your exercise goals with reminders and fitness summaries from Android Wear. Your favorite fitness apps can give you real-time speed, distance and time information on your wrist for your run, cycle or walk.
• Your key to a multiscreen world. Android Wear lets you access and control other devices from your wrist. Just say “Ok Google” to fire up a music playlist on your phone, or cast your favorite movie to your TV.
Google is already working with manufacturers Asus, HTC, LG, Motorola and Samsung, along with chip makers Broadcom, Imagination, Intel, Mediatek, and Qualcomm. Fossil may make the first watches available later this year.
To see Android Wear in action, check out the videos after the break.
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Even though the new XBox and PS4 get most of the attention there days, we can’t forget that there’s other platforms out there that also have cool games. Android is one of those plafrorms and the cool game in question today is Injustice: Gods Among Us.
Following is all you need to know from the official Warner Bros. Interactive press release. Also, don’t forget to check out the game trailer after the break.
Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment and DC Entertainment today announced that its popular Injustice: Gods Among Us mobile game is now available on Google Play™ and is coming soon to the Amazon Appstore for Android. Already available from the App Store on iPad, iPhone and iPod touch, this free-to-play title has already garnered more than 16 million installs to date and a player rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars.
Developed for iPad, iPhone and iPhod touch by award-winning NetherRealm Studios, and brought to Android by Virtuous, Injustice: Gods Among Us features a collectible card mechanic and engages players in 3-on-3 tag team combat that pits many of DC Comics most popular icons such as Batman, Superman, The Flash, Wonder Woman, Green Arrow, Aquaman and more against one another.
Fans who also own the PlayStation®3 computer entertainment system and Xbox 360® games and entertainment system versions will be able to unlock content in the console versions that is available in the mobile game, and vice versa, by registering for a Warner Bros. ID (WBID) account and playing the game.
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As with most new smartphones, and other highly anticipated devices these days, it’s hard to keep them a total secret before they come out. Inevitably, photos, specs or in the case of the Motorola Moto X smartphone today, a video will leak out.
The video in question is from Rogers Wireless which highlights the upcoming Motorola Moto X and confirms many of the new features the device will have at launch. Among said features are hands-free searches, notifications showing up as information on screen rather than through a notification light, gestures to launch the camera, and more.
The video also confirms that the device will be able to work hands-free, with features being activated simply by talking to it. In the video a woman speaks the command “OK, Google Now” with the phone fully asleep and it wakes and then performs a search. The clip also highlights other Google Now features, like setting an alarm or getting directions.
All in all, this looks like a pretty great device. Can’t wait to get our hands on one to check it out in more detail.
In the meantime, check out the video after the break. Look for the Motorola Moto X to arrive in the coming months.
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People seem rather divided over the look of Apple’s new iOS 7. But love it or hate it, iOS 7 is here to stay. That’s great for iPhone and iPad users excited for the new OS, but what about people using Android smartphones?
Fortunately, Android users who do want the iOS 7 experience are in luck because an intrepid Android developer has decided to copy it and create a theme for Android called “jbOS 7.” The theme, who’s full name is “Jelly Bean OS 7,” is compatible with handsets running Android 4.0 and later.
Once installed, the theme mimics the look and feel of many aspects of the iOS 7 interface including the lock screen, home screens, some apps and the new app icons. The photo above gives you an idea of how that looks.
There’s also a handy video as well, which we’ve included after the break. For more on “jbOS 7″ or to get the files needed to install the theme, head on over to the developer’s website.
In truth, we’re not entirely sure why someone using Android would want to do this, but heck, who are we to judge? People do love to modify their Android devices. Maybe the iOS 7 theme will actually catch on?
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If you want the latest news about updates and improvements to Google services, you won’t find a much better source than Vic Gundotra. As Senior VP of Engineering for Google, he’s privy to pretty much everything that happens at the company. And he likes to share.
So, when he touts a new update for Google+, we listen. In fact, that’s just what he did this morning. According to his post, the update introduces a new navigation drawer that is “more consistent with other Google apps.” In addition, notifications will now sync across devices so you no longer have to see the same notifications from device to device if you’ve already dismissed them.
You also get a new notifications tray with a bell icon that lets you know if there’s something for you to see as well as unread and read trays. So, some nice improvements. This update should start being availbe today for Android and the web with iOS update to follow.
Here’s what the changelog says about the update:
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Even though Google is pretty much the king of maps and traffic avoidance these days, it would seem the company wants to do it even better. So, with that in mind, today Google announced they are buying Waze, the GPS social traffic app that updates routes and drive information in real-time as users post updates.
The app has voice navigation, shows community-contributed road alerts, learns from your frequently traveled routes, and can even find the cheapest gas station near you, all based on community interaction with other users. With over 10 million downloads via the Google Play store and at least as many in iTunes, Waze has quite a large user base. With this, Google is hoping to further improve the ability for its Maps app to help drivers avoid those pesky long commute times.
According to the company, they are “excited” about the prospect of “enhancing Google Maps with some of the traffic update features” already used by Waze. They are hoping to “outsmart traffic together.”
Let’s hope they can. We, like everyone else in the world, hates traffic.
If you haven’t already heard the news, the email wars are over and Google won. Gmail is the dominate email address and platform that most people use. In fact, we’re not sure we know anyone who doesn’t have a Gmail account.
Fortunately, those who do don’t usually have to decide between using an iOS or Android-powered smartphone to get their email on the go. There’s plenty of other reasons for the debate between Android and iOS, but thankfully Google doesn’t make you choose — at least where email is concerned.
Today the Gmail apps for both iOS and Android got an update. Both updates feature the new “Categories” tabs as well as the usual bug fixes and performance improvements.
Here’s what you specifically get in the new iOS version:
• New notifications options: Get notified for all messages, only important messages, or none at all, on a per account basis. Customize these settings from the in-app settings page.
• Meet the new inbox: If you’ve enabled the new inbox, your mail is now grouped into categories so that you can see what’s new at a glance and decide which emails you want to read when. Primary mail is shown first and it’s easy to access and keep track of email in other categories by opening the menu. Configure this feature by going to Gmail.com on your computer.
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Rejoice Android-using fans of short videos, your iOS-using friends no longer have a reason to gloat. Well, one less reason at least.
That’s right, Twitter’s popular Vine application, that was previously an iOS-only exclusive, has arrived for Android. For those not familiar (and it could be a few of you), Vine allows users to record 6 seconds of video with sound and then share it with the world, much like you do with a Tweet on Twitter.
Once the video is posted, others can view it as it loops continuously. The app has become pretty popular and has spawned some very inventive videos that utilize the 6 second time limit as part of the piece and not a hindrance.
Now that Android users can join the fun, it will be interesting to see what new videos pop up. To get the app now, head over to the Play Store.
Even though they denied its existence, it looks like HTC will release a ‘Nexus Experience’ version of their flagship HTC One device. The announcement and confirmation came today during the AllThingsD conference in Rancho Palos Verdes, CA.
Google’s head of Android development, Sundar Pichai, personally confirmed the device on stage during the conference and said it will available through Google Play on June 26. It is also now up over at HTC’s website with the following specs:
32GB of storage, running stock Android 4.2.2, runs on T-Mobile and AT&T LTE, $599 through Google Play, unlockable bootloader. Now that’s a nice phone with great specs.
So tempting. If you’re an Android fan, will this be your new phone or will it be the ‘Nexus Experience’ Samsung Galaxy S4?
Are you a Gmail user? If you’re like most people, you probably are. In fact, you probably have multiple accounts that you check on a daily, hourly or even a minute by minute basis. Heck, we get it, you don’t want to miss anything important and Gmail is a great service.
Well, good news because it seems Google understands. Or, at least they’re trying to by continuously updating and refining the Gmail experience both on the desktop and via their mobile apps to make it even better.
Continuing the trend this week, Google has announced they are updating Gmail yet again for Android, iOS and the desktop. This time, the update will include features designed to help users unclutter their inboxes and deal with email in a more efficient way.
The redesign changes the layout of Gmail and separates messages into tabs. You can have up to five with each designed to group messages into categories that make it easier to process email. In addition to the main tab, which continues to be sorted by priority, the new tabs include social (messages from social networks like Facebook, Twitter, Google+, etc.), promotions (for Groupon, LivingSocial, etc.), updates (for confirmations, receipts, bills, etc.) and forums (messages from discussion boards, mailing lists, etc.).
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